16 September 1983. Thought for the Week: "...Which are more popular, novels written by animated fountain pens that turn out love stories by the gross, or the great classics of our English speech? The idea that the voice of the people is the voice of God is mostly nonsense The fact is that in any realm where judgment calls for spiritual finesse, only the minority who are above the average are right. And because a man is always tempted to live down to the average of his social group, a searching test of character is involved in ones relationship with this dead level of public opinion and practice..."
Harry Emerson Fosdick, in Twelve Tests of Character (1923)
BRETTON WOODS REVISITED
Mr. Eric Butler reports from New Zealand,
where he is conducting a nationwide lecture tour under the
auspices of the New Zealand League of Rights
Prime Minister Muldoon echoes the carefully fostered view that the only way out of the international financial crisis is to "strengthen" the International Monetary Fund, which means, amongst other things, that the debts created by the International Bankers become the responsibility of the International Monetary Fund, which means that the taxpayers of the members of the Fund are then responsible. Mr. Muldoon is calling for an international taxing system, this to help service the international debt. This means a further lowering of living standards in countries like New Zealand in keeping with the views of the strategists working to create the New International Economic Order.
Time does tend to blur the memory, so it is understandable large numbers of New Zealanders, particularly amongst the younger generation, are surprised when told that although New Zealand was represented at the Bretton Woods conference held in New Hampshire, U.S.A., in 1944, both National and labor governments resisted signing the Bretton Woods agreement for over 15 years following the Second World War.
Apart from representatives of banking interests, the only group in New Zealand strongly supporting the Bretton Woods agreement was the Communists. This was understandable as the principal architect of the Bretton Woods proposals, including the establishment of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, was the top Soviet agent in the United States Treasury, Mr. Harry Dexter White. White was ably assisted by his good friend, John Maynard Keynes, the British economist who promoted the concept of deficit budgets and controlled inflation". Controlling inflation means, of course, controlling people.
Under a policy of expanding debt it is
mathematically impossible to prevent financial costs and prices
from rising. Any short term slowing of the inflation rate
can only be achieved by bankrupting large numbers of business
organisations. While Mr. Muldoon expresses concern about the
international financial crisis, his policies intensify New
Zealand's debt burden. There has been a 30 percent increase
in the public debt over one year, an increase of $4,351 million.
The nation's international debt has increased by 40 percent
in one year, with the result that the total overseas debt
now stands at $2,500 for every man, woman and child in New
Mr. Muldoon has not explained why a nation in increasing its assets should go progressively into deeper debt. New Zealand remains one of those small nations, with sufficient natural resources and productive capacity, which if its people can resist the offer to repeat the treachery of another Bretton Woods agreement, can give a lead in showing how to regenerate a disintegrating Civilisation. Mr. Muldoon's policies are like those of the alcoholic who believes that the answer to his problem is to increase his alcohol consumption. Escalation of the debt burden must result in increasing disasters.
JEREMY LEE REPORTS FROM QUEENSLAND
Having just concluded 30-odd meetings right round Queensland in just over a month, I can report that one question now predominates in the minds of Queenslanders - 'What does it matter who wins the State election?' Many are now grasping that the huge powers given to Canberra - right against the spirit of the Constitution - as a result of the Tasmanian Dams decision, make the State election a non-issue - unless a State Government emerges which will seize the initiative in leading a national campaign to regain the Constitution for the people.
So far no party or leader has given any indication that such a move will be initiated. There has been plenty of 'tut-tutting' about the Dams decision. But not concrete plan of action has been put forward. However, I believe this is the 'gut' issue in Queensland. I have been amazed how many are talking about the danger of international treaties. Much of this has been due to the excellent work of Mrs. Jackie Butler and her organisation "Women Who Want to be Women". Mrs. Butler has been campaigning continuously and has had large rallies wherever she has spoken. Although concentrating on one treaty - that dealing with the so-called elimination of discrimination against women - her material inevitably spills over into the whole question of the 1,500 international treaties to which Australia is already a signatory, and the future of the Constitution.
The League's Brisbane seminar - which I expected to be smaller than usual included Mrs. Butler and veteran constitutional authority Arthur Chresby, and was packed out. There were many new faces, and the audience was a young one. My meetings around Queensland were generally excellent, with heavy literature sales, and heavy sales of tapes. The marvelous work of the League's tape librarian, Ian McDonald, means that touring League speakers in Queensland now have stocks of their current address at each meeting. Sales were so heavy that I had run out of tapes in Mt. Isa, where we had a very good meeting with a number of men from "underground" present. The fast work of a key Mt. Isa supporter meant I had fresh stocks for the second half of the tour.
At one North Coast meeting the local President of the Labor Party attempted to suggest that there was "nothing unconstitutional" about the Tasmanian decision, as the High Court had authority to interpret the Constitution as it willed. He refused to give any validity to the "original intent", or spirit of the Constitution. His argument - so like the Pharisees of Christ's' day, whose obsession was the letter of the law - foundered when asked whether he would support the right of Australians to have a say on any changes. So much for "democratic socialist". It is clear the A.L.P. will not support any move to give the Australian people a say in constitutional changes - and if the non-Labor parties have the wit to pick this up, they're on a winner.
RED OVER GREEN
A feature article in The Bulletin
(September 6, 1983) dealt with the training being given to
'non-violent' demonstrators such as those currently operating
at Roxby Downs in South Australia:
The blockade organisers have attempted to enlist every blockader in some training ... the two men who spoke to The Bulletin said that most of the leaders seemed to be veterans of other campaigns ... After the lectures the class split into "affinity groups" of about ten members each for the rest of the training ... The Roxby handbook describes affinity groups this way: "Affinity groups will form the backbone of the blockade so all people at the blockade must be in affinity groups; this includes service people and members of the co-ordinating group. When affinity groups decide to undertake an action, which could lead to arrest, it is also important to decide on one or two members who will not be arrested. These people will be the arrest watchers. These people will also be responsible for making appropriate arrangements about the possessions of arrested blockaders."
The handbook also has instructions on
how to deal with the media and the police. On the media it
says: "The media will not be allowed to film or record any
meetings whilst at the blockade. Of course, they will be informed
of all decisions, but their presence at meetings could be
counter productive..." Counter productive? Could it be they
are afraid the public just might find out what's really going
BRIEF COMMENTThe Catholic Archbishop of Sydney, the Most Reverend Edward Clancy, strongly criticises Senator Susan Ryan's "Sex Discrimination Bill": he says it should be rewritten in consultation with Church bodies. A report by theologians condemned the Bill: (Catholic Moral Theology Association) - stating that it should not be approached on political party lines but on a basis of individual conscience. We, ourselves, are encouraged that a leader of a Christian Church should speak out strongly AGAINST moral wrongness in the political sphere. Political decisions are moral decisions: they are either right or wrong according to the yardstick of Christian morality. Would that more Christian leaders were so fired.
THREE CHEERS FOR THE AUSTRALIAN LEAGUE OF RIGHTS
These words were written in the Editorial
of the Maryborough-Hervey Bay Chronicle (September
1st). It commences:
Inevitably, there was a letter to the
Editor of the above newspaper to condemn the League of Rights;
and no prizes for guessing that it was from a Christian clergyman.
The following letter appeared in Maryborough-Hervey Bay Chronicle
(September 5th) above the name of Rev. Father Michael Scragg,
Parish Priest, BIGGENDEN (Qld.):
Mr. Jeremy Lee, National Secretary of
The Institute of Economic Democracy, a Division of the Australian
League of Rights, replied on behalf of the League:
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