Thursday, July 29, 2010

The CCC* government is scrapping the compulsory retirement age, 65 years. However, just in case those prats who want to hog jobs people with families to keep could be filling think they've won something, there's a little catch in the offing. The CCCs are going to make it easier (EASIER?) for bosses to get rid of employees they don't want. So when the needy and the greedy reach 65 they'll get the heave-ho anyway; unless they'd like to carry on on half the regular wage (they will).
I really despise these old fools who want to carry on slaving till they drop dead. The capitalist media love them.

*Cameron-Clegg Conservatives. Clegg is now revealed as a Tory entrist who seized control of the Liberal Party, just as that other Tory entrist took control of the pale pink party. Now we have a choice of three conservative parties.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

An agreement negotiated between the IUF, the Atlanta, USA-based The Coca-Cola Company (TCCC) and Coca-Cola Icecek (CCI, Coca-Cola's Turkey-based bottler for the Middle East, Pakistan and Central Asia), has successfully resolved a long and bitter conflict over employment and trade union rights at Coca-Cola Beverages Pakistan (CCBPL). CCBPL is jointly owned by TCCC and CCI.

Under the agreement, all unfairly dismissed workers will be reinstated with full compensation. The company recognizes the People's Employees' Union (PEU) as the representative of IUF members at the Multan bottling plant and guarantees that there will be no harassment or victimization of union members and officers.

To rectify precarious employment practices which undermined the right to trade union membership in CCBPL's bottling operations, the agreement creates 187 permanent, directly employed positions.

The agreement will be overseen internationally by the IUF and CCI/TCCC and implemented through a local process and implementation group established between the IUF and its affiliates and CCBPL in Pakistan.

... and life goes on, the world still turns.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Eric Cantona advertising the Dirty Digger's sports channels. Cantona you whore, how much did Murdoch pay you pour t'enculer? You have no shame.

"Être français, c’est rester combatif et révolutionnaire." No kidding? Oh yes, kidding.
“It’s quite unbelievable that Ministers preach pay and pensions restraint while quietly pocketing jaw-dropping pension rises. The stench of hypocrisy is overwhelming. GMB members on £6 an hour in the public sector are told they face job losses, pay freezes and pension cuts by government ministers who are taking massive hikes to their own pensions. It’s a real sickener and the Tory and Lib Dem Ministers should hang their heads in shame. Obviously ‘we’re all in it together’ doesn’t apply to these fattest of fat cats.”

Unbelievable? I have no problem believing it.

Bravo, Alberto Contador, three times winner of the Tour de France.
Bravo, Mark Cavendish, winner of five stages. What did Chris Boardman say - the best sprinter ever? What did I say? That he wouldn't make it to Paris. A portion of humble pie, s'il vous plait.
Andy Schleck says he has a date with the yellow jersey in 2011. Could be.
And good luck to Laurent Fignon, who I always preferred to Hinault (minority opinion).

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The Deputy Prime Minister, speaking at the dispatch box in the House of Commons (ex cathedra, so to speak), declared the Iraq adventure an "illegal war". Now he must use his powers to bring the lawbreakers to justice. Any other course would surely be a dereliction of duty, and could leave him open to a charge of some or other offence - withholding evidence? Obstructing the police? Being an accessory after the fact?
No charges over Ian Tomlinson death
(Headline in today's Guardian)

Well, well!
Am I psychic? Or am I just a bloke with a long memory? Jimmy Kelly, Liddel Towers, Blair Peach, et al., et al., et al?

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Ian Tomlinson death: verdict tomorrow on whether police will be charged
Headline in today's Guardian. Can't wait, the suspense (like the Met) is killing.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Cameron has been summoned to the headmaster's office for a bollocking.
Having abased himself before Netanyahu, kissed and made up with the Pakistanis, and given Karzai more time to loot his non-nation's coffers, Obama needs a dog to kick. Step forward the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Monday, July 19, 2010

No such thing as society - the Tory party line 1987.
The Big Society - the Tory party line 2010.
All boils down to the same thing in the end; we can't have peppercorn taxes for the super rich, AND finance a welfare system. You're on your own.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

STS Bulletin no. 27
"The BBC will have to make tough decisions like everyone else. There are huge numbers of things that need to be changed at the BBC. They need to demonstrate the very constrained financial situation we are now in." (Jeremy Hunt, Culture Secretary)


"Soon, Mr. Murdoch, soon."

Friday, July 16, 2010

Dead Man Walking
The Conservatives are back from the dead, and so is that old soak, Professor Norman Stone. Apparently he is among us to sing the praises of his patron, Lady Gaga.
I remember a time when an edition of newsnight without him, glassy-eyed and drooling, was a blessed relief.
"Socialists eat babies." He would declare.
"Are you sure, Professor?" the cowed interviewer would ask nervously.
"Do you dare to question my reputation as a leading historian? As a man of honesty and integrity? As a drinking crony of the old witch who could have your job in a trice."
"Oh no, Professor Stone, do carry on."

Then he slipped off to Turkey and academic obscurity, or so we thought. But cometh the hour cometh the incoherent man. Perhaps little Slithy Gove will hire him to help Professor Niall Ferguson to rewrite British history.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Vuvuzela from John Greyson on Vimeo.

Reading through a report of a conference celebrating the centenary of the Swedish union, SAC, I found this paragraph of particular interest -
The SUF is behind the ingenious and well-organised Planka initiative, part of an international campaign for free
public transport (which the Scottish Socialist Party is also affiliated to). Users of the underground train system can
pay a monthly subscription and then faredodge. If they are caught Planka will pay their fine out of the pool of
money. The substantial remainder of the money in the pool works as a general slush fund for the radical movement.
Planka has several thousand members and is going from strength to strength.

SUF is for Syndikalistika Ungdomsförbundet, (Syndicalist Youth Association, I think). More on the Planka Initiative here.

Coca-Cola Pakistan Turns its Back on Multi-million Dollar World Bank Loan - What Have They Got to Hide?
Quatorze Juillet -

"... upon the immortal 14th 0f July, 1789, a day which gave new life to man, the pillars of superstition were shaken by the capture of the Bastille, and the thunderbolt of reason hurled despotism from its throne." Citizen Robert Watson
(Quoted by Graham Bain in his biography of the good doctor)

Monday, July 12, 2010

"And regrettably, sadly, they played very dirty. So much so that they should have been down to nine immediately, then they made two [such] ugly and hard tackles that even I felt the damage.

"It hurts me that I was wrong in my disagreement that instead Holland chose an ugly path to aim for the title.

"This ugly, vulgar, hard, hermetic, hardly eye-catching, hardly football style, yes it served the Dutch to unsettle Spain. If with this they got satisfaction, fine, but they ended up losing. They were playing anti-football."
(Johan Cruyff)
Today is the 12th of July when we remember the chestnut mare (some of us anyway).

It's also a rest day on the Tour, and the first day of life without the World Cup.
Let me add my voice to the tumult, "Klootzakken!"
And echo the widely held opinion; Spain deserved to win. Forlán (Uruguay) was the best player on view on my telly, though some go for Iniesta.
The Dutch coach reckons that, with a different referee, his team could have won. Is that an honest opinion or an attempt to blame someone else for a disgraceful display? With another referee they could have been down to nine men in ordinary time.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

How does that Millwall song go, "Nobody likes us, we don't care"?
Baron Prescott of Kingston upon Hull - what a liberty!
The bloke's Welsh, he only came to Hull because Liverpool was too hot for him after he scabbed during the 1960 seamen's strike. I found a title for him, Lord Prescott of Corned Beef Island, but it seems he wants all Hull as his domain. Still it's only a life peerage, so it won't be handed on to his offspring. The Prescott-Hull connection will soon fade away.

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Dustin Hoffman and Meg Ryan have cancelled appearances at the Jerusalem Film Festival. Prince Albert of Monaco,who was to attend a tribute to his mother, Grace Kelly, has also cancelled.
Meanwhile one John Lydon is going to do his bit for the Palestinian cause by exposing his nauseating persona to a desperate Israeli public. They deserve him.

Sir Elton John, the pop Falstaff, was a sellout success at Ramat Gan. His appearance was as outlandish as ever, taking the form of the Michelin Man.

Sunday, July 04, 2010

(I love this picture)

Argentina 0, Germany 4
¡Ay, ay, ay! I'm sorry to see Argentina go, they were my favourites to win the trophy. Sorry for Maradona too. There was a period when it wasn't possible to like the little fellow, but all is forgiven. I hope he keeps the job if he still wants it.

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Netherlands 2, Brazil 1.
I'm glad. Brazil didn't deserve to progress further. Anyway, it upsets the pundits when things don't go smoothly, i.e., according to their predictions.

Today begins the Big Loop, featuring sportsmen who earn their wages. There is a "British" team in competition, Team Murdoch. Needless to say it won't get my support. And I don't like Bradley Wiggins since he couldn't be bothered to turn up to sign in when a leg of the Tour of Britain started in Hull a couple of years ago. Too big for Hull, not big enough for the podium on the 25th - just my opinion.

Friday, July 02, 2010

Binyamin Netanyahu, tonight confirmed he was prepared to release 1,000 Palestinian prisoners in exchange for the abducted Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit, but drew the line at paying "any price" for the soldier's freedom.

They have one thousand Palestinian prisoners*, and all we hear about is one Israeli?
Talk about victim culture!
Shalit's grandfather says that the Netanyahu statement is a death sentence on Gilad. Maybe that is the intention. There are those who say Shalit the dead martyr is more useful to the Israelis than Shalit the Hamas bargaining chip.
An agreement between Hamas and Israeli negotiators for Shalit's release needed only the nod from Netanyahu, but he turned it down. He didn't want a propaganda coup for Hamas (or perhaps it was a case of "Bring me the corpse of Gilad Shalit").

*In fact they have many more.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Right, Afghanistan, let me settle that problem for the politicians. The war in Afghanistan will end when the politicans have the honesty and the guts to say, "We can't win this war, so we're skinning out."
When they do the Taliban will fire off their feux de joie, bugger a few little boys, and slaughter anyone they don't like. They will declare that they have defeated the evil crusaders. In the sense that they are still in Afghanistan and the invaders have left they can kid themselves that they have won. In fact everybody knows that it's a conflict that no-one can win.
But there will be losers: the dead of all nations and their grieving kin; the taxpayers of the alliance of the damned; and the United States military, whose credibility as a fighting force will be Vietnam-low. Finally the poor bombed and buffeted people of Afghanistan who will be left as prey to the régime of murderous fanatics.
And Karzai will settle down in Florida, USA, among all the other failed puppets of the American Empire.
Live long enough and history just becomes a series of repeats.
The Cameron-Clegg Connards are going to -
Cut the number of armed services personnel
Cut the number of police
Cut the number of offenders sent to prison

Imagine the ruckus if the Labour Party had even hinted at doing any of this.
A message from Bob Crow of the Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) -

“This ConDem administration has thrown down the biggest challenge to the Trade Union Movement since Margaret Thatcher took on the National Union of Mineworkers. I have no hesitation in saying that it will take general and co-ordinated strike action across the public and private sectors to stop their savage assault on jobs, living standards and public services.
“The Trade Unions must form alliances with community groups, campaigns and pensioners organisations in the biggest show of united resistance since the success of the anti-poll tax movement. Waving banners and placards will not be enough – it will take direct action to stop the Cameron and Clegg cuts machine.
“We have a right wing Tory Government propped up by a Liberal Party that has binned every commitment that it gave to voters in the run up to the election in order to grab power. That’s why we say this administration has no mandate for its cuts and that’s why we argue that bulldozing through their austerity measures amounts to fiscal fascism. It was zombie capitalism that dragged us into this mess and our people should not be made to pay to clear it up.
“The Trade Unions can only fight these attacks from the front foot. We have a Government of millionaire public school boys who are determined to rule by fear – fear of losing your job, fear of losing your home and fear of losing your benefits and the public services that you rely on.
“RMT says don’t fear them, fight them. Our Trade Union has a slogan, “never on our knees”, and from Aberdeen we want those words to ring out on the Millionaires Row of Clegg and Cameron. They started this fight with the working class and we are up for it.”

It would be really something if the "leadership" of other unions were to join Bob Crow and offer more than token opposition to the wreckers.

(The sound of bitter laughter is heard.)