Colin Paulson asks how the Government will influence overseas coal users to go on buying Australian coal (“Buckley’s chance of protecting coal”, Chronicle Forum, Nov 17), but the answer is obvious.
As long as there is a single vote at stake for the National Party (what a misnomer), the Government will throw our hard-earned dollars down the drain in subsidies to international mining corporations, to keep digging it out and selling it, at an enormous loss, to whoever will take it off our hands.
It won’t even matter if the purchaser even uses it, as long as we get it out of the country and out of sight.
We could eventually pay miners to extract it from underground mines and use it as filling in restoring open-cut mines – a win-win situation for everybody.
I can see the PM waving a piece of coal and explaining to the miners, the environmentalists, the climate activists and the economists that he has found a fear-free solution to all our problems.
Mr Paulson sadly under-estimates the ingenuity of our Government in using our money to bolster up its electoral support.
In light of the Sportsrort, the Carpork, the Pooldiddle and other imaginative ways that taxes can be magically converted into winning campaigns, does he really believe that the Government is going to give up on this invaluable seam of voting ore?
You can be sure that our PM will find some way of spinning mining as a contribution to our climate-change efforts, paltry as they are.
Of course, given how few jobs are affected, the timeframe involved and the range of options open to us, one would suppose that a rational policy would be to have a phased withdrawal, but then, what would happen to the National Party membership?
Their troglodyte views have already alienated the farmers, and Pauline Hanson has cut them off from the know-nothings who could previously be counted on for a donkey vote, so their lifespan looks limited.
I think the important thing is to hang in until the current Members can collect their pensions, then Devil take the hindmost.
Email, Nov 20
Bruce Hyland, Woy Woy