Yabby You – Conquering Lion

Nothing needs to be said.

Authored by Chris Hall


Planes, boats and trains

Well, planes anyways, and only then if you’re white? Great cartoon.

From the Daily Mirror.

From now on, anyone arriving in Australia by boat without a visa will be transferred to PNG —this includes women and children. PNG officials will assess their claims on Manus Island,” Acting Australian High Commissioner Sonya Koppe said.

Authored by Chris Hall

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The Archbishop and the rug

The other day I posted about the Archbishop of Canterbury’s crusade against payday loan companies like Wonga and others. He received much praise from the media and even from that bloke at the head of the National Secular Society (least I think it was praise when I heard him doing a rent-a-quote on the radio).

However it seems that someone has whispered in Justin Welby’s ear that the dear old Church of England actually invested in the creation of Wonga. He must feel that he’s had the rug pulled from under him.

Oh dear!

Does raise a question with me on church structure though. Should the church be dancing with mammon or set up in such a way that the church can give it a sound thrashing? For the future methinks.

Authored by Chris Hall

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The Archbishop and Wonga

Image representing Wonga as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase

Have to say I was initially chuffed to see the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby laying down a challenge to Wonga and others of their ilk. The AoC communicated that he wanted to see the payday loan industry driven out of business by promoting the use of credit unions.

The payday loan industry is involved in outright usury which is condemned by many faiths such as Islam and Christianity and others. Usury we can look upon as the lending of money at exorbitant rates of interest.

But then I thought what was the AoC actually saying? He wanted to replace excessive usury with not so excessive usury. Is that what we should be aiming for? Plus the architects of our current austerity are backing the AoC!

I would love to see all of the credit industry driven out of business but it will only be done by paying workers a decent wage, sharing in the profit of their labour and making capitalism history.

At the end of the day this sort of initiative is just a sideshow, the real work to get a free and just society and world remains.

Pay a living and just wage so people don’t have to borrow.

Authored by Chris Hall

Are the Samaritans De-Recognising Unite?

Unite logo
Unite logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Have seen two conflicting statements today around the issue of the Samaritans and their relationship with Unite the Union.

Unite is claiming that the Samaritans are de-reconising the union, maybe a a prelude to changes to terms and conditions etc. They have issued this statement:

Problem for Samaritans – derecognising Unite
24 July 2013

Samaritans, the charity that has helped people with their problems for 60 years, has a problem of its own – it has derecognised Unite as the union representing its staff.

Samaritans has recognised the right of the workforce to have an independent trade union and elect representatives for many years, however the charity has recently reneged on this agreement, claiming that ‘the agreement does not reflect the nature of our working relationship’.

Unite regional officer Jamie Major said “I would strongly urge Samaritans to reconsider its position. This act of derecognition goes totally against the ethos of Samaritans.

“It is highly suspicious that Unite was informed that management wants to make sweeping changes to policies and procedures, and then derecognised the rights of staff to have an independent trade union in the same breath.

“This is a worrying development for the 110-strong workforce. I would urge them to stand together to ensure they retain an independent voice at Samaritans.

“As management no longer recognise our agreement, we have no other option but to consult our members working at Samaritans about the action they are prepared to take in response.

“Industrial action will obviously be one of the options we will be discussing, if management refuses to negotiate.”

Samaritans is a national charity and the coordinating body for the 201 Samaritans’ branches in the UK, the Republic of Ireland, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man. It was founded in 1953.


I posted a tweet about this and JoeFerns_Samaritans @Ferns_Joe tweeted back on behalf of the Samaritans stating that they hadn’t de-recognised Unite. Their statement is here:

Samaritans statement regarding UNITE the Union

Wednesday 24th July 2013
Catherine Johnstone, Chief Executive of Samaritans, said:

“We are very disappointed that Unite have come out today and announced that Samaritans has ‘de-recognised the Union’.

“It is surprising to us that this statement has been issued as it is our impression that we have been working together working with Unite in order to put in place an appropriate new Voluntary Recognition Agreement that accurately reflects the needs of the organisation in the context of the number of staff that are members of the Union, which we believe to be quite low.

“Samaritans believes it is important that all staff are treated fairly and equally and have had membership with a union since 2005.”

Tis a mystery but why go for a Voluntary Recognition Agreement when you already have what I assume is a statutory agreement does seem a bit fishy.

Authored by Chris Hall

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Papiss Cissé and Wonga

Image representing Wonga as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase

A few days ago a story broke around a Newcastle United football player called Papiss Cissé who refused to wear the Newcastle strip as it displayed their new sponsor’s logo. The new sponsor being Wonga, the infamous scummy payday loan company.

Cissé’s stand is apparently being taken on religious and ethical grounds. Religious in that his Islamic faith frowns upon usury (lending money at interest, and at at up to 5,835% Wonga needs frowning upon). And ethical/religious in that those who suffer at the hands of these companies and also fill the coffers of these parasites are the poor and unfortunate, classes of people who deserve protection in any faith worth it’s salt.

So I applaud  Cissé’s stand on this. If only our political masters had some backbone like him. But of course they haven’t, all the leadership and backers of the main political parties are enmeshed with the parasitic capitalists and see nothing wrong with the poor being fleeced.

However it’s sad to see the media trying to knock Cissé’s stand on this by conflating his apparent attendance at a casino. Somehow this proves the hypocrisy of Cissé and nullifies the stance he’s taken. I think it just shows how low the media will go to support their class backers.

Cissé going to a casino is in no way similar to endorsing a payday loan company. He will answer for what he does according to his faith, but he certainly isn’t leading the poor up the garden path. Siding with a payday loan company is encouraging the poor to place themselves more and more in debt and heap extra misery upon their shoulders.

I know what’s worse.

Cissé gets my vote and support.

Authored by Chris Hall