Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Medieval robber-baron, Steven Purcell cuts off water supply to Wyndford School!

This is the limit! Glasgow City Council have cut off the water supply to the school where parents are staging a sit-in, while they await a judicial review on the decision to close the Glasgow schools.

Steven Purcell, you obviously have no shame. Your dirty tactics are reminiscent of sieges in Medieval times. Why don't you talk to the people in communities, and actually listen, instead of ramming your fake consultation results down their throats?

Water is a basic human right.

Get there if you can, with water and supplies for the parents.


Monday, 29 June 2009



From Richie Venton, Glasgow Save our Schools Campaign organiser
Please take 2 minutes to sign the e-petition for the Scottish Parliament; help fight for smaller class sizes and greater democracy in decision-making.
Dear friends and fighters,
We have been fighting the Glasgow Labour council’s closure of 25 primaries and nurseries since January. We have built a mass movement, using every conceivable method of struggle.
Now we have taken the battle to the Scottish parliament and the Scottish government, demanding they take a clear stance in opposition to the closures and their consequences – especially the regressive increase in class sizes.
Our massive efforts saved 3 of the 25, but the rest are now closed, with horrendous consequences for kids, families and communities.
The Labour Council cynically calculated that since there will be no Council elections until 2012, they would ride the storm, hope people forget, and save themselves £3.7m a year at terrible cost to communities in working class areas of the city. We are determined to make them pay for these crimes – and in the process, stop the threat of 34 further potential closures!
If you want more background information, just click on the Glasgow Save Our Schools website at Glasgow Save Our Schools Campaign

At the heart of our battle now is that for smaller class sizes. Our Campaign has persistently demanded cuts to class sizes of 20 maximum for all ages. That would improve education and protect and create teachers’ jobs.
That is also the official policy of the teachers’ unions. And the Scottish government claims to aim at 18 maximum in Primary1-3.
As one important strand of our ongoing campaign, we have lodged this petition in the Scottish parliament Public Petitions system.
In case you are not aware, the Scottish parliament allows the public to submit petitions to a committee of MSPs to consider, with the option of inviting representatives to address this Public Petitions Committee to justify the case, and the power to then lodge the issue as a matter for debate in the full parliament and its sub-committees.

So we need vast numbers to add their names to this petition online, to add pressure to the MSPs in favour of inviting us to address them when they meet again in September. We have a limited few weeks to maximise the numbers signing the petition online.
It is straightforward - just click here to sign the e-petition for the Scottish Parliament.
And you have the OPTION of adding a comment on the discussion board to help add weight to the debate; but at least please add your name to the list of signatures TODAY.
And when you’ve done that, get others in your family to do it; and others in your trade union or community group. Then forward this email to everyone on your list of email addresses, to encourage them to sign up as well.

Thanks for your help – sign up and spread the word!
Yours in struggle and unity,
Richie Venton

Sunday, 28 June 2009


I have so much respect for these courageous parents, who are standing up for the rights of their children.

The birth rate in Glasgow is rising, so there is no justification for school closures. Why would you close schools just at the point when nursery and school rolls are rising?

Why should children in the most deprived areas have to pay for the recession? Tax the rich and leave these people and their scarce resources alone.

From watching the video, you can feel the people's increased awareness of their own power. That's very healthy and the council should be doing everything they can to encourage these people, not belittling their interests.


Also, see this press release from Friday. If you can, pop up to the schools with supplies and words of encouragement for the parents.


Latest - Council plan to stop people geting in or out of Wyndford from 8pm! Urgently need supplies before then, and anyƶne who can join the sit-in...

PRESS RELEASE … for immediate use (26th JUNE)-

Latest-Glasgow Save Our Schools Campaign


Parents at Wyndford primary school have this afternoon occupied the school in fury at its closure by Glasgow labour council.Glasgow Save Our Schools Campaign organiser, Richie Venton, today said:“Parents sacrificed their Easter holidays, occupying the buildings of schools facing closure. The Labour council ignored this community uprising and the mass opposition across the city to their butchery of primaries and nurseries.“Parents who have re-occupied Wyndford primary as the council slammed the doors shut today are expressing the fury of a community at the damage done to their kids’ education – but also at the Council’s planned demolition of one of the few remaining community facilities in Wyndford.“This school won numerous awards for high achievement, partly based on smaller class sizes. Now kids are being scattered to the four winds by the heartless Labour axe-wielders, who also hope to bulldoze the building. The parents staging the sit-in against Labour’s vandalism deserve massive public support.”

For more info contact Richie Venton on 07828 278 093 or at richieventon@hotmail.comOr Nikki Rathmill 07894123721END

Sunday, 21 June 2009


This truly lays bare the myth that we live in "civilised" Western "democracies." In the UK, three million people demonstrated against this war, but the decision to use our taxes to commit mass murder without any justification had already been taken by just two men, representing the interests of the narrowest, wealthiest section of society. Instead of holding them to account or challenging them, our elected representatives were presumably prioritising padding their expenses claims.

There wasn't even any point to it. All they achieved were thousands if not millions of unnecessary deaths and political instability. And at the same time, they have led us to the brink of economic and environmental catastrophe.

The ruling class and their representatives in ALL the mainstream parties are not fit to lead. None of this will be solved by voting for another mainstream party, or even by having a no-holds-barred public enquiry. It's the rotten capitalist system that has got to go.


Jamie Doward, Gaby Hinsliff and Mark Townsend
The Observer, Sunday 21 June 2009
A confidential record of a meeting between President Bush and Tony Blair before the invasion of Iraq, outlining their intention to go to war without a second United Nations resolution, will be an explosive issue for the official inquiry into the UK's role in toppling Saddam Hussein.
The memo, written on 31 January 2003, almost two months before the invasion and seen by the Observer, confirms that as the two men became increasingly aware UN inspectors would fail to find weapons of mass destruction (WMD) they had to contemplate alternative scenarios that might trigger a second resolution legitimising military action.
Bush told Blair the US had drawn up a provocative plan "to fly U2 reconnaissance aircraft painted in UN colours over Iraq with fighter cover". Bush said that if Saddam fired at the planes this would put the Iraqi leader in breach of UN resolutions.
The president expressed hopes that an Iraqi defector would be "brought out" to give a public presentation on Saddam's WMD or that someone might assassinate the Iraqi leader. However, Bush confirmed even without a second resolution, the US was prepared for military action. The memo said Blair told Bush he was "solidly with the president".
The five-page document, written by Blair's foreign policy adviser, Sir David Manning, and copied to Sir Jeremy Greenstock, the UK ambassador to the UN, Jonathan Powell, Blair's chief of staff, the chief of the defence staff, Admiral Lord Boyce, and the UK's ambassador to Washington, Sir Christopher Meyer, outlines how Bush told Blair he had decided on a start date for the war.
Paraphrasing Bush's comments at the meeting, Manning, noted: "The start date for the military campaign was now pencilled in for 10 March. This was when the bombing would begin."
Last night an expert on international law who is familar with the memo's contents said it provided vital evidence into the two men's frames of mind as they considered the invasion and its aftermath and must be presented to the Chilcott inquiry established by Gordon Brown to examine the causes, conduct and consequences of the Iraq war.
Philippe Sands, QC, a professor of law at University College London who is expected to give evidence to the inquiry, said confidential material such as the memo was of national importance, making it vital that the inquiry is not held in private, as Brown originally envisioned.
In today's Observer, Sands writes: "Documents like this raise issues of national embarrassment, not national security. The restoration of public confidence requires this new inquiry to be transparent. Contentious matters should not be kept out of the public domain, even in the run-up to an election."
The memo notes there had been a shift in the two men's thinking on Iraq by late January 2003 and that preparing for war was now their priority. "Our diplomatic strategy had to be arranged around the military planning," Manning writes. This was despite the fact Blair that had yet to receive advice on the legality of the war from the Attorney General, Lord Goldsmith, which did not arrive until 7 March 2003 - 13 days before the bombing campaign started.
In his article today, Sands says the memo raises questions about the selection of the chair of the inquiry. Sir John Chilcott sat on the 2004 Butler inquiry, which examined the reliability of intelligence in the run-up to the Iraq war, and would have been privy to the document's contents - and the doubts about WMD running to the highest levels of the US and UK governments.
Many senior legal experts have expressed dismay that Chilcott has been selected to chair the inquiry as he is considered to be close to the security services after his time spent as a civil servant in Northern Ireland.
Brown had believed that allowing the Chilcott inquiry to hold private hearings would allow witnesses to be candid. But after bereaved families and antiwar campaigners expressed outrage, the prime minister wrote to Chilcott to say that if the panel can show witnesses and national security issues will not be compromised by public hearings, he will change his stance.
Lord Guthrie, a former chief of the defence staff under Blair, described the memo as "quite shocking". He said that it underscored why the Chilcott inquiry must be seen to be a robust investigation: "It's important that the inquiry is not a whitewash as these inquiries often are."
This year, the Dutch government launched its own inquiry into its support for the war. Significantly, the inquiry will see all the intelligence shared with the Dutch intelligence services by MI5 and MI6. The inquiry intends to publish its report in November - suggesting that confidential information about the role played by the UK and the US could become public before Chilcott's inquiry reports next year.