Issue 142


By Catherine Gow

MELBOURNE — Prison privatisation plans for Victoria are the most sweeping of any Australian state. Almost 40% of Victorian prisoners will be in a private prison if the Kennett government's plans go ahead., Victoria will also

By Dave Mizon

MELBOURNE — Workers at Shell's Geelong refinery returned to work on May 5, having won the reinstatement of six colleagues. The settlement of the dispute also set in place a procedure requiring management to prove that a refinery

Sydney: Pigsty 2000?

The Waste Crisis Network (WCN) warns that Sydney is at risk of becoming a "pigsty" by the year 2000. The latest issue of the Waste Crisis Quarterly, the network's newsletter, points out that Sydney's waste levels have risen

New Wollongong Resistance Centre

By Felicity King

WOLLONGONG — The Democratic Socialist Party and Resistance opened a new centre on Saturday, April 30, with a lunch and drinks after the May Day march.

An informal occasion, the

Socialists oppose $10 a week jobs

"The government's white paper does not create any permanent jobs. Instead, it hands billions of dollars to business. This is a direct transfer of social security payments into the pockets of employers", says

Operation Sweep to continue

By Sean Healy

PERTH — On April 27 the state government confirmed that it would be reactivating "Operation Sweep", aimed at getting young people under 18 off the streets of inner city Northbridge and Fremantle.

By Bill Mason

BRISBANE — New powers to allow police and security guards to forcibly move on "trouble-makers" at Brisbane South Bank were a return to the "police state tactics of the Bjelke-Petersen era", Susan Price and Ana Kailis said on May

ADELAIDE — Stephen Bull reports that around 400 people rallied in Victoria Square on April 30 as part of the city's annual May Day celebrations. This year's march celebrated the victory of the ANC in South Africa and the end of white minority rule

By Tom Kelly

The campaign to restore Tasmania's Lake Pedder to its original condition is gathering momentum in Australia and overseas.

The original Lake Pedder was a shallow glacial lake covering about 10 square kilometres and situated 320

By Chow Wei Cheng

The government's long-awaited white paper, optimistically titled "Working Nation", has promised to cut unemployment to 5% by the turn of the century by implementing "reforms" in the labour market and in industry which will cost

By Steve Rogers

CANBERRA — Incumbent national officials in the Public Sector Union have embarked on a campaign of red-baiting and dirty tricks prior to national union elections in mid-May. The cause of their concern is a campaign being run by

No help to industry — Democrats

The white paper fails almost totally to mention, let alone address Australia's structural problems, according to the Democrats.

"It started life as an industry statement, but a sandwich shop got in the way

Anti-union repression exposed

Repression of trade unionists is increasing worldwide, with 92 killed last year, says the International Federation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU) in a report published on April 28. The report says that some 2300 trade

Greens oppose 'employment merry-go-round'

Greens (WA) Senator Dee Margetts, commenting on the release of the government's white paper, Working Nation, claimed it will merely create a nation of working poor.

"To quote the prime minister, 'he

Agency bargaining in the ATO

By Chris Slee

MELBOURNE — An agency bargaining agreement for the Australian Taxation Office, endorsed by both management and the Public Sector Union leadership, will be put to PSU members around Australia at a


By Norm Dixon

JOHANNESBURG — South Africa's major union federation, the Congress of South African Trade Unions, has vowed to do everything it can to ensure that the ANC's Reconstruction and Development Program (RDP) is implemented. COSATU

By David Robie

PORT MORESBY — Papua New Guinea has given the all clear for parliamentary fact-finding delegations from New Zealand and the Solomon Islands to visit Bougainville.

Pleased with the April visit by an Australian delegation,

By John Pilger

Last month Prime Minister Paul Keating launched a "trade and cultural promotion" with Indonesia. Surrounded by businessmen and representatives of the arts, Keating made an extraordinary speech that was praised in the Australian

By John Hallam

Eight years after the disaster at the Chernobyl nuclear reactor, the governments of Ukraine and Russia have opted to proceed with ambitious nuclear programs that they can't afford.

While studies done by the International

Manila 'cleaned' of people

By Ray Fulcher and Rachel Evans

MANILA — On April 28 Metro Manila's police began an operation to sweep the many thousands of street people (peddlers, beggars and street kids) from the streets in preparation for

Tens of thousands of people are expected to demonstrate in Paris on the weekend of May 28-29 to demand a 35-hour week with no loss of pay. Demonstrations and meetings will be the culmination of five separate marches from different parts of France

By Max Lane

Following the massive May Day demonstration in Manila, when more than 100,000 workers demonstrated in a series of rallies, the Filipino left faces a serious challenge in an imminent resort to violence by one of its sections.


By Renfrey Clarke

MOSCOW — On the afternoon of April 28, several hundred representatives of Russian state structures, political parties, trade unions and religious and social organisations gathered in the Kremlin to sign President Boris

Thousands of women took part in Germany's first national women's strike on International Women's day. From Bochum, MARY MERKENICH reports on the activities of the German women's movement.

On May 28, 1993, the Constitutional Court, the highest

By Jon Land

The Indonesian government has clamped down on the activities of East Timor solidarity and human rights groups in response to international attention to the plight of the people there. The release of John Pilger's film Death Of A

ROBYN MARSHALL was one of a party of five Australian women who acted as observers of the Salvadoran elections in March at the invitation of the FMLN. Here she describes some of their experiences.

We're not quite sure how we ended up in Ruben

By Mary Merkenich

BOCHUM — A thousand people on April 23 took to the streets here, in the heart of Germany's Ruhr Valley. The demonstrators demanded no deportations of Kurds, an end to the criminalisation of Kurds by the Bonn government,

By M. Bandung in Jakarta
and Max Lane

One hundred students, workers and farmers crowded into the offices of the Jakarta Legal Aid Institute (LBH) on May 2 for the launch of Indonesia's first campaigning democratic organisation, the People's


Another beginning

"It is not all that we wanted, but it is a beginning", were the words chosen by senior Palestinian negotiator Nabil Shaath to describe the signing of the accord between the Palestine Liberation Organisation and Israel on May 4


Aileen Wuornos: The Selling of a Serial Killer
Directed by Nick Broomfield
Ronin Films
Now screening at Valhalla, Sydney and Melbourne
Reviewed by Jon Land

This film traces the life of Aileen Wuornos, a 35-year-old sex worker who killed

Eight Little Piggies: Reflections in natural history
By Stephen Jay Gould
Penguin, 1994. 479 pp., $16.95 (pb)
Reviewed by Phil Shannon

Stephen Jay Gould's latest book continues his engrossing series of essays on evolutionary biology —

The Last Whale
Directed by David Bradbury
Available through Youngheart Productions, 187A Whale Beach Road, Whale Beach, Sydney 2107, phone (02) 974 1102, fax (02) 974 1064
Reviewed by Francesca Davidson

The Last Whale is a moving

The Gift of the Gorgon
By Peter Shaffer
Sydney Theatre Company
Reviewed by Helen Jarvis

"Set aside what anyone thinks of the play, it does ask a serious question. Perhaps the most serious question you can ask of a civilisation. Do you

The Songs of Dougie Young
Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies and the National Library of Australia
Reviewed by Jill Hickson

This collection of songs relates the real life situation for many Aboriginal