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Wednesday, 26 November 1941

Mr ROSEVEAR (Dalley) .- Had the honorable member for Wentworth (Mr. Harrison) spoken any longer, lie would have convinced himself of his sincerity in moving the proposed new clause, but not us, and, I should say, not his own colleagues. The honorable member had ample opportunity as a Minister to limit the duration of taxation bills which were introduced by the Government of which he was a member to the period of the war and six months thereafter, which is what he wants this Government to do with this bill. We may find it necessary to meet a post-war collapse by imposing even heavier taxation than is now contemplated. Government officials estimate that after the war at least 600,000 men and women, will be searching for work. They will not be earning money which can be taxed, and will have to be provided for in some way. Whatever be the way, taxes will have to be levied in order to provide for them. After the war the

Government will be faced with the necessity to find huge sums of money with which to pay deferred pay to returned soldiers. Had the Fadden budget been accepted further huge sums would have had to be raised in order to repay the compulsory loans for which it provided. No one can predict what conditions will operate after the war ends, and the Government is justified, therefore, in seeking to obtain revenue in this way. Taxation measures of any kind last only from budget to budget, and from year to year. In the next budget the postage rate may be increased or reduced - no one can tell - and to gay, with the semblance of sincerity, that the operation of this measure should be limited in the way intended in the proposed new clause is ridiculous, and I hope that the Government will stand its ground and refuse to accept the proposal.

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