Tuesday, 7 April 2009 7:56 AM

Guts is What it Will Take

It is possible you will never meet in your lifetime a palangi [in Polynesia] or a dim dim in Papua New Guinea [a white man] who sings the same tune as the local people do when it comes to landownership.

You will now in Kelvyn Alp, a self-made New Zealand businessman, who has established the first alluvial gold mining business in Solomon Islands. Mr. Alp is Managing Director of New Zealand-based CARATAPA Group of Companies.

Pheonix International [SI] Ltd, one of the concerns in his stable, is operating on a 50sq km concession at Sutakama along the Balasuna River east of Honiara, the Solomon Islands' capital.

Mr. Alp has chosen alluvial gold mining operations, because in his words, "it requires little or no use of environmentally-destructive chemicals that conventional mining operations do".

It's not so much his multi-million dollar alluvial gold mining business that caught my inquisitive eye, although his approach is gaining approval and acceptance amongst landowners nationwide.

Among other things, he has made it clear to the locals that he and landowning tribes will have equal share in the profits. This is in stark contrast to methods multinational mining corporations use the world over.

Giant mining corporations, for example always get the lion share of the profits, leaving behind landowners as paupers and untold damage to the environment and its biodiversity, including river systems.

Mr. Alp is now eyeing other Pacific island nations including Fiji to market his business model.

For me, a document Mr. Alp has produced attracted me more than anything else.

Copies of the Solomon Islands Economic Reform - Monetary System and Taxation - were given to members of the ruling Coalition for National Unity and Rural Advancement [CNURA] government last November. Other Members of Parliament have also been given copies.

The Alp document was prepared as a discussion paper for Members of Solomon Islands Parliament.

But unlike similar documents produced in the past which tells successive government what it wants to hear, Solomon Islands Economic Reform - Monetary System and Taxation is not. It is more than just a compilation of banking data and practices.

This simple, easy-to-follow-and-understand document is a bigger picture and a road map to what Solomon Islands can be if it so chooses.

The direction it charts departs from the norms of officialdom, telling government what it and its officials do not want to hear.

In the main, if a nation like Solomon Islands is to be truly free of its ever-increasing debts burden, the Government has to take a number of simple but decisive steps which are outlined in the document.

For example, the axe must fall on its Central Bank, the Treasury Department and so on.

"The only way to correctly apply a Monetary System that is sustainable and not subject to systematic flaws and dangers is to adopt the following points," he said.

. Repeal the legislation that created the Central Bank of Solomon Islands;

. Bring the Central Banking system under the control of Treasury [the Government's public purse]; there should be no international trade of the nation's currency to avoid deliberate exploitation through devaluation and manipulation. This will ensure the Solomon Islands remains with Solomon Islanders, without the fear of the monetary system being used as a weapon to dispossess the people of their land, assets and wealth;

. Make loans to businesses and individuals at a certain rate of interest, however, create that interest component at the time of the loan and spend that into the economy - the amount of money owed will be equivalent to the money lent and therefore you create a stable economy;

. Protect all of the country's industries from low cost competition where foreign workers are exploited due to their economic circumstances;

. To prevent an over-supply of money in circulation and therefore creating a Government fund to serve as a stimulant in times of need, apply a transaction tax on the money itself, not on the people;

. Completely rid the country of the Inland Revenue Department as it will no longer be required due to the implementation of the transaction tax. Taxation as applied in the Solomon Islands was born from archaic ideology and serves no positive purpose except to allow continued control over the nation by the private bankers;

. Government must control the following industries that are the lifeblood of any economy, as everything, regardless of what business one undertakes, ALL will rely on one or more of these:

Finance
Power generation
Telecommunications
Transportation
Water Supply

"There is absolutely no need for a government to be subject to the will of others for private gain," Alp said.

In his view, the information he has painstakingly assembled in the document, Solomon Islands Economic Reform - Monetary System and Taxation - is the only way out from the system imposed on us.

"The information contained within this document if applied, will ensure that the Solomon Islands Government if it so chooses, can free its people from irredeemable debt and therefore a future of inter-generational servitude," the New Zealand self-made businessman said.

The document also tells its readers that government and banks are actually in bed together in what amounts to a conspiracy to defraud the masses.

The document also gives details, for example, of how commercial banks are technically insolvent and yet are allowed by law in just about every country to continue to trade.

The authorisation to do so comes from the governments.

But why target the Central Bank? I asked.

"Governments, not just in Solomon Islands, are at the mercy of their Central Banks. Many policies and other reforms are directed at the behest of that bank."

Through its central banks everywhere, governments have allowed the authorisation for commercial banks to make money by creating debts. What many borrowers don't know is the fact that they are the creator of the funds they borrow, not the banks. It is your signature or "promise to pay" that allows your debt to become a credit on the banks books, according to Alp.

"Government makes money in two main ways, through borrowings (which incurs a bigger debt than what was borrowed) and through commercial/retail banks having to purchase the actual notes and coins at face value.

"Taxes that you and I pay, is used predominately to repay the loans that the Government has borrowed. It does not go into hospitals, schools and infrastructure," he said.

"The Inland Revenue is a created entity set up for the purpose of ensuring the people pay for the careless borrowings of Government - the problem being, that even if the people were taxed at a 100% rate, they could still never pay off the irredeemable debt burden placed upon them in the long term, by those responsible for their welfare, because of the interest (usury) component of those loans," it said.

In the Solomon Islands Economic Reform - Monetary System and Taxation - Kelvyn Alp also gave insights into how money created as debts, works.

"We don't distinguish between the money in circulation as notes and coins (issued by the government) and hundreds of millions in the form of loan accounts, overdrafts etc. (created by banks etc,)," he said.

"$100 cash in your wallet is treated no differently from $100 in your current account, or an overdraft facility allowing you to spend $100. You can still buy goods with it.

"In 1948 Britain, for example, had $1.1 billion of notes and coins and $1.2 billion of loans etc created by banks - by 1963 it had ballooned to $3 billion in cash and $14 billion bank created loans etc.

"The government has simply issued more notes and coins over the years to cover inflation, but today's $680 billion of bank created loans etc. represents an enormous increase, even allowing for inflation," Mr. Alp said.

Why target Solomon Islands? I asked Mr. Alp out of curiosity.

"Solomon Islands remains largely intact. Some 95 per cent of its land is owned by tribal groups. This is a good thing because he believes no land should be vested in the crown [government]," Mr. Alp said.

He said in Solomon Islands land is next to foreign exchange in terms of earning power.

"You have all the minerals and a rich fisheries," he said.

These, according to Mr. Alp, should be harvested in the most sustainable manner in a partnership with the landowners," he said.

You don't envisaged reprisals as in the case of Zimbabwe? I put it to him.

Zimbabwe, Mr. Alp said, has never controlled its own currency. What they are doing to the rural white farmers is basically of cutting their nose to spite their face," he said.

"What sh....s me about Solomon Islands is that its government and people are fighting for the scraps that fall off the table of the international community.

"We should all be eating at the same table in the banquet. And Solomon Islands has more than enough to feed its people," he said.

"It's easy to fix it," Mr. Alp said.

Mr. Alp also believed that every country should be sovereign unto itself rather than be subject to the whims of other countries.

"Here, you have expensive advisers telling government how to screw things up. What many people here don't realise is that they come from countries they've already screwed up".

Most, he said, are Trojan horses. They'll tell you: "How dare you want to stand in the way of our plan to rule you?".

So what's the answer?

Changes to the status quo, he said, can be done in less time than many realized.

Mr. Alp said he and his team are ready to initiate and bring about the change within six months for free - in stark contrast to the expensive so-called "experts" that have been for a long time "advising" the Government on how to get it wrong.

However it is done, a system so entrenched will require GUTS (Genuine Urge To Succeed).

Because as the Toltec Motto says:

""Truth is more important than public belief, and any man who feels the need to adjust his knowledge so as to receive public approval is a man unworthy of trust".

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