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Issue No. 272 15 July 2005  

Interview: Battle Stations
Opposition leader Kim Beazley says he's ready to fight for workers right. But come July 1, he'll have to be fighting by different rules.

Unions: The Workers, United
It was a group of rank and filers who took centre stage when workers rallied in Sydney's Town Hall, writes Jim Marr.

Politics: The Lost Weekend
The ALP had a hot date, they had arranged to meet on the Town Hall steps, and Phil Doyle was there.

Industrial: Truth or Dare
Seventeen ivory towered academics upset those who know what is best for us last week.

History: A Class Act
After reading a new book on class in Australia, Neale Towart is left wondering if it is possible to tie the term down.

Economics: The Numbers Game
Political economist Frank Stilwell offers a beginners guide to understanding budgets

International: Blonde Ambition
Sweden can be an inspiration to labour movements the world over, as it has had community unionism for over 100 years, creating a vibrant caring society, rather than a "productive" lean economy.

Training: The Trade Off
Next time you go looking for a skilled tradesman and can�t find one, blame an economist, writes John Sutton.

Review: Bore of the Worlds
An invincible enemy has people turning against one another as they fight for survival � its not just an eerie view of John Howard�s ideal workplace, writes Nathan Brown.

Poetry: The Beaters Medley
In solidarity with the workers of Australia, Sir Paul McCartney (with inspiration from his old friend John Lennon) has joined the Workers Online resident bard David Peetz to pen some hits about the government's proposed industrial relations revolution.

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PM Rallies on Spin
John Howard is spinning the merits of his industrial assault off a Kiwi rally driver who made a motza out of individual contracts.

When Howard mounted his New Zealand defence of AWAs, last week, he told Australians that a survey done in the Shaky Isles showed overwhelming employee satisfaction with workplace reform based on individual contracts. [full story]

Crafty Boss Bytes Staff
An employer, pinged for discriminating against union members, is using AWAs to slash wages by $25,000 a year.

Bytecraft, which has the contract to maintain TAB betting machines, has staff on AWAs that include a 48 hour week with no penalty rates or leave loading. They force workers to take parental leave out of sick leave � all for a base salary of $27,000 a year. [full story]

Andrews Faces "Thuggery" Challenge
Workplace Relations Minister Kevin Andrews is being challenged to "put up or shut up" over accusations of criminality against building workers.

CFMEU national secretary, John Sutton, threw down the gauntlet after Andrews claimed the industry was the scene of ongoing "thuggery and intimidation", last week. [full story]

Delta Blues
An electrician who tried to retire because of severe depression has been ground out of $95,000 worth of leave entitlements.

Brian Healey had his application for retirement on ill health rejected by Delta Electricity, his employer for 25 years, even though the company believes he is unable to work. [full story]

NRL Plays Man Not Ball
The National Rugby League launched a vicious attack last week on the head of its players� association, after his members called for increased funding for junior rugby league.

Rugby League Professionals Association CEO Tony Butterfield copped a battering after commissioning an independent valuation of the NRL�s secret TV rights deal with the Nine Network and Fox Sports. [full story]


 Boeing Hits Turbulence

 Whole Truth Eludes Rev Kev

 Correct Weight Caulfield

 Business Nervous Over IR Changes

 Last Weekend Gets a Lift

 Free Pass for Death Doctors

 Activists Whats On!

email workers to a friend latest breaking news from labornet
Ticket to Ride - Free busses and trains will head to Homebush on August 7 for the Last Weekend

As American pollster Vic Fingerhut observes, merely going out and engaging in an economic argument - even when you have better arguments than your conservative opponents - does nothing more than shift the debate onto their turf.

Expert Tool


The Soapbox
State of the Union
Unions NSW secretary John Robertson lifts the lid on �The Nine Myths of Modern Unionism�

The Locker Room
Wrist Action
Phil Doyle trawls the murky depths of tawdry sleaze, and discovers Rugby is behind it all.

To Hew The Coal That Lies Below
Phil Doyle reviews Australia's first coal mining novel, Black Diamonds and Dust.

The Westie Wing
Our favourite State MP, Ian West, reports from Macquarie Street that the Premier is all the way with a State Commission.

LETTERS to the Editor
 Do It Yourself?
 The vision thing
 True Lies
 You C.A.N. Do It
 Water Works

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