Australian retail billionaire Gerry Harvey has rightly been vilified for describing COVID-19 as an opportunity for profitmaking. But Harvey was just stating the facts: the pandemic has enabled his class to get even richer off the backs of the working class.
Zacharias Szumer is a Melbourne-based writer.
Agricultural bosses and their allies are accusing Australians of being work-shy as they face a post-pandemic labor shortage. But it’s low wages and abusive working conditions that make it hard for them to find workers. The solution is obvious: decent pay for decent work.
In the wake of the pandemic, Australian renters are once again facing the threat of mass evictions. The militant renters’ struggles of the Great Depression are an excellent model for the movement that’s taking shape today.
Victoria’s lockdown has provoked a self-styled rebellion that postures as defending freedom against the state premier, “Dictator” Dan Andrews. But once you scratch the plebian surface, the “movement” is led by right-wing activists and funded by Liberal Party money.
For almost a decade, people in three Melbourne local councils — Yarra, Darebin, and Moreland — have elected socialist councilors to represent them. By standing up to developers, neoliberal local government managers, and the federal government, Melbourne’s socialist councilors have not let them down.
The Labor Party in Australia speaks a progressive language on climate change that it rarely enacts in policy. Now, under cover of the health crisis, the Victorian branch is expanding deforestation projects and onshore gas exploration.
Following cataclysmic bushfires, Sydney has spent the last fortnight choked by poisonous smoke. While Prime Minister Scott Morrison pretends all is normal, construction and dock workers have refused to put business as usual above their health, and are walking off the job.