Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from December, 2011

Ayse Berktay

There is still no word of Ayse Berktay's release from prison in Turkey. Guardian online has just published this article by her friend, Ayça Çubukçu.

"There is a growing disjuncture between those who promote modern-day Turkey as a democracy and those who experience Turkey as a land of arbitrary detentions, political repression and military destruction.

In the past two years, the Turkish state has imprisoned thousands of its citizens under the sweeping rubric of counter-terrorism operations. The recent wave of arbitrary detentions known as the KCK operations has cast such a wide net that participation in a single protest or petition could constitute evidence of an intention to commit terrorism – if not directly, then certainly by association.

Today, even relatively privileged academic colleagues in Turkey face the prospect of sharing the fate of Professor Büşra Ersanlı of Marmara University, whose detention in October 2011 as an alleged terrorist was proudly defended by the prime …

In Place of Austerity

Public sector workers must work together to prevent privatisation

Dexter Whitfield calls on public managers to ally themselves with those opposed to privatisation, in order to protect democratic, flexible public services
Guardian Professional, Thursday 8th December 2011

The financial crisis has created opportunities to accelerate the privatisation and marketisation of public services - but the policies of transformation are designed to destablise services and deconstruct democracy.

We must draw on the lessons learned in opposing marketisation and privatisation over the past three decades to promote action strategies that can stop, slow down and/or mitigate the negative consequences of neoliberal policies.

Public managers committed to radically improving in-house provision will be important allies. More systematic trade union and community intervention in transformation and procurement is required, to organise new strategies, to forge strong alliances, to combine industrial and community ac…

Global Auction of Public Assets by Dexter Whitfield

Reviewed by Hugo Radice, University of Leeds, UK for Capital & Class


Ten years ago, Dexter Whitfield's Public Services or Corporate Welfare? gave us the first detailed critique of the growing use of private resources to 'finance' public infrastructure projects. With Global Auction, he provides a comprehensive account of just how far and wide these forms of privatisation have now spread. A movement that seemingly began as a technical innovation in project financing now threatens to transfer the design and implementation of infrastructure projects entirely from public to private hands, with taxpayers and service users footing the bill. If this continues, the consequence will be to dramatically restrict the scope of democratic decision-making in this vital part of the economy, while simultaneously redistributing income from the poor to the rich. And as with so many innovations in the history of capitalism, successive UK governments have been the most enthusiastic pioneers…