The carbon tax is a "con-job" that will do nothing

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Tim Badrick believes that a carbon tax is a "con-job" that will do nothing to reduce environmental damage, but alot to damage the lives of ordinary Australians.

BELIEVE YOU ME, I am the last person to want to have five bucks each way so I can keep in sweet with everybody to win a popularity contest at a public rally or by writing stuff that doesn't marginalise anyone or get up the nose of the odd person.

My belief is that if we only write what won’t offend some people here and there we are only ever preaching to the converted, and what is the point of that? The world would come to a grinding halt if we didn't have 'real' journalists, bloggers, writers, lobbyists and level headed rebels in the world creating robust discussion which the mainstream media is not interested in inducing, because the mainstream media wants to have five bucks each way because very often it allows news editors and journalists off the hook when politicians break election promises and they have to protect them from unwanted scrutiny from a deceived electorate.

What Julia Gillard and Greens leader Bob Brown announced on Thursday, side-by-side is an obvious blasé disregard for what the Prime Minister categorically promised in the federal election campaign—that there would be no carbon tax introduced while she was the leader of the Labor Party.

Don’t get me wrong, I am an environmentally responsible person; I even consider myself to be slightly left of centre on environmental issues. But I don’t call myself a greenie, I call myself a pragmatist who cares for the environment. Personally, I think that's a good thing, because from what I’ve seen, being an official greenie most of the time only makes you a budding politician who uses the environmental theme for personal and gratuitous political gain.

Julia Gillard and Bob Brown announce the new carbon tax (photo courtesy Herald Sun)

The carbon tax is just another tax like the GST or capital gains tax; it will send so many smaller companies and businesses to the wall, and in time, thousands upon thousands of already struggling families around Australia as well. This is because householders will end up footing the bill for the increased cost of producing everything which is still manufactured here. And the most deceitful aspect of the carbon tax will be that it will do bugger all towards reducing carbon emissions, because unless we stop population growth all together every single reduction in one emissions category will be offset by gains in another category. The federal government and greens have got the cockeyed idea that simply stopping smelter emissions and other tangible sources of industrial carbon pollution is all that is needed to get carbon levels reduced in the short term to a level consistent with Kyoto targets.

Can't these donkeys work out that if we keep clearing trees on the edges of our cities for urban, commercial and industrial development – just for starters – any benefit derived from putting a price on 'industrialised' carbon dioxide at the opposite end will be useless and counter-productive. The only practical way of reducing carbon emissions is to keep the lungs of the earth intact, and that includes all the bushland around our cities that act as the best air filters that no money can buy.

I am a pragmatist, and common sense tells me when a politician or politicians are trying to hoodwink me with a crock like the carbon tax.

If I thought it would do anything positive for the state of the atmosphere long term, I would support its implementation, even if it cost me and millions of other Australians a packet like it is going to from next year. But the carbon tax is a con-job; it is an amateurish Band-Aid job and a deceitful way of bringing in a new tax by stealth which will end up seeing the cost of all consumer goods and products skyrocketing to the stratosphere— everything from groceries, petrol and produce to the cost of building a house. Everything you can think of which you buy at the user end will go way up in price as a result of a tax that will do very little to cut carbon emissions like it's suggested it will.

The federal government and Bob Brown should be a lot more concerned about stopping trees being mowed down across Australia and putting the diplomatic brakes on allowing developing countries to pollute the atmosphere with all their noxious output before they lumber us and our economy with a carbon tax.

(Read other stories by Tim Badrick by clicking here.)
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