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Issue No. 293 20 December 2005  
 
F E A T U R E S

Interview: Back to the Future
James Gallaway collars Unions NSW secretary, John Robertson, on threats, challenges and opportunities.

Unions: A Real Page Turner
Jim Marr glances through Workers Online’s 2005 news stories and finds there is more one way to skin a Rat

Industrial: The Pin-Striped Union
Rachael Osman-Chin profiles a white collar union that is having some almighty blues.

International: Around The World In 365 Days
It was a year of online activism, as LabourStart's Eric Lee reports

Legends: Terrific, Tommy
Jim Marr tackles a champion.

Your Rights At Work: Worth Fighting For
The Your Rights At Work campaign has been a big part of this year and, as Phil Doyle reports, it is making a difference.

Politics: The Year That Was
Frank Stillwell looks at year that saw the politics of fear; and finds many reasons to be very afraid.

Economics: Master and Servant Revisited
Evan Jones asks if the Neo Liberals are taking us back to the future

Culture: 2005: The Year of Living Repetitively
Nathan Brown ignores Oasis and decides to look back in anger after all

Bad Boss: The Bottom Ten
Nathan Brown digs through his voluminous dirt files and comes up with the top 10 grubs of the year.

Religion: Hymns from a Different Song Sheet
James Gallaway on the Way, the Truth and life according to Brian.

WHAT YOU CAN DO
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L A T E S T   N E W S

Melbourne Burns AWAs
Eighteen Melbourne workers have kicked a big hole in John Howard's plan to deunionise Australia.

On Monday, December 19, their employer, Colrain, wrote to the Office of the Employment Advocate, asking that their AWAs be scrubbed. [full story]

Corporates Defend Costello
Big business is defending Treasurer Peter Costello from allegations he lied to Parliament about the real affects of Workchoices.

The Australian used Freedom of Information searches to blow apart Costello's insistence that he had not received Treasury advice that undermined key Government claims for its radical IR rewrite. [full story]

Speaker Won't Talk
The Speaker of the Australian Parliament didn't understand coercive workplace powers when he helped ram them into law.

The extraordinary admission came from David Hawker, federal member for Wannon, when he was confronted by constituents, including a Catholic Nun, about Building Industry Commission standover tactics in rural Victoria. [full story]

Bank Pays on Dodgy Contracts
The Finance Sector Union is celebrating a major victory against the Commonwealth Bank over its scheme to push employees onto inferior individual contracts.

The CBA has been ordered by the Federal Court to pay a record $750,000 in fines for inducing hundreds of Premium Financial Services employees, who look after some of the Bank's wealthiest clients, to resign from jobs protected by CBA agreements and sign individual contracts with subsidiary CommSec.  [full story]

Plan to Save Jobs
Unions, employers and state governments will join forces in a bid to save 1100 jobs a week.

The three groups will work towards a manufacturing plan in response to the loss of 1178 jobs a week since the Howard Government came to office. [full story]

Harper's Bizarre Excuse for Failure
John Howard's Fair Pay Master was moaning about the concept of a “living wage” while his trading company was going bust, putting dozens of Aussies out of work.

Ian Harper was a director of Australian Derivatives Exchange which had its trading licence revoked in March 2001. At the same time, Professor Harper was preparing a paper for investment bankers that argued Australia would have a healthier economy if sweatshops had been legal, last century.  [full story]

ALSO MAKING NEWS

 It's Not Fair: Business

 Workers Walk As Warnings Wiped

 Teenager Hit With Shrapnel

 Pay Day “Unlawful”

 Tassie Rail Win

 Professionals Fear for Their Kids

 Boss Pings Rorters Charter

 New Ways to Take a Share

 An Hour of Need

 Boeing Steals Christmas

 Trouble at the Mill

 Activists What's On

email workers to a friend latest breaking news from labornet
Burn baby burn...Chris from Colrain sends his AWA up in smoke

E D I T O R I A L
A government responsible for further reducing the economic barriers to the world economy can only make citizens feel secure by diverting attention to cultural barriers

The Dog Whistler

C O L U M N S

Predictions
The Crystal Ball
Workers Online consults a raft of leading psychics to find out what readers can look forward to in 2006.

The Soapbox
The Things People Say
It was a year of quotable quotes, reports Phil Doyle.

Parliament
The Westie Wing
Ian West checks the rear vision mirror on 2005, and plants his foot down

The Locker Room
The 2005 Workers Online Sports Awards
After years of being overlooked by selectors at club, representative and national levels, Phil Doyle and Jim Marr, agreed to hand out our 2005 sports gongs.

Postcard
Postcard from East Timor
In East Timor entertainment also spreads an important message into the community


LETTERS to the Editor
 Pension Pinching
 Free to Rat
 Tax Cuts and Cockroaches
 Proportion, Not Distortion
 Corp That!

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