Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 9 Hansard (21 August) . . Page.. 2539 ..
Mr Corbell: On the point of order, Mr Speaker: it may be an opinion, but it is certainly accurate.
MR SPEAKER: Thank you, Mr Corbell. The accuracy of opinions has not got much to do with it. Mr Quinlan is entitled to offer an opinion, but he is not entitled to be asked for one.
MR QUINLAN: Thank you, Mr Speaker. As I was saying, the opposition, being lazy and bereft of ideas of its own, thought, "We need some exposure somewhere. Let's puddle in the quite serious material that is emerging from quite sensible deliberations on the insurance question." Therefore, what we see is a clear demonstration of that phrase that ends, "It is better to say nothing than to speak and remove all doubt." Quite clearly, we have an opposition that understands very little of the insurance question and has therefore been amongst the fools that would rush in.
I want to advise the house of an article in the Australian Financial Review, in which commentator Alan Kohler reported new developments in the insurance market. He says:
But it is apparently already clear that the claims experience of the not-for-profit sector is better than originally thought, so that a viable package of public liability insurance can be provided without Government support.
That is saying that a more studied, rigorous and intellectual approach to the question might take us to a far better place than would the actions of the opposition across there.
This government has been working closely with the Commonwealth and with other states on finding a common solution for Australia. Remember those figures that I gave you earlier to put it into perspective? With Australia at 2 per cent of the world market and us at 2 per cent of that 2 per cent, it would be rather stupid to try to go it alone. It would be far more sensible to be part of a more reasoned and intellectual approach.
But who does the opposition want to help, anyway? I think they are just seeking another photo opportunity-a continuation of the shallowness that was a feature of the previous government. Further, I have heard that the opposition has established an insurance hotline. God help us. Now, not only are fools rushing in and telling people that waivers are okay and giving misinformation; they are going to institutionalise that and provide a hotline service so that they can spread misinformation across the airwaves.
Let me say that this government has established a hotline. This government has contacted businesses. This government has held a very well attended seminar.
Mrs Cross: Yes, but you didn't market it. You didn't tell anybody. You had to guess.
MR QUINLAN: We targeted the people. We did not rush around the streets. We were not looking for the photo opportunity; we were looking to contact the people who were really affected. So we did contact the people who were really affected. And as I said earlier, I am sorry that I have forgotten that there are people in this place who still want to live by the photo opportunity.