Treason never prospers; what's the reason? For when it prospers, none dare call it treason. Sir John Fortescue.
THE TRAGEDY OF POLITICAL PARTY GOVERNMENT
THE NATIONS of the British peoples (with constitutions and laws based on those of the mother country) were long the envy of other nationals. Many Europeans migrated to these countries to enjoy the privilege and security. However the best of law, in corrupt hands, can be turned against us. It is cause for suspicion that we are no longer warned of the fact that no law or constitution (or Bill of Rights) can protect us against corruption. We no longer learn that only by our own continual vigilance can we ensure that the rules are kept.
Although Australians today know little about the Australian Constitution, that document provides opportunity for the most advanced form of government so far developed. Its history goes back some four centuries before Europeans settled Australia and in fact its beginnings were in Magna Carta - the time English barons demanded certain rights and freedoms from kingly oppression.
It was the development of those ideas that led to the concept of 'government of the people by the people' and the Common Law system that has been the model for the most advanced forms of democracy known.
Let us begin with a simple outline of our present situation and how it came about. Most of us should know that the ideal of the Common Law system is equality under law. All are equal under the law and we are innocent until proven guilty rather than 'guilty unless you can prove yourself innocent' as with 'despotic law', and we are entitled to be judged by a jury of our peers. However the really important thing about the Common Law system is that AUTHORITY belongs to the people.
Our present LEGAL Constitution provides a three way arrangement of administration based on the AUTHORITY of the people, the JURISDICTION of the Crown and the SERVICE of the Parliament. Because of the fact that the Jurisdiction of the Crown is bound by historic Law such as the British Bill of Rights, Act of Settlement, etc., jurisdiction cannot be simply removed from the Australian Constitution without mutilating its power. It would seem undeniable that if all constitutional links with the U.K. are now broken, then Australians no longer have the protection of those Statutes which provide the legal base for our government and culture.
From the first edition of Call it Treason it was indicated that Australia became a quasi-republic at the signing of the Australia Act. This becomes more clearly evident as each item of evidence comes to light. Unless the Australia Act can be withdrawn (or we write a new constitution to include our Common Law protections) we Australians now have little or no constitutional protection.
However, on the other hand, you and I would say that the enactments that have brought us to this sorry state of affairs are illegal because they have bypassed the democratic and constitutional authority of the people.
The Common Law concept gave people the right to express their authority through an electoral system in which each electorate SELECT and ELECT, its own representative to a parliament that would administer the government of the nation. To make sure that these representatives did not band together to betray their trust, there was a Crowned Head of State who was the ultimate military commander and who was entitled to step in and dismiss the parliament should its actions be seen to be not in accord with the will of the people.
To ensure that the Crown also performed its duty, it was required that a very explicit Coronation Oath (on the Holy Bible) must be sworn. This Oath contained the promise to rule in Law, Justice and Mercy.
This is a very solemn and important part of the Coronation. After the Oath, the Holy Bible is presented and the Moderator says:
Here is wisdom; This is the Royal Law; These are the lively Oracles of God.
The important thing in all this is that the Queen swears to govern according to LAW and although that may seem a promise full of loopholes (are not the laws changed almost daily?) the fact is that the LAW referred to in the Coronation Oath is not that produced by day-to-day parliamentary activity.
The Laws of the Oath are firstly the Laws of God and, secondly, those Laws, Statutes and customs established in certain fundamental ways which, all together, could be described as the British Constitution. These Laws, established over years of struggle, can only LAWFULLY be changed (if at all) with the knowledgeable consent of the people.
You may wonder at the 'if at all' but, apart from the normal longstanding intent of constitutional type laws, at least one, the British Bill of Rights, declares certain things to be 'forever' or to cover future generations into an indefinite future, as we might expect from law establishing fundamental principle.
Our present Queen has sworn to uphold the rule of LAW and it would be difficult for her to now be relieved of her Coronation Oath even if the people, in full possession of the facts, agreed that it should be so. Such a move would be (at least) morally questionable. The Oath is sworn, not for a period of years but for her entire reign. It is sworn to God and to all her subjects (born or unborn) for the length of her reign.
So the full importance of the Coronation Oath is not apparent in the words themselves because the LAW referred to does not represent the civil laws passed by parliament but the Law established by various Statutes and ancient customs and the teachings of the Holy Bible.
The Law of the Coronation Oath is not something that can be altered by the Crown or the parliament or the Law Courts at will; where it can legitimately be altered it can only be altered with the knowledgeable consent of the people.
It is essential to appreciate that this Common Law system is not a system (or ideology) dreamed up by political fanatics or power-crazy manipulators, it is a system developed over years of trial and error and heartbreaking struggle by a community of peoples.
Now I think you will agree that very basic principles are involved here and the fact is, that these principles are based on Statutes that are part and parcel of the British system. These protections are not written into the Australian Constitution directly but are part of our Constitution only by virtue of our constitutional ties with the British Crown and law.
From the opening paragraph of the Australian Constitution:
. . . have agreed to unite in one indissoluble Federal Commonwealth under the Crown of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, and under the Constitution hereby established.
So the point to highlight, is that if our Constitutional links with the United Kingdom can be cut by legislation such as The Australia Act (even though not one word of our Constitution is changed), then our Constitution becomes worthless and no more than an historic curio.
Does the Queen have the right to deny her loyal subjects, residing in Australia, the safeguards of the British Statutes without the people individually (or by referendum) petitioning her for this? Even were the Australia Act constitutionally legal we, individually, have an agreement with the Crown and our Constitution is WITHIN this agreement. By proclaiming the Australia Act does she not break her oath on this agreement?
The entire base for our political freedom is under threat. Be sure to understand the above and the rest of the book will be much easier to follow.
What went WRONG?
At the time the Common Law system became fully operational it must have seemed a very secure and watertight system of public authority. What could possibly go wrong?
What went wrong was that somehow or other the people got the impression that the political ELECTION was the important part of the process - that by the very act of election the people controlled the parliament. This lie is now commonly maintained by mass media and our parliamentary representatives.
In truth the important part of the process is the SELECTION, not the election, of the candidates. If you allow me to select the candidates I will be entirely happy for you to elect any of them you like.
Party politics probably developed because the first selected and elected parliamentarians felt proud of their position and the respect it gained them. When it came time for re-election it is not unlikely that most would desire re-election and be prepared to do a little 'campaigning' to improve their chance against any new candidate that may be proposed. It is also easy to see that selected popular issues would be good talking points. This desire for re-election and the desire to 'sell' popular issues would soon lead to the formation of political groupings and the introduction of political parties would soon lead to the squeezing out of most independently selected and elected parliamentary representatives.
The Australian Constitution.
A reading of the document called the Australian Constitution gives little understanding of what is involved. The historical roots and meaning of that document are not apparent without research. As we have seen the Australian Constitution is not complete in its own right but transfers a long political heritage to the authority of an Australian administration.
The Australian Constitution gave Australia independence WITHIN the British Empire. There was no reason to believe that Australia would need a full constitution because the British Crown and Common Law system guaranteed us the liberties of the best system of democracy then known. At that time (as now) it was not suspected that the advent of political parties had created a serious flaw in the democratic ideal.
The great failure of our founding fathers was the failure to foresee the dangers presented by a party political system. Political parties are extremely vulnerable to infiltration and control by vested interests. The main parties, once under control, can be used as a foil to each other and to deceive the electorate.
Had the risk been appreciated and some simple mechanism placed in the constitution to require consultation between the elected representative and the electorate, or, had the electorate been given power to force a referendum on any matter should a reasonable percentage of the electorate petition for it, then the electorate would not have been tricked into a gradual loss of its power and authority.
A good example of this is Switzerland, where the government must hold a referendum should 50,000 voters (less than 1% of the population) petition for it on matters of constitutional amendment, or 30,000 on matters of laws and international treaties. As a result of this, Switzerland (a country very poor in natural resources) is one of the best governed and wealthiest of nations, while Australia (a country very rich in natural resources) is one of the worst governed and indebted of nations. In fact, on last report (early 1987), we were third from the bottom of the list and rapidly moving lower. Debt wise, a 'banana' republic.
Had authority been established as being VISIBLY in the hands of the electorate, then we would not today be at the mercy of sects and subversive interests but would be politically aware, prosperous and leading the world in responsible government. We would not have political parties conspiring to deceive the public (now so visible) or suffer the electoral frustration of choice between evils.
It is not, as some will argue, a matter of buying a dog and barking yourself. The electorate does not have to instruct the representative in every matter but must be seen to have the power to instruct when necessary.
For instance the electorate need not give instruction on details of taxation but should DIRECT limits which, in various circumstances, it is prepared to suffer; and for what purposes. The electorate need not say which person may come into the country but should DIRECT what the immigration policy is to be. The electorate need not decide who should be hanged but should DIRECT if capital punishment is to be a meaningful part of law enforcement. All proposed CHANGES to national policy should be put to referendum as part of the election process.
The disasters of recent years were not a public choice. Did the electorate ever ask its representatives to increase taxes so that youth could destroy itself in mindless pursuit of pleasure without responsibility, or so that unmarried partners could live comfortably on social service payments and raise a family without working? Did the electorate ever ask that laws be made easy and so help the international mafia to destroy thousands with drugs and disease? Did the electorate ever say we should hand control of the economy to the international money-lenders?
In present circumstances we are, year after year, harassed by media and pressure groups which create division, confusion, trauma and social problems. Cultivated problems and the damage they cause, result (directly or indirectly) from political party conspiracy. With public control of parliament our most serious problems would not have even begun; others would have been aborted by referendum.
Our paid representatives, in the main, represent political parties not the electorate, in fact they scorn the electorate. The decay over the last century is marked. Lord Shaw (1910) said an M.P.:
... is not to be the paid mandatory of any man, or organisation of men, nor is he entitled to bind himself to subordinate his opinions on public questions to others . . .
In the modern political party there is obviously an involvement that causes an M.P. to bind himself to subordinate his opinions on public questions to others ... that is clearly the effect of political party discipline. Wilberforce, at Liverpool (the election of 1812) put his position so well as to expose the great tragedy of our political degeneration. He said to his electorate:
It may happen that your own judgment may occasionally come in conflict with my own ... but I promise you that any difference of opinion between us will always lead me to distrust my own views, carefully examine, and, if erroneous, frankly to correct them. . . .
... if, unfortunately, occasions should occur ... on which there should arise between us, on points of serious importance, a radical and irreconcilable difference of opinion, I will not abuse my trust, but will give you the earliest opportunity of recalling or reconsidering your delegation of it.
Compare those past attitudes with the attitudes of arrogance and impudence common to present leading M.Ps.
Liberal Minister for Immigration and Ethnic Affairs for the Coalition Government, Mr. Ian Macphee, is reported as saying (Hobart 1981) that he did not take notice of public opinion, his job was to change it!
Or this from Bill Hayden, Labor Minister for Foreign Affairs, 1984, in response to a letter from his electorate:
Unfortunately, my "will" on these matters is just the opposite of yours and even more unfortunately, I have taken a vote to establish which of our two "wills" will win out ... It is my melancholy duty to advise you that you lost . . .
At one time, both the representative and the electorate understood something of their correct relationship. Unfortunately, the political greed for power progressed and public understanding of their right to exercise authority was dispersed. A process of gradualism, supported by the Fabian socialist movement over our present century, undermined public understanding and led political party despotism to the tragedy we suffer today.
Far from accepting the will of the people, politicians now reject referenda on the grounds of obvious public disapproval of the party position.
The original Australian Constitution makes no place for political parties; they are neither necessary nor desirable. Their deceit is that they offer to take responsibility for people who find responsibility irksome; their treason is that they sell it to the highest bidder.
The evidence today is a tremendous and traumatic evidence of what results from political party government. The damage is plain but there is no publicity to show it as the inevitable consequence of allowing unfettered power to political parties and so TO THOSE WHO CONTROL these parties.
Just how serious our situation has become is evidenced on the one hand by our disastrous economic plight and on the other by the continual erosion of public understanding and authority. The attempt to force on us a Bill of Rights and identity card which would introduce law to further undermine the authority of the people, produce despotic law situations and transfer authority to centralist government (a dictator's servant), indicates the nature of the power they now seek.
Above all was the sly introduction of the Australia Act which, in effect, vanguards the LEGAL transfer of all authority to the political parties via centralist government. It allows all those potential abuses (visible in the Australia Card and discredited Bill of Rights) to be established, without public choice, in a new constitution. d&ta02.htm
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