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John Passant

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Keep socialist blog En Passant going - donate now
If you want to keep a blog that makes the arguments every day against the ravages of capitalism going and keeps alive the flame of democracy and community, make a donation to help cover my costs. And of course keep reading the blog. To donate click here. Keep socialist blog En Passant going. More... (4)

Sprouting sh*t for almost nothing
You can prove my 2 ex-comrades wrong by donating to my blog En Passant at BSB: 062914 Account: 1067 5257, the Commonwealth Bank in Tuggeranong, ACT. More... (12)

My interview Razor Sharp 18 February
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp on Tuesday 18 February. http://sharonfirebrace.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/18-2-14-john-passant-aust-national-university-g20-meeting-age-of-enttilement-engineers-attack-of-austerity-hardship-on-civilians.mp3 (0)

My interview Razor Sharp 11 February 2014
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace on Razor Sharp this morning. The Royal Commission, car industry and age of entitlement get a lot of the coverage. http://sharonfirebrace.com/2014/02/11/john-passant-aust-national-university-canberra-2/ (0)

Razor Sharp 4 February 2014
Me on 4 February 2014 on Razor Sharp with Sharon Firebrace. http://sharonfirebrace.files.wordpress.com/2014/02/4-2-14-john-passant-aust-national-university-canberra-end-of-the-age-of-entitlement-for-the-needy-but-pandering-to-the-lusts-of-the-greedy.mp3 (0)

Time for a House Un-Australian Activities Committee?
Tony Abbott thinks the Australian Broadcasting Corporation is Un-Australian. I am looking forward to his government setting up the House Un-Australian Activities Committee. (1)

Make Gina Rinehart work for her dole
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Sick kids and paying upfront

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Save Medicare

Demonstrate in defence of Medicare at Sydney Town Hall 1 pm Saturday 4 January (0)

Me on Razor Sharp this morning
Me interviewed by Sharon Firebrace this morning for Razor Sharp. It happens every Tuesday. http://sharonfirebrace.com/2013/12/03/john-passant-australian-national-university-8/ (0)

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Archive for 'Royal Commission into unions'

Jeff Sparrow in Overland on black bans and blackmail

Here is a link to a great article by Jeff Sparrow in Overland on the blackmail charges against John Setka, the secretary of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union in Victoria, and Shaun Reardon, his deputy. Jeff’s article exposes the witch hunt against the CFMEU and the real issue here, which is safety at work. To read the whole of Jeff’s excellent article in Overland click here, ‘Black bans and blackmail’.

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In defence of the CFMEU

The CFMEU is a major target of the Royal Commission witch hunt into unions precisely because it is one of the few unions left in Australia today that actually stands up for and fights for its members. The MBA’s safety smear campaign and the clearly anti-union and political nature of the charges against Lomax show that the building industry bosses and their state apparatchiks will stop at nothing in their quest to put profit before people.

Fair Work, building workers and 7-Eleven

It is all about priorities, and making sure that bosses don’t rip off their workers isn’t a priority for the Abbott government in Australia. Destroying the CMFEU, one of the few unions that fights to defend its members, is. If the government can do that it makes the climate even better to drive down wages and cut conditions in other industries across Australia. 7-Eleven is a microcosm of Australia’s industrial relations. What Abbott and his hired anti-CFMEU puppets in the Fair Work industry want is a cowered and compliant building workforce a la 7-Eleven. They want workers to work longer for less, just like the 7-Eleven bosses have been doing, with the same result – more profit for the bosses.

Boycott the witch hunt into Australian trade unions

If the ACTU, or at least the left unions, were to announce a complete boycott of the Royal Commission, and to back that up not only with the threat of (illegal) mass strike action in defence of anyone prosecuted for not appearing, but also with an education campaign among their members as to why they must walk off the job in response to the biased Commission, it would destroy the witch hunt. The CFMEU is due to appear before the witch hunt today at 10 am. Boycott it.

Boycott the witch hunt into trade unions

Labor and the unions could refuse to have anything more to do with the Royal Commission into trade unions because of Heydon’s perceived bias. This opens up those who have been subpoenaed and refuse to appear to fines of up to $1000 or six months imprisonment. Although this is a strict liability crime, if the person has a reasonable excuse for not appearing then that is a defence. And what could be more reasonable than not appearing at a Royal Commission because of the perceived bias of the Commissioner?

ACTU: Biased Royal Commission into trade unions must be terminated

Dave Oilver: “The ACTU calls on the Abbott Government to shut down the Royal Commission, which has been proven to be an $80 million dollar political witch hunt. It is untenable that the former judge charged with overseeing the Royal Commission is helping to fundraise for the Liberal Party.”

ICAC, the Canberra Times and building unions

It was disappointing to see Jack Waterford repeat the tired Tory tropes about the CFMEU’s ‘manipulation’ of safety issues as a justification for an ICAC in the ACT. (‘Clearly the ACT needs its own ICAC’ Forum page 1 The Canberra Times Saturday 1 August.) While the ACT does need its own ICAC, deaths and serious injuries on building sites across the Territory show in fact that what we need to save lives is a safety regime run by the unions, the only people with an overriding interest in building workers’ health and safety. The Royal Commission witch-hunt into the CFMEU is designed to destroy them precisely because the union does win better wages and campaign for safety. Jack has fallen for the bosses’ lies.

Defend building union organiser John Lomax against the criminalisation of union activity

This is part of a letter I sent on Sunday to the Canberra Times on the arrest and charging of building union organiser John Lomax. ‘Unionists and union leaders should be very very worried about this attempted criminalisation of industrial activity. If successful it will undermine every union in Australia. The charges against Lomax are an attack on unionism.’

The ‘evidence’ for the Abbott inspired police witch hunt against the CFMEU

This is just some of the ‘evidence’ Abbott used to justify his recently announced police taskforce witch hunt into the building union, the CFMEU. It would be laughable if it weren’t so serious.

The new McCarthyism and the Royal Commission into unions

Paid trade union officials are the retailers of our labour power to the bosses and what Abbott wants to do through this Royal Commission is cut out the middle men and women, the union officials, and allow the bosses to completely dominate atomised workers and thus drive down wages and slash conditions, cut jobs, and lengthen the working day, among other things.