Monthly Archives: May 2020


Research on covid-19 is suffering “imperfect incentives at every stage”

The rush to publish and report during the pandemic is compromising quality, worried experts tell Stephen Armstrong from the British Medical Journal. On 11 April Neel Shah, assistant professor of obstetrics, gynaecology, and reproductive biology at Harvard Medical School, published … Continue reading


The children came back

Paradigm Shift 4ZZZ fm 102.1 Friday at Noon – 29 May 2020. This week we talk about aboriginal child removal rates. This Tuesday was Sorry Day, the anniversary of the Bringing Them Home report into the stolen generations. So why … Continue reading


Murder in Minneapolis

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“It’s my face man I didn’t do nothing serious man please please please I can’t breathe please man please somebody please man I can’t breathe I can’t breathe please (inaudible) …. I cannot breathe I cannot breathe they gon’ kill … Continue reading


Modern Monetary Theory and Morrison’s cash splash

In this article Humphrey McQueen poses the straw man that Morrison is Marx re-born because of the Keynesian expenditure during Covid-19 pandemic. The fast concentration of wealth, theft from the poor, and the dominance of the economy by the market … Continue reading


See What You Made Me Do

Welcome to the Paradigm Shift on FM 102.1 4ZZZ Fridays at noon. We challenge the assumptions of our current society, to resist oppression and investigate alternative ways of living for a world based on justice, solidarity and sustainability. This week … Continue reading


Attack on Cuban embassy in Washington brings complicit silence from U.S. government

Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla discussed the April 30 attack on the country’s embassy in Washington with the press yesterday, stating: ‘Here is the attacker, an AK-47 rifle, 32 shell casings, 32 bullet holes and a statement – by … Continue reading


Cuba’s internationalism and COVID-19

More than 2300 Cuban health professionals, belonging to 26 “Henry Reeve” medical brigades, have gone to 24 nations in Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, Africa and the Middle East, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. They are helping … Continue reading


Medical Aid for Cuba

URGENT APPEAL: Medical Aid for Cuba The US continues to impose sanctions on Cuba, severely restricting access to medical equipment in the fight against the pandemic. In spite of this Cuba has sent more than 2300 medical workers around the … Continue reading


May Day at home

The measures taken to control the COVID-19 pandemic were felt across our union and solidarity movement as our annual Brisbane Labour Day march was cancelled, and we had to celebrate the International Day of the Workers in our own homes. … Continue reading


Democratic Rights and Detainees

For the past 6 weeks there have been protests outside a Kangaroo Point Hotel on Main Street, not far from Brisbane CBD. About one hundred refugees are detained in the Kangaroo Point Central Hotel, with no trial or release date, … Continue reading


Turning off rooftop solar, why?

Australia’s solar industry is going gangbusters. Soon it is likely to provide 75% of daytime electricity. Yet the coal lobbyists want to be able to turn off solar on rooftops by introducing new inverters. The reason is the grid is … Continue reading


Letter from America – will Democrats dump sleepy Joe?

“There is only one party in the United States, the Property Party … and it has two right wings: Republican and Democrat. ” – Gore Vidal. With unemployment over 20 million, the pandemic about to claim 100,000 lives and a country … Continue reading


A Sunday in Hell

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Jorgen Leth’s film focuses on the 1976 Paris-Roubaix single day bike race over the cobbled farm tracks of northern France, normally reserved for cattle. Leth covers the race with twenty cameras and a helicopter and captures the drama as some of the sport’s greats, including Merckx, De Vlaeminck, Maertens and Moser, battle it out through the dirt and dust clouds. Continue reading


Brisbane Metro – danger!

Logan city ain’t it pretty?Logan city what a pityThat we’re livin’ south of the freeway Rich up north….poor down southRich live up there in their expensive houseLivin’ south of the freeway – Kev Carmody They say that the French classic … Continue reading


Exile on Main Street

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Farad a civil engineer who had escaped from Iran was told when he arrived on Christmas island 7 years ago that he would never be settled in Australia. He was exiled to Manus Island. After going through a lot of hardship Farad was brought to Brisbane International Transit Accomodation at Pinkenba (BITA) last April. He needed medical attention after spending 6 years on Manus Island. He was transferred there forcefully from Christmas Island in August 2013. Continue reading


Jack Mundey tribute

WBT posts this epitaph for Jack Mundey by the author of Frameworks of Flesh – Builders’ Labourers Battle for Health and Safety, Humphrey McQueen. Much was made about political differences between Jack Mundey (NSW BLF) and Norm Gallagher (Victorian BLF). I … Continue reading


Screen New Deal

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Canadian journalist and author, Naomi Klein, has put her finger on it. She says in her essay ‘Screen New Deal‘ that: “All of this is moving very fast. The Australian government has contracted with Amazon to store the data for … Continue reading


Vale Jack Mundey

Jack Mundey grew up amid amid the rainforests of North Queensland. In 1973 Jack Mundey coined the term ‘Green Ban’ to describe the withdrawal of Labour for social and environmental reasons. So by 1974 the NSW Building Labourers Federation (BLF) … Continue reading


How Labor Governs – in the ashes of Covid-19

The Queensland Labor Party arose from the shearers strike of 1890. In the words of Vere Gordon Childe “a confidence in the irresistible might of the organised workers prevailed.” and “Labour was now a force to be reckoned with in … Continue reading


Who should I vote for in November?

“There is only one party in the United States, the Property Party … and it has two right wings: Republican and Democrat. ” – Gore Vidal. The Democratic and Republican parties are set to run candidates for president in 2020 who … Continue reading


Shock Doctrine II

Paradigm Shift 4ZZZ fm 102.1 Fridays at Noon – May 8, 2020 Today on the Paradigm Shift it’s part two of our series on “the shock doctrine” and the covid-19 crisis – how might this crisis be used by government … Continue reading


U.S. to be pitied on response to pandemic?

We post this recent article The World has Loved, Hated and Envied the U.S. Now, for the First Time, we Pity it by Fintan O’Toole from the Irish times. We note that there is plenty of justified criticism of the GOP … Continue reading


Where do Australian state schools come from?

The answer to this question is trickier than I thought. Here is an excellent answer by Craig Campbell, PhD DipEd University of Sydney. The corollary to this question is why have governments since Menzies so heavily funded private schools? – … Continue reading


Brisbane Metro going green in Kurilpa?

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As the covid-19 curve flattens and people get back in their cars why should a publicly funded institutions like GoMA, the state library of Queensland and the art gallery support 48 thousand cars going past there door daily? Worse still why would they support more cars being able to contest the limited space in Stanley Place with public transport? All council has done is to promise a green bridge and to make the Grey Street Bridge a dirty bridge. Continue reading


Kent State and the War That Never Ended

“Tin soldiers and Nixon coming,We’re finally on our own.This summer I hear the drummingFour dead in Ohio.” (“Ohio” lyrics by Neil Young) On Thursday, April 30th, 1970, President Richard Nixon announced that American forces were moving into Cambodia. The following week the … Continue reading


Shock & Awe Doctrine

At a time when the United States is failing under pressure of 20 million workers unemployed the contest for leadership is between two men who supported the Iraq war. In 2003 Canadian journalist Naomi Klein was covering the occupation of … Continue reading


Child care workers on $5.99/hr

Recently the Federal government announced its #freechildcare policy. This has privately owned child care facility at Coorparoo upset because it means a reduction in funding. All this comes under the radar because of Covid-19. Is the government using Covid-19 restrictions … Continue reading

May First General Strike in United States

Poster from strike call on West Coast

Corporate America is making money during Covid-19. In April, Wall Street had their best month since 1974, and the Australian stock market had its best monthly performance – ever!

From outside the ring, Noam Chomsky is saying the US is a failed state. Some people are making a lot of money in Trumps America. Governors have released Covid-19 restrictions in some states.

On the inside of mainstream politics, Bernie Sanders capitulated to Biden after one call from Obama! I think both Sanders and Obama are wrong, they could beat Trump if Bernie had run in November because Biden is both right wing and a nincompoop. But even if they do … how does that help the workers with corporate america determined to profit from this health and financial crisis.

According to US treasury statistics, thirty (30) million workers in the US have filed for unemployment benefits. That is one in five workers, that’s not a recession, that’s a depression if it lasts through the year!

Syndicalists have called for one day strikes in the US starting today, 1st May on international workers day. Their demands are quite modest:

“The #GeneralStrike has five demands:

(1) Protection from Covid-19

(2) Safe Housing.

(3) Living Wages.

(4) Medicare for All.

(5) Equal Education.

We would add a sixth urgent demand – saving the postal service.” –

Employees of Amazon, Whole Foods, Walmart, FedEx, Target and Instacart will walk off the job demanding compensation for unpaid time off work, hazard pay, sick leave, personal protective equipment and cleaning supplies at workplaces. Many of the workers are part of a growing coalition that will join a May 1 People’s Strike launched by worker cooperatives in Mississippi. This is Kali Akuno, co-director of Cooperation Jackson.

Kali Akuno: “We’re asking everybody to start with these basics: no work, no shopping, no rent, no mortgage, no school, no borders, no prisons. Right? Let us all take joint action together.”

Ian Curr
1 May 2020



Foco Nuevo live stream on May Day

ReminderFoco Nuevo Live-Streaming Tonight MAY 1st! 8pm. To start, click HERE.  If you have trouble seeing the stream, scroll down and click on ‘See All Posts’ Hosted by Unity Production. In lieu of our regular monthly Foco Nuevo concert Jumping Fences … Continue reading