The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain
Week commencing 21st April 2017

National News

Nae Nazis in Wishaw!

HIGH STREET shops in Wishaw, Lanarkshire, were forced to close last Saturday as racist thugs in the SDL — the Scottish Defence League, equivalent of the Islamophobic EDL south of the border — insisted on trying to march through the town.

Around 50 Nazis were confronted by a 200-strong counter demonstration including a strong presence of people from the town, as a massive police presence accompanied the masked and hooded SDL members were escorted through the town during their protest.

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Nursing cuts linked to patient deaths

NEW RESEARCH by the University of Southampton has shown unequivocally that low levels of nursing staff are linked to higher levels of patient mortality.

It would seem to be an obvious truth but one that the Government would not acknowledge until some researcher added up the figures and published the results in black and white.

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Corbyn’s promise to carers

AROUND one million carers would receive an extra £10 per week under plans for a significant rise in the value of the carer’s allowance if Labour was elected into government, Jeremy Corbyn announced last Tuesday.

Labour would fund the 17 per cent increase, which would cost £538 million, by reversing the inheritance tax cut announced by George Osborne, the then chancellor, in 2015.

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Trainee London bus drivers short changed

THOUSANDS of trainee bus drivers in London have been ‘short changed’ by the majority of bus companies not paying the agreed London living wage, according to the giant union Unite.

The union said it had evidence that bus companies were deliberately not paying the London living wage of £9.75 per hour for those trainees holding the Passenger Carrying Vehicle (PCV) licence. Unite also claimed that some were not even paying the national minimum wage of £7.50 per hour to those trainees not holding a PCV licence.

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Pin-Striped Loan Sharks

by our Scottish political affairs correspondent TWO of the enduring legacies of the Blair—Brown years are the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) and its near identical twin, the Public Private Partnership (PPP), which is placing a particularly heavy burden on the National Health Service. Designed to reduce public expenditure figures, private sector investors were encouraged to get involved in financing public sector projects. Needless to say, the private sector benefited at the expense of the public purse.

Since 2001 a number of hospitals have been built for £2 billion. These carry debts of £10 billion. The first was Hairmyres Hospital in East Kilbride, which cost £68 million to build (without a kitchen) but whose repayments will amount to £675 million. A comparative bargain is nearby Wishaw General, which cost £100 million to build but will see £813 million paid out by 2029, by which time it will probably have fallen down. At present its Accident & Emergency unit is categorised at ‘very high risk’ because it cannot afford doctors.

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Shanghai maths books to be introduced to Britain

by Mengjie

HARPERCOLLINS Publishers will translate mathematics textbooks from Chinese schools and publish them in Britain, according to its agreement with Shanghai Century Publishing Group.

Under the agreement signed at the London Book Fair last month, some primary schools in Britain will use 36 books, including maths textbooks, supplementary textbooks and teacher’s textbooks from Shanghai primary schools, starting in September.

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Tall Ships to London!

by New Worker correspondent

LONDONERS had a chance to see the Nao Victoria and many other sailing ships at the Greenwich Tall Ships Festival 2017 last weekend. The Nao Victoria is a carrack, a replica of the ship, which became the first vessel to successfully circumnavigate the globe in 1522 as part of Ferdinand Magellan’s expedition.

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A Gem of a Tower

by Carole Barclay

THE PALACE of Westminster is what we call the Houses of Parliament today. It was originally a feudal royal palace, although little remains from the middle ages apart from Westminster Hall, where Charles Stuart was tried and condemned to death for treason by Parliament in 1649, and a tower that was built around 1365 to house the personal treasure of Edward III.

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International News

Turkish leader claims victory: opposition say poll was rigged

by Burak Akinci and Qin Yanyang

TURKISH President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has declared victory in a constitutional reform referendum that will give him sweeping powers, amidst an outcry from the opposition that the voting was rigged.

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Moscow warns Washington over North Korea

by Pavel Jacomino

RUSSIA has warned the United States against any ‘unilateral action’ against north Korea, saying any response to Pyongyang’s nuclear activities should not violate ‘international law’, amidst reports of potential military confrontation between North Korea and the United States.

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Workplace deaths: a capitalist disease

People’s Voice (Canada)

EVERY YEAR leading up to 28th April, the annual Workers Memorial Day, statistics and articles provide ample proof of the epidemic of workplace deaths. On a world-wide scale, every 15 seconds, a worker dies from a work-related accident or disease, and 153 workers have a work-related accident. Every day, 6,300 people die as a result of occupational accidents or work-related diseases — more than 2.3 million deaths per year. An estimated 12 million people die as a result of living or working in an unhealthy environment each year, nearly one in four of total global deaths, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO). More than 300 million accidents occur on the job annually, many resulting in extended absences from work. The economic cost of occupational deaths and injuries, and poor occupational safety and health practices, is estimated at four per cent of global Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

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Incredible myths about Soviet space flights

ON 12th April 1961, Yuri Gagarin circled the Earth in the Vostok spaceship, opening a new era in the history of humanity and becoming the focal point of pride for the Soviet Union. At the same time, the Soviet space programme was always kept in the strictest secrecy, generating plenty of fantastic legends.

‘Zero Cosmonauts’ or ‘Ghost Cosmonauts’

Adherents of this ‘theory’ believe that the USSR sent people into space before Gagarin. This is where the name ‘zero cosmonauts’ comes from. Those launches were supposedly unsuccessful however, so all information on the launches and astronauts was kept strictly classified by the Soviet leadership. There’s no official mention of these people anywhere, which is why they are also called ‘ghost cosmonauts’.

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President Kim Il Sung and Britain

by Dermot Hudson

THE HIGHLY significant 105th anniversary of the birth of the great Korean communist leader, comrade Kim Il Sung, is a reminder of how important it is to reflect on the relevance of his teachings and ideas to Britain. How are the ideas of Kim Il Sung applicable to Britain?

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Hurrah for the free press!

by Rob Gowland

THE CAPITALIST media is at great pains always to portray itself as ‘free’, independent and definitely not a tool of the government. This state of affairs is constantly paraded before us as not only desirable but as an essential prerequisite for the smooth functioning of democracy, good and efficient governance and just about anything else that could be regarded as socially desirable.

It’s a load of baloney, of course. The capitalist mass media is big business, and whether it supports or opposes a specific government it will always support the interests of the capitalist ruling class. Different sectors of the ruling class have varying priorities, however, and this is reflected in the mass media each sector controls. Priorities aside, however, all the capitalist mass media have a fundamental commitment to sustaining capitalist class rule, so they will not support anything that actually threatens the dominance of capital or that might weaken its hold on government.

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