12 April 1999
weekly opinion

Back off, Prime Minister John Howard.

Many Australians wish that the Federal Government would reduce, not increase, the size of government.  Does J Howard really believe that we believe him when he says that with a GST we will all be better off?

What follows is a suggestion to reform Australia...

  1. The independent taxation corporation should maximize the revenue from land tax on all Australian land.  Land tax should be so high that land value with 20 year old improvements on it is close to zero.
  2. The taxation department should pay all of the land taxes so collected in equal portions to every Australian (including children) as negative income tax.  It should be treated as their share of the rental  income from the assets of "corporation Australia".
  3. An elected Federal government should request the taxation corporation to collect a flat tax for customs & defense.  (Those were the original powers given in the constitution, not education or health.)
  4. Australians would use the income obtained from the tax department to replace assistance formerly provided by federal money for welfare, schooling & health.
  5. Roads would be provided for by a petrol tax.  The police, ambulance & fire departments would be maintained at the municipal level, justice is simplified and a user pay system.  Criminals pay the cost of their imprisonment to a commercial organization from their negative income tax.
  6. Trust people's charity to take care of the rest.
How, you might ask, could all that work?  Where would the money come from?

Australia's government currently takes about A$200 billion p/a from enterprises & the people.   Divided equally among about 18 million Australians that is about A$11,000 p/a for each man, woman & child.  That is enough so that trustee parents could use their children's income to pay food, clothes & school fees, enough for pensioners or the unemployed to buy food and pay the rent, enough for anyone to minimally insure for medical expenses.

The money to Australian citizens is not a handout.  The payment is the disbursement of dividends of corporation Australia to it's shareholders.

John, when the Australian people elected you with a hostile senate, they didn't understand that you could sneak your GST through before the new senate took power.  It is not right of you to try to take advantage of their innocence.

What follows is a prediction.  Selling Foxtel will not stop it.

What happened to KC will be just a shadow of what will happen if GST happens.  The coalition will be dead for decades.  Like Paul, your memory will be reviled until the Coalition is no more.
Back off John.  Give the people less government.  Less vampires.

Next week: SPIN's preamble for the constitution.


The lack of progress with the Indonesian elections is worrying.  These elections are not just a change of power from one group to another.  They are about a devolution of power to the people.

The Indonesian army has no right to guaranteed power.  If the elections are not properly conducted there may well be a bloodbath.  The student unrest in Indonesia should be a warning to those who are organizing the elections.

If you try to hold on to too much, you will lose it all!
Those in power should be aware, Timor is also becoming an issue.  Timor is, like Kuwait, a conquered country, and entitled to liberation.

Do not make the mistake of thinking that the world is too busy with Yugoslavia.


On Sunday 11 April 1999 there was a Serbian demonstration in the Sydney Domain against NATO bombing of Serbia.  By my estimate there were between 3,000 and 5,000 people present.  Most were Serbians.  The demonstration was not publicized in the mainstream media, so few Australians knew to attend.  There were 250 police at the demonstration, another 600 police were in reserve and guarding the US embassy in Martin Place.

A Serbian speaker explained that there were more Serbian refugees in the Balkans than there were refugees of any other race.

One fiery speaker said..

..Unlike Monica, the Serbian people will never kneel before Adolph Clinton
A third generation, 14 year old Australian girl of Serbian extract spoke passionately to the Serbian cause.

An Australian was given the platform, and he denounced Zionism as the cause of Serb troubles.  His talk was not well received, & the the Serb organizers immediately denounced his views & explained that they had not previewed that speaker's material.

The following is from the Serbian web site

"The police found a crematory and a lime pit in which KLA terrorists burnt, after shooting, the corpses of kidnapped Serbian civilians. Adjacent to the prison, a grave was found in which the Albanian terrorists buried bones which were not completely burnt.

The crimes against the kidnapped Serbian civilians are confirmed by the testimonies given to the investigators by the arrested terrorists.  During one incident in the Klecka camp, 10 persons were killed, including two children (7 & 11 yr. old), and three women between 28 and 38 years of age.   The girls between 12 and 15 years of age were raped; the boys had their ears cut off, their eyes taken out, their arms cut off at the articulations. Then the Albanian terrorists put them all in a line and shot them."

It follows that Serbian troops might not be particularly fond of Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) terrorists that they might happen across.

The Serbian army has been given the task of erasing the NATO sponsored KLA from Kosovo.  There is evidence that some Albanians suspected of involvement with the terrorist organization are being executed without a fair trial.

Reports by NATO of Serbian atrocities in Kosovo are disturbing.  Of course some fatalities are to be expected as Serbia liquidates the KLA.  It is also expected that NATO intelligence would place it's own spin on any Albanian fatalities in Kosovo.  The test will be: terrorists torture women and children but soldiers shoot terrorists.  Children & old women are not terrorists

As the size of the terrorist KLA has shrunk from 80,000, someone in NATO has suggested bombing Serbian TV stations.  There are calls for an invasion by land, or of "grinding Serbia to pieces".

The bombing is totally immoral.   I thought that I had left bullies & mobs in the school yard.

It is Vietnam and Afghanistan reincarnated.

Even if the operation is a success, the patient will be dead.  The question becomes:

Is stiffening Willie's willie more important than WWIII?

As the world's foremost citizen it is the duty of the US to refrain from exercise of military power except in cases of the most extreme provocation.  An invasion (moving an army to occupy a province/nation that was not previously administered by a central government) is provocation.  Suppression of an internal terrorist organization is not extreme provocation.  The US government should not have been involved in the breakup of Yugoslavia in the first instance.  It is the duty of the US people to restrain their government.

The Serbian intervention shows the world that the urgent desire of various nations to obtain nuclear weapons & delivery systems to protect themselves from madmen like Willie is entirely reasonable.


I must commend PM Howard on his choice of Yoyo (Alexander) Downer as foreign minister.  This scion of one of Australia's early politicans has already commended himself to our attention with his proclivity to change his mind opinion with great frequency.  Refusal/acceptance of Albanian refugees is a recent instance.

The Serbians can be excused for suspecting that Steve Pratt is a spy.  Australia's Richard Butler has already shown the world that Australians do not let small things like honor prevent them (or members on their team) from spying under the cover of working for an international agency.  Steve Pratt would have been the perfect spy in Yugoslavia.  What better person than a retired logistics officer could assess an ostensibly friendly nation's war potential under the "cover" of working for an international charitable organization such as "CARE"?

Having Yoyo declaim Serb charges as "simply preposterous" is unlikely to affect Yoyo's credibility, except perhaps to improve it in the event that he turns out to be correct.

Yo Yo is to be commended for the job he has done on Timor.  It is most certainly in Australia's best financial interest that the Timor people remain firmly under the boot of the Indonesian military establishment.  It would not do anyone (except maybe the East Timorese) any good whatsoever if the agreement on the oil fields located between Australia & East Timor had to be renegotiated.

My government makes me quite sick.

Wednesday Flash - Yoyo has "expressed concern" at the conviction of Anwar Ibrahim.

If Anwar was convicted by a properly constituted court of perverting the course of Justice, then it is appropriate that he be jailed.  End of story.

The reason that he was charged is quite irrelevant.  The reason for any delay might be of interest to prosecutors.  If Mr Downer believes that evidence has been manufactured, then he should make that assertion clear, & provide any evidence publicly to the prosecutors in Malaysia.

More likely, Yoyo probably fears that the Australians people might come to believe that Australian politicians also are not above due legal process.  Perhaps he fears that past or present Australian parliamentarians might be brought before justice for similar crimes, like dealing in stock/shares/property with those with whom government {has dealings}/{should deal with}/{has dealt with}.