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latest news

Britain/Ireland
Dublin's #JobstownNotGuilty

23/02/2017: Defend the right to protest - stop this political vendetta!

  Ireland Republic

Ireland
A web of intrigue sparks government crisis

22/02/2017: Smear campaign against a prominent police whistleblower

  Ireland Republic

February revolution 1917
What lessons for today?

21/02/2017: 23 February 1917 (8 March in today’s calendar) marked the beginning of the socialist revolution in Russia, which sparked a revolutionary wave that would travel around the world.

  Russian Revolution

 Yemen
International protests in support of TOTAL/G4S workers

20/02/2017: Solidarity spreads for victims of wage robbery and killing by multinational corporations

  Solidarity, Yemen

Netherlands
Anti-immigrant Freedom Party leading polls ahead of general elections

18/02/2017: Only a choice between the “regular” and far-right?

  Netherlands

Britain
Council cuts can be fought - and they must be

16/02/2017: Corbyn needs to stand up to Brexit rebels

  Aceh

Spain
Pablo Iglesias wins clear victory in Podemos congress

15/02/2017: Time to build the class struggle on the streets

  Spain

US
A socialist strategy to defeat Trump

14/02/2017: Escalate the resistance toward shutdowns on March 8 and May 1!

  US

Scotland
Greens back SNP government austerity budget

13/02/2017: TUSC council elections candidates put forward 100% anti-austerity programme

  Scotland

India
Upheaval in Tamil Nadu

09/02/2017: Corruption, nepotism, and other crimes of ruling party exposed

  India

Britain
Universal basic income demand gains ground

08/02/2017: What approach should socialists take?

  Britain

Yemen
Workers protest at parliament against TOTAL and G4S

07/02/2017: Security workers demand wages and arrest of colleagues’ killers

  Yemen

CWI and Izquierda Revolucionaria – Towards unification

06/02/2017: Joint declaration of the CWI’s IEC and Izquierda Revolucionaria’s IEC

  Spain

France
After Sarkozy, Juppé and Valls, now Fillon is on the way out

06/02/2017: Space opening up to left of Socialist Party

  France

Romania
Biggest street protests since 1989

04/02/2017: What position should the left take?

  Romania

Syria
Is an end to the war in sight?

03/02/2017: New movements for change will need to arm themselves with the lessons of the Syrian tragedy

  Syria

Quebec
Terrorist Attack in Québec City

01/02/2017: Counter terrorism and hate with solidarity

  Quebec

 CWI
9th Latin American school a success

31/01/2017: Over 200 participate in Sao Paolo CWI continental gathering

  CWI

Sri Lanka
The year 2017

31/01/2017: Between oppression and struggle

  Sri Lanka

Canada
Where are Trudeau’s ‘Sunny Ways’?

31/01/2017: Battles of Indigenous peoples, youth, workers will test Liberal government

  Canada

US
Airport protests help block Trump travel ban

30/01/2017: Defend immigrant communities

  US

Russian Revolution Centenary
January 1917 - On the eve of revolution

29/01/2017: War, hunger, hated Tsarist regime: class tensions reach breaking point

  Russian Revolution

China
CWI member Hu Xufang forced to flee

28/01/2017: Xu and his family are victims of China’s deepening police crackdown

  China

Afghanistan
The limits of US power

28/01/2017: Imperialism’s 15-year adventure a bloody catastrophe for millions

  Afghanistan

US
Build 100 days of resistance to Trump’s agenda!

27/01/2017: Establishment deeply divided as mass resistance explodes

  US

Russia
Duma legislates to decriminalise domestic violence

26/01/2017: For unified struggle for women’s rights and against capitalism

  Russia

Tamil Nadu
Mass protests against state repression

26/01/2017: Support the right to assemble and protest - release those arrested immediately!

  India

Millions on women's marches around the world

25/01/2017: Reports from mass women's marches against Trump

  US

Bangladesh
Hartal protest against power plant

25/01/2017: Follows mass strike of garment workers in December

  Bangladesh

Côte d’Ivoire
Social revolts shake Ouattara regime

24/01/2017: Public sector strike and soldiers’ mutiny expose reality behind “economic growth”

  Ivory Coast

Taiwan
US foreign policy under Trump

24/01/2017: Island risks being pawn in his game

  Taiwan

US
CWI joins protests around the world against Trump

23/01/2017: Photo gallery selection of CWI actions during weekend of mass protests

  US

US
Kshama Sawant responds to Trump inauguration speech

23/01/2017: Socialist council member speaks

  US

Canada

Where are Trudeau’s ‘Sunny Ways’?

www.socialistworld.net, 31/01/2017
website of the committee for a workers' international, CWI

Battles of Indigenous peoples, youth, workers will test Liberal government

Tim Heffernan, Socialist Alternative (CWI Canada), Toronto

Justin Trudeau, leader of Canada’s Liberal Party, took power in October 2016 adopting the mantra of “sunny ways”. After more than a year, how has he done? If he was a figure skater his performance might score high on style, but considerably lower on content/substance. Or as a young friend put it, “The smile is a change from before but what has he done that is different?”

On many fronts, Trudeau and the Liberals are continuing former premier Stephen Harpers’ Conservative Party policies including federal cuts to health spending and going ahead with the Harper negotiated, $15 billion export of weapons to Saudi Arabia, even though it has one of the worst records for women’s rights in the world (remember “Because it is 2015”) and is bombing Yemen to smithereens.

CETA

The Liberals pushed hard to force the European Union to agree the Canada-Europe Trade Agreement (CETA), negotiated in secret by Harper’s team. It was little Wallonia (a region of Belgium) that opposed the proposed investor-state dispute settlement rule which allows companies to seek damages if local regulations interfere with their economic expectations. CETA would ban government policies to buy local, add billions to the cost of pharmaceuticals for public health and increase pressures to privatize water, transit and energy. CETA is not a done deal, as there is powerful opposition across Europe.

Climate change continues

The Liberals have talked about tackling global warming and a national carbon price. Yet in practice, which is what matters, Trudeau’s government has approved more environmentally damaging and climate change causing projects than Harper. These include expanding two pipelines from the tar sands: Kinder Morgan to Vancouver and Enbridge to Lake Superior, US. They approved two LNG plants in BC: Woodfibre near Squamish and Petronas near Prince Rupert. The Liberals also agreed the Site C dam in the Peace River Valley.

All this while global warming increases. 2016 was the hottest year on record. The arctic is unstable with record low ice levels and warm temperatures, 30oC above average during December! The permafrost is melting, risking widespread release of methane, a powerful greenhouse gas. Both the ice melt and methane release will accelerate global warming.

In response, the Liberals justify these projects claiming that, “the environment and the economy go hand in hand.” Yet most of these projects provide very few jobs and risk destroying thousands of jobs in farming, fishing and tourism.

First Nations

Trudeau promiseda renewed, nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous Peoples, based on recognition, rights, respect, co-operation, and partnership. While they have announced increased funding for on-reserve education and some infrastructure, their environmental actions have enraged First Nations with widespread opposition to all the projects.

Workers

Trudeau claimed to be worker friendly, writing an open letter to public servants saying that, “I have a fundamentally different view than Stephen Harper of our public service. Where he sees an adversary, I see a partner.” Yet in recent negotiations with the main federal employees union, PSAC, Ottawa simply repeated the proposals of Harper’s team.

The Liberals refuse to introduce a federal $15 minimum wage that would benefit nearly a million workers and set a benchmark for the provinces. The previous Liberal government abolished the federal minimum wage.

They promised “a fair and balanced approach to organized labour.” Yet they blocked legislation that would ban the use of replacement workers (scabs) during a dispute. Such laws exist in BC and Quebec.

Canada Post

The Liberals promised that they would “save home delivery” and review the Harper attacks on Canada Post. They did not remove the Harper appointed CEO, Chopra. They did not support the postal union in last year’s negotiations. The review panel that Trudeau appointed backed all of Chopra’s attacks on Canada Post, including a likely move to two-tier pensions and partial privatization.

The Liberal-dominated House of Commons committee only recommended restoration of home delivery to 350,000 out of the 830,000 households that lost that service since 2014.

Both the review panel and parliamentary committee opposed the idea of re-establishing post office banking (abandoned in 1968) which works well in many countries. The Liberals’ banking friends on Bay Street do not want competition, particularly in rural areas.

Economy and living standards

The Liberals promised, real help to Canada’s middle class and all those working hard to join it.So far, what has happened?

“2016 has been an economic bust. [Between] November, 2015 to November, 2016, we lost 30,000 full-time jobs; the proportion of part-time jobs jumped from 18.7% to 19.7%; and the unemployment rate would have risen if the number of Canadians seeking work had not fallen,” stated economist Andrew Jackson.

Workers’ living standards are stuck with average weekly earnings rising in 2016 by 1.1%, while inflation is 1.6%. Growth for 2016 is only 1.2%. Outside of the construction sector, business investment has been dismal and exports are flat “meaning that growth essentially came from the continuing housing boom and consumer spending based on rising debt.”

While there may be small increase in federal stimulus, this will be cancelled out by the provincial cuts. Jackson notes, “the contribution of government spending to growth will increase a little bit in 2017 [but] not enough to put much of a dent in unemployment and underemployment and stagnant wage growth.” Low paid workers can expect their precarious lifestyles to continue. 

What is Different? – Infrastructure and Privatization

The Liberals’ promise to boost the economy and improve society through much needed public investment in infrastructure was central to their victory. Nowhere did the Liberals say this would be a privatization bonanza.

The $81 billion investment in infrastructure over the next 10 years, through a new Canadian Infrastructure Bank, involves two privatization schemes.

Capital will be raised by recycling assets, selling off all or some of the 8 public airports and 18 public ports. Handing them over to private companies will increase costs to users, mean poorer services and no community involvement.

Much of the construction will be Public Private Partnerships (P3s), where the public sector carries most of the pain of costs and risks, and the private sector gets the gain. P3 projects are notorious for cost over-runs and cutting corners on quality. Ontario’s Auditor-General stated that Brampton’s P3 hospital cost $200 million more than if done in the public sector.

Behind the infrastructure investment is a huge gift to profits, going even further than Harper on privatization.

Opposition

The votes of young and Indigenous people were crucial to the Liberals’ victory. Increasingly both feel tricked. The leader of British Colombia’s First Nations, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, said that that the Site C approval is “an absolute betrayal.”  Young people have been vocal and angry at recent stop Kinder Morgan demos.  The Canadian Labour Congress Young Workers’ Summit saw a clear expression of anger at Trudeau.

The Liberals’ public support has dropped to around 45%, still enough for a comfortable majority. A big help is the opposition in parliament is a mess. The Tories are in the midst of a leadership election battle, with some candidates moving to right wing social policies. Mulcair is set to lead the New Democratic Party (social democratic party) for more than another year after the membership voted him out.

However, the battles of Indigenous peoples, youth and workers on jobs, pay, pipelines and more will test the Liberals. These are the key struggles and will shape Canadian politics.

 

 



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A socialist world is possible, the history of the cwi with new introduction by Peter Planning green growth, a contribution to the debate on enviromental sustainability

NEWS

Britain/Ireland: Dublin's #JobstownNotGuilty
23/02/2017, Neil Cafferky, from The Socialist (weekly paper of the Socialist Party, England & Wales):
Defend the right to protest - stop this political vendetta!

Ireland: A web of intrigue sparks government crisis
22/02/2017, By Cillian Gillespie, Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland) :
Smear campaign against a prominent police whistleblower

Yemen: International protests in support of TOTAL/G4S workers
20/02/2017, Socialistworld.net:
Solidarity spreads for victims of wage robbery and killing by multinational corporations

Netherlands: Anti-immigrant Freedom Party leading polls ahead of general elections
18/02/2017, Pieter Brans, Socialist Alternative (CWI in Netherlands), Amsterdam:
Only a choice between the “regular” and far-right?

Solidarity: French presidential candidate Mélenchon backs #JobstownNotGuilty campaign
17/02/2017, socialistworld.net :
Support the international solidarity campaign

Britain: Council cuts can be fought - and they must be
16/02/2017, Editorial comments from the Socialist, paper of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) :
Corbyn needs to stand up to Brexit rebels

Spain: Pablo Iglesias wins clear victory in Podemos congress
15/02/2017, Izquierda Revolucionaria, Spain:
Time to build the class struggle on the streets

US: A socialist strategy to defeat Trump
14/02/2017, Kshama Sawant, Seattle City Council Woman and member of Socialist Alternative :
Escalate the resistance toward shutdowns on March 8 and May 1!

Greece: Athens’ bus cleaners win bulk of wages owed
14/02/2017, Eleni Mitsou (Xekinima - CWI Greece) and Apostolis Cassimere’s (Board Member of OASA - Athens Bus Workers’ Union):
The struggle continues!

Scotland: Greens back SNP government austerity budget
13/02/2017, Matt Dobson, Socialist Paty Scotland (CWI), Glasgow:
TUSC council elections candidates put forward 100% anti-austerity programme

Yemen: Workers protest at parliament against TOTAL and G4S
07/02/2017, Socialistworld.net:
Security workers demand wages and arrest of colleagues’ killers

Romania: Biggest street protests since 1989
04/02/2017, Mâna de Lucru (CWI supporters in Romania):
What position should the left take?

Quebec: Terrorist Attack in Québec City
01/02/2017, Socialist Alternative (CWI in Canada) :
Counter terrorism and hate with solidarity

CWI: 9th Latin American school a success
31/01/2017, socialistworld.net:
Over 200 participate in Sao Paolo CWI continental gathering

US: Airport protests help block Trump travel ban
30/01/2017, Socialist Alternative reporters, US :
Defend immigrant communities

China: CWI member Hu Xufang forced to flee
28/01/2017, chinaworker.info reporters :
Xu and his family are victims of China’s deepening police crackdown

Russia: Duma legislates to decriminalise domestic violence
26/01/2017, From Socialist Alternative (Russian CWI) website (socialist.news) :
For unified struggle for women’s rights and against capitalism

Tamil Nadu: Mass protests against state repression
26/01/2017, Isai Priya, from Tamil Solidarity website :
Support the right to assemble and protest - release those arrested immediately!

Bangladesh: Hartal protest against power plant
25/01/2017, Pete Mason, Socialist Party (CWI in England and Wales) :
Follows mass strike of garment workers in December

Côte d’Ivoire: Social revolts shake Ouattara regime
24/01/2017, Militant Côte d’Ivoire (CWI group in Côte d’Ivoire) :
Public sector strike and soldiers’ mutiny expose reality behind “economic growth”

Taiwan: US foreign policy under Trump
24/01/2017, Vincent Kolo, chinaworker.info:
Island risks being pawn in his game

US: CWI joins protests around the world against Trump
23/01/2017, socialistworld.net :
Photo gallery selection of CWI actions during weekend of mass protests

US: Kshama Sawant responds to Trump inauguration speech
23/01/2017, socialistworld.net :
Socialist council member speaks

Russian Revolution Centenary: New site celebrates and defends October socialist revolution
20/01/2017, socialistworld.net :
1917revolution.org brings rich lessons of 100 years ago to wide audience

Kazakhstan: Regime increases repression
20/01/2017, Andrei Prigor from Campaign Kazakhstan:
Citizens forced to register with police at all times

US: Global resistance against Trump’s inauguration
20/01/2017, socialistworld.net :
CWI organizes protests as millions prepare to fight Trump’s agenda

CWI Comment and Analysis

ANALYSIS

February revolution 1917: What lessons for today?
21/02/2017, Peter Taaffe, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales), printed in the Socialist (paper of the Socialist Party):
23 February 1917 (8 March in today’s calendar) marked the beginning of the socialist revolution in Russia, which sparked a revolutionary wave that would travel around the world.

India: Upheaval in Tamil Nadu
09/02/2017, Sajith Attepuram, New Socialist Alternative (NSA) (CWI India) :
Corruption, nepotism, and other crimes of ruling party exposed

Britain: Universal basic income demand gains ground
08/02/2017, Judy Beishon, from The Socialist (weekly newspaper of the Socialist Party – CWI England & Wales) :
What approach should socialists take?

CWI and Izquierda Revolucionaria – Towards unification
06/02/2017, Socialistworld.net :
Joint declaration of the CWI’s IEC and Izquierda Revolucionaria’s IEC

France: After Sarkozy, Juppé and Valls, now Fillon is on the way out
06/02/2017, Alex Rouillard, Gauche Révolutionnaire (CWI in France) :
Space opening up to left of Socialist Party

Syria: Is an end to the war in sight?
03/02/2017, Serge Jordan (CWI) :
New movements for change will need to arm themselves with the lessons of the Syrian tragedy

Sri Lanka: The year 2017
31/01/2017, Siritunga Jayasuriya, United Socialist Party (CWI in Sri Lanka) :
Between oppression and struggle

Canada: Where are Trudeau’s ‘Sunny Ways’?
31/01/2017, Tim Heffernan, Socialist Alternative (CWI Canada), Toronto

:
Battles of Indigenous peoples, youth, workers will test Liberal government

Russian Revolution Centenary: January 1917 - On the eve of revolution
29/01/2017, Niall Mulholland, from 1917revolution.org :
War, hunger, hated Tsarist regime: class tensions reach breaking point

Afghanistan: The limits of US power
28/01/2017, Judy Beishon, from Socialism Today (February 2017 issue), monthly magazine of the Socialist Party (CWI England & Wales)<br />
<br />
:
Imperialism’s 15-year adventure a bloody catastrophe for millions

US: Build 100 days of resistance to Trump’s agenda!
27/01/2017, Bryan Koulouris, Socialist Alternative, US :
Establishment deeply divided as mass resistance explodes

Millions on women's marches around the world
25/01/2017, Editorial from the Socialist, paper of the Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) and reports from US marches :
Reports from mass women's marches against Trump

China: New US President’s approach to China
21/01/2017, Vincent Kolo, chinaworker.info :
Outbursts raise fears of confrontation

Ireland North: Snap elections called to Stormont Assembly
17/01/2017, Daniel Waldron, Socialist Party (CWI Ireland), Belfast :
Build a socialist alternative to the ‘Orange’ versus ‘Green’ headcount

Spain: What kind of Podemos do workers and youth need?
17/01/2017, Izquierda Revolucionaria, Spanish state, editorial :
Debate within leadership touches on fundamental issues for future of party

US: Trump prepares vicious attacks
05/01/2017, Philip Locker and Tom Crean, Socialist Alternative (US):
Mass resistance needed!

Russian Revolution centenary
02/01/2017, Editorial from Socialism Today, Dec/Jan 2017 edition:
Defending the legacy in a new era

2017:Upheaval and fightback will continue
01/01/2017, Peter Taaffe, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) general secretary :
Everything to play for in 2017

Britain's shifting political contours
22/12/2016, Hannah Sell, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales) from Socialism Today Dec/Jan 2017 edition :
Capitalist establishment in disarray

CWI International Executive Committee: European capitalism “battered by events”
16/12/2016, Kevin Henry, Socialist Party (CWI in Ireland) :
Report of discussion on Europe at CWI IEC meeting in November

CWI International Executive Committee: World shaken by seismic political events
14/12/2016, Kevin Parslow, Socialist Party (CWI in England & Wales):
Report of first session of the CWI International Executive Committee, discussing World Relations

World capitalism in deep crisis
08/12/2016, CWI :
Perspectives documents agreed by November CWI international meeting

Sudan: Three day nationwide strike shuts down the country, in unique defiance of Al-Bashir’s rule
30/11/2016, Serge Jordan, CWI:
Escalation of the struggle needed to overthrow repressive regime

US: Trump prepares attacks on working people,immigrants and women
27/11/2016, Tom Crean and Philip Locker, Socialist Alternative (USA):
We must prepare massive resistance!

Cuba: Fidel Castro, leader of 1959 revolution, dies at 90
26/11/2016, Tony Saunois, CWI :
Castro's life and the Cuban Revolution