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Issue No. 296 24 February 2006  
 
F E A T U R E S

Interview: Court's in Session
As the silks line up to challenge WorkChoices, Jeff Shaw is fighting for his own legacy - the NSW IR system.

Industrial: Whose Choices?
The Howard Government's WorkChoices legislation has been dissected by lawyers and the commentariat; now it's the turn of political economists.

Politics: Peter's Principles
Forget John Howard. The force behind WorkChoices is Peter Costello. The Prime Minister-in-waiting has devoted a lifetime to undermining the security and living standards of Australian families, Jim Marr reports.

Environment: TINA or Greener?
What does the greenhouse effect and legislation to control workers have in common, asks Neale Towart

History: Its Not Just Handshakes and Aprons
Power. They have it, we want it. Friendly societies tried to keep it for working people, writes Neale Towart

International: US Locks out Jose' Bove
The US Government has refused to allow France's most famous farmer Jose Bove into the country to address a conference

Education: No AWA - No Job
The Howard Government has given the Australian community its first view of the future by forcing new staff at Ballarat University to sign an Australian Workplace Agreement if they want a job, writes Jenny Macklin.

Culture: Jesus was a Long-Grass Man
The writings of a Middle Eastern theologian may provide guidance to those grappling with indigenous issues, writes Graham Ring

Review: Charlie the Serf
Nathan Brown takes the sledgehammer (and sickle) to Mr Wonka's Chocolate Factory.

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L A T E S T   N E W S

Taskforce Shrugs Bashed Teen Worker
The Building Industry Taskforce has brushed a teenager who was allegedly bashed in the face by his boss with a claw hammer, leaving him with horrific injuries.

The anti-union watchdog is washing its hands of the attack of the Cook Islander who was being paid just $50 per month.  [full story]

Abattoir Blues
A South Australian abattoir has called in Chinese guest workers to replace locked out meatworkers trying to hold onto their Australia Day holiday.

About 20 workers at the Packer family-backed Teys Brother's abattoir at Naracoorte refused to sign Australian Workplace Agreements, which stripped workers of the Australia Day holiday, other public holidays and whittled down penalty rates. [full story]

Car Plant Puts Pedal to Metal
Manufacturing workers at a Melbourne car parts plant are the first victims of WorkChoices, with the employer revealing plans to slash wages by up to $200 a week.

According to a 41-point plan obtained by Workers Online, workers at Dana Car Parts could be stood down without pay if union members at another business took 'action(s). [full story]

Call Me Now: Rev Kev
Calls to the WorkChoices hotline cost taxpayers six times more per minute than phone sex.

Calls to the controversial hotline, set up by the Department of Employment and Workplace Relations to “explain” industrial relations changes, cost an average of $33 per minute. Workers Online understands the going rate for a call to a phone sex hotline is about $5 per minute. [full story]

Fat Boss Sings
Workers at the Sydney Opera House will be picketing opera-goers after being told they have to sign non-union contracts that strip them of up to $20,000 a year, or face the sack.

US multinational United Group Services, has told the workers, including 38-year veteran, Steve Tsoukalas, who built the icon, to take the pay cut and brush the union they wants to keep his job. [full story]

Unions Back After This Break
An attempt to make the first non-union TV ad in Australia since 1992 fell apart when a vocal demonstration proved to be too noisy for producers to shoot the commercial.

A hastily assembled picket in Waterloo by around 30 members of Equity and other unionists sang, yelled, whistled and whooped outside the location of the shoot for Quaker's Oats. [full story]

ALSO MAKING NEWS

 Public Cuts Must Be Last

 Apprentices Grow Up

 ‘Castle Win Keeps Trains On Track

 Chicken Worker Stuffed

 ‘Revolving Gangplank' at Sydney Ferries

 NSW Councils Short $21 billion

 Activists What's On!

email workers to a friend latest breaking news from labornet
The Opera House has become the latest battleground over AWAs being forced onto workers

E D I T O R I A L
With the NSW industrial relations system up for grabs, the next state election is too important to sacrifice on the economic adventurism of a few Cabinet members. This is a time when we need a Labor government that has the courage to play to its strengths.

Decimation

C O L U M N S

The Soapbox
Hitler in Bowral
Political censorship has made its wasy to the sleepy Southern Highlands, wrties Rowan Cahill.

The Locker Room
No Laughing Matter
Phil Doyle tries to take Australian sportspeople seriously, and fails.

Parliament
The Westie Wing
Ian West is mistakenly sent an advance copy of John Winston Howard’s Little Blue Book of Australian History…


LETTERS to the Editor
 Lest We Forget
 For Whom the Toll Bells
 Unfinished Business
 Labor Sells Hydro
 Stop the Hordes
 Packer Whacker

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