tip off

Workplace flexibility: where (almost) everyone gets to grandstand

The government’s proposal to expand the right to ask for workplace flexibility was a grandstanding opportunity for everyone except its target, the Coalition.

There’s something for everyone in the Prime Minister’s rather vague announcement about extending the right to request flexible working arrangements to parents returning from parental leave — everyone, that is, except the opposition.

A little background: the Fair Work Act established a right for carers/parents with kids under school age, or with disabled kids, with 12 months’ ongoing employment, or long-term casuals, to ask employers for flexible working arrangements. The right is entirely limited to asking: employers can knock back requests on “reasonable business grounds”.

Sounds vague and a bit wishy-washy, right? When the Fair Work Act review looked at the right last year, however, it was quite positive about the right, and about similar schemes overseas. “The high percentage of requests that lead to flexible working arrangements being put in place, and the comparatively low rate of refusals, indicates employers are taking the provisions seriously and that they are being used effectively by employees to alter their working arrangements to suit their circumstances,” the review found. It also noted international evidence that employers believed such schemes improved productivity.

The review recommended the right be expanded to “a wider range of caring and other circumstances”, as urged by unions and academics, and that the right be strengthened to the requirement that “the employee and the employer hold a meeting to discuss the request”. But it knocked back proposals for a right of appeal, or for legislative codification of what “reasonable business grounds” meant. In effect, it proposed to extend the right to ask, but leave it at a right to ask.

And while submitters to the review proposed extending the right to all carers, or people with school-age children, or victims of domestic violence, the extension proposed yesterday by the Prime Minister appears confined to “mums who are returning from maternity leave, and indeed for dads who are returning from caring for children too,” along with a promise to strengthen requirements for consultation on roster changes.

If you’re wondering how parents returning from parental leave don’t already fit into the existing category of carers with children under school age, you’re not alone. Australian Industry Group’s Innes Willox wondered the same thing. Presumably that particular mystery will be explained when more detail is made available on the legislation later this week.

The political rationale for targeting this at employees returning from parental leave is, however, crystal clear: the government believes that area is a weak spot for the opposition, an intersection of the electorate’s mistrust on a possible return to WorkChoices and Tony Abbott’s women problem. So untrusted is Abbott on issues relating to women that voters actually prefer the government’s significantly less generous paid parental leave scheme to Abbott’s “Rolls-Royce scheme”. For an opposition that usually comfortably leads Labor on trust in virtually every area of policy, it’s a remarkable gap.

Not that Labor was alone in grandstanding on the subject. The Greens quickly issued a press release calling for an enforceable right to flexibility, meaning employees could take employers to Fair Work Australia for arbitration on requests, imposing a potentially costly layer of bureaucratic intervention in a process that appears to be working well in its current form. “An unenforceable right to request is no right at all,” Greens MP Adam Bandt said in a media statement, a view that the Fair Work Act review evidently disagrees with. The government couldn’t assume the Greens’ support on the bill, Bandt insisted.

Yeah right.

And The Australian Financial Review shoehorned the issue into its monomaniacal obsession with productivity, finding employer representatives to lament the “produc­tivity-sapping elements of Labor’s Fair Work Act” and even some self-described “business battlers” for whom the prospect of being asked by their staff about flexible working hours was, apparently, a nightmare.

The head of Pacific Retail Management, whom the article was careful to note was pregnant herself, complained that employees being able to merely ask about flexible working hours, without any guarantee of getting them or any external procedural requirements, made her “nervous” and was “a bit like taking choice away” (no, that doesn’t make any sense to me either). Apparently, amid incessant calls for greater “flexibility” in the workplace, there are some forms of flexibility employers so dislike they don’t want to even be asked about them.

The only team left out of the grandstanding was the opposition, who sensed Labor’s trap on the issue and wisely held off commenting until more detail was available. Having failed to lure Abbott into any form of industrial relations debate so far, Labor will be hoping the opposition bites on this. “Nervous” business people who can’t abide the idea of talking to their employees might hope they do as well.

Don’t count on it.

46
  • 1
    Jimmy
    Posted Monday, 11 February 2013 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

    Abbott will have to “bite” at some point, surely he won’t be allowed to got to the election without an IR policy.

    On a related matter anyone find it funny that News Ltd papers ran an article on the 1990’s home reno’s of the PM (again with no new evidence of wrong doing) on the same day Abbott puts forward a bill increasing the penlaties for corrupt Union officials?

  • 2
    MJPC
    Posted Monday, 11 February 2013 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    Of course the LNP won’t be drawn in and make comment as their willing foot soldiers in the ever compliant employer groups are doing their work for them, with the usual bleating about how hard they are doing, how less regulation is more for them and similar trite comments.
    Of course they are ably assisted by the joke that passes off for informed commentary in this country, when interviewers let pass their assinine comments without probing questions.
    Abbott and his fellow travellers can run but can’t hide on the issue of industrial relations, a debate I am anxious to hear.

  • 3
    Jimmy
    Posted Monday, 11 February 2013 at 3:19 pm | Permalink

    MJPC - If Abbott does finally come out with a IR policy and it is skewwed back in favour of employers the govt SHOULD be able to tie a few things together and tell a very persuasive story.

    In the past couple of weeks he has committed to rolling back means testing of private health insurance & FTB while dumping the shcool kids bonus (ie cutting payments to lower income famil ies and restoring them to higher income famil ies) and he plans to cut the low income super contribution while opposing tax increases for high income earners super contributions.

    Add to this a move back towards work choices and you have a very clear story of favouring the rich at the expense of the workers, we just have to hope the “workers” can figure this out, seeing as most of them read the Herald sun and think B.olt & McCrann are representing their views I don’t hold out any real hopes.

  • 4
    klewso
    Posted Monday, 11 February 2013 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

    Abbott is going to be kept on a short leash up to the election - like Howard and his pack of non-core promises - that way Labor will get all the viewsmedia (playing their part in the “debate”/farce) scrutiny, negativity and scepticism.

  • 5
    Jimmy
    Posted Monday, 11 February 2013 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

    Klewso - I think that is why Gillard made the election date known so early, over 8 months the pressure will build and build for Abbott to get out more detail on his policies.

    See today the head the Parliamentary budget office said they need the policies sooner rather than later to get them costed.

  • 6
    MJPC
    Posted Monday, 11 February 2013 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    Agreed Jimmy, the LNP will not be able to keep mum on their vision for too long. I am waiting for the lie that by giving more to the rich they will create jobs for the underprivileged or low paid workers.
    Already we are hearing of the removal of penalty rates, internships not such a bad idea and other such nonsense from the “ruling” class that bought us all the GFC.

  • 7
    Jimmy
    Posted Monday, 11 February 2013 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

    MJPC - Just hope it get’s some half decent ana lysis in the media, but considering B.ol t today was laying the blame for the drugs in sport allegations at Gillard feet I am not very confident.

    According to News Ltd if it is bad and it happened it is Gillard fault - they would blame her for climate change if they beli eved it existed!!

  • 8
    Mike Flanagan
    Posted Monday, 11 February 2013 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

    Some one killed old Jim Divine
    The poor old fellow was a 109
    But blame on the Gillards boys…..
    I think I’ll go and steal a horse myself…….
    And blame on the Gillards…………..”

  • 9
    Mike Flanagan
    Posted Monday, 11 February 2013 at 6:37 pm | Permalink

    I’ve left out “it” that should proceed “blame” Sorry, as I hoist my Kelly flag.

  • 10
    taylormade
    Posted Monday, 11 February 2013 at 10:48 pm | Permalink

    You will just have to patient Jimmy. People are still coming to terms with the surplus backdown and now the low mining tax has just added to the confusion. Abbott wont bite at anything until both these issues have played out.

  • 11
    john willoughby
    Posted Monday, 11 February 2013 at 11:12 pm | Permalink

    IYGYKHN…

  • 12
    Jimmy
    Posted Tuesday, 12 February 2013 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    Taylormade - The point I am making is that not achieving a surplus isn’t really an issue, every economist will tell you it is the correct call to run a small deficit in the current climate and the mining tax is doing exactly what it is designed to do, when commodity prices tank no money is collected, when they are high the tax flows. Abbott will want to hope prices drop pretty quick because if they stay where they are the March quarter will see significantly more tax collected than the December quarter and he will again be looking foolish.
    If News Ltd was even slightly interested in balanced intelligent reporting neither of these things would be major issues, the fact Abbott can skate through with a storm being whipped up around him proves my point.

    On another related issue anyone see Steve Price having a go at Michael Rowland for saying Abbott has been dodging the hard interviews when he had been on “The Project just last week” - seriously?

  • 13
    GeeWizz
    Posted Tuesday, 12 February 2013 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    One thing Labor and the Union heavies won’t touch is flexible award wages and conditions… they’ll do lots of talking about flexible workplaces but won’t allow the golden goose to be touched.

    One example… older Australians and their working agreements. Now let say someone is now 67.. they are getting a bit old to be working, but need the extra cash to pay the bills. In other words they want to be semi-retired.

    The current system says they MUST work 38 hours to be a “full time employee”, yet in most likelihood they won’t want to work 38 hours. So that only leaves the more expensive part time pay option for the employer. There is no incentive for an employer to take on an older person because they are generally slower at performing the job that a 20-something.

    What is required is a system which allows say a 26 minimum hour work week for older employee’s, with benefits, paying only full time employee wages. Of course if we did this the unions would go absolutely banana’s. How dare we do something that is convenient for both the employer and the employee?

  • 14
    Jimmy
    Posted Tuesday, 12 February 2013 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    Geewizz - “The current system says they MUST work 38 hours to be a “full time employee”, yet in most likelihood they won’t want to work 38 hours. So that only leaves the more expensive part time pay option for the employer.” Is there one topic which you know anything about.
    Firstly why would someone wanting to be “semi retired” want to be classed as a “full time employee”?
    Second why is part time more expensive? The rates of pay are generally the same and holidays and sick leave etc earned on a pro rata basis.
    Third there is another option which is casual employment which while the hourly rate is higher the employer isn’t liable for holiday or sick leave and has plenty of flexibility in when the employee works.
    And could you please provide the award that you were referring to.

  • 15
    Jimmy
    Posted Tuesday, 12 February 2013 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    Geewizz - “What is required is a system which allows say a 26 minimum hour work week for older employee’s, with benefits, paying only full time employee wages” It’s called Permanent Part Time!!!

  • 16
    Spike
    Posted Tuesday, 12 February 2013 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    Workplace flexibility/ taxpayer funded abortion / maternity leave: guaranteed get job back. Gillard’s dividing Australia, playing the ‘gender card.’ Stuff our economy, stuff small business, stuff tradespeople + myriad other jobs! Just look after the ‘sisterhood’ Juliar! You’re worst PM/Labour govt, in Aussie history. Chifley/Curtain must turn in graves!.. The sooner you + your socialist bunch of unpatriotic, destructive + ineffective sell out ‘pollies’ are voted out the better for our kids/grankids! GO! GO! GO!

  • 17
    Spike
    Posted Tuesday, 12 February 2013 at 11:28 am | Permalink

    Mike Fitzgerald..No need make up blaming Julie..It’s her track record of lies, mega wastage: taxpayer $’s, insulation batts, schools program : financial stupidity. Illegal ‘reffos’: changed Howard’s policy into hers + billions of taxpayer $’s wasted thereon!…See fellas’ she + her ‘comrades’ have an actual, factual, real life, TERRIBLE TRACK RECORD! That’s WHY SHE/THEY ARE DOWN IN THE POLLS. Folk out in the real world are hurting, they’re suffering, due to her/Labour policies + inept, weak government> We/ they’re voting with ‘their feet.’ We see the largest ‘in the red’ state of our national ‘book’ balance + we want RID OF HER/LABOUR!

  • 18
    Hominoid
    Posted Tuesday, 12 February 2013 at 12:29 pm | Permalink

    Mmmmm, the old “Right to Ask”. There is a similar principle at play in Privacy Law - one can request a copy of his/her health record, but the request can be refused…. It’s like the old shop sign “Please do not ask for credit, as refusal may offend”. Can’t see much changing in the Fair Work Act as it is, unless Direct Action Man gets in and appoints Reith as his main IR Change Agent.

  • 19
    Jimmy
    Posted Tuesday, 12 February 2013 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    Spike - Would you like me to call an ambulance? Can you not find your medication?

    Why don’t you sit down, take a few deep breaths and think about what you want to say, then try to form it into coherent sentences.

    If you could it would be great to actually have some evidence to support your argument.

  • 20
    Spike
    Posted Tuesday, 12 February 2013 at 1:43 pm | Permalink

    Jeemy!You’ve played the man; that’s common when undeniable facts confront many ALP acolytes. Irrefutable facts/ track record/ history. Damage control, quick, no informed, accurate, intelligent debate. Ergo: ‘play the man!’I know, grew up in that ‘religion’. When Whitlam + his socialist cronies almost totally stuffed Australia; saw the light Jimmy..That + the political brown stuff’ hits the national fan! Heey Jimmy!.. The electorate disagrees with you, it’s not you though is it Jimmy, it’s them!: the polls Jimmy, the polls!…The problem is everyone else, eh Jimmy? Not the ALP — yeah right!…Joke for you Jimmy: Shorten + his team of socialist engineers. About to open wider/deeper a Pandora’s box, with fines to employers etc: Workplace Bullying, sound good Jeemy?! Here’s the joke: Probably + most commonly, WORKPLACE BULLIES are the unions/ hierarchy/ ‘enforcers’ etc. Good’un eh Jeemy. Challenge your cerebral cortex Jeemy, come back without playing the man, BET you can’t!

  • 21
    Jimmy
    Posted Tuesday, 12 February 2013 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

    Spike - “Jeemy!You’ve played the man; that’s common when undeniable facts confront many ALP acolytes.” I would of argued your points but you don’t seem to have any! In fact I asked you to make a rational case supported by facts but you simply rant.

    When Whitlam + his socialist cronies almost totally stuffed Australia” Did you not read the recent IMF REport - “Australia’s most needlessly wasteful spending took place under the John Howard-led Coalition government rather than under the Whitlam, Rudd or Gillard Labor governments, an international study has found.

    The International Monetary Fund examined 200 years of government financial records across 55 leading economies.

    It identifies only two periods of Australian “fiscal profligacy” in recent years, both during John Howard’s term in office - in 2003 at the start of the mining boom and during his final years in office between 2005 and 2007.”

  • 22
    Spike
    Posted Tuesday, 12 February 2013 at 6:34 pm | Permalink

    Jeemy! You’ve socialism , in your genes! As my Crikey days are ‘numbered’+ as I’m a pensioner financially suffering Gillard’s socialist govt. I ‘ll ‘Play the man’: Gillard + her socialist govt, has taken my beloved Australia. To the taxidermist; I fear for my kids/grankids!..I hope/ advise you to SEE = AVAIL YOUR SOCIALIST SELF TO the services of a good taxidermist! GET STUFFED!

  • 23
    Charles Richardson
    Posted Tuesday, 12 February 2013 at 11:26 pm | Permalink

    OK, I give up - what would it mean to *not* have a right to request flexible working arrangements?

  • 24
    robo
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    @ Spike – still trying to make sense of your rant. You seem to be saying it’s harder to live on a pension under Gillard.

    I’d like to know how. I’m a pensioner and my wife and I lack for nothing. We can run a house and a car, have a drink and go on the occasional holiday.

    Please tell us how it’s worse for you now than it would have been ten years ago.

  • 25
    oldskool
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

    @ Spike,

    A pensioner has no right to call anyone specifically though, a Labor supporter a ‘socialist’ since the LNP is idealogically opposed to you receiving a pension.

    Your rant would be more credible if you were a self funded retiree, however you would get no joy from the LNP there either since they promise to keep interest rates down.

    Given all the promises they have made, you could be safe on that one though…

  • 26
    Spike
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 1:44 pm | Permalink

    Robo: Not on pension 10 years ago, live alone, no pensioner wife: next question? Have to work part time till unable do so: supplement pension. Move in circles, working: know many pensioners same boat or worse than me.

    Oldskool: Show me [us] where LNP has stated is opposed to OAPension. You’re confusing your [years ?] ALP conditioning + ideology / mantra with facts. SHOW me textually where LNP has stated: opposed to OAPension….Chas Richardson; Bet you’re NOT a small business owner with staff! Odds on you’re in a government or related to job. Bet you’re not a roof tiler, plumber, builder, carpenter, truck driver, industrial/commercial painter, employer of apprentices, factory floor drone etc. I’d tip you as a govt, ‘worker.’ Or maybe hospitality: latte maker, hairdresser, part time employee in some sort of basically female employing gig…Guys 2 days! You can do better! Where’s Jeemy?… Rattling your collective socialist ‘cages’ is giving an old bloke a hobby; I enjoy the same old Labour verbiage. The Labour ‘head in the sand’ approach to the actual, factual, real life history of ALP is so predictable. It’s a real ‘hoot’ fellas’, so please keep’em coming, I’m enjoying myself…Come back Jeemy!…

  • 27
    Jimmy
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

    Spike - I am here, just waiting for you to make an actual point.

    By the way how is me referring to an IMF report proof “You’ve socialism , in your genes!”

    And I used to vote Liberal, I voted for Howard more than once but once he started moving the party further right and running up a structural deficit the ALP is fighting hard to remove (plus I moved slightly to the left) I found the party hard stopped representing my values, rather than me values stopping being the same as the parties.

    And as you have raised socialism how do you reconcile Abbott’s paid parental leave scheme and his moves to roll back means testing on FBT and private health?
    Also how is using a market mechanism like a price on carbon socialist and a direct action plan of paying companies tax payer money not?

    This time try to actually make a point and complete a coherent sentence.

  • 28
    Jimmy
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 2:03 pm | Permalink

    Spike - “Not on pension 10 years ago, live alone, no pensioner wife: next question?” So you weren’t on a pension prior to the ALP taking office and despite this govt increasing pensions much more than Howard did in his 11 years you still blame Gillard for the pensioners plight - explain how?

    Show me [us] where LNP has stated is opposed to OAPension.” Look at the 2 parties ideology’s and tell me which one supports the concept of a pension more?

  • 29
    robo
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

    Spike – unanswered question: Please tell us how it’s worse for you now than it would have been ten years ago.
    More questions: Why can’t you manage on a single pension? And, would it have been any better ten years ago?
    Your anger is clouding your judgement.

  • 30
    Spike
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

    Jimmy, ah, er, the Rudd/ Gillard socialists haven’t been in power 10 years; it just seems much longer! So Jimmy, why couldn’t I be OAP under Libs? Just sayin.’ Jimmy “ideology” now I ask you, maaate: that’s not an informed, intelligent answer, you know that! Show me where Libs are opposed to OAP?
    Jimmy, Rudd/Gillard: Like shooting fish in barrel! Illegal ‘refos,’ batts, Scools :wasted misspent unaccounted for mega $’s, cut back on defense force + spending thereon. 603,000 Underpriviledged Aussie kids..Haven’t time for more, have to attend my part time job to supplement my OAP [almost 10 years]; relax Jimmy, the ‘Rudster’s’ returning.

  • 31
    robo
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

    Jimmy, Oldskool – trying to convince this one eyed philistine of anything is really flogging a dead horse.

    When he answers questions with a barrage of nonsensical invective, who are we to convince him the earth is round?

  • 32
    Jimmy
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 2:56 pm | Permalink

    SPike - You aren’t doing an Abbott on us are you, all bluff and bluster but when a couple of hard questions are put yo you you go missing?

    You call me out and then run?

  • 33
    Jimmy
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

    Spike - When I posted my previous post you response (30) wasn’t there.

    However on reading your response it is clear you are adopting Abbott’s strategy - You didn’t answer any questions put to you by either me or Robo and the ramble on with a mixture of poor spelling and nonsense.

    And on ideology - it is what all future policy decisions will be based around, the Libs haven’t stated tehy are opposed to the pension but they aren’t likely to improve it wither, just look at the way Howard treated it.

  • 34
    robo
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 4:09 pm | Permalink

    I turned the bold on and didn’t turn it off. Sorry.
    Seems like Spike’s gone to ground. Must be doing an Abbott, eh?

  • 35
    Spike
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

    Signing off: socialist ‘girls.’ robo/Jimmy.. Polls , ‘girls’ the polls…Again, you’re like a group of shielas in party mode, all admiring your ALP ‘party frocks’ all agreeing with each other + stroking [!]each others socialist ideology! Still await your socialist indoctrinated reply about Whitlam + his govt! Not one of you ‘girls’ has responded..Only have till noon 14/2/13 then Spike goes ‘off [Crikey] air.’ Oh, girls, no reply to my almost 10 years OAP. Jimmy, bet you’re an ex/current schoolteacher! You girls tell me: which Australian govt, brought in OAPensions, Liberal or ALP?..Jimmy: proof read all your texts: see if you can find the spelling, grammar + sentence structure errors, just sayin’…

  • 36
    Spike
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

    Spike, you’re a legend, so accurate, coherent + politically informed! I love the way you rattled their socialist ‘cages’ + stirred their Chardonay/ latte senses. They’re usually + nearly all the same Spike: hunt, feed + feel safe in packs. Need to stroke [!] each other’s socialistic psyche + when cornered by truth: attack the man!…More power to you Spike! P.s. Spike, they’ve not answered your Bulling in the Workplace assertion. Would that be because most workplace bullying: Union honchos/ shop stewards + ‘enforcers?’

  • 37
    Spike
    Posted Wednesday, 13 February 2013 at 8:24 pm | Permalink

    JEEMY! ROBO! ‘GIRLS’ WHERE ARE YA?’ [spelling Jeemy]; how’d you ‘girls’ rate Whitlam’s govt?..Remember how Keating: adjusted unemployment figures? Few hours work weekly = fulltime job! Done for subterfuge: make massive unemployment figures SEEM lower.

  • 38
    Jimmy
    Posted Thursday, 14 February 2013 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    Hey Spike - “Spike, you’re a legend, so accurate, coherent + politically informed! I love the way you rattled their socialist ‘cages’ + stirred their Chardonay/ latte senses. They’re usually + nearly all the same Spike” At least we don’t post self congratulatory messages!!! Did you forget which fake account you were using?

    Still await your socialist indoctrinated reply about Whitlam + his govt!” Read the IMF report I referred to!

    ” Oh, girls, no reply to my almost 10 years OAP” Both Robo & I have replied to that, you however have not answered any of our questions.

    ” Jimmy, bet you’re an ex/current schoolteacher!” No I am in that ultra socialist profession of accountancy.

  • 39
    robo
    Posted Thursday, 14 February 2013 at 10:02 am | Permalink

    JEEMY! ROBO! ‘GIRLS’ WHERE ARE YA?’ Spike - like the rest of the girls I’d rather communicate with a sane person.
    Bye…

  • 40
    Spike
    Posted Thursday, 14 February 2013 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    Dialogue/scenario. Venue: ALP branch meeting + Chardonay tasting evening. Attendees: Rob + Jimmy along with many [ex lawyer] Labour ‘pollies’. Many schoolteachers, union leaders, shop stewards + Greens Party invitees. Noticeably absent: truckies, plumbers, builders, [laborers], carpenters, roof tilers, bus drivers, posties, farmers, bread/milk vendors: delivery folk. Ditto: Factory workers, industrial engineers + small business EMPLOYERS. ‘Rudster’ between Chardonay sips, “Hey Rob/Jimmy, there’s no blokes/shielas here from the blue collar/trades/overalls brigade?!”..Jimmy, “Kev, we’ve moved beyond ‘that’.”..”What do you mean ‘that’?” ‘Rudster’ asks..”Let me explain Jimmy.” Interjects Rob..”We’re now the party for the 21st century ‘Kev,’ threw off all that workers party, representing the poor ‘battler’ stuff.”..”Exactly Rob.” Says Jimmy + continues. “We’re Lawyers/ barristers/solicitors + schoolteachers now. None of that ‘old school’ fighting for the battlers + underdogs.”..Rudster “That why our ALP’s done nothing to prevent employment for the ‘battlers’ to devolve into ‘part time’ + or ‘casual’ I expect..” Rob stirring his latte: “None of this 8 hrs, rest, 8 hrs work + 8 hrs play, ‘old school’ Kev, ‘old school.”..Jimmy: “Thing is Kev’, the ALP has to think outside it’s class history representation. We’re the high flyers Kev’, we’re white collar pros’”..”May I say something Jimmy?”..”Go ahead Rob.”..”See Kev’, we ‘ve cast off that ‘old school’ image of Curtain, Chifley + Caldwell. They were good for their time Kev’ But we’re the new kids on the block.”..”Well said Rob, I agree entirely.”

  • 41
    Spike
    Posted Thursday, 14 February 2013 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    Page 2.”I agree with you too Jimmy.”..”Haven’t said anything yet.”..”I know Jimmy, but as a true adherent to ALP policy aka ‘36 Faceless Men,’ I’ve turned being agreeable ‘in house’ into an art form!”..”Well boys, its been nice; have to go + have a chair fitting. Nudge, nudge, wink, wink, know what I mean,know what I mean?”..”Jimmy, Rob.”..”Yes” together..”Social Alliance meeting, next week, you’re both invited, white collar of course.”..”We’ll be there!” …

  • 42
    Spike
    Posted Thursday, 14 February 2013 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    robo: THANKS FOR THE TEXTUAL ‘STIR’ YOU + your comrades provided me with. Always enjoyable to ‘rattle socialists cages.’..Vale..

  • 43
    Jimmy
    Posted Thursday, 14 February 2013 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    SPike - You had all that time to write something that said absolutely nothing (and it must of taken you a while as you were doing it 1 handed) but you couldn’t answer just a few simple questions.
    ““We’re Lawyers/ barristers/solicitors + schoolteachers now. None of that ‘old school’ fighting for the battlers + underdogs.” Could you explain how the govt’s current policy positions reflect this statement, could you also include in you response how the Liberal parties plans to cut the low income super rebate and the school kids bonus while rolling back means testing of FTB & Private Health rebate effect the “Battler”

  • 44
    Jimmy
    Posted Thursday, 14 February 2013 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    Ohh and which Spike am I talking to the original one who makes no sense or the Spike or thinks the original Spike is a legend and makes no sense?

  • 45
    Spike
    Posted Thursday, 14 February 2013 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

    Jimmy, welcome back! Howard had a successful policy: illegal refugees..Rudd Gillard changed it. [1] Fixing the unbroken has /is costing Aussie taxpayer billions, ‘billions’ which could be invested into hospitals/schools/dams/armed forces/roads/ employment thereby. [2] 85Percent of said refugees stay on unemployment benefits, costs us billions + is non productive, no return on expenditure. [3]Gillard has reduced Jn Howard’s $1.50 for each self donated pensioner $1 to dollar for dollar. [4] Billions of $’s wasted on batts/ schools spending fiasco, could’ve gone to any, all of the above. [6]ALP Government ‘red tape’ + govt, intrusion via laws, rules + excessive b’crat demands on business, small + big: costs us millions $’s, increased as always, under socialism..Could be spent on all the above. Since Rudd ruled, costs to the ‘battlers’ in our society, have rocketed + continues under Gillard. The polls Jimmy, the polls!.. By the way Jimmy, a handicapped person with one arm, usually types slower than a two armed Jimmy!..Just sayin’…You gotta admit Jimmy, my scenario/dialogue was creative..Oh, no comment Whitlam govt+ the approaching billions to be spent on workplace bullying, involving more govt interference, legislation etc? Imagine when, in true socialist fashion, having thrown billions at their BitWorkplace social[ist] engineering exercise. The ALP discovers, lo + behold: Most workplace bullying actuated by union hierarcy/shop stewards/ ‘enforcers’/ members etc! Anyway Jimmy, you’ve not quite reached the incensed psychological state robo’s allowed himself!..Feel free: come back on Whitlam govt’s track record esp, economically-wise + the Bullying - - -.Jimmy, ruminate on this: What if there was an OAP, who for fun, lark + faeces ‘stir’. Textually baited pseudo intellectuals in, eg politics. Then to pass some time, thrusted, parried + riposted with said PSEUDO intellectuals as a sort of therapy/hobby? Shared his PCscreen with like minded mates, over their beers, whilst laughing uproariously at PSEUDO intellectuals bovine fertilizer textual verbiage! Nobody’d do that….would they Jimmy, nah’. Would they?..Surely not?..Jimmy its been fun; stop taking yourself[ves] too seriously, bad for your mental health. Jimmy, here’s an old adage, may help you in your darkest politically stressed out hours + its obvious you’re having lots of them!…POLITICIANS [CAPITALS TO ANNOY ROBO]PROMISE US EVERYTHING, GIVE US NOTHING + BEFORE WE GET IT, TAKE IT OF US! If you find it hard to walk, after our PC ‘battles’ Jimmy…Its because one leg is now longer than the other!..”Nudge, nudge, wink, wink, know what I mean, know what I mean.” Gotta’ go Jimmy…The OAP needs a supplement under Gillard….Carefl with that leg Jimmy: best buy a built up heel, less trouble than having the lengthened one surgically shortened!…Its been fun, have to go Vale — Jimmy.

  • 46
    Spike
    Posted Thursday, 14 February 2013 at 6:13 pm | Permalink

    Jimmy+ robo: later this + early next month. The ‘boys’+ I are doing: DRUGS [gotcharobo] in sport, feminism, ‘feminazis’ + the gender employment favoring females, IMBALANCE: teaching, banks, Telstra, receptionists, ABC radio commentators + hospitals..Guys/blokes: Spike won’t be my ‘tag’, my OAP mates have PC + they’re better spellers than me. Some are handicapped too: Jimmy. We’re considering doing ‘stuff’ OPPOSING taxpayer funded abortions!..BET you pseudo intellectuals don’t ‘suss’ us till we TELLYOU!

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