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On February 14, at least 10,000 striking government school teachers rallied in the Vodafone Arena in the Melbourne Park complex in the largest stop-work meeting in the history of the Victorian branch of the Australian Education Union.
Stationery giant Esselte, which last year attempted to force its workforce onto AWAs, is threatening compulsory redundancies against eight workers due to changes to “business processes”.
Who's the other one? "You know, women are now very active in the Kuwaiti parliament." — Emperor George Bush II, speaking in US ally Kuwait, January 12. Associated Press reported on January 22: "Kuwait's only female politician survived an attempt
The basic argument in favour of the privatisation of electricity generation and distribution is simple — public ownership allows too much bargaining power to electricity workers and their unions (which they will always use to defend “inefficient practices” and “overstaffing”); it also fosters over-investment in generation capacity by engineers concerned to guarantee service reliability (“gold-plating”).
In the afterglow of saying sorry to the Stolen Generations, the federal Labor government introduced its first piece of industrial relations legislation into parliament on February 13 — the Workplace Relations Amendment Bill. While the government claims that this legislation is the first step in dismantling Work Choices, in fact, it will leave most of Work Choices intact.
On February 13, 50 people attended an angry public meeting at the Derbarl Yerrigan Health Services centre in East Perth. The meeting called for an immediate cessation of transporting prisoners long distances in road vehicles following the death in custody on January 27 of an Aboriginal elder.
Hollywood writers won gains following a 14-week strike against TV and film producers that ended with a new contract giving them a percentage of revenue for programs streamed on the internet — a demand that industry bosses had vowed to resist.
Since January 12, more than 1600 delegates to the founding congress of the United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV) — along with thousands of local socialist battalions (branches — have been discussing the new party’s program, principles and statutes, and in large part the future of the Bolivarian revolution.
Justice secretary Jack Straw has been forced to order an investigation into allegations that a senior Muslim MP was bugged while visiting a constituent in prison. The February 5 Morning Star reported that Labour MP and government whip Sadiq Khan was allegedly bugged while visiting his constituent Babar Ahmad in a prison in Milton Keynes.
East Timorese President Jose Ramos Horta was rushed to Darwin to undergo emergency surgery after being shot three times in a February 11 attack on his residence by armed rebels. The apparent leader of the assailants, Major Alfredo Reinado, was killed in the incident.
In December 2005, four activists (Christians Against All Terrorism) were arrested while carrying out a citizen’s inspection of the US Pine Gap war base, near Alice Springs. They carried out a simple “trespass” action and had permission from the traditional Aboriginal owners.
On February 8, the South Australian government voted to extend its moratorium on commercial GM crops, despite Victoria and New South Wales recently legislating to allow commercial GM plantings. Western Australia and Tasmania still have bans in place.
In a world where the mainstream media riddles dumbed-down news reportage with inane sports metaphors, sometimes it takes sports to remind us of the gravity of the actual news.
It was a victory long overdue. The corporate giant — plantation company Lion Group — could have resolved the issue a decade ago, but it chose the path of arrogance and sheer disregard for its toiling workers.
On January 26, Invasion Day, Anti-Flag opened their Sydney show, with bass player, Chris #2 beginning, “On behalf of all nationalist, racist holidays, this songs called ‘Fuck You and Your Fucking Flag!’”
The following is abridged from a January 18 article by Richard Samuelson, the co-director of Britain’s Free West Papua Campaign ().

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