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Articles from the WSM paper Workers Solidarity

Abortion rights in Ireland - the story so far (to 1992)

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IN 1983 anti-choice campaigners pushed the government into holding a referendum on abortion. The Eight Amendment was then passed by 33% of the electorate (the turn out was 54.6%). Abortion was already prohibited under the 1861 Offences Against the Persons Act. The Eight Amendment copperfastened this ban preventing any reforming legislation.

Vote No to Maastricht

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Equality for some women?

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LAST SEPTEMBER the Bank of Ireland was, according to the 'Irish Times', 'basking in an unadulterated glow of approval' from the Employment Equality Agency, the Council of Status for Women and the Joint Oireachteas Committee on Womens Rights among others. What the Bank of Ireland had so progressively managed to do was to provide one creche which will cater for up to 45 children.

The Bank of Ireland employs 11,600 people. However, at £55 a week the centre is obviously aimed at helping only a very small section of the workforce. As Bertie Ahern said, it did not make sense having highly and expensively qualified women leaving the workforce because of lack of childcare facilities. However, it does make sense, to industry, to employ over 50% of the entire workforce having either low pay or no security of employment (or both).

Why capitalism can't sort out the world's problem'

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The list of jobs to be done in Ireland is endless. Houses need to be built, roads need to be repaired, hospitals and schools need to be adequately staffed. At the same time 265,300 people are unemployed in the 26 counties (official figures for end of August, which do not include those on FAS Schemes, early retirement and SES Schemes). Why can't these jobs be given to those who want them?

When the unemployed elected their own TD

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A SURVEY carried out by the Connolly Unemployed Centre at three labour exchanges in Dublin's South Inner City during the recent local elections showed that 90% of respondents would vote for an unemployed party if there was one running. Is this a way forward in the fight for decent jobs for all who want them? It is worth taking a look at what happened in 1957 when an unemployed candidate made it into the Dáil.

As unemployment breaks all previous records - How do we fight back?

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Over the Summer unemployment reached an all time high. It would have seemed fair enough to expect some kind of militant response to this by the unemployed organisations in Ireland but in fact very little happened. In this article we look at why these organisations are so unable to mobilize unemployed people, either to demand work or to fight for improved social welfare. We go on to look at how unemployment can be fought and what exactly should we be fighting for.

Why half the world's children go to bed hungry

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It's hard to know how any one can consider capitalism a viable system when looking at the situation of the less developed countries. After the millions raised by Live Aid, it seems unreal that people are going hungry. A recent UN report estimates that 30 million people face starvation. Yet EC beef, butter and wine mountains rot in European warehouses, farmers are ploughing crops back into the land, in US corn belt fields of wheat are burnt.

What about human nature? Thinking about Anarchism

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A WORLD without war, famine, poverty, racism? A world where there are no bosses ordering us around and living off our work? A world where competition is replaced by co-operation and individual freedom? Sounds nice. Who wouldn't like to see it? But it can never happen, it runs against human nature. How many times have you heard that line? How many times have you been told that people are naturally selfish, greedy, prone to violence and short-sighted?

How Lenin led to Stalin

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FOR THE LENINIST far left the collapse of the USSR has thrown up more questions then it answered. If the Soviet Union really was a 'workers state' why were the workers unwilling to defend it? Why did they in fact welcome the changes?

What happened to Trotskys "political revolution or bloody counter revolution"? Those Leninist organisations which no longer see the Soviet Union as a workers state do not escape the contradictions either. If Stalin was the source of the problem why do so many Russian workers blame Lenin and the other Bolshevik leaders too.

Executive pay in Ireland - Laughing all the way to the bank

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ALTHOUGH workers have been getting a bad deal out of the PNR and now the PESP in terms of pay the same can hardly be said for Irish bosses. In 1989-90 many executives got increases of 20% according to a recent Irish Management Institute survey.

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