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Contract Workers Sacked in the Philippines

For years contractual workers at the Holcim cement plant in Davao have demanded regular employment, in line with Philippine law. Last year they filed a complaint with the Department of Labor and Employment.

But in March this year 140 contract workers were laid off, while non-union workers were offered new employment contracts.

Since then the workers have been picketing the factory, but in May they found out the owner of the plant - multinational cement giant LafargeHolcim - is planning on selling the factory to notoriously anti-union Filipino conglomerate San Miguel.

Trumped Up Wars

"Obey me or die!"
the orange-haired man threatens the world.
"My drones know you're home,
and my missiles don't miss.
I'm Commander in Chief, CinC for short.
I'll sink you into the sea, fry you crisp,
burn you to dust with the push of a button.
I'll overthrow your governments,
strangle your economies,
jail your refugees.
I'm the trumpet of doom,
I'll turn your land into a tomb!"

Thomas Ley and Peter Dutton

This is Thomas Ley.

In 1925 he ran for the federal seat of Barton for the Nationalists (a precursor to the Liberal Party). Ley attempted to win the seat by offering a £2,000 bribe to his Labor opponent, Fredrick McDonald, to withdraw from the race. McDonald instead publicly revealed the attempted bribe.

True to form, voters elected Ley with a large swing. McDonald challenged the result but mysteriously, and conveniently, disappeared without trace before the investigation could progress.

Grenfell Tower, Plus Two Years

Remember when 72 people burned to death in Grenfell Tower because of inadequate safety regulations? Remember how the survivors were given safe housing without being shunted off to temporary accommodation across the country where many of them might still be today?

Remember the condemnation and punishment of the slum landlords, many of whom once sat in the UK parliament before they were forced to resign in disgrace and lost their ill-gotten fortunes?

Trump Taxing the Middle Class

Trump's tariffs are a tax on middle class American consumers. The price of RC cola has risen 30% since the imposition of Trump's idiotic tariffs. For as long as I can remember, it was 99 cents. Now, it increased directly in proportion to Trump's tariffs. The same can be shown for countless other products. It is a tax on the average American that somewhat offsets the tax breaks Trump gave to the uber-wealthy. He's raised taxes on all the folks that voted for him.

Polish and Pakistani Workers Harassed by Hutchinson Ports

Transnational giant Hutchison Ports is punishing workers in Poland them for their union activity.

The National Section of Port Workers NSZZ Solidarność has asked us to build international support for justice for one of their organisers, Marek Szymczak, who was sacked for his union activism.

This company has also recently harassed workers for union activity in Pakistan. The same company, and the same union-busting activities.

Biden's Climate Plan

I'm finally sitting down and reading through Biden's climate plan, and it is really, really similar to Beto's. It was a smart move by Beto to get his climate plan out first, even though it wasn't really done, because it makes it look like everyone else is imitating him. (The exceptions to this are Jay Inslee, who imitates no one, and John Delaney, who's imitating Milton Friedman.)

Some highlights:

"Ensure the U.S. achieves a 100% clean energy economy and reaches net-zero emissions no later than 2050."

Environmental Caucus Party Policy Officer Part II

OK, to update people on how my campaign for Environmental Caucus Party Policy Officer went:

Most of the meeting was spent re-electing incumbent candidates who were running unopposed. By the time we finally got to the Party Policy Director race, we were almost at the end of the meeting. Rusty Hicks, Kimberly Ellis, and (I think) Daraka Larimore-Hall, the three main candidates for Party Chair, were all waiting outside for us to get out of the room so they could use it for the next event.

A Sign of Reconcilation

Yesterday WA police were being praised for their decision to permanently fly the Indigenous flag at police stations as a sign of reconciliation.

Also yesterday, Kearah Ronan, a six months pregnant Indigenous woman was arrested, strip searched and jailed because she was too sick to attend court and give evidence against her former partner. Kearah Ronan is a cousin of Ms Dhu, a 22 year old Indigenous woman who died in police custody after she was arrested for unpaid fines in 2014.

Attempted Suicides on Manus Island

Since the election about 30 detainees have attempted suicide on Manus Island. They are sent to Lorengau Hospital, who do not have the staff or facilities to cope. They have not seen one cent of the $21.5 million the government claims they spend on medical care for detainees on Manus and no one can explain where the money has gone.

What do you think we can expect now that the government have been given another three years and the man responsible for overseeing this fiasco has been reappointed with increased powers?

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