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20 January 1989. Thought for the Week: "A man's reasons for not wanting his country to be ruled by foreigners are very like his reasons for not wanting his house to be burned down; because he could not even begin to enumerate all the things he would miss."
SLOWING DOWN THE FABIAN PROGRAMME
It is no secret that Australia's Fabian Prime Minister, Mr. Bob Hawke, is already campaigning for the next Federal Election, which possibly will be held some time later in the year. If victory is to be achieved, the projection of Hawke as a type of Messianic figure, with a "special relationship" with the Australian people, will have to be maintained. Compared with Opposition leader John Howard, Hawke still rates highly in the popularity polls. But the polls, and Hawke's close victory at the last Federal Elections, mask the reality that the Bicentenary year ended with few of Hawke's visions being realised. The Fabian programme for the creation of a Socialist Republic has been seriously dented.
Bob Hawke was prominent among those who believed that by the year 1988, effect would be given to the Labor Party's official platform calling for the creation of an Australian Republic. The 1984 Labor Party national conference, meeting in Canberra, called for the preparations for the Bicentennial celebrations to be used to initiate moves for the creation of a new flag, a new national anthem and a new national day. Far-reaching constitutional changes were envisaged.
At the height of his early rating as some type of political pop star, Australia's spiritual Republican Prime Minister created the impression that he would carry all before him. He started by decreeing that Australians would start singing Advance Australia Fair as their national anthem. Very few Australians even knew the words, re-written at Mr. Hawke's request, of a song which is much less known than Waltzing Matilda. The campaign to impose a new national flag upon the Australian people has been another dismal failure.
Prime Minister Hawke and his fellow Republicans made every effort to play down the nation's British background during the Bicentennial celebrations. But they grudgingly had to accept the First Fleet re-enactment. Bob Hawke's Australia Day address in Sydney was disgraceful. It was left to Prince Charles to up-stage Hawke and others with a brilliant address in which he stressed that the Bicentennial celebrations were primarily about the nation's Constitution.
The Royal reminder about the vital importance of the Constitution was not very pleasing to a Prime Minister who had said in his policy speech at the 1983 election, that 1988 should be made the "target date" for major changes to the Constitution. But events did not work out as envisaged by Hawke and his fellow Fabian planners. The very Constitutional Commission set up to condition the Australian people for constitutional changes, proved counterproductive and highly expensive with the Hawke government then rather hurriedly only submitting four proposals at the referendum of September 3rd. The result was a massive re-buff of the proposals by the Australian people.
During the Hawke government's approaching six years in office it has had to retreat from the Aboriginal land claims programme, inherited from the Fraser government, has had the Bill of Rights rejected, along with the ID card legislation are as yet, has not fulfilled the Prime Minister's promise to establish a Treaty with Australians of Aboriginal background. It is now being suggested that the Prime Minister may have to enlist the disastrous Malcolm Fraser in an attempt to achieve the Treaty objective.
Well aware that the League of Rights has played a major role in exposing the Hawke government's long-term programme and in acting as a catalyst for much of the growing grassroots opposition to its policies, the Bicentenary year saw the amazing spectacle of the Fabians and their allies using some Members of the National and Liberal parties to mount a national smear campaign against a non-party service movement, with a long history of defending traditional Australia.
But the year ended with growing alarm among Liberal and National party members, with even some Labor Members privately expressing their concern about the proposed all party investigation of the League of Rights. The latest news is that the inquiry by the House of Representatives standing committee on Constitutional and Legal Affairs will be replaced by an inquiry into "racism" by Irene Moss of the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission.
Although the Hawke governments have since
1983 inflicted great damage on the Australian people, we are
encouraged by the fact that the Fabian programme has suffered
serious setbacks. More breathing time for regeneration has
been made available. Our greatest fear is that if the Hawke
government fails at the next elections, primarily because
of financial policies, which press heaviest upon middle Australians,
the Coalition parties will fail to implement policies necessary
to provide substance for fine sounding rhetoric. But such
a failure would bring Australia to a new and critical period
in its history.
Professor Geoffrey Blainey's surprise resignation from the Melbourne University must be rated as one piece of good New Year news. While Professor Blainey insists that he has always had complete freedom to speak his mind at the University, he believes he will have more time to make speeches and to forward his views after his retirement. It is pleasing to note that he appears to have rejected suggestions that he should seek a political career, correctly pointing out that while he has "a limited amount of influence in the political sense at the moment", this would be a lot more than as a backbench member at Canberra. Blainey is reported as saying, "What's more, I have independence, which is a lot more than I would have up there." (at Canberra) Professor Blainey has emerged as one of Australia's natural leaders.
Once again Prime Minister Hawke has demonstrated how selective he can be concerning past history. Reflecting the pressure of the Zionist lobby in Australia, the Hawke government has passed legislation designed to have witch hunts conducted against those Australians who, before coming to Australia many years ago, allegedly committed "war crimes". Any of those charged will be elderly. But we must never forget, says Mr. Hawke. Prime Minister Hawke used the Bicentennial year to lecture his fellow Australians on how they should remember injustices done to Aboriginals as far back as 200 years. But the same Bob Hawke neglects to refer to the death and suffering of thousands of his fellow Australians under the Japanese less than 50 years ago. Without canvassing the question of whether Japanese Emperor Hirohita should have been held responsible for Japanese aggression and atrocities during the Pacific War, was it necessary for the Australian Prime Minister to send such a fawning official note to Japan? There are good reasons why the Japanese should be respected. They have demonstrated the value of maintaining a homogeneous people. But a cringing Australian attitude, dominated by a fear of possible lost markets, is a manifestation of a lack of proper national pride, and is not likely to win any respect from the Japanese. Under sane financial and economic policies, Australia would have less need for Japanese markets than the Japanese have for Australia's natural resources.
It did not need an expensive Muirhead Commission to investigate the problem of why many Australians of Aboriginal or part Aboriginal background commit suicide when imprisoned. As admitted by the Muirhead Commission, large numbers of Europeans also commit, or attempted to commit suicide when imprisoned. Dr. Ernest Hunter, a psychiatrist who has been researching Aboriginal deaths of all kinds, believes that the Muirhead Commission's focusing upon suicides is obscuring a "massive change in the way Aboriginal people are dying nation wide - particularly in the North." Dr. Hunter says that alcoholism is the major problem, and that this must be addressed on a nonpartisan basis. Unrestricted access to alcohol is similar to giving small children unrestricted access to matches or firearms. But any comments like this have the do-gooders throwing up their arms and shrieking about the "evils of discrimination." The reality is that all people are not equal, a reality which the unfortunate police have to contend with.
THAT INQUIRY INTO LEAGUE OF RIGHTS
In a letter dated December 21st Mr. Ian Sinclair, leader of the Federal National Party, informs a League actionist that "Neither the National Party nor the Liberal Party support an enquiry into the League of Rights. Labor's Alan Griffiths (Chairman of the House of Representative standing committee on legal and constitutional affairs) suggested that the committee have a special inquiry into the League. "I am opposed to this proposal because there is no evidence to indicate that the League of Rights has been involved in matters illegal.... If there is to be an enquiry into the Australian League of Rights it will be a unilateral exercise conducted by the Labor Party.
In a letter dated December 20th National Party Member for Mallee, Victoria, said that "The decision to conduct an investigation into the League was one taken by a Parliamentary Legal Affairs committee, chaired by the ALP Member for Maribyrnong, Mr. Alan Griffiths. The National Party members on this committee did not support this decision believing that such an Inquiry was prejudiced and against a group in the community which has every right to pursue their policies in a democratic society. "Following the decision to have an investigation, public opinion will I believe, ensure that this inquiry not proceed."
There is no doubt that public opinion across Australia has resulted in National and Liberal party leaders backing away from any investigation of the League. But what has yet to be fully exposed is the strategy used to make members of the National party appear to be the initiators of the anti-League campaign.
The Age (Melbourne), which has played a major role in fostering the anti-League campaign, carried a report, INQUIRY INTO LEAGUE OF RIGHTS POSTPONED, on January 9th. The report said, in part, that "A proposed parliamentary investigation into the activities of the Australian League of Rights has been postponed pending the outcome of a Human Rights and Equal Opportunities Commission into racism in Australia."
Mr. Alan Griffiths "said yesterday that the committee would await the outcome of the human rights inquiry before deciding whether to proceed with a parliamentary inquiry. He said that, if the inquiry led by Ms. Irene Moss, the federal race discrimination commissioner, exposed the alleged racist basis of the League's ideology, there would be little to be gained by a parliamentary investigation. Mr. Griffiths said he urged Ms. Moss to scrutinise the League of Rights, which was attacked in Parliament last year for alleged racism." Mr. Griffiths is quoted as having made the interesting comment that "The establishment of a human rights inquiry had removed the issue from the political domain " In the meantime his parliamentary committee "remained interested in the League's activities, and would continue to research its operations."
The strategists behind the anti-League campaign have skilfully used some members of the Opposition to create the climate for what they propose. Mr. Griffiths correctly points out that it was members of the Coalition parties who led the current attack on the League. The first parliamentary shots were fired in the Senate with Senator Ron Boswell leading the way with his carefully prepared address. Not one labor Senator participated in the attack. There were two National party speakers and two Liberals. Then the campaign was moved to the House of Representatives, where Queensland Labor Member Keith Wright led the attack. But his main support came from senior National Member Ralph Hunt. South Australian Liberal Andrews made his contribution.
There is little doubt that the anti-League strategists are planning to expand their campaign during what is shaping up as a critical election year. Well-known members of the media mafia can be relied upon to play their part. As the battle lines for 1989 are being drawn, League National Director Mr. Eric Butler has written to Irene Moss of the Human Rights Commission asking in what way can he and senior League colleagues assist her with her investigation.
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