Comment and Analysis

Vale Lisa Cruickshank: feminist, unionist and activist

Lisa Cruickshank, long-time activist, feminist, union stalwart, friend, sister and mother died peacefully at home surrounded by family and friends on November 2.

Lisa lived her life with courage, commitment, determination and love. She once wrote that: “I’m not about to prioritise class v gender v ethnic struggles — if there’s a decent blue going on, it deserves support.”

NSW Labor: new leader, still stinks

NSW Labor has anointed a new leader less than three months before the state election in March. With the ALP trailing Mike Baird's Coalition government in the polls, it must have calculated that it has nothing to lose by dumping former leader John Robertson.

Queensland goes to polls on January 31

On January 5, with most of the country still in holiday mode, Queensland Premier Campbell Newman called on the acting governor (even the governor was still on holidays) to issue writs for a state election on January 31.

The Liberal National Party (LNP) won government three years ago in a landslide against the Labor government’s privatisation of public assets, reducing the ALP to a rump of seven seats (now increased to nine after two byelection victories).

Tamils call for new way in Sri Lanka

The statement below was released by the Tamil Refugee Council in Australia on January 9. The day before, opposition-backed presidential candidate Maithripala Sirisena beat incumbent president Mahinda Rajapaksa, who oversaw war crimes and abuse of the human rights of Tamils and others in Sri Lanka.

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The Tamil Refugee Council urges the Australian government to use the change of leadership in Sri Lanka to push for a resolution to the country’s most pressing issue – the long-standing oppression and persecution of Tamils.

Socialists: Abbott's Paris massacre response 'no solution'

The statement below was released by Socialist Alliance national co-conveners on January 9.

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The Socialist Alliance condemns the massacre of journalists, cartoonists and others at and around the offices of the Paris-based publication Charlie Hebdo. However offensive anyone may have found some of the cartoons published by Charlie Hebdo, this act of brutal violence is not justified.

Hockey reinforces cuts to federal jobs, services in MYEFO statement

The federal Treasurer Joe Hockey has foreshadowed further major cuts to public sector jobs and services in the Mid Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO) released on December 15. The MYEFO is an update on the draconian federal budget brought down by the treasurer in May this year.

National Union of Students meet to plan fight back, amid controversy

The National Union of Students (NUS) Conference 2014 kicked off at the Mannix College in Monash University, Melbourne last week to decide policy and administrative reform for the next year. They also voted to for the reintroduction of a new series of Office Bearing positions for 2015.

The conference was dominated by Young Labor Right, Student Unity, The Labor Left, National Labor Students, Socialist Alternative and Grassroots Collective. A scattering of independents also attended.

Rolling Stone hangs rape victims out to dry

Last month, Rolling Stone ran an article on rape culture in US colleges, focusing primarily on the experiences of a young woman who told the magazine she was gang raped at a frat party.

Rolling Stone has been accused of letting rape survivors everywhere down by not properly fact checking the claims of the woman in question, Jackie, and for running a story with inconsistencies.

The magazine did let rape survivors down, but not by believing Jackie. They let us down by abandoning her for not being a good enough victim.

Socialists warn against racial incitement after Sydney siege

The statement below was released by Socialist Alliance on December 16.

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The Socialist Alliance has warned of a dangerous escalation of incitement of racial violence against Australia's Muslim communities in the wake of the tragic hostage incident in Sydney.

“Our heartfelt sympathy goes out to the families and loved ones of the two victims who died and to all those caught up in the terrifying and tragic siege in Sydney's Martin Place over the past 24 hours,” said Socialist Alliance national co-convener Susan Price today.

No to Abbott's back-door GP tax scam: Socialist candidate

"The Abbott government's proposed back-door GP tax is a massive scam, and should be totally rejected by the whole community," Susan Price, Socialist Alliance candidate for the seat of Summer Hill in the March 2015 NSW state election, said on December 10.

"Today, International Human Rights Day, is a good time to stand up for universal public health as a basic human right. Abbott's proposed cut to the Medicare rebate for doctors still means the beginning of the end of our treasured universal, national public health system, Medicare," she said.

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