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4 November 1988. Thought for the Week: "I do assure you, I do not desire to distrust my faithful and loving people. Let tyrants fear; I have always so behaved myself that, under God, I have placed my chiefest strength and safeguard in the loyal hearts and good will of my subjects; and, therefore, I am come amongst you as you see at this time . I know I have the body of a weak, feeble woman; but I have the heart and stomach of a king - and a King of England, too, and think foul scorn that Parma or Spain, or any prince of Europe, should dare to invade the borders of my realm; to which, rather than any dishonour should grow by me, I myself will be your general, judge, and rewarder."
Queen Elizabeth 1 to her army at Tilbury, 1588
LEAGUE OF RIGHTS NOW A 'DILEMMA'
"The Editorial in The Australian (18/10) dramatically highlights (but unfortunately ignores) the dilemma (our emphasis.... O.T.) which organisations such as the League of Rights present in a democracy." - Alan Griffiths, M.H.R., Chairman, Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs, Canberra. The above extract is taken from a letter from Mr. Griffiths, published in The Weekend Australian (October 29-30).
There is nothing new in his letter, only the old stuff, re-mixed. We are (or rather, The Australian readers) - are intended to be impressed by the number of Federal parliamentarians, of ALL parties, who condemn the League of Rights. To us, all this means is that the moral rot now infects ALL parties. We have the old, old, Line: - viz., "The Parliament has an obligation and responsibility to investigate and expose to full public scrutiny the aims and activities of any organisation which by deception, stealth or misinformation could prey on the fears and ignorance of the people." Mr. Hawke, Prime Minister, not once - but several times, has stated that Australian electors are shrewd people, and can well understand and analyse political and electoral matters. Mr. Griffiths seems not to agree with his parliamentary leader, and opines that these same Australians are babes in the woods, and must be protected from the Evil League.
We are well content to let our fellow Australians judge us on unsullied evidence, and yes, we do most definitely respect Mr. Alan Griffiths' right to air his views on the League of Rights. At least the record, so far, is that the League of Rights is NOT a rat bag organisation: it must be taken seriously; it has most sophisticated techniques for the dissemination of its views (we know that). What we don't like is the incipient totalitarianism, which lies beneath the surface of debate on the existence and function of the Australian League of Rights. Unless there are constitutional safeguards against such evils, then these could surface and give Australia a shove towards the police state.
We do make the point that the League of Rights was in the van against the incipient totalitarianism of the Bill of Rights legislation, and the Identity Card legislation. Mr. Griffiths' own political party attempted to introduce these pieces of legislation, which were violently rebuffed by Australians, who could, as Mr. Hawke has insisted, separate the grain from the chaff with respect to parliamentary legislation.
This brings us to another matter; the freedom of the press. Despite accusations against us of all the evils of a witch's, coven, we do respect and uphold the freedom of the press. Yes, its freedom to berate and vilify us. What democracy we have cannot exist without a free press, and a free judiciary. The freedom of the press has taken a blow by the recent decision of the High Court, which means that newspapers must now reveal sources of information where defamation litigation is being pursued. The traditional "convention", or "gentleman's agreement" has been that newspapers were exempt from such obligations. No longer.
The editor of The Australian was
most scathing, on weekend T.V., on this recent High Court
ruling. It is probably a political decision, we have come
to expect, now, from the Australian High Court. The reason?
The appeasement of an influential Asian from the Philippines?
Just a thought. What about the Koowarta decision of the High
Court? This validated the Racial Discrimination Bill (now
the Racial Discrimination Act) which has unleashed all the
United Nations "Mickey Mouse" social legislation, such as
Affirmative Action, Equal Opportunity legislation which is
causing all manner of bitterness in commerce and industry.
Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen reminded us that the politicisation of the High Court (he may not have used that word but that was what he meant) - was brought about by ONE MAN, the late Judge Lionel Murphy. The Koowarta decision was 4-3 in favour, with Lionel Murphy ruling against Queensland, of course. There is no doubt that the more percipient media leaders are aware of the approaching dangers to their freedom of operations. We, ourselves, have asserted from time to time, over the years, in these pages, that we shall, eventually, witness the phenomenon of an approach to the League by media leaders to protect and save them from the rigours of a totalitarian government.
A totalitarian state MUST muzzle the press, and the media in general. When the time comes, we shall give the mass media leaders the benefit of our long expertise - despite the attacks on us, over the years, by THEM. We note that the present media critics of the League, after the customary vilification against us, are careful to insist on our right to exist and function. Why? Because they know jolly well that if the League is persecuted by parliamentary "investigative committees" an "odious precedent" (The Australian editorial, 18/10) will have been established which could well turn against themselves in the future. Examples : -The Australian Editorial, "A Whiff of McCarthy" - and The Australian's accusation of "an odious precedent" (The Investigating Committee).
In the Sydney Morning Herald (25/10) journalist, Milton Cockburn, in his article - "Rights and Wrongs of Being Bigoted" (that's us!) ends his rather long article thus: "Nevertheless, this debate provides the opportunity to rebut the League's absurd claims (they are never detailed.... O.T.) and this will obviously be of assistance to M.P.'s in responding to the volume of material they say they are receiving from League influenced constituents. This is likely to be of much greater assistance to them than a detailed and weighty tome provided by a parliamentary committee. "Tolerance is supposed to be the ideal of a liberal democratic society. As distasteful as it may seem, that tolerance must extend to those who themselves exhibit little tolerance (us again.... O.T.) - provided they remain within the law. The League of Rights has rights too."
This gentleman has got the message.
How about this from him? "... But the establishment of a parliamentary
inquiry into the League's activities is a massive over reaction
and establishes a dangerous precedent. What is there now to
stop a future Coalition Government establishing a parliamentary
committee to investigate the activities of the Sparticist
League or some other extreme, but harmless, left wing group?
Or even into the activities of the A.L.P's Socialist Left."
"News Weekly", the weekly organ
of the National Civic Council, as we would expect of it, stands
up, defiantly, for principle. After the anticipated attack
on the League (rather milder than that of other media journalists),
AUSTRALIA BEING SET UP FOR ASIAN MIGRANT FLOOD?
"Australia may host an important international conference aimed at solving the region's most nagging social and political problem - Indochinese refugees." - The Age (Melbourne) October 29th.
Senator Gareth Evans; remember, the one who said in his early parliamentary days that children had to be "protected" from the influence of Christianity - now says that "exploratory overtures" had been made on Australia's attitude and that the Government would seriously consider a formal approach. Well, well. What nations have made these "exploratory overtures"? It sounds like a smelly set up to us. Get the simple minded Australians to "host" the international conference, which then more than half commits them to implementation of its agenda. The Association of South East Asian Nations is seeking United Nations endorsement for the international conference.
THE AGED : BLOW FOR THE YOUNGAlan Barron, of Modbury North, Adelaide, has this letter published in The Weekend Australian (October 29-30). Alan Barron is connected with the Festival of Light, and is the author of "The Death of Eve", available from all League Bookshops.
"Now that the Opposition has unveiled its social security policy on pensions, it appears as if the major concern is the reduction of government expenditure, which is all very well; but if this policy is implemented it would be a recipe for social dislocation and adversely affect young people. "I refer in particular to the proposal to lift the pensionable age for women from 60 to 65 in order to give women 'equal opportunity with men'. The Government may save paying women the pension at 60, but on the other hand the Government will spend more on employment benefits to young people and job creation schemes.
"If the pensionable age of women is raised to 65 it will increase government expenditure rather than reduce it. If women hold their jobs for five years longer it will deny many young people the opportunity to find work and save for their future. "The fact of the matter is most people over the age of 60 years do not need two incomes in any case. Surely by then the mortgage will have been paid and the children left home. There should not be the necessity for a second income for most. If 'equality' is the aim, why not reduce the male retirement age to that of 60 and give our young a chance to find employment?
For preference, the present retiring ages should be left as they are. "The idea of permitting retirement past the age of 65 is nonsensical. Given that the current average male life expectancy is 73 years, why should men be expected to work until they retire? It's simply not on. "If we want to reduce the greying of the population and financial pressure on families, then governments must reduce personal taxation and the inflation rate in order to alleviate the necessity of a constant second income for survival. "If this were done, more women would opt to leave the workforce and have large families. This would arrest our declining birthrate and lead to rapid population expansion, thus leading to economic revival. Increasing the natural birthrate would also begin to fill our empty classrooms and re-create employment opportunities, thus reducing welfare spending.
"It's time the Opposition thought more carefully about its social security policies. "No, raising the women' s pensionable age to 65 is heading in the wrong direction. If it is implemented it will create an unequal society where the older generation will be reasonably well off, and the younger generation desperately poor as they seek to raise a family and pay the mortgage with very limited employment opportunities."
|© Published by the Australian League of Rights, P.O. Box 27 Happy Valley, SA 5159|