Anti-cuts protests 2011

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Mike Harman
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Jan 13 2011 06:09
Anti-cuts protests 2011

New year, feels like time for a new thread.

The break over Christmas was a bit depressing IMO.

- Only Kent university stayed in occupation (until last week when they left voluntarily and on their own timetable) in horrible conditions.

- Lots of bickering on twitter, most of it people jostling for positions rather than any kind of real debate about direction.

- Then there was the NetRoots UK conference which I've been trying to avoid reading about so I don't smash my computer, populated by many of the aforementioned twitter bickerers, plus Brendan Barber, US liberals and other assorted cunts.

- Have any places gone back into occupation yet?

- The Jeremy Bentham room at UCL was 'remodelled' with 'new doors' over the break, this might be something that was scheduled already, or it might have been done specifically to make re-occupation harder.

- Looks like there have been a few local demos - town centre plus UK Uncut type things., but on a small scale as far as I can tell.

- Heinz workers struck again this week - http://libcom.org/library/heinz-beanz-being-really-meanz

- Jeremy Cunt at the LSE yesterday:

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- NCAFC is holding a nation conference http://anticuts.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/NCAFC-Conference-2011-Leaflet1.pdf

- National walkout to save EMA, 26th Jan - http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=176843452345159&index=1 (1,200 attendees so far)

- National demo 29th January - National demo - No Fees, No Cuts! Defend Education & the Public Sector! (about 5,000 attendees)

- The NUS exec voted to not support either of these, although UCU is now backing the 29th Jan demo.

- Firefighters in London are going to be rehired on new terms and conditions - anyone know if there's going to be new strike actions?

- Is there any other upcoming industrial action apart from Heinz and the tube strikes? Folks in Manchester, is the 29th January demo possibly an opportunity to make stronger links between students and the Heinz workers?

Caiman del Barrio
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Jan 13 2011 10:26

More generally, I think what we can expect to see after the EMA vote is a shift in terrain away from education cuts and into other arenas. Hopefully this means that this will stop being seen as a "student movement". The students I'm in touch with are already working to support other anti-cuts struggles in the area.

Jason Cortez
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Jan 13 2011 10:40

Leeds Trinity are in occupation http://ltsac.wordpress.com/

Mike Harman
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Jan 14 2011 15:33

Thanks Jason, and for the past ten days as well.

Someone just arrested in Newcastle, people protesting outside the police station. No reason given by the police for the arrest yet.

http://ncluniocc.blogspot.com/2011/01/peaceful-protestor-arrested-in.html

Rum Lad
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Jan 14 2011 18:16

Student protesters interrupt talk by MP Jeremy Hunt at LSE:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8-FBeNKYjeA

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Steven.
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Jan 14 2011 19:58

It will be interesting to see if the break has dampened spirits.

The vote on EMA is on the 19th, don't think anything is organised for it though as it was announced at short notice.

Next student walkout is 26 January, and Saturday 29 January is the demonstration which workers and everyone can attend as well. It would be great if this is really big, we will have to see…

Councils are beginning to feel cuts now, and in some industrial action is brewing.

Kirklees Unison members voted to take five days of strike action.

In Camden teachers are balloting for industrial action over compulsory redundancies. Unison should be following them.

Nationally the NUT is preparing a timetable for industrial action ballot over pension cuts. If they propose dates for action this could put pressure on other unions to organise some sort of strike action as well. There was big joint strike action over pensions back in 2006.

A teachers strike in the near future could also be great from the point of view of giving millions of kids a day off school, in which they could take some sort of action over fees and EMA.

Jason Cortez
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Jan 14 2011 20:06

Manchester is looking at cuts of 2,000 from the council workforce and Unite are balloting for action. I personally wouldn't hold out too much hope coming from the NUT in short medium term at least at present.

Jason Cortez
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Jan 19 2011 12:15

Rawmarsh school teachers strike against job cuts in Rotherham,
http://www.wsws.org/articles/2011/jan2011/rawm-j17.shtml

posi
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Jan 19 2011 12:28

Heavy handed eviction of Birmingham uni occupation:

http://birminghamstudentsagainstcuts.blogspot.com/2011/01/forced-heavy-handed-eviction-of.html

bastards.

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jef costello
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Jan 19 2011 13:57

Haringey are planning 100 job cuts which is 20% of the council workforce.
There were over 600 people at a march/demo on Monday. The march was organised by the unions and met up wth a demo organised by HAPS, the local anti-cuts group. The campaign is on-going but while most people seem to support it they are not necessarily getting involved. As we were marching we handed out leaflets explaining what was going on and quite a few people said they were glad 'someone was doing something about it' but few joined the march and not many signed up for future events. We went into the council meeting as well, there was a successful HAPS delegation and a less successful union one. The councillors just used it as an excuse to snipe at each others' parties and the labour council referred to various instances of councils refusing to set cuts budgets and said that it was no longer possible. Most of the heckling was from labour party types who seemed to miss the point that the labour council leader was agreeing with us that the cuts were wrong but was also saying that they would implement them.

Caiman del Barrio
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Jan 19 2011 14:04

20th Public meeting against the cuts @ Goldsmiths College SU, SE14
24th National Day of Action Against Benefit Cuts
25th Demo outside Southwark Town Hall, SE5
Feb 5th National Read In to save our libraries
7th (?) Demo outside Lambeth Town Hall, SE2
19th Carnival Against the Cuts, SE13

Mike Harman
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Jan 19 2011 15:16

There's a save EMA protest on today in London. Anyone have any idea how it's going/went - not at all clear from the shitty coverage.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/2011/jan/19/ema-students-fight-for-grant

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-12228466

edit: apparently it actually starts in 15 minutes at Picadilly Circus, or that's what twitter says anyway.

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jef costello
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Jan 19 2011 15:26

The other element to the EMA cut is raising the compulsory school-leaving age to 18 which is coming in 2013.

Mike Harman
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Jan 19 2011 15:55

Picadilly Circus.

http://yfrog.com/gyf9tyzj

Mike Harman
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Jan 19 2011 16:08
jef costello wrote:
The other element to the EMA cut is raising the compulsory school-leaving age to 18 which is coming in 2013.

wtf I missed that one!

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jef costello
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Jan 19 2011 17:04
Quote:
For the first time in 30 years, Government has legislated to raise the education leaving age to 18.

Raising the participation age gives every young person the best chance to achieve and succeed. Young people are required to participate in education or training until their 18th birthday through either:

*full-time education or training, including school, college and home education;
*work-based learning, such as an Apprenticeship, including traditional contracts of apprenticeship;
* part-time education or training, if they are employed, self-employed or volunteering more than 20 hours a week.

http://www.dcsf.gov.uk/educationandskills/

Increases ghettoisation and swaps carrot for stick.

gypsy
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Jan 19 2011 17:44
jef costello wrote:
Quote:
For the first time in 30 years, Government has legislated to raise the education leaving age to 18.

Raising the participation age gives every young person the best chance to achieve and succeed. Young people are required to participate in education or training until their 18th birthday through either:

*full-time education or training, including school, college and home education;
*work-based learning, such as an Apprenticeship, including traditional contracts of apprenticeship;
* part-time education or training, if they are employed, self-employed or volunteering more than 20 hours a week.

http://www.dcsf.gov.uk/educationandskills/

Increases ghettoisation and swaps carrot for stick.

Can you expand on that Jef? Ta

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Steven.
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Jan 19 2011 22:08

Jef, I assume you mean Haringey Council are cutting 1000 jobs, not 100

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Ellar
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Jan 19 2011 22:30

Just got back from the EMA demo in london. Was pretty bad, about six hundred attended and they were very lively but the whole thing was pretty much ruined by the fact that the ULU stewards acted to create a moving kettle with the police and stifled any attempts at more interesting routes or actions. The march ended in parliament square with what was ultimately a kettle but just one that had been pre arranged by a few students and the police. And whats worse is there was some shit rapper doing political stuff out the back of a van.

I think the 29th will be better because the numbers will be bigger (people organising coaches apparently) and the students still seem lively, we just got to make sure the stewards are ignored.

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Chilli Sauce
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Jan 19 2011 22:44

This came through from the TUC to my inbox today regarding the March 26th Demo:.

Quote:
Volunteer stewards are not being asked to deal with any trouble-makers the event might attract. Of course we are planning this to be a massive, peaceful and friendly event, but in the unlikely event that a few fringe trouble-makers do cause difficulties, our volunteers are not expected to do anything other than report problems to senior stewards.

Oh, you "trouble makers", at least we have the TUC there to police and make sure everything stays "peaceful and friendly"...

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Jan 19 2011 22:56

Normally my opinions are expressed in a more articulate manner, but Fuck the TUC.

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jef costello
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Jan 19 2011 23:18
Steven. wrote:
Jef, I assume you mean Haringey Council are cutting 1000 jobs, not 100

Yeah, I meant 1000

Jason Cortez
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Jan 20 2011 00:48

Six hundred on the EMA demo? Seemed less than that to me. There was no kettle at Parliment Square the police had no need, the numbers just were there. Also don't think they was that much willingness/confidence to go off route with the low turnout. Whilst the stewards were annoying, hardly a walking kettle though they barely had enough folks to deal with the march taking both traffic lanes, so they were largely ineffectual. But I expect a lot more hassle with stewards in the coming months.

Jason Cortez
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Jan 20 2011 00:49
Bill Jefferies wrote:
I've learnt that on the March 26th demo the TUC have organised a call centre with the Metropolitan Police at Congress House. Any message from any TUC steward, whether they intend it or not, will be relayed straight to the cops. People need to be aware of this before the event. So spread the word. The source is 100% reliable
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Ellar
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Jan 20 2011 01:08

I think six hundred is is about right during the march but when we got to parliament square it quickly dispersed cos people were so bored. There was no forceful kettle at parliament square but we did essentially walk into a small area with fences to the left and right of us and a police line to the front and back of us (yeah I know this isn't officially a kettle but you get my point right). I think there was willingness to go off route, considering how people were moving at the beginning of the march, obviously later on people became more subdued. We could have easily taken both traffic lanes it's just everybody lined up behind the stewards and the cops who were only in one lane. I think your underestimating the effect the stewards had, students don't want to push past other students, soon after leaving piccadilly people were picking up pace but as soon as this happened the stewards did that stupid human chain thing which had a real effect on the march.

Then again I can be to optimistic about these things so maybe I wasn't reading the situation right.

Mike Harman
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Jan 20 2011 04:02

Did anyone see the students "arguing for socialism and anarchism on newsnight" last night?

Samotnaf
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Jan 20 2011 06:00

Here's an old slogan from the 1980s to drag out of the attic:
TUC = Tories' Unofficial Cops...

Caiman del Barrio
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Jan 20 2011 13:17
Mike Harman wrote:
Did anyone see the students "arguing for socialism and anarchism on newsnight" last night?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00xxghk/Newsnight_19_01_2011/

Mason's reportage is pretty good again (I had a brief chat with him about the difference between dubstep and grime, lolz) but Frei is a fucking idiot as always, hauling out all sorts of patronising cliches about "a new generation", "kids learning about the true nature of the world", etc, etc...

EDIT as concerns the demo itself, it's hardly surprising that it was horrifically attended. The majority of college students aren't motivated to attend demos by left wing leaflets but by media furore and hype. That's not to say we shouldn't try our hardest to access them, but it's worth considering tactics here. On the face of it, with the SWP and the horrific ULU stewards (includign one in a Crass t-shirt) made it a typical pre-Millbank business as usual type affair, the sort of demoralising shite that characterised my time as a student anarcho.

Mike Harman
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Jan 20 2011 13:38
Caiman del Barrio wrote:
Mike Harman wrote:
Did anyone see the students "arguing for socialism and anarchism on newsnight" last night?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00xxghk/Newsnight_19_01_2011/

"Not available in your area" sad

Caiman del Barrio
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Jan 20 2011 13:46
Mike Harman wrote:
Caiman del Barrio wrote:
Mike Harman wrote:
Did anyone see the students "arguing for socialism and anarchism on newsnight" last night?

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00xxghk/Newsnight_19_01_2011/

"Not available in your area" :(

TBF it's not that great. They say they're in favour of "socialism and anarchism", before revealing they'd visited Parliament, would love to be politicians and are pro-Labour. wink

Mike Harman
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Jan 20 2011 13:52

@Tommy Ascaso: I can only ever get that bbc news link thing to work, one day I will figure out how to use open proxies properly.

@Caiman, thanks that makes me feel a bit better, well not really but I don't feel the same need to watch it.