884

Green Left Weekly is moving to a new office. Ever since it was founded in 1991, GLW has been produced in Sydney in our Chippendale office, on Abercrombie St.

For years before that, GLW’s predecessor, Direct Action, was also produced in the Chippendale building.

But the space no longer suits our needs and we are moving to an exciting new building on Mountain Street, Ultimo — just minutes from Abercrombie St.

It wouldn’t be okay for Amnesty to take donations from military dictators or for Animal Liberation to accept abattoir-owners as sponsors.

Such scenarios are so unlikely they just sound bizarre.

So why should we accept that it’s okay for Australian environmental groups to take money from fossil fuel corporations?

Surely it’s the ultimate conflict of interest. How can groups set up to stop climate change accept cash from companies that make millions from polluting the planet?

Chanting “refugees — freedom now, don’t treat people worse than cows”, 50 refugee rights protesters confronted immigration minister Chris Bowen at a refugee conference on June 17.

The protest, which was called by the Refugee Action Coalition, marched into the University of NSW lecture theatre in which Bowen was addressing the conference, before police and security ejected the activists.

Many of those inside the conference, which was organised by the Centre for Refugee Research, supported the protest. About half the room turned their backs on Bowen.

At a public debate on June 16, Icelandic journalist and WikiLeaks spokesperson Kristinn Hrafnsson said WikiLeaks has strengthened democracy and revealed wrongdoings. Most of the 600-strong crowd said they agreed.

At the end of this year’s second IQ² debate, 58.2% of the audience voted for the proposition: “WikiLeaks is a force for good”. Just 32.2% said they disagreed while 8.8% were undecided.

The debate did sway some people, however. Polled before the debate, only 6.3% of attendees said they disagreed and 30.7% said they were undecided.

Ninety-one percent of Australians think the government should take more action to roll out renewable energy and create green jobs and 86% say the government should develop a plan to get to 100% renewables.

These were some of the outcomes of one of Australia’s biggest ever polls on climate change and climate policy, which was released by the 100% Renewable Energy Campaign on June 14.

Australian Taxation Office management has announced it will put its draft enterprise agreement to a vote of all ATO staff during a seven-day period starting on June 24, after negotiations with the unions ended in disagreement.

From June 15 to June 17 the Community and Public Sector Union held a ballot of its ATO members to decide the union's attitude to management's proposal.

About 3000 people rallied outside Tasmania’s parliament house on June 16 to protest a harsh budget handed down by the ALP-Greens coalition government.

Up to 1700 public sector workers will lose their jobs and 20 schools will close under the government’s plans.

Gaddafi has record of slaughter

Tony Iltis [GLW #882] perceptively takes apart the double-dealing of the major Western powers as they have responded to the Arab revolts. But he is on shakier ground when he argues in relation to Libya that “there is no evidence that the (NATO) intervention saved thousands of lives”.

As reported by Reuters on March 17, Muammar Gaddafi in a radio broadcast threatened the people of the rebel city of Benghazi in these terms: “We will come … house by house, room by room … We will have no mercy and no pity.”

Multinational gas company Dart Energy met with residents from St Peters on June 6 to discuss the company’s plans to carry out exploratory coal seam gas (CSG) drilling in Sydney’s inner-west before the end of the year.

Dart have plans to drill at a now vacant industrial site in St Peters close to residential properties and Sydney Park.

The exploration licence held by Dart covers not only St Peters but an area of 2392 square kilometeres, encompassing most of metropolitan and suburban Sydney.

The president of the Pacific island nation of Nauru told Australian opposition leader Tony Abbott that it would move to sign the United Nations Convention on the Status of Refugees though it has not taken formal steps to do so.

Abbott said on June 13 this meant Prime Minister Julia Gillard had “run out of excuses” not to reopen the centre and send refugees to the small, poor nation about 4000 kilometres from Australia.

Pages

Subscribe to 884