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On Target

28 October 1994. Thought for the Week: "The evil that men do lives after them...."
Shakespeare, in Julius Caesar

DR. H.V. EVATT'S REGIONALISATION DREAM

If former Labor leader H.V. Evatt were alive today, and observing the progress of his Regionalisation strategy for bypassing the Federal Constitution, he would be delighted. Much of his delight would stem from the spectacle of Victorian Liberal leader Kennett leading the charge to regionalise Municipal Government. The kindest thing, which can be said about Premier Kennett is that he doesn't have a clue concerning the long-term implications of the old Fabian programme, which he is implementing. He is Lenin's genuine "useful idiot".

But some unrehearsed events are, fortunately, starting to emerge in Victoria as ratepayers and their sacked elected Municipal Councillors start to protest. It took the arbitrary closing of the Fitzroy swimming pool by the Commissioners, now generally described as Commissars, to produce a strong reaction, with a massive "sit in", still in place as we go to press, to highlight what is taking place. The non-elected Commissioners justify their action by claiming that the Fitzroy swimming pool is "uneconomic". If all "uneconomic" Municipal swimming pools are to be closed, then nearly every local swimming pool in Victoria will have to be closed! And what about other community services such as libraries?

There have been a number of massive protest meetings throughout Victoria, the latest being at Yarram, southern Gippsland, as ratepayers come to realise their local community way of life is scheduled for destruction. Some Municipalities, like Brighton, one of Melbourne's seaside Municipalities, are stating that they are determined to continue resisting the amalgamation programme. But the only way to reverse the centralist programme is at the political level. Victorian ratepayers have got to make it clear that they will be voting against every State Liberal and National Party Member who supports the amalgamation programme.

Unlike the last Victorian State elections, when the electorate was polarised because of the deep resentment against the Cain and Kirner Labor Governments, with Independents being given no consideration, the position could be quite different before the next State elections. It is not surprising that public opinion polls indicate that there is growing dissatisfaction with the Kennett Government.
A Labor Party headed by Mr. Brumby offers no genuine alternative. We note with interest that the Victorian Labor Party is planning a greater involvement in Regionalised Municipal Government. The Fabians, aligning themselves with protests against the effects of the very amalgamation programme they pioneered (Deputy Prime Minister Howe has joined the protest movement against the Fitzroy swimming pool closure), now seek to exploit what the Kennett Government has done for them.

The Australian League of Rights is the only national organisation, which has consistently warned about the long-term implications of the Regionalisation programme. The League has backed the production of the educational video produced by N.S.W. Municipal Councillor Bevan O'Regan, and urged all League actionists to ensure that their Municipal Councillors see it and then warn their ratepayers of what Regionalisation really means. Only lack of resources prevented this explosive video from being produced earlier.

It has had a most encouraging effect, one of the most important being that when the National Conference of Australian Municipalities gets under way in Canberra next week, on November 6th, many of those attending will be equipped to block what is planned to be another major step in a Regionalisation programme, ultimately leading to the destruction of State Governments and setting the stage for the establishment of a Republic without consulting the people.

There is still time for League actionists to consult their Municipal Councillors and to ask if they are to be represented at the Canberra Conference and, if so, that they insist that no programme of Regionalisation be adopted before electors have voted on the question. The growing educational programme via the special video must be intensified. The future of Australia depends upon the failure of the Fabian regionalisation programme, supported by some of those Big Business interests whose philosophy is basically that of the Fabians.

Not without significance, the Board established by the Kennett Government to implement the far-reaching amalgamation programme, states that 'as with other tiers of government, Local Government needed an international focus in framing regional economic development' (vide The Age, October 22nd).


FROM CREATIVE NATION TO CAPTIVE NATION

by David Thompson
A study of any form of dictatorship reveals that, among other basic features, "the arts" quickly become an instrument of political policy. On one hand, censorship of artistic expression is essential to prevent the power of ideas from undermining what is essentially an attempt to control the minds of "captive" populations. The powerful "idea" of freedom was kept alive by such as Solzhenitsyn, who were forced to write in secret, and distribute their ideas through the "samizdat" or underground press. Hitler and the Nazis resorted to burning books to suppress politically incorrect ideas.

In his classic 1984 George Orwell highlighted the fact that "those who control the past, control the future", and invented "the memory hole" for unpopular literature which no longer conformed to desirable political thinking. On the other hand, of course, the manipulation of "the arts" can be a powerful propaganda weapon, to encourage a population to think in a particular way. Even today, several generations of Australians have a prejudiced outlook on German people, as a result of deliberate propaganda from official sources through two world wars.

In his Creative Nation statement on the arts, Prime Minister Keating is indulging in both the censorship and propaganda aspects of manipulation of the arts. As a matter of priorities, it has been quite validly claimed that the greatest rural disaster perhaps this century attracted $164 million of Government aid, while "the arts" has received $240 million to be allocated in the next few years. But it is not Keating's fascination with Mahler's music, antique clocks, or prints of birds, etc., that drives this priority. It is the potential for political exploitation provided by a powerful medium of communication.

INSTITUTIONALISED 'KULTURE'

The financial manipulation of the arts is nothing less than an extension of Keating's tendency to attempt to dominate all aspects of Australian life, and bring cultural expression within his own political objectives. It is obvious that part of the price that artists must pay is lip service to republicanism, although this particular point was conspicuous by his studied refusal to refer to it throughout his statement.

To Mr. Keating, Creative Nation is the institutionalisation of the arts as one of his strands in "the rope of Australia". Other strands include "fidelity to the unemployed, the truth of Mabo, the shift to Asia with APEC". Together with 'culture' these strands provide the rope, and it is perfectly obvious that the "rope" is intended to drag us into Keating's vision of a utopian republic. Submission to the Prime Minister's artistic authority was best expressed by the gaggle of sympathetic performers, and submissive arts administrators who appeared with him at the extravaganza mounted for the Creative Nation statement.

The Australia Council was strengthened financially, and is expected to exercise the Government's cultural authority through grants. As one correspondent to a newspaper expressed it: "The Australia Council effectively now runs a licensing system for writers, musicians and painters.'...." The dissidents are having their artistic licences withdrawn, so that only the 'culturally correct' can be given expression.

All resources are now being exploited to cut Australians off from their heritage, obliterate the traditional outlook on social expression, embrace an "Asian" orientation, and conform to the new, elitist vision for the future, known in generic terms as a "new world order". If he were alive today, even George Orwell would be terrified by the pace at which his nightmare is becoming reality.


THE NEXT ASSAULT ON THE AUSTRALIAN FLAG

Professional opinion polling in the last few weeks has revealed an increase in young people who would favour changing the Australian flag before the 2000 Olympics in Sydney. It is alleged now that 59% of people between 14 and 24 years would support a change. Apart from the fact that such opinion polls are extremely suspect in their framing of questions, and interpretation of answers, there are a number of factors worthy of note.

The age group interviewed for this poll happens to be almost exactly the same age group that provides the world's highest rate of suicides. So of what value is their opinion? Irrespective of the quality of their views, the fact is that this generation will be voting in a few years. The agents of political and cultural upheaval are counting on this to destroy the remnants of traditional Australia, including the symbols like the flag that hold that remnant together.

Australian youth cannot be wholly blamed for their attitude to the symbols of their people. It is obvious that they have been carefully prepared to represent the views they do. If this suggestion was made to any one of today's youth, it would doubtlessly be hotly denied, which simply confirms the facility with which the "education" system has been manipulated. Last week, Labor icon Gough Whitlam told a Eureka exhibition in Ballarat that the new flag required by 2000 should have the Southern Cross, but not the Union Jack.
"Australians need a flag that is instantly recognisable in all other countries and is acceptable to everyone in this country," he is quoted as saying. This is impossible while the young are taught to denigrate their own flag. However, the erroneous impression is fostered that Aborigines do not identify with the Union Jack.

It is even proposed that the "Aboriginal flag" replace the Union Jack. But this is a distortion of Aboriginal thinking. For example, Australia's first Aboriginal anthropologist, David Burrumarra, M.B.E., rejected the "new flag" idea. As a genuine tribal elder of the Warramiri clan, he began his own form of "reconciliation" in 1957, when he instigated the Adjustment Movement of Arnhem Land, which was an attempt to combine Aboriginal laws with Christian values.

In an obituary following Burrumarra's recent death, Ian McIntosh writes: "Thirty years later, in response to Prime Minister Bob Hawke's call in 1988 for a compact, Burrumarra put forward a plan for Aborigines to create their own flags based on what the land and sea meant to them. In the corner of each would be the Union Jack, the symbol not only of the coloniser, but of the coming of Christianity to Australia." As the culmination of his life's work, Burrumarra saw the flags as a symbol of the partnership that once existed in Australia, and would again in the future, between black and white. This is true reconciliation, but it would not suit the Prime Minister's own agenda.


REPUBLIC BY STEALTH

from The Maryborough District Advertiser (Vic.), October 4th
Few people, least of all politicians it seems, place much credence in the polls which seem to be all pervasive these days. Who among your readers, I wonder, has been polled? The latest poll on the Republic has claimed that Australia is evenly divided on the issue. If the poll is to be believed there never has been a clear mandate to begin dismantling the constitutional monarchy that has served us well. Yet some of the people who make our decisions for us in the various parliaments have obviously ignored the question mark over the assumed mandate. We are getting a Republic by stealth thus:
* Mr. Keating does not fly the Australian Flag on his official car.
* The Crown has gone from the Australian Customs logo.
* The title, Queen's Counsel, for eminent barristers, is being progressively scrapped.
* Reference to the Queen has been omitted from federal statutes since 1990.
* The Oath of Allegiance no longer mentions the Queen.
* No more do the N.S.W. statutes feature the Royal Coat of Arms, or refer to the Year of the Sovereign's reign.
* The title of Crown Solicitor has been abolished. We now have the Australian Government Solicitor.
* A.B.C. Radio has boasted, 'In the headlong rush to the Republic...'

"This change by stealth is the process by which the National Socialist Party (Nazi), under Hitler, changed the face of Germany in the 1930s. Politicians realise that if we don't like what they're doing we can change the government after three years. The German people thought that too. We are certainly on the same road." (Ron Fischer, Talbot, Victoria)


INTEREST RATES

from The Maryborough District Advertiser (Vic.), October 8th
John J. Alderson's opening sentence (Letters, Oct.7) 'Traditionally, inflation has been regarded as too much money chasing too few goods', is probably rhetorical in that he does not believe what he says. In case any one other than a certified economist still does believe it, may I expand on the matter. "When economists and the governments that believe them talk about inflationary pressures building up they are talking about demand, theoretically, becoming excessive. Their reaction is always to stem demand by applying either 'fiscal' or 'monetary' measures. Both have the effect of increasing costs either through higher interest rates or higher taxation. It defies belief that demand could cause inflation at a time when our shops are full of stock, retailers are employing all sorts of gimmicks (such as win a trip to Honolulu) to unload those goods, and there are a million or more people with insufficient incomes to provide the basics of life - hence reliance on the overloaded services of Lifeline, the Salvos, St. Vincent's, et al.

"Mr. Alderson comes close to the truth when he mentions inflation and unemployment in adjacent sentences - in the same breath, so to speak. The fact is that inflation and unemployment are on a seesaw, one up - the other down. As unemployment comes down and more people have money in their pockets the extra demand allows the struggling businesses to return to a profitable bottom line, hence rising prices in the beginning.
As the above mentioned economists and governments observe this phenomenon they react in the traditional way, and feed the monster. The treatment of the housing sector is a clear example. Abusive language is being directed at this sector with threats of increasing interest rates as though building a lot of houses will undermine our 'low inflation regime'. The effect of increasing interest rates across-the-board will be to reduce the left-over-after-mortgage money of those already committed, to my mind a despicable breach of trust. This will be accompanied by an exacerbation of inflation.

"When the C.P.I. was coming down we were told that one contributing factor was that mortgage rates were coming down. Now that mortgage rates are being pushed up, in the dubious company of a giant propaganda campaign through the mass media, will we see the statement that the C.P.I. went up because of increased interest rates? I believe not." (Ron Fischer, Talbot, Victoria)

"On Target" is published by the Australian League of Rights, Box 1052. G.P.O. Melbourne 3001.
© Published by the Australian League of Rights, P.O. Box 27 Happy Valley, SA 5159