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Issue No. 316 21 July 2006  

Call Security
There's a bloke, a pollster, prowling the country with a tale for the centre-left about messages and constituencies.


Interview: The Month Of Living Dangerously
When the mobs took over the streets of Dili it was the people of East Timor that bore the brunt. Elisabeth Lino de Araujo from Union Aid Abroad-APHEDA was there to witness what happened.

Unions: Staying Mum
Penrith mums, Linda Everingham and Jo Jacobson, are at the heart of a grassroots campaign to boot Jackie Kelly, out of federal parliament. Jim Marr caught up with one half of the sister act.

Economics: Precious Metals
There's a lot of spin around AWAs in the mining industry, but Tony Maher argues all that glitters is not gold.

Industrial: The Cold 100
The Iemma Government has come up with 100 reasons why WorkChoices is a dud, with 100 examples of ripped off workers

History: The Vinegar Hill Mob
This month's Blacktown Rally was not the first time workers had stood up for their rights in the region, writes Andrew Moore.

Legal: Free Agents
Is an independent contractor a small businessperson or a worker? The answer depends upon whether the contractor is genuinely ‘independent’ or not, writes Even Jones.

Politics: Under The Influence
Bob Gould thinks Sonny Bill Williams is a hunk; he reveals all in a left wing view of The Bulletin’s 100 most influential Australians, questioning the relevance of some, and adding a few of his own.

International: How Swede It Was
Geoff Dow pays tribute to the passing of Rudolf Meidner, one of the architects of the Swedish model of capitalism.

Review: Keating's Men Slam Dance on Howard
These punk rockers are out to KO WorkChoices. Nathan Brown joins the fray.


 Hendification Blurs WorkChoices ll

 Visa Rorts Minister Urged to Quit

 Organiser On Front Line

 Fire Brigade Chokes on Tests

 Union Backs Man of Steel

 $3 Billion Dollar Chalkies

 Lib Pans Telstra Job Cuts

 James Hardie Joins AWA Crusade

 Job Network Unravels

 Andrews Discovers Irony

 Big Business Bashes Bush

 Howard Pinches Pay

 Tilers Spark Korean Protest

 Activists What's On


The Soapbox
Work Choice: US Military Style
John Howard has learnt a few lessons on workers rights from his Texan buddy, writes Rowan Cahill.

Westie Wing
As Pru Goward slams into the glass ceiling of the NSW Liberal Party, Ian West considers how women are faring under the Howard-Costello Government.

The Locker Room
A World Away
Phil Doyle is pleased that a display of subtle beauty and athletic grace has been overtaken by some good old-fashioned mindless violence

 Balancing Act
 Sick of Ants
 Swimming Uphill
 Praise from Belly
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Tool Shed

Piers In Space

Our Tool Of The Week reports from the war zone that is Holt Street Surry Hills.


Australia's leading super-sniveller, Piers Akerman, managed to find the lighter side of the Middle East conflict this week.

Piers took time out from his excruciatingly busy lunching schedule to pen a very witty satire in the pages of the Daily telegraph this week.

Passing himself off in a fair imitation of a deranged, coke addled buffoon, Piers The Hutt took the banality of evil to it's logical conclusion with a self deprecating soliloquy on the politics of the absurd.

Piers chief argument, that kiddies getting blown up was the kids fault, was right up there with Piers Commo mates in China charging the families of those who face the firing squad for the bullet.

It was good of Piers to open his new era of "integrated newsroom" at Uncle Rupert's shop with a tirade against those who cheapen their Australian citizenship.

Piers took the new style of "website first, paper second" at the appropriately named News Limited, to a new level by adding his own style of "thinking last".

In an astonishing vault face, Piers has embraced his bete-noir of identity politics, berating Lebanese-Australians for, well, being Lebanese - not that that is in any way racist, it's just judging people on the basis of their race.

"While this bunch of insufferable ingrates whinge and whine, the stressed and overworked team at the hard-pressed Australian Embassy in Beirut is pulling out all stops to arrange evacuation aboard a ferry chartered at extortionate cost to all Australian taxpayers," said the goat lover.

What Piers didn't appear to immediately grasp was that the "team at the hard-pressed Australian Embassy in Beirut" was being gazumped by some quick thinking Canadians.

Then again, Piers probably is the only Australian who would trust Alex Downer with anything greater than a five-dollar note.

"It is absolutely unreasonable in such circumstances to expect the Government to be able to organise a sea-lift overnight" thundered the malcontent, little realizing that every other developed nation managed to do it.

Piers believed that bombing the sovereign state of Lebanon, and no small number of its civilian population, back to the stone age was a reasonable response, any other

It's good to know that piers can find blowing up women and children laughable, as this gives us an indication of his secret love of terrorists, which joins his secret love of goats - two loves that dare not speak their name.

So now we know why Piers has a foaming attack every time he finds terrorists under the bed, he's secretly jealous of them. He wants to drink blood and eat the flesh of babies. Piers thinks this is manly. It's more fun than saving rabbits from pet shops.

He's probably also disappointed that the Isrealis and the Hezbollah haven't managed to blow up any cripples as well.

The poor man is obviously suffering from a pathological blood lust, no doubt fuelled by his failed editorship of the Herald Sun, where he is long gone, but there is still a Labor government in Victoria.

Although his argument that any civilian who stands in the way of a randomly directed missile deserves what they ruddy well get was pure Alf Garnett, Piers kept his best logic defying argument this week for last.

His column on the events in the middle east, penned as they are from first hand accounts from the back table at Machiavelli's, produced one of the great logic defying achievements of the twenty-first century.

"A recurring but telling image on the television news is of Israelis taking refuge in bomb shelters from Hezbollah missiles fired from Lebanon or those fired by Hamas from Gaza.

"Bomb shelters are built by groups at risk of attack. Pictures from Lebanon and Palestine usually show civilians running in the streets - no shelters - which probably indicates the lack of fear of sudden attack among Lebanese and Palestinians."

So there you have it. There is no fear of attack from Isreal because other people in the region don't have bomb shelters.

Under Pier's logic, our best defence against invasion would be to abolish our army, thus demonstrating how strong we are. So strong we don't need a military.

It is stunning stuff, but Piers should either go back on the medication, or go to Lebanon himself and see what life is like in a refugee camp, first hand.

And then put his theory about people in war zones deserving to get blown up into practice.


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