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2 April 1971. Thought for the Week: "What is morally wrong cannot be politically good".
Rev. Denis Fahey, C.S.Sp.D., PhD., B.A.
ON THE SOCIALIST ROAD IN NORTH AMERICA
Mr. Eric Butler is studying the finance-economic crisis in North America. He reports
In both Canada and the U.S.A. there is mounting controversy concerning the finance-economic crisis. The Socialists of all types, including those who describe themselves as anti-Communist, are pushing for still more Government controls and centralised planning. Class warfare is being generated as each section of society is misled into believing that it is being hurt by continuing inflation because of the "selfish" policies of other sections.
I am in possession of a confidential Canadian Communist document confirming my view that the Marxists are encouraging farmers to intensify class warfare by organising into centralised National Farmers' Unions which will ensure that farmers refuse to supply the rest of the community with food unless demands for higher food prices are met. It is proposed that if the farmers link with the Trade Unions they can force the community to yield to their demands. This type of action would result in a still greater rate of inflation, and destructive tensions within society. This is what the Marxist revolutionaries want.
The latest unemployment figures in Canada
have been hailed by the Trudeau Government as evidence that
its restrictive financial policies are working. The rate of
increase in the number of unemployed has slowed down! At the
end of February there were 149,000 more out of work than there
were 12 months ago. The total unemployed figure is now 675,000
and if the Governor of Canada's Central Bank, Louis Rasminsky,
has his way it could pass the record figure of 700,000 of
In the meantime the Canadian price level
continues to rise, and Finance Minister Edgar Benson has announced
that the Government is examining how and when compulsory price
and wage controls might be implemented "if inflation again
becomes a problem".
It is true that those who will not learn from history are doomed to keep on repeating the mistakes of history. The Canadian Government is 2,000 years out of date with its study of how to cure inflation with Government price controls. The Romans tried that. But in more recent times the British Socialist Government under Harold Wilson tried to control wages, profits and prices - and failed. The Canadian Government will also fail.
Having embraced the Keynesian Socialist technique of a deficit budget, it is not surprising to hear spokesmen for the Nixon Administration stating that they are not adverse to considering Government price controls if necessary. The truth is that the United States is much further down the Socialist road than most people realize.
The Socialist textbooks state that the Government is best which taxes the most and spends the most. In 1940 Americans contributed 20 per cent of their national income to Government, Federal, State and Local. Since then there has been a progressive increase in the percentage of national income contributed to Government, until today 35 per cent of the Americans' national income is being contributed to Government. It is significant that the percentage increase to State and Local Government has been only 1 per cent, as against the 14 per cent increase to Federal Government.
There is no evidence that Canadian and American businessmen are responsible for inflation as a result of profiteering. But while trade union members are misled into believing that "capitalist profiteering" is the cause of their problems, they in turn are being charged with being the real villains by pressing for higher wages. But wage increases are in most cases an effect, not a basic cause of inflation. A business manager for a Canadian construction Union has pointed out that while a few years ago labor costs were probably about 25 per cent of the total construction cost of a particular project, in many instances increased productivity had reduced labor costs down to 15 per cent of total costs. But inflation continues.
Interested in this situation in the building industry in Canada, I investigated and made the following revealing discovery:
In 1957 the financial cost of the average
Canadian home was $14,500. Land was $2,250, Labor $5,300,
Materials $6,500 and Legal and associated costs $450.
It will readily be seen therefore that increased labor costs were not the major factor in increasing the cost of an average Canadian's house from $14,500 to $24,400 - if he could pay cash.
But the real "sting" in the above figures
is when a study is made of the actual financing of the increased
These are the type of facts which make it clear that instead of different sections tearing the free society apart by attacking one another, they should unite to challenge the basic causes which generate inflation and other destructive results. Inflationary financial policies, stemming from increasing debt, taxation and interest charges, have been described as the bridge over which man is passing from the Free Society into the Marxist Society. Those who do not wish to cross this bridge must challenge the basic features of its structure. Increasing numbers of Canadians are starting to make this challenge. The challenge will grow as the Fabian Socialist programme of centralism becomes clearer.
NEW COUNTRY PARTY M.P. PROMISES DECENTRALISATION
"The Country Party has got to adopt a more positive role in the development of a total rural community. Decentralisation will benefit not only those living in the areas of development, but must help people in Melbourne and Sydney, too." - Mr. Bruce Lloyd, Country Party candidate for the Federal by-election in Murray, Victoria.
Mr. Lloyd, the successful candidate, has committed himself to a policy of decentralisation. Although it is well known that practically every Liberal-Country Party politician who gains election gives lip service to the principle of decentralisation and then mysteriously forgets about it when he gets to Canberra, the emphasis Mr. Lloyd is no doubt giving to decentralisation at this moment is because he has given a written undertaking to the electors of Murray that he would stand firm on this vital principal. He did so in a reply to questions submitted to candidates during the campaign by The Murray Electors Association.
However, promise or no promise, the realities of politics being what they are, with a record of 20 years of adopting increasing centralist policies by the Federal Country Party, there is no doubt that the decentralisation of Mr. Lloyd will quickly become the centralism of Messrs. Anthony, Sinclair, Nixon and fellow Federal Party colleagues unless the Murray Electors' Association maintains the pressure on Mr. Lloyd.
During his campaign Mr. Lloyd campaigned on the slogan, "Performance, Not Promises". We trust that in the future we will see promises matched by performances. Who knows we may have unearthed a statesman from amongst the irrigation farms on the Murray River.
RHODESIAN BISHOP OPTS OUT
The following is from the Rhodesian Commentary, March 1971 -"Last year the World Council of churches announced it would allocate $200,000 to various Groups "that fight racism, including African guerrillas", and the public relations secretary of the Australian Council of Churches, Mr. Vaughn Hinton, found it necessary to issue a press release justifying this decision. The grants argued Mr. Hinton, were made specifically to "improve race relations, to assist victims of racial injustice and to help minority racial groups to develop education and social programs".
The views expressed by Mr. Hinton are at odds with those expressed by the Anglican Bishop of Mashonaland, the Right Reverend Paul Burrough. Bishop Burrough spoke at a recent Anglican Consultative Council meeting in Kenya. "I believe the World Council of Churches decision as far as Rhodesia is concerned was ill-informed and ethically wrong". He said he was being asked by the W.C.C. to encourage moral and financial support for two organisations pledged to violence in Rhodesia, and which in the past had engaged in violence, especially against Africans. Bishop Burrough walked out of the Kenya meeting saying that the Anglican Consultative Council had supported the W.C.C. program "including sending money to organisations pledged to making war in the country in which I reside, Rhodesia".
The Archbishop of Melbourne, Dr. Frank Wood was a delegate to the conference in Kenya. On his return the Diocesan journal, "See" published his remarks on the conference in which he said he had been given a glimpse of a world where Christians of all nations would be ultimately united. Every Christian would agree that such unification is desirable, but only on a basis whereby God's kingdom is extended. It is hard to see how the financing of anti-Christ terrorist organisations will promote the necessary unity. Perhaps we have not progressed sufficiently in the study of modern theology.
WESTERN AUSTRALIAN PREMIER ON FLUORIDATION
"The Government would try to find out whether any scientist was prepared to stake his reputation on the merits of fluoridated water supplied". - The Sun, Melbourne. March 9.
Mr. Tonkin, the newly elected Labor Premier for Western Australia, was speaking at his first press conference as Premier. Those who saw Mr. Tonkin interviewed on the ABC session, Four Corners will have no doubt gathered the impression of a temperate, reasonable man, and certainly not one like Mr. Dunstan in South Australia who will be rushing in to upset stable policies. He promised the maximum co-operation with free enterprise, and criticised the "socialist" policies of the former government in dealing with the mining corporations. He undoubtedly sees in the mineral boom a means of alleviating Western Australia's financial problems, mentioning the use of royalties similar to those paid in Canada by the oil companies as a means of meeting financial burdens of the State.
Those who have fought to retain a water supply free of the addition of Sodium Fluoride by State edict will be heartened by Mr. Tonkin's realistic approach to the problem. He is challenging the scientists in favour of fluoride to put up or shut up. Mr. Tonkin pointed out, "It is a cumulative poison at any level of intake - it remains in the body. Until such times as it is shown not to be harmful, we must be very careful. It is not enough to say that it has not been proved to be harmful".
Mr. Tonkin prefaced these remarks by asserting that not one scientific opinion favouring fluoridation existed, and nor had anybody of any standing in the world supported it. This statement will force the proponents of fluoridation to carefully define the qualifications of those organisations promoting fluoridation. It is apparent that Mr. Tonkin wishes to remove the whole argument from the speculative to a scientific basis. No one should quibble about that.
INEFFICIENT AND OVERCOSTLY TRANSPORT
"The Minister for Shipping and Transport criticised 'inefficient and over-costly transport' in country areas". - The Age, Melbourne March 20.
The cost of transport to the producer is a time worn but nevertheless real problem. The impact on the cost structure of the rural community, and on manufacturing industries in country towns, to transport both produce and raw materials is a crippling burden. The whole question is tied up with the false economics of government interfering in activities, which are not the responsibility of government. Mr. Nixon said he had personal experience of being on the "daggy end" of an inefficient railway system. Private transport operators battling with the overbearing and bureaucratically tedious Transport Control Boards, which are proliferating over the nation, could also lay claim to being on the "daggy end" of a policy caused by undue interference. All over the nation we have stagnant railway systems propped up by the taxpayer, while road transport is deliberately inhibited so it will not become too competitive. However, to the bureaucratic mind, the build-up of government control in both areas undoubtedly serves a valid purpose. Where would our full employment policy be if the dead wood was eliminated and competition restored?
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