Issue 1035

Australia

A subsidiary of the giant construction company Grocon was fined $250,000 in the Melbourne Magistrates Court on November 21 for “failing to ensure a safe workplace”.

The charge related to the deaths of three people when a wall collapsed in March last year. The wall blew over in a strong...

The Tamil Refugee Council released this statement on November 29.

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The Australian government has almost certainly condemned another group of Sri Lankan asylum seekers to persecution, including torture, by returning them...

Refugee activists organised a float in the Perth pride parade on November 23 to raise awareness of the discrimination queer refugees face on Manus Island.

About 50 people took part in the float, dressed as prison guards and detainees in bright orange jumpsuits.

The float was...

Thousands rallied in Sydney, Melbourne and cities across the country to protest the federal government's cuts to the ABC and SBS, during the week of November 18 to 25.

The week of action was organised by unions and the Friends of the ABC, culminating in a protest outside federal...

Cuts to the ABC. Cuts to SBS. More broken promises by this rotten Coalition government. Now more than ever we need Green Left Weekly as an alternative source of news and commentary from a progressive viewpoint.

Green Left Weekly is Australia's premier newspaper from an...

World

December 3 marks the 30th anniversary of the horrific Bhopal gas disaster. It also marks 30 years of relentless struggle for justice by survivors.

The city of Bhopal, capital of the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh, was the site of a pesticide plant run by Union Carbide India...

Teachers from Mexico's National Autonomous University (UNAM) demanded on November 27 that the country's authorities release the 11 people arrested during the clashes between protesters and police after a march over the 43 missing Ayotzinapa students.

“Human rights organizations, press,...

On the world map, Kobane falls in the north of Syria, right on the border with Turkey. According to the Kurds, however, it is the west of Kurdistan or “Rojava” in Kurdish.

There is a train line right by the town. This line determined the border between Syria and Turkey. The division of...

The Korean Supreme Court appeal ruled on November 13 in favour of Ssangyong Motor Company management and against the reinstatement of laid-off workers. The workers were laid off in 2009 after a bitter stand-off with police and 77 day factory occupation.

The November 13 decision...

President Barack Obama’s executive order on deportations of undocumented immigrants has created a firestorm of controversy between Democrats and Republicans.

However, the charges and counter-charges between the two big parties are not what are essential.

The presidential order,...

“Drop that plate right now!”

Those were the words of a Fort Lauderdale, Florida, police officer as he arrested 90-year-old Arnold Abbott, a homeless advocate who serves hot meals to homeless people twice a week through his Love Thy Neighbor group.

This incident, which gained...

Britain's major political parties are so scared of an alternative that they won't even let the left-wing, anti-austerity Green Party into televised debates.

If the Greens aren't allowed into the TV election debates, there should be a compromise, such as its MP, Caroline Lucas, being...

In September, Prime Minister Tony Abbott signed an agreement which will allow sales of Australian uranium to India for the first time.

India has consistently refused to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and has manufactured up to 110 nuclear warheads, but has been given a...

The siege of Knightsbridge is a farce. For two years, an exaggerated, costly police presence around the Ecuadorean embassy in London has served no purpose other than to flaunt the power of the state.

Their quarry is an Australian charged with no crime, a refugee from gross injustice...

When a St Louis County grand jury, after its three-month farcical “investigation”, announced on November 24 its foregone conclusion not to indict white police officer Darren Wilson for the murder of unarmed Black teenager Michael Brown, the town of Ferguson, Missouri erupted.

For the...

Analysis

A report conducted by the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has shown environmental concerns and technical lapses in coal seam gas (CSG) mining by Santos at their sites in Gunnedah and the Pilliga Forest, NSW.

The report, published in Fairfax Media, is an audit from May last year...

In the Social Contract, published in 1762, Jean-Jacques Rousseau wrote that, “man is born free, and everywhere is in chains”. The French Revolution determined to remedy this state of affairs and its chosen instrument was a constitution setting out “natural, imprescriptible and...

The White Ribbon is a public symbol that family violence is a problem. Women have the right to live a life free from gender-based violence. The fact that White Ribbon Day exists is a tribute to the generations of women and men who have campaigned to have family violence recognised as a crime and...

The education reforms of the 1970s occurred in a very different political climate from today's education movements, yet there are still lessons to be learnt from it.

The political agitation and mood for change of the 1960s opened the door to a number of movements, many coming from the...

A Senate committee recommended on November 24 that immigration minister Scott Morrison’s sweeping migration amendments be passed by parliament.

The Migration and Maritime Powers Legislation Amendment (Resolving the Asylum Legacy Caseload) Bill 2014 would give Morrison unprecedented...

If there was one thing that seemed, finally, to unite this divided nation, it was the overwhelming sense of embarrassment at Prime Minister Tony Abbott's performance at the G20 Summit and other recent international platforms.

Hell, even the US media were talking about how cringe-worthy...

Macquarie Group is the largest investment bank and fund manager in Australia. On November 27 it was listed in a “Hall of Shame” report on global financial institutions found to have investments in companies manufacturing cluster bombs.

The report Worldwide investments in cluster...

Three species of owls are in danger of becoming extinct in Victoria, because the Victorian government has failed to protect the forest habitat where the Sooty, Masked and Powerful owls live.

The Powerful and Sooty owls are listed as vulnerable and the Masked owl is endangered, according...

The Coalition government’s Direct Action policy has become law after passing the lower house on November 23.

The centrepiece of Direct Action is the Emissions Reduction Fund. Under this scheme, the government will pay for projects that will reduce CO2 emissions "at least cost".

...

Australia signed a free trade agreement with China on November 17. The Coalition government and the media praise the agreement, but other groups are concerned about the implications.

More than 85% of Australian exports will be tariff free initially, rising to 93% in four years. Some of...

If the need for an Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) in NSW was obvious when it was established in 1989, a report released in 2010 showed why it is absolutely indispensible.

This was an ICAC study of registered lobbyists that found there were 272 individual lobbyists...

Culture

His cattle didn’t get a bid, they were fairly bloody poor,
What was he going to do? He couldn’t feed them anymore,
The dams were all but dry, hay was thirteen bucks a bale,
And last month’s talk of rain was just a fairytale,
His credit had run out, no chance to pay what’s...

In the wake of the Grand Jury decision to not indict police officer Darren Wilson for shooting unarmed Black youth Michael Brown, US punk band Anti-Flag said all proceeds from a compilation of protest songs, This Concerns Everyone released by its record label A-F Records, will go...

“Amid swinging cuts to the nation’s largest public broadcaster came the news yesterday that coverage of both the W-League and Women’s National Basketball League will conclude in coming months,” The Guardian said on November 25, “ending thirty-five years of commitment to regular women’s...

Australian sport, particularly Australian rules football, has enjoyed a positive place in the public psyche.

It has managed to perpetuate an image of an all-encompassing and all-welcoming environment, a world away from hooliganism and violent crowds often associated in the popular...

Sheplife
Briggs
Golden Era Records
Released August 2014
Now touring
www.iambriggs.com

Briggs is 598 kilometres from his hometown of Shepparton - and he's missing his bed.

"When I'm at home I don't have people ringing me up...

Tom Waits once said that writing songs against war was like throwing peanuts at a gorilla. Which may be true, but no one said gorillas liked peanuts in their face.

After all, the veteran American songwriter made the comment as a self-deprecating reference to the anti-war songs on his...

Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal

Ebola exposes sickness of the global system

To understand the Ebola epidemic, the People's Health Movement says, we must shed light on the global and local political, economic and other societal factors that underlie its appearance, spread and high fatality rate.

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