Sunday, October 23, 2005

Industrial Relations Propaganda

I was reading Phil Gome's new home at Larvatus Prodeo this morning and he written an article pricing the current Australian Government's Industrial Relations advertising blitz $15 million dollars in two weeks..

That's a lot of moolah. Estimates are that it will blow out to $100 million all up, which works out to around $5 for every man, woman and child. A lot of dough, which is esentially political propaganda. It seems as if the Government needs to convince the population at large that those on the lower end of the scale are underpaid.

I'll get a photo of the current batch of enthralling ads a little later today. Again, it is using the tired but effective Howard spin of "Stronger and more secure". I don't think this one is going to be as easy as throwing $100 million to convince the hearts, minds and actions of Australians at large. But there again it could be as Phil Gomes puts it a "blunt instrument" used to bludgeon the Australian opinion to one of complete apathy over time. Familiarity breeds contempt.

Then there's this from the Australian Council of Trade Unions website which is a transcipt from one of the poor buggers appearing the advertising blitz. Apparently he thought he was doing a "Worksafe training video or something". Turns out he was paid $13 for his efforts and actors were in the majority of the shoot, he was bullshitted by his employer regarding the purpose of the filming. And turns out the employer ended up with a tidy little earner for his role in the Howard propaganda campaign.

Which is is how I kinda feel how this IR legislation is going to play out.The guys on the shop floor getting pittance and the owners of the business... cashing in.

EDIT UPDATE: I was listening to Chris and Craig on Triple J today and they came to the same conclusion. Apparently as of today 26th of October the Work Choices propaganda budget has blown out to $40 million, letting us know that this Industrial Relations legislation isn't really going to change anything. So the point is as they said, "Why spend 40 million telling us everything is still going to be the same?".

I smell a rat!

Here's the interview from the Nine Networks a current affair. Actors were paid up to $6000 for the filming of the Industrial Relations propaganda ads, this poor schmuck got $13 and hour for his efforts. Welcome to the brave new world of the Australian Workplace Agreement(AWA).

CAMERON - it annoys me the image is used without knowing what for as such - when it's going to be on TV every five minutes, every ad break, it's pretty full on
FROM ADS - "with work choices"
Voice Over - He's the star of a multi million dollar ad campaign... but Cameron Meadows says he had no idea..
FROM ADS - to find out the facts..
REPORTER - what did the boss tell you about all this?
CAMERON - he told me to get the work shop ready because there is a crew coming in to film stuff for work safe - but it isn't even, it's not work safe is it ?
FROM ADS - it's called workchoices
CAMERON - mates start calling saying you are on TV and I didn't even know it was going on to TV ..
REPORTER - so you had no idea it was going to be on television?
CAMERON - no not at all
REPORTER - did you know it was part of a government advertising campaign?
CAMERON - Nothing to do with the government - I thought it was a work safe video or something, yeah
VOICE OVER - These scenes were filmed at Calbah Industries in Melbourne where, until last week, Cameron worked as a welder.
CAMERON - four of us from work are in that shot there all the rest are actors
REPORTER - they are all actors?
CAMERON - they're all actors
REPORTER - and did you get paid?
CAMERON - 13 bucks I think I got for it
REPORTER - 13 bucks?
REPORTER - how do you work that out?
CAMERON - 2 hours overtime and then take tax out I ended up getting 13 bucks clear
REPORTER - 13 dollars for ..
CAMERON - For my face being all over the telly yeah..
REPORTER - how do you feel about it?
CAMERON - Oh a bit used
CHESTER - which ad ?
REPORTER - the ad?
CHESTER - the ads on telly, I've hardly seen any of them
VOICE OVER - Chester Baker is the boss at Calbah..
REPORTER - these guys thought it was work safety video ?
CHESTER - I thought it was a work safety video
DARREN - I just thought the government was full of it..
FROM AD - and for people working under awards your wages and specified conditions like penalty rates and long service leave will be protected by law
DARREN - we didn't get penalty rates, didn't get leave loading
VOICE OVER - Darren Byrne quit Calbah a month ago...
DARREN - and the award states you are entitled to penalty rates and I was full time there for 6 months and every hour I worked over 36 hours was just a flat rate
CAMERON - I've been there for nearly 3 years, just under 3 years, penalty rates, what are penalty rates ?
REPORTER - do you pay penalty rates?
CHESTER - I pay with my guys an agreed wage
VOICE OVER - Chester Baker says he pays his workers above the award ... but he won't say how much he was paid for the filming of the commercial..
CHESTER - if it's a good cause shouldn't we be doing this sort of thing for free
REPORTER - you didn't do it for free
CHESTER - no but shouldn't we
REPORTER - you did not do it for free
CHESTER - no I didn't, I didn't
DARREN -the boss cleaned up
REPORTER - do you know how much he got?
DARREN - I have heard a rumour
REPORTER - come on mate what is the rumour?
DARREN - apparently he got 2 and a half for location and another 5 grand on top of that
REPORTER - why did you leave the company?
CAMERON - nothing to do with the company at all really I just got offered a better position, more money and overtime rates, ha.


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