||Issue No. 193||29 August 2003|
Smells Like Community Spirit
Interview: The New Deal
Unions: In the Line of Hire
Culture: Too Cool for the Collective?
International: The Domino Effect
Industrial: A Spanner in the Works
National Focus: Gathering of the Tribes
History: The Welcome Nazi Tourist
Bad Boss: Domm, Domm Turn Around
Poetry: Just Move On.
Review: Reality Bites
The Locker Room
Tom’s History Of The World
Tony Is A Tool
Letters to the Editor
Tom’s History Of The World
The letter „Misplaced Trust „in issue 192 of Workers Online caught my attention - not through lack of empathy with the complainant, but rather an overwhelming, pervasive and unrepentant contempt and revulsion as once again a parasite having reciprocally fed on the collective (Unions) with their host to the exclusion of the collective for 25 years now pleads and bleats about rights which they obviously and voluntarily have abrogated through a long term mutually satisfying relationship.
It is self evident from this recurrent and pathetic cry from the Œfoxhole‚ of life, that Union membership was not a priority to the likes of these industrially licentious lice during their referred to , 25 years of employment and contentment , and my assumption is ; that until this forced reality, any mention of joining a Union would have be met with ridicule.
It was this letter which brought back memories of a sermon I attended in 1997 at the 400 old years Killinchy Presbyterian Church while on a visit to Ireland .A sermon, although in the genre of the benefits of Comradeship , and not specific to Trade Unions; I found quite relevant to the state of the Union movement not only in Australia, but world wide.
The Valley of the Dry Bones:
In a vision God caused. Ezekiel to see himself in a valley full of dry bones. Perhaps it was a field of battle where years ago the Babylonians had defeated the Jews. It must have been a terrible defeat because the passage says; the valley was full of dry bones. Each of those skeletons had once been a human being who had lived just as you and I now live with hopes and fears and plans and expectations. But a great and terrible battle had been fought; they had been defeated and killed, and now all that was left was bleached, dry bones.
Is this not an accurate description of the current state of the Unions within Australia; in disarray as the Mad Monk and the Howard machine like the Great Nothingness relentlessly ravages the Unions?
It would not be difficult for any battler to understand this vision. We know about valleys of dry bones. We have all been there. The 1998 Maritime Battle caused some to see only dry bones where once there had been vitality and life in the Union. Sometimes we enter a valley of dry bones when the doctor tells us our cancer cannot be cured. Or maybe we have invested years of effort in some project or dream or career, and then things beyond our control happen, and the project falls apart; the dream is destroyed; the career is ended by redundancies, and we find ourselves in the midst of a valley of dry bones. The loss of a significant relationship can leave us wandering in a valley of dry bones. Sometimes what happens is the consequence of what we did or what we failed to do.
Sometimes it is the consequence of what others did or failed to do. Sometimes we do not know why all that has happened has happened. All we know is, for us, in Australia our situation in life is like a valley of dry bones , this danger being exacerbated through the shameless cannibalistic behaviors of many of those who have usurped the will of the members through electoral rorting and Branch stacking .
This is where your correspondent Jenny and family have found themselves, and in their case, while I have complete empathy, I can offer no sympathy or compassion, as this would only serve to encourage the proliferation of comparable cockroaches, and I suggest they seek consolation in their acceptance as to the moral of this tale of woe, as the inexorable law of action is invoked 'as ye sow, so shall ye reap.
The Rev. Martin Niemoller a German Lutheran Pastor imprisoned by the Nazis, articulated how we bring these calamities upon ourselves when we refuse to speak out against tyranny no matter what face and to whom it presents itself to us:
First they came for the Communists, and I didn‚t speak up, because I wasn‚t a Communist.
Then they came for the Jews, and I didn‚t speak up, because I wasn‚t a Jew.
Then they came for the Catholics, and I didn‚t speak up, because I was a Protestant.
Then they came for me, and by that time there was no one left to speak up for me.
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