Recent Events Articles

Saturday’s protests and incidents of violence

by Paul Sagar     March 28, 2011 at 2:36 pm

As previously noted, I have no problem per se with political violence.

Its use and justification must be assessed on a case-by-case basis, with reference to myriad factors such as likelihood to succeed, ability to justify harm to victims, long-term advantages gained, greater evils averted, and so on.

But certainly not all instances of political violence fit this model. When the so-called “Black Bloc” of anarchist militants attacked stores on Oxford Street yesterday they were not part of a (para)military organised hierarchy with a leadership exercising strategic-tactical judgement – still less the militant wing of the 250,000 peaceful marchers congregating in Hyde Park.
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TUC march: I don’t predict a riot

by Dave Osler     March 25, 2011 at 2:32 pm

Not only are my days as a street fighting man well behind me, but daddy is taking girls aged 10 and 8 on the TUC anti-cuts march tomorrow. The last thing I want is for the headbangers to kick anything off.

Yet today’s papers are full of dire predictions that a ‘violent minority’ are hell-bent on ‘hijacking a peaceful protest’. In particular, the Guardian is hyping up an article by some ex-copper on the website of a rightwing think tank, which contends that the Old Bill have ‘strong intelligence’ that ‘extremist groups are planning illegal acts of violence’ tomorrow.
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How disabled people can virtually join the march tomorrow

by Guest     March 25, 2011 at 1:31 pm

contribution by Tim Hardy

“Disabled people are going to march to tell the government we demand ‘Rights not Charity’ and to show we are not easy victims of their cuts even though they may think we are,” Eleanor Lisney of Disabled People Against Cuts says.

While the TUC have been working hard to make access easier but for those who cannot physically make the day. But we have an alternative to that too.
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A week excuse

by Guest     March 18, 2011 at 1:30 pm

Contribution by Danny Chivers

You really couldn’t make it up. March 21st – 27th has been designated as a “Week of Action” on climate change in the UK. The eco-warriors behind this rebellious project? Why, it’s those well-known champions of environmental justice: Tesco, EDF Energy, and the Royal Bank of Scotland. I honestly don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

Tesco, whose entire business model is based on the mass transportation of goods halfway across the globe, and on driving a race-to-the-bottom in environmental and labour standards in farming worldwide. EDF, who operate two of the five biggest coal fired power stations in the UK. And RBS – RBS! – who are the UK’s leading investor in fossil fuel projects.
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Progressive London: lots of agreement and speeches, but where’s the strategy?

by Sunny Hundal     February 20, 2011 at 8:44 pm

I enjoyed yesterday’s Progressive London; I was able to make some points in a session, meet interesting people I’ve talked to on this blog or on Twitter, hear a few interesting speeches.

Call me a “strategy hawk” if you will, but am I the only one tired of events where most speeches just preach to the converted? This, I felt, was the main problem with Progressive London.
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Suggestions for #NetrootsUK organisers

by Guest     January 11, 2011 at 11:20 am

contribution by Maeve McKeown

The Netroots conference on Saturday was a great opportunity for activists to share ideas and tips and to network in person.

After discussing the day with other attendees, I would like to share five suggestions:
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Netroots UK has sold out; this is what you can expect

by Sunny Hundal     January 6, 2011 at 9:10 am

We have now sold out all the available tickets to Netroots UK and are massively over-subscribed. Thank you to everyone who’s bought tickets and to the TUC for having the foresight to organise and host it.

Netroots UK, on Saturday 8th January, will be the biggest event of its kind in perhaps a long time. We hope it will become an important annual fixture in the political calendar and eventually be replicated in key cities across the country.

This is what you can expect…
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Olympics, World Cup: please God, no

by Dave Osler     December 2, 2010 at 2:40 pm

I remember going on a business trip to Glasgow which happened to coincide with the seventh world congress of flower arrangers. Perhaps because I did not appreciate the popularity of this pastime, I didn’t think to check for any clash of dates on that particular score.

So it was that 32,000 attendees – predominantly ladies of a certain age – and poor old me descended on No Mean City at the same time. It was hard to get a decent hotel room, and the resultant shortage of taxis made me late for more than one appointment.

In a country where infrastructure is as woefully inadequate as it is in Britain, major events inevitably put a strain on the inhabitants of the places in which they take place.

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The violence at student protests misrepresented the vast majority of us

by Guest     November 12, 2010 at 9:15 am

contribution by George W Potter

Having read Mr Barker account of what happened at Millbank I felt quite pissed off.

His account is unrepresentative of the majority of the protesters.

I went to the protest as a Lib Dem and marched with other Lib Dems to demonstrate our personal opposition to fee rises and to show that the majority of the party does not celebrate what our leadership is doing.
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The Occupation of Milbank: what the press missed

by Guest     November 11, 2010 at 6:11 pm

contribution by Arthur Baker

Marching along Milbank the word went round: “that’s Tory HQ!” soon, hundereds of protesters rushed towards the building.

It was completely undefended, and it took the protesters all of about 15 seconds to break through into the lobby. A minute later, a few police tried to block the doors to stop anyone getting in or out but to little avail. They were hugely outnumbered, and their raised batons did little to stop protesters.

Some once inside simply walked upstairs, went through a fire exit and onto the roof, others entered offices and smashed windows from inside, whilst others sprayed graffiti, smashed up the lobby, and generally caused trouble.
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