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Edmund Burke
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On Target

22 May 1987. Thought for the Week: "Our aim is to gain control of the two great treasure houses on which the West depends…the energy treasure house of the Persian Gulf and the mineral treasure house of Central and Southern Africa"
Soviet Leader, Leonid Brezhnev, in 1973

FIJIAN FUMBLES

"The harsh political reality, assessed from Canberra, is that the Fijian establishment is determined to regain the power it lost at the election to the narrow Indian majority." - Paul Kelly, in The Australian, May 18th.

Amid all the clouded reports and obvious conflict of opinions that hover over the Fijian political crisis, there are some pertinent home truths that can be clearly seen. Firstly, there is no argument that the "political" crisis is really a "racial" crisis. If you like, the political crisis is racially based. Three cheers, yet again, for the multicultural society Hooray. Readers will recall details of the ejection of many Asians from the Republic of Madagascar. Here again, the local indigenes are rebelling against the economic stranglehold of the Asians on trade and the economy. The same thing happened in Uganda: Idi Amin expelled thousands of Asians from Uganda some years ago.

The Multicultural Society does not work any better in Asia than it does in Western (European) societies. Take a look at the present bloodshed in Sri Lanka (formerly Ceylon). The Tamils in the North are involved in armed conflict with the Singhalese in the South of that Island. Their languages and cultures are different. Very many of those being expelled from Vietnam are Chinese ethnics who are disliked in Vietnam. The same goes in Indonesia; Chinese have been expelled and generally are disliked. Yes there is Singapore, where Chinese, Indians, and indigenous Malays appear to be living in reasonable harmony, but it has not always been so, and different circumstances obtain there: Singapore (was) and Hong Kong (still is) the creation of highly experienced British colonialism thus providing a more resilient social and economic base. However, there are definitely racial tensions in Singapore, - less so in Hong Kong, which is to revert to Chinese rule in a few years. Peking will not allow any racial tensions. Peking takes precious few foreigners as immigrants; if any at all. We know that.

The Fijian crisis may eventually be solved via the actions, influence of the Governor General of Fiji, with whom, we are led to believe by newspaper reports, the Queen is in constant contact. The judges of Fiji have sworn allegiance to the Governor General the representative of the Queen, Head of the Commonwealth. We have seen reports that Colonel Rabuka, the leader of the present coup in Fiji, wants the Governor General to swear in a "rebel" Cabinet, to give it legitimacy. So the Governor General's role is central.

The Hawke Government is really in a quandary over Fiji as the major regional power, Australia must be seen to be acting decisively in one way or another to help bring the crisis to a satisfactory conclusion. The same goes, perhaps to a lesser extent, for New Zealand. The Governor General could be the pivot on which the whole question may be resolved. Readers may remember the key role of the Governor General in the Grenada crisis, in 1983. We highlight the role of the Governor General in political crises: this role is a great stabilising force.

Once again the Socialist politicians in Australia, who have sworn by their allegiance to Fabian Socialism to abolish the monarchy, are not averse to using the monarchy when it suits them. Last week, in On Target, we instanced an appeal to the Governor of Tasmania, by a socialist politician, to intervene in the "replacement senator" crisis in that State.

Finally, the Fijian crisis demonstrates the fragility of this part of the world: "our" part of the world! We don't know how the crisis will be resolved, hopefully, in the near future. We think we'll be Lucky this time: it isn't a Communist inspired coup as almost succeeded in Indonesia back in 1965, when General Nasution cheated almost certain death, and was able to alert the loyal military forces. Next time, there could be a Communist backed coup in the South Pacific, with no Governor General to save the day; and a powerful Communist military/ naval base not far from our own shores.


BROTHER KEATING'S FISHING NET

"There is something fishy going on. The few crumbs Mr. Keating tossed to the market last week in the mini Budget have become bait which it has swallowed hook, line and sinker. Interest rates are tumbling so fast they defy all known natural laws." - David Potts in The Australian, May 18th.

Mr. Potts, we think, put his finger on the pulse of the mini-Budget "... Don't forget, the whole point of it was to please our international creditors..." Yes, indeed. Mr. Keating has a deft hand for the pea and thimble trick. The taxpayers, of Australia are being slugged still further, in that Telecom etc. will now pay sales tax, meaning more expensive phone calls, postal services, etc. Some Medicare rebates reduced; the taxpayer slugged yet again.

Restraint, everywhere restraint: but no restraint for the politicians. What a great racket to be in. Ridiculous salaries; all manner of perks; and indexed to inflation. No restraints for the pollies, brothers and sisters!

Mr. Keating has assured the overseas "money boys" that their dough is safe in Oz. On with the external debt; who cares?! There is a Seminar on in Melbourne Town as we write these lines, at which many "establishment" personalities, including the boss of the Westpac Bank (a Mr. "Nobby" Clark), Mr. Kenneth Davidson, the well-known economics journalist; with Brother Keating as the star - will laud the mini Budget. Brother Keating is riding high; Brother Hawke has his tail up: everything is as nice as pie. It seems poor John Howard can only call for more and more productivity". His suburban lawyer's mind can't encompass anything more than that. The world is awash with goods that cannot be sold. Australian farmers can't sell enough of their produce on international markets now; what is the use of producing still more? So it appears to be "on with the New International Economic Order". Full steam ahead.

David Potts firmly suggests that the Reserve Bank of Australia has come to the Keating Party and is financing the lower interest rates, which the taxpayers of Oz must pay for, eventually. But the N.I.E.O. political programme is the important wagon to get behind. After Australia's rural base has been undermined, then Australia's industrial base will receive international "attention". A shrewd guess is that Mr. Holmes a Court, or someone like him, will have the backing of the international banks. Mr. Holmes a Court says that he can attract $10 Billion dollars in credits to takeover B.H.P. And then, our shrewd guess is that steel production will be phased out: we shall become dependent upon the giant steel mills of Asia, processing the iron ore from Oz. This suits the international money powers: just a handful of giant producer combines to finance; backed by trusted, obedient governments - prior to World Government. Neat and tidy; beautifully efficient. Men, women, and children?? What's that got to do with it, silly?


THE PERVERSION OF FUNCTION

"The Victorian Public Service has developed a bloated bureaucracy of super managers at the expense of service to its clients, according to a former senior officer of the service." The Age, (Melbourne)... May 18th.

If this is so in the Victorian Public Service, how greater must it be so in the Commonwealth Public Service? The thrust of Professor Lois Bryson' s argument is that bureaucracies have become "ends in themselves" at the expense of their proper functions. She instances the Department of Community Services, where "systems development, report writing, and paper work were at the expense of action". We all know that bureaucracy is of the Devil. If anything is wrong; if public or parliamentary criticism cannot be ignored - then "call for a report", and make sure that no one cops the blame. By the time the report is tabled, nearly everyone will have forgotten about the original complaint, anyway.

Nothing like a Report, or even a Commission of Enquiry, to let the steam out of a situation, and prevent a pressure build up. What to do about it? No use fiddling around with the bureaucracy; it is self-perpetuating; in the nature of things.

What then? A reversal of policy is the only thing. Functions must be decentralised back into as many non-governmental bodies as possible: to local government, and then to private hands. There must be a retreat from government. Taxpayers are kept so short of purchasing power via the various forms of taxation, and inflation, that they cannot provide services for themselves, and their families. Government finance economic policy forces the individual into the arms of Big Brother.


BRIEF COMMENT

We heard via A.B.C. News (nothing in print media, as yet) that a major church is to appoint a (presumably, suitably trained) cleric to liaise with other clerics of the same denomination with respect to AIDS. The news report we heard had it that the appointed cleric is to convince brother clerics that AIDS is not the "scourge of God" for sodomites and drug "injectors". Well, he might as well convince his brother clerics that 2+2=7. God will not be mocked. If the so-called exponents of the Moral Law (if clerics believe in the Moral Law these days) ignore their Christian teachings (what ARE they taught these days?) - then they cannot complain that those who should compromise their flocks abandon them and their (now) parody of what their church once was.
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