Tuesday, 26 August 2014
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Treasurer. Is it the case that one of the things that quite astounds the Treasurer is that some people are screaming about the $7 co-payment? Does the Treasurer agree that you can spend just over $3 on a middy of beer, so that is two middies of beer to go to the doctor?
What astounds me is that the Labor Party are in denial about the state of the budget. That astounds me. And it astounds me that the Labor Party are in denial about debt. If 'She'll be all right, mate' is the policy of the Labor Party, it is going to end up in $25,000 of debt for every man, woman and child in Australia in 10 years time. That is unfair—to give every Australian in 10 years time a legacy of $25,000 of debt if there is no policy change now. That is unfair.
Ms Butler interjecting—
But the Labor Party do not care. They are happy to see our children pay for our standard of life now. Well, that is unacceptable to the coalition. We will not pass the debt burden on to the next generation of Australians. We are going to deal with it now and it must be dealt with now otherwise the challenge gets greater and greater—the debt goes up to $667 billion and that is based on the assumption that we do not have over the next decade any severe economic downturns, and based on the assumption that we will have another 10 years of continuous economic growth. We have already had over 22 years of continuous economic growth, one of the longest periods of economic growth in world history in recent times. Very few countries can boast of a period of growth. The reason why we have had that period of growth is that previous governments undertook the reforms to ensure that the economy got stronger and that budgets were sustainable—and they were Labor governments and they were coalition governments. But the last six years of Labor defined recklessness. The last six years of Labor was the most cowardly government Australia has seen in more than a generation. Why so? Because they failed to deliver on their words and the Labor Party failed to prepare Australia for the challenges of the future.
Ms King interjecting—
We will not give away our future. We will not give away the future of the nation. We will not hand it to the people that we borrow money from. We want to control our destiny and the best way to control our destiny is to ensure that we do not owe people too much money, that we do not owe the bankers of the world too much money. You have to live within your means. If you have financial freedom, if you have economic freedom, you see jobs created and you see prosperity created. That is exactly what this government is trying to achieve.