Geography Archives: Australasia

  • Migration as Revolt against Capital

    The fact that a large number of refugees, especially from countries which have been subjected of late to the ravages of imperialist aggression and wars, are desperately trying to enter Europe is seen almost exclusively in humanitarian terms.  While this perception no doubt has validity, there is another aspect of the issue which has escaped […]

  • The Imperial War Museum in London: A Lesson in State Propaganda?

    In January 2016, I attended Tate Britain’s Artist and Empire: Facing Britain’s Imperial Past, a disappointing exhibition that in spite of its title did not face Britain’s past in any meaningful way.  On the contrary, as I argued in my review, it shied away from this bloody history in favour of quasi-glorification, non-committal wording and […]

  • The Spectre of Social Counter-Revolution

    5th Dr. BR Ambedkar Memorial Lecture, Indian Institute of Dalit Studies, New Delhi, September 27, 2014 I I would like to use this occasion to dwell upon a point to which Dr Ambedkar had drawn attention in his closing speech to the Constituent Assembly on November 25, 1949.  In that speech he had underscored a […]

  • Capitalism, Inequality and Globalization: Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-first Century

    I. The Piketty Argument Thomas Piketty’s book Capital in the Twenty-first Century embodies an immense amount of empirical research into the distribution of wealth and income across the population for a number of advanced capitalist countries going back for over two centuries.  In particular Piketty has made extensive use of tax data for the first […]

  • The Myths of Capitalism

    There is a pervasive view that growth under capitalism, though it may worsen poverty, even absolute poverty, to start with, eventually leads to a lowering of poverty.  The experience of the English Industrial Revolution is invoked in this context.  There has been a huge debate among economic historians about the impact of the Industrial Revolution […]

  • Sago Mine Disaster

    Five years ago today, an explosion rocked the Sago mine in Upshur County, West Virginia.  Twelve miners died; miners’ families were led on a horrific emotional roller-coaster ride during which they were told that their trapped fathers, husbands, brothers, uncles, and in-laws had been found alive (only to find out, hours later, that only one […]

  • Cancun Climate Conference: Some Key Issues

    A year after the chaotic Copenhagen summit, the 2010 UNFCCC climate conference begins in Cancun.  Expectations are low this time around, especially compared to the eve of Copenhagen. That’s probably both good and bad.  The conference last year had been so hyped up beforehand, with so much hopes linked to it, that the lack of […]

  • The Dollar Question: Where Are We?

      The global crisis has led some to question the dollar’s place as the dominant currency.  This column discusses three camps in the literature: those advocating a new synthetic global currency, those arguing that a new reserve currency will emerge, and those suggesting a return to sharing the role.  It concludes that talk of the […]

  • Confront Dow Chemical at the Dow/Live Earth Run for Water

      CALL TO ACTION Organize Events in Your City! Confront Dow Chemical at the Dow/Live Earth Run for Water Tell Dow: You Can’t Run from Your Responsibilities! APRIL 18 2010, 8:00 am Dow Chemical was among the chief producers and profiteers of Agent Orange during the Vietnam War.  In addition to wartime exposure resulting in […]

  • In Memory of Alistair Hulett, Scottish Singer and Socialist

      Today is my daughter Leila’s fourth birthday, and while this occasion brings my thoughts back to the day she was born, the past 24 hours have otherwise been full of fairly devastating news. If the left can admit to having icons, then two of them have just died.  Yesterday it was the great historian […]

  • Gaza Freedom March: Palestinian Non-violence and International Solidarity

    I’m going to discuss the utility of non-violent resistance as it applies to resolving the Israel-Palestine conflict and, specifically, the occupation and blockade of the Gaza strip.  Even more specifically, I’m going to discuss the Gaza Freedom March (GFM), of which I’m one of the organizers.  But before discussing Palestinian non-violence, several things must be […]

  • The Impending Indian Government Offensive against the Adivasi Inhabited Hilly Regions: Statement of Concern and Protest by Arundhati Roy, Noam Chomsky and Others

    Analytical Monthly Review On Monday, October 12th, it was reported that Manmohan Singh — despite the request of air chief marshal P. V. Naik to permit IAF personnel in helicopters to attack inhabitants of the hilly regions — had announced that the armed forces would not be deployed against the domestic left-wing opponents of the […]

  • The Union Premium

      Countless academics have sought to measure the tangible benefits of being a union member.  The difference between union and non-union wages, often referred to as the “union premium,” can be calculated in many different ways.  It’s a profoundly complex field. . . .  Here’s a classic example of the poop one has to wade […]

  • Unions in New Zealand Organize the Unorganized, Win Gains in Minimum Wage

    AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND — On April 6, 2009, I spent a day visiting the offices of New Zealand’s newest, and among its most dynamic, trade unions, Unite. Unite is at the forefront of a revitalization of a section of the labour movement in New Zealand that has resulted in thousands of young and marginalized workers […]

  • Israel Forcefully Condemned at UN Conference against Racism

      The president of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, attended the conference to condemn the Israeli government’s brutal and repressive policy against the Palestinians.  The European delegates walked out when he called the government of Israel “racist,” but the Latin Americans stayed.  The United States and eight other countries boycotted the event. The Israeli government’s stance against […]

  • Thailand: Drop Lèse Majesté Charges against Giles Ji Ungpakorn

    Academics, Intellectuals and Members of Parliament from around the World Call for Charges against Giles Ji Ungpakorn to be Dropped Academics from U.K, Canada, France, South Africa, Ireland, Australia, South Korea, Greece and the U.S.A., including those from Oxford University and SOAS London University, have signed an open letter calling for charges of lèse majesté, […]

  • Saturday 20/12 Global Day of Action against State Terrorism

      “Our community is expanding: MRZine viewers have increased in number, as have the readers of our editions published outside the United States and in languages other than English.  We sense a sharp increase in interest in our perspective and its history.   Many in our community have made use of the MR archive we […]

  • This Alien Legacy: The Origins of “Sodomy” Laws in British Colonialism: I.  Introduction

      “Our community is expanding: MRZine viewers have increased in number, as have the readers of our editions published outside the United States and in languages other than English.  We sense a sharp increase in interest in our perspective and its history.   Many in our community have made use of the MR archive we […]

  • Indigenous Peoples Rising in Bolivia and Ecuador

    Introduction Indigenous peoples in Indo-Afro-Latin America, especially Bolivia and Ecuador, are rising up to take control of their own lives and act in solidarity with others to save the planet.  They are calling for new, yet ancient, practices of plurinational, participatory, and intercultural democracy.  They champion ecologically sustainable development; community-based autonomies; and solidarity with other […]

  • Seized! The 2008 Land Grab for Food and Financial Security

    Today’s food and financial crises have, in tandem, triggered a new global land grab.  On the one hand, “food insecure” governments that rely on imports to feed their people are snatching up vast areas of farmland abroad for their own offshore food production.  On the other hand, food corporations and private investors, hungry for profits […]