In September 1932 as Jardine and his team departed for Australia, they left behind a country seething with discontent over the high levels of unemployment. A National government composed of members of the three main political parties had been formed in August 1931, with Ramsay MacDonald the former Labour Party leader as Prime Minister. On 10 September an emergency budget was rushed through parliament. Income tax was raised as was indirect taxation collected via levies on beer, tobacco, petrol and entertainment. Unemployment benefit was cut by 10 per cent, teacher's salaries reduced by 15 per cent and smaller deductions made in the pay of the police and armed forces.