Subjects: Chris Bowen’s energy policy crisis; Labor’s offshore wind policy destroying environments and local economies; interest rate rise; Jim Chalmer’s hypocrisy and economic credibility ‘in tatters’; Labor’s cost of living crisis; the barbaric attacks on Israel and the ramifications around Australia; the Prime Minister’s lack of leadership.
Peter Dutton is the Federal Opposition Leader. He’s back on the program. Good morning.
Good morning Ray.
I just was getting information coming out of the Prime Minister being in the Cook Islands, after being in the US, after being in China. He said ‘it has been extremely positive reception Australia has received here, there is a recognition that my Government is committed to climate action and we are playing a positive role, not just with our commitment to reduce our emissions by 43 per cent by 2030, and reach zero by 2050, but that importantly, we are playing a role in the region’.
Now, he went from meeting up with Joe Biden, having a dinner there, to China, where he met, you know, the top echelon in China. Not one word about coal fired power stations until he gets to the Cook Islands. I mean, it’s – hypocrisy is breathtaking.
Ah, well it is – and the problem is that it’s mums and dads and families, and small businesses, and pensioners and self-funded retirees who are picking up the bill for all of this Ray. You’ve got Chris Bowen’s effort to get to his emissions target reductions through a renewables only policy, you’ve got the regulator now warning about blackouts and if you think your power price is expensive today, wait for another two or three or five years of this that they’re rolling out. Power prices will continue to go up exponentially. The Prime Minister’s, you know, happy to sort of strut the world stage, but he’s got no answer for families back here.
You know, let’s stick with renewables for the moment on another issue: the Clarke Creek Wind Farm, which is in your home state. Now, Ben Fordham has been doing the running on this, I haven’t stuck my head into it much, but I couldn’t help but do that this morning.
When we have logging protests in northern New South Wales, we’ve got people tying themselves to trees, chaining themselves to trees. We’ve got a whole range of things because it’s removing habitat for native Australian animals. This particular Clarke Creek Wind Farm, with Chinese imported wind turbines, vegetation clearance – which may lead to loss of vegetated habitat, including hollow bearing trees, bird nests, food resources, damage or removal of ground based habitat, features including fallen timber, dead wood and bush rocks, removal of up to 1,500 hectares of suitable koala habitat, removal of 17 hectares of suitable habitat for the greater glider and squatter pigeon.
Now, forget about the pigeons and the gliders for the moment, but if there were a logging firm taking out a habitat, removing 1,500 hectares of suitable koala habitat, the NIMBYs, and the Greens would be chaining themselves to trees, with the Labor Party supporting them, yet because this is a renewable model, not a dickie bird, not a word spoken.
Honestly Ray, the hypocrisy is just breathtaking. It’s a similar story on the Hunter Coast, when we were there only a couple of weeks ago. It’s inconceivable that a developer could, as you say, knock over those trees or move into koala habitat to start putting up high rises or even a residential development, the environmental hoops that they’d have to jump through, the reports they’d have to furnish to council, they’d be years in the planning court to try and get approval, if in fact they could.
Yet with the wind turbines, the proponent, the builder of the wind turbines, the person who’s the beneficiary of all of the government largesse and the payments that they’ll get out of the wind turbines are the ones that undertake the environmental impact statement. So, they’re assessing their own impact on the environment.
Down at Port Stephens, we were talking to a fellow there who’s sort of an avowed environmentalist, I suspect, you know a strong Green voter, he was saying he’s never seen anything like it in his life. He can’t believe that the Government allows the destruction of the environment, in your example, on the land, in their example, out in the sea, where the whales are migrating and there’s no consideration for the environmental impact.
There’s literally hundreds of tonnes of concrete going into the ground to keep these wind turbines upright – they’re 260 metres above the sea level – and in the case of out in regional areas, they’re a blight on the environment and you’ve got a situation where people in cities wouldn’t tolerate not a single one of these wind turbines at any beach close to a capital city. Yet somehow people in regional areas, in particular, are supposed to carry the burden of all this nonsense.
Well, just if you – you’ve been to Port Stephens and we know it well, and we’ve had, you know, people talk to us about what it’s going to do the area where they fish, let alone the whale migration, but then you move further down the coast off Wollongong. Now, whether it’s Wollongong, where these 250 metre towers, you know, and they don’t go by the way, when the wind gets above 30km and you know they shut down. It’s not some sort of wireless transition of power from out there to some sort of reception in either, you know, the coast of Port Stephens or the coast of Wollongong, there are giant cables bringing it back. They’ve got to be brought to shore somewhere. Then they’ve got to go somewhere else.
The infrastructure spend, apart from the blight on the landscape, is just incredible. I mean, and Casanova Bowen – I noted you didn’t take my policy on board when you’re talking Chris Bowen, his name is Casanova Bowen on this program because everything he touches, as you well know, because I keep telling you, everything he touches, he (beep) – so, the thing about it is, he doesn’t care about, you know, what it’s going to look like, what it’s going to do to the bird life.
I mean, I’ve got some other stuff here from another wind turbine built by the same company that’s doing Clarke Creek, and it’s got how many birds they killed – Rosellas and the like – when they were building it. Now that’s only when they’re building it, when they’re would up and going, you wouldn’t know how many eagles and native species are ruined and killed and destroyed by these things flying around in the air. It’s just incredible.
Well, it is, but we do know from other parts of the world that that’s exactly what happens. I mean you’re talking about some endangered bird species, including off Port Stephens, that are put at risk. Their migratory patterns are right through this area, and again, no regard for it. I mean where’s Tanya Plibersek on all of these issues? The Greens say, ‘oh, well’ – at least they’re honest about it, but they say, ‘oh, well, that’s the price you’ve got to pay for reducing global emissions’.
At the same time you’ve got China and India who are setting up coal fired power stations – they’re not going to let the lights go out. They won’t allow the power prices in India to surge such that it makes manufacturing untenable. In fact, in India, the economy is booming because they’ve reduced the price of electricity and they’ve got manufacturing exiting China coming into India. People are making products there, they’re employing people, they’re adding to the economy. We’re deindustrialising the country and consumers are paying for it.
The Prime Minister’s off around to every other country across the globe except for Australia. I think he’s completely and utterly lost the plot in terms of the priority that Australians need him to focus on right now, and that is helping them on their cost of living pressures.
Every decision the Government’s made has driven interest rates higher and people then wonder why the economy starts to falter. He’s walking in the footsteps of Gough Whitlam in China, but he’s doing it here in Australia as well.
I’m glad you mentioned interest rates. Now, I got this from the 3rd of May last year, prior to the election, and we’d had historically low interest rates during COVID. We went down – it was 0.10, .1 of a per cent and then under your government, it went up by a quarter of one per cent to .35, and that was in May of last year, the 3rd of May before the election.
Now, after that one increase – that one increase – this is what Jim Chalmers released:
‘It was hard enough to make ends meet under Scott Morrison and today it got even harder for millions of Australians’ – at 0.35 of one per cent.
‘Even before today’s decision Australians were facing a full-blown cost of living crisis in his watch’ – should be on his watch, by the way.
‘Scott Morrison’s economic credibility was already in tatters, now it’s completely shredded.
After almost a decade of this Liberal-National Government, the costs of essentials are out of control, real wages are falling and now interest rates are rising by a quarter of a per cent.
Everything is going up except wages, and now interest rate rises are part of the pain.
When things are going well in the economy, Scott Morrison takes all the credit, but when things get difficult he takes none of the responsibility.
He can’t have it both ways.
The RBA is an independent body and makes its own decisions on monetary policy free from political interference’.
Now this is the most important part: ‘we’ve been responsible and reasonable about the causes of today’s decision.
But governments have a role to play in easing cost of living pressures, and in creating secure jobs which put upward pressure on wages.
All Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg have is a plan to get them through the election’.
Now, the point I made about this: ‘governments have a role to play’, since this imbecile took over as Treasurer – and that’s what he is – economically he’s bereft. We’ve had 12 more interest rate rises, 12 more after he’s critical of your government for one increase in that period of historically low interest rates, we’ve had 12 under his watch. Twelve: one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten, twelve! And all of a sudden he can’t do much about it – it’s outside pressures. I mean, it’s imbecility, Peter Dutton.
Ray, you’re right. The difficulty for Jim Chalmers is that I suspect he put that statement out in writing because he couldn’t stand up in front of the camera with a straight face to deliver those same words. I mean he must have been in hysterics as he was typing away at the computer.
I just think the human cost of this is something we just need to bear in mind constantly, and I think the Government’s lost regard of that. The real wages in this country – because of inflation – have gone backwards under Labor, that’s the reality and you’ve got a complete abrogation of their core responsibility, I mean, to keep Australians safe and to keep the economy strong.
They don’t have any economic instinct at all. Every government at any period in time will face different headwinds, globally, domestically, you need to have the wherewithal to respond to it. The trouble is that this Prime Minister wants to please everyone, which is exactly what happened in the Voice, and you end up creating situations through bad decisions which adversely affect people, and at the moment people are losing their businesses.
The fact is that in our country at the moment, the number of foreclosures and the number of business failures is at a record high. You’ve got interest rates that families can’t pay and you’ve got the Prime Minister that wants to be, you know, the Henry Kissinger of the world. He needs to get back to reality, and it’s a long time since Anthony Albanese left the housing commission home because he hasn’t been back there, obviously, and he’s forgotten about where real Australians are.
A lot of Australians continue to hurt and will continue to suffer under Jim Chalmers and Anthony Albanese because they’re making the wrong decisions, and it comes back to the energy policy: inflation is a huge problem in our economy because every business is facing an increase in their electricity bill, every business is facing an increased cost in their gas bill and they’re passing it on to consumers. That’s why inflation here is a much bigger problem than it is in most of the comparable countries in the West. There are always global factors, but the Government is making it worse and Australians are picking up the price, and it really pains Australians to see other Australians hurting at the moment.
Anthony Albanese and Chris Minns have a problem because they have people in their Party who are very sympathetic to Hamas, a terrorist organisation.
Today marks the 85th anniversary of Kristallnacht, also known as the ‘Night of Broken Glass’, when a violent wave of anti-Semitism took hold of Germany and Austria and marked a date turning point. Because, what happened? The German people seemed to support the Nazi approach and the rest is history, with 6 million Jewish people dying in concentration camps, in the gas ovens.
Today, the front page of The Australian newspaper posts an application, a pleading, from prominent Jewish Australians that we can’t repeat what’s happened previously. I had a very special guest on the program, Dr. Dave Rich, a British expert in anti-Semitism, extremism. And it’s being led by these preachers with terrorist sympathies.
Now, the best we can do at the moment with security forces is to go and say, ‘don’t be a naughty boy down there at Bankstown, you’ve got to behave yourself and stop talking about jihad’. I mean, I think at this particular stage, Minns and Albanese, the two leaders where things are happening, need to take a very strong hand, a very strong hand, and if they have to go in a little heavy handed, not them particularly, but the forces that deal with such matters, I think they’ve got to do it because things are a bit scary.
Well Ray, there’s no doubt that the rise of anti-Semitism is a reality in our society, as it is across the world. I can’t believe that the circumstances have given rise to the need for Holocaust survivors to come out and to call it out. That’s the job of the Prime Minister and as you say, the Premier as well.
I stood before 10,000 people at Dover Heights and the Premier was there as well, he apologised for the poor response from the police at the direction of the Police Minister at the Sydney Opera House, and he was applauded for that apology and for the sentiment that he expressed that night, and we applauded him on your program following it as well. But it seems that each day since then he’s walked it back and I think it’s unacceptable.
There needs to be an acceptance of the reality of history here. Nobody wants to see conflict in the Middle East, nobody wants to see anyone die – not a person of Israeli state, not a person of the Palestine state (*side), nobody wants to see any carnage. But the fact is that a couple of hundred hostages, including children, including toddlers, are still being held in caves, in these tunnels. The Israeli response to it is as a direct response to these acts of barbaric behaviour by Hamas, a terrorist group.
On the 6th of October, the Israeli troops weren’t shelling the Gaza Strip, they were enforcing their borders and it was the 7th of October that triggered what we’re seeing today, and that is undeniable.
Now, nobody tolerates any behaviour that is directed against any Australian on the basis of their religion, their postcode or colour of their hair or anything else. Australia’s a great society because we’ve been a tolerant society and we tolerate free speech, but we don’t tolerate hate speech, and what we’re seeing at the moment is hate speech. The police have the requisite powers to deal with it, and they should exercise those powers, I think for the safety of all Australians. But importantly at the moment, those of the Jewish faith.
Well, in New South Wales, we’ve got members of the Labor Party in Parliament, Friends of Palestine. We’ve got the lunatics that you’ve got to, you know, deal with in Canberra, marching out of the Senate, one holding a piece of A4 paper with a Palestinian flag on it. I mean really? And my most worrying aspect of all this, Peter Dutton, is that 10 per cent of the population vote for these imbeciles. I mean 10 per cent of the population vote for these dopes.
Well, that’s hard to comprehend. But what makes it worse Ray, is that people like Tony Burke, even Anthony Albanese – if you look back to his old speeches, Anthony Albanese’s been of the same view as the Greens and it’s only now that he’s been Prime Minister that all of a sudden he’s reversed his position, but the people aren’t stupid. They can see what he’s argued for, for his entire adult life, and all of a sudden now he doesn’t believe in it. I mean that doesn’t pass the pub test, and why are they doing it? Well, the Greens are doing it because they’re in a political fight with the Labor Party in inner city seats. Why is C-Bowen out there making these decisions in relation to energy? I’ll meet you halfway, that’s what I’m doing, Ray. I’m meeting you halfway.
That didn’t go through to the wicket keeper, that one.
I was hoping it might, I’ll just meet you halfway.
C-Bowen is out there with his energy policy, why? Because they’re trying to win Green votes in capital city seats, and it’s this whole elites v the struggle street reality.
People have been abandoned by the Labor Party and the Greens in the suburbs and in regional towns and in rural Australia. The Labor Party has sacrificed them, and the reason that Tony Burke and some of his colleagues, Tanya Plibersek and others, have taken such a strong position on this issue is because they’re fighting the Greens for votes in inner city seats. Let’s call it out for what it is: it’s crass politics and it’s disgusting.
At the moment there are people who are living in fear in our country, in our country, because of their faith, and the fact is that Hamas wants to drive the Jewish people into the sea – that’s their stated objective. It’s not about a territorial grab as it was in the Second World War, it is about destroying a race of humans. Six million of them were exterminated, and the fact that we’ve got Holocaust survivors coming out today to say that their children and grandchildren are living in fear in Australia, in 2023, is disgusting and the Prime Minister needs to stand up and show the leadership that the person in his office should be demonstrating at this point in history, and he’s not, he’s absent. I think it’s a great shame for our country, to be honest.
Okay. To a lighter note, to a lighter note. Now, I don’t know too much about Mandarin, but that’s the most broadly spoken language in China – particularly Beijing and Cantonese plays second fiddle. But I can only suspect that the Chinese Premier’s literal translation, a translation describing our Prime Minister as a ‘handsome boy’ was somehow lost in the translation.
We used to have a Parrot when we were…
Do you speak Mandarin?
I don’t, but we said we should consult K-Rudd, because he’s the expert on these matters.
Yeah, he’d know whether it’s just political, you know, it’s one of those sort of things they do with the act of diplomacy. He might have said ‘he’s got a head like a robber’s dog’, and someone said, ‘no, say ‘handsome boy’, say, ‘handsome boy”.
Handsome boy. We used to have a parrot when we’re kids, and the parrot used to say, ‘who’s a pretty boy’.
Yeah, I had a cockatoo that did that as well!
It did remind me of that actually…
Well, I don’t blame him for the – I don’t blame him for what the Chinese Premier said, but I think the literal translation may have been, you know, a little different to ‘handsome boy.’
Possibly. Alright, we’ll put it in the C-Bowen category and get back to you next week.
There’s an old Chinese expression: ‘a head like a beaten favourite’, but anyway, that’s for another day.
I thank you for your time. We’ll talk next week.
Thank you, mate. Bye bye.