1047

“Down The Abbott Hole” By Zelda Grimshaw A group of musicians in Cairns, Queensland, have released a song controversially calling for the head of Tony Abbott. “Down the Abbott Hole” refers to Abbott’s Australia as a bleak and sterile environment, in which fear reigns over logic, and the atmosphere is “cold as ice, black as coal”. The song can be streamed online and was being played by radio stations all over the country just hours after its release.
VICTORIAN GOVERNMENT REPEALS ANTI-WIND FARM LAWS The Victorian Labor government has repealed the worst aspects of the Coalition's anti-wind farm laws. After a strong community campaign led by Friends of the Earth, the Andrews government announced it will remove the 2km right of veto that allowed householders to block wind farms. This measure will be replaced by a 1km buffer zone.
Melbourne punk band The Duvtons have come out of a five-year hiatus to record a catchy new anti-Abbott song to hasten the fall of “our very own idiot”.
The Australian Conservation Foundation has released a report titled . It reveals that these 10 polluters — and it’s no surprise that most are electricity suppliers - are responsible for generating nearly one-third of greenhouse gases through their production and use of energy.
The Abbott government's metadata retention bill passed the Senate on March 26 with Labor support — deepening the mass surveillance of the public and further undermining the ability of investigative journalists to do their jobs. And just to really rub this attack on civil liberties in, the government is headed by an idiot who has less of a clue about the huge technology powers his law grants the state, than the Catholic Church has historically had of “duty of care when working with children”.
Workers in the South Australian retail sector — particularly young, casual workers — could lose their penalty rates thanks to a deal between retail employers and the Shop Distributive and Allied Employees Association (SDA).
When neoliberal economics was being established as a hegemonic position in Australia in the late 1980s, 1.2 million workers were employed in the manufacturing industry — 15% of the workforce. The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ (ABS) latest employment analysis shows that 25,000 jobs were lost in manufacturing last year, bringing the total employed down to 920,000 — 7.8% of the workforce. It is a trend that will only continue with the winding-down of the vehicle production industry and its related vehicle components sector.
Hell-Bent: Australia’s Leap Into The Great War Douglas Newton Scribe, 2014 344 pages, $32.99 (pb) Behind all the froth, then and now, about the noble cause of World War I — defence of freedom against German aggression — lay a far less exalted reality, writes retired University of Western Sydney historian Douglas Newton. The war’s “grand plan” for Britain, candidly called “The Spoils” by the British Colonial Secretary, was to divvy the world up among the victors.
It seems you can’t turn around these days without having at least one of your senses assaulted by some form of advertising. It seems that is not about to change any time soon. In fact, judging by the amount of money that will be spent on advertising this year, things are about to get a lot worse.
When then-immigration minister Scott Morrison made a video in September last year callously informing refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru that they would never be allowed to settle in Australia, he hoped at least some would ask to be returned to their home country. But the video failed spectacularly. Not a single refugee or asylum seeker asked to be returned. Instead, angered by the video, they started a series of protests, hunger strikes, attempted suicides and instances of self-harm.
No McDonald’s in Tecoma campaigner Richard Pearson was cleared of the charge of “defacing a public footpath” by a Melbourne Magistrates Court.
Israelis voted for the status quo in elections on March 17. The ruling Likud party and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu were re-elected, as voters endorsed ongoing apartheid and military rule for the Palestinian population. Israeli Jewish society is itself wracked by economic and social crisis. It is also conflicted by class, gender, religious and ethnic divides. But like all Israeli elections, the campaign was fought over how Israel should relate to its subject Palestinian population.
The motto of the University of Wollongong (UOW) promises “Personalised Experiences: World Class Results”. It would do well to tell the public which persons in the institution availed themselves of the experience of authorising political donations of $26,175 in the last four years, and what world class results they expected. The signature on contribution donations in 2009 was the university’s director of government relations, Canio Fierravanti, brother of Liberal Senator Concetta Fierravanti-Wells. Coincidentally, 82% of the donations since late-2010 have gone to the Liberal Party.
On March 25 university students and supporters of accessible education participated in National Day of Action rallies against the ongoing attacks on education. There were rallies in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney, Tasmania and Wollongong.
Rallies calling for the closure of refugee detention centres were held across the country on March 29. The Refugee Action Committee Canberra released this statement on March 25 in the lead-up to the rally. *** Activists from Canberra’s Refugee Action Committee (RAC) took to a boat on March 25 to highlight the plight of asylum seekers and refugees. The RAC activists held up banners advertising the upcoming Palm Sunday Rally for Refugees.
The Tony Abbott government’s moves to introduce the Healthy Welfare Card – income management on steroids – indicate that it remains committed to a welfare system based on deterrence and punishment. Once again, the government refuses to acknowledge years of negative data about the policy and its consistent failure to benefit those it will be forced upon.

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