Working Class Self Organisation

Robin Williams, mental illness, and the stigma epidemic

The tragic death of Comedian Robin Williams, in an apparent suicide, has placed the issues of mental illness, suicide, and associated ignorance and stigma, firmly in the public sphere.

NHS agency spend: the hidden truth

In 1997 the NHS spent over £700 million on agency nurses. This year the figure will have risen to over £2.5 billion. Why pay outrageous amounts of money to agencies when it is clearly cheaper to employ permanent staff? I will show that in actual fact it is not cheaper to employ permanent staff, and that increasing agency use is just more laying of ground work in preparation for the privatisation of the NHS.

Royal College of Nursing: the voice of the establishment

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) represents most of the nurses employed within the NHS and has a membership of over 400,000. It started life as a ‘professional’ organisation for nurses, promoting excellence in practice, before registering as a ‘trade union’ in 1976. Scratch the surface of this grubby, conservative, false-flag operation, and you will see it is not a ‘trade union’ by any understanding of the term.

Carol Malone, Benefits Street, and mental health

Journalist at the Mirror and general scumbag, Carol Malone, has attacked an individual on Channel 4's 'Benefits Street - calling her a lazy, feckless, thief, and denouncing her mental health problems as a 'sob story'... This is my brief response.

Christopher Alder: death in custody

In light of the recent ‘lawful killing’ verdict in the Mark Duggan case, and the increased interest around the conduct of police, deaths in custody, and corruption, I am re-visiting the case of Christopher Alder who died in 1998, face down on a police station floor in Hull. Christopher’s death was initially ruled to be an ‘unlawful killing’, but the decision was over-turned by a judge in 2000. Fourteen years of lies, cover-ups, and heartbreak for his family, have followed.

Pussy Riot released: a PR stunt of Olympic proportions

The last two incarcerated members of Pussy Riot, Maria Alekhina and Nadezhda Tolonnikova, were yesterday released from prison as part of an amnesty granted to around 22,000 prisoners. Whilst their release is obviously good news for everyone concerned, it is more of a public relations stunt by Vladimir ‘Bonaparte’ Putin, ahead of the Winter Olympics in early 2014 - than it is clemency, or a relaxing of Putin’s regime.

My Favourite Libcom posts / articles of 2013

A run-down of the ten Libcom blog posts / articles that I found the most informative, interesting, or thought provoking in 2013.

Protesters clash with police at Rote Flora social centre eviction in Hamburg

Over 8,000 protesters have clashed with riot police as they protested against the planned eviction of squatters from a popular social centre, and against the eviction of hundreds of people from heir homes. The largely peaceful protest erupted following a baton charge, and use of teargas, and water cannons by the police. The protesters responded by building barricades, throwing stones, fireworks, and bottles. It is reported that over 500 people has been injured, and around 150 arrests made.

Brazil World Cup 2014: workers' deaths, racism, gentrification, and cultural terrorism

A brief look at the deaths of four construction workers at the World Cup 2014 stadium construction sites, and at several other scandals associated with next summer's tournament, FIFA, event organisers, and the Brazilian political elite.

Nelson Mandela: some thoughts

Some brief reflections on Nelson Mandela, his politics, and legacy.