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Issue No. 285 14 October 2005  

Howard’s Secret War
There are two wars being waged against Australian workers right now.


Interview: Under Fire
Michael Crosby outlines his agenda to save the movement – and explains why Australians have nothing to fear from the SEIU.

Politics: And the Winners Are ...
Wal King, Allan Moss, Roger Corbett, Chip Goodyear, Michael Chaney and David Murray have lots in common, writes Jim Marr.

Industrial: Un-Australian
Labour lawyer Clive Thompson argues the changes to IR are fundamentally at odds with the national tradition of consesensus.

Economics: The Common Wealth
As the policy wonks debate the future of our cities, Neale Towart mounts a simple argument: It’s the real people in a society, stupid

History: Walking for Justice
The Eight Hour Day, a very Australian celebration, had its origins in New Zealand it seems, writes Neale Towart.

International: Deja Vu
A group of trade unions have walked away from America's peak council, again. Labourstart's Eric Lee was there.

Legal: The Rights Stuff
Terror laws have sparked a fresh debate on a Bill of Rights - and workers have a bigger stake than ever before, writes Rachael Osman-Chin.

Review: That Cinderella Fella
Russell trades the phone for mitts in an inspiring cinematic slug-fest. Nathan Brown is ringside

Poetry: Is Howard Kidding?
Mel Cheal asks who Howard thinks he is kidding to the tune of the ‘Dad’s Army’ theme song.


 Call Centre Dials Up Future

 Greenfields Become Cotton Fields

 PM Endorses Billy Boy Tactics

 Stats Go Missing

 Paper Tiger in Protection Racket

 Thugs Are Go!

 Usual Suspects Bite Employers

 Pay Boss Opposed Living Wage

 Tele Enlists Boss’ Family

 Entitlements Go AWAy

 State Employees in Limbo

 Activist’s What’s On!


The Soapbox
No Place For A Woman!
Doreen Borrow spoke to the Public Service Association’s women’s conference in September about her experiences of working life that span seven decades.

North By Northwest
Phil Doyle returns from up north, where he survived on nothing but goodwill, good people and a great big orange bus.

The Locker Room
In which Whatsisname slams the recent poor form of Thingummyjig.

The Westie Wing
Our favourite MP, Ian West MLC, gets all casual in his latest missive from the Bear Pit.

 JWH's Inspiration
 Hooray for Robots
 Government's Dream
 Come Clean
 Good Guy Done Bad
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Letters to the Editor

Hooray for Robots

Oh joy! Long live the future, where as robotic, enterprise workers we can finally negotiate unilaterally with our employers, rather than having to withstand interference from those pesky unions. They're always sticking their noses into areas that have nothing to do with them, like social policy and community values.

God knows, that's what the Tories were elected for, to paternalistically take care of those issues so we could simply grind away for 8 - 12 hours a day and then go home to our empty houses. None of us have time for relationships anymore! The future prosperity of the economy is far too important to be enjoying ourselves! We need to keep striving for the ever-disappearing finish line, according to the Lying Rodent.

And that damn ACTU, always giving the conservatives a hard time! Don't you wish it would just die a slow death so market forces could prevail once and for all, leaving the invisible hand of the market to work out what's best for us all?

Unemployment? No such thing in John Howard's Australia. Don't have a job? That's OK, cause have the Liberal Coalition government got a deal for you!! Just sign here, and you'll get a minimum wage for 60 hours a week work with no penalties or overtime, no annual leave loading and no prospect of a pay rise til the Fair Pay Commission kindly decides to give you one. What a deal! Don't like it? Well dont bother knocking on Centrelink's door cause they won't be so understanding. 26 weeks with no Centrelink payment! Woo - hoo!

Welcome to the brave new (and incredibly scary) world.

Julianne Taverner, NSW


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