All out for May Day

The Budget is out – tax cuts for the rich on top of trying to destroy the NHS, welfare cuts, tax avoidance, university fees, post-riot sentencing, hackgate, occupy evictions – the reasons to be angry go on and on and on and on. But, after the massive student demos of just over a year ago, the 26 March demonstration and the 30 November strikes, things seem to have gotten fractured. Lots of small demonstrations and actions, but what we need to do is bring everyone together and create a massive force to take down this government and scare the next.

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Persecuted religious groups and Baroness Warsi

Apparently, militant secularists are threatening Britain. Well, according to the unelected Tory loud-mouth Baroness Warsi. It appears the Tories have decided that the Daily Mail-promoted bleating about Christians under attack is reaching the upper echelons of British political life.

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Aid to India – the historical perspective

Right-wingers seem to have gotten a bee in their bonnet about development funding to parts of India by the British government. Incredibly hypocritically, they point to cuts being made in the UK to argue that we shouldn’t be wasting money on an increasingly rich country.

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My radio presenting debut on the Circled A show on Resonance FM

I filled in for Yodet on the Circled A show on Resonance FM last week and you can hear it on the Circled A website.

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VisiononTV at the Rebellious Media Conference: What’s wrong with the tradtional media?

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Two meetings on reclaiming the media

Update: Following these two successful meetings – and also raising the issue at tonight’s NUJ Claudia Jones lecture, I’ve set up a new mailing list and will discuss setting up a follow-up discussion and planning meeting with NUJ colleagues. Stay tuned for further details.

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The roots of Cable Street

A poster from the Great Strike of London TailorsFollowing the 75th anniversary of the Battle of Cable Street, it is important to remember not just the day itself, but where it came from. The most important thing about what happened on that day was how the other major East End community – the largely Irish dockers – came out in solidarity with the Jewish community in Whitechapel. The roots of this solidarity lie in the strikes of the Great Unrest period more than 20 years before.

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For the record – I supported the clean-up operations

Readers of a certain blog on a certain newspaper site might have gotten the false impression that I was against the post-riot clean-up operations in London. On the contrary, I promoted plans for Tottenham on Twitter, started early collecting abandoned shopping trollies on Wednesday morning en route  and then, alas, found that it wasn’t possible due to the police cordon still being in place on Tottenham High Road. By Thursday, the area had pretty much already been cleaned up by the Council.

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Riot criminality is a product of consumerism and social breakdown

Commentator after commentator, from politicians to journalists, is blaming the recent chaos in London and beyond on “criminality”. What does that even mean? Crime is a product of social conditions, not a thing in and of itself. Recognising that people smashing, looting and burning are committing crimes is not an explanation – of course they’re criminals, what they’re doing is against the law.

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