How to characterise what Jonathan Moylan did?
Well the Greens are trying to run a ‘civil disobedience‘ line.
THE Greens leader, Senator Christine Milne, has endorsed a controversial hoax by an anti-coal activist, saying his actions were ”part of a long and proud history of civil disobedience, potentially breaking the law, to highlight something wrong”.
Her comments came after a tweet by her colleague Lee Rhiannon, who publicly congratulated Jonathan Moylan, an activist under scrutiny for impersonating a bank and temporarily wiping $314 million off the value of Whitehaven Coal.
”Congrats to Jonathan Moylan, Frontline Action on Coal, for exposing ANZ investment in coalmines,” Ms Rhiannon tweeted on Tuesday night.
Okay – good luck with that. I’m not convinced myself but it does leave the Greens having to explain why destroying economic prosperity and shareholder value is for the ‘good’. Having destroyed the Tasmanian economy they are turning their sights onto the mainland.
Conversely Nikki Williams from the Australian Coal Association has an excellent op-ed in the Australian.
The deliberate and fraudulent manipulation of the stockmarket is a serious offence, which undermines confidence in Australia’s investment system.
I disagree with two sentences.
Contempt for the interests of the public is an unusual face for the activist movement.
No. Ask the Tasmanian logging industry about that.
Free speech is a right that must be protected, but with free speech must come responsibility and accountability.
This is not a free speech issue. Moylan should be free to tell us all about the evils of coal mining and how it is disgraceful that ANZ is lending them money and, if he were an ANZ shareholder, turn up at the AGM and ask tough questions etc. etc. etc. In fact, Moylan is free to do all those things already.
Moylan did not say what he liked, he did what he liked. Moylan committed an act of violence against Whitehaven’s shareholders and the integrity of the Australian financial markets – so every person in Australia who has direct investments or indirect investments like superannuation.
If he had set a forest fire we would immediately recognise the wrong – he did the financial equivalent.