|Issue No 81||08 December 2000|
Reith Sacked Over Telecard Affair
Workplace Relations minister Peter Reith has been rocked by a new setback after Industrial Relations reporters voted to sack him as patron of their annual dinner.
The controversial decision was made as new revelations of Reith's performance during the Telecard Affair came to light.
Media reports suggest that during questioning in Parliament, Reith's hands trembled, requiring him to use two hands to take a sip of water. The behaviour was deemed to constitute a 'drinking problem' under the rarely sited rules of the IR writers, grounds for a vote of 'no confidence'.
When the vote was completed, Reith was removed and the position of patron reverted back to his predecessor Labor's Laurie Brereton.
In a televised address to the dinner, Brereton accepted the post with regret, before announcing this year's winner of the prestigious White Golliwog, the Australian Financial Review's Stephen Long. Long was nominated after a keyword search found he had used the phrase 'landmark' in the lead paragraph of no less than 63 stories over the past four years.
Among the other winners:
* Workplace Express's David Vincent picked up the Golden Thing Award for fashion. He was nominated for his continued commitment to dressing down.
* Peter Reith's press secretary Ian Hanke again wrestled the Sour Lemon Award for best/worst media adviser out of the grasps of the ACTU> Reith adviser Mary Jo Fischer was on hand to accept the award and offer Australian Workplace Agreements to all present at the dinner.
* AAP's Natalie Davidson picked up the Best Newcomer in the Cul-de-Sac Award, narrowly staving off a challenge from the ABC's Ron Fuller. The celebrations were tempered by the recognition that they are the only two Sydney reporters left on the IR round.
* and the SMH's Brad Norington was awarded the Golden Egg-Beater for his series of front page scoops on the guide to workplace relations that encouraged public sector encouraged managers to lie and cheat. Both the Reith and Beavis entourages lobbied strongly for Norington.
Interview: Back to Work
After a stretch of unemployment following the 1996 election, former Keating Minister Robert Tickner is now helping others find work.
Media: Reality Check
Aiden White, head of the international journalists' union, argues that online journalism presents a new set of challenges for organising.
Economics: In the Same Boat
In an unprecedented move, a coalition of industry, community and trade union groups have joined forces to address long-trerm unemployment.
International: Nepalese Hotel Workers Ask for Support
Hotel workers in the small Himalayan nation of Nepal have finally decided to vent their anger and call a general strike for Monday - over a 21 year old dispute.
Unions: Speaking in Tongues
Labor Council's Mark Morey outlines the successful campaign by local government workers for a community language allowance.
History: Fighting Words
The anti-conscription campaign of 1914-18 tore the ALP apart; but this was not the first time the labour movement took a militantly anti-war stance.
Politics: A New Socialism
In an extract from his new book, political economist Frank Stilwell argues the need for a new radicalism to counter the Third Way
Satire: Roy Slaven on the Rampage
John Doyle's history of the ABC stretches back to a 1958 evening in Lithgow on which he was "scared shitless" by Blackboard on Mr Squiggle.
Review: Mauled in the Bear Pit
Vengeance may be sweet but it is always made better when you are able to write a book about yourself that also provides the opportunity to dump a bucket load on those who undertook your removal.
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Last Modified: 15 Nov 2005