Manfred Cross

Interviewed by
Sue Yarrow
Dec 13 2010
Manfred Cross
Time Summary Keywords
00:00:05 Manfred Cross discusses joining the Labor Party. He notes that his father was a founding member of the Rainworth branch. He describes the party leadership at the time of his joining, and the early events that he remembers. He discusses the ongoing influence of Ned Hanlon on the trade union movement and on the party.
00:05:25 Manfred Cross describes his understanding of the 1957 Labor Party split. He describes the relationship between Gair and Bukowski and the contacts that each had. He notes the influence of the many industrial groups at the time of the split. Vincent Gair
00:08:36 Manfred Cross notes that the Masons had very little influence over the industrial groups at the time of the split. He goes on to note the influence of communism on trade unions at the time. Jack Egerton, unions
00:11:59 Manfred Cross discusses Vince Gair's lack of commitment to implement three weeks' annual leave due to the need to maintain employment. Vincent Gair
00:16:55 Manfred Cross discusses Vince Gair's expulsion from the Labor Party. He notes his own preference, and that of many others, to keep Gair. He also notes the large influence of Jack Egerton in expelling Gair. He notes the influence of the Gair expulsion on specific electorates, from South Brisbane to Windsor. Jack Egerton, Vincent Gair
00:22:49 Manfred Cross discusses what happened to party property and finances after the split. He notes that the Brisbane federal division came out of the split quite well.
00:25:01 Manfred Cross details what the branches considered were the issues surrounding the split. He discusses the important lessons for the Labor Party after the split. For him, he thinks that the party needed to respect its trade union roots because this was where the votes came from. He diverges to note the importance of Jack Schmella as state secretary in unifying the party.  unions
00:30:32 Manfred Cross discusses the national split between the AWU and the Labor Party in the late 1950s. He recalls Joe Bukowski talking to Jean Howie, which led to Bukowski being suspended as president.
00:33:50 Manfred Cross discusses the different styles of Milliner and Egerton as presidents of the Labor Party. He notes that Egerton provided an example of why not to have the same head of the party and head of the trade union movement. Bert Milliner, Jack Egerton, Qantas
00:37:38 Manfred Cross discusses the influence of social change in the 1960s and 1970s, and the Labor Party's response. He lists the leaders and secretaries that the party had throughout this period. Jack Duggan, Jack Egerton, Jack Houston, Percy Tucker, Tom Burns
00:42:57 Manfred Cross discusses the important issues for him at the time of his election to parliament in 1961. He details the communist issue and the key figures surrounding this in the Labor Party.
00:48:41 Manfred Cross discusses his experience of the social changes in 1960s and 1970s, these include the Vietnam War, the womens' movement and street marches.
00:52:48 Manfred Cross discusses the importance of national conferences for policy. He discusses his role in creating an Aboriginal policy for the party. Indigenous issues
00:55:58 Manfred Cross details the influence of the unions into the 1960s, in particular the influence of Neal Kane and the functions of QCE Inner Executive. unions
00:58:35 Manfred Cross discusses the opposition of the Labor Party to the Bjelke-Petersen Government. He recalls when Percy Tucker challenged Bjelke-Petersen to an election when the Labor Party were organisationally very deficient. Bjelke-Petersen Government 1968-87, Jack Duggan, Jack Houston, Percy Tucker, Tom Burns
01:02:13 Manfred Cross discusses the effectiveness of the Labor Party's opposition to Bjelke-Petersen. He notes the divisions within the party that caused problems. Bjelke-Petersen Government 1968-87, Tom Burns
01:04:44 Manfred Cross discusses the importance of the Queensland branch in federal elections in the early 1970s. He notes the difficulties with Queensland electoral boundaries. He goes on to list the Queensland Labor leaders until Goss. He recalls an experience with Wayne Goss.  Neville Warburton, Wayne Goss
01:08:23 Manfred Cross discusses the roots of the intervention by recalling December 1975 and grievances the that were emerging. He notes the attacks of Neal Kane on the leader Bill Hayden, and his own response to attack Neal Kane on television. He notes that what he and many others wanted was a more participatory and contemporary party. Bill Hayden
01:10:51 Manfred Cross notes that to win office you have to mirror the society in which you operate. He notes that for the party to succeed contemporary leadership was needed and Bill Hayden provided that. Bill Hayden, homosexuality
01:12:37 Interview ends. Listen also to an interview with Manfred Cross and Barbara Cross.