11 Aug 2011

Gillard's Meaningless Commitment To Bob Brown

'Senator Brown said he had a public commitment from Prime Minister Julia Gillard that no money flowing from the agreement could be used on the Bell Bay pulp mill'. That quote is from the Hobart Mercury on August 11, 2011.  Brown was talking about the 'Inter Governmental Agreement' on forestry. This is the sort of shallow statement that feeds the Greens poor credibility. Surely Brown is mature enough to realise Julia Gillard cannot possibly make a commitment like that? Even an Australian Prime Minister cannot legally transfer taxpayer's money to a private company and then make assurances on how that company's board of directors then allocates the money? This is not Stalinist Russia. Under what Australian law is Julia Gillard compelling Gunns to spend money a certain way? Notice how this issue is just an after thought to Bob Brown's big field goal? He got Gillard to put 572,000 hectares of native forest into a kind of virtual protection or 'Informal Reserves' to use the cute, ambiguous term in the agreement. 'Bob Brown will seek independent legal advice if the Inter-Governmental Agreement on forestry results in a payment to Gunns Limited for ending its logging in native forests.' While he is at it Bob Brown should get legal advice on the rest of the document. Surely they didn't sign-off on a major restructure of  the forest industry in Tasmania without consulting a single lawyer?

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