Above all else, Bob Hawke and the government he led turned the wheel when it came to inequality and disadvantage in this country. He turned the wheel through the architecture of an inclusive economy and through massive improvements in our social compact, in public health, in education and in welfare support. It is well past time for us all to put our shoulder to that wheel again.
Mr Wilson (4:41pm) — I take this opportunity to remember and pay tribute to John James Joseph Wade, known understandably as JJ, who died on 7 October, just shy of his 101st birthday. JJ Wade was one of the last surviving members of the legendary Rats of Tobruk, and he also fought at El Alamein in Egypt as part of Australia's 2/28th Battalion of the 9th Division. He was wounded, spent time in a military hospital and was then retrained in jungle warfare in order to fight the Japanese in New Guinea.
There's no good reason we can't expect that pension applications in this country get processed quickly. We should expect that technological change makes processing easier and faster, not slower, more dehumanised, more painful and more frustrating, but that is exactly what has happened since the very dawn of this government.
Mr Wilson (12:23pm) — I'm very pleased to make some remarks on the report on the second inquiry of the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties into the Peru-Australia Free Trade Agreement, or PAFTA. I say at the outset that Australian Labor have long supported fair and free trade.
Carbon emissions have risen under this government; they are rising every year. Investment in renewable energy has fallen off a cliff, and we have suffered through five years of inaction. There is no area of policy failure that has been more bleak and more hopeless in the course of the Abbott-Turnbull-Morrison government than the failure to put in place as a matter of urgency a responsible and effective forward-looking climate change and energy framework.