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Issue No. 318 03 August 2006  
E D I T O R I A L

Don't Bank on Costello's Oil Shocker
Did the economy slip on a banana skin or an oil slick?

F E A T U R E S

Interview: A Life And Death Matter
Macquarie Street and Canberra are squaring off over safety in the workplace, NSW Minister for Industrial relations, John Della Bosca, explains what's at stake.

Unions: Fighting Back
When John Howard's building industry enforcer started threatening people's homes, one couple hit the road. Jim Marr met them in Sydney.

Industrial: What Cowra Means
The ruling on the Cowra abattoir case highlights the implications of the new IR rules, according to John Howe and Jill Murray

Environment: Scrambling for Energy Security
Howard Government hypocrisy is showcased in its climate change manoeuvring, Stuart Rosewarne writes:

Politics: Page Turner
A new book leaves no doubt about whether the faction came before the ego, Nathan Brown writes.

Economics: The State of Labour
The capacity of the state to shape the political economy and thus improve the social lives of the people must be reasserted, argues Geoff Dow.

International: Workers Blood For Oil
A new book by Abdullah Muhsin and Alan Johnson lifts the lid on the bloody reality of US backed democracy for Iraq's trade unions

History: Liberty in Spain
Worker Self-Management is good management. The proof in Spain was in Catalania, Andalusia and continues in the Basque Country, as Neale Towart explains.

Review: Go Roys, Make A Noise
Phil Doyle thought he'd find nostalgia, but instead Vulgar Press' new book, Maroon & Blue is a penetrating insight into the suburban mind under stress.

N E W S

 Ah, Sol

 Telstra Contractors in Bush Raid

 Spooks Go “Nuclear”

 Drivers Under Attack

 Stacks on the Hill

 Advertising Works

 29 Face Secret Interrogations

 Bureaucrats Sit on Wages

 Blue Mountains Fit Through Loophole

 G Spot for Rally

 Chalkies Give WorkChoices An F

 Howard Base Shaky

 Deaf Workers Lose Voice

 Canberra Scratches WorkChoices Handicap

 MUA Hungry for Change

 Vanny Changes Story

 Activists What's On

C O L U M N S

The Locker Room
Ruled Out
Phil Doyle plays by the rules

Fiction
Tommy's Apprentice
Chapter One - Tommy and "The Boy"

Politics
Westie Wing
Ian West wonders what might happen if the NSW Coalition actually did win power next March at the State elections.

L E T T E R S
 Bussies Are Tops
 What Was He On About?
 Belly On Balance
 Help Wanted
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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News

Stacks on the Hill


The Howard government's policy of political appointments to key industrial posts shows no sign of stopping with boss' cheerleader Bruce Williams due to become a member of the Australian Industrial Relations Commission (AIRC).

Williams is the Executive Director of Workplace Relations for the Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CCI) of Western Australia.

In announcing the decision, Attorney General Phillip Ruddock praised Williams as an "experienced manager (bringing) a wealth of practical experience to the Commission".

Given the reduced role of the AIRC under WorkChoices, he may end up with practically nothing to do.

The West's Williams has a long history working for employer groups since 1984. He is a H.R Nicholls society regular, appearing as a key-note speaker at the anti-worker group's 2003 conference.

The WA Chamber of Commerce and Industry has been an aggressive champion of AWAs and guest labour.

The job-for-life at the AIRC will net Williams an annual salary of more than $200,000 once his appointment takes effect on 14 August.

The newest pro-business appointment continues the government's policy of rewarding Liberal party supporters, government staffers and business lobby personalities with key posts, both here and overseas.

The former chief counsel at the Department of Employment and Workplace Relations (DEWR), James Smythe, was presented in July with a plumb posting to the International Labour Organisation in Geneva.

It is the first posting to the UN body since 1996 when Canberra cut off relations, stung by ILO criticisms of Peter Reith's Workplace Relations Act, the proto-type of WorkChoices.

News of the 'Geneva option' followed hard on the heels of the stack in the Federal Magistrates Court (Issue 314)

Another WorkChoices architect from Kevin Andrews' office, Liberal staffer John O'Sullivan scored a Federal Magistracy despite dubious legal credentials.


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