Past Episodes

Tipping point in New Zealand politics at the grassroots: The Residents Action Movement

The Residents Action Movement (or RAM) is a left wing local government electoral ticket in the Auckland Region of New Zealand that is in the process of becoming a national-level political party to contest the 2008 elections. RAM can be characterised as as broad left coalition, stretching from social liberals, community activists and former National Party members to social democrats, democratic socialists and left-wing radicals. Its chairperson is currently Grant Morgan, who is also a leading member of Socialist Worker (Aotearoa). [Source Wikipedia]

This is an interview with Grant Morgan (RAM chair), Daphne Lawless (a RAM candidate in last year's Auckland Regional Council election and is a current member of the RAM Executive) and Oliver Woods, RAM co-organiser. It was recorded by telephone on May 1st.

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John Bellamy Foster on the global financial crisis: ‘Nobody knows where the toxic debt is buried and how much there is’

John Bellamy Foster is an American journalist, sociologist, essayist and socialist, as well as editor of the Monthly Review, a prominent political journal foundered by the Marxist economist Paul Sweezy in the 1940s.

Foster is a Professor of Sociology at the University of Oregon in Eugene. He has written widely on political economy and has established a reputation as an environmental socialist.

He has argued that Karl Marx was a radical ecologist in his book, Marx’s Ecology: Materialism and Nature .

Foster is interviewed by Peter Boyle for Links and Green Left Weekly.

LeftCast April 29th, 2008

Original audio source

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Dick Nichols:Radical social action to stop climate change

The Climate Change Social Change Conference held in Sydney on the April 11/13 weekend was engineered to strengthen radical social action to stop climate change.

But did it succeed in its attempted aggregation of activists from the red and the green?

To answer that question LeftCast spoke to Dick Nichols --a conference featured speaker -- about the conference and what he thought its deliberations can teach us about what we should be doing next to save this planet from climate change.

LeftCast April 17th, 2008

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Michael Karadjis: Is Kosova allowed to declare independence?

"The Kosovar Albanians were an oppressed people in the old Yugoslavia, and much more so in Serbia following the collapse of the Yugoslav federation in 1989-90. Kosova had a per capita income one quarter that of Serbia; Albanians constituted only one per cent of military officers of the Yugoslav army, while Serbs constituted 70 per cent; Albanians made up 70-80 per cent of political prisoners. They are a national group in a long well-defined territory that deserve the right to national self-determination.

"Much mystification surrounds Kosovar independence. It is claimed Kosova is a “mere province” of Serbia that happens to have an Albanian majority, and thus its “secession” is a violation of Serbian “sovereignty”. The alleged difference between Kosova and the other parts of the former Yugoslavia is that the latter were constitutionally fully fledged federal republics, which had the right to independence, whereas Kosova merely had autonomy within the Serbian republic."

To address some of these issues, LeftCast spoke with the writer of the above lines, Michael Karadjis -- author of of Bosnia, Kosova and the West, published by Resistance Books in 2000.

9.71 MB, 33:56

LeftCast February 25, 2008

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Graham Matthews: is this the beginning of the end of Work Choices?

This week the Labor government introduced legislation into federal parliament which it assures us is to be the first step in the dismantling of Work Choices .

Work Choices you may recall was the Howard governments hated industrial legislation and the core issue debated during last year's federal election campaign.

In fact that vote was a poll on Work Choices.

But is this really the beginning of the end of Work Choices?

To find the answer to that question LeftCast spoke to Graham Matthews, national trade union coordinator for the Socialist Alliance.


LeftCast February 22, 2008


Original audio source

Further reading
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David Spratt : Climate CODE RED!

David Spratt -- along with Phillip Sutton -- has authored a sharp review of the Climate change crisis that is bearing down on all of us: Climate Code Red.

This interview with David Spratt explores the main arguments in this report (published by Friends of the Earth, Australia)and tries to locate the environment science in the context of what urgently needs to be done right now.

Spratt criticizes the politics of pragmatism and the ready habituation of low political expectations. He then tries to relate this penchant to compromise to the challenge of sustaining an emergency response as exemplified by the war economies during the Second World War.

18.3MB 20:05 128 kbs

LeftCast February 8, 2008


After "The big melt: lessons from the Arctic summer of 2007" comes...

"Climate Code Red: The case for a sustainability emergency"

Available for download at
Climate policy is characterised by the habituation of low expectations and a culture of failure. There is an urgent need to understand global warming and the tipping points for dangerous impacts that we have already crossed as a sustainability emergency, that takes us beyond the politics of failure-inducing compromise. We are now in a race between climate tipping points and political tipping points.

"Climate Code Red: The case for a sustainability emergency"
By David Spratt and Philip Sutton
Friends of the Earth (Australia)
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Invasion Day 2008

January 26th is celebrated in Australia as "Australia Day" but in indigenous communities around the country many communities mark it as "Invasion Day."

This is an audio montage of the annual Brisbane Invasion Day rally which gathered at state parliament and marched to Musgrave Park -- the traditional gathering ground of Brisbane blacks.

Speaking are long time Murri activists: Sam Watson, Denis Walker & Wayne Wharton.

LeftCast February 5, 2008
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Kamala Emanuel: Climate Change/Social Change Conference

Kamala Emanuel -as well as being the environment campaigns coordinator for the Socialist Alliance is a key organiser for the upcoming Climate Change /Social Change Conference set for April 11-13 in Sydney.

In this interview Kamala (pictured left)discusses the present situation that confronts the climate change movement and what role the conference can have in advancing our shared perspectives.

17.4 MB 25 minutes 20 seconds

LeftCast January 25 2008

Mp3 file download
Climate change|Social change conference
The world is teetering on the brink of unstoppable climate change. Many now recognise the need for serious change in the way we produce and use energy, our transport systems, food production, urban design and forestry practices. Yet politicians are still mouthing platitudes while allowing corporations to continue to profit from polluting our atmosphere and destroying our ecosystem.

The need for social change has become an urgent part of preventing catastrophic climate change. Can the market fix the problem? What is the real record of carbon trading? How can we build a social movement capable of averting this disaster? What models and experiences can offer real solutions?

To strengthen the exchange of ideas and contribute towards that urgent action Green Left Weekly is organising the Climate Change Social Change conference from April 11-13, 2008 in Sydney.

We are pleased to have confirmed:

  • John Bellamy Foster, author of Marx's Ecology: Materialism and Nature,editor of Monthly Review
  • Patrick Bond, Director of the Centre for Civil Society, Univ of KwaZulu-Natal; editor of Climate Change, Carbon Trading and CivilSociety
  • Roberto Perez, Cuban permaculturalist (featured in The Power of Community: how Cuba survived peak oil)
  • Sandino Carrizales, Venezuelan environmental science student, studentactivist and community organiser.

We invite your participation in making this more than just an exchange of ideas important as that is but a part of building up resistance to corporate-led climate change and strengthening the movement for sustainable development.

If you would like to participate, including presenting a workshop, taking part in a panel, exhibiting your artwork or simply to register your interest in the conference, please email the conference organisers.

To receive updates about the conference, send an email here to subscribe by email or use this feed to subscribe with your Feed Reader.

Please forward this conference call through your networks.

In solidarity,
Kamala Emanuel and Pip Hinman
Climate Change|Social Change conference organisers
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