How ‘the economy’ kills our better angels

Corey Oakley One of the most successful con-jobs carried out by those who run the world is convincing the rest of us that there is something natural and inevitable about the way society is currently organised. There are two important concepts they use to do this. The first is the idea that the drivers...CONTINUE READING

An activist’s life in Joh’s Queensland

Sandra Bloodworth The Queensland Liberal National government’s attacks on civil liberties and increases to police powers are prompting many to make comparisons with Joh Bjelke-Petersen’s reactionary rule from 1968 to 1987. Sandra Bloodworth was an activist under Petersen’s government. I attended my first sm...CONTINUE READING

Twenty-five past midnight in Portugal

Tom O’Lincoln The revolution began at 25 minutes past midnight, with the popular tune Grandola Vila Morena , a song banned by the dictatorship: “Grandola, brown village in a land of brotherhood”. When the song played on radio, the Armed Forces Movement (MFA) – an underground organisation of military off...CONTINUE READING

Why the Palestinians don’t have a partner for peace

Kim Bullimore US Secretary of State John Kerry in early November chaired the latest round of negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. His visit to the region was downbeat, highlighting once again the failure of the US-backed “peace process”. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pr...CONTINUE READING

Mrs Barbour’s army

Llanon Davis Glasgow, 17 November 1915 : 20,000 households in Glasgow – all the major munitions districts – are on rent strike. Thousands of working class women, collectively known as “Mrs Barbour’s army”, along with thousands of engineering and shipyard workers, march on the sheriff’s court in Glasgow...CONTINUE READING

Lizzie Ahern, socialist agitator

Katie Wood Female leaders have often earned prominent places in the union and socialist movements in Australia. Lizzie Ahern was foremost among them. Her militant, iconoclastic attitude won her many supporters and not a few enemies. Her early political career stands, 100 years later, as an inspiratio...CONTINUE READING

Lesley Hall was fierce!

Liz Ross “Lesley was fierce!” Playwright and Melbourne Workers’ Theatre member Patricia Cornelius punched out the words in her tribute to hundreds gathered at the Northcote Town Hall on Tuesday, 29 October. A fierce fighter for the rights of disabled people to control their own lives. A fierce figh...CONTINUE READING

Keynes’ grandchildren need Marx

Sandra Bloodworth In 1930, British economist John Maynard Keynes published an essay titled “Economic possibilities for our grandchildren”. In it he predicted that in a hundred years capitalism would produce machines capable of doing most of society’s work. We’d happily be working only three hours a day or a...CONTINUE READING

Sweatshop rebels

Sandra Bloodworth In December 1981, 300 migrant women at the Kortex textile mill in Brunswick, Melbourne, were on strike for 10 days. They had to fight cops using batons and wearing guns; some were arrested. Men we called “the company goons” were employed by the bosses to bully them into submission. Their u...CONTINUE READING