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May 6, 2012

LNP central planning not interested in uranium development.

Image: Barry Goldwater poster.

“We have lost the brisk pace of diversity and the genius of individual creativity. We are plodding along at a pace set by centralized planning, red tape, rules without responsibility, and regimentation without recourse.” – Barry Goldwater Republican nomination acceptance speech, 1964.

Campbell Newman and his ‘can do’ team are now in power with an overwhelming majority, holding 78 seats in an 89 seat parliament. With that sort of advantage they can pretty much do whatever they wish in implementing the policies they were elected on.

‘Can Do,’ and his team presented us with their famous ‘action plan’ featuring their vaunted ‘Four Pillar’ strategy: “Grow a Four Pillar Economy through focusing on tourism, agriculture, resources and construction and by cutting red tape and regulation.”

It appears now though they are stuck with the same old central planning approach that we are accustomed to dealing with under Labor governments, whereby nothing can happen without the state seal of approval. Governments here tend to be terrified of deviating from the old five-year plan concept, lest the perception arise that they are not really in total control.

In reply to newly elected Mount Isa Mayor Tony McGrady and his push to have a uranium mine develop just out of the city, the government has stated that its opposition to uranium mining would not be relaxed. The curious aspect to this is that opposition to uranium mining was always a Labor policy, not a LNP one. This begs the question, “Just who the hell is running things, the government or the bureaucracy?”
Natural Resources Minister Andrew Cripps says the LNP has no plans to develop Queensland's uranium resources.

The government had identified other mining and energy issues as "being significantly higher priority than uranium mining", Mr Cripps said in a statement.
It seems from this statement that if the people of Mt Isa want a new mine, they are going to have to find something that central planning has priority for, or perhaps convert their uranium into coal or perhaps iron ore. The city and surrounding area has been mined for over a century, so it is not likely to require much in the way of infrastructure beyond what a mining company would be responsible for.

If the uranium is there, companies will wish to mine it, providing investment and jobs in the area, as well as royalties for the state. All the LNP and government at large, have to do is get out of the way and let it happen.

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