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February 8, 2002 | Issue 393


Stop the Bush war machine
They're on the rampage
George W. Bush's message in his State of the Union address was unmistakable: The U.S. is the world's cop and will do anything it wants--anywhere.


Report from Porto Alegre
What will another world look like?
First organized a year ago around the theme "Another world is possible," this year's World Social Forum drew some 40,000 people from across the globe to Porto Alegre, Brazil--and sharpened the international debate on what that new world should look like.

Thousands march against the World Economic Forum
Standing up to the global fat cats
"How do you spell theft? W-E-F!" That chant rang out on the streets of New York February 2 as some 15,000 people marched against the global fat cats at against the World Economic Forum.

A week of protests in New York
Socialist Worker rounds up the forums and demonstrations against the WEF.

Sending a message to the WEF
A step forward for our side
For weeks leading up to the World Economic Forum, the media ridiculed global justice activists. But the 15,000 people who marched last weekend proved the pundits wrong.

"I'm not going to root for bullies"
A worker for the jet engine maker Pratt and Whitney talks about his union's victory after a controversial strike in December--and why he came to New York to protest the WEF.

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The Enron gang and its friends in Washington:
Crooked to the top
If it were all put in a movie, Rush Limbaugh would be hyperventilating about Hollywood's left-wing conspiracy mongering. But nearly every day brings an incredible new revelation about the greed, arrogance and dishonesty of Enron's executives and their buddies in Washington.

Regrets of Israel's top war criminal
On the eve of his meeting with George W. Bush, Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon discussed one his life's great regrets--that he didn't "liquidate" Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat when he had the chance during Israel's 1982 invasion of Lebanon, he said.

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Illinois' broken death penalty system:
Too flawed to fix
The death penalty is too flawed to fix--and it's time to end it once and for all. That was the message that some 600 people--packed into the United Church of Hyde Park in Chicago for a January 31 rally--wanted to send to Illinois lawmakers.

Counting the cost of U.S. bombing in Afghanistan
"These casualties aren't mistakes"
Socialist Worker talked to Marc Herold, the University of New Hampshire economics professor who has counted the real toll of the U.S. war on Afghanistan--a toll that the Pentagon won't admit to.

Victims of government scapegoating
Australia's war on refugees
Politicians like Australia's Prime Minister John Howard love to talk about how they want to help Afghans. As long as they stay in Afghanistan.

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Bush's new scheme to chip away at our rights
Anti-abortion fanatic in the White House
In the Bush administration's latest attack on abortion rights, Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson has unveiled a new proposal that could potentially lead to the outlawing of all abortions.

Judges want out of Justice Department
Even U.S. judges want out of John Ashcroft's Justice Department. Some 200 judges who preside over immigration cases are angry at executive orders, imposed by Ashcroft since September 11, that limit their powers.

White House out to gut civil rights panel
The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights raised a stink about George W. Bush's fraudulent election victory in Florida that allowed him to steal the White House. Bush has been out for revenge ever since.

The Bush gang's fuel-cell con game
The Bush administration said in January that it was committing to a campaign to promote pollution-free cars that run on hydrogen-powered fuel cells. But the seemingly environment-friendly proposal was a cover--for abandoning a program to require fuel-efficient gas-powered cars now.

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Warlords run the "new" Afghanistan
During his gloating State of the Union address, Bush claimed the U.S. victory over Afghanistan "saved a people from starvation and freed a country from brutal oppression." But news reports from post-Taliban Afghanistan paint a far different picture.

Is the ruling class too strong to beat?
Those who rule will not give up their power peacefully. Try to protest one of their meetings--as antiglobalization activists mobilizing against the World Economic Forum did this week in New York--and our rulers pull out thousands of cops. Imagine what they might do in a revolution.

The fight for real Teamsters reform
"We have learned that to get things done in Washington, you have to get support from both sides of the aisle." That was International Brotherhood of Teamsters President James P. Hoffa's excuse for throwing a January 23 bash for guests that included House Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.) and Labor Secretary Elaine Chao.

Cover-up at Justice
Attorney General John Ashcroft doesn't want to be seen in the same room with a semi-naked woman--even if she's just a statue.

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Delta bosses defeat union organizing drive
Despite the fact that 98 percent of flight attendants who turned in ballots in the recent union representation election at Delta Airlines voted "yes," federal election rules turned the vote into a defeat for unions.

San Francisco airport screeners
Erlinda Valencia, a shop steward for Service Employees International Union Local 790, talks about the fight to save the jobs of immigrant baggage screeners, who are barred from their jobs under the Aviation and Transportation Security Act passed last year by Congress.

Other labor
Portland nurses; Krug Winery

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Protest Benjamin Netanyahu
Approximately 60 people turned out February 4 to protest the appearance of former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at Northwestern University. The protest turned into a victory rally when Netanyahu's appearance was canceled because of "increased security concerns."

Other reports
Money for schools; Martin Luther King Day celebrations

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Zimbabwe socialists under attack by regime
Since Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe signed a so-called antiterrorist Public Order and Security Act on January 18, we have witnessed a further crackdown on democracy--harassment, disruption of opposition meetings, beatings and arrests of activists.

They blame injustice on everyone but themselves
"On September 11, Osama bin Laden or those responsible probably didn't mean to create such havoc and destruction, but they did," declared a judge in a Rhode Island courtroom, refusing to reduce the sentence of Aldrin Diaz, who is serving 12 years in prison for a parole violation.

You can't ever trust Democrats
We must stay independent even when the Democrats put on a compassionate mask.

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Africa's struggle for independence
When the Second World War ended, major European powers had colonies throughout Africa. By 1994, all African countries had won their liberation. The Short Century--a multimedia exhibit--marks this important period.

How public is public broadcasting?
According to its charter, public broadcasting was to be a "forum for public debate" and "provide a voice for groups" that might "otherwise go unheard." But anyone who has listened to National Public Radio stump for George Bush's "war on terrorism" has to wonder what happened.

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