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Hands off penalty rates! – Workers’ Rights Campaign

PM Tony Abbott and his union-bashing team have promised their employer mates a life without unions in deregulated workplaces where they can drive down wages and conditions to levels found in low income countries. Towards these ends Treasurer Joe Hockey has commissioned a review of the Fair Work Act by the Productivity Commission, a body notorious for its pro-corporate, neo-liberal policies. The following are some of the measures the Commission is considering:  more ...

Current Issue of The Guardian

November 25, 2015 - click here for index of articles.

As racism mobilises – Multiculturalism must be defended

Protests by racist group Reclaim Australia took place in several Australian cities last Sunday. In every case small crowds were outnumbered by people attending to register their disapproval of the anti-Islam, anti-refugee agenda of this latest manifestation of right-wing extremism in Australia. Participants from racist groups hammered the idea that they were defending the Australian way of life, its culture to which people arriving in the country, whether as migrants or refugees, must “assimilate” in every way. A reduction in the number of people permitted to settle or seek refuge in Australia was another common and very ugly theme.  more ...

Hutchison port workers win return to work – New enterprise agreement a testament to character of Hutchison workers and a victory for common sense over anti-worker ideology

A few minutes before midnight on Thursday August 6 this year multinational port operator Hutchison Port Holdings, the biggest stevedoring company in the world, sent a text and accompanying email to 97 wharfies in Brisbane and Port Botany (Sydney) telling them they were sacked.  more ...


Editorial – Who set terrorism loose?

While thousands upon thousands of innocent people die in big power wars, tens of millions displaced, the usual suspects profit from the death and chaos. A drumbeat for military escalation and internal repression becomes louder and louder. Terrorist attacks lead to big gains for defence stocks as investors bet on a jump in weapons spending. The Islamic State provided wonderful business opportunities for armaments companies. In almost two years Northrop Grumman’s share price has surged 160 percent, Lockheed Martin shares have climbed 150 percent.  more ...

CPA statement on domestic and family violence

Wednesday November 25, 2015 is National White Ribbon Day in Australia. The Communist Party of Australia fully supports the objectives of White Ribbon to prevent men’s violence against women and shares the organisation’s concern at the growing problem in Australia and internationally. The Party’s weekly newspaper, the Guardian, has given details of neglect of the issue and lack of a sense of urgency on the part of Australian governments in the face of a mounting toll of deaths of women at the hands of abusive partners or ex-partners. The Coalition has de-funded services to women escaping domestic violence, forcing the services to close. Programs to change men’s violent behaviour have been cut. Australian governments are long on lip-service but short on action.  more ...

The Common Tern

NATO adopts facebook strategy, will use national flags to fight ISIS

In what facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has described as a social media coup, NATO has announced it will abandon its bombing campaign in Syria and contain the spread of terrorism using the French and other national flags.  more ...

Medicare attack – Eliminating the safety net

Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Health Minister Sussan Ley may present a softer, more consultative image but when it comes to the agenda for destroying Medicare they are just as ruthless as their predecessors. The Health Insurance Amendment (Safety Net) Bill sets out to introduce caps on rebates under the Extended Medicare Safety Net. These “efficiencies”, as the Minister calls them, are in the form of caps on payments under the safety net. They will deny many needy patients access to the life-saving treatment and tests they require.  more ...

History inspires – Working Voices Choir mark 100 years since Joe Hill’s execution in 1915

The annual Harold Peden Memorial Lecture 2015 delivered by Unions WA secretary Meredith Hammat paid tribute to Harold Peden a senior trade union activist, state president of the Amalgamated Metal Workers Union, senior vice president of the Trades and Labour Council, state president of the Communist Party of Australia and a long-time activist in the peace movement, retiring in July 1985. Peden was a man who took the cause of labour and labour history to his heart. A political activist and proud unionist throughout his working life, Peden was awarded the Order of Australia in 1990 for his services to the trade union movement and Western Australian workers. Each year since his untimely death in 1993 due to boating accident, the Labour History Society celebrates Harold’s life with a community lecture emphasising his work and passion.  more ...

CPA SA State Conference

The 25th South Australian State Conference of the CPA was held recently in Adelaide. The Conference heard reports and elected the incoming State Committee. State Secretary Bob Briton reported on a challenging period for SA Branches since the last Conference and a troubling political scene at the international, national and state level.  more ...

Did BHP Billiton know their dams would collapse?

A report prepared two years ago by four Brazilian university academics warned that design flaws could lead to a catastrophic collapse of iron ore tailings dams owned partly by BHP-Billiton in Brazil.  more ...

Taking Issue – The Berlin Wall – built to keep people out not in

A young comrade asked us the other day about the “notorious” Berlin Wall. The modern history textbooks she had been provided with at school were proving a tad unsatisfactory. And no wonder! They all adhered to the official Western line that the inhabitants of the GDR, like all the people of the USSR and Eastern Europe, were imprisoned behind the Iron Curtain, unable to escape but yearning to be free, to live like the people in the West that they supposedly envied so much.  more ...

Waiting for approval

While the Netherlands is expected to take a further 7,000 refugees under the European Union’s proposed quota plan, on top of the 2,000 already agreed to by the Dutch government in May, a stark question remains: what will happen to the numerous rejected asylum seekers – often waiting years and too scared to return to the countries they have fled – who are squatting in empty buildings across the country?  more ...

Culture & Life – ISIS, the Saudis and oil

Were the attacks in Paris the work of fanatical Islamist terrorists taking revenge on France for its well-known hostility and intolerance towards Muslims? Or are the religious fanatics merely tools, and what we are really dealing with is capitalism and its never-ending quest for higher profits?  more ...

Pete's Corner

Over 10 years worth of sharp humour from The Guardian's very own cartoonist Pete Andrew can be accessed from the main menu – or just click here.


Half A Century of Pain

50 Years of Agent Orange Disaster in Vietnam

A selection of images from the book Half a Century of Pain – 50 Years of Agent Orange Disaster in Vietnam – 1961-2011, published by the Ministry of Information and Communication of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.  more ...

Maritime Bulletins and leaflets from the CPA Maritime Branch

This web page was last updated: Wednesday, November 25, 2015

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