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Issue No. 275 05 August 2005  
E D I T O R I A L

Iemma’s Dilemmas
The past fortnight has seen the sort of upheaval in NSW that reminds us all that politics is a very tenuous game with few certainties and even fewer rules.

F E A T U R E S

Interview: On Holiday
Historian Richard White looks back on the Aussie vacation - and finds a way of life is under threat.,

Unions: One Day Longer
Nathan Brown travels to the Boeing picket line and find a group of workers with a steely determination to stick together.

Industrial: Never Mind the Bollocks
Jim Marr plays the Howard Government's industrial relations spin job on its merits.

Politics: Spun Out
Canberra’s latest campaign underlines the need for controls over government advertising, according to Graeme Orr and Joo-Cheong Tham

Economics: If the Grog Don't Get You ....
Evan Jones explains how the way we purchase alcolohol reflects the type of economy we live in.

History: Taking a Stand
Neale Towart looks at two books that chronicle how to build community support against social injustice.

International: The Split
Amanda Tattersal outsider's account of an insider's shake-out at the AFL-CIO Convention 2005

Legal: Pushing the Friendship
George Williams argues that the federal government’s constitutional powers are not sufficient to enact a comprehensive national industrial relations scheme

Poetry: Simple Subtractions
The latest blitz of taxpayer-funded advertising has revealed a crisis of arithmetic in government ranks has moved resident bard David Peetz to prose.

Review: Sydney Trashed
Sydney band SC Trash are on a mission to give new life to folk and country music – and the politics of common sense. Nathan Brown had a beer with them

N E W S

 Carmen's Boss No Fun Guy

 Discriminating Centrelink on Charges

 Uproar Over Holiday Plans

 Do The Bus Stop

 Taxpayers to Fund Advertising Orgy

 Get Up Stands Up

 Andrews Provokes Showdown

 Thousands in Super Rort

 Constituents Don’t Trust Andrews

 Skill Shortage Fabricated

 Yanks Short Change Tradesmen

 Howard Steamroller Hits Building Sites

 CFMEU Bans Ferguson

 Activists Whats On!

C O L U M N S

Parliament
The Westie Wing
Our favourite MP, Ian West, goes away for a couple of weeks and look what happens…

The Soapbox
The Last Weekend
Unions NSW secretary John Robertson's speech to the Last Weekend - how the Howard government laws will undermine the Ausrtalian way of life.

The Locker Room
A Concept Is Born
In which Phil Doyle helps the proponents of the vision thing across the road.

International
Workers Blood For Oil
A new book by Abdullah Muhsin and Alan Johnson lifts the lid on the bloody reality of US backed democracy for Iraq's trade unions

Postcard
London Post
During his recent stay in London IEU industrial officer John Shapiro was living only a few hundred metres from the site of one of the bomb blasts.

L E T T E R S
 Back To The Past
 AFL-CIO Not The Only War
 Be Afraid
 Frame Up
 We Love Morris
 ANew Development
 A Readers Suggestion
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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Workplace

Do The Bus Stop


Developer Westfield has been left with a six figure fare after the botched redevelopment of a Bondi bus stop.

State Transit and Waverley Council signed off on a bus lane at the new Bondi Junction shopping centre without consulting bus drivers, who realised it would lead to lengthy delays and endanger pedestrians.

Drivers pointed out that the new stopping bays were too narrow and mixed pedestrians and buses on the busiest bus corridor in Australia.

"This came about because there was no consultation with the bus drivers,' says Wendy Wirth, a driver from Waverley Bus Depot. "We knew it just wouldn't work.

"It would have caused massive delays and cancellation of trips as there was no room for busses to go past a bus stopped in front."

Drivers from Waverley Depot overwhelmingly supported a ban on the new bus stops when they were constructed last year.

The bans prompted Westfield to launch a campaign against the drivers, advertising in local papers claiming they were inconveniencing the elderly.

The bussies hit back with a concerted community campaign to inform the public, winning widespread support through leafleting Bondi Junction interchange and providing information to passengers on the dangers of the new stopping bays.

"Neither the public nor the union will accept a reduction in public transport facilities," says Raul Boanza from the RTBU.

The successful campaign brought the driver's union, the RTBU, the council, State Transit and Westfield to the table early this year, where the developer agreed to foot the bill for a rebuild of the bus stops.

"We heard a lot from Westfield about the inconvenience to the public during the campaign," says Boanza. "We've had an agreement for eight months. The ball is in their court. We've heard nothing from them about inconveniencing the public since they agreed to fix the problem.

"At this rate they will miss the Christmas sales."

The bill for fixing widening the bus stops is already over $100,000 and rising, and Boanza says that bus drivers simply want the faulty design fixed quickly.

"We just want to hear the sound of jackhammers, not excuses."


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