Flood relief, solidarity and nationalism

There was an overwhelming response from working people to the flood preparation and recovery efforts in Queensland. On the weekend after the waters receded in Brisbane, tens of thousands of people took to the streets, getting knee deep in the mud to assist friends and strangers alike.

Labor expands racist refugee polices

In June 2008 the federal Labor government said its changes to refugee policy had removed the “worst excesses” of the previous Howard Coalition government’s racist refugee policies. Two years later, it’s clear that the Labor government has not only retained the core elements of these policies, but has actually expanded them.

Australian artists to build an alliance to fight Israel's apartheid

Australian artists from disciplines including music, visual arts, poetry and film-making, with the common goal of ending Israel’s apartheid system, will come together at Australia’s first Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) conference, which is being held in Melbourne from October 29 to 31. By joining the BDS campaign, Australian Artists Against Apartheid will add further strength to the growing cultural component of the global BDS campaign.

Burqa ban aims to whip up Islamophobia

Hundreds of Muslim women and children rallied in Punchbowl, Sydney, on September 19 to protest a burqa ban soon to be debated in the NSW parliament. The bill, introduced by Christian fundamentalist MLC Fred Nile, criminalises wearing a “face covering while in a public place” except as part of a job, entertainment, recreation or sport. It states that “a religious or cultural belief does not constitute a reasonable excuse for the wearing of a face covering”, thus exposing the aim of criminalising the wearing of the burqa or niqab by Muslim women.

Woodside, WA government renew 'colonialism'

Compulsory acquisition provides state and local governments with the power to acquire land with or without the owners’ agreement, provided they are compensated. It is supposed to be the claiming of land owned by an individual to be used for the benefit of the public. In other words, it is the need of an individual versus the need of the community. But the latest case of compulsory acquisition in Western Australia is being done for a totally different purpose: profits of the minority rich and powerful over the majority working people.

RSP confronts Australia Day racism again

The apathy and racism inherent to most mainstream “Australia Day” (Invasion Day) events was dealt a blow by activists from the Revolutionary Socialist Party on January 26 in Melbourne. RSP members including revolutionary artist Van Rudd put the media corporations on notice that for a second year running the RSP would expose the racist nature of Invasion Day with “another public art instillation” this time located at the Great Australia Day Swim, Brighton Beach.

The history and development of Zionism

Zionism, belief that all Jews throughout the world constitute a nation that requires its own homeland, is a relatively recent ideology. It is a direct product of capitalism and it is important to understand Zionism, its fallacies and development in order to understand the struggle of the Palestinian people for national self-determination and to understand the ideological basis of the apartheid state of Israel.

From the Belly of the Beast: Anti-Muslim hysteria erupts in US

Plans by a mainstream Islamic group to build a cultural centre a few blocks from where the former Twin Towers of the World Trade Center stood in New York have suddenly been seized on by right-wing media and politicians to whip up a storm of Islamophobia.

Say no to Labor and Coalition racist scapegoating; for socialist solutions

Like in the rest of the world, workers in Australia have suffered almost three decades of what has been described here as “economic rationalism” and in the rest of the world as “neoliberal reforms”. These “reforms” have entailed massive privatisation of government-owned business and utilities such as banks, airlines, power stations, urban public transport, etc. Although done in the name of greater efficiency, privatisation has had the effect of concentrating wealth into even fewer hands and making the public pay even more for basic services. Economic rationalism has also meant massive deregulation of everything that could diminish profits, including protecting the environment and safety on the job. If this wasn’t enough, neoliberalism has also entailed massive cuts to public expenditure on social services like education and health care, while government subsidies for capitalist business have increased massively.

From the Belly of the Beast: Racism alive and well in the USA

The firing of African American Shirley Sherrod from her job with the Department of Agriculture, where she worked to help the rural poor for decades, has again brought to the fore the oppression of black people.