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Edmund Burke
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21. February 1969. Thought for the Week: "... the danger of royal absolutism is passed; but the danger of cabinet absolutism, even of Prime Minister absolutism, is present and growing. Against that danger, the reserve power of the Crown, and especially the power to force or reform dissolution, is in some instances the only safeguard.
"The Crown is more than a quaint survival, a social ornament, a symbol, an autonomy with no public role of its own. It is an absolutely essential part of the Parliamentary system. In certain circumstances the Crown also can preserve the Constitution or ensure that if it be changed it shall be only by the deliberate will of the people."
Eugene H. Forsey in "The Royal Power of Dissolution of Parliament in the British Commonwealth."(P.259)

APPOINTMENT OF NEW GOVERNOR-GENERAL RAISES SERIOUS ISSUES

"Liberal Parliamentarian - barrister Mr. Jim Killen yesterday criticised on political grounds, the appointment of Sir Paul Hasluck as Governor-General and said he thought that the matter deserved to be raised in Federal Parliament. He warned that if the Governor-Generalship became a political plum, the office would become degraded." - the Courier-Mail (Brisbane) February 14.

Prime Minister Gorton's appointment of Sir Paul Hasluck as Governor-General, straight from active participation in party politics, provides further disturbing evidence of the new progressive philosophy now permeating the Liberal Party. When a Federal Labor Government appointed a leading Labor Leader, Sir William McKell, as Governor-General, no one was more scathing in his criticism than Country Party leader John McEwen. That was in 1947. Now Mr. McEwen has apparently turned his back on what he said were fundamental principles.

Although we have been critical of much of Sir Paul Hasluck's foreign policy, we have no doubt that he is as capable as Sir William McKell proved of making a competent Governor-General. But the Governor-General must appear to be non-partisan to the whole community. There appears to be little doubt that Mr. Gorton's appointment, followed by the selection of Mr. Gordon Freeth as the new Minister for External Affairs, is in keeping with the Prime Minister's new style of government. Mr. Gorton has left himself open to the charge of "cronyism".

While it was to be expected that Mr. Edward St.John would support the appointment of Sir Paul Hasluck, it is disturbing that as yet Mr. Killen is the only Liberal Party M.P. who has publicly drawn attention to the far-reaching implications of the method of the appointment. Obviously he has not enhanced his political prospects by drawing attention to fundamental principles. These principles can only survive from generation to generation if they are defended by sufficient public leaders. Mr. Killen has once again rendered a great national service by his stand on the manner of appointment of the Crown's representative at Canberra.

It is unfortunate that the full text of his brilliant statement has been published in only one paper,The Herald (Melbourne). The League of Rights will therefore publish the complete statement in its monthly Intelligence Survey for March.


DEFICIENCY FUND

Mr. Eric Butler returned to Melbourne this week after covering two thousand miles on special activities in Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland. Mr. Edward Rock has been engaged in intensive work in Victorian rural areas. Mr. Jeremy Lee is moving through Victoria, to South Australia and on to Western Australia, conducting a massive educational programme. Mr. Jim Marsh is working in highly selective personal interview activities. Literature is pouring out at an increasing rate. The tempo of League activities is mounting. But all this requires funds. The year started with a deficiency of £5000. Our deficiency fund advanced another $195 last week, the total now being $1697.20. The total amount must be available by the end of June.

COUNTRY PARTY UNDER INCREASING ATTACK

Canberra, Sun
A new rural political organisation, formed this weekend, today attacked the Country party and its leader, Mr. John McEwen. The chairman of the group, Mr. R. J. Bourke, said today that Mr. McEwen was a failure an utter failure. The new organisation is named the National Political Reform Group.

Daily Telegraph (Sydney), February 17.
Although there have been conflicting reports about the National Political Reform Group, with the chairman Mr. Burke subsequently denying having made the statements attributed to him concerning Mr. McEwen, and some Liberal Party supporters of the Group resigning, the basic truth is that this new activity is one more manifestation of the mounting unrest amongst primary producers because of the growing cost-price squeeze. All over Australia protest groups are developing and the Country Party leaders will be most shortsighted if they ignore the basic cause of the protests: rising financial costs, and amalgamations offered as the only solution. Unfortunately the protests being made will be ineffective if there is fragmentation amongst protest groups.
Large numbers have left the Country Party in disgust.

While the Country Party must accept the main criticism from primary producers it is short sighted to make the Country Party solely responsible, suggesting that the Liberal Party is blameless. The principal cause of rising financial costs is the Fabian Socialist credit policies being imposed by the Federal Government under a Liberal Treasurer, Mr. McMahon. However, the Country Party could exert sufficient influence to have these policies modified - or leave the Coalition and refuse to accept any further responsibility for these policies.
Anti-Country Party Liberal supporters should not be smug about the developing criticism of the Country Party. The current situation is one in which increasing numbers of electors are becoming cynical about both the Liberal and Country Parties.

Australian politics are entering a new and highly critical situation. Mr. Gorton's Government could find itself in trouble before the coming Federal Elections.


DOUBLE-TALK ON WEST IRIAN

"The Minister for External Affairs, Mr. Freeth said in Canberra yesterday the Australian Government would be watching closely the outcome of the free vote on self-determination for West Irian - Indonesia's half of New Guinea. Mr. Freeth told the Young Liberals convention that the free vote was to express a voice about their future and to give them determination. - The Australian February 19.

Mr. Freeth may learn from experience, but his performances since being recently elected to the vital External Affairs post have tended to confirm the view of those who believe that Mr. Gorton made him Minister because he was a personal friend and could be expected to agree completely with the Prime Minister. Mr. Freeth has already been criticised by the President of the RSL for having said that Australia must adopt the role of a "policeman" in South-East Asia.

Mr. Freeth has expressed himself strongly in opposition to Rhodesian independence. But he has no difficulty on accepting what is happening in West Irian. It is dangerous double talk to talk about a "free" vote in West Irian when the natives have been told that opposition to becoming a permanent part of Indonesia would be regarded as "treason" by the Indonesian Government. Mr. Freeth has explained why it is necessary for the plebiscite to be taken amongst only 1000 West Irians, that is one vote for approximately 800 people. Mr. Freeth states that if the one-man-one-vote principle were applied in West Irian conditions, this form of vote may not produce the exact wishes of the people of West Irian because many of them exist under stone-age conditions. A free vote in these circumstances would not necessarily represent the true wishes of the people.
The 1000 representatives who are to vote are spokesman from regional councils, provincial councils, tribal areas and intellectuals.

If the Rhodesian Government proposed to test public opinion in Rhodesia on the West Irian Method, there would be an even bigger campaign of opposition to Rhodesia than there is now. No African elector is threatened with treason if he dares to vote for an Opposition candidate. It would be instructive to learn how Mr. Freeth reconciles his opposition to Rhodesia, where a proposed new Constitution provides for the preservation of Civilised Government and greater opportunities for Africans to participate in politics through their own Provincial Governments, with his support for the type of blackmail being practised against the West Irian by the Indonesian Government.


COMMUNIST ADVANCE IN INDIA

"A communist victory in the key industrial complex of West Bengal and setbacks in two out of three other elections in Northern India yesterday jolted the governing Congress Party led by the Prime Minister, Mrs. Ghandi... Militant and moderate the communist groups submerged their differences and jointed dissident Congress elements and left-wing splinter groups to regain control of West Bengal by 181 seats out of 241. Congress won only 50 seats."- The Australian, February 14.

Immediately following their successes in the Indian State Elections, the pro-Peking Marxist Communist Party in West Bengal demanded that they should have the positions of Chief Minister, home office and police. Communist progress in West Bengal is of vital importance to the Communists in order to advance their strategy in South-East Asia. The general deterioration of the Indian situation must be of great importance to Australia's future, as the Soviet hope to continue expanding its influence to the point where it has naval bases in India. These are essential for the Soviet's growing naval thrust into the Indian Ocean.


ITALIAN REDS ADVOCATE "NEW FORM OF SOCIALISM"

"The Italian Communist Party has emerged from its week-long 12th national congress at the head of a campaign for a new type of international communism. - The Age (Melbourne), February 18.

The Italian Communists have been in the forefront of Communist "reformers". They have gained massive electoral support in Italy working through the parliamentary system. Further advances are confidently anticipated so long as the "soft sell" tactic can be developed.
The Italian Communist strongly denounces the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia last August. They insist on the Italian Party's complete autonomy and right to criticise other Socialist States. Superficial observers will see in these developments further evidence that Communist around the world are "changing and mellowing".
Communists are constantly changing their tactics, but not their objectives.
The Australian Communists have also changed their tactics. They strongly criticised the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia.

Socialism in practice requires the Police State. Once power is obtained, it is the "duty" of the Marxist-Leninist to take the necessary steps to ensure that he does not lose that power.
The threat to the Free World becomes progressively greater as the Communist experiment with different methods to reach the same ultimate objective. There is no new form of Socialism. The reality remains the same that it has always been - the domination of the individual by power-lusters claiming to represent "the State."


"THIS BROCHURE COULD SHIFT AUSTRALIAN POLICY"

The initial response to the League of Rights" special brochure, Australia's Front Line in Southern Africa has been most stimulating. The opinion has been expressed that if it could be placed in the hands of 50,000 selected leader personnel - politicians, Federal and State, Municipal Councilors, clergy, teachers, and numerous public men representing a variety of organisations - the result would be a complete shift in Australian foreign policy. Why not join the campaign.
Supplies available at following prices 10 cents per single copy; $1. per dozen; $3. per 50 $5. 100. Order from Box 1052J, G. P. 0. Melbourne, 3001.

THE WEEK IN BRIEF

National Convention of Young Liberals in Canberra rejected resolution calling for Australian recognition of Rhodesia, but many delegates did not vote, and narrowly defeated a resolution calling for the recognition of Red China. . . .
An Iraki - Jewish physician has told the Bagdad Observer, an English - Language daily, that it is not true that Iraki-Jews are being persecuted or subjected to mass extermination, observing that Jews have lived for centuries in Irak without experiencing persecution....
West Germany has indicated that it is moving towards recognition of Red China.

ON TARGET BULLETIN

TARGET FOR THE WEEK
SELECTION OF GOVERNOR-GENERAL

Important constitutional considerations have been raised with the appointment of Sir Paul Hasluck as the Governor-General. The impartiality of the Governor-General should be beyond question. No doubts should be in the mind of the public or the parliament that legislation submitted to the Queen's representative for ratification, or that any decision of the Governor-General in regard to any appointment he is expected to make is affected by bias.

The highest possible virtues of justice and responsibility are expected of the Queen's direct representative in Australia. By recommending a leading politician the Government has caused a division in the Australian people, which can only be exploited by those who would like to abolish the concept of Monarchial representation. What has been done is the equivalent to the election of a President in a Republic where many of the people are actively opposed to the politics of the person selected.

As Mr. Jim Killen has pointed out, this Government should be aware that the appointment of one of its senior politicians opens the way for the Labor Party to appoint such men as Dr. Cairns who would not hesitate to lower the expected standards of an office which he would rather see abolished. There is no doubt the Government, by selecting an Australian, has narrowed the range of suitable choice of candidates, but that is not sufficient excuse for selecting a politician still active in formulating Government policy.

Letters to M.P's suggesting that the appointment of Australian politicians for such an office should never be considered, and asking whether it was now the official policy of the Liberal and the Country Parties to not accept Englishmen whose impartiality and high standing, fitting them for the office of Governor-General was not in question.
A further suggestion worth putting to our representatives is that we should seriously consider the appointment of a member of the Royal Family as a permanent representative of Her Majesty in Australia. There are many who would like to see established a dynasty of the Royal family permanently in Australia. Such a development would put an end to argument about appointment of Governor-Generals and would be a major defeat for the republicans and other place seekers in our midst.

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