Greenman's Occasional Organ

Ecosocialist. Syndicalist. Critical Techno-Progressive.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Weekly Links - 22/06/2008

UK Politics News Stories
Lots of interesting, if sometimes a little depressing, stuff being reported this week. It seems all the millions spent by the climate change denial industry and the busy beaver efforts of their conspiracist right-wing errand boys on blogs and comments sections have not been in vain as a majority of Brits still "doubt the evidence" on climate change. Semi-reasonable comment (albeit from his establishment viewpoint) from Andrew Rawnsley here, but as usual the cynics, pessimists, liars and fascists are out in force on the comments section.

Meanwhile there is to be a much trumpeted "Green Energy Push" in Britain, but George Monbiot has picked out some of the flaws in the plan and its likely implementation. One thing I picked out was the lack of mention of the potential use of biogas from anaerobic digestion of food waste etc - let us hope that this is not a further signal of government "capture" by the big waste companies eager to incinerate 50% of Britain's waste and call this "sustainable" and "green" energy from waste. These firms have just managed to get the tame elements of the EU to pass legislation favourable to their plans in the face of Green opposition.

UK Royal financial reports are due out in the next few days, with the monarchist spin machine presenting it as "value for money" - the campaign group Republic is ready with the facts and arguments for an end to expensive and undemocratic hereditary offices of state. Republic are also running a campaign to challenge the oath of allegiance to the monarch.

It is the British Isles Regional Organising Committee (BIROC) of the Industrial Workers Of the World (IWW) meeting this weekend, with preparations well under way for the international General Assembly of the IWW in London at the end of August. Before then, Wobblies internationally will be involved in a mobilisation to highlight the union-busting tactics of Starbucks. IWW members at Starbucks branches in the US have been under attack and now the IWW is linking up for action with the Spanish CNT union and the international organisation they are affiliated to the IWA/AIT (International Workers' Association) as a CNT member in Sevilla has been fired for union activity. The day of action is scheduled for July 5th.

It was the British public services union, Unison, conference this week and as well as warning the governing Labour Party over local government workers' pay they passed a motion on the situation in Palestine.

The RMT (transport) union has its' conference in Nottingham this week and there is a fringe meeting put together by the Campaign Against Climate Change Trade Union Group at 1.10pm at the Rope Walk Pub on Derby Road.

Green Issues

Despite all the campaigning by green groups over battery recycling the British authorities have failed to act and now face penalties under new EU legislation.

There is impressive mobilising and campaigning going on against incineration in various parts of the world, including the Basque country where 2000 demonstrated on the streets of San Sebastian last week. There was also a protest in Barcelona, Catalonia, where three weeks ago 1,000 people marched against a project from the Lafarge cement plant to burn different types of waste, including sewage sludge, tyres and solvents. The local "platform" against incineration also collected 6,200 signatures against this project.

Human Rights
The campaign for the freeing of Lovinsky Pierre-Antoine continues, with a new petition. The speech given by actor Danny Glover at a vigil for the campaigner, and for freedom for Haiti is on You Tube here.

There is a demo supporting the long suffering opposition to the Mugabe regime in Zimbabwe in London on Monday 23rd June. More from Action For Southern Africa here.


Aled has a blog piece on Paul Mobbs' Energy Beyond Oil.

Derek reports that the Greens are likely to run a candidate in the Howden and Haltemprice by-election to give a voice to all those who support the former MP's stance on 42 days detention but vigourously oppose him on just about everything else and so could not bring themselves to vote for him. By voting Green people will be able to register opposition to the detention without trial moves without allowing a socially reactionary and economically neo-liberal Tory to present his party as the sole guardian of our rights and liberties. Elsewhere, Labour Left Dave Osler has taken Tony Benn to task for backing the Tory campaign.

Jack Ray is following the European football, Liam MacUaid and Dave Osler reflect on the anti-fascist event in London on Saturday, and the Socialist Unity blog reports on a call for the abolition of prescription charges.

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