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Issue No. 317 28 July 2006  

Independent of Facts
John Howard's mastery of the big lie was evident again this week.


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.


 Howard Chews Up Lollipop Men

 Ridout: WorkChoices �Revolutionary�

 Voters: WorkChoices Rotten

 Terror: WorkChoices Rule

 Bussies Go Gangbusters

 Strikers Drive Deal

 Australia Faces Jobs Meltdown

 Fat Lady Sings at Opera House

 PM's Pick Burns Fire Fighters

 Spooks Tail Early Risers

 Telstra Boss Gets Crossed Line

 Prof: Fair Pay Should Be Lower

 TNT Snub is Dynamite

 Activist's 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
 Swimming Uphill
 Help is at Hand
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Australia Faces Jobs Meltdown

Australia faces massive job losses and a currency crisis if the federal government refuses to support manufacturing, new research warns.

The National Institute of Economic and Industry Research is urging Canberra to invest an extra billion dollars in manufacturing to prevent the loss of 200,000 jobs by 2020.

Its State of Australian Manufacturing report, launched in Sydney last week, says that level of assistance would sustain 290,000 direct and indirect positions.

The institute advocates a sweep program of industry assistance based on ...

- $300 million for investment allowances

- $300 million for research and development

- a $225 million increase in export development grants

- $50 million worth of incentives to attract foreign equity to small and medium-sized Australian manufacturers, and

- $50 million to attract and train high-skilled workers

Institute economists argue the rundown of manufacturing has seen Australia meet five of six benchmarks identified by the IMF as prevailing at times of meltdowns that rocked European, South American and Asian currencies during the 1990s.

The only "signpost" not pointing in Australia's direction is "falling terms of trade" which the Institute says is largely due to the resources boom.

"Without a change in policy to arrest these unsustainable trends, Australia faces a currency crisis at a point in the future that will most likely coincide with the end of current commodity price cycle," it says.

The warnings reflect concerns of middle Australia revealed in marginal seats polling commissioned by the AMWU.

Ninety three percent of more than 1000 people interviewed agreed it was "essential" to maintain Australian manufacturing, even if it require government support.

Sixty eight percent of voters did not believe the Howard Government had done enough to support industry, while only 12 percent believed the government was powerless in the face of globalisation.

Sixty five percent would prefer to see budget surpluses invested in industry support rather than personal tax cuts.

AMWU national secretary, Doug Cameron, said the result showed the government should and could play a role in manufacturing's survival.

He said, on average, the sector had shed 184 jobs every week since the Howard Government took office in 1996.

"The public understands these issues and is crying out for the federal government to show some leadership," Cameron said.

"People understand that putting all our hopes in the mining boom makes us very vulnerable.'


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