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"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing"
Edmund Burke
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On Target

31 March 2000. Thought for the Week: "A disturbing malaise has gripped the leading lights of world politics. 'Today we are living in the midst of a worldwide revolution,' former UN Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali hammers away in his addresses. 'The planet is in the grip of two vast opposing forces: globalisation and fragmentation.' "Boutros-Ghali adds with deep uncertainty: 'History reveals that those caught up in revolutionary change rarely understand its ultimate significance.
"The Global Trap" by Hans-Peter Martin, 1997

THE IRON HAND IN THE GST GLOVE

by Jeremy Lee
Although millions of businesses still have to apply for an ABN number (D-Day is May 31st) the Australian Tax Office has already excluded 40,000 small businesses from eligibility for an ABN. What sort of businesses might they be? They are those too small or diverse to fit easily into the nice, regulated mould required by the ATO, which wants quarterly assessments, which it can 'profile' for the future. Thus at one stroke a host of little enterprises, perhaps selling toys from a home workshop, a few vegetables from a garden, items from a stall at a market, people who are retired but still doing a few things part time, will be cast into the outer darkness outside the glare of the GST searchlight. Yes, they're Australians like the rest of us. They may have been carrying out their modest trade for decades. But they don't fit easily into 'computer-categorisation', or have, as the ATO so nicely puts it, a "track record."

The Australian Financial Review (22/3/2000) said: "The Australian Tax Office has already excluded 40,000 businesses from registration for an Australian Business Number - thereby imposing a punitive 48.5 percent tax on all earnings - and plans to use the new compliance weapon to deregister entities that fail an 'enterprise test'. "Another 200,000 new businesses will face intense scrutiny after July 1 because they were unable to demonstrate a track record before registration… the 40,000 businesses had been excluded because there was insufficient evidence they were carrying on an enterprise. They still had the option of applying for an ABN and avoiding the penalty tax, but they would be subject to a detailed questioning about their activities…A new rule introduced under the Ralph reforms will deny company status to businesses that earn more than 80 percent of their incomes from one source…"
Sounds like the Red Queen in Alice in Wonderland to us.
The ATO will not only give each one the order to jump, but will measure how high. Woe betide you if you're not a high jumper!

Meanwhile, the Australian Tax Office itself is being crippled by industrial action. The Community and Public Sector Union - which includes about two-thirds of the ATO's staff of 16,000 - is demanding a 5 percent wage increase. Apparently the Government doesn't know what to do. If they cave in to the wage increase, it will spread to all sectors of the Public Service. If they don't, they may be faced with crippling strikes that makes the lagging work for the GST totally impossible. Naturally, our hearts are bleeding for the ATO!


GLOBAL TAX REFORM

Speaking of tax, Australia's Treasury is now looking at the virtues of global tax reform. The AFR (14/3/2000) reported:
"The threat to Australia's revenue base from e-commerce, transfer pricing and global capital flows has prompted the Federal Treasury to examine options for global tax reform.... The executive director of Treasury's economic group, Dr. Ken Henry, confirmed for the first time that Treasury is not opposed to radical taxes like the Tobin tax on global financial flows in response to the pressures of globalisation…"

The Tobin tax has already been endorsed by the Canadian Government. It is an idea for taxing transfers of finance anywhere, from one country to another. The volatility of the trillion or so dollars washing round the world each day can wreck national economies, cause panics and generate recessions. It is ample proof that Dr. Mahathir was right. He simply imposed national controls in Malaysia, and stopped the rot. He was criticised by Prime Minister Howard for his actions, NOT because they were wrong but because he made the decision on his own, instead of waiting for 'global consensus'. The big crime these days is personal initiative.

The chances of Howard stepping one inch outside the bounds set by the international banks and the global corporations is less than Buckleys.


TASMANIA AGAINST GLOBALISM

Once again, Tasmania, Australia's smallest State, is taking a lone stand, which just may save the federal system. It is spitting in the face of the World Trade Organisation by saying it won't allow Canadian fish imports inside its borders. The Constitution gives Tasmania authority to do so. But another international treaty is set to strike the Constitution down. The matter will probably end up before the High Court, which has a poor record when it comes to such issues. By 4 to 3 in the Tasmanian Dams case, Section 100 of the Constitution was rendered meaningless. Still, even High Courts have occasionally got it right. So Tasmania has a chance, which would be a big blow to the globalist Howard Government.

ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF CHEAP IMPORTS

We're as sick as our readers must be of hearing another story of Australian industries knocked over by cheap imports. Queensland's Courier-Mail (20/3/2000) reported: "Queensland's heavy engineering companies are set to lose million-dollar contracts which could have provided more than 25,000 jobs because of cheap, low quality imports. "Research by the State Government-subsidised industry Supplies Office also forecasts that more than 700 manufacturing workers will join the jobless queue by June, as imports replace local products in major projects. If the trend continues, Australia's steel fabrication industry would shrink by 25 percent by the end of the year, the study has found.

Australian Manufacturing Workers Union state secretary David Harrison said yesterday that owners of heavy engineering and fabrication plants round the State have warned of imminent job losses. The union estimates that more than 170,000 tonnes of steel could be imported into the State in the next few months for several major projects, including power stations and the Comalco Alumina Refinery at Gladstone What can you say? Australia has suffered a quarter-of-a-century of this sort of insanity, wrecking industry, losing jobs and getting further and further into debt as a result. Yet both Government and Opposition are mindless puppets of the globalist mantra.


THE CHILD ABUSE INDUSTRY

Hovering like a time-bomb over the Queensland Government is a one-man petition increasingly known as "The Lindeberg Petition" by a former government officer who presents evidence that the Goss Government shredded the evidence about an inquiry into abuse of children at a Government centre that implicated members of the Labor Party. The issue was recently raised at the trial of Scott Balson, former web-master for the One Nation Party (who, incidentally, was expelled from the party for publicising on his website the fact that the Party had been illegally registered).
Mr. Balson, charged with illegally publishing on his site the name of Labor member Bill D'Arcy on 49 sex charges, including rape, even though the major media had already placed the news in the public domain, was acquitted after a third, dramatic hearing. The media and the politicians had egg on their faces after an hour-long self-defence by Balson. His testimony is, we've heard, to be the subject of a forthcoming book. It should be fascinating reading.

The latest report from the Queensland front comes from The Taskforce on Women and the Criminal Code. Among other things, it recommends legalised abortion, that women should be allowed to be surrogate mothers, and that the age of consent for underage couples should be lowered to 12 -provided the partner is no more than two years older. Legal sex between kids who have not even entered their teens! "Those whom the gods wish to destroy…"


HOW WE LOVE THE 'GANG-OF-FOUR'

The March issue of Choice (published by the Australian Consumers Association) shows that the public perception of the major banks has not improved. Despite making, between them, $29 billion in profits over the last five years, only 10 percent of customers feel that service has improved. While the big four were at the bottom of the heap, the best banks were the Bank of Queensland and Bendigo - the only two that haven't been affected by mergers.

A major survey in The Australian (14/3/2000) suggests that we are on the verge of another series of bank takeovers and mergers. So far we've had the following:
* 1994: State Bank of NSW acquired by Colonial Mutual
* 1995: Primary Industry Bank acquired by Rabobank Nederland.
* 1995: Bank of Western Australia acquired by Bank of Scotland.
* 1995: Bank of South Australia acquired by Advance Bank.
* 1996: Challenge Bank acquired by Westpac.
* 1996: Metway Bank, Suncorp and the QIDC merged into Suncorp-Metway
* 1996: Advance Bank Australia acquired by St George Bank.
* 1997: Bank of Melbourne acquired by Westpac.
* 1999: Colonial acquires Trust Bank of Tasmania.
* 2000: Colonial and the Commonwealth Bank of Australia plan to merge. And, of course, the service gets better and better all the time!


ALL THE BURDENS, NEVER ANY BENEFITS

by Betty Luks
In the furore over the GST and related tax changes we are losing sight of the fact that all major parties are committed to progressive taxation in one form or another. Just as Mr. Howard learned from the international bankers that the price he would have to pay for more funds was, "...micro initiatives such as commitment to privatisation, subsidy reduction, progressive tax policies, reduced public payrolls (and) pension reform" (Australian Financial Review, 7/6/1996); so we can be sure the other parties also got the message.

But what about some progressive policies for the people? What about looking at what the Government of Alaska did for the people? In the 1980s, an Alaskan Permanent Fund was set up with the task of determining the best way to spend funds beginning to flow from oil royalties. While the ideas were further developed, the benefits that now accrue to the people are worth noting: they pay no income or sales tax and every Alaskan citizen receives an annual dividend. By the mid 1990s The Courier Mail, 16/6/1995, reported that the State of Alaska still made its living from the riches it pulled from the ground and the people receive money from the Government. As at Christmas 1998, every family of four received a cheque equivalent to $A8,600. Those who have taken the trouble to study Social Credit know that one proposal is a national dividend paid to the people. Under the present system we have all the burdens - never any benefits.


PLENTY MORE "NEVER EVERS" TO COME

by Alfred King
Note again how the Establishment is able to push through unpopular, left wing policies with a Liberal Government in power that they could never achieve under Labor. While Philip Ruddock is busily trying to create the vote-winning illusion that the Libs are the Party that is tough on immigration, his boss announces that he is "open" to debate the possible increase of migrant numbers. We are reminded of Bob Hawke's comment that the most important thing he achieved in his political career was bi-partisan support for a "multicultural" Australia.

Let us clarify our terms: in political speak, "multicultural" means that we slant our immigration policy in favour of Asians, and discriminate against British and European migrants. The truth of this was shown in the findings of a recent study on the nation's ethnic make up carried out by Dr. Charles Price of Monash University. It shows that Australians are still mainly of British origin, but the picture is changing fast. Although Anglo-Celtics formed 90 percent of the population just after WW2, they will be in the minority by the middle of this century. (These are the study's results anyone taking a walk around any of our main cities could not help but form a different opinion.)

The Australian, 6/3/2000, reports that Labor has offered bi-partisan support for an increase in immigration numbers, and wants to offer incentives for migrants to settle in regional Australia. Martin Ferguson, Labor's population spokesman, welcomes the Government's sudden backflip on migrant numbers. A Labor Government would consider relaxing requirements to enable the spouse, children and parents of a migrant to settle permanently in Australia. No doubt, we would be obliged to then welcome in and provide for the immediate families of these relatives, and so on. The fact is this Family Rule opens Australia up to potential immigration from the WHOLE WORLD. This has been pointed out several times by leading academics on this subject, but professionally ignored by the press and politicians of all parties.

At what point may we be allowed to draw the line and put our own interests first rather than being swamped by a migrant tide that has overtaken Europe and the US also? The answer is NEVER. Not only this, but as a people we are never to even discuss who may be allowed to enter this marvellous, but fragile, country that we have created from scratch in a mere 200 years or so. We are not to be trusted to debate issues which are so fundamentally important to the survival of our people because we may come up with an answer different to that decided on for us by the Establishment.

An illustration of the fact that The Australian newspaper is engaged in a long term psycho-political war against the Australian people is given in their reporting of the immigration "debate". Rather than reflect people's views, they see their role as shaping them. Social engineering is a fundamental role of the Establishment. Aside form the huge number of illegal migrants swamping our country and dividing it into many smaller enclaves, such as little Vietnam, little Iraq, etc., this paper has been attempting to condition its readers over a long time frame to want to increase our annual intake of legal migrants.

The ABC is in on the act too. Last December their news service reported the release of a report by the Committee for Economic Development in Australia, which concludes that our immigration levels need to be increased to avoid a population decline, which in turn would mean a 'significant slow- down in economic growth". It said that to avoid this immigration level needs to be increased from 80,000 to 100,000 a year. This view has been reinforced again this month in the minds of the people by The Australian, telling us that big business and Labor also are strongly of this view.
Now, the political editors applaud John Howard for changing government policy on immigration to open the possibility for an increase in the intake levels. "Both sides of politics are the closest they have been for years in adopting a bi-partisan immigration policy."

John Howard told The Weekend Australian "I think we need a comprehensive debate about population and immigration". He said that this debate could be part of a "nation building" that he wants to promote after the implementation of his poisonous GST. Makes sense doesn't it! Impose an oppressive and divisive tax which many people will feel they want to avoid, increase the workload of the people by making them account for this tax themselves, recruit legions of Gestapo GST inspectors to further terrorise, then embark on a nation building exercise of flooding the country with foreigners. Brilliant.

When John Howard says he wants to look at increasing the number of immigrants he is described warmly by the press as being "open minded". Mr. Howard is quoted that he wants full and open debate of the subject. But, of course, anyone in this "debate" who advocates putting the needs of the Australian people first and wanting to reduce the numbers of migrants, or to select them based on their compatibility with our existing culture, is branded as sub-human and terrorised out of the discussion all together.

The most devastating form of censorship is that which controls that which we are not even allowed to talk or think about.


GST AND OTHER REFORMS BECOMING CLEARER

by Betty Luks
As I travel around the country, it has become increasingly obvious that people have not grasped the extent of the tax reform proposals. While individuals are concerned with just how the GST will affect them personally, they are not seeing the bigger picture. The bigger picture reveals that the whole tax package, of which the GST is a part, will give the Tax Commissioner powers to monitor the most comprehensive tax-surveillance system ever devised in the Western world. He will be able to tap into every cash register and account of every Australian business that has been forced to register for the GST. Even 'school tuckshops' will be liable for the GST.

The power of the Tax Commissioner lies in the fact that the system is fully integrated. As reported in The Australian Financial Review, 27-28/11/1999, the bureaucrats drew on their knowledge of what happened in such countries as New Zealand, Canada and the UK. In New Zealand both the GST and Income Tax are collected by the same agency, but separate computers are used and the computers are not linked. In Canada and the UK, the Value Added Tax (as it is named) is collected by Customs but the Customs computer is not linked to the Internal Revenue computer.

In Australia, the quarterly activity statement that gets fed into the database of the one Tax Office Computer contains the GST, Income Tax, Fringe Benefits Tax, Salary and Wages and Group Tax records. Every business, including sole traders and contractors, will put in one statement - with a cheque - every three months detailing all the main figures for the quarter. The key is the Australian Business Number and the Tax Invoice. Every business must quote an Australian Business Number (ABN) on its Tax Invoice to claim back the GST on the things that it sells.

Business customers are required to withhold 48.5 percent of the sale price (the top marginal rate) if the Tax Invoice, presented to them by their suppliers, does not quote the ABN.

In On Target, March 3rd, we republished a letter to the editor from The West Australian by a Frank Starevich, of Dardanup, who claimed John Howard was going to introduce death duties through this taxation reform. We understand that at this stage "Entity Taxation" under which further tax changes are proposed (and obviously the source of Mr. Starevich's concern), is, just that - a proposal. But to quote The Australian Financial Review, 27-28/11/1999, "Something like 80-90 percent of Australia's small businesses are operated through trusts, mostly discretionary trusts in which cash is distributed to a family company and then lent to the benefices... From July 1st, 2001, Entity Taxation will basically wipe them out..." (as trusts).

'The final part of the picture is Option 2, a short way of describing a fundamental change to the method of calculating income tax. Instead of assessable income minus allowable deductions. . .the new system will simply tax changes in the tax value of assets, including bank balances." In Hansard, 9/6/1999, the Member for Wills, Mr. Kelvin Thompson is quoted as saying, 'The Queensland National Party expressed concern about the proposal that family trusts would be taxed as companies. This means there would be a 47c tax rate on the distribution of capital to a beneficiary on the rental value of a house owned by a trust and lived in rent free by a beneficiary, and the beneficiaries of the discretionary trusts are family members."

Mr. Thompson went on to quote a report in The Sydney Morning Herald, 7/6/1999, that the Ralph Report was examining a government proposal to tax trusts (that were carrying on as a business), the same as companies. The then Deputy Prime Minister, Tim Fischer, was reported as saying that he would not support any crackdown on trusts that amounted to a defacto reintroduction of death duties. While it would appear that the objective of Entity Taxation is to "net the big fish" who avoid taxes through discretionary trusts, the results could be something quite different. Mr. Starevich could have some genuine concerns. Our readers need to ensure their local Federal Member gives them a detailed explanation about the proposals.


ELECTORAL FUNDING

Australian voters have become aware of the way the Howard Government changed the Federal voting system before the last Federal election preventing the voter from placing his choice in number one position and thereafter not allocating any preferences but putting in number 2 in every other square. This became known as the Langer system. Mr. Langer defied the powers that be by publicly promoting the idea. Now, in order to record a formal vote, you must vote "in order of preference", this way the major parties usually end up gaining the seat through the preference votes.

At the last Federal election Pauline Hanson received about 40 percent of the primary vote and yet lost the seat on preferences. A suggestion from one of our readers is that unless the current sitting Member of Parliament is of exceptional quality, put him or her last in your order of preferences. A second term in Parliament qualifies them for their lucrative pensions and other lurks and perks - such benefits that no "Aussie battler" can access.

Electoral Funding, set up by the Hawke Government, allows any candidate that has received more than 4 percent of the vote to claim $1.62 for each First Preference vote. In the 1998 Federal election the major parties received nearly $28 million of our money for their Party coffers. Even their losing candidates each brought in an average of over $33,000 for their respective Party machines just because they received the first preference vote.

© Published by the Australian League of Rights, P.O. Box 27 Happy Valley, SA 5159