Monthly Archives For November 2012

The November Issue of the Socialist Voice is Out Now!

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The November issue of the Socialist Voice is now available online.


  1. Austerity is working!
  2. Turf-cutters fight back against state lies
  3. Intellectual property rights: Who benefits?
  4. Government policies exacerbating child poverty
  5. Health care, American style
  6. Ponzi ponces
  7. The reality of local government reform
  8. Understanding the crisis, and putting the system on trial
  9. European labour prepares a fight-back — Will Ireland be the odd one out?
  10. Cuba’s universal health care
  11. Venezuela: Why the media got it so wrong
  12. Withdraw Irish soldiers from Afghanistan now!
  13. A history of uneven development
  14. A play about four women


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Just When You Thought It Couldn’t Get Any Worse

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Just when you though it couldn’t get any worse, along comes the EU Commission with their projections for the Irish economy.  It will make grim reading for the Government.  All their projections are being undermined.  Of course, the EU could turn out to be wrong and the Government right – so we are just dealing with projections.  However, with media leaks that the Government will be revising growth downwards in a couple of weeks, even they are heading in the direction of the EU projections.  Let’s compare some indicators.

GDP Growth

The Government is hoping for a quick return to robust growth.  The EU is not so hopeful.  The Government is hoping for an average annual growth rate of 2 percent up to 2014.  The EU expects it be 1.2 percent.  At that level, the economy is stagnating.


To bring down unemployment, there has to be job creation.  To absorb new entrants into the market and reduce the dole queues.  But the EU suggests that job creation will be sluggish over the medium term.

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& the state of California executes


& the state of California executes


a man who wrote children’s books

twenty four years on death row

during the twelve minutes


it took to find a vein in his

left arm

he joked with them


the warden of San Quentin

said everything depends on the veins

& how accessible they are


& also it was a high-pressure

assignment for the nurse

getting the needle in before so many people


the man was strapped into a dentist’s chair

in a room that was painted sea-green

green is a relaxing colour

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His Hands Were Gentle: Selected Lyrics of Victor Jara

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His Hands Were Gentle: Selected Lyrics of Victor Jara (2012) captures a spectrum of lyrics which explicitly portrays social upheaval and the struggle against injustices. Victor Jara’s poetry resonates with memory and history woven into relics of resistance and triumph, culminating into an unfinished poem narrating the decadence of the dictatorship and initiated annihilation of socialism.

Thirty nine years after his death, Victor Jara remains a symbol for the Chilean left. Joan Jara’s foreword to the book shifts between memory and exile, explaining the commitment towards imparting Victor’s legacy in the aftermath of his murder. Living a constant battle against the right wing’s coveted practice of oblivion when confronted with dictatorship atrocities, Joan reiterates that Chilean justice is hampered by secrecy and impunity.

A founding member of the nueva canción movement together with Isabel Parra, Angel Parra, Rolando Alarcon and Patricio Manns, Victor gave constant support for Salvador Allende’s Unidad Popular political campaign. Epitomised by songs such as El Pueblo Unido Jamas Sera Vencido and the ubiquitous hymn of Venceremos, Allende’s campaign amalgamated social struggle and culture into a popular movement. Nueva canción served as a medium of expression for the left wing and, following Allende’s electoral triumph, many musicians travelled abroad as ambassadors for Unidad Popular.

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