A recent slew of opinion pieces in The Australian declares that union involvement in politics is somehow inappropriate or even passé; but be careful what you wish for. History shows what happens when such notions have free rein, from the Polish Communists’ failed suppression of the Solidarity movement, to the recent edicts of Fiji’s military dictators.
Labour rights are inherently political. Despite decades of legislation aimed at fragmenting and disempowering the workforce, unions remain a mass movement founded on freedom of association. Attempts to stifle the natural political expression of this fundamental right are anti-democratic.