9th Jan 2018

NSW Young Liberals propose including home in assets test

Is your home safe from assets test?

President of the NSW Young Liberals Harry Stutchbury has sparked an internal brawl within his party after writing in The Sydney Morning Herald that the Government should scrap the primary dwelling exemption from the Age Pension assets test.

Mr Stutchbury said the Liberals were “terrified of taking serious steps to tackle housing affordability”, having been burnt by their attempt to curb superannuation excesses before the last election.

“The Coalition treads on eggshells around the pensions of retirees sitting on homes worth millions of dollars across Sydney and Melbourne's blue chip electorates,” Mr Stutchbury wrote.

“Imagine two Australians, who over the course of their lifetimes earn the same income, and save the same amount of money. However, one of them invests in the share market instead of buying a home. The one bold enough to invest in productive capital in the share market will be ineligible for the aged-pension and significantly worse off as a result.



“This creates an incentive for Australians close to retirement to sit on large family homes instead of downsizing. This reduces the volume of housing available in the market, pushing up prices.”

In response, NSW Counter Terrorism Minister David Elliott blasted Mr Stutchbury on Facebook, suggesting Liberal voters in western Sydney would use the opinion piece to light their barbecues.

“A middle class eastern suburbs private school boy is hardly qualified to pass judgement on something he's never faced,” Mr Elliott wrote. “Haven't we already had our quota of policy brain farts?”

Federal Assistant Home Affairs Minister Alex Hawke dismissed Mr Stutchbury’s contributions as lazy and wrong.

“It definitely was intellectually lazy and inaccurately posited that older people exercising their absolute right to stay in their own home as long as they want are somehow hurting young people from getting ahead,” Mr Hawke wrote.

Opinion: The year of targeting pensioners

The new year is not off to a great start. The Government clearly has pensioners in its sights this season.

It started when the Federal Treasury report announced figures explaining how much of an average worker’s pay went towards funding the Age Pension.

Now we have the NSW president of the Young Liberals suggesting scrapping the primary residence exemption from the assets test.

This is not a new target for conservatives. Last year, the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) urged the Federal Government to consider that should the primary residence be valued over $450,000, those retiring at 65 would not be eligible for a full or part Age Pension for five years.

The Liberal Party-linked Menzies Research Centre also called for including the home in the assets test for the pension prior to last year’s Federal Budget.

While there is some merit in including the homes of the particularly wealthy in the assets test (possibly homes worth more than $2.5 million), it needs to be carefully thought through, otherwise many older Australians could suffer undue hardship in retirement.

Matt Grudnoff, a senior economist from The Australia Institute, provides a much better solution in the YourLifeChoices Retirement Affordability Index.

Mr Grudnoff proposes a Universal Age Pension paid to anyone over the age of 67, regardless of their income or assets, while simultaneously abolishing superannuation tax concessions to provide the funding.

His model would also allow the single pension base rate to rise from $814 per fortnight to $1063 per fortnight, while also seeing the Government pocket an extra $15 billion per year.

What do you think? Should the family home remain fully exempt from Age Pension assets testing? Or should homes above a certain amount be, at least partly, included?


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COMMENTS

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bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
9:37am
I ignore anything coming out of the Australian Institute (full of left wing greenies with zero economic credibility).
I do believe further discussion needs to be had on whether those with family homes valued at $3m or more should be excluded from assets test for OAP. Some may think that $3m is too high.
I declare that I am a self funded retiree and get no OAP.
There are many aged pensions who through no fault of their own have reached aged pension age but are renting and so are doing it tough on on OAP.
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
9:41am
To adee to my earlier comment - interesting that Alex Hawke and David Elliiott are quoted (both so called moderates and would be better off in the right wing part of the labor party)
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
9:45am
$5 million would suit me as $3 million is too low in my opinion.
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
9:52am
BigBear - an excellent start to the discussion - I suspect those who chose $2.5m have information from ATO or elsewhere that indicates that is where the cut-off is to make the most savings.
However I've seen nothing to date to say your $5m figure is not equally valid - in any case - with all things politics - it is the art of the compromise
Hasbeen
10th Jan 2018
10:56am
Cutting immigration to net zero would do much more to address the housing crisis, without attacking those who built the wealth the young share today.

Quote bob Menzies, "There are many aged pensions who through no fault of their own have reached aged pension age but are renting and so are doing it tough on OAP". Garbage bob, anyone who could not become a hone owner in their lifetime did not try very hard, is a wastrel, or mad some very bad choices.

I started again at 42 years of age with nothing, & was a home owner, debt free by 60, on average income, & raising 3 kids along the way.
jackie
10th Jan 2018
11:07am
In a world of overpopulation, global warming, rising costs, job decline and no security the Australian Institute has lost the plot.
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
11:10am
Has been - I think your being a bit harsh - there have been several stories on news concerning mothers who got divorced late in life and had little to nothing. There were some now in their 90s who suffered for one reason or another after WW2 (my mum told me of some she knew) - yes you may be right some bad choices but to call them all wastrel is harsh.
I agree though with cutting immigration - but I would go back to long term historical averages from WW2 of of 70,000 (last year it was over 280,000 and that is unsustainable)
inextratime
10th Jan 2018
11:17am
Has Been. Its comments like yours that make one wonder where you have been all your life. Have you ever heard of illness either by the bread winner or one of the family, businesses going broke, shares taking a dive etc etc etc (remember the GFC?). There are a thousand reasons why people have not been able to own a house. Just thank your lucky stars and well done, but don't berate others for not dodging inhibiting factors that you have so fortunately not had happen.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
11:32am
You have a point on the bottom level at which a family home can become an asset... we've had Ebergeezer Scrooge and what's-'is-name from yesterday telling us how he organised his finances in advance so as to get a pension etc, so there's actually room for looking at say ten years of past transfers of assets and such as well, rather than the same old stomp on the pensioners and forcethem to downsize.

Another nail in the LNP coffin,if you ask me - but I hold no great hopes from their 'opposition' either. Just got to swap one bad thing for the other and try to ameliorate the damage they are doing....
Kaz
10th Jan 2018
11:32am
That’s the ticket bob - ignore the Aus Institute and stay ignorant. Goodness knows you may learn fairness and objectivity
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
2:56pm
Kaz - on the contrary - read the Aus Institute and become ignorant - all commentary coming from that lot on economic matters are fanciful.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
3:30pm
The AI is not left-wing, but is to the Right of Genghis Khan! Alex Hawke a moderate? Rubbish! He's an extremist Rightard.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
3:47pm
@Hasbeen "Cutting immigration to net zero would do much more to address the housing crisis"

Yes - absolutely!

"Quote bob Menzies, "There are many aged pensions who through no fault of their own have reached aged pension age but are renting and so are doing it tough on OAP". Garbage bob, anyone who could not become a hone owner in their lifetime did not try very hard, is a wastrel, or mad some very bad choices."

TOTAL BOLLOCKS!!! I was retired early due to ill-health (multiple chronic conditions), and prior to that worked extremely hard. yet i will NEVER be able to afford a home. Please stop making stupid generalizations.
OnlyGenuineRainey
10th Jan 2018
4:45pm
I tend to agree with Hasbeen in part. A tiny percentage of current retirees can offer genuine reasons why they couldn't buy a home, but for the most part any current retiree who isn't a homeowner was pretty shockingly irresponsible. Certainly anyone who earned anywhere close to an average income for a decade should own a home, unless they lost it through marriage breakup or natural disaster or business bankruptcy.

My partner earned minimum wage for 15 years, during which time I did only a little casual and part time work on very low pay rates. After that, we had only one part-time income due to my partner's disability. We also were burdened with a $100K debt for medical treatment for a special needs child. And I was off work completely for a year due to illness. Yet we paid off a home and put all our kids through university. And we are now debt free with too much to qualify for even a part pension.

All of my relatives bought homes - mostly on subsistence incomes. My grandmother supported 6 kids through the Great Depression with an unemployed husband, taking in laundry, but paid off a modest cottage.

I do think Hasbeen is a little harsh, as there are some whose life experiences have left them very hard up in retirement through no fault of their own, but the problem I have is that those folk are getting too little help while those who squandered their savings are getting up to $1 million handed to them by the taxpayer over their retirement as a reward for being irresponsible. And the more responsible are being deprived.

I like the universal pension idea. Either way, I think the family home MUST be included in the assets test because, all other considerations aside - and I am emotionally attached to my home too - it's grossly unfair that people can sink a fortune into a home and collect a pension while those with modest homes and investments are deprived.

It has to be done with great care and consideration. It's a very complex and touchy issue. We don't want to force anyone out of their home. My suggestion would be to abolish the assets test completely but apply a sensible deeming rate to ALL assets, INCLUDING the family home, and then apply the means test only to the greater of income or deemed income. Anyone with a very valuable home who then finds their income inadequate should be able to reverse mortgage the home in return for a pension.

If we are not to accept the universal pension idea - which is how it SHOULD be - I think my suggestion would be the next best thing. It would avoid pushing anyone out of their home, remove the gross unfairness, and reduce the risk of retiree over-investment in the home pushing house prices up.

I think just setting a threshold is too simplistic. A $1 million home in one suburb would be worth $3 million in another. And with the ridiculously low assets test threshold, it would be unfair to suggest someone with a $2 million home should get a pension while someone with a $400,000 home and $900,000 should not.
Hasbeen
10th Jan 2018
6:03pm
I bought my first house, an ex farm labourers cottage. It was a 3 room, plus lean-to laundry/bathroom & toilet at age 21, in Fairfield Sydney for 2000 pounds, [$4000] in 1961. Yes it was an absolute dump, no stove, no hot water service, but it got me on the home owner path.

Two years later I sold it to another young family, who did the same. !0 years later someone tore it down, & built a real house, but it had suited us.

Yes it was easier in my day, before all these old dumps were replaced with McMansions, but 2 of my kids on very average incomes are doing it. They struggle at times, & don't get to go on cruises or skying holidays, but they will benefit in a few years, & for the rest of their lives.

I get very sick of people telling me I'm LUCKY to having my assets. I explain that the answer is simple. The harder I worked the luckier I became. Simple.
OnlyGenuineRainey
10th Jan 2018
8:36pm
Yes, Hasbeen. Our first home was a two-bedroom dump with plumbing leaking into the bedroom, but we renovated it - working our guts out nights and weekends - and sold it at a decent profit, and then laboured for 5 years, living with little kids in bare shed with no heating or plumbing, while we built a home for ourselves, again working nights and weekends. We were on a minimum wage and as well as building the house we renovated a car bought at the wreckers for peanuts, sat up all night sewing clothes and soft furnishings, and built most of our furniture or renovated junk from a second hand shop. It was hard, but boy was it rewarding! We paid 18% interest on our mortgage, but we hung on by making house payments the first priority and living on what was left - however much sacrifice that required.

When we completed our second home, which was quite lovely, a friend said ''gee, you are lucky''. I couldn't help replying ''Yes, I know. And you know what? This house just fell out of the sky and landed here last week!'' We'd been living in a shed and working weekends, nights and through holidays while she and her husband had 4 week beach holidays every year and went out to dinner and to the club every Friday night. But she was jealous! And her ilk are now whining that they could never afford a house and should get more rent assistance.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
11:37pm
I've owned two, staked my kids's mother to one, built one, renovated one ... one of my most oft-repeated phrases is that, whenever Christmas Eve or anything comes up, I say I never got to spend one suchwith my family (no wonder they left me).....

Now I'm down-sizing to somewhere near the beach and a (maybe) 37' cabin cruiser I can tour in.

Nobody gave me a sweet ride.... but they sure stood in line to kick me in the teeth.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
7:24am
Likewise, Trebor. Kicked in the teeth at every turn, from birth to near retirement. But I fought back and had some good wins, and now I'm better off than many - but I haven't lost either my fear of sliding back (however irrational it might be) or my empathy and compassion for those who didn't enjoy many wins and are still struggling. That's why I hit back so fiercely at folk like OG and Bonny. I can't stand arrogance. And it's why I continue to lobby for reform to make the system fairer and more sustainable. Sadly, I don't think anyone in politics - or any of the mouths purporting to advise - really wants to achieve either.
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
11:06am
It's an old tru-ism that a hard time burns the dross out of people's souls and lays them bare - you either come out of it tougher but more humane or you become twisted.

Politicians in the main have never had a hard time outside of not having enough sugar for their morning coffee or perhaps slow service in a restaurant, and simply have no idea. On top of that they are too well looked after by taxpayers, and lose contact immediately with the meaning of hard work and lack of money to go around.

Pay more peanuts and all you get is bigger monkeys, and then the ideology creeps in and they lose any interest in their constituents at grass level and regard them as nothing more than dispensable items on some political crusade.... gotta break some eggs to make that omelette, but it sure as hell ain't gonna be their eggs.

Then there are the ones who deliberately enter politics as a business..... just to make money and set self up for life.
Infinityoz
10th Jan 2018
9:37am
This quote says it all: “A middle class eastern suburbs private school boy is hardly qualified to pass judgement on something he's never faced,” Mr Elliott wrote. “Haven't we already had our quota of policy brain farts?”
Typical of this lot, trying to blame pensioners for the current difficulty in housing affordability. Of course, Harry Stutchbury is most unlikely to ever need a pension, he's set for life with family money and investments, most likely will have plenty to see him through in his old age.

And haha, I bet Old Geezer comes on with a comment supporting the stupid proposal! At current valuations around Sydney, even the worst old fibro shack in the western suburbs is valued at $800k+ ... and the usual example of the old lady living in a $15 million house in Mosman is sure to be trotted out. Get real - how many of those would there be, especially ones with no other source of income than the age pension?
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
9:49am
I have no facts only anecdotal remarks however there are apparently a high number in eastern suburbs of Sydney and inner Melbourne that live in house valued at $2.5m or more and have people in them getting full OAP.
I do not qualify for an OAP so believe I can comment without bias - my view if you are getting an OAP and live in a house valued at more than $3m -that was never the intention. of the OAP.
The current government has gone after welfare cheats and saved several billion in past few years.
It is a fact that it is becoming increasingly difficult to fund OAP so the most needy must be priority
thommo
10th Jan 2018
10:55am
I agree with you INFINITYOZ 100%.
I'am retired at 70, having worked all my life raising a family and paying my taxes, inter alia, to help cover the cost of our social security obligations, which is the expected function of a fair and compassionate society.
I've always expected that when I retire, society will assist me also.
These politicians and governments who are down on pensioners forget they get ALL or most of their incomes and life long pensions from the taxpayer, but they don't apply any austerity measures to themselves...no they just demonise the pensioner.
Well, pensioners have had a gutful and will use their huge voting numbers to oust this government at the next election.
They stuffed up my retirement when they changed the assets test as from 1.1.17 (despite Abbott promising on his dead granmas grave that would not happen), and I will never forgive or forget this act of treachery by the LNP govt, and many others won't either.
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
11:04am
thommo - it was Turnbull not abbott who made the changes and every conservative commentator at the time by changing the asset test and other super changes you will hurting the base.
You have every right to be annoyed BUT we cannot expect anything better from Shorten - if you look at his policies he will head Australia into the next recession.
thommo
10th Jan 2018
11:14am
bob menzies....Abbott and Morrison changed the assests test in the 2015 budget but it was to take effect on and from 1.1.17, by which time Turnbull was the PM, but the legislation had already passed through parliament. When changing the assets test, Abbott demonized part age pensioners at the time for being "liquid asset millionaires", which was just plain BS.
Abbott will still be getting his $300K plus per year taxpayer funded pension for life when he retires, so bugger everyone else.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
11:37am
With all due respect, bob - these anecdote givers know this how? Going through the old lady's mail box? This is like all those anecdotes about people ripping off Unemployment Benefits - few and far between in reality but rolls nicely off the tongue.
Mad as hell
10th Jan 2018
11:46am
It was the LNP and GREENS who legislated the changes to the Pensioner Assets Test. Yes it was Abbott who promised “ no change to pensions” LNP and GREENS are not the pensioners friend.
marls
10th Jan 2018
2:28pm
thommo
totally agree im sick and tired o the greed of this govt
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
3:59pm
bob menzies, Shorten and the ALP would be infinitely better than the current retarded bunch of over-privileged cretins in government. The Lieberal-Hillbilly COALition will drive us into recession. Labor spend money to improve Australians' quality of life. The morons you adulate are just glorified bean-counting accountants who have no idea that we live in a society, not just an economy. They have zero imagination and seek only to make Treasury's pile of beans as big as possible.
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
6:36pm
Well for more than 2/3rds of time from 1901 coalition governments have been in charge. Now we have had a depression in 1929 and a recession in 1991 - on both occasions we had labor governments.
I detest the current the coalition.
During my time I have admired Menzies, Hawke and Howard. The others not much.
That said I would always prefer party that prefers lower taxes, smaller government, encourages freedom of individual and enterprise than a bunch of union hacks.
At leas the coalition have a greater representation of all walks of life - farmers, small and big business people, a tradie, military and police personnel whereas as the labor party has over 85% come through the union movement that today represents barely 9% of private sector and 19% of public sector.
I have little time for Turnbull or Shorten and wish we had a Hawke?Keating or Howard/Costello team today
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
7:36pm
Too many issues, bob - but just one will suffice:-

If you 'create' smaller government by selling off the family silver to a horde of gangsters, who then charge double or triple the price for that silver - you are by no definition doing a service to the people who pay you.

As for lowering taxes - it depends on how, when and where... when taxes on business who already pay low are reduced again, in the desperate hope for a little trickle-down (LMAO), youare throwing taxypayer money at business as a bonus for not succeeding and helping the nation to prosper.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
7:32am
Bob Menzies, you obviously haven't studied economic history diligently, or you'd know that the major part of Australia's debt accumulated during the Rudd/Gillard years resulted from Howard and Costello wasting the profits of the boom making obscene and unaffordable gifts and ongoing commitments, 80% of which benefited only the richest 20% of the population. Lower taxes are nice, as long as they are NOT at the expense of sufficient welfare and social services to maintain social health. And as long as the message that accompanies claims to be working to reduce them aren't focused on demonizing those who need welfare and social services. The current LNP is guilty of both sins, and their constant harping and attacks on the poor are not nearly as bad as their encouragement of elitism and an attitude among the well off that the poor are at fault for their situation and to be despised, trampled on and punished. But what is worst of all is that the LNP is focused on making sure there are more poor - bashing and punishing those who strive with moderate success and pushing them back down.

I detest Labor, and I think our only hope is to get rid of both parties, but if I had to make a choice between the two, I think Labor would be my preference. I've had more than enough of the arrogance and greed of the over-privileged, and I honestly believe greed causes brain deterioration and has resulted in mass stupidity among the current powers-that-be.
Rae
11th Jan 2018
4:55pm
Yes Rainey they aren't the brightest buttons in either the LNP or ALP. That's why there were always independent, experienced public servants until Credlin sacked or forced them out and replaced them with young liberals just as tarnished.
bob menzies
15th Jan 2018
4:20pm
Rainey - oh! yes I've studied and have both bachelor and masters degree in finance and science. At the time Rudd took over the budget was some $30b in surplus and there was $40b in bank and more set aside for future fund (which is now over $100b). Had Rudd remained within the same budget parameters (even within downturn in mining boom)we would have remained with a slight budget surplus.
I agree Howard could have done more and created some of the structural budget problems (and Norway did better at same time) - but the fact is the labor party has never seen a taxpayer dollar is does not want to spend.
ex PS
16th Jan 2018
12:04pm
And where would the money have come from to pay the escalated payments to people thrown out of work when thousands of small businesses went bust?
Cowboy Jim
10th Jan 2018
9:45am
Headline was a bit misleading - you have read "including primary home in asset test". The
idea is not new, comes up every year. Of course, always the eastern suburban millionaire is
mentioned. To get real money, every home will have to be included and possibly the asset
limit raised to $1.5 million. Only that way you would get the fat cats only.
KSS
10th Jan 2018
12:32pm
You would have to raise the asset limit well beyond $1.5m in Sydney in order to "get the fat cats". This is no great price for a modest family home these days.
OnlyGenuineRainey
10th Jan 2018
5:56pm
Anyone who thinks someone with $1.5 million total assets is a ''fat cat'' is suffering delusions. That might represent considerable wealth for someone aged 85+, but for a couple faced with living for another maybe 3 decades with no income, and probably considerable cost of living increases, it's peanuts if even half of that sum is the family home.

The assets test should be abolished. It's grossly unfair and a huge deterrent to the kind of responsible living that is needed to boost improve national economic health. Adding the family home in would not solve anything, but would create a host of new problems.

The universal pension is the obvious answer, but given the suggestion of funding it by cutting handouts to the rich, don't hold your breath! This stinking government isn't going to deprive themselves and their greedy fat-cat mates.

One possible solution would be to abolish the assets test but apply a deeming rate to all assets INCLUDING the family home, then means test income, counting deemed income. If that leaves some owners of very valuable homes with inadequate income, pay them a pension as a loan against their home. This would eliminate most of the unfairness in the current system; deter people from overinvesting in the family home; but not force anyone out of their home.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
11:39pm
I can see that the input here is modifying your thinking, Rainey, and giving you meat from which to develop some good ideas...

If we can keep this up, we might find the solution!! .. but not the Final Solution just yet for old pensioners....
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
7:53am
The problem, Trebor, is nobody with any power to change anything ever listens.

I wrote to every single sitting politician before the assets test change was voted on detailing how it would disadvantage people and encourage overspending, because it created a situation where the pension represented a 7.8%+++ return with no risk while having a little extra might yield 5% or less with heavy risk and onerous management implications.

ONE politician replied. It took me 40 minutes to get him to understand what I thought was a very simple concept that I'd laid out in a spreadsheet, and he then shouted ''I've got to get off the phone and tell the others. We can't let this go through. I had no idea. Thank goodness you alerted me!'' And the change was passed into law anyway!

And now the same dim-witted morons who ignored my warning are whining about people drawing lump sums from their super and there being too many part pensioners. Hello, idiots! You are offering many $180K of taxpayer funds over 10 years as a reward for taking a $100K world cruise, or buying a home worth $100K more, and you are annoyed that many are taking up your generous offer! Duh!!!!

And meanwhile people like OG and Bonny, who purport to be smart, are justifying this idiotic situation - maybe because it doesn't hurt them, and like many elite, they hate the notion that others could rise to their level?
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
9:41am
Now you know why I distributed my wealth amongst my family, toured the world for 5 years and bought a mcmansion. I still enjoy myself and my family still prospers all at the expense of the taxpayer.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
8:04pm
Yet you begrudge battlers their pension and suggest they should forfeit their homes as punishment for being a lot poorer but honest and ethical? That's disgusting!
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
9:49am
I support that everyone get the OAP at retirement age if they want it and any pension paid should be a debt upon their estate when they die.
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
9:54am
an interesting idea - what about those who get more OAP than is in their estate on death - does that just get written off to consolidated revenue?
Cowboy Jim
10th Jan 2018
9:58am
Now - BigBear, that would be a good way to go into the future, much more efficient then reverse mortgage. It would give the pensioners peace of mind and would only impact the next generation. Other
countries around the world might have universal pensions but then
they also have inheritance taxes (death duties).
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
11:41am
Not a good idea... pension has been explained so many times I will not do it again, and it is the right of every person to leave their accumulated estate to their descendants, not just the fat cats.

Pensions should be paid to all and every single bit of income including superannuation, fringe benefits or 'gifting' from companies etc taxed as income over and above that.
AutumnOz
10th Jan 2018
1:52pm
BigBear, what happens if they do not own their own home and have no estate to pay back the pension they drew?
Does the debt pass to their children and grandchildren to pay?
If they are single with no children do they miss out on a pension in their old age?
Triss
10th Jan 2018
2:12pm
Oh, Big Bear, yet another tunnel visioner who looks around to find the easiest section of the community to bully and goes in with both boots.
What about ex politicians, judges, in fact anybody who has lived longer than their contributions? What about anybody who has had unemployment benefits, been into hospital, what about adding all that up and clawing it back at the end of someone’s life?
What nasty little gremlin made you Nazi of the year?
marls
10th Jan 2018
2:37pm
Bigbear
what a stupid idea why on earth have i worked all my life and raised 4 children on my own and paid a house of by the age of 62 to see people like my friend who has never worked a day in her life on disability pennsion for being obese living in a 3 bedroom govt house that only every had one child that child is now 40 shes been living in the same place for over 30years not to mention many others i know in similar situations your idea is perfect for the up and coming citizens to never work and pay taxes and bludge of the govt.
marls
10th Jan 2018
2:40pm
cowboy jim
they do not have death duties in european countries. my family live there and i'd had a father that died. no death duties and no means tests on aged pensions
Sundays
10th Jan 2018
4:18pm
Yes Trebor, I think your proposal has a lot of merit. I don’t know why we keep victimising pensioners. Some have worked hard, some not and many in the middle. Life is hard, why can’t we have a society which looks after its old people. Those who have accumulated wealth will not be disadvantaged under your proposal. Managing only on the OAP can’t be easy.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
7:40pm
I note that BigBear would be deemed to be earning income from his children paying his bills -he won't come at that kind of scheme.... he'd rather continue to accept his unwarranted pension after deliberately disposing of assets to ensure he was eligible.

As I said elsewhere, if family net worth were considered and his children deemed to be capable of looking after him - he should receive no pension or at the very least they should be paying it back.

Easy to say that OTHERS should be forced to repay pension out of their estate - his estate has been spread but could be deemed to still exist...... since he gave it away but it still serves the same purpose - to be passed down to his descendants.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
8:09am
Read BigBear's other posts. This is a VERY SELFISH proposal from someone who wouldn't be hurt by it because he deliberately disposed of most of his assets to achieve a maximum pension benefit to which he had no moral or ethical entitlement. He thinks manipulators should be richly rewarded and the honest and diligent harshly deprived. Sorry, BigBear. I had some respect and admiration for you until you put this proposal forward. Yes, it would be wonderful for people like you - who are content to ''play the game'' with selfish disregard for the taxpaying public and the genuinely needy. And I guess you think those who suffered under such a system deserve to for not playing by the rules. But making rules for the benefit of the wealthy and the ''game players'' is what has screwed the country.
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
9:56am
Actually Rainey I will be hurt by my proposal in that I still own my home and it can be used eventually to pay my pension debt.

Even if the house was included in the assets test all I would lose is holiday money and I'm getting to an age where I may not be able to do that much longer if old age catches up with my health.
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
2:44pm
If they change the rules, they might hit you with a 'please pay within fourteen days' notice...
Rae
11th Jan 2018
5:05pm
Rainey,
Big Bear is doing exactly what you said smart people who can do the maths would do and yet you berate him.

I locked in an annuity otherwise I'd be organising assets to gain the OAP. You'd be mad not to when that 7.8% worry free income with terrific benefits is there waiting.

An OAP doesn't have to worry about medicine costs while it is a real worry for the self funded.
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
5:37pm
Trebor there is nothing to explain or pay within 14 days as it's all done well inside the rules.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
7:35am
Yes Rae, smart people do it, but it still isn't right or admirable. Though I think I am rapidly losing any conscience I had and leaning toward developing that welfare mentality OG and Bonny whine about incessantly. We pay a very high price for being ethical and honest in this country!
PlanB
13th Jan 2018
8:04am
Like hell -- Big Bear, to have my Home that I worked long and hard for and did without to own -- given to the fat cat scum!
I paid my taxes too from the age of 15
OnlyGenuineRainey
14th Jan 2018
8:42pm
I agree, PlanB. And if the rich pigs start taking homes away from battlers, they will totally stuff the nation. They've already done massive harm with their greed and selfishness. If they start taking houses away, there will either be a revolt or people will just give up and say ''why bother - it's too hard and there's nothing worth working for. The greedy bastards just take it all away, so don't work in the first place.''

It boggles the mind how so many well-off dunces can keep whining about the so-called ''welfare mentality'' while driving policies that can do nothing else but discourage hard work and make people more inclined to take welfare.
Cowboy Jim
10th Jan 2018
9:53am
In some way your residence is already part of your asset test, just read the pension tables
of 'home owner' and 'non-home owner'. There is a difference of about $200'000 in what you
are allowed to own. Not so?
AutumnOz
10th Jan 2018
1:54pm
Agreed Cowboy Jim.
The $200,000 figure is probably the value of a three bedroom house in the suburbs when the amount was first suggested for the assets test.
Moo
10th Jan 2018
9:55am
One problem with including the family home in the assets test is the difference in home values across the country. A modest home in a modest Sydney or Melbourne suburb probably has a higher value than some of the swankiest homes in other parts of the country. Should those residents be denied a pension? Should they be forced to move away from their family?

Another aspect is that higher paid workers - that generally live in those areas with higher value homes - have paid more tax in their lifetime than others yet received fewer means-tested government handouts. And I'd imagine disposable incomes are similar to other areas due to the higher living costs in the high-value areas. So the areas of the country that "carry" the rest through higher taxes and lower percentage of GST distribution, and receive less government handouts, should get less pension? Give me a break.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
12:45pm
I was going to go with that - thanks for doing it.
Triss
10th Jan 2018
2:43pm
Yes, Moo, that's a valid point.
Rae
10th Jan 2018
3:26pm
According to these people if you can't afford to support yourselves you can't live there.

The far right believe people should know their place and the wealthy suburbs are not for the ordinary people to aspire to.

Any money given away will go to the Corporations and well off high income earners who deserve it.

The rabble should be out in the slums where they belong.

The LNP have always believed this ideology so I'm not at all surprised by any of this.
Sundays
10th Jan 2018
4:27pm
Do these young people really think that if there was an increase in housing stock, the price of houses in expensive areas would fall enough for them to buy. No, investors (including foreign) would make a killing!
OnlyGenuineRainey
13th Jan 2018
8:27pm
If pensioners are penalized further than they already are for owning houses many will sell up and spend the proceeds, which will impose more strain on the taxpayer to pay higher pensions and rent assistance and will create more demand for rental properties, thus pushing the cost of rent up. House prices will then rise because investment is more appealing when rents rise. Ultimately, owning a home will be the exclusive province of the rich. But I guess that's what the greedy mongrels want!
boma
10th Jan 2018
9:59am
Why keep on picking on people on the OAP it is our right not a hand out just because my parents bought a house 60 or 70 years ago in a now "up market" area why try to blame the current family member for the market price the ease to which we are blamed for the current debt is a lazy way out. Why don't these people get out & earn & pay the tax they should to see them tru when they are on theOAP.
KB
10th Jan 2018
10:10am
For people who have spent years of paying their home then retirees on modest incomes should have their homes exempt over their heads, Homes valued over 2 million should be included in the assets. A home is only valuable if yo need to move into a quality nursing home,
Not a Bludger
10th Jan 2018
10:21am
Why is this sort of Sydney centric claptrap a surprise?

After all Turnbull and his mates are all lefties.

No more and no less than a Turnbullesque lookalike (like Turnbull, wealthy and out of touch) continuing to deliberately alienate traditional liberal voters.
Rae
10th Jan 2018
3:29pm
This idea is about as far right as you get. Almost fascism.

User pays. Pure and simple.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:06pm
"Not a Bludger", are you for real? ALL of those wankers - Turdball included - in the Lieberal-Hillbilly COALITION (LNP) are to the Right of Genghis Khan and Adolf Hitler! Are you totally blind? Politics in Australia has been moving continuously to the Right ever since Bob Hawke in the early 1980s. Hell, the late Malcolm Fraser would now be on the Left wing of the Labor Party, or a Green!
Not a Bludger
10th Jan 2018
4:33pm
Knows-a-lot - you obviously don’t know much about the Liberal Party.

Malcolm Fraser (like Turnbull) always was a leftie - and, incidentally, you will know that he was also an Eminent Person who thought that Mugabe was a really nice fellow!
PlanB
13th Jan 2018
8:06am
Lefties!????? they are as far right as you can get
clancambo
10th Jan 2018
10:27am
Another young, wealthy upstart with no life experience making uninformed comments!
libsareliars
10th Jan 2018
1:55pm
Spot on.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:08pm
Yeah - Lieberal vermin that would be best put to use as a marksman's target then turned into fertilizer.
Belle
10th Jan 2018
10:28am
Harry Stutchbury has obviously not thought his comment through.
Has he thought of the many people with disabled children for whom they must provide a home. Sure the home may be worth a lot now but it wasn’t when they bought it. Even at age pension age they are still supporting their child both personally and financially. They prepare their home for the child/children to live in when they die.
So Harry would have them denied a pension and therefore have to sell their home in order to give themselves money to live on this denying those children the secure home and environment the parents have worked hard to give them and then place the cost of housing the children back on the government, not to mention the distress caused to those children by now middle aged having to move from a familiar area and informal support built up over the years. Harry Stutchbury, you have no idea - learn how the other half live before shooting your mouth off with undeveloped thought bubbles.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
3:00pm
More likely he's received orders from Idiotsville to run this insanity up the flag-pole again and see how many hits it takes before falling in a heap again.
Rae
10th Jan 2018
3:39pm
He would not have a clue Belle. Besides which he probably wouldn't care even if he did.

"The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away" is their motto.

These bastards( both government parties and their sycophants,e.g. think tanks, lobby groups) have sold everything not locked up, squandered billions, doubled the population, bailed out the banks putting us all in debt, encouraged rampant household debt, stifled wages, destroyed unions, allowed environmental destruction on unimaginable scale.etc,etc.

They have no idea what to do about the consequences now.

Looking around we have the last wealth standing and I think we may have to fight to hold onto it against the carpetbaggers like Harry.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:09pm
"Harry Stutchbury has obviously not thought his comment through."

Of course he hasn't. He's a typical Right-wing moron.
Kathleen
10th Jan 2018
10:35am
Two of our children did have homes but lost them through divorce and are now renting. Many things affect people’s wealth when they hit old age. Because my husband and I have been together for over fifty years we were paying off a home on retirement and used my husband’s super to get a comfortable home 70 ks from Melbourne. Born during the war means we did not have massive super but enough to help make sure we have a nice home suitable for our retirement. We also made sure our children had the best possible education each one was capable of achieving. We did not have a small family so a lot of our financial resources went into our children.
Creating inter generational envy or hate is very wrong and counterproductive.
Rae
10th Jan 2018
3:43pm
So true G.

Sorry for the kids.

I lost a house early due to crop failure and excessive debt back in the Keating high interest rate period and came good again.

Took a while.

Tell them to keep saving and hang in there. These insane prices will collapse. It's only a matter of time. The value isn't there and is somewhere around 65%.

Markets always correct to the mean eventually.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:11pm
"Two of our children did have homes but lost them through divorce and are now renting."

I bet they're both men - hence victims of the evil and vile lunacy known as feminism.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
8:20am
At it again, Knows-a-lot? I could name quite a few women who lost their homes in divorces - to selfish bastard husbands who couldn't keep their pants up! I agree feminism is ''vile lunacy'', but at least to some degree it was a response to chauvinistic behaviour and unfair deprivation of rights of women.

I recall once buying some dining chairs at a garage sale. The poor lady was standing in front of a $2 million house with 180 degree river views, lavishly furnished, crying that she had lost everything and didn't know how she'd now support her children, because hubby had run off with the young secretary and she'd discovered he'd been manipulating the finances so that everything she thought they owned was mortgaged to the hilt and all the cash had disappeared along with him and his lady friend.

I have male friends who have been shafted in divorces. But it's about fifty-fifty. And some of those whinging about being done over by the opposite sex richly deserved their fate.
Hairy
10th Jan 2018
10:38am
Yes just keep sucking the heart out of anyone planning a future. What’s the point of working and saving .the young are already spending now eating out holidays , renting. I thought they were being stupid but now I think yes! enjoy because these sucksesive governments will have you existing on the poverty line anyway.while they live well on their PENSION and we are the only ones on welfare handouts .
libsareliars
10th Jan 2018
1:55pm
Too true.
marls
10th Jan 2018
2:47pm
Hairy
so so true, i see it the same way. i look back over my life studying paying HECS etc driving 4hrs daily to work raising 4 kids on my own and i see a lot of people i know living in govt housing never worked one day in their life on disability pensions/aged pensions they are the ones laughing at the stupid taxpayers its these people that are continually rewarded by our govts
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
3:02pm
End game - a legion of serfs, all property owned by the self-appointed elite who make all the rules and run the show for their best benefit.
Rae
10th Jan 2018
3:54pm
You really wouldn't want to be on a disability pension mari

Good health is worth everything.

Yes TREBOR these are dangerous times but we have beaten them at least twice before and we can do so again.

It's realising where we are now in time.

A powerful Seniors Academy open to anyone over 65 would be a fine thing right now.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:15pm
@Trebor. "a legion of serfs, all property owned by the self-appointed elite who make all the rules and run the show for their best benefit."

Exactly! Then comes the bloody revolution where the financial elite will be slaughtered.

@Rae. "You really wouldn't want to be on a disability pension"

I am, alas; and the future scares the hell out of me - particularly with the evil LNP in power.
Rae
11th Jan 2018
7:28am
I find it appalling that those suffering injury or illness already are being worried relentlessly these days Knows-a-lot.

All the politicians and sycophants bullying the old and infirmed need to be tossed out as they do not deserve to be representing Australians .
caporal
10th Jan 2018
10:42am
yes age pension should increase for those without any assets !! eg home , super , etc ,etc .
It is impossible to survive at the current rate of age pension of $815.00 per forthnight , especially if you have to pay rent as well .
Not Amused
10th Jan 2018
10:49am
Avoidance of aying rent in old age is why those who were able sacrificed many things to pay off a house. Just because it's increased in value doesn't mean their foresight and thrift should be penalised. Some of these kids spouting green-eyed monster ideas really should give up their smashed avocadoes, addition to coffee shops, eating out and overseas adventures. They could also work harder at keeping their marriages together. Splitting assets after "relationships" break up is another self-imposed financial penalty and then they complain about having a disrupted financial future. I do despair.
Cowboy Jim
10th Jan 2018
3:47pm
No idea where you get your figures from, Caporal. Looked after the finances for a while for a bloke in hospital and I had to cash hie cheque as well as paying his rent and 4 years ago he was on $935 a fortnight with rent assistance. He was quite happy with that.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
7:44am
So after 35 years of living on the smell of an oily rag to pay off a modest home, Caporal, and now paying around $8000 a year in rates, insurance, maintenance, etc., you think I should be deprived so that people who partied, gambled, drank, cruised the world, bought fancy cars and clothing, etc. etc. etc. and didn't bother to pay off a mortgage can be kept in comfort in old age?

I have no issue with giving up luxuries to help support those who were disabled, chronically ill, suffered GENUINE crisis or trauma against which they were GENUINELY unable to insure themselves in one way or another. But I have a huge issue with giving up what I worked my guts out for to fund a better lifestyle for the hundreds of thousands who either bludged or lived it up. MOST current retirees COULD have owned a home if they had bothered to prioritize saving and mortgage payments over indulging their less important wants. Why should those who sacrificed to pay off homes continually make sacrifices for those who couldn't be bothered?

And most of today's young could buy a house if they stopped frequenting coffee shops, gave up their expensive hobbies and holidays, and accepted the crappy little old cottages that we thought were heaven when we started out.
Not Amused
10th Jan 2018
10:42am
Ideas like this would remove the incentive for people to improve themselves, live comfortably where they choose in old age and pass the fruits of their hard labour to their families. Everyone should get an OAP. The savings from an overpaid bureaucracy, chasing people for every last dollar and all the costs involved with managing/supervising a presently unwieldy system would probably make it cheaper to simply give to everyone over 65 yrs. as in NZ. Just keep picking on people who make sacrifices to house themselves in their old age and people will avoid going through the hell that is paying off and maintaining a house and become a burden on an under-stocked rental market, both public and private.
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
10:57am
I disagree - I do not believe politicians who were on defined benefits pensions prior to 2007 and most getting more than $100k should get any OAP - not should high court judges or anyone else getting a defined benefit pension of say $50k or more. That probably cuts out over 100,000 (not enough but a start).
There are well off people who try to arrange their affairs so that they can get $1 OAP (just so they can get pension benefits for government services such as rates, electricity etc which can add to over $3k tax free).
Much of what you say is fine except for part "whereon should get an OAP"- as I've outlined above - no they shouldn't.
I don't and as a self funded retiree still pay taxes (not a lot). People like me who can fund themselves should not expect government upport
Triss
10th Jan 2018
2:58pm
Yes, Not Amused, it would be interesting to know just how much the administration of this bitty way of paying a pension costs.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:18pm
"Everyone should get an OAP."

NO! It should go only to those who cannot afford to be self-funded retirees.
Sundays
10th Jan 2018
4:41pm
The problem at the moment is many who can afford to be fully funded retirees do get a part pension. Not necessarily because they restructure their affairs but because the current system is full of inconsistency, grandfathered rules, and unfairness. A universal system would stop this
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
8:03pm
Universal system - wait for the whining that it will kill too many if introduced too fast.

When I first put The Trebor Plan forward here - I suggested a lead-in time of five years so people could get all their affairs in order, so they could accommodate to the new one-shop national superannuation scheme far from the grasping hands of politicians.

Of course, those who asset-shifted in that time would leave a mighty paper trail and should be assessed fully on assets deliberately shifted so as to reduce liabilities.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
8:00am
Oh, only the handful who suffered GENUINE hardship and the hundreds of thousands of bludgers and spendthrifts who frittered their money away should be supported by those who worked their guts out and went without luxuries to save, Knows-a-lot. Yep, that's what I'd expect from someone with a PHD and on a pension. Selfish, self-serving, arrogant, and showing total disregard for the rights of people who worked hard and saved well to benefit from their endeavours. Any idea how hard some of those SFRs did it so that could be SFRs for at least part of their retirement years? No, of course you don't. Anymore than you know what drove some women to decide they had no option but to give up their dreams and raise their kids alone.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
8:00am
Oh, only the handful who suffered GENUINE hardship and the hundreds of thousands of bludgers and spendthrifts who frittered their money away should be supported by those who worked their guts out and went without luxuries to save, Knows-a-lot. Yep, that's what I'd expect from someone with a PHD and on a pension. Selfish, self-serving, arrogant, and showing total disregard for the rights of people who worked hard and saved well to benefit from their endeavours. Any idea how hard some of those SFRs did it so that could be SFRs for at least part of their retirement years? No, of course you don't. Anymore than you know what drove some women to decide they had no option but to give up their dreams and raise their kids alone.

10th Jan 2018
10:51am
Universal pension is the way to go
marls
10th Jan 2018
2:48pm
it works for NZ every one over 65 regards of wealth receives the pension and can continue to work full time - no means test
No means test in europe either
Rae
10th Jan 2018
4:00pm
It would be equitable. All other income could be appropriately taxed as every working income earner is.

Moderate income would be fine but the wealthy would pay their portion which right now they aren't.

Perhaps GST could then also be raised a little bit and that $5 doctor visit fee rethought.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:19pm
Totally agree, Raphael. It works well in Scandinavia. (The only problem in Sweden is the feminazis.)
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
8:06pm
Too late for the $5 whatever levy/co-payment for a doctor's visit .. all the doctors I know have divested themselves of much of their work and simply charge double now - I doubt they'll go back to bulk billing and more work....

But Fat Joe knew that when he came up with that brain-fart... it was a petty and spiteful move to chop the guts out of Medicare, or to impose greater cost on the user thus rendering it non-viable.

Never mind the massive subsidies to 'private' funds....

Anyway, Fat Joe should be brought back in chains and put on trial.. a fair trial, then a fair imprisonment, then a fair hanging......
Anonymous
10th Jan 2018
9:39pm
I'm moving to New Zealand
The sheep are also better looking over there
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
12:32am
Awesome to see sheep on those steep hillsides just acting like mountain goats...

Past in-laws had a farm in Northland, the missus was a NZ MP - poor dear worked so hard... (bulldust, bulldust) ...
Rae
11th Jan 2018
7:49am
Knows-a-lot I heard the Swedish men are now insisting that women they meet sign a consent app before they'll have anything to do with them. I'd be adding a signed declaration that they have no claim on any assets either if I was a young man with prospects these days.

Same for women with assets. Time to start protecting oneself.

Yes something is strange with Doctors now. A beautiful beach suburb next to here, an hour to the CBD can't get a doctor. The local pharmacist advertised extensively and had not one reply.

It seems doctors are happier to work on contract for foreign surgery owners who pay all the costs and provide nurses and receptionists on casual rates. The Government has made it too hard and expensive for a doctor to work his own surgery himself.

Just another unseen consequence of the privatise everything ideology.
tropic
10th Jan 2018
10:52am
The only solution is to give everyone an aged pension regardless of income and/or assets. Just like the politicions give to themselves. This Stutchbury guy is just a spoilt brat.
Rosret
10th Jan 2018
12:55pm
I agree. Everyone should have an aged pension if they have contributed to the Australian taxation. Other countries have very good systems and they don't seem to be going under financially.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:21pm
No. As Raphael says above, we need a universal basic living wage regardless of age. This works very well in Scandinavian countries.

Rosret, because of the GST, EVERYBODY who buys just about anything in Australia has contributed tax here.
mogo51
10th Jan 2018
10:52am
I receive the OAP, don't own a home (late life divorce), tried to live onit in Oz, no hope. Live OS and get battered by C/link and Government all the time. I do not live lavishly where I am, but can have the odd meal out, eat much better, have a better home to live in etc.
But where would I rather be - Oz of course, I am a proud Aussie, born and bred. I don't really like it here, but that is my problem.
But I have long felt that people in high value homes and living on he pension is a contrarian.$450k is a stupid figure, a friend sold his home in St Cllair near Penrith, several years ago for $620k and it was far from a mansion. Homes closer into the city are now $1m plus so, probably 1.5m is a more realistic figure, suggestions of 2.5 and 3m are not realistic. You can buy a nice home in country coastal NSW for example for #450k If they are not happy with that alternative, then live without the pension.
There needs to more consideration to this issue, but I agree in principle.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
12:48pm
I'm in much the same boat - asset stripped in my late forties dueto divorce, company hit the wall due to bad management and left town owing me money, then injured and sick.

All in the years when I should have been building that massive nest egg for retirement... instead I was literally on the streets, and it is only through good luck and hard work that I am now much better off.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:24pm
Let me guess. You're both blokes who have been royally screwed over by the ridiculous feminist bias now prevailing in the Family Court.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
8:08pm
You got it...... and hearts torn out over kids a day's drive away that you never saw unless you busted a gut and your bank.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
8:09am
Mogo1, a friend sold a valuable city home to buy a $450K home in coastal rural NSW. And within two years it was worth $700K, and now - 5 years later - it's over $1 million. He spent most of the proceeds of the sale of the more expensive home paying off loans and paying for very expensive medical and dental treatment. But I suppose he should not be denied a pension as punishment for choosing a location that developers later discovered and exploited?

Get a life! You are being very disrespectful and mean to people who have just as much moral right to support in old age as you do. You may have suffered a bit in a late life divorce, but my friend faced some major life challenges also - including his home being flooded, causing the loss of most of his possessions, which insurance nowhere near covered. And some serious ill-health. Some prepare better for challenges and some deal with them more successfully. But just because you are doing it tough doesn't give you the right to declare people who APPEAR TO YOU to be better positioned should be forced to suffer.
Kali-G
10th Jan 2018
10:54am
LIBERALISM is akin to SOCIALISM.
One is either right wing conservative...or left wing Socialist...
no in-between.
These people are lacking real life experience, and just playing politics.
Rae
10th Jan 2018
4:05pm
Wrong. It is left wing socialist but the right wing is fascist.

The Liberals have all factions from social leaning to hard winner takes all. That's why they are tearing themselves apart.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:26pm
Socialism is a VIRTUE. All of the Li(e)berals are ipso facto fascists, Rae, otherwise they'd be in another party. There are no Lefties in the LNP.
Rae
11th Jan 2018
7:54am
Yes I think it's time we called "conservative" it's real name of "fascist".

Just so everyone understands exactly what they are voting for.

Too many see "conservative" as some sort of conservation which it isn't at all.
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
11:14am
If they're conserving anything they're sure doing a bad job of it....
Cowboy Jim
12th Jan 2018
4:14pm
Nothing wrong with a bit of Fascists - they made the trains go in time which is something to be treasured in Sydney today, hahaha
4b2
10th Jan 2018
10:58am
Another cock head who has never struggled to pay off a mortgage. Typical of the born to rule mentality, attack the low hanging fruit while the wealthy enjoy welfare handouts.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:26pm
Typical Lieberal Nazi Party filth. They should all be shot for treason.
Travellersjoy
10th Jan 2018
10:59am
An awful lot of those houses the LNP pup is referring to are occupied by older women either divorced with the kids or widowed.many are also single women who had no superannuation while working so bought a house as insurance for their retirement. Most bought houses when they were still affordable and were in undesirable suburbs. No fault of their own that inner cities have been gentrified and the old slum dwelling is now a des. res. with renovators delight written on the front gate. Suddenly these women don't "deserve" to own a valuable property?

Does the LNP see older women as easy game? Do those young men have an eye on an old house for their own family? Do they just want a rental property? The LNP will have an army of women to deal with if they take on turning us out of our houses, either directly, or by manipulating the pension, housing market or superannuation regs.

Economic discrimination against women in and out of work, in housing, in pensions, in childcare costs, in health care costs, in superannuation, in aged care is still endemic. The social care of older women pushed out of their homes, communities and support systems will fall upon tax payers, because the rich won't get forced to leave.

I am sure that there are some elderly women living in very valuable properties in highly desirable locations who could move without serious disadvantage, but they are not on an age pension, and probably have children just waiting for them to pop their clogs while waiting for the asset to appreciate. All those heirs to grandma's unexpected windfall gain will be very cheesed with the government that forces a premature sale. perhaps the young man proposing this move doesn't expect granny's house to fall to him, and he wants someone else's.

When the data consistently shows that the cost of tax payer subsidies and tax lost via superannuation being rigged for the well-off, is a much greater cost to the government than the age pension, why not focus on fixing that problem before throwing pensioners out of their homes?
Rae
10th Jan 2018
4:11pm
I'm exactly that T.

My kids are furious. They see it as an attack on me, my effort to get here through several very bad adversities, with no help from the Government. And no support now.

They see it as discrimination and as unfair.

They are the demographics this guy needs to vote for him.

He isn't very bright or private education just isn't worth the money.
Rae
10th Jan 2018
4:13pm
And, It doesn't effect me but I'm totally over this attack on the elderly. Enough!

This is ageist harassment on a grand scale and very nasty indeed.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:28pm
"An awful lot of those houses the LNP pup is referring to are occupied by older women either divorced with the kids"

Yeah - homes they stole off their ex-husbands, due to the feminist crap now dominating the Family Court.

Ah, but women are the sacred cows of the 21st century...
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:33pm
"Economic discrimination against women in and out of work, in housing, in pensions, in childcare costs, in health care costs, in superannuation, in aged care is still endemic."

So what? On average, women outlive men. It's overwhelmingly MEN who die on the battlefield (protecting the women at home), MEN who inhabit the 'Glass Cellar' (where the dirtiest and most dangerous jobs are done), MEN who die younger yet have a lot less of the health budget directed to them, MEN who are ripped-off by the Family Court. If you don't believe me, read Dr Warren Farrell's book "The Myth of Male Power".
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:34pm
PS: Men also on average work longer hours for more years than women in the workforce. That's why women on average get less super.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
7:51am
Give it a rest, Knows-a-lot. You are sounding like exactly the kind of man women would want to shaft! A lot of those divorced women with kids fled from abusers, selfish manipulating bastards, and blokes who couldn't keep their pants zipped.

I hate feminism, and I think the anti-male sentiment has gone way too far. Our society needs some balance. But we won't achieve balance bashing ALL women the way you do. And nobody is going to sympathize with you while you are so irrationally biased and nasty to and about females. There are good an bad of both sexes. And both are subjected to varying kinds of injustice because of their gender. The solution is for us all to work together respectfully, recognizing the problems HONESTLY and without bias and working together to resolve them. Most women want that. Feminists are just a vocal minority whose extremism makes them as despised by most women as they are by men.
MITZY
10th Jan 2018
10:59am
If you own your own home and its taken you a great part of your working life to finally own it, it is yours and nobody else's. In fact you paid tax on your earnings in order to save for the deposit and the monthly payments for years on that pride and joy home. You paid out again in buying everything that went into it, and you paid tax again i.e. sales tax and/or GST on those purchases. Who cares what value it has it has been paid for in blood, sweat and tears. The problem with politicians is they can't budget the taxes they collect correctly and fairly, so they pick on the area they can do the most damage too the low income earners and the pensioners. There are plenty more of these people, most probably than the rich, who think they are entitled to everything. Anyhow this will probably get knocked on the head but those pesky excuses for politicians just like to give the most vulnerable a bit of a scare to start of another year. Next thing they will be taxing is the homeless on the streets for the space they are occupying.
MITZY
10th Jan 2018
11:02am
P.S. I suggest we get on this Harry Stutchbury's website and give him a blast for his idiotic comments.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
11:47am
Wouldn't waste my time - just put on on the two lists - the one titled 'Never To Be Elected' and the one titled 'For Easy Collection and Disposal'.
Rae
10th Jan 2018
4:16pm
Now if a Senior's Academy held the lists it would mean something.
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
12:34am
A few years on the chain gang making roads for the Outback never hurt nobody.... I don't go for Final Solutions.... just 're-education'... learn the true value of real toil and hardship and aching muscles.... and some d1ck always telling you what to do and trying to make trouble.... (that's where Pol Pot went wrong)....
PlanB
11th Jan 2018
11:54am
MAybe this thread should be sent to this Elitist scum!
bobby
10th Jan 2018
11:02am
The Government is trying to blame retirees for the state of the economy. I think the boot is on the other foot.

Australia's net foreign debt has expanded beyond $1 trillion for the first time on record. Net foreign debt in the December quarter came in at $1,006 billion — an increase of 2.8 per cent on the previous quarter's $971 billion.

Methinks that the Government should look closer to home.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:37pm
Yep, the world would be a better place if the LNP disappeared up its own arse.
Rodent
10th Jan 2018
11:06am
Dear bob menzies, I note your views, but I also note you were not a contributor in the past when this issue was discussed. There is no right answer. But If you want to know more then may I suggest you read this doc. The Age Old Problem of Old Age-Fixing the Pension. by Simon Cowen & Mathew Taylor from the Centre for Independent Studies. Simon Cowen is one of the most common wheelbarrow pushers on the subject of the Family Home being included in the Assets Test. You should read this because it has SOME facts/data in it that my be of interest to you.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:39pm
Simon Cohen and the CfIS are Right-wing vermin best ignored.
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
6:41pm
Rodent - thank you very much I will read this over next few days and appreciate you drawing my attention to it.
HS
10th Jan 2018
11:17am
Do your maths people. The funds from a residential home sale worth $2 million can be used to purchase a $600,000 retirement unit and live off $60,000 pa with a $5,000 pa increase after every 5 years. This means that it is possible to be self-funded for up to 24 years before qualifying for OAP at the age of 91 (assuming one retires at 67). So there is merit in including residential homes worth $2 million or more in the Asset Test.
HS
10th Jan 2018
3:02pm
And, in addition, if the value of the retirement unit increases 3% pa then the value of the unit will be well over $1.2 million in 24 years. That's if, the resident lives that long.
Triss
10th Jan 2018
3:08pm
The only thing about a $600,000 unit, HS, is the fact that there is a body coporate fee, generally quite high, and the fact that there is a very real concern there could be upgrading costing hundreds of dollars to each unit dweller.
HS
10th Jan 2018
3:24pm
That's why I allowed $60,000 pa to be drawn on savings with a $5,000 increase every 5 years. So, in the 10th year they draw $65,000 pa and in the 15th year they draw $70,000 pa and so on.
I expect that laws will be introduced to control retirement home managers to contain upgrading to a reasonable cost in consultation with the unit owners and to the unit owner's future financial benefit not to the selfishness and greed of the unscrupulous retirement home operators.
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
10:22am
Nobody has a right to tell anybody else where they can or can not live. This is not Soviet Russia. If you want to live in a country that has sort of control over free citizens I suggest you move.

I have no problem with an Asset Test as long as it is fair and reasonable.

When assessing a family home there are some very basic, common sense questions that need to be asked.

When was the home bought, how much did it cost when it was bought, what was the median house price in that area for a similar house when it was bought, who is on the Deed Of Title?

All questions designed to establish whether the property is an investment, a rort or a home. If the property turns out to be an established genuine family home, leave it alone.

You work hard all your life to buy a decent car, good furniture and a home of a design and in a location that you want to live in, why should anyone have the right to tell you to sell up and move if you don't want to. If you are asking me whether I want to live in a house or a home, I will live in my home thanks.
Tib
10th Jan 2018
11:25am
So this young snot nose who has never worked a day in his life ( and probably never will) because daddy and mummy have made it so easy for him thinks the government should include the family home in assessing for the OAP because it will drive old people into the street, sell your home or starve. Sounds like a liberal idea to me. Vote them out.
Triss
10th Jan 2018
3:10pm
I wonder if he is going to be left an inheritance and a house by mummy and daddy.
Unfortunately this kind of remark shows that he thinks he belongs to the elite and, as such, everyone else is below him.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:40pm
It's scum like them that lower the quality of life for everybody else.
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
10:25am
Can something be done to make sure this simpleton doesn't dilute the gene pool?
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
11:29am
Who gives a rat's what the Young Liberals want? they can eat my shorts with their over-fed mealy mouths....

Told yez two days ago this would come up again, the moment these idiots started to pretend they were having an original idea...
Kaz
10th Jan 2018
11:29am
So in the days when houses were just a roof over your head and you worked your life to pay it off, you secretly knew that it would be worth a fortune and you you could get the aged pension as well ! What is wrong with everyone? Do you want those with little other than their home to go without the AP or be forced to sell their HOME because through sheer luck it’s worth a lot and someone else wants it? It amazes me how greedy everyone is becoming. So sad. This young lib has not done his research and has learnt brain farting well from the old Libs.
Charlie
10th Jan 2018
11:31am
42 comments already
margie
10th Jan 2018
11:33am
When will these greedy creatures stop going after the pensioner, aren't we entitled to a little peace and comfort at the end of our lives? The Age Pension is not a handout, it’s an entitlement. And superannuation is not a gift from an employer, it is your right as negotiated long and hard by unions on behalf of all. Most pensioners worked and spent a lifetime paying for their pensions. It’s not welfare and, when it was introduced, it was actually meant to be an entitlement. A 7.5 per cent tithe was taken from wages to put into a fund to pay their pensions. Just as workers now have superannuation collected. Unfortunately (for pensioners) the Labor Party insisted the contributions shouldn’t be kept in individual accounts as in the UK and the US where retirees get the entitlement earned by their contributions. Instead, it all went into one big pot, the National Welfare Fund. And when the pot got really big, the politicians took it.
AutumnOz
10th Jan 2018
2:20pm
And now the Superannuation pot has passed the X trillions mark and the National Debt has passed the one trillion mark it probably wont be long before it goes the same way as the National Welfare Fund.
I suppose the gov't will blame us for that as well.
Placido
10th Jan 2018
6:48pm
Yes Margie, Robert Menzies and his "Liberals" took it not the Labor party.
MICK
10th Jan 2018
11:40am
This is the latest rich man's government attacking pensioners and the working class.
First they pushed people who had made efforts to fund their own retirements as much as possible off even a part pension.
Then they tried to push people out of their own homes (downsizing) and make them spend the resulting spare money.
Now they want to attack people who are not destitute and rob them off their home.

If this is allowed to proceed then the next generation can expect no inheritance as it will all be gone.
Surely even the mentally challenged will see the writing on the wall and vote this bunch of low life bastards working for the big end of town out in a big way. That needs to happen!
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
1:05pm
End Game - a legion of serfs serving the cashed-up self-appointed elite... and if the serfs play up they'll do what the Chinese do and send in the Army....

Been telling yez all for ages now that our 'politicians' eye the Chinese approach with envy - that opportunity to exploit every facet of the State for your own massive self-enrichment is far too good a chance to let pass...

If only they could send in the troops to break up those nasty Unions.... tried that with the Feds and it suffered blow-back.... oddly the current situation in China is in some ways similar to what triggered the Cultural Revolution and the Red Guards .. basically that was a grass-roots protest against the overweaning demands and excessive comfort and profit of the ruling elite.... but they often picked the wrong enemy....

The Chinkois stomped the Cultural Revolution and they stomped Tianenmen Square ..... and now the ruling elite are all billionaires in the $100BN+ zone.... being THE government has its benefits....

Just saying - watch this space right here in Oz..... I see the same pattern being played out right here and now and for some time in the past......
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
1:07pm
... and certainly into the future as far as the eye can see unless those 'communists' in the proles stand up and take over... some sort of Bolshevik move storming the Houses of Parliament at gunpoint...

Damn - what a dilemna for this Poor Fellow, My Country.... not a single way to turn... every possible path is a disaster waiting to happen.
PlanB
10th Jan 2018
3:08pm
Too right Trebor and Mick too darn right, you can see it happening now b4 your eyes
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
12:37am
Careful - you'll frighten the Entitlement Generation editors on YLC... they don't understand this blood sweat and tears stuff......
Charlie
10th Jan 2018
11:43am
Never owned a home or had a lot of money, but if a home is not included in the assets test and a person has too much cash to get the age pension, cant they simply buy home to the value of how much they want to reduce their assets.?
PlanB
10th Jan 2018
3:10pm
Yes they can Charlie but that just what these B*^%%S want to do is take the pension off those that worked long and bloody hard to own their own home
OnlyGenuineRainey
10th Jan 2018
8:28pm
They can, but that's hardly good for the nation, and many simply don't want to exchange their comfortable existing home for something bigger, grander, harder and more expensive to maintain, and possibly in a less desirable location.
Cowboy Jim
12th Jan 2018
4:20pm
Go right ahead Charlie - as long as you buy a place that leaves you $250'000 in the bank you are sweet. Be smart and get a place, pointless having all that cash.
Linda
10th Jan 2018
11:45am
Tinkering around with the old age pension unsettles folks who are on fixed incomes. It is a huge problem that young and old who do not currently own a home are facing massive expenses for shelter. This is because of the way the negative gearing tax laws work. Then we have folks from other countries with huge fortunes buying up homes. Things are never that simple, to make any sweeping new rules for folks who have already retired and have done their planning and have worked out how to manage after working life. This constant push to take away what was given earlier by previous governments while reducing tax for some and keeping the status quo on negative gearing seems a poor way forward.
Obviously investments are more important than homes for some who are running the government. As the values of property skyrocket because of the incentives tax wise, renters face unfair competition for a home to live in and they face inflated property prices. Why? Investors, and developers, foreign ownership, poor tenancy laws, and of course supply, along with AB&B short stay rentals, are all impacting on the prices of homes for people to live in. There is no single bullet to fix this, what is needed is a full assessment of each perceived cause of the high prices for homes and high rents too. With the research done, and modeling of the what if solutions a way forward to ease the crisis is likely to be effective. It is hard to defend someone eligible for OAP with home assets in the millions.

It should be understood and acknowledged that some folks who have owned their homes for a long time, have seen the value of their homes soar. Their income, however is low. There may be other issues impacting on their decisions to sell or stay. Memory loss, accessibility of the home, the social cost of moving and so on. In one locality maybe most homes are worth several millions these days while in another location there are very few homes that come with such huge pricetags. One has to look at all the factors and all the impacts of any changes. Most multi-faceted strategies work better than single bullet ones.

I think we oldies are getting weary of all the talk about how the oldies are the cause of all the troubles. Very weary of that. The political folks created this mess and now folks are looking for scapegoats that do not include those who are actually responsible. My vote will be going to the folks who are able to find a way to get folks into their own homes or decent long term rentals with good laws to protect tenants.
Crowcrag
10th Jan 2018
11:46am
People who have worked all their lives and paid their 7.5% extra income tax to provide for the pension deserve it regardless of where they live. The high cost of dwellings in Sydney and Melbourne are not their fault. They will die soon enough. Be patient. However, the LNP should realise that a lot of us will still be around to vote at the next election. A lot of us.
Pageturner
10th Jan 2018
11:47am
Harry, if you are suggesting that the sale of multi million dollar homes by retirees will allow young people to purchase them and therefore enter the property market, I think you are in a rather small demographic. I continue to be amazed at the arrogance perpetrated by Gen Y and Millenials towards those of us who received no superannuation until late on our lives ( unless you worked In a government job) and yet saved enough, hopefully, to live a reasonable life in retirement. Yes, homes were cheaper, way back then. Wages were very low too. So sue me! I bought and made money on my home. I didn’t want a mansion. I kept within my budget. I brought up my children alone. I had reasonable expectations of what I could afford and I kept debt to a minimum. If you, Harry, think I will sell my home so the entitled youth of your ilk can buy it, you are sadly mistaken. I lived in Sydney and worked in private school there and saw the entitlement and e expectations of your friends and family first hand. They had no idea of the values of the “common man”. Picked up in Mercedes and Rolls, Bentley’s and Ferrari’s. While it’s not your fault that you have no idea what you’re talking about I can’t help but say, “ You know nothing, John Snow”. Go away and do yourself a favour and grow up before you make your ill informed comments.
Placido
10th Jan 2018
6:57pm
Yep many Millenials and Gen Y believe that seniors caused all of the problems, we had free Uni education, superannuation and lots of perks!

Only a very fortunate few for a short number of years were lucky enough to receive Gough Whitlams gift of education (many of the current Liberal parliamentarians for example) Superannuation was a late comer for many retirees, most of us got very few perks indeed, I remember buying a tired ex housing commission house, doing it up and staying there for many years and of course most of our furniture was second hand or home made. Catch a Millenial buying something second hand - no way has to be the latest and greatest.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
8:23am
Free uni education? Yep. For the minority of privileged well-to-do whose folks could afford to keep them at school long enough to qualify for uni entrance. Most of us left school at 15.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
8:23am
Free uni education? Yep. For the minority of privileged well-to-do whose folks could afford to keep them at school long enough to qualify for uni entrance. Most of us left school at 15.
Hardworker
10th Jan 2018
12:05pm
And when all these older wealthy home owners downsize and put their million dollar properties on the market, who is going to buy them? The young ones don't have any money do they?
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
12:49pm
Many don't even have real jobs....
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
1:12pm
An example:- My daughter is getting so good in the film industry that she is pre-booked for a major film this year - because she works intermittently but at good income, her chances of a mortgage are slim....

On the other hand, some jerk with a 'business plan' can go along to a bank and work a multi-million dollar loan to develop a block of units.... and live off the cream skimmed before a sod is even turned, and then often leave the tradies out of pocket at the end.

Many questions need to be asked at this time in our nation's history - I said that the Abbott government would be a watershed in Australian politics, which is indeed the case with many disenchanted voters turning away from the majors - this time is a major turning point in our history, and we, as a nation, need some very careful planning and real input, beyond selfish interests, as to how and where it will go ahead.

All I can guarantee you, for many reasons, is that the current direction is not it, and it may well be that the 'Trostkyites' in the general population must rise in righteous wrath and cast down the usurpers....
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
1:16pm
Resource management has been mentioned again - if this nation were to nationalise resources and exploit them for proper return to this nation and its people - it would be labeled communist... and would be treated like Cuba was(remember thattheUS continued to buy sugar from Cuba while all this guff was going on about the enemy only 100 miles away or whatever)...

Qatar, on the other hand over that gas, would never be labeled communist....... anyone see a serious issue here with perceptions and realities and how these are twisted by propaganda?
floss
10th Jan 2018
12:08pm
As a self funded retiree I think our flawed immigration policy is causing most of the problem it I only delaying the end result.The bigger the population the bigger the problem.The cake is only so big and the more that want it the smaller the slice , is it that simple or have I missed the point.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
1:17pm
Immigration is one of the issues that needs to be resolve properly here and now and for the future, and should be put to a binding vote of the people with a fair selection of choices.....
Triss
10th Jan 2018
3:23pm
I wouldn't be surprised if that's what all this upset is about, Floss. Immigration costs are going through the roof, we're trillions in debt, how can the government sidestep the blame, tell the taxpayers they're burdened by the OAP.
Rae
10th Jan 2018
4:54pm
Yes floss. Nailed it.

They now have realised the costs of immigration don't match the cosy GDP figures conjured up by it.

There are always consequences.
Denisedancer
10th Jan 2018
12:12pm
When you have worked and paid taxes all your life you should not have to downsize your family home in order to obtain a pension. Who can afford to buy these large homes if they come onto the market anyway, especially in Sydney. Certainly most of the younger generation will be renting all their lives. My husband and I happily downsized to a country village but because we kept a small one bed unit in Sydney we have lost our small part pension. The rent from this apartment provides our only income and is less than the aged pension pays. It's high time Sydney housing prices and costs are taken into account as happens in London where there is a "London loading" on salaries. Some years ago there was a first home buyers grant of $14,000, this wasn't enough for a deposit in Sydney but in Tasmania it bought an entire house.I'm sick of wealthy Liberal Politicians attacking the poorer members of our society, particularly pensioners.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
12:53pm
It's only the companied-up serial housing owners and the developers who will benefit from pushing the old people out of their cherished homes. Don't forget that councils are very much onside, too - they see serious benefit for themselves in developing vertical slums so they push up the rates and such so people have to sell up so the developments can go ahead and ruin their suburb with human waves of residents in small units over-taxing the infrastructure.

How will they all fit on the trains from Turramurra? (when they talk about the North Shore Line, they don't mean the RAILWAY line).....
Mad as hell
10th Jan 2018
12:29pm
Australia is set to eclipse Qatar as the largest exporter of gas in the world by 2020 but will receive just a fraction of the revenue, $800 million compared to Qatar’s $26.6 billion.
That’s $480 billion over the next two decades.
Family Trusts are costing taxpayers $3.5 billion p.a. in lost revenue.
Here’s a thought fart.
Let’s get the Pensioners.
Let’s get the Pensioners.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
12:55pm
Only an idiot would sign up to the kind of deal our politicians and alleged 'business' people do as regards resources - but they're all right, Jack....
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
8:31am
Look, Mad as hell. We need $65 billion a year to gift to companies that make billions and currently don't pay enough tax on it - so they'll pay more (Not sure how that works, but evidently the brains trust has worked it out)

We need $38 billion a year +++++ to fund superannuation tax concessions to high income earners so they won't draw aged pensions they'd never need or be entitled to anyway (according to the stated logic!)

We need billions to keep funding capital gains tax concessions and negative gearing to rich property speculators, so they can keep pushing the prices of housing up (thus somehow making it more affordable for those who don't speculate. Again the stated logic of the brains trust, and I'm sure they must have it all figured out)

We need billions to keep importing refugees (including those loaded with gold and paying a fortune to immigrate to where they can claim better welfare) and to immigrants who take multiple spouses, breed like rats, and have no intention of ever doing an honest day's work. (Yes, I know that's only SOME. No doubt lots of refugees are genuine and lots of immigrants are hard working and honest. But still the exceptions are costing billions)

So where will all this money come from?

Let's get the pensioners.
Let's get the pensioners.
Mad as hell
11th Jan 2018
12:35pm
Where will the money come from?
Our politicians don’t care, they’ll black is white just to get the keys to the lodge.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
9:01am
True, Mad as hell, but they seem to think they need to make it LOOK like they care, and the pensioners are great targets for those peanut savings that they can claim they ''responsibly'' achieved to help fund the wild extravagances. Along with claiming that the extravagances are ''good debt'' and ''necessary to drive economic growth and jobs'', cuts to welfare can be CLAIMED to demonstrate responsible economic management. And it seems a lot of voters are easily fooled.
trood
10th Jan 2018
12:37pm
How come some even smaller countries can pay everyone a reasonable non means tested pension? Where did we go wrong and why can't we fix it?
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
12:56pm
Where did we go wrong? We voted in either Sidewalk Cafe Uni Quadrangle Labor or the Upper Class Twits of The Year And Their Hill-Billy Mates..... and now we can't get rid of them....
Cowboy Jim
10th Jan 2018
12:57pm
Most smaller countries do not support single parent teenagers, illegal
immigrants etc therefore there is more money available for Age Pension. Simple, really. Also smaller countries, including mine, do not
have special privileges for "First Nations".
marls
10th Jan 2018
2:51pm
trood
spot on there is no means test in europe or NZ and they all receive a pension and can continue to work
marls
10th Jan 2018
2:56pm
cowboy Jim
europe has no means test for aged pensions they also have disability and carers pensions and they also take in refugees and give them far more than their own people. my mother receives aged pension from aust. and also european she also receives a portion of my deceased fathers pension and a small pension from another european country because my father was in the war. my sister is my mothers carer and gets carers. I also have an aunty in another european country no means test and they assess couples in an individual basis not like australia
Farside
11th Jan 2018
6:21am
there are plenty of young boomers and older x-gens with money looking to upscale to better digs. I recently sold my property in that category to someone about my age but with a young family so I could downsize to a home on the coast.

These folk are not looking to retire for another 15 years or more and then there will be the next generation to follow. Nobody is expecting the large established properties in the leafy burbs to be sold to first or second home buyers.
Patch25
10th Jan 2018
12:41pm
Get our heads around the notion that an underlying factor of government policy for OAP and the enormously over inflated value of housing is to "gift" a lot more real estate to the Government's developer mates. How does this affect your thinking old age pensioners?
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
12:57pm
Been there - agree with you .. see my comment above.... above... above....
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
1:18pm
(repeat)...

It's only the companied-up serial housing owners and the developers who will benefit from pushing the old people out of their cherished homes. Don't forget that councils are very much onside, too - they see serious benefit for themselves in developing vertical slums so they push up the rates and such so people have to sell up so the developments can go ahead and ruin their suburb with human waves of residents in small units over-taxing the infrastructure.

How will they all fit on the trains from Turramurra? (when they talk about the North Shore Line, they don't mean the RAILWAY line).....
Snowflake
10th Jan 2018
12:59pm
I was never great at maths but if I sell a house for 2 million and then buy another house, which is cheaper, that doesn’t creat more housing for anyone. The family home is not a toy to be passed around because the government says so. I literally despise the current LNP, the worst I have seen since I moved here in 1973. However, I am beginning to think that Labour won’t be any better. Sort of leaves a lot of us in no man’s land doesn’t it?
marls
10th Jan 2018
2:59pm
snowflake
the only way to go is vote independant
PlanB
10th Jan 2018
1:02pm
All I can say no wonder they took the guns off the people -- all dictators did that b4 they brought hard times down on the people
Cowboy Jim
10th Jan 2018
1:17pm
Very true - Lenin, Hitler, Franco, Mao et al took the guns off the people first. Spot on!
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
1:31pm
Said that when it happened.... and one reason why I lodged a dissenting view over the plan to use domestic violence so broadly cast as to be diaphanous and requiring no standard of proof, so as to remove legal firearms from the community by regulation.

Never trust anyone under five feet ten inches tall....
KSS
10th Jan 2018
1:15pm
Since when did a youth club for 18-30 year olds (The Young Liberals) become The Government dictating policy?

Mr Stutchbury (or should that be Master Stutchbury?) has less than three years' work experience (3 months in Mr Howard's office in Nov 2015 - Jan 2016; 14 months in Andrew Constance's office Jan 2016 - Feb 2017; and the last 11 months at the NSW Minerals Council). Poor love just hasn't had time to get his head out of his BA in Political Economy and American Studies (maybe Mr Trump would benefit from Mr Stutchbury's help?) and his Master in Management Accounting to even look around himself. Seriously??????? The Communications Manager for a mining lobby group(!?!) with just a few month's actual work experience moaning about the plight of successful wealthy stock market players not owning a home and not getting a Government funded pension! Well bless him! When he has a home (or a bigger bank balance and share portfolio), a family and a few more miles under his belt, he may be worth listening to. In the meantime, he is NOT a Government Minister, he is NOT making Government policy nor is he 'advising' those who are.

Like everyone else, Mr Stutchbury is entitled to his opinion. Come back in 15 or 20 years and let's see if he is singing the same tune. Everyone else can calm down, nod knowingly with a wry smile and wait for him to grow up!
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
1:33pm
Here's a terrifying though - Gladys (Captain Hook-Nose, successor to Blackbaird The Privateer) was once the top dog in the NSW Young Liberals, and look where that's getting us.... poorer by the day.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
1:34pm
Oh, in twenty years time that jerk will be warming a seat in Parliament with a guaranteed income for life out of the fools who put him there.
ScoMo
10th Jan 2018
1:20pm
If the family home is to be counted under the assets test then open ended negative gearing needs to be abolished and in addition to the CGT concessions.
It's madness that there is no limit on loss transfers for negatively gearing yet there are limits on concessional super contributions plus 15% contributions tax.
Treasury, being full of clowns are now finding it hard to believe that the signals sent by the changes last year to super legislation is resulting in an increase in dependency on the OAP and a diminished incentive for people to save for retirement.
That's what happens when you have a thick fingered idiot as Treasurer.
Pageturner
10th Jan 2018
1:35pm
Just read the SMH piece which reiterates the comments by several Libs regarding the inane and poorly researched comments by Harry. As his father is the editor of the Financial Review (and is groaning and wishing he had proof read Harry’s assignment before he submitted it) I imagine Harry has not had a particularly varied upbringing nor has he had to dirty his hands in the middle class cesspool. But, oh dear, Harry, if only you’d let one of the pensioners you speak of with such derision, proof read and advise you on your submission. You may still have had a future in politics...perhaps. As it is... it’s unfortunate for your ambition, that a line has just been drawn through your name.
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
1:44pm
Even though I will be personally affected by his proposal I think he is right. People should not be able to live in mcmansions and get the full OAP and benefits. My family have a very expensive asset that is increasing in value of over 10% per year and that is tax free until the day I sell or die.
Rae
10th Jan 2018
5:03pm
Yes indeed Big Bear.

Well we will cancel the pension and then the economy will tank. Your asset price will collapse and the pension will be earned back after the dust settles on a much poorer nation. Simples.

Not just the day you die or sell but the day the prices correct.
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
7:09pm
I'm not too concerned as if house prises fall by 75% it would not worry me at all. Cancelling the pension would just mean I stay home more often or take less expensive holidays.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
8:12am
In other words, BigBear, ''I'm all right Jack, and stuff the rest of you''?
Rae
11th Jan 2018
8:13am
Well I'm concerned as I've seen economic collapse a couple of times now and it is very nasty for everyone. Nothing worse that hundreds of thousands of homeless families and businesses failing in the thousands because demand collapsed and liquidity ceased to exist.

Keep cutting cashflow through austerity measures and that is a very real possibility the always wealthy never see coming.
flowerpot
10th Jan 2018
1:37pm
bob menzies and Hasbeen, May I remind you that this country was built on immigration and unless you are an indigenous person then you really don't have a leg to stand on. It's a typical narrow attitude of 'I'm here now so shut the door'. New immigrants are an easy target and a useful scapegoat but that's it. Without immigration your ancestors would have still been in Scotland or wherever you 'Menzies' come from.
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
1:40pm
Let's face it we are only in the good economic situation we are today thanks to immigration propping up our economy.
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
3:06pm
I reject your assertion outright - my comment was that immigration is too high - long term historical average is 70,000 go back to that. Taking 250,000 plus is unsustainable and there is now evidence that we are all economical poorer as a result.
I fully support an immigration program - just not the numbers
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
3:07pm
Full explanation required there, boys.. HOW is mass immigration propping up our economy?
Triss
10th Jan 2018
3:33pm
Yes, Flowerpot, but you have to go back a few years when immigrants stepped onto Australian soil and worked their socks off from then. Nowadays there just aren't enough fulltime jobs for everyone to make a decent living so it's not good
economy any more.
floss
10th Jan 2018
1:40pm
Is my memory slipping in old age or did I hear Honest Tony say THERE WILL BE NO CHANGE TO PENSIONS.
AutumnOz
10th Jan 2018
1:45pm
Yes you heard correctly floss.
It seems to me that there has been nothing else but change since that statement hit the airwaves.
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
1:48pm
There have been no changes to pensions just making it a little harder to get them.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
3:08pm
I'm sure many former and current part pensioners will disagree BB.
PlanB
10th Jan 2018
3:15pm
^Yes Floss you heard right and then that B^#@*^ed broke every promise he made in quick time -- no change to the ABC or SBS etc etc
Triss
10th Jan 2018
3:42pm
Honest Tony also said on TV that you can't believe a word he says. He told The 7.30 Report that not everything he says is true.
AutumnOz
10th Jan 2018
1:43pm
In the above article I don't see any mention of the fact that the current housing bubble is responsible for so many OAPs living in multi million dollar homes. The OAPs probably paid about $50,000 or maybe $80,000 tops for their homes which are now supposed to be worth a couple of million dollars.
Certainly the value of homes has risen in the last 40 or 50 years however you can't eat a brick or a sheet of fibro from those houses, nor are OAPs stopping anyone else from buying a home if they have the ability to pay it off as did previous generations.
I am very tired of reading about the "selfishness" etc. of OAPs and self funded retirees who are living in homes the worked hard to pay for.
Shades of "Logan's Run" - does anyone still remember that old film and TV series?
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
1:51pm
Yes you can eat those houses which can be done by making any pension received a debt on your estate or the sale of your house if you sell before you die.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
3:09pm
Not going to fly, BB - forget it.
Triss
10th Jan 2018
3:50pm
I hope you're an organ donor, Big Bear. Australia has provided you with health care, etc. so, when you die, you have a debt to the living.
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
3:55pm
My organs will be too worn out for anyone to want them when I die. I also have no intention of being cut up while I am still alive either.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
8:16pm
Over Christmas and a big fat ham I was wondering about fat people going missing on the streets of Sydney.... .. don't despair, BigBear - everyone can be a slice of the action... there's always Soylent Green.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
8:05am
Now you are being a cruel hypocrite, BigBear. I could tolerate your boasting about successful manipulation to take more than your share of taxpayer handouts, but suggesting that people with the integrity to make more honest choices in life should be punished while you prosper is unacceptable. Some of us just want to be allowed to age with dignity and self-respect, enjoying what we worked for 5 decades to accumulate, and free to bequeath the proceeds of our endeavours to our chosen heirs when we pass on. And in a decent society, nobody should be punished for such a choice.
Blossom
12th Jan 2018
10:17pm
My parents bought their basic 3 bedroom home in 1952. It was new and not established at all. It didn't even have a power point in any of the bedrooms. I don't know what its value was when they bought it. In 1980 it was valued at 37,000.00 and in late 2012 it was valued at $540,000.00 The only improvements were general maintenance including the necessity to replace the hot water service, standard gas stove and rainwater tank which caught water and prevented flooding + painting the exterior timber work. A new house built next door to us on a much smaller block was worth over $60,000.00 more than my parents home was.
libsareliars
10th Jan 2018
1:50pm
The family home should be left alone.
PlanB
10th Jan 2018
3:16pm
Bloody oath it should libsareliars
Drewbie
10th Jan 2018
2:17pm
G'day all;

Having scrolled down, read some & seen the huge litany of comment regarding Harry Stutchbury's newspaper opinion piece; how anyone can tar with the same brush two example that are so glaringly disparate. The fact that ( Joe Blogs A ) works hard to earn his pay, wisely invests a decent chunk of it in the shares market - gaining hefty capital gains over many years & now lives in a mansion, does in no way shape or form " shouts from the rooftops " that he will be worse off by being ineligible for the OAP. That is a blatant outright Furphy by Mr. H Stutchbury! Of course Mr J. B. A is going to be able to more than adequately self-funding his retirement, because over the decades he's got quite proficient at making capital gain

However: ( Mr & Mrs.Joe Blogs B ) who both work long hrs & many years in respective modest paying jobs, providing for/raising a family, covering relevant living expenses including purchasing the family home . . . and apart from the annual holiday, don't have enough residual coin leftover to invest in similar fashion to ( Mr. Joe Blogs A ); can be no adequate comparison whatsoever.

Perhaps " Mr. J.B.A " has qualifications that place him in a very highly paid salary bracket, that after tax, provided a more than comfy lifestyle & significant residual to grow his wealth by trading shares, etc. Whereas " Mr & Mrs. J. B. B " were/are honest battlers in a much lower wage bracket & they are only left comparatively with 2 gold coins to rub together.

Taking into serious, detailed consideration an individual's income stream/s, family homes worth more than 2 million should be assessed accordingly regarding OAP eligibility, if that individual or couple can easily afford loan repayments for a property of that value, well how long is a piece of string ??

Under that figure, they shouldn't. Besides folks, despite for & against debate, there has to be a cut off point somewhere.

Craig.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
7:44am
Unfortunately Craig, it's that approach that has created the current mess, because nobody can determine where a fair cut-off point actually lies. The election of a cut-off point for other assets has created major unfairness and plunged many who saved very well into difficulties, with strong incentives now to waste their savings. Do you realize some with around $900K (homeowner couple) would reap $180K of extra income from the taxpayer as a reward for spending $100K on a world cruise?

The situation would be far, far worse if we chose a random cut-off point for the family home. A home in one area might be worth 1/3rd the value of the exact same home in another. And while the theory that owners of multi-million dollar homes don't need taxpayer support is totally valid, you can't eat bricks! Furthermore, the current system already positions many homeowners worse off than many of their pensioner counterparts.

We don't need another stupid half-baked change to the pension system that will cause yet another host of problems. We need a total overhaul - a new slate. The proposal for a universal pension is about the only one I've seen that really makes sense. I've considered the option of including the family home in an assets assessment but abolishing the assets test and only testing income and deemed income on non-returning assets. Given adequate thresholds, that could work and be much fairer than the existing system. But just plucking a number out of the air and bashing people with valuable homes will achieve a great deal more unfairness, hurt and heartache - and likely some very adverse economic consequences as well, if more people start selling up and cruising so they can claim fatter pensions and rent assistance.
Rae
11th Jan 2018
8:22am
Yes Rainey. Somehow they need to get around the unsustainable Superannuation tax concessions.

It's just too expensive and no tax after age 60 is crazy.

No other country has ever considered such a dumb idea especially just as the demographic involved was hitting 60. One of Howard's sillier ideas.

The tinkering around the edges that is blatantly discriminatory is just annoying a lot of people without solving the real problem at all.
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
11:22am
Nobody could ever accuse Howard of being a genius - a manipulative, cunning little rat - but no genius.
VeryCaringBigBear
12th Jan 2018
2:43pm
If there was tax on super after 60 many would just cash it in because they would pay less tax outside super on the same return. Unless you have considerable assets outside super it is marginal at best for some people to leave their money in super.
bobbalinda
10th Jan 2018
2:27pm
If they do bring it in many will sell their home, spend all the extra money on overseas trips and cruises and new cars etc till the balance is down to pension level then more will be on the pension and country worse off! Those of us who went without to buy a home for ourselves and family should not be penalized for those who preferred to rent and spent their money during their lifetime!
BillF2
10th Jan 2018
2:27pm
There are four necessities for old age pensioners - accommodation, food, clothing, and sufficient income to pay for the other necessities. Harry Stutchbury, like many young, political wannabe apparatchiks is quite happy to spout the water-muddying line that oldies with property are the cause of excessive house prices, and should be forced, financially, to divest, regardless of the chaos or hardship this may cause. It would appear he wants, as George Orwell put it, all people to be equal, but some (himself and politicians in general) to be more equal than others. If any politician or wannabe politician wants to include the family home, regardless of market value, as an assessable asset, then all property owned by politicians, including its market value, should be made public, and their parliamentary pension adjusted accordingly. By this standard, many would receive nothing - which would be only fitting. Unfortunately, pollies are in a league of their own when it comes to feathering their own nests and taking the material from everybody else.
Triss
10th Jan 2018
2:40pm
I've said this before but I'll say it again about the blatant lack of logic in using a home to lower the pension. If you don't own a home you get a rent subsidy, if you own a home you don't get a rent subsidy thus saving the government that money. If you home is then included in the assets test your being hammered twice,
first because you don't get a subsidy and second because a portion of your pension is removed as well.
My logic says that because non-home owners get a subsidy and home owners don't the the home has been assessed as far as the pension goes.
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
3:00pm
So it's Ok then for a family to put their Mum and Dad pensioners in a $15 million dollar house and use it as a tax free wealth generating asset for the whole family?
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
3:12pm
Sure - must be at least five million pensioners living in $15m houses.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
3:18pm
What if the guv were to look at family net worth (since you are suggesting that Mum and Dad are spotted in that $15m house as a benefit to their descendants) - in which case how would your own self-revealed fixing of your assets/income so as to receive the pension go, since you handed it all down early so as to have access to the pension, Bear?

Your family net worth and the family net worth of the $15m mansioners is the same concept, neh? It's all there in one way or the other for the benefit of descendants............

It seems you have no need of a pension since your family could support you easily, given their lack of mortgages etc...... yet you unashamedly claim it... while demanding that pure pensioners cop a debt against their family' inheritance.....

So only you and the fat cats can pass on an inheritance? I've explained that one before.. within a short space of time ONLY the fat cats would own anything... and we ain't going there, son.
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
3:46pm
Correct if I done what other people do I would not qualify for the OAP today. However by thinking outside the square I have done nothing illegal in benefiting the whole family.

I honestly don't know why others don't do what we have done as it makes more sense than old people hording wealth leaving the young ones to struggle.
Triss
10th Jan 2018
3:55pm
Arguing with me that pensioners live in $15 million houses is not using logic or common sense, Big Bear, try and be more realistic.
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
4:43pm
I actually know of families who are doing that so it is realistic. It is more common that you think as it really is a great legal tax dodge. There are many where I live that are OAPs in mcmansions too.
OnlyGenuineRainey
10th Jan 2018
4:51pm
Most who are that rich are like OG and Bonny - have transferred the house into a trust of some sort so they can live in it and pretend not to own it.
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
5:03pm
I don't blame them as it's better to get rid of one's assets while I is alive than have the lawyers make a killing sorting it all out.

I have a relative living with me so if I have to go into a nursing home they can claim to have lived here long enough so that the house is not counted for the nursing home fees. As I have very few assets other than the house then how can they charge me anything more than the OAP.

Best thing I ever did is sharing my wealth with the family.
OnlyGenuineRainey
10th Jan 2018
6:01pm
Triss, it's not quite that simple, since the $3 million home owner gets a pension if they have only a few hundred K in savings while the $400,000 home owner saves the government just as much but gets nothing because they maybe have $900K in other assets. Yet the $3 million home owner is much wealthier.

You are right, though, that including the home in the assets test would effectively count it twice. And nobody seems to pay attention to the high cost of owning a home. Rates, water, maintenance and insurance add up, often, to nearly as much as rent for a lower-priced property, yet the renter gets handouts and the homeowner doesn't. The whole system is a disastrous unfair complicated mess. The only answer, I think, is the universal pension.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
8:21pm
Last time this nonsense came up, along with the brain-fart about pensioners repaying pension out of estate, I said in that case the family home should be treated as an investment property and all the costs carried forward through income earning life....

Like all of these brain-farts, the clowns putting them forward can't think past the first square of how it benefits them or their ideology.

Now having put this idiot Screaming Lord Sutch to bed... let's make sure the little pr1ck never gets an elected position in this nation. He's already proven himself inept.
Triss
10th Jan 2018
9:23pm
Hey, Trebor, there aren’t many of us who remember Screaming Lord Such.
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
11:31am
Being old doesn't mean you lose all your... um.. what was it... arrrrr.. oh, yeah.. memory!!
Triss
10th Jan 2018
2:52pm
As a matter of interest, will Turnbull be collecting a pension when he leaves parliament and has he asked for his $52 million home to be asset tested to lower the burden on taxpayers?
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
3:13pm
Of course he'll collect - that's an entitlement worked and paid for................... (I can leave that one hanging methinks... not Malcolm.. not yet anyway)......
HS
10th Jan 2018
3:17pm
Government pensions for politicians should be abolished altogether. The taxpayer's money they earn also contributes to their superannuation. At what percentage? Very high to retire on. If they are broke they can get Newstart or OAP at the same rate as every other Newstart or OAP when they reach the qualifying circumstances or old age and eat humble pie like all the poor age pensioners.
PlanB
10th Jan 2018
3:21pm
Darn right he will get the pension the same as they all do even though they get another well-paid job as well -- they donýt have to wait till THEY ar 70 to get a miserable pension they get ALL the bells and whistles as well AND they can get it at a very young age as well and get travel free as well -- what a load of bludgers
HS
10th Jan 2018
6:13pm
Bludgers is too kind.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
7:59am
Now, now, folks. Just remember Mr Turnbull started life ''disadvantaged'', and is therefore firmly convinced that anyone who hasn't risen to his level of wealth has only themselves to blame. After all, all of us - even the children of single parents - surely enjoyed an elite private school education, attended the world's best university, and inherited mega millions, didn't we?

Poor orphaned Mal has done the hard yards and made good. We should all have done the same, apparently!
VeryCaringBigBear
12th Jan 2018
2:08pm
Mal was in the right place at the right time and a simple corporate takeover nett him a fortune.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
8:02pm
Mal inherited millions, after growing up super privileged. It's easy to be in the right place at the right time when you are fantastically wealthy and can afford to take risks.
VeryCaringBigBear
12th Jan 2018
9:52pm
Not a bad payout for a $500,000 investment.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OzEmail
OnlyGenuineRainey
14th Jan 2018
8:38pm
Who can make a $500,000 investment at that age? Only people who inherit wealth. And he had an extraordinarily privileged education and exposure to wealthy people. The rest of simply don't have those opportunities. The ignorant arrogance of the wealthy makes me sick! I couldn't care less what investment he made. He would not have his millions if he hadn't grown up wealthy and privileged and inherited vast wealth.
VeryCaringBigBear
14th Jan 2018
10:19pm
He probably borrowed it like many of us did at that age. My solicitor friend was in same year as him at uni and he was just in right place at right time. The difference between the wealthy and the poor is that one is prepared to take risks and make mistakes as they realise that nothing ventured is nothing gained.
VeryCaringBigBear
14th Jan 2018
10:21pm
It is interesting that Malcolm Turnbull was born same year as Gina and Clive. I also know of a few other low profile well off people born this same year.
OnlyGenuineRainey
15th Jan 2018
8:57am
''The difference between the wealthy and the poor is that one is prepared to take risks and make mistakes as they realise that nothing ventured is nothing gained. ''

BULLSHIT!

That's the ignorant, arrogant, ill-informed lie the egotistical rich love to subscribe to because it feeds their ego. It's CRAP. The difference between the wealthy and the poor is that the wealthy have opportunity, guidance, and space to grow, whereas the poor are forced to just grind away exhausting themselves trying to keep their heads above water. They don't get the opportunity to take risks - because it means risking their children's bread and shelter. And they don't get the education to understand risks. They fear loss, because they have experienced the suffering it causes first hand. And if they do start to improve their circumstances, they are immediately beaten, bullied, and bashed to try to keep them down.

Malcolm didn't borrow anything, BigBear. Read some facts. He studied at the most elite private school in Australia and one of the top universities in the world. His father owned a string of pubs. His grandfather left him millions. He was BORN RICH - like the majority of the wealthy (Gina and Clive included).

It is sick to denigrate the battlers and condemn them to greater hardship by lying about the social structure and what produces wealth.

With very hard work, some battlers get modestly comfortable. Occasionally, astonishingly good luck enables someone to rise from hardship to wealth. The wealthy love to lie about their claimed ''challenged'' beginnings, but they don't know what a challenge is, and they certainly don't understand hardship.

You are full of it, BigBear - arrogance, ignorance, contempt for the workers who build this nation, and apparently gross self-interest, which you, like OG, justify by pretending hardship is entirely self-induced. It's a nasty and socially destructive belief to try to foster, and it's total rubbish.
OnlyGenuineRainey
15th Jan 2018
9:03am
And claiming the battlers should have to repay their pension from their estate is just more social engineering to preserve the class system. Stop the hard workers passing on better opportunity to their children and grandchildren, while they continue to pay tax to load the coffers of the stinking manipulating wealthy.
VeryCaringBigBear
15th Jan 2018
10:37am
I gather from your comments that is OK to do what I did and now my family will benefit from a big tax free capital gain when I die and I use my OAP to pay to enjoy my old age.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
2:57pm
YLC - please be sure to pass this thread on to Twerptown Central so they get the message.
Old Man
10th Jan 2018
3:27pm
To take the points one at a time:

The Federal Treasury reports every year on where the tax income goes so the report for this year is unremarkable and taken out of context

One person connected with a political party has an opinion that is not shared by the party.

The ACCI made a suggestion to the government and the suggestion has been ignored.

Menzies Research Centre made a suggestion to the government which has also been ignored.

Matt Grudnoff of the Australia Institute has made a suggestion.

In all of the above there is no justification to support the misleading headline that "NSW Young Liberals propose including home in assets test", nor is there any proof that "The Government clearly has pensioners in its sights this season."

YLC is starting the year off in the same vein as 2017, rumour, innuendo and partial truth to slant a story to suit their political agenda. Surely the readers of this site deserve better?
Triss
10th Jan 2018
3:58pm
A war only needs one bullet to start it, Old Man.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
7:18am
Why do you think they banned guns and are making a hell of a fuss with their claims of ''terrorism''?
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
5:33pm
Now only the criminals and old ladies have guns.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
3:27pm
Young Liberals = young, verminous SCUMBAGS. How DARE these greedy ars*holes propose this!
Triss
10th Jan 2018
3:59pm
Because they have no life experience and nothing between their ears.
Knows-a-lot
10th Jan 2018
4:42pm
Yes indeed, Triss.
OnlyGenuineRainey
10th Jan 2018
4:50pm
I don't necessarily agree with the motive or the details, but he's right that it's grossly unfair that owners of valuable homes get pensions while people with modest homes and more savings don't. The whole aged pension system is seriously flawed. I don't think just pushing the family home into the assets test is any kind of a solution. It would create more problems than it solves. But a total overhaul of the whole messed up system is needed urgently. A universal pension would be an excellent solution.
Dot
10th Jan 2018
5:20pm
Whose fault is it that the prices of properties have gone up, certainly not mine. Back in 1966 couldn't even get a bank loan for our property from our bank that was Australian owned, had to change and then my name wasn't on the titled because I was under the age of 21.
Most homes are owned by property investors which are rented out and one only has to look around and see one beautiful homes looking like
pig styles, lets also not forget the foreign buyers purchasing homes which shouldn't be allowed
The sheer greed of the real-estate industry and developers are responsible for the damage that has occurred over the past 20 years.
OnlyGenuineRainey
10th Jan 2018
5:44pm
Yes, Dot, but I don't see how we can solve a problem by focusing on whose fault it is or how it got to be a problem. The fact is that the aged pension system is a disaster, and it needs fixing. The unfairness of excluding the family home from the assets test is undeniable, but merely pushing it into the mix now will create far more problems than it solves. We need a complete overhaul - a new system from the ground up. Every change makes it worse! There was agreement to overhaul it completely when the Greens consented to the assets test change, but as usual the government ignored its own promise and did nothing.
roy
10th Jan 2018
6:29pm
Dot, From midnight tonight stop all tax relief on 2nd 3rd 4th 5th homes etc. That will bring the prices of houses down.
Also stop the Chinese and other overseas investors and go through all property sales to the Chinese with a fine tooth comb over the last number of years especially in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.
There must be thousand sold illegally.
PlanB
10th Jan 2018
3:41pm
These elitist scum have never lived in the real world, most of them came straight from school to FREE UNI and then into Politics -- and have NFI what the hell it is like to do the hard yards, except for the likes of Jacquie Lambie
Old Man
10th Jan 2018
3:49pm
Those bullying scum who have never lived in the real world but have worked for a union or have been to uni and worked as a staffer for a Labor MP have no idea what the hell it is like to do the hard yards. As regards Lambie, look up her service record with the Defence Forces.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
8:23pm
Only one assault charge, OM.. not that bad... though I never saw the inside of the glass-house...
Old Man
10th Jan 2018
8:30pm
Thanks Bob, didn't get as far as the bad back and case for compo then?
roy
10th Jan 2018
11:43pm
Elitist scum like Shifty Shorten,that well known sycophant(google sycophant if you don't know what it means you ALP voters).
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
10:33am
TREBOR, is that because of virtue or being too clever to get caught?

Don't worry roy, I will not be voting for the ALP I will be voting against the Coaladdiction.
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
11:39am
I kinda caught up with the back claim and stuff - but I'm forced to continue with my stated view that I dispute no claim, since the current handling of them is very biased and one-sided the other way. I know personally people with genuine injuries (non-active) who've just given up.

I'm not really a clever person, ex PS - not in that sense. More interested in simply doing right as far as I can see it. Unless seriously stomped on I don't have trouble mostly with people - but my temper is something to behold... old Digger mate once said to me that I didn't know how to protect myself from arseholes... probably right.
Cowboy Jim
10th Jan 2018
4:07pm
Now at the end of the day, anyone in her/his 50s should know exactly what to do in planning retirement. Just make sure you have not too much capital left over when you get to 67 cause
unless you are a politician you will be means tested to your bones and the memories of world travels they cannot take off you. Have a good time, don't buy home brand all the time and take each other out for a meal now and then. It is always later than you think.
Charlie
10th Jan 2018
4:18pm
Raising the pension age is already a disaster on the way. People wont be in the workforce, they will be drawing disability pension. There goes the pension increase.
People are living longer because they get more hospital care. There goes the rest of the pension increase.
Anything that is pinned to this is also doomed to failure.
sumerluva
10th Jan 2018
4:25pm
I know quite a few people who didnt want to buy a house rather rent and get rent assistance and blow any money that they got their hands on. Low income people tend to have wrong priorities spend it when u have it and dont worry about consequences later in life.
I believe if you worked hard saved and brought a house you have the right to be able to live in it and not be penalised You must be able to prove you have lived in it more than 5 years before retirement if valued over 1.5 million that way you cant shovel it all into property and claim pension
Why does the government pick on seniors what about all the money that goes into assisting immigrants.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
8:24pm
Does that apply to divorced men as well... that bit about a right to live in your own home?
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
7:15am
Hey Trebor.... don't be sexist. What about divorced women? Yes, it may be that statistically more men lose their home than women, but I know quite a few women who have been kicked out with nothing. One I know just lost a custody battle to a man who threw her out and moved his girlfriend in. He could afford a good lawyer. She couldn't.
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
11:40am
Fair enough, Rainey.... most often I say it cuts both ways, but given the current climate the men's side needs a bit of oxygen...
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
7:31am
Now that I certainly agree with!
Dot
10th Jan 2018
4:41pm
TO ALL THOSE WHO KEEP ON TARGETING THE PENSIONERS WHO HAVE WORKED THROUGH HARD AND GOOD TIMES PAID THEIR DUES IN MORE WAYS THAN ONE WE ARE GUNNY FOR YOU WHEN THE RECESSION COMES WHICH IS ONLY A STEP AWAY.
roy
10th Jan 2018
10:42pm
There is a recession around the corner, mark my words.
Rae
11th Jan 2018
8:35am
Scaring pensioners is no way to ensure they keep spending in the local economy and if they all stop spending then yes there will be a recession.

Never having had any experience these young elites don't know that seeing the enemy's barrel is the signal to pull the trigger.
Rodent
10th Jan 2018
5:13pm
So what are the Numbers of Age pensioners?
Answer as at Sept 2017 (latest available) there are 2,489,591 people on the age Pension
of these there are 1,176,982 that are Home Owning Couples
There are 190,225 that are NON Home Owning Couples
There are 660,381 that are Single Home Owners
There are 461,973 that are NON Home Owning Singles
Cowboy Jim
10th Jan 2018
5:26pm
Thank you Rodent. And here again the difference between home owners and non home owners. Some people still claim there is no
asset test on your own home. Your own home is assessed at about $200'000 even if it is only a country flat worth $125'000. Go figure!
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
7:12am
I added the cost of rates, maintenance and home insurance and then factored in the extra pension entitlements for a renter, and I found that vast numbers of home owners are actually no better off than they would be renting. In fact, some are significantly worse off - if they live in areas where council rates are high, or their homes are aging.
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
11:59am
Not too sure where one could buy a house for $200,000 these days as in most places that is barely enough for a deposit.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
12:36pm
Irrelevant, BigBear. Do the sums. Add up maintenance costs, rates, water, insurance, etc., then add the rent assistance, plus the extra pension paid to those without a home but with the same assets, and in many cases you'll end up with a figure that is actually higher than many people are paying in rent.
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
3:46pm
I'd hate the even think what it would cost to rent a house like mine but it would be well in excess of the sum of all those outgoings. That would be very cheap rent indeed for such a place.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
8:41am
So what? You think we should pay rent assistance and higher pensions to people so they can choose luxurious accommodation? I'm talking out basic suitable accommodation.

I know someone who - having never worked a day in her life - recently challenged her mother's will claiming a ''need'' for a home. She already had lifetime rights to a public housing unit, but she wanted a luxury waterfront mansion, and claimed her mother's meagre estate - the estate of a woman who had survived major hardship and worked hard to acquire a very, very cheap and modest old home unit and then accumulate some savings - should be 100% hers so she could achieve her dream. In her view, the fact that her siblings worked hard for 30 years to pay off modest homes rendered them ineligible to share what their mother left behind.

This is the problem in our society. The have-nots have somehow concluded that their irresponsible lifestyle ENTITLES them to deny the haves fair reward for effort, and to just demand that they be given what their green eyes see over the fence. And then the manipulators realize that the have-nots greed is being indulged, so they arrange their affairs to pretend they are among them. And then welfare becomes unaffordable, so the very privileged scream that the hard working responsible who accumulated modestly must now be deprived, because we have to hand out more to the have-nots and the pretenders, and we can NEVER take from the elite. In the end, there's no incentive to work and be responsible, so the entire nation is royally SCREWED UP. But some selfish folk and some stupid folk continue to support this nonsense idea that the responsible workers should be screwed over to fund lavish handouts to the irresponsible spenders, the bludgers and the manipulators.

And no, I'm not being harsh. I would give the shirt off my back to someone in GENUINE need. I do, often. But it's a very, very small percentage of the population who qualify as GENUINELY needy. Most are right where they deserve to be, given their lifestyle choices.
OnlyGenuineRainey
10th Jan 2018
6:06pm
I was proud of having been married for 47 years, but I'm rapidly warming to the idea of divorce. According to a friend, I could divorce for about $8000, giving my spouse the house. My partner would then qualify for a full pension and all benefits, and I would qualify for a very substantial part pension with rent assistance. But if the house is to be included in the assets test, maybe we should give it to our kids and rent it back. After 5 years, we'd be full pensioners, instead of struggling to live on the returns from investments and agonizing over risks and management costs.

Honestly, I'm convinced this idiotic government just wants to find every possible means of compelling people to manipulate to drive the costs of pensions UP as high as possible.
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
6:46pm
Why do yo have to get divorced? We didn't. I retired at 55 and cashed in my super and bought a very expensive house. I then either gave away or spent enough f my wealth to qualify for a full OAP at 65. One of our relatives has lived in one of the self contained wings of the house for many years and they also now collect the full OAP. Our family picks up all our bills which allows us to use the OAP to travel.

I agree Rainey the OAP is full of holes and I can't understand why others want to keep their wealth which they have no need for instead of distributing it among the rest of their family. Our grandkids now no longer have to both work and they can enjoy their young kids and bring them up themselves.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
8:26pm
Not everybody has that kind of sweet ride, BigBear.... get out a bit more.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
7:03am
BigBear, my point is that pushing everyone to make the choices you make is going to destroy the entire system. The cost is already claimed to be excessive and cuts are being made. If more people do as you have done, more will be going to people who don't need it and there won't be enough for people who genuinely do.

Good luck to you if you can manipulate and live well, but it's not what the government should be encouraging or rewarding. And for me, it feels wrong. It's unethical and it's unfair. But I guess having suffered horrendous hardship and cruel injustice changes your perspective. When you finally escape poverty, you have two priorities: trying to ensure you don't slip back, and supporting the notion that taxpayer funds should be directed to those in GENUINE need.
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
10:07am
Many others I know are doing very similar to what I have done basically we feel that we have accumulated more wealth than we would ever need so why not help those in the family out now rather than have them struggle until we die. Just imagine the difference it would make to young couple if they had no mortgage?
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
10:44am
The system has put itself in a position where more and more people want to manipulate it. If the system wants to be treated with respect, it should try showing some.

We always said we were content to be self funded and be left alone to get on with our lives. We are now faced with the suggestion of changes that will seriously hamper our well thought out strategy for retirement.

Why shouldn't we demonstrate our discontentment by using the system to our advantage and sticking it to the man, before the man can stick it to us.

The government should learn "Don't to poke the bear", it may be getting grey, it might not be as fast as it once was, but it still has teeth and claws.

Some of us planted PVC trees decades ago, the time is coming that we may have to dig them up.
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
11:42am
I've always had an argument with SFRs having actually less income than a pension - pensions should be the lowest income level in retirement.

Our system is indeed broke.
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
6:23pm
knows a lot says the Australian institute is to the right of genghis khan - well the Director Ben Oquist was an advisor to Greens and if you ever him talk on TV he is a rabid green
PlanB
10th Jan 2018
6:25pm
It is all part of the Agenda 21-30 the idea is to get everyone to live in a 30 x 30 box and have no possessions and not even a car -- they are already charging people for dam water in SA and also will, charge for tank water over a certain amount.
Agenda 21 has been planned for many years and is quickly coming to fruition.

If you do not believe look it up for yourselves
bob menzies
10th Jan 2018
6:54pm
I have read it and it is scary - many years ago when I read agenda 21 one of the items was global warming (this was 5 years before that 1998 report from IPCC that said 97% of scientists agree (etc) - as it turned out is was only 78 or so scientists asked and 8 of them have walked away from those findings.
The UN is a dangerous beast. Fortunately there is push back - Trump, Austria, Poland and Hungary. Poland apparently told Un to take a hike.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
8:27pm
Was the term for Polish Brexit PoleAxed?
PlanB
11th Jan 2018
7:30am
At least Bob --- you have the sense to not call Agenda 21 a conspiracy - like so many do -- it is as I said coming to fruition quickly now and it IS very scary --- we are and have been treated like mushrooms for decades -- and like I said b4 no wonder Howard took the guns off the people -- this has always happened in the past some time b4 the s*^# hit the fan
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
10:45am
Time to move into the hive and live as one, become one with the Borg.
Careworn
10th Jan 2018
6:34pm
I'm sick of these threats. I really wish that I was a self-funded retiree then I wouldn't have to live in fear of what these politicians will do next.
OnlyGenuineRainey
10th Jan 2018
8:20pm
Um... you would live in fear of further falls in investment returns and losses due to share market or property crashes, and stupid policy changes that render many SFRs far worse off in income terms than pensioners and force them to drain their hard-won savings until they qualify for handouts. If you are going to wish to be an SFR, wish to be a very rich one, because anything less than $1.5 million will certainly not remove the fear of what politicians will do next.
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
10:53am
I am a self funded retiree, not living in fear yet, but I am getting concerned. Not all of us are wealthy and it would not take much to push a lot of us over the line into taking a part entitlement.

We are all retirees, let the government try and divide us and they will conquer us. We have more problems in common than we have differences and they all seem to be coming from the government. Time to show them that Grey Power can not be taken for granted forever.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
7:32pm
https://www.youngliberal.org.au/executive

Another series of overpaid useless make-work jobs.. Screaming Lord Sutch is moving from the NSW Minerals Council - another useless mouth job... a made-up job for the mates, friends, cronies and families of 'business' people.

Now wonder this twerp has zero idea and is only capable of mumbling refuse when he opens his mouth...a true pillar of the community...

Igor - prepare the scaffolds and guillotines.... our work here has not begun....
OnlyGenuineRainey
10th Jan 2018
8:18pm
How much will you be worth when you are 65, Harry Stutchbury? And how much of that worth will be due to taxpayer-funded benefits, like generous tax concessions on superannuation that cost the country far more than the aged pension and that, unlike the age pension which isn't expected to increase in cost until 2050 - when it will start to fall - are costing taxpayers more and more every year.

While I agree that the exclusion of the family home from the assets tests creates problems, there are no simple solutions other than a universal aged pension - which should have been gazetted a long time ago. Most of the suggested measures will create far more problems than they solve. But regardless, before you hit out at people who worked for 4 or 5 decades to ensure they had comfortable accommodation and some security in old age, clean up your own backyard. Insist the government stop the obscene expenditure on unaffordable tax handouts to the wealthy and to high income young folk like you,
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
8:29pm
Bill him for his own scaffold...... take it out of his estate.....
Believer
10th Jan 2018
9:11pm
Time to get rid of the Liberals!
henkay
10th Jan 2018
9:44pm
well said I say to you start now and get behind the ALP who are the better option to govern
roy
10th Jan 2018
10:39pm
Hear hear, let's get Shifty Shorten, Shanghai Sam Dastyari and that Berk Tony Burke in charge, God save us all.
PlanB
11th Jan 2018
7:31am
Trouble is Libs and Lab are wings of the same bird
Rae
11th Jan 2018
8:59am
It's a sad choice between unionists and bankers. It seems the bankers have sold all our assets anyway. It's what they do.

Our Prime Minister can always retire to the lovely house in the Cayman's. And spend Summers in the Hamptons with the rich boyband girls.

If Sam is Shanghai what do you label Robb after giving Darwin to China?
Aviatorman
10th Jan 2018
9:38pm
People (Pensioners) should be allowed to 'sell' or downsize in their own time. They have worked hard for their nest egg, large or small. The fact that its value escalates over time, should not 'force' them to sell, nor cause them to lose the OAP because of its value. Its not all about numbers, its about peace of mind. (young Lib please note)
henkay
10th Jan 2018
9:42pm
this proves that the Liberals cannot be trusted to govern the sooner we have an election and vote out the liberal trash the better and that applies to state governments as well as federal only the ALP can be trusted to look after those who deserve respect after working al their lives for what we have today bring on a federal election and lets kick the liberals out of office asap
roy
10th Jan 2018
11:40pm
Yeah, vote for Shifty Shorten the union bully boy.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
7:09am
I want the LNP gone, henkay, but ''trust'' Labor? I don't think so!
Rae
11th Jan 2018
9:05am
It is pointless installing Labor as the LNP has completely destroyed the revenue base now anyway. I certainly don't want to see the ALP stuck with the mess.

Both parties are useless so make the Liberals face the consequences for once. Time after time they destroy the place and Labor gets the blame for spending to fix up the mess.

People like roy only see the spending bit. Leave the LNP wallowing in the mud just once.
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
4:06pm
I doubt it would matter who was in power so why worry about it. I for one have better things to worry about than politics.
john
10th Jan 2018
10:17pm
HARRY YOUR AN IDIOT , WITH TOO SHORT A LIFE TO EVEN CONTEMPLATE TIMES DOWN THE TRACK, THAT IF YOU ARE SMART AND WORK HARD, YOU MIGHT GET THERE , TO THE OLDER AGE WHEN A PENSION MEANS A LOT , A HUGE LOT!
You know zilch you silly young fool!
john
10th Jan 2018
10:21pm
Has been is one of those blind people who only see their own experience and have absolutely no idea of other circumstances that happen to others. Has been, may wake up one day and something has changed that makes things a bit harder The fact that it hasn't makes me think that Has been would suffer greatly if something snuck up and kicked him in the teeth.
Self satisfied , sounds like geezer.
henkay
10th Jan 2018
10:25pm
John you are the fool as you fail to understand that I know what it means to be on a low income but you also got my name wrong as well pensioners are better looked after when the ALP are in government not the liberals they are the ones who hurt the pensioners and you should know better than to protect those liberal mates of your who have hurt our country
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
7:07am
Henkay, Labor introduced both the income and the assets test, failed to garner support from their allies - the Greens - to block the recent assets test change, and refused to pledge to reverse the cruel assets test change in the last election, so I don't see them as being a wonderful alternative - although I do agree pensioners and battlers generally have a better chance under Labor. The problem is that the parties now are very similar and share the same policies, because neither are focused on the good of the nation. We need to somehow get rid of BOTH.
roy
10th Jan 2018
11:45pm
Stop the Chinese buying Australia NOW.
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
12:40am
Stop offshorers buying up this nation - in the case of China it is a government policy to buy up the West... why else would they offer their citizens no or low interest loans to buy up property?

Don't be fooled by such things as :- "It's not the Guv-ment.. it's the banks here!"... the government IS the banks there.... and the $200Bn club New Mandarins and New Emperor OWN BOTH!!
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
12:41am
Don't get me wrong - I like Chinese, especially the women..... but their government is as cunning as the proverbial outhouse rat.
PlanB
11th Jan 2018
7:36am
Darn right TREBOR, it not the ordinary Chinese -- although there are a LOT that are beholding -- under the control of the Chinese Government -- (communist Government )
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
12:01pm
A 'communist' country classically perverted to the best benefit of its ruling class - the more things change... and the people, despite the public kid gloves, do not step out of line or they will be purged without a second thought as 'bandits' and 'anti-social elements' or 'counter-revolutionary reactionaries'.

Like Stalin being Russia's greatest Tsar, Mao was China's greatest Emperor. Only in China could the 'communist' leadership be made up of those whose family net worth is in the hundreds of billions of US dollars......and who run everything using every part of the state apparatus as a means to sustain their own rule.

That's what our politicians envy most - that ability to exploit every aspect of the State for their own enrichment..... funny how despite the old claims of China being some softy-feely 'middle kingdom' it is in reality a very primitive society.

Still like the people though.
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
12:05pm
** add to "sustain their own rule" - 'and to build and maintain a dynastic rule over the nation'.

We do see the same thing here with offspring of politicians becoming politicians... just following the family business with all its benefits....
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
8:12am
Can the YLC staff PLEASE send all of the below comments to Harry and ask him to be sure to read every word carefully?
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
11:05am
I think Harry is right and it would not surprise me that the vast majority of OAPs would be better off if their house was included in the assets test.
PlanB
11th Jan 2018
11:56am
Please explain your statement there Big Bear -- where the ^&*# would they live if they never had a &^%$*&^house!!!!
PlanB
11th Jan 2018
12:02pm
He -- Harry -- is yet another career Pollies that would NOT know ^
$*^t from clay has never worked a day in his privileged life and needs to get with the program and try and live on welfare for 12 months -- I bet he could not do it -- others have tried -- they lasted days, these bastards spend more on a lunch that OAP gets in a bloody year!
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
12:07pm
If the house is included in the assets test then either the asset test levels would have to increase to accommodate a modest house or there would be restrictions on how much a house could be worth before it's effects one's pension.

The problem with the current OAP system is that it is so inequitable and many people with a bit of forward planning are using the rules to get the pension in a way it was not designed. It was designed to help those who don't have the means to support themselves not to allow wealthy families to distribute their wealth so that they have expensive assets but are able to get welfare in many forms as well.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
12:32pm
What SHOULD happen is the stupid and destructive assets test should be abolished. The notion of punishing people for having saved is absurd. And the argument that it was saved for retirement and should be spend accordingly is BS. Many saved for specific purposes that have nothing to do with their basic living costs in retirement. In many cases, it is NOT superannuation and was NOT accumulated through any tax-favoured scheme. So it's blatantly WRONG to effectively ''tax'' it in retirement by denying people a pension that people who saved less are receiving.

Adding the family home to the mix won't fix the problem. It will be yet another stupid, ill-conceived Band-Aid solution that will create a host more problems.
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
3:43pm
Once retired you are in the phase of your life where you are no longer using your labour to earn money and so need some form of support. If you have money then you should be spending it before you access the OAP. Remember the OAP was designed for those who have no other means of support. The system was not designed to allow people to buy mcmansion with their retirement money so that it becomes a way of accumulating wealth tax free for the next generation. Nor was it designed so people can give away their assets instead of using them to provide for their retirement. However that is exactly what our current system allows people to do.

If the assets test is abolished people with assets will invest them in little if any income producing assets and have a very low income and still qualify for the OAP. A good example would be to invest in physical gold which has no income until it is sold.

So how do you stop people from playing by the rules and finding all the loop holes? The only solution I can see is for any welfare OAP received to become a debt to be repaid upon their death. Now old people hate having debts as evidenced by the uptake of funeral insurance so they will find other ways of providing for their retirement as they don't want to burden their family with such a debt.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
8:19am
Says someone who admits to gifting assets to his kids to get a pension he neither needed not had moral entitlement to. Bugger off greedy Bear. I worked my guts out for what I have and I have just as much MORAL right to support in old age and the bludgers and spendthrifts and manipulators you claim are more entitled. Your proposal is selfish, self-serving BS.

Australia pretends to be a free country, so if I want to work hard and accumulate a few assets to live the way I please in retirement, that should be MY right, and there should NOT be a penalty for it. Make the pension universal, as is common sense fairness and has been often proposed, or test INCOME ONLY, applying a fair deeming rate to any non-returning or very low-returning assets where it's clear the low return was not a result of factors beyond the owner's reasonable control.

If you make people repay their pension out of their estate after death, more people will ensure they retire with no assets and the cost of pensions will rise dramatically, plus the young will be deprived by less inheritance. A very STUPID and destructive idea that will hurt the whole of society!
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
8:19am
Says someone who admits to gifting assets to his kids to get a pension he neither needed not had moral entitlement to. Bugger off greedy Bear. I worked my guts out for what I have and I have just as much MORAL right to support in old age and the bludgers and spendthrifts and manipulators you claim are more entitled. Your proposal is selfish, self-serving BS.

Australia pretends to be a free country, so if I want to work hard and accumulate a few assets to live the way I please in retirement, that should be MY right, and there should NOT be a penalty for it. Make the pension universal, as is common sense fairness and has been often proposed, or test INCOME ONLY, applying a fair deeming rate to any non-returning or very low-returning assets where it's clear the low return was not a result of factors beyond the owner's reasonable control.

If you make people repay their pension out of their estate after death, more people will ensure they retire with no assets and the cost of pensions will rise dramatically, plus the young will be deprived by less inheritance. A very STUPID and destructive idea that will hurt the whole of society!
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
8:50am
Big Bear, consider this situation - one I've seen several times in my lifetime. Father dies young. Had life insurance arranged to leave trust funds for children. Mother is left with insufficient funds to provide a home for the kids and support and educate them, but struggles along doing it very tough,making emergency drawings from trust funds (as is permitted by law if it's for the children's needs), pledging to repay the debt at some future time. Kids are entitled to their trust fund at 21, but there's precious little left now. Mum says she owes them and will repay, but they elect to ignore the debt and make it on their own, knowing Mum needs to retain her home and wanting her to have reasonable comfort. Mum says ''well, you'll finally get your dues from my estate when I die'.'' Kids do it very tough, having grown up as children of a poor widow and started working life with nothing. Still doing it very tough, with kids of their own, when Mum dies. Estate - i.e. Mum's house - is confiscated to pay for the pension she collected.

Now, if the kids knew they would never recover the money their dad left them, they might have called the debt much earlier and left Mum living in poverty and homeless. Good outcome? Well, the selfish and self-serving, who approve manipulation to entitle the greedy well-off to take pensions, obviously wouldn't care! No wonder our society is in such a mess!
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
9:03am
Come to that, I wonder how many lend to struggling aged parents, with no documentation because being in debt would stress the oldies terribly, but with both parties expecting that the debt will be repaid from the estate? I guess that would have to stop if the selfish and self-serving get their way and estates disappear into government coffers. More oldies living in poverty! Great outcome. Well done Bear!
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
9:07am
Sorry, I should be more forgiving. This is the kind of logic one should expect from those who don't understand hardship.

I reckon the best solution would be to oust all the damn pollies and their advisers and install folk who have done it very, very, very hard through life, but demonstrated resilience and intelligence sufficient to retire with a nice home and a decent savings nest-egg. Then maybe we'd have policies that recognize the realities of life, show compassion to those in genuine need, but deliver the knowledge and incentives that would encourage striving and responsible living and thus enable the nation to prosper.
VeryCaringBigBear
12th Jan 2018
1:56pm
All I'll say is that that window had every right to draw the money to support her children and if they were my children I would be very disappointed that they were so greedy to even think about getting the money back. I would also be very disappointed if the children were upset because their mother needed money to support herself in old age and drew the pension knowing it was to be a debt on her estate. Nothing but very greedy children.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
7:59pm
Says the greedy fellow who manipulates to rip off taxpayers and claim a pension he doesn't need. Typical attitude of the elite. - greed and selfishness is fine if you are rich, but if poor people want a little they are evil.

Of course she had the right to draw the money, but likewise she had the right to WANT to help her children along, given that they lost their Dad and suffered a lot as a consequence. And stinking vile greedy bastards are mongrels for suggesting these orphans shouldn't inherit what little their mother left, but it's okay for others to manipulate to take far more than they are morally entitled to.

Stop bashing the battlers, BigBear. It may be a rich man's world, but it's sickening to see the greed of the haves and the disgusting contempt they show for the have-nots.
VeryCaringBigBear
12th Jan 2018
9:43pm
Yes I have played the game to my advantage but I have certainly not resorted to bullying and calling people names. That definitely should not be tolerated by anyone and is certainly not tolerated by me.

I often wonder what sort of people you associate with from your stories and think that you must just get a real buzz out of such bizarre stuff. I certainly don't.
OnlyGenuineRainey
13th Jan 2018
7:48pm
Well, pardon me BigBear, but I found your comment highly offensive - suggesting that it's okay for someone with more money than they need to take from taxpayers, but the far less privileged are ''greedy'' for wanting what their mother considered should always have been theirs and wanted to leave to them. It's one rule for the rich and another for the poor, apparently. The poor are ''greedy'' and should be deprived. The wealthier are ''entitled'' and should be indulged Personally, I think it's the other way around.

As for who I associate with - yes, BigBear, a lot of people who suffered major disadvantage, as did I. Nothing ''bizarre'' about it. Apparently you wear rose coloured glasses. We live in a very cruel world, and I take an interest in the suffering it causes and look for ways to help relieve it.
OnlyGenuineRainey
13th Jan 2018
8:23pm
BTW BigBear, you might want to consider, when suggesting battlers should be deprived of their homes, that most don't have the luxury of sufficient assets in retirement to be able to afford to give money away. They work all their lives to pay off a modest home and save barely enough, in many cases, to cover the essentials that the pension doesn't stretch to, ending retirement with nothing but their home. I think its extremely greedy to suggest that someone who can afford to gift generously should be able to do so and claim a pension, but someone who has nothing but their home should have to sacrifice it to get a pension. Having not been able to afford to gift while they lived, many want desperately to leave a little behind for loved ones and having worked very hard for a home they are probably quite emotionally attached to, they take great comfort in knowing the kids will inherit it - even if it will be sold quickly. When someone has nothing else in the world, leaving something to family can take on huge importance, and why shouldn't they when the wealthier can manipulate and take from the taxpayer? It's a sick world that denies only the less affluent.
TREBOR
11th Jan 2018
2:42pm
Well... I guess he's on the list never to be elected into a safe seat...... couldn't happen to a nicer guy...

Why is it, do you think, that people who happen to live in a silver-tail seat, but work at Macca's or whatever, somehow imagine themselves a better class that needs to vote for this lot?
dk
11th Jan 2018
4:44pm
I can't see how I would benefit from downsizing from a $375000 property to a "$400000" property in the rural city that I live in. I don't own a $1000000 plus house in the city, but would be subjected to the same rules as the more affluent. When is this Government and it's associates going to put an end to the idea that pensions be included in the welfare costs. It's not my fault, along with many others , that successive Governments have wasted all of the taxes I have paid till I retired at age 72. Why do the young think we expect thing for free. we worked and saved to gather our assets and now Governments want to tax us on our hard efforts. DK
TinTin
12th Jan 2018
10:40am
Thommo, I totally agree with everything you've stated. I would also like to add that this government's so called crack down on closing loop holes on tax avoiding big business, corporations and banks is most probably a con because they'll just give it back some other way to avoid them missing out on those huge donations. If they were serious they would ban donations over a thousand dollars and in doing so would hopefully wipe out corruption. They also need to look in their own backyard when cutting welfare, the post politician allowances are not only despicable but also unsustainable.
PlanB
13th Jan 2018
8:08am
I must say this thread sure has had some answers telling this young upstart Fascist what is thought of him
froggy
13th Jan 2018
9:48am
Yea? how many investors with no home ownership are there vs home onership only pensioners??...none, I wud say..what a brain fade..where do these guys come from?...
VeryCaringBigBear
13th Jan 2018
10:07am
Life Choices your annoying moving ads are making it impossible for me to read your content on my tablet.
Spondonian
13th Jan 2018
2:28pm
The Universal Pension Scheme sound the best idea put forwards yet . UK does this , everyone pays inand everyone gets the same . Must save $millions in Centrelink tracking and costs to Pensioners trying to keep up with changing investments etc trying to keep up with Deeming rules etc . Pensioners who are being targeted now have allready paid for the previous gen erations pensions AND the Politicians pensions so should be given a fair go now .
Aussie
19th Jan 2018
5:37pm
This is what United States are doing to Pensioners .... They help them they do not hit them and take the pension away bit by bit
Maybe our government needs to learn from them and help us rather than make it hard as the days go by .......


5 Ways Social Security Protects You and Your Family

Posted on January 18, 2018 by Jim Borland, Acting Deputy Commissioner for Communications
Next payday, when you see a portion of your wages go toward FICA taxes, rest easier knows that your investment in Social Security brings a lifetime of protections for you and your family.

From your first job and throughout your career, we track your earnings and give you credits for the contributions you’ve made through payroll taxes. Those credits can translate into important future benefits. As you prepare for a financially secure future, you should know about these five benefits that you, your spouse, and your children may become eligible for through Social Security:

Retirement benefits provide you with a continuous source of income later in life. If you’ve earned enough credits, you can start receiving your full retirement benefits at age 66 or 67 — depending on when you were born. You may choose to claim these benefits as early as age 62 at a permanently reduced rate, but waiting until after your full retirement age increases your benefit amount by up to 8 percent per year to age 70. Plan for your retirement at: www.socialsecurity.gov/planners/retire.

Disability benefits offer a financial lifeline if you’re struck by a serious medical condition that makes it impossible for you to work and provide for yourself and your family and is expected to last at least one year or to result in death. Learn more at: www.socialsecurity.gov/disability.

Child benefits support your minor children while you’re receiving Social Security retirement benefits or disability benefits. This financial support also is available to adult children who become disabled before age 22. Grandchildren and stepchildren may qualify in certain situations. Please see: www.socialsecurity.gov/people/kids.

Spousal benefits supplement a couple’s income if one of the two never worked or had low lifetime earnings. In some cases, this benefit is also available to divorced spouses. Please see: www.socialsecurity.gov/planners/retire/applying6.html.

Survivor benefits ease the financial burden on your loved ones after you die by providing monthly payments to eligible widows, widowers, children, and dependent parents. It’s likely the survivor benefits you have under Social Security carry greater value than your individual life-insurance policy. Read more about survivor benefits at: www.socialsecurity.gov/survivors.

You must meet specific eligibility requirements to receive any type of Social Security benefits.

Currently, Social Security provides benefits to more than 66 million American workers and their families. And we’ll be there for you and your family through life’s journey.

Learn more about all of our programs at www.socialsecurity.gov.
Aussie
19th Jan 2018
5:48pm
And the USA Social security also extends to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender ..... wowowowo our gov. needs to learn a lot .....

https://www.ssa.gov/people/same-sexcouples/

and they call the pension "Retirement benefits" BENEFITS .... NOT A HANDOUT OR WHATEVER BigBear (ExOG) and other call the pension ,,,,,,
Mad as hell
28th Jan 2018
12:41pm
Here is an opinion that was poste on another site.

The problem with this is that the very wealthy, having set up trusts and minimized their tax as far as they legally can will have made arrangements so their heirs can inherit as much as possible. Nursing homes can be funded by payments - if you have the money - and the home kept.

Meanwhile, someone who is income and asset poor, but may have a house they have lived in for a substantial part of their life, finds developers have pushed up the value of their property. -What was a small or medium place in a cheap suburb (Remember Footscray or even Fitzroy in the 70-80s) is now sought after- and their heirs get almost nothing because they are either selling up to fund retirement or paying some tax that will really target those less well off.

All this will increase the divide between the "haves" and the "have-nots"


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