Industrial relations & productivity

The Australian newspaper has been running one of their not-very-subtle campaigns for ‘reform’ of industrial relations laws, blaming the current laws (which partially rolled back Workchoices) for declining productivity. Today’s they’ve made it the main front page story, with a headline saying – Lucky to lazy country: review industrial relations laws to stop decline, says…

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WorkChoices – what happens when a government stops paying attention?

Parliament resumes this week, although only the House of Representatives is sitting.  The Senate is not sitting, but a range of Senate Committees are engaging in additional Estimates hearings.  I expect the focus on economic management and the current pressures on the economy will continue. No doubt Brian Burke’s extraordinary capacity to keep making life difficult…

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Labor’s adopts yet another Howard position – they want to treat the Senate like a rubber stamp too!

The federal Labor Party’s emulation of every stance John Howard takes now extends to them also demanding the Senate rubber stamps major legislative changes with no time for proper inquiry or public input. The Federal Opposition is warning the Senate to support Labor’s industrial relations policy should it win the election. Deputy Opposition Leader Julia…

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No Entry

The Australian newspaper has reported more detail on Labor’s workplace relations policies, including another major piece of backsliding with the adoption of John Howard’s Workchoices constraints on workplace entry by union officials: “A Rudd government would keep all of John Howard’s tough limits on unions entering worksites.” The new strict controls on workplace entry have…

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Evil fascist law now OK

I recently mentioned an experience I had of being criticised in the Senate by a Labor Senator back in 2004 for supporting “fascist” and “evil legislation”. This incident came to my mind again when Labor announced that they will maintain the Building and Construction Commission if they win the election, as this was the subject…

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Advertising a law that doesn’t exist

Senate Estimates have provided many opportunities for Senators to try to establish the cost and nature of taxpayer funded advertising across a range of departments, finding that “the total media spend on current Government ads is $111 million.” However, the big focus is still on the (not)Workchoices advertising campaign. This is partly because it is…

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Workplace 2

While debate on the workplace relations changes is starting on Monday, there is still some uncertainty about what the final shape of the law will be. I am sure there will be some minor amendments made, but the main impact of these will be as a propaganda tool for the government to pretend it is taking on board community concerns, rather than genuinely fixing up some of the major injustices in the Bill.

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