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Edmund Burke
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10 December 2004. Thought for the Week: "Many intelligent people feel that "Planning" is something which is self-evidently "scientific" and sound. They employ the principle in their daily life, it is helpful, and they believe it to be the antithesis of haphazard incompetence. Of course, in connection with their own affairs, they are often right.
But the Planning in regard to which Dr Dobbs writes involves many factors which are quite unfamiliar to those outside a small circle of experts.
All plans are the static incarnation of ideas. In nearly every case they block other plans. In small matters this may not be very important but in Government plans it may be decisive.
Many large Plans are made without consideration or knowledge of effects, such as soil erosion, which may take years to ensue. The physical world is a congeries of balances; not a small water-course locates itself without a reason. And these physical balances have social and political effects, as any student of recent history can observe for himself. For these and other far-reaching reasons, it is necessary to recognise that size introduces an unfamiliar quality into the idea of a Plan…"
Foreword by Clifford Hugh Douglas to Geoffrey Dobbs' "On Planning the Earth," 1950.

WATER 'WARS' OR WATER CONTROLS?

by Betty Luks
Finally, the absolutely 'basic to survival' issue of regular water supplies has reached the 'public consciousness' through the mainline media! In South Australia it has taken the public release of a draft blueprint issued for comment by the State Government: Water Proofing: A Thirst for Change. The paper includes dire warnings interwoven with veiled threats should the public fall short of the demands contained in the blueprint.

The Adelaide Advertiser sets it out for us: "Targets set on Water Use Cuts". "We have been threatened -- REDUCE water use by 25 per cent in 20 years or face the consequences of a dramatically changed lifestyle. Bans on watering gardens in summer and filling swimming pools, and limiting industrial development are just some of the examples of changed rules during a water crisis… If new water use habits are not implemented now, there will not be enough water to go around by 2025."

Let's repeat that
If new water uses are not implemented NOW… there will not be enough water to go around in fifteen years time. Environment Minister John Hill added, "That could mean dramatic and drastic water restrictions put in place along the lines of other cities." They are looking for a reduction in water use by households and industry of 35 gigalitres a year.

Three targets set for 2005
A doubling of the reuse of treated wastewater to 30 gigalitres a year.
The reuse of 10 times as much stormwater, to 20 gigalitres a year.
Further aquifer storage and recovery research.

The proposals include changes to future council development plans to achieve water-efficient urban design, and a voluntary water audit scheme for households, parks, gardens, sporting grounds and other community organisations. A voluntary water audit? HOW? After all, an audit means: an inspection of accounting procedures and records by a trained accountant.
Mr Hill said the report's recommendations raised logistical questions, but he was confident they could be addressed. Logistics has to do with providing and handling of labour and materials. Does this mean we can expect extra meters and extra 'water' police?

But what was so astounding in the light of a predicted water scarcity was to read the S.A. government plans to increase the population.
"Not only are these targets achievable", Mr Hill said, "but it's essential that we reach them". Increase in population -- essential for whom and for what? Does the minister mean the government is going to reduce state charges and taxes, thus lightening the financial burdens on the backs of present South Australian families? Reducing this financial burden would financially free young couples to have more children if they so chose.
So, how's it going to happen, this government-planned increase in the population? South Australian readers need to ask Mr. Hill why the state's politicians have taken it upon themselves to decide we need an increase in population, especially in light of their gloomy predictions of 'water wars' with the present population numbers!

What a contradiction!
An increase in population must mean more infrastructure, more housing, more production, therefore in every case, more pressure on (what we are told are) our dwindling resources such as water… When seeking answers to the present problems facing our state the following factors are never taken into account:
· The planned obsolescence in present production. A criminal waste of finite resources.
· Over-production and rape of the soil driven by the present faulty financial system.
· The colossally wasteful advertising industry. Clear evidence of this unnecessary (and in so many cases just 'junk') production.

South Australians have voluntarily reduced their water use over the last year and they are now to be pressured to reduce it even further. If there is wanton waste, then no responsible person would object to constructive policies or a little pressure to reduce that waste. But is this the real agenda the state government has in mind? Is it really to ensure the present population's water supply? I think not!
For those who would like to study - and act upon -- the draft report Water Proofing: A Thirst for Change phone 1300 365 422 and ask for a copy to be forwarded to you.


IMMIGRATION INCREASE FOR 'THE MARKET'

We have consistently warned the so-called business 'leaders' and politicians of this nation, driven by the twin ideologies of economic rationalism and financial whoredom, have high on their agenda, increased immigration to this country. The figure of 50 million has been quoted by chief executive of Visy Industries, John White and is on public record.
Visy Industries and the ANZ Bank both have vested interests in a greater population and control of our water systems. Deputy Prime Minister John Anderson (Countryman, West Australia 5/2/04) crowed over the announcement Visy Industries and the ANZ Bank intend to invest $10 million a year for 10 years in Australia's developing "water allocation and management system." Please mark those underlined words.

STEVE BRACKS WANTS TO IMPORT MORE CHINESE WORKERS

Victorians should be interested in their premier's announcement he would support the use of Chinese workers to fill vacancies at Ballarat's MaxiTRANS. (Ballarat Courier 26/11/04).
The Learmonth Rd. company, Australia's largest manufacturing and supplier of trailing transport solutions, is considering hiring up to 30 Chinese welders as it struggles to fill vacancies from the Ballarat workforce. The unemployed in Victoria would be pleased to learn the Bracks Government's Skilled Migration strategy is on track to lift Victoria's population to six million by 2025 and that "MaxiTRANS has hired an agent in China to seek out prospective workers, who would be employed on temporary four-year working visas."

Mr Bracks said the State Government was willing to work alongside MaxiTRANS to fast track any visa applications. "We'll do what we can but remember there's Federal Government regulation as well," Mr Bracks said. "But we'll make our best efforts to make sure it move as quickly as possible." Employment and Youth Affairs Minister Jacinta Allen said the Victorian Government had sponsored more than 1,000 skilled migrants to fill job shortages in Victoria in 2003-04 -- a 400 per cent increase from two years ago. She said her office would be in touch with MaxiTRAN to see what assistance it could offer.


PEDIGREE OF THE IDEAS TRACED TO THE ASIA SOCIETY

Can we expect John Howard to block the push for a population of 50 million as they continue the centralisation and control over our natural resources? People forget, that old fox Howard has been in politics for many a year and his record is there for all to see.

In O.T. May 1997, David Thompson wrote:
"It is reported that the party to celebrate the opening of the Crown Casino in Melbourne last week cost in the vicinity of $60 million, with something like $2 million spent on fireworks alone. Such ostentatious extravagance seems almost obscene, when just down the Yarra, homeless children sleep under the bridges.
(Not too much conservation and sound management of our resources demonstrated by these people in this little party!…ed)

But while the casino opening might have been a spectacular circus, it was really only a sideshow, compared with the main event in Sydney. While Premier Kennett and the glitterati were performing in Melbourne, Prime Minister Howard was attending the launch of the Asia Society in Australia, in Sydney. While Howard's attack on Hanson was anticipated, the real significance was the vehicle he used - the Asia Society. Where did it come from, and what is the Asia Society?

'Asia Society' forerunner to Trilateral Commission
"Peter Harcher, The Australian Financial Review's Asia correspondent, outlined the background of the Asia Society on May 9th. It is not merely another study group or "think-tank" on Asia. It was founded in 1956 in New York, by John D. Rockefeller III, as the American financial spearhead into Asia following World War II, when the American banking houses and multinationals were positioning themselves in Asia. American business groups wanted, in particular, to establish a strong presence in Japan, which was then beginning to westernise. Rockefeller's Asia Society was the forerunner to the Trilateral Commission, which was established to begin to mould the world into three major trading blocs, in the Americas, Europe and Asia. This programme is now well advanced, and the Asia Society exists simply to facilitate the programme.

There are already several Asia study groups in Australia, like Asialink. Why establish yet another? Because the Asia Society has a political programme, organised 40 years ago by the Rockefellers in the United States. It would be amazing if Mr. Howard was unaware of this.
The key organiser of the Asia Society launch was Western Mining's Hugh Morgan, but some 400 of Australia's top industry and financial elite paid $250 each to help launch it. Among them were BHP's John Prescott, Mrs. Janet Holmes a Court, and executives from Telstra, CSR, Woolworth's, James Hardy, Deutsche Bank, Visy Industries, Arthur Anderson, and many others. Many companies donated between $5,000 and $30,000, including the National Australia Bank, Australian Consolidated Press, and the ANZ Bank, which has emerged as a major sponsor of the Asia Society.

It is significant that there is no reference anywhere to any trade union representative attending the launch. How will the Asia Society help John Howard's "battlers", whom he loves to mention? How will the working Australian benefit from becoming further enmeshed with "Asia"? It is now becoming clear that many of the largest "Australian" companies have shifted their loyalties from "Australia' to "Australasia". The truth is that companies like BHP, although they like the propaganda fillip of being known as "the big Australian", are not really "Australian" companies at all. They are multinationals. They are fully prepared to contribute to closer connections with Asia, through the "American" (Trilateral) network. Their objective is increased profits, but the price of increased profits is the erosion of Australian sovereignty, the international centralisation of political power, and the disappearance of the Australian nation-state." (emphasis added…ed).


WATER WARS: PRIVATISATION, POLLUTION AND PROFIT

What has the water issue in Australia got to do with the grass roots protests in the Ukraine we are now witnessing on our TV screens? It is this. If we don't recognise that we must also fight for our rights while we are relatively free, then we will have to fight when the battles will be much more brutal and harder to win.

Indian physicist Vandana Shiva has exposed the erosion of communal water rights in her own land and what we can expect if we don't take a stand now.

"Many of the most important conflicts of our time are not wars of race, religion, culture or nation -- although they are 'dressed up' as such, they are wars for the earth's resources. These wars are both paradigm wars -- conflicts over how we perceive and experience water -- and traditional wars, fought with guns and grenades.

Water war - culture war
"These clashes of water cultures are taking place in every society. Recently, when I was travelling to Rajasthan's capital, Jaipur, in western India, for a public hearing on drought and famine, I experienced the clash of these two cultures of water. On the train from Delhi to Jaipur, we were served bottled water, where Pepsi's water line Aquafina was the brand of choice. On the streets of Jaipur, there was another culture of water. At the peak of drought, small thatched huts called Jal Mandirs (water temples) were put up to give water from earthen water pots as a free gift to the thirsty. Jal Mandirs are a part of an ancient tradition of setting up Piyaos, free water stands in public areas.

This was a clash between two cultures: a culture that sees water as sacred and treats its provision as a duty for the preservation of life and another that sees water as a commodity, and its ownership and trade as fundamental corporate rights. The culture of commodification is at war with diverse cultures of sharing, of receiving and giving water as a free gift. The non-sustainable, non-renewable, and polluting plastic culture is at war with civilizations based on soil and mud and the cultures of renewal and rejuvenation.
Imagine a billion Indians abandoning the practice of water giving at Piyaos and quenching their thirst from water in plastic bottles. How many mountains of plastic waste will it create? How much water will that dumped plastic destroy?

Paradigm wars over water are taking place in every society, East and West, North and South. In this sense, water wars are global wars, with diverse cultures and ecosystems, sharing the universal ethic of water as an ecological necessity, pitted against a corporate culture of privatisation, greed, and enclosures of the water commons. On one side of these ecological contests and paradigm wars are millions of species and billions of people seeking enough water for sustenance. On the other side are a handful of global corporations, dominated by Suez Lyonnaise des Eaux, Vivendi Environment, and Bechtel and assisted by global institutions like the World Bank, the World Trade Organization (WTO), the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and G-7 governments.

Alongside these paradigm wars are actual wars over water between regions, within countries, and within communities. Whether it is in Punjab or in Palestine, political violence often arises from conflicts over scarce but vital water resources. In some conflicts, the role of water is explicit, as is the case with Syria and Turkey, or with Egypt and Ethiopia.

But many political conflicts over resources are hidden or suppressed
"Those who control power prefer to mask water wars as ethnic and religious conflicts. Such camouflaging is easy because regions along rivers are inhabited by pluralistic societies with diverse groups, languages, and practices. It is always possible to colour water conflicts in such regions as conflicts amongst regions, religions, and ethnicities. In Punjab, an important component of conflicts that led to more than 15,000 deaths during the 1980s was an ongoing discord over the sharing of river waters.

However, the conflict, which centred on development disagreements including strategies of the use and distribution of Punjab's rivers, was characterized as an issue of Sikh separatism. A water war was presented as a religious war. Such misrepresentations of water wars divert much-needed political energy from sustainable and just solutions to water sharing.

Something similar has happened with the land and water conflicts between the Palestinians and Israelis. Conflicts over natural resources have been presented as primarily religious conflicts between Muslims and Jews. Over the past two decades, I have witnessed conflicts over development and conflicts over natural resources mutate into communal conflicts, culminating in extremism and terrorism.

My book Violence of the Green Revolution was an attempt to understand the ecology of terrorism. The lessons I have drawn from the growing but diverse expressions of fundamentalism and terrorism are the following: Non-democratic economic systems that centralize control over decision-making and resources and displace people from productive employment and livelihoods create a culture of insecurity. Every policy decision is translated into the politics of "we" and "they." "We" have been unjustly treated, while "they" have gained privileges.

Destruction of resource rights and erosion of democratic control of natural resources, the economy, and means of production undermine cultural identity. With identity no longer coming from the positive experience of being a farmer, a craftsperson, a teacher, or a nurse, culture is reduced to a negative shell where one identity is in competition with the "other" over scarce resources that define economic and political power.

Genuine democracy undermined
"Centralized economic systems also erode the democratic base of politics. In a democracy, the economic agenda is the political agenda. When the former is hijacked by the World Bank, the IMF, or the WTO, democracy is decimated. The only cards left in the hands of politicians eager to garner votes are those of race, religion, and ethnicity, which subsequently give rise to fundamentalism. And fundamentalism effectively fills the vacuum left by a decaying democracy.
Economic globalisation is fuelling economic insecurity, eroding cultural diversity and identity, and assaulting the political freedoms of citizens. It is providing fertile ground for the cultivation of fundamentalism and terrorism. Instead of integrating people, corporate globalisation is tearing apart communities.

The double fascism of globalism
"The survival of people and democracy are contingent on a response to the double fascism of globalisation -- the economic fascism that destroys people's rights to resources and the fundamentalist fascism that feeds on people's displacement, dispossession, economic insecurities, and fears.
On September 11, 2001, the tragic terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre and at the Pentagon unleashed a "war against terrorism" promulgated by the US government under George W. Bush. Despite the rhetoric, this war will not contain terrorism because it fails to address the roots of terrorism -- economic insecurity, cultural subordination, and ecological dispossession."


DUTCH LAWMAKER URGES HALT TO IMMIGRATION

Anthony Deutsch Associated Press, 19/11/04. The Hague, Netherlands

"One of the most popular politicians in the Netherlands said the country's democracy is under threat and called for a five-year halt to non-Western immigration in the wake of the killing of a Dutch filmmaker by a suspected Muslim radical. "We are a Dutch democratic society. We have our own norms and values," lawmaker Geert Wilders told The Associated Press in an interview.

In his first interview with the foreign media since the slaying of filmmaker Theo van Gogh on 2nd November, Wilders said his own life has been repeatedly threatened. He said he has begun living under state protection and has even had to stay away from his own home. Wilders split with the free-market coalition partner Liberal Party two months ago because it backed the candidacy of predominantly Muslim Turkey for the European Union. He formed his own conservative party, the Wilders Group, which has one seat in the 150-member parliament. But a recent poll suggested his anti-immigrant message was reverberating through the electorate, and he would win 24 seats if elections were held today -- up from 19 seats before Van Gogh's murder.

In Brussels, Belgium, European Union leaders met Friday to discuss immigration, one of Europe's most pressing and sensitive issues. EU justice and interior ministers agreed to demand that new immigrants learn the language of their adopted countries and adhere to "European values" to guide them toward better integration. Even as the number of immigrants arriving in Europe falls due to tougher policies, led by a sharp drop in the Netherlands, Wilders said closing the borders isn't enough. Newcomers should be forced to integrate."


FALLUJAH NAPALMED

US uses banned weapon ...but was Tony Blair told? Sunday Mirror, UK 28/11/04

"US troops are secretly using outlawed napalm gas to wipe out remaining insurgents in and around Fallujah. News that President George W. Bush has sanctioned the use of napalm, a deadly cocktail of polystyrene and jet fuel banned by the United Nations in 1980, will stun governments around the world. And last night Tony Blair was dragged into the row as furious Labour MPs demanded he face the Commons over it. Reports claim that innocent civilians have died in napalm attacks, which turn victims into human fireballs as the gel bonds flames to flesh.

Outraged critics have also demanded that Mr Blair threatens to withdraw British troops from Iraq unless the US abandons one of the world's most reviled weapons. Halifax Labour MP Alice Mahon said: "I am calling on Mr Blair to make an emergency statement to the Commons to explain why this is happening. It begs the question: 'Did we know about this hideous weapon's use in Iraq?'" Since the American assault on Fallujah there have been reports of "melted" corpses, which appeared to have napalm injuries. Last August the US was forced to admit using the gas in Iraq.
In 1980 a UN convention banned the use of napalm against civilians - after pictures of a naked girl victim fleeing in Vietnam shocked the world.
America, which didn't ratify the treaty, is the only country in the world still using the weapon."


LETTER TO THE EDITOR - EDUCATION

Sir, "One of your members rang me about your article on education, "Yet another inquiry into the education system". Congratulations to the writer, for Joyce along with many others including myself, has been fighting this battle for the last 15 years.

May I say a little about myself? Educated during the depression and WWII; one of five supported by a sole parent who lefty her drunken husband. We all then were prime cases of socio-economic status which is touted today as one of the reasons for children's failure in school. My Mother scrubbed floors and washed for others and did nothing - not a thing - to advance our education re learning to read or doing homework. I must say she was well-read and well-spoken and so the level of speech in the home was high. But she did not have to help any of us to learn to read. One sister had brain damage but she learned to read and to write.

When I began teaching in 1950 I knew next to nothing about how to teach children to read but worked from the Government written and printed Preparatory Readers. Each lesson constituted a week's work of phonic teaching, word-building and reading. The children - even the slowest - learned and did well because the phonic primers were written by experienced infants' teachers and introduced grammar and punctuation in increments. Never did I have to send work home for parents to help their child read!

In the mid 1950s Fred Schonell arrived from England to show the Queensland colonials how to teach children to read. He just happened to bring along the Happy Venture Readers (plus workbooks) which he had co-authored with Phillis Flouerden. At about the same time, the Australian Council for Educational Research published an anonymous article, deriding phonic primers, promoting Look-and-Say and promising (amongst other things) NO FAILURES. You know the rest.

Having been a successful teacher of infants in their second year, I found that I could no longer achieve the results I had been used to when forced to use Look-and-Say (and later Cuisinaire Rods for number work). Things went from bad to worse until 1987 when ELIC (Read-by-reading AND write-by-writing) was foisted upon teachers. Those who didn't agree with the method were not allowed to teach infants.

I resigned in 1988 and began reading and studying in order to find out why I was no longer a good teacher. I stopped blaming myself and concentrated on the changes in method and the materials that supported them. Reading of basic psychology and of brain research has shown me WHY modern methods do not and cannot work for most and only succeed in a limited way through forcing quantity rather than quality on the child. Children are still struggling to read the words on the page even in secondary school; thus comprehension is limited.

All this business of children learning in different ways is just another smoke-screen. Unless the brain becomes the main focus of any inquiry, results won't improve much.
E.C. East Ipswich, Queensland.


CONSTITUTION EDUCATION FUND - AUSTRALIA

We believe the Constitution Education Fund - Australia (CEF-A) is worthy of our readers' attention and support.

To the Editor: I ask that you mention the existence of this website (www.cefa.org.au) to your friends and colleagues so that Australians are aware of its existence. CEF-A is a non-partisan and non-political initiative to encourage young Australians to think and learn about the history and operation of the Australian Constitution and the Australian system of government. It offers cash prizes to primary, secondary and tertiary students who enter its various competitions. Donations to CEF-A above $2 are tax deductible.

For full details please go to our new website: www.cefa.org.au
Philip L Gibson - Hon Fundraising Coordinator and full time Volunteer
Telephone: (02) 9251 8511 Founding Benefactor: Father Jeremy Flynn
Facsimile: (02) 9251 8677 Level 13, 189 Kent St, Sydney NSW 2000
E-mail: info@cefa.org.au GPO Box 64 Sydney NSW 2001
Patron-in-Chief: His Excellency Major General Michael Jeffery AC CVO MC
Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia


BASIC FUND

The League's annual Basic Fund, launched just recently stands at $5,369.50. There are some ambitious projects 'on the drawing boards', for the coming year but they will need your committed support. In truth, the Australian League of Rights' action and educational service is a dynamic centre continually defending, promoting and preserving our British-Christian history, culture and heritage. But we need your support. We ask that you get behind the work of the League by a generous contribution to the Basic Fund. Let's hear from YOU this coming week!

'THE HUB' TO CLOSE OVER CHRISTMAS/NEW YEAR BREAK

Please note the Melbourne Office will be closed from Friday, 17th December 2004 and will reopen Monday, 10th January, 2005, thus allowing our hard-working team to have their well-earned annual break. Now is the time to send for your holiday reading -- get your book orders in right away.

IMPORTANT BOOKS FOR YOUR HOLIDAY READING

"A Race Against Time: Racial heresies for the 21st Century," edited by George McDaniel. What does the future hold for the West? Must our Civilisation give way before the waves of Third World newcomers? It is increasingly clear that race and civilisation cannot be separated; that only the people who created a culture can sustain it. Price: $45.00 includes postage.

"Killing Hope: US Military & CIA Interventions since WW II," by William Blum.
The West has been soundly conditioned to react Pavlovianly to a number of psycho-political terms; 'swear words' such as 'communist' or 'fascist', terms intended to conjure up mental pictures from Stalinist purges to slave-labour camps. A 'Them' agin 'Us' reflex.
"Them" can mean a peasant in the Philippines, a mural-painter in Nicaragua, or a legally-elected prime minister in British Guiana - but all, somehow, presented as part of the same monolithic conspiracy; all in some way, a threat to our Way of Life. William Blum has done a mammoth service to his people by listing the destabilising, revolutionary activities of the U.S. Military and the CIA, from China in the 1940s to the invasion of Iraq in 2003. Price $40.00 includes postage.

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