Monthly Archives: October 2007

Airline refuses to co-operate with enforced removals

I find it heartening to find that an airline is refusing to play a part in enforcing removals of those who have probably endured endless catastrophe in their lives. Gordon Brown spent his time prior to his elevation going round the world proclaiming the need to help the poor. We had hoped for better following the abject record of his predecessor who is now now has a job of sorting out problems of the dispossessed in Palestine.
After Blackwater and Haliburton it is heartening to find a business which won’t put people before its corporate interests. While no one expects businesses to do this governments are supposed to look after their peoples. Burma, Israel and others with depressing records on human rights? Have no expectation of the UK either. Tax payers’ money goes into paying for privatisation, never cheap, and propping up now even the banks. But who came to the rescue of the savers who lost out when Farepak went to the wall?

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World Bank encourages destruction of Congo rainforests

While reviling companies for exploiting the mineral wealth and natural resources across the planet, it now seems as if the World Bank has been encouraging just that as it encouraged the destruction of the Congo’s precious rain forest.
“It is particularly embarrassing for the British government, which is a development partner of the bank and its third largest financial contributor. It encouraged the bank to intervene in the Congo forests with export-driven industrial logging and has earmarked £50m for further Congo basin forestry aid.” Source Guardian 4/10/2007).
Considering the loud noises made about the need to support African countries on the one hand, and the desperate plight of the planet from excessive carbon emissions on the other, declarations from government reach new heights of hypocracy.

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Ray Holtom

Ray Holtom joined Birmingham City Council the same time as I did in 1995 and I found him to be a staunch upholder of traditional Labour values which he demonstrated to effect when our own New Labour colleagues tried to bring in Housing Stock Transfer. Ray was himself a council house tenant, and it was that group of people who gave a firm “no” to this attempt at privatisation. Due to people like him the attempt failed. I was sad, therefore to note his passing, not in the Post or Mail but in the Stirrer.
Bill Challis and I went over to Weoley Castle to support his election campaign for Labour, and at the same time work against the BNP who were fielding a candidate there. In his disillusion with New Labour Ray joined the Lib Dems. This was difficult to understand when that party went on to prop up the Tories.

Blackwater’s trigger happy record

Blackwater has been in almost 200 incidents of shooting in Iraq we learn from Al Jazeera (2.10.2007). In a majority of cases they were the first to fire. As a security firm they are supposed to perform a defensive role.
“Blackwater, which has received over $1bn from the US government since 2001, declined to comment on Waxman’s statement.
“We look forward to setting the record straight on this and other issues” when Erik Prince, Blackwater’s chief, testifies before the committee, Anne Tyrrell, a spokesperson for Blackwater, said.”

I swear I haven’t any shares in Blackwater or Haliburton!

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