How stupid do Gillard and Combet think we are?

Gruesome threesome

Terry McCrann on the increasingly nonsensical propaganda for the carbon tax:

Just how stupid does the prime minister and her climate minister think you are? Pretty damn stupid has to be the answer.

There they both were yesterday, saying we want to hit you with a $10 billion tax, to pretty quickly grow to a $20 billion or $30 billion one. And we promise to give you back half of it.

They actually think this is the trump card! Climate Change Minister Combet: “I can assure you … that more than 50 per cent of the carbon price revenue will be used to assist households.”

While earlier in the day, the prime minister herself even more emphatically: “I can guarantee that more than 50 per cent … of the revenue raised will go to assisting households.”

She then managed to say with a straight face: “That means millions of Australian households will be better off under a carbon price.”

How persuasive can you get? We hand over $10 billion, they give us $5 billion back. And it just gets “better” as the tax rises. We hand over $20 billion, they give us back $10 billion. We hand over $40 billion, they give us back $20 billion.

So this is what Ms Gillard means when she claims that people will be “better off”. Just focus on the $5 billion or $10 billion or more that you are “getting back”.

You don’t need to worry about the $10 billion or $20 billion or more flowing to Canberra, because as Gillard and Combet keep claiming, you won’t be paying it.

No, only the big so-called polluters will be paying the tax. Believe that and I have an opera house to throw in with the bridge I’ve got to sell you.

Read it all.

Combet's "national interest" lie

National interest my a***

At the Press Club this lunchtime, Greg Combet stated, without any hint of irony, that the government was “acting in the national interest” by putting a price on carbon. He’s not the first. Gillard and Wong banged on and on about it in the Rudd era, but it’s such a shocking lie that it needs revisiting.

So Greg, it’s a very simple question:

Please would you explain how putting a unilateral price on carbon [dioxide], which it is agreed will do nothing for the climate whether globally or locally, but will do significant damage our economy relative to our competitors, increase prices for every product and service in Australia, and require a massive bureaucracy to administer the redistribution of wealth from the rich to the poor, be “in the national interest”?

There isn’t any point in asking this question to his face of course, because any response will be so wrapped up in spin, misrepresentation and pre-rehearsed sound-bites that it will be barely comprehensible.

If anyone can provide an explanation as to how this can possibly be in the national interest, please let me know. I’m dying to hear.

A tax to make you richer!

Greg's carbon tax fudges kept crashing Excel…

It’s a miracle! If you’re a “low or middle income” earner, you’ll be better off under a carbon tax, says Greg Combet. It’s just the gift that keeps on giving!

Such is the laughable level to which the government’s rhetoric has sunk, Combet is depserately trying to bribe a section of the Australian population into supporting it. And of course, it’s the rest of us that will be hit hardest. Sounds like a simple redistribution of wealth to me. Take from the rich and give back to the poor – it’s that ‘S-word’ again, isn’t it?

But why do families need compensation anyway? I thought the government told us that the tax would only “hit big polluters” and that they wouldn’t even think of passing on costs to consumers.

And quite how this ties in with changing people’s behaviour to reduce emissions is yet to be announced. If the poorest are compensated, then they are unlikely to consume less energy, and the well-off will just pay more for it.  Gee, Greg, you’ve really worked this through!

THE Federal Government has promised that millions of low and middle income families will be better off financially under its plans for a carbon tax.

More than half the funds raised by the Gillard government’s carbon tax will be used to pay for permanent tax cuts and pension hikes under a plan to be outlined on Wednesday.

In a bid to turn around widespread concern that the tax will hit family budgets, Climate Change Minister Greg Combet pledged that more than two million households will be better off under the related tax and welfare changes.

Compensation for families will be in place permanently, even after the carbon tax is replaced by an emissions trading scheme in three to five years, Mr Combet said.

The pledge comes as Treasury models revealed average family bills could jump $860 a year based on a $30 a tonne carbon tax.

The Government plan has not been signed off on by the multi-party climate change committee including the Greens and independent MPs Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor.

Mr Combet will use a National Press Club speech in Canberra on Wednesday to outline the Government’s plans to win over voters. In an excerpt from his speech, Mr Combet vowed “we will put households first”.

“There will be generous assistance for households to meet costs that may be passed on by the companies that are paying for their pollution,” he said. (source)

Oh, so companies may pass on their costs to consumers now, will they? It’s a different line every week.

From the archives: the 1996 Parliament House Riot

What is it with the Left and violence? Listening the Gillard, Combet, Brown and their ilk over the past day or so, you would think that the carbon tax protesters, mainly honest, hardworking Australians angry at the contempt shown to them by the Labor government, were a bunch of dangerous, radical extremists. And that is precisely what you are supposed to think. The Labor/Green smear machine works very well, with the help of the compliant ABC and Fairfax, spreading innuendo and bile to discredit anyone who dares criticise a Labor policy. But again, people have very short memories.

The 1996 Parliament House riot was flagged by a commenter, and a little research shows that the union thugs were a far uglier bunch than anything the carbon tax protesters could compete with (from Wikipedia) – and just look whose name crops up:

The Australian Council of Trade Unions called the “cavalcade to Canberra” rally to protest against the industrial relations reform agenda of the LiberalNational Coalition Howard Government. The protest began with senior Australian Trade Union officials including ACTU President Jennie George and Assistant Secretary Greg Combet, as well as senior members of the Australian Labor Party.The initially peaceful protest deteriorated into violent action when a new group or demonstrators arrived in the early afternoon and attacked the entrance to Parliament. Around 90 personnel were injured —including lacerations, sprains, and head and eye injuries. Damage to the forecourt and foyer of Parliament was initially estimated at $75,000 and the Parliamentary shop was looted. Nine rioters were arrested and charged with a variety of offences. (source)

Read also the graphic description of the violence:

[T]his group refused to accept police direction, forced a breach in police lines and ran towards the main front entrance of Parliament House. Unfortunately, it was apparent that some of these demonstrators were affected by alcohol. This group was supported by participants from the more general demonstration who were incited to join those involved in riotous conduct by a speaker from the official platform.

Police formed a protective line along the perimeter of the Great Verandah which was subsequently forced back to the main doors. The police line was withdrawn from this area due to the level of violence being experienced by officers and was redeployed to an area inside the front doors in support of parliamentary security personnel. This deployment stabilised the situation for a short period. However, demonstrators using increasing force broke through the first line of doors.

Once inside this area, demonstrators used weapons, including a large hammer, a wheel brace, a steel trolley and a stanchion torn from the external doors to break open the internal doors. Simultaneously, a second group of demonstrators used other weapons to break into the Parliament House shop, but were held at the internal doors. The shop was ransacked by demonstrators and major damage was caused by persons who subsequently occupied the area. After some two hours, the demonstrators were finally repelled from Parliament House and driven back onto the forecourt area and, shortly afterwards, they dispersed.

In addition to the events which took place at the front entrance to the building, incidents also occurred on the Members Terrace, the roof of the Great Verandah and the Queens Terrace. There were 197 Australian Federal Police on duty at the start of the demonstration, in addition to the Australian Protective Service officers and parliamentary security personnel. A further 60 Australian Federal Police reinforcements were called out under established contingency plans.

Michael Smith of 2UE has footage of the news reports, which I have uploaded to YouTube for a wider audience. Just look at the disgraceful scenes shown here, and compare with the politeness and respect (barring a few inappropriate placards) on show at the Carbon Tax rally (and we also get to see Combet and Bob Brown plying their trade):


Just one word from this: hypocrisy.

Left smears carbon tax protesters as "extremists"

Hey Bob, where's your apology for this? (photo via Bolt)

A favourite trick of the Left – brand your opponents as “extremists” and then you can avoid actually engaging with their arguments. Thousands of ordinary Australians protested in Canberra yesterday, angry at being lied to by Julia Gillard before the election about her policy for a carbon tax. But the Left’s smear machine is in full swing this morning, rubbishing the genuine concerns of ordinary people:

Labor backbencher Nick Champion says the protesters are extremists.

NICK CHAMPION: A rally that has all the credibility of a Dungeons and Dragons convention – full of fantasists, full of people who think we can just avoid this problem – and we can’t.

It’s a serious problem. The world has to deal with it and Australia has to do our part.

REPORTER: Does that mean you think that they’re extremists, the people at this rally?


SABRA LANE: Labor MP, Michelle Rowland:

MICHELLE ROWLAND: Some of these people, you objectively analyse their positions and they are extreme. They are extreme. (source)

She said it twice just in case you didn’t get it the first time. Greg Combet also used the word “extremists”:

Climate Change Minister Greg Combet said some people in the rally crowd were extremists.

“We had the Lavoisier group – a group which, as one commentator points out, warned the Kyoto protocol was part of a new imperial structure that would relocate Australian sovereignty to Germany,” he said. (source)

WTF? And one Labor MP has gone even further:

FEDERAL MP for Bendigo Steve Gibbons has been caught on social media website twitter comparing anti-carbon tax protesters to the notorious Ku Klux Klan.

But Mr Gibbons has defended the tweet, saying one of three anti-carbon tax rallies yesterday had been infiltrated by right-wing groups with a racist agenda.

Bendigo man Tony Hooper, a key organiser in Victoria of the No Carbon Tax Protest Group, says he is absolutely disgusted at the comments and will demand an apology.

In his tweet on the pro-carbon tax “noCTrally” Twitter feed, Mr Gibbons said: “Looks like all the extremists were having a day out. Was the Ku Klux Klan represented?”. (source)

Bob Brown even went as far as to write to Julia Gillard, apologising to her for some of the signs, which admittedly went too far: the words “bitch” and “witch” were undignified. However, when did Brown ever write to Howard about some of the disgusting treatment he received from the thugs on the Left? Never, because it’s OK when the target is from the Right of politics.

So now it's a "pollution tax"?

More spin than a launderette

Greg Combet coins another lie this morning to deceive the Australian public, naming the “carbon dioxide tax” a “pollution tax”. We’ll come on to that in a minute, as Combet spins yet another yarn in The Daily Telegraph today, full once again of misrepresentations and half-truths, in a desperate attempt to justify a pointless “tax on everything”.

Once again he refers to Tony Abbott’s questioning of the policy as a “full-blown scare campaign”, but cannot actually answer the simple questions people have about a carbon tax. He goes on to describe the potential effects of climate change (as told to him by his alarmist advisers), which I guess he doesn’t believe is a scare campaign…

Australia, as a very hot and dry continent, has a lot to lose from the effects of climate change. Our industries in the areas of agriculture, resources and tourism will all suffer from these impacts. Also as most of our population lives on the coast we can expect severe social and economic impacts if predicted sea level rises occur.

The most recent [alarmist – Ed] science indicates that the potential effects of climate change are only getting worse, and the chance of them happening is much more certain.

Economic studies show that the effects will also affect our economy which means less economic growth and fewer jobs.

As opposed to a carbon tax which will mean even less economic growth and even fewer jobs… And I am getting really bored of asking this, Greg, but what will a unilateral carbon tax in Australia do to mitigate any of these things? NOTHING AT ALL.

So let’s move on to the big one, the “pollution tax”:

The Government has now announced a pricing framework that allows us to engage with the community on the detailed design, and provides business with certainty so they can begin to plan.

That framework has a carbon price that will effectively operate as a pollution tax before moving to an emissions trading scheme.

The reality is that this tax has nothing to do with pollution at all. The harmless trace gas carbon dioxide, even at many multiples of the current level of about 390 parts per million, cannot possibly be regarded as “pollution”. It’s toxicity only becomes apparent at 10,000 ppm (or 1% of the atmosphere), which is more than 25 times the current levels. But by using the word “pollution”, Greg obfuscates and confuses the issue in people’s minds, so they are not sure what he is referring to, and the immediate reaction would be “Pollution = bad, we should do something about it.”

This lie is compounded further:

The environmental benefits of cleaning up our pollution will also become clearer as this debate unfolds, but facts not fear campaigns should be the basis for the community making decisions about the Government’s plans.

“Cleaning up our pollution”? This is just a brazen attempt to mislead the public into thinking that the carbon tax is about “cleaning up pollution”, when in reality it is about a pointless attempt to control the climate by reducing emissions of a harmless trace gas.

So who is the real merchant of misinformation, Greg?

Read it here.

Combet smears expose Labor's carbon tax desperation

Last act of desperation

As the polls slide and the public’s loathing of this deceitful government continues to rise unabated, Greg Combet has revealed the desperation that must be felt in Labor circles, as he unleashes against Tony Abbott. Denier Alert:

CLIMATE Change Minister Greg Combet has intensified his attack on Tony Abbott as a climate change denier, seizing on the Opposition Leader’s comments to a Perth community forum in which he declared: “I don’t think we can say that the science is settled here.”

“But having said that, whether carbon dioxide is quite the environmental villain that some people make it out to be is not yet proven,” Mr Abbott said.

“We should take precautions against risks and threats, potential ones as well as actual ones, but I don’t think we should assume that the highest environmental challenge, let alone the great moral social and political challenge of our time, is to reduce our emissions.”

But Mr Combet said Mr Abbott’s comments demonstrated “what we all know, and that is that Mr Abbott is a climate change denier, which explains why his climate policy is nonsense”.

“Despite his best efforts to convince people that he really does accept the climate science, these comments make clear he has not changed his view that the science is, in his own words, ‘absolute crap’.

“Mr Abbott’s comment confirms that at the core of the Liberal Party is the extreme view that climate change doesn’t exist.” (source)

Nobody denies climate change exists, Greg. Are you really that stupid or are you just pretending? What people question is the magnitude of the effect that humanity has, and whether the massive costs of mitigation are worth the almost zero benefits (which they aren’t). But that’s too subtle for Greg, who resorts to the hysterical “denier” rhetoric when confronted with an opposing view, which is always the last act of a desperate man with nowhere to go.

You have to feel sorry for Greg [only a tiny bit – Ed], trying to sell a crock of a policy which he knows as well as blind Freddy won’t do a thing for the climate. Whether Abbott is a “denier” at all is irrelevant. Nothing Australia does on its own will change the climate so a carbon tax or an ETS will be a huge amount of pain for no gain whatsoever. In that regard, Abbott’s direct action plan is as pointless as Labor’s carbon price.

And what’s probably annoying Greg even more is the fact that the public are seeing through the futility of a unilateral carbon tax:

Voter hostility to tackling climate change with a carbon price has jumped sharply since the federal government announced the plan last month.

A Nielsen telephone poll, published in Fairfax newspapers on Tuesday, surveyed 1400 voters last week and shows found 56 per cent were opposed to the introduction of a carbon price, while 35 per cent supported it.

A month earlier, 44 per cent of voters opposed the introduction of a carbon price, compared to 46 per cent which supported it. (source)

Twelve percent increase in opposition in a month. That must sting. And it will only get worse.

Combet on climate action

Half-truths and misrepresentations

The Sydney Moonbat Herald prints Greg Combet’s response to an article by Julie Bishop, which gives me a perfect opportunity for a spot of deconstruction and hopefully demolition. Fasten your seatbelts, ladies and gentlemen. Here we go:

The puerile opinion piece by Deputy Leader of the Opposition Julie Bishop shows how the Coalition perpetuates misinformation to hide the fact it does not have a credible plan to cut Australia’s carbon pollution.

Combet accuses the Coalition of misinformation? That’s ripe for a start. How much of a cut in global temperature will our “carbon price” achieve Greg? What did Julia Gillard say before the election about “no carbon tax under the government I lead”? And what is “carbon pollution” anyway? Soot? Because it certainly isn’t carbon dioxide. Misinformation is your speciality, and it’s there for all to see. And his petulant use of the word “puerile” to dismiss any dissenting view speaks volumes of the arrogant, contemptuous mindset of this government. And all of that in the first sentence? It’s not looking good so far…

It is appropriate to correct the record.

It is incorrect to imply that Australia risks going it alone on pricing carbon.

Thirty-two countries and 10 US states already have emissions trading schemes. California, one of the largest economies in the world, is due to start emissions trading next year.

Other countries, including China, Taiwan, Chile and South Korea, and a number of Canadian provinces, are either considering developing their own or already have trial emissions trading schemes in place.

Carbon taxes are in place in Britain, Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden, the Netherlands and Canada and under discussion elsewhere, including in the EU, Japan and South Africa.

China has a tax on coal, oil and gas extraction in its largest gas-producing province and plans to extend this to all other western provinces.

India has nationwide tax of 50 rupees per tonne levied on both imported coal and coal produced domestically, to be used for clean energy development.

South Africa has released a discussion paper for public comment on a broad carbon tax.

This, again, is simply nonsense. Most of the countries in the world with emissions trading schemes are part of the EU arrangement, where corruption, fraud and organised crime have made the carbon market over there a joke. The US has abandoned federal plans for climate mitigation schemes, with Obama desperately trying the EPA back-door route. US states are bailing out of their go-it-alone plan, with New Hampshire voting to leave the scheme (which only covered less than a fifth of US states anyway). Japan has just abandoned plans for an ETS.

And please don’t insult us by quoting China or India. Both of those massive emitters are far more concerned about their economic growth than tilting at climate windmills (or wind farms, perhaps). Their emissions will continue to rise over the coming decades, dwarfing any mitigation that Australia may put in place. To believe that the world is heading towards greater climate action is just delusional.

Bishop suggests it is not relevant if Australia’s per capita emissions are high. The fact is that Australia has the highest per capita emissions of all developed countries, about 27 tonnes per person.

This compares to a world average of about 6 tonnes per person, and an average of about 14 tonnes per person in other developed countries.

Developing countries consistently point to Australia’s high per capita emissions to justify why we should take strong action on climate change.

If we did not make our fair contribution to international efforts, how could we expect the big emitting developing countries such as China and India to take meaningful action?

Of course, a country’s total level of carbon pollution is important. That’s why the government is working with the main emitters – the 20 countries responsible for about 80 per cent of the world’s emissions – to support an effective global outcome. Australia is one of these top 20 emitters.

A really good effort to justify pointless unilateral action, Greg, but no-one will buy it. Australia has a small population, with a very high emissions economy – due primarily to the geology of our country. Therefore per capita emissions will inevitably be high. But that is totally irrelevant in these discussions. We contribute less than 1.3% of global emissions, and nothing, repeat NOTHING, we do alone will make the slightest bit of difference to the climate. One of my commenters pointed out that by land area, Australia’s emissions are negligible: 60 tonnes per square km compared to 700 t/km2 in China and 3000 t/km2 in Japan.

Australia is in the top 20 emitters, but again, that is meaningless, because the top ten alone contribute nearly 80% of global emissions. The remaining 20% comprises the entire rest of the world, including Australia.

It is the case that the 2009 conference in Copenhagen did not deliver all that was hoped for. But it is wrong to say that there is no action happening globally or that Copenhagen did not make important progress.

In the lead up to Copenhagen all the big emitters pledged to reduce their carbon pollution. These pledges were formally incorporated into the United Nations process at the most recent negotiations, in Cancun last December. The Cancun meeting also made concrete progress on other key elements needed to underpin an effective global response.

Irrespective of what happens under the UN negotiations, countries, regions and states around the world are taking real action on climate change now.

Please don’t mention Copenhagen… oh, you just did. Copenhagen was an utter disaster, irrespective of how you spin it. The worthless Copenhagen accord was of less value than the paper it was printed on. And you know it. And Cancun did very little to advance that process. And you know it. The reality is that there is less desire for global action on climate now than there was five or ten years ago. And the GFC has focussed people’s minds on what is really important – economic growth and prosperity, rather than chasing the nebulous chimera of climate change.

The Coalition has ridiculed the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative in the US. But look at some facts. The RGGI scheme caps carbon pollution for the electricity sector in the 10 participating north-eastern states. The combined population for these 10 states is 50 million – more than double Australia’s total population.

Each state auctions pollution permits to power stations, and commits to use at least 25 per cent of their auction revenue for clean energy programs, and to assist consumers to reduce their use of electricity.

In practice all participating states are far exceeding this commitment, investing 80 per cent of their proceeds – totaling $775 million so far – in renewable and energy efficiency programs.

The RGGI’s executive director has said that these programs show $3-$4 in benefits for every $1 invested. Furthermore, several businesses have realised energy cost savings great enough to retain or add new employees.

See above. New Hampshire has bailed out. And what effect will this have on the climate? NOTHING. Nada, Zip, Zilch. Just money thrown away that could have been spent on hospitals, schools, or in fact anything other than climate mitigation. And don’t start on the mythical “green economy”. It doesn’t exist. For every “green job” created, between 3 and 4 proper jobs are lost. And for every dollar spent on “green investment”, real investment suffers.

The Coalition has also alleged that emissions trading schemes are bad because of vulnerability to fraud, referring to cyber attacks on the European Emissions Trading System. Europe has taken steps to strengthen the integrity of its carbon market to prevent criminal activities in the future.

See above – the EU ETS is mired in fraud.

High standards of security and a range of anti-fraud measures are being applied to Australian emissions registries. For example, Australia’s Kyoto Protocol registry complies with IT security standards set by the Defence Signals Directorate and the United Nations. Australia’s registry systems have remained safe from cyber attacks.

Big deal.

It is all very well for Bishop to tell the electorate what she doesn’t like. What she and the Opposition need to tell everyone is what they actually propose to do to reduce Australia’s carbon pollution at the lowest cost.

A fizzle-out ending for a fizzle-out article, full of half-truths and misrepresentations. If this is the best that our minister for climate change can come up with, it shows a total lack of any grip on reality. What the Opposition should do is say we will do nothing to mitigate climate change, because it is money down the drain, but we will spend where necessary to adapt, at far less cost.

Even Bjørn Lomborg, the non-sceptic’s sceptic, who believes in the reality of man-made climate change, thinks that carbon taxes are the worst way to deal with climate change:

“The current solution is to make fossil fuels so expensive that nobody will want them,” Dr Lomborg said, adding that this is “economically inefficient and politically impossible”. (source)

And finally, it’s “carbon dioxide”, Greg, not carbon pollution.

The article source is here.

Labor Premier: carbon tax will "push up prices"

You've just made a LOT of new friends

Gong for the most blindingly obvious statement about the carbon [dioxide] tax goes to Lara Giddings, who tactlessly speaks the truth when Gillard, Combet et al are spinning their way up their own backsides. No Prime Ministerial Christmas card for you this year, Miss Giddings, methinks:

Tasmania’s Labor Premier Lara Giddings says a carbon tax will push up living costs and unfairly inflict economic pain on her state despite it already having more renewable energy than other states.

The federal government insists its compensation measures will help cushion households from steep price rises.

“You’d have your head in the sand to say there aren’t going to be cost of living increases,” Ms Giddings told ABC Radio on Monday.

“That’s not fair.”

It certainly isn’t, but delusional Combet isn’t having a bar of it:

Federal Climate Change Minister Greg Combet rejected the suggestion, arguing compensation measures for pensioners and low-income households would act as a cushion. [What about the rest of the population? – Ed]

I don’t expect any significant impact on the overall cost of living out of our carbon price mechanism once we’ve done all our final work [please, my aching sides – Ed]. But, we will ensure that whatever that may be, we will assist households cope with that price impact,” he told reporters on Monday. (source)

Which I guess means they’ll be emitting the same amount of carbon dioxide, then? Total horse-shit, Greg. Sorry. Never thought I’d find myself agreeing with a Labor state premier, but in this case, Lara’s right on the money.

Swan: public "confused" by carbon tax

If it quacks like a duck… it's a tax

Ah, yes, the old excuses are the best. If anyone disagrees with your policy, just say the public are too ignorant to properly understand it, and that all that’s necessary is better “communication”. Such is the arrogance of Labor that is believes it is beyond criticism, so when the public go ape because their Prime Minister has lied to them about a carbon tax in order to get elected, they go into self-deluding rationalisation strategies – in other words, we’re right and the public are just a bunch of stupid bogans. Charming.

AUSTRALIANS are confused by the government’s carbon tax plan, Acting Prime Minister Wayne Swan admits.

Mr Swan has tried to downplay concerns about the proposal to cut pollution, saying the scheme would not operate like a “traditional tax”.

He said a “traditional tax” would take money from Australians’ pay packets, while the government’s scheme would take money from big businesses.

Opposition leader Tony Abbott was quick to match the Treasurer’s spin with his own, saying if it “acts like a tax … it is a tax”. (source)

Swan is desperately trying to spin the Labor government and himself out of trouble by claiming that this is a tax on “polluters” [what type of pollution is carbon dioxide again? – Ed], but carefully avoiding the fact that the “polluters” will pass on the tax to their consumers in the form of increased prices. Otherwise, why would there be a need for bewilderingly complex “compensation schemes” for individuals? Sorry Wayne, doesn’t wash.

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