Wednesday, 13 November 2013
Commonwealth Inscribed Stock Amendment Bill 2013; Consideration in Detail
Next week—the member for Mitchell seems know something that the rest of the public does not know, as to how quickly the government is looking to rack up debt. So you guys know, but you won't release the figures. Here is the other thing: we have said that if you come back and put the case, we will allow it to go further. The best way to do it is to release MYEFO. But they won't do it, because they are gutless. They will not allow the public to scrutinise it. This whole control approach that they have in other portfolios—like Scott Morrison, the Minister for Immigration and Border Protection: he is hiding the boats and he has hidden himself. You can't even see him in the chamber anymore because he is in hiding behind the Speaker over there. And now they want to hide the state of the books until Christmas. Effectively, when Santa is getting soot on his suit, that is when they will release MYEFO—when no-one can really analyse it and look at it. So why won't they do it? They are saying they want to lift the debt limit to $500 billion—with no data, with no figures, with no substantiation. Why do they want to do it?
They have also suddenly realised that revenue is soft. Well, we have been saying that for ages. When we were in government, we had been saying for ages that the world economic outlook, as soft as it is, is going to impact on us. Exchange rates are going to have an impact on us as well. And they said—about all these things—'no, this is an expenditure issue, and you have got to get your house in order.' But they are not announcing anything at all that they plan to do to address expenditure. What have they done? They have set up a commission of audit. By the way, I love this commission of audit. They have put Amanda Vanstone on it—how much money did she spend on her renovations in Italy?—but they would not even put Peter Costello on; their own Treasurer! They were too embarrassed to put him on their commission of audit. They are going ahead with this commission of audit, but when will it report? Down the track sometime they will put forward their expenditure cuts, but they won't put them in now. This is the problem. As I said, they need to come up with the data and the facts, and explain precisely why they reckon debt is going to go the way it is going to go and take the public with them.