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Issue No. 199 10 October 2003  
E D I T O R I A L

Bush-Whacking
Those of us preparing to protest US President George W Bush’s visit to Australia must tread a fine line – between condemning the policies of an illegitimate president with a dangerous agenda and damning an entire nation.

F E A T U R E S

Interview: No Ifs, No Butts
Rugby League Professionals Association president Tony Butterfield on his battle to deliver a collective agreement for NRL players.

Unions: National Focus
In this month’s national wrap: Noel Hester meets a heavy hitter talking up open source unionism, truckies front the suits at Boral’s AGM, tales of corporate bastardry and Medicare birthday revelry.

Industrial: Fools Gold
Unions have thrashed out a string of protocols with the NSW Labor Government. Some, now, are questioning whether they are worth the cheap, imported paper they are written on, reports Jim Marr.

Bad Boss: Bones of Contention
Byron Bay chicken boners have nominated thier boss for a Tony after seeing their entitlements plucked.

History: The Gong Show
In late September the South Coast Labour Council (SCLC) celebrated 75 unbroken years championing the rights of workers in the coastal Illawarra region 80 kilometres south of Sydney, writes Rowan Cahill.

Politics: The Hawke Legacy
The election of the Hawke Labor government twenty years ago holds some salient lessons for today’s Labor Party, writes Troy Bramston.

International: Sick Nation
As Australia celebrates 20 years of Medicare’s universal health coverage the crisis facing American workers in need of medical care is a useful reminder of what we’ve got – and what we stand, writes Andrew Casey.

Economics: Closed Minds
Philip Mendes looks at the political influence of right-wing think tanks, their financial backing and asks why the left hasn’t been able to get its ideas out there.

Review: Mixing Pop and Politics
He's had relations, with girls from many nations... but Billy Bragg seems to like us Aussies as much or even more than any of the others, writes Pádraig Collins.

Poetry: One Size Fits All
There once was a man from the Lodge - Who tried hard, our poems, to dodge... Resident bard David Peetz is back!

N E W S

 Rail Whistleblower Attacked - Again

 Royal Con on Tape

 Call Centre Stumps Umpire

 Breakthrough for Email Privacy

 Harbour Sell Off Sparks Occupation

 Harvey World Travel Locks Up Tour

 STOP PRESS: Telstra Drops Out

 Workers Voice Gets Hard Edge

 Employees Disable Hard-Ball Bosses

 Canberra Eyes Crash Windfall

 Bush Whacker - Dubya Fingered

 Assault Costs Education Department

 Uni Workers Stand Up To Feds

 Thousands Say No to Cole

 The Town that Struck

 Activists Notebook

C O L U M N S

Postcard
North By Northwest
Phil Doyle returns from up north, where he survived on nothing but goodwill, good people and a great big orange bus.

The Soapbox
The $140 Million Patriot
It would be hard to imagine a steeper slide from hero to zero than the experience of Richard Grasso, the now-deposed head of the New York Stock Exchange. writes Jim Stanford.

Media
Bush's Bad News Blues
The Bush Administration is cooking up a new campaign 'to shine light on progress made in Iraq', writes Bill Berkowitz.

The Locker Room
A Tale Of One City
Phil Doyle gazes into the crystal ball for signs of life, and finds that somewhere the horses are running in the wrong direction.

Culture
With Banners Furled
There is no better account of the glory that was the annual Labour Day marches than that given by Kylie Tennant in Foveaux, her fictional account of life in inner Sydney in 1912, the year she was born.

Politics
The Westie Wing
Our favourite Macquarie Street MP, Ian West MLC, reports on the world of NSW politics.

Postcard
The Cancun Wash-Up
The dramatic collapse of the World Trade Organisation Ministerial Meeting in Cancun, Mexico, last month has been followed by a deafening quiet from Geneva, Brussels and Washington, writes Peter Murphy.

L E T T E R S
 On The Waterfront
 An Honest Job
 Letter From America
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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Activists Notebook


REPORT BACK ON WTO MEETING

Whither the WTO after Cancun?

Reports from community organisations on the World Trade Organisation meeting in Cancun

When: Tuesday October, 14th 5.30pm

Where: Room 814 Parliament House, Macquarie St, Sydney

Chair: Andrea Durbach, Director, Public Interest Advocacy Centre

Speakers: Geoff Atkinson, Oxfam Community Aid Abroad, reporting back for Andrew Hewitt, Executive Director, Dr Patricia Ranald, Principal Policy Officer, Public Interest Advocacy Centre, and Convenor, Australian Fair Trade and Investment Network (AFTINET)

For further information contact Margaret di Nicola at Oxfam Community Aid Abroad on 8204 3902 or email [email protected] Louise Southalan at AFTINET on 9299 7833 or email [email protected]

ME NAM : Rivers photo exhibition

2003 international Year of Fresh Water

ME NAM : Rivers is an exciting photography exhibition to celebrate waterways and communities activism to protect them, in Australia and in the Asia Pacific Region.

Through the immediacy and realism of some of Australasia's most renowned artists and the fresh photography of environmental and human rights activists, ME NAM : Rivers provides an intimate glimpse of life evolving around rivers, while leading the viewer into a journey that explores political and corporate efforts to commodify and control our water resources.

ME NAM : Rivers, to be held at NSW Parliament House in October, will be opened by former lead singer of Midnight Oil and renowned environmental activist Peter Garrett.

Artists include: Paul Blackmore, Gordon Undy, Peter Solness, Ruby Davies, Vince Lovecchio, Maylei Hunt Guerra, Japan's Yoshiaki Murayama and Taiwan's Hong Tien-Jun.

Inspirational and at times confronting, ME NAM : Rivers will leave you with a desire for action, environmental righteousness, and understanding of the politics and controversy behind the world's fresh water crisis.

PUBLIC LAUNCH: host speaker Peter Garrett, President of the Australian Conservation Foundation

WHERE: NSW Parliament House, Jubilee Room, Macquarie St, Sydney

WHEN: Tuesday, October 14 - 2003

TIME: 7.00 pm

ENTRANCE: free

Exhibition will run October 7 - 17, 2003. Weekdays 9.00 am - 4.30 pm

Refugee fundraiser film screening: "Mollie & Mubarak"

A fundraiser to support Mahboba Rawi, the Sydney based founder of

Mahboba's Promise, a charitable organisation that raises money to

support orphans and widows living in refugee camps in Afghanistan.

Friday 17th October

7:30pm for 8:00pm start

Gordon Library

Pacific Highway, Gordon

(1 minute walk from Gordon Station)

$15 full / $10 concession

A documentary by Tom Zubrycki about Afghan temporary protection visa

holders working at the abattoir at Young in regional NSW. It's a moving,

personal insight into the effects of Australia's cruel refugee and

asylum seeker policies. After the film, Tom Zubrycki will speak about

his experience making the film, followed by a light supper. Please come

along to see a terrific film and support Mahboba Rawi in her work with

Afghan widows and orphans.

Contact: Susie Gemmell 9943 6222, or [email protected]

WE'RE BEING BUSHWACKED: Give George the Welcome he Deserves - Sun Oct 19, national day of ridicule.

Muster at Prince Alfred Park (walk south from Central down Chalmers St)

Sunday 19th October, 2-4pm

Comics, music, world's first protest "line dance. Creative Ridicule competition - rewards for best placard and best display. Costume competition, come as the best red-necked Texan!

Organised by the Sydney Peace and Justice Coalition, more info call Hannah 0418 668 098, [email protected]

http//:www.nswpeace.org.

Fairwear!

Is your organisation involved in merchandising? Do You Buy clothing to sell with your message? Do You Know if the workers making those clothes are receiving their legal wages? If you want to Be Sure that the clothing you sell is being made for fair wages, under fair conditions then this is the training for you.

Fair Wear is providing a free training day on how to get your clothing supplier accredited to the Homeworkers Code of Practice. This code was developed by the Textile/Clothing Union together with representatives of the retail and manufacturing industries. The code is a self regulatory system that monitors the production chain from retailer to outworker to ensure legal wages and conditions. Some outworkers have been paid their Award entitlements for the first time as a result of the accreditation process.

Once accredited, suppliers can display the No Sweatshop label: a sign of sweatshop free production. As organisations you have the power to demand companies you source from commit to sweatshop free conditions, and through demanding accreditation you can be directly involved in improving the conditions of outworkers in the Australian clothing industry.

Fair Wear is calling on all NGO‚s, charitable organisations and community groups to get behind the No Sweatshop Label and get their suppliers of T-shirts, windcheaters or any other garments, accredited to the Homeworkers Code of Practice.

Where:

Labor Council 377-383 Sussex St Sydney.

Executive Board Room, Lvl 9

When:

Wednesday 5th November. 9am - 12.30

Contact:

Dez Karlsson;

[email protected]

ph: 9380 9091

fax: 9380 8159

mob: 0403 128 013

www.fairwear.org.au

SPREADING THE MESSAGE OF WORKERS RIGHTS

Bankstown City Radio is seeking to establish a weekly program to be produced and presented by NSW workers and unionists that addresses issues and concerns surrounding workers rights.

Such a program would provide an opportunity to examine work and industrial issues from the perspective of those who know this area best - working people and our unions.

It will allow workers to have a say about current disputes, government proposals and industry attacks and most importantly educate the wider community about workers rights.

We are looking for volunteer producers and presenters with a solid background in workers rights who could spearhead this exciting new broadcasting project.

ESSENTIAL:

Good communication, presentation and interpersonal skills

Sound program and editorial judgement

Knowledge and experience of work and industrial issues and NSW unions

Demonstrated ability to work well in a team environment

Commitment to contributing to the program on a weekly basis

DESIRABLE:

On-air experience

Ability to operate broadcasting equipment

Understanding of media law requirements

For more information contact

Mary Ellen Hall, Station Manager, on 9771 2846 during office hours or email: [email protected]


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