Update from Bolta:
Lying Gillard must give us a new election before her taxNOT even supporters of Julia Gillard’s new carbon tax can dare forgive her for lying so shamelessly about it.
This isn’t just about the virtues of a tax that will in fact make us poorer without changing the weather by a single storm.
Leave aside arguments about whether the world has even warmed this past decade (it hasn’t) or whether our useless sacrifice will at least persuade the big emitters to do the same (they won’t).
Let’s at least agree on the deceit.
At least four times in the fortnight before the last election, a desperate Gillard and her deputy, Treasurer Wayne Swan, swore they would not impose a carbon tax – a tax on carbon dioxide emissions that will drive up the cost of power.
On August 12, Swan insisted there would be no carbon tax if Labor won: “We have made our position very clear, we have ruled it out.”
On August 18, he added: “What we rejected is this hysterical allegation that somehow we are moving towards a carbon tax.”
On August 16, Gillard was categorical: “There will be no carbon tax under the government I lead.”
Two days before the poll she said it again: “I rule out a carbon tax.”
Why those promises? Because the Liberals were campaigning against the tax, and Labor knew if it had to rule it out to save itself.
And so, in the August 21 election, more than 80 per cent of voters backed parties that had promised no carbon tax. The trouble is, one of them was lying.
Flanked by the triumphant Greens, Gillard this week revealed she’d cheated her way into office. The public will now get the tax that most voted against, and which she’d promised not to introduce.
What Gillard has perpetrated is an insult to every voter. It destroys the trust we place in politicians to do as they promised and as we’ve charged them. It puts politicians beyond the power of the voters, undermining what is democracy’s great boast.
If Gillard has changed her mind on her tax, there is just one honourable way to introduce it – to ask voters at the next election for a mandate, as John Howard did when he changed his mind on a GST.
That means not introducing the tax next year, but after a new vote.
But Gillard’s way is a betrayal of democracy. A brazen fraud. An act of infamy.