RealVampiresDon'tSparkle by me

No happy, Jan ...

My politics tend to the left, no surprise there.  My reaction to the fact that the Howard government is dismantling industrial legislation that has given workers the right to award wages, leave, holidays etc and effectively destroying unions at the same time - not good, and possibly combined with lots of naughty words.  How to I feel about my son working at a job that requires him to work 10 hour days, six days a week, on a commission basis with no retainer, for the minimum of $20-40 a day, with no leave or benefits, or even reasonable meal breaks - immensely sad and frustrated, but I can't tell him that.  All I can do is support him in his endeavours and hope that he realises he is being exploited, sooner rather than later.  I keep hearing Billy Bragg in the back of my mind in relation to both situations.

Between The Wars

I was a miner
I was a docker
I was a railway man
Between the wars
I raised a family
In times of austerity
With sweat at the foundry
Between the wars

I paid the union and as times got harder
I looked to the government to help the working man
And they brought prosperity down at the armoury
Between the wars

I kept the faith and I kept voting
Not for the iron fist but for the helping hand
For theirs is a land with a wall around it
And mine is a faith in my fellow man
Theirs is a land of hope and glory
Mine is the green field and the factory floor
Theirs are the skies all dark with bombers
And mine is the peace we knew
Between the wars

Call up the craftsmen
Bring me the draughtsmen
Build me a path from cradle to grave
And I'll give my consent
To any government
That does not deny a man a living wage

Go find the young men never to fight again
Bring up the banners from the days gone by
Sweet moderation
Heart of this nation
Desert us not, we are
Between the wars

  • Current Mood: worried worried
Let's just say Australians are a hell of a lot better off and better paid than Kiwis are. And we have a Labour govt.

(But I do sympathise over J's job -- those sort of sales jobs are always shit. God, imagine working for commission only -- hell!)

And don't worry -- if your Labor Party could get its act together long enough to win an election, they can just undo it all again. It happened here -- the National govt brought in shitty labour laws, then the Labour govt got in and undid them again.

: )
: )
: )

:: grinning in triplicate ::
I have high hopes that the Labor Party will see sense very soon - I suspect that Peter Garrett may be being groomed for the leader's position. As much as I like Kim Beazley, his time has come and gone.

BM and I quietly advised J last night that we would be in NO way disappointed with him if he decided to give the job the heave, and looked for something else, and looked for something that paid him adequately for the hours put in. I mean, 10 hour days is totally unacceptable!
Peter Garrett, eh? How well is he doing in Parliament? The rock star activists don't always translate well into politicians....

Good advice to J, I would say.
I love that song. Bought it as an EP single back in 1985 (ish) - in fact all four songs were wonderful and led to the purchase of several albums over the years. I like to sing along (which can be embarrasing when I'm in public listening on the mp3 player).

At our last general election, I believe Billy foreswore New Labour and voted Lib Dem.
We downloaded a heap of songs - I think there's a best of album on Amazon, so when I get my act together ...

The ACTU (Australian Council of Trade Unions) used a huge TV screen playing Billy Bragg songs when it launched it's campaign against the Federal government's industrial legislation last year.

I'd probably dump Labor if there was a viable alternative ::sigh::