THE MONEY QUESTION,
THE RACE QUESTION AND POVERTY
(1)THE MONEY QUESTION
The Greatest Paradox Of The Modern Age
“The white man knows how to make everything, but he does not know how to distribute it” - Chief Sitting Bull. (1)
The problem of poverty amidst plenty is one of the greatest paradoxes, if not the greatest paradox, of the modern age. Due principally to exponential advances in technology, in particular in the field of computer sciences, but increasingly in that of bio-technology, the world has never been richer. Yet as I write these words I have in front of me a twenty page A5 pamphlet published by Westminster Libraries which lists numerous organisations and centres for homeless people in Central London, (2) one of the richest cities in the world.
In November 1998, the British Government sanctioned American-sponsored bombing raids on Iraq. Although the sun has long since set on the Britain Empire, Britain still maintains armed forces in various parts of the world, and should the need - or the desire - arise, British servicemen will be sent hither to die at a moment’s notice for Queen and country with no thought as to the cost in purely financial terms. Indeed, at this very moment - late May 1999 - British forces are helping reduce the former Yugoslavia to ruins. This is a state of affairs which is not peculiar to Britain: there is always, has always, been money for war. Yet we still have people sleeping rough on our streets, indeed, this problem has grown worse in recent years beginning with the election of Margaret Thatcher, on through the Major years, and now under “New Labour”.
It is a hard fact that in the 1960s and before, although there were countless homeless people roughing it in hostels and night shelters, there were, with very few exceptions, hardly any people actually sleeping rough on our streets who were not mentally ill or afflicted in some way by drink. In the 90s the problem of homelessness has actually grown worse. What is the cure for homelessness? The answer to that question is simple: a roof over one’s head.
The problem of why there are poor people and why poor people stay poor is one that is no nearer being resolved now than it was a hundred years ago. If anything, the problem is further from being resolved than ever; the usual proposed solution is state intervention. In reality, state intervention in any sector of the economy almost invariably creates more problems than it solves, and although the “study” of poverty and why poor people stay poor certainly creates jobs for academics and social workers, it does little to alleviate the actual problem. For example, in December 1998, two council employees from Yorkshire travelled to Dublin where they spent four days at a 5 star hotel attending a conference on poverty. (3) Examples of such lunacy are not difficult to find, but just as there is a simple reason why homeless people are homeless - they don’t have homes - so too is there a blindingly simple reason why poor people are poor. BECAUSE THEY DON’T HAVE ANY MONEY.
I said that state intervention doesn’t cure poverty; one of the reasons it doesn’t can be gleaned from the “poverty conference” mentioned above. State intervention requires first and foremost funding; the state has no money of its own, so in order to obtain money it has to raise it by taxation. The government can also raise money by credit creation (including printing money) or by borrowing. Although the most efficient means of financing state spending is by credit creation, at the end of the day goods and services have to be paid for, so simply creating credit for good works is not enough; if it were then there would be no such thing as poverty! (4)
Taxation does not create wealth, all it does is redistributes wealth. The professed ideal of taxation for such purposes is to rob the rich and give to the poor. Robin Hood may have robbed the rich and given to the poor, but taxation robs both rich and poor alike. The class which gains most from heavy taxation is the middle class, in particular the bureaucracy, many of whose jobs are dependent on taxation, because before this latter day Robin Hood gives to one poor person, he pays his own wages. Never let that be forgotten.
Although taxation does create some jobs - notwithstanding that it also destroys many others - it does not create “real” jobs, and only real jobs create wealth. A job which simply shuffles paper around or which does not create the goods and/or services which the community needs or desires is not a real job.
Nobody identified the fallacy of redistribution of wealth through taxation better than Ayn Rand, who wrote that “The percentage which the rich spend on personal consumption is so small that it is of no significance to a country’s economy. The money of the rich is invested in production; it is an indispensable part of the stock seed that makes production possible.” (5)
The more a nation’s wealth is “redistributed” the more adversely the economy is affected. Rand again: “If an average housewife struggles with her incomprehensibly shrinking budget and sees a tycoon in a resplendent limousine, she might well think that just one of his diamond cuff links would solve all her problems. She has no way of knowing that if all the personal luxuries of all the tycoons were expropriated, it would not feed her family - and millions of other, similar families - for one week; and that the entire country would starve on the first morning of the week to follow. (This is what happened in Chile.)...No one tells her that higher taxes imposed on the rich (and the semi-rich) will not come out of their consumption expenditures, but out of their investment capital, (i.e., their savings); that such taxes will mean less investment, i.e., less production, fewer jobs, higher prices for scarcer goods; and that by the time the rich have to lower their standard of living, hers will be gone, along with her savings and her husband’s job...” (6)
Rand’s analysis is spot on, this though is cold comfort to the homeless and to the rest of the underclass.
Although it is disparaged by the radical right, the concept of the welfare state is a very fine one. The original idea was that there should be a “safety net” through which no one should fall. The problem though is that this safety net for the poor become first and foremost a safety net and then a gravy train for bureaucrats, in particular for the civil servants who run the system, the lawyers who legislate it, and the various entities who police it, eg tax men, Customs & Excise men, benefit “fraud” investigators, and so on. It is increasingly recognised that whatever purposes they may ostensibly serve, the raison d’être of all bureaucracies is to perpetuate their own existence. (7) Again, Robin Hood pays his own wages before he pays anyone else. So what is wrong with the welfare state?
There is no single answer but most people would agree that it has grown from a basic safety net to an enormous, unwieldy bureaucracy. There is a plethora of different benefits, each with its own rules and regulations, most of which are enormously complex and all but impossible for even specialists to interpret, much less the man or woman in the street.
Leafing through Halsbury’s on a visit to Westminster Central Reference Library I found something truly remarkable: in the (fine print) Alphabetical List, the entries for the Statutory Instruments for Social Security begin at the bottom of page 721 and end halfway down page 731. There are literally hundreds of them. (8)
Imagine how much it must cost to commission, draft, proof, print, publish and distribute these. And this is only the law related to Social Security. Every year several thick volumes of Statutory Instruments are produced on every subject under the Sun. (9)
Most benefits are means tested, which means in practice that claimants are subjected to what amounts to an inquisition, often degrading, before they obtain a penny. To claim any of the various allowances a claimant has first to fill out a lengthy form with all manner of at times intimate details. The mere commissioning and printing of such forms must surely run to hundreds of millions of pounds annually.
There are job centres/unemployment offices, benefit offices, and all manner of administrative offices. There is a so-called independent tribunal service which hears appeals, the expense of running which must be staggering. (10) And last, and least, there are the benefit “fraud” investigators, a particular revolting species of men - or more often women - whose job it is to poke their unwanted probosces into people’s financial affairs, interrogate them with third degree methods, and do everything in their power to discourage people from claiming the benefits which are rightfully theirs.
Although there have been occasional instances of people ripping off the benefit system in a big way, (11) the actual scale of benefit fraud, though impossible to quantify, has been grossly exaggerated for political and other purposes. For example, a report in the Guardian in May 1999 claimed that benefit fraud costs the government up to £7 billion a year, a figure that is nothing less than ludicrous. (12) An earlier report in the Times gave a far more modest estimate; it was claimed here that in London, £3 million of fraud was detected in 1996. National benefits frauds were estimated at £55 million for 1996, according to the Audit Commission. (13)
There are still people who attempt, for all manner of reasons to portray the unemployed and unemployable as parasites, but the real parasites are not the unemployed but the likes of the fraud “investigators” and other lowlife who run the system.
In spite of increasingly repressive attempts to deny them benefits at every turn, the greatest problem most claimants face is the poverty trap; this is the phenomenon by which the state gives with one hand and takes back with the other.
In March 1999, Bruce Anderson, political columnist of the Spectator, commented that “Our cash is financing dole queues rather than deserving pensioners”. In other words, people “on the dole” are not “deserving”. According to this pompous ass, the dole queue is the “Wrong target” because increased taxes in his view are used to “subsidise the underclass”. (14)
This idea, that the poverty trap “subsidises” the underclass and encourages “idleness” is a widely held misconception. It doesn’t. But what it does do is encourage rationality. Most people caught in the poverty trap would like to be able to earn a living, but existing on benefit and perhaps doing the odd job here and there cash-in-hand is for them by far the lesser of the evils. I am writing here from personal experience. In any case, the tone of Anderson’s article, and indeed the tone of most political rhetoric and legislation concerning “unemployment” is moral rather than economic; “idleness” is seen as a problem which must be cured by “making work” for the so-called unemployed. (15) The real problem is not unemployment but poverty, in particular the lack of goods and services and the wherewithal to obtain them.
The new Labour Government has tried several measures to eliminate the poverty trap, probably with total sincerity on the part of the policy makers. The previous Conservative administrations were doubtless likewise sincere. John Major, and Margaret Thatcher before him, probably considered a few thousand or even a few tens of thousands of (mostly young) people thrown out onto the streets to be a price worth paying for getting the country back to work. There is no doubt whatsoever that many people did prosper under the Conservative Government; why should Margaret Thatcher care about a few young homeless? After all, her own (imbecile) son was extremely well provided for. Again, we return to the problem of poverty amidst plenty. So how do we eliminate the poverty trap without destroying the poor?
First and foremost we must recognise the real cause of the problem. Yes, the poverty trap is the major cause of poverty, but what is the cause of the poverty trap? The answer, incredible though it may seem, is falling prices. This needs some qualification because falling prices benefit the economy as a whole, and, provided they have money in their pockets, falling prices benefit everyone. The reason for this is that although most of us produce either a very limited range of goods and services, and some of us don’t produce at all, we all consume a wide range of goods and services. Even the poorest and most destitute of us must eat. Because we are all consumers, when prices fall we gain more on the swings than we lose on the roundabouts. Yes, individual people, companies and even industries, will be hurt by some falling prices, but falling prices in general are good news.
The prices of goods in real terms have fallen dramatically since the industrial revolution, the second industrial revolution (transistors), the third industrial revolution (the micro-chip), and are set to fall even further with the fourth industrial revolution (bio-technology). (16)
My favourite snippet of information regarding the falling cost of computer technology appeared in the New Scientist in 1992: “IN THE 1950s, an electronic circuit that could store a single ‘bit’ of information cost more than £1. Today, a penny will buy 5000 of them.” (17) Since these words were written, prices have plunged yet again: now a Gigabyte hard drive is standard for a personal computer, and for less than a thousand pounds the man in the street has at his fingertips the sort of power that was available only to governments and the very largest of corporations back in the fifties.
However, falling prices means not only increased productivity but falling wages, at least in the manufacturing sector. This has led to a dramatic shift towards service industries. Goods, especially electrical and computer goods, are now dirt cheap, but skilled labour has become expensive. The average cost of hiring a solicitor in Central London for civil work is currently about £100 to £150 per hour. (18)
As stated, falling prices are good for society as a whole. By the same token, higher wages and salaries for skilled workers, managers, engineers, academics, lawyers, doctors, etc, are good for them. But what about the people at the bottom? The unskilled and those who for various reasons are excluded from high earning professions? In short, what about the underclass?
As things stand, the problem can and will only get worse as the current Labour Government continues to pursue policies which aim to force the unemployed off benefit and into low paid jobs. The Blairite slogan “a hand up, not a hand out” means in practice precisely that. In fact, under Blair the problem of poverty amidst plenty will surely grow worse because of two factors in particular, one of which didn’t exist under the Tories. These are the minimum wage and the obsession with racial (and other) quotas. (19) Let us take a brief look at the minimum wage.
The idea of a minimum wage, that nobody should work for peanuts, sounds fine. In theory. After all, isn’t any employer - private, corporate or state - which pays its employees less than a living wage, exploiting them? Surely it isn’t right that people in full time employment should have to claim state benefits in order to keep their heads above water? No, it isn’t right, but as usual, the cure is worse than the disease.
If a minimum wage is to have any meaning at all then it has to be set above the market rate for the job. If for example the minimum wage were £5 per hour and the lowest paid workers in a particular industry were earning £5.01 per hour, then there would be no point in setting such a rate. However, if the minimum wage is set above the market rate, we encounter real problems. To make this point clear, imagine that the minimum wage is set at something totally unrealistic: a hundred pounds an hour, say. What would be the result on employment policies?
Very few people in very few professions earn such enormous salaries, not because employers are mean, but because money doesn’t grow on trees. The result of such lunacy would be that the economy would be unable to function. It would either grind to a halt or inflation would go through the roof as it did in Weimar Germany when the German people had enough money to paper their walls, but not enough to buy a loaf of bread. (20)
At the time of writing, the newly enacted minimum wage has been set at £3.60 per hour, which is surely not excessive. Yet a recent report in the business section of one of the Sunday heavies claims that with its introduction, many small firms are preparing to cut their workforces or to cut back on recruitment. The red tape surrounding the minimum wage is said to be a major problem, in particular it will be time consuming and increase costs. (21)
“Socialists” and others argue that £3.60 per hour is peanuts, as it is. Who could survive on that? Of course, as usual this isn’t the whole story. Many such low paid workers are housewives and others earning a second income. Some very low paid jobs have fringe benefits which in real terms boost their value considerably; bar staff may live in, and so on. (22) Then there are “jobs” which are not so much jobs as apprenticeships, where the employer actually provides on-the-job training as part of the contract. (23)
Even though it will create large numbers of useless jobs for those who police the system, the minimum wage, if enforced rigorously, will destroy countless such real jobs and businesses and cause enormous hardship, but New Labour has spoken: no one will be “exploited” by wicked capitalists, even though many large capitalists will continue to be subsidised out of the public purse for “creating” jobs. The state will, it seems, give money to everyone except the people who most need it.
Which brings us to the latest gravy train, and one of the most socially divisive and parasitic industries of all, the race industry.
Over the past two decades and more we in Britain - and elsewhere - have been treated to massive doses of “anti-racism”, the cure for the mythical disease of racism. The campaign against racism has become a holy crusade, and since the Stephen Lawrence case, almost a religion. (24) The race card, as it has become known, has been exploited quite cynically by gerrymanderers with political and racial agendas, and often purely for financial gain, or for other motives. The race card was invented by Organised Jewry, and although the current writer has found examples dating to the 19th Century, it really only first came into its own with the trial of Leo Frank, a Jewish factory manager who was charged with, and later convicted of, the brutal murder of a thirteen year old girl at the Atlanta, Georgia pencil factory which he ran.
Leo Frank was sentenced to death and later reprieved but, after having his throat cut in prison, he was kidnapped by a lynch mob and strung up. The case against Frank, although not overwhelming, was reasonably strong, (25) but the principal evidence against him came from another suspect, Jim Conley, a low class Negro of poor character who had himself admitted to covering up the crime. A jury of White Southerners - supposedly the most bigoted and prejudiced of people - convicted Frank almost entirely on the word of a Negro, but Frank’s powerful supporters, many of them Jewish, raised the spectre before, during and after the trial, of racial prejudice, claiming that Frank was being victimised simply because he was Jewish. The case was likened to the Dreyfus affair in France, an inaccurate comparison, or even the ritual murder trials of the past, an absurd claim. (26)
There is of course nothing wrong with the presumption of innocence, one of the hallmarks of a civilised legal system, but the constant refrain of “anti-Semitism” every time a Jew is caught with his hand in the till, or of racism when the accused is black, does much to alienate decent white people. The nadir of this sort of gerrymandering was of course a much more recent murder trial, that of O.J. Simpson. Simpson was the most famous American ever to stand trial for a double murder. A sportsman turned actor and media personality who had married white, he was hardly the stereotype of the oppressed Negro. He was also as guilty as any man could be of murder, but his defence team, with a little help from police perjury, managed to secure his acquittal by the constant refrain of racism. (27)
The race card is also played just as cynically for financial gain. If any black or other minority member can so much as raise the spectre of racism, he finds himself in line for a massive hand-out from some imbecile tribunal or other. Indeed, the race card has become so lucrative and all-pervasive that of late even whites have taken to playing it. To give just one example, in January 1997 the Times reported that two white men and one Asian had won their case for unfair dismissal against their former employer, a Japanese financial institution. One of the white men was said to have suffered racial harassment, being told by the deputy managing director: “You have a strange skin colour and the shape of your head looks like a football”. Yeah, sure. Their claim was backed by the misnamed Commission for Racial Equality. (28) Never let it be said that these bods are partisan.
Akin to the race card is what might be called the sex card, which if anything is even more lucrative (and ludicrous) than the race card. The first sex discrimination case in the UK was brought by a woman photojournalist named Sheila Gray. Against a Fleet Street wine bar which barred women wearing trousers. (29) In 1996, there were 3,674 cases of alleged sexual discrimination compared with 1,734 “claiming racial prejudice” in comparison with 1,970 sex and 1,302 race cases in 1995. The average payout in a sex discrimination case was £19,238! (30) In May 1998, it was revealed that a woman bringing a sex discrimination case against Camden Council was earning £83,000 a year. (31) Yes, eighty-three grand a year. Predictably she was a lawyer. (32)
Again, the people who enforce these Draconian - and stupid - laws, are anything but partisan; given the opportunity they will press charges against anyone regardless of race, c olour, creed, economic status or sex. Thus when hotelier John Tatum confided to a clerk at the Job Centre that he was looking for “presentable females” to employ rather than “scruffy men with rings in their noses”, he found himself hauled in front of an industrial tribunal, even though no one had complained about discrimination. He was told by the tribunal’s chairman that “It occurs to us you have not appreciated the importance of legislation.” Obviously not. (33)
Most people believe in a society which offers equality of opportunity. Obviously this is an ideal rather than a reality so can be realised only to a limited degree, but equality of opportunity does not mean equality of outcome, and the idea that because one group, be it racial or whatever, lags, or appears to lag, behind others in economic advancement, does not mean in any sense that this group is subjected to racism, whether institutionalised or not, or mysterious forces that can be combatted only by passing more and more repressive laws. It is ironic in the extreme that the people who make the most noise about racism nowadays are the same people, the same vested interests, who made the same noises about “anti-Semitism” in the past, although in those days they were coming from the entirely opposite direction.
We are constantly being reminded of how “oppressed” blacks are in white society. Here is one example:
Boys from black Caribbean families have some of the worst school records in Britain. The problem: racism.
Only 9% of black Caribbean students gain qualifications above A Levels compared with 13% of whites, 26% of Chinese and 27% of black Africans! The problem: racism.
The unemployment rate amongst black youth is three times higher than among whites. The problem: racism.
Blacks make up 1.5% of the population yet 11% of the prison population. The problem: racism. (34)
Such statistics, which are for the most part meaningless, are not difficult to come by. What are we to make of them? The second set of statistics cited above is extremely interesting. How come Africans are twice as likely to gain advanced qualifications as whites? Is this because of racism against whites? Are the Chinese, who also excel, the beneficiaries of racism rather than the victims of it? There could be all manner of explanations, the most likely explanation for the apparent African excellence is that most of these African students are the sons and daughters of the wealthy elites who have been sent to Britain by their parents to benefit from our supposedly so superior educational system. On the other hand, Afro-Caribbeans are likely to be second or third generation immigrants from lower class families. As for the Chinese, it could be, and probably is, that unlike Afro-Caribbeans, who along with whites have suffered from the deterioration of the traditional extended family, they have benefitted from extensive family ties and a tradition which venerates scholarship and hard work.
Leaving aside these apparent anomalies, it is widely believed - due largely to incessant repetition - that blacks in particular are held down by racism. This is the cause of black so-called underachievement. Racism, this mysterious force which has insinuated itself into every nook and cranny of white society, holds the black man down, and leads to incessant calls for more and more repressive “anti-racist” legislation. It is racism which leads to black unemployment rates running higher than white ones; it is racism which leads to fewer blacks qualifying as doctors, and so on. Fine, now let’s look at Nazi Germany.
When the Nazis came to power there were approximately 600,000 Jews in Germany. (35) Nazi propaganda depicted German - and world - Jewry in all manner of unflattering ways, not least of which was the oft’ repeated claim that German Jews somehow dominated the economy. International Finance, which was widely believed to be Jewish controlled, was said to be strangling the economy. Jewish financiers and monopolists in particular were represented as parasites on the body politic of the German, and in a wider sense, the Aryan, people. Jews were also said to control the press and most if not all of the retail trade. What was the factual basis for this?
The roster of Jewish names in “International Finance” is well-documented, and is something of an embarrassment to anyone attempting to refute anti-Semitic propaganda, but finance, whether international or otherwise, was never a Jewish monopoly. For example, one scholar has written that “In Elizabethan England, usury burgeoned; and it was clearly not a matter that could be attributed to Jews, since virtually all of them had been banished from England in 1290.” (36) Likewise Jewish involvement with the press, retail trade, professions, and so on. Let us take the following small sample.
In Nazi Germany, 16.25% of lawyers were Jewish as were 10.88% of doctors. (37) As Jews made up approximately 1% of the German population, these figures, although far from showing total domination, are certainly impressive, or in the terminology of “anti-racists”, disproportionate. But domination there certainly was in other fields. One academic has written “[A Nazi] document of June 1933 - to be treated with due reserve but seemingly in the main reliable in many of its facts - claims that of 147 members of the stock, produce, and metal exchanges, 116, almost 80 per cent, were of Jewish origin.” There were 25 Jews and 11 Gentiles on the management committee of the stock exchange; 12 Jews and 4 Gentiles on the produce exchange; and 10 Jews, and 2 Gentiles in the metal exchange. (38)
An American-Jewish academic writing on the same subject tells us that in the Weimar Republic, Jewish firms owned 80% of the department and chain store business; 40% of the wholesale textile business; and 60% of the wholesale and retail clothing trades. Nearly half the private banks in Germany were owned by Jews. (39) But if the Jewish “stranglehold” on the economy of pre-Nazi Germany was impressive, it doesn’t lack for much in the USA today.
Writing in 1982, an author with the very Anglo-Saxon name of Krefetz tells us that although there are no Jewish billionaires in the USA, a few come close, but there are scores of multimillionaires and hundreds of millionaires. (40) Eleven years later this scenario had changed for the better - if you were Jewish - for American-Jewish scholar Benjamin Ginsberg informs us that “Today, though barely 2% of the nation’s population is Jewish, close to half its billionaires are Jews.” (41)
But what about average income? According to Gerald Krefetz - from his 1982 book - Jewish family incomes are 72% above the national average! (42) One survey from the early 1970s showed median family income for Jewish families was $12,630 as opposed to the national average of $9,867. Blacks earned barely half that with $5,074, while Puerto Ricans were even lower down the scale earning $4,969. (43)
However, it isn’t just the Jews who are doing well in the good ol’ USA. A 1975 study written by an American Marxist rails at racism which, allegedly, oppresses white workers as well as black: “...no prior work has shown so conclusively the cost to white workers, and the profits of monopoly capital, of discrimination against Blacks.” (44) Leaving aside the fine point that monopoly capitalists have always opposed segregation - if only on commercial grounds (45) - this Marxist author is blind to a curious anomaly because, citing 1969 figures for per capita income, he finds that while blacks earned 54% of whites, and Chinese 92%, Japanese earned 106%. (46) (There is no mention of Jews in this study, Jews obviously being classed as white). However, although Japanese-Americans are said to earn more than whites, they are classed as an “oppressed” minority. (47) How can this be?
Just as much anti-Semitic propaganda is based on the fallacy that Jews per se are powerful, wealthy, greedy, exploitative and oppressive, so too is most if not all “anti-racist” propaganda based on the same false assumptions about whites. As well as rich Jews, author Krefetz points out that at the national level, a little more than thirteen percent of Jewish households probably fall below the poverty line, roughly comparable to the national average, and more than one would expect. (48) The phenomenon of poor Jews is also not exactly rare. (49) The reality is that poor Jews can be found everywhere Jews live; a working class Jewish parent struggling to raise a family on an ever diminishing budget who read an anti-Semitic tract claiming that Jews control the world’s banks, the world’s gold and the world’s press would probably be mystified as to why he had been left out of the grand conspiracy. (50)
But although anti-Jewish propaganda of this nature is condemned and even ridiculed by “anti-racists”, the very same people make exactly the same claims about the mechanism of racism by which the wicked, greedy, rapacious, exploitative whites hold down everyone with a non-white skin. So what is really going on here?
Gerald Krefetz summed it up in a nutshell: “Jews, along with everyone else in the top brackets, are earning and amassing wealth far beyond their comparable number.” (51)
Note: everyone else in the top bracket. Much as I hate to agree with a Marxist interpretation of anything, the conclusion is inescapable: the old saying “if you’re white, you’re all right” should be replaced with something like “if you ain’t rich, life’s a bitch.”
Just as poor Jews are mystified by anti-Semitic propaganda which portrays all Jews as wealthy, so would, and are, many ordinary white people mystified - probably pissed off is a better phrase - by “anti-racist” propaganda which incessantly portrays white people as parasites, (52) and clamours for more and more special privileges for non-whites, especially blacks. Although such nonsense as “affirmative action” does benefit some blacks, all the available evidence shows that the ones it benefits are those who least need it.
Incidentally, it is not only “anti-Semites” who fall into the trap of portraying Jews as human leeches. In his autobiography, Malcolm X wrote that “...in every black ghetto, Jews own the major businesses. Every night the owners of those businesses go home with that black community’s money, which helps the ghetto to stay poor.” (53) It is easy to dismiss this sort of talk as plain anti-Semitism, yet in spite of making the odd disparaging remark about them, Malcolm X clearly admired Jews. (54)
It may indeed be that Jewish businessmen took money out of the ghetto, but that begs the question: how did the money get into the ghetto in the first place? Obviously from those wicked white people who had nothing better to do than to hold the black man down. (55) In other words, money goes from white to black to Jew, and so on. This is not anti-Semitism any more than it is racism, it is merely ignorance of economics. (56)
“Anti-racists” and their fellow travellers constantly reiterate that there is a “problem” because there are so few blacks working in certain professions, and so on. I had a personal experience of this in 1998 when I sat in the audience of a TV programme on race issues. It was meant to be a debate, in reality it wasn’t so much a debate as one long continuous whine by middle class, upwardly mobile blacks who were obviously none too happy at what they perceived to be the lack of progress made by blacks (read themselves) in white society. (57) One particularly nauseating contribution was made by Donu Kogbara, who has the effrontery to pose as a Libertarian. A journalist who has written for, among other publications, the Sunday Times, Kogbara - who is married to a white man (58) - told her audience lachrymosally that she had for years been a passionate opponent of race laws and quotas, but every which way she looked she found the door of promotion closed to her, and she couldn’t think of any reason for it, except racism, and, I suppose we might add, sexism. Something must be done about this problem, she said, or what? There will be riots?
What was Kogbara’s problem? Having reached her mid-30s, (59) this upwardly mobile black woman has risen as far as she can for the present, and her fear is that she will rise no further. She has, in effect, reached a glass ceiling, something we all of us reach. (60) Many are called, few are chosen. Not every barrister will become Lord Chief Justice, or even a judge, not every PC will become Chief Constable, not every check-out operator will become managing director of Marks & Spencer, (61) and not every journalist will become editor of the Sunday Times, (which was obviously what Kogbara thought she should be). And unless this “problem” is rectified, there will be blood on the streets. So what we need is more legislation? Apparently yes.
Kogabara’s whining was directed primarily towards the field in which she works, the media, and its greatest irony is that as far as the media is concerned it has absolutely no basis in fact. A glance through the byelines of the broadsheets reveals a host of non-Anglo-Saxon names, while over the previous few years the BBC and independent television channels have recruited literally dozens of non-whites as anchormen and roving reporters, in many cases undoubtedly over the heads of equally talented or senior whites: a few names that spring readily to mind are Wesley Kerr (black), Gillian Joseph (black), Zaneb Badawi (Asian), and time server Martin Bashir (Asian).
A few months after the screening of The Race Debate, it was revealed that the highest paid newscaster in Britain is, surprise, surprise. Trevor McDonald, one of the best known black faces on TV if not in Britain, has been a household name for donkeys’ years; he was said to be on a salary of £1,000,000 a year. Yes, one million. The next on the list is a woman: Kirsty Young, while Jon Snow, who is one of the world’s oppressors (white, male and middle class) was on a paltry two hundred grand. (62) So much for racism and sexism.
Okay, that’s the media, now let’s refute the rest of Kogbara’s nonsense. How oppressed are blacks in racist white society in general? Okay, there aren’t that many black scientists, in fact in the hard sciences and mathematics there are hardly any, even in the USA, where less than 2% of scientists are black. (63) There aren’t that many blacks in the higher echelons of the police force, but that is hardly to their discredit considering the low esteem in which our wonderful police are held - often with some justification. There aren’t that many blacks in the civil service, not in the higher echelons anyway, but who really wants to be a bureaucrat? Now let’s look on the positive side.
The fields in which blacks excel are traditionally, and still are, entertainments, particularly music, and sport. Boxing, especially heavyweight boxing, is all but monopolised by blacks, mostly American blacks. On the aforementioned Race Debate one young black man voiced the opinion that blacks were stereotyped as being only interested in sport, but as many sportsmen, and women, are literally idolised by members of the public, that can hardly be taken interpreted as racism.
In Britain, one of the most revered sportsmen - and rightly so in my humble opinion - is Lennox Lewis. In 1996 it was reported that Lewis had donated 1 million, a hefty 10% of his income, to charitable causes. (64) That is certainly a feather in his cap, but the fact that he was able to make such a donation is hardly an indictment of racist white society. (65) Two and a half years previously black soccer player Paul Elliott lost a claim in the High Court after his career had reportedly been ruined by an over-the-top foul tackle. Obviously this was a personal tragedy, but don’t shed too many tears for him because at the peak of his career he was said to have been on £4,000 a week. (66)
Another black soccer player, who unlike Elliott was the author of his own misfortune, was Justin Fashanu, the eldest of the talented Fashanu brothers. While his brother John - also a soccer player - handled fame and fortune well, Justin did not. A rampant homosexual, Fashanu became a born-again Christian (believing apparently, that he could engage in perverted acts with other men six days a week and pray for forgiveness on Sundays). Fashanu was the first million pound black player, in 1981, and seems to have suffered more from homophobia than from racism; he “came out” in 1990, sold his story to the tabloids, and was working as a coach in the United States until shortly before his suicide, which resulted from his being charged with sexual offences against a minor. (67) Yet another black soccer player, Stan Collymore, whose pastimes include fast cars and white women, was said in February 199 to be earning £20,000 a week! (68)
An article in the Times in November 1996 reported that with the abolition of affirmative action, California is set to experience a mushrooming of Asians in academia “at the expense of black, Latino and American-Indian students”. The reason for this is the poor academic performance of these other groups which will lead to their numbers dropping by 50%, from 26.5% to about 12.5%" Whites will increase their places, but not by as much as Asians, obviously. The leading black politician Jesse Jackson was quoted thus: “We can go forward by embracing inclusion or we can go backwards by abolishing race and gender considerations.” This is rather ironic, because thirty years before, Jackson and his ilk were screaming for the abolition of “race and gender considerations”. What happened to all that talk about a colour blind society?
Another leading black advocate of affirmative action, Errol Smith, was quoted thus: “It is the most corrosive debilitating and heinous remnant of the legacy of slavery.” (69) Not just racism but slavery? So the poor academic performance of blacks after three decades of affirmative action is all the fault of long dead white men?
Although this is still a taboo subject - made so by indiscriminate charges of bore, bore, racism - a few authors have the courage to speak out: "affirmative action was not created because of white racism. It was created because of widespread black failure to take advantage of the opportunities available when legal segregation was ended." (70) As for racism in academia, “The problem of black enrollment [sic] at elite universities is not caused by racist admissions policies. It is caused by poor academic performance.” (71)
How else is one to explain the fact that in 1997, all 196 black applicants for places at a leading Californian medical school were turned down. The previous year there were 7 blacks accepted, and in 1995 there were 11. In this field at any rate, black academic performance appears to be growing worse. (72) According to traditional theories of anti-Semitism (the first generally recognised form of racism), the Jew is used as a scapegoat for all the world’s ills. Nowadays it is the legacy of long dead white men. As Indian immigrant Dinesh D’Souza has written, “Racism itself becomes a scapegoat: it is blamed for problems that have little to do with racism, such as blacks failing maths tests.” (73) The same author also points out, quite correctly, that “No race has a monopoly on achievement.” To that he might have added on failure. (74)
Okay, that’s black underachievement and failure, now let’s take a look on the bright side. Blacks are not exactly under-represented in the very top earners, especially in the media - as we’ve demonstrated already - and in the entertainments world. According to a 1996 report, in 1987 the world’s highest paid entertainer was Bill Cosby, earning $84 million. Eddie Murphy was fifth, $50 million; and Michael Jackson was 9th. In 1988, Cosby was second and Murphy fifth. In 1989, Murphy was sixth and Oprah Winfrey was ninth. In 1995, Murphy was still earning $30 million a year, although he didn’t even make the top forty! (75) To complicate matters further, D’Souza points out that in the USA, black women with college degrees earn more than white women with college degrees, which makes a nonsense of the spurious and oft’ parrotted double jeopardy claim that black women suffer from both racism and sexism. (76)
So for all Donu Kogbara’s whining about how oppressed blacks (read Donu Kogbara) are, what she, and other middle class blacks, are really talking about is percentages, statistics if you will. The blacks - like everyone else in the top brackets - are earning and amassing wealth far beyond their comparable number. And she is just damned annoyed that she isn’t one of them.
Percentages And Statistics
The problem as perceived by the race industry, professional race agitators, their fellow travellers and dupes, is this mysterious and for the most part indefinable entity racism, or as it is perceived in certain professions, instititional racism or institutionalised racism. In reality there is no such problem because there is no such entity. (77) Let us take just one more statistic. In 1981 the managing director of the Spa supermarket chain predicted that more than half of Britain’s independent grocery stores may be owned by Asian shopkeepers in 5 years "because they give customers what they want". (78)
It is now eighteen years since that prediction was made, and although Asian shopkeepers do not have any sort of monopoly, they certainly do own many, many small retail outlets, and not a few of the larger ones. Is it really such a problem or even such a mystery that there are so few Asian police officers or high flying civil servants when Mr Patel and Mr Khan own half the shops down the local high street, especially when their sons and daughters follow in their footsteps? (79) Or when, as in California, they are set to dominate the universities?
Earlier I alluded to Bruce Anderson, the Spectator columnist who railed against the underclass being subsidised by the benefit system (paid for by honest, hard working, respectable “productive”) journalists like himself. It isn’t only pompous white asses like Anderson who categorise the underclass as parasites, blacks are just as capable of advancing the same flawed arguments, especially those who inhabit the same privileged world. In 1997, Larry Elder, an American talk show host, came under fire for, among other things, attacking affirmative action. “If a white person attacks affirmative action, you can dismiss his attack on the basis of racism, but if a black person attacks it and attacks it well and persuasively, that’s a whole different ball game...” He was said to have received death threats and hate mail.
Elder doesn’t think much of Jesse Jackson either, nor of other “civil rights” leaders: “They all collectively blame most of black America’s problems on white racism and the legacy of slavery, a connection which I don’t think can be demonstrated...They believe all problems can be traced to the great white bigot.” And on black crime: “Who is the biggest danger to blacks? The vicious minority of young black punks and thugs that terrorise the overwhelming majority of law-abiding people in the inner city...” (80)
Elder has a point or two, this sort of talk coming from a white man would undoubtedly be branded racist, and it is just as true that some blacks do blame all their problems on the great white bigot, but what this talk show host and qualified (former) lawyer doesn’t realise is that he is as far removed from the black underclass as Spectator columnist Bruce Anderson. Writing in the same year, one contributor to a book on this tortuous subject commented perspicaciously that “The problem with the black underclass is not that it is underemployed, but unemployable. Blacks who have fallen through society’s cracks don’t even get to the point of being ‘last-hired’.” (81)
He might have added - and should have - that this is a universal problem with the underclass, there may be - and indeed are - more blacks in this underclass, but at the end of the day there is a large - and growing - white underclass as well, and that the underclass is growing worldwide regardless of its ethnic make up. These are people who are disenfranchised. People who can’t earn a living wage because no employer in his, her or its right mind would employ them. Again, as with Donu Kogbara and the other middle class blacks who whined they were being held down unfairly on account of their race, all we are really talking about here is percentages and statistics. Because even if all the nonsense that has been espoused about racism were true, the problem of the underclass would still be there.
Even if all black men turned white overnight (or vice versa) the underclass would still be large and would still be growing. And every cent spent on fighting the mythical disease of racism, in the workplace and elsewhere, is public money wasted, literally thrown down the drain. The principal beneficiaries of the campaign against racism are the professional “anti-racists”, race industry careerists, legislators and lawyers, not blacks, and most definitely not poor blacks. Here is what I mean.
In 1996, the misnamed Commission for Racial Equality had a budget of over £15 million a year. The Chairman (and Chief Executive) was the well known imbecile Sir Herman Ouseley. Ouseley, who is black - in case you hadn’t noticed - was on the princely salary of £78,150 a year. (82) Can no one see the irony of paying a black man over 78 grand a year to lecture the white population on how oppressed blacks are in white society?
The American poet and journalist Mark O’Brien was born in 1949 and was stricken with polio as a young boy. He has spent the rest of his life in an iron lung, unable to leave it for more than an hour. He has no meaningful movement in any part of his body bar his head. He writes using his mouth. He is a monument to human courage and determination. (83)
A far more publicised though equally tragic story, is that of the actor Christopher Reeve, best known for playing Superman on the big screen. In May 1995 Reeve fell from a horse while riding and has been wheelchair-bound ever since. After recovering from this near fatal accident, and proving that men of steel come in all flavours, Reeve has not only continued his acting career, playing a paraplegic detective, but has taken up a career in directing. He has also become a fund-raiser and consciousness-raiser for disabled causes.
As much as we can and should admire the Mark O’Briens and Christopher Reeves of this world we should not allow our admiration for these latter day Supermen to cloud our judgment. Both are exceptional cases. Mark O’Brien has been totally dependent on other people for all his adult life. Likewise, Christopher Reeve is now totally dependent on other people. Although this is true of all of us to some extent (84) Reeve can’t even dress himself in the morning. He is only able to do any sort of job because he is Christopher Reeve, ie an established actor, wealthy, etc.
Even the grossly mentally impaired are capable of “working for a living”. One of my regular haunts is the Borough of Lewisham’s library system, and in one of those libraries I have regularly seen an assistant who is a Mongol. (85) Like Christopher Reeve, this man can only “earn his living” with a great deal of assistance, in his case, subsidy from the taxpayer and the ratepayer, and also through voluntary agencies. It is doubtful if this sort of subsidy can be justified in purely economic terms, but leaving such selected examples aside, there remains a large and growing underclass who could only “earn a living” by the imposition of a régime that would put the 19th Century workhouses to shame.
In this day and age, unless you have a university degree, some sort of vocational qualification, a laser printed CV, or family connections, you will have serious problems finding any sort of employment. Then there are what might be referred to as “the great unwashed”. These are people with lengthy criminal records, people who are socially inadequate for one reason or another (winos for example), people with mental problems, and so on. Another group which is rapidly being excluded from the workforce is older people, especially older men. One of the greatest fears of working men over fifty or even approaching fifty, is that if they lose their current jobs they will never work again. The continuing shift from manufacturing industries to service industries means this trend will not be reversed. The plain truth is that in the first instance there are not enough jobs to go round, and in the second instance, even if there were, there are some people who are for the most part unemployable.
The real problem though is not “unemployment”, it is lack of income. There are many people: the idle rich, the retired and well provided for, and so on, who are neither employed nor unemployed. It is not employment the underclass needs, it is money. There is no doubt that like the Tories before them the current Labour Administration would like to solve the problem of the underclass. But like an alcoholic who will do anything to stop delirium tremens except stop drinking, the government will do anything to help the underclass except give them money. (86)
The government - all governments - will create all manner of lunatic “employment schemes”, draft anti-discrimination legislation, engage lawyers, inspectors, advisers, commission enormously expensive academic studies, and a plethora of other things, but at the end of the day they won’t put a penny in any unemployed person’s pocket - white or black - unless he or she works for it. And we have already discussed the effects of the minimum wage and the poverty trap. At the end of the day, without a drastic rethinking of the meaning of employment, and the cost of this insane philosophy of employment at any price, the problem of the underclass will grow worse and worse, and the hapless victim will continue to be blamed for the crime that is perpetrated against him.
This insane philosophy is one that permeates Western culture from top to bottom. In 1943, a multinational corporation published a pamphlet in which it argued that able-bodied people “should not only be free from want, they should not be idle.” (87) Says who? This is a moral argument, and one that has nothing whatsoever to do with economics. In the 1930s this culture even went so far as to the setting up of “Instructional Centres”, in reality little more than concentration camps, where “a certain type of man” (88) would be sent in order to toughen him up. A contempory advocate was quite candid about this; Ronald C. Davison wrote “Their purpose was, not to teach a trade, but to cater for men of the labourer type. They were agencies of physical and moral rehabilitation, giving men a twelve weeks’ course of fairly hard work, good feeding and mild discipline.” (89) Mild discipline indeed. One modern writer referred to Davison as "a self proclaimed expert on the problem of unemployment". (90)
Marxist critic Wal. Hannington, writing in the same vein, commenting on the workfare schemes of the then present day, wrote that “The government and the social service leaders advance the argument that it is better that the unemployed should be working even though they are not receiving wages, than hanging about and doing nothing and becoming demoralised.” (91)
This hits the nail bang on the head, the government of the day then - as now - viewed the “problem” of “unemployment” as primarily a moral problem, in particular a moral problem for the unemployed. Unfortunately, being Marxists, Hannington and his fellow travellers had, and still have, no real solution to the problem, even though they were acutely aware of what that problem really was. (92)
Between 1929 and 1939, nearly 120,000 long term unemployed men went through these British concentration camps, (93) which were based all over the country including Scotland and Wales; perhaps the most notorious was the Brandon Group in Suffolk. (94) The labour camps eventually became superfluous because “...full employment was once again made possible by the Second World War.” (95) Exactly how a war solves the “problem” of unemployment has never been clear to the current writer. I recall a conversation I had some time ago with a somewhat older fellow member of the Christian Council for Monetary Justice who had grown up during the Great Depression. Suddenly, it was over, there we were in the forces with free accommodation and three square meals a day, he said. Yet to all intents and purposes servicemen are unemployed, because their raison d’être is not to create goods and services, but to destroy them.
Yet few people realise this. In 1933, novelist Gilbert Frankau made a speech in which he lauded war as the saviour of the unemployed! “A war would be a great idea”, he said, “Another war would give our three million unemployed ample employment.
I would suggest conscription for this country. It would be immensely popular.” (96)
One wonders if he would have still felt the same way on VE Day. Tell us Gilbert, was it worth it? Fifty million and more dead? Did the people of Iraq think war was a “great idea” in the aftermath of Operation Desert Storm? Do the masses of Serbia think conscription and war is a “great idea” now that NATO is bombing the hell out of them? Do the streams of Kosovan refugees who are fleeing the region as I write these words think war is a “great” idea? Pillock.
This was the view of one author, and apparently not a very intelligent one at that, but even people who should know better don’t. Here is another quote from the 1943 publication produced by Lever Brothers & Unilever Limited, which we alluded to above: “Many people jump to the conclusion that what is possible in a war-time economy must also be possible in a peace-time economy - the only difference being that, instead of war material being produced, more consumption goods, houses and so on, would be produced. But it is not so simple as all that.” (97)
Oh yes it is, it is precisely so simple as all that. Professor Quigley, a self-professed “Insider” tells us that “Wars, as events have proved since, are not fought with gold or even with money, but by the proper organization of real resources...The outbreak of war on August 4, 1914, found the British banking system insolvent in the sense that its funds, created by the banking system for profit and rented out to the economic system to permit it to operate...could not be liquidated rapidly. Accordingly, the bankers secretly devised a scheme by which their obligations could be met by fiat money...but, as soon as that crisis was over, they then insisted that the government must pay for the war without recourse to fiat money...but by taxation and by borrowing at high interest rates from bankers.” (98)
In other words, there is never any problem with fighting wars. As long as the physical resources are there, the money can be found to marshall them.
The same solution can be made available to the “problem” of unemployment, the only question that remains to be answered is what is the best method for implementing basic income?
Major Douglas, the founding father of Social Credit, identified the root cause of the money problem. Money comes into existence largely if not exclusively as an interest-bearing debt. As a result of this there is a shortage of purchasing power which manifests itself in boom and bust cycles. Douglas has been both ignored and savaged, but although serious criticisms have been made of his solution to the problem, no one has ever refuted his analysis. (99)
Douglas advocated both a basic income (Social Credit or National Dividend) and a price discount. This system has been criticised as being unnecessarily complex, (100) which it surely is, but there is a far simpler solution, that of Unitax. In 1994 there were no less than 88 different types of taxes in the United Kingdom. (101) There were though, and remain, four main taxes: National Insurance, Corporation Tax, Customs Duty, and Value Added Tax. The tax system is extraordinarily complex, and before a penny of taxpayers’ money is spent on public services or on the needy - let me remind the reader again that - the taxman first pays his own wages. Are all these taxes necessary? Is any of them? Certainly not. VAT in particular is a tax on growth. (102) Not only that but tax goes on tax on tax. Don’t think that when you buy one simple commodity, a can of baked beans for example, that you are paying one flat tax. The shopkeeper who sells you the can pays Value Added Tax (and if the shopkeeper is a supermarket, Corporation Tax); he will pay rates and other overheads; the haulage company that delivers the can will pay tax on petrol, road tax, National Insurance on its employees, and so on. There is really no such thing as a simple tax system. Or is there? Enter the Unitax proposals.
Advocates of Unitax seek to abolish all present taxation and replace it with one uniform tax. On energy. This would be a direct tax, at source. Unlike the plethora of taxes we have under the current lunatic régime it would be both simple and cost effective. It would also allow the direct payment of a basic income to all citizens and the total elimination of the poverty trap. This is far superior to other systems of basic income; on the few occasions when supporters of the mainstream political parties have considered basic income they have suggested that it be raised by increasing income tax, which would clearly push taxation through the roof.
In May 1998, a remarkable story appeared in the London Times. Japan, until very recently the most rapidly expanding economy in the Far East, has been going through the doldrums, so much so that unemployment, even among the professional classes, is now rife. The Japanese have a different mentality from us Westerners; this was strikingly discernable during World War Two when they were proved capable not only of the most bestial cruelty and inhumanity - in Burma, for example - but of the most astounding acts of self-sacrifice. Whoever heard of a white man committing hari kari, or of an American kamikaze pilot?
The Japanese are a proud people and are quick to feel a sense of shame, even for things over which they have little or no control. The Times article alluded to reported that in 1997 “At least 32 people died of starvation in Tokyo...Apparently they were too proud to apply for welfare benefits.” Some Japanese people have not only been too proud to apply for state benefits but have been too ashamed even to admit that they were unemployed and have been hiring alibis for employment! Less humorously, one man, a 43 year old former company president, died in a fire which was apparent started by a candle, his “only source of light and heat since electricity and gas were cut off months ago”. He had been unemployed for three years. (103)
People don’t generally starve to death in Britain, but one wonders how many people in Britain and elsewhere have died in similar tragic circumstances - including suicide - due to their being unemployed and desperate for years, or for other reasons related to poverty and desperation.
There really is no solution to the problems created by the current lunatic financial system other than some sort of basic income. Prophets of doom have been predicting the collapse of capitalism for as long as I can remember, since before I was born in fact. Although these prophesies, like predictions of the end of the world, are a long way from coming true, there can be little doubt that the system is getting worse, at least for the people at the bottom. Society is becoming increasingly polarised into haves and have-nots. This polarisation was once far more noticeably along racial lines than it is now, but that does not mean that society is becoming more equitable, rather it means that social injustice and social exclusion are now becoming less discriminating, even in South Africa. (104)
The machinations of the “anti-racist” bureaucracy and the make-work and full employment at any price schemes of successive Conservative and Labour administrations (105) serve only to turn a problem into a crisis. Even worse, no “anti-racist” activist, economist or mainstream politician so much as recognises what the real problem is, so any attempt to rectify the current malaise within the current economics paradigm can and will lead only to an intensification of the problem, in practice more “anti-racist” poison shoved down people’s throats, more suppression of civil liberties, and more poverty amidst plenty in an age when mankind should be reaching for the stars, instead of, like the underclass of all nations, sinking slowly into the gutter.
I hope the foregoing has convinced the reader of the true nature of the problem of “unemployment”, the real causes of poverty in the modern age, the poverty trap, and the mechanism by which it can be eliminated. Unfortunately, it is one thing to identify a problem and the remedies for it, and it is quite another to bring about the necessary structural change. I said earlier that the raison d’être of all bureaucracies is to perpetuate their own existence. When one considers the enormous extent of the bureaucracies that batten off the current system, and all the vested interests therein, the mere thought of changing it becomes a daunting challenge.
Consider what the institution of Unitax and a basic non-means tested income would mean. It would mean, in effect, the abolition of the entire social security system, the benefits system, job-seeker’s allowance, a plethora of benefits, the abolition of VAT and the subsequent scaling down of Customs & Excise, the scaling down of the independent tribunal service, the repeal of vast tranches of legislation with the subsequent redundancy of lawyers, tax inspectors, “fraud” investigators, and all manner of associated auxiliary and peripheral services. Just consider the size of the printing bill that would be saved, and ask if that would not lead to protests from the printing industry.
What we are talking about here is not just a total reform of the social security system but a revolution in thought, a revolution that will be opposed every inch of the way by powerful vested interests from narrow-minded politicians who can’t see further than their noses, to outright parasites who “earn” their living by keeping poor people poor on the pretext of protecting government funds from misappropriation. Undoubtedly a great deal of resistance will come from the trade union movement, because organised labour in this country - and probably everywhere else - has a streak of Luddism down its back a foot wide.
Trade unions have consistently opposed the introduction of new technology, and continue to do so. Civil service unions are among the most powerful, and we can expect nothing but intransigence, stonewalling and resistance all the way at the slightest suggestion of financial reform from them, from the lawyers, and from everyone who has a vested interest - or thinks he has a vested interest - in the perpetuation of the current system.
So how do we bring about the necessary changes to the system? Major Douglas produced his Social Credit proposals in the 1920s; Unitax is a much more recent innovation, but although Unitax has won some influential supporters - as did Social Credit in its time - without a paradigm shift of mega-proportions I doubt very much anything worthwhile will happen in my lifetime. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to bring that change about, and at least we have far more resources than our predecessors: low cost desktop publishing and the Internet, to name but two. We must harness the limited resources we have, if only by holding monthly meetings at the House of Commons, (106) and proselytising to all who will listen.
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