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Issue No. 286 21 October 2005  
E D I T O R I A L

Lord of the Lobster Legs
It was probably only shame that prompted the Prime Minister to drag himself away from a $250 per head fundraiser to meet with a group of emergency workers in Wollongong this week. But, this in itself may be a development.

F E A T U R E S

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.

N E W S

 Family Grieves an Enterprise Worker

 All Quiet in Dandenong

 Hotline Gets Wires Crossed

 High Flyer Crashes Families

 Bolt Strikes Lecturer

 Good Heavens - Della Plays Santa

 Maori Take Challenge to Canberra

 Drips Fail Water Test

 Hardie Shuts the Door

 Hadgkiss Threatens Protesters

 Army Fires Salvo

 The Munro Doctrine

 IR Sparks Emergency Call

 Tassie Jobs Hit By Truck

 Canberra Coy on Promised Statements

 Inquiry to Speak No Evil

 Activist's What's On!

C O L U M N S

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.

Postcard
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
Disaster
In which Whatsisname slams the recent poor form of Thingummyjig.

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

L E T T E R S
 Sacking For Dummies
 DIY Tool
 Thus Spake Sydney Uni
 Morgan’s Way
 Vote 1 Dictator
 Howard’s Choice
 Buying peace Of Mind
 Coolies Bullish
 Unfair ads
 Rev Kev Speaks
 Politicians
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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Letters to the Editor

Rev Kev Speaks


Dear Fellow Australians

There are no simple answers the the problems we face, no matter how much we yearn for straighforward answers. We do, however, have an obligation for the greater good of our nation to accept the policy directions of the Hon. John Howard. You do, however, have choices.

Why Work Choices, and Why Now?

We face threats that we have never faced before and in order to preserve our way of life certain sacrifices need to be made.

In order to survive and thrive on the world stage we need to 1) built, maintain and sustain robust economic outputs, and 2) we also have to strengthen our homeland defenses and military capabilities.

Unfortunately, there is only one political party (the other has got no ticker) that can help us realise that goal, guess who? In reality Work Choices is also crucial if we are to move forward and remain a member (even senior member) of the 'coalition of the willing', and thereby prosper along with our allies (just look at the U.S economy and quality of life).

Whether we like it or not, Work Choices is in all our best interests - our word is our record'. But we have to act, and what is best for our country is not always seen as fair.

Why Work Choices?

Well, the workplace revolution is part of the big picture for two reasons:

1) Current and future cost of labour is not viable. In order to compete in the global marketplace we need to control costs, especially the cost of labour - note: OHS legislation is another costly distraction, that to needs to be culled to a more acceptable level.

2) Reality bite -we are at war, like it or not. Cost savings from the Work Choices will allow Australian businesses to prosper as well as encourage greater foreign investment, which in turn will aid governmental efforts to strengthen homeland security and military capabilities - this is expensive.

In essence, we need to focus on wealth creation, not public welfare issues - when we are in a position to think more altruistically, funds will be made available - on a needs basis only.

'No more waste', is an essential ingredient to ensure future prosperity.

What are the long term benefits?

Well, there are a number of benefits that are not immediately visible, and they are:

1) We have had it too good for too long - we are fat, we have too much obesity - by lowering wages we teach our children some important lessons - you can't always eat what you want, and you should work hard for your money. This is also a major health issue which costs money.

2) In addition to point 1, we don't want our children being brought up as anti-war protesters, we can't defend our great nation if our kids become fat and lazy pacifists. Poverty creates a fire in the belly - the military offers some great opportunities where many of our children will be able to support themselves whilst defending the rights and privileges we hold dearly as a nation.

What Next?

Abolish compulsory voting - this is a waste of time because too many people vote with their eyes closed. This is neither good for the economy and our plans for the future.

Thank you for your support and understanding.

From the office of workplace relations

Reverend Kev Andrews, NSW


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