I support Labor’s campaign to explain the Resources Super Profits Tax. While any exemption of a Government campaign from political advertising guidelines should be questioned, the mining lobby’s “active campaign of misinformation” identified by Wayne Swan calls for an urgent and honest response.
A further question we should be asking, however, is why an “emergency” exemption should be granted for a public interest campaign about a tax, but not one to address the even more pervasive misinformation directed against the scientific reality of climate change.
The resources tax campaign will cost $38 million. The recent budget announced $30 million over two years for better communication on climate, but expects this funding to be drawn from the existing resources of a climate change department called on to find savings of $200 million.
If the Government is going to honestly claim exemptions for its advertising, a public interest campaign on climate change based on the latest science should be one of the first cabs off the rank. The trouble is, a truly honest campaign on the climate issue would show that the Government’s current climate measures simply don’t stack up when it comes to ensuring a safe climate.