The Eurogroup and its allies in the so-called ‘Institutions’ (the European Commission, the European Central Bank, and the International Monetary Fund) continued demand yet more cruel austerity – pension cuts, VAT increases, and labour market ‘reforms’ – and refused to offer debt relief. Tsipras responded on Friday 26 June by calling a referendum on Sunday 5 July on these proposals. This is a victory for the left and the workers’ movement in Greece, who have pressing the government to reject the EU diktat. It has been welcomed with delight by the left elsewhere in Europe.
Lee Sustar writing in Socialist Worker US explains the background to the announcement of a July 5 referendum on austerity measures in Greece – and how it will affect the struggles to come.
I sent this to the Sydney Morning Herald in response to an article quoting me. What chance? John Passant My thanks to Gareth Hutchens for using me as an example of those who have condemned the Greens’ shift further to the neoliberal right. (‘Meet the new Greens economics team preparing to shake up Australian politics’, […]
Here is a quote from an article in Saturday’s Sydney Morning Herald about the Greens’ new economic team and direction: ‘Liberal senator Sean Edwards, who chairs a Senate estimates committee with Whish-Wilson, says the Greens have benefited from Whish-Wilson’s contribution. “A lot of the stuff I’ve talked to him about privately I’ve found him economically […]
These are dangerous times. The Abbott government is strangling differences outside the narrow neoliberal mainstream. It is gathering extreme powers to itself under the lie of protecting Australia. It is othering significant sections of Australian society. It is trying to silence the Human Rights Commission and the ABC
The danger is real. That is why it is important to fight every attack of this rotten Liberal government. A good start will be the protests on 18 and 19 July across Australia against the Abbott endorsed (nudge nudge wink wink) Reclaim White Australia rallies.
The obsession with radicalisation and the programs to supposedly combat extremism treat wide swathes of the Muslim community as suspect, writes James Supple in Solidarity
Tony Abbott is using every available opportunity to whip up fear about terrorism, scapegoat the Muslim community and talk tough on “national security”. ….
But both the rhetoric, and the government’s response, is continuing the demonisation of Islam and the attack on the Muslim community that began after 9/11. A new book by Arun Kundani The Muslims are Coming traces the development of “the concept of radicalisation” to explain Islamic terrorism, and the government responses in the US and UK over the past decade.
The idea of radicalisation treats Islamic extremism almost solely as a product of an evil ideology and as “how Islam is interpreted”. This serves to downplay if not reject the political causes of extremism as a response to Western imperialism and the war on terror. But fundamentally, it is a response to the atrocities of Western imperialism in the Middle East.
You can read the whole article here. How governments treat Muslims as the enemy within
Refugee advocates have called on the parliamentary Labor Party not to support any Coalition legislation aimed at saving offshore processing from a successful High Court challenge. The Human Rights Legal Centre’s challenge seems to have exposed what so many felt for a long time – that offshore processing is illegal. It certainly has exploded the lie that offshore processing is the responsibility of Nauru and PNG.
Tony Abbott asks ‘Whose side are you on?’ Pete Seeger gives this answer.
Fuel tax increases – the unity ticket of Liberals, Labor and the Greens against workers and the poor
The Abbott government has been joined by Labor and the Greens in a rotten unity ticket on fuel excise indexation to attack workers and the poor.
This should not surprise us because what unites them – capitalism – is greater than any of their differences over aspects of how to manage it. Lie all parties of capital they make workers and the poor pay for the crises of capitalism and the fuel tax is just one small example, a portent of things to come.
While we are splitting hairs arguing over which worker is slightly richer than other workers, and admiring the government for its sleight of hand in giving a few crumbs to a few pensioners, the rich are laughing all the way to their tax free superannuation bank. And it is not just superannuation. As ACOSS has revealed in its report Inequality in Australia: A nation divided, inequality continues to increase in Australia. As the report says ‘a person in the top 20% wealth group has around 70 times more wealth than a person in the bottom 20%.’ The main winners out of this winner/loser strategy are the Abbott Government and the really rich. The government will use the same divisive model again. Public school fees anyone?