Editorial

“Earth Hour” will be held around the world on March 27. The event is organised by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and involves participants switching off their lights for the hour as a symbolic declaration of support for environmental action.

The formal outcome of the Copenhagen climate summit was a huge fiasco. It confirmed the world’s corporate rulers were simply unwilling to act in defence of people and the planet.

On the face of it, 2009 is drawing to an end with a new outbreak of political madness.

For environmentalists, Indigenous rights activists, feminists, socialists and all progressive people, Latin America is a source of hope and inspiration today. The people of Venezuela, Cuba, Bolivia, Ecuador and El Salvador, among others, are showing that radical social change is possible and a better, more just society can be imagined and built.

On November 15, Indonesian authorities said they had shot and wounded two Afghan refugees they said were trying to escape after their boat was intercepted three days earlier.

The big nuclear push is on. The nuclear industry is trying to re-brand yellowcake as “green”.

One of the infamous “double-speak” slogans of the nightmare totalitarian regime in George Orwell’s 1984 was “war is peace”. The Nobel jury appears to have based itself on this principle of inverting reality with its decision to grant this year’s Nobel Peace Prize to US President Barack Obama.

If we are going to meet the crisis posed by global warming, governments must take strong and urgent measures to cut emissions now. We need to build a sustainable economy and we need to do it fast. Delay will result in dangerous and unstoppable climate change.

The July 1 Australian carried an extraordinary attack by Ilan Grapel on Green Left Weekly and its monthly Arabic insert the Flame titled “A willing ally to Hamas’s hatred”. Both publications are guilty of a “radical anti-Israel stance”, Grapel said.

Bosses do not provide safe and healthy workplaces for their workers out of the goodness of their hearts. Capitalism’s drive for short-term profits means workplace safety is a cost that can cut like any other.

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