Big men in a small world

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JOHNNY LOMAX has been making headlines in Canberra for nearly a quarter of a century. Twenty two years before he was scapegoated by a long-running political campaign to criminalise trade unionism, he had the national capital talking. And that story is nearly as incredible as the fact he now … [Read more...]

Wage war targets league star

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FORMER Kiwi rugby league captain Johnny Lomax looks like collateral damage in a move to hitch powerful state agencies to a radical wage-shredding agenda. In August, Lomax appeared in the ACT Magistrates Court to face a single blackmail charge - that in 2013 he demanded a painting company pay its … [Read more...]

Chill out – it’s only safety

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“Dean, if you look hard enough, you will find some safety risk because it’s a construction site, but that doesn’t mean there is an issue.”  These 25 words undermine the rationale behind a three-year government campaign to turn around the worst construction industry safety statistics in … [Read more...]

All about the bias, no trouble

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One sentence, used to protect right wing poster girl Kathy Jackson, lays bare the bias driving Tony Abbott’s royal commission against trade unions. Jackson, feted as a hero by Prime Minister Abbott, Education Minister Christopher Pyne and right wing shock jock, Michael Smith, now faces charges that … [Read more...]

Big lift for skills

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Commuters on Melbourne’s Westgate Bridge can often see the jib of a luffing crane, stretching and flexing through morning exercises, in the business park below them. The 38m Leibherr tower crane is state-of-the-art, the only one of its kind in Australia and the centrepiece of the Victorian … [Read more...]

CFMEU care delivers for youngsters

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As apprentice numbers tumble across Australia, Tony Abbott’s trade union royal commission is taking aim at successful skills programs. It will be interesting to see if its recommendations take account of industry needs. Brisbane’s RNA convention centre hosts some flash gigs but not many … [Read more...]

“I was wrong,” expert witness recants

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Victoria Police is backing the most extreme elements of Tony Abbott’s anti-union agenda, according to a top Melbourne cop. In extraordinary evidence to Abbott’s trade union royal commission, Assistant Commissioner Stephen Fontana, outlined a legislative wish list that could have been lifted … [Read more...]

George Alex – some facts

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Thousands of families are better off because of $50 million the CFMEU has recovered from cheating employers in NSW, alone, over the last five years. More than $1.6 million secured from scaffolding, labour hire and traffic control companies associated with alleged crime figure, George Alex, … [Read more...]

A million questions for royal commission

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Tony Abbott’s trade union royal commission is sitting on $1.6 million worth of documents that undercut its allegations about union links to organised crime. The commission holds detailed records of wage and entitlement recoveries, including bank cheques and receipts, that show the CFMEU’s NSW … [Read more...]

Seven years without a collar

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Tony Abbott’s special building industry police force failed to uncover enough evidence for a single criminal conviction in seven years of operation. Officers from Victoria Police and the Federal Police lowered the boom on the Australian Building and Construction Commission at Senate … [Read more...]