The Battle of Seattle - What Is It About? - Free Market - Beer - 18 Year Olds On The Town - Hunger Strikers Freed - AIDS Day
THE BATTLE OF SEATTLE: A day of running battles on the streets of Seattle as the WTO meets. Police use tear-gas and rubber bullets. Across the world a riot takes place outside Euston station in London. Rioters overturn a police van. Mike Moore today spoke against the violence raging outside - but he defended the right to peaceful protest. Alliance Leader Jim Anderton today saw two sides to the argument - "it would be a pity if the right to protest stopped others rights to free speech" he said. Caretaker Trade Minister Lockwood Smith says he is trying to help poor people.
WHAT IS IT ABOUT: Protests have ensured the meeting is the most remarkable WTO meeting ever. A remarkable range of activists are involved. Children's activists. A High School student who is upset about the environment. An old activist from the 60s. They are fighting against the same things - big corporates and the WTO. The single organisation that symbolises all that is wrong for these people appears to the WTO. Protestor says she is trying to defend the American Dream.
FREE MARKET: Meanwhile the free-market remained alive and well. The interenet address "Business.com" sold for $7.5 million USD.
BEER IN SUPERMARKETS: Beer now available in supermarkets. Makes perfect sense says a shopper buying for her husband. Packaging could change. Beer sales expected to put more pressure on staff who have to ask for ID to prove they are over 18. First day low key. Prices same as usual but price war not ruled out.
18 YEAR OLDS ON THE TOWN: 18-year-old Tuesday night party animals experience their first night on the town at 2am this morning. Town quiet and they are unimpressed. A youth radio station is broadcasting live from a bar. This has angered alcohol watch groups. Bar putting on a party tonight says it is not about binge drinking it is about "putting on an event". Bars can be fined $10,000 for serving underage drinkers.
HUNGER STRIKERS: 16 hunger strikers finally allowed out of Mt Eden Prison. One man has lost 15kgs after 32 days without food. The men have been freed but have no money. Their supporters will look after them however. One is off to the hospital.
AIDS DAY: Medical Researchers at Otago are lobbying the government into reversing its decision on AIDs testing of would be immigrants and refugees. AIDs day today will be marked with new AIDs ads. Researchers say that the proposed policy will make people feel safe when it will make no difference.