Monthly Archives: October 2013

Phone Tapping In A Minor Key.

If you tap the phone of The Prime Minister of England the PM consults the opinion polls to see how he should react.

If you tap the phone of The President of France millions of people support the action and demand to know what The President said. Meanwhile the President of France writes poems because of his sadness.

If you tap the phone of The Emperor of Japan, The Emperor bows and says “Yes, we invent this technology.”

If you tap the phone of The Chancellor of Germany the police come and say “Germany has never done this so don’t tap The Chancellor’s phone.”

If you tap the phone of The Prime Minister of Sweden, the people vote to see if they accept the tapping of The Prime Minister’s phone. If the answer is yes, the tapping continues. If the answer is no, the Prime Minister shakes your hand.

If you tap the phone of The President of Romania, The President starts playing gypsy music and dances with you.

If you tap the phone of The President of Turkey, The President takes his gun and shoots you, then either goes to jail for 8 years or escapes to Greece where he is welcomed as a political refugee.

If you tap the phone of The President of Greece, The President takes his gun and shoots you, then either goes to jail for 8 years or escapes to Turkey where he is welcomed as a political refugee.

If you tap the phone of The President of China, you vanish.

If you tap the phone of The President of Italy the Mafia makes you a handsome offer for the tapes.

If you tap the phone of The President of Russia, The President kisses your mouth. If he likes it, he kisses you again. If he doesn’t like it you are jailed for conspiracy to over throw the government, and later found guilty of hooliganism.

If you tap the phone of The President of Arabia…there is no President, you become foolish. But if you tap the phone of The King, the King cuts off your ears.

If you tap The Australian Prime Minister’s phone he says, “This is not the time to be talking about this issue.”

If you tap the President of The United States phone The President says: “Yes, we know.”

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Have You Paid Your Taxes?

Tax? Which tax?

Well now, let’s see…

There’s land tax, bed tax, table tax, food tax, tractor tax, school tax, a tax for teaching, one for preaching, work tax, income tax, a tax that double-dips your pay and makes it seem like child’s play; a tax on your cow, your goat, your underpants and coat, ties, shirt, suit and dirt, tobacco, drink, a tax if you stop and think. Tax on cigars, on beer, tax on payments due and one on arrears; car tax, gas tax, coffin tax, a grave tax, a tombstone tax…and when you’re dead do not relax, it’s time to apply the inheritance tax.

That’s just off the top of my head. A five minute search on the ATO website reveals the following incomplete list:

Accounts Receivable Tax
Alcohol tax Building Permit Tax Corporate Income Tax
Dog License Tax
Excise Taxes
Unemployment Tax
Fishing License Tax
Food License Tax
Fuel Permit Tax
Fuel Tax
Goods & Services Tax
Gross Receipts Tax
Hunting License Tax
Inventory Tax
ATO Interest Charges Tax
Penalties (tax on top of tax)
Luxury Taxes
Marriage License Tax
Medicare Tax
Personal Property Tax
Property Tax
Real Estate Tax
Service Charge Tax
Social Security Tax
Road Usage Tax
Recreational Vehicle Tax
State Income Tax
State Unemployment Tax
Telephone Federal Excise Service Fee Tax Telephone State and Local Surcharge Tax Telephone Minimum Usage Surcharge Tax
Telephone Recurring and Nonrecurring Tax
Telephone Usage Charge Tax
Utility Taxes
Vehicle License Registration Tax
Vehicle Sales Tax
Watercraft Registration Tax
Well Permit Tax
Workers Compensation Tax

Get the idea?

Well, get this: At the time of Australian Federation in 1901 not one of the above mentioned taxes existed and this nation was amongst the most prosperous in the world. Australia had absolutely no national debt, and the doors to the middle class were well and truly open for business.

So what happened?

Can you spell: P O L I T I C I A N S…

In Australia’s case, 230 politicians each wielding their power over the current population of 23 million.

YOU can help people think about what they are getting in return for their tax dollar. Send this thought bubble around social media at least 230 times.

SPEAK OUT! and avoid complacency.

When the communists were overrun the people did not speak out…too many said, “I am not a communist.” Same thing with the socialists: “I am not a socialist.” Look what happened to the trade unionists: “I am not a trade unionist.” How about when the fascists came for the Jews and people did not speak out because, “I am not a Jew.”

Ask yourself: When political power is turned against me who will be left to speak out for me?


The Australian Bloodless Revolution:

Some members of the radical right deem “militant revolution” as the only method for transforming the Australian system, and certain splinter groups subscribe beyond that notion, believing it will occur within our lifetime. The latter group, often described as the lunatic fringe (and with good reason) believe all out guerrilla warfare, which is essential for revolution, is achievable in the streets and cities of 21st century Australia. But the man who wrote the book on militant revolution, Che Guevara, knew otherwise. Che Guevara laid the cold, hard facts out plainly from his very first page.

Militant revolutions rely on the will of the people. It is the people and their collective will who win a revolution, not just the “resistance fighters.” Without majority support of the people the resistance fighters will not be supplied, will not be fed, will not be hidden, will not be encouraged, will not be  manned, will not be supported. The people give birth to the resistance army; they protect and nourish it: the army does not protect the people.

But that’s cart before the horse stuff. To reach a point of birthing a resistance army, let alone supporting an armed revolution, the situation requires many people to be upset with the status quo. Not 50% of the people, not 60 or even 75%. The supporting figure would be in the 90% range and those people would have to be really furious, hungry most likely, starving, or desperate in some other way. All hope vanquished.

Severe conditions and very high numbers of support are essential because even when such conditions are present, many will play it safe rather than support or supply the actions of a challenging group of revolutionaries. In the 90% range, a third would directly help a revolutionary force in a small but significant way. Less than a tenth of that figure would risk their families to hide anyone.

With this in mind, think of present day Australia. Out of 23 million people, not too many slip thru the government safety nets of health, welfare and other social services. Not many citizens drop down dead of starvation. The overwhelming majority are content. Australia is arguably the best county in the world to be in, even if you are poor, or especially if you are poor. Most Australians are grateful for their freedom, real or perceived. The nation as a whole is very far from being dissatisfied to the point of militant revolution. Our 230 political representatives know this, and to them, the very notion of militant revolution in Australia is laughable.

Australia is not Syria, not Egypt, it’s not Northern Island. Australia is a nation on a patio and it will remain this way indefinitely. The government of the day, be it Labour or Liberal, will forever make sure of this. Their existence depends upon it. The system demands it.

“Cruel leaders are replaced only to have new leaders turn cruel” – so sayeth Che Guevara.

Still, as we throw another mung bean burger on the barbie, and the rupture of tiny alcohol bubbles fuel yet another jocular Facebook posting about militant revolutionists interfering with our football game, from the safety and comfort of this particular patio The United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights springs to mind. Article 19 in particular, which states:

“Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference and to seek, receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers.”

Article 19 is a UN resolution, not a treaty, and therefore does not, in its entirety, legally bind UN members to enforce its contents.

By contrast, The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) is a multilateral treaty. It was enforced by the UN in March 1976. Committed parties are obliged to respect the civil and political rights of individuals, including the right to life, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, electoral rights and rights to due process and a fair trial.

Australia signed the ICCPR in 1972 and ratified the deal 8 years later. The first Australian Human Rights Commission was established in 1981. The ICCPR was made a reference point for its functions but was never made a part of Australian law.

We the people, merrily waltzing away here in “The Land Down Under”, may not realise that Australia (unlike The United States) does not have explicit freedom of speech in any constitutional or statutory declaration of rights. (The exception is political speech which is protected from criminal prosecution at common law, a shield basically against government prosecution, but not a shield against private or civil law prosecution).

In 2005, under the cloak of anti-terrorism laws, ye olde Tory tart himself, John Howard reintroduced sedition laws. The Attorney-General in 2005 was Philip Ruddock, who said: “The offence [sedition] is one if the person urges by force or violence the overthrowing of a government, or interfering with an election, or encouraging other people to use – or groups of people to use – force or violence against other groups.” A statement that any surgical lawyer could cut a thousand ways.

Most countries have sedition laws, mainly in legislation and occasionally at common law. Certainly Australia’s sedition laws are rarely used, but they are there. The law exists and can be spun into action on a case by case basis. Be in no doubt that our 230 MPs have the power to enforce sedition laws anytime, to suppress any person or group or entity, including the media, and to initiate prosecution.

Australia’s political clique publicly subscribes to the idea that we the people be allowed to exercise our natural rights and voluntarily gather whenever we desire to do so, providing, of course, our actions do not compromise the freedom of others. It is this latter point which the clique discuss behind closed doors with a high rate of perspiration: How to further violate the liberty of 23 million people and contain their right to speak freely using the spin “Your actions will compromise the freedom of others.” Tricky, but our political clique is up to it. The Senate passes a bill requiring all mass gatherings to be permitted. No tickee, no shirtee. For example – “The protestors were not granted a permit to march today because of a number of concerns around the issues of public safety, and the disruption to local schools and businesses in the area. I want to assure them, however, that their grievances have been heard and that Australia is a great country where free speech still means unrestricted speech.”

Somewhere in the mix, the fearless leader will be made available for a sound grab: “It is important to respect peoples’ right to discover their own limits.” Especially in the realm of abstraction.

Australia’s political clique has all points covered. They are prepared for the unlikelihood of a militant revolution, and on red alert for any uprising that could lead to a bloodless revolution. Peaceful protestors have been dragged off to Australian jails yelling and screaming infringements of their freedom of speech all the way to the gaol. Difficult to argue an infringement of rights when those rights don’t exist in the Australian constitution. Such peaceful protestors are generally fined for “offensive behaviour,” with jail terms for repeat offences. When a government starts jailing its people for “offensive behaviour,” it is a slippery slope towards tyranny.

Freedom of speech does not mean we are free to chat about sport. It means we have the freedom to say and do some very controversial things. We the people are lulled into believing we enjoy such freedom in Australia, but the between the lines banter is: freedom until we decide otherwise.

There exists current Australian laws which gives federal police the power to bring felony charges against any person who engages in public demonstrations or protests without a permit. When a person or persons  want to protest freely in Australia, they have to be pre-approved to do so, and must conduct their free speech protest in a “designated zone.” When it comes to curtailing the freedom of we 23 million people, our small clique of 230 representatives somehow find a way to work together.

Free speech if you must first seek permission to use it is not free at all.

The great domain of the internet is another matter entirely. A public space where subscribers of a bloodless revolution can gather to exchange and discuss ideas with anyone, even if they don’t have the proper “permits”. Arguably, it is the last great bastion of hope for we the people.

Australia’s political clique are continually exasperated at the ineffectiveness of their efforts to gag and suppress online activity. The internet continues to mock Court Orders which fundamentally need a designated zone in which to enforce said Orders. The internet is borderless. Technically, the Court has the power to order any person, any entity to do or abstain from doing any act or thing. It has the power to order any act or thing to be done or left undone. That certain issues persist around enforcing certain orders on the internet is not lost on our political clique. There is no way to stop overseas sites from publishing information or to stop people here from visiting sites over there. Any government at any time can weave and spin a reason to close its physical borders, no one in, no one out. But there is not an army anywhere on earth capable of marching to the centre of the internet and shutting it down (just ask Julian Assange).

The word “revolution” is arguably the most heroic word on earth and has undoubtedly enjoyed a renaissance in the hearts and minds of we the people since September 7.

However, the Australian militant revolution will not be televised. It is a fiction in the minds of the lunatic fringe. To those pseudo soldiers prancing around the bush with broomsticks, engaged in pointless drills that will ultimately lead to pie, chips and gravy in a jail or old folks home for the criminally deluded, best of luck. The only threat you impose is encouraging revolutionised Australians to have children and educate them to consume and die.

By contrast, 2013 Australia is the only Westernised democracy in the world to have genuine potential for spawning a bloodless revolution. When it comes it will come rolling with tremendous and unstoppable force along the length and breadth of the only route possible: The Information Super Highway.

Perhaps it has already begun.

I, Johnny Green, do not disclaim anything about this article. I’m quite proud of it really.


OCTOBER 2013 – Sydney, Australia.

It appears Politicians are a novel group of people who create problems and then speak out against those problems. Labour and Liberal and all the minor players are, outwardly at least, dead against “problems.” Strangely, however, in perpetuity problems remain.
 
Point in question: inflation and high taxes. MPs continually speak out against inflation and high taxes, yet we the people have endured inflation and high taxes for as long as there have been Politicians.
 
In this time, we the people have looked to the Politician…for the Politician has the power: the immense power that operates the taps of life and death. A power that changes things. The power of a Politician is an encroaching shadow that, among other things, reigns over the culture of wealth. Who else but the Treasurer hands down the budget. We the people do not write the tax code, the Commonwealth does. We the people do not have the authority to vote on appropriations, that belongs to the Senate. Fiscal policy is set by the government, and monetary policy is set by the Federal Reserve Bank.
 
The Australian Parliament has 150 Members and 76 Senators. If you include The Monarch, The Governor General, The President of The Senate and The Speaker of The House, 230 people are running a country of 23 million people; two hundred and thirty human beings directly, legally, morally, and individually responsible for managing the domestic problems we 23 million people know about (and the ones of which we know nothing).
 
It  is important to mention The Reserve Bank because the RBA contribute to the stability of the dollar, promote full employment, and the economic prosperity and welfare of we 23 million people. But the RBA does not enjoy the same power as a Politician. I do not include unions, special interest groups and lobbyists for the same reason: these entities have no “legal authority.” They have no legal power to force a Senator, an MP, or a Prime Minister to do anything. Even if they offer a Politician $10 million dollars in cash, the Politician has the power to accept or reject the offer. The Politician has the power no matter what the offer promises. It is the Politician’s job to conduct him/herself responsibly, to enact laws and vote accordingly.
 
At this point, reality takes over from fact.
 
Our 230 representatives spend sizable amounts of their time and energy convincing the people that the problems they are attempting to manage are not of their doing. They do this with a stern face and flowery rhetoric, and this is what separates these 230 from the other 23 million: a propensity for impudence. No normal human is imbued with the arrogance, the inclination to take liberties, to be rude and impertinent, to stand up and criticise a fellow MP and/or government for creating problems they themselves contributed to. All 230 cooperate in this common con regardless of party.
 
There is not a single domestic problem that is not traceable directly to those 230 people. The mounting horror as we the people grasp the irrefutable evidence that 230 people wield the power of the federal government in the manner they choose, is quickly replaced with slack jaw disbelief that what exists is in fact what those 230 people want to exist.
 
If the tax code is unfair, it’s because they want it unfair; If the budget is in the red, it’s because they want it in the red; if the refugee policy is diabolical…go figure; if the military are engaged in war, it’s because they want war in places like Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan. When a Politician retires and receives the “golden hand shake” (not available to we the people), it’s because they want it that way.
 
There are no insoluble government problems.
 
When the light is shone on these 230 people like cockroaches they scurry for cover, employing tactics familiar to all. Shock and awe, smoke and mirrors, sleight of hand, a flick of the wrist – code for blaming bureaucrats whose jobs and departments they create and they can abolish; they blame lobbyists whose gifts and advice they can reject; they blame regulators, to whom they give the power to regulate and from whom they can take this power away. They con the people into believing in disembodied mystical forces like “the economy,” “inflation,” or “politics” that prevent them from doing what they are voted in to do, and which they pledge an oath to do.
 
No amount of spin can unspin the responsibility those 230 people choose to compromise.
 
Thanks to the internet we the people are able to scrutinise this cult of arrogance 24 hours a day: more than any time in history, we the people have the power to self educate. The Australian contingent is no different. We 23 million have the power to apply knowledge and tangibly replace our 230 people who stand convicted – by present facts – of incompetence and irresponsibility. It is up to the people of all nations to hold their representatives to account. But does the voter have the gumption to manage their own employees, to clear all of them out of office and clean up their mess?
 
I sincerely doubt it.
 
A lot of people care, but beyond a Facebook LIKE just not enough are prepared to to do anything physical about it. Putting one’s body upon the gears, upon the wheels, upon all the levers and the apparatus of the system – most of us are not there yet.
 
Many people try to stir up physical motivation to match their emotion, but most get irritated because it’s difficult to make anything come out. In the middle of the night we the people lay awake thinking about all this. If we don’t get back on track somehow, I am dead…we are dead, that’s the sense people get. Yet there isn’t a single emotion inside strong enough to motivate a mass physical response.
 
Why? Maybe we should go back to the beginning. Two hundred and thirty people representing 23 million, remember? The Politician has the power, from popular culture to the propaganda system, there is constant pressure to make we the people feel helpless, that the only role we can have is a democratic vote and to consume. But this is not the 50s. There exists many savvy types plugged in and switched on, enough to know that being apolitical is not an option. Nothing wrong with doing nothing, unfortunately no one can do nothing forever. Those 230 will not allow it. They will come for you and they will get you. They have the power.
 
So do something, anything. This might be considered a droll conclusion were it not for the urgent reality of 21st century politics: The power of one should never be repudiated.
 
If one does nothing, the result will be no change, but change is not the objective. Change is the reward. One may do something, anything, and the result may be inconclusive. One may never learn what changes came from their action. Therefore, motivation must come in a quest for change while the objective of the mission is simply to do the right thing. It may not be in one’s time that any change may occur, but one must do the right thing. It’s the deed, not the change effected by the deed that’s important. We the people must begin…and for those people that have begun, they must continue.
 
Each person must strive to remove just a chip from the wall that we know must come down. Not all will enjoy the coalescence or witness first hand the retooling of history, but each person who strikes out against the injustice, the redundant ideals of those 230, or acts to improve the lot of we 23 million, a small ripple of hope will fan out and crisscross other like minded acts from a million different centres of influence, daring those like minded rebels to form a current which will level the oppressive, resistive mortar holding the 230 bricks together in the wall.