30 Nov 2011

Dominican Republic to abolish indigenous people


Just got this from Intercontinental Cry

A new piece of legislation has been proposed in the Dominican Republic that would effectively erase the country's Indigenous population---the Taino.
According to a recent article on Dominican Today, the "Dominican Republic Electoral Law Reform" Bill identifies just three ethnicities for the country's new citizen ID cards. Those ethnicities are Mulatto, black and white.
While the country's Indigenous population has been reduced by roughly 98 per cent since 1492, according to some estimates, that population continues to exist.
An emergency petition has been set up to stop to the Bill from being ratified.

Dominican Legislation Eradicates 'Indians'

Mulatto, black and white will be the only colors among Dominicans and will be stated thus in the citizens ID cards (cedula), effectively eradicating the nation's "Indians."
The bill "Dominican Republic Electoral Law Reform" states that in the master file of cedulas the color of Dominicans will be established by their ethnic group, and as such only three colors.
The Spanish Royal Academy of Language defines ethnic group as "a human community defined by racial affinities."
Organization of American States (OAS) and Central Electoral Board (JCE)technicians drafted the legislation to reform Electoral Law 275-97, and will be debated by the JCE prior to being submitted to Congress in the next few days.
The bill also states that in addition to the person's ethnic group, in the cedulas master file information must figure the serial number for each municipality, the specific identity number, a citizen's blood type, their father's and mother's full names, their digital photo and fingerprints, among others.
The measure announced late Thursday drew quick rebuke Friday morning, with prominent media figure Teo Veras asking the JCE to "leave that as is," because in his view, it could only stoke "ill feelings."
Although nearly all Taino Indians perished early during Spanish colonization, the term "Indio" lingered from the many remaining descendants of mixed blood also called mestizos.
The term over time came to describe a person whose color is neither black, white nor mulatto, the latter often called "moreno."

Osborne biofuel expansion will kill!

Dear friends,

the UK Government is consulting on the level of subsidies for all types of electricity which they class as renewable – including biomass power stations and electricity from biofuels (including palm oil). Their proposal is to continue to support biomass on an unlimited scale – even more than at present as far as co-firing of biomass with coal is concerned. They also propose  to support the burning of up to 400,000 tonnes of biofuels for electricity per year (on top of the large-scale use of biofuels for transport).  If all those biofuels were palm oil – a realistic prospect given that this is by far the cheapest vegetable oil – then 110,000 hectares of new oil palm plantations would be needed.

Those subsidies mean more deforestation and climate change, more land-grabbing for tree plantations and thus more human rights abuses and more people going hungry.  At the same time, the Government is drastically cutting subsidies for solar PV and are proposing to cut back on subsidies for onshore wind which, according to Friends of the Earth, would harm small-scale and community wind projects.

Please go to www.biofuelwatch.org.uk/2011/rocs-alerts/ [ http://www.biofuelwatch.org.uk/2011/rocs-alerts/ ] and let the government and your MP know that renewable energy support should go to clean, sustainable real renewables, not to destructive biomass and bioliquid electricity. Please note that there are two separate email actions on the same webpage. Please help spread the word about those alerts. Many thanks!

Best regards,



Almuth Ernsting
Biofuelwatch
biofuelwatch@ymail.com

29 Nov 2011

Economic Democracy for the Occupy generation

A number of us are supporting a motion to support Economic Democracy for the next Green Party conference in the spring,  Peter Tatchell has set the ball rolling and thanks to his work we now have the following proposal:




To help prevent a repeat economic meltdown, we need greater economic democracy, participation, transparency, decentralisation and accountability. There are four ways we could achieve this:
* Make corporate negligence and recklessness an explicit criminal offence, to reign in big business sharks and ensure more responsible economic management. Bankers and company bosses should not be able to wreck whole economies and squander with impunity people’s jobs, pensions and savings. They ought to be held personally liable for damaging corporate decisions. This spectre of legal penalties is likely to result in more prudent corporate governance.
* Require medium and large-sized companies to be accountable to their employees and to the general public by including on their management boards employee-elected directors and independent directors to represent the interests of consumers. Employee and consumer directors could act as watchdogs and whistleblowers against corporate irresponsibility. Not being driven by the profit-motive, they could also push for company policies that are more socially inclusive and environmentally protective.
* Give trade unions a majority stake in the management of their members’ pension funds, to decentralise and democratise investment decision-making and to give it a social and ethical dimension. The £900 billion invested in pension funds is a sizeable counter-weight to the economic clout of big business. It could be invested in ways that help make the economy more fair and people-centred. Trade unions are less likely to invest in the arms trade and sweatshops. They would be more open to investment to meet people’s needs, including renewable energy, affordable housing and quality public transport.
* Grant employees the legal right to buy out their companies and turn them into workers cooperatives; possibly with funding from trade union-controlled pension funds. These coops would weaken the power of big corporations, localise economic decision-making and give employees incentives for greater productivity. Evidence shows that people who areemployed in worker-owned enterprises tend to have higher output, better job satisfaction and greater social solidarity.      

27 Nov 2011

Don't ask is Ferguson a racist? (because he will sue your arse!)






Niall Ferguson is suing over the review of his latest book on the imperial legacy (see below).  Empires work by stealing peoples land, removing their rights and then lying about what has happened.  You can call this civilization if you like






You can judge Ferguson by this on indigenous peoples in America, where he notes simply:


The Apache and the Navajo had all sorts of admirable traits. In the absence of literacy we don’t know what they were because they didn’t write them down. We do know they killed a hell of a lot of bison. But had they been left to their own devices, I don’t think we’d have anything remotely resembling the civilisation we’ve had in North America.
He is also a modest guy as you can read here, 'it seems to be becoming de rigueur for mediocrities to build their fame on attacking those more successful than them." 


Any how read the review while you can (i.e before he closes the LRB) and see what you think:



‘Civilisation’s going to pieces,’ Tom Buchanan, the Yale-educated millionaire, abruptly informs Nick Carraway in The Great Gatsby. ‘I’ve gotten to be a terrible pessimist about things. Have you read The Rise of the Colored Empires by this man Goddard? … The idea is if we don’t look out the white race will be – will be utterly submerged.’ ‘Tom’s getting very profound,’ his wife Daisy remarks. Buchanan carries on: ‘This fellow has worked out the whole thing. It’s up to us, who are the dominant race, to watch out or these other races will have control of things.’ ‘We’ve got to beat them down,’ Daisy whispers with a wink at Nick. But there’s no stopping Buchanan. ‘And we’ve produced all the things that go to make civilisation – oh, science and art, and all that. Do you see?’

‘There was something pathetic in his concentration,’ Carraway, the narrator, observes, ‘as if his complacency, more acute than of old, was not enough to him any more.’ The scene, early in the novel, helps identify Buchanan as a bore – and a boor. It also evokes a deepening panic among America’s Anglophile ruling class. Wary of Jay Gatz, the self-made man with a fake Oxbridge pedigree, Buchanan is nervous about other upstarts rising out of nowhere to challenge the master race.

Scott Fitzgerald based Goddard, at least partly, on Theodore Lothrop Stoddard, the author of the bestseller The Rising Tide of Color against White World Supremacy(1920). Stoddard’s fame was a sign of his times, of the overheated racial climate of the early 20th century, in which the Yellow Peril seemed real, the Ku Klux Klan had re-emerged, and Theodore Roosevelt worried loudly about ‘race-suicide’. In 1917, justifying his reluctance to involve the United States in the European war, Woodrow Wilson told his secretary of state that ‘white civilisation and its domination over the world rested largely on our ability to keep this country intact.’
Hysteria about ‘white civilisation’ gripped America after Europe’s self-mutilation in the First World War had encouraged political assertiveness among subjugated peoples from Egypt to China. Unlike other popular racists, who parsed the differences between Nordic and Latin peoples, Stoddard proposed a straightforward division of the world into white and coloured races. He also invested early in Islamophobia, arguing in The New World of Islam (1921) that Muslims posed a sinister threat to a hopelessly fractious and confused West. Like many respectable eugenicists of his time, Stoddard later found much to like about the Nazis, which marked him out for instant superannuation following the exposure of Nazi crimes in 1945.

The banner of white supremacism has been more warily raised ever since in post-imperial Europe, and very rarely by mainstream politicians and writers. In the United States, racial anxieties have been couched either in such pseudo-scientific tracts about the inferiority of certain races as The Bell Curve, or in big alarmist theories like Samuel Huntington’s ‘clash of civilisations’. It’s not at all surprising that in his last book Huntington fretted about the destruction by Latino immigration of America’s national identity, which is apparently a construct of ‘Anglo-Protestant culture’. As power ostensibly shifts to the East, a counterpoise to dismay over the West’s loss of authority and influence is sought in a periodic ballyhooing of the ‘trans-Atlantic alliance’, as in Philip Bobbitt’s Terror and Consent (2008), which Niall Ferguson in an enthusiastic review claimed will ‘be read with pleasure by men of a certain age, class and education from Manhattan’s Upper East Side to London’s West End’.

Ferguson himself is homo atlanticus redux. In a preface to the UK edition ofCivilisation: The West and the Rest, he writes of being seduced away from a stodgy Oxbridge career, early in the 2000s, to the United States, ‘where the money and power actually were’. The author of two previous books about 19th-century banking, Ferguson became known to the general public with The Pity of War (1998), a long polemic, fluent and bristling with scholarly references, that blamed Britain for causing the First World War. According to Ferguson, Prussia wasn’t the threat it was made out to be by Britain’s Liberal cabinet. The miscalculation not only made another war inevitable after 1919, and postponed the creation of an inevitably German-dominated European Union to the closing decades of the 20th century, it also tragically and fatally weakened Britain’s grasp on its overseas possessions.
This wistful vision of an empire on which the sun need never have set had an immediately obvious defect. It grossly underestimated – in fact, ignored altogether – the growing strength of anti-colonial movements across Asia, which, whatever happened in Europe, would have undermined Britain’s dwindling capacity to manage its vast overseas holdings. At the time, however, The Pity of War seemed boyishly and engagingly revisionist, and it established Ferguson’s reputation: he was opinionated, ‘provocative’ and amusing, all things that seem to be more cherished in Britain’s intellectual culture than in any other.
In retrospect, The Pity of War’s Stoddardesque laments about the needless emasculation of Anglo-Saxon power announced a theme that would become more pronounced as Ferguson, setting aside his expertise in economic history, emerged as an evangelist-cum-historian of empire. He was already arguing in The Cash Nexus, published a few months before the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001, that ‘the United States should be devoting a larger percentage of its vast resources to making the world safe for capitalism and democracy’ – if necessary by military force. ‘Let me come clean,’ he wrote in the New York Times Magazine in April 2003, a few weeks after the shock-and-awe campaign began in Iraq, ‘I am a fully paid-up member of the neoimperialist gang.’

Empire: How Britain Made the Modern World (2003), Ferguson’s next book, appeared in America with a more didactic subtitle: ‘The Rise and Demise of the British World Order and the Lessons for Global Power’. The word ‘empire’ still caused some unease in the US, whose own national myths originated in an early, short-lived and selective anti-imperialism. An exasperated Ferguson – ‘the United States,’ he claimed, ‘is an empire, in short, that dare not speak its name’ – set out to rescue the word from the discredit into which political correctness had apparently cast it. Britain’s 19th-century empire ‘undeniably pioneered free trade, free capital movements and, with the abolition of slavery, free labour. It invested immense sums in developing a global network of modern communications. It spread and enforced the rule of law over vast areas.’ ‘Without the spread of British rule around the world,’ he went on, in a typical counterfactual manoeuvre, colonised peoples, such as Indians, would not have what are now their most valuable ideas and institutions – parliamentary democracy, individual freedom and the English language.

MORE HERE 

26 Nov 2011

TIME FOR A GREEN PARTY TRADE UNION LIAISON OFFICER




I have decided to support this motion to go to the next Green Party of England and Wales conference in the spring.

GREEN PARTY TRADE UNION LIAISON OFFICER

This conference believes that the Green Party England Wales (GPEW) shares
many positive common aims and objectives with individual Trade Unions and
the Trade Union movement as a whole in defending workers conditions and
public services.



We further recognise that the workers movement is becoming more open to our
ideas on the need to change society to one that is sustainable economically,
including the Green New Deal and our campaign for 1 million green jobs as
against that of unfettered capitalism that is so wrecking people's lives.



We note that some local parties and candidates have received positive
support from a number of trade unions including moral, practical and
financial support for our campaigns and individual candidates, but recognise
that while this is an excellent development the party could gain further
support if we were to established a dedicated Trade Union Liaison Officer in
the Green Party (GPEW) at a national level and at some point also in the
regions.



This Conference therefore agrees to the creation of an elected Trade Union
Liaison Officer on GPEX to co-ordinate the building of links with the Trade
Union movement and individual Trade Unions including working closely with
our own Green Party Trade Union Group.


20 Nov 2011

Feed the world tour continues!





November 20 Glasgow Hosted by Scottish Socialist Party 2pm, Creation Studios16 Trongate Glasgow G1 5EU
November 21 Newcastle hosted by Newcastle University International Development Society, 6pm at Room 2.22 at the Old Library Building (Research Beehive), Newcastle University ( entrance from Queen Victoria Rd near and opposite RVI – also possible from Claremont Rd or Claremont Walk.
November 22 Wigan hosted by Wigan Green Socialists, Socialist Resistance and Green Left : Tuesday, 7:30pm – 10:00pm Friends’ Meeting House, 76 Swinley Lane (see Map @ http://www.quaker.org.uk/wigan)
November 24 Oxford 7.30pm , Oxford Town Hall St Aldate’s, 40 Pembroke Street, Oxford OX1 1BX

Tour of Philipina Ecosocialist
We live in a world where soil erosion, desertification and famine is an ever-increasing reality for millions of poor people. At the same time the profits of large landowners and supermarkets continue to soar.
The issues of food production and food sovereignty – who controls the production, sale and distribution of food – have never been more crucial.
In November 2011 Socialist Resistance and Green Left will be hosting a national tour to let audiences in British cities hear an activist for whom this is a matter of life and death.
Our keynote speaker will be Maria Neri B. Pampilo from Mindanao in the Philippines. Maria is a longstanding activist and ecosocialist. She will share her powerful experiences in the struggle for land reform and ecologically sustainable food production.
Monoculture – the industrial growing of a single cash crop – is a major contributor to soil erosion and desertification along with forest clearance for farming multi-nationals.
Agribusiness calls for ever-increasing yields that may give short-term benefits but at a devastating long-term cost including pesticides polluting rivers and oceans.
The cost to human communities is also immeasurable – peasants are thrown off their farms as land reform is reversed in the insatiable search for profit. Millions are forced to migrate to unsustainable cities – living in shantytowns with no infrastructure.
Samir Amin, the economist and writer on development issues, has argued that agriculture is one of the new frontiers for capital. Over the last few years appreciable amounts of speculative capital has moved into food production forcing food prices up. At the same time there has been a massive expansion of an unprecedented phenomena – the land grabbing, particularly in Africa, by both private and state capital, for the production of both food and agrifuels.
There is resistance – from the growth of militant peasant and indigenous organisations in many parts of the globe, the pioneering of organic agriculture in countries as diverse as Cuba, Venezuela and the Philippines and of guerilla gardening in the deserts of post-industrial cities in the United States such as Chicago.
The opportunity for ecosocialists in Britain to explore these topics in depth doesn’t come often and we hope you won’t miss this opportunity


19 Nov 2011

OCCUPY BRISTOL' CAMP OUT ON CAPITA PICKET LINE




ANTI-CAPITALIST PROTESTORS FROM THE 'OCCUPY BRISTOL' CAMP AT COLLGE GREEN HAVE CAMPED OVERNIGHT ON THE ANTI-CAPITA PICKET LINE OF 500 CWU MEMBERS ON STRIKE AT THE TEMPLE MEADS-VICTORIA STREET ROUNDABOUT SITE.

CWU Bristol Branch Secretary Dave Wilshire said:

"'Occupy Bristol' and our Bristol Capita members are fighting the same battle. Capita is a money-rich employer that is forcing many of its workers to survive on a minimum wage when they are making profits of a million pounds a day. So far as the CWU is concerned, 'Occupy Bristol' can camp out at Capita for as long as they like. We salute thier idealism and determination. 3,500 CWU members in Bristol and District, including our Capita strikers, have already made the link between anti-capitalism and anti-Capita, and we invite others to visit our picket-line camp to support us today."

******************************


Capita TVL facing Third one day strike by CWU members in Bristol .

Nationally members of the CWU employed by Capita are fighting for a decent pay rise and this Friday 18th they are taking their third day of strike action. In Bristol there are 350 workers involved.
We have a great record in Bristol of solidarity support and we are needed again.This time it’s CWU members at Capita who run the TV Licence contract. Capita are raking in a massive £ one million per day, EVERY SINGLE DAY!
Please find attached a summary of the dispute and what we can do to help by Dave Ward CWU.
 
What we can do in solidarity with the srtikers.....................
1] Send a meassge of support.
2] Visit the picket line (100 Temple Srteet, (far end) near Temple Me ads 07.30 to 10.30
3] Invite a CWU Capita striker to speak at any of your meetings. 
4] Make a donation to the strike fund Cheques made payable to 'CWU Bristol and District' and send to 'Capita Strike' C/O CWU Office 20 Church Road, Lawrence Hill, Bristol; BS5 9JA 
See below links to the CWU web site with info and articles and a video. For more information tel: 0790 952 5740
Yours in solidarity,
David Wilshire Bristol CWU Branch Secretary
‘Victory to the CWU in their fight against Capita(lism)’!

 

17 Nov 2011

Arundhati Roy speaks to occupy (video) please share



Going to be writing about her book on the war in India, 'Broken Republic' for Green Left Weekly soon.

Great activist and impressive novelist.

Nun who fought for Tribal rights beheaded



Just had this from one of my friends in India

'This is an odd story, but rather resonant. A Catholic Nun who was fighting for Tribal rights was beheaded by a group of men, after receiving threats from the local coal mafia.




I think this illustrates another aspect of "Dirty Coal"'

Catholic nun Valsa John (52), who was involved in a movement against displacement of tribal people by coal mining companies in Jharkhand, was murdered early on Wednesday. The killing occurred at Bachuwari village of Pakur district, 430 km from here. The police suspect that a coal mafia is behind it.




In the immediate context, she had been protesting against the functioning of a private coal mine in Pakur district. She was staying at Bachwari for the last 12 years, all by herself. She was seeking to protect the interests of the Santhal tribe, some members of which were displaced by the Panem Coal Mines.



According to the police, some unidentified men approached her house around midnight. When she opened the door, she was beaten with sticks and hacked to death.



The nun, who hailed from Kerala, was arrested in 2007 after she protested against the functioning of a coal mine on tribal land.
MORE HERE





15 Nov 2011

Reoccupy Wall Street!





Statement from Occupy Wall Street

To occupy is to embody the spirit of liberation that we wish to manifest in our society. It is to exercise our freedom to assemble. We are creating space for community, values, ideas, and a level of meaningful dialogue that is absent in the present discourse.
Liberated space is breaking free of isolation, breaking down the walls that literally and figuratively separate us from one another. It is a new focus on community, trust, love and hope. We occupy to create a vision of equality, liberty and social justice onto the blank paving stones of public parks, in the silent hallways of abandoned schools, banks, and beyond. Public space plays a crucial role in this civic process and encourages open, transparent organizing in our movement. As we have seen in Liberty Square, outdoor space invites people to listen, speak, share, learn, and act.
Last night, billionaire Michael Bloomberg sent a massive police force to evict members of the public from Liberty Square—home of Occupy Wall Street for the past two months. People who were part of a dynamic civic process were beaten and pepper-sprayed, their personal property destroyed.
Supporters of this rapidly growing movement were mobilized in the middle of the night, making phone calls, taking the streets en masse, and planning next steps. Americans and people around the world are appalled at Bloomberg's treatment of people who peacefully assemble. We are appalled, but not deterred. Liberty Square was dispersed, but its spirit not defeated. Today we are stronger than we were yesterday. Tomorrow we will be stronger still. We are breaking free of the fear that constricts and confines us. We occupy to liberate.
We move forward in the grand tradition of the transformative social movements that have defined American history. We stand on the shoulders of those who have struggled before us, and we pick up where others have left off. We are creating a better society for us all.
Occupy Wall Street has renewed a sense of hope. It has revived a belief in community and awakened a revolutionary spirit too long silenced. Join us as we liberate space and build a movement. 9 a.m. Tuesday morning at Sixth Avenue and Canal we continue.

13 Nov 2011

Never forget the millions killed in futile wars!


I met Heather Tanner in the early 1980s, she was in her 80s and told me of how she became a life long anti-war activist because her beloved brother was killed a minute or two before the end of the first world war, the 11 minute, of the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, a ritual date that through its neatness killed him. Never forget!



Come you masters of war
You that build all the guns
You that build the death planes
You that build the big bombs
You that hide behind walls
You that hide behind desks
I just want you to know
I can see through your masks
You that never done nothin’
But build to destroy
You play with my world
Like it’s your little toy
You put a gun in my hand
And you hide from my eyes
And you turn and run farther
When the fast bullets fly
Like Judas of old
You lie and deceive
A world war can be won
You want me to believe
But I see through your eyes
And I see through your brain
Like I see through the water
That runs down my drain
You fasten the triggers
For the others to fire
Then you set back and watch
When the death count gets higher
You hide in your mansion
As young people’s blood
Flows out of their bodies
And is buried in the mud
You’ve thrown the worst fear
That can ever be hurled
Fear to bring children
Into the world
For threatening my baby
Unborn and unnamed
You ain’t worth the blood
That runs in your veins
How much do I know
To talk out of turn
You might say that I’m young
You might say I’m unlearned
But there’s one thing I know
Though I’m younger than you
Even Jesus would never
Forgive what you do
Let me ask you one question
Is your money that good
Will it buy you forgiveness
Do you think that it could
I think you will find
When your death takes its toll
All the money you made
Will never buy back your soul
And I hope that you die
And your death’ll come soon
I will follow your casket
In the pale afternoon
And I’ll watch while you’re lowered
Down to your deathbed
And I’ll stand o’er your grave
’Til I’m sure that you’re dead

11 Nov 2011

PhD students occupy against Euro dictatorship



Greece and now Italy are ruled by European bank-o-crats.

Democracy has ended.

To keep the  bond markets happy no doubt a coup in Britain would be appropriate.

European voters have no say, schools, hospitals, clinics shut, wages slashed, so derivative markets can continue.

Nice to see phd students occupy in protest at European Council President Herman Van Rompuy:

Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council and the very personification of the undemocratic and unaccountable European technocracy, was treated to an unpleasant surprise today. As he delivered a lecture on the political and economic challenges for Europe at the European University Institute (EUI) in Florence, Italy, a group of about 50 PhD researchers occupied the university and interrupted his speech, holding up banners with a straightforward reminder: ‘Democracy?’
When the banners were raised, attendants spontaneously began to applaud incessantly, silencing the President, who was visibly frustrated. But having previously been denied the chance to ask questions afterwards, the researchers felt compelled to air their opinion in another way. Van Rompuy’s speech, as a result, was interrupted several times with demands to engage in a dialogue and allow the researchers to ask questions and make a statement.

MORE HERE 

9 Nov 2011

This saturday ULU 'Feed the world without destroying the planet: A seminar on food sovereignty'




November 12, 11-5.30

Registration 10.30.



University of London Union,

Malet Street, London WC1



Organised by Socialist Resistance and Green Left

http://socialistresistance.org/ http://greenleftblog.blogspot.com/



Agenda

11- 1.30 Introductory plenary

1.30-2.30 Lunch

2.30-4.00 Workshops

Women and Food Sovereignty

Agribusiness and the supermarkets

Land rights not Land grabs

Food Sovereignty and Climate change

4.15-5.30 Closing Plenary



With Maria Neri Pampilo

Maria has worked for CONZARRD since the mid 1990’s.CONZARRD is a grouping of popular and non-governmental organisations working on agrarian reform and rural development in Mindanao, in the Philippines. For CONZARRD organic farming is not a luxury – but essential to the survival of the famers.Organic rice for example is more resilient against both disease and flooding as well as cheaper. Organic fertiliser, produced locally enriches the soil rather than depleting it in the way chemical fertiliser does.



Other principal speakers include:

Graciela Romero War on Want International Programme Director and author of their report on Food Sovereignty

Rehad Desai: South African climate change activist and documentary film maker, visiting Britain to build support for the climate justice protests in Durban to coincide with the COP 17 summit in December

Derek Wall, Green Left – former principal speaker of the Green Party, author of the No Nonsense Guide to Green politics

Pierre Rousset : Noveau Parti Anticapalist (NPA), France, and Europe-Asia social forums – Editor of www.europesolidaire.com, has written extensively on Asia particularly the Philippines, Vietnam and Japan

Terry Conway: Socialist Resistance Editorial Board



Food sovereignty not `food security’ is answer to world hunger



One and a half billion people are at risk from rising food prices. This is the dramatic conclusion of the report by UN food agencies; The state of food insecurity in the World today. The report talks of a triple crisis of food, climate change and depleted natural resources, which could affect 1.5 billion people across 10 countries. It says: “having 600 million people suffering from hunger on a daily basis is never acceptable”



But the way the UN agencies focus on the concept of “food security” is fundamentally flawed. They promote private investment and increased agricultural productivity – both of which are part of the problem. They have contributed to the development of widespread hunger, rising food prices and small producers being forced off the land by increasing power of agribusiness and the supermarkets. Socialist Resistance and Green Left say that the answer is food sovereignty; that is the right of the people who produce food to determine their own agricultural policies, free from interference from either multinationals or from international institutions such as the World Bank and the IMF. The promotion of neo-liberal deregulation by these institutions has been one of the key factors leading to today’s food crisis. We say no to the power of the supermarkets. Food producers are at the mercy of the supermarkets who dictate what is grown and what price they will pay. Tesco makes two thirds of its sales and profits in Britain. In the second quarter of this financial year like for like sales in British stores fell by 0.7% while profits increased by 12% in the first half of the year! These are not issues that the left in Britain often addresses – we hope you will join us to hear Maria and other speakers discuss why they are vital to us all



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



I want to register for the Feed the world without destroying the planet seminar





Name----------------------------------------------------



Address--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Email-----------------------------------------------------------



Phone ---------------------------------------------------



Send £7 or £4 unwaged to PO Box 62732, London SW2 9CQ or by paypal.com to pay resistance@sent.com



8 Nov 2011

Protest and we will maim you?


Rubber Bullets agreed for use by police at Student Demonstrations 
Responding to the Met Police's statement on the potential use of ‘baton rounds' (similar to rubber bullets) at this week's student protests over tuition fees, Green Party Mayoral Candidate Jenny Jones said: "Any officer that shoots a student with a baton round will have to answer to the whole of London.
"How did we come to this? An unpopular government pushing ahead with policies that are all pain and no gain, relying on police armed with plastic bullets to deal with young people who complain about it all.
"The police should never be put in the position where they are seen as the last defence of an unpopular government. The police have a duty to facilitate peaceful demonstrations, which is why all this talk of baton rounds is very unhelpful as it will stop ordinary people from exercising their right to protest.
"The Mayor of London should be telling the Met police to calm things down, rather than talking tough and using tactics which escalate any tensions. We have seen how worried the Church became at being associated with any police action to clear the peaceful protesters away from St Pauls.
"The prospect of the police shooting at unarmed demonstrators with any kind of bullet is frankly appalling, un-British and reminiscent of scenes currently being used by murderous dictatorships in the Middle East."

So if capitalism doesn't work what do you suggest instead!




















Great to speak at Occupy London on capitalism and alternatives, I argued capitalism is innately flawed but the commons provides a democratic and ecological alternatives.

 Lets not be dogmatic but lets look at how collective and ecological property rights might work.

Marx is excellent on the 'macro' how commons were destroyed and the possibility of their restoration.

Elinor Ostrom is very good on 'micro' case studies on actual commons showing where they work and where they don't.

We can have an economy the suffers human need without wrecking the environment.

SOME LINKS (incomplete but to get you started no claim to be exhaustive or any other claims in fact)




Prosperity without Growth, Economics after capitalism http://www.sd-commission.org.uk/publications.php?id=771

Marxist Internet Archive http://www.marxists.org/

Digital Library of the Commons http://dlc.dlib.indiana.edu/dlc/



Karl Marx and the Iroquois - Franklin Rosemont  http://libcom.org/library/karl-marx-iroquois-franklin-rosemont


7 Nov 2011

Video of Caroline Lucas MP speaking at Occupylsx




Great speech.


'We will fight it every step of the way' 'biggest lie of all is there is no alternative'


oh and catch me tomorrow.


'What is capitalism and what are the alterantives' 2pm, Occupy London at St Pauls.


See you there!

6 Nov 2011

Green Left backs Mark Campbell as UCU secretary






"Green Left puts full support behind Mark Campbell as a candidate in the up coming UCU General Secretary Election. The group recognises the need for trade unions to have active, rank and file leadership, responsive to grass roots activists and that as a General Secretary candidate, Mark embodies this within UCU.

We welcome Mark’s decision, if elected, to only draw his lecturer’s salary, and only to accept increases which have been won for union members. We feel that this is an important connection between the union’s apparatus and the members. We are disappointed that Mark has been portrayed by other candidates as an “SWP candidate” and want to make it clear that he commands support from a significantly wider constituency."

'Greens continue to prosper where Labour fears to tread'



Caption Ed Milband speech bubble 'I wish I had Caroline's vision and radicalism'?

This is worth reading from the Brighton Politics Blogger, glad to see my party growing and standing for justice and change:

Bravely, four weeks after the event, when he knew which way the tide was running, and taking his lead from the Archbishop of Canterbury, Ed Miliband has come our, unequivocally in favour of the protest campers outside St. Paul’s Cathedral. Well, almost.
Writing in today’s Observer he carefully distances himself from the “long list of diverse and often impractical proposals” of the protesters.
At least he recognises that the Occupy London protest and similar protests around the country and the world as “danger signals” that only “the most reckless will ignore”.
Miliband writes: “the challenges that they reflect a crisis of concern for millions of people about the biggest issue of our time: the gap between their values and the way our country is run ….. I am determined that mainstream politics, and the Labour Party in particular, speaks to that crisis and rises to the challenge”.
Perhaps the first challenge Ed can rise to is to reframe “the way our country is run” to “capitalism”. He should name what we all know. What we are experiencing is the greatest crisis of capitalism EVER. The 99% believe one thing, the 1% – bankers and their supporters in the media and political elite – another. Instead Ed trots out cliche after cliche, carefully choosing his words so not to offend the 1%.
His second challenge is to support the day of action on November 30th. This will be the nearest thing the UK will have to a general strike, pathetic and limited though it is. Imagine if Miliband provided what is known as LEADERSHIP and called for an actual general strike on that day.
But Miliband won’t support this or any other industrial action. No Labour leader ever has. Nationally Miliband’s fence-sitting won’t matter. The unions will have to support Labour. TINA – there is no alternative.
But in Brighton and Hove there is. Green Party leader, Caroline Lucas, was one of the first to visit the Occupy London camp, Ben Duncan emerged from his sick bed to visit the Brighton camp (a sad little gathering, it must be said). Mike Weatherley has been quick to condemn the Brighton camp.
Labour locally has remained quiet. Like their ‘leader’, they are waiting to see where the people are going so that they can lead them. (Can anyone source the quote from the French leader who said “There go my people. I must find out where they are going so I can lead them”).
People in Brighton and Hove have a genuine choice. They can support the People’s Mike (Mike Weatherley who would wish to personally evict the campers at St Paul’s), or they can wait and see what ‘decisive’ action Labour takes, or they can support Caroline Lucas and the Greens who are demonstrating which side they are on.
Rumour has it that the trade unions in Brighton are becoming disenchanted with Labour and are privately looking to work more closely with the Greens. It might be expediency given the forthcoming budget. But it might just be that the Greens continue to prosper where Labour fears to tread.

5 Nov 2011

Caroline Lucas at Occupy London today



And I am running a little workshop on 'capitalism' tuesday 2pm.

Lots happening tomorrow, just cut and pasted this to tempt you'all.


Sunday 6th November
  • 11am Tent City University at St Paul’s – ‘Reflections: a media perspective’ - Three weeks into the occupation, deputy comment editor of the Guardian, Libby Brooks and special correspondent Audrey Gillan review mainstream media coverage of the occupation, reflecting on the challenges the movement faces in terms of courting positive media attention as well as the challenges the media face in reporting about a networked global movement that operates in an unorthodox way and cannot be defined in simple soundbites. There will also be other invited journalists
  • 1pm – General assembly - This is the forum through which members of the camp update the rest of the camp, make decisions through consensus voting. Members of the public are welcome to get involved
  • 2pm – 5pm – Cut cut copy shop for a new wor(l)d order at TCU - Delaina Haslam and Vyvian Raoul encourage word fans to come down and take part in this conceptual writing experiment. Conceptual writing is the art of taking that which has been written before – whether a paragraph, a sentence or a word – and creating something new out of it. Bring: a text of your choice connected in some way to OccupyLSX or the larger occupy movement
  • 2.30 – 4pm – Brian Leslie – financial reform (TCU)
  • 4pm – 6pm – The Corporate Governance of the Square Mile. John Christensen, Anthea Lawson and Rev. Taylor at TCU – John Christensen (Director of the Tax Justice Network), Anthea Lawson (Senior Investigator for Global Witness) and Rev. Taylor (formerly seated on the council for the Square Mile) will be talking about the governance of the Square Mile in terms of its corporate ties.
  • 5pm – 7pm Spanish political parties with the 15M Spanish movement at Finsbury Square
  • 7pm – General Assembly focusing on political discussion
  • 9-11.30pm – Cinema InTents: Z (1069) plus Death Of The Revolution (TCU)