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(en) SchNEWS 248, Friday 11th February 2000

From Jo Makepeace <webmaster@schnews.org.uk>
Date Sat, 19 Feb 2000 06:14:10 -0500


 ________________________________________________
      A - I N F O S  N E W S  S E R V I C E
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This is SchNEWS, the weekly direct action newsletter
published by Justice? in Brighton, England.
To subscribe, or to get in touch, see the bottom of this message.

Wake up and support yer beer-stained, online rag and you'll know Justice has been
done....... cos while
Email SchNEWS is FREE, we're (still) skint! If you want to make a donation, send a
cheque payable to "Justice?" to the address at the bottom of this message. Write
"SchNEWS Online" on the back of the cheque. Or, print out the Standing Order form on
the site... http://www.schnews.org.uk/grant.htm - Thanks!

This week's SchNEWS: http://www.schnews.org.uk/thisweek.htm

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WAKE UP! WAKE UP! IT'S YER DEBT-RIDDEN SchNEWS

Published in Brighton by Justice? - Brighton's Direct Action collective

Issue 248, Friday 18th February, 2000
SchNEWS still needs your help!

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FRIENDS OF THE POOR

"One Filipino child is said to die every hour, in a country where more than
half the national budget is given over to paying just the interest on World
Bank and IMF loans."
John Pilger, ‘Hidden Agendas’

The outgoing head of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) became the
latest victim to be pied last Sunday. In a farewell speech at a meeting of
the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)in
Bangkok, Michel Camdessus’ claim that the IMF "are best friends of the poor"
was clearly too much for one outraged person, who pied him full in the
face. Splat!

And SchNEWS can reveal that the pie in the face is nothing compared to the
global protests being planned when the IMF next meets at Washington DC in
April!

So why all the fuss? What’s the IMF? Read on for your quick economics
lesson...

In 1944, 44 nations met in the New England village of Bretton Woods to
construct a new framework of stability and national sovereignty for the
post-war economy. This little gathering gave birth to three beautiful
offspring... The IMF, the World Bank and the WTO (which at that time was
called the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade or GATT). Frederic
F.Clairmont, in ‘The Rise and Fall of Economic Liberalism’ described the
Bretton Woods creation as "a lethal totalitarian blueprint for the carve up
of world markets".

The IMF, in its infancy, was set up to maintain currency stability and
develop world trade, but as it grew up it got bigger and badder. In the
1970s, the Organisation of Oil Producing Countries (OPEC) shoved large
amounts of money in western banks which the banks then loaned out to
developing countries. When governments began to run into trouble with the
repayments, the IMF and World Bank hastily stepped in to bail out the
private banks. The transfer of private debt into public liability was
therefore complete - the third world debt crisis had begun! In order that
third world governments rescheduled their debts and received new loans, the
IMF imposed certain conditions, conditions called ‘structural adjustments’.

Structurally adjusted...

Countries whose economies are going down the pan can receive loans from the
IMF in return for a bit of ‘adjustment’. Adjustment, to the IMF, means
de-regulation of industry, cutbacks in public services and subsistence
farming abandoned to cash crops. In short, the economic direction of the
country is planned, monitored and controlled by the IMF in Washington.
Lovely! Or as John Pilger put it, "the surrender of sovereignty, and without
a gunboat in sight." Any Governments that refuse to comply are cast into
financial darkness and refused further loans.

In 1997, the foreign debt of ‘developing countries’ was $2 trillion. Put
another way this is $400 for every man, woman and child, while the average
income in these countries is less than a dollar a day. Meanwhile... net
nerd Bill Gates is worth over $60 billion; more than $1.5 trillion changes
hands on the global currency market each day; the World’s richest 200

people are worth more than $1 trillion!!!

The IMF: Working wonders worldwide...

Chile was the first lucky recipient of the IMF’s restructuring revolution
under Augosto Pinochet’s regime. This resulted in industries being
dismantled and the majority of Chileans being plunged into poverty. At the
end of this programme, Chile’s debt was higher than it was at the start.
Surely this was a failure? Oh no, the IMF were proud of the results!

The reign of ruin spread to Africa, the poorest continent in the world
where more money is spent of debt repayments than on healthcare. What a
lovely target...the IMF rubbed its hands with joy as they took over the
management of the economies, increasing debt by 400%. In the city of Lusaka
in Zambia, four out of every five people are unemployed and half of the
newly privatised companies are bankrupt. Nicaragua is equally fortunate,
structural adjustments have moved the economic burden from the rich to the
poor. Living standards have declined and many state workers face a bleak
future owing to the privitisation of almost everything.

Dictators, unsurprisingly, are very good at applying IMF policies, and so
have been very successful at receiving loans. Very often this money has not
reached the poor who suffer most through the subsequent debt. In the
Philipines, the late Ferdinand Marcos managed to build up a wealth of $10
billion thanks to International Aid. On his departure, the IMF refused to
cancel repayment and simply moved the burden to the Filipino government who
had to raise taxes and end rice subsidies. In Brazil there is no record for
80% of the amount borrowed by the former military dictatorship.
* The IMF’s program extends to complimenting dodgy regimes, which maybe accounts for
their recent praise of New Labour’s chancellor, Gordon Brown.
* A small group of protesters, disguised with West Papuan tribal masks, greeted the
Indonesian President and 100 of his corporate cronies this week, throwing
pies and fake blood and blocking the entrance to a business seminar. The
Indonesians were here to chat to 400 delegates from British industry.


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DIARY DATES

   * April 16-17 are the dates for the ‘mobilisation for global justice’,
     with actions planned when the IMF next meet in Washington DC, and
     simultaneously in countries across the world.
   * There also a proposal for a Global Day of Action during the annual
     ministerial meeting of the IMF in Prague, in September.
   * For a good in depth analysis of the global economy get this months
     issue of the New Internationalist. Tel 01858 439616 or www.newint.org

CRAP ARREST OF THE WEEK

For waiting for a train! Brighton’s finest were out in force last Saturday
night at Brighton station with the usual collection of S&M gear, dogs and
vehicles needed to ensure safety for the travelling public. One
particularly jovial officer approached a humble SchNEWS scribe and
proceeded to let his dog jump all over him, justifying the assault as 'just
training, sir' before moving on to his next victim. The fifth or sixth
person unwillingly drawn into this 'training' exercise wasn’t so lucky, as
the dog got very excited and the extremely bemused commuter was grabbed by
four cops and dragged off to a police car without search, charge or
caution.


CHEMICAL TERRORISM

"I was ordered to go into a brick room and take off my gas mask for 3-4
minutes. I then ran out tears streaming from my face and I felt awful."
Anonymous ex-serviceman from WWII

Shocking evidence is emerging from scientists investigating chemical gases
carried out by the Ministry of Defence in 'Demoralising Experiments'. The
International Scientific Environmental Research Network (I.S.E.R.N) told
SchNEWS, "We were digging into the controversial topic of Gulf War Syndrome
when we made an astonishing discovery."

I.S.E.R.N started investigating ex-servicemen and found that men who were

in the army as far back as 1945 suffered illnesses related to chemical
damage to the brain. When the ex-serviceman above asked why the M.O.D had
gassed him, he was told it was an experiment "to see if I could carry out
orders while demoralised."

An I.S.E.R.N spokesman told us, "this soldier was subjected to a concoction
of chemicals, which attacked the limbic region of his brain, which controls
mood and memory. Hence the demoralising effect. When tested we discovered
he had chemicals in his blood from 55 years ago! Furthermore, his children
have developed an illness known as Multiple Chemical Sensitivity and they
have allergies to everyday chemicals such as perfume, paint, tobacco smoke,
household cleaners, car fumes etc. This illness is caused by chemical
damage to the limbic region of the brain." What a coincidence!

This is the thin end of the wedge. Evidence suggests up to 2 million people
in the UK may be ill due to the M.O.D’s use and creation of toxic
chemicals. Illnesses range from Spina Bifida, Asthma, Arthritis,
Alzheimers, thyroid disorders, Eczema, Dyslexia, Anaemia, Allergies, to
hormonal disorders such as PMT, sleep disorders, mood swings, memory
problems, the list just goes on...

I.S.E.R.N intend to carry on their research and need ex-servicemen to come
forward with information, which will be treated in confidence. Contact:
isern2000@hotmail.com or by post c/o SchNEWS


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SANTA CLAUSE

"To remove Clause 28 without replacing it with alternative protective
legislation is irresponsible, leaving children without any statutory
protection from homosexual campaigning."
Keep the Clause, anti gay campaigners.

In Scotland, Media House has handed over £500,000, to this bunch of
paranoid arseholes, who seem to possess the combined intellect of a dead
pilchard. 'Keep the Clause,' in their quest for spreading hateful rhetoric
have made the slight mistake in advertising a new Freepost in the Daily
Record and have been bombarded with empty envelopes, old beer mats,
telephone books, and it was a rumoured, a paving slab. Of course SchNEWS is
not the kind of publication that would print such an address which is Keep
the Clause, Freepost SCO 5219, Perth PH2 8BR.

Meanwhile Stagecoach boss Brian Souter, is also a keen supporter of the
clause, and gave £500,000 to the Scottish Schoolboards Association to help
them rant on about how our kids need protecting.What these gallant pioneers
of child protection neglected to disclose however, was that when Stagecoach
took over South West Trains, one of their first decisions was to close the
work’s nursery. This left Carol Moya, who was employed as a rail operator,
having her contract terminated due to her being unable to find childcare!

SchNEWS in brief

   * March 8th is International Women’s Day. Women all over the world will
     be taking part in a Global Strike, calling for fairer wages for women,
     a total change in the priorities of the world’s budget, and
     recognition of women’s work both paid and unpaid. The strike has been
     called by the National Women’s Council of Ireland, and the
     International Wages For Housework Campaign. Contact Crossroads Women’s
     Centre, 0171 482 2496 or http://womenstrike8m.server101.com
   * Two people from the Protest Naked For The Right To Be Naked In Public
     campaign are up for, yes, indecent exposure at Birmingham Crown Court
     on the 25th Feb. They reckon the 1847 law is outdated and should be
     scrapped. After stripping off at such tightly dressed places as the
     Royal Courts of Justice, the campaign plans to protest naked at New
     Scotland Yard on July 15th. 01203 222076
     www.geocities.com/thehumanmind/
   * Campaign Against Arms Trade National Student Gathering, including
     evening entertainment from Mark Thomas and Seize the Day, Sat 11th
     March, London. Tickets £7 including vegan meal. Info: 020 7281 0297.
   * Leicester Prevent the Terrorism Act are having a day of action to

     highlight the new bill (SchNews 242), Meet on Sat Feb 26th at the
     Clocktower, Leicester city centre, 12 noon.
   * There’s a benefit for the Southdowns Hunt Sabs this Sat 19th at The
     Freebutt, Albion Street, Brighton. It starts at 8pm and features
     ska/dub/punk group Inner Terrestials + support.
   * Pedal Power! A critical mass cycling event is planned for 26th Feb.
     Meet at Markeaton car park derby at 1.30pm to ride to the city centre.
   * Canadian Pacific Coastal Airlines recently barred a member of
     Greenpeace from boarding one of their planes because it regards
     Greenpeace as a 'quasi-terrorist organisation'.
   * West Country Activist has been revamped as Action South West, and they
     are looking for people to re-subscribe. Send donations, spare
     stationary, stories, or office equipment to Box 80 Greenleaf, 82
     Colston St. Bristol, BS1 5BB, tel. 07931 268966, e-mail
     wca99@hotmail.com

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SEED OF DESTRUCTION

Want to hear about yet more genetically modified madness? The government
has announced plans to introduce the first genetically modified seed onto
the National Seed List.

This list dictates exactly which potatoes and peas get to make it onto our
plates. A herbicide-tolerant maize fodder, made by Aventis, could be placed
on the list by the end of this month, and would give the corporation the
right to sell and grow their mutant produce. To add further insult, MAFF is
seeking to remove peoples’ right to object to products placed on the Seed
List. More info contact Friends of the Earth 0171 490 1555

www.foe.co.uk/camps/foodbio/seedlist/

For an ethical alternative for your allotment, contact the Heritage Seed
Library who have around 700 types of vegetables which are ex-National Seed
List owing to their not being commercially viable. The aim of the library
is to keep these poor unwanted seeds alive and well, and it is run on a
non-profit basis. Tel 01203 303517
* Week of protest against genetic foods 1-10 April, www.RESISTANCE
isFERTILE.com

**PREVENT THE TERRORISM BILL BENEFIT GIG**

At the Cuba Club on the seafront, Tuesday Feb 22nd 10pm-2am, Matt Black
(Coldcut/Ninja tunes) + Milkyboy + Headspace.Tickets £3 b4 11pm £4 after.
Tequilas £1.20 all night

LIFE IN THE FASLANE

The Valentine’s Day demo at the Faslane Naval Base, home of the Trident
nuclear submarines, resulted in 179 arrests - the largest arrest of the New
Millennium! Around 400 anti-nuclear protestors descended on the base and
blocked the main entrances in an attempt to prevent employees reaching
their workplace. They managed to close down the main road for four and a
half hours! A spokesperson from the base gave his opinion, "The workforce
is sick and tired of these people trying to stop us earning a living".Those
arrested may be charged with minor criminal damage. For more info contact
Trident Ploughshares on 01603 611953 or visit www.gn.apc.org/tp2000/

*Visit Faslane Peace Camp, 81d Shandon, Helensburgh, Argyll and Bute,
Scotland, G84 8NT Tel 01436 820901

Also on Valentine’s Day...86 people were arrested at the US mission to the
UN, and 3 at the US embassy in London in a protest to highlight the ongoing
economic sanctions on Iraq. A second member of the UN team in Iraq has quit
in protest against sanctions.

There’s a talk on Iraq titled ‘Death of a Nation?’ featuring a speaker from
Voices in the Wildernest, taking place in Brighton on Tues. 29th Feb at the
Brighthelm Centre, North Rd, 7.30 pm. And on March 6th, there’s a
documentary by John Pilger on the same issue. ITV, 9.30pm
* Voices in the Wilderness, 16b Cherwell St, Oxford OX4 1BG, 01865 243232.

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FU’CANAL

Campaigners in Oxford are trying to stop Berkeley Homes evicting voles and
lizards and building £350,000 worth of ‘socially useful’ housing alongside
the canal. Slogans appear every night and are whitewashed by contractors

each day. Anarchist rules football has been played, watched by an audience
of 4 police for 2 hours. In a separate incident Laing Homes have demolished
the wall of a listed bridge and are now in trouble with the Council. They
are also in trouble with the fire brigade for blocking access to the
industrial estate with a JCB where they were burning demolition waste and
being unable to find the keys. Check out

http://freespace.virgin.net/art.2000/OxfordCanal

...and finally...

Dig this! What do you get if you tear up 8.5 miles of countryside, trashing
358 acres of land containing three special sites of scientific interest,
10,000 trees, two civil war battle sites and then concrete the bloody lot?
In the illogical, road fanatical Blighty, believe it or not, you win an
award.

Environment wrecking, hard core terrorists, Mott MacDonald, the
organisation responsible for this solid achievement, won the Concrete
Society’s Millennium Award. As they have spread the stuff over half of
China, Hong Kong and Malaysia, to name but a few, it’s no wonder. In fact,
the only place they haven’t is a park in southern Mongolia which they don’t
know about yet. SchNews have concrete evidence that these stone hearted
tree killers were the Newbury Bypass overall winners.We had to grit our
teeth when we heard they also took away the civil engineering category and
were awarded a certificate of excellence.This is obviously going to pave
the way for other multi-national lovelies to grace our land.

disclaimer
SchNEWS warns all readers to structurally adjust their Section 28 on
leaving the bathroom. Honest!

Top

GOT A SPARE PC OR PRINTER? We've been given two printers but they're too
old to work properly with current software. If you can help.............

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contacts, comedy etc. All the above books are available from the Brighton
Peace Centre, saving postage yer tight gits.

Subscribe to SchNEWS: Send us first class stamps (e.g. 20 for the next 20
issues) or donations (cheques payable to "Justice?"). Or £15 for a year's
subscription, or the SchNEWS supporter's rate, £1 a week. Ask for
"original" if you plan to copy and distribute. SchNEWS is post-free to
prisoners. You can also pick SchNEWS up at the Brighton Peace and
Environment Centre at 43 Gardner Street, Brighton.

SchNEWS, PO Box 2600, Brighton, BN2 2DX, England
Phone/Fax (call before faxing): 01273 685913
Email: schnews@brighton.co.uk Web: http://www.schnews.org.uk/

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Last updated 18th February 2000
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