Welfare body calls for better care of those on low incomes

ACOSS is prepared to fight the Government over proposed welfare changes.

Welfare body calls for better care of those on low incomes

The Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) is preparing to fight the Government over its plans to crack down on welfare and its potential backflip on super changes.

Australia’s top welfare body says the Government is planning to renege on agreements made at the National Reform Summit in August last year, which ACOSS is calling a breach of faith.

It would appear that, in order to pacify angry conservatives within his own party, Malcolm Turnbull may be softening his ‘ironclad’ stance on changes to superannuation that the Coalition took to Election 2016.

ACOSS believes this softened stance is a betrayal of constructive discussions upon which welfare and community groups agreed during the August 2016 summit.

This, along with the proposed $5 billion in welfare savings that Social Services Minister Christian Porter wants legislated, has ACOSS ready to fight back.

"We've had the first clear indication from the Government that it is absolutely determined to make major cuts to incomes and living standards of people who are the poorest, they're living on the lowest incomes in Australia," ACOSS Chief Executive Cassandra Goldie told Fairfax Media.

Mr Porter has proposed changes to the welfare system that include reviewing disability support pensioners, increasing disclosure requirements, scaling back some carer payments and halting carbon tax compensation for new welfare recipients.

Dr Goldie believes these new measures were not part of reform summit discussions and have been created without consultation with welfare groups. She has also warned the Government against the savings, claiming that “integrity” measures such as these can place increased hardship on already vulnerable people – especially when it comes to recovering debts.

"At the absolute minimum, given that we are talking about some of the most vulnerable people, the Government should be sitting down with the community sector which has the direct experience with this system to make sure that its plans won't create really harsh outcomes for people," said Dr Goldie.

The Government claims that such measures will only affect legitimate recipients and will make welfare payments better targeted.

During last year’s National Reform Summit, the Government agreed that those on a low-income should be better looked after and that benefits should be increased from current levels.

The carbon tax compensation offers a small increase, but this only applies to those already on welfare. Still, any increase is better than the $38 per day recipients currently receive.

Dr Goldie argues that the Coalition’s indications that it may back down on proposed changes to super are a sign that it is still intent on looking after the top end – possibly ignoring the issues faced by low- to middle-income earners.

"That lifetime and annual cap are very modest measures to make superannuation fairer, to ensure that people who have high net worth are not using the superannuation system for essentially tax minimisation arrangements," Dr Goldie said. "We strongly oppose any weakening of these. They're modest, not extreme. And they are going to affect a very small percentage of the people who fall into the most wealthy groups in the country and are receiving overwhelmingly too generous tax concessions.

"What has the government learned from the election outcome? To listen better. Well, who's it listening to?"

ACOSS is now calling on the Prime Minister to consult welfare and community groups about potential changes to welfare if his aim is to restore confidence in politics.

At this stage though, Dr Goldie feels there's not been any indication that they're prepared to do so.

Read more at The Australian
Read more at The Age

Opinion: Let’s allow the dust to settle

ACOSS is angry at the Coalition for potentially changing its mind. Whilst the welfare group’s heart may be in the right place, it might be wiser to allow the dust to settle before attacking a government in its infancy.

Sure, all Australians want super to be fairer and most will back ACOSS in its fight to protect those less fortunate. But the new Cabinet was only named yesterday and will be sworn in today. Any proposed policies are just that – proposed. Nothing is yet set in stone and, in the meantime, the Government cannot be faulted for being cautious, tweaking policy and looking for savings wherever it can find them. It should be careful not to back-flip on policy though, as was a trait of the previous government.

It’s also important to keep in mind that the Government claims that it is not going after legitimate welfare recipients, rather, it is targeting those who abuse the system. Which criteria it follows to label welfare recipients as ‘abusers’ could be called into question, but the intent is surely fair.

It would, however, be advisable for Mr Turnbull to not put organisations such as ACOSS off-side and, if he really wants to restore Australia’s faith in politics, he should indeed consult all relevant sectors before legislating any such policies on super, welfare and health care.

And if Mr Turnbull is serious on his promise to ‘deliver’ a strong and stable government to the people of this nation, then he needs to learn the lesson handed down in Election 2016. He should listen to the people as well as to those organisations that have the rights of the people as their mandate. He needs to stop being seen as looking after the top end and start factoring in the real-life issues faced by many Australians. It goes without saying that low- to middle-income earners far outnumber the wealthy. If he keeps on ignoring the needs of this majority, he may find himself a very unpopular PM or an opposition leader.

What do you think? Is ACOSS right to commence attacking the Government so early in its term? Do you have any issues with Mr Porter’s proposed welfare changes? How do you think the Government should handle its plans to change super?

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    COMMENTS

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    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    10:21am
    "She has also warned the Government against the savings, claiming that “integrity” measures such as these can place increased hardship on already vulnerable people – especially when it comes to recovering debts"
    - If the government has to recover welfare debts ( ie, over payments, false / fraudulent application etc) then it seems it is the government which is vulnerable to such crooks. If crooks like that suffer hardship as a result of being found out, SO BE IT ! -
    Anonymous
    19th Jul 2016
    11:39am
    Exactly! If you are doing the wrong thing you should be caught and suffer the penalty accordingly.
    Anonymous
    19th Jul 2016
    11:57am
    So be it, IF the system is worked honestly and fairly and with reasonable compassion where there are extenuating circumstances. Unfortunately, that hasn't been the case in the past. Many genuine recipients have suffered terrible torment and gross unfairness.
    Oldchick
    19th Jul 2016
    12:55pm
    I recently heard of a young girl who had been overpaid disability support of $8k dollars. She wasn't even aware she had been overpaid until debt collectors came knocking on her door. Centrelink error, but no apology- just cough up. Another recent case, a friend on disability managed to get a few weeks seasonal work. Just a few hours but he could 'just' manage it and it helped him out financially. Again Centrelink hauled him in, told him he'd worked consistently over x number of weeks so he didn't qualify anymore for the pension until he was re-assessed - 6 hours away in Melbourne, not by the Doctors in the rural area he lives. These are not scammers, just people trying to get by and doing it really tough. I know, I'm on disability and it ain't easy. Fine for fit and healthy people to say get a job but some of us can only wish that was possible. Good luck to you for being able to work, God help you if you develop medical problems and can't. Physically well people don't know how truly lucky they are.
    KSS
    19th Jul 2016
    1:19pm
    Jansview don't make this a play off between the physically well and those that aren't.

    When one applies for welfare - regardless of the type of welfare - there are rules that apply, first in eligibility then in compliance for on-going support. Surely the recipient of any welfare has an obligation to uphold their responsibility to comply with the rules for the period of time they are receiving support? That means in most cases, declaring when they receive extra income no matter the amount or the duration. Failure to do so does, and should, result in consequences. I see no problem with that.
    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    1:22pm
    "She wasn't even aware she had been overpaid until debt collectors came knocking on her door" - This is not true. Centrelink 1) sends a letter 2) calls on the phone to discuss the problem 3) Centrelink will listen to and consider any reasonable offer from the recipient on the amount and manner of repayment. 4) The only time situation will arise that debt collectors have to be sent is when the recipient ignores the debt, avoids contact with Centrelink and or absconds from their address to avoid repaying the debt. None of this action taken by Centrelink to collect happens in days, It may be many months before they catch up with you. Rules are rules. You don't run a red traffic light because you are desperate to get to work or whatever. If you do you will suffer the consequences if you are caught out.
    Old Geezer
    19th Jul 2016
    1:49pm
    Pull the other leg of course she would have been. People are simply not that stupid.
    Old Geezer
    19th Jul 2016
    1:53pm
    I served on a jury in a case of a lady that defrauded Centrelink. It really opened by eyes the lengths that people will go to to get welfare.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    3:44am
    As long as these measure ONLY capture genuine rorters, and do not become some form of insane Neo-Conservative witch hunt or jihad against those with the least, by the inclusion of all kinds of changes and switches to rules as nothing more than a means to cut payments by any means.

    NOBODY has a problem with genuine rorters - EVERYBODY but the most foolhardy and unthinking pub talker has a problem with governments ripping off people so as to make a claim that they are somehow rorters.

    I had a relative who was in hospital for a double operation, and who failed to report her income for one fortnight while doped up on medications for weeks, and the axe came out after her with a vengeance.

    These are the kinds of neo-NAZI actions that I find totally unforgivable.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:21am
    We are not discussing welfare here - we are discussing bought and paid for Social Security.

    Get your terms right.

    1. Social security, in Australia, refers to a system of social welfare payments provided by Commonwealth Government of Australia. These payments are administered by Centrelink, a branch of the Department of Human Services.

    2. welfare

    noun: welfare

    1. the health, happiness, and fortunes of a person or group.
    "they don't give a damn about the welfare of their families"
    synonyms: well-being, health, good health, happiness, comfort, security, safety, protection, prosperity, profit, good, success, fortune, good fortune, advantage, interest, prosperousness, successfulness
    "local authorities have a duty to promote the welfare of children"
    antonyms: hardship

    2. statutory procedure or social effort designed to promote the basic physical and material well-being of people in need.
    "the protection of rights to education, housing, and welfare".

    Note that one is a philosophical issue, the other is a system of actual payment - Social Security is the system of actual payment. 'welfare' is merely a statement of intent or of focus.

    Get your minds, right, Lukes..... I don't know how many times I have to explain simple things to you, including to the staff here, yet you all continue with the same old gaffes over and over in class.
    Rae
    20th Jul 2016
    9:27am
    Who pays for ACOSS. I wouldn't be surprised if it was taxpayer funded. Goldie certainly earns a large salary.

    They would be better served lobbying for jobs for the disabled and unemployed as far as I can see rather than trying to rob lower paid and average workers to pay for welfare.
    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    10:25am
    If the government is allowed to backflip on its intentions / pre-election promises, so should the voters be allowed to backflip on their votes. Sounds fair to me.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    3:45am
    Sounds very fair to me - but we have to wait for the next election called at the whim of our 'political masters'.
    Jurassicgeek
    19th Jul 2016
    10:26am
    onw good way to cut the welfare bill is to stop giving it willy nilly to "refugees"
    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    10:35am
    And; it is another way of stopping the boats of 'economic vagabond refugees'.
    Supernan
    19th Jul 2016
    10:47am
    They dont. Refugees get EXACTLy the same benefits as Aussies. If you see them getting new furniture, etc it is from within their own ethnic group support.

    Many refugees who were kept in detention in central Aus came out of detention with huge bills for their keep. And had to paay the Gov back out of their wages.

    Stop spreading unfounded rumours. Check your facts. Its on all the Government Sites what refugees are entitled to. Many do not get access to Medicare until they are accepted as citizens, which takes years.

    The refugees that cost a lot of money are the ones kept in detention. That costs millions.
    Gee Whiz
    19th Jul 2016
    10:58am
    Last year A Current Affair aired a story of a Muslim who had three wives and nine children.

    He claims he didn't live with any of them so they were entitled to all the benefits of a sole parent, plus the children's allowance, plus rental assistance, plus, plus.

    It was a straight forward rip off. But a spokesman for social security said they were entitled because they could not interfere with their Islamic beliefs.

    Try doing that if you are an Australian.
    Ted Wards
    19th Jul 2016
    11:13am
    Have to agree, we cant afford to look after our veterans and aged who have sacrificed a lot for this country. I dont have access to free dental, I cant afford private health cover and cant get into public services because its full of refugees. And yes that is a fact. Go have a look for yourself if you dont believe me!
    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    1:04pm
    Superman - First of all, refugees do not have the same waiting time for welfare hand outs as Australian citizens. Citizens have to wait a month and until they deplete their savings account down to an acceptable level. Refugees get priority over the citizens to housing and other assistance.
    Secondly, The only huge bills they have is to payback people smugglers.
    Thirdly, what detention camp in Central Australia are you referring to?
    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    1:11pm
    Gee Whiz, this sounds bizarre, that the government wilts to religious beliefs, absolutely bizarre given that many refuse to vote on the grounds of their religious beliefs. What the government must say is, "OK you have your religious beliefs then go to your church, synagogue or mosque to get welfare. We have our beliefs that you rorting our system- Good Bye!"
    Anonymous
    19th Jul 2016
    2:33pm
    I'd like to see real evidence of any of the above anti-Islam horse manure. ACA doesn't count as real evidence..
    marls
    19th Jul 2016
    2:59pm
    Gee Whiz

    your are correct and there are hundreds of the same stories different laws for different people
    LENYJAC
    19th Jul 2016
    5:47pm
    Wake up supernan where do you think their "ETHNIC GROUPS" GET THEIR MONEY FROM?????????????????????????????????????
    Young Simmo
    19th Jul 2016
    6:11pm
    Supernan, have a read of this. Oop's I'm outa here.
    ***************************************
    IMMIGRATION POEM
    I cross ocean, poor and broke.
    Take bus, see employment folk.
    Nice man treat me good in there.
    Say I need to see welfare.
    Welfare say, 'You come no more, we send cash right to your door. "
    Welfare checks - they make you wealthy! Medicare - it keep you healthy!
    By and by, I get plenty money.
    Thanks to you, you Aussie dummy!
    Write to friends in motherland.
    Tell them 'come fast as you can. "
    They come in turbans and Toyota trucks,
    And buy big house with welfare bucks!
    They come here, we live together.
    More welfare checks, it gets better!
    Fourteen families, they moving in,
    But neighbor's patience wearing thin.
    Finally, Aussie guy moves away.
    Now I buy his house, then I say
    'Find more immigrants for house to rent. "
    And in the yard I put a tent.
    Everything is very good,
    And soon we own the neighborhood.
    We have hobby, it's called breeding. Welfare pay for baby feeding.
    Kids need dentist? Wives need pills? We get free! We got no bills!
    Australians crazy! They work all year, to keep the welfare running here.
    We think Australia darn good place.
    Too darn good for Aussie race!
    If they no like us, they can scram. Got lots of room in Afghanistan!
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:34am
    You mean those refugees from a real job and the real world called politicians and their staffs?

    Great thinking!
    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    10:29am
    What $38 per day is the columnist talking about?
    leonYLC
    19th Jul 2016
    10:41am
    “People are struggling to survive on $38 dollars a day Newstart payments which have not been increased in two decades,” said Dr Goldie.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    3:49am
    $527.60 pf / 14 days = $37.68 pd.

    Not too 'ard - coupla days....
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    3:50am
    One week of seven days = less than a politician's handout for one night in Cambra tax-free and outside of salary and travel ... now THAT'S Welfare!
    LiveItUp
    20th Jul 2016
    7:36am
    Youth allowance is only $284 pf so our kids must be really struggling then.
    Rae
    20th Jul 2016
    9:37am
    The youth allowance is pitiful.

    The overnight rate for pollies is far too high also.

    In fact we are not getting quality performers in parliament so obviously the argument about paying peanuts is incorrect. Look at their performance through the past three years.

    As far as I can see the only achievement was to destroy faith in Superannuation and it isn't at all obvious if it will save any real money anyway.

    Personally I like the jury call up thing and provide motel type accommodation for those nights in Canberra. If you can't get motel contracts for around $100 a night then you are in the wrong job.
    Ted Wards
    19th Jul 2016
    11:10am
    Well if this is true then once again its a case of politicians saying anything to get into power. Once again its time they were made accountable all the time, not just at election where quite clearly they are willing to say anything and agree to anything to get votes.
    I say lets take the savings and introduce a system that makes every politician being paid to make them accountable on every promise. Every broken promise, no pay. They are getting away with too much and we are suffering because of it. Enough is enough!
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    3:51am
    I like the idea above of withdrawal of vote in the event of withdrawal of promise.
    ex PS
    21st Jul 2016
    7:01am
    TW, the sheep have voted, now now they have the wolf in charge. We need to live with it, but we also need to remember how they conduct themselves and hopefully do better next time if they don't improve.
    heyyybob
    19th Jul 2016
    11:25am
    Now IS the time. 'Strike while the iron is hot.' Keep the 'heat' up, make them aware that the disillusioned who just voted haven't gone anywhere ;)
    Not a Bludger
    19th Jul 2016
    11:29am
    ACOSS is just another moaning, leftie crowd of rentseekers.
    Oldman Roo
    19th Jul 2016
    3:27pm
    And your comment confirms your bigotry and contempt for the less fortunate and vulnerable in life .
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    3:53am
    bludger
    ?bl?d??/
    nounAustralian/NZinformal
    noun: bludger; plural noun: bludgers

    a scrounger.
    "just look at that bludger, can't get his thieving hands on the cash fast enough"
    an idle or lazy person.
    "I suspect there are far more bludgers in jobs than on the dole"

    Originally it meant a man who lived off the proceeds of prostitution... but we've outgrown that social problem these days, no?

    Desto mehr Dinge , die mehr ändern bleiben sie gleich!
    LiveItUp
    20th Jul 2016
    7:42am
    Have any of you pensioners read ACOSS's wish list? If I was a pensioner with assets I'll be quite concerned with some of their agenda. Nothing they would like more would be to take from the haves and give it to the have nots. They also want any super left in one's account after your death nationalised so that those less fortunate get it. So Not a Biudger is close to the mark with the above comment.
    Rae
    20th Jul 2016
    10:14am
    ACOSS is a very dangerous and self serving lobby. They do not care at all about the disadvantaged or they would lobby for extra services and employment.

    The ACOSS ideology is far left wing almost into communism.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:31pm
    Yes - I've often found common non-cause with ACOSS and their ideas... unelected swill.
    John
    19th Jul 2016
    11:40am
    Right let's start and get things in perspective it in the pension is all the time is not home you want to save money and cancel the free flight see you 12 business class for MPs let them drive the cells to work instead of being chauffeured Cooktown and peas super which is anything from 150,000 a year to 250,000 a year it is a fucking joke
    Sceptic
    19th Jul 2016
    1:26pm
    You what?
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    3:57am
    I think I catch his thrust.... easy.. he's saying let's start with those who are our Great Leaders and their fattened pensions, free travel for life, free travel to work by any means (including from places like Cooktown by chopper etc), and MPs super is outrageous at $150-250k a year tax free which is a fucking joke.

    That'll be a consultant's fee of $1800 a day plus found for sitting on a Commission of Audit of Other's Comments here....

    BTW - when WILL we see another Commission of Idiots and Old Mates dragged out at massive cost to rubber-stamp this economic drivel from the 'Right' here?
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:37am
    Maybe CHUMs - Committee to Hype Up the Manifesto .......
    Alex
    19th Jul 2016
    11:42am
    It is good that Ms Goldie is challenging the Treasurer's intention of making more of his savings off the backs of those who can least afford it, however, it was she who supported cuts to the taper rate and asset thresholds, and the incomes of people with low to modest super balances and small defined benefit pensions and was happy with the suggestion that charities should be involved in providing for the aged care and pension obligations of the Government. Seniors could line up nightly at the soup kitchen and say "Please sir, More". Heaven help us if she is the person negotiating on superannuation. Super contributions need to be adequate to survive inflation during years of retirement. The changes being debated do not involve after tax contributions as far as I know. If there is an upper limit on the amount one can have in super it should be possible for people generally to invest to that limit, not just those who are high income earners during their lifetimes.
    Has anyone contacted Pauline about support for seniors? She mentioned last night on Q&A that the Treasurer was concerned about the “Welfare Bill”. She will be supporting his attacks on Seniors if someone does not get her onside and explain that so far all the burden of paying for the “Debt & Deficit Disaster” has been placed on the most vulnerable seniors so that the LNP can afford tax cuts for business high income earners in this election. If they want to have tax cuts for the big end of town they need to find their savings elsewhere.
    Anonymous
    19th Jul 2016
    11:59am
    Well said, Alex. I agree. And let's contact Pauline. Unlike many pollies, I believe she actually listens and thinks.
    Old Geezer
    19th Jul 2016
    3:30pm
    I agree with the cutting the company tax rate as it is way too high to the rest of the world. If we don't then I can't blame them for shifting their tax liabilities off shore.

    I don't have a problem with the big banks getting a tx cut especially if it flows though to super funds and self funded retirees getting bigger dividends. I will point this out to Pauline when I see her next.
    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    3:36pm
    Don't rely on Pauline Hanson. After 18-20 years in politics she still can't articulate her ideas and debates. Retards can express themselves better. How abysmal, some right ideas but the wrong person to represent them.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:41am
    Companies need to pay their fair share of tax - they already cop a lower rate than the ordinary working stiff. As for offshoring their profits - keep an eye and an ear on the international furore arising over that issue.... soon we will be seeing a universal taxation system in play, or failing that, a mandatory exit of profits tax imposed on cash and jobs vanishing offshore.

    Governments simply cannot allow this kind of tax evasion to continues if they are to survive in the 'globalised economy' - in which the most outstanding example of failure to keep up is in taxing companies on their profits.

    Until that happens there is no playing field at all....... just a monumental amount of theft from nations.
    LiveItUp
    20th Jul 2016
    7:58am
    Maybe Trebor it is time for a tax lesson. Companies are an incorporated structure and their income is taxed at the corporate rate. Now if an owner or shareholder wishes to access the money from that company they are paid a dividend by the company. This dividend plus the company tax paid is then taxed as an individual. The tax paid by the company is then deducted from the individuals tax. So the profits of a company are eventually taxed at the individuals tax rate not the company tax rate.

    Therefore any money taken out of the company to pay the owners is taxed at their rate.

    A drop in the company tax rate does not alter the amount of tax the company owners pay. What it does do is make more money available within the company to create jobs and spend on the companies needs to make profit.

    So a cut in company tax rate does make the company better off but if the owners access the company profits they still pay same amount of tax they pay no matter what the company tax rate is.

    A drop in the company tax rate will effect thise pensioners with share investments as the inputation credits will be less as time goes by.

    So if you have shares in a bank and the company tax rate is reduced your grossed dividend will be less.

    So dropping the tax rate on companies will not make the owners richer but will allow more captal to be available within the business for more jobs and other expenditure.
    Rae
    20th Jul 2016
    10:32am
    That is how it worked prior to 2000 Bonny.

    In this crazy new economy, the deposit and investment channels no longer support business at all.

    It is all about the arbitrage and the winners are the senior executives.

    I've been steadily moving investments out of banks and ensuring income in case of systemic banking failure due to the huge debt sitting in bank balance sheets pretending to be assets.

    I expect the Central Banks are trying to support Deutsche Bank but if they fail then money you think you have and dividends you think you get will cease to exist.

    You didn't mention the imputation credits which mean that shareholder owner may very well be getting a taxpayer payout which we won't call welfare will we.

    The fact that they can collect back the tax paid is a scandal as far as I can see by rich people hoping ordinary people won't notice or understand what happens.

    Companies these days are so bent on borrowing for buy backs and dividends, acquisitions and mergers and deals that they are not running businesses for society at all.

    I'd give it three days of overnight channels not working to create chaos in the financial system and four days on main street before there is chaos in the real world. I'm being generous here in the time frame.

    Our just in time economy is very very fragile indeed.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:33pm
    Bonny - they can either pay their company taxes and fees etc, and so so gladly - or be subjected to the same regime for tax as everyone else - in which case most would be paying the highest tax bracket on their incomes.

    This guff about reducing company taxes all the time is just that - guff - they have an obligation like everyone else to pay proper tax and that tax needs to be set at a reasonable level.

    I'm tending more towards the idea of a transaction tax....... in isolation.
    Old Geezer
    23rd Jul 2016
    7:49pm
    I agree with Bonny and I really don't think most people understand how tax works.

    Imputation credits were bought in so that people weren't taxed twice for the same income which seems fair to me.
    BrianP
    19th Jul 2016
    12:04pm
    Yourlifechoices would be wise to note that Centrelink's so-called crack-down on over payments is being poorly managed. A high number of people on low incomes are being targeted as a result of Centrelink errors. Details are available if you are interested.

    To take one example, a retired couple were put through 6 months of extreme stress and worry over a large sum which turned out to be caused entirely by a staff error and a glitch in a Centrelink computer program.

    Centrelink wasted 6 months of man-hours involving at least 10 staff to recover nothing. The sheer wastage of tax-payers money here warrants improving their procedures immediately. Surely Centrelink should check if over payments resulted from internal errors BEFORE harassing low income people and wasting resources.

    Gross negligence on the part of Centrelink senior management. That means you Ms Kathryn Campbell.
    Scrivener
    19th Jul 2016
    12:34pm
    "Gross negligence on the part of Centrelink senior management. That means you Ms Kathryn Campbell." Now she'll get a promotion. They did it to us as well - just before Christmas. I had to spend the entire Christmas period preparing for a Tribunal, at their convenience. They had made an error and we won - but I lost Christmas with my grandchildren.
    Have you tried reporting your income on the loopy MyGov site. Impossible. You can't ring them either. We were on the phone for nearly four hours recently - gave up. So the only alternative is to physically go into a Centrelink office and make an appointment. Then expect to be treated like a criminal because you are trying to do the right thing.
    Old Geezer
    19th Jul 2016
    1:18pm
    Only this morning I was shown a letter from Centrelink from a mother whose daughter is in her final year at school and has just turned 18. Centrelink had told her that her daughter was now eligible for Youth Allowance. So the daughter applied for youth allowance but asked that the money be put into her mother's account so her mother could use it to feed and clothe her etc.

    The letter that her mother showed me this morning asked that her mother itemise all the amounts she received and everything she paid for out of the $280 a fortnight as they Centrelink wanted to check her records regularly.

    I really think this is just going a little overboard.
    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    1:33pm
    Nothing wrong with Centrelink wanting proof of integrity. It's a good process despite the inconvenience.
    Old Geezer
    19th Jul 2016
    1:47pm
    I wonder when they are going to ask the old age pensioners to record all their pension income and how they spent it? Sooner the better I think.
    Alex
    19th Jul 2016
    2:11pm
    Yes Brian. Crackdowns usually result in life being made impossible for genuine people dealing with Centrelink than it is now. A great deal is made of the few people who are found to have been over paid or done something illegal like continue to collect their parents payments after they have passed away. They get longer jail terms than Bankers and Business Moguls who cheat people out of their life savings. Interestingly the Treasurer is not cracking down on them.
    Old Geezer
    19th Jul 2016
    3:04pm
    Alex do you realise that the first thing a funeral director has to do when he picks up a body is contact Centrelink? So how do these people keep collecting benefits after their parents have passed away? Bury them in their backyards.
    ex PS
    21st Jul 2016
    7:09am
    Easy enough to understand Old Geezer, by receiving her daughters welfare payment directly, the mother has increased her income. Depending on the mothers financial circumstances CentreLink may have adjustments to make.
    I would have thought that the daughter would be better off receiving the payment herself and learning how to manage her own finances, mummy won't be around to look after her forever.
    Scrivener
    19th Jul 2016
    12:25pm
    "the Government is planning to renege on agreements." Get used to it. Tax the poor. Extend largesse to the rich. That's how the Coalition thinks. If you refer to the IPA agenda for Australia then you see very clearly it is the only agenda the Coalition has.
    Alexii
    19th Jul 2016
    5:02pm
    Absolutely correct, Scrivener. They just look after their own.
    ex PS
    21st Jul 2016
    7:12am
    How do you tell when a politician is lying, their lips are moving. They won the previous election by lying, they won this election by lying and the sheep will ensure that they win the next election, if they tell the lies that the sheep want to hear.
    We got the government that we deserve.
    Andy
    19th Jul 2016
    12:27pm
    its never to early,the fight should be continuing, get on with it.
    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    1:37pm
    The only fight that the government will give attention to is one of a mass hostile reaction otherwise it pigeon-holes any citizen's concerns and goes out for a lengthy round of lunch and a good laugh at the taxpayers expense.
    gendarme
    19th Jul 2016
    12:31pm
    A crackdown is, without a doubt, necessary but, it must be within the realms of a well sourced investigation into this issue. It is obvious that there are many who use the system to STEAL from the taxpayer, many who never work a day in their life and just take, treating it as a right to cheat, sure, come down hard but remember those who genuinely need our help. Stop talking and start doing !
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:01am
    I would hesitate to use that word 'many' here, gendarme - the actual numbers are very, very small in comparison to the number of recipients... and we ARE talking about massive, endemic and rising un- and under-employment times here.

    No - it is NOT 'obvious that many use the system to steal from the taxpayer'..... and never forget that everyone pays tax every day in every way - do not confuse taxation with income tax.
    Thumper88
    19th Jul 2016
    12:40pm
    It is never to early to display your intentions to a new Government. tell them what is expected of them before they develop bad habits. Do Not go down the path of the USA, the us government opened the super funds up to be used for investment companies, and used the funds for US companies to expand into overseas countries, Australia was one, many of the companies have gone bust and the funds are now gone. The people who saved money in Super for their retirement have now got little or nothing left. Do Not let the government tax the life out of your super and do not let government get their hands on the pot. Government sees your super as a huge pot of money for them to use, wrong this is money for people who can no longer work because of their age. To have government continually telling us the country is broke and will not be able to afford to pay pensions in the future it seams to me to be robbery by stealth to take away people future funds for retirement. The election told them were they stand, now is the time to follow it up with detail.
    Alex
    19th Jul 2016
    2:30pm
    Yes Thumper88 we need to get back on the job of letting politicians know that their handling of super in not acceptable. Private super funds have not always proved safe and the Government needs to have guarantees in place to make sure they do not lose people's savings. You may remember this also happened in the UK in the early 1990s when most people's super disappeared with Robert Maxwell's companies.
    ex PS
    21st Jul 2016
    7:14am
    We gave them a slap to get their attention, next time we may need to give them a good kick in the pants.
    Crimmo
    19th Jul 2016
    1:00pm
    Don't wait for the dust to settle. New faces but same government. Same ideologies and same self interests. Having said that, I say that the proposed superannuation changes will affect middle-income earners. ACOSS should be fair to everyone and not fall into the ideological trap.
    Alex
    19th Jul 2016
    2:31pm
    Yes Crimmo. Unfortunately ACOSS works against middle income earners
    Old Geezer
    19th Jul 2016
    3:33pm
    True ACCOs only wants to know about those without two pennies to rub together.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:04am
    Well - that IS their mandate....... and their raison d'etre... the middle etc non-classes can look after themselves and have the wherewithal to withstand a little changing of the rules on super (something I've consistently opposed, BTW, stating the 'new rules' are way too low and harsh in many cases) - someone living on $37.68 a day has no umbrella from any storm in any way.

    We should be looking at the two issues of super changes and attacks on Social Security as separate parts of the same overall thrust - not as opposing views.
    KSS
    19th Jul 2016
    1:09pm
    "reviewing disability support pensioners, increasing disclosure requirements, scaling back some carer payments and halting carbon tax compensation for new welfare recipients"

    Frankly I can't see what is wrong with these actions. As an example Hamdi Alqudsi was convicted last week of recruiting and aiding recruits for ISIS. He was on a disability pension (as well as supporting 2 wives) yet he clearly was not so incapacitated as not to be able to work. In fact he did a great deal of 'work'. Mr Alqudsi is not the first ISIS operative to have been claiming DSP some of whom were able-bodied enough to actually go and fight! And we have all known or heard of those with a 'bad-back' who have a labouring job on the side!

    As for the carbon tax compensation, we DON"T have a carbon tax so why should there be compensation for it?

    Whatever the system there will be those who think they are entitled to scam it. I see nothing wrong in making it harder to do so.
    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    1:39pm
    Ditto !
    Rae
    19th Jul 2016
    4:10pm
    I agree. Every time you see the police trying to sort out problems with these people a whole bunch of fit young men come out. Why aren't they at work?
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    5:00am
    Ummm.. because :-

    a. the carbon tax component is in reality a hidden compensation package for the rip-off of 'privatisation' of our energy utilities etc???

    Yes - Eddie - lock in a.......

    (for ONE MILLYUN DULLAHS - you're sure you want a?)
    Alex
    19th Jul 2016
    2:05pm
    Gee Whizz there are many Australians who have children by multiple partners and do not provide much support for any of them. It is irresponsible behaviour and not something condoned by Muslims any more than by anyone else. Refugees come with the idea of working and making a new life and most of them do this successfully. I have come across a lot of Muslim families from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran and elsewhere in the Middle East where parents had professional jobs in their own countries before being forced out but have worked at anything they can find here while they undertake studies to have their qualifications recognized. I met an Afghani judge who did office cleaning, his wife, a University Lecturer, worked in the Post Office. An Iranian engineer fixed a roof leak, a job for which I had previously paid a great deal of money to successive Aussie roofers only to find the leak persisted. I found two 'Muslim' boys to render my house when I could not find anyone else. They did an excellent job. One had a Maters degree in French and English. Many refugees with engineering qualifications work as painters, taxi drivers, and small business operators in the food and transport industries. They turn their hands to anything they can find. Some are fortunate enough to gain employment in their professions such as the person who fixed my persistent roof leak. When I later rang him about another job he was working in IT. We hear about the handful of people who do the wrong thing but not about the majority who make every effort to be good citizens.
    As for doctors surgeries or any other public services being clogged by refugees, I am not sure how you would know whether or not people were refugees or whether or not they were paying for services. Supernan is right migrants do not have access to Medicare or Welfare for a number of years after arrival. Yes it is important that people who come here become cognizant with Australian law and abide by it. It is important that women have their rights respected as they should be under Australian law and instances where this does not occur are to be deplored.
    Hairy
    19th Jul 2016
    2:08pm
    The lies the pensioner discrimination imigration Halal scam these are why i voted independent.the big three are all about their own agenda they don't give a rats about citizens or what they want or think.they are in my opinion so far removed from reality they come from another planet.BUT they are real when you see what the cost is to have these useless pricks in,and out of goverment when they have finished screwing us around.a bloody disgrace the bullturd that they spread around just to get your vote.not me never again I've had enough of your political shite.
    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    3:55pm
    You should learn and understand these 4 words:-
    taqiyya, tawriya, kitman and muruna
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:44am
    Hanging rolls off the tongue better.. we of the west don't have time for philosophical considerations in dealing with raging bushfires....
    Young Simmo
    19th Jul 2016
    2:20pm
    Sorry to change the subject, but I was wondering what people think about this nice little story????
    https://au.news.yahoo.com/thewest/video/watch/32091331/secret-footage-reveals-baby-chickens-being-shredded-just-one-day-after-hatching/#page1
    Old Geezer
    19th Jul 2016
    2:23pm
    I don't have a problem with it at all.
    Young Simmo
    19th Jul 2016
    2:51pm
    OK, substitute Chickens for Cats and Dogs, or go even further and apply it to Humans. Still not a problem ?????
    Old Geezer
    19th Jul 2016
    2:58pm
    Nope.
    crazy one
    19th Jul 2016
    2:42pm
    Well it had to happen he gets in then turns around and does things his way and forgets about what he promised the people like always. If they want to save money they should cut their wages back as they do not deserve it and then stop paying these refugees money that they do not deserve as they did not look after Australian over the years but that is how they get in by buying their votes they do not care about the Australians or the country. So it it shows that they are the biggest crooks out there by robbing the country for themselves.
    Carole
    19th Jul 2016
    3:09pm
    The comment which struck a note with me in the whole article was "a government in its infancy". LNP have had 3 years to get it right! Can anyone tell me what they've done for pensioners and the aged population in those 3 years? And now they're strutting around with smug grins on their faced as if they've just won lotto, which, as far as their pensions are concerned they have. I don't have any faith in any political party actually listening to people for any longer than it takes to count the votes.
    Alexii
    19th Jul 2016
    5:06pm
    "Can anyone tell me what they've done for pensioners and the aged population in those 3 years?"
    Yes, they've made life a lot harder for a lot of part pensioners with the changed asset thresholds.
    LiveItUp
    20th Jul 2016
    8:21am
    They have not made it harder from part pensioners with new asset test. You can have same lifestyle by spending instead of hoarding your assers.

    The only thing that has changed is that your heirs will now have to go economy instead of first class on their disneyland trip as they will not get as much inheritance.

    All you need to do is pend that money you saved for retirement on your returement. It is not rocket science.
    Rae
    20th Jul 2016
    10:42am
    Politicians and public company employees should go economy too including ACOSS teams.

    I'm over paying tax for these people to indulge their luxurious demands.
    Anonymous
    21st Jul 2016
    6:39am
    They've ripped off the ''lifters'' and the disadvantaged to continue obscene handouts to the well-off - the arrogant TAXPAYER FUNDED well-to-do whose retirement is costing this nation far more now than the total aged pension bill. But still the arrogant, greedy TAXPAYER FUNDED WELL-TO-DO are belly-aching that they don't get enough and screaming for bigger cuts to pensions to give more to the greedy.

    I'm over these LIES about being ''self-funded'' from people who claimed huge tax concessions all their lives, used a far greater share of national resources than the workers, and abused and exploited others to accumulate their wealth - which they hoard in off-shore tax havens while screaming that the country is broke and we have to cut the incomes of those whose suffering of this exploitation and abuse left poor in old age.

    CUT THE SUPERANNUATION CONCESSIONS. There's more than $35 million annually there that could be put to far better use. And NONE of it is helping anyone be self-sufficient in retirement because it's going to people who don't need help to fund retirement. Those who DO need help are paying the same tax OR MORE than they would without concessions.

    The proposal of a 15% discount on a person's highest tax rate was much fairer and more sensible, but the most sensible and nationally beneficial proposal was the one in 2014 to abolish concessions on superannuation contributions, give the aged pension to everyone over qualifying age without means test, and tax all retirement income over a generous threshold. That would be fair, retain incentives to save, preserve the personal wealth that is serving the nation well, AND benefit the next generation by allowing inheritance to improve their status and giving them confidence that they will be allowed to age in comfort and respected instead of suffering abuse and insults being branded untruthfully branded ''leaners'' and ''welfare recipients'' by the very people who do the least and get the most taxpayer-funded benefits.

    And PROOF was presented in 2014 that a universal pension, tax in retirement, and no superannuation concessions - combined with the saving on administration of pension means tests - would deliver the savings needed going forward to ensure funding retirement for all was highly sustainable.
    Anonymous
    22nd Jul 2016
    7:29am
    Sorry, the figure I quoted above was incorrect. Of course the superannuation tax concessions cost the nation $35 BILLION a year - and that was a 2014 figure. It was rising at 12% per annum and this year was expected to well outstrip the total cost of the aged pension. And a massive 80% of that money goes directly in to the pockets of the greedy self-serving well-to-do WHO DON'T NEED IT. It yields ZERO benefit to the nation, because those who benefit would never qualify for a pension anyway. They just keep on bleeding the country by minimizing tax in IMMORAL, UNETHICAL, and GREEDY ways.

    But Bonny and Old Geezer want to take pensioner's houses away and persecute them so we can continue these disgusting handouts to the rich.

    The cruel assets test change that they support MIGHT yield $3.5 billion a year in the short term, until people rearrange their affairs because it's so stupid to pay them to have less. But while battlers who saved are being persecuted, the fat rich are stealing $35 BILLION A YEAR - rising at 12% per annum - and much of it is being hoarded in tax havens. And having had their long noses in the trough throughout their earlier years, they get to 65 and claim tax-free income from their whopping superannuation funds accumulated at taxpayer expense, and then beat their chests and claim they are ''self-funded'' and somehow superior.
    Crashbang
    19th Jul 2016
    3:21pm
    what does it take to make people understand. The 3 parties ALP LNP & Greens do not care about the Australian people. they will lie cheat & do what ever it takes to do what they & the UN puppets want..
    crazy one
    19th Jul 2016
    3:25pm
    That is very true so we need a party that is going to help us the people and Australia but these three parties get together and cause that much trouble for them and then lock them up.
    HarrysOpinion
    19th Jul 2016
    4:04pm
    This is true except that 50.5% of 2 - party preferred LNP voters didn't agree this is true, so they voted in the bastards.
    Alex
    19th Jul 2016
    4:32pm
    They are attributing their loss of support to anything and everything other than the fact that people are angry about what they have done. They are blaming poor salesmanship when their actions over the past three years have said it all. Neither they nor the media wish to acknowledge the role the anger of older people played in this election.
    Rae
    20th Jul 2016
    10:44am
    I'm pleased they have this chance to prove their ideology will make life better for all of us.

    If they don't then they have no one else to blame at the next few elections.
    JoMojo
    19th Jul 2016
    4:02pm
    If you know of someone rorting the system report them anonymously.

    I believe ALL welfare for children should cut out after 2-3 children. The women must then get back to work NOT live on Centrelink ! It would discourage those breeding 14 or more children per female. A family one woman one man and 10 plus children is reaping $100,000 per annum - which is more than most on basic wage earn and must stop.
    Old Geezer
    19th Jul 2016
    4:25pm
    I have a big problem with women going back to work and farming their kids out for others to raise. Why have them if you don't want to look after them yourself?
    crazy one
    19th Jul 2016
    4:59pm
    Ye the ones that are rorting the system is the ones that go in as they give themselves a pay-rise when they want to for just sitting on their backsides for doing nothing plus take trips over seas 90% off their time so there you are
    Culgoa
    19th Jul 2016
    4:10pm
    Quicker and stronger the attack, the better. When I read of the resident idiot Minister Pyne getting over 1 million in allowances over the past two years as well as a substantial salary, it confirms our political leadership has sunk to a new level.
    Alex
    19th Jul 2016
    4:24pm
    Culgoa, I did not hear Minister Morrison say he was cracking down on Politicians rorting the system
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:08am
    Actually, Culgoa, I'd say Pyne's rorts are a little bit of a rise in their usual standards... can't for the life of me see what his electorate could possibly see in this nodding clown's head without a single valid thought - sometimes I despair of the Australian people...
    Rae
    20th Jul 2016
    10:49am
    Yes it is a worry he is in control of the contracts for Defence as he obviously has no idea of how to negotiate lower costs and control budgets.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:37pm
    Scary thought - was just today discussing the onboard fire on an RAN ship caused by a wrong fuel pipe being fitted - killing four matelots. Some clerk-'n-jerk made the decision to use an inferior pipe made of the wrong metal.... to cut costs....
    KB
    19th Jul 2016
    4:20pm
    Pensioners are struggling with high living costs so the pension must be increased,The govt should focus on dole bludgers and not people who like me who are disabled,
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:10am
    When you can squeeze an estimated 18.8% of the workforce, currently un- and under-employed (meaning as little as 1 hour a week), into 120,000 alleged vacancies... I'm all ears.

    Until then - let us leave out pub talk like 'dole bludgers' and the like - unless you would prefer those millions to live off the proceeds of crime since they have nothing else.
    Scrivener
    19th Jul 2016
    6:53pm
    If it is in its infancy who has been governing us for the last three years - and who gave undertakings to ACOSS?
    Renny
    19th Jul 2016
    7:03pm
    I suppose we'll all be happy when people with terminal cancer are kicked of DSP and die as happened in Britain, and people with mental lines are too scared to front a review and die from starvation ( as also has happened in Britain in the last 12 months). There are always vulnerable people who will be hurt by harsh measures.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:11am
    .. or they do a Thatcher and cut the pensions of legless war veterans, and praise the 'finest troops in the world' while cutting funding for the treatment of Falklands wounded.

    Politicians are all hypocrites.
    LiveItUp
    20th Jul 2016
    7:27am
    I know of people with terminal cancer who are not on the DSP in the country. Just because you have terminal cancer it doesn't qualify you for the DSP.
    Rae
    20th Jul 2016
    11:56am
    I know business owners who pay no tax at all on the countless hundreds of thousands of dollars they benefit from too.

    They don't call it welfare though but entitlements.

    As far as I can see it is still taxes either way.

    Just because it exists doesn't make it right.

    A family being left destitute because of having to spend all savings first in the event of illness indicates a very unfair and lacking in compassion society.
    ex PS
    21st Jul 2016
    7:18am
    Rae, these businesses are still suckling off the government teat, so to me they are just rich people on welfare.
    Renny
    19th Jul 2016
    7:05pm
    What a bunch of nasty old racist haters. You make me sick.
    Aussie
    19th Jul 2016
    10:00pm
    Renny ....mate you have no idea how many people like this nasty racist and totally ignorant people we have in this country.
    You be surprised .... start with the politicians .

    We have no choice or any way to fight for our rights read my comments about a bill of Rights (BOR) for Australian citizens on my comments below
    Alex
    20th Jul 2016
    12:56am
    Yes Renny it seems some people can only focus on racist attacks and not on doing anything positive for retirees or anyone else. They have strange stereotypes that they run with and cannot see people as people.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:48am
    Great comment - apart from your presumption about we oldies, and your generalisations..

    Ad Hominem in your case means more than a few gay guys doing advertising work....
    Aussie
    19th Jul 2016
    9:55pm
    All this drastics changes to the pension/Welfare system that the government is trying to apply is only because we do not have any rights to defend ourself that is why I am trying to highlight the needs for a Bill of Rights (BOR) in Australia.

    This will never happen with a BOR in place to defend all our rights and duties including clamping on the crooks at an early stage.

    “Super and other kind of income including the pension payments SHOULD be sacrosanct…”

    Regardless of what government is in power, the retirement income savings system should be in a sense sacrosanct and once those [retirement] savings are made, governments of any flavour should not be able to get their hands on the money that people have saved for their retirement over so many years with great effort........ This will save our kids super but at the moment with all this Gov. super changes who knows

    The way the gov. is going at the moment I can say that The nationalization of Australia’s
    retirement funds has barely begun ..... more coming very soon I am sure because there is too much money saved in super funds to be taken and we have no way to defend our rights because NO BOR
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:53am
    We do have a kind of Bill of Rights in the Rule of Law - which stipulates not only that laws and regulations themselves must be Lawful, but they must also provide the basics of Natural Justice, Presumption of Innocence etc....

    This 'bill of rights' has been progressively eroded as a matter of policy here in Australia (after a very shaky start as a convict colony with two 'classes' - cops and robbers), and when you recall that 70% of government is carried on by regulation and not legislation - you can readily see why there is a need for not only a Federal ICAC to pull the wings off thieves, liars, and con men - but also a simple and cheap access Court in which any legislation or regulation that adversely affects anyone can be held up to scrutiny and judged on its merits and in accordance with Law (and not simple law, legislation or regulation - but you have to read my stuff elsewhere).

    Sometimes legislation is itself not in accord with the Rule of Law........... let alone regulations in their outstanding and persistent failure to abide by the Rule of Law and all it requires.
    Retired Knowall
    20th Jul 2016
    9:36am
    What happened to He He He, Ha Ha Ha?
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:39pm
    Dunno - it was never my signature song.....

    He He He, Ha Ha Ha,
    I'd like to stretch my pension far....

    Sounds like a Sting song to me....
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    3:39am
    Again I must advise you all against using the term 'welfare' when dealing with Social Security. Social Security is not a handout in need, it is a guaranteed Right in need, and has been bought and paid for by generations of contributions into the tax bucket.

    Even this forum is guilty of deliberately confusing the two, which makes it much easier for governments of any stamp to attack Social Security as some sort of parasitic imposition on government funding, when it is, in reality, a duty and obligation placed on government through the contributions process, and is a bill falling due.

    You may argue what properly does and does not constitute Social Security - you may dispute whether its coverage is too broad and offers too much to those without genuine need, or that some is misplaced - you may not argue over its merits.

    There endeth the lesson.
    LiveItUp
    20th Jul 2016
    7:24am
    All social security is welfare. It is not a right or entitlement to all.
    Aussie
    20th Jul 2016
    2:11pm
    Yes agreed with you but there is a group of people here that very strongly use the word welfare as pension as far as I am concern the pension is not a welfare I just use the term so the greedy people on this forum are happy but they will never understand because they are very jealous and against everything
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:42pm
    Incorrect - read above for the correct definitions of welfare and Social Security in Australia - one is the intent, welfare, to alleviate hardship and provide a landing pad etc , in other words it is a philosophical or political position adopted as policy - Social Security in Australia is the process by which paid-in monies are repaid into the community to those in need.

    Being fully funded by past generational contributions it is fully self-funded - any fault in failing to find the funding where it is hidden lies with politicians and public servants.......

    Sorry - get it right.
    Anonymous
    21st Jul 2016
    6:45am
    Tax concessions to the wealthy are WELFARE - obscene and disgusting handouts to arrogant greedy people who drain the public purse and the nation's resources, and then beat their chests and scream that they are SELF-FUNDED and denigrate pensioners. In fact, they are TAXPAYER FUNDED. And they get far more than any pensioner. So they should zip their filthy lying lips and stop insulting the people whose contribution to this nation made it possible for them to steal and plunder and hoard.
    Anonymous
    21st Jul 2016
    6:53am
    Funding badly needed pension increases is easy. Tax concessions on superannuation are costing well over $35 million a year (more now than the total cost of the aged pension). And 80% of that cost benefits ONLY those who don't need help or incentive to fund retirement. These concessions are doing NOTHING for the economy.

    Adopt the 2014 proposal to abolish superannuation tax concessions, abolish all means tests on the aged pension, tax retirement incomes over a generous threshold, and raise the basic aged pension rate. We would eliminate massive administration costs, give everyone high incentives to save for retirement (whether through super or outside it), guarantee all Australians comfort and respect in old age - the MOST necessary of all social reforms and the one that will be of most value to young taxpayers - and win the government a great deal of support for future SENSIBLE economic reform. Plus, most younger folk would benefit by being able to inherit from their parents eventually, which would increase tax revenue further and make the nation, overall, wealthier.

    It makes far more sense than this STUPID idea of killing incentives to save by stripping the incomes of people who struggled to put a bit aside and try to be at least substantially independent in old age. All that's achieved by killing incentives to save is reducing national wealth, increasing the drain on the public purse - but possibly giving more to the well-to-do greedy LEANERS, and allowing them to keep slandering the people whose hard work made their wealth possible.
    ex PS
    21st Jul 2016
    7:21am
    Bonny, doesn't matter how many times a lie is repeated, it will not make it true, you are wasting your time.
    And talking about wasting time, this is the last time I will comment on your ridiculous assertion that the pension is welfare, it is getting a wee bit silly.
    Anonymous
    21st Jul 2016
    9:20am
    Sorry, In my post about I should have said $35 BILLION, of course.

    That's right. $35 BILLION every year, growing at approx. 12% per annum, is spent on superannuation tax concessions. And 80% of that goes to the WELL TO DO who don't need help to save for retirement. And those same WELL TO DO support taking a miserable $3.5 billion from struggling part pensioners who DO need help to fund their retirement, but scream blue murder when someone suggests their WELFARE be cut.
    Old Geezer
    23rd Jul 2016
    7:46pm
    There is only one reason why super is taxed favourably and that is no one would bother with it if it wasn't. So if you take away the tax incentives for super then how are you going to get people to save for their retirement? Most won't even bother about it. Result more welfare as people age.

    Young people are already only putting what they have to into super now because they know that by the time they get to retire the rules would have changed many times with the big possibility that super will be nationalised before they retire. Who is going to put money into something that may not benefit them when they retire?

    Super to me is way too restrictive and the accountability is very annoying so I only have a small amount of my wealth in super. I'd rather pay a bit of tax and do what I like with the money. Most wealthy people I know do the same.

    Yes I pay for my own retirement without any help from the government. If I was to put my hand out for the pension I would consider that to be greedy and selfish but since I don't then I can't see how that good possibly be greedy or selfish but I'm thinking it is probably a bit stupid since I could manage my affairs so that I qualify for welfare. So I save the country lots of money and actually by paying tax full up the countries coffers as well.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:15am
    NO - let us NOT allow the dust to settle! We, The People, spoke loud and clear at this election - we do NOT want any more of this self-serving guff from the major (and insulated from The People) parties - we want a a real government of real leadership for all - and not just more and more and more of the same old worn-out and putrid nonsense pulled out of the pockets of their contributors.
    TREBOR
    20th Jul 2016
    4:55am
    .. and handed to the parties in brown paper bags of the equivalent..... (snuckles - I do love a turn of phrase)....
    MD
    20th Jul 2016
    7:48am
    Both Carole & Scrivener hit the nail onna head in that this govt have held the reins for the past 3 years. NOW, someone is suggesting that they need time to get their act together - give me strength, parleeease. Politicians are merely elected reps, the pubic savants are supposed to be the movers and shakers (who in turn are influenced by faceless men). MOST pollies are merely a face with a (big) mouth, sly grin, little by way of a conscience and carry a handbook - 'A Hitchhikers guide to Entitlements'.
    The LNP have had more than enough time to determine policy, review/implement and enact the necessary. So if they now need time to settle in then what the hell have they been doing for the past 3 years. Aside of - squabbling, conniving, back slapping/stabbing and lining their pockets with 'entitlements'. So let's not be mistaken, don't be mislead, these apes have yet to descend from the trees. Darwin had it right - Natural selection, survival of the fittest'. We're dumb enough to select em, ergo, they: being the fittest - will survive !
    ex PS
    21st Jul 2016
    7:22am
    If the LNP hasn't got its act together now it never will. It told us it had all the answers, another lie apparently.
    crazy one
    20th Jul 2016
    11:31am
    It makes no different what we say, the government is in and they have the license to do what they want and all they will say is the people have voted us in to do what we want on their behalf because they believe that they do not have to listen to anyone anymore as they are sitting back and laughing as they are rooking everyone out there and putting Australia down because they do not care about us at all but themselves.
    Aussie
    20th Jul 2016
    2:34pm
    Agreed mate
    Rodent
    20th Jul 2016
    5:17pm
    ALL I am re posting this from another item , because it refers to "Welfare"

    All it was 'interesting to read the Janet Albrechtsen article in today's Australian- Turnball Tax Reform ---- perhaps some here might find it interesting, not the use of the word grandfathering as applied to super, pity when Pensioners complained about the Jan 2017 changes not being Grandfathered, the reason was it was all to difficult.
    Any way its an interesting article.

    I notice that Welfare is getting a mention again in these posts. For those that want to understand it better go to this link
    www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/.../WelfareSpend
    You will find an interesting Govt Doc Dec 2015 that is all about -What counts as Welfare Spending- this could provoke some discussion between posters
    TREBOR
    21st Jul 2016
    3:49am
    Needs a re-post:-

    We are not discussing welfare here - we are discussing bought and paid for Social Security.

    Get your terms right.

    1. Social security, in Australia, refers to a system of social welfare payments provided by Commonwealth Government of Australia. These payments are administered by Centrelink, a branch of the Department of Human Services.

    2. welfare

    noun: welfare

    1. the health, happiness, and fortunes of a person or group.
    "they don't give a damn about the welfare of their families"
    synonyms: well-being, health, good health, happiness, comfort, security, safety, protection, prosperity, profit, good, success, fortune, good fortune, advantage, interest, prosperousness, successfulness
    "local authorities have a duty to promote the welfare of children"
    antonyms: hardship

    2. statutory procedure or social effort designed to promote the basic physical and material well-being of people in need.
    "the protection of rights to education, housing, and welfare".

    Note that one, welfare, is a philosophical issue, a statement of intent, philosophy or policy - the other is a system of actual payment - Social Security is the system of actual payment, and never the twain shall meet.
    ex PS
    21st Jul 2016
    7:24am
    So early in its term? What the hell have they been doing for the last three years?
    *Loloften*
    22nd Jul 2016
    8:02pm
    What really pis*ed me off was 5yrs after my hubby passed away after 9yr battle with cancer in his early 50s+, I was informed via shocking letter from ATO that I owed them a 5-figure CGT sum + 9% interest for those 5yrs after my hubby passed away. Hubby managed all our finances as was far more "with it" than was I, had no idea that owed any CGT on the property as had only been rented for a couple of yrs prior to son buying 1/2 of it when 24, 20 yrs ago (wanted him to get into the housing mkt asap). Obviously we didn't expect our son to pay rent as he more than upkept the property in pristine condition @ his own expense & sold after enormous expense/labour by him that 5yrs ago. Still wondering why I wasn't informed abt owed CGT 'til 5yrs later - interest!? I'm still paying off CGT @ $1,000 mthly & most happily AT0 eventually kindly let me off paying the 9% interest when sent 'em a letter re above. Funny, NOT, how "they" & Centrelink chase we peeps with meagre savings, not the huge corporations who pay no tax. Will never forget a close friend telling me couple of decades ago & I quote "you're not truly rich 'til pay no tax," as he didn't!!??
    Mez
    30th Jul 2016
    8:00pm
    I guess that it would be very difficult to try and balance the budget to cater for both major socio economic classes because the deficit really needs to be reined in yet the less fortunate still need increases in welfare and pensions to live decently as human beings.
    However, many on the dole are those who are less qualified and less educated therefore most likely to be unable to comprehend that the economy and business need to be stimulated in order to be able to pay for welfare otherwise we end up like Greece - BANKRUPT!