25 August 1972. Thought for the Week: "A people may want a free government. But, if from carelessness, cowardice or want of public spirit, they are unequal to the exertions necessary for preserving it; if they will not fight for it when attacked; if they can be induced to lay their liberties at the feet of those with enough power to subvert their institutions - then they are unfit for liberty - and they are unlikely to enjoy it very long."
John Stewart Mill, the great English libertarian.
THE GREAT BUDGET BRIBE
"The Prime Minister, Mr. McMahon and his colleagues are pinning a tremendous amount of faith in the ability of a Budget with a strong voter appeal to rehabilitate the Government's electoral prospects. How this objective is to be reconciled with uncontrolled inflation, which the Treasurer, Mr. Snedden, a year ago saw as the 'over-riding' economic problem of the country, is what Cabinet has to decide this week. Clearly, however, political objectives will be paramount. The Government's badly shaken rank and file will settle for nothing less in the present political climate. It is why the Budget to be announced four weeks from tomorrow will be the most generous the Australian electorate has seen in many years." -Alan Ramsey in The Australian, July 17th.
Mr. Ramsey predicted correctly. The short-term political objective of surviving has taken precedence over all other considerations. The Snedden-McMahon 1972 Budget provides striking evidence of the capacity of politicians to eat their own words when faced with the threat of being thrown on to the political scrap heap in the near future. League of Rights actionists will recall the stereotyped letters they received from Mr. Snedden, Mr. McMahon and their Federal Members following the 1970 and 1971 Budgets. They will remember, for example, the remarkable argument that increased tax on petrol would "in the long run" contribute to defeating inflation!
As we predicted, the policies of Mr.
Snedden and his Treasury "advisers" did not end inflation,
but continued it, even though a large unemployment problem
was created and the general economy depressed. Even in the
face of strong criticism from those who could by no stretch
of the imagination be called radical or "dangerous", like
The League of Rights! - Treasurer Snedden stubbornly persisted
with his claim that his policies were "working". But inflation
continued and unemployment figures did not improve.
Both before and after the Budget Mr. Snedden denied that the Budget was directed to winning votes. He claimed that it was a responsible Budget. One of the regrettable truths concerning a disintegrating Civilisation is that little authority of any kind remains. The first rule of modern politics is dishonesty. Mr. Snedden and his colleagues will rationalise that they are merely being "practical". But the truth is that many of them cynically hope that sufficient of the electors will be so pleased to be left with a little more of their own money that they will forget what has been done and said in the past. And, of course, it is hoped that they will not ask any difficult questions about what will happen next year as continuing inflation produces a new wave of crises!
Under present Fabian-Socialist finance-economic policies these crises are as certain as the sunrise. Unless these policies, generating an increasing burden of debt, are drastically modified, crisis will follow crisis irrespective of which set of politicians are at Canberra after the coming Federal Elections.
The 1972 Federal Budget completely ignores
the basic causes of inflation. Heavy interest burdens remain.
Inflationary indirect taxation continues. There is no suggestion
of reducing the crushing burden of debt on Local Government.
Secondary industry gets no tax relief. The financial credit
required to finance Mr. Snedden's deficit will be created
in the usual manner by the Central Bank as an increase in
public debt upon which the taxpayers will pay interest.
Continuing inflation is the most destructive force working against the free, stable society in favour of the Marxist type of society, in which increasing compulsion of the individual is inevitable. If inflation were halted and reversed, as it could be by dealing with causes instead of effects, the further disintegration of Civilisation could be avoided and the way cleared for regeneration.
We are not going to try to predict whether or not the great Budget Bribe will be accepted by sufficient electors to keep the present Liberal-Country Party Coalition in office. But we know that an increasing number of electors are starting to see through the party political game as it is now played and are going to ask all candidates for a firm written contract of specific policy agreements before voting. As the Government will be making much of the belated reduction in income tax, its candidates might be asked to give a firm assurance that at the very least the new overall level of all taxation will not be increased during the next Parliament!
WHAT ABOUT MR. ANTHONY'S NEW RURAL BANK?
"Canberra - The Prime Minister. Mr. McMahon, and Deputy Prime Minister, Mr. Anthony, appeared divided at the weekend over the proposed federal rural bank. Mr. Anthony told farmers on Saturday that the bank was one of the main Budget proposals for them . . . But Mr. McMahon made it clear in Melbourne last night that the bank was far from under way."- Bill Norman in The Sun, Melbourne, August 21st.
As the Budget offers no real relief to rural citizens, it is not surprising that the Federal Country Party leaders are attempting to "blow up" the proposal to use the $20 million Budget allocation for long-term rural finance to set up a national rural bank. Mr. Sinclair, Minister for Primary Industries, was the first to publicise the proposal, in an address to the NSW Graziers Association on August 16th. The Australian of August 17th quotes Mr. Sinclair as saying, that it was "one of the most forward-thinking steps in terms of budgetary initiatives the Commonwealth has taken this year."
The League of Rights has been the driving force behind the growing campaign to offer some relief to the rural community by the re-negotiation of their present debts on to a long-term basis and at a much lower rate of interest. This is one of the policy proposals by the League's specialist division, The Institute of Economic Democracy, which the Attorney General, Senator Greenwood, has claimed to be "dangerous".
While we have no doubt that some Members
of the Country Party desperately wish to do something about
the growing pressure for long-term, low-interest rural finance,
they obviously do not have the Prime Minister's full-hearted
support. In a TV interview in Melbourne on August 20th, Mr.
McMahon said "at the moment it is fair to say we do not know
how to overcome the problems associated with the rural bank.
It is not on at present."
There is, of course, no need to establish another bank at all. The Commonwealth Bank could be directed to make available the necessary long-term credits for the cost of administration, which would not be in excess of 2 percent interest. If a new rural bank is established and seeks to operate on credits merely provided by other institutions, including, according to one suggestion, the merchant banks, it will prove to be one more disaster for the rural community.
Farmers and graziers should take a long, hard look at what is proposed by Country Party leaders before getting too excited. Members of the rural community should also beware of another election gimmick being proposed by Mr. Anthony. Believe it or not, the Federal Country Party leader is seriously suggesting that decentralisation be made a major election issue. Decentralisation has remained in the Federal Country Party's policy statement during the whole of the time the Country Party has been a member of the Federal Coalition. Figures provided by the Bureau of Agricultural Economics reveal that in the five years to December 1971, 83,000 people have left their rural occupations, 1,300 have abandoned their properties, and 50,000 have left country towns in Australia. The number of rural holdings has been reduced from 245,000 to 198,000.
86 percent of Australia's population now lives in five capital cities. Electors in the rural electorates might well insist that Mr. Anthony and his colleagues stop all the double-talk and give some written assurances before the Federal Elections. Might we take this opportunity of suggesting to readers who are members of the Country Party that if they work and vote for the return of Federal Country Party Members without obtaining assurances that these Members will do much better than they have to date, then they cannot escape their share of the responsibility for a continuation of the crises they have already suffered.
PRIMARY INDUSTRY MINISTER JOINS THE ANTI-LEAGUE SMEARERS
"Two groups of 'fascist fossils' were fostering anti-Jewish feeling, the Primary Industry Minister, Mr. Sinclair, said yesterday. He said the two groups - the League of Rights and the Nazi Party of Australia - were closely linked . . . Mr. Sinclair told the Wesley Church forum in Melbourne that Australia should be wary of the organisations."- The Sun. Melbourne, August 21st.
It was the late Sir Wilfrid Kent-Hughes who once observed to us that even the best of politicians had a difficult time avoiding the corroding influences of Canberra. While we have watched this corroding influence on many politicians, we must confess to some astonishment that Mr. Ian Sinclair should feel that he needs to get down to the same level as some of the political scum who have been attempting to smear The Australian League of Rights. Mr. Sinclair's allegation that the Nazi Party and the League of Rights are "closely linked" is a foul falsehood. In fact it is the vilest smear yet made against the Australian League of Rights by a Government Member. We can only speculate on why Mr. Sinclair should use the pulpit at Wesley Church to make allegations, which he knows to be completely false. We have no doubt that our many Country Party readers will be even more revolted than we are concerning the gutter behaviour of one of their Federal Cabinet Ministers.
As the "anti-Semitic" smear is one of the principal weapons being used in the growing national campaign to destroy the League of Rights, it is appropriate to publish what an expert on Communist subversion, Mr. Patrick Walsh, former undercover agent with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, said in a statement in January, 1964:
"Anti-Semitism' is a key weapon in the Communist arsenal . . . its most effective and deadly weapon used to smear patriots, freeze the timid with fear, and generally divert attention away from Communist activities. And on occasion, where there is no 'anti-Semitism' it has to be created. And it seems that the Rockwells and David Stanley's, with no significant following, but with great publicity and incredible co-operation from the news media are created, built up and used for these purposes. A hideous ogre is created, and then publicly 'associated' with any patriot whom the Reds wish to destroy."
In charging an alleged close link between the Nazi Party and The Australian League of Rights, Mr. Sinclair also follows the lead of Mr. Mike Richard, whose smear articles in The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald early this year have now been republished in brochure form and are being distributed by some anonymous group in different rural communities throughout Australia. One of Mr. Richard's "authorities" is Mr. Dennis Eisenburg, author of The Re-Emergence of Fascism.
In what can only be described as an hilarious
chapter, "From Quebec to Melbourne, The Advocates of Violence
are Re-Grouping", Eisenberg charges that Mr. Eric Butler is
in direct contact with "the Hungarian Fascist Movement", then
goes on to describe Quebec terrorists as Fascists when in
fact it has been proved conclusively that they are Communists.
Then comes the fantastic statement that not far from the streets
of Melbourne where Jews are allegedly being attacked "there
is a bookshop filled with Nazi books and festooned with swastikas
and pictures of Adolph Hitler and the man who owns this bookshop
is Eric Butler."
COMING HISTORIC SEMINARWhat other organisation in Australia could stage a National Seminar on the controversial subjects of Southern Africa, race, and associated subjects? Starting at 2 p.m. sharp on Saturday, September 23, Mr. Eric Butler, National Director of The Australian League of Rights, will open a Seminar at which three outstanding authorities, Mr. Carlos de Lemos, Dr. Walter Henderson, and Mr. Ivor Benson, will present papers at the Isabel Younger Ross Hall, Carlton, Melbourne. Entrance donation: $1.00.
ON TARGET BULLETIN
Statements by Banking Authorities on the Creation of Money
The following is from the MacMillan Commission report on Finance and Industry presented to the British Parliament in June 1931:
"It is not unnatural to think of the deposits of a bank as being created by the public, through the deposit of cash representing either savings or amounts which are not for the time being required to meet expenditure. But the bulk of the deposits arise out of the action of the banks themselves, for by granting loans, allowing money to be drawn on overdraft, or purchasing securities, a bank creates credit in its books, which is the equivalent of a deposit. "A simple illustration, in which it will be convenient to assume that all banking is concentrated in one bank, will make this clear."
"On Target" is published by the Australian League of Rights, Box 1052. G.P.O. Melbourne 3001.