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3 May 1996. Thought for the Week: "Society cannot exist unless a controlling power on will and appetite be placed somewhere, and the less of it there is within, the more there must be without. It is ordained in the eternal constitution of things, that men of intemperate minds cannot be free. Their passions forge their fetters."
GRAEME CAMPBELL MOOTS FORMATION OF NEW PARTY
Just prior to going to press we have received a general press release issued from Canberra by Independent M.P. Graeme Campbell. Clearly Graeme Campbell intends to move forward within his proposed programme to restore Australian sovereignty. This programme was outlined in his great Australia Day address, an edited text of which appears in the September 1995 February 1996 issue of "Heritage". Available from all League addresses $10.00 posted.
We have no difficulty in supporting,
as a first objective, the programme suggested by Graeme Campbell
and those working with him. The text of the Campbell press
THE HOWARD LULL BEFORE THE STORM
The strategy of those advising the Howard Government is emerging. There was the initial softening up concerning the state of national finances: "These were much worse than we realised, primarily because the Keating Government deliberately kept us in ignorance. In order to restore our international credit rating, we must therefore take all possible steps to balance the budget."
In his autobiography, former Governor General Bill Hayden relates the story of how just before a critical session of Parliament, when he was the Federal Treasurer, the news suddenly came through that Australia's credit rating had been downgraded. He took Prime Minister Gough Whitlam behind the speaker's chair to break the bad news to him. Gough Whitlam asked, "But Comrade, what the hell does this rating business mean?" Exactly.
In plain English it means that certain organisations advise the international banks if they should lend a country any more credit, and on what terms. John Howard and his advisers are telling Australians that unless they can obtain a higher credit rating from Moody or some similar organisation, they will have difficulty in borrowing internationally or of attracting foreign investments. John Howard is telling Australians as clearly as he can that he proposes to continue basically to do what all previous governments have been doing: pawning Australian assets, including its real credit, productive capacity, to the international bankers. The end result of this policy is more international debt and more taxes of various kinds to service the interest bills on the debt.
In the meantime the Howard Government is attempting to keep electors quiet by what might be termed motherhood issues such as the suggestion that Australians should have a vote on whether they want a change to the present flag. There is no suggestion that the Australian people might have a vote on much more basic issues, such as immigration and whether there should be sales of any more Australian assets.
It is relatively safe to attempt to deal with the blatant corruption in the administration of Aboriginal affairs. There is general agreement that something should be done about this corruption. But the Howard soothing measures can only work for so long. Eventually the Howard Government has got to provide the "medicine" which the orthodox financial advisers insist must be administered to do good for the community. This "medicine" is going to be increasingly painful, with many government pre-election promises broken. When this happens there is going to be a nationwide reaction. We can only hope that the proposed Campbell party is by this time in place to provide Australians with a genuine alternative.
IS HOWARD HIDING BEHIND THE FLAG?
by David Thompson
In 1996 Anzac Day itself provided a
mystery and a hope for the future. The hope for the future
was the larger numbers of young people than ever. The mystery
is why do they turn out on Anzac Day? At the end of World
War II the English scholar Sir Ernest Barker wrote, in "The
British Constitutional Monarchy":
If there is a lesson for Mr. Howard in Anzac Day, it is that if the monarchy is abandoned, and ceases to be a focus as "a symbol of unity, an apparatus of ceremony" then Australians will turn to some other focus. Today it is Anzac Day, when the flag can be waved with enthusiasm. But when the Diggers are gone, what will the focus become tomorrow?
It is not inconceivable that we may eventually wave the same flag with the same enthusiasm at the modern equivalent of the Colosseum, while feeding the last remaining Christians to wild beasts. By then, the flag, Union Jack and all, would simply be a hollow symbol of a bygone era in which we gradually abandoned our very identity as a people.
The crown is, of course, more than an "apparatus of ceremony", it is a constitutional framework that, if properly exercised, prevents the centralisation of power. This is why it is under attack. The challenge before Mr. Howard is to take a leaf from Mr. Keating's political book, and nail his colours to the mast on the Crown. Is he for it, and prepared to defend it, or is he equivocal, prepared to bend with the breeze?
Whatever his faults, Keating identified his goals, nailed his colours to the mast, and set about achieving his objectives. The fact that they were basically destructive and socially divisive did not deter him. Keating never used the excuse that "The press will crucify me". He went out and did battle with the press, and anyone else who opposed him, to impose minority views on the majority. He was a centralist, who pursued centralisation of power.
If Mr. Howard is a monarchist, then let him get on with it, and provide conservative leadership to the majority whose instincts will respond to championing the status quo.
THE PASSING OF PAUL KEATING
When former Prime Minister Keating announced his retirement, he did so, as we predicted, without attending a sitting of the House of Representatives as a member of the thirty-eighth Parliament, to which he was elected to serve his constituents on March 2nd, 1996, for a term of possibly three years. But Paul Keating was not in Parliament for service. He obviously sought, and exerted, power for a purpose that led one of his former backbenchers, Graeme Campbell, to remark: "Hawke wanted power to be loved, while Keating wanted power to use it - therefore Keating is much more dangerous."
To Paul Keating, the Australian people were not his political masters whom he sought to serve faithfully. They were clay in the hands of a master, a political "Placido Domingo". They were statistics to be calculated and manipulated towards the political ends decided by Paul Keating and the "elite" of the Labor movement. That the "statistics" should actually consider biting back genuinely shocked Keating. This was illustrated on election night, when Keating, himself temporarily stunned by the magnitude of his defeat, was heard to mutter in bewilderment "when the brick veneers the Blue Mountains start voting for Howard... incredible " Thus, Australians who happen to live in the Blue Mountains cease to be people, but become mere "brick veneers".
Upon the announcement of Keating's retirement from Parliament, Prime Minister Howard was gracious, as victors can afford to be, wishing him well, and noting that while they were fierce political opponents, Keating was to be respected for his contribution to "the political cause in which he believes". Although magnanimity is a laudable quality, and to be welcomed, if we are to serve our fellow Australians faithfully, we must also acknowledge the truth, in the hope that another "Keating" can be avoided.
We recall that upon the death of Mao Tse Tung, the then Premier of Queensland, Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen, alone refused to paper over the moral chasms in the Chinese Communist leader's character. While others noted Mao's passing with faint praise, or exaggerated his redeeming qualities and lauded them, Sir Joh shocked many with his blunt valedictory of "good riddance". The man, said Sir Joh, was a criminal and a mass murderer, the world is a better place for his passing.
No one is suggesting that Mr. Keating's record might be remotely compared with Mao, but nevertheless, let us record that as Treasurer, and later Prime Minister of Australia, he was a disaster. History will show that for the period that Keating held these two offices, Australian sovereignty declined dramatically. It will also show that his arrogance, abrasive nature, domineering style and abusive methods divided the Australian people as few others ever have. Even the tributes of his friends, like Phillip Adams, contain concessions to Keating's divisiveness, Adams describing Keating as dogmatic, doctrinaire, and exemplifying a form of "political craziness".
The truth is that the Australian Parliament is well rid of Mr. Paul Keating. It is simply a question of what he will do now. What do retired/defeated Prime Ministers do? Ted Mack, former Independent for North Sydney, expressed the view that only Gough Whitlam had successfully solved this question. "Whitlams answer was to simply go right on being Prime Minister!" said Mack. Paul Keating could also "go right on being Prime Minister" if he chose. He still enjoys a Parliamentary pension of $121,200 per year for the rest of his life. In addition to this, he has unlimited first class travel within Australia and an office with staff fully paid for by the taxpayer. His record as a press manipulator is legendary, and if he chose, Mr. Keating could exert sufficient influence to do a lot more damage to the nation yet.
UNEASY CEASEFIRE IN MIDDLE EAST
Those who hail the present cessation of military hostilities in Lebanon as "peace" in the Middle East are to be disappointed. If anything, it is merely a lull in the storm. A number of observations are pertinent. First, the "Arab" states have little respect for the United States as a broker of "peace". The U.S. is so blatantly pro-Israel that this is like being asked to accept that a member of the opposing team should be invited to be the umpire.
When the Lebanese appealed to the United Nations Security Council to condemn the Israeli bombardment of southern Lebanon, it was the United States that vetoed this. When the request for condemnation was put to the General Assembly, only two countries voted against it, Israel and the United States. Who is Israel's blindest ally, source of massive financial aid, military technology and hardware? The United States.
Now that the bombing has died down, how
many of the Hezbollah guerillas did Israel eliminate? Four.
How many Lebanese civilians and refugees died? Hundreds. The
Israeli incursions into southern Lebanon may have achieved
political objectives for the Israeli Prime Minister facing
a difficult election, but the most significant result has
been a palpable outrage among the southern Lebanese population.
Such is their outrage, that the ranks of the Hezbollah will
now be swollen with angry new recruits bent on vengeance for
families slaughtered, homes and property ruined and livelihoods
For an essential background on the Middle East we recommend "The Middle East Crisis", by Sir John Glubb. "Glubb Pasha" was unrivalled in penetrating the Arab mind and the intricacies of Middle East history. His chapter "A Brief History of the Palestinian Grievance" alone is essential reading. Available from all League book services: $5.00 or $6.00 posted.
THAT ELUSIVE 'RURAL RECOVERY'It comes as something of a shock for many Australians to be reminded that 53% of N. S.W. is still declared drought affected. Statistics released recently by the Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics show a grim picture. The ABARE report highlighted the rise of farm debt by nearly $1 billion in 1995. The official farm debt figures are up by $3.2 billion in the past five years to a record $17,982 billion in 1994-95. The rural sector's difficulties were also highlighted by predictions that its terms of trade would decline by 4.3% this year and by another 4.6% in 1996-67. At present, high wheat prices are the only major hope on the horizon for debt-ridden primary producers. But this promise cannot be fulfilled without grain to sell.
Drought grips a large part of agricultural Australia. The only hope for Australian farmers in the longer term is a realistic financial policy that meets their unique needs. Long-term, low-interest credit is essential.
PUBLISHER OF IRVING'S GOEBBELS BIOGRAPHY COLLAPSES IN U.S.
British historian David Irving's United States publishers of his new biography, "Goebbels: Mastermind of the Third Reich", have yielded to tremendous pressure and cancelled their contract to publish the book. St. Martin's Press' chief executive officer, Thomas McCormack, released a three-page statement "explaining" his company's decision, and noting that information on the Internet concerning Irving included an account of his worldwide struggle against censorship. The Internet was also used to publish David Irving's introduction to the Goebbels biography. This appeared on Bradley Smith's Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust (C.O.D.O.H.) World Wide Web Site.
In his newsletter for April, "Smith's
Report", Bradley Smith had the following account of the U.S.
Simultaneously spokesmen for such groups as the American Jewish Committee, the American Gathering of Holocaust Survivors, and the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith surfaced in the newspapers and on the airwaves to demand, in veiled and not-so-veiled terms, that St. Martin's withdraw the book. And that ignoble Nobelist, Elie Wiesel, slithered forth to threaten withholding his magical name from St. Martin's book jacket blurbs.
At first, St. Martin's put up a brave
front. Editor Dunne issued a press release in defence of publication
which offered the obligatory demurral from Irving's views
on the Holocaust, but also named Irving's several renowned
publishers, quoted the accolades which leading historians
have heaped on his books, and cited laudatory reviews from
publications such as the London "Sunday Times" and
the "New Yorker".
The defacto book banners presented,
among other arguments for censorship, the following:
Snicker if you like at the lunatic babble of these book-banning loony-tunes: it worked (together with the threats of boycott, ostracism, and physical harm, of course). By April 3rd, St. Martin's C.E.O. Thomas McCormack had announced that his house was cancelling the book. In a pathetic press release, McCormack stated, manfully: "I want to emphasise that we are not cancelling under pressure - publishers can often be at their best resisting pressure."
Yes, that's what he said. (End of "Smith's
The proposals to "decriminalise" the
hallucinogenic drug, cannabis, in Victoria, and some form
of relaxation of the laws in New South Wales, are causing
further alarm among the nation's police forces, who will inevitably
find themselves placed in a difficult position. Police will
be required to make difficult judgments about whether a person
caught in possession of cannabis has only sufficient for personal
use. Further, States with common borders but different laws
on cannabis will suffer increasing difficulties. As yet, no
simple reliable test has been proposed to ascertain just how
much a driver's judgment has been impaired by cannabis.
If the Liberals are permitted a conscience
vote on the issue, it may be defeated. We suggest actionists
put pen to paper. The truth is that cannabis is a serious
health risk, and can certainly lead to altered states of mind,
and has a much more deleterious effect on the brain than alcohol.
The following plea from the parents of a marijuana victim
should be heard.
FROM N.A.F.T.A. TO THE PACIFIC UNIONRepresentatives of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Trilateral Commission, officials of 34 nations and international bankers met in Cartagena, Columbia, on March 18th-21st, to consider extending the scope of the North America Free Trade Agreement to include all of the "Americas". That is, an "American Union" from the Arctic Circle to the Antarctic Circle in which a common currency is to be forged by the year 2005. The "Pacific Union", or the "Asia/Pacific Community", into which Australia will be invited to merge, appears to be scheduled for a little later on the One-World programme. As yet, the European Union staggers from one crisis to the next, and appears to be breaking down before it is effectively established. Nevertheless, the ideologues insist that it ought to work, so we must be forced to try it!
'RIGHT WAY TO GO ABOUT REVIEWING THE CONSTITUTION'The following letter appeared in "The Australian" (27/4/96) from Emeritus Professor Marty Webb, who was Foundation Professor of Geography at the University of W.A. Together with Patrick O'Brien, Associate Professor of Politics at the U.W.A., Webb edited "The Executive State - WA. Inc. & The Constitution":
"From the very beginning, and that includes Bob Hawke's 1988 Constitutional Commission, it has always struck me as rather odd that we should use centennial occasions as reasons for changing our constitution rather, than as we should, as times to celebrate our great good fortune in enjoying the benefits of one of the world's oldest and most successful written constitutions.
"It seems even odder to consider that first Mr. Paul Keating and now his like-minded constitutional 'reformists' in the Liberal Party want to continue this back-to-front argument that presumes we can best celebrate our constitutional centenary by pushing for a national plebiscite on a People's Constitutional Convention in order to change what, in the words of John Howard, 'has served us well'.
"Surely the right order of things would be first to celebrate the achievements of our constitutional Framing Fathers during the year 2000, and then on January 1, 2001, celebrate the first day of the new millennium with nationwide re-enactments of that day one hundred years ago as a special day of independence, unity and dedication.
"Spending the year 2000 celebrating the events that led up to the our Commonwealth Constitution would not only serve as a year of education and of learning about ourselves as a nation for all Australians, but also provide a foundation upon which an educated and informed public could then, with knowledge of what they were about to do, vote on whether to establish a qualified People's Constitutional Convention."
Martyn Webb, Emeritus Professor, Dalkeith, W.A.
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