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Between the Lines: From Soweto to the Indian Reservations

From Soweto to the Indian Reservations

It is not only in South Africa that the natives have been forced into second-rate "homelands" by the property-owning minority. Capitalism is a global system and its robbery extends far. In On Indian Land (C4, 7 July. 9.55) we were shown how the native Indians, who had once owned 22.000 square miles of land in Northern British Columbia, were placed in reserves of 45 square miles. Some of the older Indians told how Christian missionaries had come and told them not to resist as their land was taken away from them. The fisheries which they once possessed are now the property of Canadian capitalists. Capitalism's defenders boast of the freedom of cultural individuality. This documentary put the lie to that boast.

American dreams

The Rise of Parliament in England

In considering the history of Parliament, it is convenient to commence with the events leading up to the Civil War in England, when the institution of Parliament was at a crossroad. In Europe, under despotic monarchs the old feudal Parliaments were falling more and more into neglect. In England, however, as in the Netherlands, Parliament could not only maintain itself against the trend but could also struggle for greater strength.

Parliaments, Kings and Courts are not, and certainly were not, abstract methods of ruling. These institutions represented the administrative power of various economic classes and groups with their different interests in the organisation of society.

History - Whose Story?

We live in times of great change, uncertainty and bewilderment. For many it is hard to see where it is all leading. Empires fall; economies slump; morals are up in the air; riots; new national conflicts; New World Orders that are more wish than substance. Like in the inter-war years, the ruling class seem to be unsure quite what it is they are ruling—and for how long they will do so. The majority of people are a little numbed by it all. Better the devil you know? The atmosphere is one of expectation—often pessimistic and fatalistic, but the assumption is that everything in the known world might soon be not quite the same.

Between the Lines: Dispatches, News Priorities and GBH


Men with baseball bats threatening their political opponents; whispering campaigns and smears leaked to the press in order to discredit certain MPs; statements to the police about physical intimidation. Dispatches (C4, 8pm, 12 June) has shown what life is really like inside the Tory party. And there we were thinking it was all tea parties with fairy cakes made by the W.I. and orgasmic rallies in Blackpool. Not so, it seems. Where there is power to be fought for these louts fight dirty.

One Tory referred to the infiltration of his party by a "sinister brotherhood of extreme right-wingers". These are known within Tory ranks as The Movement and comprise of a number of free-market ideologues who dream of a utopia where the fire brigade is privatised and every beggar has the freedom to become a self-employed rent boy.

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