Isn’t it funny how some once staunch left-wing union men suddenly forget their past when they are preselected to run as Labor candidates in an election?

Tony ‘Skipper’ Austin, the Labor Party candidate for the newly created bayside seat of Oodgeroo, is the perfect example.

In his candidate profile on the ALP website Skipper is described as one-time bank teller who moved into the workplace health and safety field and is now working as a representative of The Services Union, aka The Worst Union in Australia.

Now for a start Skipper is not really just a representative of The Worst Union in Australia, he is actually a Union Organiser. There’s nothing wrong with that is there? So why doesn’t he just come out and say “I’m a Union Official who helps average Australians to get a better deal at work”? What’s he afraid of? Where did the old maxim union loud, union proud disappear to?

Maybe it sunk down to the bottom of the Brisbane River at DP World at Fisherman’s Island, where like Johnny in the Bon Jovi song Skipper used to work on the docks, as a wharfie. Until he went off to work as a union official for the MUA, Australia’s second most militant union, although members of the union might argue with that and say that they make the CFMEU look like pussycats when they get a head of striking steam up.


Tony ‘Skipper’ Austin back when he used to proudly wear the MUA badge

Perhaps I’m being a bit harsh suggesting that poor old Skipper is deliberately concealing his militant past for fear of scaring the voting punters living down by seaside on the edge of Moreton Bay. Maybe he simply forgot the 20 years or more that he worked first as a wharfie and then later as the Assistant Secretary of the MUA.

After all working for The Worst Union in Australia under the ‘leadership’ of The Lawyer Who Couldn’t Cut It In Private Practice does tend to turn you brain dead. If you need any proof just take a Captain Cook at the Bovver Boy and I’m sure you’ll be immediately convinced, although to be fair those who’ve known that bloke for a while reckon he was always a dim witted, woman abusing bigot and an absolute f*ckwit to boot.

Setting amnesia aside though, doesn’t Labor boast that they are the party of openness, accountability, transparency and integrity?

C’mon skipper, jump on board!