(AA) Anarchist Age 195 (Extracts)

esperanto (lingvoj@lds.co.uk)
Fri, 19 Apr 1996 05:13:29 +0200


The Anarchist Age Weekly Review
PO box 20,
Parkville,
Victoria 3052
Australia
tel (03) 9828 2856
fax (03) 9482 4371
---------------------------------

FLOUR! BLANKETS AND TEA

Indigenous affairs in Australia are about to revert back to the flour,
blankets and tea era that typified Australians relations with the indigenous
inhabitants of this country pre the 1967 referendum. The 1967 referendum
acknowledged that indigenous Australians were Australian citizens. It's
fascinating to see the mass media feeding frenzy that has accompanied the
public disclosure that some indigenous organisations are corrupt. As the
media maggots and the government hacks bay for blood and accountability the
cry has gone up that current indigenous organisations should be stripped of
what little power they have.=20
Unless Australians are careful, it's possible that the flour, blanket and
tea mentality that characterised white black relationships in this country
will be resurrected by the coalition. The Aboriginal and Torres Strait
Islander Commission (ATSIC) was set up by the Labor government to act as a
funding vehicle for indigenous affairs in this; country. Its structure
mirrors Australia's parliamentary system. Indigenous people are asked to
select representatives to the commission. Elections are held throughout
Australia (only about 30% of indigenous Australians vate in these elections)
and commissioners are elected t@ ATSIC. The commission has the
responsibility of distributing about one billion dollars of government funds
to look after the housing, legal, health, art and education needs of
Australia's 300,000 indigenous people (approx. $3,300 dollars per person
per@year).=20
When you look at the budget of ATSIC and their personnel and the extent of
@leir responsibilities and the way ATSIC is supposed to mirror p@rliament
it's obvious that ATSIC is faced with an impossible job. When you consider
the support m@=A3@nisms @hat the Federal government has, as it attempts to
look after the welfare of 18 million Australians and you compare the support
mechanisms ATSIC has as it attempts to grapple with the problems of the most
disadvantaged section of Australian society, it's obvious that ATSIC was set
up to fail in its attempts to self-manage indigenous affairs.=20
It's interesting to note that @e mass media wants ATSIC to be disbanded and
replaced with the welfare mentality that did so much harm to indigenous
people in this country. When capitalism is found to be wanting, and our
so-called corporate high flyers embezzle billions of dollars or when the
government is not able to meet the basic needs of its own citizens,
Australians are not subjected to a mass media campaign to replace capitalism
and Federal parlic@nent by a fairer system of government and by a fairer
economic system. If the mass media maggots had any credibility you'd think
they would apply the same criteria to the parliamentary system and capi@lism
th@t they are now applying to ATSIC.=20
It's obvious to anybody who hasn't lived on a desert island that both
indigenous and non-indigenous Australians are faced with major problems as
far as thiS continent is concerned. Creating a system of government for
indigenous people that mirrors the Australian parliamentary system is asking
for trouble. Representative democracy especially a parliamentary system that
does not empower people economically is nothing more than a mirage. The
current problems that ATSIC c@nd the Australian p@rliament are faced with
are a direct consequence of the structure of parliament itself.=20
Representative democracy both for indigenous and non-indigenous Australians
is a sham. The people involved in a decision should make the decision. We
don't need representatives to make the decisions for us. Both indigenous and
non-indigenous Australians are facing similar problems as far as the
parliamentary system is concerned. If we want accountability for indigenous
and non-indigenous organisations we need to become involved in activities
and campaigns that remo@e po@er from the h@nds @f representatives and place
it back into the hands of local assemblies. All delegates that are appointed
or elected by local assemblies should have fixed mandates and should be able
to be recalled by the assemblies that appoint them.=20
So let's not go back to the days of blankets, flour and tea. Let's move
forward. Let us both indigenous and nonindigenous highlight the limitations
of representative rule. Let's abolish both Federal and State parliaments and
the indigenous parliament (ATSIC) and replace it with a system of
selfmanagement that ensures that everyone has an equal say in the decisions
about how resources are distributed and everyone has equal access to the
wealth created by society. In the meant:ime don't hold your breath waiting
for the media maggots to outline the shortcomings of capitalism and the
current Federal and State parliaments. I'm sure if you decide to hold your
breath waiting for the media maggots to give an even handed account of
what's going on, you may be digging your own grave.=20
=20
NUCLEAR POWER THE PLOT THICKENS! !=20

As the Uranium mining industry and the anything for a buck coalition
government dots the i's and crosses the t's in their new uranium policy,
Suharto the butcher and his Australian counterparts are licking their chops
at the thought of the windfall profits that are going to line their pockets.
As the ln@onesian oll wclls clry up tlle Suharto dict@torship is embar@ing
on a calnpaign to build 12 nuclear reactors across the Indonesian
archipelago. Although Suharto the butcher is keen to build these nuclear
reactors, few government are willing to sell the butcher the uranium
necessary to fuel the reactors. Enter on the stage the anything for a buck
Howard government.=20
In its haste to open up the uranium mining industry, the Fe@eral coalition
has agreed in principle to supply the Indonesian nuclear reactors with all
the uranium they need. Not one member of those intellectual giants that make
up the coalition has raised ar y doubts about this new policy to bankroll
the Indonesian military butchers. The previous Labor govertlment trained
their army and signed a defence treaty with SuhL@rto the butcher. The
current government is falling over itself in its haste to sell the Indonesia
authorities urculium.=20
Few in the coalition and the Labor opposition realise that this new policy
exposes over half of Aus@alia to radiation exposure if one of these nuclear
reactors fails. How many pieces of silver would it take to repair the dama@e
if this occurred. Obviously more than could be earned from selling uranium
to Indonesia for the next thousand years. Few politicians seem to realise
that selling uranium to @lc Indonesi@n Inilitary dictatorship is tantamount
to giving the Indonesian authorities unlimited numbers of nuclear bombs.
It's amazing what you can do with the waste products of a nuclear reactor,
just ask little old Saddam, he has always been a great support of nuclear
tecl-nology.=20
Few people seem to realise that selling uranium to Indonesia will allow the
military authorities to create centralised sources of energy which will
extend and consolidate their power over Indonesian society. Even fewer
people realise that the introduction of nuclear reactors to Indonesia will
inhibit the development of solar based energy sources in Indonesia. While
Howard sells uranium to the Indonesian military dictatorship they
consolidate their power in Indonesia.=20

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