Labour tells Rishi Sunak to stop ‘hiding’ and take ‘responsibility’ for Greensill deal

Labour’s Anneliese Dodds has told chancellor Rishi Sunak he has “ultimate responsibility” for money lent through government Covid support schemes. And she accused Sunak of “hiding” from questions over the Greensill Capital affair. The shadow chancellor has written to Sunak criticising his decision not to go to the House of Commons last week. He wasn’t present to answer questions about the controversy surrounding lobbying by former prime minister David Cameron on behalf of failed firm Greensill Capital. Evading scrutiny Instead, the government sent a junior business minister to answer an urgent question about the issue that has engulfed Westminster. Labour said the move “erodes public trust and does…

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Cut the Defense Budget: Rep. Khanna on Bloated Pentagon Spending, Ending War in Yemen, UAE Arms Deal

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.AMY GOODMAN: You tweeted Tuesday Congress should reject President Biden’s Pentagon spending hike, at the same time he’s talking about pulling out of Afghanistan. You wrote, “Instead of continuing to increase the bloated Pentagon budgets or defense contractors, we should invest in keeping us safe from pandemics and climate change. We need a 21st century national security strategy.” And you signed, along with 50 House Democrats, a letter to Biden from the Defense Spending Reduction Caucus that read in part, “Hundreds of billions of dollars now directed to the military would have greater return if invested…

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“This Agreement Protects Jobs”: Four Unions at Rutgers University Reach Historic Deal to End Layoffs

After a year of layoffs, cuts and austerity, the faculty and staff of four unions at Rutgers University have voted in support of an unusual and pioneering agreement to protect jobs and guarantee raises after the school declared a fiscal emergency as a result of the pandemic. A key part of the deal is an agreement by the professors to do “work share” and take a slight cut in hours for a few months in order to save the jobs of other lower-paid workers. “The historic nature of this agreement is that it encompasses all four unions,” says Christine O’Connell, president of the union representing Rutgers administrators. “This…

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“A Big Deal”: Bill McKibben on Rutgers Fossil Fuel Divestment & the Future of Climate Justice

Rutgers University has voted to begin divesting from fossil fuels, following a campaign by the student-organized Endowment Justice Collective that grew out of the Global Climate Strike in 2019. The organizing efforts led to a referendum vote in 2020 in which 90% of students supported divestment. About 5% of Rutgers’s $1.6 billion endowment is invested in fossil fuels, and under the terms of the agreement, it will now cease new fossil fuel investment and divest from passive index funds with fossil fuel investments. It said it also plans to invest in renewable energy and energy efficiency and that the school’s investment office will annually report on divestment progress.…

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Fossil Fuel Shock Doctrine: Naomi Klein on Deadly Deregulation & Why Texas Needs the Green New Deal

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.AMY GOODMAN: Today, we’ll start in Texas, where millions are still suffering after severe winter weather devastated the state’s energy and water systems. About 8 million Texans remain under orders to boil water. About 30,000 homes still have no power. President Biden has declared a major disaster in 77 counties. Around 70 deaths have now been linked to the winter storms, mostly in Texas, including at least 12 people who died inside their homes after losing heat, including an 11-year-old boy named Cristian Pavón, who froze to death in his bed in his family’s mobile home…

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Government contractor’s meal deal | The Canary

We need your help ... The coronavirus pandemic is changing our world, fast. And we will do all we can to keep bringing you news and analysis throughout. But we are worried about maintaining enough income to pay our staff and minimal overheads. Now, more than ever, we need a vibrant, independent media that holds the government to account and calls it out when it puts vested economic interests above human lives. We need a media that shows solidarity with the people most affected by the crisis – and one that can help to build a world based on collaboration and compassion. We have been fighting against an…

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Post Brexit Britain has started the way it intends to go on – with a trade deal siding with a dictator

The fact that the first trade deal the UK signed after Brexit was with Turkey is telling. It sets the stage for a post-EU Britain which taps into a longstanding imperial tradition of siding with dictators, despots and oppressors. Turkey’s dictatorial leader Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, has spent the last seven years since becoming president arresting and imprisoning the political opposition and awarding himself ever-increasing powers. Since 2015, 6,000 members of the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) have been imprisoned, and 16,000 detained. The party’s co-leaders, Figen Yüksekdağ and Selahattin Demirtaş have been jailed. More than 50 elected HDP mayors have been replaced by state appointed trustees. In December 2020,…

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Senior Tory MP says Johnson should quit as PM if he doesn’t get a trade deal

A veteran Tory MP has called for Boris Johnson to stand down as prime minister if he fails to secure a post-Brexit trade deal with the EU.Thanet North MP Roger Gale made the dramatic intervention as last ditch negotiations continued between London and Brussels on the issue. If Mr Johnson fails to reach an acceptable trade agreement with the EU the Prime Minister will also have failed the people of the United Kingdom. As a lifelong member of the Conservative Party, I believe that Mr Johnson’s position as Prime Minister would be untenable. 1/2 — Sir Roger Gale MP (@SirRogerGale) December 14, 2020 Gale told the PA news…

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Palestinian Official Hanan Ashrawi: Trump’s Morocco-Israel Deal Legitimizes Land Theft & Occupation

This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.AMY GOODMAN: Morocco and Israel have agreed to establish diplomatic relations as part of a U.S.-brokered deal. Morocco is the fourth Arab nation to establish ties with Israel since August. As part of the deal, the United States agreed to become the first country in the world to recognize Morocco’s sovereignty over occupied Western Sahara — what many consider to be Africa’s last colony. It’s due to open a consulate in the occupied city of Dakhla, where there are few, if any, U.S. citizens. Morocco has occupied much of the resource-rich territory since 1975 in defiance…

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UK government make final Brexit deal preparations

We need your help ... The coronavirus pandemic is changing our world, fast. And we will do all we can to keep bringing you news and analysis throughout. But we are worried about maintaining enough income to pay our staff and minimal overheads. Now, more than ever, we need a vibrant, independent media that holds the government to account and calls it out when it puts vested economic interests above human lives. We need a media that shows solidarity with the people most affected by the crisis – and one that can help to build a world based on collaboration and compassion. We have been fighting against an…

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