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Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 5068

WILLESEE INTERVIEW

Photo of Fraser, Malcolm

Fraser, Malcolm

Period of Service: 11/11/1975 to 11/03/1983

More information about Fraser, Malcolm on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 13/06/1979

Release Type: Interview

Transcript ID: 5068

31
OFFCE: OV THE PRIME MINISTER
CAN BERRA
13 June, 1979
WILLESEE INTERVIEW
Because of extensive editing, the text of the interview which
the Prime Minister gave to Mr. Michael Willesee is being issued
in full.
Mr. Wi.;_ llesee-indicated when he sought the interview on the
Government's recent economic statement that it was for a special
programme which was to last the full half hour of his scheduled
broadcast time.
Whe.-the interview was put to air on Monday evening, 11 June, it
was heavily edited. The responses to eight questions were
brcadcast in part only. In one of these instances, the
Priz-, e Minister's reply was cut in the middle of the broadcast
portion, with a further cut at the end. In another instance,
the answer to one question was cut and joined to the answer to
a different question later in the interview.
Points made by the Prime Minister in edited-out portions of the
part answers broadcast included the following:
Despite the high unemployment, there has been a steady
rise in private civilian employment for some 8 or 9 months.
There are optimistic signs in the economy in that
Australian industry is gtf-tting a better share of the
domestic market.
The basic employment potential in Australia is growing
for the first time for many years.
Having to renew the tax surcharge was a disappointment,
but the Government' s main commitment was to responsible
economic management.
Changes in the economic situation after the August Budget
included substantial increases in interest rates in Britain
and the the growth in the size of the wheat crop over
estimates, the unexpected extent of the rise in beef prices,
and the events in Iran with their impact on oil prices, all
of which had an effect on the money supply and there was
a need to respond to these changes.
( Davi Barnett)
Press Secretary.

PRESS OFFICE TRANSCRIPT 7 JUNE 1979
PRIME MINISTER INTERVIEWED BY MIKE WILLESEE
Willesee I might as well get all the upopular stuff over with first.
Broken promises. You've answered a lot of questions about these
in recent times and I know you'vye said they were all made in
good faith and I think most people would accept that. I'd like to go
through them anyway. Unemployment: You were very wide of the mark
with unemployment. Why?
Prime Minister
Unemployment did fall through 1978.-It didn't fall enough to start to
reduce the number unemployed. ( Deletion: WHAT WE HAVE HAD
HOWEVER, IN THE LAST 8 OR 9 MONTHS, IS A STEADY RISE IN PRIVATE
CIVILIAN EMPLOYMENT, AND THAT'S THE FIRST TIME THAT'S HAPPENED
FOR 7 OR 8 YEARS). I think we earlier underestimated the
difficulty in getting manufacturing industry moving, getting
the employment base, therefore rising. We obviously hoped we would have
more success on the wages front but I don't state that as an
excuse, I just state it as a fact of life. ( Deletion: THE
IMBALANCES THAT HAVE COME INTO THE ECONOMY ARE CLEARLY TAKING
MUCH LONGER THAN ANYONE HOPED IN WORKING THEMSELVES OUT
BUT THERE ARE SOME OPTIMISTIC SIGNS AT THE MOMENT
BECAUSE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY IS GETTING A BETTER SHARE OF THE
DOMESTIC MARKET AND IT'S ALSO, IN AN EXCITING WAY, GETTING OUT
INTO MNANY EXPORT MARKETS IN A FASHION THAT'S JUST NOT BEEN
POSSIBLE OVER THE LAST 5 OR 6 YEARS. THIS OF COURSE IS THE BASIS
ON WHICH AUSTRALIAN EMPLOYMENT HAS TO BE BUILT).
Will ese e
You couldn't have been more definite about your statements of
unemployment falling you've specifically said that it will
start to fall from February and it will keep falling. Then you
went on to your taxation promises, also you were pretty
definite about them...
Pri-m Mfiister
Unemployment did go on falling throughout that year 1978-
so let's not forget that.
Wi 11,= a
But you wouldn't say now that you were promising that fall only
for the year. It was an on-going thing under your government
that was your promise. ./ 2

2
Prime Minister
Everyone knows there is a seasonal increase in unemployment as
school leavers leave and as they register in November or December.
Nobody could take what was said as indicating that that would not
occur. There was a fall in employment throughout the year, but I've said t
fall was not great enough to start to reduce the basic number unemployed.
( Deletion: NOW, WE HAVE SEEN FOR 7 OR 8 MONTHS, A RISE IN
PRIVATE CIVILIAN EMPLOYMENT AND THAT MEANS THAT THE BASIC
EMPLOYMENT POTENTIAL IN AUSTRALIA IS GROWING. AND THIS IS FOR
THE FIRST TIME IN MANY YEARS. SO, YOU KNOW, MAYBE A LITTLE LATER,
CERTAINLY NOT AS MUCH AS WE'D HOPED, BUT POLICIES ARE WORKING IN
ESTABLISHING MORE JOBS).
( Deletion: WILLESEE
WHAT ABOUT TAX? YOU SAID THEY WOULDN'T RISE. YOU WERE QUITE
SPECIFIC ABOUT IT.)
( Deletion: PRIME MINISTER
WE SAID THAT TAXES WOULD FALL AND WE SAID WE'D INTRODUCE NEW
TAX SCALES, AND SO WE HAVE. WE ALSO SAID WE'D INTRODUCE TAX
INDEXATION WHICH MEANT 7HAT GOVERN T NEEDED MORE REVENUE THEY
WOULD HAVE TO LEGISLATE FOR IT AND SO WE HAVE, IN THAT. BUT I
THINK YOU ARE PROBABLY ASKING ABOUT THE SURCHARGE.)
( Deletion: WILLESEE
NO, NO, FIRSTLY YOU SAID TAX WILL NOT RISE JUST AS A SIMPLE
STATEMENT, PROMISE.)
( Deletion: PRIME MINISTER
WE NEVER SAID THAT TAXES WOULDN'T GO UP BUT WE DID SAY THAT IF
GOVEPMENTS WANTED MORE MONEY, THEY'LL HAVE TO LEGISLATE FOR IT
AND THAT IS THE WHOLE DEBATE ABOUT TAX INDEXATION. BEFORE THE
LAST ELECTION WE'D INTRODUCED NEW TAX SCALES AND TAX REFORMS. EARLIER,
BEFO. E THOSE REFORMS, ON THE HAYDEN SCALES, PEOPLE WERE ENTERING
THE 45½ IN THE DOLLAR RATE AT $ 10,000 AND THE 55½ IN THE DOLLAR
RATE AT $ 16,000. UNDER OUR REFORMS WE REDUCED THAT TO
32½ IN THE DOLLAR AT $ 10,000. THAT RATE CONTINUED RIGHT THROUGH,
AND EVEN WITH THE SURCHARGE, PEOPLE AT $ 10,000 ARE PAYING 10½ IN
THE DOLLAR LESS THAN WITH MR. HAYDEN, AND AT $ 16,000 ARE PAYING MORE
THAN 20½ IN THE DOLLAR LESS. THE SURCHARGE WAS THERE, AND IT
REM-AINS FOR THE REASONS THAT JOHN HOWARD AND MYSELF HAVE
EXPLAINED, BUT LET NOBODY MISS THE POINt TAXES ARE VERY MUCH LOWER
INCO E TAXES THAN THEY WERE, AND IT'S OUR AIM TO KEEP
IT THAT WAY.)
WILLESEE
Equally, they. can't wiss the point that you said that taxes will not
go up, and they did go up.
Prime Minister
You're getting again back to the tax indexation side of the argument.
We said that tax indexation will be introduced so that we don't / 3

-3
Prime Minister
get a continual rip-off in taxatLion through the process
of inflation. If governments want more money, they'll
have to legislate for it. And we never said at some stage that
we might not have to collect more tax to meeL the government's
bills. We've kept a very tight rein on expenditure, as I think
everyone knows, but at the same time, if we've wanted more
revenue, we'Ive had to legislate for it openly and plainly, but none
of that can detract from the fact that income taxes are much,
much lower than they were under the Hayden scales. That was
the main commitment, and that commitment has been fulfilled.
( Deletion : NOW, THE SURCHARGE WAS A DISAPPOINTMENT WE ALSO
SAID THAT WHEN IT WAS INTRODUCED THAT IT WOULD BE TEMPORARY AND FOR
REASON \ S THAT HAVE OCCURRED SINCE THE* BUDGET IT WASN'T POSSIBLE TO
TAKE THAT OFF ON JULY 1.
AGAIN, THE REASONS FOR THAT HAVE BEEN EXPLAINED AND OUR
MAIN COM. 1MITMENT HAS TO BE TOWARDS THE RESPONSIBLE ECONOMIC
MANAGEM', ENT, PROPER BUDGETARY MANAGEMENT, BECAUSE IF THE GOVERNMENT
FAILS ON THAT, YOU THEN DISSIPATE THE GAINS THAT HAVE BEEN MADE
IN GETTING INFLATION DOWN AND IN MAKING AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY
COMPETITIVE). ( Deletion: WILLESEE
PEOPLE WANT WHAT IS RIGHT FOR THE GOVERNMENT. I'M JUST TRYING TO
( Deletion: PRIME MINISTER
I'M GLAD YOU RECOGNISE -THAT.)
( Deletion: WILLESEE
I HOPE EVERYONE RECOGNISES THAT. THE RIGHT THING MUST BE DONE.
BUT YOU SEE YOU DID SAY VERY SIMPLY AND BALDLY IN THE ' 77
POLICY SPEECH, THE GOVERNMENT WILL BRING TAXES DOWN FURTHER
AND NOT INCREASE THEM.)
_( Deletion: PRIME MINISTER
WE DID BRING THEM DOWN. IN FEBRUARY WE INTRODUCED THOSE NEW
TAX SCALES THEY APPLIED FROM FEBRUARY 1978 AND I'VE INDICATED
TH. P-l PE-DUCTIONS IN TAXATION AT THE $ 10,000 LEVEL ARE MORE
THAN l0 IN THE DOLLAR COMPARED WITH THE HAYDEN SCALES AT THE
$ 16,000 LEVEL, MORE THAN 20 IN THE DOLLAR LESS THAN UNDER THE HAYDEN
SCAL'ES. BY ANY STANDARDS, THAT'S A VERY SUBSTANTIAL REDUCTION
Willesee It's just such a simple thing. You said you will not increase
them and you did. People get very confused about the economy,
It's very hard for them to follow and they see very simple and bald
statements and they want them to be true and they are not true.
Prime Minister
We said we'd introduce new tax scales, we said we'd introduce
lower tax scales and reduce taxes, and we have. / 4

4
Wil le see
You said you wouldn't increase taxes but you did.
Prime Minister
We made it perfectly plain with the introduction of tax
indexation. We said that if governments want more money they'll
have to legislate for it. And so we did.
Willesee
Don't you think that people might look at you now and think,
" Look, he's behaving like a politician. He wants to get the
best out of each answer, which is his right, but he's not facing
up to those basic
Prime Minister
I think you want to get the best out of each question, and
not recognising the fact that taxes are very much lower than
they have been. You're running the risk of doing what so often
seems to happen when you and I get on an interview you want me
to say something, and you stick on that point, or try to, and
you generally fail to get me to say what you want me to say.
Why should I?
Willeasee
Yes, I do generally fail, but I just feel, in the public interest,
if I put a question that is important, I should get the answer.
Now, I've put to you several times that you said you would not
increase taxes...
Prime Minister
YVou're totally missing whatwe said about tax indexation. Now
I knowA tax indexation is not well understood, but it stops
governments getting the rip-off from continual increases in
taxation as a result of inflation, which means that governments
need more money to meet their bills, they've got to tax for it
and do it plainly, openly and honestly, and that's precisely
what we did.
Will esee
Was it and honest promise wahen you said, " I will not
in--as t-axes'
Prime Minister-
We never gave a blanket commitment not to increase any taxes,
and it would be totally wrong to suggest that we did
Will esee
But that's what you said in your policy speech.

Prime Minister
we'd introduce company -taxes and we'd increase company taxes
and we have adjusted other elements of taxation because we'd
have to make sure that revenue adequately matches expenditure.
And any government that didn't do that, would be totally irresponsible.
Wil11e see
All right, I give up on that one. At the time of the mini-budget
you said you had to go back on promises, not exactly your
words but that's what you meant, because a lot of things had
changed. At what time did you know things had changed
sufficiently, that you couldn't keep all your promises?
Prime Minister
I th 4nk there was a contLinual change probably from about
Noveinzer onwards.
( Deletion: THE RATES WERE SET FOR A NOVEMBER LOAN, AND AT THE
VERY STAME TIME, THERE WERE VERY SUBSTANTIAL INCREASES IN rIIEPEST RATES IN
THE UNITED STATES AND ALSO IN THE UNITED KINGDOM. THEN, RIGHT
THROUGH TILL FEBRUARY OR MARCH WE WERE GETTING REVISED ESTIMATES
OF TIHE WHEAT CROP. IT ENDED UP BY BEING DOUBLE THE YEAR BEFORE
AND VERY, VERY MUCH LARGER THAN ANYONE HAD EARLIER ANTICIPATED.
BEEF PRICES ROSE MUCH MORE THAN ANYONE HAD EXPECTED AND THEN THE
EVEINTS IN IRAN WHICH LED TO A SHORTAGE OF OIL AND A MUCH
GRE;? ER INCREASE IN OIL. MORE RECENTLY THERE HAVE BEEN INCREASES
AND IMPROVEMENTS IN METAL PRICES.
NOW, MUCH OF THIS IS GOOD NEWS FOR FARMERS OR FOR THE BALANCE OF
PAYM ENTS, FOR THE MINING INDUSTRY WITH METAL PRICES, BUT ITS
BAD NEWS FOR THE M-ONEY SUPPLY.)
Will ese e
Prime Minister, if you noticed these changes from about November
as you say, why then at the end of February this year did you
say in a major speech to Parliament " I believe that ' 79 is
the year in which the fruits of our economic policy will become
clearly apparent"?
Prime Ministerrlh of our economic policies are becoming apparent. In
many industries, they're doing very much better than they have
been or many years.. The rural industries are clearly doing
better : and there wouldn't have been of course if inflation had still
bee-n running rampant. Their costs increased 30% in 1974
in one year alone. The trade offensive around the world has
secured much better markets for many of our products. Without
markets they wouldn't be doing well. ( Deletion: MANUFACTURING
INDUSTRY IS MORE COMPETITIVE THAN ANY TIME SINCE THE VERY EARLY
THEY'RE GETTING INTO EXPORT MARKETS, THEIR PROFITS ARE UP
AND THEY'RE LOOKING TO THE FUTURE. INVESTMENT IS UP VERY GREATLY.
NOW, NONE OF THIS COULD HAVE OCCURRED, NONE OF THIS
WOULD HAVE OCCURRED, IF IT HADN'T BEEN FOR THE RIGOUR OF OUR
ECONOMIC POLICIES OVER THE LAST THREE YEARS.) ./ 6

-6-
Willesee Can you understand people being confused when you were so
bouyant about the economy at the end of February, and a couple of
months later you bring in a horror mini-budget, and warn of a
tougher August budget?
Prime Minister
A horror mini-budget I think out in the community there is a
very broad acceptance that what was done was necessary because
any government, whether an economy is running well or whether
an economy is running badly, ought to respond to changed
circumstances so that matters keep on a proper path. ( Deletion:
I DON' LIKE BEING TECHNICAL, BUT IF MATTERS OCCUR WHICH ARE GOING
TO AFFECT MONEY SUPPLY SIGNIFICANTLY, IF FACTORS OCCUR WHICH ARE
GOING TO AFFECT INFLATIONARY PRESSURES DURING THE COURSE OF THE
YEAR, THEN QUITE PLAINLY A GOVERNMENT OUGHT TO RESPOND TO THAT.
BUT RESPONDING TO THAT DOESNT MEAN THAT THE ECONOMY IS NOT DOING
WELL, DOESN'T MEAN THAT INDUSTRIES AREN'T DOING MUCH
BETTER, DOESN'T MEAN THAT THE BAMANCE OF PAYMENTS ISN'T STRONGER
THAT IT'S BEEN FOR YEARS).
Willesee
When the Whitlam GCverrment had the economic reins and made a
mess, you held them responsible, didn't you?
Prile Minister
Yes, of course.
Willesee Do you think people should hold you responsible for what's
gone wrong now?
Prime Minister:
Weli, wha-Ts~ gone wrong? The fact that we had to introduce some
measures in May? That's not a sign of something going wrong.
It was a sign as we said on many occasions, we put this
cross on our own backs. ( Deletion: IT W AS A SIGN THAT WE SHOULDN" T HAVE SAID
THAT THAT COMITMENT IN RELATION TO THE SURCHARGE WOULD BE
TEMPORARY. NOW, THAT'S CERTAIN. BUT THE FACT THAT THE WHEAT
HARVEST WAS DOUBLED, MEAT PRICES HAVE GONE UP A GREAT DEAL, THAT
METAL PRICES ARE MUCH MORE BOUYANT NOW THESE ARE THINGS THAT MANY PEOPLE WOL
BELIEVE TO BE GOOD AND DESIRABLE. BUT THEY ALSO IN THE MOVEMENTS,
EXCEEDED WHAT HAD EARLIER BEEN EXPECTED AND WITH THE WAGE INCREASES,
OIL INCREASES, AND BOUYANCY IN A NUMBER OF OTHER AREAS, THERE WERE
SIGiS OF RENEWED INFLATIONARY EXPECTATIONS, AND CLEARLY WE HAD
TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT.
ALWAYS IN AN ECONOMY, THERE'LL BE CHANGES THROUGHOUT
THE YEAR, AND SOMETIMES A GOVERNMENT MIGHT NEED TO RESPOND TO THAT
BETWEEN AUGUSTS, NOT JUST LEAVE IT TILL THE AUGUST BUDGET. THAT
DOESN'T MEAN THAT THINGS HAVE GONE WRONG. THAT MEANS THAT YOU'RE
TRIMMING YOUR SAILS TO KEEP ON A STEADY COURSE, AND THAT'S WHAT
WE DID.)
Willesee
But there are things wrong you've got an enormous deficit, enormous
unemployment. You told us these things wouldn't happen. If you
go back to 1975, you said, " I'll need three years to right / 7

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Wil11 s C C
the economy, after the mess -the Labor Party has left it in."
Prime Minister
By the end of the third year, on all the surveys that came out
of industry overthe last summer months, and into this year, for the
first time they are looking to the future with confidence.
And they still are.
( Deletion: WILLESE
BUT THIS IS THE FIFTH YEAR. YOU'VE HAD TO BREAK PROMISES, YOU'VE
GOT A MASSIVE DEFICIT
( Deletion: PRIME MINISTER
IS THIS THE FIFTH YEAR?
( Delet.-ion: WILLESEE
' 76, ' 77, ' 78, ' 79 FOURTH YEAR.
( Deletion: PRIMNE MINISTER
YES. THREE AND A HALF YEARS, AND AS WE GO INTO THE
BEGINNING OF THE FOURTH YEAR, AT THE END OF THE THIRD YEAR,
PEOPLE WERE ABLE TO SEE THAT THERE WAS MUCH GREATER VIGOUR
AND LIFE IN THE AUSTRALIAN ECONOMY FOR A VARIETY OF REASONS,
BECAUSE WE HAVE ESTABLISHED THE CIRCUMSTANCES IN WHICH THE
RURA-L INDUSTRIES CAN BE PROFITABLE AGAIN, BECAUSE WE HAVE
ESTABLISHED THE CIRCUMSTANCES IN WHICH MANUFACTURING
INDUSTRY CAN ONCE AGAIN COMPETE IN AUSTRALIA OR AROUND THE WORLD.
NOW NONE OF THAT MEANS THAT THERE ARE NO PROBLEMS.
NONE OF THAT MEANS THAT THERE AREN'T STILL THINGS THAT, AS A
GOVERNMENT AND AS A NATION, WE HAVE TO WORK AT. IF YOU THINK YOU CAN
LOOK TO A CIRCUMSTANCE AND SUDDENLY SAY, " WE'LL GO THROUGH
THIS DOOR AND THERE'LL BE NO MORE PROBLEMS, NO MORE DIFFICULTIES",
WELL, LIFE IS NOT LIKE THAT, AND GOVERNMENT IS NOT LIKE THAT
AND I DOUBT IF PRODUCING YOUR SHOW IS LIKE THAT.).
( Deletion: W1ILLESEE
BTT YUiA~ PROMISE IN Y3UR SITUATION, PARTICULARLY AS
PRINLE MINISTER -YOU SAY UNEMPLOYMENT WILL GO DOWN AND
IT GOES UP YOU DONT SAY THAT...
PRIME MINISTER
WE DISCUSSED THAT EARLIER, AND THROUGH 1978 UNEMPLOYMENT WENT
DOWN MONTH AFTER MONTH AFTER MONTH. I'VE INDICATED TO YOU THAT
IT DIDN'T GO DOWN ENOUGH ONCE THE NEXT BATCH OF SCHOOL LEAVERS
CAME ONTO THE LABOUR MARKET TO REDUCE THE TOTAL NUMBER UNEMPLOYED.
I'VE ALSO POINTED OUT THAT FOR THE FIRST TIME IN MANY, MANY
YEARS, PRIVATE CIVILIAN EMPLOYMENT HAS BEEN INCREASING, MONTH
BY MONTH, FOR SEVEN OR EIGHT MONTHS. THAT AGAIN IS AN INDICATION
OF A MORE BOUYANT SITUATION IN MANUFACTURING INDUSTRY, IN
THE PRIVATE SECTOR OF THE AUSTRALIAN ECONOMY.)
Look, its fair enough for you to want to say that things are
all lousy

8
Willesee No, not all lousy, but some things are...
Prime Minister
But that's the implication from your question...
Willesee I'm being quite specific unemployment and tax are two very
specific things...
Prime Minister
I made the point that taxes are much lower than they were, and
our ceneral thrust is to try and get taxes lower if we can, as
you know.
We've spoken about the unemployment question. In addition to that,
on the wages front, the increases have been much greater than
we would have expected and greater I believe than many people
in the outside world would have expected, or wanted. ( Deletion:
AND TH= AT PLAINLY HAS BEEN ONE OF THE FACTORS WHICH IS HOLDING BACK THE
RATE OF RECOVERY W'iTIN THE AUSTALIAN ECONOMY. ALRIGHT, THAT'S NOT
TO SAY WE DON'T HAVE OUR RESPONSIBILITIES, BUT IT DOES POINT TO
THE FACT THAT THERE ARE OTHER CIRCUMSTANCES WITHIN AUSTRALIA,
OTHER GROUPS THAT HAVE GOT THEIR OWN INDEPENDENT POWER BASE AS
THE ARBITRATION COM4ISSION HAS, WHICH CAN EITHER ASSIST THE
PROCESS OF RECOVERY OR INHIBIT IT.)
Willesee
Do you think people regard you as a credible Prime M'inister,
particularly in view of the mini-budget?
Prim. e Minister
I would think so, yes, because as a result of the mini-budget
we've made it perfectly plain that we'll stay on course in
relation to the broad economic policy, that we're going to
continue to bear down on inflation and establish the circumstances
in which Australians can work for the future with a great deal
of confidence. If we hadn't had that mini-budget, people would
have been saying and the economic commentators would have been
sayin-that the August Budget is going to be an impossible one
because the deficit will be too large. There'll be no doubts
about that now.
Wi I -see
There aren't too many people saying that you did the mini-budget
for the wrong reasons they believe you did it for the right
reasons. / 9

.9-
Prime Minister
That's a pretty fair concession on you part.
Will ese e
I think it's a simple fact. No one thinks you did it deliberately
to become unpopular, or to deliberately break promises.
Prime Minister
They know that it was unpopular but they also know it was the
right thing for the Australian economy.
Wil leS e
But, to do that, you had to swallow this rather bitter pill of
brea'king promises, and be seen to break promises.
Pri-me Minister
We had to swallow the rather bitter pill in relation to the
surcharge.
Willesee Did you stop and think about that in a personal sense?
Prime Minister
Of course I did. One thing you think about it, " why did we
do that in the first place?" Quite clearly we weren't doing it
to box ourselves in a corner in May and establish a commitment
that we wouldn't be able -to meet. So, we thought we were making that
conmitment, we were iraking it, in good faith. We weren' t able to meet it and I
have said before that was a cross that we have to bear, or that I have to bear
( Deletion: WILLESEE
HOW DO YOU BEAR THAT CROSS? DOES IT WORRY YOU, FOR EXAMPLE?)
( Deletion: PRIME MINISTER
IT . DDB/ SN' T HELP Ir-' YOU ALLOW THINGS TO WORRY YOU. YOU'VE GOT
TO BE ABLE TO ASSESS WHAT HAPPENS, WHAT YOU DO, THE IMPLICATIONS
OF IT...
( De ~ IL T_ 5E E
DID YOU DISCUSS IT WITH SOME BODY, PRIVATELY?)
( Deletion: PRIME MINISTER
THESE THINGS ARE DISCUSSED IN CABINET WITH YOUR COLLEAGUES,
OBVIOUSLY. WHEN YOU'RE MAKING A DECISION, THEY'RE CABINET
DECISIONS, GOVERNMENT DECISIONS, NOT FRASER'S DECISIONS HOWEVER
MUCH PEOPLE SOIIETIPIES MIGHT WANT TO SUGGEST THEY ARE.)

10
( Deletion: ILLESEE
BUT DON'T YOU THINK, " ARE PEOPLE GOING TO BELIEVE ME ANY MORE?")
( Deletion: PRIME MINISTER
I BELIEVE THAT PEOPLE ARE GOING TO BELIEVE A GOVERNMENT THAT
QUITE PATENTLY, IS TAKING THE RIGHT COURSE FOR THE
AUSTRALIAN ECONOMY.)
( Deletion: WILLESEE
YOU SEEM TO AND I CAN UNDERSTAND WHY COME BACK TO GOVERNMENT
AND CABINET, BUT THAT WAS A VERY PERSONAL THING, TO BREAK A
PROMISE, WASN'T IT?)
( Deletion: PRIME MINISTER
LOOK, IT WAS A GOVERNMENT DECISION, INCORPORATED IN THE TREASURER'S
SPEECH, AND CERTAINLY, I'M HEAD OF THE GOVERNMENT, IF THEPRE'S A
COMMITMENT OF THAT KIND THAT'S NOT MET, IT GETS TIED ROUND MY
NECK AND PEOPLE TRY TO SAY THAT IT WAS A PERSONAL DECISION OF
FRASER'S. BUT IN THE SENSE, THAT IN FACT IT WAS A GOVERNMENT
DECISION, IT MAKES IT A GOVERNMENT MATTER. NOW, IT'S ONLY A
PERSONAL MATTER IN THE SENSE THAT PEOPLE TRY TO HANG FRASER WITH IT.)
( Deletion: WILLESEE
DO YOU TAKE MANY THINGS HOME AT NIGHT, IN A PERSONAL SENSE?
( Deletion: PRIME MINISTER
NO, I THINK WHEN I LEAVE THIS BUILDING YOU PUT IT BESIDE YOU
BECAUSE THE DAY IS BUSY ENOUGH THERE'S ONE QUESTION, THEN
ANOTER... ( Deletion: WILLESEE
THEPRE MUST BE SOME THINGS THAT GET UNDER YOUR SKIN?)
( Deletion: PRIME MINISTER
THINGS CAN GET UNDER THE SKIN, YES., BUT THAT DOESN'T MEAN TO SAY
THAT I HAVE TO CARRY THEM AROUND WITH ME. I THINK IT'S VERY
IMPORTANT TO BE ABLE TO SHUT DOORS, TO BE ABLE TO, IN THE SENSE OF " THIS
WEEKED IS GOING TO BE SPENT WITH MY FAMILY, I'M GOING TO GET
DOWN ON THE FARM, OR GO FISHING OR WHATEVER". I THINK IF YOU ARE GOING
TO ALLOW A JOB OR A CIRCUMSTANCE TO WORRY YOU, CONCERN YOU,
GET UNDER YOUR SKIN, MAKE YOU FRET ALL THE TIME, THEN IT MAKES
A JOB JUST THAT MUCH HARDER, AND THERE'S NO POINT AT IT BECAUSE
YOU WON'T BE DOING THE JOB ANY BETTER). 000---

Transcript 5068