The huge number of transnational capitalist firms straddling the planet are effectively controlled by a very small group of centrally important players, says a ground-breaking survey conducted by Swiss researchers. Deploying statistical methods normally used in physics, Stefania Vitali, James B. Glattfelder and Stefano Battiston of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich, data-mined information held by business intelligence firm Bureau van Dijk. The data, which included company ownership structures, allowed a new insight into the relationships between 43,060 corporations.
About 200 people attended a rally and march in Brisbane Square on October 15 to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the sinking of the refugee boat SIEV-X, with the loss of 353 lives — 146 of whom where children. The then-Howard government and Australian navy knew of this disaster but allowed these asylum seekers, fleeing war and persecution, to die. Speakers at the rally included former Democrats Senator and now Greens member Andrew Bartlett, an Iraqi refugee now settled in this country, and human rights lawyer Julian Burnside.
More than 600 people rallied and marched in Brisbane’s CBD on October 16, as part of a national day of action to “Defend our water from coal and coal seam gas”. The rally in Queens Park was sponsored by the Lock and Gate Alliance and Defend Our Water Queensland. Lock the Gate Alliance spokesperson Drew Hutton told the rally: “We live in the driest country on earth. To allow the mining industry to pollute our water and destroy our best farming land is a disgrace. “Why is the Labor government allowing the mining companies to ruin our state? And the Liberal-National Party are no better.”
The occupation of Sydney’s Martin Place continued into its fourth day with a kitchen, information desk, media centre and people’s library set-up, as protesters come and go from the now comfortably established rally site.
Ongoing occupations of public spaces were continuing on October 17 in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane in opposition to corporate domination and exploitation. The actions began on October 15 as part of the "United for Global Change" actions that took place in more than 1500 cities and towns around the world.