The offices of several oil companies have been inspected by the European Commission which include BP and Shell. The inspections were unannounced to the companies, hopefully catching them by surprise before any evidence can be shredded.
The ‘raids’ which took place in the UK, Norway and the Netherlands happened after allegations were made that the companies colluded to keep oil prices higher than they should have been for more than a decade.
The European commission said the alleged price collusion, which may have been going on since 2002, could have had a “huge impact” on the price of petrol at the pumps “potentially harming final consumers”.
Milton Friedman once said: “Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself.”
Of course this is absolute nonsense, it’s not a lack of belief in freedom, it’s a lack of trust in the corporate world!
There are countless examples where had it not been for government regulation the ‘free market’ would have hampered competition and worked against the interests of the consumers, making costs higher for ordinary people and profits higher for the corporate world, leading to a much more unequal planet.
France is back in a recession, the second time in 4 years as Socialist Party leader and President Francois Hollande comes under further criticism.
The capitalists would have you believe that a successful country is not one with the best/highest standards of living but one with the highest GDP. It is under such a guise that Socialism is deemed a failure.
Pseudo-Socialist parties and leaders don’t help the cause by going along with capitalism under a red banner, making the left look like failures.
This is the problem in France, they have a quasi Socialist government integrated into a capitalist Europe and European Union. France implements policies that try to improve conditions for the working class and make a fairer society and as a result ‘business confidence’ takes a big knock, the economy stumbles and the electorate think the ruling party are useless and vote them out only to return the previous lot of incompetent politicians.
So the never-ending cycle continues.
So what’s the answer?
Well that depends if you want the short-term or the long-term answer.
In the short term, stick with Hollande and the Socialists and screw ‘business confidence’. Maybe if we ignore the markets, they’ll go away!
In the long term capitalism must come to an end for real positive change to take place and it can’t be restricted to one country, stick with the European Union and together a socialist Europe will lead to real, genuine prosperity.
The prime minister’s adviser on enterprise Lord Young has told the cabinet that the economic downturn is an excellent time for new businesses to boost profits and grow because labour is cheap.
Instead of trying to improve conditions for workers the ruling coalition is focusing on the positive side to recession, cheap labour and as we all know, cheap labour is good for business and good for profits.
If ever there was a clear sign of the governments callous attitude towards the working class and their lust for profits over people here it is.
Only business owners should be voting for the coalition, anyone else is voting against their own interests.
Just a few months ago we were delighted to share the good news with you: eleven countries in Europe pledged to introduce Robin Hood Taxes — netting a combined whopping £30 billion. It’s hard to believe, but those taxes are now under threat from our government.
These taxes were the result of European leaders listening to the millions of ordinary people demanding the banks pay their fair share. George Osborne tried to block progress at every turn but European leaders fought on and we got the right result. But after losing the moral and practical arguments George Osborne is resorting to a desperate legal challenge to try and block these countries from introducing their own taxes.
We need to act fast to stop this dastardly Sheriff of Nottingham move and ensure these countries can introduce Robin Hood Taxes. Osborne tried to sneak this one unnoticed late on a Friday afternoon. But by speaking up and standing together we can send a clear message – we know what’s happening and we won’t let them get away with it.
Make no mistake this is not about defending British interests in Europe — it’s about defending the interests of this Government’s friends in the City of London. This legal challenge should be seen for what it is: a desperate last-ditch effort to protect the obscene profitability of our bloated financial sector.
In the UK, and across Europe we all paid to bail out the banks. And millions of us are still feeling the pain. These proposed financial transaction taxes are small but significant steps in ensuring the banks begin to pay their fair share. And that £30 billion would provide vital funds that can pay for doctors and nurses, help people in the poorest countries or fight climate change.
Not only is this wrong but it’s breathtakingly hypocritical. The City of London could be hit by the tax if, for example, a British firm trades with branches of French or German banks based in London. This is the exact same mechanism as the UK’s very own stamp duty on shares which nets the UK £3 billion a year.
Support for this tax is overwhelming: world leaders, faith leaders, economists, Nobel prize winners all cheered the lead taken by European countries. Don’t let George Osborne wreck this progress.
Why is it illegal to throw a stone through the window of a department store? Yes, the law is meant to protect us, but in reality it protects private property and bourgeois interests. The law in it’s current state is a bourgeois invention, thus the legal apparatus, in fact the whole bourgeois apparatus must be opposed.
Therefore, firebombing a department store is an expression of disdain towards the bourgeois system, towards exploitation; it is an act in solidarity with the proletarians that work at that store, selling themselves daily. But it isn’t enough to commit arson as an individualistic way to convey your antipathy towards the current system, because, overall, it achieves nothing other than causing a few thousand pounds worth of damage.
If one wishes to truly have an impact upon capitalism, then they need to do more than destroy an individual link in the chain. Let us take the London riots of 2011- the underprivileged youth showing its hate for the status quo. It had potential, but since it was random acts of violence against private property, it achieved nothing, but worst of all, meant nothing. This was terror upon the bourgeois class, but the people rioting did not know this. If one wants to revolt against the bourgeois state, they must have:
1) proper theory; it would not be good to be commiting blind acts of violence
2) they must expose the exploitation in capitalism and attempt to raise class consciousness.
3) they must make it clear to the masses that they are fighting for the proletariat, and that their actions are merely a response to the class war that the bourgeoisie has been waging with the proletariat since the birth of capitalism.