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Issue No. 145 19 July 2002  

Two Wings Flapping
The one element missing from the current debate about the relationship between the labour movement and the ALP is any discussion about what's in it for the unions.


Interview: In The Tent
The Australian Services Union's Martin Foley on the dilemma facing trade unions affiliated to the Labor Party.

Bad Boss: The Desk Nazi
Everyone�s mail is on the money this week. Yep, Australia Post, courtesy of the born-to-rule attitude so beloved by the Workplace Relations Minister has been nominated for the Tony Award.

Media: Hold the Presses
The withdrawal of mainstream news outlets from the reporting of industrial relations is playing right into the bosses' hands, writes Andrew Casey

Workplace: Putting Bullies In Their Place
Ever wonder where the schoolyard bullies from your formative years ended up? Chances are they are still making someone�s life hell in an Australian workplace today. Even worse, one of them might be your direct supervisor.

Industrial: Women and Work
The last fortnight may well prove a turning point for working Australian women and their families, argues ACTU President Sharan Burrow

International: Whine and Dine
The political and industrial wings of British labour are at each other's throats, reports Andrew Casey.

History: Black Adder
Old King Cole had good tutors. Roger Milliss captured the style of conservative government witch-hunts in Serpent�s Tooth, his cathartic apology to his father, Bruce.

Review: Bad Movie
While the search for Australia's worst boss is well underway, Joel Schumacher's Bad Company seems to point the finger squarely at the US Government - albeit accidentally.

Poetry: I Remember
Dermott Ryder knocks our Resident Bard off his podium this week with a little ditty about a bloke called Honest John


 Builder Blows Whistle on Kangaroo Court

 Alarm Over Unis in Detention

 Unions Spark New Super Push

 Abbott Trips on Entitlements - Again

 Picnic Day for Union Members Only

 Memo: John Travolta - Come Fly With Us!

 Cole Comfort to Bodgey Builders

 Unions Eye SA Casuals Victory

 Burrow: Paid Mat Leave Just First Step

 Mayne Warning � But Will They Listen?

 Drought Relief Should Extend To Rural Workers

 Coca Cola Action Bubbles Globally


The Soapbox
The Royal Circus
CFMEU organiser Terry Kesby gives a first hand account of his experience before the Cole Royal Commission.

The Locker Room
Bravely Running Away
Phil Doyle is bewildered by the Australian Cricket team�s reluctance to join John Howard�s War On Terror.

Nothing Exceeds Like Excess
As the world market lurches under the weight of its own amorality, regulators and business lobbies are locking horns over the need for more rules.

Week in Review
A Share of the Action
Sharemarket jitters produce mea culpas from the magnate set but, as Jim Marr discovers, loyal followers in the Howard administration aren�t likely to join the chorus any time soon.

 Make My Week!
 Real Reform
 Hooray for Frank!
 Reform or Die
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Bad Movie

By Tara de Bohmler

While the search for Australia's worst boss is well underway, Joel Schumacher's Bad Company seems to point the finger squarely at the US Government - albeit accidentally.

In a nutshell: CIA spy extraordinaire Jake Hayes (played by Chris Rock) is mercilessly gunned down while on a mission to save the world as we know it.

Fortunately for the CIA news breaks of an identical twin brother, Kevin Pope (allegedly also played by Rock).

Unfortunately he is from the 'wrong side of the tracks' and getting killed while spying for the US Government is way down on his 'must do' list.

Fortunately the CIA pre-empts all this and - in between sheltering Kev from the truth - feeds him a load of old cobblers about his future being safe in their hands. Plus there is a small matter of $25,000 being on offer for successfully completing the mission.

But money does not un-maketh the bad boss and no amount of remuneration would excuse the lack of respect this kid receives on the job. Kev is largely left on his own without a clue - or even a bullet proof vest - while terrorists seek his scalp. Meanwhile, this movie is supposed to be funny.

It does deliver a couple of good one-liners and the acting is faultless but it is so full of tired old clich�s no one really needs to see the film to know what happens next. The car chase scene is good for the first fifteen minutes. The 'running against the clock' scene works for a while. Kidnapping the girlfriend works in every other movie so why not this one?

But there is one scene that says it all. Sitting in a park near the very start of the movie Kev is playing a game of chess when his girlfriend rings. Suddenly he feels the game has gone on for long enough. Leaning forward to his opponent he moves all pieces from both sides around the board until he has finally checkmated his way to victory. Lets face it, he says, it would have happened this way anyway. Then he asks for $20.

Watching the movie inspires the same feelings of dejavu - along with a strong desire to press fast-forward through much of the 'action'. For this reason alone, it might be worth waiting until Bad Company comes out on video. Personally I'd rather the $20.

Then there is also the small matter of the US Government's recent announcement that it intends to recruit at least 4% of American's citizens as spies (no this is not still part of the movie plot). Presumably these would be the domestic style of spy that we currently recognise as nosey neighbours.

But armed with the support of the US Government and a clear brief to find terrorists and report them, who knows in what sticky situations they might find themselves in the line of duty.

The trouble is that if too many folk see Bad Company, the US Government might have a little trouble trying to recruit people able to swallow the bait. Heavens forbid that folk may suspect the US Government could treat them with the same disregard shown to Kev. Even worse: they might expect a wage.

In order for America to save the world as we know it, now might be a good time for Hollywood to re-focus the propaganda on this issue.

one out of five stars (a must not see movie)


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