UK Newswire Archive
02-12-2010 09:15At approximately 8.15am a group of UEA students rushed into the council building of the University of East Anglia and began a peaceful occupation to protest the government’s plans to raise tuition fees and cut funding to higher education.
02-12-2010 08:48PRESS RELEASE
2 December 2010. For immediate release. No embargo.
Irish/ Australian international peace activist, Ciaron O'Reilly, referred to in Secret US cables exposed by Wikileaks, calls for Release of Bradley Manning
On a chilly Saturday afternoon on 27th of November, Oxford street shoppers
were distracted by the launch of London Rising Tide's sales and advertising
team's new product, Nothing(c).
We decided to mark the annual Buy Nothing Day this year by giving out a
thousand free samples of '˜Nothing' to the desperate shoppers scrabbling for the latest must-have item. On our stall we had Nothing for everyone: “ Nothing for Men, Nothing for Women, Nothing Lite, Nothing for Those who have Everything and Nothing - Now with even Less. A cheeky flyer explaining
the authenticity of our product and giving a link to the Buy Nothing Day website was given out along with the box of Nothing.
Half-way through the action on a hectic Oxford Street the security guards came to our sleek product launch with an intention to move us on, as apparently it is illegal to give out Nothing on Oxford Street. The police were quick to join the security and to avoid wasting our time we decided to visit shoppers on Carnaby street, where 'Nothing' found same rate of popularity.
The reaction of passers-by was generally very positive, from questions of was our action art to genuine interest of what our product was all about i.e. what are we trying to sell. Quite a few people even said that they will be giving our little box of '˜Nothing' to their loved ones for Christmas. Now that's a successful Buy Nothing Day action! The action was thought-provoking for passers-by, and much enjoyed by us.
Text on the flyer:
Certificate of Authenticity
Congratulations on choosing Nothing. Whether at today’s product launch you received Nothing ‘for Men’ or Nothing ‘for Women’, Nothing ‘Now with even Less’ or Nothing ‘Lite’ this certificate guarantees that the product you have in your hands is 100% genuine Nothing.
Consumer benefits of Nothing
We all know the joyous feeling we get when we buy something new and shiny… Nothing goes one step further. From designing to testing, market research to sales analysis we have brought you the perfect product, and as much as any other product, Nothing can provide you with:
We in the Nothing sales and advertising team have only your best interests at heart, and we hope that this product gives you hours of satisfaction. Should this product prove defective, damaging your mind, body or world, we will happily sell you another one.
The gift of Nothing
If you enjoy your free trial of Nothing, why not give Nothing as a gift to friends and family this Christmas? Get 50% off your next purchase of Nothing with this certificate. Do be aware however that just after you’ve received a Nothing Christmas gift, we’ll be launching the New and Improved Nothing… “now with even LESS”.
Nothing: for those who have everything.
Connect with other fans of Nothing on Twitter
When you get home tonight and unpack your bags, we hope it’s our little box of ‘Nothing’ that brings you the biggest smile.
Curious? Find out more:
02-12-2010 00:55During the protests yesterday the police went into a data gathering frenzy. From FIT teams searching and photographing occupying students in Oxford, to police arresting and processing 139 protesters for ‘breaching the peace’ in London, gathering intelligence has clearly been a key objective of police operations.
02-12-2010 00:46Hamley's of London have come under fire for plans to use live penguins as part of an in-store publicity stunt this Monday, to launch their events running up to Christmas.
there have been various promises, and big media stories based on no more than a sentence or two from a dodgy peer - or recent big stories based on a quote by housing minister grant schapps for example, but finally there are some bones on the story that the con-dem government is serious about removing brian haw's 10-year protest from parliament square.
parliament.uk have published a proposed "police reform and social responsibility bill' for consideration.
it is unclear whether the proposed legislation could go ahead without interfering with rights under the human rights act, but it's possible that human rights will be eroded by this government too, so the proposal is certainly a serious one.
part 3 section 141 of the new bill is called 'prohibited activities in the controlled area of parliament square' and it very specifically targets tents, or any structures designed or adapted for sleeping. it also avoids the pitfall that the 2005 socpa act met, by expliticly stating that the law can and will apply to any structures used or erected before the passing of the bill. (brian haw pointed out that the socpa law couldn't apply to him as he couldn't possibly give six days notice of the start of his protest as it started back in 2001, 5 years before the law!). the new law bans sleeping bags or any other items designed to facilitate sleeping.
the law also prohinits the use of any loudspeaker or amplifying equipment without permission - again, this is an area of socpa that brian has successfully challenged.
various promises to repeal socpa have been broken. gordon brown promised to do it within 100 days of taking office.
police have been very selective in their application of the socpa laws, often using it to harrass and intimidate brian and his supporters, while turning a blind eye to other major challenges. police didn't enforce socpa during the large scale sri lankan protests, and they also surprisingly failed to use it during the long occupation by the democracy village (eventually the village was evicted using westminster bye-laws instead).
at present, to my knowledge (apologies to anyone i have left out) there are two 24 hour continuous protests in parliament square. first, brian's anti-iraq war and anti-depleted uranium weapons protest, (although currently his supporters are holding the fort for his ten year long protest as he is in hospital across the river), and second, maria gallestegui's 'peace strike' protests, although she herself is currently opposite downing street as the 'white flag revolution' campaign against any attack on iran, and calling for the troops home from afghanistan.
but police, who have powers under socpa, have turned a blind eye to a dozen or more rough sleepers who have erected tents around the edge of the square, and politicians see the "mess" of tents and are easily persuaded by the apparent simplicity and reasonableness of legislation like this.
but this bill effectively outlaws a 24-hour one-person protest, and therefore would appear to infringe the rights of that one person, through sleep deprivation. the law looks so precisely constructed to remove brian haw, it stops him from using a megaphone, it stops him sleeping there, it provides the court with the means to first fine him, then remove his tent and megaphone, and finally to ban him from the square - these are all the precise legal issues that have been fought over for years, including the still open issue that the seizure of his banners on 23rd may 2006 was in fact unlawful and they should be returned.
now, brian has lost many supporters over the years, and although i wrote countless indymedia reports in support of him over the years, he has become distant, so i know that many in the activist community see him as an irrelevance, but there are two points i'd like to make.
first, i am reminded of an r.d. laing quote that "insanity is the only sane response to an insane society", and while people go about their normal lives as their government rains bombs down on civilians (people like you and me) abroad, then perhaps the sanest of people are the ones who scream, shout, cajole, and ask over and over "what are you doing about it?". brian's frustration and anger with the apathy and ignorance of passers-by, other activists, the police and the politicians, has lost him support and friends, but maybe he's the sane one in this context after all.
second, a right lost for one person is an erosion of all our rights. why the fuck can't we hold 24-hour protests and shout and harangue our MPs given their spineless, corrupt, undemocratic, abuses of power? do we really want to see some snivelling privileged peer get away with contructing a law merely to remove a sight that offends his personal view of how his town square should look, while he votes to carry on bombing the hell out of civilians and destroying their town squares in distant lands?
whatever people's views of brian and others, i hope that if this law gets anywhere close to passing, we will see protests and direct challenges like those against socpa but on an even larger scale. protest is our right, and we should be able to do it wherever we like and for however long we like. if we want to give up our normal lives to peacefully protest to bring soldiers home and stop the killing, we should be allowed to sleep on the job.the people targetted by this new law have given up everything because they believe human life is more important than a cosy home, three good meals a day, or any of the comforts of modern life.
this law is an assault on everyone's rights.
incidentally, also like socpa, the overall law seems to be a mish-mash of unsavoury bits of legislation under one bizarre banner. further down, section 151 appears to be the law enshrining the "letting off war criminals who have committed genocide or other crimes against humanity, especially if they are israeli" act. this section prevents private prosecutions and so, citizen's arrests, and embarrassment for the government when foreign fascists come to visit.
watch this law - keep an eye on its progress, and fight it. it is an assault on justice.
01-12-2010 22:43Wednesday 1st December 2010
London being the capital city of England holds all the main focuses and lobby groups for industries which use and exploit animals in their day-to-day business; be it the vivisection industry, meat trade, fur being peddled as part of the major fashion cities, those associated with bloodsports, head offices for many of the racing companies and is the centre of power in terms of making progress. For this reason, the city needs a radical presence of activists using a diverse method of grassroots tactics to focus on these companies, show them the opposition to the wrongs they are involved in and effectively push for change.
01-12-2010 22:30Top officials of the Obama administration have threatened criminal prosecution of WikiLeaks for its latest release of secret US diplomatic documents. Attorney General Eric Holder, at a press conference Monday, declared, “There’s a predicate for us to believe that crimes have been committed here and we are in the process of investigating those crimes.”
01-12-2010 22:23Last night the Chamber of Deputies approved the Gelmini reform. 307 votes in favour, 252 against, 7 abstained. The reform will be passed over to the Senate on 9th December for its 3rd reading, then to the Chamber of Deputies again for the final vote.
01-12-2010 22:22Student walkouts against tuition fees and education cuts on the 24th and 30th November have mobilised tens of thousands, and sent shivers down the spines of the Con-Dem politicians out to wreck our education.
On Thursday 9th December MPs will vote on increasing tuition fees.
This is IT people! The day has come!
The date for the parliamentary vote on fee increases has been announced!
9 DECEMBER 2010
We all need to start mobilizing, organizing, publicizing... the works!
Talk to your student unions, guilds, societies so you can come on a coach down to London and make some noise at Parliament!
They wanted big society? They'll see big society!
Bring your friends, family, lovers, brothers, carers.
Bring your nan and your neighbours, bring noise and creativity!
NO THANK YOU!
01-12-2010 21:58Demonstration front of The Oxford Union has been cancelled as the speech will not be taking place.
on 2nd Dec 2010 5pm to 8pm
01-12-2010 21:43We are a peaceful and non-violent occupation. We see ourselves as part of a broad and united movement that has sucessfully mobilised against the ConDem attack on education and the rest of the public sector.
01-12-2010 21:24Amazon took less than a day to bow to pressure and stopped hosting Wikileaks. The best response is to boycott Amazon in response.
Several news channels have reported that MPs are to vote on the raise of tuition fees on Thursday 9 December.
call out for protest:Thursday, December 9 · 12:00am - 11:30pm
Student walkouts against tuition fees and education cuts on the 24th and 30th November have mobilised tens of thousands, and sent shivers down the spines of the Con-Dem politicians out to wreck our education.
On Thursday 9th December MPs will vote on increasing tuition fees.
NUS has promised to build a national day of action with a lobby of Parliament, and representatives of university occupations and campaigns have called for parents, workers and trade unionists to do everything in their power to join in.
We will let the Con Dems know that education is a right and that we are prepared to fight for it!
01-12-2010 21:05Rockets Strongly Hit Kalso Occupation Base
Katyusha Rockets Aim US Base in Kirkuk
Katyusha Rockets Felt in the Green Zone
Roadside Bomb Targets US Oil Tanker
US Occupation Wheel Destroyed in Bakuba
01-12-2010 20:49While secrets from WikiLeaks were splashed all over the American newspapers, I couldn’t help but wonder: What if China had a WikiLeaker and we could see what its embassy in Washington was reporting about America? I suspect the cable would read like this: