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Issue No. 175 24 April 2003  
 
F E A T U R E S

Interview: Picking Up The Peaces
Walk Against the War Coalition convenor Bruce Childs outlines the challenge for the peace movement in the lead up to Palm Sunday.

Unions: The Royal Con
Jim Marr argues the Cole Commission can only be taken seriously by people kept ignorant of the way it actually operated.

National Focus: Around the Grounds
Unions maintain the pressure for peace as the upcoming organising conference takes on added significance, reports Noel Hester.

Economics: The Secret War on Trade
Overseas-based multi-nationals are coming after our film industry, electricity, water, pharmaceutical benefits and even childcare. Or are they? Nobody knows, as Jim Marr reports.

International: United Front
Workers and their unions around the world have possibly never been as united in their commitment to campaign together against the War in Iraq, writes Andrew Casey

History: Confessions of a Badge Collector
Bill Pirie has one of the largest collections of trade union badges in the world. After 20 years the collection now numbers some 6,000 badges.

Politics: Stalin’s Legacy
Fifty years ago last month Josef Stalin died. How could it be that a democratic and socialist revolution produced one of the monsters of the twentieth century, asks Leonie Bronstein.

Review: Such Was Not Ned’s Life
The life of Ned Kelly is what we in the world of journalism term a “ball tearing yarn” so why have writers of the movie adaptation felt so impelled to dress it up with fiction, asks Tara de Boehmler.

Poetry: Osama's Top Recruiter
Through our extensive intelligence networks, we have managed to track down the top recruiter for the global terror network of Osama bin Laden.

Satire: Woolworths CEO Denied Bonus After Company Posts Profit
Woolworths chief executive Roger Corbett was devastated today to report an 18.3% rise in profit under his management over the last year.

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L A T E S T   N E W S

Medicare Bombshell – Bosses To Pay
Employers have been put on notice that labour costs will skyrocket if John Howard takes Australia further down the private health track.

ACTU president Sharan Burrow said Australian unions were “loathe” to write health costs into employment contracts but would be under pressure to do so if the Prime Minister restricted free bulk billing under Medicare. [full story]

Another Cole Man Bites The Dust
Key Cole Commission witness Troy Stratti ripped off business partners and failed to honour agreements, according to a properly-constituted judicial authority.

A Court has found that Troy Stratti, Sam Stratti and their company Stratti Ocean Earthworks failed to deliver on promises made to a husband and wife operation, Lefty’s Excavator & Drott Hire, then reneged on payments for work completed. [full story]

Cheap Indian on Telstra Menu
Australia’s biggest company, Telstra, is paying guest IT workers less than 20 percent what it pays Australians to do the same job.

Confirmation came, courtesy of the Herald Sun which spoke to a Melbourne-based Indian IT worker, as Australia’s largest company denied it was paying “sweatshop wages” to foreign workers. [full story]

Legal Tussle Looms Over Email Laws
Unions have appealed to NSW Attorney-General Bob Debus not to throw in the towel on email surveillance laws, with Canberra moving to cover the field with pro-employer rules.

As the Commonwealth moves to take control of the area, the Labor Council has sent Debus legal advice from former Attorney-General and new Supreme Court justice Jeff Shaw that NSW should regulate at a state level. [full story]

Recycled Training Stitch-Up Exposed
A clothing company has stitched up nearly half a million taxpayer dollars for signing existing staff over to traineeships in skills they already possessed.

The example was one of several abuses of Commonwealth traineeships outlined before a Senate Committee last week.  [full story]

Contractors Code Fires a Blank
The bizarre prison labour outsourcing saga has landed on the desk of new NSW Commerce Minister John Della Bosca, after bureaucrats refused to honour the Carr Government’s much-vaunted contractors code.

Department of Public Works officials have refused to disclose to unions where textiles used in NSW hospitals are being sourced from, in breach of the Department’s procurement code. [full story]

ALSO MAKING NEWS

 Sweet Talk – Big Business Style

 Bosses, Workers Unite on Grey Threat

 ANZ Workers Want Cut of Billion Dollar Profit

 Time for Death Penalties

 Union Exhibition for Wollongong

 Nurses in Staffing Stand-off

 North Coast Jobs Saved

 Super Success in Pilbara

 Howard Attacks Education - Again

 May Day Festivities

email workers to a friend latest breaking news from labornet
'Jeb Bush Has Won the Contract to Conduct Iraqi Elections' - Palm Sunday Peace March sign winner Bill Johnstone. Bill will donate his $150 from the NSW Labor Council to union Aid Abroad-APHEDA.

E D I T O R I A L
With John Howard’s self-appointed date to consider his political future fast approaching, the federal ALP should be applying maximum political pressure on him to end his dismal and dangerous rule.

Galoot in a Suit

C O L U M N S

The Soapbox
Factional Free-For-All
Chris Christodoulou looks at the fallout from the selection of the new Carr Ministry and what it means to the factional warlords.

The Locker Room
The Best Season Since Last Year
Phil Doyle goes trudging through the mud in search of the heart of the matter beneath the corporate biffo

Culture
Books on Bombs
In times like these, reading inevitably turns to America and war. Chris White wades through Pilger, Chomsky, Eco, Moore and Vidal.

Postcard
Postcard from Harvard
Labor Council's Michael Gadiel was elected to give the valedictory speech to this year's Harvard Trade Union Program.


LETTERS to the Editor
 Tom's Cunning Plan
 Robert's Conquest?
 Success Breeds Contempt
 Join the Dots
 Still Walking

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