"This movement today, not Tony Blair, is speaking for the British people," declared Aslef member Andrew Murray, opening the Stop the War national conference. 800 activists came from local coalitions, political parties, trade unions and peace groups, along with some new young people getting active for the first...

MANY FIREFIGHTERS and other workers will have looked on bewildered as the FBU (Fire Brigade Union) executive council called off the eight-day firefighters’ strike due to begin on 4 December.

"THE GOVERNMENT has completely lost control of the agenda. This is no longer just a dispute between the FBU and the government: it has descended into a fight between the government and the whole union movement" (Observer 24 November).

Camera crews, reporters and members of the International Socialists (CWI) along with other Scottish Socialist Party members waited outside the Blackness Fire Station in Dundee for the 6 o’clock start to the first national fire strike in 25 years.

New figures published last month by the Pesticides Residue Committee (PRC) for the British government have raised serious concerns over the safety of fresh fruit and vegetables, both imported and UK grown produce. The government discovered levels of controlled pesticides in foods that exceed legal and safety limits.

THIS WEEKEND’S Golden Jubilee celebrations survived a crisis - Buckingham Palace started burning down. After the public were evacuated and firefighters efficiently got the blaze under control, TV commentators asked the question on everyone’s lips: "Has anything expensive got scorched?"

“SO MUCH has been transferred to the national level, and so much of the financial control is retained there, that being asked to vote in a local election is like being asked to select which crumbs you would prefer from the rich man’s table,” commented the Guardian’s Hugo Young on election day.

“THIS IS a disaster” - that was Burnley Labour leader Stuart Caddy’s response to the BNP winning three council seats in Burnley. That feeling is echoed throughout the country.

Committee for a workers' International publications

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