With the Howard government gone, now is the time to remove Work Choices once and for all. Unfortunately, the new Rudd government has decided to maintain key sections of the laws, such as maintaining Australian Workplace Agreements (AWAs — individual contracts) and limiting unfair dismissal laws.
@poetry = Someone is crying in the dark,
She lost her son (a monk who stood up for people)
Someone had woken up in the middle of the night,
She longs for her rights as a human being. @poetry = Someone had been beaten to death on the road,
For he was holding a signboard. @poetry = Someone is praying in Insein jail,
He was arrested and tortured all day. @poetry = They have sacrificed for their country,
But their country has not been freed. @poetry = We have to hand over their works,
If you dare to fight for their rights! @poetry = We have to follow their way,
Which they’ve walked with hope, love and prayers. @poetry = We will fight to reach our goal, @poetry = Don’t wait until tommorrow!
The November 27 decision by the Victorian Premier John Brumby’s Labor government to lift a moratorium on commercially-grown genetically-modified canola has drawn sharp criticism from scientific researchers and environmental activists. Labor MPs declared that the decision had been made secretly, and should have been open to debate.
On November 29, Ecuador’s new constituent assembly sat for the first time, beginning the process of rewriting the country’s constitution as part of self-described socialist President Rafael Correa’s project of refounding the country through a “citizen’s revolution”.
Workers at the Foster’s brewery at Yatala, south of Brisbane, have stepped up their campaign for a union agreement, following a victory over the latest attempt by the company’s management to impose a non-union agreement on the work force at the plant. Scott Wilson, Electrical Trades Union (ETU) organiser for the site, told Green Left Weekly that the Yatala workers had voted by 154 to 120 to reject management’s third offer of a non-union agreement, which provides wages and conditions significantly below those of workers at other breweries in southern states.
On the night of March 25, 1971 the Pakistani army began a campaign to murder and rape thousands of Bengalis in an attempt to curb the rise of the Bengali national independence movement in what was then East Pakistan — Bangladesh today.
Victorian unions have begun discussing the next stage of the campaign to rip up all of Work Choices.
Music from Archie Roach
Liberation Music, 2007, $30
A bill legalising aspects of brothel operation is being debated by Western Australia’s parliament. The Prostitution Amendment Bill 2007 would change the current legislative approach to brothels from one of “containment” (brothels, while technically illegal, are regulated by the police), to one where brothel managers and owners could be formally registered.
Dita Sari, who is head of the advisory council of the National Liberation Party of Unity (Papernas) and also a member of the advisory council of Indonesian National Front for Labour Struggles, spoke to Green Left Weekly during the Latin America and Asia Pacific International Solidarity (LAAPIS) forum, held in Melbourne from October 11-14, about the struggles of Indonesian workers.
“Now what?” must be the most commonly asked question among the left these days. Now what for the struggle for Indigenous rights? For the struggle against global warming? For the anti-war movement? For the fight against the Tamar Valley pulp mill? For the Your Rights at Work committees? Local Socialist Alliance branches have already begun a series of forums on this theme.
An Australian Security Intelligence Organisation (ASIO) spy told a NSW Supreme Court judge on December 4 that Australian counter-terrorist authorities had no evidence that Mamdouh Habib had engaged in terrorist-related activities in Afghanistan and Pakistan before he was abducted by US authorities in October 2001.
Lex Wotton has been portrayed by the Queensland police, government and mainstream media as the ringleader of the so-called “riot” that occurred on Palm Island on November 26, 2004. A police station and residence were destroyed after a police report on the death of community member Mulrunji Doomadgee that concluded that his death was an accident was read at a public meeting. Wotton will face court in April 2008. He continues to be vilified in the media. He spoke to Green Left Weekly’s Hamish Chitts.
[This is a statement released by the Australia Western Sahara Association (Victoria) on December 4.]
Ecology is often seen as a recent invention. But the idea that capitalism degrades the environment in a way that disproportionately affects the poor and the colonised was already expressed in the 19th century in the work of Karl Marx and Frederick Engels.
In his election night acceptance speech, PM Kevin Rudd said that all of Labor’s policy now becomes a “plan of action” for the incoming Labor government. As to Labor’s oft repeated promise to “tear up Work Choices”, their plans — as far as they actually go — are detailed in the Forward with Fairness: Policy Implementation Plan, released by the then Labor opposition in August.


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