Analysis

Petrol prices have sky-rocketed in the last six months. The cost per litre now pushes $1.60, with predictions in some quarters of a $2 per litre price by the end of the year.
When one sees a modern city from the air, especially at night, it is a truly awe-inspiring spectacle. The immensity of the project is a testimony to the power and creativity of human beings. However, on the ground and actually living and working in this wonder, things are quite different: the social and ecological problems crowd in and fill your view. The truth is that our cities have always been dominated by the rich and powerful, and built and operated to serve their needs rather than those of the mass of working people who live and toil in them.
The federal government’s intervention into remote Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory has largely failed to produce significant improvements in health or housing, an NT health department employee told Green Left Weekly on May 29.
The following abridged statement was initiated by participants at the Climate Change — Social Change conference, hosted by Green Left Weekly in Sydney, April 11-13, 2008.
With his May 15 announcement that legislation to enable electricity privatisation will be introduced into the June session of parliament, NSW Premier Morris Iemma started the countdown to the most decisive days of the struggle to date.
The Pacific Calling Partnership (PCP) is a response to the calls of people on low-lying islands in the Pacific about the ravages of climate change — more storm surges, longer droughts, tides rising higher, shores eroding, coral reefs bleaching, water supplies and soils becoming contaminated by salt water, breadfruit and banana trees dying and taro pits being destroyed.
Labor’s first federal budget in 13 years was well received by much of the welfare lobby, despite its shortcomings. “The Brotherhood of St Laurence welcomes the Rudd Government’s first Budget because of its focus on helping disadvantaged Australians to overcome poverty and achieve their aspirations”, Tony Nicholson, BSL executive director said in a media release on May 13. “Robin Hood may have just fired off his first humble arrow”, said Dr John Falzon, CEO of the St Vincent de Paul Society, in his statement on the budget.
The Victorian Aboriginal Health Service (VAHS), based in Fitzroy, and started by Koori activists in 1973, is threatened by funding shortfalls.
Ali Humayun, a queer Pakistani, was recently granted permanent residency after spending more than three years locked up in Villawood Detention Centre. He made the following statement to Green Left Weekly on May 23.
The federal Labor government says it is not homophobic. Yet it agrees with its Coalition predecessor that marriage is a “union between a man and woman”. Regardless of opinion on marriage, the legal rights afforded this institution should be available to all couples regardless of gender.

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