The idea of a Universal Basic Income (UBI) is for the government to give everyone — rich and poor — a regular income that would be enough to cover their basic needs. It would be an unconditional payment, meaning you would not have to work or satisfy job-search tests to receive it.
Our Common Cause
Afrin, a city within the canton of the same name in northern Syria , is under siege by the Turkish military, supported by right wing jihadist forces, including al-Quaeda, al-Nusra and the remnants of ISIS. Fifty-two days after the invasion began, more than 290 civilians had been killed.
Progressive, activist campaign groups such as GetUp!, 350.org and Friends of the Earth have been in the federal Coalition government’s sights for some time.
However, a new bill introduced into parliament threatens to also frustrate the work of human rights, environmental, women’s, international aid and social justice NGOs and charities.
Communist and feminist Zelda D’Aprano became the symbol of the fight for equal pay when, in October 1969, she chained herself to the Commonwealth Offices in Melbourne, after becoming frustrated at the lack of pay equity for women.
D’Aprano was employed by the meatworkers union, which was involved in a test case on the gender pay gap in the meat industry before the Commonwealth Conciliation and Arbitration Commission. At the time, women’s participation in the workforce was 38% and they were paid 75% of men’s wages for doing the same work.
Yet again, the federal Coalition government has launched a broadside in favour of its plan to cut company tax for big corporations from 30% to 25%, while slashing spending on social welfare and the public sector.
The catalyst for the latest controversy on the issue was a February 14 article on the ABC website by chief economics correspondent Emma Alberici, entitled, “There's no case for a corporate tax cut when one in five of Australia's top companies don't pay it.”
Barnaby Joyce thought he was untouchable. But for the Malcolm Turnbull government in crisis mode, it seems he could be dispensable.
The week before last, it appeared that Joyce’s media and parliamentary advisors may have just managed to save his skin. After the tabloids splashed news of his affair — including a picture of Vikki Campion, Joyce's former media advisor and now partner — we had the “Look, I never said I was an angel” line.
“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?”
The answer is yes!
Socialist Alliance’s Indigenous Rights spokesperson Sam Watson considers there has been “a definite strengthening and expansion of the Black political struggle”. Watson was referring to the record-breaking attendance of tens of thousands of people at Invasion Day rallies around the country on January 26.
“You can't really pinpoint this phenomenon geographically or by age or gender,” he said.
Australia’s 33 billionaires increased their wealth by more than $38 billion dollars last year — or more than $1 billion each. That is more than $3 million each a day!
At the other end of the spectrum, Credit Suisse data cited in the Sydney Morning Herald showed the wealth of the bottom half of Australians declined in the same period alongside stagnating wage growth.
If you’ve had the misfortune to watch former Labor leader Mark Latham’s video on changing the date of Australia Day you’ll know how desperate the debate has become.
Latham presents a world of full surveillance, where citizens live in fear of their secret lamington and lamb celebrations of our wide, brown land being discovered by the unseen politically correct police — followed by a call by Alice Springs town councillor and Warlpiri woman Jacinta Price to not be ashamed to celebrate Australia’s national day.
When renowned ecosocialist Ian Angus came to Australia in 2011 he observed that for most people it is “easier to imagine the end of the world than to imagine the end of capitalism”.
Unfortunately, imagining the end of the world is getting easier. There are almost daily reports of the accumulating effects of climate change, to choose just one source of potential apocalypse.
After depriving hundreds of men of food, water and medical support for more than three weeks, Papua New Guinea police moved into Manus Island detention centre on November 23.
They are forcing the 400 men left in the centre to move to alternative accommodation on Manus Island which, according to Kurdish asylum seeker and journalist Behrouz Boochani, is like “moving to another prison”.
The statements, photos and videos that have emerged from the refugees inside paint a brutal and tragic picture.
The Coalition government of Malcolm Turnbull is in deep, possibly terminal, crisis.
The combination of the dual citizenship fiasco, the widespread resistance to the government's attempts to push its neoliberal agenda through a maverick Senate and the constant undermining of Turnbull by the right wing of the Liberal Party under the leadership of former Prime Minister Tony Abbott has sapped any public confidence the government was given when Turnbull replaced Abbott only two years ago.
The crisis is deepening on Manus Island. The 600 men remaining at the former regional processing centre compound are being starved out, deprived of medical aid and having fences taken down around them as Green Left Weekly goes to print. Notices have been posted at the centre saying that if the men do not vacate, they will be removed by force.
The Socialist Alliance is running in the November 25 Queensland state elections to help build an anti-capitalist alternative to the two-party system. We are also supporting the re-election of progressive independent MP Rob Pyne in Cairns and calling for a vote for the Greens in other seats.
The Australian Federal Police (AFP) raids on the Melbourne and Sydney offices of the Australian Workers Union (AWU) on October 24 show the state is becoming more authoritarian at a time when more people are disengaging from politics as usual.