Archive for 'Fighting back'
Local labor member and former ANU Professor Andrew Leigh, in justifying Labor’s massive higher education cuts to the large group of student protesters, fell back on that old furphy that things would be worse under Abbott. That’s like the python who is squeezing us to death warning us to beware of the tiger lurking nearby. In fact Labor’s attacks lay the groundwork for possible attacks by the Liberals in the future. Such is the degeneration of the ALP that the Liberals agree with Labor’s current cuts to higher education. The way to fight Abbott’s neoliberalism is to fight Gillard and Leigh’s neoliberalism.
Today the capitalist system is in crisis internationally. It is inflicting experiences on people that undermine neoliberal ideas in the eyes of millions. The struggle against this austerity and the system is also, with various ups and downs, developing internationally. If we want ideas to change, and we do, our job as socialists is to raise the level of that struggle. We also need to make sure that at the heart of the struggle is a political movement systematically arguing for a real change in the system.
One billion of the Gonski funding will go to rich private schools. Presumably more tennis courts at Grammar are a higher priority for Labor than adequate lecture theatres at University. If students and staff can fight for free education in other countries we can fight back against the latest higher education atrocity that Labor is unleashing against its own base. Tax the rich to make higher education free.
The Greens’ push for reforms imagines that in a time of global economic crisis, a crisis of low profit rates arising out of the way production is organised under capitalism, capital will willingly divert some of the surplus value we workers create back to us or the poor. That is fairy land stuff.
Revolution won’t come about by us wishing and waiting writes Nick Everett in Socialist Alternative in Australia. We need to fight for change. Socialism – a society that organises production to meet human need, not corporate greed – is not only possible, but urgently necessary.
The recent protests are tied to the wave of fightbacks against the system on an international scale. The women and men who have been filling the streets of various Indian cities have seen, in the last few years, dictators fall and public spaces be occupied. We need to see these protests as not just standing in the tradition of past women’s movements in India, but also as echoes of Tahrir, Tunisia and Zuccotti Park–and inspiring, in their turn, a new cycle of protests for women’s rights.
it should be clear that the protests in India against rape and sexism are about rejecting the culture of misogyny and moralism imposed by the Indian state and the global free market alike. They are not about the narrow interests of any particular class of women.
It would be wrong to condemn these protests as “middle class.”
Mass movements need to be seen in their full course of development, in which numerous factors come together to produce confidence and mobilization. It is not a matter of checking whether these protesters were there to stand in support of Neelofar, Manorama or any other individual rape victim, but to see how these past cases were part of a slow build-up of anger that finally came to a head in the aftermath of December 16 in Delhi.
…it is an urgent task for the left to actively intervene and try to shape the movement -and the broader struggles for a future society free of rape and women’s oppression.
The hope lies in the huge numbers of people who came out to protest in India. Even better was the willingness to direct that anger against the society and culture that justifies rape and sexual violence. However the dire situation women face in India has led some Western pundits to described the country as the worst place in the world for women.
But the problems aren’t confined to India’s borders. Many countries, including Britain, have shockingly low conviction rates for rape. And attitudes that blame women for rape and sexual violence aren’t confined to India.
The latest attack in India shows the urgent need for a change in the treatment of women and in responses to rape. And the mass protests that followed it show that many people are prepared to fight for that change.
Real answers to climate change will only come from the people – when we manage to organize and fight for the things we need through a radical change in social power -from them to us.
It is only by having a vision of a better world for women and, indeed, for all of us, and fighting for it through the power of the working class, the one force capable of delivering it, can the likes of Alan Jones be sent to the sea in the chaff bag of history.
Unions NSW could immediately ban all work and supplies to 2GB until Jones is sacked. It could ban all goods and services to all of Jones’s advertisers until they abandon 2GB. Individual unions could do the same. Workers at 2GB could walk off the job until Jones is sacked. Such actions would of course be illegal under Labor’s industrial laws. But it would be the right thing to do.