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20 February 2009 Thought for the Week:
The love of field and coppice, Of green and shaded lanes, Of ordered woods and gardens Is running in your veins. Strong love of grey-blue distance, Brown streams and soft, dim skies - I know but cannot share it, My love is otherwise.
I love a sunburnt country, A land of sweeping plains, Of ragged mountain ranges, Of droughts and flooding rains. I love her far horizons, I love her jewel-sea, Her beauty and her terror ' The wide brown land for me!
The stark white ring-barked forests, All tragic to the moon, The sapphire-misted mountains, The hot gold hush of noon, Green tangle of the brushes Where lithe lianas coil, And orchids deck the tree-tops, And ferns the warm dark soil.
Core of my heart, my country! Her pitiless blue sky, When, sick at heart, around us We see the cattle die ' But then the grey clouds gather, And we can bless again, The drumming of an army, The steady soaking rain.
Core of my heart, my country! Land of the rainbow gold, For flood and fire and famine She pays us back threefold. Over the thirsty paddocks, Watch, after many days, The filmy veil of greenness That thickens as we gaze.
An opal-hearted country, A wilful, lavish land All you who have not loved her, You will not understand Though earth holds many splendours, Wherever I may die, know to what brown country My homing thoughts will fly.
- - My Country by Dorothea McKellar, 1885-1968
OUR QUEEN 'S SADNESS AT BUSHFIRE DISASTER
The Queen of Australia, Queen Elizabeth II, has expressed shock at the devastating bushfires that have torn through southern Australia and offered her condolences to the families of those who have been killed.
"I was shocked and saddened to learn of the terrible toll being exacted by the fires this weekend," the Queen said in a statement released last Sunday.
Buckingham Palace has announced Her Majesty will make a private donation to the bushfire fund-raising appeal.
ROYAL COMMISSION TO BE CALLED
from David Flint 's Opinion Column
A Royal Commissioner has considerable powers, but must act within the "Terms of Reference" of the Commission. The Commission will be established by the Governor on the advice of the Victorian Government. They are considered to be non-political and independent, and this is reinforced by their appointment by the Crown acting on advice. It sometimes occurs that the findings of a Royal Commission do not reflect well on the government which decided to appoint it.
Royal Commissions are called to look into matters of great importance. They are usually chaired by a judge or former judge. Some Chief Justices take the view that since a Royal Commission is an administrative body, judges should not take part. They adopt a strict interpretation of the separation of powers doctrine.
The Premier also said "There is clear evidence now that the climate is becoming more extreme. Those people that doubted it... we have had temperatures of 48 degrees.'' He had earlier said that Victoria may need to review its bushfire policy of "stay and defend or leave early" in light of the appalling death toll.
The head of CSIRO's bushfires research unit, Phil Cheney, told The Australian on 10 February the Royal Commission should look at fuel reduction policies. He said that while temperatures rising several degrees might increase the fire danger by one or 2 per cent, doubling the fuel load doubled the threat.
ANOTHER 'ASH WEDNESDAY - ONLY WORSE
by Betty Luks
Realism required for natural disaster:
Young men, many of them married with families, who lost their lives as volunteers in the unique Australian fire fighting services have demonstrated that type of service to their fellows, which should put most politicians to shame. Television has at least shown all Australians that those who have fought, suffered and in many cases, lost all their material possessions, are capable of great courage and quiet dignity. '
You were right Eric. They are in fact a special breed a British-European breed!
Eric wrote of another important matter:
'We applaud the views expressed by spokesmen for the Senate Integrity teams, who challenge both Mr. Fraser and Mr. Hawke to treat Australian refugees from the bush fires as generously as Vietnamese coming into the country are treated. There is growing resentment as Australians see Vietnamese driving around in late model cars, well dressed, and obtaining homes on terms denied to Australians.
'Integrity spokesmen are calling for a complete moratorium on all rural debt until the drought breaks and fire losses are overcome. They point out that while the Federal Government is donating $600,000, the same government has made hundreds of thousands of dollars available in the form of foreign aid to Communist and pro-Communist governments.
"What we need is some of this foreign aid right here in Australia for our own desperate people. A mere $10 million would enable all fire victims to be reasonably re-housed," they are stressing. Some $4 to $6 million has been since promised by Mr. Fraser, but this is to go to State Governments. Will you write to local papers, businessmen, your political representative NOW and insist the real credit of Australia must be used to help the victims of the latest tragedy get back on their feet?
It is time the national credit of this nation was used by and for the people of this nation, not just for a private financial system.
How true Eric when you continued:
ECONOMIC OUTLOOK ISN 'T ALL THAT BAD
Martin Hattersley, Canada:
- The economy is not collapsing. We are just as able to grow food, build houses and automobiles, as we were a year ago. What is collapsing is the system of payments by which that production is made available to people who want to enjoy it.
- There is nothing mysterious about the way our money system behaves. Money obeys all the normal rules of arithmetic. Our Gross National Product is directly connected to the quantity of dollars in circulation at any time. If the quantity is reduced, say by a shortage of credit, then the amount of production will also shrink and bankruptcies and unnecessary poverty result.
- Government deficits are not a bad thing. They are sometimes needed to give citizens a decent standard of living.
- It's wrong to assume that Canada's banks are stable and sound. The reserves of legal money held by banks to cover their obligations to customers are a minute fraction of the amounts they owe. Banking is a confidence game that can break down at any time. It only takes a few bad debts for the whole card house to start tumbling down. That's what is going on at the moment.
- Everyone doesn't have to be working to get an income. The really rich get most of their incomes not from the jobs they do, but from the property and investments they own. Society's unearned income -- who gets it and why -- is as important to a sound and prosperous economy as what comes in a pay packet.
- Creating money does not necessarily involve creating debt. Coins come into existence simply by stamping an image on pieces of metal. When you think how much of your taxes are going to pay interest on borrowed money that the government could have printed, one wonders why there isn't a taxpayers' revolt.
- Governments printing money does not guarantee inflation. Money is like the transmission fluid in a car -- it doesn't create any energy itself, but it transmits the energy of the motor to the wheels, which makes movement possible. If there's too little fluid, the vehicle will go in stops and starts just like our present economy. Too much fluid, and its power is diluted. Dollars are dollars no matter where they come from, and as long as there is proper control of the overall amount in circulation, inflation and deflation need not be problems.
- The present situation will not work itself out soon. History shows that the one effective way of getting out of a depression is by the incredibly unpleasant, dangerous and wasteful route of re-armament and war, when normal rules of "prudent finance" are suspended. Do we want that? When we find ourselves in a hole, as we are today, the first thing to do is to stop digging. The next, is to find a way out.
- Economic systems have been created by man, and they should serve public welfare, rather than private greed.
Today's "competitive, free-enterprise system," so favoured by organizations such as Steven Harper's National Citizens' Coalition, is nothing but a blueprint to establish the Kingdom of Hell on Earth. We can do better.
As William Aberhart used to say in the Great Depression, "If you haven't suffered enough, it's your God-given right to suffer some more."
Signed: Martin Hattersley, former leader, Social Credit Party of Alberta, Edmonton, The Edmonton Journal, Canada: 8/2/2009.
THE CURRENT SO-CALLED BANKING 'CRISIS '
by Wallace Klinck, Canada
This conjures up the frightful spectre of a world dictatorship. Yet many people are lured by the prospect of solving problems by making them bigger. Many public spirited and informed individuals have sensed the malignant nature of these world-encompassing powers.
The following is a brief mini-essay that I forwarded to all Canadian Members of Parliament:
In a free society and rational economic system, producers should get their money from consumers. Subsidizing producers so that they can create more goods for which consumers lack income to purchase is lunacy. What is needed is enhancement of consumer income to balance aggregate purchasing power, with aggregate prices, in each cycle of production. This would place consumers in a position to determine the viability of producers. The physical cost of production is fully met as production progresses. There should be no aggregate need for consumer debt whatsoever.
If society had followed the Social Credit policy of C. H. Douglas, who advocated Consumer Dividends and Compensated Retail Prices instead of the Fabian Socialist Social Debt policy of the late economist John Maynard Keynes, none of the current madness would have occurred. We would be enjoying increasing prosperity with falling prices and increasing leisure, as should be the case in any modern and civilized society.
A financial system which issues money only as interest-bearing debt in combination with a concentrated and controlled public media (the two are concentric) are the main instruments employed to effect this ominous policy of centralised control of society. The credit system is doing essentially what it has always done - except that we are now dealing with a greater magnitude of circumstances.
Unliquidated costs increasingly inflationary:
Policy of the Higher Powers:
So, are we attempting to solve a problem of excessive debt by applying more of the same from the original source of the problem, assumed in this case by the state? This is pure Keynesism in action and, as intended, will end in increasing the power of the state over the citizen. How long the current foreclosure of the assets of the nations will continue is not certain and depends upon how long it takes for this confiscatory process to sufficiently liquidate the accumulated debt - in accordance with the policy of the financial powers.
Isn 't it time you informed them? Encourage them to download the Social Dynamics videos from the League website. Even if they secretly watch the videos better they watch them than not!
Important little essay for this time in history: 'The Just Tax by Geoffrey Dobbs.
Then, as now, while there was any amount of passionate discussion in the churches about the distribution of the taxation levied, whereas, the moral nature of taxation itself, or of the money of which it consists, was scarcely even then considered in the light of Christian theology. With the recent 'financial crisis it could be the Church leaders are also having 'a reality check '.
Copies of the updated version of 'The Just Tax are available for $4.00 plus postage.
BISHOP RICHARD WILLIAMSON 'S OWN 'FIRE-STORM '
Who would have thought such a storm would rage because this Bishop was reinstated into the Roman Catholic Church?
Spiegel Interview with Bishop Richard Williamson: 'I Will Not Travel to Auschwitz'
SPIEGEL: The Vatican is demanding that you retract your denial of the Holocaust, and it is threatening to not allow you to resume your activities as a bishop. How will you react?
SPIEGEL: How can an educated Catholic deny the Holocaust?
SPIEGEL: You could travel to Auschwitz yourself.
SPIEGEL: The Society of Saint Pius X has set an ultimatum for the end of February. Are you not risking a break with the Brotherhood?
SPIEGEL: What does the repeal of the excommunication by Pope Benedict XVI mean to you?
SPIEGEL: People at the Vatican claimed that they didn't know you. Is that true?
SPIEGEL: The Second Vatican Council counts as one of the great achievements of the Catholic Church. Why do you not fully recognize it?
SPIEGEL: Are you actually aware that you are dividing the Church with your extreme views?
SPIEGEL: Your position on Judaism is consistently anti-Semitic.
SPIEGEL: Do you seriously intend to use Catholic tradition and the Bible to justify your anti-Semitism?
SPIEGEL: The Pope will travel to Israel soon, where he plans to visit the Holocaust Memorial. Are you also opposed to this?
SPIEGEL: Your statements have caused great injury and outrage in the Jewish world. Why don't you apologize?
SPIEGEL: Do you at least recognise universal human rights?
SPIEGEL: Your statements and the lifting of your excommunication have triggered protests worldwide. Can you understand this?
Interview conducted by Peter Wensierski and Steffen Winter. Interview conducted in German and translated into English by Christopher Sultan.
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