WorkChoices

Labour parties are the same the world over

The headline is scarily similar to what happened here in NZ.

Labour the world over booby traps the economy of their victim countries.

When Joe Hockey was growing up and dreaming of becoming prime minister, he would not have imagined that his dream would lead him to joining a bomb disposal unit. Tomorrow, he will unveil the first bomb he must dismantle and it is almost nuclear in its capacity for destruction.

At 12.30 on Tuesday, Hockey, who has also been the stand-out thespian of the new federal parliament, will unveil the real horror, dysfunction and narcissism of Kevin Rudd’s contribution to Australian political history, disably assisted by Julia Gillard. Hockey will release the mid-year economic and fiscal outlook, known in the trade as MYEFO, which will show a budget deficit much worse than Labor led us to believe, probably close to $50 billion, debt obligations much higher than Labor led us to believe, and unfunded liabilities that are so irresponsibly crushing the government will have to walk away from many of them. The most monumental folly is the National Broadband Network, whose economic rationale was worked out on a piece of paper by Rudd. The scheme subsequently created by former communications minister Stephen Conroy would cost more than $70 billion and never recover its cost of capital. The Abbott government will have to start again.  Read more »

Cracking down on dodgy union officials

Tony Abbott is pledging to crack down on dodgy union officials…he sure has his work cut out for him:

AUSTRALIANS would have higher wages and better working conditions under a Coalition government, Tony Abbott has announced today.

Unveiling his industrial relations policy in Sydney – four months before the next election – the Opposition Leader and his workplace relations spokesman Eric Abetz said the Labor scare campaign that the Coalition would bring back Work Choices needed to end, because it was now absolutely clear that was not the case.  Read more »

Labor’s life of shame

Brisbane Times

Labor’s judgement day is looming. Their union rorting, cheating chickens are coming home to roost:

A constant stream of Labor heavies came through Dobell and Robertson, led by the opposition leader Kevin Rudd, to support the Labor candidates: Craig Thomson in Dobell and Belinda Neal in Robertson. Former prime minister Bob Hawke visited Dobell four times.

”I had never seen so many shadow ministers coming through. We had one every day,” said another Liberal campaign worker, who preferred not to be named. She saw plenty of the Labor field general in Dobell, Michael Williamson.

Williamson was operating from deep within the Labor machine. He was, and is, the national president of the Health Services Union, where Craig Thomson had been national secretary for five years. He was on the executive of the ACTU. He was a vice-president of Unions NSW. And a director of the SGE Credit Union. He would be elected national president of the ALP in 2009.

After Julia Gillard became prime minister, she employed his daughter, Alexandra, as a media adviser. Senator Mark Arbib, believed to have been a key figure in organising political and legal protection for Thomson, rented a Canberra apartment with Alexandra Williamson for two years.

In the 2007 election campaign, Williamson concentrated all the resources he could marshal on Dobell. He spent much of his time operating out of the Thomson campaign office at Long Jetty. He deployed resources from the HSU, Unions NSW, the ACTU and the ALP. He organised scores of union members into the electorate and booked dozens of motel rooms for campaigners.

Many of the details of the 2007 campaign can be found in the report by Fair Work Australia into the activities of Thomson. The Dobell campaign office was largely financed by the HSU with help from the Transport Workers Union. Staff from the HSU national office were seconded to the campaign. The ACTU set up a Work Choices campaign office across the road from Thomson’s headquarters.

So blurred were the lines between Thomson, Williamson, the unions, the ACTU and the Labor Party that when Thomson gave his first speech in federal Parliament on February 19, 2008, he said: ”The support I received from the entire union movement but in particular from Unions NSW, the TWU , the CFMEU [Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union] mining division, the PSA [Public Service Association of NSW] and, of course, my own union, the Health Services Union, was phenomenal. Michael Williamson, the HSU national president, was a marvel in relation to the long-term support he provided to me.”

The Thomson scandal has now busted all that wide open, but Labor feels it owns Thomson after helping him so much. But Thomson is set to name names at 2pm our time:

Labor would do it all again in Dobell in 2010, more than a year after the Thomson scandal was exposed by this newspaper. Thomson re-contested and won Dobell in 2010, a victory that saved the Gillard government.

Labor owns Craig Thomson. In every way.

Strange, then, that Thomson is now accusing Williamson of being one of those who engaged in an improbable conspiracy to ruin his reputation through associations with prostitutes and misappropriation of union funds.

Last week, when the Victorian police fraud squad invited Thomson to name those he believes are involved in the conspiracy, he declined to do so. Responding via the Labor Party’s law firm, Holding Redlich, he said he would name people in Parliament.

That day has come. Thomson is scheduled to address Parliament at midday. He will seek to place reasonable doubt into the narrative that has thus far condemned him. The level of scrutiny and scepticism will be intense.

The whole soap opera around Thomson has succeeded in postponing any legal day of judgment until after a full three-year term has run its course. Thanks to these tactics, used by the Prime Minister on down, and thanks to the support of Thomson by the Greens and independents Tony Windsor and Rob Oakeshott, the Labor-Greens-Windsor-Oakeshott coalition appears unlikely to ever breach solidarity over Thomson.

Bucket loads of popcorn are required this arvo, to watch this unfold.

Did a former Union Boss just get a big donation for Tony Abbott?

Sydney Morning Herald

Bill Shorten, after recently denying his missus had done a runner due to a little problem with a secretary and an unplanned pregnancy, decided to raise a whole heap of money for Tony Abbott. Unfortunately for Bill he is on the other side to Tony, being a former union boss and a member of the Gillard cabinet.

The government has turned on the BHP Billiton chairman, Jac Nasser, suggesting he clean up his own backyard before blaming the workplace relations laws for the increase in industrial disputes in the mining sector.

The Workplace Relations Minister, Bill Shorten, said claims that killing Labor’s Fair Work Act, which replaced WorkChoices, would boost productivity and economic growth was ”a conservative fantasy”.

”That is a lie and should be called for the lie it is,” he said.

On Wednesday, Mr Nasser delivered a blistering attack on the government’s industrial relations and taxation policies, saying they were fuelling investment uncertainty.

Some friendly Liberal bag man will likely being having a word to BHP and Jac Nasser in the very near future.