Extinction Rebellion activists blocked Vauxhall bridge in central London for the climate last year (Picture: Extinction Rebellion UK/ Andrea Domeniconi)

How can it be that a level of global heating not meant to happen in a century seems to be upon us already? Global average surface temperatures could exceed 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels within the next five years, the World Meteorological Organisation forecast last week.

That’s the same temperature that world leaders officially aim to stop us surpassing by 2100, according to the Paris Agreement and Glasgow Climate Pact. But when politicians talk about climate change “targets”, it’s worth reminding ourselves of some climate change realities.

We know the world is heating up fast. South and East Asia roasted this spring in a long, brutal heatwave, bringing sickness and death. Weather stations from northern India to the Philippines hit record-breaking temperatures.

We know that more warming is already baked in. The atmosphere now contains over 420 parts per million of carbon dioxide—the most important greenhouse gas. That’s higher than it’s been since at least 3 million years ago, when the world was thought to be an average of around 3 degrees hotter.

We know that governments are acting to add to those gases with new fossil fuels. After approving a new coal mine in Cumbria and oil drilling in Surrey, the Tories have their eye on the massive Rosebank gas and oil field under the North Sea.

Joe Biden—whose first act as US president was to back the Paris deal—recently approved new oil drilling in Alaska and the Gulf of Mexico. The Paris Agreement does nothing to address these realities—as many of us warned on protests outside the talks in 2015.

Promises, riddled with loopholes, about hypothetical emissions cuts decades from now take the place of actions today.

Fossil fuels don’t even get a mention. To dig for new gas, oil or coal is to dig our own graves–yet Paris Agreement signatories are free to keep digging.

We can expect to hear a lot more hot air, as the climate crisis deepens, about wonderful plans, promises and agreements to prevent the world from burning. And yet it burns.

David James


Don’t say ‘paedo’

Socialist Worker regularly calls prince Andrew a “paedo”. That he is a paedophile is not in question.

But should socialists use the term “paedo”, which is a derogatory term for someone who is a paedophile? The term “paedo” is something that the right use whether it be Tommy Robinson and the rest of the fascist filth, “flog them and hang them” right wing Tories or the Murdoch gutter press.

Paedophilia is an officially recognised mental health illness and many—but not a majority—paedophiles were themselves victims of sexual abuse. Having been a victim of sexual assault when I was 7 or 8 years old I understand the rage and hatred and desire to inflict summary justice on abusers.

However, unless we as a society come to grips and understand the root cause of paedophilia all that would happen is an endless cycle of abuse and new victims created. Paedophiles who commit crimes should be removed from society for the safety of others as well as themselves. They should be sent to specialised treatment centres.

Those who are in positions of power and influence who use their position to perpetuate their sexual abuse should be prosecuted and jailed. Using the term “paedo” plays into the right wing narrative and prevents a serious discussion about paedophilia.

John Curtis


Socialist Worker isn’t the enemy, Dave

I’ve been a member of the CWU union for 22 years, and I’m asking the question why is our general secretary Dave Ward attacking a pro-rank and file paper like Socialist Worker? (Socialist Worker, 3 May).

It’s because the paper is standing up against the deal the union leaders have reached with Royal Mail. The deal is a disgrace. It’s an insult to sacked reps that work in every part of the Royal Mail Group.

The boss who presided over this period of “negotiations” is now leaving with hundreds of thousands of pounds in his pockets. Yet Dave says, “This is the best deal”. The best deal for who?

Definitely not the members that struck for 18 days to defend their right to a decent pay rise and to protect terms and conditions. Dave should stop attacking Socialist Worker and attack the board instead.

Gary Smith


Tory new hospital lies sow cynicism

A key pledge by the Tories, that helped them win the last election, was to build 40 new hospitals in England by 2030. This week the BBC reports work has yet to start on 33 of them. Most are waiting for full funding to be agreed.

This includes my local hospital Whipps Cross, parts of which predate the NHS. Health secretary Steve Barclay previously announced he had approved “up to £28 million” for the first stage. But it then emerged money for the second stage had not been approved.

That means no new hospital is being built. Meanwhile, the old one is crumbling away. Two years ago flooding in parts of the hospital led to 100 patients being evacuated, surgery cancelled, and hospital activity compromised for 17 days.

Delays and cancellations of the promised new hospitals are more than just damaging to people’s health. They tell us that the democratic system we are supposed to live under isn’t functioning.

It’s not surprising that people have little trust in politicians, making promises with no intention of keeping them.

Jim Fagan

East London

Cheesed-off with system

When I was young people said that if I worked hard I could expect to live in a good house and take a foreign holiday once a year. That was proof, it was said, that capitalism was working.

Now, I hear former Tory employment minister Ann Widdecombe telling me that I shouldn’t expect to be able to afford a cheese sandwich.

I guess that means capitalism is broken.

Grace Stanley

By email

Renta-Toad Michael Gove

The ever-smug Tory Michael Gove says that his new housing rules will stop landlords from evicting renters without a good reason.

These “no-fault evictions” are often used against tenants asking for repairs. Landlords shouldn’t worry about the new laws though. If you want to get rid of pesky tenant, simply whack-up the rent by a few hundred quid a month.

That, of course, is still strictly legal.

Sandra Wright-Phillips

On Facebook

Uprgrade U? Nah, SackU

South Wales Police used facial recognition cameras at last week’s Beyonce concert. Images captured were sent to a computer using AI software which compared them to a police “wanted” list.

The cops say that if you are not on the wanted list, your data was destroyed automatically. But I don’t trust them. South Wales police have already used this technology against protesters—despite a court case finding against them.



Tories now far right?

The Tories lurch to the far right shows there isn’t much difference between them and the fascists. Shouldn’t we now start treating them accordingly?


By email

Original post


We’d love to keep you updated with the latest news 😎

We don’t spam!

Leave a Reply

We use cookies

Cookies help us deliver the best experience on our website. By using our website, you agree to the use of cookies.

Thank you for your Subscription

Subscribe to our Newsletter