In the era of out-sourcing, contract labour, fragmented supply chains, and flexible industrial relations, federal Labor has decided against reinstating compulsory student unionism if it wins the federal election. Quell horreur!
David Farrar and his NZ VSMers will be very impressed and, no doubt, on the hunt for a National or Act backbencher to front a NZ campaign for the 2008 general election.
Interestingly, Australia Student Unions are linked to parliamentary parties far more strongly than in NZ. Despite the ranting of the VSM movement in NZ, there isn't the cross over between campus and parliament in NZ that there is here. Sure there's a few on both sides of the house who're former presidents, and more than a few staff too, but I can only think of two recent senior student politicians who're high up in NZ Labour. Compared with Australia, where it seems every other recent parliamentarian (either state or federal) is either an ex-staffer or an ex-student pollie. For Australian Labor, losing the strong link to the universities will impact on their recruitment, possibly not a bad thing?
4 days ago