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E-NEWS BULLETIN 21 July 2017 A week’s links to the making of the world



The A-bomb – R2-billion amnesty package for Zuma?

Daily Maverick learned that an offer of R2-billion has been presented to Jacob Zuma, making it the most significant financial amnesty ever made to a sitting head of state. (The money would be raised from private individuals and institutions, and not from state coffers). The economic implications, to say nothing of the legal precedent it would set, are beyond staggering.

LAC contract workers ruling a victory for workers, says Jimirvin jim

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) has “secured a significant victory” at the Labour Appeals Court (LAC) for contract workers, the union’s general secretary Irwin Jim said on Saturday.

South Africa’s Commuters Derailed By Corruption

trainOver 700,000 South Africans rely on a train to get them to work everyday, yet their journeys are often derailed by late trains. Trains are not safe and dreams are deferred by journeys that go off track. The pain of the passengers is not caused by a shortage of money. South Africa spends almost R100-billion a year on transport with a significant chunk going to subsidise train travel. But the Passenger Rail Agency of SA is paralysed by corruption.

Justice for Nqobile Nzuza: Police Officer Convicted of Murder

abahlaliOn 30 September, 2013 Nqobile Nzuza was murdered by the South African police in Cato Crest. She was shot from behind while participating in a protest organised around a road blockade. She was seventeen years old when she was murdered. The court found that the cause of Nzuza’s death was traceable to the gun belonging to the accused officer.

#DataMustFall: Icasa to tackle high cost of data

Independent Communications Authority of SA will consult the Competition Commission among others to find ways to make data more affordable.

Why SA’s data pricing needs a revolution

The use of digital technology coupled with affordable internet access offers a real opportunity to advance growth. In South Africa, where high unemployment and job scarcity has become a permanent feature of our social landscape, especially among the youth, having access to the internet offers a portal to alternative avenues for job creation and income generation.

SA’s Internet penetration on the rise

SA’s Internet users are expected to grow to at least 22.5 million in 2017, an increase from last year’s 21 million.

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The movement against the labour law in France: creativity, state violence and anger

The reform of a French labour code will touch many areas, from working time to the ‘right to disconnect’ (meaning the right not to be permanently available through IT devices). In short, it is about the flexibilisation of work.

How could we cope if capitalism failed? Ask 26 Greek factory workers

viome workerAt the height of the Greek crash in 2011, staff at Viome clocked in to confront an existential quandary. The owners of their parent company had gone bust and abandoned the site. The workers’ chances of getting another job were close to nil. So they decided to occupy their own plant.

Resistance is met with repression in Turkeyturkey

This week saw massive mobilisations in Turkey, highlighting how the social situation is continuing to alternate between repression and resistance. The protest march led by opposition Parliamentary leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu culminated in a huge rally in Istanbul attended by an estimated one million people.

Filipino workers mobilise against martial lawphillipines

The presidency of Rodrigo Duterte has been characterised by the murderous campaign against working class communities on the pretext of a ‘War on Drugs’, as well as the recent declaration of Martial Law in the southern island of Mindana.

russia mapRussia: a target, not a superpower

Old preconceptions and terms must be challenged in order to have an accurate view of the present international situation. Russia today, as a capitalist country, is not even a fifth-rate economic power.

mcWeatherMayweather vs McGregor: a Roman Spectacle of Greed and Vulgarity

Two of the highest profile athletes in their respective sports, boxing and MMA, coming together for the first time to promote their upcoming non-title bout, set to take place under Marquis of Queensberry – i.e. boxing – rules is not a serious fight. It is not even an event. Instead it is a spectacle of unfettered vulgarity and greed that has little if anything to do with sport.

How Prison Labor is the New American Slavery and Most of Us Unknowingly Support it

inmate laborAmerican slavery was technically abolished in 1865, but a loophole in the 13th Amendment has allowed it to continue “as a punishment for crimes” well into the 21st century. Not surprisingly, corporations have lobbied for a broader and broader definition of “crime” in the last 150 years. As a result, there are more (mostly dark-skinned) people performing mandatory, essentially unpaid, hard labor in America today than there were in 1830.

Neoliberalism has conned us into fighting climate change as individuals

While we busy ourselves greening our personal lives, fossil fuel corporations are rendering these efforts irrelevant. The breakdown of carbon emissions since 1988? A hundred companies alone are responsible for an astonishing 71 percent. You tinker with those pens or that panel; they go on torching the planet.



Gaza: A Not So Slow Genocide

gaza cityTwo million Gazans face a growing manmade disaster that is largely invisible. After 50 years of occupation, a decade of strangulating siege, and multiple high and low-intensity Israeli assaults on an almost daily basis, a power struggle between Hamas and Fatah, aided and abetted by the Israeli government, now threatens the very lives of these beleaguered people.

Israel has consigned the people of Gaza to “living in abject poverty under practically inhuman conditions unparalleled in the modern world” – B’Tselem


UN Secretary General: We Demand the Immediate Release of all Palestinian Child Prisoners in Israeli Jails

children arrests
According to the April 2016 report No Way to Treat a Child by Defence for Children International – Palestine, between 500‐700 children are prosecuted in Israeli military courts every year, 75% of these children report assault during detention, 97% of interrogations are held without the presence of a parent or a lawyer, and by the date of the report’s publication 440 children were held in military detention.
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Why Net Neutrality Is a Working-Class Issuedcdemo

We all know the internet is driving changes in culture, politics and the economy. It is also one of the key spaces where workers can organize—and where mass movements for racial and economic justice blossom and build power.

working the phonesCall Centres: Understanding Casualised Labour

Jamie Woodcock’s new book Working the Phones: Control and Resistance in Call Centres is an insider’s account of work in a call centre. In this interview he shares his movitations for the book, opportunities for organising casualised employment, and the future of work.

Automation and jobs in the world’s docks

A brief summary of a conference on automation in the international shipping industry by a member of the Sailors Union of the Pacific .


Neoliberalism in Crisis

This year marks the 150th publication anniversary of Marx’s Capital. To mark this anniversary, two leading, but slightly diverging voices on CapitalKevin B. Anderson and John Bellamy Foster – situate Marx’s centrepiece in our own contemporary moment of neoliberal crisis in this interview.