The amazing David Hart, of The Online Library of Liberty fame, sent us a PDF of the Workers Party Platform (PDF, Scribd). Below it is in a format easier to copy, paste and, with its hyperlinked table of contents, to skip and link to specific sections. The text below has the exact same text as the other versions, except in each page’s footer in the original is repeated: “No man or group of men has the right to initiate the use of force, fraud or coercion against another man or group of men.”
THE FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLE
1. INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS AND CIVIL ORDER
1.1.– Individual Rights
1.1.1. The Right to Life
1.1.2. Property Rights
1.1.3. Liberty and Freedom
1.1.4. Aboriginal Australians
1.1.5. The Rights of Children
1.1.7. Voting and Elections
1.2.– Rights, Justice and Law
1.3.2. Due Process
1.3.3. Criminal Justice
1.3.4. Involuntary Commitment
1.3.5. Subpoena and Jury Service
1.3.6. Penal Institutions
2. ECONOMIC AFFAIRS
2.1.– Monetary and Fiscal Policy
2.1.1. Taxation is Theft
2.1.2. Inflation and Recession/Depression
2.1.3. Money and Banking
2.2.– Production and Trade
2.2.1. Free Trade
2.2.2. Government Licensing
2.2.3. Government Monopolies
2.2.4. Tariffs and Quotas
2.2.5. Subsidies and Bounties
2.3.– Investment by Foreign and Multi-National Companies
2.4.– Reducing Government
3. GENERAL AFFAIRS
3.1.– Labour Unions
3.2.– Broadcasting and Television
3.6.– Consumer Protection
3.9.– Land, Building and Housing
3.11.– The Public Service
4. FOREIGN AFFAIRS
4.1.– Foreign Aid
4.2.– Military Policy
4.3.– Military Capabilities
4.4.– Treaties, Alliances and International Agreements
4.5.– The United Nations
4.7.– Diplomatic Immunity
4.8.– Foreign Travel
WORKERS PARTY PLATFORM
- To offer an intelligent and practical alternative to socialism as practised and preached by the Labor and Australia Parties and as practised by the Liberal and Country Parties.
- To put principles before votes.
The aim of this Party is simple. It is to implement one fundamental moral principle fully and consistently. This fundamental principle is that of non-interference. It can be stated thus: “No man or group of men has the right to initiate the use of force, fraud or coercion against another man or group of men”.
The implications and applications of this principle make up the remainder of our platform.
The main problem facing Australia is government. Government has become too big, too powerful and too expensive. It is no longer the servant of the people, but their master. Its record is one of aggression: taxation, conscription, inflation, confiscation, etc.
Power-hungry people use government to exercise control over others; greedy people use it to gain personal advantage over others; lazy people use it to sponge on others; and pressure groups use it to enforce their will on others.
All of us pay for government and all of us are dominated by government.
We believe that as every man’s life is his own he should be able to live that life in the manner of his own choice, provided that he does not trespass on the freedom of others. It follows that in a moral society the only proper role of government is to protect the individual’s rights from violation by force, fraud or coercion. We repeat that this is the only proper role of government in a moral society.
However, this goal will be achieved only after a gradual change during which inefficient and unnecessary government activities, such as the Railways and Post Office, will be phased out and replaced by private organisations. This gradual reduction of the public sphere will result in an increase in individual activity and responsibility, especially as all forms of taxation are progressively reduced.
It follows that as each of us owns his own life, the relationships that we have with others must be on the basis of voluntary agreement. This is the only way in which people may live in peace as free men and women.
No conflict exists between civil order and individual rights. Both concepts are based on the same fundamental principle: that no individual, group or government may initiate force, fraud or coercion against any other individual, group or government.
The Right to life is the source of all other rights. The Right to Life means that each person is the sole owner of his own life, and of the values honestly gained therefrom; and that no other man or group of men has any claim on any portion of another’s life without that person’s consent. There can be no conflict between these rights, as each man possesses equal rights. Conflict can only arise through the violation of individual rights.
We uphold the unconditional recognition of every person’s individual Right to Life and, therefore, advocate the repeal of all laws based on the assumption that a man’s life belongs to the State or to Society. We oppose any form of compulsion, conscription or involuntary servitude.
Recognition of Property Rights in material objects is the recognition of a man’s right to exist; his right to pursue his own goals in his own manner at his own discretion with what is rightfully his to command. Just as the Right to Life is the right to the property of one’s own person, so the right to own material products is the right to sustain one’s life and to keep the results of one’s own efforts. If the right to use and to dispose of property is controlled by others, the owner of property ceases to be a free man. Therefore, we advocate the unconditional recognition of property rights, and the eventual repeal of all laws such as those relating to death duties, land acquisition, etc., which are based on the assumption that all property belongs to the State, or to Society.
Liberty is the state where each man respects the rights of others. Liberty is freedom from coercion by other men, where men choose to deal with each other only by mutual consent.
The concept “liberty” includes:
the freedoms of thought, speech and opinion (including religion);
the freedom of association, which means that all men are free to come together or to stay apart as they choose, in any form or organisation they choose; for example, labour unions, joint-stock companies, clubs, etc.;
the freedom to trade (a special form of association entailing an exchange of property rights), and the freedom not to trade; including the freedom to choose one’s employers or employees, whether singly or together; and the freedom to bargain on wages or on prices by uncoerced mutual agreement;
the freedom to contract (a special form of association entailing a voluntary future commitment), which means that men are free to commit themselves in contract to each other in any manner they mutually choose and determine;
the freedom of the press, of information, of broadcasting, of the arts, of all forms of human expression in any medium (a special form of trade in certain products of the human mind), which means that any man may offer for sale or use any form or type of expression provided that he does not violate the rights of others (freedom of the press, etc., does not imply that the media of expression or distribution should be made available to all and sundry via the violation of the property rights of others);
the freedom of movement, which means that everyone has the right to move and reside in any geographical location, provided he respects the rights of others.
We believe that liberty is the only state proper to man and therefore advocate the repeal of all laws which restrict individual liberty and which assume that man is free only inasmuch as the State permits him to be free. Such laws include those regulating censorship, education, unions, compulsory voting, licensing, tariffs and prices, wage and rent controls; laws permitting government monopolies and government supported cartels and price fixing rings and laws relating to the registration of books, newspapers, magazines, cinemas, radio and television stations, etc.
We recognise that the rights of Australian Aborigines have been violated frequently, extensively and degradingly by successive governments. We advocate the repeal of all laws which violate individual rights. In particular, we advocate that land currently held “in trust” by various governments be returned to the Aboriginal Australians with full property rights, including the ownership of minerals below the ground.
All people are morally responsible for the results of their actions. Therefore parents have an obligation to provide for the children they have caused to be born into the world. Therefore they have the responsibility to bring their children to adulthood, the state of self-sufficiency, to the best of their ability and means. While parents are supporting a child they are responsible for that child and have authority over that child.
From birth, children are human beings and have equal rights with all other human beings.
While a child is dependent on others he cannot be fully self-sufficient. Notwithstanding, every child has the right to leave home, to seek employment unhindered by coercive government intervention, to seek alternative guardians, and to enjoy full rights of ownership over his own property, and therefore the right to seek redress against theft, including thefts committed by his parents.
No law shall discriminate against any individual on the grounds of race, colour, sex, creed, etc.
Compulsory voting is an infringement of individual rights. However, we maintain that all residents wishing to vote in an election should be required to register their intention to vote. Such registration would not be binding. Its sole purpose would be to prevent people from voting more than once in any one election.
We advocate voluntary voting and therefore the repeal of laws which make voting compulsory.
In many respects the Australian legal system is contradictory and complicated. There is no consistent concept of justice. The application of the Law does not always guarantee that justice is served.
Apart from the repeal of such legislation, we advocate a complete streamlining of the legal process on the basis of individual rights. We advocate one fundamental principle: No person, or groups of persons, shall initiate the use of force, fraud or coercion against another person or group of persons. Only on the basis of this principle can men by equal before the law.
Thus, on the principle that every man is responsible for his own actions, we maintain that every person convicted of transgressing the law must undertake to compensate fully the victim or victims of his action for their loss. (See 1.3.3. Criminal Justice.)
We further advocate the streamlining of the legal process on the basis of consent. Where plaintiff and defendant agree on the method of adjudication of their dispute, whether trial by jury, trial by judge(s) or decision by some extra-legal agency, then the result of that agreement will be binding and will have the force of law, subject to the right of appeal.
In order to put these policies into effect we propose the following addition to the Australian Constitution which will be put the people via referendum.
AMENDMENT TO CONSTITUTION
BILL OF RIGHTS, 129
- Every living human being has the Right to Life.
- The Right to Life subsumes and includes all other Rights: The Right to own and dispose of property, the Right to Liberty, and all the subsidiary Rights that those Rights entail, without exception.
- The Right to Life means that each human being’s life is his absolute property, and his alone, as are the values rightfully gained through his exercise of his Right to Life.
- Every human being will respect every other human being’s Right to Life, which means that no human being shall initiate force, fraud or coercion of any description or in any manner against another human being. Any human being who so violate another’s Right incurs a debt to that other human being which he must repay.
- The sole function of governments is to uphold these Rights.
Actions which do not infringe the rights of others cannot be termed crimes. Such actions not involving victims (“victimless crimes”) are not crimes at all, but, by being so defined, are merely attempts by one group of people to control the lives of other individuals. Therefore, we advocate:
The repeal of all laws restricting the voluntary exchange of goods or services, including trading hour restrictions.
The repeal of all laws restricting or controlling any form of gambling.
The repeal of all laws which control or prohibit any sexual activity, including homosexuality and prostitution, between consenting adults.
The repeal of all laws restricting or controlling the production, transportation, sale, possession or use of any food supplement or drug. The repeal of all laws setting up special classifications of foreigners, and the abolition of all laws which place economic and social restrictions upon them.
Until a person is proved guilty of a crime, he should be accorded all possible respect for his individual rights. Present safeguards for these rights of the criminally accused must be improved. Preventive detention and all similar measures violate individual rights. Speedy trials should be available to accused persons.
Losses suffered by any person arrested, indicted, imprisoned, tried or otherwise injured in the course of criminal proceedings which do not result in his conviction should be recoverable from the agency, person or persons laying the charges.
The purpose of any system of courts should be to provide justice. The present system of criminal law is based on punishment, with little concern for the victim. The primary emphasis should be changes from the present “crime against society” to “crime against individuals”. Thus, to implement this principle, we advocate that:
The goal of the legal system, upon a determination of guilt, should be restitution to the victim for his loss but only at the expense of the criminal. Whether the restitution to the victim be paid by the criminal as a result of work in a free environment or as a result of with a restricted environment (e.g., gaol) should be a question for the court to decide.
If a person is found innocent, the monetary costs of his defence should be recoverable from the party initiating the proceedings.
All laws relating to alleged conspiracies will be reviewed to ensure that those which infringe individual liberty are eliminated.
An objective scale for compensation defining the relative values of such things as physical, material, and psychological deprivations will be devised, and then revised as necessary.
No person should be committed involuntarily to a mental institution. The incarceration of an individual not convicted of a crime, but merely asserted to be incompetent, violate the individual’s rights.
The power to subpoena witnesses will be abolished as it compels attendance at trials and thus violates the rights of those compelled to give evidence. Coerced testimony is forced labour and should be abolished.
Similarly, any form of compulsory jury service is likewise forced labour. If individually negotiated fees were paid to jurors and to witnesses, coercion would not be necessary and individuals would be more likely to assist the processes of the legal system.
At present criminals are kept in prisons at the expense of taxpayers, who include the victims of these crimes. The criminal is not liable to pay restitution, so the victim loses twice — (a) through the crime and (b) through taxation for the upkeep of the criminal and often also for the support of the criminal’s family.
Penal institutions will be used only for incorrigible criminals; there they will have to work out their debts under supervision. Otherwise, criminals will be allowed to work in their own vocations and pay off their debts as determined by the courts. (See 1.3.3. Criminal Justice.)
Political freedom is impossible without economic freedom. Every government control is a control of people. Every government intervention is an invasion of personal liberty. The Party regards all forms of government intervention as a violation of individual rights. The majority of economic ills currently suffered by Australians are traceable to many and varied government attempts to “regulate” trade, “fix” prices and wages, “redistribute” wealth, “regulate” the currency, “manage” the economy, “direct” production, “set” standards, and so on. The problems of inflation, monopolies, cartels, price fixing, industrial unrest and shortages are all caused by government interference; they are the inevitable problems which will always plague the present Statist system.
Government controls divide society into competing classes and special protected interests which deprive Peter to pay Paul and set one group of men against another. Only in the free market can there be harmony among men.
Taxation (which is legalised coercion and robbery by government) is no less immoral than coercion and robbery committed by private individuals. The greater one’s ability and/or willingness to work, the greater one is penalised by progressive taxation. This is blatantly unjust. We believe that every man has complete sovereignty over his own life, and his own income, and that extortions, regardless of motive, are inconsistent with freedom.
We are committed to creating a moral social system in which justice is the ruling consideration in all human relationships. As taxation is immoral and unfair we are committed to working towards the immediate elimination of sales taxes, capital gains tax, gift duties, death duties, and the gradual reduction to an absolute minimum of all other taxes, including personal and company taxes.
Taxation can be replaced by:
- Fee-for-service payments; and
- Private bodies taking over many of the present functions of governments.
When the volume of money is increased, prices rise in accordance with the law of supply and demand. The visible effect is a reduction in the value of the currency measured in terms of purchasing power.
As a result, everyone needs more money just to maintain the same standard of living.
Government, with its monopoly control of the money supply and the banking system, is obviously the only group which is able to inflate the currency.
On gaining office, we would halt inflation by:
ending the inflationary practice of deficit spending by achieving a balanced or surplus budget at all times;
putting an end to credit expansion by the Reserve Bank.
Inflation, recession and depression are all caused by government intervention in the economy. Recession/depression is the inevitable result of inflation.
On gaining office we would speed recovery from a recession or depression by:
removing all controls on wages, prices, rents, incomes and interest rates; and immediately eliminating sales tax, death duties, gift duties, capital gains tax, and gradually reducing to an absolute minimum all other taxes including personal income tax and company tax;
repealing all restrictions on production and trade, including factory hours, standards, licensing, etc.;
reducing and eventually eliminating all tariffs;
gradually removing all subsidies;
continually reducing the strength of the Public Service;
gradually removing government support for all business enterprises;
abolishing all government business monopolies.
In order permanently to eliminate the threat of inflation/recession/depression from the Australian economy (the so-called “trade” or “business” cycle) the Party will reform the monetary and banking systems. As well as providing for long-term stability and prosperity, these reforms will hasten recovery from inflation/recession.
On attaining office, the Party will:
move gradually (so as not to cause undue disruption to existing lenders and borrowers) to eliminate government-supported fractional-reserve banking, a system whereby governments encourage banks to lend more money than they possess;
restore confidence in the Australian economy by replacing the Australian dollar (based on nothing) with a new currency (or a revaluation of the present currency) based on an objective standard, such as gold;
repeal the government’s monopoly of the money supply;
abolish the Reserve Bank and repeal all laws which create special privileges for banks, thus ending the present government-supported monopoly of the banking system.
On the attainment of these objectives, all monetary and banking practice would be guided solely by the fundamental principle.
Political freedom is impossible without economic freedom. We therefore advocate, and will actively work towards, the long-range goal of completely separating the State from the economy.
Government controls are usually imposed on the basis that they are vitally necessary, either to protect the interest of consumers or to effect a fair distribution of wealth in the name of some unidentifiable public good.
In a free market, consumers with their choice (whether to buy or to abstain from buying) are the supreme controllers. Their choices ultimately determine what is produced, in what quantity and quality, and at what selling price.
In a free market, wealth is acquired, not at the expense of a sacrifice by someone, but by serving consumers in the best and cheapest way. Only in a free market can economic justice prevail.
Controls abridge the freedom of trade and abrogate the rights of individuals.
Therefore, we advocate, and would work towards, the abolition of controls on prices, wages, rents, shopping hours, production quotas, etc.
The effect of government licensing is to give financial advantage to a selected person, or to a group of persons, by preventing free competition.
This action constitutes a flagrant negation of the rights of individuals. Therefore, we advocate the abolition of all such licensing.
Only government can establish coercive monopolies, such as the post office and the railways, which are inefficient, unreliable and only exist because the government prohibits competition.
All laws preventing or restricting privately owned business from competing with government monopolies will be abolished. Government services will then be gradually phased out.
The government also props up many other businesses, both government owned and privately owned, by regulating competition and preventing consumer choice.
All restrictions on competition and free choice should be abolished.
Government has no place in competition with the private sector or in the monopoly of business activity.
On attaining office, the Party would, with all deliberate speed:
repeal all laws maintaining government monopolies;
offer for sale all government-owned property as it becomes available and, thereby, liquidate government debt.
Tariffs and quotas are methods by which governments subsidise one or more sections of the community at the expense of others. Tariffs and quotas, through interference with market forces, promote inefficient production and reduce competition by denying to consumers the right to purchase, without hindrance, the lowest price goods available.
We advocate the gradual abolition of all tariffs and quotas, thereby avoiding disruption. The Industries Assistance Commission, the Department of Customs and Excise and all other such agencies will be phased out.
In common with all other government interventions, subsidies and bounties serve only to benefit one section of the community at the expense of others. Therefore, we advocate their reduction and eventual elimination.
Any person who contracts to provide one standard and intentionally deliver another of inferior quality is guilty of fraud. Laws regulating specific standards are unnecessary for consumer protection of individual rights.
Minimum standards, when imposed, tend to become maximum standards and so restrict competition.
We advocate the immediate abolition of all laws enforcing standards. (For Consumer Protection see Section 3.6.)
Any and all individuals and their companies should be able to operate within Australia, provided their claims to property rights are justly transacted. These individuals or companies may use and dispose of, within this country or overseas, any investment, capital gained, property owned or goods and services produced here. While operating with our territorial boundaries they will be subject to Australian law.
Reductions in taxation and the backing of the Australian currency by an objective standard, e.g., gold, will allow enormous sums of risk capital to accumulate in Australia. Free market forces, operating on the exchange rate, will so depreciate the currencies of other countries in relation to our own that access to the local market will be on terms highly favourable to Australians.
On attaining office, the Party will:
Immediately abolish death duty, gift duty, capital gains tax and sales tax, and gradually reduce to an absolute minimum all other taxes, including personal and company taxes; and, as soon as possible thereafter, reduce all other taxes until government activities as far as practical, can be financed through charges for special services rendered.
At all times, the Party will ensure that the government spends no more than it receives.
Government expenditure will be continually reduced. In addition to the measures outlined elsewhere, the Party will, within 12 months of attaining office, examine the functions of all government departments, with a view to gradually reducing them to five in number:
The Department for Defence Against Internal and External Aggression.
The Department for the Review of Laws and the Legal System.
The Department for the Reduction of Taxation.
The Department for the Reduction of Government Control.
The Department for the Rehabilitation of Tax Consumers.
(The latter four departments would be phased out on completion of their roles.)
Government interference in domestic affairs should be defined and limited by the fundamental principle of non-interference: that no person or group of persons has the right to initiate the use of force, fraud or coercion against another other person or group of persons.
Many domestic problems are caused or compounded by violated of this principle by governments.
We oppose all government interference which infringes upon the rights of individuals, and we will gradually repeal all legislation that infringes upon those rights. The role of government should be limited to protection of the rights of all people within its territorial boundaries. All other affairs should be the province of private individuals.
Over the years, successive government, through industrial legislation, have permitted labour unions to become a law unto themselves, privileged to breach contracts and to coerce both employers and employees.
We recognise the right of all persons to form voluntary associated of any kind and for any purpose. We also recognise the right of all person to refrain from joining any association. We therefore advocate repeal of all laws establishing compulsory associations of any kind, including the Conciliation and Arbitration system.
We believe that contracts between employers and employees should be entirely voluntary, but legally binding, like any other voluntary contract.
We recognise the right of an employee to withdraw his labour in the understanding that he does not breach his contract of employment. Likewise, an employer may terminate a contract of employment provided that he honours his obligations under the contract.
No man or group of men should be permitted to use force, fraud or coercion to restrict freedom of employment.
As the Australian Broadcasting Commission is a government-owned and operated enterprise it will be offered for sale to private operators. The Broadcasting Control Board will be abolished.
In addition to selling the ABC, the Party will recognise the property rights in airwaves, and, as an interim measure, transform the Broadcasting Control Board into the Airwaves Property Registration Office. APRO will define all available broadcasting frequencies. Existing licence-holders will have their property rights recognised; all other frequencies will be available for claim. All other laws regulating broadcasting will be repealed. After the frequencies are defined and existing claims recognised, APRO will be abolished.
The present state education systems are far from satisfactory. Common problems are: insufficient funds, teachers, and facilities; poor communication because of large classes; high failure and drop-out rates; and widespread discontent amongst administrators, staff and students.
These systems contain numerous contradictions. Uniform syllabuses do not allow sufficient variety. Furthermore, they restrict both teachers and students. Regulations always restrict innovation. Zoning laws restrict choice of school. Taxpayers either pay for, or subsidise, schools. Little allowance is made for those taxpayers who are childless or who send their children to private schools. “Free education” is not free — it is paid for by the taxpayers.
In many ways, the present education system violate the fundamental principle of non-interference.
the immediate reduction and eventual elimination of all State control, ownership and subsidy of educational institutions;
the removal of all government syllabus restrictions;
the eventual repeal of all zoning restrictions;
the removal of all government restrictions applying to teacher training and qualifications, these being decisions for the owners of individual schools;
that attendance at schools should be non-compulsory and be a parental responsibility.
A free market educational system would be a moral system. The market forces of supply and demand would encourage growth, diversity, experimentation and higher quality at lower costs.
Pollution may be defined as “the transfer of matter or energy to the person or property of another without the latter’s consent”. It, therefore, clearly violates the fundamental principle of non-interference. Furthermore, the pollution does not depend on arbitrary limits.
Any pollution is a violation of individual rights. Proof of the source and identity of the polluter must be obtained in order that effective legal action be taken.
Pollution is the violation of the property rights of the victim. Much of the current confusion surrounding the problem of pollution stems from the facts that:
- property rights are not adequately defined or protected (see Section 1.1.2);
- much of the property affected by pollution lacks a specific owner, e.g., rivers, the sea and air;
- it is not easy to sue government departments if they cause pollution.
We therefore advocate the following measures as being necessary for the solution of pollution problems:
the development of objective methods for the gradual transference to private ownership of all currently unowned property;
the gradual repeal of all current laws relating to pollution and the full implementation of a body of law to protect legitimate individual rights (see Section 1);
the gradual abolition of the Department of the Environment and Conservation, and all similar regulatory bodies.
Concepts such as “moral pollution” and “aesthetic pollution” are not valid for they are matters of individual choice, and do not infringe upon the rights of others.
The desire to conserve natural resources, or man-made objects is not a valid excuse for the violation of individual rights. We oppose such violations as being contrary to the fundamental principle of non-interference. Specifically, there should be no law that violates the right of a person to dispose of his property as he sees fit, provided that such disposal does not infringe upon the rights of any other person.
As with pollution so with conservation. Much confusion is caused when property is not privately owned. Therefore we advocate:
that objective methods be devised for the gradual transference to private ownership of all currently unowned property, including waterways, air space and “public” (government) property;
that conservationists buy areas or resources or building that they wish to conserve;
that all current laws relating to the conservation, regulation and control of the use, development, sale or production of resources (including land, minerals, building, etc.) be gradually repealed.
The aim of consumer-protection laws is to protect the rights of consumers. It is immoral to legislate to “protect” consumers if, as a consequence, the rights of producers are violated. The rights of one group of people cannot take precedence over those of another group of people.
The only laws needed are those required to enforce the fundamental principle: that no person, or group of persons, has the right to initiate the use of force, fraud or coercion against another person or group of persons.
In the realm of consumer protection, the protection against fraudulent practices is essential.
But since each person has the right to his own life, laws designed to protect people from themselves are unnecessary and immoral.
a review of all existing laws relating fraud to make them clearer, more understandable, and more enforceable by an individual even against the largest corporation;
the repeal of all existing consumer protection laws that violate individuals’ rights, including all laws designed to protect people from themselves;
the repeal of all laws preventing professional people from advertising their services;
the enactment of a body of law designed specifically to protect individual rights against all forms of fraudulent practice.
It should not be forgotten that in the free market consumers would be further protected because:
a good name is an asset to a business and it can best be maintained by fair and honest dealing;
the use of certificates, guarantees, and warranties issued by manufacturers and supplies of goods and services are, in themselves, a protection to consumers;
both professional and non-professional people can voluntarily form associations for the specific purpose of maintaining high standards, both in work and behaviour;
privately owned consumer protection organisations producing journals and magazines would proliferate in a free market.
The principle of individual rights has far-reaching implications when applied to “Welfare”. Put simply, its application means the eventual termination of all government welfare programmes.
All government welfare is paid for by taxation or inflation in direct violation of the rights of individuals. The claims of welfare recipients do not take precedence over the right of other individuals.
Insistence upon this principle does not mean that we are indifferent to the plight of some people. It means that we believe that it is immoral to rob or to enslave one man for the purpose of helping another.
We do not deny that the plight of the old, the sick, the handicapped and the impoverished is cause for great concern. The plight of most of these people has been caused by their exposure to a lifetimes of confiscatory taxes and duties. Government-caused inflation has added to this plight.
Our fiscal policies, designed to permit every man to control and plan his own life, will restore dignity and self-respect to many who would otherwise have been forced to seek charity through impersonal and inefficient welfare programmes, run by governments on money extracted by force from taxpayers.
By freeing Australians from the crippling tax burden imposed to provide inefficient and impersonal welfare programmes, individuals would be better able to make for themselves adequate provision for sickness and old age, especially in the absence of inflation.
We therefore advocate:
that government welfare schemes be gradually reduced and eventually replaced by private charitable organisations;
that all laws relating to compulsory retirement and minimum wages be repealed, thus making it possible for many welfare recipients to return to work and recover their lost self-esteem;
that it be recognised that in a free society where the right to dispose of one’s income as one chooses is not violated, people will not only be in a better financial position to engage in and support voluntary welfare schemes but will also be more willing to do so.
It is naive to think that a few men in government care more or can do more for any deprived group than can be done by any concerned group outside government.
We believe that health is an individual matter and that all government health schemes contravene individual rights.
Government hospitals should be offered for sale. Thereafter they would be operated more efficiently by private enterprise.
We therefore advocate:
that all government instrumentalities in the realm of health care be replaced at the earliest possible date by private organisations;
that recognition be given to the fact that, in a free economy, people will be in a better position to engage in and support voluntary medical schemes which are free of government control.
Government regulations and controls on town planning, land zoning and subdivision have prevented the free flow of land to the market place. The shortages so created have added to high prices and personal hardship.
Government regulations and controls on buildings, housing and services have created unwarranted delays and shortages.
Government powers of acquisition and government restrictions on land use and sale violate the property rights of owners. Therefore, they cannot be tolerated.
In many different ways, governments extort large sums of money from individual property owners, and from property transactions.
We therefore advocate:
the repeal of all laws relating to the production, use or sale of land or housing, including building codes, standards and regulations, zoning laws, all registration laws, stamp duty laws, land development regulations, and resumption laws;
the sale of all government-owned buildings;
and the sale of all land and public buildings as they become available (as the Public Service is reduced).
Government intervention in agriculture has spelt disaster to many primary producers.
We advocate the repeal of all laws relating to the production and marketing of foodstuffs and agricultural products and the abolition of all government-enforced quotas, levies, bounties, subsidies and other such interferences.
Most government activities cannot be morally justified as they infringe upon the rights of individuals.
Furthermore, government departments are notoriously wasteful and inefficient. Departments, boards, enquiries, statutory bodies, trusts, commissions, etc., continue to proliferate. New government departments are set up in an attempt to solve the problems created by other departments. Individuals are compelled by law to support this huge authoritarian bureaucracy.
Governments are the major offenders in creating the problems that they so ineptly attempt to solve.
The Public Service will be drastically reduced to embrace only those agencies necessary to the protection of individual rights. The function of government will be changed from the role of the violator to that of the protector of the rights of individuals.
Ample productive employment will be available to displaced public servants as government restraints are lifted and private enterprise is left free to expand.
The concept of Nationalism is often used as the reason for coercing individuals. “In the national interest” has become the standard excuse for tax increases, expropriation of property, conscription of youth, and the many and varied repressive controls and regulations imposed upon individuals.
Nationalism can easily lead to the establishment of a strong centralised government. Historically, nationalism has been the prime cause of aggression.
We do not accept the validity of such concepts as “the common good” and “the national interest”. We maintain that such concepts are meaningless and, therefore, invalid, and are only used as an excuse to violate the rights of individuals.
Nationalism, however, need not be evil if it springs, spontaneously, from individual pride in a way of life. If there is to be genuine national feeling in Australia, it will be for an Australia that is a free country in which individual rights are respected and where people are able to live in peace and harmony. If emphasis is placed upon the individual, and not on the State, then the irrational, militaristic brand of nationalism will not appear.
Since government have no place in the production and distribution of goods and services, foreign aid programmes are not within their jurisdiction. If individuals or groups of individuals choose voluntarily to assist others, they should be at liberty to do so.
One of the proper functions of government is to provide adequate and efficient protection against foreign aggressors. The emphasis in military matters should be on defence.
Conscription is a coercive action against individuals and is unacceptable. The military and para-military forces of the country will be comprised of volunteers. We believe that if men and women were free there would be adequate incentive for them to defend their freedom. If further incentive is needed this will be in financial form.
No treaty, alliance or international agreement will be entered into which relinquishes any portion of the sovereignty of our country, or involves the use of our forces for foreign intervention.
Ostensibly the United Nations was created as a peace-keeping organisation. However, it welcomes as members numerous aggressive totalitarian States which advocate and practise slavery. Representatives of these countries hold many policy-making and executive positions within the United Nations and are able to enforce their will on peace-loving peoples of other countries.
That any freedom-loving individuals or groups should be prepared to abide by immoral decisions is blatantly irrational. We, therefore, advocate that Australia withdraws, forthwith, from the United Nations.
We advocate the abolition of subsidies for immigrants and barriers to immigrations for those who are prepared to pay their fees and support themselves on arrival. (Any immigrants who are unable to support themselves on arrival will not be supported by the government.)
No one individual possesses more rights than other individuals. Therefore, no individual or group will receive any special treatment, favour, sanction, privilege or immunity under law.
Although access to Australia is granted to all people, other governments might not accord Australians the same freedom.
Any Australians wishing to travel overseas, therefore, would have to make their own arrangements for such travel with the governments of the countries concerned.
We apply the fundamental principle of non-interference to all people. If a person enters Australia and is accused of a crime in a foreign country, he will be judged according to our criminal code. If he is not guilty, he will be offered sanctuary here; if he is guilty, he will be deported or be required to compensate his victim.
We have outlined concepts based on morality and reason which should be acceptable to large numbers of thinking people. However, we do not expect to achieve our aims immediately, because the steady drift of power to government has gained enormous momentum over recent years, and this cannot be reversed overnight.
Furthermore, the influence of government on education has enabled many irrational concepts to be implanted into the minds of both young and old.
Working from hazy basic premises it may be difficult for some people to grasp the true significance of individual freedom.
Politicians and public servants talk glibly of “mandates” to commit immoral acts, and treat taxes as “trust monies” rather than as loot extorted from individuals.
Our concepts are based on morality. We cannot depart from our basic principles. Likewise, we cannot accept the concept that, by statute law, immorality can be transformed into morality. Rather, morality based on the fundamental principle must at all times take precedence over the law.
We state openly that we will encourage and support to the limit of our capacity individuals who, in support of our principles, place moral issues before immoral statutes backed by government force.
This Platform is not a policy document. It is a declaration of aims and ultimate objectives. To some, the objectives may appear idealistic but every objective can be achieved, in time, by a gradual process. This will involve an educational programme to clear people’s minds of the misconceptions that have been so carefully planted by government education programmes and malicious media misrepresentation of facts.
Big Government is neither benevolent nor paternalistic.
It has become the master of the people and not their servant. It must be cut down to manageable size. In particular, it must be cleared out of the economy which it has grossly mismanaged.
Government should protect Australia against foreign invaders, protect individuals against criminals and maintain law — but not “order” people around.
The WP Platform can be altered, as laid down in the Constitution of the Party, but it cannot be watered down as the Liberal Party Platform has been watered down over the years.
Platforms and Policies are different matters. Policies, according to the Oxford Dictionary, involve “potential wisdom, statecraft, prudent conduct” and “a course of action to be adopted by a government or a party”.
The policies of the WP will be directed towards “what is immediately achievable and to what is ultimately possible” in that order. Policies will be determined, in keeping with the Platform, to produce gradual change rather than abrupt alteration, but every policy will be directed away from socialism and towards individual freedom.
It is better to regain freedom a little at a time than to lose it altogether and for ever.
Authorised by R. A. Howard, 5 Langley Street, Darlinghurst, N.S.W. 2010
- Governments Consume Wealth — They Don't Create It
- Singo and Howard Propose Privatising Bondi Beach
- Singo and Howard Speak Out Against the Crackpot Realism of the CIS and IPA
- Singo and Howard on Compromise
- Singo and Howard on Monopolies
- Singo and Howard Support Sydney Harbour Bridge Restructure
- Singo and Howard on Striking at the Root, and the Failure of Howard, the CIS and the IPA
- Singo and Howard Explain Why Australia is Not a Capitalist Country
- Singo and Howard Call Democracy Tyrannical
- Singo and Howard on Drugs!
- Simpleton sells his poll philosophy
- Singo and Howard Decry Australia Day
- Singo and Howard Endorse the Workers Party
- Singo and Howard Oppose the Liberal Party
- Singo and Howard Admit that Liberals Advocate and Commit Crime
- Up the Workers! Bob Howard's 1979 Workers Party Reflection in Playboy
- John Whiting's Inaugural Workers Party Presidential Address
- John Singleton and Bob Howard 1975 Monday Conference TV Interview on the Workers Party
- Singo and Howard on Aborigines
- Singo and Howard on Conservatism
- Singo and Howard on the Labor Party
- Singo, Howard and Hancock Want to Secede
- John Singleton changes his name
- Lang Hancock's Foreword to Rip Van Australia
- New party will not tolerate bludgers: Radical party against welfare state
- Singo and Howard introduce Rip Van Australia
- Singo and Howard on Knee-Jerks
- Singo and Howard on Tax Hunts (Lobbying)
- Singo and Howard on Rights
- Singo and Howard on Crime
- Singo and Howard on Justice
- Singo and Howard on Unemployment
- John Singleton on 1972 cigarette legislation
- Singo and Howard: Gambling Should Neither Be Illegal Nor Taxed
- Holed up, hold-up and holdout
- The libertarian alternative vs the socialist status quo
- Workers Party Platform
- Singo and Howard Join Forces to Dismantle Welfare State
- Singo and Howard on Business
- Singo and Howard on Discrimination
- Singo and Howard on the Greens
- Singo and Howard on Xenophobia
- Singo and Howard on Murdoch, Packer and Monopolistic Media
- Singo and Howard Explain that Pure Capitalism Solves Pollution
- Singo and Howard Defend Miners Against Government
- Singo and Howard on Bureaucracy
- Singo and Howard on Corporate Capitalism
- The last words of Charles Russell
- Ted Noffs' Preface to Rip Van Australia
- Right-wing anarchists revamping libertarian ideology
- Giving a chukka to the Workers Party
- Govt "villain" in eyes of new party
- "A beautiful time to be starting a new party": Rand fans believe in every man for himself
- Introducing the new Workers' Party
- Paul Rackemann 1980 Progress Party Election Speech
- Lang Hancock 1978 George Negus Interview
- Voices of frustration
- Policies of Workers Party
- Party Promises to Abolish Tax
- AAA Tow Truck Co.
- Singo and Howard on Context
- Singo and Howard Blame Roosevelt for Pearl Harbour
- Singo and Howard on Apathy
- Workers Party is "not just a funny flash in the pan"
- Singo and Howard on Decency
- John Singleton in 1971 on the 2010 Federal Election
- Matthew, Mark, Luke & John Pty. Ltd. Advertising Agents
- Viv Forbes Wins 1986 Adam Smith Award
- The writing of the Workers Party platform and the differences between the 1975 Australian and American libertarian movements
- Who's Who in the Workers Party
- Bob Howard interviewed by Merilyn Giesekam on the Workers Party
- A Farewell to Armchair Critics
- Sukrit Sabhlok interviews Mark Tier
- David Russell Leads 1975 Workers Party Queensland Senate Team
- David Russell Workers Party Policy Speech on Brisbane TV
- Bludgers need not apply
- New party formed "to slash controls"
- The Workers Party
- Malcolm Turnbull says "the Workers party is a force to be reckoned with"
- The great consumer protection trick
- The "Workers" speak out
- How the whores pretend to be nuns
- The Workers Party is a Political Party
- Shit State Subsidised Socialist Schooling Should Cease Says Singo
- My Journey to Anarchy:
From political and economic agnostic to anarchocapitalist
- Workers Party Reunion Intro
- Singo and Howard on Freedom from Government and Other Criminals
- Singo and Howard on Young People
- Singo and Howard Expose how Government Healthcare Controls Legislate Doctors into Slavery
- Singo and Howard Engage with Homosexuality
- Singo and Howard Demand Repeal of Libel and Slander Laws
- Singo and Howard on Consumer Protection
- Singo and Howard on Consistency
- Workers Party is born as foe of government
- Political branch formed
- Government seen by new party as evil
- Singo and Howard on Non-Interference
- Singo and Howard on Women's Lib
- Singo and Howard on Licences
- Singo and Howard on Gun Control
- Singo and Howard on Human Nature
- Singo and Howard on Voting
- Singo and Howard on
- Singo and Howard on Education
- Singo and Howard on Qualifications
- Ron Manners on the Workers Party
- Singo and Howard Hate Politicians
- Undeserved handouts make Australia the lucky country
- A happy story about Aborigines
- John Singleton on Political Advertising
- Richard Hall, Mike Stanton and Judith James on the Workers Party
- Singo Incites Civil Disobedience
- How John Singleton Would Make Tony Abbott Prime Minister
- The Discipline of Necessity
- John Singleton on the first election the Workers Party contested
- Libertarians: Radicals on the right
- The Bulletin on Maxwell Newton as Workers Party national spokesman on economics and politics
- Singo and Howard: Australia Should Pull Out of the Olympics
- Singo and Howard Like Foreign Investment
- Mark Tier corrects Nation Review on the Workers Party
- The impossible dream
- Why can't I get away with it?
- The bold and boring Lib/Lab shuffle
- Time for progress
- The loonie right implodes
- Max Newton: Maverick in Exile
- John Singleton on refusing to do business with criminals and economic illiterates
- Censorship should be banned
- "Listen, mate, a socialist is a bum"
- John Singleton on Advertising
- John Singleton on why he did the Hawke re-election campaign
- Sinclair Hill calls for dropping a neutron bomb on Canberra
- Bob Howard in Reason 1974-77
- John Singleton defends ockerism
- Singo and Howard talk Civil Disobedience
- The Census Con
- Singo and Howard Oppose Australian Participation in the Vietnam War
- Did John Singleton oppose the mining industry and privatising healthcare in 1990?
- Bob Carr in 1981 on John Singleton's political bent
- John Singleton-Ita Buttrose interview (1977)
- John Singleton on elections: "a Massive One-Day Sale!"
- John Hyde's Progress Party praise
- King Leonard of Hutt River Declares Defensive Just War Against Australia the Aggressor
- Singo says Lang Hancock violated Australia's 11th commandment: Thou Shalt Not Succeed
- Singleton: the White Knight of Ockerdom
- John Singleton bites into Sinclair Hill's beef
- Save Parramatta Road
- 1979 news item on new TV show John Singleton With a Lot of Help From His Friends
- Smoking, Health and Freedom
- Singo and Howard on Unions
- Singo and Howard Smash the State
- Singo and Howard on the big issue of Daylight Saving
- Come back Bob - It was all in fun!
- A few "chukkas" in the Senate for polo ace?
- Country Rejuvenation - Towards a Better Future
- Singo and Howard on Profits, Super Profits and Natural Disasters
- John Singleton's 1977 pitch that he be on a committee of one to run the Sydney 1988 Olympics for profit
- Thoughts on Land Ownership
- 1975 Max Newton-Ash Long interview on the Workers Party
- The Electoral Act should allow voters to choose "none of the above"
- The great Labor Party platform: first or last, everybody wins a prize
- The politics of marketing - laugh now, pay later
- Singo and Howard call Australia fascist and worse
- The mouse will roar
- Viv Forbes and Jim Fryar vs Malcolm Fraser in 1979
- Quip, Quote, Rant and Rave: four of Viv Forbes' letters to the editor in The Australian in 1979
- Australia's First Official Political Party Poet Laureate: The Progress Party's Ken Hood in 1979
- Hancock's playing very hard to get
- Harry M. Miller and The Australian disgrace themselves
- Ocker ad genius takes punt on art
- John Singleton 1976 ocker Monday Conference Max Harris debate
- John Singleton mocks university students on civil liberties and freedom of choice in 1971
- Murray Rothbard championed on Australian television in 1974 (pre-Workers Party!) by Maureen Nathan
- John Singleton profile in 1977 Australian MEN Vogue
- I think that I shall never see a telegraph pole as lovely as a tree
- Ralph Nader vs John Singleton on Consumer Protection
- John Singleton's first two "Think" columns in Newspaper News, 1969
- Singo and Howard on Ballet
- Product innovation comes first
- Protect who from a 'mindless' wife?
- A party is born
- Tiny Workers' Party gives us a hint
- John Singleton on the ad industry, consumerism and innovation
- Workers Party Economic Policy Statement, December 1975
- Lang Hancock on the Workers Party, secession and States Rights
- John Singleton and Howard on Government Largesse
- Counterculture must exclude government handouts
- John Singleton's 1974 Federal Liberal Election Campaign Ads
- John Singleton believes in the Workers Party
- Write-up of John Singleton's 1978 speech to the Australian Liberal Students Association
- Singo in 1987: "Joh doesn't go far enough ... I want absolute deregulation of the economy"
- Maxwell Newton chapter of Clyde Packer's No Return Ticket (1984)
- Singo and Howard on Totalitarian Socialism and Voluntary Socialism
- Rip Van Australia on Ripoff Vandals Taxing Australia
- Singo and Howard beg for tolerance
- John Singleton's 1985 advertising comeback
- Singo and Howard Demand End to Public Transport
- John Singleton and Howard on Fred Nile, Festival of Light, FamilyVoice Australia and the Christian Lobby
- Capitalism: Survival of the Fittest
- Return Australia Post to Sender
- Singo and Howard on Public Utilities
- John Singleton and Howard say monarchy should be funded by monarchists alone
- John Singleton on cigarette advertising
- Singo in 1972 on newspapers' demise
- John Singleton farewells Bryce Courtenay
- John Singleton on Australian political advertising in 1972
- Gortlam rides again
- Announcement that Lang Hancock will be guest of honour at the Workers Party launch
- John Singleton on trading stamps, idiot housewives and government
- 1975 John Singleton-Sir Robert Askin Quadrant Interview
- Singo asks two prickly questions
- VIOLENCE, TV BAN, DRINK - SINGO SPEAKS HIS MIND
- Why John Singleton can't keep a straight face
- Why John Singleton Defends Smokers Rights
- Tony Dear on Paul Krutulis, the Workers Party and murder
- An Ode to Busybodies
- Progress Party and Workers Party lead The Australian
- How many tits in a tangle?
- Viv Forbes in 1978 on loss-making government, the Berlin Wall and misdirected blasts of hot-air
- John Singleton wants the Post Office sold and anti-discrimination legislation scrapped
- A speech from the Titanic
- A crime must have a victim
- John Singleton vs Australia Post
- Minimum wages the killer
- Has Fraser got his priorities all wrong?
- John Singleton says "the royal family should be flogged off to the U.S."
- John Singleton vs Don Chipp and the Australian Democrats
- John Singleton vs Don Lane
- John Singleton. Horseracing. Why?
- John Singleton's 1986 reflection on the Workers Party
- Bob Howard in 1978 on libertarianism in Australia
- John Singleton on the stupidity of anti-discrimination laws
- Thou shalt know the facts ... before thou shoot off thou mouth
- Charity: An Aesop Fable
- Bob Howard announces the Workers Party in freeEnterprise
- New improved moon
- Announcing people ... YES, people!
- Creativity in advertising must be pointed dead on target
- John Singleton on barriers to, and opportunities for, effective communication
- Wayne Garland on John Singleton on Advertising
- John Singleton schools ad course
- John Singleton: advertising awards
- Mr Singleton Goes to Canberra for Australian Playboy
- John Singleton on his TV career for Australian Playboy
- John Singleton sacked for telling the truth about Medicare