In 2002 we took our 15 year old son and his best friend up to see the Great Barrier Reef. I’m so glad we did. Like the experience of standing on the beach catching whiting for dinner it might well end up being one of those “priceless” experiences that Mastercard can’t buy.
I get it that people voted against a Labor party that seems full of wankers with inflated egos and sense of entitlement. I get it that spending the taxes of the person trying to make a living running a pizza shop on propping up a giant car manufacturer is government favouritism, and that there are very good arguments for low taxes and small government and leave free enterprise to work it out. I get it that bureaucratic regulation and red tape is often ludicrously over the top, so wasteful of time and energy and creativity that it is head-bangingly frustrating. I get it that there is a human spirit of competitiveness that can lead to amazing feats of triumph and creativity and ingenuity if it is let run. I get right wing politics.
But trashing the Barrier Reef to speed up the rate of mining, as if that coal is going to vaporise and lose all its value unless we get it out now….
Trashing the Barrier Reef to make mining magnates rich, in their lifetime, when it will all be gone into private jets and Dom Perignon baths by the time their kids get to amuse the gossip mags….
Trashing the Barrier Reef to fire up local coal fired power stations and save a couple of hundred dollars in power bills while it lasts…
Trashing the Barrier Reef and giving the finger to the world community trying to pull together some kind of alliance to fight the (very, very real) threat of whole nations going underwater, millions of desperate refugees. Us, the nation that stepped up in two world wars…
We all deserve white feathers.