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Wednesday, 30 October 1974
Page: 2105

Senator BONNER (QUEENSLAND) - I present the following petition from 2 citizens of Queensland:

To the Honourable the President and members of the Senate in Parliament assembled. The petition of the undersigned respectfully showeth:

That whereas dangerously accelerating inflation is placing unbearable strain and hardship upon the people of Australia, with consequent serious escalation of industrial strikes, chaos and hostility,

And whereas neither government economists nor the Federal Government can offer any certain early solution but continue to propose policies known to have failed in the past- including the claim for centralised control of all wages and prices which has also failed overseas, and which the Australian public rejected decisively by national referendum only recently,

And whereas the Senate is not only an independent House of Review elected democratically by the people with its own mandate to protect their heritage and constitutional rights, but is the States ' House by which all Australians in their own sovereign States formed long before Federation can bring together ideas and plans and resources for their mutual benefit and advancement,

So accordingly the recent, carefully-reasoned proposals of the Premier of the State of Queensland seeking the freezing of all taxation, the elimination of sales tax, and the reimplementation of consumer subsidies or discounts, warrant the most urgent and thorough investigation of the Senate.

Your petitioners most humbly pray that the Senate, in Parliament assembled, will take all essential steps without delay to:

(A)   Demonstrate to the Australian public that everything possible is genuinely being done to halt the grave damage being inflicted by inflation upon our economy, by immediately and openly debating the aforesaid proposals of the Queensland Premier, and

(B)   Call for the widest possible publicity and discussion of these said proposals, especially in view of the surprising scarcity of reports or details about these in most of the mass media and having regard for the fact that the Premier of Queensland did certainly table such proposals at the official Premiers' Conference lately, that the practice of consumer or price subsidies or discounts did work most effectively and harmoniously throughout Australia between 1943 and 1948, and finally, that such broad publicity is in full accord with the present Federal Government's stated claim of 'Open Government*.

And your petitioners as in duty bound will ever pray.

Petition received and read.

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