This is a vital activity. A full meeting of the Tory-dominated Council will be in session and five delegates from Great Yarmouth and District Trade Union Council are being admitted to the Chamber to ask direct questions at the start of the session.
PLEASE BE THERE TO SUPPORT THEM!
1) Can the Leader of the Council explain the reasons why Great Yarmouth Borough Council is now considering merging local services with South Norfolk District Council? (Put by Alan Stewart)
2) Can the cabinet member responsible for resources confirm how much money has been spent on GYBC early staff severances over each of the last three years and the likely expenditure on early severances in 2011 arising from staff cuts? (Put by Christina Stewart)
3) Can the Cabinet member for resources explain what sustainable improvements (in the light of expected job cuts) have been made in customer service when statistics for April 2010 show the number of unanswered telephone calls for that month was 5,132; this equates to 35% of calls going unanswered, of the 65% of calls answered the average time taken to answer those calls was over 3 minutes. (Put by Lee Sutton)
4) Can the Cabinet member for responsible for the economy provide information as to the Council’s response to the proposed closure of the Coastguard office at Havenbridge House and the impact this will have on the local economy, especially as this will not be the first time central Government have pulled jobs out of Great Yarmouth e.g. HM Revenue & Customs, Ministry of Justice? (Put by Paula Waters-Bunn)
5) A Leisure Strategy for Great Yarmouth 2006-16 adopted in August 2006 whose first priority is to improve the health of local people through physical activity says “any strategy for future pool [swimming] provision should seek to ensure that about 900m2 of water space is available to the wider community, in locations that best meet their needs”. Can the Cabinet member responsible for the strategy confirm that the future of Bradwell’s Phoenix Pool is secure from closure? (Put by Kevin Reynolds)
Come along with your flags, banners and placards and
make a noise for Great Yarmouth!
UK and IRELAND
Joe Glenton, Military Corrective Training Centre, Berechurch Hall Camp, Colchester, CO2 9N, United Kingdom.
A British soldier who refused to return to duty in Afghanistan and went
on to speak at anti-war rallies was sentenced to nine months’
detention in a military prison on 5th of March.
Young people who took part in demonstrations against Isael’s attack on Gaza in January 2009 are being handed down prison sentences for minor offences. Israel’s attack brought tens of thousands on to London’s streets. In the months that followed the demonstrations, over 90 protestors were arrested — most of them Muslims, many of them teenagers — often in intimidating dawn raids, and many are now receiving long sentences.
26 sentenced after pleading guilty, 23 currently in prison, 1 released on appeal, and 3 found not guilty as of late March…
For more information see http://nomoreisolation.wordpress.com/
John Bowden, Prison No. 6729, HMP/YOI Perth, 3 Edinburgh Road, PERTH, PH2 8AT
John Bowden, convicted in 1982 for a brutal murder, has spent his entire adult life in prison. Politicised by his incarceration he’s regularly paid the price for his resistance through long periods of isolation, beatings and treatment amounting to torture. He has never been broken and is one of the UK’s most articulate and vociferous prison writers and a powerful advocate of prisoners rights.
In a dangerous precedent, heavy sentences were recently handed out to those involved in a legal campaign against vivisection, on the grounds that they were associated with illegal acts committed autonomously against the same targets, with no proof that they themselves had committed any such acts. For up to date information about these and other animal liberation prisoners see http://www.alfsg.org.uk/current_prisoners.html
Jock Palfreeman, Sofia Central Prison, 21 General Stoletov Boulevard,
Sofia 1309, Bulgaria.
Jock Palfreeman is a 23 year old Australian who had the courage to stand up against 16 Nazis on a night out in Sofia, Bulgaria. He witnessed the fascists chasing and attacking two young Roma boys. Jock ran to the boys’ aid, he did his best to keep the Nazis at bay by waving a knife at them but they attacked him. Jock was left with nowhere to run and had no choice but to defend himself. Andrey Monov, one of the Nazis, was stabbed and killed and another, Antoan Zahariev was injured. The Roma boys ran away.
Jock has since been tried and sentenced for murder and attempted murder. He has been sentenced to 20 years imprisonment and has been fined 375,000 Australian dollars.
On November 11th 2008, French Anti-Terrorism Police arrested around twenty people, mostly in Tarnac, a small village in the Corrèze region of central France. Nine were subsequently accused of “criminal association for the purposes of terrorist activity” in connection with the sabotage of train lines which had caused delays on the French railways, five of them were released on bail and two remain in custody. Very little evidence has been presented against them, but central to the prosecution is their alleged authorship of a book, The Coming Insurrection, and their association with what the French government has termed the “anarcho-autonomous movement”. They and others are the victims of a witch-hunt in which the word “terrorism” is applied to any ideas and practices which challenge the status quo. An international movement is emerging in their support.
email contact: ussupportcommittee (at) gmail.com
To send letters, postcards, notes to the imprisoned, write to:
Comité de soutien aux inculpés de Tarnac, le bourg, 19170 Tarnac, France
Thomas Meyer Falk, JVA Bruchsal, Zelle 3117, Schoenbornstr. 32, 76646 Bruchsal, Germany:
In 1996, Thomas was sent down for a bank robbery. He’ll be inside until at least 2010. Because of his strong beliefs, he’s been subject to very harsh repression – kept in solitary, daily cell raids, suppression and censorship of mail, no access to education. In 2007, he has finally been moved out of solitary and can now participate in education and other activities. When writing, it’s useful to include up to 3 IRC’s (International reply coupons available from the post office) at a time.
For more info email: email@example.com
or see http://www.freedom-for-thomas.de/
On the 28th June 2004, near Aachen in the area of the German/Dutch border, police stopped a car with four people, including Spanish anarchist fugitives Jose Delgado and Gabriel Pombo da Silva, Begonia Pombo da Silva (Gabriel’s sister) and Bart de Geeter. The car attempted to escape, and shots were exchanged between the police and the fleeing car.
Jose Fernandez Delgado: 14 years in prison
Gabriel Pombo da Silva: 13 years in prison
Gabriel Pombo da Silva, JVA Aachen, Krefelder Str. 251, 52070 Aachen, Germany
Jose Fernandez Delgado, Aachenerstr. 47, 53359 Rheinbach, Germany
Three young squatters are serving 5 years sentences after throwing stones at the police evicting their squat in 2007, an action which was inflated by the authorities into a charge of attempted murder:
Lukas Winkler, Marktplatz 1, 96157 Ebrach, Germany
Stephanie Träger, JVA Aichach, Münchner Straße 33, 86551 Aichach, Germany
Sven Maurer, Marktplatz 1, 96157 Ebrach, Germany
Also see http://www.hausbesetzerinnensoli.de.vu
Laurynas Mogila, c/o JVA Moabit, Alt-Moabit 12a, 10559 Berlin, Germany, Buch-Nr. 890/09-0
Was arrested last year in March for attacking a police van and a police officer during a squatter’s demonstration in Berlin. In June he was sentenced to 15 months and will be in prison until May 2010.
Alfredo Bonanno and Christos Stratigopoulos, Dikastikes Filakes Koridallos, T.K. 18110, Athens, Greece.
The anarchists Alfredo and Christos are in prison of Korydallos, Greece.
Christos is accused of armed robbery and Alfredo for complicity. The lawyers made a request for Alfredo because of his health conditions to keep him under house detention.
For more information:smolikas2[at]gmail.gr
Yiorgos Voutsis-Vogiatzis, ASKA Filakes Kassavetias, Post Code 37100, Volos, Magnesia, Greece. Arrested in Oct 2007, and admitted to bank robbery, which he called an action against the the slavery of wage labour.
Yiannis Dimitrakis, Filakes Domokou, Post Code 35010, Fthiotida, Greece. Anarchist sentenced to 35 years for armed robbery of a bank
Ilias Nikolau, Prevantorio Amfissas, Post Code 33100, Amfissa, Fokida, Greece. Accused of an arson attack on a police station.
Polikarpos Georgiadis, A’ Pteriga, Filakes Koridallou, 18110, Koridallos, Athens, Greece. Polikarpos is accused of involvement in the kidnapping of a senior economic official.
Panagiotis Masouras, Filakes Anilikon Avlona, 19011 ,Avlona, Attiki, Greece
Haris Hatzimichelakis, ASKA Filakes Kassavetias, Post Code 37100, Volos, Magnesia, Greece
Accused of being members of the urban guerilla group “Conspriracy of the Cells of Fire“.
There’s a steady stream of reports of extensive repression from Italy. Ecological anarchists, squatters and ALF activists are more and more active, but are also facing more arrests, raids and random fit-ups.
Il Silvestre Defendants
Eleven eco-anarchists in Italy were arrested on charges relating to alleged involvement in the magazine ‘Terra Selvaggia’, and accused of forming themselves into a direct action group known as COR (Revolutionary Offensive Cells) and carrying out a number of actions including acts of arson, targeting right wing politicians and targeting the construction site of a police station. There was practically no evidence against the 11, other than the fact Il Silvestre had published a COR press release in their magazine Wild Earth. However despite the lack of evidence, six of the eleven defendants were found guilty and have been handed sentences of between 3½ years to 6 years imprisonment.. 11 people faced trial. All are linked to the eco-anarchist group Il Silvestre. All were accused of COR activities.
To write to their support group:
Casella Postale 351, Livorno Centro, 57123 Livorno – ITALY, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Daniele Casalini & Francesco Gioia have been aquited of the charges of blowing up electricity pylons but were found guilty and sentenced to four years for bank robbery. Also a third person, Leonardo Landi, has been sentenced to 6 years for robbery but found not guilty of subversive association:
Leonardo Landi, Carcere San Michele, Via Casale, 50/A, 15122 San Michele (AL), Italy.
Two people arrested in pre-trial detention on charges of attempted sabotage, car theft and subversive association:
Sergio Maria Stefani, Carcere San Michele, Via Casale, 50/A, 15122 San, Michele (AL), Italy.
Freed in early August 2010.
Aleksey Bychin, SIZO 47/2, ul. Akademika Lebedeva, dom. 39, 195005 St. Peterburg, Russia.
Antifascist sentenced in May 2009 to 5 years for fighting with neo-nazis. Continues to de held in prison despite previous update the he had been released. [13/11/10]
Pavel Delidon Anarchist and Animal Rights activist Pavel Delidon was in dispute with his employer over some wages which he had not received. Pavel allegedly took direct action to try and gather his wages and has subsequently been jailed, for merely trying to take money owed to him.
Update: Just heard that Pavel has been released. [23/10/20]
The Cordoba Four
The Malaga court of appeal sentenced the anarchists Giovani Barcia, Michele Pontolillo and Claudio Lavaza, already sentenced to 11 years on September 1999, for an incident in the Italian vice-consulate in December 1996. Three persons wearing balaclavas imprisoned the consul and an employee, sending a message of solidarity to the Italian prisoners jailed by the Judge Marini (the judge who built a false accusation against Italian anarchists) and disappeared with passports and some money. These three Italians were convicted of this, as well as a previous bank robbery with sentences of 49 years for Claudio, 48 years for Giorgio and Giovani, 3 years for Michele. Write to them:
Claudio Lavazza, C.P. Teixerio – Curtis, Mod. 11, Carretera de Paradela s/n, 15310 A Coruña, Spain.
Disappeared when out of prison on three days release Summer 2009.
Giovanni Barcia, C.P.El Acebuche, Ctra. Cueva de los Úbeda, km 2,5, 04071.- El Acebuche, Almería, Spain.
Jose María Pirla Olivan
CP de Albolote. Ctra. Comarcal 220, Km. 6 – 18220, Albolote (Granada), Spain.
An anarchist comrade who has been in prison for 30 years and who currently has an on-going campaign for his release. See: Campaign To Release Jose Maria Pirla Oliván.
Jonatan Strandberg, Anstalten Storboda, 19595 Rosersberg, Sweden.
Serving a sentence for ELF actions in which a communication tower connected to the Department of Defence was sabotaged with a firebomb, and a building crane in a urban sprawl project and seperately a logging truck were sabotaged.
Ten people charged with preparing an arson and one with rioting as well. Three nights before, unrest broke out after a police intervention at a youth center.For more information see:
You can send letters through ABC, Box 4081, 102 62 Stockholm and we’ll hand them on or send messages to abc-stockholm[at]anarkisterna.com.
Remember that everything will be read by the prosecutor.
Marco Camenisch, Penitencier de Bochuz, Case Postale 150,CH -350 Orbe, Switzerland
Marco is a Swiss anarchist and evironmental activists who has been in prison since 1989. He is serving a 18 year sentence: 10 years for using explosives to destroy electricity pylons leading from nuclear power stations and 8 years for the murder of a Swiss Border Guard whilst on the run. In 2002 Marco completed a 12-year sentence in Italy for destroying electricity pylons in Italy as part of a sabotage campain against the nuclear industry.
Solidarity is our weapon: let’s use this weapon by sending cards and greetings to Marco. [9/10/10]
Luca Bernasconi c/o regionalgefängnis thun, allmendstr. 34, ch-3600 thun,Switzerland
Costantino Ragusa c/o regionalgefängnis bern, genfergasse 22, ch-3001, Switzerland
Silvia Guerini c/o regionalgefängnis biel, spitalstr. 18, ch-2502
Friday, 14 January 2011 · 19:00 – 21:00
Friends Meeting House
Upper Goat Lane
Norwich, United Kingdom
FoodCycle Norwich have decided to use this first event as a dummy run / volunteers social as they have yet to get a supermarket to commit to donating regularly. However, the fantastic food photograpy company Brandbank have supplied them with enough food for one meal and the promise of more in the new year. Although they still need a supermarket’s commitment, this is great news and a massive step forward.
Please come along to this meeting where we will eat, chat and discuss forming smaller volunteer groups with specific focuses such as fundraising, publicity and creative activities.
by Laurie Penny
Ed Miliband’s pitiful offer of 1p membership won’t tempt the young back to parliamentary politics.
Democracy is going cheap. Just in time for the January sales, the party responsible for introducing tuition fees has decided that it wants to jump on the youth protest bandwagon. “Join the party for one penny, and we will be your voice,” writes Ed Miliband in a rather desperate Christmas message to under-25s.
Labour is making a fundamental error, however, in assuming that these young protesters want or need anybody to “be our voice”. Parliamentary politics has sold the young out, and whatever bargain-basement price tag mainstream parties slap on their membership, they aren’t buying it any more.
The young people of Britain do not need leaders, and the new wave of activists has no interest in the ideological bureaucracy of the old left. Their energy and creativity is disseminated via networks rather than organisations, and many young people have neither the time nor the inclination to wait for any political party to decide what direction they should take. The Liberal Democrats represented the last hope that parliamentary democracy might have something to offer the young, and that hope has been exquisitely betrayed – no wonder, then, that the new movements have responded by rejecting the old order entirely.
What we are seeing here is no less than a fundamental reimagining of the British left: an organic reworking which rejects the old deferential structures of union-led action and interminable infighting among indistinguishable splinter parties for something far more inclusive and fast-moving. These new groups are principled and theoretically well-versed, but have no truck with the narcissism of small differences that used to corrupt even the most well-meaning of leftwing movements.
At the student meetings I have attended in recent weeks, ideological bickering is routinely sidelined in favour of practical planning. Anarchists and social democrats are obliged to work together alongside school pupils who don’t care what flag you march under as long as you’re on the side that puts people before profit. When the Unite leader, Len McLuskey, wrote in these pages this week encouraging union members to lend their support to the “magnificent student movement”, he hit precisely the right note – one that respects the energy of these new networks of resistance without seeking to hijack it. The unions have begun to realise what the Labour party is still too arrogant to consider – that the nature of the fight against bigotry and greed has evolved beyond the traditional hierarchies of the left.
It is highly significant that one of the first things this hydra-headed youth movement set out to achieve was the decapitation of its own official leadership. When Aaron Porter of the National Union of Students was seen to be “dithering” over whether or not to support the protests, there were immediate calls for his resignation – and in subsequent weeks the NUS has proved itself worse than irrelevant as an organising force for demonstrations.
Of course, the old left is not about to disappear completely. It is highly likely that even after a nuclear attack, the only remaining life-forms will be cockroaches and sour-faced vendors of the Socialist Worker. Stunningly, the paper is still being peddled at every demonstration to young cyber-activists for whom the very concept of a newspaper is almost as outdated as the notion of ideological unity as a basis for action.
For these young protesters, the strategic factionalism of the old left is irrelevant. Creative, courageous and inspired by situationism and guerrilla tactics, they have a principled understanding of solidarity. For example, assembling fancy-dress flash mobs in Topshop to protest against corporate tax avoidance may seem frivolous, but this movement is daring to do what no union or political party has yet contemplated – directly challenging the banks and business owners who caused this crisis.
The young people of Britain are no longer prepared to take orders, and are unlikely to pay even a penny for a vacillating, pro-business party to be “our voice”. We have never spoken in just one voice. We speak in hundreds of thousands of voices – voices that are being raised across Europe, not in unison but in harmony. The writing on the wall of the Treasury earlier this month may yet prove prescient: this is just the beginning.
In politics, being competitive in the realm of ideas is a prerequisite to being competitive anywhere else. The following is the first part of an attempt to start mapping out an explicitly pro-working class vision upon which a wider movement might be built, namely that of economic democracy as opposed to state socialism or ‘free-market’ capitalism.
Part 1 attempts to cover the philosophical underpinning, the ‘why’ of economic democracy.
Part 2 looks into the ‘what’ and the ‘how’.
Found on YouTube
Professor Greg Philo explains an imaginitive method of clearing the national debt, but the Labout and Conservative MPs present are not particularly interested.
The Daily Mirror today ‘reports’ that secret meetings between David Cameron and TUC officials could start as early as tomorrow.
DAVID Cameron is secretly planning a historic meeting with union bosses in Downing Street this week.
And the PM’s talks with TUC general secretary Brendan Barber could happen as early as tomorrow. But Number 10 has been desperate to keep the meeting secret amid fears Mr Barber could pull out if details were leaked.
There are also fears the summit could spark in-fighting between moderate and hardline unions because of savage job cuts.
It is expected Mr Barber will be offered mince pies in a desperate charm offensive by Mr Cameron aimed at heading off fresh strikes.
He could even pose for an unprecedented handshake outside Number 10 with Mr Cameron – an image
that would horrify both the Tories and union members.
But a senior union source said: “We welcome the change of tone. But we still have a long list of areas where we disagree.”
Like us, we’re sure you are in no doubt that these ‘officials’ will do all they can to not ‘rock the boat’ and will make sure their ‘places at the table’ are guaranteed. While trade union grass root members are committed to fighting tooth and nail to save our welfare state, sadly as always, it will be the ‘leadership’ that stifles any serious fightback.
So far it has been students showing the real leadership, the only ‘gesture’ from the TUC has been to call a demo in March 2011. Hardly shows a commitment to fight for all the hard earned rights our forbears lost their lives for does it?
More commentary on this story
Over the past twenty years, I have lived through countless bombs in London. IRA bombs, neo-Nazi bombs, Islamist bombs. And yet, there was still something viscerally shocking about Taimour Abdulwahab al-Abdaly’s attempt to bring carnage to the streets of Stockholm. The fact that Sweden has been largely free of terrorism can, I imagine, only magnify that sense of shock. So, are there any lessons that Stockholm can learn from the experience of a city like London?
The first lesson is the need flatly to reject the fiction that the bombing was a response, however perverted, to some sense of political grievance. Every such bombing is followed by an attempt by an army of commentators to rationalize it by suggesting that it was the inevitable result of a sense of injustice created by Western foreign policy or by anti-Muslim attitudes in the West. The audio message sent to a news agency shortly before the bomb went off, claiming that Sweden would be punished for failing to act against cartoonist Lars Vilks’s depiction of the Prophet Muhammad as a dog, and for the country’s 500-strong presence in Afghanistan, has provided perfect fodder for such rationalization. In fact the bombing was no more a response to Muslim grievances (real or perceived) than the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing in America was a response to the perceived evils of the US government.
Three years ago, Islamists parked a car bomb outside a central London nightclub. Thankfully it was discovered and defused before it detonated. Had the attack been successful, the bomb could have created far greater devastation than the 2005 attacks on the London underground. Just two minutes’ drive from that nightclub were the Houses of Parliament and the Foreign Office. Yet the bombers chose not to make a political statement (albeit a perverted one) but instead parked their deadly load outside a building full of party goers.
Like those London bombers, al-Abdaly seems to have been driven not so much by political fury as by a hatred for the world around him and a deep indifference to the consequences of his actions. However far one stretches the concept of ‘political’, it is nevertheless still impossible to imagine that setting out to murder dozens of Christmas shoppers could be any kind of political response to the Swedish authorities’ attitudes either to Vilks or to Afghanistan.
Much has been made of al-Abdaly’s British connection. He studied for a degree in physical therapy at the University of Bedfordshire and lived in Luton, a small town north of London with a reputation for being a magnet for Islamic extremists. It was here that the men responsible for the 7/7 bombings met before going onto London. And many suggest that it was here that al-Abdaly became radicalized. The local mosque claims that it expelled al-Abdaly for his extremist views.
The idea of Luton as a vipers’ nest of radical Islamism is vastly exaggerated. A handful of Islamic radicals in the area have made a lot of noise, attracting the attention of the press, the police and politicians. But there is little evidence that it is a major recruiting school for jihadists. In any case, ‘radicalization’, especially for a loner like al-Abdaly, might mean little more than trawling the internet for suitable jihadi websites or listening to some firebrand preacher.
At the same time, the obsession with ‘radicalization’ misses the point about someone like al-Abdaly. The real question is not so much how he came to be radicalized, but why someone, who by all accounts was intelligent, articulate and integrated, came to find such a medieval, murderous ideology so attractive. To understand that we need to look not so much at extremist preachers and websites as at public policy, and in particular the policy of multiculturalism.
In Britain, and elsewhere, multiculturalism has led to the de facto treatment of individuals from minority communities not as citizens but simply as member of particular ethnic groups. In the name of multiculturalism, governments have abandoned their responsibilities for engaging directly with Muslim communities, effectively subcontracting out those responsibilities to so-called community leaders, who are often the most conservative voices. As a result, religious and Islamist voices have been given new legitimacy and come to be seen as the authentic voice of Muslim communities, while more progressive, secular movements have frequently been sidelined.
At the same time, many second-generation Muslims have found themselves detached from both the Muslim traditions and institutions of their parents, which they have often rejected, and from the wider secular society that insists in viewing them simply as Muslims. The consequence is that a few get drawn to the extremist Islamist groups through which they discover a sense of identity and of belonging to a world-wide gang. In a country like Britain, multiculturalism did not create militant Islam, but it helped create a space for it within Muslim communities that had not previously existed.
In the wake of the Stockholm bombing, it is imperative for the Swedish authorities not to follow the British template, or to imagine that ‘community leaders’ somehow speak for all Muslims. It is particularly important not to give an inch to Islamist demands over free speech and supposed Muslim sensitivities. The more that liberals concede on such issues, the more that Islamists gain a spurious moral legitimacy, and the more that the likes of al-Abdaly imagine that theirs is a noble cause.
But if it is important not to concede to Islamists on questions of free speech and liberties, it is equally important not to concede to the right on the questions of immigration and of Islam. Al-Abdaly’s actions will inevitably unleash a cacophony of calls for a clampdown on immigration and for stricter controls on Muslims. They must be resisted. A Muslim immigrant might have been responsible for the bombing. But it makes no sense to blame either immigration as a process or Islam as a religion. The same perverse logic that leads many on the left to view religious bigots as the authentic voice of Muslim communities, and to insist that we should accede to their reactionary demands, leads many on the right (and not just on the right) to blame Islam as a faith, or immigrants as a group, for the crimes of lone extremists like al-Abdaly, and to imagine that narrow-minded intolerance is the answer to fanaticism and terror. Cracking down on immigration or discriminating against Muslims to appease the far right would be as illiberal and as irrational as banning material deemed offensive to Muslims to appease the Islamists.
The Stockholm bombing revealed how easy it can be to cause mayhem and disruption in an open, urban, society. It is the arbitrary nihilism of Islamic terrorism that makes it so terrifying. Yet al-Abdaly’s actions should also remind us how infrequently such terror occurs. Society is based on trust. The aim of the bombers is to undermine such trust by sowing fear. We should not let them.
After al-Abdaly blew himself up, a passer-by named Pascal, a trained medic, came running over to help. ‘My first thought was that the man was a terrorist’, he said. Nevertheless, he tried to save his life. ‘I removed a Palestinian scarf from his face to free his airways and attempted CPR, but it was too late’, Pascal told reporters. In such moral courage and basic human instincts lie the best responses to the nihilism of the suicide bomber.
Coalition MPs on their very handsome salaries sat securely in the hallowed Palace of Westminster cobbling together a vote to trap young people in a future of eternal debt or low wages, whilst students and workers were raging in their anger up and down the country. Thousands upon thousands took part with rough and ready placards pulling no punches; endless chants and homemade shields to protect themselves from the police.
Many people are now making complaints above police behaviour to the IPCC, however a workers independent inquiry could expose more and propose appropriate punishments to those who gave orders to brutalise a new generation whose futures are being stolen from them.
As the first phase of the campaign draws to a close many students will be mulling over what to do next. An important place to debate this issue will be at the National Shop Stewards Network Anti-Cuts Conference on January 22nd in central London. Hundreds of rank and file trades unionists with local anti-cuts campaigns across the country will be there. Activists and leaders from trade unions that have shown a fighting lead like PCS, FBU and RMT will participate. We welcome students, to attend and take part. Lets make the ‘students and workers, unite and fight’ chant an ongoing practical reality. http://tinyurl.com/372uupq
Sat 29th January sees the long awaited TUC action on Youth unemployment which PCS members put forward at TUC in Sep. Sadly it has been called as an indoor rally, so PCS are now organising a March on that day to feed into the rally. All welcome to support and attend.
1200 Heinz workers in Wigan are to strike for 24 hour for an improved pay offer. Messages of support to Ian at email@example.com.
Medirest Staff at Southampton General & Amersham & Wycombe Hospitals took 48 hours of strike action. http://sabmw.weebly.com/meetings–events.html
Clitheroe Grammor School Lancs members of NUT/NASUWT took strike action against express academies.
ALSEF – Massive vote for strike action by LU Train drivers on boxing day. On the 23rd London Midland ASLEF will also be on strike. http://tinyurl.com/3y5dux7
PCS urge YES vote in ballot open till 14th Jan http://tinyurl.com/34ep3yy
This week also saw RMT protest at City Hall about 800 job cuts, a CWU rally that burst out onto the streets after Billy Hayes CWU leader also talked about being kettled on the 24th Nov with Students and other workers. Up and down the country actions took place to profile the horrendous Welfare and Housing benefit cuts. And this is apart from the ongoing meetings and lobbys organised by anti cuts alliances up and down the country. Students are also reviewing how to develop campaigns now the government vote has gone through and further actions and protests are being planned. Many occupations short and long continue, they welcome visitors.
Anyone up for helping out in our communications team? Local, National or Regional input welcome, updating on our facebook or providing content on our main website? Our likes page is becoming more useful to input short links on a day by day, sometimes hourly feed. Please join it and invite others to join and make use of it. http://on.fb.me/fNkaIo
National Shop Stewards Network.
Professor Mark Blyth explains why public debt is not the same as private in a short film that is both clear and entertaining.
Article by John Pilger
“Rise like lions after slumber
In unvanquishable number!
Shake your chains to earth, like dew
Which in sleep had fall’n on you:
Ye are many – they are few.”
These days, the stirring lines of Percy Shelley’s “Mask of Anarchy” may seem unattainable. I don’t think so. Shelley was both a Romantic and political truth-teller. His words resonate now because only one political course is left to those who are disenfranchised and whose ruin is announced on a government spreadsheet.
Born of the “never again” spirit of 1945, social democracy has surrendered to an extreme political cult of money worship. This reached its apogee when £1trn of public money was handed unconditionally to corrupt banks by a Labour government whose leader, Gordon Brown, had previously described “financiers” as the nation’s “great example” and his personal “inspiration”.
This is not to say parliamentary politics is meaningless. It has one meaning now: the replacement of democracy with a business plan for every human activity, every dream, every decency, every hope, every child born.
The old myths of British rectitude, imperial in origin, provided false comfort while the Blair gang built the foundation of the present “coalition”. This is led by a former PR man for an asset stripper and by a bagman who will inherit his knighthood and the tax-shielded fortune of his father, the 17th Baronet of Ballintaylor. David Cameron and George Osborne are essentially fossilised spivs who, in colonial times, would have been sent by their daddies to claim foreign terrain and plunder.
Today, they are claiming 21st-century Britain and imposing their vicious, antique ideology, albeit served as economic snake oil. Their designs have nothing to do with a “deficit crisis”. A deficit of 10 per cent is not remotely a crisis. When Britain was officially bankrupt at the end of the Second World War, the government built its greatest public institutions, such as the National Health Service and the arts edifices of London’s South Bank.
There is no economic rationale for the assault described cravenly by the BBC as a “public spending review”. The debt is exclusively the responsibility of those who incurred it, the super-rich and the gamblers. However, that’s beside the point. What is happening in Britain is the seizure of an opportunity to destroy the tenuous humanity of the modern state. It is a coup, a “shock doctrine” as applied to Pinochet’s Chile and Yeltsin’s Russia.
In Britain, there is no need for tanks in the streets. In its managerial indifference to the freedoms it is said to hold dear, bourgeois Britain has allowed parliament to create a surveillance state with 3,000 new criminal offences and laws: more than for the whole of the previous century. Powers of arrest and detention have never been greater. The police have the impunity to kill; and asylum-seekers can be “restrained” to death on commercial flights.
Athol Fugard is right. With Harold Pinter gone, no acclaimed writer or artist dare depart from their well-remunerated vanity. With so much in need of saying, they have nothing to say. Liberalism, the vainest ideology, has hauled up its ladder. The chief opportunist, Nick Clegg, gave no electoral hint of his odious faction’s compliance with the dismantling of much of British postwar society. The theft of £83bn in jobs and services matches almost exactly the amount of tax legally avoided by piratical corporations. Without fanfare, the super-rich have been assured they can dodge up to £40bn in tax payments in the secrecy of Swiss banks. The day this was sewn up, Osborne attacked those who “cheat” the welfare system. He omitted the real amount lost, a minuscule £0.5bn, and that £10.5bn in benefit payments was not claimed at all. Labour is his silent partner.
The propaganda arm in the press and broadcasting dutifully presents this as unfortunate but necessary. Mark how the firefighters’ action is “covered”. On Channel 4 News, following an item that portrayed modest, courageous people as basically reckless, Jon Snow demanded that the leaders of the London Fire Authority and the Fire Brigades Union go straight from the studio and “mediate” now, this minute. “I’ll get the taxis!” he declared. Forget the thousands of jobs that are to be eliminated from the fire service and the public danger beyond Bonfire Night; knock their jolly heads together. “Good stuff!” said the presenter.
Ken Loach’s 1983 documentary series Questions of Leadership opens with a sequence of earnest young trade unionists on platforms, exhorting the masses. They are then shown older, florid, self-satisfied and finally adorned in the ermine of the House of Lords. Once, at a Durham Miners’ Gala, I asked Tony Woodley, now joint general secretary of Unite, “Isn’t the problem the clockwork collaboration of the union leadership?” He almost agreed, implying that the rise of bloods like himself would change that. The British Airways cabin crew strike, over which Woodley presides, is said to have made gains. Has it? And why haven’t the unions risen against totalitarian laws that place free trade unionism in a vice?
The BA workers, the firefighters, the council workers, the post office workers, the NHS workers, the London Underground staff, the teachers, the lecturers, the students can more than match the French if they are resolute and imaginative, forging, with the wider social justice movement, potentially the greatest popular resistance ever. Look at the web; listen to the public’s support at fire stations. There is no other way now. Direct action. Civil disobedience. Unerring. Read Shelley and do it.
See Jody McIntyre’s new blog in the Independent here http://blogs.independent.co.uk/2010/12/15/jody-mcintyre-who%E2%80%99s-apathetic-now/
The LRC condemns the Coalition government for voting through the trebling of tuition fees, for abolishing the Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA) and the 80% cut in central teaching grant to Higher Education institutions.
We welcome the protests over the last months that have involved school, college and university students and the numerous occupations of universities , colleges and schools – and the support received by students from education trade unions and non-education trade unions alike.
We also congratulate the vibrant demonstration organised by students that brought 30,000 people to the streets on 9 December. We note that the march from Malet Street to Parliament Square was entirely peaceful and incident-free
We condemn the unprecedented levels of violence from the Metropolitan Police and call for kettling to be abandoned as a police tactic.
We call on the Labour Party to support the abolition of all fees and restoration of student grants (including the EMA) and on Ed Miliband and all Labour Party members to give their full backing to the students’ campaigns, and to join them in future protests.
The LRC will support future campaigning by students against fee rises and the abolition of EMA, and for free education paid for out of general taxation.
Lovell has won three contracts to carry out housing repairs and maintenance work for Norwich City Council.
The housing refurbishment and regeneration specialist will deliver kitchen and bathroom improvements, disabled alterations to council houses, and electrical upgrading, over the nine months of the contract.
Lovell, part of the Morgan Sindall group and based in Norwich, took on emergency housing repair work for Norwich City Council after its previous contractor Connaught collapsed.
Lovell regional director Simon Medler said: “We would like to underline our continuing commitment to providing jobs for former Connaught staff wherever we can.”
We’re sure the people will of Norwich will hold Lovell to that…
Even Red Pepper Calls For Unions To Get Their Acts Together. Lets Hope They Get The Message…
At last Thursday’s anti-tuition fees protests, students culminated their two-month campaign against savage tuition fee hikes, shaking the coalition government to its core. Such a protest has not been seen in London for 10 years. We’ve had bigger numbers, but the vibrancy, clear political analysis, and anger-mixed-with-party atmosphere, have all been absent for a long time.
Students could not have given a clearer lead to the rest of society. The protest was a culmination of a wave of occupations, marches, local days’ of action, and more. Although organised, it was not top-down – the National Union of Students resigned their leadership role early on. It came about through organising by local, national and, vitally, online centres – with many decisions being taken on radically democratic lines.
Self-interest was never a primary motivation for current students who are organising in solidarity with the next generation which will actually pay the price of fees. Indeed in occupations around the country students have gone well beyond fee rises, questioning the very structures of education.
But Thursday’s demonstration was far from dominated by white middle-class kids. I was taken aback by the amount of working-class, Black and Asian school and university students – no one taken in for a second by the idea that the Government’s proposals were ‘necessary’ or ‘fair’. The government has declared war on them, their communities and their class – pure and simple.
The immediate result of this mobilisation: a government majority of 84 slashed to 21. But the faces of Ministers – in particular Lib Dems– told of greater fears for their future. Outside, protestors were angry but unsurprised. After all when a party tells you it opposes tuition fees in May and in December agrees to triple them, clearly the political model isn’t working (anymore than it did when the Labour Government first introduced them).
That anger was compounded by a set of brutal police tactics which have not received nearly enough attention. Scores of riot police on horses, with visors, shields and more padding than the Michelin man, charged at unarmed protestors, many of them legally children. I have never seen so many bloodied protestors. One student required three-hour brain surgery so severe were his wounds. Hundreds more were repeatedly beaten and finally, at 9.30, marched onto Westminster bridge with no facilities, no information, where the cold was guaranteed to be worst. David Cameron got it right about “violent, thuggish behaviour”, but it was the police acting on clear instructions.
What does this mean long-term? First the Left must take the issue of violence head-on. The policies being inflicted on this country – without electoral mandate – are truly violent. The – at worst – vandalism carried out by protestors in the face these policies has been surprisingly moderate. No progressive change in society has ever come about without much worse scenes. The Left has to lose its fear about this issue.
Second, and even more worrying, was the lack of trade union presence. The RMT made a good show on the protest, as have UCU at previous protests. Otherwise just a handful of local, mostly university-based, flags peppered the march. This will come to haunt us. The students cannot carry the can for the failure of others forever. The unions want to reinvent themselves, to appeal to new activists, to get young people to understand the importance of solidarity. This was – hopefully still is – the opportunity. Local organising is vital. Student organising is vital. But trade unions remain the only bodies which can truly mobilise on the scale needed. If they fail, we all fail.
Belvedere Centre, Belvoir Street, Norwich, 15th Dec 7.30pm – 9.30pm.
Ian Gibson (former Labour MP Norwich North),
Ed Bober (Unison),
Don Timson (Greater Norwich Street Voice)
Stan Cullen Grant and Rick Dutton (NCAG)
We have waited for weeks now to see if the TUC will adjust it’s position and call trade unions to support the students fight against the fees and cuts, the silence as predicted is deafening.
After the hideously inaccurate and biased media reporting of the December 9th student mobilisation in the capital, we feel moved to make a direct appeal to all trade union members in Norfolk and beyond.
We can no longer sit and wait for the TUC mobilisation in March 2011 while young people are being beaten to the floor by the Metropolitan Police. The time to act is now.
We urge all Trade Union members to travel to the next national student protest in London when the date is confirmed. Look deep into your consciences, the time for solidarity is now.
He was beaten on the head with a police truncheon causing bleeding on the brain.
The IPCC (Independent Police Complaints Commision) have opened an investigation into the case and are appealing for help. If you saw Alfie attacked by the police then contact the IPCC.
Police have been accused of attempting to prevent seriously injured protesters being treated at the same hospital as officers hurt during last week’s tuition fees demonstration, igniting claims that one student’s life could have been put at risk.
The mother of 20-year-old Alfie Meadows, who required brain surgery after allegedly being hit by a police truncheon, claimed that when her son was taken to Chelsea and Westminster hospital officers objected to him being treated there.
Susan Matthews, 55, said that only the intervention of an ambulance worker allowed her son to receive urgent medical treatment for the stroke he suffered after receiving his injury. “If he hadn’t, Alfie would have been transferred and he could have died,” she said.
After allegedly being hit by police, the philosophy student fell unconscious and later sustained bleeding on the brain.
His mother added: “The ambulance man took us to Chelsea and Westminster hospital. That [hospital] had been given over to police injuries and there was a standoff in the corridor. Alfie was obviously a protester and the police didn’t want him there, but the ambulance man insisted that he stayed.”
She said that he was then asked to take Alfie to another hospital. “The ambulance man was appalled and he said: ‘I’m getting angry now, and I’m not going to do this.’
“The senior nurse in charge took us into a resuscitation room to keep us away from the police because, she said, they were finding it upsetting to see protesters in the hospital.”
The injury to Alfie, a second-year undergraduate at Middlesex University, is already the subject of an investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission.
Yesterday afternoon investigators interviewed Alfie at Charing Cross hospital in west London, where he was taken for surgery as his condition began to deteriorate. His mother, an English literature lecturer at Roehampton University, said that her son had made a good recovery after a three-hour operation.
“The first thing Alfie said when he woke up was about how many other people had been hurt and how the police had been striking and bashing everyone. Any one of those kids there could have been Alfie.
“I’m from the generation of Blair Peach [hit over the head by police at a London demonstration in 1979] and we knew that anyone could die if they were hit. He’s amazingly jolly now. I don’t know it that is from a sense of having survived or the morphine.”
A Scotland Yard spokesman said: “The issue is under IPCC investigation.”
I was ashamed and shocked.
First we sent our children out to fight our battles – and then we stood and watched as police horses were set on them.
On Thursday evening I visited Parliament Square and Top Shop on Oxford Street. The protestors were so young. And so brave.
It’s all very well making statements in support of students – and against the increases to the cost of education.
But where were the trades unionists and trade union leaders when it really mattered.
We should be standing between the horses and the students – not watching it on telly.
We no longer accept this treatment.
It is we the workers who built these palaces and cities here in Spain and in America and everywhere. We, the workers, can build others to take their place. And better ones! We are not in the least afraid of ruins. Buenaventura Durruti (14 July 1896 – 20 November 1936)
The media’s outrageous and one sided view of the ‘violence’ on the streets of the capital city on Wednesday is to be expected.
It is the propaganda cry of the state, full of sorrow, full of tears.
Their hypocritical statements often reflect a child like fear of everything they can not understand.
But they are the parent who screams at a child for making a mess of the new carpet or upholstery, placing inanimate objects into a category way above that of the human person.
Their petty nationalism drives a chorus of manipulation of ‘truth’.
A memorial becomes sacrosanct.
A shop window becomes the life blood of national identity.
‘Mess with us and we’ll hunt you down’ they cry.
But theirs is the verbiage of history, a mental state they can’t expire.
They call it violence, we call it beautiful.
They call it hatred, we call it love for humanity.
They call it ‘then’, we call it ‘here, now, together as one’.
Forward and never look back, ours into destiny, soon, someday maybe we’ll arrive.
Keep the emails coming!
So if you’re in the Labour Party and just happen to be passing-feel free!
As a member of Norwich Labour Party I …………………………………….. would like to add my voice to the call for a full public inquiry into the policing tactics used yesterday outside Parliament. Eyewitness accounts now emerging on the internet, through the main public news networks and now in the press, suggest that the official government position that the near breakdown in public order in London last night arose not from a small well organised ‘anarchist’ group intent on damaging life, limb and property but was a direct result of the police practice of ‘Kettling’. From last nights violence it is clear that this relatively new practice of policing, legitimate public protests, is rapidly leading to grave public order issues.
Tonight we have news that a 20 year old student called Alfie Meadows, sustained near life threatening head injuries in the battle that erupted outside Parliament. Fortunately he was found by his mother wandering the streets by Parliament taken to hospital by ambulance where he immediately had an emergency operation that undoubtedly saved his life. If he had not been discovered and had passed out it is entirely possible that today we would be discussing not simply the protest of the students that accompanied the debate on raising tuition fees in the house of commons but the cutting short of the life of a person who’s only crime was that of exercising his democratic rights.
Regardless of the issue that surrounds the question of how to fund further and higher education we can not accept the curtailment of our right to protest through fear of what the state might do, or more precisely, the limits set by the metropolitan police practice of ‘Kettling’. Therefore a public inquiry into what were the causes of last nights violence is urgently required because it is now impossible to determine the validity of the statements of either the metropolitan police or the government. More over it is of vital concern locally as there are serious implications for policing of future protests in Norfolk.
On Monday (6th) a lobby of Norfolk County Council by students from Norwich City College protesting at the cuts to their travel subsidy took place and was publicly applauded by the Tory County Council leader from the steps of County Hall. However from eyewitness accounts by County Council employees and a Labour Councillor, we now know that the ‘riot police’ with police dogs had been garrisoned in the County Hall car park out of sight of the 300 plus students assembled on the grass in front of the building. Neither the students nor the media who had dutifully turned up to record the march, lobby and reception (BBC’s Look East) were aware of this. Of course the argument is that the ‘riot police’ are there to restore order but at this stage, following the disturbances in London, it is impossible to say whether they were not in fact the cause. If the ‘riot police’ had been used on Monday it is entirely possible that it would have been Norfolk and not just London that would be in the national and international news tonight.
Signed ………………………….. Date …/…/… Organisation ……………………..
Great article from Lolrevolution.
Today the right to freedom of speech and expression was met with wanton barbarity. People were herded like cattle, penned in for hours in the biting cold. Many were children. Police kettled protesters into Parliament Square for several hours and again on Westminster Bridge for a further two hours. The cries of the injured and the scared went unheard by the friendly neighbourhood bobbies, their yells of “get back!” used only to justify the brandishing of their batons. A young man wanders confused and afraid behind a police line, blood dripping from his face. His plight met by a blow to the back and a shove into the crowd. Later in the day, anxious calls went up on the megaphones for any students from Middlesex to report immediately: I would not be surprised if someone has been killed.
Today was not unusual. One only has to look at the history of the police force to understand where the heroic crime-solving ends (not very far from where it starts) and where the attack on the working class begins. The police were formed to counter the strikes of the Chartist movement, and only because the soldiers didn’t work effectively (a baton, cutlass and a free hand being preferable to a musket). Something that really spells out the true nature of the police is that at some points soldiers turned against the police in solidarity with the workers, such as in the 1840’s in Leeds during the anti-police riots. To the people, the soldiers were the heroes – the police, the enemies.
The new police of England were not welcomed on the streets. In 1829 posters announcing an anti-police demonstration read:
LIBERTY OR DEATH! BRITONS!! AND HONEST MEN!!!
The time has at last arrived. All London meets on Tuesday. We assure you from ocular demonstration that 6,000 cutlasses have been removed from the Tower for the use of Peel’s Bloody Gang [Peel being the Tory Frankenstein of the pigs]. Remember the cursed speech from the Throne!! These damned Police are now to be armed. Englishmen, will you put up with this?
Police numbers do not correlate with crime. They correlate with the number of workers involved in strike action. That’s what they were formed for, that’s what they continue to exist for. They are strike-breakers. Property is said to be nine-tenths of the law, and that is what they protect – the interests of their masters. This is in stark contrast to their glamorous media portrayal: Hours of footage daily of coppers hard at work catching villains, high-speed chases, the works. Corruption within the force has even been portrayed in an almost charming, endearing light by modern media, for instance in the series Life On Mars. However, the force is not capable of dealing with most crime due to its very nature. Police numbers would need to be astronomically high if burglary, domestic issues, assault and other forms of social crime were to actually be deterred. If there is to be any good in the world, their existence will one day be relegated to the museums of the former state, along with the rest of the vestiges of oppression and slavery.
Today was both glorious and terribly sad. The police and the state aren’t doing themselves any favours. They are turning the youth into the next generation of Tory haters and radicals, those who question all authority and who will not sit down or shut up. It is also heartening to see the creativity, spirit and vigour of those who are apparently not trusted to march down a street: Never in the crowd were you far from solidarity and compassion, organic organisation and quick-footed thinking in the face of danger. Oh, and the book bloc definitely needs to be repeated.
It’s difficult to feel any sympathy for coppers with paint over their faces, on stretchers, getting wailed on after being surrounded by protesters or being kettled against their own vans and having firecrackers chucked at them after seeing baton charges at any poor excuse, complete irreverence for the health of those they are supposedly duty-bound to protect and even mounted charges. It doesn’t do much for the myths around the thin blue line to see 16-17 hand high horses charging into crowds divorced of any means of self defence from these terrifying creatures. It doesn’t do much for one’s understanding of nature either: every time they came out the cry went up, “get those animals off those horses!” It’s not difficult to see where the problem lies here: Cops with animals and batons versus kids. Kids who have been told that their future has been decimated and are getting beaten for reacting quite naturally to that fact.
Those kettled on the bridge were eventually permitted their basic human rights after two hours, provided they walked single file in-between two rows of riot police, having their masks used as a feeble attempt of anonymity ripped from them, with FIT waiting at the end of the blue corridor, camera light glaring on the tired faces. Denial of food, water, warmth, toilet facilities and thorough intimidation: Whose side are they on?
Today was a landmark. It spells the condemnation of the youth, locked out of higher education as tuition fees treble, but also marks the start of something big. They can hit us, scare us with animals, intimidate us, pen us for hours in miserable conditions and put us on spotter cards but we will come back again and again. We will return to fight for the right of our generation to education. This is not the end of the children’s crusade.
Following this mornings press conference by the students of the National Campaign Against Fees And Cuts, it is clear that those leading the defence against this coalition Governments attacks on public services, are not those we’d normally expect to answer the clarion call and ‘lead’ the fight back.
While trade union bosses were given the opportunity to address the protesters on Mallet St yesterday, it was clear very quickly that most assembled were less than keen to listen to ‘leaders’, and more eager to get to Parliament and make their voices heard. Perhaps the message given by said ‘bosses’ wasn’t quite up to scratch.
Student movements over the last decade or two certainly couldn’t be recognised to be ‘militant’, and the lack of leadership from both the NUS and the national trade union movement appears not to have been lost on many of these young people, who seem to have suddenly developed a political fervor and willingness to take on the full force of the state.
Many of us are shocked. Not because there were scenes of ‘violence’ on the streets of London, not because windows were smashed and graffiti was daubed across buildings in the ‘political elites front gardens’, or shocked because some posh couples car was covered with paint and ‘felt the indignity of receiving a broken window’, but shocked because the students we remember over the last twenty years were about as radical as a tin foil hat and a copy of Socialist Worker.
Much of this sudden rise of welcome militancy can only be attributed to one thing and that is the Trade Union movements inability to pull its head out of the sand and lead any kind of effective counter attack against the onslaught and oppression of both the previous two governments, and now the current coalition sham who are clearly trying to destroy the welfare state and return us to a society based on pre-war philanthropy.
While the media spouts it’s drivel about ‘violence to property’ and battles between student ‘thugs’ against the police or ‘infiltration by outside elements’, the student ‘leaders’ stand resolute refusing to condemn the protesters who fought back repeated attacks and intimidation by the Metropolitan Police and firmly declare their intention to carry on regardless of the vote in Parliament.
Meanwhile there is silence from the trade union movement. Not a whisper to declare the media rhetoric as being hideously biased, not a murmur to declare support for those on the front line fighting the government to save us from the Americanisation of British society.
The students want to unite and fight with organised labour, but organised labour it seems is in danger of producing nothing other than the re-hashing of songs of the great struggles of days gone by, or the occasional dragging out of ageing class warriors of the same distant struggles to decorate a podium to try and prove they are still up for the fight.
As of 1300 today, there is still not a trade union leader who has appeared on our screens to publicly support the student movement and condemn the police for trying to stifle the right to protest.
Off your knees TUC, you are in danger of being left behind and being consigned to the history books. There is a movement growing across Europe, and you’re likely going to miss the bus.
The best the TUC has been able to muster against the cuts is a national demonstration in March2011.
And that simply isn’t good enough.
Ruahri ó Cléirigh