Ian McLean

Interviewed by
Sue Yarrow
Jul 02 2011
Ian McLean
Time Summary Keywords
00:00:00 Ian McLean discusses his early working life for the Postmaster General's Department, including joining the ATEA. He discusses his work for the PMG and with the union. He notes that he joined the Labor Party during the Vietnam War and became the secretary of the Sandgate branch. unions
00:01:44 Ian McLean recalls what the Labor Party was like when he first joined. He reflects on the continued relevance of the 1957 split in the Labor Party. He states that the Inner Executive had strong control over the party. Denis Murphy, Tom Burns, unions
00:03:53 Ian McLean discusses the DLP and the Labor Party's electoral difficulties. DLP, NCC
00:04:28 Ian McLean considers the impact of the 1975 split in the Labor Party and the impact this had on the group in control. He states they were concerned about Catholics, women and academics. Bill D'Arcy, Catholics, unions
00:06:11 Ian McLean discusses the influence of Jack Egerton on the Queensland branch. DLP, Harry Hauenschild, Jack Egerton, Mt Isa, unions
00:08:03 Ian McLean discusses his involvement in the social movements of the 1960s and 1970s. George Georges
00:09:04 Ian McLean reflects on the electoral position of the Labor Party federally and in Queensland. He discusses the involvement of the Queensland branch in the major social movements of the time. He discusses the internal tensions in the Queensland branch. Bill Hayden, gerrymander, Gough Whitlam, Harry Hauenschild, Joe Harris, Joh Bjelke-Petersen, media, Tom Burns
00:13:33 Ian McLean discusses his hopes for the Labor Party in the period before intervention. He speaks of the desire to broaden the party's membership to become more inclusive. Gailene Harrison, unions, women
00:14:59 Ian McLean reflects on internal conflict in the Labor Party and consequences for the union movement. He highlights the decision to try to limit the impact on the TLC and the parliamentary wing. Ed Casey, Harry Hauenschild, Kevin Hooper, Trades and Labor Council, unions
00:17:00 Ian McLean discusses the recognition of the need for intervention. He delves into the control the Inner Executive, the Trades Hall group, exercised over preselections and the conference. He tells of the growing frustration amongst branch members. He discusses the expansion of the Inner Executive but states the reform did not go far enough. He emphasises the role of unions in the push for intervention. Bill D'Arcy, Denis Murphy, Joy Ardill, Terry Hampson
00:19:25 Ian McLean discusses union support for intervention. Joe Harris, unions
00:20:05 Ian McLean discusses the formation of the Socialist Left faction of the Labor Party. He discusses the importance of the 1979 conference. factions, George Georges, unions, women
00:21:42 Ian McLean discusses his break from union work from 1972-79 and thus his lack of involvement in early meetings of the reform group. He notes that in 1979 he re-engaged with both the union and the Labor Party.
00:22:39 Ian McLean discusses the lead up to intervention. He describes party expulsions and the Rockhampton state conference. factions
00:23:33 Ian McLean notes the Socialist Left's support for women in the Labor Party. Alice Cavanagh, Anne Warner, Sue Yarrow
00:24:05 Ian McLean discusses the issues that led to the intervention. He notes the lack of internal democracy in the Queensland branch of the party.
00:25:49 Ian McLean notes the first phase of federal intervention and suggests why it was limited in its goals. factions, unions
00:27:07 Ian McLean notes the links between unions and party branches. He notes the lack of ideological difference between the Socialist Left and the Old Guard. factions, unions
00:30:26 Ian McLean reflects on the Rockhampton conference. Gailene Harrison, George Georges, Harry Hauenschild
00:32:36 Ian McLean discusses the importance of union support for intervention in the context of a letter the ATEA wrote in support of intervention. Bill Hayden, Malcolm Fraser, unions
00:34:10 Ian McLean discusses the key factors that led to the federal intervention. He reflects on the personal effects of intervention and subsequent court case. Denis Murphy, Manfred Cross
00:37:24 Ian McLean discusses his hopes for intervention, including the broadening of the party base and the reform of the party administrative and dispute resolution structures. women
00:39:11 Ian McLean discusses the 1980 election for the state secretary position, which he lost to Peter Beattie. He notes Beattie's support for the initiatives being proposed by the left, including affirmative action and proportional representation. factions, Peter Beattie
00:41:14 Ian McLean notes the importance of party unity in improving the party's electoral position. Denis Murphy, factions, Manfred Cross, Peter Beattie, Trades and Labor Council, unions
00:44:28 Ian McLean discusses the emergence of the factional system. He discusses the links between the left and unions and the role of the union movement in the modern Labor Party. Denis Murphy, factions, George Georges, Joh Bjelke-Petersen, Manfred Cross, Peter Beattie, SEQEB dispute, unions
00:51:12 Ian McLean discusses the links between unions and factions and role of officials in determining associations.  Wilf Ardill
00:52:05 Ian McLean discusses the 1980 Townsville conference where he was elected party president. Denis Murphy, Wayne Swan
00:54:21 Ian McLean notes the major industrial disputes of the late 1970s and the 1980s. He discusses the importance of the SEQEB dispute in unifying the union movement and the Labor Party. Joh Bjelke-Petersen, Malcolm Fraser, SEQEB dispute, unions
00:58:49 Ian McLean notes the role of the union movement in the party before and after intervention. unions
01:00:03 Ian McLean reflects on the reaffiliation of the AWU and their role in the party. unions
01:01:11 Ian McLean describes the alliance between the AWU and Socialist Left. Errol Hodder, Peter Beattie, unions
01:03:12 Ian McLean discusses the early aims of the Socialist Left. He discusses public ownership and the peace movement. George Georges
01:04:16 Ian McLean discusses his hopes to regenerate the level of union involvement in the Labor Party. Anna Bligh, unions
01:07:39 Ian McLean reflects on the importance of intervention and argues that intervention contributed to Labor's return to government in both Queensland and federal levels.
01:09:22 Ian McLean considers the lessons for the Labor Party from the intervention. He then reflects on the role of the media and the place of the Labor Party in the mass movement. George Georges, Kevin Rudd, media, Peter Beattie
01:12:03 Ian McLean discusses the changing class associations of the Labor Party.
01:16:09 Ian McLean states that intervention delivered the desired outcomes, most importantly returning Labor to power. He also argues that the downside of the Labor companies means the party does not have to rely on unions and branches for funding which has an impact on policies. Anna Bligh, campaign strategy, Clive Palmer, George Georges, unions
01:20:52 Interview ends.