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Issue No. 243 22 October 2004  

The Perfect Storm
The storm clouds are gathering on the industrial horizon, an unholy trinity of a hostile legislative agenda, a radical High Court decision and emboldened employers.


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.


 Hardie Rewards Asbestos Rats

 Kentucky Fried Kids

 Miner Shafts Democracy

 Fine Drop in Ocean of Blood

 Sydney Water Outsources Brains

 Head Injuries to No Injuries

 Bosses Celebrate with Sack-athon

 Kangaroo Strikebreakers Spotlighted

 Officers Change Customs

 Union Backs League

 Carr Trouble At Port Botany

 Pratt Backs Warwick Farm Loser

 Students Fight Summer Blues

 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.

 Historical Reversion?
 Whose prosperity?
 Shop Till the Worker Drops
 Unreported Views
 Bobís Silver Anniversary
 Hit And Myth
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Union Backs League

A rugby league team backed by Sydney building workers and selected by legends Arthur Beetson and Rod Reddy is heading to New Zealand to tackle the annual Maori Rugby League Tournament.

The 22 man NSW Maori Rugby League squad, coached by former NRL player Luke Goodwin, includes several current NRL players as well as some exciting new talent.

The NSW Maori Rugby League is the breeding ground of players of the calibre of current NZ International and Melbourne Storm forward Alex Chan.

The current side is captained by Souths player Stevie Skinnon and also features former St George player Darren Ramika.

Sydney building workers have raised $30,000 to send the side on the trip, which coach Goodwin believes offers an extra incentive for players taking on the top Maori league talent going around.

In their last attempt, in 1999, the side made the final against Auckland and Goodwin is quietly confident of going the extra step and taking out the tournament.

"This is one of the best sides I've ever seen," says assistant coach John Trinder, who singled out young Western Suburbs first division player Aaron Hermina for big things. "He's a freak. He can step off both feet and has a good kicking game."

There is considerable interest in the side from New Zealand with Construction Forestry Mining Energy Union (CFMEU) organiser Steve Keenan fielding enquiries from MaoriTV and TV3 prior to the side's departure.

Members of the CFMEU dug deep to support the team, which includes many players who spend the summer months working on construction sites around Sydney.

"Building workers should be proud of themselves for digging deep to support this team and giving this very strong NSW team the chance to be the first team from outside New Zealand to win this tournament," says CFMEU secretary Andrew Ferguson. "The CFMEU represents many Maori's workers in the building industry, as shown by the 15 players from the 22 man squad who work on construction sites between football seasons, and our rank and file members are right behind these men."

"These men have a reputation for hard work, and sticking up for their mates on building sites, so it isn't surprising to see other workers doing the same for them, and helping them to achieve a dream."


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