The Red Pepper round-up: 14 September

A selection of ace articles and videos from this week and upcoming actions for the following week, by Izzy Koksal

September 14, 2012
4 min read

And the booing of politicians continues… this time it was Ed Balls who was put in his place by angry trade unionists after he refused to promise them pay rises if the Labour government come into power.

There was good news for the majority of the 182 Critical Mass cyclists who were arrested on the night of the Olympics Opening Ceremony for the crime of cycling; realising that they had no case whatsoever the Metropolitan police will be taking no further action against them. The police’s actions on that night – which saw people detained on buses, denied food and water, and given punitive bail conditions – were a clear abuse of police power as they sought to use the Olympics as an excuse for heavy handed tactics.

After anti-workfare campaigners forced the retreat of workfare in corporate stores across the country, the government have shifted their workfare schemes into the charity sector in the hope of rebranding workfare. Here are 10 arguments detailing what is wrong with charity workfare. In other workfare news, yet another case study has emerged of workfare being used to replace paid workers jobs.

As the housing crisis intensifies, resistance to it is building. Brum Tenants and Homeless Action Group have produced a report and an interactive map showing the 607 empty houses owned by Birmingham city council. If the council do not act, they will use the information they have gathered and take action themselves. In west London, West Ken and Gibbs Green tenants have been campaigning against Hammersmith and Fulham council’s plans to sell of their homes to private developers. The council agreed a £105 million land sale to developer CapCo last Monday, but local residents promise ‘we shall never surrender!’

Climate protesters built a giant ice pyramid blockading Shell’s London HQ in protest against their Arctic drilling.

Listen to Open Democracy’s ‘What was the true legacy of the Olympics?’ discussion with Suzanne Moore and Dan Hancox and join in the debate online.

The Centre for Labour and Social Studies has published a pamphlet presenting the key findings from Kate Pickett and Richard Wilkinson’s ground breaking book ‘The Spirit Level’.This is a great resource for furthering our discussions on inequality and what we can do about it. Owen Jones discusses the pamphlet here.

The latest edition of ‘Social Movements Studies’ is a special issue dedicated to the Occupy movement to mark its one year anniversary. The articles will be free to access and download until mid-November. Follow this link and register to access.

Upcoming events

Pussy Riot protest London as part of the Global Day of Action, Saturday 15 September, 11am, opposite the Russian Consulate at Bayswater Road

UK Feminista Summer School, 15-16 September, 10am, University of Bristol Students’ Union

Lambeth Save Our Services ‘Stop the Cuts’ lobby of Lambeth Council, Wednesday 19 September, 6pm, Lambeth Town Hall, Brixton

Fight for Sites public meeting organised by the Traveller Solidarity Network, Thursday 20 September, 7.30pm, Toynbee Hall, 28 Commercial Street, E1 6LS


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Short story: Syrenka
A short story by Kirsten Irving

Utopia: Industrial Workers Taking the Wheel
Hilary Wainwright reflects on an attempt by British workers to produce a democratically determined alternative plan for their industry – and its lessons for today

Mum’s Colombian mine protest comes to London
Anne Harris reports on one woman’s fight against a multinational coal giant

Bike courier Maggie Dewhurst takes on the gig economy… and wins
We spoke to Mags about why she’s ‘biting the hand that feeds her’

Utopia: Daring to dream
Imagining a better world is the first step towards creating one. Ruth Potts introduces our special utopian issue

Utopia: Room for all
Nadhira Halim and Andy Edwards report on the range of creative responses to the housing crisis that are providing secure, affordable housing across the UK

A better Brexit
The left should not tail-end the establishment Bremoaners, argues Michael Calderbank

News from movements around the world
Compiled by James O’Nions

Podemos: In the Name of the People
'The emergence as a potential party of government is testament both to the richness of Spanish radical culture and the inventiveness of activists such as Errejón' - Jacob Mukherjee reviews Errejón and Mouffe's latest release

Survival Shake! – creative ways to resist the system
Social justice campaigner Sakina Sheikh describes a project to embolden young people through the arts

‘We don’t want to be an afterthought’: inside Momentum Kids
If Momentum is going to meet the challenge of being fully inclusive, a space must be provided for parents, mothers, carers, grandparents and children, write Jessie Hoskin and Natasha Josette

The Kurdish revolution – a report from Rojava
Peter Loo is supporting revolutionary social change in Northern Syria.

How to make your own media
Lorna Stephenson and Adam Cantwell-Corn on running a local media co-op

Book Review: The EU: an Obituary
Tim Holmes takes a look at John Gillingham's polemical history of the EU

Book Review: The End of Jewish Modernity
Author Daniel Lazar reviews Enzo Traverso's The End of Jewish Modernity

Lesbians and Gays Support the Migrants
Ida-Sofie Picard introduces Lesbians and Gays Support the Migrants – as told to Jenny Nelson

Book review: Angry White People: Coming Face to Face With the British Far-Right
Hilary Aked gets close up with the British far right in Hsiao-Hung Pai's latest release

University should not be a debt factory
Sheldon Ridley spoke to students taking part in their first national demonstration.

Book Review: The Day the Music Died – a Memoir
Sheila Rowbotham reviews the memoirs of BBC director and producer, Tony Garnett.

Power Games: A Political History
Malcolm Maclean reviews Jules Boykoff's Power Games: A Political History

Book Review: Sex, Needs and Queer Culture: from liberation to the post-gay
Aiming to re-evaluate the radicalism and efficacy of queer counterculture and rebellion - April Park takes us through David Alderson's new work.

A book review every day until Christmas at Red Pepper
Red Pepper will be publishing a new book review each day until Christmas

Book Review: Corbyn: The Strange Rebirth of Radical Politics
'In spite of the odds Corbyn is still standing' - Alex Doherty reviews Seymour's analysis of the rise of Corbyn

From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation
'A small manifesto for black liberation through socialist revolution' - Graham Campbell reviews Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor's 'From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation'

The Fashion Revolution: Turn to the left
Bryony Moore profiles Stitched Up, a non-profit group reimagining the future of fashion

The abolition of Art History A-Level will exacerbate social inequality
This is a massive blow to the rights of ordinary kids to have the same opportunities as their more privileged peers. Danielle Child reports.

Mass civil disobedience in Sudan
A three-day general strike has brought Sudan to a stand still as people mobilise against the government and inequality. Jenny Nelson writes.

Mustang film review: Three fingers to Erdogan
Laura Nicholson reviews Mustang, Deniz Gamze Erguven’s unashamedly feminist film critique of Turkey’s creeping conservatism

What if the workers were in control?
Hilary Wainwright reflects on an attempt by British workers to produce a democratically determined alternative plan for their industry

Airport expansion is a racist policy
Climate change is a colonial crisis, writes Jo Ram


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