Panel with Richard Wilkins and Rob McKnight, Today Show
29 October 2022
RICHARD WILKINS: Let's bring in today's talkers, Victorian Senator Jane Hume and media commentator Rob McKnight. Thank you both for coming on the program. Good morning to you, Jane. There was no cost of living relief in this week's budget, Jim Chalmers saying it was all about making our economy more resilient. Did he get it right, do you think?
JANE HUME: You know prior to the election, Richard, we heard from Labor that you are going to feel the change of government in your bank account. Well, unfortunately, I think they were right on this one. Because I think a lot of Australians were disappointed with the budget this week. There was our little cost of living relief. And yet there were forecasts that were saying inflation was going up. Cost of living was going up. Unemployment was going up. We're going to see about 140,000 people unemployed in the next 12 months and real wages were going down again, something else that the Albanese government promised in the lead up to the election that they failed on, but the really scary one was power prices. Again before the election, over 97 times they promised a $275 cut in your electricity bill. And now we're finding out that they're going to go up more than 50% for electricity and more than 40% for gas. So I think that there are a lot of people out there that are really feeling the pinch at the moment and are a bit disappointed this week.
RICHARD WILKINS: I think everybody is feeling the pinch. No doubt about that. It's a perfect storm really with what's going on. But Rob, do you think most Aussies are kind of on board with the government's budget goals?
ROB MCKNIGHT: I think most people are worried Dicky. You look at the flow on effects this is going to have so you were talking about middle middle class Australia here who are really going to be hit hardest because they're the ones that may be and it might sound elitist trying to get their kids into private school but they're scrimping and saving to do that. When you look at the kind of money we're talking about here, that will have a bigger impact because suddenly, you can't afford to send the kids to even to a cheap private school. So the public school system will become impacted by that. So more government resources will need to go into that suddenly people can't afford private health insurance. So where do they go the public system? So this becomes a false economy where people are going to put strain onto public services. And when it comes to knowing where the budget is going to go, don't trust the RBA, don't trust the government. Trust the banks, the banks if you remember when the RBA said interest rates will not go up. All the banks were saying yes they will. They're the ones to keep an eye on.
RICHARD WILKINS: Yeah, well, there's a lot going on. And that's even before Tuesday, we could see another rate hike then.
ROB MCKNIGHT: Absolutely.
JANE HUME: Almost guaranteed.
RICHARD WILKINS: Yeah. A quarter or half. It's probably the latter. Hey, here's a question for you. A little change of subject. Is it okay to pocket items from a hotel room? We're talking shampoo, tea bags, slippers, all that kind of stuff. And you study this morning is revealed 73% of us nab items at the end of the stay. Rob I’ll start with you.
ROB MCKNIGHT: Obviously I'm staying in a hotel at the fuel to do it Dicky. What I love about that is this question should be to you. You stayed in more hotels than anyone else and stayed with some of the most famous people. I'd love to know what you've swiped and what your rock and roll friends have swiped from hotels.
RICHARD WILKINS: Well interest in the early days. When I started traveling a lot. I didn't use to nick all the shampoos and things from the nice little hotels. Someone I spoke to over these Dustin Hoffman. He told me used to clear the hotel room which is quite a sight as. Jane, some have even admitted to taking home towels and bathrobes, you know the bathroom is so thick you can hardly get it in your suitcase. Is that taking it a bit too far?
JANE HUME: Well, can I tell you the one thing that I have stolen from a hotel other than you know your own shampoo bottle here and there. And I feel really bad about this, was a Bible. I had to steal a Bible from the hotel rooms, you know the bedside table, because I was getting sworn into a ministry online that day and I really needed to have a Bible with you to do it.
ROB MCKNIGHT: Jane this is an outrage.
JANE HUME: I know it is.
ROB MCKNIGHT: Hang on -
JANE HUME: Do you go to hell for stealing a Bible?
ROB MCKNIGHT: you stole a Bible to get sworn in?
JANE HUME: I know it's terrible isn’t it. I can't believe I'm admitting it on national TV.
RICHARD WILKINS: I can see the headlines of tomorrow's papers already. Almost a gimme. They’ll be sending you a bill too. Hey, thank you both for coming on the show today.