Activists delivered an early birthday present for Rupert Murdoch to The Advertiser building in Adelaide on March 9. Occupy Murdoch delivered a yellow “uranium” cake, along with demands for media reform, to the office of the News Ltd tabloid. Activist Tamara Otello baked the cake, which she explained was intended “for The Advertiser staff”. She said: “It hasn’t been laced with anything nasty ... unlike The Advertiser. It’s actually a chocolate mudcake.”
Adelaide has a new social movement in town, yet with a familiar name: Occupy. The Occupy movement has been criticised for its lack of focus and demands, yet in Adelaide there is a clear focus for direct action: Rupert Murdoch. Hence the name: Occupy Murdoch. Occupy Murdoch specifically focuses on corporate controlled media, especially News Corporation. Adelaide's daily tabloid The Advertiser is a Murdoch paper that publishes rubbish dressed up as “news” to distract people and supports specific political interests.
Inequalities are not only unjust: they literally make us sick. This was the conclusion reached by the sizeable turnout at Left Unity’s January 31 forum: “Inequality, Health, And Wellbeing: Why Inequality Is Bad For Us.” Much of Adelaide’s progressive community came together — Resistance and the Socialist Alliance, the Communist Party of Australia, the Adelaide Anti-Capitalist Forum, Occupy Adelaide, anarchists, and current and former members of the Greens — to hear why inequality has increased dramatically throughout the world over the past few decades.
Occupy Adelaide's November 8 general assembly adopted the document below by consensus. * * * We, Occupy Adelaide, are an open and evolving group engaged in the struggle for an equitable, inclusive and sustainable democratic society. We gather in solidarity with the world-wide movement opposing the power and greed of corporations which place profit over people, animals and the earth; self-interest over social justice; oppression over equality; and which control and corrupt our governments.
“When I meet with [climate change] minister Greg Combet next week I will be taking my prescription pad with me and I will be writing a prescription for solar thermal for Port Augusta, not just three times a day but permanently,” said Dr David Shearman of Doctors for the Environment Australia (DEA) to a 120-strong crowd in Port Augusta’s Cooinda Club on October 29. Shearman was one of several speakers at the forum, which was organised by the Adelaide-based Climate Emergency Action Network (CLEAN), the Port Augusta City Council and Beyond Zero Emissions.
Inspired by Occupy Wall Street and the global revolt against corporate greed, a diverse range of new and experienced people have gathered at several public assemblies, each of more than 40 people, to discuss building the movement in Adelaide. Following an October 15 action where 200 people gathered in Victoria Square, the collective has held a major working bee to make banners, signs, placards to help build awareness of Occupy Adelaide.
More than 300 people of all ages gathered in Adelaide on September 24 calling for concentrating solar thermal (CST) technology to replace Port Augusta’s ageing coal fired power stations. The action was organised by several environment groups, including the Australian Youth Climate Coalition, the Climate Emergency Action Network, the Socialist Alliance, Resistance and the Young Greens. The crowd met in Adelaide’s Rymill Park and took to the streets in a colourful, rhythmic parade, featuring a moving solar thermal tower.
More than 300 people of all ages gathered in Adelaide on September 24 calling for world leading concentrating solar thermal (CST) technology to replace Port Augusta’s aging coal fired power stations. The action was organised by several environment groups, including the Australian Youth Climate Coalition, the Climate Emergency Action Network, the Socialist Alliance, Resistance and the Young Greens. The crowd met in Adelaide’s Rymill Park and then took to the streets in a colourful, rhythmic parade, featuring a moving solar thermal tower.
The Australian Nuclear Free Alliance released the statement below on October 11. * * * In the wake of the approval of BHP-Billiton’s Olympic Dam expansion, the Australian Nuclear Free Alliance (ANFA) is calling for a moratorium on uranium mining due to the long-term impacts associated with the nuclear industry. Uncle Kevin Buzzacott, Arabunna elder from Lake Eyre and president of ANFA, addressed a rally at parliament House in Adelaide on October 11 held in response to the approvals announced by the state and federal government:
Activists from the Climate Emergency Action Network (CLEAN) in Adelaide, accompanied by Mark Ogge from Beyond Zero Emissions (BZE), went on a road trip to Port Augusta over September 15 to 18 to campaign for solar thermal power. Port Augusta’s two ageing coal-fired power stations, Northern and Playford B, are due to be replaced in the near future. CLEAN and BZE argue that concentrating solar thermal power plants are the logical way forward for Port Augusta and its workforce.
Fundamentalist Christian street preachers faced stiff opposition from activists who rallied against their public sermons in Adelaide’s Rundle Mall on September 2. Members of the right-wing religious group found themselves surrounded by a large crowd of activists who rallied for more than five hours. The rally’s theme was “love not hate”. The rally aimed to show solidarity for those who have received verbal abuse and suffered violence, particularly homosexual youths often targeted by the fringe Christians.
In an exciting development in the South Australian climate action scene, a range of groups have united to campaign for Australia’s first concentrated solar thermal power plants in Port Augusta, about four hours north of Adelaide. The Adelaide Moving Planet Organising Collective includes representatives from the Australian Youth Climate Coalition, the Conservation Council of South Australia, the Climate Emergency Network of South Australia, the Young Greens, the Socialist Alliance and Resistance.
Feminism is experiencing a revival in Adelaide with the formation of a new activist group, the South Australian Feminist Collective. The group emerged from a feminist forum jointly hosted by Socialist Alliance and Femment, which followed the recent Adelaide “SlutWalk” march against sexual assault and victim-blaming. The forum explored the politics of this event and the relevance of feminism today. About 30 people attended the collective’s first meeting on June 25. The meeting began discussion about how the group would be run, its aims and values.
About 500 people took part in a June 11 march to demand an end to victim blaming in sexual assault. This was followed by a screening of the film War Zone in the Adelaide Activist Centre. About 30 people attended. The film screening was jointly hosted by the Socialist Alliance and the Femment Feminist Collective. It was followed by a discussion on the politics of Slutwalk and the future of feminism. From the discussion the South Australian Feminist Collective (SAFC) was founded. All in attendance joined the contact list.
For 25 years, the gay youth of Adelaide have had just one place to find group support from people who understand. Each fortnight, the “Evolve” project for women and the “Inside Out” project for men at the state-run Second Story Youth Health Centre have provided safe, confidential drop-in groups for gay and queer young people. These projects have been free, well-attended and of great support for Adelaide’s young gay community. The effectiveness and popularity of these projects have meant that Adelaide has had no need for other drop-in groups for gay youth.
More than 100 people rallied outside the South Australian Parliament on March 25 in solidarity with the people of the Middle East. The focus of the rally was the attacks on protesters by snipers in Yemen, the invasion of Bahrain by Saudi troops and the ongoing civil war and bombing in Libya. People from various Middle Eastern communities waved flags and placards demanding an end to the military crackdowns.