Going bananas

Wayne Swan 27 July 2011

Banana prices are up 470 per cent compared to where they were prior to the natural disasters with some people paying as high as $14 a kilo.

Wayne Swan 27 October 2006

This is the Treasurer’s banana alibi again. The truth is core inflation has been rising.

The problem is the Government has put all its eggs in its commodity basket and mining is very important to the Australian economy and a huge generator of wealth but it has precious little to say about the services sector of the Australian economy and the manufacturing industry. For example, the manufacturing industry has growth going backwards but the Government doesn’t regard it as a problem. We’ve got to have a much more balanced approach to economic development which pays attention to the needs of our manufacturing sector and our services sector. Once again, that comes back to investing particularly in the skills of our people, making sure we’re innovative in the way we work and the way in which produce products, it means putting incentive into the tax system and it means really attending to the infrastructure bottlenecks. On all these questions the Government is missing in action.

(HT: Token)

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35 Responses to Going bananas

  1. Gillard is veracity challenged; Swan is intellectually challenged.

  2. sdog says:

    Hahaha. Great catch.

  3. Viva says:

    Can Swan ever get it right on inflation? I seem to remember that very early on in the Rudd government, Swan was carrying on alarming declaring “The inflation genie is out of the bottle”, talking down the economy at a time there was more concern about economic growth than inflation.

  4. Louis Hissink says:

    Innovation ?

    Remonds me of a conversation I had a couple of years back with a WA Department of Industry type about the use of the term “innovate”.

    Said ALP state government, after putting various impediments to mining etc activity, reacted when I mentioned it was not a useful policy, expected the industry to innovate to solve its problems, in stead of repealing the regulations.

    I took it that the time honoured reaction to government iniiated impediments to activity is the discreet deployment of brown paper bags etc.

    Those idiots thought that increasing taxes, and etc, would cause us to innovate rather than take our exploration and mining capital elsewhere, where returns were higher.

  5. sdog says:

    You’re right, Viva. In May 2008 Wayne Swan was still rabbiting on about trying to put the inflation genie back in the bottle. Less than 9 months later Kevin announced his $42 billion “economic stimulus package”.

  6. sdog says:

    (links for my comment above: inflation genie; stimulus)

  7. ACTOldFart says:

    It’s yellow, it’s bent, and it’s from Queensland – and it’s not a banana

  8. C.L. says:

    Can Swan ever get it right on inflation?


  9. Dandy Warhol says:

    And they wonder why voters already have baseball bats in hand two years out from an election.

  10. Infidel Tiger says:

    Yes, we have no bananas.

  11. Gabrielle says:

    Song most often requested by Swan on the drive home.

    His Comcar driver wears earmuffs.

  12. Tal says:

    Bananas……. sums up this government

  13. JC says:

    A friend just mentioned to me earlier…an interesting angle to this.

    It would be interesting to ask Shane Wand why is he so worried about the price of bananas.

    The aussie has been appreciating all year so imported prices have actually fallen.

    Domestic inflation must be absolutely raging if we’re at the top of the RBA band with the Aussie appreciation quelling import prices.

    Fuckkkkkk never thought of that.

  14. Theres’ only ONE reason that bananas are $14 a kg. and it has NOTHING to do with floods (or inflation).

  15. Token says:

    Julia Gillard met the Queen in England … She asked her, “Your Majesty, how do you run such an efficient government? Are there any tips you can give to me?”

    “Well,” said the Queen, “the most important thing is to surround yourself with intelligent people.”

    Julia frowned, and then asked, “But how do I know the people around me are really intelligent?”

    The Queen took a sip of tea. “Oh, that’s easy; you just ask them to answer an intelligent riddle.”

    The Queen pushed a button on her intercom. “Please send David Cameron in here, would you?”

    David Cameron walked into the room and said, “Yes, Your Majesty?”

    The Queen smiled and said, “Answer me this please, David, your mother and father have a child. It is not your brother and it is not your
    sister. Who is it?”

    Without pausing for a moment, David Cameron answered, “That would be me.”

    “Yes! Very good,” said the Queen.

    Julia went back home to Australia and asked Wayne Swan, her Deputy Prime Minister the same question.

    ” Wayne , answer this for me. Your mother and your father have a child. It’s not your brother and it’s not your sister. Who is it?”

    “I’m not sure,” said Wayne … “Let me get back to you on that one.” He went to his advisors and asked every one, but none could give him an

    Finally, he ended up in the men’s room and recognized Tony Abbott’s shoes in the next stall.

    Wayne asked, “Tony, can you answer this for me? Your mother and Father have a child and it’s not your brother or your sister. Who is it?”

    Tony yelled back, “That’s easy, it’s me!”

    Wayne smiled, and said, “Thanks!” Then, he went back to speak with Julia.

    “Say, I did some research and I have the answer to that riddle. It’s Tony Abbott”

    Julia got up, stomped over to Swan, and angrily yelled into his face, “No, You idiot! It’s the English Prime Minister, David Cameron!”

  16. Fleeced says:

    Theres’ only ONE reason that bananas are $14 a kg. and it has NOTHING to do with floods (or inflation).

    Lack of imports.

  17. pete m says:

    Actually it was cyclone Yasi. And before that it was cyclone Larry.

    Swan should just STFU. Closed mouth catches no flies. He’s so dumb he has stayed in Aust when all the half smart ministers flew off at the first sign of carbon ads.

  18. Fleeced says:

    Actually it was cyclone Yasi. And before that it was cyclone Larry.

    No, it’s lack of imports. There’s enough diversity in global supply, that a cyclone in one area should have minimal effect.

    It’s just another protected industry… we should be getting bananas for $0.99/kg.

  19. jumpnmcar says:

    “”””No, it’s lack of imports.”””

    You have more faith in AQIS than i do.

  20. Fleeced says:

    You have more faith in AQIS than i do.

    The industry in Australia can’t guarantee supply, and is unreliable. We should let it pass.

  21. Fleeced says:

    The industry is basically subsidised, and then imports banned, so that we also pay 14 times as much as we should. Then on top of that, we pay handouts to countries in the region to help prop them up – which is generous and all – but we should instead just buy their stuff. We’re basically overpaying not just once, but three times, for an inferior product with an unreliable supply.

  22. Rafe says:

    See how the fruit cost problem has morphed into climate change, next thing it will be G W Bush and Hitler.

    “Be afraid consumers, climate change is coming to get your food prices!”

  23. Dandy Warhol says:

    Fleeced – no need to get worried. Just do what I do – boycott bananas.

    That’ll learn ’em better than words.

  24. Fleeced says:

    But I like bananas 🙁

  25. sdog says:

    Instead of a Flood Levy, we should have a Banana Levy, whereby Rich People™ have to pay an extra 1.25% tax into a dedicated Bananas With Fairness fund.

    This will allow our Benevolent Leader to subsidise the price of bananas so that they’re back down to the pre-cyclone price, allowing Wayne to get that Inflation Genie back into its bottle. WINNING!

  26. Ivan Denisovich says:

    Bananas……. sums up this government

    Swan committed to realising Labor hero Keating’s banana prediction:

    If this Government cannot get the adjustment, get manufacturing going again, and keep moderate wage outcomes and a sensible economic policy, then Australia is basically done for. We will end up being a third rate economy… a banana republic.

    Keating speaking to John Laws on Radio 2UE, May 14, 1986.

  27. JC says:


    And just to remind you… that comment flashed on our Reuter screen at lunchtime and as soon as I read that I went out and sold tons of aussie panicking the market. It was perhaps my best trading day that entire decade.. 14 May 1986. What a day.

    I was perhaps the first trader to understand the gravity of that comment and how others would react.

  28. Gabrielle says:

    Cut & Paste. Swan on ABC1’s Insiders program, July 30, 2006:

    PETER Costello and John Howard’s banana alibi simply doesn’t stack up. You can walk down any supermarket in the country and see that fruit prices are up across the board.

  29. Herb says:

    Sinclair. You were great on 2ue today

  30. Sinclair Davidson says:

    Thank you.

  31. Gabrielle says:

    Sinclair why don’t you tell us in advance of your interviews? Or even afterwards?

    Same goes for Judith. Another one worth listening to.

  32. Sinclair Davidson says:

    I had little advance warning myself. Many of my interviews are at very short notice.

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