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Friday, 27 November 1959


Mr UREN (Reid) .- I was trying to get the call before the luncheon suspension, but I failed to catch your eye, Mr. Speaker. Had I succeeded I had intended to take the Government to task for the role it has played in frustrating the efforts of Qantas Empire Airways Limited to build an hotel in Sydney. I have given this matter a good deal of thought, and I have decided to leave the main burden of criticism of the Government until the New Year. The Government will by then have had time to review its programme. Australia would benefit if an hotel of international standards were built in Sydney for Qantas Empire Airways Limited. We know that the Wentworth Hotel, which is owned or controlled by Qantas, is not adequate and does not conform to international standards. That is all I have to say on this subject at the moment.

We are approaching the Christmas season, and this should be a time of goodwill. I am only a young member of the Parliament, and I have enjoyed the twelve months that I have spent here. I humbly thank the electors of Reid for having given me the opportunity to express my views on problems that arise in my electorate, in Australia as a whole and in the international sphere. I believe that two conferences held recently in Australia have been of great significance to world peace. The first, is the conference of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association, which was held in this chamber. I, with other honorable members, attended the conference I was here for five of the six days on which the conference was held, and I think I attended more meetings of the association, possibly, than did some of the delegates. I did that because I have a strong feeling for world problems, as they affect world peace and economic welfare. Not many solutions to economic problems were offered at the conference. I was fortunate enough to hear speeches on world peace and disarmament given by such men as Earl Attlee. He made an impromptu speech which was one of the greatest speeches ever delivered in this chamber, and possibly in Australia. It was a great fighting speech, delivered off-the-cuff and right from the heart. I hope that the delegates learned something from the speech and that they decided, on their return to their Parliaments, to work along the lines suggested by Earl Attlee.

I listened to the Treasurer (Mr. Harold Holt) when he spoke on economic questions. I did not like his presentation very much, but I was rather taken with his summing up. I thought that it was a particularly good summing up, and I hope that, in his role of Treasurer, he will adhere to some of the principles he outlined to the conference. In a way, he offered a solution to some of the problems of the backward nations of the Commonwealth and of the world. In my view, we in this country must look beyond our shores. The concept of the welfare state is appropriate not only to Australia, but also to many other countries, and unless we are prepared to make sacrifices and to share our prosperity with the backward countries, we will not have any chance of achieving world peace. Certain honorable members talk about a so-called red bogy. If men are honest with themselves, they will admit that we need not fear any red bogy in this country. But there are great masses to our north that are uncommitted. Unless we make some great effort, we cannot help to solve their problems. Many people point to the Colombo Plan; but we are just scratching the surface with it. We must make greater sacrifices, and make greater contributions to these people, no matter what criticism is offered, even by the recipients of our aid.

The other conference I should like to mention is the Melbourne peace conference. I attended it just as a rank and file member of the Australian Labour Party. My executive decided that every member of the Labour Party had a right to attend, if he wished to do so. I know that many supporters of the Labour Party felt that the smears and innuendoes of the AttorneyGeneral (Sir Garfield Barwick) were unjustified. I see that the Minister for External Affairs (Mr. Casey) is present in the chamber. The suggestion that Communists attended the peace conference in Melbourne is correct. But I want to say this: The conference was attended also by people from the field of liberal thought. Clergymen, members of the Australian Labour Party and people from many fields of thought were there. No matter what people say, 1 think that the declaration of hope that came out of that conference was not influenced by any one point of view. I do not think anybody wants to say that world problems to-day are caused by the United States of America or by the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, but I think we will all agree that we must have peaceful coexistence. We must solve our problems. Unless we do so it is not much use standing here as Christmas draws near and saying that we need to create goodwill to all men in all countries. We must get rid of distrust. We must stop beating the drums of war and start beating the drums of peace. We must strive to solve our problems.

From time to time in this House the red bogy has been trotted out by the honorable member for Hume (Mr. Anderson) and the honorable member for Chisholm (Sir Wilfrid Kent Hughes). Although their remarks have at times upset me, I respected them before I came into this House and I still respect them. But while I am in this ring - as far as I am concerned this is a ring - I will fight within the rules laid down by Parliament. You, Mr. Speaker, have done a fine job. You have been kind to me as a new member. I will continue to fight within the rules with everything at my disposal. I will hit above the belt, but if any honorable member tries to hit me below the belt I will use a few tricks of the trade myself. I hope that in the coming year honorable members opposite will broaden their minds a little and cease to look for pink elephants under their beds every morning. They must realize that we live in one world. Our leaders in the international sphere, whether they are Communists, Fascists or anything else, are trying to settle the world's differences, and we in this Parliament must do likewise.







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