Editor's Choice

The history of anti-vaxxism

In recent weeks there have been protests denying that Covid-19 is a problem. Many of these people are also against vaccinations. Why?

Nowadays, vaccinations are very safe. Like all medications they do have side effects, but the chances of a vaccine causing significant harm are many times smaller than the harm that would be caused by the disease that they are vaccinating against.

Overdoing doom saps activism

The first 20 years of this millennium, 2000-2019, has seen a sharp increase in major recorded natural disasters, a report by a UN agency on 12 October has found. 7,348 recorded events killed 1.23 million people, affected 4.2 billion (many multiple times), and caused roughly US$2.97 trillion of global economic losses. In the 20 years previous, 4,212 recorded natural disasters killed roughly 1.19 million people, affected 3.25 billion, and caused approximately US$1.63 trillion loss.

It depends who's saying it

The Morning Star (and the Daily Worker before it) for years survived thanks to a subsidy from the Russian leadership: Moscow paid it £3,000 a month in the 1960s (equivalent of £60,000-plus today), and in the 1970s and 1980s purchased 12,000 copies a day. When the order was cancelled in 1992, the paper was saved by the leaders of several British trade unions pumping money in.

Responses to the pandemic: equality or insanity?

Agitation for increased funding for mental health services continues, with various research papers highlighting or predicting high levels of stress, anxiety, depression, self-harm and suicide in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Mental health services are in desperate need of resources.

It remains unclear whether this coronavirus pandemic and lockdown restrictions, specifically, really have made a difference to the mental illness pandemic that was already blighting the lives of billions globally long before Covid-19 came into being.

The Labour War

As trade union struggles re-emerge, we need to bring forward the idea of solidarity too. One of the greatest historical lessons in solidarity in the English-speaking world was the 1913-14 “Labour War” in Dublin.

The story is told in the RTE series Strumpet City, part 1 here.

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