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19 August 2011Thought for the Week:

“Are you aware that CH Douglas' book “Social Credit” was translated into Japanese and published in 1929 (there is a copy in the Secretariat Collection housed in the National Library of Scotland)?

This, with his Tokyo visit, supports Douglas' observation that an understanding of finance could be used to endorse a wide variety of policies. This he never tired of pointing out.

Settle your policies first - which is a political issue. Only then do you settle on the appropriate financial mechanisms to carry out the policies”.

- - Frances Hutchinson’s response to a Social Credit discussion group: 16th July 2011  


The question above was recently raised over the internet in relation to the present world financial upheaval. In order to provide an answer to that question we have taken excerpts from Wallace Klinck’s correspondence on the ‘social credit’ history behind the claim that Japan was pushed into WW II. He writes:
My understanding is that the Japanese used their national credit to effect a reversed application of the compensated price on goods for export, rather than to assist domestic consumption, in order to force their way into export markets. The article in question discusses the role to which the Japanese central bank was elevated in controlling credit for production in accord with State policy.
I do not have detailed information on this matter, but from appearances, the policy was centralised control of credit for State-designated economic policy. The fact that interest could be eliminated or minimised in the process did not mitigate this centralisation of power in the hands of the State.

The Japanese experience would seem to vindicate Douglas in criticizing the "usury-hunters" for obsessing about interest as the bête noir or "Black Beast" of economic injustice while overlooking the core defect in the existing price-system which relates to the inclusion of accumulating allocated capital charges in final retail prices, this being the primary cause of an increasing deficiency of purchasing-power and consequent dependence upon escalating financial debt. Elizabeth Gaskell’s 1850’s novel “North and South” provides some background here
It was deemed to be "unfair" trading practice because it provided an advantage in securing exports that other nations did not have or utilize. Such policy is an almost certain path to war as other nations will array themselves in opposition culminating in both military aggression and retaliation. This relates to the mindless and repeated assertion that "we live by our exports."

I do not think that there is any doubt that the USA provoked the Japanese who apparently repeatedly sought some sort of negotiated arrangements to the economic problems involved. The story of the deliberate sacrifice of Pearl Harbour in order to enrage the American public into acceptance of entering the War has, I think, been well-documented by such I understand as Rear Admiral Theobald, etc.

(OT Vol. 38, No19 Bush ‘Seized the Moment’ – So Did Howard – The reality is something else again. "The main dynamic of war is capitalism" wrote former international banking representative Lawrence Dennis in The Dynamics of War and Revolution. "Capitalism requires incessant industrial expansion to mop up the excess capital created by debt-fuelled economies. When the bankers create money out of thin air, and then lend it at interest, more money must be created to pay back the loan plus interest. War is just another means of perpetuating this usurious system”.)

When we learn how to live primarily by our internal production and consumption with external trade taking a place of secondary importance we will have reached a point of economic sanity. To do this, consumer income must be appropriately supplemented by non- cost-creating consumer credits introduced extraneously to the price system.

The correct Social Credit policy is the optimal decentralisation of power ultimately to the individual. Some people have picked up on the Social Credit idea of making all things physically possible as being accomplished through State initiative rather than properly through expressed consumer demand - where production responds according to the approval of a democracy of consumers. The purpose of production is consumption and production must serve consumption.

Social Credit stands for the decentralisation of the exercise of credit power for both production and consumption in a manner to diminish dependence upon external trade and to provide economic security to individual citizens with increasing opportunity for self-chosen leisured activities. Japan of course did not have a Christian background philosophically and she was a nation possessing limited natural resources other than the creativity of her people.
These factors would no doubt provide the basis of an interesting study. One does not have to use much imagination to understand the friction that price-compensated goods for export would cause in a world governed by the existing debt system of finance, wherein all nations are desperately struggling for export markets in order to compensate for increasing insufficiencies of consumer purchasing-power in their domestic or home markets.

Another participant in the discussion had this to say:
The Japanese government DID take great interest in Douglas's ideas, stemming from his visit there to present a paper to the World Engineering Congress in 1929. And its Ministry of Finance officials interviewed him extensively while he was there. And Douglas himself was obviously highly impressed with what Japan, (at that time a pre-militarist-controlled Japan), had been able to accomplish. And with the Japanese people themselves.

But, as he stated later in the 1930's, the Japanese government had employed the "REVERSE" of his ideas on Social Credit. And for a purpose that was in REVERSE of the philosophy behind those ideas. Namely the advancement of the "Will to Freedom" for each of us as individuals, over the "Will to Power" of a dominant State.

The Japanese attempted to push their manufactures on a Depression-era Western world that saw such manufactures further exacerbate their own countries' economic problems. A somewhat similar parallel could be drawn today with China. There is NO SOLUTION to the world's economic and financial problems to be found in any country going this route.

To use the REVERSE of the Douglas ideas will lead to a Fascistic world, (which no doubt is the hope of the author of the article), only whatever potential advantages Fascism holds for anyone, if any, will be lost as Nations inevitably plunge themselves into the abyss of war again. This can be the only outcome of any system set-up to embellish the "Will to Power" over that of the "Will to Freedom".

Read for yourself what Douglas had to say to the 1929 World Engineering Congress: “The Control and Distribution of Production” C.H. Douglas’ 1929, price $7.00 plus postage 


Astronaut turned organic farmer reflects on modern Japan and evacuation from Fukushima - Asked what he thinks of the situation four months into his evacuation to a place that's approximately 200 kilometres from the power plant, Akiyama says,
"Unless we rid ourselves of the myth -- or rather, it's an ideology -- if we do not rid ourselves of the ideology that we cannot be happy without economic growth, I don't think we'll be able to take away any lessons from the tragedy."
- - The Mainichi Daily News

“Astronaut turned organic farmer reflects on modern Japan and evacuation from Fukushima” - (Mainichi Japan) report August 7, 2011: The first Japanese astronaut to travel to space in 1990 on the then-Soviet spacecraft Soyuz, journalist Toyohiro Akiyama, had since moved to the Fukushima Prefecture city of Tamura to become an organic farmer. Since the accident at the Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant, however, the 69-year-old Akiyama has been staying in the Gunma Prefectural city of Fujioka, where he greeted me at the bus station with a deep tan, wearing rubber boots. He seemed to be perfectly comfortable in the role of farmer, both inside and out.

I was led down the Kanna River that borders Gunma and Saitama prefectures to a 600-square-meter rice paddy that Akiyama had rented from an acquaintance of his who also engages in organic farming. Akiyama planted rice seedlings here in early July. "In Fukushima, I used to plant rice around May 20 or so, but it took a long time before water temperatures went up," Akiyama says. "I'm surprised by how quickly the rice grows here."

In a greenhouse, Akiyama grows vegetables such as asparagus, kabocha squash and peppers. Akiyama seems to be settled into his new home, now that he's finally "returned" to his life as a farmer.

On Dec. 2, 1990, Akiyama, then a reporter at Tokyo Broadcasting System Television (TBS), boarded the Soviet spacecraft Soyuz at the Kazakh launching facility Baikonur Cosmodrome. His first words from space were: "Are we live?" in response to a live call from a Tokyo television studio. He later went on to head the broadcaster's international news centre but quit the company in 1995, claiming that he couldn't tolerate being in a management position away from the action on the ground. Moving to the town of Takine -- now merged with neighbouring towns to become the city of Tamura -- in Fukushima Prefecture, he began organic farming with the aim of becoming self-sufficient. He continues to write, however, including a series in the monthly magazine Shizen to Ningen (Nature and human beings) about life in farming.

Akiyama bought a 10,000-square-metre plot of land at an elevation of 600 meters above sea level in the Abukuma Mountains. He began growing shiitake mushrooms, rice and vegetables. This year -- what would've been his 16th year farming in Fukushima -- he had planned to keep bees and try his hand at becoming self-sufficient in honey. Then the Great East Japan Earthquake struck.
"Since it had been 40 years since operations began at the Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant, I'd guessed that its decommissioning process would begin right about this year," Akiyama says. "I now know what an ill-advised assumption that had been."

Akiyama's home is located 32 kilometres from the nuclear power plant. By March 12, the day following the temblor, tsunami and ensuing nuclear disaster, residents of the Fukushima Prefecture town of Okuma, where the stricken plant is located, began pouring in to a gymnasium near his home. There were television reports of cesium being detected in the air, and when Akiyama stepped outside with a radiation detection device that he'd owned from before, the alarm went off. Feeling that his life was in danger, Akiyama evacuated to a lodging facility in the prefectural city of Koriyama. Realizing that it would take a while before the crisis was brought under control, Akiyama decided to stay with an acquaintance in the town of Onishi in Fujioka, Gunma Prefecture.

Must rid ourselves of ideology ‘we can’t be happy without economic growth’
Asked what he thinks of the situation four months into his evacuation to a place that's approximately 200 kilometres from the power plant, Akiyama says, "Unless we rid ourselves of the myth -- or rather, it's an ideology -- if we do not rid ourselves of the ideology that we cannot be happy without economic growth, I don't think we'll be able to take away any lessons from the tragedy."

The one puzzle that Akiyama, who went through his college years in the wake of the 1960s student demonstrations, has tried to understand throughout his adult life is the modernization of Japan. The reason that he jumped into farming was because he wanted to experience the self-sufficient lifestyle that existed before the country modernized. Looking at the Earth from Space Station Mir, he says, reinforced the notion that in light of the environmental degradation that was taking place, it was time for him to take action.

From the rapid economic growth era to the bubble period, post-war Japan has constantly pushed forward in pursuit of economic growth. "By the 1980s, the only demand we could expect was in the form of replacement purchases. Once things have been distributed to the entire population, there's nothing left to do but stoke desire. As a result, we've been made to feel that we cannot go on without things that we actually don't need.
"The expansion of IT into all areas of life is a part of that. Convenience became a mantra, without questioning whose happiness it achieved. Electrification became the equivalent of convenience, and energy -- that is, nuclear energy -- is an extension of that.
Akiyama got rid of his computer when he was 60, and until he became a "nuclear crisis refugee" several months ago, he didn't own a cell phone. So how do we lead lives that don't depend on economic growth?

Financial accounting just doesn’t make sense for the primary sector
"What the economy's primary sector, like farming and fishing, has at its core is day-to-day life. It isn't necessarily about seeking profit or expansion, and its basic goal is the maintenance of everyday life. I'd been able to live a decent life by growing shiitake, rice and vegetables. It's not about swinging wildly between elation and disappointment because of how much eggplants are selling for at a given time. It's about eating eggplant because I harvested it. There's a good harvest some years, and other years, not so much," he says.

"Corporations are finding their way into farming, too, but for them, profit is the objective. But year-by-year financial accounting just doesn't make sense for the primary sector." Meanwhile, a nuclear crisis triggered by the March 11 earthquake and tsunami has yet to be brought under control. What's next for Akiyama, who evacuated on his own accord from his home in Tamura, located just outside the 30-kilometer evacuation zone set by the government?

"I think that I may be able to return home once the reactor buildings are covered," says Akiyama, adding, however, that because shiitake mushrooms -- which used to bring him 1 million yen per year through direct sales -- are believed to readily absorb radioactive cesium, he'll have to hold off on that for decades.

"I'll have to wait for about 30 years. By then, I'll be 99 years-old. That's how long cesium's half-life is. Like the government says, radiation levels might not be at 'levels that pose an immediate danger to health,' but I won't sell anything that I can't confidently say is safe. Negative rumours (about the safety of certain foods) are a reflection of the public's distrust toward the government. The public is wise not to buy products that they are told have radiation levels below the maximum permissible amount, when they aren't being presented with hard data."

Akiyama also voices anger, which may be what's felt by many people from Fukushima. "My post-retirement has been totally ruined. I want to make a voodoo doll with straw when I harvest my rice plants this fall, give them names of those in the 'nuclear power village' (a tight web of academics and industry and government members promoting nuclear power), and strike nails through them."  


Questions from National Senator Bridget McKenzie at Senate hearings on coal seam gas today in Canberra reveal that farmers are getting a dud deal. Santos has revealed to the Senate that their Gladstone LNG project is set to produce $9 billion a year in revenue. Questioning in the Senate Rural Affairs and Transport Committee today revealed that a landowner can expect on average, at most, $2,500 per year per well. The GLNG project is set to drill 2650 wells meaning that landowners can expect only about $6.6 million of the $9 billion in revenue, or about 0.074%. “I think if someone was going to come on to my property to make $1000 and offered me 74 cents in return I would consider that grossly unfair”, said Senator McKenzie today.

“These outcomes seem to be a consequence of the imbalanced negotiating rights that farmers have. Under current laws, the bottom line is that gas companies can come on to someone’s land if negotiations fall over. There is a gross imbalance in negotiating power.
Senator Barnaby Joyce added “It’s quite obvious that there is an absurd imbalance between what the farmer gets and what the gas company gets, and I think it deflates the image that they are trying to pump up that they are on the farmer’s side. What do you call something that lives on your body, takes everything and leaves nothing but a scar? I think it rhymes with beach? If you want an effective relationship, 75 cents for $1000 doesn’t cut it. Elastic-sided boots and broad brimmed hats, does not equal empathy, a fair return does.”

Under questioning Santos did not deny the 0.074% figure but instead responded: You have taken one aspect of our compensation regime, which is a per well amount. There is much more to how we compensate landholders. It’s not clear what that extra compensation is. Do they provide morning tea?
Queensland Gas Company would not provide the proportion of their revenue that they pay to landholders, stating that "I don't think that is a relevant figure". Many farmers would presumably disagree. It’s up to the coal seam gas industry to come clean on how much of their revenue is returned to landholders and the community.

- - Senator Barnaby Joyce and Senator Bridget McKenzie (Nationals) 9 August 2011

Phone the Senators - Matt Canavan (Senator Joyce) 0458 709 433 : Senator Bridget McKenzie 0419 248 916  


by James Reed
Deadly tuberculosis, once thought to be under control in the West, is back with a vengeance in places like London. The disease is likely to have been brought into the country by migrants from Asia and Africa in Britain’s desperate desire to abolish itself, but it is now not primarily a disease of migrants.
The disease likes damp, cold places where masses of people huddle together. The disease likes the homeless, drug users and AIDS sufferers, people with compromised immune systems.

In London cases have surged 50% in the last decade; TB rates in some areas of London are higher than on the Indian subcontinent. (The Weekend Australian, June 4-5, 2011, p.22) Many cases are resistant to existing TB drugs. The fate of London is likely to be the fate of some parts of major Australian cities as well in the future. 


by Chris Knight
Where will the false god of technology lead us? Co-founder of Apple Computers Steve Wozniak thinks that mankind has already lost the war with machines and will become just a house pet for super-intelligent robots. Already, he believes, computer intelligence is approaching human intelligence. Humanity, all seven billion of us, will have an easy life. However, don’t bet on it. If the global elites can control the superintelligence then the need for virtually all of us is gone. We become useless eaters who will be destroyed by the billions. On the other hand if the superintelligence gets the upperhand on the global elites it may seek to either (1) destroy the entire human race or (2) destroy just the elites. It is all speculation but it does show what a potentially monstrous world could exist down the track thanks to an uncritical acceptance of technology.
In a world ruled by great evil, great power will always be greatly abused. With great power comes great irresponsibility, contrary to Spider-man.  


by James Reed
Brief mention was made of secessionist sentiment in Western Australia in the media recently as Western Australia gets cocky with its power from selling minerals to China. In the past Western Australia did vote on secession and may come to do so again. Perhaps Australia could break up with New South Wales and Victoria forming a new country to be called “Multicultralia”.
It can be populated with all the lefties, pinkos, commos and economic rationalists from the Right. Then they will be free to rocket ahead on the cosmopolitan experiment while the rest of us reclaim and rebuild what is left of “Australia”  


by James Reed
The traitorous intelligentsia love to talk about the “Asian century” over a good, fatty, high carbohydrate, high salt/preservative, ethnic, multicultural meal, washed down with litres of fancy wine. Yes, but what about the ‘Asian minute’? At the moment there is a nuclear arms race occurring between India and Pakistan with the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute estimating that each country has increased its number of nuclear warheads from 60-80 to 110 in the last 12 months and Pakistan increased its nuclear warheads from 70-90 to around 110 as well.

All this is occurring in countries which have fought three wars since 1947. Pakistan as well could lose control of some of its nuclear bombs to its friendly neighbourhood terrorist groups. Remember, according to the Establishment Osama lived down the road from a swanky military academy. For either reason the so-called ‘Asian century’ could become the ‘Asian minute’ as hundreds of nuclear fire crackers light up the skies.  


by Ian Wilson LL.B.
Consider this article title: “Tipping Point is Near as Women Take Over the Law”, (The Australian, June 10, 2011, p.33). To a reasonable person doesn’t this indicate that soon a point, a “tipping:” or critical point will be reached where women will dominate law? And given the logic of anti-discrimination and egalitarianism, isn’t that a bad thing?
Shouldn’t there now be affirmative action for men? No, the article by Ainslie van Onselen notes that even though in some states (e.g., South Australia) 48.8% of the total number of solicitors are women and nationally the figure is 46%, there is still reason for concern. Renumeration for solicitors may decrease with the feminisation (or feministisation) the Sex Discrimination Commissioner worries.

She should worry no more if Richard Susskind, author of The End of Lawyers? (Oxford University Press, 2010) is right. Susskind argues that the combined effects of commodification and economic rationalism (the need to maximise profits) and information technology, will and is, radically transforming the legal profession. Tasks which once required expert professional judgement can be dealt with by lesser qualified people using on-line resources. The end result of this process is that lawyering will decline. Thus the end of lawyering and the feminisation of the workforce can happily wed and march down the aisle of the unemployment queue.  


Dear Captain,
I appreciate much of the content of each issue of the "Privateer" because you focus on aspects not readily available in the press. Some of your remarks about economics do puzzle me and you may recall I have sent small booklets and a video to you which contain different views. You have not acknowledged receipt of my mail, so I can only hope you did receive them. You may get a lot of mail but I would appreciate a response this time, please.
On page 5 of Issue 684 you write that, "The ONLY way to increase the wealth of an individual or a nation of individuals is to produce MORE than is consumed. The difference - which is SAVINGS - can then be used to produce more real wealth with more efficient means and thus less real effort. That is the only way that an economy can genuinely grow."

My first reaction is to suggest that practically every nation on earth has either produced more than it consumes, or is attempting to do so and look at the situation we are in!!
The excess production is seeking a market in other countries which is frequently very difficult because those countries are also attempting to shift their excess production. The result is a complexity of Trade deals like Free Trade Agreements, anti-dumping legislation etc., etc., which fail to achieve more than a superficial impact.

The best way to consider economic theories can sometimes occur by looking at an uncomplicated example like an isolated community. Imagine an island if you like, where the inhabitants manage to grow sufficient food for themselves and they are able to construct adequate shelter from local trees for housing. Keeping it simple, what possible benefit would they achieve if they "grew their economy" by producing an excess of food or housing? I fail to see any benefit, let alone "the ability to produce more real wealth with more efficient means and thus less real effort".

- - Sincerely, Ken Grundy Naracoorte South Australia  

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