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Showing posts from October, 2007

ISLAM AND MODERN SOCIAL MOVEMENTS

The London Islamic Network for the Environment Monthly Forums:

ISLAM AND MODERN SOCIAL MOVEMENTS

Date: Sunday 11th November
Time: 2.15pm to 4.45pm
Venue: 4nd Floor, Muslim World League, 46 Goodge Street, London, W1T 4LU (entrance on the corner of Charlotte Street); Nearest Tube: Goodge Street (Northern Line)

Speakers:

Anne Gray, Social Activist
Mark Barrett, People in Common

Muslims' commitment to social justice suggests a necessity for engagement in civil society. What challenges and opportunities confront Muslims within European societies in their pursuit of action to preserve the environment, to oppose unjust war and oppression? This topic will be approached from the perspectives of two people who have been political activist(s) for many years before turning to Islam, and who see religious and political commitment as mutually reinforcing. There will be an opportunity to ask questions and offer insights. Within the forum, we will also get to hear about environmental campaigning LINE is …

Don't taxi

Well no new news, I still have the flu, arrgh must stop running around and beat it,and George Galloway and the SWP still don't love each other in RESPECT..will post on the Diana Raby book Democracy and Revolution in the next few days promise

thanks to Pablo for the following:




watch it here:
http://video.google.co.uk/videoplay?docid=-4603066186176011479&q=Taxi+to+the+Dark+Side&total=64&start=0&num=10&so=0&type=search&plindex=4



ABOUT THIS FILM

Over one hundred prisoners have died in suspicious circumstances in U.S. custody during the "war on terror". Taxi to the Dark Side takes an in-depth look at one case: an Afghan taxi driver called Dilawar who was considered an honest and kind man by the people of his rustic village. So when he was detained by the U.S military one afternoon, after picking up three passengers, denizens wondered why this man was randomly chosen to be held in prison, and, especially, without trial? Five days after his arrest Dilaw…

Islam I like is green islam

I get attacks from those who view any form of Islam as reactionary but lets face it there is a huge amount of progressive islam out there, Ok I am biased a lot of my friends and close political associates are liberal progressive Muslims and as a green I am really inspired by the LINE stuff, so especially for those of you who are new to it, take a look at the great work of LINE...hope this helps on the RESPECT discussion as well

London Islamic Network for the Environment.

A small but important correction!

The correct date of Larry Lohmann's article (2nd notice below) is '2007', NOT '2000'! as was originally stated in Ecobites. Apologies for the mistake.

The corrected notice is below.

Muzammal Hussain,
Ecobites


Peace -

In this edition of Ecobites are four notices.

First is news of the recent launch of LINE Leaf, the long awaited newsletter of LINE (London Islamic Network for the Environment). Next, Larry Lohmann sheds light on the UK Bank, Barclays, and its investment of…

Saudi Arabia has exported religious fundamentalism and terrorism

had this from Peter Tatchell, well said...what is the worst example of a repressive state..~Saudi Arabia, where does the cash come for regressive hate filled forms of Islam, Saudi Arabia.

Who does the British government buy oil from and who do British companies sell weapons to, Saudi Arabia.

shocking...far far worse than Iran and of course Gordon Brown's best friend state, say no to the Royal visit.

Incidentally very pleased to see the statement from Vince Cable, who I am not normally a fan of

And acting Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable said he was boycotting the visit, citing the corruption scandal over Al Yamamah arms deal, and the Saudis' human rights record.

"I think it's quite wrong that as a country we should give the leader of Saudi Arabia this honour," he said.

from the BBC here

John McDonnell, MP is a star, I am not going to be sectarian if people do good stuff they do good stuff, the we are all wonderful and they are shite approach to politics is one of t…

Green Left rejects 'cults of personality'

At its meeting last Saturday, Green Left unanimously passed the following motion:



“Green Left notes the failures of ‘ top -down’ political leadership and promotes instead, ‘bottom-up’, democratic structures of political leadership in accordance with the best participatory democratic structures of the Green Party and in opposition to the cults of personality, and the emphasis on celebrities.”



Joseph Healy


I didn't make the meeting because I was debating with the Communist Party, nice people, good discussion but look how the cult damaged that brand of the left and how big brother damaged Galloway...participation is vital.

Socialism today must be Green.

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At first sight, environmentalists or conservationists are nice, slightly crazy guys whose main purpose in life is to prevent the disappearance of blue whales or pandas. The common people have more important things to think about, for instance how to get their daily bread. […] However, there are in Peru a very large number of people who are environmentalists […] they might reply, ‘ecologist your mother’, or words to that effect. […] Are not the town of Ilo and the surrounding villages which are being polluted by the Southern Peru Copper Corporation truly environmentalist? Is not the village of Tambo Grande in Pirura environmentalist when it rises like a closed fist and is ready to die in order to prevent strip-mining in its valley? Also, the people of the Mantaro Valley who saw their little sheep die, because of the smoke and waste from La Oroya smelter. (Hugo Blanco quoted in Guha and Martinez-Alier 1997: 24)


I thought I would paste up a few notes on ecosocialism, I think the turm…

More on RESPECT crisis

I have seen things that I can no longer accept.
I have heard things from meetings I have been at described in a way that I don’t recognise.

No longer will these things be done in my name.

For the reasons that I have set out, as from this moment I am resigning from the SWP.

This is from the resignation letter of Jerry Hicks a longstanding Bristol member of the Socialist Workers Party....the split between the SWP and most of the rest of the RESPECT Party is causing huge interest and gossip.

I am keen to see greens, socialists and progressive Muslims and plenty of other sections of society work together but I guess like most on the left I have not been confident that RESPECT would hold together....if a broad, pluralist, democratic party comes together out of the current rows the Greens ought to find ways of working with it towards shared goals of ecology, social justice and no war. However I think that the most likely outcome is more division of the left, with two RESPECT Parties but lets wa…

Don't mess with the badgers

Healthy now, I must admit I haven't looked at a computer screen since tuesday...been busy around Green Parties in Monmouth, Bath and Birmingham and even did an office occupation in support of new housing for people on the Masefield Estate, Birmingham.

Right back to blogging...here is Caroline's statement against culling.

Culling badgers 'counter-productive'

23rd Oct 2007


Badger culling is a distraction to the uncomfortable truth

Green Party Principal Speaker Caroline Lucas today criticised the the government's Chief Scientific Advisor's recommendation that culls of badgers should be carried out to control the TB epidemic in cattle.

Sir David King said yesterday that culling badgers was the 'best option available at the moment to reduce the reservoir of infection in wildlife'. His recommendation is in stark contrast to the views of the Independent Scientific Group report into the matter - a near 10- year government study of badger-culling which found that cull…
The last time I did nothing was years ago, a day and half of doing nothing is just what the Doctor ordered so feeling a bit chipper, might see some of you at the meetings I am doing in Monmouth, Bath, Birmingham and Croydon.

Well how do we win. I am on the left but the left at least in the OK seem better at fighting than any other part of the spectrum, there is huge interest in the fallout between the Socialist Workers Party and Galloway.

And political parties period tend to get corrupted by power, even the Greens...so can we have a non sectarian left that agrees to differ on some issues but fights for justice shoulder to shoulder or electoral parties that win power without becoming drunken with it.

Is the iron law of oligarchy really balanced by an iron law of democracy?

Answers on a post card or blog comment please

nice thoughs on social movememt reading here, I have the same feeling towards social movements as Homer Simpson has to doughnuts...come here I love you!

They can fuck up as we…

Flu strikes Dr Wall

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Well I am as sick as a sick person, with the flu I caught off of Joel Kovel last week,

so today sans Havana Club, which is what you need when you have the flu, sitting around watching Queer as Folk, making extra hot curry and regretting I have run out of ron...could this be voodoo from political enemies or instant karma for working too hard. No, no as Wittgenstein used to say 'causes are superstitions'....any way it is knocking the blogging on the head, although I have contributed to a press release on oil addiction, talked to Morning Star and open a number of letters from angry pensioners.

I have a vision of some people practising sorcery to sum up Ludwig and ask him advice.

Been watching too many horror movies as well, The Shining (good), Hellraiser (pretty good), Creep (not very good but charing cross underground is a bit spooky!), is there one about Ludwig Wittgenstein, 'Nightmare on analytic philosophy street' or 'The Prison House of Language'? anyway, stop …

Poles vote today

From Joseph Healy




http://observer.guardian.co.uk/world/story/0,,2195929,00.html



Poles in the UK vote today and hopefully will help to remove from office a government which has been anti-semitic, homophobic and generally reactionary in the extreme. Carol Dimyon from Brighton GP has organised a bus full of Polish voters travelling to the Polish embassy in London to vote. She was interviewed last night on Polish TV and read a statement in Polish from Caroline Lucas MEP.



This morning at Friends Meeting House in London, myself and the Coordinator of the London Federation of Green Parties will greet the voters after they have voted and offer them Polish cakes and leaflets about the Green Party. I hope in time that the party will be able to produce leaflets in Polish for the huge Polish community living in the UK.



Many of these young Poles will be voting for a more tolerant and open Poland which is looking towards the future and away from the phantoms of the past.



Joseph Healy

GPEx International C…
Great day in Bristol, lots of people came to the East Bristol Green Party conference and I bumped into my old mucker Pete Taylor who showered me with anti-car stickers.

Tara

THE HILLS ARE ALIVE

The latest at the Hill Of Tara, where the Irish Govt are trying to build a
motorway through one the most important archaeological sites in Europe (See
SchNEWS 585), is that more ancient burials have been discovered and
protesters are making an emergency appeal for the road to be re-routed. The
road is due to go through forty-odd known sites of ancient historic
interest, with new sites being unearthed during the excavations - and being
promptly destroyed. The latest discovery is at Philpotstown, where the
motorway will cut into the Hill Of Tara, where they have dug up a system of
ancient fields, ceremonial and burial structures, and an Iron Age hill fort.

On a legal front the European Commission is starting legal action against
the Irish Govt over the motorway. The commission decision will force the…

Crass

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Crass was an English anarchist punk rock band, formed in 1977[1][2] and based around Dial House, an open house community near Epping, Essex.

Whereas the Sex Pistols might have mentioned 'anarchy' for shock value (thereby furthering the common misconception that it is simply a synonym for chaos), Crass actually promoted genuine anarchism as a legitimate political ideology, way of living, and as a resistance movement, popularizing the seminal peace punk movement and touching on such overtly far left political issues as anti-consumerism, direct action, animal rights, feminism, anti-war, anti-corporatism, environmentalism, LGBT rights, anti-globalization, reproductive rights, anti-racism, squatting, and the separation of church and state.

Taking literally the punk manifesto of "Do It Yourself", Crass combined the use of sound collage, graphics, song, film, and subversion to launch a sustained and innovative critical broadside against all that they saw as a culture built on…

Reject the Swedish model for the sex industry

Well said from Sian and Jean,


Siân Berry, Green Party Mayoral Candidate for London, and Jean
Lambert, Green MEP for London, have signed the Safety First!
Petition, which calls for the complete decriminalisation of sex work,
so that the focus of official efforts can be on protecting the most
basic human rights of prostitutes, life and health. (1)

Siân noted that Green Party policy called for the complete
decriminalisation of prostitution on the “New Zealand model”, so that
the focus for sex workers moved on to their safety and wellbeing.

She said: “The so-called ‘Swedish model’ of criminalisation of the
customers of prostitutes is receiving much attention at present, but
the fact is that this approach drives sex work, and particularly
street sex workers, further into the twilight, further from
traditional areas, further into danger.

More here

Green Party Spring Conference

Dear all

SPRING CONFERENCE, READING TOWN HALL, 14-17th FEBRUARY 2008 - VENUE Spring Conference next year will be in Reading. That is the decision of Conferences Committee.

DATE The dates of the Spring Conference will be 14-17th February.



Had this from conference comm.
Is this because the Principal Speaker lives in Berkshire, I could not possibly comment but it will be nice to cut the travel times down and may be I can put up a few guests at the Wall Dacha in East Berkshire (go on Dr Wall admit you are mobile home dweller!)

any suggestions for fringes, etc...will be well received, other than from trolls...

Party democracy under threat from leader

“I have passed a national leader (who aspires to be part of the party) to the Disciplinary Council for talking nonsense. I will be watching closely … Critical thinking is fundamental to a revolution, but that is very different to going around talking badly about a party that has not been born, collecting signatures to present them who knows where. Anyone who wants to be an anarchist, get out of here, you are not wanted, what is needed here is a creative, but disciplined active membership.” 4

Well one of my functions is to be critical and this being the blogosphere you will know doubt be pretty critical of me, sobeit...as Erich Fromm used to say the first classic virtue is disobedience.

I am a great fan of Chavez, amusing, intelligent, a great thinker and interested in ecology, I don't support him uncritically so thought I would post this essay flagging up concerns about discipline in the United Socialist Party.

Criticism is necessary but should not be used as ammunition to be fired b…

Protest against sex killings in Saudi

Saudi Arabia! Stop persecuting queers!

Gay men sentenced to 7,000 lashes Protest against potential death sentences

Friday 19 October, 1:30pm - 2.30pm Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia 30 Charles Street, London W1J 5DZ Map: www.mofa.gov.sa/Detail.asp?InSectionID=1722&InNewsItemID=24829

On the 2 October 2007 two young men in the Saudi Arabian city of Al-Bahah were reportedly convicted of 'sodomy' and sentenced to 7,000lashes. In Saudi Arabia same-sex relations are illegal and the maximum penalty is death. 7,000 lashes is a form of torture, calculated to cause maximum,prolonged suffering. So many lashes can be fatal, depending on howmany are delivered at any one time. To protest against the persecution of queers in Saudi Arabia , the National Union of Students LGBT campaign is organising a protestoutside the Saudi Embassy in London this Friday. The protest issupported by LGBT human rights group OutRage! Peter Tatchell is a guest speaker. The protest comes ahead of the State Vi…

Re-elected as Principal Speaker

Announcement:

Results of GPEx election postal ballot count 15th October 2007




The four remaining GPEx positions were elected by postal ballot. The candidates elected are as follows;

Female Principal speaker: Caroline Lucas

Male Principal speaker: Derek Wall

Local party coordinator: Jon Lucas

Chair: Richard Mallinder

The turn out for the election was just over 20%




The votes in detail


Female Principal speaker


Caroline Lucas 1190 votes ELECTED

Jenny Jones 335 votes

RON 6 votes

Spoiled 7 votes




Male Principal speaker

Ashley Gunstock 138 votes >>> Ashley's votes were then redistributed

Derek Wall 752 votes >>> + 60 = 812 votes ELECTED

Darren Johnson 625 votes >>> + 53 = 678 votes

RON 16 votes >>> + 5 = 21 votes

Spoiled 1 spoilt paper




Local party coordinator

Jon Lucas 748 votes ELECTED

Chris Haine 692 votes

RON 24 votes

Spoiled 5 votes







Chair

Richard Mallinder 781 votes ELECTED

Peter Cranie / David Ford 683 votes

RON 21 votes

Spoiled 5 votes




Yours,

Jim Jepps
Ca…

Terracotta protest and more

Martin said to me why don't we go down to the British Museum on sunday, mask up some of the terracotta statues and protest against rising Chinese CO2 emissions....and he did, I am afraid I didn't make it being out of London with my children but he did and got in the Daily Mail and other papers.

I did hook up and support him on the anti-Tasmanian clear cutting demo on saturday

Well done Martin, a good example of a Green Party member using his head to stir up some media attention....

Martin Wyness, a father of two young daughters, said he made the protest on Sunday to draw attention to the lack of international action on global warming and specifically China's growing role in the climate crisis.

"It is a protest against China's CO2 emissions. Nothing was damaged. It was all very respectful," he told Reuters, adding he had then been grabbed by security guards and bundled out of the "First Emperor" exhibition.


More here

So Ming has resigned, I won't repea…

On tour!

I am packing in meetings in Bath, Bristol, Birmingham, Croydon, London and Monmouth over the next fortnight, so may be catch me if you can.

I must admit I enjoy meetings on economics in particular and generally get to hear some interesting comments and discussion, certainly the people at the Twickenham Green Party meeting on green politics and growth made me think, a week or two back.

First up the Green Left meeting on having a single leader, I am seriously bored with this debate and having got nervous the pro leader camp are now insisting we could have a co-leader, this is not on the table in the referendum, it is a vote for or against, I am incidentally worried by the excesses of the New Greens (renew your membership on line and get a string bay is the latest mad scheme) and am really worried that Caroline Lucas is fronting this as some kind of soft left Kinnock figure who will make the change palatable before being discarded for the Green versions of Smith, Blair and Brown...I hope …

Jean Lambert rejects Star Wars

off to the strand to defend the forests in Tasmania...great to see Jean as usual working hard for peace

"Star Wars": The Green MEP Strikes Back
Jean Lambert MEP will address demonstrators at a United States 'spy base' inYorkshire, on Saturday 13th October from 12-4pm, in protest against itsinvolvement in the "Star Wars" missile system. The demonstration, organised by the Campaign for Accountability of AmericanBases (CAAB), will take place at the Menwith Hill communications centreoutside Harrogate: where military, economic and political information isgathered and fed back to the US Government.
On 25th July the UK Government announced that it had given permission forMenwith Hill, the largest electronic monitoring station in the world outsideAmerica, to be used in the American Missile Defence System. The site is run by the US National Security Agency (NSA), which monitors theworld's communication for US intelligence, and employs around 1,800 USc…

'SAVE TASMANIA'S WILD FORESTS

'Save Tasmania’s Wild Forests - Forests are the Worlds’s Lungs' 12 pm, Saturday 13th, Australian High Commissions Strand, London, WC2B 4LA

Derek Wall, Green Party Principal Speaker, today urged people to attend this demonstration: "The proposed new pulp mill in Tasmania will consume 6 million tonness of ancient old growth forest and consume 26 to 40 billion litres of fresh water each year. It will emit 10 million tonnes of carbon dioxide annually and discharge 64, 000 tonnes of toxic effluent in to the sea, everyday. "Scientists have warned that planned logging in Tasmania’s north-east threatens animals and birds with local extinction. "Send a message to the Australian government and join me in making our opposition to this known, and supporting the Australian Greens, on Saturday. " ENDS


Further info: http://www.wilderness.org.au/regions/tas/
Tell the Australian Government to protect its old growth forests: Email Peter McGauran MP Minister for Agriculture, …

#eco revolution in Latin America

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well have my criticism of Ecuador government on shark conservation but for my 700 post I am running this from the superb Hugo Blanco this is from here

Hugo Blanco:
A Triumphant Advance in Ecuador

Popular Forces Sweep Constituent Assembly Elections

Hugo Blanco was leader of the Quechua peasant uprising in the Cuzco region of Peru in the early 1960s. He was captured by the military and sentenced to 25 years in El Fronton Island prison for his activities, but an international defence campaign won his freedom. He continues to play an active role in Peru’s indigenous, campesino, and environmental movements, and writes on Peruvian, indigenous, and Latin American issues.

He wrote this article for Socialist Voice on the eve of the sweeping victory of the Country Alliance Movement (Movimiento Alianza País) and President Rafael Correa’s anti-imperialist government in the September 30 elections for Ecuador’s new Constituent Assembly.

Mercopress reported October 2 that "Ecuadorian president Rafa…

rich and poor electoral war

Sad stuff British politics at a party level, mainly about tax cuts in leafy suburbs as far as I can see.

"The rich and super rich have thrived under the last ten years of Labour. The top 10 per cent now own more of the country's wealth than they did in 1990 - in the region of 54 per cent. Yet, around only 5 per cent of the country currently pay inheritance tax. (1

More here

FIRST INTERNATIONAL ECOSOCIALIST MEETING

Ecosocialist International Network Launched
News Release: October 8, 2007
FIRST INTERNATIONAL ECOSOCIALIST MEETING

PARIS: On October 7th and 8th 2007, a group of ecological activists from thirteen countries met in Paris to inaugurate the Ecosocialist International Network. The International Ecosocialist Manifesto, written some years ago by Joel Kovel and Michael Löwy, was the starting point for this initiative. “Ecosocialism is a word that does not yet appear in any dictionary,” said one of the conveners of the event, “yet we believe that it represents the single best hope for healing the planet and saving society from ecological devastation.”

More than 60 activists from Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Cyprus, Denmark, France, Greece, Italy, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States belonging to various political parties and ecological movements took part in this meeting. It was decided to organize a larger ecosocialist international conference on January 2009, in…