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Your weekly round up of alternative news you ought to know • 19 August 2016     
SOUTH AFRICA: Lonmin failing on ‘appalling’ housing for workers
“Four years after Marikana killings, Lonmin fails to improve ‘appalling’ housing for thousands of workers
1. Lonmin only built three show houses in Marikana since 2006
2. Mine workers still live in “truly appalling” conditions
3. Company’s excuses expose bad planning, false reports to shareholders
4. Company admits 13,500 mine workers do not have formal accommodation
read more…http://www.amn
SOUTH AFRICA: Israel & South Africa agree to work together
The discussions focused on the relations between the two countries and the sides agreed on improving cooperation on national priority issues such as water, agriculture, trade and science and technology. read more…http://saz
SOUTH AFRICA: A National Minimum Wage for South Africa – the path to economic growth?  
“A national minimum wage in South Africa, if set at an appropriate and meaningful level, can reduce working poverty and inequality and support economic growth. This is the findings of to a recent report by the National Minimum Wage Research Initiative at the University of the Witwatersrand.

By establishing a wage floor below which no employers are permitted to pay the employees covered, minimum wages are able to meet their central objectives as defined by the International Labour Organization of covering the basic needs of workers and their families.”  read more…http://www.dai

SOUTH AFRICA: It’s time for a global framework agreement in world sport
“The labour and intellectual property rights of athletes are critical to the staging and marketing of international sporting events such as world championships and the Olympic Games, yet sports organisations have been slow to allow athletes any real power over the conditions of their participation. It’s time for athletes to take the initiative.” read more…http://col
MIDDLE EAST: Israel is making inroads into Africa and no one seems to mind its checkered methods

“At the end of July, Israel and the Republic of Guinea quietly announced they would be mending diplomatic relations after 49 years. Between the endless terror attacks and the histrionics of the Democratic and Republican conventions, the story received little play. But make no mistake; it brings Israel full circle on its Africa policy.” read more…
MIDDLE EAST: Holland probes threats against Palestinian group’s lawyer at The Hague
“For the last six months, Nada Kiswanson has received a steady stream of death threats while she has worked with the International Criminal Court as it probes possible war crimes committed by Israel against Palestinians.” read more…https://ele
MIDDLE EAST: Celtic face yet another UEFA rap as fans defy pleas and fly Palestine flags
“Celtic face another UEFA rap after their fans flew Palestine flags during the Champions League clash with Israelis Hapoel Beer Sheva.

It is the ninth time in just five years Hoops supporters have landed their club in trouble with European football rulers.

UEFA forbid political expressions in football and the waving of the Palestinian standard is seen as especially provocative given the opposition.” read more…http://www.dai

MIDDLE EAST: Palestine going for Gold
“Dear friends,

We want to say a massive congratulations to the six athletes representing Palestine at the Olympics, the largest team since Palestine began competing in the games in 1996.

The full Palestinian Olympic team is 22 people: the 6 athletes as well as coaches and administrators. Athletes included an 100-metre runner from Gaza, a marathon runner, a judo player, an equestrian competitor and two swimmers. One of the swimmers, Mary Al-Atrash competed in the 50 metre freestyle, but despite this being just one length of an Olympic-sized pool, Al-Atrash had to complete all her training in a 25-metre pool because there are no Olympic-sized facilities in the occupied West Bank.” read more…http://us11

MIDDLE EAST: New Government of Yemen Ready to Accept Saudi Surrender
“Day by day the life in Yemen becomes more difficult for the people on the ground. The Saudis have restarted bombing and seemingly hit everything in sight – schools, hospitals and food supply routes. Food is running out. But Yemen now has a new legitimate government. And the Saudis will have to either follow the conditions it will set, or all-out lose their war.”  read more…http://www.moo
MIDDLE EAST: Perception is Everything
Google put Palestine on your Maps!
“We are up against the most powerful corporation on the planet, which is in league with two of the most powerful governments on the planet.

The importance of this issue cannot be overstated. This is a war of perception. A war for the hearts and minds of the people who, on the basis of misleading propaganda, support Israel either actively or tacitly by failing to speak out against Israel’s brutal occupation and ethnic cleansing and apartheid policies.”  read more…https://www.cha

CANADA: Toronto Mississauga teacher suspended following school board probe into appearance at pro-Palestinian rally
“A Greater Toronto Area elementary school teacher has been suspended following a school board investigation after she was criticized for appearing in and speaking at what advocacy groups have called an anti-Israel rally.

Nadia Shoufani, a teacher at St. Catherine of Siena school in Mississauga, Ont., has been suspended with pay pending further investigation by the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board, the board said in a statement.”  read more…http://ht

MEXICO: Nochixtlan and the Mexican Teachers’ struggle again: What is at stake?
“Nochixtlan is now a name that has gone down in popular memory along with Ayotzinapa.  Nochixtlan is the name of a small community in the State of Oaxaca where, on Sunday, June 19, a group of demonstrators composed of striking teachers, parents and their supporters, were blocking a major highway leading in and of out of Oaxaca City, the capital of the State of Oaxaca, when they were fired upon by elements of the Federal Police and the newly formed police unit called the “Gendarmaria”. At least nine people were killed and scores of others were injured.”  read more…http://ht
SPAIN: The Street Syndicate: Re-organizing Informal Work Using Tech
“Christopher Columbus towers over Barcelona, pointing outward, far beyond the harbor. Carved in stone beneath him, an indigenous man kneels before a priest, head down, eyes averting the holy man’s gaze. Built in 1888 for Spain’s first International World’s Fair, this monument to colonialism stands where the port meets the Ramblas—the tree-lined mall Orwell described as the Catalan city’s “central artery”. There, it commemorates the bloody events that inaugurated Western dominance over the global economy. And today, it is a flashpoint in the struggle between life, property and the Sovereign.” read more…https://roa
AUSTRIA: How Working Class In Vienna Solved Their Housing Crisis-Make The Rich Pay For Working Class Housing
“Professor Irmi Voglmayr from Vienna University  discusses the history and  role of working class public housing in Vienna, Austria. The working class in Vienna had a massive housing crisis in 1919 and solved it with the construction over a number of years  of 220,000 units which still exist today.  read more…https://www.wie
USA: A Rocketship Takes Off in South Africa with “blended learning” and privatization through charters
“We are introducing the blended learning model into South Africa to provide quality education at a cost that the country can afford,” said Stacey Brewer, a recent MBA graduate following the now prevalent U.S. trend of smart kids becoming edupreneurs.

Stacey spent time at Rocketship Education in San Jose, Calif.  She and her colleagues have adapted the model for South Africa and will be launching their first school next month.” read more…http://get

USA: The brave new world of robots and lost jobs
“Job insecurity is a central theme of the 2016 campaign, fueling popular anger about trade deals and immigration. But economists warn that much bigger job losses are ahead in the United States — driven not by foreign competition but by advancing technology.

A look at the numbers suggests that the country is having the wrong economic debate this year. Employment security won’t come from renegotiating trade deals, as Donald Trump said in a speech Monday in Detroit, or rebuilding infrastructure, as Hillary Clinton argued in Warren, Mich., on Thursday. These are palliatives.”  read more...https://www.was

USA: Where machines could replace humans—and where they can’t (yet)
“The technical potential for automation differs dramatically across sectors and activities.

As automation technologies such as machine learning and robotics play an increasingly great role in everyday life, their potential effect on the workplace has, unsurprisingly, become a major focus of research and public concern. The discussion tends toward a Manichean guessing game: which jobs will or won’t be replaced by machines?”  read more…http://www.mck

USA: Obama Administration Prepares to Reinforce the Militarized Police Occupation of Black America
“Black activists confronted police terror on the cops’ own turf, last week, with actions at the Washington, DC, lobbying offices of the Fraternal Order of Police and the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association headquarters in New York City. In stark defiance of demands that they stand down in the wake of the killings of eight police officers in Baton Rouge and Dallas, Black Youth Project 100 and Black Lives Matter took the struggle to the very doorsteps of police political power: their unions, the bargaining and lobbying powerhouses that have erected interlocking legal walls of impunity around cops, making them the most protected “class” in the nation.” read more…https://por
USA: Fact-checking Trump: Is “Record Immigration” Causing Higher Unemployment?
“We are going to have an immigration system that works, but one that works for the American people,” Donald Trump told the Republican National Convention. “Decades of record immigration have produced lower wages and higher unemployment for our citizens.”” read more…https://fe
USA: Obama Versus Trump, Putin and Erdogan: Can Coups Defeat Elected Governments?
“Never in the history of the United States, has a President and Supreme Court Judge openly advocated the overthrow of a Presidential candidate. Never has the entire mass media engaged in a round-the-clock one-sided, propaganda war to discredit a Presidential candidate by systematically ignoring or distorting the central socio-economic issues of their opposition.” read more…http://www.glob
USA: Pentagon Preparing For Mass Civil Breakdown
“A US Department of Defense (DoD) research programme is funding universities to model the dynamics, risks and tipping points for large-scale civil unrest across the world, under the supervision of various US military agencies. The multi-million dollar programme is designed to develop immediate and long-term “warfighter-relevant insights” for senior officials and decision makers in “the defense policy community,” and to inform policy implemented by “combatant commands.”

Launched in 2008 – the year of the global banking crisis – the DoD ‘Minerva Research Initiative’ partners with universities “to improve DoD’s basic understanding of the social, cultural, behavioral, and political forces that shape regions of the world of strategic importance to the US.” read more…https://www.popu

UK: Are Trotskyists Everywhere?
“The mainstream media and Blairite elites in the Labour movement continue to paint socialists who support the ideas of Leon Trotsky as a toxic breed apart from Labour. When interviewed on Channel 4 News last week, Peter Taaffe the General Secretary of the Socialist Party was asked “do you think that Jeremy Corbyn wants someone back [in the Labour Party] who calls for a violent revolution to restore workers democracy?”” read more…http://www.cou
ANGOLA to silence social media with new regulatory body
Angola’s governing People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) is gearing up for a tough battle to retain its 40-year grip on power in the face of a rising tide of discontent, swelled by the biting economic consequences of low oil prices and poor governance. Its response is to tighten control by restricting civil liberties – and in particular freedom of information. By D. QARESMA DOS SANTOS for MAKA ANGOLA. read more…http://www.dail
ETHIOPIA: Internet Shutdown Amidst Recent Protests?
Nearly 100 deaths and thousands of arrests have been reported in Ethiopia over the last days, as part of protests against the marginalization and persecution of the Oromos and Amharas, Ethiopia’s two largest ethnic groups. But the attacks and arrests may not have been the only forms of retribution carried out by the Ethiopian government in its crackdown against protesters.

Last weekend, the internet was reportedly shut down in the country. read more…http://www.gee

MOZAMBIQUE: MISA Mozambique denounces attack on public sector reporting teams
MISA-Mozambique was extremely concerned when it became aware of the attack on vehicles of Mozambique Television (TVM) and of Radio Mozambique (RM), which took place on 12 August 2016, in the Chiwala region of Bárué district, Manica province, along National Highway No.7.

According to various sources to which MISA-Mozambique has had access, the two vehicles were attacked by gunmen of the Mozambique Resistance Movement (Renamo). The vehicles were carrying reporting teams from the two public sector media, who were to cover the visit by the President of the Republic, Filipe Jacinto Nyusi, to Manica province.” read more…http://mis

USA: Facebook deactivated her profile on police request. Then police killed her.
Facebook just took away one of the most important tools we have to help hold police accountable – social media.

Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook, at the request of police, deactivated the social media accounts of Korryn Gaines, a 23-year old Black woman shot to death by Baltimore County police last Monday. She was broadcasting the standoff on Facebook that led to police shooting her 5-year-old son and killing her. read more…http://act

USA: Smiley-faced monopolists: how Google, Facebook and Amazon won the world
Wonderful, bountiful.

The ever-youthful prince of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, told the world that he and his wife Priscilla Chan would be giving away 99 per cent of their shares to charitable causes during the course of their lifetimes.

A gesture so bold and generous: almost enough to rekindle the notion that tech billionaires were something different. A far cry from those grey and grubby bankers clutching their bonuses in so unseemly a fashion, or the brash property tycoons with exclusively located follicles and vacant consciences. read more…https://new

USA: The lost infrastructure of social media.
“More than a decade ago, the earliest era of blogging provided a set of separate but related technologies that helped the nascent form thrive. Today, most have faded away and been forgotten, but new incarnations of these features could still be valuable. read more…https://med
USA: Cell-Jamming Technology Is Being Turned against Journalists
Technology developed to jam cellphones during the Iraq War may be getting deployed against journalists reporting on protests against the political establishment in the United States.

While police and government surveillance of protests, including monitoring of cellphone use, is well-documented, efforts to block signals at protests remains an oft-repeated, but never proven, rumor. read more…http://www.glo

USA: Today’s Tech Oligarchs Are Worse Than the Robber Barons
Yes, Jay Gould was a bad guy. But at least he helped build societal wealth. Not so our Silicon Valley overlords. And they have our politicians in their pockets.

A decade ago these guys—and they are mostly guys—were folk heroes, and for many people, they remain so. They represented everything traditional business, from Wall Street and Hollywood to the auto industry, in their pursuit of sure profits and golden parachutes, was not—hip, daring, risk-taking folk seeking to change the world for the better. read more…http://www.the

USA: Want to Live Longer? Try Picking up a Book
A chapter a day may keep the coroner away, according to a new study conducted by researchers at Yale University, which found that reading books can help a person to live longer.

Published in the journal Social Science & Medicine on National Book Lovers Day, researchers wrote that, compared to non-book readers, “book readers experienced a 20% reduction in risk of mortality over the 12 years of follow-up compared to non-book readers. read more…http://spu