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Issue No. 242 15 October 2004  

Historical Revisions
It was a common refrain on Saturday night as we cried in our beers, hurled vitriol at the TV set and wondered how big the shellacking would be this time around: Howard won on a lie.


Interview: The Last Bastian
AMWU state secretary Paul Bastian has been at the centre of the three year battle to bring James Hardie to account.

Unions: High and Dry
Jim Marr unpacks the recent High Court Electrolux decision to test whether the ruling matches the media hype.

Security: Liquid Borders
The Howard Government loves to trumpet its national security credentials but a close look at its record in shipping sinks the myth argues MUAís Zoe Reynolds.

Industrial: No Bully For You
Phil Doyle reports on how bringing dignity and respect to the workplace is undermining bullies.

History: Radical Brisbane
Radical Brisbane extends the 'Radical City' series into the Red North. Two experienced activists, academics and writers turn South East Queensland history on its head.

International: No Vacancies
More than 1400 hotel union workers, members of UNITE HERE Local 2, are on strike at four major hotels in San Francisco, California, writes Andrew Casey.

Economics: Life After Capitalism
A situation that all anarchists dream of? Michael Albert has been more than dreaming., writes Neale Towart

Technology: Cyber Winners
Labourstart's Eric Lee looks at a good news story of global online campaigning that has delivered a victory.

Poetry: Do It Yourself Poetry
Teaser: Wondering why the polls are all over the place? Ask our resident bard and psephologist.

Review: Hard Labo(u)r
The Voice of Southern Labor highlights the role music played in the 1930's US textile strikes, but more than that it provides a lucid insight into the roots of modern capitalism and some truly organic organising, writes Tara de Boehmler.


 Donít Worry, Be Organised

 Senate Faces Family Fight

 Cheques Cashed In Seconds

 "Undemocractic" Taskforce Court Out

 Power to People: On Hold

 Eyes Have It Over Lotto

 Bomb in Santaís Sack

 No Picnic in Park

 Smoking Loophole A Bit Rich

 BlueScope Workers Take Stock

 ABC Radio Clash

 Melbourne Goes Global

 No Justice for Joel

 Mercury Falling in Hobart

 Last Gasp for Monitoring

 Kiddie Photos Victory

 Thousands Up for Grabs

 Activists What's On!


True Lies
Labor Council secretary John Robertson argues Itís Time Ė for an IR reality check.

The Westie Wing
Much work has been done in the past to ease the plight of clothing outworkers in New South Wales. It's time to step up the pressure, as sweatshops and clothing contract work are thriving stronger than ever, writes Ian West.

The Soapbox
Who Started the Class War?
Evan Jones looks across the Australian political landscape and asks who are the real class warriors?

The Locker Room
First Past The Post
Phil Doyle is coming up in class and is all the better for recent racing

Westie Wing
Our favourite state MP returns for his monthly Macquarie Street wrap.

Positive Action
Australian unionists are helping give hope to Filipino workers living with HIV/AIDS.

 Giving Your Soul Away
 Invest in Dignity Part III
 You Need Help
 Medicare Woes
 Whose Party Is It Anyway?
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Tool Shed

Post Election Tool

There are those that live in the real world and those that live in the Tool Shed, Peter Hendy is one of the latter.


While Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry boss Peter Hendy's reaction to the Federal election may not be the only political equivalent of premature ejaculation we saw this week, it was certainly one of the more impressive.

Poor old Peter let the cat out of the bag when he revealed his wish list following the return of Dear Leader Howard.

Hendy was foaming at the mouth this week on the need for radical workplace legislation blocked in the Senate over the past seven years to be passed.

The reforms include the old hoary chestnut of compulsory union secret ballots before strikes to stop those hairy Bolsheviks from intimidating the honest Australian yeomanry, more AWAs and small business exemption from unfair dismissals.

There is also the laughable call for a permanent commission to police corruption in the building industry. Obviously Hendy is keen to see his mates at the ACCI locked up for killing people.

Hendy also wants the Orwellian titled More Jobs Better Pay Bill passed.

Still, this advocate of paying people in salt shouldn't surprise us. Hendy first rose to mediocrity as a staffer for the man so fondly loved by Australians, Peter Reith. Was it Hendy that showed him how to use a phone card?

Hendy has a unique philosophical position that only members of the Liberal party should receive funds from the taxpayer - advocating that mothers and workers in industries such as sugar should be forced to stand on their own two feet.

Which is fair enough. We can all see how members of the ASX200 would struggle without the assistance of not only taxpayers dollars, but also the judicial, legislative and executive arms of the state to defend them from the rampant greed of Australians working 50-plus hours a week for $35,000 a year.

Luckily Peter Hendy has dedicated his life to ensuring that no Australian millionaire will ever live in poverty.

The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (which is none of the above) is an interesting organisation, in much the same way that the Ebola Virus is an interesting medical development.

In his drive to reduce Australia to a third world nation populated by a grateful peasantry Hendy claims that there is no such thing as a bad job. No doubt shovelling asbestos is seen as 'enhanced employment mobility' by our Tool Of The Week.

Or maybe Hendy could lead the way by going and chipping cotton piecework in 50 degree heat for 40 dollars a day. Or maybe he'd prefer to work from home 16 hours a day as an outworker and have as much at the end of the week as his mates at the ACCI spend on a bottle of wine over lunch.

This is the sort of dribble we can expect from someone who's never done a day of real work in their lives to start with.

All of this subtlety does make sense if we understand Hendy's view that getting paid less to work longer is a good thing, the Kyoto protocols' are evil and that Hitler was really just a misunderstood genius

In Hendy's view his fellow Australians are little more than robots to be picked up and put down like a shovel, which is consistent with his view that people with more money are more worthy and better human beings.

No wonder the Howard government is proud to have the support of Hendy's glorious vision of a new Reich; soon our Tool Of The Week can start rounding up Bolsheviks, single mothers, trade unionists, Catholics and other free thinkers as soon as the camps are freed up.


The most inspiring interpretation of this week's tool get's a souvenir edition of Ship of Tools. Deface the Tool of the Week, click the button above to post your artwork, fill out the form and send your entry in and we'll post the winners next week in the Tool of the Week Gallery.


Ship of Tools - All the tools in one shed!

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