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Keating's job policy: PJK for PM



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Peter Reith

DEPUTY LEADER of the OPPOSITION PRE S S RELEASE SHADOW TREASURER

KEATING'S JOBS POLICY: PJK FOR PM

The principal architect of the worst recession since the

Great Depression is now crying crocodile tears about the

unemployed.

At the WA ALP State Conference on Saturday night, Mr Keating, in his typically hypocritical style, made a complete somersault on his Prime Ministership campaign platform.

Australia, it appears, no longer needs to "snap the inflation stick". It now seems that the principal job of a possible

Keating government is to return to the ALP's "great charter of creating jobs and getting the economy going".

So, how does Mr Keating propose to create all these jobs for those on the dole queues he and his once good mate, Bob Hawke, created?

Does the putative Prime Minister have any coherent policies for creating the jobs that he feels he must create?

How does Mr Keating intend stimulating the economy, again creating the boom-bust cycle that has caused Australia's enormous $131 billion foreign debt problems?

Here are some basic questions for the putative Prime Minister and his loyal (or disloyal to Mr Hawke) Cabinet Ministers:

- How much more money does Mr Keating propose to spend on

Commonwealth own purpose payments?

- How much more money does Mr Keating propose to spend on

State governments?

- By how much does Mr Keating intend increasing the State

governments' Loan Council global borrowing limits?

- What tax reform does Mr Keating propose to implement to

encourage jobs in the private sector?

- By how much does Mr Keating intend to lower personal income tax so as to create incentive to work harder, to save and invest?

- How does Mr Keating propose to fund the necessary abolition of the inequitable tax on businesses and exports, the wholesale sales tax?

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- Does Mr Keating propose to reverse the Hawke/Keating

government's tariff reduction policy and does he expect this possible reversal to create more jobs in Australian secondary industry?

- What is Hr Keating's policy on the environment and resource development? Mr Keating vitally needs the votes from his left wing colleagues, but how does he intend to create jobs unless he is prepared to allow resource projects such as Coronation Hill to proceed?

- Does Mr Keating propose to boost jobs in the tourism

industry by building the third runway at Kingsford Smith airport in Sydney or has he caved in to his NSW number

crunchers, Leo McLeay and Laurie Brereton, in this

important issue?

- With youth unemployment hovering at around 30 per cent,

what is Mr Keating's policy on youth wages? Is his slavish devotion to Bill Kelty and the failed Prices and Incomes Accord ever going to allow him to build a rational wages policy for Australia?

If Mr Keating is more than the empty populist and opportunistic demagogue that he is portraying to the left wing of Caucus, he would be able to produce answers for these questions.

But that is obviously beyond him, as testified by his 8 years as Treasurer.

The truth is that he is now so distracted by his own ambition that he lacks the discipline and interest to present an

alternative strategy to pave the way for a recovery from the disastrous consequences of his own mis-management as the former Treasurer.

30 September 1991 Hastings

Contact: David Turnbull (06) 2774277 D113/91

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