Ferguson - the 'American dream' is revealed as a nightmare
America's post-crisis weak recovery has not led to any improvement in living standards particularly in its most impoverished and disenfranchised African American communities. On the contrary inequality has risen and in the most powerful country in the world its inner cities are riven with poverty and its communities criminalised. Facing growing disaffection the police have attempted to maintain control through increased use of violence and repression. After the shooting of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown in Fergusson, Missouri the response of the black community and progressives was that enough is enough. The grand jury decision not to charge the St Louis police officer who shot unarmed black teenager Michael Brown, will unleash another round of protest and struggle as the state is thrown back on violence alone and oppressed communities refuse to accept it and the deep-rooted racism that lies at its core.
By Tom O’Donnell
In stagnant waters all sorts of virulent organisms can grow. As Britain’s economy continues to stagnate racism is spreading and becoming more poisonous.
Cameron now says that the British economy is likely to deteriorate once more, prolonging the crisis, but none of the mainstream political parties offers any policy which would resolve it. The economic stagnation will continue and so too will the unrelenting racist propaganda campaign.
Thousand of students are expected to join the demonstration on Wednesday 19 November.
The Free Education protest is organised by a coalition, including: the Student Assembly Against Austerity, the National Campaign Against Fees and Cuts and the Young Greens.
The demo's Facebook event is here and it can be followed on twitter via the hashtags #Nov19 and #FreeEducation.
By Jane West
The storm that has swirled around Ed Miliband's head over recent days has been entirely the result of hostile media manufactures and the machinations of backbench uber-Blairites. But they have exploited the mistakes and terrible weaknesses of Labour's campaign for the general election.
By Bob Clarke
The political impact of the economic crisis in Europe has entered a new phase. When the economy was contracting virtually all parties implementing austerity policies were thrown out of office or at least experienced a large drop in their support. In the more recent period of economic stagnation, the same economic policies have the effect of shifting the burden of the crisis onto workers and the poor while capital benefits, boosting the incomes of the very rich and allied layers.
The question of devolution for Scotland has not been resolved by the outcome of the referendum. All three leading Westminster parties made a pledge just days before the vote, vowing fundamental reform of Scotland’s governance and a strict timetable for its implementation.
By Paul Lewis
The run-up to the critical 2015 Paris climate talks begins in earnest this week with the United Nations’ Secretary General’s ‘Climate Summit’ in New York. The likelihood of an inter-governmental deal has improved with the Obama administration bringing the USA properly into the talks. But the price of US participation has been an attempt to remove historic responsibility for causing runaway climate change as the basis of negotiations.
By Denis Fernando
Pride, which depicts the solidarity shown by activists in the lesbian and gay community in the mid 80s towards the miners struggle, has a touching, profound meaning for 'solidarity' at its heart.
By Paul Roberts
On Wednesday President Obama made a nationally televised address to the US population to confirm the resumption of prolonged military activity in Iraq and its extension to Syria, albeit without the deployment of regular ground troops.
Following the victory of the counter-revolution in Egypt, imperialism is now moving on to eliminate its next target in the Middle East – the attempt to overthrow the Syrian government.
It is important to build the broadest possible opposition to the threatened offensive.
Protest organised by Stop the War Coalition
Join the Facebook event here
The unfolding counter-revolution in Egypt has been an object lesson in the correctness of Lenin’s insistence on the need to analyse each situation from the point of view of the interrelation of all classes and social layers if its dynamics are to be understood and the correct class lines identified.
Since the beginning of this year Socialist Action has warned that the military and Mubarakite forces in Egypt were preparing the conditions for a counter-revolutionary coup. This analysis has been proven correct in the bloody unfolding of events in Egypt.
In recent months the true character of the Miliband leadership of the Labour Party has been more clearly revealed.
The combination of its commitment to maintain austerity and implement the Tory cuts, attacks on the union role in the Party and nasty and vituperative campaigns against the employment of East European migrant labour marks out the contours of the coming Labour or Labour-led government after 2015.
Discussion about the trends in the world economy emerging from the 2008 financial crisis is dominated by the relative growth rates of the US and China – the world's two largest economies.
The media discussion has been focusing on concerns about China's slowdown and its global impact, while the US is portrayed a recovering well. In fact both major economies are slowing in the context of continued global economic weakness, but the US is slowing much more than China.
The following article, by John Ross, looks at these facts in detail and points out that the key question is not 'why is China slowing?', but why has the US slowed much more dramatically than China in the last year?
Ed Miliband’s decision to call a Special Conference in Spring 2014 to change the relationship between the unions and the Labour Party has been dubbed his ‘Clause IV moment’, in reference to Tony Blair’s Easter 1995 Special Conference that changed the Party’s Aims and Values.
Book review by Najete Michell
La Laicite Falsifiée [State Secularism Falsified] by Jean Beauberot
The question of what is known as ‘laïcité’ has raised passions in French politics for more than a decade.
It was in the name of ‘laïcité’ that laws were passed first prohibiting the hijab in schools, then the niqab in the street. Both led to increased Islamophobia. And now this is extending to the consideration of new laws prohibiting children’s nannies and mothers accompanying their children on school trips from wearing the hijab.
The conflict that erupted between UNITE and the Labour leadership over the union’s decision to sponsor a range of candidates in the current round of Parliamentary has provoked a new round of assault on the union link with Labour.
The decision by Ed Miliband to take the opportunity of the spat to push through changes to the unions’ affiliation to the Party has been cheered on by the Blairites and the right-wing media, for whom an ‘opt-in’ ballot and the elimination of the unions’ 50 per cent of the vote in the London Mayoral selection are just initial steps.
Since abducting former President Mohamed Morsi and suspending the constitution on July 3rd, Egypt’s generals have re-established their political rule.
We publish below the comments of Jean-Luc Melenchon, leader of the French Parti de Gauche, on the coup in Egypt. The original text can be found here.
Socialist Action strongly agrees with his judgement that this was a coup, that it was a rightist coup and that those forces that have welcomed the coup – or failed to recognise it as a coup – are profoundly wrong and store up grave errors of approach for the future.
By Nicky Dempsey
Repeated claims that the European crisis is over are entirely false. Among the countries whose creditors have been bailed out the Greek economy is expected to contract sharply again in 2013, the Portuguese centre-right coalition government has threatened to fall apart and Ireland, long touted as the model for a bail-out, has officially gone back into recession.
Countdown toEnd of Cameron's political career
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Previous publications (PDF):
Revolution and Counter-revolution in the Middle East, pamphlet
Unite to fight the Tory attacks, leaflet
Investment not cuts, leaflet
Drop cuts not bombs, leaflet