At its heart, political debate has always been a struggle between competing views about how a society should organise itself to maximise the benefits for the majority of its citizens.
Interview: Crowded Lives
Labor frontbencher Lindsay Tanner talks us through his new book on the importance of relationships and why politics is letting the people down.
Activists: Life With Brian
Work by men like Brian Fitzpatrick is exposing new Australians to old truths. Jim Marr reports
Industrial: National Focus
A showdown looms in Cancun, Qantas gets bolshie, casual and lazy in its response to aviation challenges, and long festering disputes fester on in Victoria and Tasmania reports Noel Hester in this national wrap.
Unions: If These Walls Could Talk
Trades Hall is preparing for a major facelift but first, Jim Marr reports, it must bid farewell to the colourful bunch who have populated its dusty corridors in recent years.
Economics: Beating the Bastards
Frank Stilwell looks at some of the proposals for building a fairer finance sector.
Media: Three Corners
So its come to this. Four Corners, one of the world's longest running television programs is now under pressure from an ABC Executive that is less cultural visionary than feral abacus.
History: The Brisbane Line
Percy Spender was Menzies' foreign minister, but, Neale Towart asks, was he also prepared to serve as Prime Minister in a Japanese controlled Australia?
Trade: The Dumping Problem
Oxfam-CAA helps set the scene for this month's World Trade Organisation in Cancun.
Review: Frankie's Way
In The Night We Called It A Day Frank Sinatra learns 'sorry' Down Under is a loaded word and refusal to say it when due will lose fans in important places, writes Tara de Boehmler.
Truckies Tip Safety on AGM Floor
Geelong Lockout Claims Family Homes
Aussie Labour Laws Fail US Test
No Accident – Insurance Dough Rises
Union Mum Wins
Rheem Runs Cold On Entitlements
Unions Take It Up for Footballers
Drug Boss Fails Workers
Ministers Urged to Take Responsibility
Museum Jobs Face Extinction
Less News And More Of It
Legal Costs Threaten Access
Learning for Life
Staking Our Territory
ACTU secretary Greg Combet argued for a fairer Australia in his keynote address to last month's ACTU Congress.
The Locker Room
Spring is a season when a person’s thoughts turn to…horse racing. Phil Doyle reports on the fate of nags and folk heroes.
Beyond the Block
We are wild about the people who live in The Block but not too interested in those who are on the streets outside, writes Michael Rafferty.
The Westie Wing
Workers friend Ian West MLC, reports form the Bearpit about a project to raise awareness about trade unionism amongst young people.
The Awkward Squad
Paul Smith meets one of the new generation of British union leaders who is taking the ball up to the Blair spin team.
Spicey and Tart
Tony and Pauline
PNG Bags Plastic
Fighting Words Craig Emerson
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Drug Boss Fails Workers
Over 70 workers employed by Melbourne based pharmaceutical company Pharm Action are $4m out of pocket after the sudden collapse of their employer.
Workers were sent home from the Laverton site following the appointment of Sim Partners as administrators to the failed business.
Pharm Action joins an ever-growing list of Australian companies that have gone bust leaving their employees without their accrued entitlements.
"This is another classic case of arriving after the fact," said Dave Oliver from the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union (AMWU). "We believe that prevention is better than the cure. This company has a fatal disease."
"It's a pity we couldn't get some agreement to protect entitlements, either through a bank guarantee or paying into NEST."
NEST is an independent not for profit trust facility established to secure employee entitlements such as annual leave, long service leave, redundancy and severance pay.
Pharm action employees, who are members of the AMWU and the National Union of Workers (NUW) now face an uncertain future with lost entitlements including over 3 million in leave and redundancy and almost $1 million of unpaid superannuation contributions.
The AMWU is speaking to the administrator in an effort to rescue the jobs through he sale of the company, but there is no obvious prospective buyer at this stage.
"The taxpayer will be expected to pick u the tab for the employees basic entitlements while the employer will walk off scott free," says the AMWU's Oliver.
Pharm Action was a part of the Cottees Health group, who are believed to be facing difficulty across a number of operations.
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