Julia's backflip on climate

First of many?

Looking back through the ACM archives, I was reminded of the speech by Julia Gillard after the defeat of the ETS in December last year, where she used the phrase “national interest” no less than sixteen times:

We are doing this to give the Liberal Party one chance to work through and deal with this legislation in the national interest. We all know the Liberal Party is deeply divided on this question and there have been many Liberal voices prepared to speak up for the national interest and to speak in favour of our plan to tackle climate change.

We believe that over the Christmas period there is time for the calmer heads in the Liberal Party to consider this question: to consider acting in the national interest and to join with the Government on the first sitting day when Parliament resumes to take decisive steps to deal with climate change.

We will bring this Bill back into the Parliament because it’s the right thing to do in the national interest. We are determined to see this legislation pass the Parliament.We know that there are Liberals who are prepared to support this legislation. We know supporting this legislation was the position of the Liberal Party only a few short days ago.

We call on those in the Liberal Party over the summer period who believe in taking responsible action on climate change to consider their position, to consider the position of their Party and to come back to the Parliament next year ready to take action on climate change. (source link dead)

Paul Sheehan in The Sydney Morning Herald summarised it well:

When Julia Gillard faced the media outside Federal Parliament in Canberra on Wednesday she looked shell-shocked. She then proceeded to give the most jittery, hollow, nonsensical performance of her career. It was pantomime of the lowest order.

Today the climate change extremists and deniers in the Liberal Party have stopped this nation from taking decisive action on climate change,” the Deputy Prime Minister said, deadpan, into a thicket of cameras and recorders.

Extremists and deniers. In case anyone had missed the point, she repeated the phrase five times. ”Now [we] have been stopped by the Liberal Party extremists and the climate change deniers. This nation has been stopped from taking a major step in the nation’s interests by Liberal Party extremists and climate change deniers.”

This is clearly going to be the mantra the Rudd Government uses to describe anyone who opposes its pointless legislation on an emissions trading scheme.

Gillard used the terms ”denier” or ”denial” 11 times, pointed words because they carry the connotation of Holocaust denial. The last time that tactic was used in the national debate, after the release of the Bringing Them Home report, it exploded on those who used it.

So this is going to get interesting because the political ground has shifted in the past six months. It is now the Rudd Government that appears to be in a state of denial. (source)

And now she is waiting for community consensus? Sounds like a Rudd-style backflip to me.


  1. […] Australia has a new prime minister, who is desperately trying to throw her prior support for the ETS into the memory hole. […]

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