SchNEWS 511, 9th September, 2005 BOMBS AWAY London is soon to be the host of the world largest "Defence" showcase. Do you feel a warm glow inside? Makers of machines of pain and death will be there peddling their wares to whoever wants them. We'll be there causing trouble. Also: protests against the corporate sell off of Iraq's assets and more.
510, 2nd September, 2005
509, 26th August, 2005
508, 19th August, 2005
507, 12th August, 2005
506, 29th July, 2005
505, 22nd July, 2005
503/4, 15th July, 2005
502, 17th June, 2005
501, 10th June, 2005
500, 3rd June, 2005
499, 27th May, 2005
498, 20th May, 2005
497, 13th May, 2005
496, 6th May, 2005
495, 29th April, 2005
For being there...
Out of the freezer into the frying pan? Whilst still busy polluting
the pristine wilderness of Iceland (See SchNEWS
506) US aluminium company Alcoa has turned its attention to
somewhere a little warmer. It is now over a planning a 340,000 metric
ton smelter plant in Cap De Ville in the Caribbean Island of Trinidad.
The island is one of the most densely populated places on earth
with 249 persons per sq. kilometre and also already ranks very high
in pollution levels - 5th in the world for carbon dioxide pollution
due to rampant industrialization.
The proposed plant, one of the largest in the world, is to be located
within a mile or less of the population centre of Cap-de-Ville/Point
Fortin in the Cedros Peninsula. However, the residents have now
woken up and are organising massive protests on a regional and international
level. While similar protests in Chile, Brazil and Vietnam successfully
blocked similar proposals, Trinidads government seems determined
to push ahead.
The citizens group Cedros Peninsula United managed to obtain a
copy of Alcoas application of Environmental Clearance - jointly
signed by Alcoa and the governments Energy Corporation - and
found it full of omissions, inaccuracies and outright falsehoods.
We are very worried about a company that promises us an environmentally
friendly smelter, yet is already lying about things like waste
and pollution before the smelter is even built. How can we trust
them, warns the citizens group. The local press totally
ignored the findings in Alcoas application but had no problem
accepting three-page ads by Alcoa promoting their project. God bless
the free press! Alcoa already have a shipping facility in the northern
part of the Island in Carenage, still operational despite an air-monitoring
report proving pollution of residential areas.
Bristle - the quarterly independent alternative magazine from
Bristol is celebrating its 20th issue. Issue 20 features a special
section on health with a look at the campaign to save local hospitals
and a wider look at Western medicine and the motives behind it.
Also featured are a look at rural racism in the south west; and
the appropriation of Native American culture. Plus reports from
the animal rights frontline, an interview with radical Bristol musician
Mark Stewart, the British states terror campaign against local
refugees, and their attack on Bristol Indymedia. Plus news, reviews,
campaigns, an extensive contacts list, and subverts.
A packed out 28 pages for a mere £1.20 - to find out your
nearest outlet go to www.bristle.org.uk
and click on get. Or send a cheque payable to bristle.
Bristle mag, c/o 14 Robertson Rd, Bristol BS5 6JY
* The Bristle collective has lost two key members and are considering
their future both in terms of format and effectiveness. If you are
interested or have a constructive opinion, theres a meeting:
Bristle mag what next? Sunday 25 September, 2-5pm,
Kebele social centre, 14 Robertson Rd, Easton, Bristol, BS5.
* Bristles 20th issue party, and benefit for local G8 defendants, on Saturday 17 September, 9pm-3am. Malcolm X Centre, City Road, St Pauls, Bristol.
US Animal/Earth Liberation remand prisoner, Chris McIntosh,
is on hunger strike in protest at the lack of being provided a decent
diet by prison authorities. Chris is a vegan and is demanding soya
or rice milk, fresh vegetables, a nutritional replacement to eggs,
and peanut butter or tofu or tempeh. All of these demands are perfectly
reasonable and something every vegan prisoner should be able to
expect. To support Chris write letters to the prison supporting
his demands. Send letters to: The Prison Governor, FDC Seatac, Federal
Detention Center, P.O. BOX 13900, Seattle, WA 98198, USA. Also send
letters of support direct to Chris: Christopher McIntosh 30512-013,
FDC Seatac, Federal Detention Center, PO BOX 13900, Seattle, WA
Babar Ahmed has been given a reprieve from being deported
to the USA (SchNEWS 474). The Home Secretary
has applied for another two month extension for his decision. His
wife says This may be a good sign that the Home Office is
taking matters seriously enough to be further asking the Americans
about issues which have arisen through Babars case. We have
said from the start that this is not just a clear cut case, but
in fact one where there are many Human Rights issues that need to
be taken into consideration. www.freebabarahmad.com
Omar Deghayes is a 35 year old resident of Brighton, originally
from Libya, who has been in solitary confinement in Guantanamo Bay
since 2002 and is now on hunger strike. Friends and family believe
he could be dead in a fortnight, but this comes after constant physical
and psychological abuse including being blinded in one eye by prison
guards. He has not been charged with any offence and the only evidence
against him is a video tape allegedly linking him with terrorists
which as been dismissed by experts as a case of mistaken identity.
* Save Omar campaign will be demonstrating on the opening day of
the Labour Party conference outside the Brighton Centre at 4pm on
Sunday, Sept 25th.
* Send gifts to Omar via his lawyer, Clive Stafford-Smith. Mail
to c/o Sabri Ben Ameur, 15 Blois Road, Lewes East Sussex BN7 2TR.
* For Full Details Visit www.save-omar.org.uk
This year sees the 100th anniversary of the Wobblies, or the
Industrial Workers of the World (IWW). Their mission? To organise
one big union that would form the new society inside the shell
of the old. The Wobblies organised amongst the marginalised
poor of the burgeoning US empire, seeking to challenge the capitalist
system at the point of production, be it factory or farm. They recognised
that Liberty without socialism is privilege; socialism without
liberty is slavery.
The Wobblies had their heyday in the early 1920s, with wildcat
strikes, sabotage and direct action. Their black cat logo struck
fear into the heart of industrialists. Hundreds of thousands strong,
they won rights still under attack today, like the 8 hour day and
public freedom of speech. (Wobblies were often nicknamed the
They emphasised rank-and-file organisation, as opposed to leaders
who would bargain with employers on the workers behalf. They
were one of the few unions to welcome all workers including women,
black workers and immigrants.
Activists were often imprisoned or lynched by state-condoned mobs
and state criminalization increased with Wobblies stance against
World War I (IWW says no to WWI!), and the movement went into decline
until the 1960s. New interest in grassroots politics revived the
Wobblies fortunes, and recently they have been organising union
action in branches of Starbucks and amongst road hauliers in the
US. See www.iww.org
*Good reading: Wobblies!: A Graphic History of the Industrial Workers of the World (Verso, 2005)
Do you believe big business is bad? That it is structurally bound
to screw everyone over for profit? That there is no hope that Corporate
Social Responsibility (CSR) will ever make companies treat the environment
right and act in the interests of society and not shareholders?
Shame on you. Just take a look at the Business for Social Responsibility
2005 Annual Conference (Nov 1-4) and apologise. Blessed with a location
at the heart of the beast Washington DC, corporations are
queuing up to explain how lovely they are really. Listen to keynote
speaker Jim Skinner, Vice-chairman and CEO of McDonalds and
youll realise how wrong you were to consider CSR merely greenwash.
Or if he doesnt convince, how about attending some of the
breakout sessions? We have Elise Bean (Staff Director
and Chief Counsel Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs
Committee) talking on Tax Management and CSR, Dan Bross
(Director, Corporate Citizenship, Microsoft Corporation) on Shaping
the Public Agenda: What, When, How? or how about Charlotte
Grezo (Director of Corporate Responsibility, Vodafone Group PLC)
on the difficulties of Accounting for Economic Impacts?
If none of these take your fancy, dont worry there are other
speakers from such social justice organisations as Ford, Intel,
Sony, Shell, Reebok and Gap. Dont worry theres a few
well chosen token Oxfam / academic type speakers to make sure theyve
covered all viewpoints. So rest assured business has cleaned up
its act and theres nothing for any of us to worry about anymore
are around $2000 not bad for complete peace of mind. www.bsr.org/BSRConferences/2005
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