The MUA snagged a prize from the ACTU for a film entry describing is a little known story of the global campaign against apartheid: how a small band of maritime workers, led by key leaders and activists of the Seaman's Union of Australia, cut off the oil to the racist regime in South Africa.
The competition called for professional and amateur film makers to create an original digital film of no more than 5 minutes duration on the theme of “My story of unions is…”Read more
|[Picture: The Boss: “I hope you’re listening, Tony Abbott!”]|
It's easy to be cynical about Bruce Springsteen, the multi-millionaire jetsetting rock star performing songs about the everyday struggles of working people.
After all, this is a man whose nickname is The Boss, and whose retinue includes not only the other 17 musicians and singers on stage, but a mini-army of roadies, technicians and all sorts of support staff.
Springsteen is as much a businessman and an employer as he is a musician, and his lifestyle today, with its 154-hectare farm and houses in Beverley Hills and Florida, is as far removed from his humble New Jersey upbringing as it is possible to be.
It’s easy to be cynical, and we live in cynical times.
Rupert Lockwood was many things in his lifetime, variously a journalist, editor, author, pamphleteer, orator, broadcaster, historian. He was also at various times controversial, vilified, and respected. From 1939 to 1969, he was one of the best known members of the Communist Party of Australia.
During the Cold War, Lockwood was a central figure in the Royal Commission on Espionage, 1954-55, the media, ASIO, and the Menzies government doing their utmost to portray him as a spy.
Cahill has spent many years putting Lockwood’s story together, and depicts a significant and courageous journalist. His account ranges from Lockwood’s early training in the rural press of Western Victoria in the 1920s, to the Melbourne Herald in the 1930s, to the labour movement press in the 1940s and onwards.
The story told by Cahill traverses the world, including the front lines of the Spanish Civil War where Lockwood was a correspondent. It is a story filled with drama, action, intrigue, spooks, ruling class perfidy, maritime history, and details never made public before.
The film, Abandoned, but not forgotten: the plight of Burma’s migrant fishers, has been awarded “Best labour film short of 2009” by the Geneva Labour Film Shorts Festival, which will take place on 16 June in Geneva, Switzerland.
The film exposes the brutal treatment of migrant workers from Burma employed in Thailand’s fishing industry and outlines the steps seafarers’ unions are taking to expose these crimes and help the workers win basic rights.
A list of the film line-up is on the festival’s website at: www.labourfilmshorts.org
Voices from the Ships, Australian Seafarers and their union, a history commissioned by the MUA, is now available from all branch union rooms.
The history, by Diane Kirkby, focuses on the last two decades of the union before its amalgamation with the Waterside Workers' Federation to become the Maritime Union of today.Read more