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As the federal Labor government was forced to drop its maligned “Malaysia solution” and process all refugees arriving by boat in Australia, there was the hint that its inhumane detention of thousands of refugees would also be questioned. Immigration minister Chris Bowen said on October 13 that the immigration department may — after health, identity and security checks — give some refugees bridging visas allowing them to live in the community while their claims are assessed. See also:
Former New South Wales Premier Bob Carr says he is excited by the Occupy Wall Street protests against US corporations, which deserve “a roughing up … after the abuses that blighted the lives of ordinary families”. Yet he has decided the protest movement has no future.
Federal Greens MP for Melbourne has come out against the October 20 decision to send riot police to evict peaceful protesters from the occupy Melbourne site in City Square. In a statement Bandt said: ““Ted Baillieu and Robert Doyle have made a huge blunder by sending in the police, turning a week-long non-violent protest into a site of confrontation. See also:
The Queensland government lifted a ban on fishing in and around Gladstone Harbour on October 6, but controversy over diseased fish goes on. Writing in the October 19 Courier Mail, environment reporter Bryan Williams said: “The mystery of the Gladstone fish disease outbreak continues, with scientists focusing on a parasitic flatworm and about 300 tonnes of Barramundi that spilled into the Boyne River last summer from Awoonga Dam.
Australian Taxation Office management has announced it will put a revised draft enterprise agreement up for a staff vote between November 9 and 15. The new version is little different from management’s original proposal, which was rejected by staff by a margin of 59% to 41% in June. The total pay rise being offered is still 9% over three years, which is less than the expected rate of inflation.
More corporate managers are psychopaths than the general population, a detailed research project has discovered. The University of British Columbia study “Corporate Psychopathy: Talking the Walk”, published in Behavioural Sciences and the Law, March/April 2010, looked at professionals who had been spotted as potential management material, the people thought to have the skills that could get them to senior positions.
John Bellamy Foster is renowned Marxist economist and ecologist, and an editor of Monthly Review. He was a featured guest speaker at the World at a Crossroads: Climate Change-Social Change conference, which Green Left Weekly co-organised in Melbourne over September 30-October 3.
Stop CSG Illawarra released the statement below on October 16. * * * More than 3000 people walked across the iconic Sea Cliff Bridge today in opposition to coal seam gas (CSG) mining. Simultaneously, abseilers lowered a banner from the escarpment that said: "This community has spoken. Stop CSG". Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery, and councillors George Takacs, Lee Colacino, Bede Crasnich, Vicki Curran, Jill Merrin and Greg Petty attended the walk.
Organisers were stoked with an exceptional turnout for an anti-coal seam gas (CSG) rally that took place in Townsville on October 16 as part of the coordinated national day of action. More than 150 protesters marched from Victoria Bridge through town chanting slogans such as “Frack is whack” and “Lock the gate, before it’s too late”. The rally proceeded to Anzac Park where various speakers addressed the crowd. Gail Hamilton from the North Queensland Conservation Council said: “The people in Townsville are standing up and saying we don’t want CSG… It is not a safe energy option.”

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