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First Tuesday current affairs discussion - Tuesday 5 December 7:00pm start

Tuesday 5th Dec: First Tuesday Current Affairs discussion

We'll discuss two topical subjects

Articles for 5 Dec 17

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First Tuesday Current Affairs Forum
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News Reviews from 2017

Political sex allegations

Political sex allegations

by Simon Belt

 

Spreadsheets and gossip have been circulating Westminster in the last week, fueled by a press keen to boost waning circulation figures and broader reach in society. A rather febrile atmosphere has been allowed to develop whereby very few will stand up and be counted as saying it's a problem. Sure, plenty are saying there's a problem and will cite various fumblings with sexual intent, and when that doesn't work will cite allegations of sexual harassment or assault as proof of the real problem at the heart of party politics.

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News Reviews from 2017

Censoriousness in film and theatre

Censoriousness in film and theatre

by Simon Belt

 

In the wake of allegations of sexual assault and cover-up by Harvey Weinstein, the floodgates seem to be opening and those caught in the crossfire will suffer badly. To pre-empt any damage to reputations in this hightened atmosphere, allegations of sexually predatory behaviour by Kevin Spacey led to Netflix cancelling their contract with him.

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News Reviews from 2017

Militarising the Far East

Militarising the Far East

by Simon Belt

 

North Korea is one of the three countries announced in George W Bush's State of the Nation speech in January 2002, whereby Iran and Iraq were listed alongside North Korea as forming an 'axis of evil'. That North Korea was included in the axis of evil and is yet the powers that be in Washington still haven't done anything much more than tweet about it is telling. Is North Korea really so powerful that it has resisted mighty power of the US that dismantled the Iraqi state with a little help from the UK?

 

Is there something going on in North Korea that has prompted this latest round of grandstanding tweets from the President of the US? Some recent missile launches from the secretive North Korean state are worthy of news reports, but what of real significance is going on that warrants threats by the US to suspend trade with China for its trading relationship with North Korea?

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News Reviews from 2017

Uber and the gig economy

Uber and the gig economy

by Simon Belt

 

In October 2016, a landmark ruling by the Central London Employment Tribunal - brought by two Uber London drivers and backed by the GMB union - said that Uber drivers are not self-employed, but are workers who are entitled basic benefits such as holiday and sick pay. On 22 September 2017, the London Mayor Sadiq Khan announced that Transport for London (TfL) were not going to renew the license for Uber London to provide taxi services in London, with effect from 30 September.

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News Reviews from 2017

Votes removed by police

Frustrating the Catalan referendum

by Simon Belt

 

Sunday saw some extraordinary scenes in Spain as police, dressed for riot control with tactical support units, descended on polling stations across Catalonia to disrupt an independence referendum. It had been ruled illegal by the Spanish constitutional court, but the show of force by the state, doling out beatings to those voting and administering the vote was dramatic and reprehensible.

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