Transcript of Radio 4BC interview on Geoff Mullins

Senator Macdonald: Absolutely Geoff and look they are both electorates that have always referred to conservative politicians; they are electorates which understand what Australia is all about and what needs to be done. The last thing by far the majority of voters in those electorates would have wanted would be for Julia Gillard to be Prime Minister and Australia to be in the absolute mess its in as we end this year.


Senator Macdonald: Well look, I know Bob Katter pretty well and we dont always agree on everything but deep down Bob understands what its all about. I never doubted that when push came to shove that Bob would come down on the side of good government, government that really did have an interest in Queensland and did have an interest in rural and remote Australia. So I was never in doubt about Bob and I think Bobs heart and mind are in the right place. The other two, I was just absolutely gobsmacked about. I dont know either of them very well theyre in the other chamber to me. I would have expected, Windsor particularly, would have been aware of what life was about, what good and bad government is about. Im terribly disappointed and I can only surmise that there were other influences that impacted upon their judgment. I would say that by today both of them are regretting having joined Julia Gillard and having joined and continuing on what is very much shaping up as the worst Government on record, and thats saying something after seeing Kevin Rudds term.


Senator Macdonald: Well, its not for me to impute bad motives. I suspect the hour in the sun might have been relevant.


Senator Macdonald: Well, absolutely and, you know, had they sided with us I think most people would have said, oh yep, well thats what we expected, now lets get on and have a decent Australia, lets stop the boats, lets cut the taxes and lets get back to the right direction. By fooling all of the pundits and those whove known them well, they certainly had more than an hour in the sun. Id say they regretting it now because I know that theyre decent Australians and they can only look on with dismay as the Gillard Government lurches from crisis to crisis.


Senator Macdonald: Well it is, look, we had this in the Senate years ago with Brian Harradine really having the say on how Australia was governed and we were able to deal with it. The last three years weve had to rely on Xenophon and Fielding in the Senate to stop some of the worst impacts of Rudds legislation. I guess thats the way it is but, gee whiz, there really has got to be a better way and I think a few people would be putting their thinking caps on over the next year or so.


Senator Macdonald: Oh look, Im absolutely certain of that, Geoff, when the boats started coming, you know, we were in some difficulty for a couple of months or so but we worked it through, worked out what was driving the people smugglers, we worked out what was encouraging people to come. We then put in place what was called the Pacific solution which I might say Im rather proud of. It said to these people who are paying tens of thousands of dollars to these criminals who smuggle people in. It said to them, look, you might get to Australia but youll immediately be picked up, taken offshore where you wont be able to get Australian legal aid, you wont be able to spend eight years going through every court option from the lowest court right up to the High Court at taxpayers expense and youll have to justify your position. Youll have to stand in line with all of the other genuine refugees that there are around the world who are doing the right thing and are waiting in line but are being displaced in that line every time these, often wealthy, people are able to pay the people smugglers tens of thousands of dollars to jump the queue and get into Australia. They know the Labor Government as long as they are there, will continue under pressure from the Greens and the other loonies of the left to let them in so thats how it is. Howard proved he could stop it, we would have adopted that policy and we would have saved the lives of those 50 people had Tony Abbott been Prime Minister last week.


Senator Macdonald: Well, look I would hope so but I doubt it. You see, Gillard is captive of the Looney Left, of the Greens who are just outrageous with some of their policy approaches and even although as weve seen in Victoria the Green star is on the rapid decline, they will still have an important role come the 1st of July. And, you know, I think Gillard wont be prepared to challenge them and to argue with them and well just have a continuation of this dangerous, inhuman almost, system that Labor has introduced and perpetuated.

Mullins If there were three things, three areas, a Liberal Government could address in the next year, what would they be

Senator Macdonald: Well, the one we were just talking about is one that worries all Australians and it can be addressed. And its an easy, a relatively easy, solution and it doesnt make Australia any less humane than weve been. Weve always been very generous with our intake of refugees so thats one of them. The other big thing is the taxes that are being continued to be imposed on Australians and will get worse if Gillard stays in power in 2011. Its just something that has to stop. See, thats the problem with Labor, its part of their makeup, its part of their DNA, its their philosophy grab the money off the wage-earners, put it into Government coffers because we, the Government, we, Big Brother, know best whats good for you and your family. So, we dont want you to have your money to spend on the way you think it should be spent, well take your money off you and well spend it in the way we know is best for you. Well, that sort of philosophy I thought went out with well, I was going to say Karl Marx, but at least with Lenin and Kruschev perhaps. Its just crazy but thats what the Labor philosophy is and I have to say the Greens are worse on that so thats a problem. That brings me to the third thing that really does concern me, particularly as someone who is a regional Australian and I have portfolio responsibility for the Coalition for Northern and Remote Australia and that is this mining tax and the carbon tax. Those sorts of taxes will make our productive industries that have really kept Australia afloat over the past few years, it will make them uncompetitive. And look, Geoff, Julia Gillard seems to think that because weve got a lot of iron ore and coal, everyone in the world is always going to line up outside our inefficient and outdated ports I might say theyre stacked up kilometres long outside the ports off Mackay but, notwithstanding that, Julia thinks they will be there but she doesnt realize that in Africa there are equally good mineral deposits; in South America there are equally as good mineral deposits. She doesnt seem to understand that these days they have these absolutely supertanker cargo ships than can carry coal from West Africa to China just as cheaply as you can take it from Mackay to China.

Mullins Well Canada was quick off the mark to attract investment into their mining industries.

Senator Macdonald: Oh well and well they would. They would be the first on the phone and say, come and see us but Canada, South America, Indonesia even, Africa all have similar mineral deposits. If Gillard keeps taxing our mining industries, the international investment that supports them will go elsewhere and not only do we lose the income and the jobs but it has an across-the-board impact on our cost of living, and Heaven knows already in Queensland in particular, the cost of living has skyrocketed with increases in energy prices in recent months.


Senator Macdonald: Well, isnt that obvious Geoff Look, Im becoming more of a sceptic every day. I mean Ive always said that the climate is changing but Ive always adopted the view that if the top 10,000 scientists in the world cant agree, what chance have I got as a country politician to work out whats right in the science Ive always said, if they are right, why should Australia be first Lets do it when everyone else does. For the last three years the scientists who are all gung-ho about mans causing climate change tell you when they speak to you: oh look theres no doubt about it, the science is settled. Well, OK guys, if the science is settled, why do we have to continue paying you billions of dollars everywhere for research into this issue which you claim is already settled And I think that just exposes the hypocrisy of some of the arguments that have been around. You know, I think there is room for alternative views and I think they are to a layman equally valid. I think we should be hastening very slowly on anything on the climate change that will have an impact on our standard of living and our exports.


Senator Macdonald: Its very much my pleasure. Thank you very much Geoff, and all the best to you and your listeners for Christmas.

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