Generally Freedom-Loving Australia Turned Totalitarian By Climate Alarmists

This is really sad to see in what is supposed to be a liberal democracy:

Now that the carbon tax has passed through [Australian] federal parliament, the government’s clean-up brigade is getting into the swing by trying to erase any dissent against the jobs-destroying legislation.

On cue comes the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, which this week issued warnings to businesses that they will face whopping fines of up to $1.1m if they blame the carbon tax for price rises.

It says it has been “directed by the Australian government to undertake a compliance and enforcement role in relation to claims made about the impact of a carbon price.”


There will be 23 carbon cops roaming the streets doing snap audits of businesses that “choose to link your price increases to a carbon price”.

Instead, the ACCC suggests you tell customers you’ve raised prices because “the overall cost of running (your) business has increased”.

Update:  Obama loves the Aussie carbon tax

Addressing the press in Australia, where legislators passed a carbon tax earlier this month, Obama praised Prime Minister Julia Gillard for pursuing “a bold strategy” to trim industrial emissions that most scientists say are contributing to global warming.


  1. Sean:

    My roommate used to tell me that as far as he could tell, he and his dog had the same intelligence but since he didn't really believe the dog was that smart, it gave the dog an operation advantage in the relationship. The progressive elite don't think they are smarter than everyone else, they know it. That's why they think message cops will stop resentment against the carbon tax when prices start rising suddenly. People think being eco-conscious is great but when it starts adding 10% to the cost of living they suddenly become very savvy consumers and start looking real carefully at what they are getting for their money. The Labor-Green coalition will soon learn that dollars signs will suddenly make people very good with numbers....and at connection the dots.

  2. Highway:

    Why is it supposed to be a big secret that costs went up because of a new tax? If there's actually a benefit to it (and I do believe that internalizing consequences is better than leaving them as externalities), then it's the right thing to do, and argue that point. "Yes, we know that prices went up, but that's because we're making the price of the thing more closely resemble the cost of the thing."

    Unfortunately, it's just that the people who passed the tax don't want the blame for prices going up (Spineless ninnies).

  3. Stan:

    So they don't have free speech down there?

  4. Daublin:

    Count me in as curious to know more. What pattern of constitutional provisions and legislation allow controlling what someone claims about a price increase? More specifically, what pattern would allow restricting people from truthful and accurate explanations of a price increase?

  5. JKB:

    Sounds about what we have here on occasion when they mandate that a business cannot list a new fee or tax independently on the invoice. All because it is "suppose to be paid by the business."

  6. Gil:

    If Coyote was blogging back in 1997 he would have been way more livid when the gun laws were passed and you now have to have a valid reason to own a gun for which private self-defence is not one of them.

  7. Bram:

    So the Aussies are going to speak in code.
    "The overall cost of running my business has increased” - means the "hell yeah, it's the taxes."

  8. perlhaqr:

    "So, yeah, they passed that carbon tax thing, did you hear? Oh, by the way, the overall cost of running my business has increased. And so has your price."

  9. Doug G.:

    Hi customer! You may be wondering why our prices have gone up. As suggested by the ACCC, we can tell you the the overall cost of running this business has increased.

    Oh, speaking of the ACCC, did you hear they are instituting fines of up to $1.1M on businesses that blame the carbon tax on their price increases? We want to make sure we are complying with this, so we have followed the ACCC's advice explicitly in the preceding paragraph.


  10. Ted Rado:

    Some things must be learned the hard way. In the absence of viable alternative energy sources, raising carbon prices (via the carbon tax or otherwise) will reduce the standard of living. Further, unless the Chinese and Indians do the same, Aussie products will become less competitive, and industry will move to China.
    This will all unfold over the coming years, at great cost to the public.

    All this can be figured out without ruining the economy first. I can't believe people can be so stupid. Zealotry wins out over logical thought.

    Does the prohibition against blaming the carbon tax for price increases smack of dictatorship, or is it just my imagination?

  11. IGotBupkis, Unicorn Fart Entrepreneur:

    >>> Generally Freedom-Loving Australia Turned Totalitarian By Climate Alarmists

    No, I think that happened as a result of the Gun-Danger Alarmists. This is just the mechanism by which the actual totalitarianism is implemented.

  12. IGotBupkis, Unicorn Fart Entrepreneur:

    >>> So they don’t have free speech down there?

    Nah, they're too closely modeled on the Brit system, which has all sorts of loopholes to regulate speech that Those In Charge don't want known.

    The solution is for the Aussies to write on American blogs semi-anonymously.

    That's the internet solution to pretty much all varieties of information access control -- sidestep the blockage.

  13. jay:

    Supposedly, the carbon tax is to discourage use of carbon fuels. If the cost of it is made known, isn't that what they would want? Wouldn't they want people to know what the carbon costs to modify their behavior?

  14. Max:

    Sometimes I think that if Global Warming wouldn't imply global government action to most people, it wouldn't be discussed at all. Someone like Mr. Mann would do his research in all secrecy and publish unconstrained in those niche journals that constitute scientific peer-review.
    However, since most countries and most people are often anti-market (especially in the developed world), it became an issue, when it was apparent that socialism and communism now longer were chique.
    I wonder how the world would look today if the greens never discovered their pet-issue "global warming".

    On the other side is it interesting to see that due to global warming coverage, we really see the divide between what people do and what they get told. We also see why no kind of communism will ever work for long (it is often do as I say not as I do). It also shows that the world population is on the margin more totalitarian and socialit than freedom loving (at least in that population we can safely poll - Western democracies) and this is especially true for academics. It is sad, but it also shows that a high IQ is not everything when it comes to having an open mind.

  15. Elliot:

    I'd love to see Australians flagrantly ignore the new tax and speech restrictions, en masse, like Canadians did with gun registration.

  16. chris from oz:

    The whole history of this tax is nearly bizarre, our current Prime Minister announced that there would be "no carbon tax under a government I lead" days before an election (big issue of that election), then did not quite win that election & formed a minority government which promptly introduced a Carbon Tax (that taxes CO2 not C). Personally I feel like burning a tyre each week to get some value for paying even more for power (currently $0.28-0.31 kwh).
    As for the free speech thing the same minority government is currently holding a media inquiry with the desired outcome of regulating comment in the print media, the left side over here are full of ideas, such as fund their view and restrict anything profitable and conservative, apparently the papers people actually pay money for have to much control and are "hate media", but press that people wont pay for should be subsidized.
    I used to a proud Australian but each day makes me a little sadder, for we are losing many freedoms we take for granted.

  17. Pat:

    Aussie cousins. This is the march of the marxists. You folks may have little experience with what happens next ... but surely you're seeing it. These marxists always use a "straw man" in an arguement .... for the benefit of the poor .... or in this case "global warming". Everything they touch results in degredation of society, further enslavement, in a system designed to brainwash you further, limit "speech", limit "dissention", destroy capitalism as well as strip you from every single freedom that you are entitled. It appears from this article that you have several key issues; a). You now have politicians with dictatorial powers b). They will confiscate your wealth for dissention, so there can be no "discourse allowed" c). You now have "thought police". The intent of this whole process is to scare you into submission. Although I am not a climate scientist, I am an engineer with more than 30 years experiece dealing heavily with gases and thermodynamics. The "major contributor" to global weather can be stated as such; "the SUN is the largest factor in determining weather". Absence of the radiation from the SUN and our "lights go out". Most scientists understand this quite well, however, since most institutions of learning operate and exist under the heavy hand of government, out of fear and threats to employment, they largely remain silent. This is a scam purpetrated on your society to enslave you. Let it continue, and you will be finished.

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