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September 2002   
F E A T U R E S

Interview: Still Flying
Flight Attendant’s Association international secretary Johanna Brem looks at life in the air since last September’s terrorist attacks.

International: President Gas
NSW Firefighter’s president Darryl Snow sent this missive to his members on the anniversary of a day when 343 of their colleagues died in the line of duty.

Politics: Australia: A Rogue State?
ARM director Greg Barnes argues that September 11 has summoned a new era of isolationism and international lawlessness.

Unions: Welfare Max
Maximus Inc is big, American and controversial. Right now its knocking on the door of Australian welfare delivery and there is every chance the Howard Government will usher it inside, reports Jim Marr.

Bad Boss: Welcome to Telstra!
A Telstra call centre has joined the race for Bad Boss after sacking a pregant woman who had the audacity to need to use the toilet.

Health: Fat Albert: The Grim Reaper
Workers Online's cultural dietician Mark Morey chews the fat over this week's conference on child obesity

Satire: Iraq Pre-empts Pre-emptive Strike
Saddam Hussein has launched a pre-emptive strike on the United States to prevent it from pre-emptively striking Iraq first.

Poetry: A Man From the East And A Man From The West
Resident Bard David Peetz has penned this ode to the sacked Hilton hotel workers

Review: The Sum Of All Fears
Tara de Boehmler checks in to see that America’s cultural cringe is alive, well and sponsored by Marlboro cigarettes

C O L U M N S

Legends
Gough's Plaza
Labor's living legend challenged NSW Labor to lift its game as he attended a renaming of 2KY House to Gough Whitlam Plaza.

The Locker Room
Support The System That Supports You
This system is a certainty, a moral, a good thing and a knocktaker; well, at least according to Phil Doyle

Bosswatch
RIP Chainsaw Al
One of the heroes of corporate downsizing has been cut down but his memory lives on with golden handshakes for leaders of failed businesses still thick on the ground.

Awards
The Importance of Being Ernie
It was the tenth annual “Ernie” Awards for sexist behaviour and Labor Council’s Alison Peters was amongst the noisy punters

Week in review
Lest We Forget
You can’t help a sneaking suspicion, Jim Marr writes, that George Bush is conscripting the dead of September 11, 2001, to lead his push for another war in the Gulf…

Activists
Workers Out!
Gay and Lesbian trade unionists are organising an international conference to develop a global response to homophobia in the workplace, writes Ryan Heath

E D I T O R I A L

The Legacy of 11/9
From the orgy of righteous indignation that has enveloped the ‘Free World’ this week a more chilling truth is emerging: if the suicide bombers were attacking Liberal-Democracy they have succeeded beyond their wildest dreams.

N E W S

 ‘Robbed Generation’ Seeks Stolen Wages

 One Year On: Ansett Crash Still Hurts

 Cole Exposed By Immigration Scam

 Car Workers on Howard Hit List

 Mystery Windfall for Hilton Workers

 Shock: Abbott Backs Workers

 Union Billboards Censored

 Track Grab Ignores Lessons of Glenbrook

 Casual Approach to Air Safety

 Bosses Say No Living Wage For NSW Childcarers

 Pastry Workers Tell Boss To Get Puffed

 Injury Toll Mushrooms

 Victorian Zookeepers Down Buckets

 Pride and Safety for Workers Out!

 Activists Notebook

L E T T E R S
 The CFMEU Race Debate #1
 The CFMEU Race Debate #2
 Keeping it Clean
 Sue the Leaders?
WHAT YOU CAN DO
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Week in review

Lest We Forget


You can’t help a sneaking suspicion, Jim Marr writes, that George Bush is conscripting the dead of September 11, 2001, to lead his push for another war in the Gulf…

*********

Rarely was an opportunity lost, over the past week, to link the terrorist attacks with Bush's desire to turn his military, and that of every other nation game for a bit of sport, loose on the citizenry of Iraq.

Bush is building for his big Baghdad bang in the face of warnings from many quarters that it will all prove counter-productive.

Salman Rushdie, hardly a favourite of militant Islam, lent his voice to the doubter's chorus, warning Bush could achieve what Al Queda only dreamed of - uniting and radicalising the Moslem world.

Voices of caution have been raised from sources as disparate as Nelson Mandela, Gerhard Schroder, Mahathir Mohammad and Helen Clark.

You see, at essence, Bush has a credibility problem of major proportions.

Firstly, he argues that Saddam Hussein's unproven possession of "weapons of mass destructions" justifies military action.

Once you get over the not-insubstantial hurdle of just where that leaves the US, you come up against the small matter of how Hussein got his blood-soaked hands on chemical and biological weapons in the first place. By its own admission, the answer was a US, keen at the time, to tool-up an ally so he could bloody the nose of neighbour Iran.

Then there's Bush's second line of argument, that the world must activate to enforce UN resolutions and, to be fair, as these arguments go, we've all heard a lot worse. Problem is, the credibility gap on this one is approaching Grand Canyon proportions.

Just what happens to Israel, referred to by Rushdie as a nation widely viewed as the 51st state, under this code of conduct, given its brazen rejection of UN resolutions over the best part of half a century?

Then there's the killer, if you will pardon the expression, Bush's triple bottom-line linkage of terrorism with weapons of mass destruction and opposition to democracy. If he wasn't such a favourite of the Bush Administration Pakistan's General Musharraf would be entitled to be shaking in his jodpurs.

Unless Bush has changed the rules more than he's letting on, installing yourself by military coup then tinkering with the constitution to cement yourself in while banning credible opponents from future ballots, still probably ranks as undemocratic.

Weapons of mass destruction? Presumably, nuclear weapons still meet the criteria.

Terrorism? Let's see, Kashmir would seem to fit the bill and Bush would no doubt be aware of the Taliban, largely Pakistan-based, trained and funded, and such enthusiastic hosts to Al Queda.

What we're seeing is Bush insisting, by dint of economic and military might, that his country be appointed prosecutor, judge, jury and executioner for the world.

It's not democracy and nor is it justice.

............

Sydney millionaire Rodney Adler has been sprung as a pillock of long-standing.

HIH's UK chief executive, Michael Payne, told the ongoing inquiry into the firm's collapse of Adler's ability, even as a young man, to seriously aggravate associates.

Payne, on the request of Rodney's Dad, took him to work in his London-based Lloyd's Insurance business in the early 1980s. The arrangement lasted less than a month because the youthful Adler so annoyed other staff that they banded together and demanded his removal.

Under questioning, Payne elucidated.

"It's getting very personal but, mainly his arrogance and his endeavouring to tell people who had been doing the job for most of their lives how they should do it in his opinion, knowing absolutely nothing about it himself," Payne explained.

.................

Then there's Rich Jodee, offering employment to legal types of a certain bent.

Rich took out an ad in last Saturday's Herald offering a "unique career opportunity" to a solicitor with "proven litigation experience".

Just to let the successful applicant know what he or she might be letting him/herself in for he was good enough to nominate a couple of possible targets - Ferrier Hodgson, OneTel's liquidator, and PBL, Kerry Packer's media conglomerate, earned mentions, along with a procedure called "defamation".

The successful applicant will work for Rich and One.Tel's former finance director, and,as the advertiser was kind enough to point out, must be an outstanding operator with a "sense of humour under pressure"

Interesting, huh?.

..................

Everyone - you, me and the family next door - will pay more for sugar thanks to the glaring inconsistincies of a two-faced Federal Government.

The Coalition has slapped an 18 cent levy on every kilo of the stuff in a bid to sweeten up its contituency in the north.

Now, we're in no position to say whether or not the move is a worthwhile social investment. But we can point out with certainty that this is the same administration that markets itself as, well, an advocate of the market. Remember all that bollocks about not picking favourites, allowing the market to decide, forcing workers to compete against low wage economies in the interests of national efficiency?

Seems the rules do not apply if you have a few thousand acres and a history of marking your ballot National or Liberal.


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