Tuesday 19 October 2010

Anti-privatisation campaign hits Cairns letterboxes this week

It's something the tourism industry should cringe about. Tourism Queensland's famous catchphrase... "beautiful one day, perfect the next" has been reworked as Premier Bligh starts on her mission to prop up the State's $80 billion debt by selling off a range of public assets, the first being Queensland Rail.

"Beautiful one day. Sold the next!" says the postcard that will be letterboxed across the region in the next week or so. The Liberal National Party’s campaign against Labor’s forced privatisation and fire-sale of assets, is warning that if Labor gets away with its privatisation agenda, it will embark on a second phase if it is re-elected next year.

“If Ms Bligh and Labor lied at the ballot box 18 months ago, then they will all the way to the ballot box scheduled in 18 months time,” John-Paul Langbroek, of the LNP said. “We all remember how Ms Bligh vowed before the last election to serve a full term. She then lied and went to a rushed election six months earlier so that she wouldn’t have to face Queenslanders and tell them the truth about Labor’s plans to sell-off Queensland."

Langbroek has accused unions who gave $1.2 million to the Queensland Labor Party in the last six months, an claim that the ETU, rejects.

"The ETU/CEPU (Electrical Trades and Communications, Electrical, Plumbing Unions) Political Disclosure form for 2010 was $0.00, as per our commitment," Peter Simpson says. "We have not donated one cent to the Australian Labor Party, nor will we be."

However Langbroek says that instead of giving money to the Labor Party to prop up Bligh’s job, if those unions had instead spent $1.2 million saving the jobs of their own members, then Labor wouldn’t be this far down the privatisation track.

It's predicted that the sale of Queensland Rail will only pay 18 months of interest on Labor’s massive debt.

“Labor has mismanaged the economy to such a degree that they are going to sell-off this great big chunk of Queensland Rail forever, simply so they can pay 18 months of interest on the debt," John-Paul Langbroek says. "Labor can’t budget, can’t manage the dollars and can’t stop the waste. As a result they are going to sell-off everything. Under an LNP Government if the assets aren’t sold, they won’t be sold. If the contracts aren’t signed they won’t be signed.”

Local ETU organiser, Stuey Traill says that they are relying on local union members to educate the public about the privatisation plans by Labor.

"We need people to know that the ETU/CEPU Queensland has not donated a cent to the ALP since privatisation," Stuey Traill says. "As a Union we are affiliated to the ALP. This decision was taken by rank and file members at our 2009 Branch Conference, prior to the privatisation announcement."

Traill says the decision to re-affiliate or not, will be voted on by "rank and file" members representing all industries in May 2011.

"The ETU prides itself on rank and file making decisions on the direction of our union," Stuey Traill said. "The 2011 Branch Conference debate on Affiliation will definitely be a lively one."

Gotta say that it's better that Tourism Queensland's latest marketing effort.

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