Solidarity 458, 10 January 2018

March for the NHS on 3 February!

Submitted by Matthew on 10 January, 2018 - 1:36 Author: A junior doctor
NHS Cartoon

The health service has hit its annual winter crisis.

16,900 people had to wait in ambulances for hospital care in Christmas week. 4,700 of those had to wait in an ambulance for more than hour to be seen. Media images of five, ten, fifteen ambulances queueing outside A&E departments have become common.

An 81 year old woman in Essex was found dead in her home when an ambulance arrived four hours after her initial 999 call. In Portsmouth an 88 year old woman died after five hours in an ambulance and two hours on a trolley waiting for a hospital bed.

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Industrial news in brief

Submitted by Matthew on 10 January, 2018 - 1:22 Author: Gemma Short, Peggy Carter and Charlotte Zalens

On 2 January a notice appeared on the staff noticeboards of some McDonald’s stores announcing a significant pay rise for workers.

Pay for under 18s will now go up to a minimum of £5.75, under 21s to a minimum of £6.75, under 25s to a minimum of £7.95, and over 25s to a minimum of £8 in London. All workers will get an above inflation pay rise of between 5.4 and 6.3%. It is the biggest pay rise McDonald’s workers have had in 10 years.

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Momentum Youth shut down

Submitted by Matthew on 10 January, 2018 - 1:18 Author: Michael Elms

After Momentum’s internal democratic structures were shut down in January 2017, its nascent youth wing was taken over by a small friendship group.

Momentum Youth and Students became obsessed with factionalism, lauding trade union leaderships (in the hope of gaining employment in their offices), and weird Stalinist iconography. It was mainly active on social media.

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Corbyn is right on BDS

Submitted by Matthew on 10 January, 2018 - 12:52 Author: Ira Berkovic

In response to a tweet from Labour MP Kate Osamor supporting the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign against Israel, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn clarified his own position on Israel/Palestine.

He made clear, again, that he supports an end to Israeli occupation and a genuine two-states settlement; an independent Palestinian state alongside Israel. He also reiterated that while he supports targeted boycotts of settlement produce, he does not support a blanket boycott of Israel.

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Taking on the “zombie” academies

Submitted by Matthew on 10 January, 2018 - 12:41 Author: Pat Murphy, National Education Union Executive, personal capacity
Academies protest

The Tories’ flagship education policy, the drive to make all schools academies, is floundering. As an explicit goal enshrined in legislation “forced academisation” was defeated before it developed any real momentum.

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Trump in America and the world

Submitted by Matthew on 10 January, 2018 - 11:55 Author: Ira Berkovic
Trump

On 22 December, US President Donald Trump passed the most significant piece of domestic legislation of his term thus far, the so-called “Tax Cuts and Job Act”.

This tax reform, one of the most sweeping in decades, will cut corporate tax by 15%. The package also includes measures such as lowering taxes on overseas profits.

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Iranian workers push for regime change

Submitted by Matthew on 10 January, 2018 - 11:33
Iran protest

Editorial from Solidarity 458

Beginning on Thursday 28 December around 80 Iranian cities and towns saw a wave of demonstrations, amounting to the biggest protest against Iran’s authoritarian Islamist political system since the 2009 "Green" reform movement.

This has been a tremendous revolt with the issue of working-class livelihood at the centre. A revolt against years of super-exploitation and a vicious regime which exists to enrich itself and boost its own power.

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Deeper questions behind the Worboys case

Submitted by Matthew on 10 January, 2018 - 11:25 Author: Charlotte Zalens

The news that the so-called “black cab rapist” John Worboys is to be released after just under 10 years in jail has put the criminal justice system and the way it deals with rape cases under scrutiny.

Worboys was convicted of one count of rape, five of sexual assault, and 10 of drugging. However police believe as many as 100 women may have been assaulted by Worboys. 85 women contacted police after Worboys’ conviction but no further charges were brought against him.

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