And the Union calls in the loan

In 2007 militant Unionists started popping up revealing the true nation of modern trade unionism. It virtually became a game of ‘whack-a-mole’ for the then opposition leader Kevin Rudd as he fought to keep unions under control and onside for the 2007 November federal election.

June 2007 saw Electrical Trade Union state secretary Dean Mighell1 forced to resign after a recording was released of him bragging about strong-arming employers who do not submit to union demands by threatening strike action. Unions in the past have engaged in such action as half-pouring a concrete slab (which would require removal and resetting at the employers expense) in order to force concessions from employers. Mighell was heard on the recording claiming how he’d used so called ‘pattern bargaining’ to rack up millions of dollars.

Also in June 2007 a militant West Australian unionist Joe McDonald2 was expelled from the labor party after recordings revealed the torrent of abuse he heaped on a representative after being directed to leave a work site. Its clear looking back now that these outbursts were indicative of darker currents swirling throughout the union movement, they could smell blood at the ballot box.

The fallout from Rudd expelling these two must have been internalised amongst much gnashing of teeth by the Union movement; they knew how much was at stake in terms of a Labor victory leading their snouts back to the trough. And that is precisely what has happened according to an article in The Australian3 about a ‘surge’ in union membership:

While unions helped bankroll Labor’s 2007 election in exchange for the rollback of John Howard’s Work Choices regime, union officials denied Labor’s Fair Work Act had been responsible for the initial increase in members.

The words and feelings of McDonald and Mighell still ring in the ears of unionists as they move in for the kill. While they demurely deny that the Rudd victory and dismantling of Work Choices has caused a boost to their membership, behind closed doors there would much rubbing together of hands. This type of unionism was lamented by the father of Australian Unionism, W.G Spence in his book “Australia’s Awakening.” Spence believed in arbitrating between the two parties in order that both sides benefit from any agreement.

The Australian Protectionist Party believe that unions are important in protecting workers conditions, but the arbitration must be fair and produce a balanced result that benefits employers and employees. As for the Unions in Australia, Spence would be rolling in his grave if he saw what had become of his beloved Labor movement.





  1. I think a lot of Aussies want to be as patriotic as you, but they can’t afford to. They have no choice, just buy the cheapest product on the market.

    It is a worry that so many illegals are doing cash jobs that at one time age pensioners used to do to pay for dental bills and shoes and other outrageous luxuries.

    The survey results paper also has about 28 articles covering issues identified in the electorate. You may find them interesting. Another thing that will strike you is the startling difference between our poll results and those of the news media and official pollsters.

  2. 54% under 15k,, wow, that’s a large portion of low income workers. I know it’s low, but didn’t have idea that the amount was that low. I can remember working my arse off as young fella thinking 28k was a bad wage, now day I work for a bit more , but has been a hard climb.
    But as an issue with the wage’s being so low. I’ll give an example of what I have found and how it relates to tariffs.
    I put an advert in the GUMTREE web site for a cleaner, ( wife and myself work and two children, no time ) I wanted somebody that would clean my house once a fortnight. I asked if they could send me an email with what they could do, If they had experience and how much they would charge….. ( but only people from the local area)

    I got over 50 emails. Many threw in extra’s like baby sitting , cooking. but was only after the basic’s, vac, mop, wipe down……
    3 things worried me.
    1st I could not pronounce most of the names that were apply.
    2nd I couldn’t understand the simplest of sentence that was written, ( the grammar and spelling below a 6 grade level at least……)
    3rd was people would say they would work for under 10.00 an hour or less……
    the lowest was 6.50 an hour,
    was scary thought that these people are are in the country and ready to work( more that likely illegally). I decided to cull the list down, first by English skills, second by name if i could say it, third by experience. It came down two 2 people over 50 emails. Out of the two was a mother who just wanted to get some extra dollars, and the other was a group of mothers that ran a business of cleaning.
    I went with the business…. ( cost a bit more but Australian owner, insured, and professional manner).

    So if all these people are looking for work more than likely not claiming the payments on tax just from my area. how many more are out their doing this for other industries and area’s. Also a lot of them would be getting some sort of government assistance.
    Being I live close to two uni’s a lot may be studying,

    Whats all this mean in relation to the tariff’s, It was my choice to go with the business that was Australian, I didn’t go for the most experience, I didn’t go for the cheapest, I went for someone that would help people like myself in my community….
    It’s like the bonds issue, I have been a bonds wearer all my life. not anymore.
    It comes down to the little things, that help the little business of australia get by, If means that a tariff could be changed so they have a little edge over the large non Australian corporate companies.
    So when out looking for that service or the next can of soup, look where it’s made first not at the price.

    I see if the tariff’s where changed the price’s may change and become fair for the Australian people to buy Australian.
    Australian product’s have a high standard than many countries, but we lower our standards for a cheaper price.
    How many people eat lamb, I like lamb, but can find it very hard to find it, sure alot of big chain supermarkets advertise it, but it looks like mutton to me. Australian standards were very good for Australian lambs at the slaughter Lambs/hoggets to max 12 months of age, ram lambs under 6 months, but from other countries their standards are very different.
    once again i rant on.
    I’ll email you for the details of the survey for a quick read mate.

  3. Gidday Jon Boy

    I’m getting to like you.

    Our organisation does three yearly surveys… interactive sample questionnaire surveys of a proven full demographic corridor on the Sunshine Coast… a region swollen with Victorians and NSW sea-changers and economic reffos; as well as being ostensibly one of the most prosperous areas in Australia, fed as it is by new retirees and tourism.

    Our definition of unemployment is based on the same one used since 1890, thereby providing precise historical continuity. This is, of course, not having a job(s) that pays a living wage. it is also a definition chosen by 90% of survey participants.

    Our last survey was August 2007 and was published in the Australian Independent, which had such an impact that by the end of November we had formed the Tariff Restoration Bloc, which is now one of the largest political entities in Australia. You would only hear about this on the Internet because one of our rules is we do not engage with the Murdoch media. This prevents us from being ridiculed or attacked, as was One nation.

    If you want to read the survey results (28 questions in all) contact me on and I’ll send it as an attachment, or give me a postal address and you can have a hard-copy.

    Incidentally, one of the researchers on has adopted the same definition and has found exactly the same situation in the US… 6-9% unemployment which is in fact 20%.

    Our last survey showed 19% unemployment but we calculate this has risen to 23%. Next month we do our third survey, so we will be able to update the figure with measured accuracy.

    A scarier figure was the 54% who have incomes below $15,000; which means they are dying in slow motion from malnutrition and lack of medical and dental care.

  4. now this could become one of the biggest issues facing us,
    if you go out past the blue mountains, and see how dry it is, an understanding of the problem of water shortage would be a bigger issue.

    but when you turn on the tap and water comes out of it, that is clear and looks clean, it’s hard to see the fields of dirt where crops used to grow.

    but in time in may become an issue that everyone will have to look at.

    but looking at the tariffs affecting the aussie worker and businesses, the issue would be something that need a shake down.

    un employment at 25% wtf?
    where did you get those figures from.
    i thought it was at about 6%, add say 5% more with what the gov hides( work for the dole, pensions, education scheme, single parents @ home, part time workers etc) . where did you get the rest from, not having a go just interested in where the other 14% is from…?

  5. I appreciate your views, and if an issue looks like being bigger than tariffs we’ll go with this like a shot. These are:

    The compulsory H1N1 vaccine (that kills);

    The AGW tax, when in fact CO2 increase follows climate change, and CO2 is plant food, and is only 0.28% of the atmosphere anyway… so what the hell. It’s the privatisation of air.

    Then there is Government support for Israel when around 80% of the people do not.

    Somehow, because bringing back tariffs is the only possible way we can return to full employment, I would bet that this is the people’s choice. After all, it is up to them.

    Then there is the water issue… which all comes down to privatisation of rain.

    But what you said about imports that we would never have got… tariff removal killed the Oz manufacturers that would have made these, and no jobs would have been lost. But jobs were destroyed by those imports and real unemployment today is 23%. By the end of this year it will be 25%. The highest sustained unemployment during the Great depression was 15%, peaking briefly at 20%.

    Tariffs = jobs, so I am betting this is the great unifying issue.

  6. Not knowing alot on the tariff issue it’s hard for me to comment.
    what I do know is that it has changed how we deal with the rest of the world. the prices have change for many of our products, and the lost of sales for the small person in business has been attributed to this.
    BUT on the other hand it has opened up other markets and allowed us to get involved in markets that were not available in the past. In saying that i’ll re state that ” I don’t know much about the tariff issues……”
    So i consider myself to be someone that has a general knowledge of things happening in the Australian communities. I am an Australian. ( last time I checked)
    So would this mean i would stand up and fight for the tariffs to come come back. ( most likely not) due to lack of information.
    It’s all ok to join a group of people that have the same idea’s, but i am talking about solidarity, a movement that involves people to stand up and fight. maybe not with rocks and sticks, but to say “i’ll change my way of living for the better of the country/group”. This can be a simple step in saying that “hey i’m not moving until I’m heard”. or “i’m not stopping until i’m forced to or the outcome is what the group is after”.
    so as a single issue that would help the solidarity movement I don’t think tariff is the answer. it may get a alot of people involved but not acting as one group.

    But you seemed to grasp what i was saying, something that upset people, so much that they are willing to go out of their way and say, “hey that’s not on”.

    being involved in a union for over 8 years i seen alot of stuff that discussed me, and i seen alot of good stuff.
    the problem is that the good stuff was mostly done on a small side and didn’t get much attention. ( the worker would do it.) for example. a worker is injured, is having a hard time. so the workforce gives up half it’s pay for the fella, not knowing who he is, but know that it could be them……
    where the things done on the top level rank and file where alot to do with poli’s crap. make them look good, if their is nothing in it for them they would pass it on down the rank and the small delegate would have to try and do something about it……..
    now i’m ranting so i’ll leave it at that…….

  7. Good thinking Jon Boy. We drew the same conclusion and found that the single issue that everyone agreed on was Bring back tariffs.

    Tariff removal wrote off more than half of our manufacturers and two thirds of our family farmers (some say 90%); and this destroyed 3 million full time jobs.

    Any unionist worth his salt should support tariff restoration, which would re-create these jobs, and within less than five years. Although every small party in Oz is now an affiliate of the Tariff Restoration Bloc (TRB), no union has joined. I guess it is a matter of attracting our first unionist.

    By the way, the link provides additional information about the TRB.

  8. all for one and one for all.

    it’s hard to get every person to think on the same line, to have the same goals. the outcome may generally be to have a safer, healthier, friendlier, more motivation workplace, or what ever it is. but to all agree on one thing is the hardest part.

    to find something that every one hates would be the first goal to have a solidarity movement. this could be from an unfair, unjust or unreasonable action. but to have people think that “hey that’s not right ” and stand up and be accounted as a group is your first step.

  9. Perhaps it is time for Solidarity in Oz.

    Anybody got any ideas where to start?

  10. There is an alternative union movement being built in the U.K known as ‘Solidarity‘ which is along the lines of what we’d like to do here in Australia.

    union secretaries with worker backgrounds had been replaced by elitist university graduates

    A similar phenomenon has occurred in our nation’s parliaments. Instead of real people with life experience, they are now just party hacks who haven’t done a hard days work in their lives.

  11. Your position was not clear from your statement; hence my query.

    I resigned from the union movement in 1974 when Bob Hawke refused to acknowledge anti-worker union corruption in the NT. By then, the vast majority of union secretaries with worker backgrounds had been replaced by elitist university graduates who were committed to power centralisation, free trade and the NWO.

    One of my organisations works towards re-creation of the union movement, but with very little progress to date. Frankly, I don’t know a contemporary union secretary who has not been corrupted.

  12. I hope you are not suggesting that workers do not have the basic human right to withdraw their labour when employers are recalcitrant;

    Tony, nobody has suggested anything of the kind.

    and I sincerely hope you don’t for one moment believe employers always play the game by the rules.

    And I sincerely hope you don’t think the unions always play the game by the rules either.

    Today, I think it is fair to say that most employers cherish the idea of an end to sick leave and paid annual and public holidays.

    No doubt that and more. That is what unions are for; to protect the workers.

  13. I hope you are not suggesting that workers do not have the basic human right to withdraw their labour when employers are recalcitrant; and I sincerely hope you don’t for one moment believe employers always play the game by the rules.

    Having working experience in industry, government and commerce, both as an employer and employee, I can say that most industrial action was the product of employer positioning, intransigence or outright hostility to the idea of a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work.

    Today, I think it is fair to say that most employers cherish the idea of an end to sick leave and paid annual and public holidays. In a less self-indulgent mood I will certainly be pushing for their imprisonment with hard labour; but then I have witnessed the disintegrated families, depressed children and suicided breadwinners that are the victims of irresponsible employers.

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