UK Newswire Archive
Taken from: http://ratcliffeontrial.org/2010/12/day-8-%E2%80%93-morning-session-former-mp-alan-simpson-testifies-in-support-of-the-ratcliffe-defendants/
After two days' court time snowed off, we were back in today for a packed schedule, with two politicians testifying to the failure of government to tackle climate change.
Alan Simpson took the stand for the morning session and pointed the finger at the Big Six energy companies in the UK as key culprits pushing their profit-driven agenda at the expense of the planet.
Alan Simpson was MP for Nottingham South from 1992 until May 2010 when he "decided to resign my seat in order to devote my time to work on climate change and renewable energy policies." In his testimony he detailed how E.ON, the German energy giant that controls Ratcliffe on Soar power station, had attempted to undermine community controlled renewable projects in Germany at EU policy level - and been flat-out rejected by the EU court. Simpson described the power and resources of Big Six lobbying teams to "defend regimes that have as few restrictions as possible...If you want to change government policies then you have to stand up to big vested interests." The government didn't have the courage, and ordinary people not the resources, to stand up to the "cartel" of energy companies.
In response to the prosecution's endeavour to hold up the Climate Change Act as evidence of government response, Simpson pointed out that the UK was 3rd from the bottom of the European Renewable Energy League in 2008 saying that the Act "didn't change reality on the ground - our practical performance in renewable energy was only marginally better than our performance in the Eurovision Song Contest."
In support of the defendants he commented in his written testimony that "Climate Change protestors are in my view absolutely right to argue that we cannot continue with a ‘business as usual' approach to UK carbon emissions without threatening the very prospects of existence for future generations."
This morning the jury heard a local, established politician testify to the democratic deficit in the current system that allows the Big Six energy companies to maintain control in their pursuit of maximum profits. Will they begin to see the necessity of political protest and direct action in the face of unabated climate change?
Taken from: http://ratcliffeontrial.org/2010/12/day-8-%E2%80%93-morning-session-former-mp-alan-simpson-testifies-in-support-of-the-ratcliffe-defendants/
Taken from http://ratcliffeontrial.org/2010/12/day-8-leader-of-the-uk-green-party-explains-the-eu-democratic-deficit/
This afternoon the much anticipated video-link with Caroline Lucas commenced. Former Green MEP from 1999 - 2010, and current MP for Brighton Pavilion, Lucas had a wealth of experience with the reality of the ‘democratic deficit'. The leader of the UK Green Party began her testimony by addressing the issue of targets and how the current targets set do not match up to the scale of the crisis we are facing. She stated a 90% reduction of emissions would be necessary to have any hope of stopping the global temperature rise at 2 degrees, with the current targets only as high as 80%.
In terms of her EU experience, Lucas aired her frustrations at the large amount of unelected power - both from the Commission, which has the power of initiation despite being unelected, and the equally undemocratic power given to corporate lobbyists, whom she claimed had better access to those in power than the elected officials themselves. This included, for examples, energy companies who lobbied against measures to reduce emissions, thwarting any attempts to improve the situation.
She also discussed the failure of the EU to prioritise realistic ways to reduce emissions, instead primarily focussing on flawed schemes such as carbon trading, which she stated was open to large amounts of abuse.
In regard to the British Parliament, the complete lack of interest in the climate was clear when Lucas stated that a recent debate on the Cancun Climate Summit had only been attended by 12 MPs, with the Prime Minister failing to attend the summit in favour of the World Cup bid. It was evident from Lucas's testimony that at both a national and supranational level, politicians were failing in their duty to protect the public from the effects of climate change.
The trial will continue from Monday, with more experts and defendants giving evidence.
03-12-2010 10:58This provides a link to an article which reviews the increasing use of Biomass in UK Electricity Production
03-12-2010 10:44In the week that Morocco has announced a new tourism plan that includes developing tourist sites in occupied Western Sahara, campaigners in London have launched a new campaign under the banner: "Morocco: sun, sea, sand and torture”
Wikileaks have been under assault from many angles over the last few days.
03-12-2010 09:18One of the women who filed charges against Julian Assange is Anna Ardin. She stood in the elections to the community council for the social democrats and she is a public person who should be examined. So I'll publish her name.
03-12-2010 08:52Call out to demo outside surgery of Sarah Teather MP (Lib Dem for Brent Central) and Minister for Children and Families. Previously very supportive of axing all fees, Sarah Teather has become suddenly very quiet. Local residents want her to vote against raising tuition fees and keep her pre-election pledge. 5.30pm this evening in Cricklewood, NW London.
03-12-2010 08:42Ciaronj O'Reilly is a long time member of the anarcho pacifist Catholic Worker movement. Over the last 20 years he has participated in 3 plowshare communities http://www.craftech.com/~dcpledge/brandywine/plow/ on 3 continents - B52 Bomber in New York (eve of the gulf War '91), uranium mining equipment at Jabiluka Mine site NT, Australia '98 (part of a series of NVDA that closed the mine) and a U.S. warplane at Shannon Airport Ireland '03 (in the lead up to the invasion of Iraq).
03-12-2010 02:47Contact details for Ministers involved in the proposed cuts
03-12-2010 01:22plus the first episode of our chilling three part Christmas ghost story
Dialect is a weekly Bristol (UK) podcast produced by volunteers. This current affairs and arts magazine programme is recorded at our Queen's Square studios and posted for download every week on Thursday evening/Friday morning. Want to volunteer? Volunteering Bristol, Royal Oak House, Royal Oak Avenue, Bristol. BS1 4GB Tel: 0117 989 7733. Listen on air: 93.2 FM (BCFM), Sundays at 12 noon. Or listen live on the internet at http://www.bcfm.org.uk/
TIMINGS ON THE MP3 FILE
00:00 - Introduction
01:00 - Sanet Abood from Bristol Gaza Link
05:30 - Low Dose & Animal Trap
10:00 - Julius Abraham from The Jam club at Day & Night club in St Nicholas Street
16:00 - Richard Cray produces comic podcasts http://comedy365.co.uk/ http://404media.blogspot.com/
30:00 - Anthea Page goes to Gorangoza National Park in Mozambique
39:15 - Our chilling Christmas ghost story extract - The Haunting of Toby Jugg
47:30 - Tim Burroughs poem about Palestine called In Death's Valley
50:15 - Jeff Sparkes' What's On Guide
54:00 - Frenchay UWE campus Core24 student occupation
55:00 - Credits
Presenters: Michaela Dennis & John Peters-Coleman
Reporters: Anthea Page & Tony Gosling
Studio Engineer: Michael Noyce
Producer: Tony Gosling
News from the occupation in the Great Hall, Trent Buildng, University of Nottingham.
News from the Occupation
Latin and Ball Room Society enjoy pedal powered class! While the University failed to address Latin and Ball Room Society’s concerns that there is no electricity being supplied to the Great Hall, the peaceful occupiers were only too happy to supply the impressive dancers with pedal powered speakers! Latin and Ball Room Society can now be added to the list of student groups that have successfully enjoyed the space being occupied by Nottingham Student’s Against Fee’s and Cuts. Educational activities and events taking place in the occupied Great Hall Yesterday saw Dance Society use the space, while also borrowing speakers, and since the occupation began a number of seminars and lectures from the departments of Sociology, Politics, Critical Theory, French, Spanish, Portuguese and Latin America have taken place. In addition, two Venezuela activities visited the occupation to express solidarity and support. Joel Linares and Marco Manresa sang Venezuelan protest songs while also sharing their experiences of student and community organising in Venezuela. The workshop with the Venezuelan’s was referred to by many as “inspirational” as the two explained how students were instrumental in the attainment of free higher education in Venezuela. While the occupiers are busy facilitating learning through seminars, lectures, discussions, workshops and other educational events and activities, the registrar, Paul Geatrix, interrupted a Politics lecturer to make his brief, false and ineffective statement which has been officially responded to by the occupiers. Billy Brag supports Great Hall Occupation While performing in Rock City, the rock musician and activist Billy Bragg commended the Great Hall occupation. Two members of the occupation were allowed into Rock City in order to flyer the concert-goers about the occupation. If Billy Bragg is able, he will visit the occupation on Saturday the 4th of December. This is also the day of the joint demonstration between the University of Nottingham, Trent, college and school students across Nottingham. It has been suggested that the students wanting to fight the cuts, come to the Great Hall for a meeting to discuss how to further unite and organise.
He and many of his war criminal entourage seem to be hiding in Sri Lankan embassy.
How they got transported there or when is unknown.
If he is in there then the only thing that matters is how they escape to airport.
02-12-2010 22:22Top public sector union pissed and confused!
Below is an email sent at 11.36pm yesterday to all Unison South West branches by the union's regional office bureaucrat Joanne Kaye. The timing of the email suggests she may have been pissed. The tone confirms it. While the language - LIES!! ATTACKS!!! DAILY MAIL!!! - is absurd and frankly embarrassing coming from the UK's largest public sector union. If this is the best they can do ... Well, really ...
Joanne says two things of vague note:
1. "we are committed to fighting these cuts and not getting sidetracked by sectarian disputes."
Fine. So come on then Joanne list what the fuck it is you're actually doing beyond firing off demented emails when you're pissed out of your head. Come on we're all ears ...
2. "Any branch is entitled to affiliate as long as they are able to verify the constitution of BADACA and the rights and responsibilities that affiliation involves."
That comrades is a victory. Two weeks ago the neo-liberal apologists of Unison South West were refusing branches the right to affiliation to the anti-cuts movement.
Onwards and upwards comrades ... All out on 9 December ... Occupy Parliament ... Seize the council chamber ... Tar and feather Dave Prentis, the useless Labour sell-out ...
From: Kaye, Joanne [mailto:J.kaye1@Unison.co.uk]
Sent: 01 December 2010 23:16
It is with regret that I have to bring to your attention serious attacks made on this union by an organization known as Bristol Citizens, made worse by the circulation of these attacks by the Bristol Anti Cuts Alliance.
Bristol Anti-Cuts Alliance circulate a web publication by Bristol Citizens on a regular basis – below are some of the extracts referring to UNISON:
Strong rumours are circulating that Bristol 's Unison Health Branch, that looks after workers in hospitals, clinics and healthcare in Bristol , have been instructed not to join the Bristol and District Anti-cuts Alliance by the union's regional office.
Lucky Unison members this week received a glossy publication - 'the six hundred thousand' - about "600,000 public service jobs at risk".
The introduction by Unison President Angela Lynes cheerily explains how she "wants to make a difference" before cutting to the chase and announcing "Unison disagrees with the depth of the cuts".
This explains a lot. Presumably then, Unison members who are losing their jobs, experiencing pay cuts or having their terms and conditions rewritten without any protest whatsoever from Unison are simply victims of cuts that aren't too deep in Unison's view? Unfortunately the union hasn't, as yet, published their list of unacceptable "too deep" cuts and acceptable "shallow" cuts. Why not?
Rounding-up the publication, Unison General Secretary, Dave Prentis - a man so out of his depth his membership should club together to buy him a rubber ring and armbands for Christmas - supplies a rambling conclusion to this maifesto of capitulation. "We'll stand together," he says, "to protect not just our members but the vital services you provide."
Alas, Dave neglects to say how he intends to do any of this. Does he have a strategy for his million members?
UNISON Strong rumours are circulating that Bristol 's Unison Health Branch, that looks after workers in hospitals, clinics and healthcare in Bristol , have been instructed not to join the Bristol and District Anti-cuts Alliance by the union's regional office.
CORRECTION: UNISON Last week's story claiming the country's largest public sector union, Unison had prevented its Bristol Healthcare branch from joining the local Anti-cuts Alliance was inaccurate. The truth is that the salaried bureaucrats of the union's South West Regional Branch office have instructed all their local branches not to affiliate to any Anti-cuts Alliance anywhere. Instead, the union think the best strategy available to fight the gravest assault on the welfare state and collective values ever is to hire an open-top bus and drive it around Bristol waving a few placards containing some non-offensive messages of protest carefully drafted by Ian Ducat in consultation with his Labour Party friends and family.
We first became aware of the circulation of these lies and attacks on our union by an email sent by Bristol Anti Cuts Alliance which was sent to all its supporters on 29th November 2010. This is reprinted below
Dear Supporter We regularly forward to you a news bulletin sent to us from "Bristol Citizens" which is full of very useful information. The last issue contained an item about disquiet amongst union members that some union officials may be blocking affiliation to anti-cuts groups. We have done some checking and the position is as follows: Unite - Len McClusky, the newly-elected General Secretary of Unite, attended the Coalition of Resistance conference on Saturday. This is the national body of anti-cuts groups. He pledged that Unite regional secretaries will be instructed to support anti-cuts groups. GMB - we have a GMB official on the Steering Committee of the Bristol & District Anti-Cuts Alliance and she has told us that this is not happening in this region. The GMB supports the Bristol & District Anti-Cuts Alliance. Unison - we have heard from a number of sources that a Unison regional officer is hostile to the Anti-Cuts Alliance. However, large numbers of our supporters are in Unison and some branches have affilliated. We will check on the official position of Unison and ask for a meeting with them if there is a problem. We have the support of the Bristol Trades Union Council and the South West TUC. The Secretary of the South West TUC spoke at the recent anti-cuts rally in Gloucester . If any supporter encounters hostility to the Anti-Cuts Alliance from the officers of any trade union, please let us know so we can contact them and address their concerns. Best wishes Admin BADACA
We have written in the strongest terms to BADACA to demand a full apology and retraction. At a time when we are facing the biggest challenge to the public sector any of us have seen, it is appalling that certain groups choose to attack unions, especially those who work for them, in a manner entirely similar to the type of anti public sector worker bile that is printed by the Daily Mail.
We will keep you informed of the response from the Anti Cuts Alliance. I hope you all know how committed we are to fighting these cuts and not getting sidetracked by sectarian disputes. However, when these attacks come from those who claim to be on the same side as us, we need to defend ourselves vigorously.
I have also informed the Anti Cuts Alliance that any branch is entitled to affiliate as long as they are able to verify the constitution of BADACA and the rights and responsibilities that affiliation involves. I have also asked them to provide this information and will keep you informed of any response
Please do get back to me with any questions
were distracted by the launch of London Rising Tide's sales and advertising
team's new product, Nothing(c).
02-12-2010 21:22Has anyone who went on last weeks or this weeks demo missed out on their EMA payments?
If you have missed out on your EMA if you've been marked as 'not attending' then post up here if there is anything people who support you can do.
Here's some ideas:
1- get you and mates to put friendly pressure on your tutor to support you. They might want your support if their job is next for the chop
2 - Ask if unions can put pressure on their members to support you. Find out what union your tutor is in and write to them, post it up here
3 - Ask for support from people here who support you to hand out leaflets to the tutors asking them to sort it out
4 - A benefit gig to raise the money
5 - Street or pub collections to raise the money
Can someone with a facebook account post this onto facebook, i can't