All In The Name Of Profit.

It's all in the name of profit.


The bike just sits there,
dust covering its lovely sheen,
puffing up the Fintry Hills
well,   it's no longer my scene.
Y'see,   as a Clydeside apprentice
I proudly learnt the tradesman's skill,
little did I know then
the price,    asbestos lungs that kill.
Now I just sit through the painful day
gasping each mouthful of air, wondering
how can I make the bastards pay.
They knew it was a killer
a time-bomb in our lungs
but,  because it was so quick and cheap
they firmly held their tongues.
So what,  if it cost the workman's life,
there's always a couple of new workers
in the care of the worker's wife.
Please try to understand my anger
as I and others bear their cost,
a slow death from asbestos lungs,
a vibrant life lost.
Anguish for family and friends,
all in the name of profit:
now that really does offend.
Our anger without direction
is like a blind archer behind the bow,
we have to use our anger
to smash the status-quo.
Perhaps making my dying public,
might provoke righteous indignation
at a system that puts profit
before the health of a nation.

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The Smoke And Mirrors Of Ukraine.

      It is difficult to get the truth of what is going on in the Ukraine, at work are vested interests, each with their own hidden agenda, the propaganda machines are at full throttle. On Ukraine, the mainstream media, that babbling brook of bullshit, has become a raging torrent of sewage. Figures and maps are thrown around, and all of them prove anything you want, or nothing at all. America accuses Russia of destabilising the country for its own interests, something the Americans should know something about, since they have been doing it across the globe for decades. Whatever information we may get from Ukraine, you can rest assured that it will not be the voice of the people of Ukraine. That story will not come through our corrupt, biased and corporate controlled media. 

       There is a very informative article by William Boardman, who writes for Reader Supported News, the article is worth a read, below is just a couple of short quotes:
     Before the Maidan began in Kiev in the fall of 2013, the Russians were allowed by treaty to have 25,000 troops in Ukraine, all in bases in Crimea. Once Russia controlled Crimea, early reports of Russian troops in Ukraine often confused this reality with other things that may or may not have been real, such as the March 7 report that the Pentagon estimated the presence of “20,000 Russian troops in Ukraine.” If true, the Russians would seem to have been under-massed by about 5,000 troops.  Whatever else was true during the Crimea takeover, there were no pictures of massive Russian troop movements. Video of Russian tanks moving to Crimea on trains were, if real, showing those tanks moving unmolested through southern Ukraine, the only rail route from Russia to Crimea.

      And there’s another constituency with a clear vested interested in pushing the Russian threat toward a new Cold War: arms makers (excuse me: “defense contractors”). As the NATO secretary general said quite plainly at the NATO Transformation Seminar, April 8:
“The reality is that Europeans have disarmed too much and for too long In NATO, we have agreed a defence spending guideline of 2% of Gross Domestic Product. Too few Allies meet this guideline. And too many have moved too far in the other direction. This is the time to stop the cuts and start reversing the trend.”
You can read the full article HERE:
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A Dislike Of The Bond Market.

      It seems that somebody didn't like the idea of Greece re-entering the bond market last Thursday.
This from Act for Freedom Now:
ATHENS, Greece  — Suspected domestic exploded a car bomb outside a Bank of Greece building in the heart of Athens Thursday, causing damage but no injuries in a brazen attack hours before a landmark bond issue by the financially struggling country.
Read the full article HERE:
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I’m Sick.

Today's little rant-----


I'm sick of missing the theatre
when "The greatest show on earth",
arrives in town.
Sick of living through the winter
with the heating turned down.

I'm sick of seeing my kids
miss out on this and that.
Sick of living with dampness
in a run-down council flat.

I'm sick of having beans on toast
every other day.
Sick of TV shows extolling
a healthy life-style way.

I'm sick of wearing the same old jacket,
hail, rain or shine.
Sick of being told
the problem's really mine.

I'm sick of being a statistic
in some ministerial debate.
Sick of quietly letting
them decide my fate.

I'm sick of being offered work
if I accept a lower wage.
Sick of trying to control
this pent-up bubbling rage.

I'm sick-----------------
I'm not,   realy sick,
though I soon will be,
I'm just obliged to live
on benefit.

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Categories: Anarchism

Propaganda, Propaganda, Propaganda,

      A couple of things that recently got a lot of cover in that babbling brook of bullshit, our mainstream media, one was Greece returning to the bond market, and the other, UK inflation dropping to 1.6%. These two pieces of information were meant to make us all feel a lot better, the propaganda machine was in full throttle. As for Greece entering the bond market, what this means is that the financial Mafia gambling cabal, had another casino in which to place their bets. They were prepared to loan the corrupt Greek state €3 billion at a nice healthy rate of interest of 4.75%, a mere drop in the bucket as far as Greek state debt is concerned. Does this mean that all is well in Greece and that the 27% unemployment, and 60% among the young, will suddenly evaporate? Does it mean that the trashed health service will, like magic, rise to the needs of the people? Will the abject poverty and deprivation be transformed into a land of milk and honey? Well perhaps a look at some of the figures might answer those questions. Greece's public debt in 2008, the date of the gambling casino collapse, was €263.3 billion, and the prediction for 2014 is €322 billion. The size of Greece's debt as a percentage of GDP in that 2008 bubble burst, was 112.9%, 2014's prediction is 175.9%. What Greece's re-entry to the bond market really means is that it is obvious gamblers can't stay away from the casino.
       The excited wetting of nickers among the millionaire cabal sitting in the Westminster Houses of Hypocrisy and Corruption, at the news the inflation in the UK has dropped for the sixth consecutive month to 1.6%, will not be transferred to the ordinary person on the street. According to a study by The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) mid-range household incomes between 2013 and 2014 were 6% below what they were before the gamblers crisis of 2008. Other interesting figures from the study state that between 2008 and 2013 inflation was 20%, energy prices rose by 60% and food prices by 30%. Where were incomes during this period? Did your income rise enough to cover that 60% rise in energy prices, or the 30% rise in food prices? It is all smoke and mirrors. The truth is that we as a people here in the UK are sliding down the shute to a sweatshop economy. Last year almost a million adults and children received emergency food parcels from food banks, a rise of 163% on the previous year. Irrespective of what the propaganda machine might say, more and more people are turning to food banks for survival. The Trussell trust has over 400 food banks and is opening two a week, compared to only three in 2012/13. Of course The Trussell trust is not the only organisation handing out food help to those in need, they are just the tip of the iceberg. What about those living in areas where there is no Trussell Trust, what about all those who just eat less and feed their kids less, perhaps too proud to seek help or unaware of where to get that help. The Trussell trust states that it is now expanding its services to include welfare advice and providing essentials such as washing powder, nappies and hygiene products, as more and more families are at breaking point and food is not their only problem. This is the true picture of Britain's low inflation figure

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Important Diary Dates.

    A couple of dates for next week, the first is on Tuesday, April 22 and is hosted by Glasgow Games Monitor 2014. The subject matter, "housing", focusing on Glasgow's East End, though not exclusively. The East End of Glasgow has seen approximately 3,000 resident shunted out to make way for "The Games". A spectacle to feed the corporate greed machine with an estimated £524 million. Of course we all know what happens to the "estimates" in all these types of affairs, they are just the starting point of the rip-off. What would £524 million do if spent on simple improving the housing and social conditions of the East End?
From Glasgow Games Monitor:

Hi all,
     Two new posts online:
     Public Meeting, Speakers and Discussion, 7-9pm, Tuesday 22nd April, St.Mungo's Academy, 235 Crownpoint Road, Bridgeton, Glasgow, G40 2RA. All Welcome!
    (2) 'Games Monitor on Newsnight
     Please circulate news of the housing meeting widely if possible. We want to engage with local people's experience in particular, but housing for the games and clyde gateway is a citywide issue and we welcome all those with an interest in housing issues.

       The other date is Friday, April 25, the monthly picket outside the ATOS offices in Cadogan street Glasgow. It is important that this picket continues and gains in strength. ATOS may have decided to withdraw early from its contract with the government, mainly due to the unpleasant publicity created by such pickets up and down the country. However, that doesn't mean that the government will abandon its attack on the sick and disabled. The millionaire cabal at the Westminster Houses of Hypocrisy and Corruption, have a bucketful of leeches ready and waiting to be unleashed on the vulnerable, when ATOS leaves by the back door, having made millions at the expense of the sick and disabled. 
This from Glasgow Against ATOS:

Friday April 25, 12:30 - 15:00
ATOS Assessment Centre
Carunna House
29 Cadogan Street
     We are Glasgow Against Atos, a dynamic campaign group, defending the sick and disabled. We have been picketing the Atos, Glasgow assessment centre since early 2012.
     Please come and join us in fighting Atos, the DWP and the government cuts against disabled people, their families and carers.
        The weather is getting better – so no excuses, and we’ll see you all outside the assessment centre. All welcome!
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The Wreckers.

A Poem, a thought, or just a simple rant.


The well mannered,    who

with the proper legislation
legitimise    insanity,
with the proper legal channels,
justify    injustice,
with the proper religious devotion,
ethnic    cleanse,
with the proper academic praise,
magnify    the trivia,
with the proper pomp and ceremony,
glorify    the mediocre,
with the proper charitable phrase,
ignore   the poverty,

are the wreckers,   who

with the proper cultured dignity,
create    havoc in their wake.

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Are falling graduate salaries good or bad?

Blog Categories: 

What to think of this...the Times Higher reports that (new window): 

Research by the Complete University Guide says graduate starting salaries in professional posts fell by 11 per cent in real terms, from £24,293 to £21,702, between 2007 and 2012.

If falling salaries (many of them in fact "rents" in economic terms - the largest falls have been in heavily regulated, and therefore rent-receiving, professions, medicine and law) are going to feed through eventually to lower costs for consumers of those rent-supported services then this is, by and large, a good thing. And to be fair to them, for once a good part of Labour government policy if I recall correctly (at least in terms of training more medical professionals).  There are more people who potentially benefit from cheaper doctors or lawyers than there are people in those professions who will see their rent premium fall.  But that assumes that labour cost savings feed through to lower consumer prices, which is not a given...

On the other hand, the overall graduate premium has barely moved, so everyone (at least those starting out in employment whether graduate or not) has seen their income fall in a similar proportion (it is in fact of course a larger proportionate fall for non-graduates). And of course, this is not only the case for those starting out - in higher education as a whole, the pay settlements since the recession started have seen us all, of all ages and skills, worse off on average by 13% in real terms.  Maybe new graduates, in this context, should not grumble: "we're all in this together", as they say!

For those at the start of their independent lives also (graduate or not) one of the biggest costs for them, housing costs, which will take up a greater proportion of their income than it does for someone who has already half paid off their mortgage, have been rising and for many in excess of the average inflation rate.  Presumably (somebody correct my economics if I am wrong please) falling real salaries/wages is the same thing as saying a greater *proportion* of production being returned to either capital or land (in interest or rent), and a lower *proportion* to labour (wages).  And presumably implies a yet increasing transfer of wealth from young and least well off (less likely to have capital or land assets) to the older and best off (landlords and shareholders).

The article doesn't say that we are getting a commensurate number of extra doctors or lawyers though, only that employers are getting their pick without increasing the salaries offered. So longer term the rent problem is not going to go away through increased supply. And this must presumably apply throughout the labour market, skilled or unskilled. 

So, are they a good or bad thing, these declining graduate salaries? Well insofar as this is in line with the whole labour market, it cannot be good that the returns to capital and land are rising and the returns to labour falling, can it? In other words that profit and rent are taking a bigger share of the pie and wages a smaller share. But if the graduate premium itself is not falling significantly then the existing arguments for going to university still apply: "you'll be better off than if you don't go". And again, the money value of the premium may have fallen an incy-wincy bit, but because non-graduate salaries are already the lower of them, this means an increasing percentage graduate premium: "you'll be an increasing proportion better off than if you don't go".

If there is a greater relative fall in the longer term in salaries for those heavily rent-receiving graduate professions, that would be beneficial to those (most of the population) who have to pay for their services. Removing rent is a good thing, but if the saving just passes from employee to employer and not to consumer, the rent remains the same, just even more concentrated: definitely a bad thing.  

Not particularly related to the above, but something I want to mention anyway, I have a pet theory about the long term socio-economic effects of a higher proportion of the labour force being graduates that I don't really see discussed much in "the literature": that it will tend to diminish the difference in returns between management roles and production roles and therefore tend to lead to a more equal distribution of economic welfare.  Middle class technical/production/specialist graduates negotiating with their middle class management graduate peers, or lobbying their middle class graduate politicians are in a relatively better negotiating position, after three years of networking with each other, than when it's between management graduates and people from whom they diverged, educationally and very probably socially, at the end of their school years. That's if, in the case of former private school pupils, who still dominate in rent-seeking jobs and politics, they ever met in the first place. Once you are at university, those from less well off socioeconomic backgrounds have relatively greater equality of opportunity with their graduate peers from wealthier backgrounds than if they don't even make it to university.

For me, and especially as regards my dissertation, will all this translate into greater demand for postgraduate education and so financing? With a predicted level of up to 75% of the post-2012 £9,000 fees regime loans likely to go unpaid according to research released last week by the Institute for Fiscal Studies for the Sutton Trust (I believe it was) maybe we're into an era when people simply cannot afford to take on more debt. Though it's possible the opposite may be true - that to take out, say, £15,000 for a one year Masters on top of your nearly £45,000 debt from your undergraduate degree may produce more than a 33% greater premium and be very much worthwhile doing. 

Shades Of 1914!!

       The Ukraine, two empires squabbling over territory, each wants it in their sphere of interest, each prepared to slaughter the people in their quest for control, shades of 1914!! If you are in or near London this week, a date for your diary.
This from Stop The War Coalition
6.30pm, Tuesday 15 April

· The Wesley Hotel, Euston Street, London NW1 2EZ

       The crisis in the Ukraine continues, with tensions between the big powers growing day by day. There are several factors militating against war in the immediate future, including Russia’s nuclear arsenal and trade links with EU countries. But as the establishment think-tank Stratfor has argued, it would be naive to rule out a conflagration.
        Already NATO air drills are taking place over the Baltics, and the UK and US are sending extra jets to patrol the skies. Poland has requested 10,000 NATO troops to be stationed on its territory and MPs in Kiev have voted to hold joint military exercises with NATO. In the medium to long term, NATO is looking at establishing permanent military bases in Ukraine.
And for today----

Today we live in a peace
midst a thousand pygmy wars;
a humanity bankrupt by its past
dragged wearily through darkness and despair
yearns for a day that's cast
long, warm and fair,
a dawn that sees humankind discard
its class, its nation and prepare
to grind outworn creeds to dust,
so mankind naked is revealed,
then moving with common cause,
what such a dawn may yield. 

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If We Make Everything, Why Are We Hungry?

     We grow, make and distribute everything, and yet some of our brothers and sisters go hungry, why?
This from ContraInfo:
Supermarket expropriated in the district of Vyronas as a minimum act of resistance.

      Everything is stolen; everything belongs to us!

     We take back a few of the things we produced with hard labour and our bosses have stolen from us…
       The establishment of a state of emergency, in conjunction with the predatory raids of the bosses at work and in our lives, imposes the fear of repression as well as destitution on society. Disparities in everyday life have a tragic dimension, when hands reach out begging or overturn trash bins hoping to find food. Unemployment and constant price increases of products on the shelves of supermarkets have made us wonder if we can even meet our basic needs.
We do not tolerate this situation; we will resist.
Today (April 11th, 2014), we covered our faces and expropriated one of these big supermarkets. We have made our face visible with our move, and because it disturbs (mostly) their peace as well as their profitability, they will try to track us down. We do not give ourselves over to them, we defy their terrorism, we plan our ways, and respond collectively in the street. We collectivize our resistances and rebel against our oppressors.
       Today, we also made a stop at the manpower employment organization (OAED).
     We left some of the items we took from the supermarket at the local unemployment office as a gesture of class solidarity towards other workers and unemployed; a righteous act that we, those from below, do for ourselves, redistributing the pie. In this modern system of human trafficking, in this contemporary galley, workers in public benefit projects, which the Greek manpower employment organization promotes, are forced to live like slaves for five months. They have no right to holiday or sick leave; they get crumbs, and face the threat of removal from the unemployed register in case they refuse the position assigned to them. Every one of us should know that we outnumber them, and if we want to organize ourselves, we can overthrow the exploiters of our lives.
poor but dishonest
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