Issue 103: 25 August – 31 August 2022

# Wages, jobs, power

Large firms are consolidating power like Scott Morrison consolidates jobs – and it’s hurting productivity
Greg Jericho | The Guardian
For decades, questions of how to improve productivity growth has inevitably seen business groups answer that we need to reform the industrial relations system and be more flexible.

At the jobs summit, be wary of people playing the productivity three-card trick
Ross Gittins | Age/SMH
There’s a lot of muddled and dishonest talk about the relationship between wages and productivity. Much of this comes from the employer lobby groups.

Yes, the gender pay gap is real, and probably worse than you think
Jessica Irvine | Age/SMH
We miss out on scientific discoveries, good policy and astute business decisions when the talents of our best people are not thrown at the task with equal gusto.

Labor won’t reverse the stage three tax cuts. Get real. It’s in for the long haul
Guy Rundle | Crikey
If some nurses and teachers are earning $120k, and construction and other trades are heading to $150k, the existing brackets were becoming punitive to working-class prosperity. There hasn’t been much acknowledgment of this in progressive discourse. 

The jobs summit’s real winners: boomer asset owners and property developers
Bernard Keane | Crikey

How much is Queensland’s bottom line powered by coal royalties?
Rachel Riga | ABC News

The housing market is class war
Editorial  | Red Flag

The Jobs Summit and our labour shortages
Abul Rizvi | Pearls and Irritations

The Deliveroo case that could change Australia’s gig economy
Kieran Pender | The Saturday Paper

Early childcare workers take action to address staff shortages, low pay
Jacob Andrewartha | Green Left
Early childcare workers are taking strike action across the country on September 7, to demand better pay and conditions and action be urgently taken on staff shortages.

SA First Peoples win against miner
Nick G | Vanguard
A decision by SA Chief Justice Chris Kourakis has vindicated a campaign waged by united groups of First Peoples to oppose exploratory drilling on Lake Torrens.

# International / Trading Winds

China’s insolvency crisis
Mike Seccombe | The Saturday Paper
The meltdown in China’s property market is dragging the world’s second-largest economy towards stagnation, and should force a reckoning with our dependence on exports. 

West Papua: Indonesia troops arrested for killings
Susan Price | Green Left

Melbourne University student union reaffirms support for Palestine
Emma Dynes, Bella Beiraghi | Red Flag

Italy’s cautionary tale: Neoliberalism the only choice at the ballot box
Adriano Tedde | Independent Australia
Neoliberalism has changed culture in western societies to the extent that precarity, unsustainable income inequalities, corporate power and the disintegration of welfare are perceived as a normal inevitability and not as political and social aberrations. 

Chile Is Rewriting Its Constitution. Australia Should Too.
Charlie Joyce | Jacobin
Australia’s constitution is outdated, antidemocratic, and has consistently blocked social democratic reforms. That’s why we need to rip it up and write a new one.

Australia hosts major war games simulating aerial combat
Oscar Grenfell | World Socialist Web Site
The US and its key allies are carrying out exercises preparing for a major air war, as Washington wages a proxy-conflict with Russia in Ukraine and ratchets up its confrontation with China in the Indo-Pacific.

# Climate

‘That’s what drives us to fight’: labour, wilderness and the environment in Australia
Jeff Sparrow | Overland
In 1838, the Sydney Herald dismissed arguments about prior Indigenous possession of the place now known as Australia. In its response to Aboriginal claims, the editorial argued that ‘[t]his vast country was to [Indigenous people] a common—they bestowed no labor upon the land—their ownership, their right, was nothing more than that of the Emu or the Kangaroo.’ 

Australians want green public transport options, and fast

Tracey Ferrier | The New Daily

Fisherfolk, environmentalists call on gov’t to stop seismic testing in Otway Basin

Darrin Saffin | Green Left


Justice and journalism: the Chris Dawson guilty verdict gives Australia two reasons to hope for progress

Van Badham | The Guardian

Poll suggests Aussies would back bans on junk food, gambling and alcohol TV advertising

James Glenday | ABC News

‘Monumental blunder’: opposition small business spokesperson claims electric utes don’t exist

Emma Elsworthy | Crikey

Teacher shortages are a global problem – ‘prioritising’ Australian visas won’t solve ours

Anthony Welch | The Conversation

So, if migration is seen as a solution to Australia’s teaching shortage, the question needs to be asked: where are they going to come from?

Public transport should be free

Sam Wallman | Overland

This month, Rail Tram and Bus Union members in NSW gifted the public free train travel as part of their industrial action against the tightarse Tory State Government. In so doing they showed us that maybe public transport should be free. We already pay for it.

For whom the toll bells: Transurban’s profits, motorists’ losses and looming toll hikes

MIchael West | Michael West Media

Yes, Shaq’s Voice support came from nowhere, but his star power thrusts our platform into the global civil rights arena

Hannah McGlade | National Indigenous Times

Ambassadors for Voice are sensible. Of course, those Ambassadors should largely be Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people from this country, but to rule out international figures is parochial and short sighted.

South Australia takes major step towards state-based First Nations Voice to Parliament

Callan Morse | National Indigenous Times