Gaze to the south from the cliffs on Victoria’s coast and what do you see? Bass Strait is the obvious answer, but the Palmer United Party’s senator-elect Jacqui Lambie, an Apple Isle native, knows better. That’s no mere body of water, she explains in the video below, but the 8000-year-old reason for Basket Case State’s ongoing economic malaise.
And it would so easy to cure!
According to Lambie, all it would take is another $5 billion in federal funds over the next four years and Tasmania would be up, running and the very picture of rugged economic health. And that money, large sum though it is, could be raised without any fuss or bother. Just slap some fresh taxes on the banks, Lambie explained to Mrs Tony Jones – aka Sarah Ferguson – on the ABC’s 7.30 (the transcript of that remarkable interview is here). After all, those bankers with their top hats, striped trousers and cigars can afford it, and speaking as a Tasmanian, she just knows there are oodles of welfare recipients about to be done out of their rightful share of other people’s hard work and prosperity.
Indeed, justice for those unable to work is a cause almost as dear to the senator-elect’s heart as her party leader’s innovative economic theories, as she has fought her own long and bitter battle to have herself deemed unfit for work, even beating down one medico’s assertion that her woes had less to do with the spine than her state of mind, as the Administrative Appeals Tribunal agreed:
… the applicant is entitled to compensation under Section 19 of the SRC Act on the basis that she has been totally incapacitated for work as a result of her injury from 12 November 2001 to the present date and the matter is remitted to the respondent to determine the amount of such compensation payable pursuant to Section 19(2)-(14) of the SRC Act.
Lambie takes her place in the Senate in just a few weeks, so Joe Hockey – who is both “a political politician” and “a psychopath”, according to Tasmania’s premier invalid — had better watch his step. While the former military policewoman’s dicky back precludes paid work in what might be regarded as a normal occupation, she is bravely promising to do lots of heavy lifting from the red-upholstered cross benches.
“As of July the first this year I’ll be part of the Palmer United team that will hold the balance of Australia’s political power in the Senate,” she notes in her post-election video:
Now isn’t that something to look forward to.
Roger Franklin, whose back bothers him from time to time, is determined to look beyond the pain and continue as the editor of Quadrant Online