Cambridge Group

Cambridge: John Hilary on TTIP

Thursday 4 December / 7 p.m. / Unitarian Church, Emmanuel Road, Cambridge CB1 1JW

TTIP is ... correctly understood not as a negotiation between two competing trading partners, but as an attempt by transnational corporations to prise open and deregulate markets on both sides of the Atlantic.

Thursday's event can't be missed: John Hilary, Executive Director of War on Want (latest book The Poverty of Capitalism), will introduce the threat of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, or TTIP.

This is the trade agreement in secret negotiation between the United States and the European Union, under which workers' rights, product standards, and environmental regulations would be targeted as so many barriers to trade, and public services broken up as unfair monopolies. Meanwhile under the mechanism of 'investor–state dispute settlement', transnational corporations would be able to sue states should their elected assemblies pass laws which might curb profits in any way – which is why the People's Assembly Conference 2014 described it as 'a frontal assault against democracy'.

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Agenda for the December CPA meeting

Wednesday 3 December / 7.30 p.m. / CB2 Bistro, Norfolk Street, Cambridge CB1 2LD

Everyone's welcome at our monthly meeting, which will be held in the library upstairs at the CB2 Bistro. Equally welcome are suggestions for the agenda, but here's a first draft.

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Cambridge: Clare Solomon debates austerity

Thursday 27 November / 7.30 p.m. / Cambridge Union, 9a Bridge Street, Cambridge CB2 1UB

People's Assembly activist and press officer Clare Solomon is a guest at the Cambridge Union student debating society tonight, speaking against the motion, 'This house believes that austerity works'. You can imagine what she'll be up against, so if you're a Cambridge Union member, please go along and give Clare some moral support!

Some readers will recall Clare's speech at the Women's Day event we held on 8 March with the Cambridge and District Trades Council. No doubt she'll be as brilliant tonight.

Cambridge: Peter Hallward on 'Organizing Capacity'

Thursday 27 November / 5 p.m. / Room 5, Mill Lane Lecture Rooms, Cambridge CB2 1RX

There is a tension within radical politics that has stubbornly refused to ease. Street movements and university theorists are as likely to appear worlds apart as to be well integrated, with worries on either side that the other is missing something vitally important.

Tonight Cambridge Defend Education will hold the last seminar in its important series Critical Theory and Practice. Following Nina Power, Göran Therborn, Bruno Bosteels, Ed Emery, and Peter Thomas, this time the philosopher Peter Hallward (latest book Concept and Form, as joint editor with Knox Peden) will give a seminar on 'Organizing Capacity'.

This is going to be great.

Book review: This Changes Everything

We present a new book review by member Simon Norton.

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Book review: The Body Economic

We present a book review by member Olivier Tonneau, posted on our former blog in November 2013.

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Book review: Who Needs the Cuts?

We present a book review by member Olivier Tonneau, posted on our former blog in October 2013.

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Cambridge: Danny Dorling on 'Geography and Inequality'

Wednesday 26 November / 8 p.m. / Queen's Building, Emmanuel College, Cambridge CB2 3AP

We've noticed that the geographer Danny Dorling (latest book Inequality and the 1%) is speaking in Cambridge tomorrow at the invitation of the Cambridge University Geographical Society, on a subject at the centre of our concerns. Austerity sharpens inequalities – and a nice sharp inequality can be used as a tool to hone austerity.

We think Danny Dorling's talk will be of broad interest and well worth hearing. Tickets are £2 on the door.

Cambridge: Film and theatre for the NHS

Friday 28 November / 7.30 p.m. / The Boathouse, Chesterton Road, Cambridge CB4 3AX

Our friends in Cambridge Keep Our NHS Public (KONP) have jointly organized a remarkable night of film and theatre 'to defend and celebrate the NHS' this Friday night. As part of the Just Press Mini-Festival of Dissenting Ideas (although we wonder if privatization and underfunding aren't the dissenting ideas where the NHS is concerned), Cambridge KONP and Just Press are presenting

  • the documentary film Sell-Off: The Abolition of Your NHS, produced by doctors concerned that profit rather than patient care is driving current reforms in the NHS, and
  • the 'cartoon action' play Conversations with a National Treasure, performed by Theatre of the Streets.
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Cambridge: One Million Climate Jobs

Saturday 22 November / 3 p.m. / Castle Street Methodist Church Hall, Cambridge CB3 0AH

Saturday's event is about one of the real alternatives to the dogma of austerity. A new report by the Campaign Against Climate Change (CCC) takes forward the pressure group's argument for investment in one million climate jobs: those which 'lead directly to cuts in emissions of greenhouse gases, and so slow down climate change.' We need high-quality jobs like these – in renewable energy and public transport, for example – and not the low-paid, short-time, insecure jobs that characterize Britain under austerity. We also need a humanly viable world in which to work and play.

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