With the carbon pricing only days away, Tony Abbott has been travelling around the country predicting doom and gloom for everything he touches. Meanwhile members of the Opposition are banking on a mining boom, and investing in resources companies.
If the members of the Opposition really were as confident in the doom and gloom predicted by their Dear Leader, the last thing they would be doing is investing in these industries.
This has been noted by both Greg Combet and Jason Clare, these are edited extracts from speeches they have given in parliament.
Greg Combet said:
Since the carbon price was announced, we have seen multibillion dollar takeovers, massive investment and new mine approvals. It is not just big companies that are investing; it is also many small investors including many members of parliament who have a lot of confidence in the future of the industry.
In fact, since the carbon price was announced last February, and the start of the opposition leader’s people’s revolt started, many coalition MPs have actually bought shares in the industry. Now, the member for Wentworth is amongst them, but we would respect that because he knows the campaign run by the opposition leader is complete and utter rubbish, nonsense, false, a fraud and a fabrication. But it does include the members for Brisbane, Flynn, Stirling, Fadden, Bennelong and Kooyong.
Not only that, when you have a look at the register, all up about 30 per cent of the members of the coalition are investors in the minerals industry. That is quite a few. We are sure of one thing: it does not show much faith in the member for Warringah’s investment advice, does it?
Publicly, their leader talks mining stocks down; privately, they snap up the investments. There might be a little insider trading strategy going on, but it demonstrates hypocrisy. If there were a TV reality show, Australia’s Greatest Hypocrites, they would be the winners.
Jason Clare (Blaxland) said:
Last week the Leader of the Opposition, in his party room, said that every time we talk about jobs or the economy they are going to talk about ‘carbon tax’. In other words, the scare campaign continues. Remember those bold predictions we had last year, that it was going to ‘wipe Whyalla off the map’? Or that it was going to be the ‘economic death’ of the steel industry? It was all nonsense—not real.
The best way to find out if this is the truth or not is to follow the money; look at the investments that have been made in the coal industry since we announced the carbon price or since the Leader of the Opposition made those statements. Has it gone up or has it gone down? According to the Bureau of Statistics, in the year to September spending on coal exploration has jumped 167 per cent.
As I told the House last year, one in six members of the opposition have bought shares in coal or resource companies since we announced the carbon price.
It is worth the House remembering who those members are: the member for Wentworth, Senator Adams, Senator Cash, Senator Fisher, Senator Humphries, the member for Stirling, the member for Brisbane, the member for Flynn, Senator Ronaldson, the member for Fadden, Senator Johnston and the member for Kooyong. They all bought shares in coal or resource companies after the Leader of the Opposition said that the industry was going to die. The member for Kooyong is a pretty smart man. When you look at this list you think they are either stupid or they just do not believe what the Leader of the Opposition is saying.
As Deep Throat said to Woodward, ‘Follow the money.’ Follow the money and you find the truth.
If there was ever anyone to test the argument of the Leader of the Opposition that carbon pricing is going to kill the coal industry, it is Senator Sinodinos. What does Senator Sinodinos’s return tell us? Like his colleagues—like the member for Kooyong—he also owns shares in the resources sector. He also owns shares in a coal company.
But that is not all. A month after the Leader of the Opposition told the country that this would be the death of the coal industry, Senator Sinodinos became the boss of a coal company. He became the chairman of Blackwood Coal, an Australian coal company based in Sydney.
While the brawn of the Liberal Party is running around the country saying, ‘This is going to kill the coal industry’, you have the brains of the Liberal Party becoming the boss of a coal company. It just goes to show what a bunch of hypocrites the Liberal Party really is.
Follow the money; follow the money and you find the truth. It shows this opposition leader for what he is. This Leader of the Opposition’s answer to everything is either ‘No’ or it is ‘No idea’.
The people of Australia expect more than just a stop sign in a suit. That is what they have with this Leader of the Opposition. They need more than a dodgy scare campaign. As Senator Sinodinos has shown, if you keep crying wolf, eventually you get found out.