These Questions Are On Fire


Jim Casey has worked for over 10 years as an operational firefighter in NSW and the ACT. A lifelong community activist, unionist and socialist, he’s currently NSW State Secretary of the Fire Brigade Employees’ Union and is committed to a labour movement that is member driven, not an adjunct of the ALP.

This summer Jim and the FBEU have been working with Greenpeace to alert politicians to the relationship between climate policy and bushfires. Watch Jim explain the risks here.

You’re safe as long as you keep Jim away from whiny singer-songwriters, although, if you’re in strife, you might be able to placate him with a Reschs Draught.

1. What’s the headline you’d most like to see on the front page of a daily newspaper?
Eat The Rich Scheme A Huge Success!

2. If you could oblige everyone in Australia to click through to one webpage, which one would it be?

3. What is one thing you’ve always wondered about economics but were too afraid to ask?
How is it possible that pretty much the majority of humanity buys into this whole market thing? It’s a social construct, not something encoded in our DNA.

4. When did you last eat a meat pie?
Last Sunday. Which is really butch. But it was a fancy one outside the Museum of Contemporary Art. Which isn’t so butch.

5. What’s the oldest thing in your fridge?
A scary bottle of Sheaf stout.

6. Has anyone got a climate change policy you agree with? Who?

7. When was the first time you changed your mind on something important?
I was 14 years old and it was on Papal Infallibility. Once that goes the whole Catholic edifice crumbles like a pack of cards.

8. What’s the household chore you relish the most?
I don’t mind cleaning the bathroom. Having said that, I don’t do it very often.

9. What sort of shoes do you wear to work?
Engineers’ boots. Or thongs, if I can get away with it.

10. What campaigning tactic do you most want to see in this year’s federal election?
Debates between the candidates.

11. Nominate a new public holiday.
Ned Kelly Day.

12. If you could go tomorrow anywhere in Australia for a holiday, where would you go?
Flinders Island.

13. What’s your favourite YouTube video?
The sleepwalking dog.

14. If you were given $5 million, what would you spend it on?
I’d buy an old warehouse space, strip it, outfit it as a social centre with printing facilities and tech stuff and workshop space, with a house to live in on the roof. And then I’d try to run a printing biz out of there to cover costs and let it be used as an organising space as well.

15. Who would you most like to sit next to on a long haul flight?
Tilda Swinton.

16. What trivia topic will you beat everyone else in the pub to the buzzer on?
Pirate trivia, especially concerning the Barbary Corsairs.

17. Complete this sentence. I’d like to hear Kevin Rudd say "…"
Something genuinely believable. I just don’t believe anything he says. He is like a robot with some subtle programming deficiencies — at the beginning he sounds okay but as time goes on, you hear more and more of these jarring notes that make you wonder if he is human at all.

18. Name someone in Australian public life who deserves a promotion.
Can I turn that around a bit? Rather than one individual who deserves a promotion, I think that there are millions of us who need to start promoting ourselves back into public life — through the labour movement, social movements, local politics, whatever.

19. In 10 words or less, summarise your food philosophy.
Pig, cow, potato, tabasco, guilt, guilt, guilt.

20. What question should we ask our next interviewee?
What’s your favourite monster? And why?

BONUS QUESTION from our last interviewee:

"Dance like no one is watching. Sing like no one is listening. Love like you’ve never been hurt. And vote like … "
Vote with no illusions in parliamentary democracy. And support the ALP "as the rope supports the hanged man".

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