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October 21, 2005



I totally agree with you. The approach of the Liberals to IR has been consistently more scary and draconian since they took office. I also still haven't forgiven the democrats for supporting their first round of IR reforms (damn you Meg Lees, you have a lot to answer for!).

I love this fallacy of 'choice'. When you need money, you have very little choice. When I resigned from a corporate law firm at the beginning of 2004 (because I didn't want to spend my life working for the profit of large corporations, or chained to my computer from dawn 'til far later than dusk), I had pretty good qualifications and work experience.

However, because I needed to pay rent, eat, etc... and had no savings, I couldn't afford to be picky about where I worked. So I ended up working for $11 an hour in a chocolate shop on a bloody AWA that included no overtime or penalty rates. My choice? That or default on rent payments. Some choice.

I also agree with your analysis of the gender division in how we are socialised to deal with negotiations. I am a shocking negotiator, and would be far far worse were it not for 5 years of law school that socialised me to be more hard-nosed.


My mum said she received an SMS advertising the scam that is WorkChoices. Unfortunately (or fortunately) she deleted it so I can't report what was in the SMS.

Has anybody else come across one?


SMS spam. Lovley. Is this from John Howard's son's company, I wonder?

Rooster, I haven't encountered it, no.

Natalie Bennett

It is hard to believe the whole IR thing is getting worse. I was around in Oz when the first blows were laid against collective bargaining - we're talking ancient history, like about 1993.

An avuncular man sat in front of a group of mostly young, mostly female staff and explained to us we just didn't _understand_ negotiation. We were supposed to give way on half of his list - which ran roughly: give up holiday loading, give up rules about working hours, give up rules about payment for extra duties ....
It was one of the few times I've managed a good comeback at the time, rather than thinking of it later: "So if you suggested half a dozen ways for us to jump off the cliff, we'd have to choose one?"
I'll never forget the look on his face.
Of course I had no future with the company after that - but since I didn't want to have one anyway it didn't matter.
But thank god for the real negotiations we had an old ex-printer who'd been trained in union stuff as our chapel head. Without him we'd have been utterly lost.

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