Jim Chalmers is forced to defend his VERY left-wing ‘inspiration’ for his 6,000 word essay – as he cops withering question from TV host
- Jim Chalmers wrote 6,000 essay in The Monthly
- Treasurer cited Italian economist Maria Mazzucato
Jim Chalmers has been forced to defend taking inspiration from a left-wing economist who wants governments around the world to remake capitalism.
The Treasurer quoted Italian-born economics professor Mariana Mazzucato in his 6,000-word essay in The Monthly magazine, titled Capitalism After The Crises.
‘As the influential economist Mariana Mazzucato has explored in her work, markets built in partnership through the efforts of business, labour and government, are still the best mechanism we have to efficiently and effectively direct resources,’ Dr Chalmers wrote.
The federal treasurer defended drawing inspiration from a former adviser to the UK Labour Party‘s previous hard left leader Jeremy Corbyn during an interview with 7.30 host Sarah Ferguson on Tuesday night.
‘I read her work in the same way that I take inspiration and advice from a whole range of sources,’ he said.
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Treasurer Jim Chalmers (pictured with wife Laura) has been forced to defend taking inspiration from a left-wing economist who wants governments around the world to remake capitalism
‘There are a lot of people writing on these sorts of topics right now.’
Pressed on why he liked Dr Mazzucato’s views, Dr Chalmers said the idea of the government intervening in the economy appealed to him.
The Treasurer quoted Italian economics professor Mariana Mazzucato (pictured) in his 6,000-word essay in The Monthly magazine, titled Capitalism After The Crises
‘I think that there’s something in this idea of co-investment,’ he said.
‘I think that there is an opportunity for us to work out if we want cleaner and cheaper energy, and we want to use technology more effectively, we want a more modern industrial base, is to work out what positive role can the public sector play in that, and what positive role can the private sector play in that.’
Government intervention would be a repudiation of former Labor prime ministers Bob Hawke and Paul Keating, who privatised the Commonwealth Bank and Qantas – a suggestion Dr Chalmers denied.
‘I mean, of course, that’s complete rubbish. It is absolute rubbish,’ he said.
Dr Chalmers claimed his ideas were in keeping with the free market reforms undertaken by previous Labor governments during the 1980s and 1990s, including by Mr Keating when he was the treasurer who deregulated the banks.
‘I’m here because of the example set by the Hawke/Keating period,’ he said.
‘It’s one of the main reasons why I got involved in politics in the first place and I see what I’m trying to do as in concert with the motivating spirit of the Hawke/Keating period, not in conflict with it.’
Dr Mazzucato, an economics professor at University College London, has written several books calling for more government intervention in the economy, including Mission Economy: A moonshot guide to changing capitalism and The Entrepreneurial State: Debunking Public vs. Private Sector Myths.