Issue 350

News

Socialists: 'Migrants don't cause unemployment' By Paul Benedek PARRAMATTA — The Democratic Socialists will be standing two candidates in Sydney's western suburbs in the March 27 NSW state election. Shane Bentley, 27, will contest the seat of
NSW Coalition: coy or sneaky? By Dick Nichols SYDNEY — Since before Christmas, NSW Liberal leader Kerry Chikarovski has been saying her industrial relations policy would not be released for "another couple of weeks". Nationals' leader George
Reception for Gerry Adams BRISBANE — Despite attacks from Liberal opposition councillors, who will boycott the event, Labor Mayor Jim Soorley has defended his decision to invite Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams to a civic reception at
Prison officers condemn private prison By Sarah Harris PERTH — The WA Coalition government wants a private company, Correction Corporation of Australia, to operate a proposed 750-bed medium security jail at Wooroloo, 50 kilometres east of
Help register socialists in Tasmania HOBART — The Democratic Socialists are attempting to register as a party with the Tasmanian electoral office. This will enable DS candidates to appear on state election ballot papers with their party
By Kim Bullimore CANBERRA — On the orders of parliamentary officials, federal police again attacked a peaceful protest by members of the Aboriginal Tent Embassy on the lawns of Parliament House on February 15. Police violently wrenched spears,
Forests become an election issue By Simon Kenny On February 16, the Sydney Morning Herald reported that the wood supply guaranteed by the National Parks and Forestry Estate Act (1998) for the next 20 years is to be reviewed by the NSW Audit
By Nick Fredman LISMORE — Thirty-five activists attended a general meeting of the North East Forest Alliance (NEFA) at Rosebank, near Lismore, on February 15 to discuss recent changes to forestry legislation and agreements. The gathering assessed
Protest against parallel runway By Robyn Marshall BRISBANE — The peace and quiet of the tree-lined streets and coffee shops of suburban Bulimba were disturbed on February 14, when 4000 people marched down the hill to demonstrate against the
Victorian Labor blames teachers By Mary Merkenich MELBOURNE — Earlier this month, Victorian ALP leader John Brumby announced his "zero tolerance" education policy. The policy attacks teachers, ignores the real causes of illiteracy and is much
Beverley uranium mine breaches standards By David Noonan Reports commissioned by the federal government on the Beverley uranium mine in South Australia reveal that the government does not have enough information to justify approval of the mine.
By Paul Glenning ROCKHAMPTON — The 17-month dispute at Gordonstone mine in central Queensland has escalated over the past two weeks as the new owner, Rio Tinto, has attempted to bus non-union labour onto the mine site. Meeting them every
By Tuntuni Bhattacharyya SYDNEY — As of February 20, seven doctors camped outside the NSW Parliament House had not taken any food for six days. The hunger strike by members of Australian Doctors Trained Overseas is to protest the Australian
Liberals attempt to buy NSW votes By Marina Carman SYDNEY — Vote Liberal and get $1000 (or $1100 in shares). Sound too good to be true? It is. Electricity privatisation will be a big issue in the Liberals' campaign for the March 27 NSW

World

By Ana Pararajasingham The Australian government's "historic shift" in policy to recognise East Timor's right to self-determination was a factor forcing Indonesia to consider granting East Timor political autonomy, or even independence. Similar
By Renfrey Clarke MOSCOW — Russians who have been worried sick about a clinically dead economy, arrogant criminals and a do-nothing government can now take a break from those concerns. The country's leaders have found a new cause for public
NY cops kill African: 'zero tolerance' in practice By Norm Dixon The body of Ahmed Diallo arrived home in Conakry, the capital of the west African country of Guinea, on February 14, accompanied by his grieving parents. Ten days earlier, Diallo's
By Barry Sheppard Last September, Anthony Porter was scheduled to die. He had been on death row since 1983, and his time had come. Today he is free. His case is another in a growing list that demonstrates how the death penalty in the US comes down
By Karen Ingram The US state of Oklahoma executed Sean Sellers on February 4. He had been on death row since 1986, when he was convicted for the murders of his mother and stepfather. Sellers was 16 years old when he committed the crimes. After
By Jon Land Tens of thousands of East Timorese marched through the streets of their capital city Dili on February 16. They were accompanying the coffin of 25 year-old Benedito de Jesus Pires, who was killed during an incident involving a
PRD to register for Indonesian election By Max Lane The People's Democratic Party (PRD) has decided to participate in the June election in Indonesia. The chairperson of the Central Leadership Council of the People's Democratic Party (KPP-PRD),

Culture

Fear of MirrorsBy Tariq AliArcadia, 1998239 pp., $24.95 (pb) Review by Phil Shannon Everyone, from his ex-lover to his son, seems to be giving Vladimir Meyer the same advice: "Stop living in the past! Wake up! Marxism is dead!". The wall is down,
Open AustraliaBy Lindsay TannerPluto Press, 1999248 pp., $24.95 Review by Allen Myers Since its crushing electoral defeat in 1996, the Labor Party has been seeking to revive its image with the voters. Part of this involves projecting the idea that
ABC-TV will broadcast a public lecture given by Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams during his visit to Australia this week. Adams will deliver the Wallace Wurth Memorial Lecture at the University of NSW on Saturday, February 27 at 2pm. The ABC
2SER-FM 107.3, Sydney's most underground radio station, is looking for activists with reporting skills to work on our weekday breakfast programs. Ideally you will: have experience using radio recording and editing equipment; have an
Inhumanity on screen A Bug's Life Directed by John LasseterDisneyNow screening at all major cinemas Review by Stuart Klawans The technique known as CGI is a Frankensteinian art, as unsettling to consider as it is difficult to pronounce, the full
The New York-based Devil's Advocates and The United 32s have released an 18-song CD of traditional Irish music, punk rock, hip-hop, ska and jazz titled Snipers In Derelict Houses, much of which deals with the conflict in Northern Ireland. Snipers In

Resistance!

Emma To and Keara Courtney SYDNEY — On February 13, nearly 200 people gathered at Town Hall to protest the anti-truancy policy of the NSW Labor government. Tim Anderson, secretary of the NSW Council for Civil Liberties, described the poor
By Zanny Begg On February 5, more than 22,000 gathered on the steps of the Sydney Opera House for the launch of the 1999 Mardi Gras season. Over the next two weeks Sydney will host a plethora of gay and lesbian events — plays, exhibitions, film
By Zanny Begg The Senate will debate amendments to federal electoral law on February 15 which, according to the Greens' Senator Bob Brown, would make it harder for "young and black people to enrol to vote". The Electoral and Referendum Amendment
By Wendy Robertson According to Karl Marx, capitalism is a system based on the debasement, enslavement and exploitation of the majority by the few. Marx provided a scientific analysis for the struggle for human liberation, and a method to make
By Sean Healy Resistance got off to a great start to the new university year last week, with more than 60 people joining the socialist organisation in Brisbane, Newcastle and Perth. Many more will join this week, as the semester begins at other
By Kathy Newnam ADELAIDE — In the face of voluntary student unionism (VSU) legislation, there is an urgent need for a mass campaign by students. The South Australian branch of NUS is setting forth a plan which would limit the involvement of
Student unions under attack: defend the right to organise By Wendy Robertson On December 19, federal education minister David Kemp announced the government would introduce "voluntary student unionism" (VSU) legislation in this sitting of
Education for liberation in Brazil By Tania Jorquera In a period when successive Australian governments have slashed funding to public education, a movement in Brazil has radically changed the basis of education. The Movimiento de los Sin Tierra