E&OE TRANSCRIPT DOORSTOP LOGAN THURSDAY, 27 JULY 2017 SUBJECTS: Inequality, Scott Morrison’s speech
JIM CHALMERS MP, SHADOW MINISTER FOR FINANCE, MEMBER FOR RANKIN: Inequality is a threat to our society, it’s a threat to social cohesion and social mobility, it’s a threat to living standards and it’s a threat to our economy. Inequality is not some fringe issue, it is a mainstream issue. It's not just an issue that some communities care about, it's an issue that every community should care about. Because the more equal a society is the more likely you are to get the right kind of economic growth to sustain living standards in our community.
We won't get the right kind of economic growth unless we have work that is rewarded, unless we grow together, unless people have the capacity to provide for their families and spend and invest in the economy. We won't get the right kind of economic growth that we need unless we get the productivity that comes from investing in the genuine drivers of economic growth, like training and infrastructure and technology. All of those things that will properly grow the economy in the right way here in Australia. We certainly won't get economic growth from a $65 billion gift to big multinational corporations and the four big Australian big banks and we won't get growth from paying people less to be away from their families on weekends.
Scott Morrison has had a bit to say again about inequality today. Matt Canavan might be from another country, but Scott Morrison is showing that he's from another planet. Matt Canavan, remains to be seen whether he's the citizen of another country, but Scott Morrison has proved with this comments on inequality that he is a citizen of another planet. His contribution today speaks volumes about how spectacularly out of touch the Turnbull Government is. We've got a problem with inequality when it comes to wealth, when it comes to wages, when it comes to the labour share of national income right across the board and instead we've got a Treasurer who is completely ignorant of those basic facts.
Our message to Scott Morrison is stop making excuses for inequality and stop making it worse. The Turnbull Government has a recipe for more division and more inequality and less growth. When what we need in this country is growth which is strong and inclusive, hard work which is rewarded and a decent social safety net for those at risk of being left behind.
It was a pretty ridiculous contribution again from Scott Morrison, a totally ignorant contribution from an out of touch Treasurer in an out of touch Government. He said some ridiculous things about inequality but also about big batteries, big prawns and big bananas. What he's shown again is he's staking his claim for Australia's biggest peanut.
QUESTION: What would you do about inequality?
CHALMERS: There are two things we need to do. We need to ensure we have strong economic growth and related to that is we need to make sure that economic growth is inclusive and that people have a stake and a share in our national economic prosperity. That means people being paid fairly, including for weekend work. It means ensuring that our tax system is as fair as it can be and that the biggest concessions aren't going to those Australians who need them least.
There are a whole range of levers to grow the economy, to invest in productivity, to make sure that as we grow as an economy and as a society that we grow together. The unfortunate thing, not just with Scott Morrison's ignorant comments today about inequality or the out of touch nature of the Turnbull Government, but in all of the things that should matter to Australians - inclusive growth, reward for effort, a decent social safety net - this Government is taking Australia in precisely the wrong direction. A Shorten Labor Government would invest in people, invest in productivity, invest in growth and jobs and fix the Budget by making the tax system more fair.