13 April 1995. Thought for the Week: "While it is true that Christians, facing the gathering storm of materialistic atheism, have been huddling together under the banner of the lowest common denominator of their religion, a vague, indulgent do-goodism, which appears to be tolerant of everything except any effective resistance to aggressive and unrepentant vice and wrong thinking, it is by now painfully obvious that this cannot save our civilisation from disaster. Nevertheless, there are still enough Christians, if they would only apprise themselves of what their religion is, and its implications, to restore the continuity of its progress towards human freedom, and to resist the ever mounting onslaught of the modern forms of paganism and barbarism upon it."
Dr. Geoffrey Dobbs
IS GLOOM AND DOOM NECESSARY?
by Eric D. Butler
As demonstrated by the recent Barings collapse, and traumatic events in Japan, with headline, which states that 'NEW RECESSION FEAR HITS JAPAN' a worldwide collapse of the international financial system could develop almost, overnight. But Australia is one of the best-placed nations in the world to survive such a collapse.
To paint an extreme scenario, a major earthquake could blow Japan off the map, precipitating the collapse of a financial system on a global scale, with the international investors threatening to withdraw their investments unless Australia accepted the type of draconian measures for which the International Monetary Fund is notorious. But the reality would be that in spite of the damage done to the Australian economy, in the event of a major crisis the Australian people are physically capable of feeding themselves, housing themselves, clothing themselves, and operating their industrial system. Self-survival would require that the Australian banking system be re-regulated and brought under the control of the elected representatives of the Australian people.
It is now becoming increasingly clear
to a growing number of people that the de-regulation of the
banking system has been a major disaster. No less an authority
than one of those who first recommended de-regulation, Dr.
Fred Argy, an economist who was at one time a member of the
Federal Treasury, now expresses doubts about the practical
consequences of financial de-regulation, stating that "the
truth is that financial markets" have become nothing but casinos,
the playthings of speculators.
Nothing is more important in Australia
at the present time than the generations of a grassroots educational
programme not only warning the people of what is now threatening,
but of outlining a constructive political and economic programme
to insulate themselves against what may be happening internationally.
As the famous Chinese sage Confucius is reported to have said,
"When struck by a thunderbolt it is too late to consult the
book of dates."
THE CORRUPTION OF REPRESENTATIVE GOVERNMENT
by David Thompson
It is almost certain that retiring Chief Justice Mason's interview broadcast on the A.B.C. Four Corners programme will set alarm bells ringing among constitutional experts and academics. Sir Anthony Mason offered the view that the protection of individual rights was better left to judges than to Parliament, and that in areas where Parliament does not act, the Court itself is obliged to act. As a principle this seriously undermines the sovereignty of the Parliament, and elevates the Court's Judges to unelected policy makers who escape personal responsibility for their actions.
It is now undeniable that the High Court has undermined the ability of State Parliaments to govern in the best interests of their constituents, weakening the federation in the Commonwealth's favour. The Western Australian secession movement is increasingly being bolstered by the view that the "indissoluble" Federal Commonwealth has already been dissolved in practice by the transfer of State powers to Canberra, with the High Court merely directing the traffic.
In a devastating address, the 91-year-old Sir Garfield Barwick demanded a return to the authority of Parliament, implying that political parties, prime ministers with presidential pretensions and even the High Court is undermining democratic government. On the High Court's new position of finding "implied rights" in the Constitution, such as the right " to free political speech, Sir Garfield commented that such decisions have "reduced the sovereignty of Parliament, withdrawn from the community its heretofore democratic control of its liberties and vested it in an unelected and unrepresentative judiciary".
On political parties, Sir Garfield said: "If a parliamentary party is allowed by any means to compel those members of Parliament who are also members of the party to vote according to the prescription of the executive government, the role of Parliament and its relation to the executive as designed in parliamentary democracy is reversed....The impact therefore of the party system is that the Parliament is virtually turned into a rubber stamp in the hands of the executive. Thus while the party system may have provided some stability in government, it has on the other hand drastically altered the relationship of the Parliament to the executive and the control of its affairs by the community itself...."
Barwick also pointed out that the United States Constitution, with its Bill of Rights entrenched, was "founded on a distrust of the community and of the Congress to whom unlimited sovereignty was not given". The fact that the community's rights were written down thus placed their application in the hands of the judiciary, denying the community the democratic control of its affairs through the Congress.
The American Supreme Court, like our High Court, is unelected, and therefore the judges escape personal responsibility for their decisions. If the Australian High Court is to continue in an interventionist, "activist" manner, increasing pressure for election of judges is the inescapable result. The best alternative is to restore the High Court to its constitutional role of interpreting the Constitution.
SELF-GOVERNMENT IMPAIREDWhile the government's ban on political advertising was certainly wrong, it should have been overturned by the Members of Parliament, under pressure from constituents, and free of party or executive control rather than by an interventionist High Court. Where the High Court's interventionist decisions respond more to United Nations conventions than common law principles, the ability of Australians to govern themselves is further impaired. Colin Howard, former Professor of Law and one of the sounder constitutional authorities, argues that the use of treaties - which the High Court sanctioned - means, "we are increasingly being delivered into the hands of incompetent foreigners for short-term political advantage". If this is the result of an interventionist High Court on the American model, it must be abandoned.
INCREASING DEMANDS OF ABORIGINAL 'INDUSTRY'
Further evidence that the demands of "Aboriginal" groups are of a revolutionary nature is to be found in the fact that, like the revolutionary "green" agenda, the demands can never be finally met, but as each position is conceded by the majority, minority demands continue to escalate. The highly contentious concession that native title does, in fact, exist in Australian law has not satisfied those who pursue the Aboriginal agenda.
In a radical package of reforms essential
to achieve reconciliation between Aborigines and other Australians,
the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission is making
a further 113 demands. So outrageous are some of the new demands
that even Prime Minister Keating blanched when accepting the
recommendations. It is claimed that respect for Aboriginal
culture can only occur if a new date for Australia Day is
agreed, and new laws are passed to recognise indigenous flags.
In addition, seats should be reserved in parliament for indigenous
representatives as in New Zealand, where Maori seats still
If such demands are ever met, this would provide the setting for even more revolutionary demands, like the establishment of separate black sovereign states. Other ominous demands made by A.T.S.I.C. in the report include a treaty between indigenous and other Australians and a form of land tax to fund compensation for Aborigines alleged to have been forcibly removed from their families. Following the High Court Mabo ruling, and then the Commonwealth Native Title Act, the Commonwealth is slowly gaining a stranglehold on administration of land tenure at the expense of the States. Such control would be essential if the Commonwealth wanted to levy a land tax for whatever purpose.
While Mr. Bob Carr can command a tenuous majority in the N.S.W. Legislative Assembly, it is almost certain that he has been denied control of the Legislative Council. As we go to press, counting for the Council continues, but we note that reports indicate that Mr. John Tingle, of the Shooters' Party, has an excellent chance of winning a seat, and Mr. Edwin Woodger, of Australians Against Further Immigration, still has some chance of gaining a seat. Such an amazing result would certainly confirm our view that there is electoral "heat" in the immigration and multicultural issues.
* * * * * * *
It is significant that the High Court's decision upholding the Commonwealth Native Title Act under challenge from W.A. has been welcomed by none other than Mr. Henry P. Schapper. Both Mr. Schapper and Dr. H.C. (Nuggett) Coombs, following their deep influence on economic policy to the benefit of the Fabian movement, transferred their interest to Aboriginal land rights. Dr. Coombs, in championing the 'Aboriginal cause, called for a treaty between Aborigines and other Australians. Schapper, in a letter to a newspaper (West Australian, 21/3/95) describes the High Court decision upholding Native Title Act as "a proud, national and historic event". Both gentlemen have given significant comfort to the Fabian programme to fragment Australia.
* * * * * * * *
In today's Alice-in-Wonderland economics,
what was black yesterday becomes white tomorrow. Reducing
the unemployment figures was a major objective - at least
the "experts" and their political puppets claimed this. But
then the economy "took off' and before long there were frenzied
warnings that the economy was "overheating". In fact, it was
dangerously "on the boil', one of the main causes being the
activities of the building industry. Higher interest rates
We will not attempt to interpret this gobbledygook, but what it indicates is that the world's economies are at the mercy of complete idiots who would be at home at the Mad Hatter's Tea Party in Alice-in-Wonderland. The world's scientists and engineers are able to put men on the moon and bring them back again. But those directing the world's economies are unable to implement a financial policy, which ensures that the true purpose of an economy system is fulfilled: to provide goods and services to consumers at the rate they require them. If there are any economic "experts" who would like to break free from the black magic enslaving them, we recommend that they enrol for the League of Rights' Social Dynamics Seminar.
VICTORIAN SUPPORTERS PLEASE NOTE
(Melbourne Suburban Newspaper Spills
Some Beans) from Malvern-Prahran Leader, 5th April
Professor Ernst also attacked the government's
claim that lower prices are 'enshrined in legislation'. "'This
is simply not true. There is no legislation that guarantees
price reductions. Even the Government's open line has admitted
this. And after the year 2000, if full competition is introduced,
neither the Premier nor the Regulator-General, the industry
watchdog, will give a guarantee that prices will not rise"....Professor
Ernst says domestic consumers won't benefit from competition.
"Ordinary consumers will not invest in the required new meters,
which currently cost $1,000 each, for a few cents savings.
Low income earners, pensioners, tenants and others can't afford
them and working families will hardly sit at home monitoring
the half hour price of electricity to flick the switch and
save a few cents.'
FARM DEBTfrom The Maryborough District Advertiser (Victoria), March 31st
"One cannot doubt the sincerity of Bruce Reid, M.P., in calling for drought aid for Victorian farmers (MD.A. 24/3). In doing so he is doing his duty in representing his electors, many of whom are farmers or businessmen who rely on farmers' cash flow.
"We have the ludicrous situation that farm debt has risen to $17.8 billion to the middle of last year. As there are now only about 100,000 farmers in Australia that is an average debt of $178,500. IF they can get it at 10% interest, that is $17,850 the farm must earn before the farmer can start to pay for fuel, fertiliser, machinery repairs and his own wages.
With most banks charging a risk margin of 1.5% to 3.5%, the interest bill will be somewhat higher. Each rise of 1% in rates takes more food off the farmer's table.
"It is the debt, and the interest on that debt, that is more devastating than the drought. Given a fair go we can survive drought but not the debt. This debt has been built up in annual increments of 2.9% since 1980 for two purposes:
1) In response to the obnoxious advice 'to get big or get out'. This process was going on for decades before the phrase was coined but has seen the farm sector shrink by 150,000 in 40 years.
2) Carry on finance. When the gross farm income fails to meet all the costs of production, including the farmer's personal expenses, borrowings must be increased to stay in business. The farmer is, in effect, borrowing to pay the bank's impost on what he borrowed last year.
"Through all of this the best offer from economists and politicians is a Rural Adjustment Scheme designed to further decimate the farming community on the basis of 'getting out with dignity'. Where is the dignity when you have worked hard and lived frugally all your life, then have to take a handout to join the dole queue?
"If the Government agrees to drought relief in the form of an interest subsidy and then increase interest rates, they are doing no more than making a gift to the rapacious finance 'industry'. The farmer gets absolutely nothing.
"The politician or political grouping which devises an alternative policy that challenges the stranglehold the financial industry has will sweep the polls. Until then the outlook is bleak."
(Ron Fischer, Talbot, Victoria)
"On Target" is published by the Australian League of Rights, Box 1052. G.P.O. Melbourne 3001.