Issue 995

Australia

About 7000 people rallied at Cottesloe Beach in Perth on February 1 to protest against the shark cull being carried out under the orders of the Western Australian Liberal government. This follows large protests in January when the plan was first proposed.

Similar actions took place in...

“Steve's case is really a case about all of us,” renowned Indian environmentalist Vandana Shiva said in support of organic farmer Steve Marsh.

It is about the right to “have the freedom to eat healthy, safe organic food”.

Marsh lives in Kojanup in Western Australia, and is...

Hundreds of residents rallied on January 26 in response to a proposal to build a large residential island between 200 metres and one kilometre off Nightcliff Beach.

The proposal, dubbed “Nightcliff Island”, was revealed in Northern Territory parliament in June last year. Approval has...

Unions and community groups have strongly criticised a bill that aims to give Victorian police unprecedented power to disband protests and ban individuals from taking part in protest activity.

The Summary Offences and Sentencing Amendment Bill 2013 will increase powers available to...

Friends of the Earth released this statement on January 30.

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A research report by environment group Friends of the Earth shows the financial cost to governments and the community in Victoria from natural disasters was $19.9 billion over a 10-year period, from 2003 to 2013....

Unions NSW has endorsed a “Stop Abbott: Save Medicare” rally planned for February 15, 1pm, at Town Hall Square.

Mark Lennon, secretary of Unions NSW, will speak at the action with representatives of the NSW Nurses and Midwives Association, and the Health Services Union.

Other...

Australian activists have written to Prime Minister Tony Abbott calling on him to recognise East Timor's rights under international law to oil and gas resources in the Timor Sea.

The Melbourne-based Timor Sea Justice Campaign is calling on Australia to “enter discussions about the...

The Darwin Asylum Seeker Support and Advocacy Network released this statement on January 30.

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Mothers in Darwin detention centres are growing increasingly despondent as immigration minister Scott Morrison’s cruel suite of policies takes effect.

Darwin detention centres...

On January 28, the NSW government announced coal seam gas (CSG) reforms, including exclusion zones and a gateway process for some of the state's farmland. Under these “finalised” reforms, 96.6% of NSW can still be developed for CSG mining, including drinking water catchments.

Stop CSG...

World

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has called for an “eradication” of “colonialism” in Latin America at the annual summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC).

During the summit held in Cuba’s capital, Havana, over January 28 and 29, Maduro called for Puerto...

Victories are rare in the ongoing struggle against the sell-off of public services in southern Europe. So when one occurs as big as the recent defeat of the Madrid regional government’s plans to privatise hospital and community health centre management, it should be enjoyed to the full.

...

Salih Muslim is co-president of the Democratic Union Party (PYD), a Syria-based Kurdish party fighting for self-determination. The PYD is a sister party of the left-wing Turkish-based Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). The party is the ruling force in the Kurdish areas of...

Thousands of railway workers returned to work on December 31 after a three-week strike. The workers were striking against government plans to set up a subsidiary company to operate a KTX bullet train service in competition with the state-run carrier Korail.

The 22-day strike was the...

Workers across the U.S., Canada, and Mexico united in an Inter-Continental Day of Action on January 31 to stop a massive new trade agreement, the Trans-Pacific Partnership — commonly referred to as “NAFTA on steroids.”

In the U.S., the immediate fight is to block a bill that would grant...

If a socialist can win an election in Seattle, why not Chicago? That was the spirit at the University of Illinois-Chicago’s Jane Addams Hull House Museum on January 22, where close to 100 Chicagoans gathered for the founding meeting of the Chicago Socialist Campaign.

Drawing on the...

East Timor has taken Australia to an international court in an effort to take control over large oil and gas reserves in the Timor Sea.

But this isn't the only time the Timorese have come up against Australia ― which has sought to impose its interests on the former Portuguese colony in...

Once a year, the world's political and business leaders flock to a small town in the Alps to drink champagne, chow down on fondue and chocolate-covered strawberries, hit the ski slopes, bathe in hot tubs and exchange business cards as they congratulate themselves on the fine job they're doing...

If you’re the sort of person who doesn’t like your kids mixing with problem families, the type who are always getting arrested, you wouldn’t want them going near Tony Blair, would you?

Five times now he’s been the subject of a citizen’s arrest. This fits with what the police often say,...

Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki called on the people of Falluja to rise up on January 6 and drive out armed groups affiliated to al-Qaeda.

News accounts reported that Falluja had “completely fallen” to the Islamist fighters. The Iraqi army was poised to retake the city, said Maliki....

Many people may wonder why Yingluck Shinawatra's Pheu Thai Party’s government, which came to power supported by the poor-based Red Shirt mass movement, seems to be paralysed in the face of violent and criminal actions by Sutep Tuaksuban's Democrat Party mob.

It is not due to “invisible...

Division among ruling circles in the United States and internationally about what to do about the revelations of wholesale NSA spying continues to deepen.

A January 17 speech by US President Barack Obama, which was supposed to move the discussion forward, was a flop. Polls indicate it...

“Seattle’s only Socialist City Council member announced Monday that she will make good on a campaign pledge and accept only [US]$40,000 a year in salary — bringing her down to the average wage of a worker in the city,” NBCNews.com said on January 27.

The rest of Kshama Sawant's $117,000...

The Democrat Party’s mad dogs unleashed violence around Bangkok’s voting stations on January 26.

Voting stations throughout the country were supposed to be open for people to cast their votes before the February 2 general election. Advanced voting is a required service since it is...

Bill Gates is worried -- too many people are talking about raising the minimum wage. Appropriately, the world’s richest man spoke on the eve of the World Economic Summit in Davos.

Gates is a great symbol of the Davos summit, an annual away day for global capitalism.There, the world’s 1%...

Analysis

In the first issue of Green Left Weekly for this year, we announced the campaign to raise $100,000 in pledges for GLW by its 1000th issue, due March 12.

 Congratulation messages for Green Left Weekly, 1000th issue celebration details, and more here....

People-powered media since 1991

On March 12 this year the 1000th issue of Green Left Weekly will be published. We are marking this significant milestone by launching a special fund appeal. The aim is to raise $100,000 in pledges and donations by March 12....

Sydney’s Botany Bay was named by Captain James Cook while he was investigating this “great Southern continent” for the British empire in 1770. His exploration led to the First Fleet’s settlement in the area on January 26, 1788, and the beginning of 226 years of massacres, dispossession and abuse...

The Socialist Alliance released this statement on January 31.

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The Socialist Alliance condemns the federal government's attempts to use allegations of criminality in the building and construction industry to launch a full-scale attack on the union movement.

Fairfax...

A 40-year-old library assistant, Sally Kuether, was arrested and charged on January 24 under Queensland’s controversial anti-bikie laws.

She has been charged under new laws that prohibit more than two alleged bikies from meeting in public.

The mother-of-three met her partner...

As Green Left Weekly approaches its 1000th issue, more than 20 years after it first hit the streets, we will be looking back at some of the campaigns it has covered and its role as an alternative source of news.

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The first editorial of Green Left Weekly, urging the...

Gunns Limited, the Launceston-based company that made a fortune turning Tasmanian forests into woodchips for Japanese papermakers, has had a long relationship with Tasmanian premiers and government ministers.

In 1989, the chairman of Gunns, Edmund Ruse, was convicted by a Royal...

The Abbott government has sunk to a new diplomatic low, with Foreign Minister Julie Bishop suggesting Israeli settlements should not be considered illegal.

Bishop made the comments during a visit to Israel. In a January 15 interview with the Times of Israel, she argued “the...

NSW Mining has sponsored a radio competition on one of Sydney’s top-rated breakfast shows, in which a listener has the chance to win $1 million if they register to be a “miner”.

The promotional poster for the competition, which features hosts Amanda Keller and Brendan Jones wearing...

The right-wing war on renewables is heating up as the Tony Abbott government announces yet another investigation into wind energy and health, and a review of the Renewable Energy Target.

Australian Financial Review featured an opinion article on January 23 by Alan Moran from the...

The Communications Workers Union (CWU) has called for Australia Post to expand its services to include banking and insurance. The postal workers' union said this would help strengthen Australia Post as a public enterprise, while challenging the power of the big four banks and improving services...

So now reporting the news is Un-Australian.

This is the line from prime minister and proud Australian Tony Abbott, strongly backed by media owned by proud Australian and American-citizen-for-tax-purposes Rupert Murdoch, whose Daily Telegraph screamed on its January 30 front page...

Culture

Invasion Day 2014 Mixtape
Brisbane Blacks
Released January 26, 2014
www.1stnationsmobb.bandcamp.com

As countless Australians donned their Cronulla capes and sank slabs of piss this Australia Day, non-profit publication Brisbane Blacks...

Banjo-picking American troubadour Pete Seeger died on January 27 at the age of 94. In a career that spanned eight decades, he sang for migrant workers, peace activists and anti-capitalists.

Seeger died peacefully in his sleep around 9.30pm in New York Presbyterian Hospital, where he had...

For a second, just imagine that one of the highest ranked male tennis players in the world is taking part in the obligatory post-game interview having just won a marathon five setter.

Now imagine the interviewer is themselves a veteran of the sport for decades, one who undoubtedly knows...

Spartacus (Revealing Antiquity)
By Aldo Schiavone (translation by Jeremy Carden)
Harvard University Press, 2013
208 pp., $29.95

Karl Marx was a great admirer of ancient Roman and Greek philosophers and leaders. However, there was one he singled...

High Hopes
Bruce Springsteen
Columbia
Released January 17, 2014
www.brucespringsteen.net

A recent documentary on veteran US rocker Bruce Springsteen asked fans to describe their hero in three words.

The responses, compiled in the...

Links International Journal of Socialist Renewal

Philippines: Popularising socialism with a local flavour

A document on bayanihan socialism was presented at the convention of the Philippines socialist Party of the Labouring Masses in December. It was an attempt to help popularise the ideas of socialism to a...