Monday, November 23, 2009

The Dodgiest Dossier

Essential reading as the Chilcot Inquiry into the war on Iraq begins its public hearings in London, 24 November.

These key secret documents include the notorious Downing Street Memo of July 2002, which recorded the candid assessment of the head of MI6, in the presence of Prime Minister Blair, that in the United States 'the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy'. The documents were leaked in 2005, during the run-up to the General Election of that year. Their authors are amongst the first witnesses to be called by the Inquiry.


A useful and informative independent commentary on the Iraq Inquiry is available online (www.iraqinquirydigest.org).


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Price £4.00 - 80 pages

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Thursday, November 12, 2009

A New Book by Dexter Whitfield

Global Auction of Public Assets

Public infrastructure in the 21st century is confronted with new challenges; adapting to climate change, meeting the economic, energy, water, transportation and social infrastructure needs of megacities in Asia, megaregions in North America, European city regions and older industrial areas.

Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) and the global infrastructure market, financed by investment and pension funds, are fuelling a new era of public asset sales. This first critical global analysis of PPPs examines projects in the UK, France, Ireland, Germany, US, Canada, Russia, Australia, China, India, Brazil and South Africa. Over US$500bn of PPP projects have failed, most have little or no democratic control or transparency. They are costly, poor value and lack innovation. Ultimately, they are entirely publicly financed by government and/or user charges.

Global Auction of Public Assets proposes a new strategy for public investment. It sets out new priorities, radical changes in global financial markets, abandonment of PPPs and neo-liberal ideology, new controls on existing PPPs and public management renewal. This is a definitive analysis and an invaluable resource for all those concerned about the future of the public domain.

Dexter Whitfield is Director of European Services Strategy Unit and Adjunct Associate Professor, Australian Institute for Social Research, University of Adelaide. He has a unique, extensive track record of research, policy analysis and strategic advice to public bodies, trade unions and community organizations
(
www.european-services-strategy.org.uk).


Global Auction of Public Assets
is available to buy online from Spokesman Books.