I was just writing about Labor (the Australian Labor party) this morning and thought I would add it to my blog. I don’t think that many people really understand where Labor stands these days, and those that are rusted on Labor supporters perhaps need to open their eyes, rather than look through rose-coloured glasses – sorry for being rude!
|What does Labor stand for? Workers? I don’t think so!|
I believe that Labor has moved well to the right. The right implies economic rationalism (i.e. neoliberal policies – free trade, privatisation, less workers rights, greater focus on the economy instead of the needs of the people, a reduction in the welfare state)
I have listed below a small number of examples of economic rationalism that Labor has engaged in, but it is by no means exhaustive.
Labor started down the road of EBAs (Enterprise Bargaining Agreements – or collective agreements) – which was part of the Income and Prices Accord (introduced by Labor – which has driven down wages and conditions in relation to the cost of living since then). These have ultimately put more power into the hands of employers and have driven down wages, particularly where there is little ability for workers to bargain. Workers in different companies doing exactly the same work, can now be paid vastly different wages, with NO way to appeal or bargain. If your employer is powerful, expect nothing!
Upon re-election after the Howard Government, Labor did not repeal all of WorkChoices, and kept significant parts of that legislation. Workchoices placed more power into the hands of employers, and removed power from employees and their representatives – i.e. unions.
Anti-worker/Anti-union laws still exist! Labor did NOT remove the ABCC (Australian Building and Construction Commission) when it regained power, but waited some years before doing so – in the mean-time, many workers and union members were abused, harassed and persecuted unfairly and without being allowed ANY legal representation. This was the most draconian legislation that Howard introduced before Labor was elected to Parliament.
Some in Labor wanted to reintroduce the ABCC to hamstring unions and workers once again!
We still do NOT have a right to strike – in which case we are SLAVES. Labor has made NO effort to change this!
How much of Australia has been privatised by Labor – how has this benefited the Australian people. Privatisation is a neoliberal policy of the right, from those who do not believe in public ownership of assets, but that competition will solve everything.
The steady removal of tariffs, started by Labor, have seen our manufacturing industry slowly collapse – the constant push for free trade agreements is leading to an influx of cheap products that are partly to blame for the decimation of our farming communities. We cannot compete on a level footing with countries that have a bowl of rice as their daily pay level, or with countries with such a low cost of living. Australia’s cost of living, using Sydney as an example, is the 7th most expensive in the world. How do we compete in a free trade market with a country with one of the cheapest costs of living?
From a time when Australia had a manufacturing industry of 40%, we now have below 6%. Thanks to Labor and Liberal governments.
Labor reduced the allowance to single parents, WITHOUT guarantee of jobs for those people. Having a child and working part time, I can assure you that part time jobs, that are suitable for someone with a child, DO NOT EXIST!!! This was started by Howard, and continued under Labor!
Neoliberal policy calls for a reduction in the welfare state.
Labor has continues to refuse to provide a welfare system that actually provides enough to survive on – even to the point that some in Labor have suggested that it is easy to live on!!!
Have a look at the housing situation in WA – since the mining boom, that has made some people very very rich, there are 20% more people requiring assistance from charities!!! This is partly under Labor!!!
This is the REAL Labor!!! The new Neoliberal way of Labor!
It goes on and on.
When Labor heavyweights are stuck in the economic rationalist methodology, without actually having a look at the impact of their ideological policies, then they have lost contact with what the people actually need, and hence their original base.
Labor and Liberal are run by dinosaurs, until we get rid of the dinosaurs, we will continue to live in the past, and not plan for the future – a more prosperous future for ALL Australians, and not just the wealthy!
That’s my 2 cents worth.