Trade Unions and the fight against the 1%

In my N30 Strike speech today, I talked about this graph:

It shows union membership over the last 100 years. AND it shows the wealth of the top 1%.  The lines of those graphs are diametrically opposed!

100 years the unions were young as the labour movement began to catch on and fight the gross injustices around work. The rich were powerful; their wealth, stratospheric. But as the unions grew, so did the gains of the people as a whole, and the wealth of the 1% diminished.

Union membership reached its height in 1978. And the wealth of the 1% reached its lowest point in the last 100 years.

When the people are strong, the unions are strong and the rich can’t take as much from us.

In 1979 that all changed with the election of Thatcher. As she attacked the unions, the NUM especially, she brought in anti-union legislation and union membership fell.  Since 1979, almost every year,  it has continued falling, including through the Labour years.

Interestingly, now in 2011, union membership is about where it was in 1940! There’s a long way to go! So join a union!

If you’re in one become active in it. If you know workers who aren’t in a union show them this. Explain THIS is how we take on the bankers and win! For our future and for generations to come.

AND – if you don’t like the way the unions support the Labour Party – which did *NOT* support this strike –  then join the Greens and bring that voice into the labour movement too.

There’s a future to fight for.

Together we can win.


Hull Green Party to welcome Deputy Leader to Hull on Friday

ImageGreen Party Deputy Leader, Adrian Ramsay, will speak in Beverley and Hull on 1st and 2nd December.

In a momentous week, where Wednesday may see the biggest strike since 1926, Hull Green Party will hear Deputy Leader Adrian Ramsay on how cuts to jobs and attacks on pensions are the wrong way to go.

“Government has responded to the recession by making sweeping cuts to public services. The Green Party has said from the outset that this is the wrong approach,” says Adrian Ramsay.

“The cuts are punishing the most vulnerable in our society while failing to address the reckless behaviour of parts of the banking industry that caused the recession in the first place.”

Adrian Ramsay will speak about the Green vision for the economy as the way out of inequality and debt.

“Cutting jobs and public services is a false economy as it leads to more people claiming benefits and greater burdens on the NHS, police and social services, “Adrian Ramsay comments.

Recently, the difference between Tory and Labour spending policies was shown as $5bn (0.3% of GDP) (Newsnight, 25 Nov). Osborne is just more zealously pursuing many cuts which Labour also planned.

Adrian counters, “The best way to build a stable economy is to create jobs in areas where they are most needed. Producing more of the foods and manufactured goods we need in the UK would boost jobs and cut carbon emissions. Investing in home insulation schemes, rail and bus services and renewable energy could create a million new jobs while cutting people’s bills.”

Adrian Ramsay will be available for interviews.
Adrian will speak at:

Beverley, Norwood Methodist Church on Thursday 1st Dec at 7.30
Hull University Larkin Building on Friday 2nd at 2-4pm,
and at Relax Café, Newland Ave, 5pm.

Adrian Ramsay was Norwich City councillor for many years. He received the second biggest Green vote in the country in the General Election. Adrian built up Norwich Green Party over 10 years to second on the Council (14 councillors to Labour’s 16).

Lest We Forget 2

How do we even move towards ending war?

When we respond to whatever news like so many puppets on the ends of strings? News that the Libyan air force was attacking its own people. False news that helped lead us to destroy Libya’s peace.

News of Iraq’s terrible weapons of mass destruction. False news which even Blair could not convince the people of. But yet enough to convince his army, not ours, surely, to go and kill and maim, and die.

And if, God forbid, we should visit the same terror upon Iran, killing millions more upon the millions we already share responsibility for, who shall we wear a poppy for then?

Lest We Forget

Targeting Afghanistan

… Thanks for this link, much appreciated. It is true, but it leaves out the involvement of Unocal, Haliburton, CENT and many others. After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, and Kazakhstan became their own nations.

In 1993 US oil companies wanted to get at the estimated 200 billion barrels of oil in the Caspian sea.

In 1995 Unocal signed an agreement with Turkmenistan for the trans-Afghan pipeline from Turkmenistan to Pakistan.

In 1996 the Taliban gained control of Kabul but the civil war still raged between the Taliban, the Northern Alliance and various other militias.

In 1997 the CentGas consortium was formed including Unocal (US), Delta (Saudi), Crescent (Pakistan) and Turkmenrusgas (Turkmenistan). Also in 1997 the US passed a resolution declaring the Caspian and Caucasus region to be a “zone of vital American interests”. Also in 1997 the Taliban were invited to the headquarters of Unocal to discuss the pipeline.

In 1998 Unocal signed a deal between Pakistan, Turkmenistan and the Taliban. In 1998 Dick Cheney was CEO of Halliburton and constantly talked about the Caspian region. Edit: forgot to mention Also in 1998 Two US embassies were attacked, these attacks were said to be orchestrated by bin Laden. Also in 1998 the Vice President of Unocal John Maresca said while addressing the House of Representatives that the Taliban government should be removed, because of the continuing civil war, and replaced by a government which would “cooperate with his company”, he told them that creation of a oil pipeline across Afghanistan increase western oil production by 500% in 15 years, this was removed from the HoR website in 2003 but can still be found on the internet archive here (remove the < sign to get it).

Also in 1998 Unocal withdrew from the pipeline project. In 1998 the US linked the bombings of two US embassies to bin Laden. In 1998 Clinton bombed Afghanistan with up to 80 Cruise Missiles. Also in 1998 Enron was commissioned to perform a feasibility study on alternative pipeline routes avoiding Afghanistan.

In 1999 Clinton froze all US owned Taliban assets. Also in 1999 the UNSC imposed resolution 1267 imposing sanctions on the Taliban demanding they handed over Osama bin Laden.

In 2000 the UNSC imposed further sanctions in resolution 1333 on the Taliban demanding they comply with resolution 1267. Also in 2000 the Bush administration took office, it included Dick Cheney as Vice President, he was the CEO of Haliburton; Condoleeza Rice as National Security Advisor, she was the manager of Chevron; Donald Evans as Secretary of commerce he was CEO of Tom Brown Inc. now the Non-Executive Chairman of TXU; and Thomas White as Secretary of the Army, he was the Vice Chairman of Enron.

In 2001 the US negotiated with the Taliban in DC, Berlin and Islamabad, before delivering an ultimatum of accepting the pipeline or facing war. Also in 2001 just before the WTC bombings Niaz Naik was told by US diplomats that they were planning an invasion of Afghanistan Edit: this is not to say that the US government orchestrated the attack, merely used it as an excuse to gain popular support for the war. The attacks are in keeping with Islamist thought at the time and I believe the reason Bush asked Dashcle to limit the investigation into the attacks was because it would reveal that the perpetrators were not linked to Afghanistan. I would like to add that this is not particularly horrible either, as the attackers were dead and acted independently of any kind of organisation, thus there was no one to go after. On September the 11th, the WTC is attacked, all but 4 bombers were Saudi Edit: Trained in Afghanistan, but they also learned to fly in the US and Bosnia. I'd also like to add that the training camps were intended for training a vanguard in order to re-establish the Caliphate and had little to do with attacking the west. October 7th, the US goes to war with Afghanistan. December 31st former Unocal consultant Zalmay Khalilzad is appointed special envoy to Afghanistan.

2002 trans-Afghan pipeline negotiations are reopened.

I can provide links but the WBM on the internet archive is taking a long time, but I will come back in the morning and do it.

From PatSmith at –