A workers’ occupation of the Greek ERT state broadcasting corporation was the only media outlet broadcasting in the country today, Wednesday. Journalists across the rest of the Greek media struck in solidarity with occupation.
A workers’ occupation of the Greek ERT state broadcasting corporation was the only media outlet broadcasting in the country today, Wednesday. Journalists across the rest of the Greek media struck in solidarity with occupation.
A small protest that began with 50 people in Gezi Park, Istanbul, to save it from becoming a shopping mall, became the spark for weeks of resistance against Turkey’s Prime Minister, Tayyip Erdoğan.
Staff at Sydney University from the NTEU and CPSU held their fifth successful day of strike action this year on 5 June as they face off against the aggressive anti-union management of hated Vice-Chancellor Michael Spence.
The $2.3 billion cuts to universities have unleashed a wave of anger across the country. A national day of protest on budget day organised by the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) along with student groups drew 1500 people in Melbourne and 500 in Sydney. Hundreds more protested in Perth, Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra and across regional campuses.
The strike campaign by Sydney Uni staff has already begun to force the intransigent, nasty management to back down from some aspects of their attack on staff conditions and education. Staff, represented by the NTEU and the CPSU, successfully shut down the campus for two days in late March, following a 24-hour strike in earlier in the month.
Twenty seven refugees with adverse ASIO security assessments exposed the detention regime with a ten day hunger strike at Broadmeadows detention centre in Melbourne. The refugees have won a meeting with Immigration to press their demands.
Labor sent itself spiralling further into self-destruction last week with its botched coup against leader Julia Gillard.
Sydney Uni staff are preparing for a two day strike, following the 24-hour strike that paralysed the university on 7 March, with classes cancelled and hundreds of union members joining picket lines to close down the campus.
In February, Sensis workers in Melbourne staged a 150-strong rally to protest against the company’s plans to cut 689 permanent positions and 100 temps. Three hundred and ninety-one jobs are being outsourced. The workers voted to take unprotected strike action and walked off the job for the rest of the afternoon.
It is now clearer than ever that the attacks on 457 visa workers are being used to whip up xenophobia against foreign workers. Last week Julia Gillard added her voice to the false claims that migrants are to blame for unemployment.
The YouTube video exposing the brutal attack by NSW police on Jamie Jackson at the recent Lesbian and Gay Mardi Gras has raised question marks over so many common sense ideas about the police and about homophobia in society. It has also enraged, with a snap demonstration organised in two days attracting more than 2000 people in Sydney.
Workers at Sensis yesterday staged a 150-strong rally for jobs in Melbourne, demanding the company back down over its plans to cut 689 full-time positions and outsource 391 jobs offshore.
Dutch Islamophobe Geert Wilders hoped his Australian tour would further the spread of his racist anti-Muslim politics. But after he was dogged by protests and opposition, he told tour organisers, “I bet you think twice about ever inviting me to Australia again”.
The Sydney University National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU) is set to strike in week one of classes, following the return of their industrial action ballot. This marks the beginning of what will be an intense battle with University management, who are waging their most aggressive attack to date on staff, students and the union.
The picket of Melbourne’s City West Water construction site, effectively demanding the sacking of 457 visa workers, shows just how dangerous and divisive the unions’ “Aussie jobs” campaign really is.
“A spiteful attempt to intimidate every community activist who may in future wish to assist workers in obtaining justice”—this is how a leaflet distributed to Victorian building sites by the Construction Forestry Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) described the charges against victimised trade union activist, Bob Carnegie.
Trade union activist Sulthoni Farras, a leader of the Indonesian union federation Progresip, union alliance Sekber Buruh, and member of Indonesian political organisation KPO PRP, is in danger of arrest for leading a strike in 2012. Another activist, Bona Ventura, may also face charges.
Journalists at the influential, liberal-leaning newspaper Southern Weekly in Guangdong province staged a two-day strike against government censorship on January 7 and 8, the first such strike at a major newspaper for more than two decades.
With a new record-breaking heat wave producing catastrophic fires across the country, why is there so little discussion about climate change?
Sign a statement in support of Dr Jake Lynch and the Sydney University Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies’ support for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel, and demand Sydney University break their collaboration with the Technion Israel Institute of Technology.
Indonesia is being shaken by a strike wave, with a growth in workers’ confidence to fight against low wages and insecure casual contracts. Particularly in the industrial area of Bekasi, that borders the east of Jakarta, demonstrations, actions, mass meetings and protests are now an almost daily occurrence.
Argo, Ben Affleck’s gripping, highly entertaining and commercially successful thriller, depicts a little-known episode within the infamous 444-day hostage crisis that followed the Iranian Revolution. Without necessarily intending to be, the film is also one of the most effective pieces of US propaganda to have emerged from Hollywood in recent years.
The massacre of 28 people, including 20 young children, at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut is deeply sad and chilling. How could this happen?
Israel is again unleashing terror and death on the people on Gaza. But this new war comes amid a very different regional backdrop to the last Gaza war in 2009—in the aftermath of the Arab revolutions.
Workers walked out in general strikes across Portugal, Spain, Italy and Greece as well as parts of Belgium on November 14.
The Greens’ national conference in November saw a continuation of efforts to drag the party rightwards in an effort to seek electoral “respectability”. The party’s more moderate federal MPs, with the support of the federal parliamentary caucus, sought to water down policy in a number of areas.
Bob Carnegie, a community organiser in Brisbane, is being sued for hundreds of thousands of dollars by construction firm Abigroup following a strike at its Queensland Children’s Hospital site.
In late October, around 100 students marched through Sydney University to demand affordable student housing. The protest was organised by students who live at Sydney University Village (SUV) alongside students involved in the campaign against staff cuts.
The decision by unions in Greece, Italy, Portugal, the Spanish state, southern Cyprus and Malta to call a one-day general strike as part of a European-wide day of action against austerity is unprecedented. Here is a statement on the strike and the fight against austerity in Europe by the International Socialist Tendency, a international grouping of socialist organisations of which Solidarity is a part. (In English and Greek).
Solidarity distributed this leaflet at The Greens’ national conference in Sydney on November 1-5, discussing some of the issues in The Greens’ focus on parliamentary influence and the potential to build a party that can be a megaphone for struggles, protest and resistance to Labor’s neo-liberal agenda.
Please consider supporting this important call for solidarity with South Africa’s Marikana miners.
The recent ACT election ended badly for the Labor-Greens governing partnership, with a 7.3 per cent swing and two extra seats for the Liberals. This should be an embarrassment to more moderate Greens, who argue that entering coalition governments with the major parties is the key to electoral success.
According to recent studies, 60 per cent of university students live below the poverty line and one in every eight regularly goes without food. Yet despite this epidemic of student poverty, Sydney University Village (SUV, or more recently, $UV) has ruthlessly decided to raise the minimum rent to $256.80.
Police, politicians and the media have unleashed a wave of anti-Muslim racism in response to the protest in Sydney against a film that mocks Islam. In words designed to stoke anti-Muslim and anti-immigrant racism, NSW Premier O’Farrell warned Muslims not to, “bring from overseas ethnic protest to this country”.
Following the Northern Territory elections last month, a community meeting of Aboriginal residents and traditional owners from Kalkaringi, Dagaragu and Lajamanu are calling for an end to the hated “mega shires”, announcing that they will refuse to sign any government leases over their land and calling for the scrapping of the whole, hated NT Intervention policy.
Somyot Pruksakasemsuk, 50, is an editor of Voice of Taksin (translated as “Voice of the Southerners/ Voice of the Oppressed”) magazine and a prominent labour rights activist in Thailand who has been detained since April 2011, charged under Thailand’s “lese majeste” laws. These laws prohibit insulting the Thai King or monarchy. Solidarity has signed an open letter calling for Somyot’s release and encourage other supporters of human rights and union rights to do the same.
An unprecedented 40,000 Victorian teachers and Education Support Staff stopped work on Wednesday 5 September. It was the second, and the biggest, strike in the campaign to win more than Victorian Premier Ted Baillieu’s offer of a 2.5 per cent pay increase. The meeting debated the way forward for the campaign at the strike meeting at the Rod Laver Arena.
For ten straight days, hundreds of construction unionists have blockaded Grocon’s Myer Emporium construction site in the heart of Melbourne. Construction workers have drawn the line against Grocon boss Daniel Grollo’s assault on union rights.
Over 100 students protested at La Trobe University’s Open Day on August 26 against savage cuts to humanities, defying threats to suspend or expel students who joined “unauthorised” demonstrations.
Labor has re-opened one of the darkest chapters in Australia’s history of refugee policies. In a final capitulation, Julia Gillard has embraced the Howard government’s Pacific Solution, forcing laws through parliament with the support of the Coalition to immediately reopen offshore processing centres on Nauru and Manus Island.
Gina Rinehart’s Enterprise Migration Agreement (EMA) for her Roy Hill project has sparked debate over the issue of “Aussie jobs” and 457 visas. This statement of union activists, anti-racists and others expresses concern over the anti-foreign worker sentiment, and argues unions should welcome temporary workers on 457 visas into the unions. Please read and consider signing on.
Workers employed by Toll at the Coles warehouse in Somerton, Victoria, have shown that militancy wins. After a two-week strike, the workers, covered by the National Union of Workers (NUW), have won improved conditions and a better pay offer.
Labor breathed a sigh of relief after holding off The Greens in the July 21 by-election for the state seat of Melbourne. Victorian Labor feared that the series of verbal attacks on The Greens, begun by members of the NSW Labor Right faction, would cost them the seat.
In early July, around 8000 construction workers joined a strike and rally against Victorian Liberal Premier Ted Baillieu’s new anti-union building code, which came in force three days earlier. The strike showed the unions’ willingness to defy the law in defence of basic union rights, with the strike deemed illegal under both Baillieu’s Code and Gillard’s Fair Work laws.
Workers at the Coles Somerton warehouse run by Toll have been on indefinite strike since Tuesday 10 July. The workers, who are covered by the National Union of Workers (NUW), have held the line on their picket outside the warehouse, stopping trucks and management from entering.
The Gurindji people at Daguragu and Kalkaringi have been fighting the Intervention with protests, including strike action, since its introduction. Here we reprint a statement calling on the Labor government to bin its Stronger Futures Bill, which will extend the Intervention measures that are destroying their community for another ten years.
More than 20,000 Victorian teachers went out on strike on Thursday 7 June, and more than 11,000 tried to cram into the Hisense Arena for the mass strike meeting—but there was not enough room. Five hundred had to stay outside and watch the meeting on a screen. It was the biggest teachers’ strike in Victorian history.
800 workers at news giant Fairfax are on strike, in a defiant response to a plan to outsource jobs at its regional newspapers.
The announcement of an Enterprise Migration Agreement (EMA) that will allow Gina Rinehart’s Roy Hill project to employ 1700 overseas workers has produced a wave of controversy. But foreign workers are not a threat to jobs—and we need to fight to win them equal wages and work rights.
Egypt’s Revolutionary Socialists argue that the revolutionary movement in Egypt must do everything it can to keep Mubarak henchman Ahmad Shafiq from winning in the next round of the Presidential elections, and apply pressure on the Muslim Brotherhood for real change
Labor’s obsession with a budget surplus has delivered more cuts and an on-going failure to fund services. Despite its talk there is only peanuts for spending on schools, dental and disability care in this budget.
On the same day the axe fell on academic jobs at Sydney University, students and staff hit the streets in a day of anger, and successfully blockaded a Senate meeting for several hours despite encountering severe police violence.
Solidarity distributed this leaflet at the 2012 national Climate Action Summit, held this weekend in Sydney
One thousand five hundred students and staff marched down the University of Sydney’s Eastern Avenue on Wednesday 4 April in a defiant display of opposition to 340 proposed job cuts. Over 100 students then occupied the Faculty of Arts and delivered an ultimatum to the Vice Chancellor, demanding he back away from the cuts or face a “campaign of escalating direct action”.
Kate Davison interviewed Christine Buchholz, German Federal MP for Die Linke (”The Left” Party) and supporter of Marx21, about their efforts to build solidarity with Greek workers facing severe austerity measures imposed by the German government and the EU.
Labor has suffered its worst defeat in Queensland in more than a century, crashing to a 26.9 per cent primary vote in the state election. The party’s embrace of pro-business policies disintegrated its support base.
A magistrate in Zimbabwe convicted six socialists of “inciting public violence” on Monday March 19. Some 160 supporters in the public gallery showed their outrage. The six plan to appeal and activists around the world are campaigning against this travesty of justice.
Defiant solidarity action by Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) members in Sydney has delivered a boost to sacked wharfies in New Zealand. Workers took industrial action against a scab-loaded ship from Auckland, demanding the company refuse to use Auckland port while it is run on non-union labour.
A major union dispute has erupted in New Zealand at the Port of Auckland, with 300 union workers sacked and replaced with scabs. Now the dispute has spread, with Sydney wharfies voting on Saturday March 10 to respect a community picket line and not to load or unload a ship worked by scab labour in Auckland.
This statement on Greece, signed by organisations in the International Socialist Tendency and others, explains the vicious austerity policies facing the Greek people and offers solidarity in the Greek workers’ fight for a better society.
The leadership showdown between Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard is a contest completely lacking in substance—and in any serious policy differences. No matter what the outcome, the problems at the heart of Labor’s crisis—its right-wing policies and constant capitulations to big business—will continue to fester.
Eight years after the shocking deaths and police cover-ups of the killings of TJ Hickey in Redfern and Mulrunji Doomadgee on Palm Island, there are all the signs of another disgraceful death in custody and cover-up in Alice Springs.
Protests celebrating the anniversary of the Aboriginal Tent Embassy have been subject to a vicious and distorting media campaign, after a snap protest directed at Tony Abbott and Julia Gillard. But this protest, and the demands of the Tent Embassy for Aboriginal rights and self-determination, remain absolutely right and should be defended.
One year from the start of the revolution that toppled Hosni Mubarak and is now challenging the power of Egypt’s military junta, Egypt’s Revolutionary Socialists analyse the dynamics of the revolution and the need to link up the revolutionaries in the squares with those fighting for economic justice in the workplace.
At the end of 2011 the Sydney University administration announced 340 job cuts (150 academic and 190 general) to be finalised by February 2012. They claim that this is because of reduced income. But they have plenty of money to spend on buildings and technology to promote Sydney University. This is about increasing the profitability of the University by slashing the quality of teaching and learning.
Egyptian trade unionists have called for demonstrations on January 25, the one year anniversary of the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak. The demands of workers and protestors have not been met by the ruling military regime.
Labour leaders in Nigeria called off a general strike on Monday of this week after the government agreed to partly reintroduce petrol subsidies.
Australia cannot evade its share of the responsibility for the tragic sinking of another asylum boat off Java, according to advocates from the Refugee Action Coalition. The boat is believed to have been carrying Afghan and Iranian refugees.
The political crisis in Papua New Guinea split open in mid-December as two men both claimed the right to be the Prime Minister.
Labor’s national conference saw a greater challenge to the government’s right-wing policies than at the previous event in 2009, where then leader Kevin Rudd orchestrated proceedings to ensure there was no debate. But the overall result was that Julia Gillard forced through a further shift to the right—and did nothing to boost Labor’s prospects.
It was a historic day. Britain’s biggest strike since 1926 saw the working class march firmly on to centre stage of the political arena, reports UK Socialist Worker
The Egyptian revolution has reached a new turning point. People in their hundreds of thousands have returned to Tahrir square and the streets across the country, in response to a brutal crackdown by the military.
Statement from the Revolutionary Socialists, released on November 21, 2011, calling on Egyptian workers to take strike action to help bring down the military regime.
The Egyptian Revolutionary Socialists’ statement on the crisis in Egypt
On the weekend, striking poultry workers at Baiada’s Laverton factory and their supporters defeated police attempts to break up their picket, which has now been going strong for nearly a week. Then on Sunday, the workers and their union held a successful union and community rally to support the workers’ demands for better wages, safety conditions and permanent jobs. Click here for photos and videos.
Striking poultry workers have pushed back police attacks on their picket at the Baiada factory in Laverton, Victoria. Read more for the latest news on the struggle and what you can do to get involved.
Baiada poultry workers at Laverton, Victoria, members of the National Union of Workers (NUW), began an indefinite strike on Wednesday 9 November for better conditions, a 5 per cent pay rise a year for the next three years, better health and safety conditions and job security.
Despite threats and intimidation by the Baiada management, the poultry workers have established a 24 hour picket line. Around 292 of the 430 Baiada workers are on strike, a majority of them from migrant backgrounds.
The ugly face of Australia’s 1 per cent was graphically on display over the weekend, when CEO Alan Joyce grounded Qantas and prepared to lock out its workforce.
If anyone was wondering what the 1 per cent looks like—take a look at anti-union thug and Qantas boss, Alan Joyce. A day after the Qantas CEO had his 71 per cent pay increase (to take his base pay to over $5 million) approved, he locked out the entire workforce.
On October 15, more than a million people took to the streets around the globe. From Seoul to Santa Fe, in so many different languages, the protests expressed the anger felt by millions at the economic crisis and a political class that doesn’t represent their interests.
The Occupy Wall Street protests have struck a chord, voicing opposition to corporate power and disillusionment with the US political system. It has mushroomed into a movement that has spread to 70 other cities across the US. It also injected renewed energy into the anti-austerity movements in Europe, and has now spread throughout the world, including to Australia.
At least 23 protesters were killed in Cairo last night, Sunday, as the army and police carried out a massacre in front of the state TV building, reports Hossam el-Hamalawy from Cairo
The Federal Court has condemned Andrew Bolt’s journalism as dishonest and racist, over a series of articles he wrote in the Murdoch tabloid The Herald Sun.
US-based anti-capitalist activist Virginia Rodino reports on a protest at the heart of the system
The revolution in Egypt is gaining new momentum. The strikes that began in the summer have stepped up. The hated Hosni Mubarak is on trial. And steel tycoon Ahmed Ezz was sentenced to ten years in jail on Thursday of last week for corruption.
Solidarity produced this leaflet for today’s coal seam gas rally in Sydney.
Solidarity has produced a factsheet outlining why the carbon tax package will not cut emissions, how the approach of pushing costs onto workers has given Tony Abbott an enormous free kick, and that there is an alternative approach—taxing the polluters to fund government investment in renewable energy
The carbon tax deal struck between Julia Gillard and The Greens has finally been unveiled. Gillard says it will mean a “great clean energy future”. The Greens have hailed it as “historic”. But it fails the key tests.
Exiled Thai socialist Giles Ji Ungpakorn writes on the victory in Thailand’s election for Peua Thai, the party closely allied to the Red Shirt movement
Just two months after taking office, Barry O’Farrell and the NSW Liberals have shown their real face, launching a savage attack on public sector workers, something they never mentioned before the election.
The thousands taking to the streets for “slutwalk” rallies show the anger at the widespread and growing sexism in society—exemplified in the efforts to blame women for rape. Solidarity produced this statement for the demonstrations.
Rallies for climate action will take place Australia-wide on Sunday 5 June. Solidarity put together this statement about the rallies demand for a carbon tax and what it means for climate action and the campaign.
Obituary: Bob Gould
Bob Gould dedicated his life to defending the rights of the working class and the fight for a socialist society and his passing is a blow to the labour movement.
This message was conveyed to the Refugee Action Coalition by a hunger strike inside Curtin detention centre. 1500 mostly Afghan refugees are detaineed in Curtin detention centre. 300 of them are now on hunger strike, demanding that refugee activists who have bused in from Perth and elsewhere be allowed into the detention centre. Below is also a media release from RAC about their Curtin visit and the decision of Immigration officials to completely ban one activist, Jemima Mowbray, from visiting detainees.
In the aftermath of the NSW election, The Australian and right-wing politicians have mounted a witch-hunt against the NSW Greens over their support for the campaign of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) against apartheid Israel.
Labor’s thumping in the NSW election was hardly a surprise. Disgust with its corruption, privatisation and the run down of schools, hospitals and public transport had been building for years. But the election result is not a mandate for Liberal policies.
The Intervention Rollback Action Group condemns the racist advertising campaign being run by business owner group ‘Action for Alice’ and their calls for further incarceration of Aboriginal people.
Flanked by Greens Senators Bob Brown and Christine Milne, Julia Gillard announced at a press conference on February 24 that she wants to introduce a price on carbon (a carbon tax) that will become an emissions trading scheme in three to five years. The announcement has been welcomed by the some of the climate movement, most environment NGOs and also by the peak union body, the ACTU. But supporting this carbon price scheme is a mistake.
A group of socialists in Zimbabwe face a possible death sentence for watching a video about the Egyptian Revolution.
A storm of revolutions, uprisings and revolts continues to thunder across the Middle East. Its speed and scale is breathtaking.
Following the overthrow of Ben Ali in Tunisia, and Hosni Mubarak in Egypt, all regimes in the region—whether considered friendly or hostile to the West—have been challenged by this growing movement.
Refugee Action Coalition media release
Refugee supporters and relatives of the survivors’ relatives again gathered at the Miowera Road gates of Villawood detention centre at 8.30am Thursday, 17 February to call on the Minister of Immigration not to return the Christmas Island disaster survivors to the island.
The tyrant has fallen. Mubarak has gone. Israel’s man, the US’s man, the World Bank’s man, has been deposed. Mubarak has been swept away by one of the greatest mass movements in history.
The statement was issued by revolutionary socialists in Egypt on Sunday February 6.
Judith Orr, editor of Socialist Worker (UK) is reporting live from the protests in Cairo—see her posts here
Thousands of people remain on the streets of towns and cities in Egypt after a day of huge demonstrations calling for the downfall of the dictator Hosni Mubarak and his regime.
They said they would be there, and they were. The 25 January was declared a “Day of Anger” by democratic and socialist forces a week beforehand. The significance of the choice of date cannot be overestimated—it is “Police Day”— an occasion when the regime incessantly drums up the virtues of its patriotic police force.
A statement from the International Socialist Tendency, a global network of socialist organisations of which Solidarity is a part:
The importance of the victory of the Tunisian masses is not limited to the successful overthrow of Ben-Ali, ending 23 years of dictatorship. The Tunisian Revolution refutes the arguments that had been disseminated by many right-wing intellectuals over the past few decades that the Arab masses are incapable of achieving revolutionary change, and that the times of revolution are over.
Revolution has ousted the corrupt Tunisian leader President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali.
This is the first time revolution has overthrown an Arab leader since the fall of the Shah of Iran in 1979. It will have an electric impact across north Africa and the Middle East.
Uprisings are shaking the authoritarian regimes of Tunisia and Algeria in North Africa. Protests have raged for more than three weeks in Tunisia. High youth unemployment, poverty and a rising cost of living—combined with the obscene wealth of the elite and corruption—has led to fury.
The debt crisis is extending and deepening across Europe. As European governments force working people to pay for the costs of the crisis through austerity measures, more and more are standing up in opposition.
Refugee Action Coalition media release 15 December 2010:
“Government anti-refugee policy is responsible for the tragedy on Christmas Island,” said Ian Rintoul, spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition.
“Our heart goes out to the people and their families of the asylum seekers who have lost their lives, so close to the possibility of protection.”
The avalanche of secret US diplomatic cables has raised the rage of world leaders against Julian Assange and Wikileaks to fever pitch. They have launched a concerted international campaign to shut Assange and Wikileaks down—seemingly by whatever means at their disposal.
Sign the open letter initiated by Sydney Stop the War Coalition.
An Iraqi asylum seeker, Ahmad, is believed to have committed suicide at Villawood detention centre around midnight Monday night.
It took a Cairns jury less than an hour to find Tegan Leach and Sergie Brennan not guilty on charges of procuring an abortion. It was a cause for celebration for the couple, as well as the many abortion rights activists crammed into the courtroom and chanting outside.
Updates on the situation are available at Refugee Action Coalition Sydney’s website
In 2007, the mass union mobilisations through the Your Rights at Work campaign were the central force driving John Howard from office. It beggars belief that only three years later, we came so close to having a Coalition government led by Howard’s clone, Tony Abbott.
Julia Gillard’s deal with The Greens to establish a parliamentary committee on a carbon price has been hailed as a new chance for serious action on climate change. The Greens have led the charge for a carbon tax; new MP Adam Bandt has called it “the key to dealing with the climate change challenge.”
As she lost the seat of Bennelong, Maxine McKew summed up Labor’s crisis: compared to 2007, she said, Labor stood for nothing.
The struggles against the NT Intervention and the expansion of the nuclear industry in the NT continued to build during the election period - through the Greens campaign and the Intervention Rollback Action Group’s (IRAG) grassroots mobilisation.
“Together we have made history today”, Adam Bandt declared, as he became the first Green to win a lower house seat in a general election. The surge to The Greens shows that, despite Gillard’s effort to race Abbott to the right, larger numbers than ever want a left-wing alternative.
Victorian Premier John Brumby’s recently announced climate policies have seen him hailed as the first Australian politician to get serious about climate change. But his promises on climate have fallen though in the past, and so far the details of how large-scale solar power would be boosted under his new plan are not available. His announcements contain no new funding for large-scale renewable energy.
The Federal Australian Education Union (AEU) held a National Symposium to highlight issues regarding NAPLAN and school rankings in Sydney on July 21.
Julia Gillard has capitulated to the mining companies to end their campaign against Labor’s mining tax. The speedy acceptance of her compromise deal by the wealthiest mining companies BHP Billiton, Xstrata and Rio Tinto shows the extent of the government’s retreat.
The Alice Springs Based Intervention Rollback Action group (IRAG) and STICS (Stop the
Intervention Collective Sydney) have condemned the Social Security and Other Legislation
Amendment (Welfare Reform and Reinstatement of Racial Discrimination Act) Bill, expected to pass
through the Senate this week.
In the early hours of Monday morning, Israeli naval ships and helicopters descended upon an international aid flotilla headed toward the Gaza strip. The trained killers of the Israeli armed forces opened fire on the activists aboard six of the boats, mostly from Turkey and Greece. Nine people were murdered. Even more are wounded.
Refugee groups today condemned the Immigration Minster’s decision to re-open Curtin detention centre to house detainees whose visa applications have been suspended.
Victoria Police routinely racially target, taunt and bash African youths across Melbourne, according to a Legal Services report released in March.
Update: After Democrat politicians bring weapons into Parliament and their officials throw CS gas cannisters into peaceful Red Shirt protestors outside, the Government then declared a state of emergency in Bangkok. This gives them the power to shut down all opposition media and use force against the pro-democracy demonstrators. There are reports that soldiers are massing at the international airport in order to attack the peaceful demonstrators.
Censored CSIRO economist Clive Spash, whose controversial paper on carbon trading was censored by CSIRO management, spoke in Sydney and Melbourne on “Why Carbon Trading Will Fail” in March.
The Greens’ Proposal
The Greens have proposed an interim 2 year carbon tax, as a transition to
carbon trading. Starting at $23 per tonne this year, rising to $24 the
Teaching unions around the country have pledged to ban upcoming national testing after newspapers in Canberra, Sydney and Melbourne used information from the “My School” website to publish damaging and misleading league tables late in January.
Up to 1600 workers have defied court orders and calls by the Rudd government to end strike action at Woodside Petroleum’s Pluto gas site in Western Australia.
Up to 20,000 union members have taken strike action at Australia Post, part of a pre-Xmas rush of strikes that also hit Sydney buses, Telstra and Qantas.
The run of pre-Xmas strikes are a welcome start in reversing years of management bullying, privatisation and job cuts. The limited revival of industrial struggle by workers marks a shift in the terrain for the Labor government.
Solidarity is making Clive Spash’s paper available because we believe it should be compulsory reading for every environmental activist.
NASA climate scientist James Hansen shocked many climate activists when he declared that it would be better if the Copenhagen talks collapsed. Spash’s paper will tell you why carbon trading schemes are fundamentally flawed and why Copehagen will not deliver meaningful action that can stop climate change.
Solidarity (Australia) joins other socialists around the world to mourn the passing of Chris Harman. International socialism has sadly lost one of its greatest thinkers.
GOVERNMENT STANCE ON ASYLUM SEEKERS IS UNSUSTAINABLE
JULIA GILLARD BRINGS SHAMEFUL REMINDER OF TAMPA
Massive “counter-terrorism” raids in Melbourne last week have further stirred up racism against Muslims and immigrants. More than 400 police were involved in the raids, including paramilitary squads armed with sub-machine guns. Five men are being charged under draconian “anti-terror” legislation with making unspecified preparations to carry out a terrorist attack.
Five hundred and fifty New South Wales Teachers Federation union delegates have unanimously voted for a series of actions to stop the publication of school league tables at their annual conference.
Refugee Action Coalition MEDIA RELEASE
- GOVERNMENT POLICIES ARE FORCING ASYLUM SEEKERS TO USE PEOPLE SMUGGERS
The drama and uncertainty that still surrounds the fate of many of the
Refugee Action Coalition MEDIA RELEASE
Some of the 74 Afghan asylum seekers feared lost at sea Indonesian waters
fours days ago have made it to land.
Refugee Action Coalition MEDIA RELEASE
In the aftermath of the rescue of a 74 asylum seekers’ boat yesterday, the refugee advocate who alerted Australian border protection authorities to the distressed boat has called on the Rudd government to end the crack down on asylum seekers and people smugglers in Indonesia.
An update from the Sydney G20 Solidarity Collective
IRAN IS being rocked by massive people power demonstrations-the biggest since the 1979 revolution that overthrew the hated Shah. Night after night, hundreds of thousands of people have poured into the streets of Tehran and other cities to join protests against the rigged election win of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
Thousands have rallied around the country calling for funding renewable energy as an alternative to the governments polluter friendly emissions trading scheme, there were climate protests in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Cairns, Hobart, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney and Wollongong.
There is a new popular power sweeping Iran. In one of the biggest mass demonstrations since the toppling of the US-backed Shah in 1979, some one million people descended onto the streets of the capital Tehran to protest at an election widely seen as rigged.
One hundred and fifty thousand people attended the Hong Kong candlelight vigil in Victoria Park to commemorate those killed in Tiananmen Square on June 4 1989. They came to pay tribute to the bravery of those who stared down the soldiers and tanks.
Thousands of people have marched in Melbourne today (Sunday May 31) against racist attacks on people of Indian origin living in Melbourne. There have also been attacks in Sydney, last week Indian student, Rajesh Kumar, was left with burns to 30% of his body after a petrol bomb was thrown into his apartment.
Workers at five universities in Melbourne — Melbourne, Monash, Swinburne, RMIT and Deakin, plus a Hawthorn college — struck on Thursday, May 21.
I acknowledge the traditional owners of the land on which we meet.
I have been an academic for over three decades. I used to like my job but not the last few years.
Howard’s long gone – so why are uni managements still acting like Liberals?
Labor was elected amid talk of an education revolution. But uni managements continue to act as if nothing has changed.
*No compromise with Rudd’s flawed scheme. More than ever the CPRS is worse than useless*
Recent developments around the Rudd government’s Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) highlight the need for the climate movement to clearly oppose and mobilise against the scheme in its entirety.
Scrap the CPRS
A Call for Green Senators to Vote NO
Kevin Rudd’s Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS), the government’s main mechanism for reducing Australia’s carbon emissions, fails every test.
Refugee groups wants the government to come clean on asylum boat interceptions. Government policy is creating the conditions for more tragedies
Workers across the country are disgusted and outraged with the announcement that Pacific Brands bosses plan to sack 1850 workers. The bosses’ greed is astounding. A fight to save the jobs would win widespread support.
This year marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin. It is also 150 years since the publication of the book that made him world famous, indeed notorious – On The Origin Of Species By Means Of Natural Selection.
NSW teachers have won a pay increase and the reinstatement of a state-wide staffing plan as part of a new 3-year-award.
Only a few years ago mainstream debate on climate change was still focused on debates with climate skeptics about whether the threat was real. Today climate change is a mainstream issue—it was one of the key issues in bringing Kevin Rudd to power in late 2007 and tackling it has moved to the center of the new government’s agenda. But this shift also means the climate movements needs to reorient itself to deal with the new situation.
Israel has expanded its murderous air attack on Gaza into a full ground assault. With all borders sealed, 1.5 million Palestinians are trapped—with little electricity or fuel and severe shortages of food, clean water and medicines. Download Solidarity pdf Broadsheet
The assault on Gaza is part of the wider US-backed “war on terror” across the Middle East. Ending the Australian government’s continued backing for US wars in Iraq and Afghanistan is part of building the kind of struggle needed to free Palestine.
The US has blamed Hamas for causing Israel’s assault. Kevin Rudd has called them a “terrorist organisation”. In fact Hamas are the legitimate elected leaders of the Palestinians.
THOUSANDS of people have rallied across Australia in the last week to protest Israel’s recent military bombardment and siege of the Gaza strip.
by Giles Ji Ungpakorn,
from Turn Left Thailand
The appointment of “Democrat” Party leader Abhisit Vejjajiva as the new Thai Prime Minister is the final stage of the second coup against an elected government. **Update Giles Ji Ungpakorn has been charged with “Lese Majeste” for publication of his book “A Coup For The Rich” Press Statement - Open Letter/Petition
Refugee groups today called for the permanent closure of the high security immigration detention facility on Christmas Island.
Panos Garganas from Greece reports on the mass movement sparked by the police killing of 15-year old, which has detonated wider anger against the government over cutbacks in response to the economic crisis
The following is an article from Workers Solidarity the paper of our sister organisation in Greece (translated from Greek)
About 40 people rallied in the Coburg mall in Melbourne on Saturday December 6 for government intervention to save ABC childcare centres.
Turnbull’s call for the re-introduction of temporary protection visas shows how much the Liberal opposition is in thrawl to the failed policies of the Howard era, according to refugee groups.
Eviction notices given to student occupiers in the Student Housing Action Collective (SHAC) at Melbourne University have been withdrawn, with the university re-entering negotiations with the students.
When life long socialist Jeff Goldhar died in 1997, he left a bequest. Set up at the end of 1998, the Jeff Goldhar Project is now celebrating 10 years of activities.
By Giles Ji Ungpakorn in Bangkok
Today the Constitutional Court dissolved the democratically elected governing party in Thailand for the second time, forcing the government to resign. This follows the refusal of the armed forces and the police to follow government instructions to clear the two international airports blocked by armed PAD fascists.
20,000 teachers at meetings around the state have voted to take 48 hours of industrial action from the start of the 2009 school year, in the event of the NSW government not abandoning its attacks on wages, conditions and the staffing of public schools.
Solidarity believes the federal government should take over ABC Learning Centres, CFK Childcare and any other “unprofitable” centres.
Immigration detainees at Villawood detention centre in Sydney have suspended their hunger strike after three days. The Refugee Action Coalition has been releasing daily updates on the hunger strike, which we republish here.
Socialist Worker in the US interviewed activists following Obama’s victory for their understanding of the importance of his win
National protests have been called in response to the guilty verdict in the trial of Lex Wotton, announced this week.
Leaflet distributed by Solidarity students at Sydney University seminar on the financial crisis
What does it do for the union movement’s credibility when its elected leader joins the government?
The extraordinary waves of panic that have swept through global financial markets in the past few weeks have filled ordinary working people around the world with a mixture of anger, bewilderment, and fear.
The era of neo-liberal market madness has crashed. It is not the end of capitalism by a long shot, but it is the end of capitalism as we have known it
Socialist Worker - our sister publication in Britain - answers the crucial questions raised by the collapse of leading investment banks and the recent turmoil in glabal markets
Join the campaign to abolish the Australian Building and Construction Commission.
Solidarity speaks to Marcus Strom, a member of the Fairfax union house committee, about the ongoing dispute at Fairfax.
Paula Pfoeffer in Cochabamba, Bolivia, reports that the Morales government in Bolivia has been under attack by right-wing forces.
The Thai political crisis took another farcical turn today when the courts ruled that Prime Minister Samak must resign because he appears on a TV cooking programme.
2000 union delegates attended a mass meeting to defend Noel Washington, CFMEU official facing 6 months jail for refusing to be interrogated by the Howard era Australian Building & Construction Commission (ABCC). The ABCC wanted to question him about what was said at a union meeting that took place outside of work hours.
“We are puzzled that the Minister seems to have pre-empted his Parliamentary Enquiry, but the changes to immigration detention announced today by the Minister for Immigration are a welcome move in the right direction”, according to Ian Rintoul, spokesperson for the Refugee Action Coalition.
In another victory for the right to protest, one of the few court
convictions over the APEC demonstration was overturned on appeal yesterday in
the District Court.
Climate Camp, a protest against the coal industry in Newcastle NSW, was a success and an important step forward in continuing to build a movement for real solutions to stop global warming. It brought hundreds of activists together for a week of discussion and protest, and the main protest on Sunday drew 1000 people with the goal of shutting down a coal train line for the day. This direct action was a breath of fresh air, compared to the mainstream environment movement’s focus on individual action and lobbying politicians.
Over two hundred students from across Australia converged on Melbourne University last week for the annual Queer Collaborations conference, this year themed ‘Freedoms are Won, Not Given’.
Unions in Victoria are set to escalate their campaign against the anti-union Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC), a WorkChoices-era relic. For the first time since Howard introduced the ABCC a unionist, Noel Washington, will face court for refusing to attend an interrogation by the commission.
NURSES IN NSW have accepted a pay deal in exchange for a raft of “trade offs” that strip back work conditions. The nurses’ is the latest in a string of public sector disputes where unions are battling state Labor governments’ below-inflation pay caps.
About 4000 people rallied in central Melbourne on Saturday July 5, addressed by Greens Senator Bob Brown, among others.
On June 21, people from ten cities around Australia took to the streets to protest the ongoing NT Intervention. One year since John Howard and Mal Brough announced the Intervention in the NT the vast majority of it continues to be rolled out, full steam ahead, by Kevin Rudd.
Solidarity has produced a climate change position paper to coincide with the Climate Camp in Newcastle in July. It runs through, in some detail, our critique of the climate camp’s focus on coal exports, the myth of the individual carbon footprint, and what sorts of demands and organisation are needed to constitute a movement post-climate camp.