Senate debates

Wednesday, 12 October 2011


Clean Energy Bill 2011, Clean Energy (Consequential Amendments) Bill 2011, Clean Energy (Income Tax Rates Amendments) Bill 2011, Clean Energy (Household Assistance Amendments) Bill 2011, Clean Energy (Tax Laws Amendments) Bill 2011, Clean Energy (Fuel Tax Legislation Amendment) Bill 2011, Clean Energy (Customs Tariff Amendment) Bill 2011, Clean Energy (Excise Tariff Legislation Amendment) Bill 2011, Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas (Import Levy) Amendment Bill 2011, Ozone Protection and Synthetic Greenhouse Gas (Manufacture Levy) Amendment Bill 2011, Clean Energy (Unit Shortfall Charge — General) Bill 2011, Clean Energy (Unit Issue Charge — Auctions) Bill 2011, Clean Energy (Unit Issue Charge — Fixed Charge) Bill 2011, Clean Energy (International Unit Surrender Charge) Bill 2011, Clean Energy (Charges — Customs) Bill 2011, Clean Energy (Charges — Excise) Bill 2011, Clean Energy Regulator Bill 2011, Climate Change Authority Bill 2011; First Reading

4:37 pm

Photo of Barnaby JoyceBarnaby Joyce (Queensland, National Party, Leader of The Nationals in the Senate) Share this | Hansard source

I will quote Senator Dr Bob Brown. These are some of the things he has said in the past:

Let there be no doubt about this: the government can manipulate the Senate and is doing so. The government can dishonour the processes of the Senate and is doing so. The government may try to treat the Senate as it does the House of Representatives—that is, as a rubber stamp—and convert this country to executive government, but the government will reap the whirlwind of that. Fortunately, it cannot do away with elections.

That sounds very prophetic. Who said that? It was Dr Bob Brown on 28 November 2005. This is the same person who is removing our right in this parliament to have proper oversight of these documents, which even on the briefest perusal we can find predominantly that you are sending people to jail. For doing what? For mishandling something that was formerly free—that is, carbon dioxide. We now have this colourless, odourless gas becoming not only something that we have to buy but something that, if we do not administer it properly, can end us up in jail.

And why? What is it going to do? What is going to happen to the temperature of the globe? Absolutely nothing will happen to the temperature of the globe, but we will have this bureaucracy and these fields of policeman coming into every corner of our lives. We are supposed to be protecting, giving more liberty to the people and making them more free, not tying them up in this absolute lunacy. Has anybody over there read this? Does anybody have a clue about it? No, you do not have to; you can just walk it in here and ram it through.

What of the Australian people? Are they just happy with it? They are happy that those opposite have thrown a match into the building and walked out the door, that they have thrown a match into the Australian economy and walked out the door? The management that has brought us this bundle, this packet of poo tickets, is the same one that currently has us $211.3 billion in gross debt, borrowing $2 billion last week and $2 billion the week before. They cannot make their ends meet their resources but they can cool the planet.

We have not only a right but an obligation to the Australian people to look at this in seriatim, because I truly believe that if we do not look at it none of them will. Not Mr Combet, who is up there saying, 'This is a great day,' along with all the backslapping. They are all happy chappies, backslapping and saying: 'Isn't this marvellous? Isn't it marvellous what we have done to the Australian people today? Aren't we clever because, even though none of them wanted it, we showed the Australian people that we are so stubborn we would do it to them anyway.' Because, you see, they are wiser than the Australian people. They are wiser and more noble, and that gives them the right to do this to you. And if you do not like what they are doing to you, be careful because in here they have the right to put you in jail. This debate has not finished. The Australian people will demand of us that we fight this all the way. And we will attach this to every lower house member who has voted for it. It is now their problem. They are personally responsible for their actions today; they are personally responsible for bringing this in. And we will attach this to every senator who votes for it. We will attach it to the Greens and we will attach it to the Labor Party. If it brings you unstuck—and it will—that is something that you will have to deal with.

Isn't it funny how the Greens talk about liberty and supporting the liberty of the individual? They want a more liberal environment for drugs, but they do not want a more liberal environment for carbon dioxide—oh, no, they cannot have that; they have to regulate that; they are going to throw people in jail over that. That is the new world. They want a more liberal environment for drugs; they want to reduce all the offences for drugs. But they want to make it a criminal offence to misappropriate the air that we breathe. Then they get some people out on the front lawn. I looked at it the other day. There were more placards than people. And they do not know about it. It is almost a cult. They go out there, or GetUp gets them out there, and they rant and rave and yak on. But they are not going to be held responsible for what happens to people.

I do not know how we can explain this. What possessed you to do this? What possessed you to launch this on us? How many of you people over there understand or can explain to us the trading stock implications of carbon permits? When is it an asset? When is it trading stock? I do not know. You do not know; you do not have a clue. You have not even read it. There is so much in here. What about application to foreign ships? That is another little bit. Let us have a read of this:

This Act does not apply to the extent that its application would be inconsistent with the exercise of rights of foreign ships in:

(a) the territorial sea; or

(b) the exclusive economic zone; or

(c) waters of the continental shelf;

in accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.

That is interesting. That obviously means that it could apply to Australian ships. Oh, that's right: it does. Australian things are evil! We have to have things from overseas; we cannot have a manufacturing industry anymore! Under this, if you want to fly to Fiji, that will be free of the carbon tax. But if you want to fly and support the Australian tourism industry, you will get taxed for that. And you had better obey the law, otherwise they will throw you in jail. This is the new world. Isn't it marvellous? It even applies to shipping. We know who is getting it free: if you are a foreigner, it is free; if you are domestic, you pay the tax.

Down the track, you get the joy of sending $56.9 billion—$56.9 thousand million—a year overseas to buy carbon credits. That is the ultimate in social engineering: taking money off the working Australian family and then bundling it up and sending it to Mr Mugabe, to the people of Zaire, to the people of the Congo and to the people of South-East Asia. That is what the Greens want to do: social re-engineering. They want to send it to those people who warrant it; those people who are more noble than us! Not only can we re-engineer Australia through a penalty of going to jail; we can re-engineer the whole world! You will have so much to tell them at Durban. It will be a wonderful time. You will be able to say to them that not only are you saving Australia but you are saving the world—saving the world with carbon permits.

But some poor sucker out at Blacktown, out at Ipswich, out at Roma, is going to work to pay for it. They are going to come home to their power bill, and there is your tax. So they work some of their lives in the sun stacking bricks, stacking shelves, behind a counter, shearing sheep, welding or whatever—in whatever industries are left after you have completely and utterly botched our nation's economy—so that you can go on your frolic of sending money here, there and everywhere around the world. This is absurd. Don't you think that there is something not right about this? Isn't there something in your stomach that tells you that there is something not right about this? Where did this come from?

The Australian people hate this. That is why before the last election you did not tell them the truth. You said that you were not going to bring it in. And now you have brought it in. If they had known that you were thinking about banging them up in jail they might have had a different view about voting for you. They might have thought differently. If they had thought that you were about to regulate the very essence of their existence, the air that they breathe, they might have thought about voting for somebody else. Gosh, I would have. But this is where we are.

And you think that we are going to lie down on this and go to sleep. You think that somehow next week it will all be better. We are going to chase you and chase you every day. We will be at the doors every day. We will chase you every weekend. Every time that we get a chance, we will chase you and we will say: 'When you think about the Labor Party, think about the carbon tax; when you think about the Labor Party, think about your power bill; when you think about the Labor Party, think about your fuel bill; when you think about the Labor Party, think about the legislation that they brought in to bang you up in jail if you dare disagree with their world view. When you think about the Greens, think about the money that they sent overseas; when you think about the Greens, think about the guillotine and how they shut down the debate so that the Australian people couldn't properly ventilate their views on this mass of legislation.' That will be the debate. We will pursue you and pursue you, and we will not relent until the next election. Then at every polling booth in every seat we will be reminding the Australian people about you.

If the global economy comes unstuck, you have created it so that you cannot get out of it—apparently, you do not want to get out of this. I have a rough idea how the punter works. I know how they are going to deal with this. I have seen this before. We have made mistakes like this before. We made a mistake called Work Choices and got smashed. This is your mistake. Here it comes: exactly the same outcome. They are going to absolutely slaughter you.


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