Tag Archives: trade unions

The behemoth is coming

It’s official, Amazon is coming to Australia, promising cheaper prices, faster delivery times, and access to a greater range of products, including groceries.

Amazon books no profit, pays no dividends and puts everything it earns back into growth. Starting 20 years ago with a share price of $US16. In April the AFR reported the price as over $US900 with a market capitalisation around $US440 billion. Gerry Harvey warned:

    “They are the animal that went right across America devouring all before it, sending everyone broke.”

Continue reading The behemoth is coming

ABCC: a better plan for union governance?

cash_michaela_image-20161121-4515-2juc76_250The Senate has passed the so-called ‘registered organisations commission bill’, with only Jacqui Lambi joining the Greens and Labor to vote against it (see also Michelle Grattan). Now the game moves to proposed legislation to restore the Australian Building Construction Commission, which I’ll examine below.

Essentially the government succeeded with the registered organisations commission bill by doing deals with The Nick Xenephon Team (NXT) and Derryn Hinch on whistle-blower provisions. Hinch reckons the whistle-blower provisions are the best in the world, and the Government has agreed to extend them to the corporate and government sectors by 2018. Continue reading ABCC: a better plan for union governance?

The tip of an iceberg, or a broadbrush smear?

Terry Sweetman in the Courier Mail has raised a real question about the objectivity of Commissioner Dyson Heydon’s report on trade unions.

    the part of the iceberg he can identify is populated by about 30 unionists and 16 executives from large commercial organisations who are adversely mentioned or recommended for possible prosecution.

Sweetman says the misconduct identified by Heydon stems from just six of the 132 unions in Australia (Heydon’s figures). Continue reading The tip of an iceberg, or a broadbrush smear?

Taking out the garbage

Brough_1451403835209_200While we are all at the beach and otherwise distracted, Malcolm Turnbull has been doing some house cleaning.

Liberal MP Mal Brough will stand aside, pending a police investigation of the Peter Slipper matter, while Jamie Briggs has tendered his resignation as Minister for Cities and the Built Environment following a late-night incident involving a female public servant in a Hong Kong bar during an official overseas visit last month. Continue reading Taking out the garbage

Dyson Heydon judges himself

The Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU) will ask the royal commissioner into trade union corruption, Dyson Heydon, to disqualify himself – an application he will hear today.

If the move is unsuccessful, the unions will appeal to higher courts.

Professor Nicholas Cowdery QC thinks Justice Heydon can be impartial in judging himself. You see, it’s the training of the legal mind. Continue reading Dyson Heydon judges himself

Abbott sets up for a double-D poll

The Abbott government plans to give itself the option of calling a double-dissolution election based on trade union corruption when Parliament resumes in mid-August, according to Phillip Coorey and Patrick Durkin in the Fin Review. Abbott will try to reap the reward for his $80 million investment in the royal commission. Continue reading Abbott sets up for a double-D poll