Union and Community Summer School 2010

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LeftResistance's picture
LeftResistance
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Dec 1 2010 05:37
Union and Community Summer School 2010

I'm surprised this isn't posted here yet. Will anyone be attending? I booked my flights from Newcastle today.

Quote:
A public forum to build practical unity within the labour movement,
for workers’ rights, social justice, economic democracy and environmental sustainability.
Often the most important things are not those that divide us but those that bring us together.
The union movement and the left are faced with some serious questions about how to progress our struggle.
Many of us might understand that action needs to be taken on issues from climate change to the ABCC.
There are many amazing people that are contributing to this weekend there a sub groups formed from the list below and an elected speaker will talk at there session over the weekend.
If you have been involved in the union movement for 5minutes or 50 years there are bound to be people on this list you don't know.
Take the time to have a look these are the ones most likely to be standing with you in Solidarity.
For more info Contact:
unionsummerschool@gmail.com or Dave Kerin 0412 484 094

Participants include
Adam Bandt (Greens MHR)
Sue Bolton (Victorian State Convener, Socialist Alliance)
Brian Boyd (Secretary, Victorian Trades Hall Council)
Kevin Bracken (Victorian Branch Secretary, MUA)
Ian Bray (Assistant National Secretary, MUA)
James Brennan (Workers Solidarity Network, Renegade Activists)
Sue Bull (OHS Trainer, CFMEU)
Verity Burgmann (Working Class Historian)
Chris Cain (Branch Secretary, WA MUA)
Len Cooper (National Vice‐President, CEPU)
Ben Courtice (Metal worker, Victorian Climate Emergency Network)
Joan Coxsedge (former Victorian MP)
Daryl Croke (Co‐founder, Union Solidarity)
Bill Davis (ex‐Victorian President, Plumbers Union)
Jamie Doughney (Former President NTEU, Victorian Division)
Joan Doyle (Victorian State Secretary, Communications Division, CEPU)
Richard Duffy (Organiser, Victorian ASU)
Rob Durbridge (AEU Industrial Officer, President, Search Foundation)
Colleen Gibbs (Environment Officer, Victorian AMWU)
Lita Gillies (Organiser, Victorian ASU, Spirit of Eureka)
Margaret Gleeson (Delegate of the year, Queensland ASU)
Tim Gooden (Secretary, Geelong Trades Hall Council)
Troy Gray (Victorian Assistant State Secretary, ETU)
Jacob Grech (Renegade Activists, co‐founder Union Solidarity)
Mel Gregson (Organiser, UNITE)
Bronwyn Halfpenny (former VTHC Campaigns Officer)
Leigh Hubbard (Senior Industrial Officer, ANF, former Secretary, VTHC)
Steve Jolly (Socialist Party Councilor, Yarra City Council)
Craig Johnston (Former Secretary, Victorian AMWU, CFMEU delegate)
Victor Jose (Organiser, Victorian AMWU)
Dave Kerin (Co‐founder Union Solidarity, Eureka’s Future)
Emma Kerin (Workers Solidarity Network)
T.M.B. Krishnan (Eureka’s Future)
Colin Long (Secretary, NTEU, Victorian Division)
Anthony Main (Secretary, UNITE)
Tony Mavromatis (Organiser, Victorian AMWU)
Humphrey McQueen (Working Class Historian)
Dean Mighell (Victorian State Secretary, ETU)
Joe Montero (Workers Solidarity Network)
Jack Mundey (Former Secretary, NSW BLF, Green Bans leader)
Dick Nichols (Former Trade Union coordinator, Socialist Alliance)
Susan Price (Vice‐President, NTEU, NSW Division)
Seb Prowse (International Bookshop Cooperative)
Shaun Reardon (Vice‐President, Victorian CFMEU)
Alejandro Rodriguez (Search Foundation board member)
Arthur Rorris (Secretary, South Coast Labour Council)
Peter Simpson (Queensland State Secretary, ETU)
Chris Spindler (Organiser, Victorian CEPU)
Rob Stary (Civil Rights Lawyer)
Davey Thomason (Former organiser, NSW BLF)
Liz Turner (Renegade Activists, Workers Solidarity Network)
Luke van der Muelen (Pres, Vic CFMEU Mining and Energy Division)
Sam Wainwright (Councilor, Fremantle Council, WA MUA Delegate)
Mark Wakeham (CEO, Environment Victoria)
Cam Walker (Campaigns Coordinator, Friends of the Earth)
Norm Wallace (Former Assistant Secretary, Victorian BLF)
Sam Watson (Queensland Aboriginal Community leader)
Shirley Winton (Spirit of Eureka)
Matthew Wright (Director, Beyond Zero Emissions)

http://unionsummerschool.blogspot.com/

Lumpen's picture
Lumpen
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Dec 1 2010 07:42

I'm thinking about going. All depends on work. Lots of speakers worth listening to (whether you agree with them is another thing entirely!) and a pretty interesting mix of perspectives.

I'm guessing a few Melbourne anarchists will be attending, as some are in the groups represented.

bastarx
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Dec 1 2010 07:15

Recuperators of Australia unite.

Lumpen's picture
Lumpen
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Dec 1 2010 07:58

Haters gonna hate.

I'm pretty interested in what someone like Dean Mighell has to say, or even a lawyer like Rob Starry.

I'm especially interested in what Sue Bolton could have to say, given that Socialist Alliance seem to do worse at every election. When I say worse, I mean they had a swing of 0%, where you would expect an increase in support over time as an indicator of doing better. So their strategy is worth examining.

bastarx
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Dec 1 2010 10:17

I'm not ashamed to say I hate these fuckers. That's not to deny that some of them might be interesting but there's no way I'd waste $25 and a whole weekend to listen to them crap on about how great it is a couple of unions now donate to the Greens election campaigns instead of the ALP.

If this is more than just a two-day circle jerk the working class in Australia should certainly be worried about a bunch of union hacks, the Greens and assorted Trots working together.

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Dec 1 2010 12:21

Some of the speakers are anarcho-syndicalists, and it can hardly hurt to make contacts in the union movement. Participating in these things can hardly be negative, rather than just existing in a council communist and anarchist wank space either.

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Lumpen
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Dec 1 2010 12:22

The willingness to spend $25 and a weekend of listening to hacks, politicians and trots might be one of many differences between you and me.

I think it's more of a mixed bag and the amount of circle-jerking remains to be seen. For example, there's no love lost between the Greens and the Trots, and the love-in between the ETU and the Greens is over. How relevant this is to class struggle is, of course, another question. It's the kind of thing I'd like to gauge firsthand in any case and I would be disinclined to discourage others from doing so.

If it makes you feel any better, I think most of the speakers would probably be glad to line up and condemn anarchy and anarchists, so I don't hold any illusions on that front.

TBH, I've not heard any other anarchists say they were going, but there are connections to some of the groups, which is why I'd presume at least a few would go.

LeftResistance's picture
LeftResistance
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Dec 1 2010 12:26

well i'm only going for the one day, so it's not a weekend. tongue

I agree i doubt the conference will be friendly to anarchists, but it doesn't mean there might not be useful information surrounding campaigns to take away.

I know one speaker on the list who last time I talked to her claimed she was an anarchist, of course that could've changed.

bastarx
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Dec 1 2010 23:40

The only good reason I can think of to go to this is to see if this presages a new united front of the disparate factions of the left against what will hopefully be a new wave of struggles against the looming austerity drive in Australia. But even if I lived in Melbourne I don't think I could be bothered to waste a weekend doing so. The WSWS/SEP guys will probably write a decent denunciation of this anyway.

LR I could care less that some of the dumbest among the seriously retarded anarcho-syndicalist scene in Australia are trying to carve out their own little corner within the wider left.

If you're referring to the Melbourne WSN, from what I've heard their politics are terrible, basically oriented towards providing free picket line labour for the unions who are of course too gutless to call out any of their thousands of members for the job.

But I hope you have a great time and make heaps of contacts with union bureaucrats and maybe it will even lead to a job offer.

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LeftResistance
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Dec 2 2010 01:13

Exactly what i'm aiming for.

So one should just wait upon the unions to call their members out, or try and organize workers to start taking a stand together despite the bureaucrats? I have heard the Melbourne WSN is closer to the unions than the other groups - so maybe I shouldn't comment. I'd hope the aim of a project like wsn is to build rank n file solidarity, rather than become a union mouth piece. I guess this is stuff i'll find out when I go to the conference.

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Dec 2 2010 05:20

My understanding is the WSN was established to support striking workers in ways that are difficult for workers to do themselves because of the workplace laws. I've never been to a WSN meeting and everything seems to be kept a bit vague for the above reason, so I couldn't say for sure.

riot_dude
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Dec 2 2010 07:52

bit confused as to why Adam Bandt would be on a union panel, whatever, good luck to them i guess.

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Lumpen
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Dec 5 2010 07:07

Bandt used to be a lawyer specialising in industrial issues. Back when he was a student activist he was also into that kind of stuff (he's an ex-trot, donchaknow)

And I missed the event. Painted a wall and got drunk instead.

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@ndy
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Dec 5 2010 10:08

Actually, it's this coming weekend.

Towards an anti-capitalist, anti-social democratic, internationalist movement,

@ndy Rant.

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Lumpen
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Dec 5 2010 11:47

Yeah, just realised and went to post an "oops". Unless I got so pissed that I traveled back in time and didn't realise it.

Adam Bandt circa 1995 wrote:
Electoral Politics, however, can be a useful vehicle for furthering campaigns and resourcing activism.

riot_dude
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Dec 5 2010 12:14
Quote:
Bandt used to be a lawyer specialising in industrial issues. Back when he was a student activist he was also into that kind of stuff (he's an ex-trot, donchaknow)

nah, I didn't, cheers.

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Lumpen
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Dec 5 2010 12:41

You can download the email that Bandt sent to a trot list about elections and the Greens from the Fantin site. It's a bit lulzy.

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Dec 6 2010 10:07

I was under the impression that the whole shabang was about learning how to organise a workplace generally, or at least that this would be the focus - as well as broader campaigning. Am i completely wrong?

One person from Organise is going, i'd have used it as an excuse for a trip to melbourne, but i'm already coming for new years.

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Dec 13 2010 00:13

The prolific Slackbastard blog has written a post on the Summer School. I didn't make it, so I couldn't tell you how it went.

Re: WSN. This is from an article, 'WSN: A Perspective on Directions in 2011' by Liz Turner, recently published in Renegade News, the zine of the Renegade Activists Action Force. It isn't available online as far as I can see.

Liz Turner wrote:
The aims and objectives shared by all WSN groups in Australia are:
  • To challenge Federal workplace laws that effectively outlaw strikes (except in an enterprise bargaining period, via a long-winded bureaucratic process); and
  • To encourage and support workers control in workplace disputes. This includes supporting workers in sectors that are currently not organised in the existing union movement, as well as workers in union-supported disputes.