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Issue No. 313 30 June 2006  

Spin Cycle
As another successful Week of Action comes to an end, we have again been exposed to the Howard Government’s defence of its IR laws, perhaps the flimsiest in Australian political history.


Interview: Rock Solid
Bill Shorten gives the inside story on the Australian Workers Union's involvement in the Beaconsfield rescue.

Industrial: Eight Simple Rules for Employing My Teenage Daughter
Phil Oswald bought up his kids to believe in their rights; so when his 16-year old daughter was told to cop a pay cut she was never going to take it quietly.

Politics: The Johnnie Code
WorkChoices is encrypted deep in the PM's political DNA, writes Evan Jones

Energy: Fission Fantasies
Adam Ma’anit looks at the big business push behind the 'clean nuclear' debate that is sweeping the globe.

History: All The Way With Clarrie O'Shea
The WorkChoices Penal Powers are the latest in a long line of penal sanctions against trade unions, writes Neale Towart

International: Closer to Home
If Australia can forgive its debt to Iraq, why not to Indonesia and the Philippines, write Luke Fletcher and Karen Iles

Economics: Taking the Fizz
While the Treasurer has been popping the post-Budget champers, Frank Stilwell gives a more sober assessment.

Unions: Stronger Together
Amanada Tattersall looks at the possibilities of strengthening alliances between unions, environmental and community organisations

Review: Montezuma's Revenge
Tommy Lee Jones directs and stars in a film about racism and retribution, writes James Gallaway.

Poetry: Fair Go Gone
Employers in the land rejoice, for we are girt by greed.


 Bold Post Spy at Rally

 NRL Throws Tradition a Dummy

 Ballarat Derails AWA Push

 Graphic Glimpse Behind the Veil

 Biz Blows Cover

 John Howard Vs God (0:1)

 Andrews A Bit Rich on Wages

 Sydney Backs Booze Deliverers

 Record Numbers in Blacktown

 Hardie Busted Over Burn Victim

 Sacked Mum Has Last Laugh

 Unions: Book Dodgy AWA Bosses

 Jobs War Gathers Pace

 Activist's What's On!


The Soapbox
The Beaconsfield Declaration
As the Prime Minister feted Brant Webb and Todd Russell, their colleagues were outside with a message to the rest of Australia.

The Locker Room
Run Like You Stole Something
Phil Doyle observes that there are some tough bastards out there.

The Westie Wing
That fun-loving friend of the workers, Ian West, reports from the red leather of the Bear Pit.

Class Action
Phil Bradley draws the lines between education funding and the current skills crisis.

 Man-Goat Love Drug Link
 Dare To Dream
 Better Get A Lawyer
 The Last Laugh
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Jobs War Gathers Pace

While John Howard celebrates the number of Australians working at least one hour a week, his government's policies are being blamed for the destruction of thousands of fulltime manufacturing jobs.

The wholesale cull of manufacturing workers continued, last week, with Bluescope Steel dumping 250 Port Kembla staff, and the employer of 700 Victorians going into administration.

The Huon Group announcement casts shadows over the futures of rubber and auto parts factories at Bendigo, Frankston and Dandenong.

The former Nylex factories, including Empire Rubber, were sold to the Huon Group, last year.

AMWU Victorian secretary, Dave Oliver, lashed governments' failure to invest in Australian skills or research and development.

He said Howard government policies were stripping 60 fulltime jobs out of auto components, alone, every week.

"Yet again, we have an auto component company facing the axe," Oliver said. "We don't want workers and their families left behind if these factories go under."

NUW spokesman, Antony Thow, said unions would try to ensure there were no redundancies until workers were guaranteed they would receive 100 cents in the dollar on everything they were owed.

Meanwhile, AMWU NSW secretary, Paul Bastian, has called the Bluescope job losses a "disaster for the Illawarra".

He said they were a result of federal government incompetence.

"John Howard has no plan for the Australian manufacturing industry or for creating skilled jobs for our young people," Bastian said.

"The federal government's answer to everything is to negotiate a new Free Trade Agreement - well, this is the result."

Bluescope is closing its Port Kembla tin mill as the first step in shedding at least 600 positions.


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