Movements against pension bill in France gets bigger and tougher

18th October 2010 Socialist Action 0

by Marie Dupont

Photo Lilicomanche

Already six nationwide demonstrations since 7 September have taken place against the proposal to increase the pension age in France. This social movement is not declining. The government is now described as ‘autistic’ – refusing any dialogue and re-iterating on and on that it will not move one inch in favour of the mass movement demands.

A new phase in the struggle against attacks on pensions in France

11th October 2010 Socialist Action 0

by Marie Dupont

In France in September there were two days of strikes, each with around three million people, demonstrating against the French government’s new pension Bill. Fifteen days later, on 2nd October, another demonstration took place with new social layers joining in. As the demonstrations were on a Saturday this allowed people who can’t go on strike to express their rejection of the pension scheme. Again, there were about three million demonstrators all over France. The strength of the protest has therefore remained intact, and a new phase has opened up with the proposal of unlimited strikes for the next national day of action which is to take place on Tuesday 12th October.

Labour Leadership result announced

Defeat for Blairites – but the fight will continue

9th October 2010 Socialist Action 0

By Stephen MacAvoy

Labour Leadership result announced
Photo flux.org.uk / Will Green

The election of Ed Miliband as Labour leader has dealt a significant blow to the Blairite tendency within the Labour Party. That current failed to regain the party leadership and is further weakened by the withdrawal of David Miliband from frontbench politics. Far from damaging Labour’s electoral chances as a range of Blairites have warned, this actually offers the opportunity to move away from the unpopular policies of the Blair era.

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The social movement against the pension changes in France

4th October 2010 Socialist Action 0

by Marie Dupont

Protest 11

Photo marcovdz

Six months ago it would have been impossible to imagine such a huge mobilisation in France against the raising of the legal retirement age from 60 to 62. When the National Committee for the Demands of Retired Workers decided to launch a campaign against the new law it had to confront a big media offensive launched by the government explaining that because the population is living older, it is no longer possible to pay for their pensions.

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The end of the ‘Swedish model’

22nd September 2010 Socialist Action 0

By Jane West

Map of Sweden

Photo: mrlerone/Toby Bradbury

Far-right registers huge success in Sweden

The far-right Sweden Democrats party almost doubled its share of the vote in Sweden’s election last Sunday, winning its first seats in Parliament by breaching the 4 per cent threshold for representation with its 5.7 per cent of the vote. Its previous highest vote was 2.9 per cent in the 2006 elections.

Even more disturbing is the fact that the party potentially holds the balance of power in the Swedish Parliament.

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Cuba moves closer to China’s economic model

20th September 2010 Socialist Action 0

By Brian George

Ministry of Interior - Che_Cuba 036

Photo hoyasmeg/James Emery

There has been extensive coverage of the news that Cuba is to reduce state sector employment by half a million and transfer these workers to the non-state, including the private, sectors. Some of this comment, for example in the Financial Times and Wall Street Journal, interprets this as a move towards capitalism and free markets. More accurate and sophisticated analysis has been given by Latin American specialists. (Also see previous articles on this website here and here.)