Jon Berry

Washington Square Serenade

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Steve Earle

On his new album, Washington Square Serenade, Steve Earle may have swapped crashing guitars for mandolins and banjos, and the harder edge of his work may also be punctuated with beautiful, melodic love songs such as "Sparkle and Shine" and "Days Aren't Long Enough". But the fact remains that anyone who signs off his introductory notes with the epithet "Fuck Lou Dobbs" - the CNN anchorman famous for racist, anti-immigration diatribes - has nailed his political colours firmly to the mast.

Trades Union Congress: Big Battalions Firing Blanks

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On the opening morning of this year‘s TUC conference at Brighton, a small group of demonstrators shouted slogans at delegates as they entered.

These ranged from demands for the TUC to block foundation hospitals to calls for an end to privatisation, racist asylum laws and tuition fees. Scattered among the slogans were, of course, demands for the end of the occupation in Iraq, and Bush and Blair‘s imperial adventures.

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