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Thursday, 22 March 2012
Page: 2626

Senator BOSWELL (Queensland) (15:27): Whether it is Senator Brandis's remarks on a carbon tax or Senator Mason's remarks on debt, whatever the feeling is, overwhelmingly the Queensland people have had enough of Labor. The carbon tax is a big issue. It is a huge issue in Queensland and it is a huge issue everywhere else.

Labor's own Treasury modelling in South Australia shows that 1,500 jobs will be lost, the New South Wales Treasury says that 31,000 jobs will be lost, the Victorian Treasury says 24,300 jobs will be lost, and the Queensland Labor government says there will be 43,000 jobs lost due to a carbon tax. What has escaped a lot of people is that the loss to GDP with a carbon tax by 2015 will be $36 billion, and by 2050 it will be $1 trillion. That is not a Liberal-National Party prediction. The page on the government's own website entitled 'Strong Growth, Low Pollution' says $36 billion. So you can understand why people are so concerned about all those jobs. They are not predictions by the LNP; they are Labor Party statements about job losses.

Senator Joyce today pointed out the absolute stupidity and folly of putting this tax on. Everyone knows that, unless it goes on worldwide, it will not work—it cannot work. Unless you go to the Indonesians, the Indians, the Chinese and the Third World countries and say: 'We want you to pull your weight. We don't care if you're starving. We don't care if you don't know where your next feed is. You pull your weight and put the price of your fuel up for cooking and put the price up for electricity'—if they have electricity—'You pull your weight.' Of course, what are they going to say? 'Listen, we don't even know where our next feed is coming from. How can we pay a carbon tax?' Unless you can get the Third World countries to do it is a farce. It is a folly. It is stupidity. But you underestimate the brainpower of the general population. You underestimate their intelligence, because they can see it. They know it, and they know that what they are being asked to do is going to have no effect on the economy.

I just want to pick up Senator Furner's remarks. Senator Furner said that the public service was going to be limited to one per cent. I had never heard that before, but I just went up and got some reference to that. Mr Nicholls said that the LNP was determined to deliver a public service that was affordable and grew in line with the community needs:

The LNP is offering public servants long term job security and the removal of the wage cap in return for managing overall growth. We want neither a big nor a small public service—we want the right sized public service.

So for Senator Furner to come him here and say that everyone's wages will be capped at one per cent is not the truth. It is absolutely turning the truth around.

No amount of the Labor Party telling people untruths about what the LNP government will do is going to change the effect of what is happening in Queensland. People have made their minds up in Queensland. They have put up with the Labor Party just spending and spending and running up debt, losing their AAA rating and plunging them into debt. They plunged what was a wealthy state with a huge mining income into a basket case. Queensland is a basket case under the last 20 years of Labor government. It cannot perform, and the people have made this assessment.

They have made it over a number of years. They have made it and added it all up. What does a carbon tax do? Why are we in debt when we have a huge mining industry in Queensland? Why are we numbered last— (Time expired)

Question agreed to.