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13 August 1982. Thought for the Week: "No matter whose the lips that would speak, they must be free and ungagged. The community which dares not protect its humblest and most hated member in the free utterance of his opinions, no matter how false or hateful, is only a gang of slaves."
SALARY RISES FOR MPs
Jeremy Lee reports from Queensland
It seems Remuneration Tribunal judges
are tired of being criticised for sticking to guidelines established
by their Cabinet critics. Justice Terry Ludeke said (National
Times, Aug 1-7): "I find it contradictory for the Commonwealth
to be putting submissions in the terms I have referred to
and urging upon me maximum restraint, when it is difficult
to see the application of that policy to the Commonwealth's
An editorial in The Australian (Aug. 4th) pointed out: "The cost of salaries and allowances for the Prime Minister's staff has jumped by almost 50 percent in the past year, to $759,025 a year. This includes the addition of four more people, some of who are being paid as 'consultants' so that they are not held to normal public service pay scales ... Mr. Fraser is fond of lecturing others on how they should tighten their belts. He should set an example in his own office."
It is doubtful if Mr. Fraser saw the Editorial. He was on his way to China. No doubt thousands of taxpayers will be comforted by the thought that as the good ship Australia is torpedoed by the Fraser Government's financial policies, one group of Australians - politicians and public servants - will be able to afford comfortable lifeboats.
ARE ABORIGINES SO UNLUCKY?
With so many clerics and activists pleading the cause of Australian Aborigines, few know just what benefits they currently enjoy. When the Maralinga Lands in South Australia are shortly handed over to Aborigines, 10.19 percent of Australia's land mass will have been set aside for Aboriginal people, made up as follows: 513,948 square kilometres freehold; 54,967 sq. kil. leasehold; 213,767 sq. kil. in reserves; and 691 sq. kil. in missions. This works out at 4.7 square kilometres for every full and part Aboriginal man, woman and child!
Although much of this huge area of land is barred to other Australians - in some cases with big penalties for entering all Aborigines are entitled to own property, live, work and profit in all parts of Australia. Government financial assistance for Aborigines (State and Federal) exceeds $1,500 per head, or over $6,000 for the average family of four. That's much higher than the per capita income in all the African countries recently visited by Mr. Whitlam and the radical Aboriginal delegation.
Strangely enough, the Aboriginal population seems to be climbing faster than anywhere else in the world. Census figures are as Follows:
Aboriginals and Torres Strait Islanders
Compare these figures with average world population growth between 1970 and 1980, which averaged 1.73% annually.
Since there is no legal definition of the vital question, "Who is an Aboriginal?" could it be that a "whole heap o' people" are climbing on a political bandwagon?
Special Issue and Project of Electors' Voice
Now on our presses is the extra special issue of Electors' Voice dealing specifically with Aboriginal Land Rights, the massive benefits being now received by Aborigines, which puts them in a privileged class of their own, AND the organised eruption of revolutionary activity planned to coincide in Australia with the Brisbane Commonwealth Games in September.
We had a call shortly before we wrote these lines, from a professional man, with many contacts in the academic world, especially in the fields of Law and Economics, who informs us that many of his professional colleagues, whom he knows to be Communists, have suddenly mysteriously left Melbourne, and have taken up temporary residence in Brisbane!
We now urge that actionists gear up for another massive distribution of this very special issue of EIectors' Voice to alert fellow Australians to the immediate peril just ahead. Place your orders immediately; and the prices are $1.50 for ten copies, $5.00 for 50, $8.00 for 100, $35.00 for 500, $60.00 for 1000 (one thousand). Order from your nearest League office.
Listening to the Sunday morning session
of A.B.C. radio, "From the British Weeklies", we were startled
to hear a most penetrating report on the military action between
Israel and the P.L.O. in Lebanon. We normally are not impressed
with the views of "The Economist" (U.K.), but this
time "The Economist" was spot on, in our view. The
report was to the effect that to fully understand the Zionists,
and their objectives, and Mr. Menachein Begin, and those like
him, one had to have a thorough grasp of the Old Testament!
Incidentally, veteran current affairs columnist, Douglas Wilkie, in The Sun (Melbourne) August 9th, also makes reference to the Old Testament, thus indicating that he, also, "knows the score". Mr. Wilkie observes in his column that probably the best that can be expected from the Beirut horror is that the Palestinian moderates may be able to take over from the P.L.O. hardliners, and that the former may be ready to negotiate with Israel. He thinks that the fighting will continue for a while. Then, he observes: "Much must depend on how soon Mr. Begin's Old Testament wrath (our emphasis) can be finally translated into magnanimity if not by Begin himself, by some younger Israeli leader less obsessed by memories of another 'Final Solution'.
Former Labor frontbencher, Mr. Fred Daly, in his column in Sunday Press (Melbourne) August 8th, spills a few more beans about C .H.0.G.M., which (with tongue in cheek) he maintains stand for "Colossal Holiday On Government Money). It cost the taxpayers $18 million, only 50% over the estimate of $12 million. The beer, spirits, wine and food, in Melbourne alone, cost $165,000, and "the mind boggles at the cost of providing security for our lucky guests." With us, he laments - "nobody seems to remember much about the biggest show of the year." Melbournians, particularly motorists, will not quickly forget the considerable inconvenience to which citizens were put to make way for Malcolm Fraser's Farce. Doctors driving to their patients, and women about to give birth, were delayed by the various security restrictions imposed at the time. Mr. Daly makes his final point well: "For a Prime Minister who talks of austerity, Malcolm Fraser certainly lets his head go when there is a chance to lead the parade......"
Heritage At Stake
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