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Issue No. 136 17 May 2002  
E D I T O R I A L

Modern Labour
Unveiling his 'modern Labor' pitch in the Budget in Reply, Opposition leader Simon Crean seemed very 1950s – when 'modern' was good in itself, like spray-cans, zippers and uncomfortable furniture.

F E A T U R E S

Interview: Licking the Wounds
Elder statesman Neville Wran expands on his review into Labor's performance at the last federal election.

Industrial: The Accidental Tourist
Standing on a picket line, just metres from the sleaziest part of Kings Cross, was not what Cheshire chemist David Lui had in mind when he was saving for his trip of a lifetime.

Unions: Stars And Stripes
Fly the flag, beat the war drum and screw the old, the sick and the poor – Peter Costello’s budget aims to emulate the worst aspects of American politics argues Noel Hester.

International: The Un-Promised Land
Andrew Casey lifts the lid on a little-known campaign to establish a Jewish homeland in the Kimberleys.

History: Mate Against Mate
Neale Towart trawls the records to recount some of the more acrimonious ALP State Conference debates.

Politics: Reith's Gong
Peter Reith's medal from the HR Nicholls Society overlooks a number of lamentable aspects about his character as Stuart Mackenzie reports.

Poetry: You've Got a Friend
A friend is someone who protects you, but in an interesting twist the Federal budget has redefined the notion of 'protection' by adding the word 'from'.

Review: War on Terror: Now Showing
Arnold Schwarznegger's latest flick Collateral Damage is spooky for many reasons, writes Tara de Boehmler.

Satire: Burmese Regime Makes Genuine Commitment To Pretence Of Change
The government of Myanmar (Burma) released democratic opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi today after a year and a half of house arrest.

N E W S

 Solidarity In The Post To East Timor

 Joy Wins For All Workers

 Workers Call Abbott On Democracy Bluff

 Wran Tells MPs: Talk to Unions

 Family First on Conference Agenda

 Cole Commission Declares Paper War

 Yarra Workers Thank Australia

 Budget Attacks Retirement Incomes

 PSA Challenges Carr’s Secrecy Shield

 Election Talk Aint Cheap

 Hotel Bosses Back Down On Pay

 Welfare Staff Strike Out At Harrassment

 Della Ups DIR Inspectorate

 Fake Notes Expose Government as Tax Cheat

 Labor Faces Acid Test on Asylum Seekers

 New Project Encourages Cultural Exchanges

 Bush’s Western Saharan War And Oil Deal

 Activists Notebook

C O L U M N S

The Soapbox
Border Solidarity
The Australian Workers Union's Bill Shorten explains why he drew a line in the cement in support of the CSL Yarra crew

The Locker Room
The Dangerous Life Of A Hot Dog Seller
Phil Doyle ruminates on the virtues of processed meats in the world of elite sports.

Bosswatch
The Bottom Line
Peter Costello wasn't the only one flaunting a budget deficit this week, as Rupert Murdoch announced the largest corporate write-down on record.

Postcard
East Timor Appeals For Help
At midnight on Sunday 19 May, the UN mandate in East Timor comes to an end and East Timor becomes a new independent nation.

Week in Review
The Spin Cycle
Budget week brings that much spin you half expect to see Shane Warne wheeled out as a spokesman on health, economics, or whatever else the combatants are blabbing about. Jim Marr lifts the covers.

L E T T E R S
 Gangsta Rap
 More May Day Hate Mail
 What Women Want
 Chucking a Wobbly
 Is Caustic Costello the Despot of Despair?
 East Timor: Independent Or Mendicant?
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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Satire

Burmese Regime Makes Genuine Commitment To Pretence Of Change

Extracted from The Chaser

The government of Myanmar (Burma) released democratic opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi today after a year and a half of house arrest.
 

Her release is a major part of the government's radical new programme of changing Burma's political system to make it superficially seem less authoritarian. The spokesman for the military junta that rules the nation, Lieutenant Colonel Hla Min, said that the move was a 'new page' for Burma, although he later clarified that he meant a new page in a fictional book.

"Aung San Suu Kyi is now free to do anything she wishes in relation to her party's activities," Min said. "As her party is banned, of course, that means she is free to do nothing." The government expects that Aung San Suu Kyi will conduct meetings with supporters, hold a number of restrained demonstrations and, most importantly, convince the West to give Burma the millions of dollars of aid it withheld while she was under house arrest. "Make no mistake, Suu Kyi's release will change things enormously for this country's current rulers," Min said. "Our bank balances will increase substantially."

Suu Kyi made a triumphant return to the headquarters of her National League of Democracy party today, where she vowed to continue her fight for genuine democracy in the Asian state. For its part, the ruling group has agreed to keep advancing the process of appearing to change. "We have already shown we can achieve fundamental change in Myanmar," Min said. "A few years ago, we in the ruling military committee changed our name from the State Law and Order Reform Committee to the State Peace and Development Council. This is exactly the kind of far-reaching, visionary change you will see from us as we continue to make Myanmar seem more democratic."


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