The Mouse That Roars
A number of campaigns this week show how web campaigning is reaching a level of sophistication that is transforming it from a gee-whiz fad to a potent industrial tool.
Interview: Machine Man
It�s regarded as the most powerful job in the Party, but new NSW ALP general secretary Mark Arbib wants to build a bridge with the union movement.
Unions: Testing Times
Unions are not opposed to drug and alcohol testing, but they do want to see real safety issues addressed, writes Phil Doyle.
Bad Boss: Freespirit Haunts Internet
FreeSpirit forked out a motza for a whiz bang internet presence then disappeared right off the radar � once it was nominated as our Bad Boss for May.
Unions: Badge of Honour
Surry Hills is home to one of the world�s finest displays of union badges thanks to Bill "The Bear" Pirie and a supporting cast headed by Joe Strummer, Mark Knopfler, George Benson, Annie Lennox and other seriously big noises.
National Focus: Noel's World
Shrill bosses bleat over minimum wage rise, union spinmeisters congregate in Melbourne and Tassie�s nurses take the baton from their mob in Victoria reports Noel Hester in this national round up.
Economics: Safe Refuge
A humanitarian approach to refugees and an economically rational one?? I�d like to see that. Frank Stilwell did, when he went to Young in NSW to look into the impact of the Afghan refugees on temporary protection visas who came to work for the local abattoir
International: Global Abuse
Amnesty International have joined the chorus against the violation of trade union rights in the former Soviet republic of Belarus.
History: The Honeypot
To the Honeypot come those individuals anxious to get their hands on instant wealth. So it was in the early days of Broken Hill, wrties Grace Hawes in this homage to the mining town.
Review: Death And The Barbarians
This new take on coming of age films focuses on the coming of death and the dignity and maturity it can inspire among those touched by it - though not always easily in the overcrowded Canadian public health system, writes Tara de Boehmler.
Poetry: Who Wants to be a Millionaire?
Resident Bard David Peetz uncovers some of the unfolding mysteries of talk back radio.
Casual Affair Costs Family
Dob a Driver Strikes Out
Crash LAME�s Smoking Gun
Axe To Fall On Skippy
Internet Replaces Crayons
Young Lives Crushed
Feds Move Goal Posts
Telstra Baulks at Two Percent
Crane Death Brings Fine
Worker Breaks Unwritten Law
Private Nurses Short Changed
RailCorp Wrecks Weekend
Thunderbirds Are Stop
Activists What�s On!
Rethinking Left and Right Part 1
Dr David McKnight, from the University of Technology, Sydney presents a new frame for looking at the competing ideas within Social Democracy.
Rethinking Left and Right Part 2
David McKnight concludes the paper he presented to the �Rethinking Social Democracy� conference, in London, April 15-17, 2004.
Out On A Limb
Phil Doyle becomes the first Australian journalist to state that the Olympics will be called off.
The Westie Wing
In the latest episode, Ian West explores what Disraeli called "Lies, damn lies and statistics".
Message from America
Searing snapshots from a landscape of uncertainty have plunged the Bush Administration into deeper crisis, writes WorkingForChange's Bill Berkowitz.
Justice For Victims Denied
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Thunderbirds Are Stop
The Federal Government is operating in a "fantasy world" and has been watching too many James Bond movies, according to an Australian researcher.
"It reminds me of the Thunderbirds," says Dr Michael Borgas, President of the CSIRO Staff Association. "You have all these gung-ho dynamos and Brains has to come up with the gadget that's going to save everyone in some room out the back."
"It's the mentality that drives these narrow minded research models. Every project is supposed to have a commercial outcome and if it doesn't it's a pariah."
"It's a fantasy world and it will fail. Science will supply 'winners' if you support people, rather than standing over them with a whip."
Dr Borgas was commenting on moves by the Federal Government to withhold research funding unless it offered a commercial outcome.
The allegations follow the release of the Federal Government's science and innovation package and moves to cut funding from Co-operative Research Centres (CRC) that were not linked to "commercial" outcomes.
The move has been labelled a "disaster" by the Federal Government's own backbench and has seen funding cut for research into the Great Barrier Reef and tropical rainforests, amongst others.
While Dr Borgas labelled not commercialising any research as "quite silly", he said that there was no "magic formula" to research and that the Federal Government's policies had made researchers "totally risk averse".
"It works only if people able to be confident that they're going to have a job." Says Borgas. "
Unions representing research staff in the CSIRO and public universities believe the Government inject sufficient funding to arrest Australia's decline in Research and Development spending relative to our OECD competitors.
"The whole of CSIRO is in desperate need of increased funding," says Dr Borgas. "CSIRO is losing science capability right now."
Reports the Government is planning to introduce a Strategic Research Council are of concern to research workers, who claim that Universities and CSIRO are already directly accountable to Government and resources need to be targeted at the researchers themselves not bureaucracy.
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