Issue 1028

Australia

Media statement by Sydney Stop CSG

Stop CSG Sydney President Pip Hinman has welcomed Marrickville Council's decision at its meeting tonight to support the campaign to extinguish the CSG licence covering the whole of the Sydney basin.

The unanimous council decision came...

Fossil Free Sydney University released this statement on September 25.

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In a historic referendum at the University of Sydney, voters overwhelmingly supported fossil fuel divestment. Eighty percent of the students demanded the Vice-Chancellor commit to divesting from fossil...

Since 1971 the Leadbeater's possum has been a faunal emblem of Victoria. This possum is now critically endangered due to loss of habitat from decades of clearfell logging and bushfires.

The Leadbeater's possum is restricted to small pockets of remnant old growth mountain ash forests in...

As well as forcing people to wait until the age of 70 before reaching the retirement age, the federal Coalition government also intends to push these septuagenarians into poverty.

The retirement pension for a single person is currently set at 27.7% of Male Total Average Weekly Earnings (...

Residents and supporters of the Save Millers Point campaign protested outside the auction of another public housing property on October 8. About 30 protesters gathered outside Ray White Real Estate in Double Bay, holding placards and chanting, "Aristocrats, shame on you."

Millers Point...

NSW’s Chief Scientist and Engineer, Professor Mary O'Kane, released the final report on her review into coal seam gas (CSG) in the state on September 30.

Former premier Barry O’Farrell commissioned the review 18 months ago in response to intense public opposition to the industry.

...

Progressive activists are contesting this year’s student campus council elections at the University of Western Sydney’s Bankstown campus.

RES Out West — Resisting Education Slashes — will run two activists for positions on the council and campus paper editors for 2015. Both are first...

Swan Island Peace Convergence released this statement on October 2.

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Before dawn on October 2, eight peace activists entered the top secret Swan Island military base near Queenscliff, Victoria.

The group entered the base to nonviolently disrupt preparations for the...

Steve O’Brien is standing as a candidate for the Socialist Alliance in the Newcastle byelection on October 25. The sitting Coalition MP, Tim Owen, resigned in August after he admitted he lied to the Independent Commission Against Corruption about accepting an illegal $10,000...

A community protest has condemned the assault of a 26-year-old woman on the Upfield train in Melbourne on September 25.

The woman was attacked by a female passenger as the train pulled into Batman Station in North Coburg, and then thrown from the carriage while the train was still moving...

World

"This win is a triumph for anti-imperialists and anti-colonialists," Bolivia's left-wing President Evo Morales told thousands of supporters from the balcony of the presidential palace on the evening of October 12 after a crushing win in that's day's presidential poll, Reuters said.

...

The administration of Salvadoran President Salvador Sanchez Ceren celebrated its 100th day in office last month, taking the chance to report on actions taken to advance towards equality.

Among the achievements of the leftist Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN) administration...

After more than 50 years in Ecuador, the US Agency for International Development (USAID) closed up shop last month. The Ecuadorian government said USAID has been asked to leave Ecuador, while a US Embassy official claimed it was USAID’s decision.

It appears that after more than two years...

Awami Workers’ Party (AWP) general secretary Farooq Tariq has appealed for international support for 12 activists jailed for “terrorism” for helping climate change victims.

In a September 25 letter to “solidarity networks” around the world, Tariq said Baba Jan, an activist in Gilgit, and...

The normally torpid Spanish legal system had an attack of extreme speed on September 29.

Its highly abnormal Usain Bolt-like behaviour was caused by the Catalan regional government formally decreeing its long-awaited November 9 non-binding consultation of Catalan public opinion on the...

St Louis officer shoots unarmed Black teen ― yes, again

“Angry protests erupted again in St. Louis on Wednesday night after an 18-year-old man was shot and killed by an off-duty police officer ― reigniting tensions in a city still reeling from the killing of Mike Brown...

The eyes of the world are watching Hong Kong, where masses of people have taken to the streets in defiance of the tear gas of riot police and the threats of the government.

On October 9, Hong Kong authorities cancelled talks with the leaders of protests pushing for democratic reforms...

About 100,000 people marched in Kolkata on September 20 against police violence and for gender justice. I have known the city all my life and have not known of a demonstration of that size since the 1960s.

The march was in response to a huge police crackdown on a peaceful student protest...

In the first round of the Brazilian presidential elections on October 5, the results were “logical”. President Dilma Rousseff, standing for re-election as the candidate of the Workers' Party (PT), will face ex-governor of Minas Gerais, Aecio Neves from the Brazilian Social Democracy Party (PSDB...

“Things are looking positive and the wind is with us,” Major General Craig Orme, commander of Australian forces in the latest war in the Middle East, told AAP on October 11.

If the US-led military coalition has a strategy against its latest enemy, the terrorist gang that calls itself the...

Latest polls suggests Bolivian President Evo Morales will be reelected for a third term in a landslide victory on October 12.

One week before the vote, Morales' support hit 57.3%. The latest statistics from pollster Tal Cual Comunicacion Estrategica indicate a huge win for the left-wing...

The Venezuelan National Assembly swore in grassroots leader Juan Contreras to assume the vacant post of the late deputy Robert Serra on October 7. Serra, a 27-year-old socialist deputy, was stabbed to death alongside his partner Maria Herrera in their Caracas home on October 1.

...

Kobane’s epic resistance against the assault of the genocidal Islamic State (IS) gangs had entered its fourth week by October 10.

The defence had held out against overwhelming odds. The defenders had been forced back, but their lines had not been broken. In some neighbourhoods, street...

A desperate battle by progressive Kurdish-led resistance fighters is seeking to defend Kobanê from ISIS fundamentalist forces. Kobanê is in Rojava, or Western Kurdistan, is a predominantly Kurdish area in northern Syria that is a semi-autonomous “liberated zone” experiencing a social revolution...

The statement below was released by the foreign affairs committe of the Turkish left-wing People's Democratic Party (HDP) on October 3. The HDP is a strong support of Kurdish rights. HDP presidential candidate, Kurdish activist Selahattin Demirtas, won almost 10% o0f the vote in Turkey's...

Amid ongoing large protests in support of democratic reforms, Chinese authorities warned of “chaos” on October 2 if protesters carried through their threat to storm Hong Kong government buildings if the region’s Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying did not resign, the Morning Star said that day....

Robert Serra, a 27-year-old legislator of the governing United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), and the National Assembly's (AN) youngest parliamentarian, was found dead in his Caracas home yesterday.

Authorities confirmed last night that Serra and his partner Maria Herrera had been...

The Venezuelan government initiated a takeover of the abandoned Clorox factory on September 25, with Venezuelan Vice-President Jorge Arreaza calling an assembly of the company's 475 workers to reactivate the plant's activities.

Clorox Venezuela called workers and left voicemails stating...

After speaking at the United Nations climate change summit on September 23, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro seized the chance to visit community leaders, local activists and grassroots groups in an event hosted by Hostos Community College of the South Bronx in New York City.

About...

Analysis

The Who Pays for our Common Wealth report into tax contributions by the S&P ASX 200, Australia’s 200 top stockmarket listed companies, has found that 84% of them paid less than the company tax rate of 30% in the period between 2004 and 2013. This amounts to $80 billion in forgone...

So it turns out the “sword” confiscated during the September 18 terror raids in Sydney's north-west — you know Australia's largest terror raids ever — was actually plastic.

That would be the “sword” the cops had placed in a plastic bag that the media made such a big deal out of...

By the mid-1880s, all of the Australian colonies had passed education Acts based on the principal of “free, compulsory and secular” education. This mirrored similar legislation in Britain where the Factory Act of 1833 had made it unlawful for children under nine years of age to be...

Continuous protests in the Nauru refugee detention camp peaked with up to 600 people breaking out of the family compound just after midnight on October 10.

An asylum seeker told Sydney’s Refugee Action Coalition (RAC): “Day to day, night to night, the situation on Nauru is getting more...

Tony Abbott’s government has backed away from the ludicrous proposal to force unemployed people to apply for 40 jobs a month to receive the paltry Newstart allowance.

The proposal would have generated 30 million job applications a month for the 147,000 jobs available to the 746,000...

The latest report on retail trade by the Australian Bureau of Statistics found department stores suffered a 2.9% fall in business in August, in seasonally adjusted terms. Indeed, overall retail trade was flat and was only saved from collapsing by people still buying food and basic necessities...

There are times when farce and living caricature almost consume the cynicism and mendacity in the daily life of Australia's rulers.

Across the front pages is a photograph of a resolute Tony Abbott with Aboriginal children in Arnhem Land, in Australia’s remote north. "Domestic policy one...

Last week the federal government released its first evaluation of how its controversial income management policy has fared in five locations where the scheme was introduced in July 2012.

This discriminatory government policy, which allows for Centrelink clients to have their payments...

In an atmosphere of manufactured hysteria about “Muslim terrorists” in our midst, the Coalition government has introduced sweeping attacks on civil liberties in Australia.

Prime minister Tony Abbott declared that the “balance between freedom and security may have to shift” and that “...

Below is the first part of a statement initially released by Socialist Alliance in Australia on September 24 and updated on October 4. In Sydney, on Friday morning (October 10), members of the community will a protest fast in Sydney Town Hall Square from 9am.

See also:
Sydney...

Culture

Here's this month's radical record roundup, from Irish rock to Australian pop. What album, or albums, would you suggest? Comment below, on Twitter or Facebook.

1. In a month when Bob Geldof urged the Scottish to vote against independence and U2 held a desperate-looking...

We Move Tonight: The Making of the Grenada Revolution
By Joseph Ewart Layne
St. George’s, Grenada: Grenada Revolution Memorial Foundation, 2014
Paperback 203 pp.

“A big revolution in a small country” is allegedly how Fidel Castro described the...

Toms River: A Story of Science & Salvation
Dan Fagin
Bantam Books, 2013
538 pages, $43.95 (hb)

In yet another chapter of the well-thumbed book of “corporate avarice and government neglect”, writes Dan Fagin, the town of Toms River in New...

This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs The Climate
By Naomi Klein
Simon & Shulster, 2014

Award-winning author and activist Naomi Klein, who wrote The Shock Doctrine and No Logo, is back with her long-awaited new release: ...