7 December 1973. Thought for the Week: "Our national life is ended as soon as it has lost the power of noble Anger. When it paints over and apologises for its criminalities, and endures its false weights and adulterated food, dares not decide practically between good and evil, and can neither honour the one nor smite the other, but sneers at the good as if it were hidden evil, and consoles the evil with pious sympathy, the end is come.
John Ruskin in The Queen of the Air
MR. AL GRASSBY'S INSULTING ATTACKS ON AUSTRALIAN HERITAGE
"I note your view that we should continue to use the national anthem of the United Kingdom, Great Britain and Northern Ireland as a kind of continued colonial anthem for our country. I must say to you that I do not agree at all. A country that has not even enough confidence in itself or pride in its own identity to have its own symbolism is hardly a nation at all every major poll in the last few years has indicated overwhelming support for an Australian National Anthem. It is also impertinent for a country that claims to be independent to continue to borrow someone else's property without even having asked if they are in favour of us doing so. It is not our national anthem to abolish and therefore the question of abolition does not arise." - The Hon. A. J. Grassby. M.P., Commonwealth Minister for Immigration, in a letter to Mr. Eric Butler, National Director of the Australian League of Rights, November 28th.
Mr. Grassby's comments provide further confirmation of his insulting attitude towards a national heritage still supported by a majority of Australian people. Mr. Grassby also indicates that he is rather weak on logic. If he insists that his logic is sound, then he clearly rejects the institution of the British Crown, the use of the Union Jack in the Australian flag, and much else, all of which Australians "continue to borrow" from the United Kingdom. If this is the case, then Mr. Grassby should openly proclaim himself as an anti-British Republican and face the inevitable electoral backlash.
In the early days of the Whitlam Government, some Labor Ministers made it clear that they had little time for the Crown. Even Prime Minister Whitlam expresses the view that it was not very relevant. And there was much talk about the necessity for a new flag in order to show that Australians were "freeing themselves from their colonial past." But the national campaign conducted by The Australian Heritage Society, a Division of The Australian League of Rights, provided overwhelming evidence that the great majority of Australians favour retention of the Grown and the Flag.
In spite of the tepid attitude of the media, the tremendous Sydney welcome for the Queen, and the special roar of applause which greeted Premier Sir Robert Askin's comment about "loyal subjects" at the Sydney Opera House opening resulted in the anti-Royalists at Canberra "getting the message". But they are still hopeful that they can carry through their campaign to impose a new National Anthem on the Australian people.
Prime Minister Whitlam's tactics in this campaign, endorsed by Mr. Grassby and those who share his views, are to by-pass the electors by a sampling only of public opinion on three songs, "God Save The Queen" not being included. Another tactic is to suggest that the present National Anthem be used only when the Queen is actually present in Australia. But even this procedure, according to Mr. Al Grassby, would be to continue "to borrow someone else's property"! Like Mr. Whitlam, Mr. Grassby does not want the Australian people to have any real say concerning a feature of their national heritage.
The type of choice offered is similar to Soviet "democracy" under which the Russians at election time have a "free choice" of electing Members of Parliament from amongst those candidates selected by the ruling Communist Party. If Mr. Grassby is so confident that "every major poll in the last few years has indicated overwhelming support for an Australian National Anthem" then he should have no hesitation in permitting "God Save The Queen" to be included in any vote by electors. Clearly Mr. Grassby does not trust the Australian people to have a say. But the Australian Heritage Society is determined that the people are going to have that say.
The Sydney Sun, which published the Heritage Society's recent full-page loyal welcome to the Queen, has also started to conduct its own campaign enabling people to have a genuine vote. There has been a tremendous response with voting four to one in favour of "God Save The Queen". Other papers are also taking up the campaign. and the results clearly show that while most Australians want a national song, they also want to retain an Anthem that is in fact a prayer, an open admission that God's authority should be accepted by those wishing for a free and stable society.
Mr. Grassby's latest contribution to what is in fact a subtle anti-British campaign was to announce in Ballarat, Victoria, on December 3rd, at the 119th anniversary of the Eureka Stockade, that the Eureka rebellion by the miners was "the cradle of Australian democracy". Mr. Grassby also proposed that December 3rd should be proclaimed as a national holiday. This will cheer the Communists, who have for years been attempting to elevate a comparatively minor incident in Australian history into one of great national significance.
Peter Lalor was a natural leader, but his subsequent political career in the Victorian Parliament, which we presume Mr. Grassby has studied, showed that he would be regarded by Mr. Grassby and his colleagues as a "right-wing extremist." Peter Lalor became Speaker of the Parliament under a Constitution that was already on its way back to Australia with the approval of Queen Victoria before the Eureka incident took place.
Vern, the German, and Carhoni the Italian, were radicals who left Europe in the wake of the l848 revolutionary uprisings. They made no contribution whatever to the development of constitutional democratic government in the Australian States. This development, along with all other political, legal and social developments, was rooted in the British stream of history. To talk about Eureka being the "cradle of Australian democracy" is nonsensical rubbish. It is an insult to all those who did ensure that the British heritage was continued in Australia.
Mr. Grassby said at Ballarat (The Age, Melbourne, of December 4th) that "We must encourage a recognition of our history, of the struggles of the past, so we can fit ourselves for the future." We suggest that Mr. Grassby take his own advice. He may then learn something about the real Australian heritage, and cease insulting those Australians who wish to preserve that heritage for their children and their grandchildren.
THE SECESSION THREAT AGAINST CANBERRA
". . .under federation we have been brainwashed into paying for our own chains." - Professor Webb, Geography Department at University of West Australia.
When Queensland Premier J. Bjelke-Petersen talked about the possibility of Queensland seceding from the Commonwealth, even some of his own Parliamentary colleagues thought this a little too much. Mr. Gough Whitlam compared the Queensland Premier with Rhodesia's Ian Smith. But the idea of secession has grown in both Queensland and West Australia as the design of the Canberra centralisers has become much clearer.
A W.A. State Rights Study Group has emerged with Professor Webb as one of its main spokesmen. The State Rights Study Group is campaigning for more independence for West Australia. Secession is being seriously proposed as a last-resort if other efforts fail to gain greater state independence. Professor Webb states that "We are getting the worst of both worlds - selling our products competitively on the world market, yet paying inflated values for imports, because of tariffs imposed to protect Eastern States' manufacturing interests."
Professor Webb believes that West Australia would be in a much better position as an independent nation. He points out that "With only eight percent of Australia's population, we are responsible for 19 percent of its primary exports, including minerals, wheat and wool. If we devoted the proceeds to our own welfare, we would be a very prosperous nation indeed.
This type of talk must be causing apoplexy amongst the planners at Canberra. Professor Webb is also calling for a restoration of monetary controls and taxing powers to the States. He also makes the realistic proposal that Senate Members be elected on State rather than party issues. It is our opinion that the Senate offers a real possibility of halting the centralist drive and of regenerating the Federal system. But the first step is for the Senate to be elected as a State House of Review. If the two States openly taking secession were to send State Senators, not party Senators, to Canberra, they would initiate a movement that would eventually make it unnecessary to consider secession.
THE SHADOWS ARE DEEPENING
"The dramatic November crash of Wall Street share prices might not have been as dramatic without the international oil crisis, but most American economists agree a price slide was inevitable. It's true that the Arab embargo on oil shipments to the U. S. triggered the rout... But the real cause of the plunge on Wall Street can be found in a few basic economic facts of life in America. - Harlow Unger from New York in The Age, Melbourne, December 4th.
The Arab's use of oil diplomacy, backed by the Soviet, is like pouring sand into a complex machine already in an advanced state of disintegration. Inflation was accelerating in the United States before the oil crisis arrived. Car sales were already dropping drastically. Housing sales had slumped.
Professor Lawrence Ritter of the finance
department of New York University had summarised the position
The British under Mr. Heath are in an
even worse position. The oil situation is not directly affecting
the United Kingdom as much as it is affecting the United States.
But the Heath policy of "controlled inflation" has brought
the nation to the point of collapse and possible revolution.
As we have consistently warned, so long as present financial
policies of increasing debt are adhered to, inflation is as
inevitable as the sunrise. Any attempt to halt it by credit
restrictions, heavier taxation, or wage freezes, results in
an explosive situation as wage-earners turn desperately to
strike action to gain increased wages. This has happened in
the United Kingdom where the miners at the moment simply refuse
to work overtime.
Commenting on Prime Minister Heath's approach to the prices and wages problem, Mr. Enoch Powell has caused another sensation by his statement that "One cannot but entertain fears for the mental and emotional stability of a head of government to whom such language can appear rational." While it may be true that Mr. Edward Heath, the man who has attempted to drive the British into a "United Europe which is also disintegrating under the pressure of finance-economic policies similar to those destroying every non-Communist nation, is not clear what he is doing. There is no doubt that the deepening crisis is being welcomed by those subversive groups who have said that it was only in times of great crises that the British would accept totalitarian planning.
A combination of oil shortages, petrol rationing at higher prices, and inflation is rapidly taking all the Common Market countries towards the same crisis being experienced in the United Kingdom. The way is being prepared for the integration of Western Europe into the Soviet Empire. And what of Australia?
In spite of the application of a more
restrictive credit policy, this applied as far back as April,
and the subsequent increase in interest rates to a new record
level, inflation has continued to increase with all its disastrous
consequences. Mr. Hawke's ACTU now advocates wage increases
which even if only partially granted, must force financial
costs, and consequently prices up at an accelerated rate.
The same Mr. Hawke who advocates higher wages is also advocating
higher taxation to curb inflation. As Mr. Hawke is alleged
to be an economist, we must presume that he realises that
higher wages require a further expansion of the money supply,
and that higher taxation means that a major portion of this
increased money supply would be taken by the Federal Government,
thus further strengthening its power to dictate to the States
and Municipal Government.
Like every other country, Australia is now moving towards the end of the road. Accelerating inflation means disaster. Attempts to curb inflation by restrictive financial policies also means disaster. Confucius said that it is no use running faster when you are on the wrong road. Cannot someone at Canberra see that If Australia is to be saved for freedom; a change of financial policy is required? Desperately.
BASIC FUND MOVES FORWARDVeteran N.S.W. supporter B.H.F. is an old-age pensioner. But he has sent a cheque for $200. He comments, "I feel that we are at the stage now where future donations may not be necessary, either because of enlightenment in high places, or a descent into the abyss." What an inspiration to us all. Thank you B.H.F. Over the last week 20 supporters advanced the Basic Fund by $780.70. The total now stands at $13,450.30.
"On Target" is published by the Australian League of Rights, Box 1052. G.P.O. Melbourne 3001.