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Is it time to reconsider a Communist political agenda for Australia?

Communism in Australia has for a long time had to share the stocks with that old mock of shame of: “The love that dare not speak its name” … being held up as almost heinous a crime as sexual predatory behaviour. But why? After all, it is no more than another political possibility in management of a country.

Consider these latest scandals concerning the banking/financial sector … The crimes were of the grubbiest, the most mean in both penny-pinching and spirit of the most elderly and the most vulnerable … and then there is those other associated arms of corporate conglomeration: The energy sector, communications and allied device manufacturers, there is the minerals industry with the coal lobby going flat out trying to both delay the closing down of a dirty industry until the biggest players can off-load their stranded assets or to corrupt an already corrupt political group to “keep the home fires burning” and delay much needed climate change legislation … there is the corp-agriculture sector with it’s mega hedge-fund management takeovers of water licences and working with the banks toward pricing the smaller family farms out of business … there is the mega online retail and marketing business going flat-strap with minimal employment or wages/conditions killing the small and big high-street retailers and putting all those employees out of work.

Then there is casual work contracts, pay-rates, conditions of employment IF and WHEN one gets a half decent or serious job that calls for your presence ON THE JOB for more than one hour a week … No-hour guaranteed employment contracts that keep a person hanging on the thread of a “promise” without commitment and then on a pay-rate that would drive Scrooge McDuck to shame! And don’t even mention super, sick, or holiday pay … and for the love of God DON’T GET PREGNANT!

Let’s be honest and realistic about this whole capitalist corporation political system … You could put ANY OF THOSE aforementioned corporations up before a Royal Commission and they would be as guilty as the banks with corruption, bribery, swindling, gouging and any other adjective that describes criminality that it is possible to think of or mention … and then we get people saying that Capitalism is the best you can expect as a social system.

And so we have the cheer squad for capitalist enterprise saying that this is the perfect platform for anyone to get a life and become one of the top earners … the top 1%; YOU … there in the crowd! … perhaps it is YOUR TURN for the spot on the dais of success! … Get real … get a life … There’s only one way to the top of the wealth pile if you don’t start with old family money or networks and that is by subterfuge of operating in a speculative, quasi criminal operation … like the above mentioned.

So, having got the “against” out of the way … let’s see what’s the positives for the possibility of a re-run of the communist manifesto.

Here are some examples of what the Communist Party saw as Policies for 1960:

Monopolies Dominate

Only 104 men from 60 millionaire families in Australia direct 249 companies whose capital is valued on the stock exchange at £2075 million, These monopolies — Coles, Myers, Woolworths, C.S.R., the banks and insurance companies, the breweries and others — dominate all spheres of Australian life. Starting on a loan from the Commonwealth Bank, in 10 years General Motors-Holden has returned to its American owners; $87 million in profits white increasing its assets by £70 million, Yet this company stands down 8,400 employees, causing them and their families dire distress in order to save a miserable £300,000.

Broken Hill Proprietary, Australia’s most powerful total monopoly, last year made a net profit of £15 million.”

Higher Living Standards and Security for the Working People

To combat the growing economic crisis, to increase purchasing power find jobs for the unemployed, the Communist Party calls for:

“Higher wages, a 35-hour working week, equal pay for women and higher rates for young workers.

Federal and State Government co-operation in stabilisation schemes for each farm industry, to provide a guaranteed price to all working producers covering the cost of production for an amount of produce up to that necessary to provide a living income.
Reduced taxation on low incomes and higher taxation on the wealthy. Abolition of all forms of indirect taxation or articles of mass consumption.

Curbs on profiteering monopolies such as legislation to prevent takeovers, strict price controls, capital gains and excess profits tax; reduction of interest rates on hire purchase, housing and farm loans, and nationalisation of the biggest monopolies such as B.H.P., G.M.H. and others.”

Here … it’s somewhere in this extraordinary index of papers, books and writings … I can’t find the exact doco again.

HEY! … I would say the above is just the solution we need TODAY! … and this was way back in 1960? … WTF!! … But there’s more!

“In foreign affairs, Australia has no independent voice. The Menzies government slavishly follows the plans of the American billionaire war planners, and offends and threatens our Asian neighbours.

The 200 million (pounds) spent each year on so-called “defence” enriches the monopolies but contributes very little, if anything, to the security of our nation.”

Need I go on? …

As many of us have lamented so many times on this blog and elsewhere that we are sick in the body of repeating ourselves and nothing happens … well, folks … there you have it … it’s been said since 1960 and before and still the monopolies rule, the corporations get richer and more powerful and the politicians keep marching out from under those same Latin-logo’d porticos and nothing changes. Now why do you reckon that is? … Perhaps those capitalist promoters are right: THIS is the best we are going to get, so wrap up the banners, take down the barricades and shut-the-f#ck-up!

COMMUNISM? … HAH! … who needs it? … I mean; look at China today … where has communism got them? Do they bow their heads ashamedly to a foreign yoke? And does Russia? Or even tiny little Cuba? But then here we are … on our f#ckin’ knees and baring our arse to be kicked down the road by anyone that has got the dosh to buy our politics …

Yes … welcome to the “real world”.

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  1. New England Cocky

    Now now Joseph, don’t get your toga in a tangle ….. just consider how a revolution would upset weekend surfing in summer and football attendances in winter. You could not allow that to happen in Australia, land of the long weekend and short black coffee.

  2. Joseph Carli

    NEC…So why not “Democratic Communism”?….they were a force in the Australian election after the war as a registered party…It was Santamaria that broke up Labor and Murdoch’s papers that set the populace against them….mind you..Joe Stalin wasn’t good pr in those days either….

  3. Stephengb

    Let’s face it anyone Left of the LNP are regarded as COMMUNISTS. So actually proposing a communist party is going to send the Right Wingers apoplectic!

    We are no longer living in a capitalist economy, we are in a NEOLIBERAL heaven. Those with capital reap the profits whilst socialising the losses.

  4. Glenn K

    Perhaps Aussies can take a few lessons from the French. The French understand and embrace the value in protest, they do it frequently and often with a bit of street violence against property. You know why? Because it works! The government reacts and responds. They listen, not always well but still they do. Subtly it works its way into the body politic and governments tread carefully. Most of the time.
    I wonder how badly it needs to get before the Aussies will take to the streets. Of course, by then the police state will be so built up and fascist that it will be too late….

  5. Dr Tristan Ewins

    Big ‘C’ Communism isn’t an option. There are problems with market responsiveness in a fully planned economy. And full nationalisation would lead to autarky and poverty. But socialists should keep a wide range of Marxist insights in their ‘political toolboxes’. Capitalism is crisis prone and monopolistic. It is wasteful and based on class polarisation. And while it won’t be replaced in one single political upsurge, there is the prospect of progress towards socialism, beginning with a return to a meaningfully mixed economy ; support for co-operative and mutualist enteprise ; a more rigorously progressive tax system ; and a strong social wage, system of social insurance, collective consumption, welfare state. As well as a regime of industrial rights. Talking about China ; China compromises with the global capitalist reality ; and it has brought them success. But it could all go too far as well. Russia is now an oligarchy.

  6. Phil

    Good on you Joseph for bringing that old bogey communism into discussion. Socialism has already passed the first hurdle and is even being seriously debated albeit by youth around the world as capitalism’s catastrophes widen to threaten the entire planet and human existence.

    The very fact that communism is even getting airplay again should be enough to start the knees trembling amongst the plutocrats and oligarchs on board their ill gotten yachts and inside their gated communities……capitalism cannot self regulate so it is inevitably on a trajectory to hell – pity we all have to go with it…!

  7. Alpo

    Hmmm…. So, the ALP with Bill Shorten offered a Social Democratic program at the recent Federal election that it was criticised from the left because they accused Shorten of being a “Neoliberal”, whereas from the Coalition-right Shorten and the ALP were accused of being “dangerous Socialists”…. The “dangerous Socialists” were defeated big time and the Neoliberal-Conservatives re-elected in spite of being the most incompetent government in recent memory…

    What’s the reaction of some people?….. Hey, let’s push further to the left, let’s get rid of capitalism and offer a Marxist-Communist agenda…

    Oh dear, I think that I have seen enough….

  8. Dr Tristan Ewins

    The ALP’s problem wasn’t that “it was too Left”. It was that we could not compete with the Conservatives’ Power Resources. For instance Palmer’s money. The policies weren’t adequately explained ; we needed simplified messages as well “to cut through with”. We needed to go on the attack more ; and warn of the prospects of the austerity that would follow from unfair tax cuts for the rich. That said, I can’t see voters ’embracing Communism en masse’. What I can see is people taking a second look at the Marxist tradition and admitting it has important and lasting insights. If socialism can go mainstream in the US (as it is beginning to do) it can do so here as well.

  9. Joseph Carli

    Dr Tristan…If I was an aspirant speculator, I would have to agree with your prognosis…but as a tradesman who, like other crafts-people/ health service people, are an indispensible part of community structure and survival, not necesarilly reliant upon “market responsiveness”, I have to disagree with the conclusive finality of your thesis.

    And I would not be inclined to link self-sufficiency with poverty..sure, again if I was one of the aforementioned aspirants, I would count monetary wealth as a measure of success, but again, as a working person who has been seen and employed as a useful member of any community I have resided, I have never had the need to aquire even a modicum of wealth..time, I consider a greater measure of richness than any level of filthy lucre…and I will say that even to this day, I have my name only on two documents…a driver’s licence and an empty bank account…yet I live and have never lived otherwise in my married life…in knowledge of absolute sensual and sufficient pleasure…

    I have worked for many, many wealthy people and the greater number show a certain silent apologetic discomfort in that they lack those simple skills that could or would allow them to do the job themselves…Though, I once did some building work for Dr Igor Kluvanik, mathematician at Flinders University (now deseased), who was a qualified electrical engineer tradesman..a state requirement when he first studied in the communist state of Checoslovakia…and he did all the welding and eletrical work required…

    The illusion of a capitalist society and of the non-producers that promote such, is that there is no other way to trade but by and with a profit motive….The use of barter is often portrayed as a goofy, hippie, organic affair with doc-Martin boots and flowers in your hair…The German pioneers in SA. were adept at bartering between families, and it was not until the 2nd WW that saw heavy machinery replace horse technology and hire-purchase debt would corrupt the close-knit communities and break up families and communities..I have written on it..:

    The niaeve and goofy philosophy that guides the hand of capital requires a cruel fist…the “no excuses” clause that brings bailiff and poverty to many inter-generational farms is seen by the financier as the driving force behind succesfull implementation of contract details…whereas the reality of the loss of farm to those inept in this new world of capital investment with only a risky return in agriculture..invoked both a sense of failure in the Farmer, who in reality was more adept and useful than the wealthiest financial dilettante on Earth…and invoked a sense too of despair that in some cases drove the head of the family to suicide…that statistical note of progress for capitalism..I wrote on this too, here..:

    So I cannot agree with all your presumptions, Dr Tristan..though I have to admit that you are in step with the mood of our society…a society moving with the precise accuracy and tradjectory of that other great capitalist enterprise…: Rome..
    I wonder what will be final episode… spolier alert please!

    Nb…I wrote my reply based on your first comment..I see that you have “moved” somewhat with your second…please take my comment on that basis.

  10. Joseph Carli

    Alpo…your incisive conclusion is both enlightening and amusing…enlightening in that it demonstrates such deep analysis in one without needing more than a paragraph to explain it, and amusing in that it shows such a facile assessment in one needing much more than a sentence to express it…How do you do it!?

  11. Phil

    Glenn K
    May 29, 2019 at 5:43 pm

    ‘ I wonder how badly it needs to get before the Aussies will take to the streets. Of course, by then the police state will be so built up and fascist that it will be too late…’

    Be patient my man it is early days yet. The real fun has not started. Morrison and the coterie of shrieking Baboons that will be masquerading as a government shortly, have only just been sworn in. Their silver tongues must be quivering in time with their full body orgasmic shudders of pleasure, thinking up new ways to screw over the working class. All those wet dreams they had about privatizing Medicare and the Americanization of the social welfare system, were their wet dreams and will be our collective (Collective that sounds a bit Bolshoi)? nightmare.

    All those Captains of industry and entrepreneurs with a Ute carrying a wheelbarrow and a few shovels in the back, are about to find out what being on the old ‘ King Cole ‘ is all about. A nice Ute with no money to put petrol in the bloody thing. I love it. Yellow vests will be all the rage soon. Trouble is coming and Morrison knows it.

  12. Joseph Carli

    The final fall of Delphi.

    “Tell the king…..
    The fair wrought hall is fallen,
    No more hut, nor prophetic laurel,
    Its waters murmur, sigh and sorrow,
    The spring of eloquence is quenched….”

    Tell the folk :
    Delphi ; the house of Apollo is fallen.
    The Oracle speaks it’s last,
    In stuttering tongue, before dusk,
    And cometh now an age of gilded lust.

    Tell the people :
    The Gods are gone, their whisp’ed scent
    From spring and bough wisdom sent
    Is barren now….rubble strewn,
    Where once was beauty marble hewn.

    Tell them all :
    The temple walls are forlorn and broken!
    The paths of herb and steps awry,
    Beast debased, their perfumes descry!
    Man’s heart’s desire…now a banker’s token.

    Yes!..Go!..tell the Kings of the world:
    Of the thousands who have homaged Delphi,
    Now..only two of us stand on the Sybilline Rock
    ….in the pouring rain….
    Two stand ; the merchant and the poet..
    ….but only one of us is crying.

  13. Kronomex

    Why not have a “anarcho-syndicalist commune” system rather than “democratic communism” system? Both make little sense but the latter would be more interesting.

  14. Joseph Carli

    That’s the problem with introducing serious discussion on this board..when we get mumblers like K above who are better suited to endless wailing on those “bleedin’ obvious” posts lamenting …for the thousanth time…the unfairness and impertinance of that “smelly poo-bum” Morrison…
    Stick to what you know best, Krono’…there is ample in the simplicities of life that is available to you on that point..

    On another point, I see two central demographics being the main essentials for a community to thrive, that while being all -inclusive of a broad range of skills and needs for a community…and they are ; The Artist and the Artisan…..

  15. Kaye Lee

    So you would prefer to discuss “for the thousandth time” how the middle class must be overthrown so tradies can rule the world?

  16. Kaye Lee


    You spend an inordinate amount of time criticising other authors and commenters here. It is annoying. You should be grateful for being afforded a platform to share your views and stop the insults.

  17. Joseph Carli

    ” You should be grateful for being afforded a platform to share your views . . . ” while it is good to be able to share my thoughts and aspirations with those with a willing ear to listen, I am afraid there are also in any gathering…that have their ear more attuned to the faulty line or grammatically incorrect moment…then immediately intrude into the conversation with such banal interruptions…and to them it is but the like of throwing pearls to swine…

  18. Kaye Lee

    You don’t invite discussion Joseph. In fact, you can’t handle it, which is presumably why you resort to personal abuse. Unless your words are accepted as “pearls” by all, you have a hissy fit.

  19. Jon Chesterson

    Groundhog world – The system is steeped in control and corruption bad mouthing and demonising anyone who’d challenge the hidden cloak of absolute privilege and totalitarianism. The worst of it is, socialism not least communism is blamed for the ills of the deeply conflicted and rotting capitalist-feudal system we have. I too am sick of this hypocrisy and condition.

  20. Kronomex

    I really like people making assumptions and value judgements about others based almost purely on comments posted. Well done Joseph. Your very thin skin, apparent lack of humour, childish petulance, and ongoing class obsession is coming to the fore again. Keep up the good work and you should drive others away with your behaviour.


  21. Dr Tristan Ewins

    Isolation is a problem. As a small nation we don’t have economies of scale in all industries. We depend on trade. Autarky would cut us off from innovations. And would cut us off from markets where we don’t have our own technology and economies of scale. This doesn’t mean you give up on socialism. But it does mean you should be wary about ‘socialism in one country’. For me socialism is something built gradually. Just as we rebuild global solidarity gradually. There is no other way. BTW there’s nothing wrong with an emphasis on class and class struggle. But we need to rethink the idea of the proletariat a ‘the universal class’. The working class is a big part of the picture. But today we need an alliance of progressive forces ; including the new social movements. But unfortunately much of the Left has emphasised these while forgetting about class. If mobilised, the working class retains enormous power. And economic exploitation and inequality remain important potential flashpoints.

  22. helviryni

    Glenn K
    May 29, 2019 at 5:43 pm,

    “Perhaps Aussies can take a few lessons from the French. The French understand and embrace the value in protest, they do it frequently and often with a bit of street violence against property…”

    Totally agree with you, Glenn K,I feel that Australians don’t want to show others what side of politics they are, privacy in all matters seems to weigh heavily lot for this nation..
    The Climate Change was supposed to be the most important issue in the latest election, only kids took it to the streets….

    ( In Finland my father, and others, used to show the photo of his chosen candidate in a very prominent place, and he was willing to discuss his choice….)

  23. David Bruce

    Some people think for themselves, others like to be told what to do. Those East of the rabbit proof fence can be told what to do and those to the West can think for themselves. Start the migration in 2020.

    I’m all for a happy life and enjoyed my freedom growing up. Now I look around around and see confused, sad, fearful and angry people.

    We live in a sham democracy now, where the Queen of Australia rules! It only took 50 years to come to pass.

    Is Russia still a communist country?

  24. Phil

    ‘I’m all for a happy life and enjoyed my freedom growing up. Now I look around around and see confused, sad, fearful and angry people.’

    Those people you observe have every right to be fearful, sad and angry. Our democracy has been slowly taken away from us by stealth. The west you wax lyrically about, is a police state and has been for the last sixty years I have lived in it. I know where the old safe houses are in Perth where dissidents had to hide to write books and discuss politics that didn’t fit in with the politics of the squattocracy. Who btw still run Western Australia.

    Many Russians long for the days of the communist state. It is now run by an Oligarchy of gangsters that would make ‘ Murder Incorporated ‘ blush with envy.

  25. Glenn K

    I might add another comment about the French, having moved here two years ago, after living in Australia for 30 years. The French are generally politically aware and engaged. Across all sections of society, and people talk about politics and about policy/outcomes. I am impressed with the high level of analysis and discussion on TV as well. The President regularly gives a speech to the nation on TV; discussing policy, strategy, outcomes. Politics and political engagement are important elements of the French psyche. One only needs to look at the fact there are over 35,000 mayors in France, and it is the local mayors office where most people’s engagement with the political apparatus begins.
    It’s refreshing.
    One must never forget they did cut the King’s head off! Oh, and the origins of the “left’ and the “right” in politics dates back to the French Assembly after they deposed the King (his head stayed on for a couple of years after he was dethroned), the two main power groups in that Assembly and where they were sitting….

  26. helvityni

    Glenn K, my daughter spent her cap year travelling in Europe. When meeting young French students she was surprised by how politically aware they were, and she admitted being ashamed of her ignorance….

    Having a good time was important in Oz, and showing your interest in politics was seen as being too heavy, too serious….

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