Economics: Super Seduction
Interview: Bono and Me
Unions: The Eight Hour Day and the Holy Spirit
Technology: From Widgets to Digits
Education: Dumb and Dumber
Health: No Place for the Young
History: The Work-In That Changed a Nation
Review: Dare to Win
Poetry: Labor's Dreaming
The Locker Room
Morals Beat Hasty Retreat
Uncounted Cost Of Asbestos
Voting Farce Expands
I Beg To Differ
This novel has a title Titanic Forces and several chapters of this always unfinished manuscript appear in Bob Carr's 2002 book Thoughtlines .
After some thirty years, Bob Carr probably does not remember me. We were both delegates to a National Young Labor conference held in Sydney in 1973. I certainly remember Bob and his extraordinary ability to use sarcasm and humour to demolish the left of which I was very much a player. Greg Sword from the NUW has some photos of the delegates together, all in our twenties and all going to save the world.
Bob Carr and I both joined the ALP in the 1960s, he chose the right wing faction controlled by Ducker/Unsworth for his spiritual guidance. I went with the Victorian Hartley/Crawford left which after federal intervention in that state branch was reborn as the Socialist Left (SL). In the 1970s we both worked for the trade union movement. Now, some thirty years after our first and only meeting, we have both climbed the greasy political Labor poll. Bob Carr has been leader of the strongest Parliamentary Labor Caucus for sixteen years while I have been an ALP electorate officer for almost two years.
Bob's impatient hero in Titanic Forces, Richard Carter, works for a right wing controlled union which is based in Sydney's Sussex Street. Other characters in his novel include Gerry Sheridan a king maker if ever there was! Surely in real life in NSW Labor politics there could not be such a person who thinks of nothing but winning pre-selections, beating the left and counting numbers. Richard, our hero, has a few ambitions and ideas of his own. I can almost taste the Chinese food in Sydney's Dixon Street, smell the smoke and beer in the pubs in Goulburn Street.
In Victoria, we (ALP) electorate officers love reading of the exploits of the Shane Moloney character, Murray Whelan, and his steady rise through the ALP machine (Stiff, The Brush Off etc.) When Bob Carr gets a bit of time he should finally reveal if Richard will go on to win a seat in the Parliament and to serve the Labor Movement in Canberra or Sydney. Only then we will have a chance to compare the real engine rooms of politics within our two great states.
At least hope I can get a review copy or a decent glass of a Hunter Valley red at the launch. This political thriller needs to see the light of day.
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