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.
7pm Thursday 24th October
Second City Suite, at the bottom of Hurst Street – 100 Sherlock St, Birmingham, West Midlands B5 6LT
Speakers include:Len McCluskey, general secretary UNITEPaul Nowak, assistant general secretary TUCSalma Yaqoob
The following interview with President Nicolás Maduro, outlines his involvement in Venezuela's revolutionary process.
It touches on his involvement in student politics, the significance of the 1989 Caracazo massacre, meeting Chávez in prison in 1993 and his involvement in the national leadership of the Revolutionary Bolivarian Movement.After Chávez was first elected President in 1998, Maduro headed up the Chávista parliamentary group, later taking on the role of Foreign Minister and then Vice President.
By Nicky Dempsey
The broad movement against austerity is warming up. A host of unions have either organised national strike action or are about to strike in the near future. These include firefighters, post workers, teachers, lecturers and others. The continued fall in living standards takes place while the government and its supporters complacently talk about recovery. As a result workers are increasingly angry and confident that they can win concessions.
Sinn Féin is hosting a conference in London on October 19 on the theme of Irish unity. It is a tremendous opportunity to hear and learn from the party leadership as it engages with a wide array of forces in the continued struggle against austerity, in defence of the Good Friday Agreement and for a united Ireland.
By Tom Castle
The massacre of shoppers at the Westgate shopping centre in Nairobi has been followed by a series of bloody attacks against both the immigrant Somali community in Kenya and targeted assassination of Muslim clerics by the security forces in Kenya. In the international sphere the US has also launched a number of raids against alleged architects of a series of terrorist attacks.
The Egyptian army’s July coup was met with widespread confusion on the left. Within Egypt and internationally some socialists actually supported the coup, others were explicitly neutral in the struggle between the Muslim Brotherhood government and the army.
The article by John Riddell that appears below considers these issues from the point of view of the experience of the international communist movement from 1917 to the 1930s, drawing out why these positions are dangerously wrong.
By Paul Roberts and Jane West
As expected Labour conference fired the starting gun for the 2015 election. What was not so anticipated was the Miliband leadership’s announcement of a series of popular policies that are widely perceived as constituting a shift to the left.
The strategy rolled out was for Labour to position itself as the party that defends the living standards of ordinary people. This was a shift in strategy and a welcome one. It is based on a correct understanding that the mass of the population is now more animated by contracting real incomes – the ‘cost of living crisis’ – than the ideology of ‘deficit reduction’.
By Nicky Dempsey and Jane West
It is little more than a year and a half until the next general election and already the main issues in each party’s campaign are being delineated.
Labour is still virtually certain to be the largest party after the next election as the long-term decline in the Tory vote will be further depressed by five years of austerity. Electorally the main question is whether Labour wins a majority – and of what size – or whether it is forced into coalition with the Lib Dems.
Talk of economic recovery and even boom is entirely misplaced, but it may have a very positive effect on the movement against austerity.
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