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My year in review -- although I'm late doing it

by Dave Riley

What is it now? In my portion of the planet it is January 6th 2009. This means that 2009 is underway and the year past is past.

But I was going to do this ritual think about the passing of 2008 and what happened during its time on earth.

So like Mr Rabbit, I'm late.

(But not so late that the memory has faded.)

So here' s the year in impressionistic review .

2008 has been and gone

The main feature of 2008 as far as I am concerned is that it encompassed pretty much the first year of the Rudd federal Labor government.

And so very very little happened....

If there was change in the land neither I nor the rabbit thought much of it. If Rudd Labor was voted in to tear up Work Choices, we've still got Work Choices and the ABCC hanging over our collective proletarian heads.

In recompense, the capitalist system faltered badly this year and in effect the world has changed hugely although we are yet to fully experience that change.

That and the Climate Emergency are bearing down savagely upon us as we sleep quietly in our beds this year of our lord whatsit, 2009.

Wake up humans. It's morning! Neo liberalism may be dead....

But my year was those things and more. My year was one sharply marked off by three conferences.
  1. A year ago, last January, at the DSP 2008 Decision Making conference, the dispute was settled over the question of what the DSP was about. This soon after led to a split in the DSP. Since this was a long and bitter dispute, lasting almost three years, I can only repeat those famous words of Martin Luther King, "Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!"
  2. The Climate Change / Social Change Conference in April created an important left green/green left forum that with focus, inclusiveness and seriousness tackled the what is to be done hard questions in regard to climate change.
  3. That inclusiveness and spirit of cooperation was enriched further in December with the Socialist Alliance National Conference. That's a month ago, peoples -- only a month -- but the sense of recovery and a quickening in the shared political step has consolidated more in that time. There's a been important adjustments made to the political line of march where I tread and 2009 looks very good indeed from my POV.
So, like 1968, forty years in the past, 2008 has been an important year for me and the rest of us. I'm sure the scale of that significance won't be evident for some time, but there's been a bit of a shift in the body politick which, in part, I suggest is registering now in the militancy and anger being expressed in these pandemic protests against Israel.

The Obama --'' Change has come to America" -- victory in the US presidential elections was a marker for this quickening, just as the continuing survival of the Venezuelan revolution underscores the many possibilities we could embrace if we had the ways and means.

And five days back Cuba celebrated 5o years of their revolution....

So 2008 was very worth experiencing, especially because 2009 follows so soon after...

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