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Issue No. 123 21 December 2001  
 
E D I T O R I A L

The Unmaking of History
The new millennium has got off to an ominous start. The fireworks, circuses and self-congratulation of 2000 were a thing of the past and we were left with the task of redefining ourselves in a new era.

F E A T U R E S

Interview: Braveheart
Labor Council secretary John Robertson looks back on a turbulent year and forward to a dynamic 2002.

International: Global Year in Review
Labourstart's Eric Lee gives his take on a year where the world changed forever.

Unions: A Year at the Barricades
2001 was a year when workers were forced to fight for what they once took for granted.

Technology: Unions Online 2001
Social Change Online's Mark McGrath looks at the advances unions made in web development in 2001.

Republic: Terror Australis
ARM national director James Terrie asks where to now for the Republic?

Economics: 2001: Annus Horribilis
Frank Stilwell looks back at a troubled year and looks forward to the challenges for the labour movement.

Campaign Diary: Melanie and Me
Strewth's Steve Cannane went into the viper's nest on election night and emerged with an ordinary feeling.

Politics: Tony Moore's Final Word
Wide boys, spivs, spin doctors and hereditary idiots have hijacked a once great Australian institution.

Review: You Are the Weakest Program
Cultural theoritician Mark Morey deconstructs the televisual subplots of our collective consciousness.

Legal: The New McCarthyism
The “war on terrorism” declared in the wake of the American events of September 11 dramatically threatens Australian democratic life.

N E W S

 Unions Take Lead in Refugee Rethink

 Workers Christmas Wish List

 Sparkie Snares Organiser of the Year Title

 Bosswatch Gets International Attention

 Bank Workers Get Serious in 2002

 Qantas's Warfare Agenda Exposed

 Cabin Crew Stand Up for Themselves

 Win for Medibank Workers

 City Council's Tactics Rival Worst in the World

 Dynamic New Start for Musos

 Unions in the Mosh Pit

 Scholarship Opportunity

C O L U M N S

The Soapbox
Into the Crystal Ball
What will happen in 2002? We asked some of the players in the world of industrial relations to look into the crystal ball.

The Locker Room
The 2002 Workers Online Sports Awards
There may have been no Olympics, but there were some stellar performances in 2001, from madass bad boys to terminated talents, these are the big ones.

Trades Hall
Neale Towart's Labour (Year in) Review
Sporting a Costa crew-cut, a new look Neale looks back on some issues of 2001 that look likely to the centres of debate for unions in 2002.

Tool Shed
Tool of the Year? You're Standing In It
After a year when Australians brought out the worst in themselves, we all stand condemned for a stint in the Tool Shed.

L E T T E R S
 A Fair Go For All
 The First Bastion
 Tom Collins' Christmas Wish
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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Letters to the Editor

Tom Collins' Christmas Wish


Dear Comrade,

Joseph also had a coat of many colours and:

Was thrown into the pit by his jealous Brothers!

Unfortunately it that time of the year again, a period of reflection as to not only our success, that is if any working class Australian could claim even one skerrick of this rare commodity, but also our mistakes. Sadly, some of those that claim to be the Vanguard of the downtrodden are in most circumstances the oppressors. Oppressors only intent on maintaining the status quo , because that position is -sitting comfortably in their own warm, soft and excrement filled Snugglers , and they are enmeshed in their own fears of loss, be it status or financial.

We have lost trust in our elected representatives, and with a total reversal of stance in political parties, the A.L.P., has become the equivalent of hereditary peerage, with safe seats being passed from father to son, through power play within the Unions and factions, thereby sowing these previous fallow fertile fields with the seeds of discontent and dissent. This is only possible through cronyism and nepotism in the branch structure, with recruitment energies being focussed on personal vendettas. It is possible that this structure could accomplish something, if these relatives, cronies, hangers on , drones and bludgers were of any consequence, or even if they were a little better than mediocre. Alas! With the case with the A.L.P., and the Trade Unions, only the hyena like pack animals, are permitted to thrive in an environment of rotting Offal, Filth and corruption ,with some branch meetings depicted, as with eerie accuracy in the 1757 Hogarth print "Canvassing for Votes" , where the rich bought votes in the rotten Boroughs.

Free speech is stymied within not only the Trade Unions, but the A.L.P., and members are continually disenfranchised, thereby demeaning the value of membership.

Both the A.L.P., and Trade Unions have been bereft of real leadership for many years, and as a consequence; to maintain self respect members distance themselves - firstly from the behaviour of the organisation and as this corrupt behaviour becomes entrenched, they feel the necessity to cut any ties from not only the organisation, but also some of their own, deep seated philosophies and beliefs. If only because these philosophies have been corrupted by self seeking incompetents, and to continue to adhere to these infected beliefs is a reflection on the individual.

The continued White Washing of these Socialist sepulchres , by the power brokers , is the epitome of an exercise in futility and this reluctance to leave the past behind ,has been recognised through the ages by many contemporary thinkers of their time , including :-

Jesus, who said in Luke 9:60:-

"Leave the dead to bury the dead; "

"But as for you, go and proclaim the Kingdom of God."

It was Seneca the Roman intellectual 4BC-65AD. Who said:-

"The fates lead him who will - him who won't they drag."

Is our uncorrupted secular message not worth leaving the dead behind for, or do we also wish to be dragged into this pit of predatory betrayal?

There can be no doubt that some organizations are beyond restructure, and must either be dismantled or be permitted to wither on the vine, this is validated by the continued and unabated loss of life blood , the membership, from these Unions who are incapable of contemporary relevance. The imitation of large corporations by these unions in their continued use of this worthless cosmetic surgery, is akin to treating a malignant cancer with a Bex, a nice cup of tea, and a lie down in a dark room

The Howard Government is on a roll, and the grass roots of the A.L.P. have been alienated by the political correctness of those that assume, behaviours totally alien to the Australian ethos, whereas the Liberals are now the working class heroes.

Where can one find a commonality with a political candidate, who has had absolutely no experience with the difficult challenges most Australians need to confront every day of their lives.

Is it only coincidental that Bob Hawke be once again embraced by the party , almost 10 years to the day after being ousted from the leadership by the worlds greatest Treasurer ? None the less, the appointment of Hawke and Wran, with both being yesterdays' men; to inquire into the recent election drubbing will also be a waste of resources, if this denial of the emperors' (plural) nakedness continues unabated without rebuttal.

All success is based on role models, and New Labour United Kingdom style was only a success because it once again re-adjusted it policies to reflect the views of the greater number, to the extent of excluding those belligerent Unions who were intent on the destruction of not only the country but the whole fabric of society .The A.L.P., factions must accept this, and the reality that, populism is the very quintessence of politics. For the A.L.P., to pander to special interest groups, left wing loonies, and Café latte socialists who are more aligned with Greens or Democrats is the foolish path of self immolation and as was shown at the last election, political irrelevance.

While these individuals may appear to be a large minority, it is usually only their high noise factor in the branch structure, and because of this and their idleness in other aspects of their parasitical lives, that creates this illusion. The reality of this truth was manifested at the last election.

Democracy is government by the greater number, and this is the system we have chosen to be governed by. The resentments shown by the electorate toward the A.L.P., with their attempts at social engineering ,also indicate the truths of alienation toward Chardonnay Socialism which has also been rejected, particularly by the working class , recent migrants ,their families, and people who have been caught in the abyss of this culture of change , and destroyed , not by diversity but division, and those who have watched their jobs being sent overseas by consecutive Labour Governments, in consensus with the Trade Unions.

But all is not lost, there are still a few Union Leaders prepared to defend their members, one being the AMWU, boss Doug Cameron, but his futile efforts, obviously indicate punishment for misdemeanours in a previous life, as he, like, Sisyphus and the Rock of Hades.....appears to be condemned to an eternity of rolling the rock up the hill, knowing full well that when it reaches the top it will roll back down again.

Perhaps in this previous life, Oor Dougie as a Cameronian , a clan who are not renowned for their mercy, behaved badly toward that Irish Mercenary Simon O Croidheain (Anglicised Crean) who fought with the remnants of Viscount Dundee's' army ,at the Battle of Dunkeld in 1689 , by impaling him on a halbert (Halberd)?

As for our own inimitable Simon and his cross of political sin, he can surely take solace in the fact, that it was another Simon who carried the cross for Jesus to his crucifixion. Let's hope that this is not the same journey on which our Simon intends to carry the Australian Labor Party.


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