Thats capitalism - WS60

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Speaking at the World Trade Organisation meeting in Washington, the foreign minister of Brazil lamented that if the next WTO meeting had to be held in an out of the way place, he preferred that it be held on a cruise ship instead of in the middle of the desert. He then gave an impassioned speech in which he opposed writing core labour standards into the WTO agreement and defended child labour. He went on to describe how in one region of Brazil, more than 5,000 children "help their families earn a little extra money" by hauling bags of coal from a dump yard to a steel mill. He was greeted by a hearty round of applause.

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Ryanair Chief Executive Michael O'Leary recently sold six million of his own shares in the anti-union airline. This gave him a whopping £37.8 million. To earn the kind of money that this parasite 'earned' in just one day, a Ryanair baggage handler would have to work for more than 2,900 years at the present rate of pay.

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In an amazingly honest interview, Minister of Finance Charlie McCreevy told the Racing Post on March 2nd how concerned he is about the happiness of his horse racing buddies. According to McCreevy "the next logical step was to put racing's finances on a permanent footing.

If that is not done, racing will be at the whim of the government of the day and, when pressure comes for expenditure on things like health and education, racing will go down the political priority list". Perish the thought that healing the sick or educating our children should be thought more important than subsidising the playtime of his millionaire horsey pals like John Magnier and Denis Desmond.

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Just in case you're really not sure which side the British government is on, Labour has appointed Sir Michael Burton, a high court judge, to head up the unit that will arbitrate between unions and employers over the new legal right to recognition. Burton made his name during the 1980s by supporting a number of high profile cases against unions. He represented Rupert Murdoch against the print unions and was involved in legal action against the 1984/85 miners strike which led to the NUM's funds being seized. Sounds just the sort of person you want to decide whether workers should be represented by unions at work!


This article is from Workers Solidarity 60 - September 2000

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