Labor - Global

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Bahrain's Courageous Doctors [& Nurses, ed.]

Adil E. Shamoo, Foreign Policy in Focus, November 7, 2011 The United States continues to ignore the thwarted Arab Spring in Bahrain. Recently, a quasi-military court in the small Gulf state sentenced 20 doctors and nurses to up to 15 years in jail. The charge against them? Treating injured demonstrators opposing the regime. Doctors and nurses in the Middle East have a long and proud tradition of treating the ill, regardless of the situation. In ninth-century Baghdad, for example, Hunayn ibn Ishaq was the Caliph’s physician. The Caliph asked this physician to prepare a poison to kill his enemies. The physician refused, risking his life, and was eventually jailed for one year. ... Bahrain

Greek Leader Calls Off Referendum on Bailout Plan

Rachel Donadio & Niki Kitsantonis, New York Times, November 4, 2011 Athens - In a tumultuous day of political gamesmanship, Prime Minister George A. Papandreou called off a referendum on Greece’s new debt deal with the euro zone on Thursday after winning a measure of support from his opposition and managing to repair, at least for a day, a major rupture in relations with Europe. The decision to abandon his idea of holding a popular vote on the European debt deal did not end the political turmoil here; Mr. Papandreou still faces a rebellion in his own Socialist Party and the fury of some opposition figures ... Greek

Understanding China & Its Unions

Wadih Halabi, Political Affairs, November 4, 2011 There is a lot of confusion about China and its unions in the world workers' movement. This paper compares China as a 'union risen to state power' – a special organization of the working class – and China's labor unions as a subcommittee of this union in state power. The labor unions are charged with the important task of protecting workers' interests in the workplace. Other important tasks of the 'union in state power' include economic development, education, public health, equality for women, youth and nationalities, environmental protection, and much more. ... Understanding

The Best Video on "Occupy The World"

Ogilvie Film, YouTube, October 17, 2011 - video

Occupy Glasgow given 48-hour reprieve

Scotsman, November 2, 2011 Campaigners who have set up camp in Glasgow’s main civic square as part of worldwide “anti-greed” protests were yesterday granted a 48-hour stay of execution from eviction. A case brought by Glasgow City Council to remove demonstrators from George Square was continued until tomorrow afternoon, so as to allow members of the Occupy Glasgow group to seek legal advice. In a civil hearing at Glasgow Sheriff Court, Sheriff Andrew Normand said it seemed a “reasonable compromise” to delay the case until 2PM tomorrow after protesters said they had unable to secure legal representation. ... Occupy

Loitering within tent: protesters in Glasgow set to move east

Claire Smith, Scotsman, November 1, 2011 A protest camp in Edinburgh’s Saint Andrew Square might be swelled by campaigners from Glasgow’s George Square, if they are evicted by the city council. Glasgow City Council is today seeking “immediate authority to evict” the protesters who have set up tents in the centre of the city. Protesters in Edinburgh said they would offer support to their counterparts in Glasgow and invite them to join the tented community in Saint Andrew Square. One protester, Duck Lamond, 21, from Fife, said he expected the Edinburgh camp to grow if the Glasgow protesters were evicted. ... Loitering

At G-20 Summit, Union Leaders to Demand ‘Robin Hood’ Tax on Speculators

Adele Stan, AFL-CIO, November 1, 2011 As world leaders head to France for the G-20 economic summit in Cannes, labor leaders from around the globe will gather nearby to represent the needs of the world’s workers. Among their demands is a Robin Hood tax on banks and financial institutions that would exact a nano-percentage of each financial transaction to the tune of 0.5 percent. That’s one half of 1 percent on every bond or derivative traded... by the very institutions bailed out by the world’s taxpayers. [T]he idea is catching on in the United States through the activism of unions, especially the National Nurses United (NNU) ... At

From Cairo to New York, Which Side Are Police On?

Michelle Chen, In These Times, November 1, 2011 As the Arab Spring enters a tense autumn chill, Tahrir Square remains a fiery political battleground, where struggles between the people and the state constantly churn and redefinine themselves. When police officers went on strike in October, they raised hard questions about the position of the public sector in the struggle against counterrevolution. Thousands of Egypt’s police, though tarnished by the shameful violence deployed by security forces during the January 25 uprising, are now staging their own revolt. ... From

Dean of Saint Paul's Cathedral resigns over Occupy London protest row

Graeme Knowles, the dean of Saint Paul's, stands down with immediate effect, saying his position has become 'untenable'. Peter Walker, Guardian, October 31, 2011 The perceived dithering and divisions of church officials over the protest camp outside Saint Paul's in London have claimed a second major scalp with the resignation of the cathedral's dean, the Right Reverend Graham Knowles. The dean – whose job is sufficiently senior that a replacement must be approved by the Queen – announced that mounting criticism over the cathedral's handling of the situation made his position "untenable". ... Dean

Anti-G20 Summit Prepares Its Case

Cléo Fatoorehchi, Inter Press Service, October 27, 2011 Aix-en-Provence - Anti-globalisation and anti-capitalist groups are gathering ahead of the G20 meeting in Cannes in the south of France next week. Cannes will be under tight police security October 31 to November 4, and the People’s Forum has negotiated permission from local authorities to meet in Nice, 20 miles from Cannes. The Forum will gather countless organisations, from Attac to Oxfam France, from Greenpeace France to Action against Hunger. With their slogan "People first, not Finance!" they are determined to generate strong mobilisation against the G20 and its policy of financial supremacy. ... Anti-G20

Nurses from Four Continents Calling for Tax on Wall Street

Nurses from Four Continents to Step Up Call November 3 on President Obama, Other World Leaders for Tax on Wall Street.
 Joined by AFL-CIO, Occupy Wall Street participants, community groups in major actions at G-20 Summit in France, Washington and West Coast. 
National Nurses United, October 31, 2011 National Nurses United, joined by the AFL-CIO and community activists, including participants from the Occupy Wall Street movement, will protest outside the US Treasury Department in Washington, DC, on Thursday, November 3 to press President Obama and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner for a meaningful financial transaction tax ... Nurses

Die Linke (The Left) Party Congress, October 21 – 23, 2011, Erfurt, Germany

Pat Fry, Committees of Correspondence for Democracy & Socialism, October 30, 2011


For Ordinary Greeks, Big Bailout Adds Up to Years of Hardship

Charles Forelle, Wall Street Journal, October 29, 2011

Athens - In the fading light of a fall evening, Amarillis Visvardis waits for the day's first customer at her clothing store in this city's tony Kolonaki district. She passes the time reading a novel set in 1930s China. No one comes. Across town, in a neighborhood scarred by drugs, a free health clinic that serves needy illegal immigrants has plenty of clients. Doctors notice something unusual about them: Many are Greeks.

Egyptians march from Tahrir Square to support Occupy Oakland protestors

Xeni Jardin, BoingBoing, October 28, 2011 As they vowed earlier this week to do, Egyptian pro-democracy protesters marched from Tahrir square to the US Embassy today to march in support of Occupy Oakland - and against police brutality witnessed in Oakland on Tuesday night, and commonly experienced in Egypt. The larger demonstration back at Tahrir was about issues closer to home: Egyptians are demanding that the military transfer power quickly to a representative civilian government, after the death by torture of a 24-year-old political prisoner named Essam Ali Atta. As the Guardian reports, critics say his death proves that the junta is failing to dismantle Mubarak's brutal security apparatus ... Egyptians

Good News from Germany

Victor Grossman, Portside, October 28, 2011 Berlin - Once in a while there's good news from Europe, yes, even from here in Germany. And because it is so central in Europe and so strong, such news can be important, if often enough not very heart-warming. Yet since Germany has one of the largest progressive movements in all of Europe, it can sometimes even add up to good news. It doesn't always add up, however! The party called Die Linke, or The Left, has supplied varied news in recent years. It was formed in 2007 when the fully renovated heir to the ruling party in the (East) German Democratic Republic before its demise wed a new West German party of people angry ... Good

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