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Issue No. 246 12 November 2004  

How It Comes To This
There are times when a worker has no real option than to take a stand, no matter the cost. This is the situation confronting NSW’s 15,000 rail workers right now.


Interview: The Reich Stuff
Robert Reich has led the debate on the future of work – both as an academic and politician. Now he’s on his way to Australia to help NSW unions push the envelope.

Economics: Crime and Punishment
Mark Findlay argues that the present psychological approach to prison programs is increasing the likelihood of re-offending and the threat to community safety.

Environment: Beyond The Wedge
Whether the great forestry divide can ever be overcome or whether it is best sidestepped for the sake of unity and sustainability in other areas is up for debate, writes Tara de Boehmler.

International: The End Of The Lucky Country
Linda Weiss, Elizabeth Thurbon and John Mathews show us How To Kill A Country

Safety: Tests Fail Tests
Nick Lewocki from the RTBU lifts the lid on the shonky science behind RailCorp testing

Politics: Labo(u)r Day
John Robertson lets fly at this years Labor Day dinner

Human Rights: Arabian Lights
Tim Brunero reports on how a Sydney sparky took on the Taliban and lived to tell the tale.

History: Labour's Titan
Percy Brookfield was a big man who was at the heart of the trade union struggles that made Broken Hill a quintessential union town writes Neale Towart.

Review: Foxy Fiasco
To find out who is outfoxing who, read Tara de Boehmler's biased review of a subjective documentary about corrupt journalism.

Poetry: Then I Saw The Light
Brothers and sisters! Praise the Lord! Brother George has saved the White House from an invasion by infidels, writes resident bard David Peetz.


 Workers Seize Cat

 Castle Hill Uprising

 Carr Flips on Rail

 Producers Call "Cut"

 Fly Me To … Anywhere

 Saint Buzz: Hymn the Man

 Patricks Attacks Westies

 Cold Comfort for Scientists

 Mothball Bowls Port Hedland

 Boss Rejects AWA

 Asbestos Audit Refused

 Bear Mauls Children

 "Leave or Leave," Telstra

 Activists What's On!


The Locker Room
In Naming Rights Only
Phil Doyle has Gone to Gowings

The Soapbox
Homeland Insecurity
Rowan Cahill tells us how the Howard Government’s appointment of Major-General Duncan Lewis to head up the national security division of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet has received little critical comment, until now.

The Westie Wing
New proposed legislation in NSW provides a vital window of opportunity for unions to ensure they achieve convictions for workplace deaths, writes Ian West.

 What about the real crooks?
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Tool Shed

Klu Klux Tool

Good ‘ole boy Peter Lindsay takes his burning cross into the Tool Shed this week.


Liberal MP Peter Lindsay's idea of fun is dressing up in Klu Klux Clan gear and targeting aboriginal Australians.

Welcome to the Liberal party's new Australia, where burning crosses and offering indigenous Australians a rope to hang themselves with is "just a fun thing".

Our redneck friend believes the problem isn't troops dressing up as Klansmen, just that a photo was taken of the event.

Lindsay sprang to the defence of the Klan, saying that allegations that the organisation was racist were "outrageous" and "should just be treated with the contempt they deserve".

Maybe Peter thinks it's a benevolent reading circle or some co-counselling group for people with six fingers?

Given that his local Army barracks has already thrown up the big brave Aussie "kitten killers" and allegations that the grunts are more often than not off their faces, you'd think that Lindsay may be a bit wary of shooting off at the mouth.

But the man who is fast making Pauline Hanson look like Martin Luther King goes on the record to say: "I'm the federal member in Townsville, and I would be the first person to know if there was any unsettling racism appearing up here, and I am very close to the Defence Force, and there is absolutely zero reports to me of anything of that nature, and as I say, I would know if there were."

But given that Lindsay doesn't even think that dressing up as Klansmen is racist it would be hard to say what he considered was racist.

Either way, no one is disputing that he is the Federal member in Townsville, but after that the general consensus is that he would struggle to know which direction his posterior is pointing in.

Around at Pointy Caped Peter's place apparently no one would "even turn a hair" at someone doffing the Klansman's cape.

According to Peter it's the done thing at bucks parties in the deep dark north.

The Klan, or a local variety promoted by people as wealthy in imagination as intelligence, is active in Townsville.

Leaflets bearing the letters KKK and a swastika were stuffed into the letterboxes of local Aborigines.

No wonder Lindsay had no shortage of people to hand out for him on Election Day.

Homeless Aborigines have also complained of being attacked with rocks and petrol bombs.

No doubt this is more of what our Tool Of The Week considers "a little fun".


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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