National News

Treasury Committee rejects PFI

NEARLY TWO decades since the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) was introduced amid warnings and predictions from the unions and other progressives, a House of Commons Select Committee has finally realised that PFI has been a disaster for taxpayers and a happy hunting ground for businesses on the make.

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Fascist march banned in Edinburgh

EDINBURGH City Council last week banned a planned march by the Scottish Defence League — the Scots equivalent of the Islamophobic English Defence League.

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Asbestos deaths a record high

THE NUMBER of people dying from cancer related to exposure to asbestos dust is at an all-time record level, according to research done for the BBC regional programme Look East.

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Remploy protest in Merthyr Tydfil

MEMBERS of the GMB and Unite unions employed at Remploy in Merthyr Tydfil last Saturday staged a petition protest outside Specsavers in Merthyr Tydfil from 10am to seek support save the local Remploy factory from closure.

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Southern Cross landlords miss deadline

THE LANDLORDS of the 750 residential care homes operated by the bankrupt company Southern Cross last week missed an important deadline for appointing new operators for the homes, according to a report from the GMB union.

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Inside the far right

[ Review ] by Owen Liddle

Matthew Collins: Hate, my life in the far right.

With foreword by Billy Bragg.

From Biteback publishers pbk, illus, 316 pp £14.99 but discounted to £13.50 if bought through and all good bookshops. All proceeds from copies bought from Hope not Hate go to the Searchlight Educational Trust.

MATTHEW Collins was a teenager who grew up in south east London. He was not atypical, coming from a poor working class background, single-parent family and his father having left home when he was a small child.

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International News

Libya: Britain breaking law on regime change?

An Phoblacht

IS THE British Government guilty of breaking international law in Libya? Has it been using the UN-authorised humanitarian intervention resolution to protect civilians in Libya’s civil war as a very thin smokescreen to use violence and military might to bring about regime change in another state — an oil-rich state?

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Arizona wall built with hate

by Leandro Maceo Leyva

IT IS NOT enough for authorities in the US border state of Arizona to distinguish them selves as the promoters par excellence of xenophobic, racist anti-immigrant policies, such as last year’s Arizona Senate Bill 1070, the first of its kind to criminalise immigration.

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The Dalai Lama’s stunts

by Eric Zhang and Lily Dong

The Dalai Lama met President Barack Obama in the White House during a visit to the United States in July.

THE FOURTEENTH Dalai Lama, though aging and in frail health, has enjoyed his latest travels around the world with the help of his two party tricks perfected through years of practice: one is lying and the other is flattering. Using people’s respect for Buddhism, the Dalai Lama attracts followers in the name of “Holiness”, which is his old trick. Wearing a cassock, the old lama jazzes around the world in a self-intoxicated state, indulging himself in the illusion of being an emperor basking in the applause of onlookers who have hidden motives.

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Iraq: The Grapes of Wrath

by Eduardo JoséGonzález

WHEN THE international coalition that invaded Iraq announced the launching of their operations on March 2003, they argued that they would bring security and democracy to a country whose government allegedly possessed weapons of mass destruction, which posed a threat to the entire world.

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US: Ancient American Indian site saved from destruction

by Terri Kay and Stephanie Hedgecoke

NATIVE California indigenous people have stopped the planned destruction and desecration of an ancient coastal sacred burial site by the City of Vallejo, California. Vallejo agreed to a cultural easement and memorandum of understanding to protect Sagorea Te at Glen Cove.

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Racism and a persistent wasteland

by Rob Gowland

WHEN I was a young fellow it was my habit to spend my Saturday nights listening to the radio, mainly but not exclusively tuned to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC). Early favourites included the BBC comedy shows Take It From Here (with Australia’s Dick Bentley) and Much Binding In The Marsh and the Australian-made music programmes World Famous Tenors (compiled and compèred by the communist actor John Deese of Quiz Kids fame) and John West’s long running and estimable Sentimental Journey (on which I was guest compère one week).

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Ominous outlook for the world economy

by Eduardo José González

THE DROP in European share markets last week was called black but in reality there are now more periods of darkness than light for these financial institutions, and it is another evident sign that whatever was done up till now to avoid the new stage of the global crisis has been a total failure.

According to various analyses of the collapse of share markets and its huge losses, the fear of another recession was the one that caused capital flight looking for other safer niches.

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