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Thursday, 31 May 1973
Page: 3006

Mr SPEAKER -Order! The House will come to order, and that includes those sitting on my extreme right.

Mr SNEDDEN - Mr Speaker, would you ask the Minister for Health (Dr Everingham) to return to the left. We do not want him on this side of the House while we are here. It will not be long before he deserves a place on the Opposition benches. The Prime Minister says that we have borne a burden. We have borne a burden as has everyone in putting up with this Government for its period in office. The Prime Minister says, in a hopeful tone, that he does not promise that the burden will be lighter. That is the problem in Australia today - the Government will not lighten the burden that we have to bear with this Government.

While we were sitting here listening to this remarkable speech we thought of the hypocrisies that are normally delivered at the end of the year and we decided that all that has happened is that the Leader of the Government has advanced Christmas by 6 months. They are hypocrisies of the kind that we all deplore in this House. The Prime Minister, in his pamphleteering mood, did not turn all the pages of the pamphlet. It is my intention now to turn a few pages of that same pamphlet. The Prime Minister commenced in office by setting the most dangerous precedent to parliamentary democracy that we have ever seen in this country - a government of 2 men. One of them-

Mr Martin - I rise on a point of order, Mr Speaker. My point is that the Leader of the Opposition is not speaking to the Chair. He is speaking to his own side and he has not even converted them.

Mr SPEAKER -Order! There is no point of order.

Mr SNEDDEN - One of this 2-man Government was the Deputy Prime Minister (Mr Barnard) who within weeks was mauled by public opinion for incompetency. He is still without confidence or authority with the Australian public or in his own Party. The Opposition, when in Government, was moving to recognition of China but the Prime Minister by his rush left us with no negotiating position on the terms at all. The Prime Minister's dreamtime in Asia has led to a rebuff from Indonesia and name calling from Thailand. His Ministers' abuse and his own rudeness have brought alienation in Washington and the United States of America. There has been bungling in Belgrade, and we all know that story. His 'may be so - may be no' over the Five-Power Arrangements has left our allies amazed and unknowing about the Government's intentions, as least until the Federal Conference of the Australian Labor Party meets in July. He made unprecedented disclosures to the Press of highly classified security information, wishing it to be seen as coming from unknown Public Service sources. He then has the gall to stand here and thank public servants for what they have done. Whenever the Labor Party Government is in trouble it blames the Public Service. The Prime Minister's ego has taken precedence over Australia's interests. He uses foreign policy for public relations purposes.

HisAttorney-General (Senator Murphy) has raped the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation on which this country depends for internal security. His actions have created scenes reminiscent of a police state - put fear in the hearts of many new Australians and prejudice in the minds of other-

Mr SPEAKER -Order! The House will come to order or I will have to take action, despite from which side of the House the noise is coming.

Mr SNEDDEN - The Government's actions have put fear in the hearts of many new Australians and prejudice in the minds of others. It has arrested the flow of security intelligence information to Australia from our allies. The Prime Minister has tried to shift the balance in industrial relations to union supremacy and away from arbitration to industrial power without regard for the public interest. He has trampled over the States in a deliberate attempt to destroy the Federal system and bring all power to Canberra. He claims, as a credit to him, that he wants a unitary system, then he has the gall to seek leave to table a list of negotiations he has had with the States. If he would only start having negotiations and table a document of his intentions we would understand it.

His Government inherited a good economy but has put it at risk by supporting a Treasurer who has no understanding of economic management. Inflation was largely under control at 4.5 per cent last year. It is now at a rate of 8 per cent and we are facing 10 per cent through the actions of the Treasurer because the Prime Minister knows nothing about economics at all. He well understands his lack of knowledge. He has maintained a myopic and cynical sham in his approach to inflation. We hobbled it; he is feeding it. He claimed he would create certainty for businessmen. Never before has there been such confusion about current policies and Government intentions. This is happening in the investment, tax, mineral exploration and development fields. The Treasurer says that he is on top but he will go off the top of his head on any tax issue and on any economic issue on any day of the week and at any question time.

The Prime Minister's Government's actions are leading to the choking off of migration. Public relations do not get migration; the quality of the nation gets migration, overseas capital and overseas expertise. The Prime Minister and his Government have ridden roughshod over the mining industry and is freezing out the valuable enterprises that should make this nation grow through mining developments. There has been Government self-satisfaction and contempt, particularly from the Prime Minister, for the Parliament of this country. High-handed arrogance and conceit to all groups and individuals in the community makes a mockery of the humanity and equality said to be the base of the Labor Party's social philosophy.

The Whitlam Government after its first fine careless rapture has now turned in on itself. Cabinet and Caucus leaks, aimed at the destruction of rivals and competing factions, are in every paper every day of the week. It is now turning inward on itself to feed on itself. Where is the Minister for Northern Development (Dr Patterson)? He has become a Minister for sugar. He is a sugary little guy. He has been humiliated but the AttorneyGeneral has been sustained. The Prime

Minister has put the Minister assisting him, the Special Minister of State (Senator Willesee), in a very humiliating position in order to sustain Senator Murphy. The Minister for Overseas Trade (Dr J. F. Cairns) received a warm welcome with warm handshakes when he walked into the chamber this evening before dinner. He is conducting Australia's foreign relations. If one looks at the list of Ministers of the Whitlam Government one finds that the Prime Minister is the Minister for Foreign Affairs, but the Minister for Overseas Trade is conducting foreign relations. But I must make this point: The Minister for Overseas Trade and Minister for Secondary Industry does leave the arts to the Prime Minister. This is the Government about which the Prime Minister is strutting. Mr Speaker, I move:

That the following words be added to the motion: and that the apologia be accepted'.

Mr SPEAKER - Is the amendment seconded?

Mr Anthony - I second the amendment.

Mr Sherry - I rise to a point of order, Mr Speaker. I seek your guidance on a matter which I think the House would be quite interested to hear. When the honourable member for Gippsland (Mr Nixon) entered the chamber tonight he made the most obscene remark about the Prime Minister when the Prime Minister was speaking. This obscene remark was overheard and I ask him to withdrew it.

Mr SPEAKER - There is no substance to the point of order. Objection must be taken immediately after an incident happens.

Mr Sherry - Mr Speaker -

Mr SPEAKER -Order! There is no substance to the point of order. I ask the honourable member for Chifley to remain quiet while I am speaking.

Mr Sherry - I invite the honourable member for Gippsland to repeat what he said when he entered this chamber.

Mr SPEAKER - No point of order is involved.

Mr Nixon - Mr Speaker-

Mr SPEAKER -Order! The honourable gentleman would have to seek leave to make a statement.

Mr Scholes - -I rise to take a point of order. The amendment moved by the Leader of the

Opposition, whilst it is a clever use of words, is completely out of order according to the forms of the House.

Mr SPEAKER - No, it is not. It is quite acceptable. I call the Leader of the Australian Country Party.

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