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  Issue No 82 Official Organ of LaborNet 20 December 2000  




.  LaborNET

.  Ask Neale

.  Tool of the Week

The Soapbox

Predictions 2001 – Tall Tales and True

What will happen in 2001? We asked some of the players in the world of industrial relations to look into the crystal ball.


Sharan Burrow (ACTU President)

- The ACTU's 2001 Living Wage Case will deliver low-paid workers and their families a much needed $28 increase in minimum wages.

- The 27 per cent of Australian workers employed as casuals will gain access to parental and maternity leave and the tide will be turned on excessive working hours by a successful ACTU reasonable hours case.

- Peter Reith will be removed as Workplace Relations Minister to serve as Peter Costello's junior parliamentary secretary.

Arch Bevis (Opposition industrial relations spokesman)

- In industrial relations we'll see more of the bovver boy under Tony Abbott - specifically we'll see registered organizations legislation and a direct attack on the operation and existence of trade unions through that legislation.

- You're going to see mounting nervousness on the coalition backbench as the slow-down on the economy is really starts to bite.

- The federal election will be called in third or fourth quarter - I expect in the third quarter before CHOGM in October. Election odds would be an even money bet at this stage. We probably have our nose marginally in front because of the numbers of marginal seats.

John Della Bosca, (NSW Minister ofr Industrial relations)

I'm hoping the new Federal Workplace Relations Minister Tony Abbott will, as an ex-seminarian, go back and read Rerum Novarum, Quadragessimo Anno and Pope John Paul II's encyclical on the condition of the working class. If he does, I predict he'll reject the Reith-Howard agenda and adopt new federal industrial laws based on our New South Wales model."

Michael Costa (Secretary, Labor Council of NSW)

- Kim Beazley to win October election in narrowly fought contest

- Cashed-up Labor Council to mount takeover of ACTU.

Michael Crosby (TUTA Director)

New Pope allows married priests - Tony Abbott returns to seminary.

Sid Marris (The Australian)

An election will be called some time after July and, regrettably, a politician will win.

Nathalie Davidson (AAP)

Phil Davey leaves the CFMEU to take up a McDonalds franchise.

Peter Moss (Director Lodestar Communications)

Politics: Federal Labor sweeps to power with 98% of the vote thanks to the adoption of a radical two-pronged campaign strategy. The first prong sees the creation of a myriad of new Labor parties, each tailored to capture a troublesome demographic identified in party polling. Feral Labor pulls in the green vote, Sports Labor attracts the disgruntled male, Four Wheel Drive Labor ties up the suburban aspirationalists, Cool Labor brings in the young'uns and Liberal Labor steals Howard's heartland. The second prong of the winning Labor strategy is the recruitment of Sophie Lee and Rob Sitch as the public face of the Party. Parliament is replaced by a late night live televised chat show, where former Shadow Ministers throw around policy ideas with the panel. Decisions are based on the reactions of a randomly selected studio audience equipped with worm meters.

Sport: Packer/Murdoch/Telstra/Foxtel, now the owners of the nation's major sports AFL, rugby league and cricket, take the obvious step and combine the most popular elements of the three games into the new code of KerryBall. Umpire, commentator, player and shareholder Eddie McGuire says: 'Aussie sports fans should be punching the air with delight. We've kept the exciting bits, pissed off all the boring stuff and thrown in a touch of Gladiators and a smidgin of Who Wants To Be A Millionaire. Best of all, once you shell out for pay TV, you can watch KerryBall live in prime time every night of the year. And to keep the traditionalists happy, we're bringing back Souths.'

Media: Friends of the ABC say: 'Come back Jonathon, all is forgiven!' as the much-maligned offshore strategy of the former Young Liberal comes up trumps. By shifting all ABC assets and staff to Bermuda, Shier solves both his financial and industrial relations problems. The low-cost, no-tax operating environment delivers massive savings which double the program budget overnight. Quentin Dempster and Romana Koval lead a sheepish procession of former belligerents offering their apologies to the great man. 'It's indicative of the dedication of ABC staff that we were prepared to co-locate to this distant paradi ... I mean island,' said Quentin. Four Corners wins a Walkley for discovering the missing Michael Hutchence fortune. 'Actually, the kids found it when they were digging sand castles,' said an executive producer.

Mark Morey (Labor Council of NSW)

1. Buffy will fall pregnant; and

2. Mark Taylor will become Governor General

Peter Lewis (Workers Online)

- a slimmed-down Beazley sweeps to power after completing City to Surf. John Howard leaves politics to set up Doomsday religious sect based at Badgery's Creek and father Jacqui Kelly's love child

- (This one' serious!) Jose Bove released from jail for bulldozing a McDonalds and starts his successful run for French president.

- Troy Luff wins Brownlow as Swans take the flag.

Michael Gadiel (Labor Council on NSW)

Bill and Hillary Clinton get divorced. Al marries Hillary and plans his run for First Husband in 2004.

Phil Davey (CFMEU)

- Michael Costa and John Robertson will both grow luxuriant curly hair next year.

- Michael Costa will NOT become treasurer of NSW next year.

- Tony Abbott will be awarded "tool of the week" by Pete Lewis before June.

- The CFMEU will continue to invite guest speakers to Labor Council meetings who will continue to force Costa and Robbo to sing and give the socialist salute against their will.

- Paul Howes will organise a Labor Council float for next years Mardi Gras.

- John Robertson will refuse to be part of the float

- Michael Costa will participate, provided he can wear a baseball cap backwards.

- Michael Costa will be vilified in Green Left Weekly next year.

- Sam Moat will develop a heavy handed, Stalinistic chairing style at Labor Council meetings, which will see the duration of meetings drop to under 10 minutes.

- John Robertson will continue to complain about CFMEU guest speakers at Labor Council meetings.

Chris Christodoulou (Labor Council)

Athen will be stripped pf the 2004 Olympics, it will be awarded to Wollongong instead.


*   View entire issue - print all of the articles!

*   Issue 82 contents

In this issue
*  Interview: Being Michael Costa
Labor Council’s secretary on the 2KY sell-off, the Olympics and his plans for the future.
*  Unions: Millennial Milestones
In a year of highs, some trade union stories stuck in the collective consciousness. Here's ten of the best.
*  International: Eric Lee's Year in Review
The editor of Labourstart looks back on the global issues that mobilized labour in the past 12 months.
*  Organising: Dispatches from the Field
Despite the 'Botsmanesque' critiques which have been levelled at Organising, it would be hard to deny that the year 2000 has seen more and more unions in NSW latch onto the approach - at least in principle anyway.
*  Economics: Who Gets Gold??
At the end of this Olympic year, Sydney Uni's Frank Stilwell charts the winners and losers in the new sport of redistribution of income.
*  Politics: Election 2000: The Winner is Gridlock
In the last in his series on the US Federal Election Campaign, Michael Gadiel, our roving reporter, gladly signs off.
*  Satire: Chaser Launches Book
In the great tradition of repackaging old material to cash in on Christmas, the team from The Chaser & Silly 2000 has produced its first book.
*  Review: Cultural Wasteland
The spotlight was on Australian culture in 2000. But was it a missed opportunity, asks Peter Zangari.

»  Mad Monk's Secret Union Past
»  New Life for Trades Hall
»  Top Cop is Our Organiser of the Year
»  All We Want for Christmas
»  Summer for Social Justice
»  Unions Return to Mosh Pit
»  Unions Head West
»  Big Bastard Censors Dissidents
»  South Coast Labor President Steps Down
»  As a Died in the Wool Westie Steps Up
»  Dying Workers' Asbestos Plea
»  Workers at Centre of Turn Of the Century
»  Truth about S11 Starting to Come Out

»  The Soapbox
»  The Locker Room
»  Trades Hall
»  Tool Shed

Letters to the editor
»  The Greatest Team Ever?
»  ABC Online Did Strike
»  Why Nader Vote was not Wasted
»  John Scrooge's Christmas Gift

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