Dick Nichols

Since the balance of forces within the Coalition shifted rightwards with the one-vote win by “mad monk” Tony Abbott over Malcolm Turnbull for leader, the media have been wondering whether his line of frenzied warfare against the Rudd Labor government can succeed where the millionaire merchant banker failed.
At first, the flow of people fleeing horrors like the Sri Lankan government’s concentration camps for Tamils and Afghanistan’s killing fields didn’t test the capacity of the Christmas Island detention centre
“A revolution is sweeping Latin America, and Venezuela is at the centre of the process that is radically changing the social order there”, Jim McIlroy told a forum on October 22.
In a September 24 speech to the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, economic historian Christina Romer, also chair of US President Barack Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers, compared the policy responses of the Bush and Obama administrations of 2008-09 to those of the Hoover and Roosevelt US administrations of 1929-36.
On September 9, more than 60 unionists picketed the University of New England (UNE) during the one-day strike called by the UNE branch of the National Tertiary Education Union (NTEU).
The Socialist Alliance was one of many signatories to a letter presented to UN Human Rights Rapporteur James Anaya when he arrived in Australia on August 17. The letter said “special measures” taken under the Northern Territory Emergency Response — or intervention — were racist.
On August 17, the Network Working Group, formed out of the January Climate Action Summit, circulated its national network proposal to 300 climate action groups and networks that make up the grassroots climate movement. The groups have until September 18 to vote on the proposal.
As the Australian Labor Party holds its 2009 national conference, there’s an old union saying that’s never been more apt: if you don’t fight, you lose.
On June 25, 330 delegates from 19 unions covering public sector workers met in Sydney to launch Unions NSW’s “Better Services Campaign”. The launch marked the return of the peak body to the battlefield over privatisation and public services.
In January 2008, in Western Australia, Aboriginal elder, highly respected community leader and grandfather Mr Ward died of heatstroke in an oven-hot prison van driven by employees of prisons operator Global Solutions Ltd, now taken over by Group 4 Securitas (G4S).


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