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Issue No. 326 29 September 2006  

Interview: Australia’s Most Wanted
The ACCC is the latest state agency to turn its guns on the construction union. National official, Dave Noonan, discusses the implications.

Industrial: The Fox and the Contractor
With new laws looming for “independent contractors”, Foxtel subbies have had the carpet pulled from under their feet, writes Nathan Brown.

Unions: Industrial Wasteland
A group of inner-Sydney veterans appear to be working to strip their families of retirement incomes. Jim Marr records their desperation.

International: Two Bob's Worth
German and British workers are participating in business decisions while WorkChoices locks Australians out of the conversation, writes Anthony Forsyth.

Economics: National Interest
John Howard claimed that interest rates would always be lower under a Coalition government than under Labor, Neale Towart crunchess the numbers.

Environment: The Real Dinosaur
Economic ignorance remains at the top and the critics are oblivious says Sol Power

History: Only In Spain?
The experiences of self management during the Civil War have been the one positive factor to come from that tragic event, and the Mondragon Cooperative Corporation thrives today.

Review: Clerk Off
Nathan Brown draws solace from some fellow social misfits.


 Death Sites Under Construction

 Bank Pledge - Safe as Houses

 Brush Big Business: Keating

 Sydney the New Mumbai

 CFMEU Blocks Vets Sale

 Workers Go Cattle Class

 Pay for Work Scheme Floated

 Howard Blesses His Brethren

 Uni Flunks AWA Test

 Minchin Takes Back Door Route

 Solid Group Goes Grassroots

 Shrinking Act

 Activist's What's On!


Westie Wing
MLC Ian West ventures beyond Macquarie St and into the desert of the eco rats.

The Soapbox
Testing Times
Former RLPA secretary and Newcastle Knights prop, Tony Butterfield, fires up over dawn raids.

Dare to Win
The union movement has lost an inspirational leader of working men and women, writes Jeana Vithoulkas

Tommy's Apprentice
Chapter Two - Tommy’s Tale.

 Seditious Intention
 Botched Surgery
 Values Call
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Tool Shed

Sol Man River

$9 million man Sol Trujillo has put Australia on the map.


The Toolshed has worked out why the death of Steve Irwin caused the biggest outpouring of grief this country has seen since Steve Waugh stood down as captain of the cricket team.

The Crocodile Hunter was everything Aussie blokes wanted to be.

He loved everything to do with Australia. He listened to John Williamson. He spoke like Alf from Home and Away.

When the Government attached the prefix "Australian" to a dodgy workplace contract, he sung its praises.

Indeed, it was no coincidence that soon after Irwin's death crazy Mark Latham was lamenting the death of the larrikin culture - Irwin was it.

But, we digress.

The one characteristic about Irwin that made your average suburban conveyency solicitor want to wrestle a crocodile it was that Americans loved him.

Which is why we can understand how Sol Trujillo got the job as chief of the nation's telecommunications carrier.

We can imagine Telstra's board meeting, with Sol putting on his straw hat and swinging around a cane, telling the mesmerised audience about how he'd stuffed phone companies in Ogdenville, North Haverbrook and Brockway.

Evidently, his version of the monorail song from the Simpsons must have worked, because the board got out their chequebooks - and its been revealed the old Sol took home $8.71 million in his first year.

According to Chairman Don McGouchie, Trujillo had met his key performance indicators and deserved the coin.

While reluctant to expand what the KPIs were, we've deduced they were:

* flexible share payment options, including being able to pay for shares in the form of peanuts, cigarette butts or bottle caps;

* reducing profits in a market in which a virtual monopoly exists;

* having the Federal Government declare jihad on the company; and

* services at such a level where people are considering in investing in fishing line and a Heinz Baked Bean can.

By those measures, it's hard to argue Trujillo hasn't excelled himself.


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