HON. WAYNE SWAN MP
FEDERAL MEMBER FOR LILLEY
CONSTITUENCY STATEMENT (2015 QUEENSLAND ELECTION)
FEDERATION CHAMBER, CANBERRA
MONDAY, 9 FEBRUARY 2015
***CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY***
Mr. Deputy Speaker,
First of all I would like to acknowledge the election of a new State Labor team in the northern suburbs of Brisbane who I'm sure will work hard across our northern suburbs to ensure that working families get a fair go - congratulations to Stirling Hinchliffe, Leanne Linard, Dr. Anthony Lynham and Y'vette D'ath
It's appropriate on a day like this - when the Liberal Party has chosen once again to put itself on centre stage - that we focus on the lessons that the Australian people are trying to teach them, if only they'd listen.
Over the past few days and weeks we've heard as the Liberal after Liberal has tried to explain why the Abbott Government finds itself in the position that it's in. And none of them, not one of them! Have even come close to identifying the reasons for their crisis and dysfunction.
Of course Mr. Deputy Speaker if they really wanted to find out why they're in such a pickle they need look no further than the Queensland State election a little over a week ago.
What we saw in from Cape York to the Tweed was that Queenslanders would not stand for Campbell Newman and Tony Abbott's trickledown economics agenda.
Both Campbell Newman and Tony Abbott brazenly lied about the cuts they would impose on the social safety net, particularly in health and education before they came to office.
And once in office they sought to camouflage these reckless attacks by exaggerating debt and deficit and talking down our economy. The result has been dramatic drop in consumer sentiment, business confidence and weaker growth with higher unemployment.
The response of the Conservatives establishment in Queensland and federally has been to blame the voters for the electoral earthquake in Queensland. Anything but admit that their low standing is a result of their unfair policies, bungled budget and their failure to accurately describe and deal with our economic challenges.
They and their conservative backers in the media now screech that reform is impossible.
Rather than acknowledge that it is the unfairness of their policies that lies at the core of the public rejection of their so called reforms. There are plenty of reforms voters will support, but they won't cop policies for wealth concentration. They will support long term reforms for wealth creation where the benefits are shared fairly with working people.
The commonality between Abbott and Newman is their only vision is division, pandering to vested interests at the top end of town.
Savage cuts to the safety net, lower taxes and lower wages aren't reform they are classic trickledown economics. Overseas this had led to increasing wealth concentration at the top and the creation of armies of working poor and hollowed out the middle class around the world.
And it will do the same here. Australians have a deep attachment to fairness. Talking our economy down with alarmism about debt and deficits isn't an economic policy. It's a crusher of confidence. The emptiness of their scare campaigns was exposed last Friday in the Financial Review when Joe Hockey admitted that his previous economic strategy was wrong.
You say you will listen but you are not. The issue is not the jockey's it's the nag of a horse you are all riding - the nag that wants to kill off Medicare, make university educations inaccessible to the children of working families, the nag that divides our nation into lifters and leaners as if somehow people have a choice in that, and it's a nag that's ridden by a jockey who's ideals are more with medieval England than with modern Australia.