Humanist, all too Humanist

Huh I says. Huh. The NSW Humanist Society — one of whose patrons, the ABC broadcaster Robyn Williams, gave an amusing address at the Global Atheist Convention in March, and whose former Vice President, Rosemary “Waratah” Gillespie, died recently — is the subject of a hostile takeover. The takeover is the subject of a newspaper article, the first to discuss the issue since fascist groups meeting at the Society’s offices in Chippendale were the subject of protests in October and November 2009 (protests which have themselves been the subject of debate in the anarchist zine Mutiny)…

“Of course one ought to express pity, but one ought to guard against having it; for unfortunate people are so stupid that they count the expression of pity as the greatest good on earth.”

Ageing idealists begin to see vultures
Andrew Stevenson
The Sydney Morning Herald
June 26, 2010

A humanist body believes it is under threat from opportunists, writes Andrew Stevenson.

WHAT do the Henry George Foundation, the Blavatsky Lodge of the Theosophical Society, the British-Israel World Federation and NSW Humanist Society have in common? Ageing memberships, open doors and very, very valuable assets.

The Georgists are still trying to remake the world according to the model described by a 19th century economist; the Theosophists aim to ”form a nucleus of the Universal Brotherhood of Humanity without distinction of race, creed, sex, caste or colour”; the British-Israelites reckon Anglo-Saxon-Celtic people are the true descendants of the Israelites of the Holy Bible; and the Humanists battle to present an ethical, secular approach to life based on compassion and tolerance.

But the NSW Humanist Society, according to one member, is actually battling for its very existence, having been ”infiltrated by racist groups”.

It started with Humanist House, a small but valuable property in Chippendale, just off Broadway, which the society hires out to a plethora of activist groups for public meetings.

For years one customer was the Public Information Forum – which has recently been turfed out [for the second time, apparently] and accused of links with the Ku Klux Klan and other racist outfits.

But it retains a foot in the door. One of its members, Mark Pavic, is now a Humanist vice-president. At least ”until they execute me”, he says.

Humanist Fred Flatow accuses the PIF of seeking control of Humanist House in order to ”sell it or put it to uses most of us would be alarmed by”.

”The infiltrators are very disciplined and vote as a bloc; they are playing for keeps,” Mr Flatow writes to members. ”They are not amenable to persuasion to desist. They have to be voted out!”

Mr Pavic concedes a few things. The PIF does contain fringe left and right-wingers, he says, and, while emphatic that he is no Nazi (”I have Jewish friends; I even had a Jewish girlfriend”), he does acknowledge some in the PIF have been ”metaphorical swastika armband wearers”.

”They [the Humanists] found a couple of PIF people who are dabblers in pretend-Nazism so they branded us all as fascists,” said Mr Pavic, 51.

Nazism is not the only dirt being dished.

Also raised is Mr Pavic’s conviction for the manslaughter of his mother in 1985.

At the trial he confessed to tying bricks to his mother Danijela’s body and tossing her into Lake Burley Griffin after she died suddenly during an argument.

”They can bring it up; it’s not relevant,” Mr Pavic says now.

In fact Mr Pavic – who insists he is a humanist – says the controlling group, headed by the society’s president, John August, is actually the real enemy as its members are beholden to the Secular Party, who themselves have taken over the society.

The NSW Humanists have an ageing and declining membership and so little money they have considered obtaining a reverse mortgage to stay afloat. But they do have Humanist House, worth well in excess of $1 million.

Ripe pickings for a takeover. ”There’s a lot of this going on,” Mr Pavic says. ”They have declining memberships and they have real estate they bought many years ago which is extremely valuable. There are people who join committees with an eye on the money.”

It has even happened a couple of times when Mr Pavic has been around. Two organisations, the Henry George and British-Israel foundations, found themselves mired in long and costly court action with Mr Pavic [peripherally] involved, although he [insists] he has always been a campaigner for the defence.

The Humanists, distracted from their true business, are optimistic they will ”weather the storm”, John August writes. ”It is a case of battening down the hatches … nevertheless, it is an object lesson of what can happen to an incorporated association when it is infiltrated by an outside group.”

Note that, in a strange twist of fate, the Secular Party of Australia has been registered with the AEC at the same moment as the Australia First Party. The leader of AF, Dr James Saleam — who certainly has own convictions — has commented on The Curious Case of the British-Israel World Federation (Patron: The Rt Hon The Viscount Allenby of Megiddo) in his tract ‘The Liberal Party’s ‘Nutzi Connection’ Revealed As The British-Israel World Federation $500,000 Takeover Plot Takes New Directions’. In typically deathless prose, Herr Doktor claims, inter alia, that a law-talking guy named John Boyle “travelled to meetings (Humanist House ‘Open Forum’ and the ‘Conservative Speakers’ Club’) with neo-nazi Mark Pavic, a man who served a prison sentence over the killing of his mother and the disposal of her body in Lake Burley Griffin, way back in 1985”.

[home.alphalink.com.au/~radnat/kangarooreich/partten.html]

Another ‘humanist’ to be elected to the NSW committee of management is Ken Cratchley. Cratchley is — or was — a member of the Christian Separatist Church Society (whose beliefs are not that removed from those of the British-Israelites), and the author of the timeless classic ‘Can a Non-National Socialist be a True Christian?’, and — notwithstanding the Vatican’s ratlines — come to the rather startling conclusion that “National Socialism is the political expression of true Christianity”.

If correct, then there’s surely no reason to doubt that National Socialism is the religious expression of true Humanism amirite?

See also : John August ~versus~ slackbastard (March 19, 2010) | NSW Humanist Society 1 ‘Public Information Forum’ 0 (January 17th, 2010) | Fascist infiltration of the ‘Humanist Society of New South Wales’ (Inc.) (November 25, 2009) | Klub Naziya / Klub Nation / Public Information Forum / Jason Rafty… (November 15, 2009) | Is neo-Nazism humanist? (October 14, 2009) | Neo-Nazism ~versus~ humanism (November 4, 2009) | Klub Naziya in Chippendale (November 7, 2009).

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  1. Yeah, and John August thinks mention of a decades-old conviction for mudder murder is over-the-top & ‘shooting from the hip.’ If The HS loses their assets to infiltration, they can thank August for it.

  2. A few things.

    There’s little info online about Pavic. But if you Google his name, Saleam’s diatribe is one of the first hits. Herr Doktor accuses Pavic of both matricide and neo-Nazism; Stevenson claims that Pavic confessed that “she died suddenly during an argument”, in other words, not at his hands. Otherwise, in addition to the above, Pavic’s name appears in connection to a Georgist group (ie, ‘geonomics’), and inre some kinda financial scandal (tho’ it’s not clear if this is the same ‘Mark Pavic’, or a ‘Mark Pavic’ from the UK).

    According to the Jan–Mar 2008 issue of Humanist Viewpoints (Vol.47, No.1):

    Following the last Annual General Meeting, the newly elected Committee appointed a Constitutional Sub-committee to examine ways the constitution could be improved. Members of the Sub-committee include Affie Adagio, Victor Bien, John August, Mark Pavic, David Duffy, and myself. Our recommendations will go to a full committee meeting in January and be posted to paid-up members of the NSW Humanist Society for consideration at the February meeting. A whole range of issues will be up for consideration, from the membership form to inserting objective criteria where this appears to be necessary. If you have any comments or suggestions, please feel free to contact me. Best wishes for the festive season Waratah, Convenor, Constitution (Rules) Sub-committee.

    This year’s AGM is scheduled for August 8, and sounds like it’ll be quite heated…

  3. Australian Humanist, No.98, Winter 2010:

    OUR SOCIETY has been in turmoil for some time. Along with several other committee members, I believe that we have been the subject of an attempted takeover by a racist group. This group goes by the name of ‘Public Information Forum’ or also ‘Klub Nation’.

    We believe this group has racist associations through the fact that past meetings have been posted on the ‘Stormfront’ website, a website that was founded by at least one US member of the Ku Klux Klan and has explicit anti-Semitic statements in its introduction, and is […] generally acknowledged as a forum for ‘ultra nationalist’, racist groups. At least four of this group have published racist or homophobic slurs on Stormfront, which is clearly against our constitution.

    Further, a member of the group has made comments which are recognisably his voice, commenting on the Christian Separatist movement as a part of National Socialist Movement Radio Free Australia’s program ‘Australia Calling’ on the 22 January 2007.

    The presence of this group caused some committee members concern for several years. These concerns were expressed but (for the last few years) did not develop into committee resolutions.

    Since then, Klub Nation’s meetings at Humanist House attracted protests. These protests had elements of violence and were not preceded by any attempt by the protesters to ascertain the true state of affairs within the NSW Humanists or otherwise communicate. They made a difficult committee situation even worse. In any case, the protests attracted the scrutiny of progressives in Sydney and devalued the reputation of the NSW Humanists. Rather than acknowledging this damage, the PIF group went on the offensive, trying to claim that committee members were associated with the protests. The fact such groups were meeting at Humanist House had been known for some time by progressive groups in Sydney, and there was no need for any such connection. Certainly, Redfern Police were satisfied with my explanation.

    I have made statements about this on the Sydney Indymedia website, a site which allows public comment. If there was a misunderstanding of what the group was in fact about, they had a right of reply on this website, and could have made their own public clarification to repair the damage to our reputation. Instead, the only comments [we’ve] heard have been made at meetings and in private discussion, avoiding acknowledgement of the damage to our reputation and trying to divert attention elsewhere, with nothing of substance which could be held up in public. I did in the past invite them to respond to the media scrutiny directly, something they failed to do.

    We had a recent election, held in our Feb SGM, which resulted in a member, Mark Pavic, whom the majority of the voting members clearly did not want as vice-president becoming elected as such. It was the result of the fact that the two vice-presidential positions were being voted for together, so that each had a quota, meaning a vice-president could be elected with less than 50% of the vote – while the majority would have disagreed with the result. In spite of the difficulties, we are recognising the outcome. It means there is now a committee majority with a connection to the historical ideals of Humanism and a shared concern about the influence of this group on the Society.

    I am optimistic we will weather the storm. It is a case of battening down the hatches.

    The whole episode has distracted us all away from the business of Humanism. Nevertheless, it is an object lesson of what can happen to an incorporated association when it is infiltrated by an outside group. It does happen – that’s something we are starting to understand all too clearly. We have become recently aware of a Klub Nation group meeting in Melbourne – I urge other state societies to review their vetting procedures of new members.

    John August, HSNSW President

  4. Holy shit, anon. That is an amazing read.

    I believe that the most probable cause in the circumstances is some action of the carotid sinus reflex stopping the heart … Stimulated by some external mechanical agent … I regard that as being far more probable than a sudden, unexplained death with no post mortem consequences.

    and

    Well, the whole reflex depends upon some stimulation,
    whether it is physiological or physical. You do not get a reflex without having some stimulant.

    If he killed his mum over a fucking coffee business, imagine the strength of motivation over prime real estate. Again. Seriously, this dude needs to get over his obsession with property. Then again, he has no mums left to kill, er, manslaughter, amiright?

  5. To allegedly cause the death of someone then deliberately attempt to conceal the act and to dispose of the body in such a way as to prevent it being discovered…I think this says everything.

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