Blogs

Workers' struggles in East Asia (June 2013)

Workers and students protest against hike in the price of fuel in Jakarta

Summary and links to news stories of workers' struggles around East Asia during June 2013 and related resources. The most important stories appear on my Twitter feed as soon as I find them: http://twitter.com/spartacusnews.

The human rights agenda: Metro Justice's housing vision

Article written to look at the Metro Justice's Housing Committee, created by housing justice activists to add dimension to Rochester's housing movement and to support Take Back the Land Rochester.

What's wrong with the unions (pt.1)

Last year Poland raised the retirement age to 67 and this year got rid of the guaranteed 8-hour day. Up til now, the main unions have responded with barely a peep. This lack of union militancy has no doubt given the green light to the neoliberal government to push ahead with such anti-worker measures. Now, as the workers demand some response, one wonders if this will be too little, too late. What are the factors that have lead to this situation? They are complex, ranging from the specifics of the local social conditions to the institutions of trade union collaboration. The following is the first in a series of articles on the situation of the unions in Poland.

Doctors take welcome step towards protecting health of own union's cleaning staff

Doctors at the recent British Medical Association (BMA) national conference have taken a welcome step towards protecting the health of the cleaning staff employed by their own union.

South African riot police pave the way for Obama visit

Security forces have clashed with protesters who are angry that Barack Obama is to receive an honorary doctorate from the University of Johannesburg.

Demo for the right to housing in Rome ends in clashes, one injured

A 20-year old young woman lying on the ground with her face covered in blood: this happened yesterday in Rome, when a rally demanding more public housing was brutally charged by the police.

Red and Black Vienna

I had the good fortune of getting airfare and a lovely flat in Vienna for two weeks, June 16-27, in exchange for doing a talk related to my book Paths toward Utopia (PM Press, 2012) as part of the Unsocial Sociability exhibition at Kunstraum Lakeside, Klagenfurt, Austria. As usual, getting to know a city is, for me, all about walking for hours without knowing where I'll end up, and in the first of my many strolls, including right outside the front door of my flat, I noticed an unusual amount of anarchist/autonomist/antifa street art. So began my obsession of taking snapshots of a good amount of what I chanced on, though far from all of what I saw.

Squatters in Manila clash with police over gentrification project

Thousands of people living in slums in Manila have fought fierce battles with police, who are trying to evict them from their homes in order to make way for a multi-billion dollar project to turn the area into a new business district.

Political prisoners seize control of Vietnamese prison

Over fifty political prisoners seized control of a Vietnamese prison for several hours, demanding a more humane regime, improved conditions and food.

Leaflet on Current Wage (un-)Freeze in the Public Sector, East London

Leaflet distributed at Tower Hamlets Homes annual staff conference. It basically raises the question what the 600 workers of the East London housing group can do in order to get a pay hike after four years of freeze, given that waiting for the UNISON ballot won't cut it...

It makes us sick: notes on affective labour, sanity, and post-Fordism

The division of leisure time is an insult - Abigail Rebakah Barr

A slightly polished version of a short talk for a panel discussion on post-Fordism and mental health with Hannah Black and Mark Fisher, as part of Auto Italia South East's Immaterial Labour Isn't Working 2013 event series.

Battlefield Indonesia

In Indonesia, workers are resisting low wages and demanding health care coverage, and indigenous communities are resisting corporate-enforced destruction.

Boat Race protestor to be deported

Trenton Oldfield

So called 'boat race' protestor Trenton Oldfield has recieved notice that he is to be deported and is now appealing.

Workers in China kidnap their boss

Workers at a medical supplies factory in Beijing, China, have taken the owner of the factory hostage. He has been locked in his office for several days, and subject to sleep deprivation techniques. The action was taken following a dispute over unpaid wages and severance pay.

Notes from the Chicago hockey celebrations

Cops push back revellers in Wrigleyville

It wasn't Kronstadt, but it was fun.

Django Unchained, directed by Quentin Tarantino

Despite wilful ignorance, gross error and prejudicial omission, this 'full-blooded' film entertainment speaks volumes about the hurt and rage of injuries past and present as well as the yearning for renewal.

IWW call to support motions to BMA conference for london living wage for cleaners at BMA House

The British Medical Association, the national trade union for doctors, pays its workers who clean BMA House the minimum wage of £6.19/hour. The cleaners are demanding the London Living Wage, £8.55/hour. BMA Tower Hamlets Division and the BMA London Regional Council which have both submitted motions to the BMA Annual Representatives Meeting supporting the cleaners demand for the London Living Wage. On Friday (21st June) London IWW leafleted outside BMA House to urge BMA members and passes by to help get motions 482 and 483 on the Table. You too can help right now. Please email the BMA in Scotland and demand that these motions are heard.

Unison instructs its members to enforce the bedroom tax

The UK's largest public sector union, Unison, has issued guidance to its members advising them to enforce the hated bedroom tax.

Fifth antifascist patrol in Athens

Antifascists patrolled the streets of Athens in large numbers once again on Thursday evening.

Ubiquitous racism

A look at the institutional racism of migration policy in Italy and Europe in the wake of another tragic drowning of migrants.