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Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Hogan's moral rights swept aside

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The successful prosecution of the Australian film icon Paul Hogan and partner 'Strop' Cornell highlights the dismal state of justice in the world. From the facts presented in the media it appears that Hogan was prosecuted on the basis of tax evasion. Hogan maintains that he did not know the basis of his tax affairs because he did not personally deal with them. i.e. He had a plethora of accountants, etc.
As far as I am concerned I do not expect honest responses from 'tax evaders' on such matters. When the arbitrary force of government intends to impose unreasonable burdens upon you, I think you have no other way to respond than with lies. Fear is the proper response when reason is not the standard of value. If the mob come to your door to kill your daughter, you do not respond 'Third door on the right'. You tell then anything to get rid of them.
So what is the standard of value? Well it is of course its a pretense....based on the premise of the 'common good'. The common good has however been defined by the parliament, and we all know what credible advocates of morality they are. Politicians do not lie to protect values they have 'earned' (unlike Hogan), but in order to evade responsibility and accountability. I am quite certain no politician has earned the right to extort wealth from Australians. The political system is a game we always lose because it comprises two 'non-combatants'. i.e. Liberal-NP and Labor. Not long after federation the two parliament coalesced into two parties. Contrary to the policy rhetoric, where they espouse a belief in competition, these two parties are intent on destroying all prospects for competition where it suits them. i.e. Even poor prospects like Pauline Hanson. You might ask why politicians, who are supposed to be 'moral agents', can justify such actions. The reason is simply they are not what they are supposed to be. Why would you accept the system? Even if you concede we need government? Why would you not stand in defense of those wronged by 'the system'? Why would you legitimatise that system. I don't. I don't vote, and I will continue to challenge the legitimacy of this system. The government publishes the number of registered votes who do not vote despite it 'being compulsory to voluntarily select between two non-combatants'. That's right, you are forced to make a choice. i.e. You are forced to give legitimacy to a system which is illegitimate. Why? To preserve the status quo, to preserve the entrenched interests of the two political parties. It does not publish the number of people who are not registered. Don't legitimatise the system. A better vote is non-participation. Better still would be to actually empathise with true victims of injustice (in accordance to some objective standard), as opposed to pretenses.
I think the problem with Paul Hogan's case is that he argued that he did not know what was happening, when in fact he should have repudiated the moral foundation of the political system. In fairness to him, the judiciary is as much a creature of pretense as any other government institution. It was perhaps a big ask for an actor & producer to identify the true nature of our political system, and he has so much more to lose financially, but you would think legal counsel ought to be able to provide such advice. Perhaps moral conviction would be stronger if more in the public displayed some. It starts with a question for the tax office:

"By what moral right do you purport to expropriate the earned wealth of others".
I have yet to hear any rational defense to this question. The 'betterment of society', the 'common good' or the 'good of society' are of course the standard answers. For logicians however, this response is not very compelling. What constitutes the common good?

When we adopt the 'common good' as a standard of value, we become a nation of perpetrators and victims. We hate those who have money, and we lust after with a sense of entitlement for that which we did not earn. In the process we ignore the reasons why some fail and some succeed, and console ourselves that a bad system has preserved 'stability' at the sake of a few, but in the process we have denied ourselves something much greater - the opportunity to achieve greatness. We have also disparaged those who have succeeded in deference to our own self-indulgence. Ask yourself if individualism or fascism is advanced by such a system.

The tax office of course comprises a group of parasites who will never amount to anything - not even their parents estimates. They are the unthinking 'plodders' who depend upon the wealth and productivity of others. They are not just middlemen - but middlemen who create nothing, add nothing. We cannot even attribute an efficiency to them because the loopholes in their systems have made the tax system more complex than it need be...except it needs to be. An arbitrary tax demands an arbitrary justification, which compels people to find loopholes, which demands counter-loopholes. So you need 5 specialised accountants rather than your own common sense. This is the 'efficiency' that the tax office has extorted upon the population. It happens because they have this 'arbitrary power'.
That is not the extent of the implausibility of the 'common good' concept. In these pages I develop additional arguments for why the current political system is a variant of fascism.
Andrew Sheldon
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