Saturday, 31 March 2012

Petrol crisis 'is our Thatcher moment', Tory MPs reportedly tell party members

What did we say a couple of days back?
Stating the obvious maybe, but the tories are spoiling for a fight with Unite to make cheap
political capital with scare stories about unions holding the country to ransom and leaving people to die.

And they have fucked it up before it even got off the ground. If these people werent responsible for
running our lives, it could be funny.

THEY DECLARED THIS CLASS WAR - WE HAVE TO END IT -FOR GOOD - TAKE THE WAR TO THE ENEMY

- NOT A DINNER PARTY

Petrol crisis 'is our Thatcher moment', Tory MPs reportedly tell party members

Unite accuses ministers of 'spoiling for a fight' after memo from MPs emerges comparing situation with 1980s miners' strike
Petrol pumps
'In order to defeat the coming fuel drivers' strike, we want supplies of petrol stockpiled,' Tory MPs reportedly told party associations. Photograph: Martin Godwin for the Guardian
Tory MPs have compared the panic over fuel supplies to the 1980s miners' strike and urged party members to "humiliate" the unions by stockpiling petrol, it has been reported.
In a private message from MPs to constituency associations, seen by the Daily Telegraph's Charles Moore, members were told: "This is our Thatcher moment."
The message reportedly continues: "In order to defeat the coming miners' strike, [Thatcher] stockpiled coal. When the strike came, she weathered it, and the Labour party, tarred by the strike, was humiliated. In order to defeat the coming fuel drivers' strike, we want supplies of petrol stockpiled. Then, if the strike comes, we will weather it, and Labour, in hock to the Unite union, will be blamed."
In his blog, Moore comments: "There is a key difference which ministers have not spotted. When Mrs Thatcher piled up the coal at power stations until the strike began in 1984, she was not inconveniencing the public.
"In 2012, the coalition is trying to press-gang the public, without saying so, into its political battles. All those people queuing on the forecourts were pawns in a government-organised blame-game."
He added: "No doubt many people reading this column are happy that Ed Miliband's and Ed Balls's dependence on a large trade union should be exposed, but very few, I suspect, appreciate being made into mugs. (And the political effect, of course, is the opposite of that intended: Unite now looks virtuous, and is much better placed to win its demands.)"
Len McCluskey, the general secretary of Unite, said the government's "posturing" was scuppering chances for an end to the tanker drivers' dispute, which has caused motorists to queues at petrol pumps across the UK and stockpile fuel in order to pre-empt any strike that could lead to a fuel shortage. "We call on the government to come clean on its whole approach to this dispute," said McCluskey. "Is it acting as an honest broker, or is it spoiling for a fight in order to get itself out of the political hole its class-focussed economic mismanagement has put it in?
"Over the last few days its every move has been designed to whip up unnecessary tension at the expense of the public. Ministers knew all along that a strike could not possibly be less than seven days away even were it to be called - that is the law. Yet they panicked the nation all the way to the petrol pumps because they imagined it would boost them in the polls.
"The British people know that this posturing and positioning is poisoning the prospects for an early resolution to the dispute.
The government has been accused of mishandling of the crisis by Labour MPs, who called for the resignation of Cabinet Office ministerFrancis Maude. Maude has faced a barrage or criticism from fire experts since advising motorists earlier this week to store jerry cans of fuel in their garages.
Calls for his resignation came after a woman suffered serious burns while transferring petrol into a jerry can in her home.
The government has since changed its advice to motorists after Unite, the union representing 2,000 fuel tanker drivers, ruled out the threat of strikes over Easter. After days of urging motorists to fill up if their tanks dropped below two-thirds full, the Department for Energy and Climate Change said there was no need to queue on petrol forecourts.
"There is no urgency to top up your tank, a strike will not happen over Easter," it said.
But with Unite stressing it retained the right to call industrial action if talks, expected to start next week, break down, No 10 stressed the threat was not yet over.
"It remains vital we take the necessary steps to keep the country safe in case there is a strike," a spokesman said.
The move followed more panic-buying at garages across the country yesterday and the revelation that petrol sales increased by almost 172% on Thursday while sales of diesel were up by almost 77%.
David Cameron said his heart went out to the woman who was burnt, describing it as a "desperate" incident. Speaking at No 10 shortly after he chaired another meeting of the government's Cobra emergency contingencies committee, the prime minister welcomed Unite's decision and called on the union to engage constructively in talks expected to start next week at conciliation service Acas.

Friday, 30 March 2012

George Galloway humbles Labour in Bradford

RESPECT Statement on George Galloway Election Victory - "The Bradford Spring"

Thursday, 29 March 2012

The Bradford Spring: A stunning election victory for the people of Bradford West

http://www.respectparty.org/2012/03/stunning-election-victory-for-people-of.html

This Thursday, 29th March, the people of Bradford West sent a clear message to the leaders of  Labour, the Liberals and the Tories: "You can no longer take our votes for granted."

George won 18,341 votes beating Labour by over 10,000 votes.

In a stunning by-election victory, won over less than three short weeks, Respect's George Galloway has shaken up the political 'establishment.'  Labour's is vote down, the Tory is vote down and the Lib-Dems are reduced to the fringe. Surely the austerity agenda of the Con-Dem Coalition or the 'austerity-lite' of New Labour fails utterly to address the concerns of everyday people.

The Respect Party intends to take George's victory further in the local elections in May - Bradford deserves Respect in the council as well as at Westminster.

You can help us by joining the Respect Party today.


George Galloway, Respect: 18,341 (55.9%)

Imran Hussain, Labour: 8,201 (25%)

Jackie Whiteley, Conservative: 2,746 (8.4%)

Jeanette Sunderland, Lib Dem: 1,505 (4.6%)

Other: 2,021 (6.2%)

Turnout: 50.8%

Majority: 10,140

GREEK CONCENTRATION CAMPS FOR ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS

GREEK CONCENTRATION CAMPS FOR ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS THE Greek Assistant Minister for Public Order M Othonas said on Wednesday morning that the first concentration camp for alleged ‘illegal immigrants’ could be ‘ready to function within 30 to 45 days’.

Last Monday the Minister for Public Order Michalis Chrysochoides spoke to a meeting of the ten Greek Regions and demanded that they would supply him with three locations, preferably ex-Greek Army military compounds and camps, so that 30 concentration camps be set up throughout Greece.

Chrysochoides said that this matter was not going to be discussed in the Vouli (Greek parliament) but it will be imposed through a Government Order.

If this Greek government plan goes ahead, then the first purpose designed concentration camp for ‘illegal immigrants’ would be operational at the very time of a general election due for either the end of April or beginning of May.

According to Chrysochoides these concentration camps will be ‘under the supervision’ of the Ministry for Public Order but they will operate with private security guards.

He said that he had 250 million euros to spend on camps for the 2011-13 period and he is negotiating for more money to fund new camps in 2014-20.

According to the Greek police, these concentration camps would have a triple three-metre-high fence installed with CCTV. 150 armed Greek police guards would be stationed on the walls, but the ‘internal’ running of the camps would be carried out by 300 private security guards. Camps will be divided in four sections each holding 250 persons.

There has been fierce resistance to the concentration camp schemes by local farmers and people living in nearby villages and cities. Chrysochoides arrogantly stated that ‘laws are voted upon and they are valid for all citizens.’ But no such law on concentration camps has been voted upon by the Vouli.

These concentration camps are meant not just for ‘illegal immigrants’ but also for the thousands of youth and workers fighting against the EC-IMF-imposed bankers’ government in Greece.

In every mass demonstration hundreds are arrested by the armed riot police. Could be that the Greek government intend to inaugurate the privately run concentration camps, where most likely Greek Law would be waived, with arrested youth and workers ‘pending trial’.

Great Photos from Spanish General Strike - Riots, Resistance and Class Struggle


Violence erupts on Spain's streets as thousands clash with police in 24-hour general strike

      Riot police took to the streets of Spain today as protesters burned bins, vandalised shops and attacked officers during a one day nationwide general strike.
      Spaniards angry with having the eurozone's highest unemployment rate refused to go to work in protest at further crushing austerity measures being brought in by the new centre-right Popular Party government.
      In Madrid more than 1,000 members of the National Police's mobile anti-disturbance units patrolled the streets on foot and in armoured personnel carriers. 

      Blaze: Firemen try to extinguish burning waste containers after clashes during the national strike in Barcelona
      Blaze: Firemen try to extinguish burning waste containers after clashes during the national strike in Barcelona
      Running battle: A man moves away from a burning trash bin during riots in Barcelona
      Running battle: A man moves away from a burning trash bin during riots in Barcelona
      Running battle: Firefighters fought back the flames in Barcelona after protesters set fire to rubbish bins in the city
      Protest: Tyres were burnt in Burgos as boisterous picket lines formed across the country
      Protest: Tyres were burnt in Burgos as boisterous picket lines formed across the country
      In Barcelona there were several incidents, the worst being an attack on a bingo hall in the early hours in which troublemakers used the strike as a cover to loot €2,250 from the cash register. Bins were set on fire as small groups battled police.
      At the city's El Prat international airport there were angry scenes when travellers who checked last night that their flights would not be affected arrived to find they had been cancelled early in the morning.
      They then found it difficult to get back into Barcelona because there were few taxis or buses.
      The country's two major trade unions, the Socialist led General Workers' Union - UGT - and the Communist dominated Workers' Commissions - CCOO - which called the protest action, claimed that more than 70 per cent of the work force was out.
      Brutal: Picketers clashed with police in the northern city of Santander during the 24 hour strike
      Brutal: Picketers clashed with police in the northern city of Santander during the 24 hour strike
      A police officer arrests a woman during a national strike in Madrid
      Protesters, first, third and fourth left, are grabbed by police agents in civilian clothes in Madrid
      Force: Police arrested a woman in Madrid (left) as undercover police buster activists in the same city (right)
      Kung Fu: A demonstrator is pushed by riot police in Pamplona, northern Spain, during the strike
      Kung Fu: A demonstrator is pushed by riot police in Pamplona, northern Spain, during the strike
      It said virtually all workers at Renault, SEAT, Volkswagen and Ford car factories around Spain, and at other industrial, mining and port facilities, honoured the strike during the overnight shift.
      Picketers tried to block wholesale markets in Madrid and other cities and commuter train service were disrupted in Barcelona.
      Outside Atocha, one of Madrid's main commuter and long-distance rail stations, picketers waved red union flags and blew shrill whistles as police looked on.
      Some picketers tried to convince a coffee shop owner to join them, and slapped a pro-strike sticker on his glass window.
      Angry: A bonfire was set up outside Barcelona's Stock Exchange Market during the strike
      Angry: A bonfire was set up outside Barcelona's Stock Exchange Market during the strike
      A riot police officer protects a shopping center with the showcase windows covered in stickers calling for a general strike to protest against the government's tough new labor reforms and cutbacks in Pamplona
      Riot policemen arrest a demonstrator following clashes during a national strike on March 29, 2012 in Barcelona
      Bubbling over: Security was high in Pamplona (left) and Barcelona (right) where riot police flooded the streets
      Protection: Riot police officers stood in front of Pamplona's El Corte Ingles as protesters took to the streets
      Protection: Riot police officers stood in front of Pamplona's El Corte Ingles as protesters took to the streets
      A Molotov cocktail was thrown at a police car in the eastern city of Murcia, and Spanish National TV showed footage of police in Barcelona on horseback accompanying buses trying to leave a parking garage, and scuffling with a picketer.
      Regional TV stations in Andalusia in the south, Catalonia in the northeast and Madrid were also forced off the air because of the strike.
      But with the exception of those isolated incidents in which 58 pickets were arrested and nine, including six, officers received minor injuries, peace prevailed.
      Observers noted that in a country where the jobless rate stands at 23 per cent, and almost one in two young people are out of work, many simply did not want to lose a day's wage.
      Massive: The government tried to play down the amount of people attending the protests, but activists filled the streets of Seville in this demo
      Massive: The government tried to play down the amount of people attending the protests, but activists filled the streets of Seville in this demo
      Protesters shout slogans during a general strike in central Madrid
      Masked protesters throw stones during the riots occured in Barcelona
      Anger: Protesters shout slogans in Madrid (left) as masked protesters throw stones in Barcelona (right)
      Mega: Protesters stretched as far as the eye could see in the northern city of Coruna
      Mega: Protesters stretched as far as the eye could see in the northern city of Coruna
      The government dismissed protesters claims that the strike was 'massive' though by saying its impact was 'clearly inferior' to the last one, held under the Socialists in September, 2010.
      Cristina Diaz, the Popular Party's director-general of Interior Policy, said there was a sparse following of the strike call in the public, commercial and banking sectors, and claimed that in most work places normality ruled.
      But another factor believed to have played a part in keeping people at work, said observers, was fear of losing their jobs.
      New measures brought in by the party which pledged in the run-up to last autumn's general election to create more jobs have made it easier for bosses to sack staff. 
      No messing: Police stood guard outside El Corte Ingles' department store in Coruna
      No messing: Police stood guard outside El Corte Ingles' department store in Coruna
      A protester argues with a older man during a demonstration in Barcelona
      Protesters hold a doll depecting Spain's Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy during a demonstration in Sevilla
      Anger: A protester argues with an older man in Barcelona (left) as protesters hold a doll of Spain's Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy in Seville (right)
      Grabbed: Police stopped a protester in Madrid during the union-sponsored general strike
      Grabbed: Police stopped a protester in Madrid during the union-sponsored general strike
      The piece of legislation also trims wages and modifies other working conditions by citing concerns over, for example, productivity.
      The idea behind the decree is to make Spain more competitive once the rest of Europe recovers and employers are less wary of hiring.
      The demonstrations come the day before the government will serve up even more austerity pain with a budget to feature tens of billions of euros in deficit-reduction measures.
      The government's cuts are designed to help Spain in its struggles to satisfy both the European Union and the international investors who determine the country's borrowing costs in the international debt markets.
      They will therefore have a lot of say in whether Spain will follow Greece, Ireland and Portugal in needing a bailout.


      Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2122237/Violence-erupts-Spains-streets-thousands-clash-police-24-hour-general-strike.html#ixzz1qa6LTa9m

      Thursday, 29 March 2012

      George Galloway and RESPECT Decimate New Labour in Bradford West historic by-election victory

      IN OUR OPINION IT IS CLEARLY FOR THE BEST THAT GEORGE STAYS SOUTH OF THE BORDER IN ENGLAND, WHERE HE ACTUALLY DOES SOME GOOD,
      INSTEAD OF BEING A STOOGE FOR UNIONISTS AND NEW LABOUR BACK HOME IN SOON TO BE INDEPENDENT SCOTLAND - NOT A DINNER PARTY

      George Galloway wins 

      Bradford West 

      by-election

      George Galloway



      RELATED STORIES

      Respect Party candidate George Galloway has taken the Bradford West parliamentary seat from Labour, winning the by-election by 10,100 votes.
      Mr Galloway, expelled by Labour in 2003, said it was the "most sensational victory" in by-election history. He received 18,341 votes - a 56% share.
      He said his victory represented a "total rejection" of the major parties.
      At the 2010 General Election, Labour's Marsha Singh, who resigned on health grounds, won with a majority of 5,763 .
      The party had held the West Yorkshire seat since 1974, except for a brief period in the 1980s when the sitting MP defected to the SDP.
      Labour candidate Imran Hussein came second with 8,201 votes as the party's share of the vote was 20% down on its 2010 figure.
      'Bradford spring'
      Conservative candidate Jackie Whiteley was third, with 2,746 votes. Jeanette Sunderland, of the Liberal Democrats, secured 1,505 votes.
      Mr Galloway, who co-founded the anti-war Respect Party after being expelled by Labour because of his opposition to the Iraq war, said the result represented the "Bradford Spring".
      He said the "mammoth majority" and "mammoth vote" represented a "total rejection" of the three major parties in the British political system.
      Mr Galloway urged his former party to turn away "decisively" from the course set by former Prime Minister Tony Blair.

      START QUOTE

      It is Labour that have been wiped out tonight - it must be a huge humiliation for Ed Miliband and his team”
      Kris HopkinsConservative MP
      He said Labour "must stop imagining that working people and poor people have no option but to support them if they hate the Tory and Liberal Democrat coalition partners.
      "They have to stop supporting illegal, bloody, costly foreign wars because one of the reasons why they were so decisively defeated this evening is that the public don't believe that they have atoned for their role in the invasion and occupation of other people's countries and the drowning of those countries in blood."
      Mr Galloway urged his former colleagues to "stop taking their supporters for granted" and "unite the coalition" it once had.
      The Respect politician was mobbed by supporters as he left the count.
      Labour's candidate did not make a speech after the results were announced, but Labour MP Toby Perkins said the Bradford West result was "desperately disappointing".
      He attributed Mr Galloway's success partly to his celebrity status from having appeared on TV reality show Celebrity Big Brother which he said had been "a very significant factor".
      Mr Perkins said: "I think frankly there wasn't a lot the other parties could do about it. [Voters had] seen him on Big Brother.
      "They wanted him on their streets and now they've got it, and let's hope that he lives up to the promise that he's made to them and actually delivers on the optimism that surrounds his campaign."
      'Lone, loud voice'
      A Liberal Democrat spokesman said the party was "clearly disappointed" with the result.
      "While we were always expecting to fight for fourth in this election, it is quite astonishing for Labour to lose this seat and the Conservatives see such a drop," he said.
      Kris Hopkins, the Conservative MP for nearby Keighley, said his party had not won Bradford West for 42 years, so "there were not high expectations".
      "It is Labour that have been wiped out tonight. It must be a huge humiliation for Ed Miliband and his team," he added.
      BBC Yorkshire political editor Len Tingle said there had effectively been two campaigns in the seat - one with the three main UK parties focused on the economy and jobs, and the other run by Mr Galloway which had his party's anti-war message at its forefront.

      BBC political correspondent Chris Mason said there had been a feeling that Mr Galloway might split the left-wing vote, but he had not been expected to defeat Labour.
      Our correspondent said the margin of the victory was "extraordinary", adding that it was not simply a matter of the Labour Party losing to Mr Galloway but "being thumped" by him and his party.
      He predicted that, once in the House of Commons, Mr Galloway would be "a lone voice but a very loud one".
      It is the second time Mr Galloway has upset the political odds - he pulled off one of the results of the 2005 General Election when he overturned a large Labour majority in London's Bethnal Green and Bow to become the Respect Party's first MP.
      His win in Bradford West is a remarkable comeback after disappointing showings at the 2010 General Election and the 2011 Scottish Parliament elections.
      The outcome was being closely watched by all the parties as a snapshot of voter opinion, following last week's Budget and ahead of council and mayoral elections next month.
      The Conservatives came second in the constituency in 2010, on a 65% turnout, ahead of the Liberal Democrats in third. Respect was fifth in 2010.
      Prior to Bradford West, there had been five by-elections in England and Scotland since the start of the current Parliament - Oldham and Saddleworth, Barnsley Central, Leicester South, Inverclyde and Feltham and Heston - with Labour retaining all five seats.
      The full result (with vote share and change since 2010 in brackets):
      George Galloway (Respect) 18,341 (55.89%, +52.83%)
      Imran Hussain (Lab) 8,201 (24.99%, -20.36%)
      Jackie Whiteley (C) 2,746 (8.37%, -22.78%)
      Jeanette Sunderland (LD) 1,505 (4.59%, -7.08%)
      Sonja McNally (UKIP) 1,085 (3.31%, +1.31%)
      Dawud Islam (Green) 481 (1.47%, -0.85%)
      Neil Craig (D Nats) 344 (1.05%)
      Howling Laud Hope (Loony) 111 (0.34%)