Daily Archives: March 24, 2009

The Bligh Era – ‘we are all economic rationalists now!’

Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee” — Muhammad Ali

In Queensland, a state with the first elected woman premier, the government does not have a women’s honour roll but does acknowledge women in hard hats.

Victoria won’t elect a woman as premier — Joan Kirner (sic) — but the Victorian Labor government does acknowledge women with an honour roll.

A difference between Labor politics as practiced North and South?

Peter Beattie’s succession plan worked. However the lineage that produced Bligh goes back to the socialist Left faction founded by George Georges during the Street March era.  A combination of this faction and the women’s movement put Anne Warner into the Goss ministry – the first woman in cabinet in Qld. When Warner retired Anna Bligh took her seat and was soon in the Beattie cabinet. And so it went, only thing was, the faction ditched the word socialist. Socialists had put her there, but no need to keep the name if it did not fit, which it didn’t. Anna Bligh’s chief of staff Mike Kaiser is from the right wing Australian Workers Union (AWU) faction, just to give you an idea of how meaningful factional titles are.

Bligh Cabinet 2009 Continue reading

Group of 17: Obama – yes, we can?

The April Meeting of the 17 Group on Wednesday the 1st of April at 7pm in unit 6 at 20 Drury St, West End will be addressed by Merv Partridge, who is not long back from the United States where he closely observed and recorded on videotape the recent election campaign of Barack Obama.

His talk, illustrated by original video footage, will centre on political dilemmas facing the Obama administration.

Dan O’Neill

Merv’s summary:

Tasting: Obama Koolaid 2008

I made two trips to the United States during 2008 to take care of animals and to observe the primaries and the election.  I had contact with the Obama campaign as well as third party and alternative groups.

Dan has asked me to lead a discussion on the 2008 election and its implications.  Oral (as in video) history is one of my pastimes and I have material that I have just begun processing.

During this session I would like to show some excerpts from Obama’s last speech before the election.  He made the speech at the Fair Grounds in Manassas, Virginia – a site chosen for its historic echoes and because Virginia was considered a litmus test for the election.  A southern slave State in the civil war Virginia has been Republican for decades.  It has been moving Democrat in the last few years and it was widely said that if Obama could carry Virginia he was likely to win the country. Continue reading

Union & Community Weekends

Strategies for Union and Community Organising

Three weekends of reflection, relationship building, and future planning  April 18th & 19th, April 25th & 26th, May 1st – 3rd

Over one weekend at the historic Camp Eureka near Warburton, and two weekends at the MUA, we will bring together young union organisers, students, environmental campaigners and social movement activists with veterans of the labour movement and the Left.

PosterCommWeekendsweb Continue reading

Free Gaza Benefit Concert

Phil Monsour Gaza Concert in Melbourne SATURDAY, 28TH MARCH 7PM

Phil Monsour and band (Brisbane)

The Brothahood
Joelistics (TZU)
Zohab Khan
Nour Abouzeid

+ Traditional Arabic music/dance
+ B-boy performances

MUA HALL, 54 Ireland St West Melbourne