Max Newton, The Australian, November 14, 1989, pp. 15, 18.
The defeat of communism is but one aspect of a global reassertion of the rights and freedoms of individuals against the State and against State-sponsored gangs that began with the election of Ronald Reagan in 1980.
For the past decade in the United States there has been a recognition that State-sponsored enterprises and State-funded handouts have undermined the integrity of individual effort and personal freedoms.
The revulsion against all State-sponsored actions continues in America. Taxes are hated; widespread corruption has been revealed in the defence-industrial complex, in the savings and loans industry, in agriculture. There is a deep contempt for government and the politicians.
Almost daily, Americans are being exposed to fresh tales of corruption, fraud and waste, along with manipulation of the government apparatus by criminals in business. This is part of a far wider revulsion against the power of government — of the State — in all aspects of American business and economic life.
Ronald Reagan began the dismantling of government power. The resulting chaos and eternal rejuvenation continue.
In Japan, the situation is the same. The revulsion against the Liberal Democratic Party has its roots in the disillusionment of the ordinary Japanese — particularly the ordinary Japanese woman — that so few of the benefit’s of Japan’s 40-year economic boom have filtered down to the average household.
The Japanese consumers can see that they are paying way over the odds for food and way over the odds for goods made in Japan — on average 40 per cent above the prices for identical products in New York or Los Angeles.
So much of the wealth that has been created has been skimmed off by the gangs that control, with LDP sponsorship, the import and sale of fuel, foods and raw materials. Something very profound is now happening in Japan. The ordinary people are beginning to assert their right to a bigger share of the fruits of their 40-year-long effort.
It is the same in Mexico. The revulsion against the gangs in the IPR party, that have controlled Mexican industry for more than 70 years and which have done the deals with big business there, is spreading rapidly through the whole of Mexican business and industry.
The East Germans, the Poles, the Hungarians and the Soviets have discovered that the attempt to manipulate and micro-direct whole economic systems has failed.
In Brazil this month, the same issue must be dealt with. Do the people of Brazil want a free, privatised economic system, or do they want to stay snarled in the mania of big government-big business corruption, inflation and ripoffs?
The people of the GDR have opted for risk and freedom. Can Australia be too far behind? Can glasnost and perestroika come Down Under? Will the Australian people also decide to reject a corporate State, manipulated and micro-managed by the ALP-ACTU politburo under the all-seeing eyes of Hawke and Keating?
“Fascism” is defined in Websters Dictionary as “a system of government characterised by … the retention of private ownership of the means of production under centralised government control.”
May I briefly outline some of the aspects of fascism in Australia?
Manufacturing industry has formed an alliance with the political and bureaucratic apparatus to impose taxes on Australian consumers through a vast and complex web of import duties, import controls, embargoes and inhibitions to trade in goods that if overseen by the most authoritarian Customs police in any civilised nation, equipped as these police are with untrammelled power of entry, search and seizure.
Governments, federal and State, have seized control of the whole of the transportation system, with the exception of a depressed and exploited trucking under-class.
Until very recently, when it began to collapse entirely under the weight of its own internal contradictions, the airline industry was a government-managed monopoly, split into two parts.
State governments have run the railroad systems of Australia on the basis of a corrupt alliance with unions, to the enormous detriment of the Australian consumers. The waterfront and coastal shipping are run by union gangs who enforce their laws with terror and in many cases through the use of murder against potential interlopers, a group that sometimes includes the State police.
The Federal Government controls the whole television industry, and enforced anti-competitive rules and licences by means of terror through the State Chamber apparatus of the Australian Broadcasting Tribunal. The same goes for the radio industry. Officials decide the allocation of licences. Officials hold a weapon of fear over what is broadcast.
Australia was one of the last nations on Earth to receive the manifest benefits of FM radio transmission, due to enforcement of the spurious argument by the (then) postmaster-general’s department that there was “no room” for new FM channels.
This FM freedom argument meant that Australia suffered for decades from sub-standard AM radio transmissions and the preservation of the privileged FM radio regional monopolies, the result of age-old deals done between the PMG and big business (that’s what fascism is all about, folks).
Pervasive corruption exists in agriculture, where trade in grains, fruits and sugar — to name a few examples — is controlled by State marketing authorities who are free to make their own deals with waterfront and transportation gangs, including such gangs as the waterside “workers”, the seamen and the painters and dockers. In much of agriculture, imports of competitive food products are banned.
In the case of sugar, the monopoly profits from the State-sponsored system of corporate monopoly profits (enforced by embargoes on the import of sugar) provided the financing of a big industrial complex, the Colonial Sugar Refinery Company, whose wealth came from the monopoly profits of a prolonged ripoff of the Australian sugar consumer.
There is little or no competition in telecommunications in Australia. This industry, which is exploding worldwide and providing the very foundation of much of the future wealth of America, is not free in Australia to compete vigorously for capital but is trammelled by political control from the apparatchiks in Canberra.
As a result, pervasive low-level corruption characterises the attempts by ordinary Australian consumers to obtain a connection to telephone, fax and data networks. “Who do you know?” becomes as much a part of getting access to the telecommunications networks in Australia as it is in any communist, or any other fascist or corporate State around the world.
Above all, as in any communist or in any other fascist or corporate State, Australians have been deprived of the right to work under terms and conditions that they may individually and freely negotiate.
The right to work has been taken away from ordinary Australian workers. Their work is regulated by a mass of official controls, imposed by a vast bureaucracy in the ministry of labour and enforced by a corrupt and compliant “judiciary” in the official Soviet-style Arbitration Commission.
Local trade union soviets, with the benefit of monopoly powers conferred on them by the State and enforced by the corrupt labour “judges” in many industries regulate the employment of each individual, who may not work unless he first obtains the union card from the local union soviet. Through the resulting complex and corrupt system of wages and work regulation, ordinary Australian workers have in recent years been subject to a persistent and now accelerating process of declining real wages.
The Reserve Bank Bulletin for October 1989 reveals that between 1984-85 and the June quarter of 1989 wages for adults in Australia rose 23 per cent, as the workers attempted to flesh out their award wages by overtime and other privately negotiated “deals” beyond the control of the labour ministry soviet and the corrupt labour “judges”. In the past three years, overtime worked in Australia has risen 20 per cent, as the workers have valiantly attempted to maintain their real wages by working longer hours.
The Reserve Bank Bulletin goes on to point out that since 1984-85 consumer prices in Australia have risen by 40 percent. So the soviet system of wages and work controls in Australia since 1984-85 has produced a decline of 12 per cent in the “real” level of award wages and a decline of nearly 6 in the real level of average earnings (even after the widespread practice of overtime working, reflecting as it does the attempt by the workers of Australia to achieve at the least no reduction in their real wages — an attempt that has failed).
So, in Australia, as in Eastern Europe or in the Soviet Union itself, the ministry of labour controls on workers’ right to work, enforced by pliant “judges”, have produced declining wages.
I might also add that in Australia, as in other fascist and corporate States, the share of profits has bounded ahead. Between 1986-87 (the Reserve Bank Bulletin for September tells us) and the June quarter 1989, the level of private corporate profits rose by 37 per cent — 60 per cent faster than award wages and 12 per cent faster than average earnings. Unfortunately for Australian workers, there is no easy route to higher wages and freedom through some nearby Czechoslovakia.
Nevertheless, Australian workers clearly recognise, through the use of their manifest common sense, the corruption and inequity of the ministry of labour regulations and controls. They are fleeing to freedom through the route of abandoning jobs where unions have the power to deprive them of their right to work, and are individually opting out of the entire State-sponsored labour control and wage-fixing apparatus.
In this, the contraction of the State-sponsored and State-subsidised (through the aforesaid import tariffs and import controls) industrial sector and the expansion of the relatively unregulated services sector is providing a route to freedom for individual workers.
Like other failed communist or fascist corporate State systems, the Australian system has been able to avoid breakdown in recent years only by means of huge and unsustainable foreign borrowing. This foreign borrowing route was the one taken by communist Poland and fascist Mexico.
The enormity of the debt burdens thus permitted by Politburo in Poland and by the IPR party gangs in Mexico eventually brought down the whole system in those countries, precipitating widespread hardship, economic stagnation and eventually the destruction of the whole ruling political apparatus. This is the prospect that now faces Australia after so long a period of suffering under the corporate State.
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