SCRAP-HEAP: Tasmanian furniture industry faces extinction because of Greens party policies

green_couch_garbageThe Greens are pursuing anti-forestry policies that would if implemented shut down the furniture industry in Tasmania, cruelly throwing as many as 1500 family bread-winners on the scrap-heap.

Furniture craftsmen are highly trained and specialised people whose skills are probably not easily transferred to other manufacturing work. That means many of them will be sacked and be thrown on the long-term unemployed scrap-heap, many workers and employers in the industry fear.

The future of the industry is at stake in discussions convened by highly respected former ACTU secretary Bill Kelty who is attempting to devise a compromise over the future of forestry, the Gunns’ pulp mill and the demands of Greens party front-groups and eco-militants. In today’s Australian, Kelty warned them of the perils of being unreasonable, something they no doubt hear quite a lot.

The Greens demands include also that as many as 1500 timber workers be boned, who are mainly middle-aged blokes from poor, small, struggling rural communities and towns whose future is being attacked by inner-urban rich people like superannuation millionaire Senator Bob Brown who is so flush with funds he’s been able to give away one of his weekender rural retreats to charity.

The furniture and timber industry also employs and gives skills and meaning to the lives of many hundreds of young Tasmanians and apprentices who are trying to make their way in the world without being forced to find work in the mainland or go on the dole, locals have explained to VEXNEWS.

Tasmanian political insiders tell the famed VEXNEWS Investigations Unit that the federal Greens have been extremely hostile to the interests of the workers while the state Greens are splitting away from them on the issue somewhat, with hardline anti-union Tassie Prisons Minister Nick McKim urging Greens front-groups to take a softer line in negotiations.

‘Slick” Nick McKim is a poll-driven ‘calculating politician’ (as the PM would say) and has probably paid careful attention to the result of a recent Galaxy poll that showed the overwhelming majority of Tasmanians supported the use of local timber. The Tasmanian Premier, Lara Giddings spoke to the results in Parliament:

Of ALP supporters it was about 80 per cent, of Liberal supporters it was about 90 per cent, and even in the Greens movement it was  56 per cent, so even a narrow majority of Greens believed that we ought to be able to grow and harvest our trees and usethat timber here in Tasmania.

The furniture industry has been one of Australia’s manufacturing success stories, representing as much as 10% of our manufacturing sector. The Tasmanian industry is on the verge of extinction if the Greens and their militant front-groups get their way and their only solution is to throw the workers hurt by their policies on the dole.

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17 Comments

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17 responses to “SCRAP-HEAP: Tasmanian furniture industry faces extinction because of Greens party policies

  1. blackmambo

    Senior Tas and Vic Greens reps walked into one of my old work places once (forestry and timber manufacturing) and asked how long before we could shut down our entire business?

    We replied: What?? Shut it down and put 750+ people out of work?

    The Greens: Yeah

    Us: But what about those people?

    The Greens: “Too bad”

    My boss (all seven feet of him): “Fuck off and get out.”

    The Greens quickly exited with backpacks.

  2. Shambles

    I am a respected political strategist.

    Do these poor unfortunate people need a lobbyist?

  3. Zaf

    “The furniture and timber industry also employs and gives skills and meaning to the lives of many hundreds of young Tasmanians and apprentices who are trying to make their way in the world without being forced to find work in the mainland or go on the dole”

    I strongly urge literacy and numeracy instead, and so should you vexnews, for shame!!

  4. coz

    There’s also the issue of land clearing, say if you have natural bushland which you use for timber and therefore fell and regenerate on a cycle, the policy here is that once regrown that land is classed as bush and you need permission to fell, which the greens are against. It puts timber workers/landowners in the position of having to plant non native timbers in order that their land can’t be declared natural Tasmanian bush. I’m not a timber worker but I’m currently planting a number of European trees at my place (small acreage) to avoid having it declared bush. The local trees here come up like weeds and regeneration is very fast.

  5. A few notes:

    Shutting down production is the Green’s aim. This is the whole object of co2 taxes – an ETS is also a Co2 tax – and what is not covered in the media, it is blowing production away in Europe, has been right from when they were imposed.

    Why? Cheap – thus it is efficient, energy in tremendous constant supply not only vital for homes, schools and hospitals (shut off the power and how many will have life preserving and extending operations!), it is a vital input for all production. No power, capital cannot be operated. Ag is not exempt.

    Killing coal powered energy will see production collapse like cards at a puff of wind. But this is the aim of the Greens, and their ‘deah leadahs’ have stated exactly that – plenty of quotes on it. It is why they plumped for Co2 taxes, it’s a weapon.

    So, what do we see from the major parties, over the years policies that will deliver and now Tas timber-men are threatened and so are all Australians.

    The Green’s jugular is capital and I quote, for instance –

    Green Guru Ehrlich: cheap energy is like giving the masses a machine gun

    Bob Brown, pulp mills, factories and so forth are all “dinosaur industries”.

    This is the only way to stop that lot and MPs in the major parties from ramming down Co2 taxes and related monstrosities such as alternative energy scams, rip that jugular out and they are dead.

    It’s only the living standards and lives of Australians at stake and this is what “Greens policies’ strike at, on a horrific scale.
    Tasmanians are being sent to the wall because of vicious policies. All others will follow them.

  6. It would be remiss of me, as a Liberal, to throw this in for your amusement:

    What also needs to be hammered home is that the right have deliberately ignored the quotes. Maybe they didn’t like the source.This recalls a well traveled joke:

    How do you get our right-wing to successfully suppress an effective free market argument? You publish it in Brookesnews.com

    I notice the ALP has ended up with a disease that is strangling the Liberal Party – How is it a tiny closed gene pool ended up on top?

  7. Steven

    What a bilious little website and readership this is. I’d expect hatred and attitude like this in the deep south of the USA. Wabbit season you wabbits!

  8. Pingback: mangledthoughts › The Bile of the Hard Left

  9. What do you object to Steven, the fact of what Co2 taxes will do, or the truth of what they will do, demonstrated by Green policies which are destroying firms already and immiserating Australians.

    So, you are outraged by what you haven’t shown to be false. You are upset because very many Australians intuitively realise what they mean and there are those who can demonstrate that sound intuition.

    While Australians are already being thrown into destitution – and firms are falling over in Victoria because Green’s policies that have been rammed down in the State are taxing away capital, as also in Tasmania, your great worry Steven is you don’t like a few home truths.

    Now, one description of your sense of morality occurs to me, and it applies to those ramming them down, callous contempt for Australians. You, however, have grace – being, presumably, not directly involved in ramming them down, you are stamped with callous contempt, and not callous thugs whose contempt is transparent.

  10. Blackmambo

    @Douglas.

    Yes, you are right.

    Shutting down production is the goal and the point of my anecdote was just that.

    When asked about the welfare and future of timber workers ( trapped through no fault of their own in a dinosaur sector – greens view), the response was “too bad.”

    By the way, if like me you are of an age where the plumbing is problematic, trawl through Adam brandts pages. Prizer could license him as an emetic.

  11. Picked up the thrust of your anecdote Blackmambo.

    Not only the Greens, but those all for their wondrous policy, they are thick and the way to pierce their skulls is with a steel rod.You have to break through their defences – reinforced cement.

    Is there enough of a brandt to produce the vast quantities of emetic needed.

  12. James

    This article is a dreadful, emotive, hysterical rant. I find it ironic that a right-wing blog would be concerned about job losses (and the class struggle, the rich screwing the poor), especially only 1,500 across a state. Interestingly that is about the same number as the Crane Group made redundant to keep its profits up after the GFC, with Greg Sedgwick being lauded for the decision (by those you’d normally perceive as right wing, namely the financial press). Same thing every time Telstra lays off a couple of thousand workers, it’s always seen as a great thing that sends it share price higher.

    And so many unsubstantiated assertions. ‘Breadwinners’? Where’s your data? ‘not easily transferred to other manufacturing work’ – again, where’s your proof and why does it have to be manufacturing work rather than other semi-skilled or non-skilled labour?

    ‘be boned’? Emotive, value-laden language.

    ‘inner-urban rich people like superannuation millionaire Senator Bob Brown who is so flush with funds he’s been able to give away one of his weekender rural retreats to charity’ – a pearler, ironically this sounds like something from the Socialist Left Weekly. And how does his superannuation detract from his position on anything (other than superannuation)?

    A well written article on this topic could have had my nodding my head in agreement the whole way through but this had me chuckling with derision.

  13. James’ feeble attempt at covering himself:

    “A well written article on this topic could have had my nodding my head in agreement the whole way through but this had me chuckling with derision.”

    To muse, Greens fronts are run by wealthy spoiled brats. They are so far removed from the facts of life most Australians deal with daily, it is very understandable why they hold the vast majority of Australians in contempt.

    But the truth is, James, another Greens cultist, he has made that plain, on the even of what the Greens believe is the cusp of their ‘great victory’ over the capitalist west sees as with his chums, disaster for themselves.

    Modest Australians see intuitively the true impact of Co2 taxes. Vexnews has it in clear view too.

    God, is it funny watching the Co2 tax Australians out of existence throw tantrums.

    I only suggest Vexnews ground its attack into the economic explanation of the impact of C2 taxes because, I assure, Vexnews, this accurate attack is like hitting the Greens with a bayonet rammed up their innards.

    They would be completely finished if this was grasped by the ‘mainstream media’ (ha, they are so feeble it’s comical)and very upset MPs and their advisers. Needless to say, it would also finish off cretins in the Liberal Party and ALP who see nothing wrong with ramming down Co2 taxes and other Green policies that bring ruin, destitution and worse.

  14. Evil ted

    What are the tradies meant to do? Not all of them can leave full time skilled work to work in low skill low pay bed and breakfast jobs

  15. A correction to ‘…God, is it funny watching the Co2 tax Australians out of existence throw tantrums. ‘

    Intended to write –
    God, is it funny watching the ‘Co2 tax Australians out of existence brigade’ throw tantrums.

  16. James

    @Douglas, what the hell does furniture making have to do with CO2 or taxes? How does that make Greens evil capitalists and foresters rabid Marxists (I thought it was the other way around). The article could have been based on objective economic arguments (if furniture makers do indeed constitute 10% of the Tasmanian economy). Someone like me, with no time for the Greens, the Libs or Labs or any other organised political outfit, could be convinced.

    The Greens problem is they know how to protest but they don’t know how to negotiate. Add to that the number of vapid neo-Marxists in their ranks who aren’t so concerned with conservation but smashing the capitalist system, then you can see why they have issues garnering main-stream support.

    Then again the Democrats, who were fairly rational especially in the early days, even got more support than the Greens. Why? Because most people are emotionally attached to the teat of the Labor Party or the Liberal Party. For a very large portion of the population, political allegiance is like following a football team and has nothing to do with ideology.

    Personally, I don’t agree with a CO2 tax, it further complicates an already complicated tax system and such an issue should be dealt with directly, not by some indirect means. And it detracts from (or maybe deliberately distracts from?) so many other issues we face such as depletion of natural resources, overpopulation, pollution, land degradation and so on.

    Having a rational discussion on anything political in this country is a pipe dream.

  17. James

    My comment re the Democrats should be that they didn’t get more support than the Greens.

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