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Issue No. 242 15 October 2004  
E D I T O R I A L

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.

F E A T U R E S

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 MUA’s 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.

N E W S

 Don’t 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 Santa’s 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!

C O L U M N S

Politics
True Lies
Labor Council secretary John Robertson argues It’s Time – for an IR reality check.

Parliament
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

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

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

L E T T E R S
 Giving Your Soul Away
 Invest in Dignity Part III
 You Need Help
 Medicare Woes
 Whose Party Is It Anyway?
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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No Picnic in Park


Moves by RailCorp management to use "waterfront" tactics on accountants and secretaries backfired when the operator was forced into an embarrassing apology after attempting to block a lunchtime union meeting.

Rail Infrastructure Corporation (RIC) workers were threatened with the use of security guards if they held their meeting at their offices in Sydney and were forced to relocate to Belmore Park to hear a report back from Australian Services Union (ASU) organisers about progress of their current enterprise bargaining agreement.

"The members were furious," says ASU organiser Karen Isles. "They were ready for blood.

"Management's heavy handed tactics have totally backfired and galvanised more support for the EBA campaign."

After pressure by union members and members of the public RailCorp issued an apology for its actions, which is "an admission of guilt" in the eyes of staff according to Isles.

"We want RailCorp management not to interfere with the rights of union members to take democratic action."

"This is typical of RailCorp's jackboot-style management, says ASU president Barry Rule. "In all my 40 years in the rail industry I have never known a lunchtime meeting to be blocked by management."

Rule predicts that management will see "massive" industrial action as a result of their actions.

"Ordinary rail workers are totally incensed," says Rule. "Even workers who are not militant are saying that if they're going to be next their going to take action."

RailCorp members will be meeting this Tuesday, October 19 to consider what industrial action they will take. It is expected that rail services will be disrupted as a result of RailCorp management's refusal to offer realistic conditions for employees across the industry.

"Every meeting we have had so far we are seeing practically unanimous calls for us to proceed to industrial action."


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