Issue 1168

Australia

As the South Australian government fights a state election where Labor is in a three-way battle for power with the Coalition and Nick Xenophon’s SA Best party, it has announced plans to build a 250MW “virtual power plant”, linking household rooftop solar and battery storage.

Beginning...

One of the most staunch resident action groups fighting the corporate profit-driven, road-building frenzy of the NSW Coalition government is Community Action for Windsor Bridge (CAWB).

They have courted arrest in their resistance to a plan to demolish the historic Windsor Bridge and build...

The Australia Institute says developing the Northern Territory's shale oil and gas resources would release an extra 34 billion tonnes of carbon, 60 times Australia's current annual carbon pollution.

The NT government will decide whether to lift a moratorium on fracking based on an...

Hundreds of people attended a rally in Melbourne's CBD on February 4 to protest racist media coverage and treatment at the hands of the police and politicians.

The protest was organised by Sudanese activists in the wake of comments made by federal and state Coalition politicians about a...

Unemployed activists, with the support of the Geelong Trades Hall Council, have established a branch of the Australian Unemployed Workers’ Union (AUWU) in Geelong.

The branch conducted its first action on February 6 when six activists surveyed people outside the local Centrelink office....

United Voice has lost a five-year equal pay case after the full bench of the Fair Work Commission ruled on February 6 that they had failed to show early childhood educators were paid differently to men performing work of comparable value.

The unions had lodged a claim for equal pay for...

With the help of the Australian Workers Union, the first union for employed hair stylists, Hair Stylists Australia, was officially launched on February 1. Hairdressing is one of the lowest paid trades in Australia.

The union’s goal is to bring the 60,000 mostly women hairdressers from...

Around the country, on March 25 (Palm Sunday in the Christian calendar), people will be protesting about the federal government’s ongoing cruelty towards refugees.

They will be demanding an end to offshore detention and boat turn-backs and for asylum seekers on Manus Island and Nauru to...

A coalition of socialists announced on February 5 that they are forming the Victorian Socialists to field a ticket to contest the Northern Metropolitan Legislative Council seat in the November state election.

Australia’s two largest socialist organisations — Socialist Alliance and...

Our political system is broken. The Liberals rule for their corporate mates. Labor is little better, tailing the political right and selling out its working class supporters to big money and developers.

It’s time for a genuine left alternative.

In the November 2018 state election,...

World

Catalonia in Spain: Europe's key struggle for democracy

Click here for latest news

Note: This blog follows on our two previous blogs on the Catalan struggle for self-determination, which provided detailed...

A Labour government would officially apologise and pardon the suffragettes for the miscarriages of justice they suffered in fighting for women’s right to vote in Britain, said Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.

Morning Star Online said the Labour shadow cabinet agreed to plans for a royal...

Venezuela's presidential elections have been set for April 22 as talks between the government and opposition aimed at promoting peace and unity appeared to crumble.

The head of Venezuela's electoral authority, Tibisay Lucena, announced the date on February 7.

The news follows last...

Thousands of solidarity activists from all across the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria defied a threat of bombardment by the Turkish State on February 6 to stand in solidarity with the resistance in Afrin.

An Assyrian representative from Deir ez-Zor in Syria’s east who attended the...

Thousands of health workers and members of the public joined marches across Britain on February 3 to demand the government act to end the crisis in Britain’s public National Health Service, the Morning Star Online said that day.

The NHS in Crisis: Fix it Now demonstrations, which took...

Britain’s socialist Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn vowed to end Britain’s rough-sleeping crisis if elected prime minister by “immediately” purchasing 8000 homes for people with a history of sleeping on the streets, Morning Star Online said on January 29.

The plan, announced that day on...

The statement below, “Message from the Women of Afrin to the Women of the World”, was released on February 3 by Kongreya Star Efrin, a confederation of women’s organisatons in Afrin (Efrin in Kurdish).

One of the cantons of the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria, Afrin is part of the...

Protesters gathered in New Delhi, India, to protest against the 2018 national budget released by the right-wing Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) government, labelling it “anti-people” and “anti-labour”.

Representatives of Indian trade unions and left-wing parties held placards reading: “Anti-...

US Secretary of State and former CEO of oil giant Exxon Mobil Rex Tillerson has threatened Venezuela with a ban on oil exports, only days after hinting that the country’s president, Nicolas Maduro, could be overthrown by a military uprising.

Describing Venezuela’s armed forces as a...

Ecuador’s February 4 “popular consultation” resulted in a victory for the government of President Lenin Moreno, with the Yes option obtaining an average vote of 67% across the seven questions included in the referendum.

Among the proposals put forward in the referendum initiated by Moreno...

As 17-year-old Palestinian girl Ahed Tamimi remains in prison awaiting trial for slapping a soldier who invaded her family’s yard, three 17-year-old Israeli girls are at the centre of a lawsuit over the decision by New Zealand singer Lorde to cancel a planned Tel Aviv concert.

Israeli...

A wave of street demonstrations have spread across major cities in Sudan in protest against new austerity measures pushed by the North African country’s government.

At the behest of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the administration of President Omar al-Bashir is removing state...

This winter has been extremely cold in South Korea, with temperatures regularly reaching well below -10°C — perhaps another sign of climate change.

One of the coldest places has been Pyeongchang, a small town in Gangwon Province, which is just south of the demilitarised zone (DMZ) between...

In a move that “smacks of something you see in a totalitarian country,” according to historian Douglas Brinkley, United States President Donald Trump is reportedly pushing for a huge display of his country’s military prowess.

Trump has given orders to officials at the Pentagon to plan a...

The slow-burn fire sale of Mexico’s public assets could be about to end – or at least, that’s what has market analysts worried.

"The market is not priced for this," Schroders Investment Management’s emerging markets analyst Jim Barrineau recently told CNBC. Barrineau was referring to the...

On January 20, Turkey launched an invasion of Afrin, one of the three cantons that make up the Democratic Federation of Northern Syria (also known as Rojava), the site of a profound, Kurdish-led social revolution based on multi-ethnic participatory democracy and women’s liberation.

The...

Analysis

The transport system in Australia is in crisis. The push by governments and the private roads lobby to build more tollways, sell off our public transport to the big corporations is worsening services, raising costs and creating a transport impasse for the public.

At the centre of this is...

In the early 1990s, Simon Millar helped organise a float in the annual Melbourne Moomba Parade. Simon was part of the campaign Save Our Services, which was fighting against the privatisation of electricity, water and gas.

Simon and some other activists and artists designed a float with a...

Community groups opposed to the controversial $17 billion WestConnex tollway project have criticised the recent decision by NSW Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) to dismiss the 13,000 objections lodged against the WestConnex M4-M5 Link Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). 

RMS responses...

The Murray-Darling Basin Declaration was signed on February 5 by 12 eminent scientists and economists — Quentin Grafton, Darla Hatton MacDonald, David Paton, Graham Harris, Henning Bjornlund, Jeffery D Connor, John Quiggin, John Williams, Lin Crase, Richard Kingsford, Sarah Ann Wheeler and...

Four years ago thousands of people lit candles in more than 750 locations across Australia to remember slain 23-year-old Iranian asylum seeker Reza Berati and demand an end to Australia’s detention system.

It was the largest post-Howard government mobilisation for refugee rights to date...

The purpose of the Turnbull government is to clear every obstacle it can to help big business maximise its profits.

No environmental protection or social good is too important to be sacrificed for this goal. No surprise then that they are trying to cripple freedom of expression. For them...

For almost 14 years we have repeated the same sad story of the death of TJ Hickey.

The young Kamilaroi man was happily riding his bike in Waterloo on February 14, 2004, totally unaware of the tragedy that was to come. A police car driven by then Constable Hollingsworth, started to pursue...

The journalists’ union and legal organisations have warned that the federal Coalition government’s latest amendments to the Criminal Code Act 1995 would make it difficult, if not impossible, to report on what the government does behind closed doors.

The Media Entertainment and...

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten told the National Press Club in Canberra on January 30 that he had become increasingly sceptical of Adani”s Carmichael coalmine in recent months: “We’re certainly looking at the Adani matter very closely,” he said. “If it doesn’t stack up commercially or if it...

“So, how come the left is so divided?”, we get asked routinely. After a conversation in which we try to put 150 years of struggle into its historical context, they inevitably respond with: “Yes, but don’t you think you’d be able to fight the right better if you were bigger and stronger?”

...

Culture

Game of Mates: How Favours Bleed the Nation
By Cameron Murray & Paul Frijters
$22.99
gameofmates.com

Game of Mates tells the story of two Australian men, the working-class Bruce and the capitalist James — two imaginary but...

Darkest Hour
Directed by Joe Wright
Written by Alexander McCarten
Starring Gary Oldman & Kirsten Scott Thomas
In cinemas now

The latest film about former British PM Winston Churchill, Darkest Hour, is already being tipped for...