Contract Labour:
The Challenge To Australian Workers And Our National Identity.
A Speech To Members Of One Nation


Dr. Jim Saleam, May 10 2005

The following is an edited version of a speech given to members of the One Nation party at Blacktown on May 10.

Fellow patriots,

I am pleased to speak here again. I believe that my scheduled last appearance was in a bit of disarray and caused some debate amongst patriots. I apologise for that. Nothing I would have said then, or say now, is in any way targeted at members of ONP so as to cause them to disavow their current loyalty. Quite the contrary/

For the record, I believe in the unity at a practical level of all patriotic people particularly around crucial issues. Contract labour either guest worker or refugee - is one of those issues.

The issue of contract labour is vital to the survival of our working people and their families, to our genuine trades union structures and thus to part of our heritage and identity. It is too important not to be the subject of united struggle.

What is contract labour? I would offer you a simple working definition. Contract labour is body hire labour, with minimum standards, hire and fire labour , organised by a company or a community to provide work in a place to a set arrangement. This is the nineteenth century again in Australia.

Stories Of Struggle:

(a) On January 19, a small group of picketers got together outside the offices of the Construction Forestry Mining and Engineering Union (CFMEU) in Wentworth Avenue.

There were some ten volunteers that day. The event was organised by the Australia First and the Patriotic Youth League. We intended to say that contract labour was a threat to Aussie workers’ rights and that the CFMEU, dominated as it is by internationalist leaders, would sell out once confronted. We intended to distribute a leaflet to the lunch-time passers-by.

Unfortunately for us, our planned presence there became known and the Socialist Alliance, the same people who protested against Pauline Hanson, mobilised against us. About 25 of these idiots turned up to shout ‘racists’, ‘fascists’ and so on. They were supported by some union leaders who established the very point we were making. The CFMEU leadership is riddled with extreme-leftists who think that by allowing in masses of labour and by opening the borders (the very programme of Australian capitalism), they are hastening the day of the real change – even ‘revolution’. But we stood our ground and were widely reported on radio and in the Left press.

So, we targeted CFMEU’s leaders, the first of several traitor union leaderships.. The fight has now begun for a new workers’ movement.

(b) On January 22 I addressed a rally in Newcastle’s Islington Park. You had Stuart McBeth here a few months back from the PYL. He was there. This rally involved Sudanese refugee influx into Newcastle,.

But contract labour was on the agenda. The Sudanese are now privileged employees at Steggles Chickens. With arranged jobs and arranged housing and certain social support additives from misguided churches and groups, a new docile labour force has arrived.

I can tell you in greater detail that Newcastle went wild over this rally. There were editorials, radio, TV and other protests. The Mayor called for a counter-demo on the rally site, but thought better of being associated with Socialist Alliance games. Even they thought better of direct confrontation. So each organised separate far away protests while we spoke direct to people. And there were ordinary working Novocastrians who wanted to hear what we had to say! I was privileged to speak that day. I believe a declaration of war has been made against Official Newcastle for us to defend our jobs and our way of life. The city’s agenda: to make the place a welcome city for refugees and overseas students for money – and to change the city’s European monoculture. Yes, they say it!

What am I saying? The issue of cheap alien labour is now on the political agenda. It has been placed there. Before I give you a view on what this issue can mean for us patriots and what it really does signify to ordinary Australians, I would explain to you how this struggle began.

 

How It Began?

The sneaks, and they are sneaks, started back in 2002 at Young in country NSW. This was the great city of the Lambing Flat riots of 1861 when European miners drove Chinese labour from the fields. Jack Lang said the Lambing Flat affair was of as great an importance in New South Wales as Eureka Stockade was in Victoria, in establishing a free labour movement. For profit, the Burrangong Meat Works employed over fifty Afghans despite community opposition. A campaign was started there which won national publicity. It must have hurt a lot of people. I found myself smeared by the Sydney Morning Herald. And worse. A docu-drama or teleplay was done on the Afghans in Young. It was said in the script that people should not listen to that "Jim Saleam from Sydney"; he was a "neo-nazi and a thug". Lovely and on SBS. So much for free speech or the fair right of reply.

The struggle then moved to Griffith in October 2002 where Steggles Chickens owned by Mr. Bartter employed up to 100 contracted refugees on temporary visas. A furore erupted in the local press over a mass leaflet distributed in the town by nationalists. Bartter is a real case. In 1998, he shared a platform with Pauline Hanson and Graeme Campbell to oppose cheap imports of fruit. He changed sides for dollars.

The falsely named ‘Rural Australians For Refugees’ (Uniting Church ministers, social workers, expatriate trendy teachers etc) helped the so-called refugees out with cheap homes, clothes etc. The struggle has gone on silently in the district ever since. Today, we are ready for a revival of the campaign.

Telling The Story From The Daily Press

I have brought with me several clippings from the press which I think are instructive and which I will précis.

1. Papua New Guinea labour features in two articles ‘Australia Under Pressure To Throw Open Its’ Labour Market’ (Sydney Morning Herald, December 11-12) and ‘Jobs Ban On Workers ‘Racist’’ (Sun Herald 27 February). Here we see the threat of a revolving door of 100000 Papuan – New Guinean workers annually in Australia all over the north. Mr. Charlie Lynn, a senior Liberal MP raged and frothed to have it so. This is the return of the black-birding of the old days in Queensland.

2. Griffith looms big again in ‘Labouring In The Shadows’ (Sydney Morning Herald, April 28). We learn that the number of work visas will be increased this year The newspaper promotes the propaganda line that illegals are the "backbone" of many industries. The solution?: let more in and legalise those already here!

3. Excuses for the anti-Australian labour practises are being manufactured in the press. ‘Guest Workers Prop Up The Economy (The Weekend Australian, March 5-6) and ‘Fruit Rots As Workers Pick And Choose’ (The Weekend Australia, March 5-6). Here we learn that our so-healthy-and-booming-economy really needs these underpaid workers! Why? Is there something wrong? It seems we are now hooked on cheap labour because us successful upwardly mobile people don’t want these jobs. Really? Or is it that with an economy geared for export certain industries in remote areas are lagging in the ability to attract workers – so the cheap fix is contract labour? Are we being softened up for really open borders?

4. Con tricks abound as one company learned when its’ lovely cheap labourers quit. ‘Albany Boss ‘Let Down’ As Afghans Quit’. (The West Australian April 2 2005). Once the Afghans became permanent residents they moved on. Of course, the Fletcher International abattoir will be looking for new workers – and will get them.

5. A Kilcoy leaflet issued in the name of Australia First shows that contract labour has spread to that city in country Queensland. The Kilcoy Pastoral Company has employed refugee labour. We wonder why?! People’s opposition is building.

From other reports: 10,000 Chinese to Sunraysia, to the Orde River. There will be Sudanese refugees spread throughout Australia from Hobart to Colac to Warnambool. Special businesses engage them There are 10,000 Iraqis in and around Shepparton up to the Murray. And now Dubbo.

As Keith Windshuttle put it years ago: Australia will be the biggest export platform in the world – and nothing else. As Ted Wheelwright said, Australia will be a market zone, an exporter of goods and services, with no national state or identity and a land cowed by cruel laws and a secret police.

It seems we are well on the way to a slave state.

What Does It Signify For Ordinary Australians?

Every lie: poor people, a chance, Aussies won’t work, propping up the economy, deregulation, helping our neighbours – are being used.

It means for ordinary people that:

A new class is being established with privileges we don’t have. They get access to certain employment and are slotted in.

They become a new pool for permanent residency and immigration rights.

These contract workers cheapen the price of labour.

They undermine our industrial organisations.

Since our families need incomes to survive the new labour force cuts into our ability to be Australians in our own land. Not all Aussies are upwardly mobile yuppies. They will be pushed to the wall.

As Henry Lawson put: The lie the men who tell us that want here is a stranger and that misery’s unknown". We’ll find out and if we don’t fight we lose.

 

What Can Patriots Do With This Issue?

For some years now, let us be brutally honest, the Australian nationalist, patriotic and freedom movements have been in crisis.

You folks here are from One Nation. You’ve seen some people fall away, silly splits, declining votes. True? I am from Australia First. We saw some people want to shut the party down so they could set up ridiculous lobby groups to persuade politicians to do the right thing. Others have had their problems too.

For our part, we decided to get out of this rut.

The contract labour issue does this:

It makes the politics of immigration a bread and butter issue as it was for our forefathers who founded the great labour movement.

It makes the campaign one which addresses issues of our cultural heritage and history. These things are undermined by the new immigrants in every way.

It draws out the enemies of Australian labour and the Australian identity. It shows that capitalism is the enemy and that it uses every false economic and moralistic argument to get in the dollars.

It gives us a direct access route to the Australian labour movement and Australian working people of all classes, city and country. Any Australian party must become a party of the great Australian working class in the city and the working people in the countryside.

This issue allows united struggle of Australian patriots regardless of their party affiliation.

This issue highlights the free trade syphilis imposed upon us, the GATS, the GATT. It is part of it. It is a nationalist issue of Australian independence. It is therefore a cutting edge issue that opens the gamut of our concerns.

I believe that right now we need to get our collective act together; here’s the chance.

In conclusion:

My conclusion to you arises from a summing of the facts.

It should be very clear to you that I am saying that this whole matter is a threat to our future. It challenges our Identity and independence.

But my real conclusion is a political one – for us. What sort of party?

100 years or so ago, our forefathers set up a party to fight these sort of issues. It was the Labour Party.

They did not set up a party that was only to contest elections. This party was a machine with unions in support, cultural and historical societies, ideological journals, newspapers and a continuous activism.

That was the way the fight was won then and given the repressive ways of the present how it will be won again.

History repeats on us with the problem. Let it be so with the solution.


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