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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 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.


 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!


True Lies
Labor Council secretary John Robertson argues It’s Time – 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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Activists What's On!

Boycott and Picket the Safari Restaurant

SUPPORT UNPAID SUBCONTRACT BUILDING COMPANIES IN THEIR CAMPAIGN FOR JUSTICE How can you help? Boycott the Safari Restaurant, Sign our Supporters Petition, Make a donation to the campaign and Picket nightly from 6.15pm - 28 King Street, Newtown.

Features of Blown Youth

by Raimondo Cortese

A new play at the New Theatre

It's the inner city; a student, a stripper, a struggling writer, a cynical idealist and a wannabe tough guy are living in a shared house. Enter a naïve skinhead, an ambitious prostitute and their very dangerous landlord and everyone's world implodes. A raw, violent and ultimately provocative Australian drama.

This darkly humorous and gritty play is perhaps even more relevant today than when it was first performed in Melbourne in 1997.

Strictly limited season 7 - 23 October 2004

Thurs - Sat @ 8pm, Sun @ 5.30pm

All tickets: $15 Bookings: 9519 8958

Dream on!

National competition for students - term 3 The Australian Council of Trade Unions' Worksite for Schools website is currently running a national competition for school, TAFE and RTO students - Your Dream Job. To enter, students must write about the job of their dreams. There is $100 for the student winner, $50 for 2 runners-up, and $25 for the winner of the special effort category.

The competition closes Friday 22nd October 2004. More information and an entry form can be obtained from the Worksite website

Please call 1800 659 511 (toll free) or email [email protected] if you have any questions.

Saharawi benefit night

Celebrate the Saharawi‚s love of dancing and the rhythms of Africa with the Café of the Gate of Salvation, Mohamed Bangoura (African drum and dance) plus special guest performers. All proceeds go to the Saharawi refugees in Algeria.

People of North Africa who have been waiting for 30 years to return to their homeland of Western Sahara. While Morocco occupies their country, they have survived in refugee camps in the harsh Algerian desert, one of the most inhospitable places on earth. It's the East Timor of Africa.

27 October 2004 $25/$15conc, The Basement- Sydney. 02. 9251-2797

ACTU And Labor Council of NSW Drug, Alcohol and Fatigue Seminar

The ACTU and the NSW Labor Council will be hosting a Drug, Alcohol and Fatigue Seminar at the Sydney Masonic Centre on Wednesday 10 November 2004.

Increasingly employers are insisting that employees and potential employees submit to various forms of testing to ensure they are drug free.

Employees and their unions have opposed many forms of testing as they are intrusive, open to abuse and all too often used to create fear and culture change in the workplace. A number of major employers are currently attempting to force through policies and government and industry safety regulators are attempting to impose standards.

Unions do agree that drugs, alcohol and fatigue don't mix with work and that an impaired worker is a danger to themselves, their fellow workers and others. Unions also seek a holistic response that deals with all causes of impairment, including fatigue and one that recognises the privacy and other rights of employees. There has been a variety of positions put by different unions and union bodies.

The ACTU in association with the State and Territory Labour Councils believes it is time to develop a single view on this important issue. To this end a Drug, Alcohol and Fatigue Seminar will be held at Sydney's Masonic Centre on Wednesday 10 November 2004.

The seminar will have a practical focus and it is hoped it will produce a draft policy on the issue for consideration by the union movement as a whole. Numbers are strictly limited and a $50 fee will apply to cover overheads. Book early to avoid disappointment.

On payment of $50 (GST Inclusive) each participant will receive a booking confirmation by email and details for web access to conference materials.

Forward cheques to ACTU level 2, 393 Swanston Street Melbourne VIC 3000.

Email registration to [email protected] Participants will receive written material, including an updated program in advance of the seminar in electronic form.

The price quoted is inclusive of GST. Upon acceptance of this registration the form becomes a Tax Invoice. ABN 81 849 815 200

Cancellations: You may make substitutions at any time; please notify us as soon as possible. Cancellations must be in writing. Registered delegates who do not attend or who cancel less than two weeks prior to the conference are liable for the entire fee.

Films, Politics and Learning Conference

Organization: OVAL Research, Faculty of Education, University of Technology 6 & 7 Dec These nights aim:

- To bring together radical film-makers, radical film buffs, and radical educators.

- To inspire educators about ways they can use film in their work.

- To inspire film-makers about ways they might facilitate learning about politics.

- To foster discussion and advocacy about this field of practice.

We are seeking videos and films under 2 categories:

1. Agitprop: protest, guerrilla, activist, political, subversive short films /videos.

2. Participatory film-making: community films/videos as social intervention. The only format accepted is DVD.

Send copies with entry form to Celina McEwen, The Centre for Popular Education, UTS, PO Box 123, BROADWAY NSW 2007 AUSTRALIA. Deadline for entries is September 30, 2004. Entry forms can be downloaded from

For further information email Celina on (02) 9514 3847 or [email protected]

poetry and building workers: I'd like to see that


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