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MDBA arm-twists Basin leaders in closed door meetings

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MDBA arm-twists Basin leaders in closed door meetings, ‘community consultations’ a farce


The Murray-Darling Basin Authority (MDBA) and Water Minister Tony Burke are holding closed door meetings to coerce Basin community leaders into accepting their plan to gut the food bowl.

Burke and the MDBA’s much touted 20-week “community consultation” period is a bitter joke, as they intend to avoid at all costs the inevitable angry public meetings like those that rejected the MDBA’s Guide to the proposed Basin Plan in late 2010 and early 2011.

They are sneaking into towns for invitation-only meetings to variously buy off or intimidate the community leaders to submit to the plan ahead of any public meeting charades that do go ahead.

This is what Tony Burke was caught at back in November, ahead of the December public meeting, when a local Griffith irrigator passionately challenged him in front of television cameras [click here to view video]; a well-connected Griffith source told the CEC that Burke was there with millions in grant money to buy off the community opposition to the Plan.

The MDBA held similar invitation-only meetings in Mildura on 12th January, which MDBA chief executive Rhondda Dickson admitted to the Sunraysia Daily were to avoid the “hothouse atmosphere that could develop at mass public meetings”.

Citizens Electoral Council chairman Ann Lawler today blasted the MDBA’s tactics as “underhanded and downright deceitful”, and said it showed that the MDBA was determined to ram through its Green Fascist agenda, over the community’s opposition.

“Tony Burke and [MDBA chairman] Craig Knowles are fronting an agenda that has nothing to do with the environment, but is intent on ripping the heart out of Australia’s agricultural capacity,” Lawler said.

“They are targeting the Basin for its ability to feed tens of millions of people, and are using the scientific hoax of ‘ecosystems’ and the ‘balance of nature’ to justify clearing the Basin of people and industry, for the sole purpose of enforcing the British Crown’s green genocide drive to slash the world’s population down to less than a billion people [click here to view PDF].

“They are determined to steamroll all opposition to ram it through, but they fear the unified strength of the Basin’s communities expressed in the public meetings last year, so their new tactic is to pick off the community leaders first.

“In response to that unified, Basin-wide outrage last year, Craig Knowles has since cooked up the official new MDBA doctrine of ‘Localism’ [click here to view PDF]. Professing profound concern for ‘local perspectives as all on ground action is taken at a local level’, this new-found interest in ‘local perspectives’ is just a transparent divide-and-conquer tactic to turn town against town, and even neighbour against neighbour.”

The MDBA’s promise of public consultation was just another lie, as was Tony Burke’s insistence that no irrigator would be forced to sell their water, Lawler said.

“Burke is reassuring everyone in the basin that the government will not force anybody to sell their water, but he knows all along that the very announcement of the MDBA plan is the green light for the banks to force farmers to sell their water, and achieve the MDBA Plan that way.

“Everything Burke and the MDBA is saying and doing on this Plan is a lie,” continued Lawler, “because they are not genuinely interested in improving the Basin, but are just goosestepping to the orders of Australian Conservation Foundation founder Prince Philip, the Führer of Green Fascism, to shut down the Basin and starve millions of people to death.”

Lawler concluded, “Genuine public policy doesn’t need to be coerced behind closed doors; genuine leaders include the public in their planning. A genuine plan for the Basin would be committed to developing an expanded potential for food production, and applying the best science to achieve that goal. That’s what the CEC is fighting for, and I urge all Australians to join our fight—if you want to eat.”

ends


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