8th Jan 2018

Backlash over Government welfare propaganda well-deserved

Leon Della Bosca

A recently released Federal Treasury report risks alienating older Australians, with the Government claiming that the average worker will shell out around $1800 this year on Age Pensions.

The cost of ‘welfare’ is again being touted as a burden on Aussie taxpayers, with the report claiming $83 of taxable income a week is spent on welfare payments.

Around $6.30 of the $83 is spent on unemployment benefits, $20 goes to family benefits and $17 to people on disability support.

The majority of taxpayer ‘welfare’ support is spent on the Age Pension, at a cost of $35 per average Australian worker, making it the single most expensive form of welfare.



A person earning $58,000 per year will pay $11,500 income tax to the Government, with $4326 going towards welfare programs.

Health and defence were the two other major expenses for the taxpayer, at $2197 and $1022 respectively. Combined, the cost of welfare accounts for two of every three dollars spent by the Federal Government.

The report also highlighted government debt, which is at a record high $517 billion – more than double the debt in 2013. Australian taxpayers fork out $474 a year to help cover what has become the country’s fastest growing spending area.

Read more at www.budget.gov.au

Opinion: Government needs to stop calling the Age Pension ‘welfare’

In what may have been a quiet news period over Christmas, the Federal Treasury welfare estimates report sure provided some fodder for the media.

And while government propaganda promotes the cost of ‘welfare’ as a burden on taxpayers with older Australians again being made a target, it’s probably not the most insulting element of the report.

Calling the Age Pension ‘welfare’ takes that crown.

The Australian Parliamentary Library may say the term ‘welfare’ can be used to refer to all facets of the welfare state, but the Government may do well to change its language when it refers to the Age Pension, or else it risks alienating a good portion of its voter base.

It seems it’s easy for the Government to forget that age pensioners paid tax all their working lives in order to receive this entitlement in retirement.

And what makes this worse is that the Government targets retirees and pensioners, yet hands out hundreds of millions, maybe billions, in corporate welfare each year. How is it that Australian PAYG individuals forked out around $194 billion of income tax in 2015-16 and corporate tax collected from Australia’s biggest companies came in at around $38.2 billion? The Australian Tax Office last year said that around 36 per cent of multinationals and big firms paid no tax in 2015-16.

Let’s not overlook the fact that our pension expenditure is still relatively modest compared to the rest of the world.

The Government’s attempt to illuminate the country about the cost of welfare has only managed to anger many who see the Age Pension as a retirement right borne of years of paying tax and working hard to enjoy the fruits of their working lives.

Older Australians should never be referred to as a public burden. Not only is it disrespectful it’s downright rude and undeserved.

Do you believe the pension is an entitlement or a handout? Would you like to see the Government change tack on its labelling of the Age Pension? Were you aware that two thirds of government expenditure goes towards welfare, health and defence?


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COMMENTS

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8th Jan 2018
9:39am
Entitlement or handout it’s still costing the taxpayer the same
So long as it’s not universal , it’s welfare
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
10:31am
Agree it is welfare.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
10:49am
Then the taxpayer will just have to eat it, the same as the Second Greatest Generation did.... and demand that their elected representative fix what they stuffed.....
Badjack
8th Jan 2018
11:04am
Raphael, it’s an "Earned entitlement".
When the aged pensioners of today started working and paying their taxes PART of the taxes paid by them was for the express purpose of funding their pension.
Therefore call it what you like but todays pensioners have contributed to and therefor earned their age pension.
MICK
8th Jan 2018
11:07am
A lifetime of paying tax, some of which was designated as 'retirement' taxes decades ago, is now being talked about as an 'entitlement'.
In times when the rich are paying little tax and getting tax cuts on top of that I have to question the Class Warfare which is being run by this government. Others should as well.
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
11:07am
It is certainly not an earned entitlement as fully self funded retirees would be able to claim double, triple or more if it was.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:14am
**face palms** You know the rules, Ebergeezer.. give it up.
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
11:24am
Yes I know the rules of the game and I love playing with those who don't.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:33am
You admit to being a troll as well as a know-all?
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
11:36am
I'm neither just someone who knows the rules before they play the game.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
12:13pm
Yet you complain that you can't get a pension because you've got too much? You understanding of the rules if flawed then.

This nation would be far better off installing my policies... that way it might genuinely prosper, rather than a few prospering through usury and exploitation.
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
12:42pm
So Badjack, you're only talking about pensioners born before 1926? So that would be those over the age of 91? Is that right?
jackie
8th Jan 2018
12:48pm
I wonder how much EXTRA it's costing tax payers in WELFARE for our politicians and public servants? I notice none of them seem to complain about that. Cut tax payers off welfare so that more can go to them.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
1:29pm
Guess it didn't cost taxpayers of our generation when we were young, Raphael? The money to pay our parents' and grandparents'' pensions must have fallen out of the sky?

There was only ONE worker per household in most cases back then, not two like today. And there were no assets tests and for a long time no income test. But I never once, back then, heard anyone complain, call it ''welfare'', or suggest oldies were a burden.
MICK
8th Jan 2018
1:57pm
OG - superannuation is one of the biggest tax avoidance schemes ever put forward in this country. Whilst the top end of town has taken many billions its insatiable appetite to defraud the system has now been curtailed but taxpayers pick up the tab.
Superannuation should be abandoned and the basic pension restored. Well off folk would invest their own money anyway but the returns they achieve would be market related rather than taxpayer subsidised. The rich will NEVER let that happen....until the whole system collapses.
Denying retirees a pension is the game currently being played and the only way to possibly end it is to throw out this dirty liberal government. Replace it with whom? The answer is 'who cares'. Anybody. Billy the Blacksmith will suffice....and if you think government will not be properly done you forget there is an army of highly paid bureaucrats stumping up ALL of our political elite. These people learn on the job and many have no skills when they enter politics other than lawyers who know how to deceive people and part them from their money. We are better off without them.
roy
8th Jan 2018
2:15pm
MICK, I think you really do need to 'phone the Samaritans before it's too late.
Your hatred of the LNP gov't is beyond belief, do you really think that Shifty Shorten and his "gang" of ne'er do wells would be any better? They would do the usual socialist trick of borrow borrow borrow, spend spend spend until we all went down the tubes plus the boats would start again.
By the way, how many of the labor "gentlemen" are lawyers?
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
4:15pm
I got the impression Mick was objecting to both major parties - not just the LNP. Certainly he's right about superannuation being a massive tax avoidance scheme that imposed huge debt on the majority to load the coffers of the rich - and meanwhile the greedy money-grabbing rich want to deny battlers any share of the national pie by claiming pensions should only be for the very needy and should have to be repaid from estates after death. Sick!!!

I certainly agree Billy the Blacksmith would govern better than any of the clowns there now, on either side of the political fence. And the independents and minor parties are no better for the most part. We keep hearing ''pay peanuts and you get monkeys''. Then please can we pay peanuts. Monkeys would to a far better job!
jackie
10th Jan 2018
10:57am
roy...Don't worry, your super is safe because it is a great tax avoidance that all our politicians will never abolish. The LNP will bribe you with another once off payment bribe when you vote them in again. All is good.
JAID
11th Jan 2018
8:22am
Mick's logic depends I think on there being a value in national savings, otherwise it is pretty difficult to pick a hole in.

We know that we need to have all living with dignity and as creative and productive as reasonably possible. Encouraging that via superannuation has cost massively in tax collected. It has also been selective, enabling avoidance of taxes by those who can afford it. As a mechanism for transferring the responsibility for maintenance of people beyond their primary productive years whether it has worked or not is beyond my ability to calculate but whether or not, it still leaves us with a need to maintain those it has not benefited. In that access and benefit was not equal, that need cannot reasonably become a finger to be pointed at those requiring this support.

Superannation has cost in tax but it has also cost in national competitiveness. Impact has not been in all areas but the manual labour intensive areas have been most strongly affected. With implementation, led by public service wages most of the superannuation component has actually been an added wages cost. People were seldom paid less in the hand. The areas lost to the economy were those that many requiring the pension now depended upon.

Superannuation also put the choice of expenditure of huge sums into institutional hands and out of everyday entrepreneurial hands. There may be data able to show that this was the best investment available but grass roots creativity should not be under-estimated; neither should the cost of institutional husbandry.

This is not a Labor or Liberal thing, all have contributed to the present system. it may not even be inappropriate but I would favour encouragement to save by simply showing whatever may be the advantages rather than paying people to do so as tax cuts do.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
12:09pm
Jaid, maybe if the government stopped worrying about tax concessions and cuts and just let people enjoy the full benefit of their savings, instead of punishing them for saving when they retire, there would be more incentives.
auldtic
8th Jan 2018
9:45am
Discrediting a group of citizens is unfair and amazingly stupid. Governments should try for a harmonious society rather than divining society
Waiting to retire at 70
8th Jan 2018
10:54am
Our politicians need to realise that there is power when we turn to each other rather than on each other.
MICK
8th Jan 2018
11:21am
Power if older voters are smart and vote against corruption. Not sure some folk can change a lifetime of habit though. We'll see as the next election is coming.
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
11:25am
Ha ha the old voters will just vote the way they always have as they don't like change.
MICK
8th Jan 2018
1:58pm
That of course is what keeps the current bunch of crooks in government and this is why retirees need to discuss this issue at length with their peers.
So who you gonna vote for OG? I'm horrified to even ask.
roy
8th Jan 2018
2:19pm
Labor will get in next time, in spite of all the troubles in Melbourne with the people of "African" appearance, the stupid voters will still put Daniels in again, sheesh. Borrow borrow borrow, spend spend spend. the labor mantra, not just here but the world over
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
2:26pm
Maybe not in Victoria if they continue to support Safe Schools and gender fluidity theories. There's a massive and fast-growing wave of protest to that.
Foxy
8th Jan 2018
2:45pm
"African" appearance? There is no doubt these thugs are Sudanese!!
Being a "Melbournian" - doubt veryyyyyy much "Danny Boy" will get back in! He is literally "hated" with a vengence here!!

Mind you - not a lot else to choose from ....... :-)
roy
8th Jan 2018
2:47pm
Rainey, thick lefties will still vote ALP as they always have
libsareliars
8th Jan 2018
3:32pm
Discrediting a group of citizens is unfair and amazingly stupid.

Spot on old tic
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
4:24pm
True in regard to thick lefties, Roy. But the swing voters decide election outcomes, and the swing voters are very anti Labor in Victoria right now because of Safe Schools and programs like it. Petition just presented to Victorian parliament was signed by 49,000, and these are mostly folk who are traditionally conservative and don't bother to speak up on political subjects. There are two ''sit-in'' protests planned for coming months. And there are dozens of other protests in progress.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
9:57pm
Oh, come on, roy - Tony and Mal imported the dusky Khartoum Kaffirs.....

Pardon me, roy - is that the blacks that chew the news blue?
ex PS
9th Jan 2018
9:31am
Yes roy, and stupid whatevers will still vote Liberal no matter what. Stupidity is not the realm of just one political supporter.
Until we wake up and start voting for the politicians that offer the best policies we will be stuck with either Woolworths or Coles, with very little difference between the policies of either. The main policy of both being, win the next election no matter what you have to say or do.
Mainstream voters just cancel each other out, the ones who decide who rules are the ones who can think for themselves and vote for policy and not rhetoric or tree word meaningless slogans.
Knows-a-lot
11th Jan 2018
1:46pm
roy, thick Rightards will still vote Lieberal-Nazi-Party as they always have.
Farside
11th Jan 2018
9:56pm
@Foxy "Being a "Melbournian" - doubt veryyyyyy much "Danny Boy" will get back in! He is literally "hated" with a vengence here!!"

Not sure which part of Melbourne you live in Foxy but even the folk in the leafy eastern burbs will back Andrews over the Lib numpty Matthew Guy. Andrews has done much better than anyone anticipated and likely be returned with an increased majority.
TREBOR
14th Jan 2018
6:47am
Current Labor leaders in NSW and Victoria have all the impact of a wet piece of toast....
Knows-a-lot
14th Jan 2018
11:01am
TREBOR, and yet they're better than the NSW government by far...
auldtic
8th Jan 2018
9:46am
Dividing !
Curious
8th Jan 2018
10:25am
Arrogant politicians should be ready for a pensioners’ revolt
THE stigma of charity should be removed from the age pension. It should be an entitlement earned by the person’s personal contribution to the fund,” said a very famous Australian long ago.
Who? Former Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies. When? At the time the current pension scheme was introduced. Fund? What fund and what personal contribution?
You wouldn’t know about it listening to the major parties’ politicians or Senate crossbencher David Leyonhjelm who, echoing former Treasurer Joe Hockey, told the ABC he wants Australians to drop their sense of entitlement to the aged pension, which should only be paid to poor people, and receiving it should be “nothing to be proud of”.
Well, no David, 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.
What a good idea! 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.
They won’t talk about the historical facts because these days politicians have developed a new “ending the age of entitlement” narrative while pushing the disingenuous line that younger workers are paying tax to support pensioners.
Menzies was opposition leader when then prime minister Ben Chifley announced a National Welfare Fund to pay for pensions, unemployment relief, child endowments, even health care with a 7.5 per cent tax increase.
Menzies insisted that the Compulsory Contribution (levy) should be kept completely separate; that it should be paid straight into a trust account and not mixed with the general revenue.
The levy and the National Welfare Fund began on January 1, 1946, and contributions were shown separately on workers’ personal tax assessments for 1946, 1947, 1948, 1949 and 1950, with the money paid straight into the special fund from which claims were paid out.
In 1950 the balance in the fund was almost £100 million or $200 million – in today’s money the equivalent of several trillion dollars.
But the pot was too big for the politicians to leave alone. Menzies, supported by the Australian Labor Party, amended the Acts governing the fund so the compulsory contributions levy was lumped in with people’s income tax and the whole lot paid straight into consolidated revenue.
But the compulsory 7.5 per cent “levy” was still collected and spent.
In 1977 Liberal PM Malcolm Fraser transferred the balance left in the welfare fund account (by then almost $500 million, or several trillion in today’s terms) to consolidated revenue. But still the 7.5 per cent was taken out of everyone’s pay packet every week.
Then in 1985 the Labor Government repealed Acts No. 39, 40 and 41 of 1945 (The National Welfare Fund Acts) and introduced income and asset testing, thus excluding millions of levy and taxpaying Australians from receiving the pension for which they had paid.
But still the 7.5 per cent levy continued to be collected (while hidden in general income tax revenue.) And to this day it still is collected.
There have been estimates that the trillions of dollars stolen from the fund and the money paid and similarly stolen (sorry, transferred) since 1985 would be enough to pay a non-means-tested pension to every retiree of far more than $500 a week.
If it had been invested, like the Future Fund, the pension might be $1000 a week. Small beer compared with the politicians’ pension deals but a huge leap for older Aussies, 420,000 of whom had their age pensions cancelled or reduced from January 1.
Ironically, they are the very pensioners who would have the highest pensions if their personal contribution to the “fund” was the yardstick as in the UK and the US.
They probably generally have been Coalition voters. But no more.
Spend time in the RSLs, bowling clubs, voluntary organisations and the like, where these people gather and it is clear they are Liberal-National voters no more.
In lieu of an Australian Trump, they see no alternative but One Nation.
The Coalition, supported by Labor and the Greens, has turned 180 degrees from Menzies’ view the age pension is “an entitlement earned by the person’s personal contribution to the fund” and portrays it as charity.
For many Australians this alone shows how far the parties they once supported have strayed from principle.
The arrogant politicians think they can hypocritically and sanctimoniously speak condescendingly of older Australians.
They are in for a shock.
This is an article I read and am sharing.
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
10:28am
The OAP is welfare (charity) that should only be given to those who have no other means of support. It has nothing what so ever to do with what taxes one has paid, how long they worked, how many pets they have or anything else.

The only shock will be a that the taxpayers will be looking for who will shift this burden from them.
Rae
8th Jan 2018
10:45am
Yes Curious. Hindsight. The fund should have been set up as an independent entity cut off from government theft and we could have had an equitable retirement payment with other income being taxed accordingly.

I also wonder how much revenue we'd have if Whitlam had Nationalised the mines, oil and gas fields and pipelines and the uranium industry. We'll never know as that money pours out in the billions.

What we do have is unsustainable.

The Superannuation tax concessions, tax free status and the fiasco of lowering taxes on speculative capital gains are also unsustainable.

It is a damned mess and both Parties are to blame for incompetence since 1975.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
10:52am
Ignore Ebergeezer Scrooge - he's never been right yet on Pensions... Pension is an absolute entitlement.

Spot on, Rae.... I sagely said to the boys at work that one day we would be looking back at the start of the Hawke years as 'the good old days' - never a truer word spoken.

Parties of any hue here have destroyed the opportunity for this nation to prosper and support its own.

Just this morning I read an article where Scott Morrison said that chopping negative gearing would bring the economy to a halt.... what kind of 'economy' is it when such a miniscule thing could bring it to a halt?

Simple answer is that it is no Economy at all.... just a hodge-podge of self-interest and greed run by lunatics.
Sen.Cit.89
8th Jan 2018
11:27am
Well said Curious; at my age, I paid heaps into the original scheme. Regarding supporting major parties, my revolt has started. I now refuse to vote ALP, NLP or Greens and a seek an independent candidate with similar views to mine. Major party pollies are nothing more than people on big salaries and large pensions and perks, answering to their party without considering their constituents.
Richied
8th Jan 2018
12:46pm
Changing history a little bit here.

The pension has always been funded from general revenue (http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/94713ad445ff1425ca25682000192af2/8e72c4526a94aaedca2569de00296978!OpenDocument)

Mr Menzies was suggesting a personal pension fund - ie. a superannuation fund - not the commonwealth pension scheme.

There was a separate Welfare Fund that people paid into via taxes, but people didn't have their own amounts tracked there - it was simply a bucket of money set aside for welfare.

https://cuffelinks.com.au/age-pension-not-welfare/

I'd be interested to find references to any other government fund set aside for aged pensions - I can't find any reference.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
12:57pm
Apologies if I'm wrong, Richied, but I haven't seen any claim of monies being tracked for individual benefit. I thought the claim was simply that the fund Menzies set up should provide for a universal age pension. Morally and ethically, I believe the Welfare fund should have been kept permanently for the purpose for which it was established, and because it wasn't I think the politicians (and others who refer to the age pension as ''welfare'' and want it restricted based on perceived ''need'' - though need really has nothing to do with it under our current flawed system!) are DEAD WRONG and disgustingly unethical in justifying the attitude currently being taken to aged pensions and the entitlements of retirees.

The aged pension is MORAL AND ETHICAL entitlement for EVERY Australian retiree who worked and paid taxes, or raised a family, or otherwise contributed positively to the future of our society. And the current system is grossly unfair, often cruel, unjustifiably costly to administer, BUT highly affordable - given it costs less than HALF what other developed nations pay to support their aged (relative to GDP) and that it is NOT expected to rise before 2050, at which time it will start to free-fall due to compulsory superannuation.
Richied
8th Jan 2018
1:15pm
The 'less than half' what other countries pay is only on the base pension amount - Australia has the highest 'in kind' support for older people than any other country (I read that in the Challenger report referenced in the above article). So adding the base pension amount, and the 'in kind' support, Australia ranks very highly in terms of the support it provides its older citizens (I think the Challenger report puts us around #11).
MICK
8th Jan 2018
2:01pm
OG - sometimes you scare me. Please tell me which first world countries do not pay their citizens a pension? Most are also not means tested.
So why is Australia different? Do you suggest that older citizens get put out in the cold in front of the igloo as well? Your lack of fairness and humanity does leave me cold some days mate.
Richied
8th Jan 2018
2:35pm
Rainey: The post said that it was an entitlement because of a person's individual contribution to the fund. That is, you contribute, and you are then entitled to get something back.

The implication of that is anyone who doesn't contribute isn't entitled to get anything back. However the opposite is generally true in Australia. The more your ability to pay (and save) the less you will be entitled to through age pension - or conversely, the less you are able to save, the more you will receive through age pension.
libsareliars
8th Jan 2018
3:52pm
Well said Curious, agree entirely.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
4:37pm
I'm curious about this so-called ''in kind'' support that costs so much and benefits so widely, Richied. What ''in kind'' support would that be, exactly? I have a ''Seniors Card'' that so far has gotten me a total of $50 benefit in over 6 years, and only $10 of that at government cost. The rest was at the cost of a private business. I get medical treatment free or cheap, but I pay full price for dental and optical. Medical care is also heavily subsidized for the elderly in nearly all other developed nations - and much more heavily in UK and Canada. Pensioners get discounts on rates and car registration and licenses, but the amount is generally minimal, and it is limited to pensioners. Where is all this wonderful ''in kind'' support? Maybe government funding to useless self-interested lobby groups and ''leisure activity providers'' and these pointless ''seniors expos''? Or maybe aged care, which is so appallingly underfunded that our aged are suffering dreadful neglect and even abuse and nobody in their right mind would refer to any ''benefit'' from being there.

I don't care what the post said or what the law or policy says, much less what privileged nasties or greedy politicians say. The fact is that an aged pension is a moral and ethical entitlement for all those who spent decades contributing to social and economic improvement, and an moral obligation to all those whose disadvantage restricted their capacity to provide for themselves. Calling it ''welfare'' is denigrating and disrespectful, and fails to acknowledge the ethical and moral rights of both recipients and those who SHOULD receive it but are unfairly denied. And means testing it in the way Australia currently does is not only discriminatory and blatantly unfair, it's economically destructive because it drives a welfare mentality and a resistance to providing for oneself.

And pointing out to taxpayer how much they contribute to supporting seniors is about as disgustingly disrespectful - no, abusive - as it gets. Those responsible should be charged with elder abuse, because that's what it is. Time for these mongrels to learn some respect and decency.
thommo
9th Jan 2018
8:57am
To CURIOUS...I agree with you 110%. Our politicians think they can treat us with contempt, but their day of reckoning is coming next election.
The 'grey' power will ensure pensioners will be a political force in future.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
9:05am
Wish I could be confident you're right, thommo. But I fear too many are like me... wondering what the hell alternative is available! I won't vote LNP, and I've told the LNP leaders that and spelled out why, but I really don't see that the alternative is any more appealing.
ex PS
9th Jan 2018
9:39am
thommo, only if we can put aside this stupid left/right nonsense and vote by using our brains. So far I will not be voting someone in who I don't know can do a better job or not, but voting someone out who I know is not working for my benefit or the benefit of the country.
You are right, this government treats Retirees with contempt, if we can demonstrate that we have an impact on government by concentrating our vote, we will be able to force them into treating us with dignity. Maybe we are treated with contempt because we deserve to be treated with contempt, no matter what they do to us we just roll over, wag or tails and hope things will get better.
Kicking this government out will send a message to all politicians.
Knows-a-lot
11th Jan 2018
1:49pm
For those looking for voting alternatives to the LNP, ALP or the loony Greens, why not try the DLP? They're politically a bit leftist but socially conservative. I like that.
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
10:25am
Good the Government is not hiding the truth the OAP is welfare!

What concerns the fully self funded retirees is that only are they providing for themselves but they are still paying for the welfare they are not getting. That is a like they are paying twice for what others get for nothing.
Cowboy Jim
8th Jan 2018
10:41am
Old Geezer - saw that one coming long ago and retired earlier to
avoid becoming one of those Self-Funded Retirees. That title is only for bragging rights at the rich men's clubs. Rather be an average bloke with a part pension and a blue card. I think a lot more people might start to think that way; as long as ex pollies get away with all their perks the lower beings will refuse to be made idiots of.
Rae
8th Jan 2018
10:51am
Or for those lucky enough to be managing trust properties, hospitality accommodation or charity hostels, motels, hotels etc who can avoid the needs of the ordinary retiree.

I must agree with OG though it is damned annoying to pay full costs in retirement as if you were still working and getting a worker's income just because of government discriminations. I wasn't aware the Labor Party introduced the asset and income test.

Strange that all the other OECD countries and even the US can afford a universal pension. Makes me wonder just exactly where all Australia's Income is actually going.
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
10:52am
I advise others to do the same. Retire early and tick off your bucket list while you are still fit and healthy.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:03am
And you need to be concerned over where this nation's income is going, Rae. For a long time I've pondered whether or not government functionaries, be they elected or otherwise, have been spiriting a few lazy bill off into some hidden offshore accounts for their own personal benefit, as befits the actions of any petty dictatorial regime/bureaucracy. That's leaving out the perfidious 'futures fund' stashed int he Caymans to provide Peter Costello with yet another lifetime income and paying no tax here as it should be.

Simple answer to that is tax every cent that comes back to any Australian citizen from it.

How much is REALLY going int 'futures funds' around the globe? Why stop at one? How many times have we had Centrelink employees and other public servants syphoning off funds to fictitious accounts?

Not an unreasonable step to imagine that funds could be slipping out without our knowledge....... I have genuine suspicions given the state of the economy and the near lack of genuine recital of income/expenditure.
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
11:10am
Yes Rae, they were smarting about Billy McMahon drawing the OAP.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:15am
My observation of Billy was that he should have been on DSP for life due to mental insufficiency.....
MICK
8th Jan 2018
2:04pm
OG - I can relate to what you are saying and we are in the same boat. The whole issue of taxation does seem hard for you to understand though. The concept runs along the lines that those who can provide well for themselves should do so. Those who cannot should get a subssitence payment known as the pension. Those in between should be encouraged to provide for themselves and not be attacked and savaged at every turn. It is the last group which is hard done by because we have a government intent on decimating everybody other than the already well off. One group at a time.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
4:47pm
That last bit is spot on, Mick (not that the rest is any less valid). It is those in between groups that are being treated very unjustly, and in a way that is economically detrimental. One wonders why. What is to be gained by decimating everyone who tries to provide for themselves and does moderately well, but not quite well enough to be self-sufficient? It seems to me all that is gained is unjust bragging rights - the right to LIE about claimed savings, and it is clearly a lie, because that group will be far more dependant on taxpayers going forward as a result of being decimated now.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
10:48am
Typical nonsense from this lot - keep 'em divided and fighting among one another so they don't see how the government is ruining the nation, and especially to make those without intelligence think that somehow they are paying for pensions.

The 'average Australia' will NOT be forking out anything for pensioners - apart from the fact that Pensioners are THE Average Australian and more so than most of the twerps around these days, pensions have been bought and paid for by a lifetime of contribution to this nation, including the wonderful things the current working (and non-working and half-working) lot now enjoy, and especially the Bludging Classes of 'business' and other people you see paraded almost daily in the news for criminal behaviour.

They should bow down and kiss our asses for our efforts and then march on Canberra and turf these liars in the streets with nothing but the clothes on their backs.

Too much to ask that the Selfish Generation should see simple truth, though.
Rae
8th Jan 2018
1:22pm
Exactly so TREBOR. Our sovereign monetary fund can create funds and also tax away to remove them. It's a balancing act that the Government either doesn't understand or worse is using to divide the Nation.

The Government brought in the extra 6 million or so new immigrants so no use whining about the consequences and the cost.

It was lunacy in any sane analysis.

Maybe if pensioners just stayed home for a fortnight the effect of not having that cashflow might just dawn on the twits.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
11:39am
Never ever going to say that all the immigrants are nasty pieces of work, since we all know that is not true - but certain the mass introduction of people from an essentially peasant background began the rot in this nation, by introducing an absolute selfishness and cunning in evading any cost etc.

This has only gotten worse with the introduction of people from Third World countries, whose daily scrabble for life renders them incapable of much above the criminal, and certainly brings a laissez faire approach to life... anything goes as long as you can get away with it.

Sad... Poor Fellow, My Country....
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
9:04am
Probably the very words used to describe the mainly Irish boat people that made up the majority of the first immigrants to this country. I personally do not believe that there is any society in the world which is bereft of aspiration, or moral conscience.
So using that theory, the rot began in Australia, the day the first transportees arrived. It did not seem to work out so bad.
TREBOR
14th Jan 2018
6:50am
Those are my ancestors... along with the Germans and the Scots, and we are a wondrous lot in the main.

Oh, all right - the niggers and the chinks can stay - but we can't have the Irish!
ex PS
14th Jan 2018
10:19am
Must get out my Blazing Saddles DVD. There's a film that could not be made today.
On the Ball
8th Jan 2018
10:48am
Senate crossbencher David Leyonhjelm who, echoing former Treasurer Joe Hockey, told the ABC he wants Australians to drop their sense of entitlement to the aged pension, which should only be paid to poor people, and receiving it should be “nothing to be proud of”."

I wonder how HE will fund his retirement...

And to quote Old Geezer: ""What concerns the fully self funded retirees is that only are they providing for themselves but they are still paying for the welfare they are not getting. "
Amen to that.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
10:54am
We are all paying taxes, children - every time we put our hands in our pockets. SRFs are nothing special, and neither are working stiffs.

Open your eyes and look around.
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
11:01am
Yes we are all paying taxes but self funded retirees are paying taxes for something they will never receive.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:04am
You already received it, Ebergeezer.. stop complaining. You've had your sweet ride, now leave others alone.
Badjack
8th Jan 2018
11:15am
We can expect the mouthy Libertarian to do a Joh Bjelke and NOT ACCEPT his overly generous pension.
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
9:17am
Joh never paid into a pension fund, but went begging to the Labor government for an exgratia payment when the bribe money dried up. Thankfully he was shown the compassion he deserved and was not given one cent of tax payers money.
Old Geezer, don't tempt the Gods, no one can be certain that they will never need the pension entitlement. I bet their are many people living on the streets now, who made the very same statement.
I am a self funded retiree and I couldn't give two gosh darns if people who have worked all their lives and never managed to get ahead are enjoying the benefits of a pension system that we have all contributed to. I paid into an insurance fund for many years and received nothing from it, and I am very thankful I did not, I look at the OAP the same way, it is just insurance, and it is paid for by taxes. It is just unfortunate that the government has mismanaged those taxes and is having trouble funding an entitlement that they are paid to provide.
JAID
11th Jan 2018
9:20am
The sooner any sense of entitlement disappears the better.

Replace it with generosity, gratefulness, probity and happiness.

It is part of our charter as a people to extend a helping hand where it is needed and to want the best for all within our reasonable capacity.

You will never achieve that aim throwing money at people. Money is not real it only the time which went into that is. People, needy or well-heeled have limited time and the focus which comes from jealousy of liberty is what makes it worthwhile.

The loss of a sense of entitlement will have no financial effect upon the needy; it will eliminate whinging from the not-so-needy and encourage focus on what is important among the needy.

Every dollar spent by government is time out of our capacity to use it freely. that is the pressure to ensure it is wisely invested.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
12:16pm
A good step towards replacing entitlement with generosity, gratefulness, probity and happiness, Jaid, would be to stop bullying and punishing those who saved well and taking from them to give to those who didn't.

Many I know lost their sense of gratefulness when they discovered that their income was to be slashed to half those of who had enjoyed a much more lavish lifestyle, and they'd have to live on their hard-won savings instead of using them for the purpose for which they put that money aside.

We have a system that fosters a welfare mentality and a sense of entitlement, and every change - and even nearly ever proposal - makes it very much worse.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
10:56am
Aged Pension, DSP and Unemployment Benefits are not 'welfare' - they are bought and paid for Social Security. Nobody's fault but their own that governments have stuffed the economy - they can now fix it.
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
11:02am
Let's face it if someone has to pay for you to live without you lifting a finger then it is welfare.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:05am
Incorrect - when a person is drawing on the just return on a lifetime of contribution, that is simply recouping their investment.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:06am
Now you've had your say on this - don't continue to bog down the discussion over that inability of yours to accept and see reality.
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
11:12am
Ha ha we all know who refuses to accept reality and it's not me. OK it makes you feel warm and fussy if you don't call your charity welfare.
inextratime
8th Jan 2018
11:58am
Ha ha.. You will never shut someone down who has tunnel vision. If the Pension (Welfare, call it what you like) didn't exist, the cost to the nation would be much greater than it is. Please put brain into gear before pressing the verbal accelerator.
MICK
8th Jan 2018
2:06pm
Come on OG. That is really rude.
Not all people who are struggling are bludgers and it is wrong of you to attack those who fall in between the cracks.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
2:20pm
Or are thrown between the cracks..... by either poor management or by political design..... don't ever forget that... the primary responsibility for failure always resides at the top.
roy
8th Jan 2018
2:21pm
MICK, you didn't mention the LNP or Malcolm Turnbull in your latest post, are you OK, just asking?
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
9:22am
"Let's face it if someone has to pay for you to live without you lifting a finger then it is welfare."

Seems you have lost your own argument O.G., using that definition, any body who has worked and had to pay tax, has indeed lifted a finger and is not in fact on welfare, your definition, not anybody elses. And we all know, you are never wrong.
JAID
11th Jan 2018
9:46am
Mick, I cannot see that OG is incorrect. If government pays someone without return, then that is welfare. There doesnt have to be any negative involved. Welfare is currently essential in this society. However, to the greatest extent possible and in the interests of both givers and receivers we need to see return where it is available.
TREBOR
14th Jan 2018
6:54am
Jaid - all social security rapidly returns into the economy... (sighs - how many years, O lord, must I explain to these Philistines?) .. unlike large sums of money spent by the high rollers on offshore things or tax havens and imports from other nations and holidays offshore etc...

NONE of that last returns to THIS economy and its tax cycle, but is lost forever.

Ergo - social security it not welfare but failure to tax money offshored is, and as usual, OG is wrong and is playing the politics of envy because some of his own family set up their affairs so they could get the pension he doesn't qualify for. Therefore in his small world, nobody has any right to a pension.
Badjack
8th Jan 2018
10:58am
How come a country with 4.5 million people can afford a NON TESTED aged pension while a country with 25million does it’s best to squib on our Aged Pension.
There’s nothing egalitarian about this great country that USED to pride itself on being an egalitarian nation.
Rae
8th Jan 2018
1:29pm
I honestly think it is this stupid war between the LNP and the ALP and it is destroying the equality we once had.

All they can do is set up minefields for each other each time they think they may lose the next election and we end up paying for the consequences of this nonsense.
MICK
8th Jan 2018
2:07pm
And that is the question Badjack.
But of course the same country can give the wealthy a tax cut when they have absolutely no need of it. Please explain.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
5:24pm
Have you notices how OG and Bonny continue to rant about people not ''needing'' a pension, but they never rant about high income earners not ''needing'' a tax cut. Apparently the less affluent are ''greedy'' to want more than OG and Bonny deem ''needed'' (and of course they are the self-appointed determinants of universal need), but the wealthy are ENTITLED to grab as much as they can get their hands on, and need is totally irrelevant.
Knows-a-lot
9th Jan 2018
11:37am
Have you noticed that Rainey has a severe chronic case of verbal diarrhoea ("logorrhea")?
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
11:45am
Now, now - that's plain nasty.... KAL (Kal El from Superman??).... Rainey is literate and perceptive... someone has to lay things out in a manner that people can read and understand.

On which note, I've commented for many years now that there is a massive underlying unrest in this nation - people as individuals point the finger at one issue or another, only to find that turning over one issue raises another - and what they need, in order to restore some sanity to this nation and the way it is being handled (in more ways than one) -there has arisen a need for a clear-thinking, clear-speaking, unifying force.

Rainey is an example of such (pins medal on Rainey,steps back, salutes)...
marls
9th Jan 2018
12:06pm
Badjack
totally agree australia is the only country in the world that means tests the aged pension. i have family in two different european countries its not means testes on top of the eg my mother receives her aged pension plus a portion of my deceased fathers and a small pension from another country because my father was in the war, and the age pension is assessed as two individuals not like australia as a couple.
Knows-a-lot
11th Jan 2018
1:54pm
"Rainey is literate and perceptive..."

Not in my book. She's cyclopean, myopic, ignorant, opinionated, nasty, and excessively verbose. She's like so many women: a total pain-in-the-arse.
Knows-a-lot
11th Jan 2018
1:56pm
TREBOR: Two ways to begin to restore sanity to this nation: (1) Eradicate Islam; (2) Eradicate Feminism.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
9:20am
Is that what you learn studying for a PHD, Knows-a-lot? How to attack someone with a lot of insulting words?
Knows-a-lot
12th Jan 2018
3:31pm
One doesn't need a PhD to articulate the truth, only wisdom - which is something you lack completely, you Pluvian oaf. Given your own copious insults, you fully deserve a dose of your own medicine.
OnlyGenuineRainey
14th Jan 2018
8:35am
You obviously have ZERO wisdom, Knows-a-lot, and you wouldn't know the TRUTH if it bit you on the behind. But one thing you do surpass me in is the creativity and nastiness of your insults. I can't hold a candle to you there. I guess PHD studies taught you a lot of nasty words to throw at people whose intelligence you envy.
Knows-a-lot
14th Jan 2018
11:11am
I obviously have A GREAT DEAL of wisdom, Pluvial Clown, and I know the TRUTH far better than you (being an expert mathematician and theologian). I certainly know the truth that YOU are a total moron.

"But one thing you do surpass me in is the creativity and nastiness of your insults."

Just one of a trillion things I surpass you in, minimus,

"I guess PHD studies taught you a lot of nasty words to throw at people whose intelligence you envy."

Hilarious! I have not one iota of envy in me - least of all envy of you, Madam Delusional. As for intelligence, here is some TRUTH for you. On my first day in school back in May 1967, I was made to do an IQ test. The teachers couldn't believe the result, so they made me do another one: same result. I was told that I was a genius, and that there might be three or four people in the whole country with a higher IQ. I'm 100% certain you are not one of them From kindergarten through to university, I was always top of the class. I bet you never achieved that. The only thing you're a genius at is being a delusional dominatrix and pain-in-the-neck.
OnlyGenuineRainey
17th Jan 2018
8:33pm
Actually, Knows-a-lot, I was dux of a very large school 4 years in a row, until forced out of school by a family crisis. And I worked my way into a job that normally requires an advanced university degree without ever finishing high school. I also had the intelligence to structure my lifestyle such that despite major disadvantage and supporting a family on one minimum wage (or less) for twenty five years, I managed to educate all my kids, pay a massive bill for health care for a child, and end up with far too much wealth to qualify for any kind of pension benefit. So I'm quite comfortably confident that my intelligence level is higher that most. Certainly, I've been far more successful than most.
Waiting to retire at 70
8th Jan 2018
11:00am
Is the 18% Superannuation Guarantee WE pay from our taxes to federal politicians 'WELFARE"?

Or is it better referred to as 'fraudulently' obtained welfare?

Does any one of them deserve 18% super contribution from our taxes, when our contributions were frozen at 9.5% by Smokin' Joe Hockey and extended by ScuMo (sorry, I mean ScoMo) to fiscal 2022/23?

'Verbaling' of sections of our community by the 'robber barons' occupying federal parliament is really the 'last straw'. In the words of a former Prime Minister, "if there were a PhD for greed you blokes [LNP] would get first class honours."
Richied
8th Jan 2018
11:58am
Super Guarantee is not paid from our taxes. It is paid from their pre-tax income (like everyone else's).

Second, it's not 18% - it's 11.5% for up to 18 years service, and 5.1% after 18 years service. Third, their super is not paid into a super fund they can manage, but into consolidated revenue fund - because of this unless they have a self-managed fund they don't have opportunity to increase contributions like the rest of us. Fourth, public servants get 15.4% super (except senior executives, who get less), so politicians don't get it as good as public servants.

By all means bash the pollies, but try to be factual.

https://www.aph.gov.au/about_parliament/parliamentary_departments/parliamentary_library/pubs/bn/1011/superannuationbenefits
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
12:17pm
In that case we are paying them too much and they are allowed far too much as extra contribution outside the prescribed amount.

How else calculate their often enormous annual payment as 'pension'?
Rae
8th Jan 2018
1:32pm
Except for Defined Benefit self funded who paid after tax contributions and did not receive the tax concessions or 9% super guarantee. The guarantee they did receive was wiped out in the 2015 budget which proves you can't trust a single promise or commitment made by any political party.
MICK
8th Jan 2018
2:09pm
Good post Waiting. My understanding of pollies come lately is that taxpayers tip in 15% pa. Perhaps somebody could do the work and verify.
Sundays
8th Jan 2018
4:21pm
Actually Richie the figures you quote are the parliamentarians contributions they make from their parliamentary allowance, not what the govt contributes. The problem is this bears no resemblance to what they get back when they retire. After only 8 Years service 50% of the allowance ($185,000 )is returned as a pension for life. Stay in office more than 17 years and it’s 75%. In addition, yes there’s more, you can get 2 pensions if you’ve chaired a committee. Nice work if you can get it
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
11:01am
Is any form of Centrelink payment an entitlement or welfare. The Palestinians are not happy about the Trump administration pulling their generous aid because they believe it to be an entitlement.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:07am
Read above, Frank - and it was the Pakistanis.... demonstrating in the streets over US cutting funds.... (bloody Great Shaitan.. always ripping off the poor Muslims)... (ROFL emoticon required)
chorton
8th Jan 2018
11:01am
I bet they don't stop their pensions though!
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:07am
No - they'll enhance those.
Richied
8th Jan 2018
12:02pm
Their pensions are effectively their superannuation. It is called a pension because it comes from consolidated revenue, which is where they pay their 'super' contributions to (not to a super fund like the rest of us).

If we changed it so they could pay contributions to a super fund, they would then receive super payments like the rest of us (and would be able to manage their super funds, which they currently cannot do), but that would lead to potential conflicts of interest as they could manipulate the super system to their benefit (and arguably to the detriment of those who aren't on super incomes - ie. the aged pensioners).
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
12:22pm
Their superannuation should go into the same scheme as everyone else's, by the same rules, and they may only access it under the same rules.

Under the Trebor Scheme a national pension fund would be set up as a separate body, and the current strands of taxation that go to Social Security would go there plus levies as required (see Bob Menzie's speech on that issue) - for the benefit of all. Superannuation outside of that is separate income and should be taxed as income on top of the pension that will be paid to all.

Add into that fringe benefits and imputed fringe benefits (Harry Fudger being given a 'free' lift in a Fudger Chocolate Company private plane that nobody else uses (LMAO) ... we all know those are fringe benefits (wink, wink) and should be added into taxable income.

I can see Ebergeezer Scrooge cringing right now... we'll pay him $22k a year pension to keep him quiet - but he'll be paying tax on all his other strands and imputed strands.... sure to hurt, otherwise he wouldn't have them in the first place (like the arguments about trust funds - they wouldn't exist if they were not tax evasion pure and simple).
libsareliars
8th Jan 2018
3:53pm
One rule for them and one for everyone else!
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
8:16am
They shouldn't get ANYTHING after they leave office. They don't need it. They can save more than enough to cover their retirement if they stay in long term and if they don't they can use the same programs the rest of us do. And they all get cushy jobs on retirement anyway.

Time to return to the notion that politicians SERVE THE NATION, not the other way around. And serving means doing they job for minimal personal reward.

My grandmother always said politicians should not be paid. Sure, that would mean only the rich could serve and there would be corruption. Hello? How different would that be from how it is now? At least we'd save a lot of money, and maybe SOME of those who nominated would actually do so for the right reasons.
Knows-a-lot
13th Jan 2018
9:04am
Rainey, like you, your grandmother was an idiot (now I see where you get it from). Politicians SHOULD be paid well, because they work hard, and in order to avoid corruption. But they should not receive entitlements after they've left politics.
OnlyGenuineRainey
14th Jan 2018
8:42am
The only thing politicians work hard at is hiding their cheating on expenses, figuring more creative ways to abuse and insult their colleagues, and finding ways to demonize and blame the battlers for everything that's wrong in this nation. You would do well in parliament, Knows-nothing!
Knows-a-lot
14th Jan 2018
11:15am
"The only thing politicians work hard at is hiding their cheating on expenses,"

Trumpeting your breathtaking IGNORANCE again. I personally know the Federal Member for Parramatta, Julie Owens, and she is one of the most hard-working people I've ever met. She does a huge amount of work for that electorate and - unlike you - is a nice person to boot. Whereas you are just an ignorant, cynical fool.
Knows-a-lot
14th Jan 2018
11:17am
"You would do well in parliament, Knows-nothing!"

If your cynical and ignorant characterization of politicians were even slightly accurate, you'd be the best Australian politician who ever lived, Pluvial Cretin.
MICK
8th Jan 2018
11:05am
The intent of the current government to dispossess older Australians is unrelenting. Nowhere in the any developed country I know of are pensions denied and retirees savage whilst money is being handed out to rich folk by way of tax cuts.
I hope voting older Australians remember what the current government has done to them on election day rather than vote as they always have. This lot need to go asap.
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
11:18am
Yep, there will be a lot of grateful Pensioners who now have an extra $30f/n. Something your Labor mates voted against by the way.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
12:22pm
Mick doesn't vote Labor....said so many times....

As for the $30 - it should be $130 ...
roy
8th Jan 2018
1:58pm
Oh MICK, why oh why can you not be our PM, we would all be living in Utopia.. As long as you had Shifty Shorten, Shanghai Sam Dastyari and a few other labor low lives along as well.
roy
8th Jan 2018
1:59pm
MICK for PM and the sooner the better.
MICK
8th Jan 2018
2:14pm
Frank - I may support some Labor policies because they are humanity based but I certainly do not vote Labor. The only thing which would tempt me to do this is if meant the difference between an impending dictatorship being thrown out or not.

Your posts Roy are clearly straight from Party HQ. Nobody listening mate and your bosses are going. Soon. And the attempt to bribe working mothers with childcare feel good BS in the past couple of days is not going to change that.
roy
8th Jan 2018
2:26pm
You sound so down trodden, MICK, you must be getting near to your next trip skiing in the USA, Brackenridge holiday makers must be dreading you arriving or do you manage to switch off for a couple of weeks or so?
Are you sought after around the dinner table?
Countess
8th Jan 2018
11:06am
It is welfare but Govt.should remember that there comes a time when people can just not work anymore.Not everyone had that good job or perfectly planned life.At 68 I am working but cant see a positive outcome when I cant.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:13am
Still not welfare - a just return on a lifetime of contribution - I say that because it is not just income earners who've contributed via the levy in tax, but also those, such as the disabled and many women, who have not worked that much, but worked in other ways for the betterment of this nation - anyone who doubts that past contribution should look at today's generations and back at those before..... and see the differences.....

OUR lot could leave their doors unblocked and even the keys in the car..... THIS lot can't drive down the street without locking their car doors while they drive in case of carjacking...

Now who created that? Was it those loyal souls going to work for forty odd hours a week on a less than average income, who somehow still managed to raise often large families and own their own homes etc? Or was it some group of lunatics masquerading as experts on everything who figured our once-great and proud nation should change to suit some oddball 'global' ideology of one kind or another?
Richied
8th Jan 2018
12:51pm
That's the correct answer - it is a safety net, funded by all of us, to support those who find it difficult themselves.

And Trebor, the 'lifetime of contribution' pays for all the services we get on a daily basis while working - health, defence, education, family support, arts and sports subsidies etc. Plus our contributions pay for the welfare of others now who aren't as well off - that's what being part of society is about.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
2:26pm
.. and pension - don't forget the pension...

Now there's a kind of welfare we should add to my list - sports subsidies....

As for Gladys - that $2Bn for upgrading sports grounds that even past Wallabies say don't need it would get rid of that bloody roundabout at the end of the Sydney-Newcastle Freeway... and slip it over the Hunter and back onto the highway north of Raymond Terrace....

How do I know there is no such plan in train? All the land at the end near that roundabout has been sold off to industrial use... can't build a road over that....
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
8:31am
No, Richied. Maybe it SHOULD be a safety net to support those who find it difficult, but it's actually a fairly generous reward for manipulation and cheating by those whose difficulties result from extravagance and living the high life, while many who are genuinely struggling are denied anything.

I am very happy to see the needy being supported and I wish the support they receive was more generous, but the system is a mess because it was designed to persecute the middle class and upper working class and feed greed. And the most recent change (dare I mention it for fear of yet another personal attack by OG or Bonny?) made everything far, far worse.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
11:48am
Your position Rainey, is why I (mostly) am careful to either speak of Pensioners or Retirees as a group, the latter including SFRs, who cop it in the neck a lot, too.
Badjack
8th Jan 2018
11:10am
For those commenting that the Aged Pension is “Welfare" then perhaps you may wish to consider this.
When you retire and you apply for a pension from your Super Fund or take in one hit and the younger generations and or the wealthy start inferring you are a bludger how will you react?
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
11:23am
So what you are saying is that you fail to see the OAP as welfare because you are afraid of what others might say? Gosh I thought that was what teenagers did not old people.
Badjack
8th Jan 2018
11:45am
What an inane reply Old G.
It’s about other people bitching about others having access to something they have put their own hard earned into.
Get it.
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
11:48am
Oh :( Badjack, did someone call you a bludger?? Who did that?
People can be so mean.
KIHAP!!
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
12:24pm
It started with 'dole bludgers', Frank - a totally false term to describe those thrown out of work etc.... it's been extended to 'welfare bludgers' and somehow Pension and Social Security have been thrown in the same pot....
Badjack
8th Jan 2018
12:25pm
@ Frank,....it’s great to see a Rhodes Scholar commenting. That was a well researched and well thought out comment.
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
12:35pm
Oh? I see, this question of "what shall we call the OAP?" is simply an exercise in political correctness. Well why not say that? I'm not a Rhodes Scholar Badjack.

KIHAP!!
Richied
8th Jan 2018
12:56pm
First I don't see recipients of welfare as bludgers (remember, bulk billing of medical bills is welfare; being a public patient in a hospital is welfare). Society has an obligation to help its members, and each person has a responsibility to pay as much as they can afford into that society.

Welfare should not be seen as a bad thing - it should just be seen as part of society, like free concerts :-)

Secondly, to your point, drawing an income from a super fund is not a pension. Pensions are provided by the government from general revenue.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
2:36pm
The issue, Richie - is the use to which that term welfare has been put - as a derogatory term to reduce the value of Social Security in the eyes of the gullible, and thus to extend that new meaning into the suggestion that Pension and other Social Security is a discretionary handout.

Stick around - we'll get back to the push on older people to 'down-size' their dwelling since they are 'selfish' in 'hoarding' it. Then we'll have Ebergeezer Scrooge back to tell us people have no right to pass down any accrued wealth as inheritance to their families - unless they are the very well-off, of course - and all those old bludgers should be forced to sell their homes to 'keep the market buoyant' (lest the economy collapse as Scott Morrison said it would if serial housing ownership subsidies were scrapped)and 'create housing availability', and they should be forced to spend down every cent they have including assets before they can get a pension - unlike their 'betters' who can have as much as they can hoard and hide in tax havens, trusts, accounting practices, etc.

Then we'll soon be getting back to the push by local councils, via rates rises etc, to get residents out of homes so they can be replaced with new vertical slums hosting thousands of Chinese etc.... all to keep the housing market and 'investment' alive, of course.

Plenty of meat to go around.......

I applaud your principles on Social Security - but let us leave that derogatory Yank term 'welfare' out of it - if I want 'welfare' I'll go to a charity for some help with the food bill or whatever, or get a visit from the local police to ensure I'm not dead instead of holing up in the house for several hot days.

Now that's welfare!
Wstaton
8th Jan 2018
11:35pm
Wow here we are saying the retirees who are rattling about in their homes today. What will we be saying to retirees in 10 to 20 years time when the new retirees start rattling in their homes that are on an average %50 - 60 percent bigger than they were 20 years ago when those retirees bought them.
Wstaton
8th Jan 2018
11:42pm
On another point what about all those rich people who seem to need 60 to 100 square homes. what they do with all that space I don't know. Hah! they are entitled to spend their money on what they want because they have it.

Well if they are then the retirees are also allowed to do what they want with their homes even if they are much much smaller than the rich entitlement of size.

No-one is saying to the rich cut down your size so there is more land for others.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
1:34am
Fine shot, Wstaton... you hit the bulls eye....
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
11:53am
A few 20 storey blocks of flats in Bellevue Hill and Point Piper filled with immigrants and refugees and Sudanese and offshore Chinese buyers never hurt nobody.... clean air and good views and a coffee in Double Bay or lunch at Rose Bay would do them the world of good.... give them hope.... not cause them to become 'alienated' or 'radicalised' by the way we nasty Australians treat them (*eye rolling emoticon needed).
Richied
8th Jan 2018
11:13am
Sorry but aged pension IS welfare.

When it started 100 or so years ago, it didn't cut in till after the average life expectancy. It was expected that people would self fund till then, and only those who lived passed that life expectancy would be supported by the community.

Life expectancy in Australia is now 82 - and aged pension cuts in 15 years earlier!

So whereas 100 years ago a person would work almost their whole adult life, and only if they exceeded average life expectancy did society help them out for their few remaining years, now people work 3/4 of their adult life and are supported by the community for 1/4 of their adult life.

The argument that 'we've paid taxes all our life so we are entitled' ignores the fact that all those taxes paid for education, defence, roads, health services, arts and sports subsidies, and a raft of other ancillary services that people enjoyed through their life. Taxes are not banked for future years - they pay for services now.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:19am
Been explained many times over and over - it is Social Security and is not a handout. It has nothing to do with anticipated lifespan, and indeed, if it did, then those who carked it at 67 after receiving a pittance in return for the retirement insurance were robbed, and those who lived to 99 would have had it cut off at some point.

Thank you for coming.
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
11:29am
That's right TREBOR!! We're making new rules these days.
Richied is right, in 1908 when the OAP started at 65 the life expectancy of a male was 68. Of course the wars lowered the total cost by reducing the number of recipients.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:41am
True, Frank... all of this is smoke and mirrors to make out that Entitlement to Pension (etc) is somehow a bludge and is at the discretion of the government of the day.

We need the Trebor scheme of a totally independent retirement packaging scheme operating under the same rules for all - a pension paid at work's end or age 65 (whichever comes first depending on reasons), and taxation on all income and imputed income outside of pension.

If governments wish to function as businesses - they can function in the same way - NO taxes gathered, and for every 'project' they have in mind they can approach the funds - the banks etc plus the Australian Retirement Fund, for funding, and will receive it or not based on the merits of their 'business plan'.

I'm sick of these fools wanting it all ways to suit themselves just 'cause they can. If these idiotic privateers wish to continue down that track - let them embrace their philosophy with both arms and got totally private as a business entity WITHOUT support from the long-suffering people - then we'll see where the sheep and the goats lie in the fields...
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:42am
.. oh - that scheme is so far outside the reach of politicians they'd need a Mars expedition to reach it, too.... no more handing the foxes the keys to the chicken pen...
Richied
8th Jan 2018
12:33pm
The original scheme had everything to do with lifespan - it was to ensure people who lived longer than expected did not live in poverty.

When the aged pension scheme was introduced at federal level, only 4% of the population lived longer than 65 (the age when pensions cut in), with the average life expectancy at 55. In 2014 (last figures I could find just now), 89% of people lived longer than 65.

The level of benefit in 1908 was deliberately set low to encourage workers to also make their own provision for retirement. It was also means tested, indicating it was not an entitlement (an entitlement is available to all people).

Average working life in 1908 was 50 years (15 - 65). Average working life now is about 40 years (21 - 61).

It wasn't envisaged that this welfare (see above, not entitlement) would go from supporting 4% of the population for a limited time to supporting 89% of the population for an extended period. It was also not envisaged that those who paid taxes to support that scheme would reduce their worklife by 20%.

Over the years pensions have evolved into an entitlement, and the late 80s/early 90s recognised it was unsustainable, and so the compulsory super was introduced to put the onus back on people to self-fund all or most of their retirement (as it was in 1908).

I know this is a highly emotive and personal debate, but it is disingenuous for anyone to suggest that they are 'entitled' to 20+ years of pension simply because they paid taxes through their life. Simple arithmetic says they would be taking out vastly more in pensions over that 20+ years than they ever paid in to taxes (even though they got all the benefits of the taxes, like health, education, roads, defence, family benefits, etc) through their working life.
MICK
8th Jan 2018
2:15pm
It ain't "welfare" in any other country Ritchie Rich!
Richied
8th Jan 2018
2:31pm
Is that because of political correctness (ie. 'welfare' is seen as bad, so let's rename it to say 'social security' to make it more palatable)?

Welfare is a good thing and shouldn't be demonised (in any form) - here's the first definition that popped up in Google: "the health, happiness, and fortunes of a person or group" - that sounds good to me.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
2:40pm
Incorrect, New Chum - it's always been Social Security and is described as such in the Budget.....

You are correct - I explained many moons ago that welfare was the philosophy and practice of ensuring those thing you listed - Social Security is the way it is done as regards pensions, unemployment and such... but that is not the entire meaning of welfare even in that context.

Its misuse as a political tool is an appalling example of the cupidity and self-interest of ego and ideology driven politicians here and elsewhere, and of their total lack of genuine understanding of what they are mouthing off about in most cases.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
11:57am
Why not, Richie? Granny who lived to 99 was paid pension... Nowhere was there a time limit on it, and nor should there be.

You are close to the truth, but keep skirting the edges... perhaps because of an ideological stance or simply from reading the news too much.
Gaz
8th Jan 2018
11:15am
Of course it is welfare. It is a safety net for those who have not thought ahead and failed to provide for their own old age. It was meant to keep them in 'genteel poverty' rather than grinding poverty.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:19am
Utter nonsense on all fronts.
inextratime
8th Jan 2018
11:51am
Silly comment Gaz. Not everyone lives an ideal lifestyle, there's family needs, different rates of pay, illness considerations, deaths in families, ets etc etc. So if you got all your ducks in a row, good luck and well done but stop gloating.
MICK
8th Jan 2018
2:16pm
BS Gaz. Tell me what other country claims their pension system is welfare? Not one! Only in Oz from doubtful posters.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
1:36am
Welcome to the Poor Courts, Gaz - where the magistrates pick the pockets of the poor....
Rae
9th Jan 2018
8:43am
Except the disconnect between wages and productivity gains started in 1974 just when many boomers started work.

Since then incomes from labour for the majority have been declining as a percentage of profit share. Decade after decade.

Those in the bottom two quartiles could not possibly save enough for retirement.

Howard tried to help with tax cuts as wages stagnated but he was too late for most boomers.

The truth is we have been had big time by those fighting against workers. Those wanting the middle class gone.

If you do the math the current median pay still won't be enough for the bottom 50% of workers even now.

9.5% of the median after the 15% tax is around $3000 a year and then there are fees, charges, insurances and market risk.

All the fuss about superannuation is entirely for those earning over $80 000 a year and even that may not be enough if prices keep rising.

The only way you could provide for yourself on current low wages to costs would be a lifetime of frugal poverty and that would destroy the economy quick smart.

The only way to prosperity is to increase cashflow all around and neither government party seems able to do that now.

Of course these "leaders" coming out of private schools into well paid jobs and never meeting anyone from the bottom quartiles of hard working underpaid haven't got a clue and do believe they should have looked after themselves.

They look at average wage figures and forget the top earning $25 million plus bonuses that force that average up to something that looks okay.

It's not okay. All that profit overseas doesn't help us one little bit.
Knows-a-lot
11th Jan 2018
1:59pm
What crap, Gaz. I "thought ahead" but am on a disability pension because of health failure. Pull your head out of your fundament!
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
7:47pm
No. You are on a disability pension because you didn't plan ahead and save for a rainey day. You have a PHD. You had all the opportunity in the world to earn a substantial income and save for the future. I also suffered health failure, after earning MINIMUM WAGES and incurring massive debt for a sick child, but I still reached retirement age with savings because I lived frugally and saved as much as I could.
Knows-a-lot
13th Jan 2018
9:09am
By God, Rainey, you're a total moron. I did not plan on acquiring poor health early on; but I have always saved (despite never earning much).

"You had all the opportunity in the world to earn a substantial income and save for the future."

Bullsh*t. My field does not generate decent incomes, and because of poor health I could not go far up the greasy pole in academe.

"I also suffered health failure, after earning MINIMUM WAGES and incurring massive debt for a sick child, but I still reached retirement age with savings because I lived frugally and saved as much as I could."

Boo hoo. I suppose you want a medal for that. I have ALWAYS lived frugally because I had no choice.

Get your head out of your backside. You know very little about me, Pluvial oaf.
OnlyGenuineRainey
14th Jan 2018
8:55am
I know that people who achieve a PHD honestly get more than double the minimum wage, Knows-a-lot. And I know that it's possible to retire in modest comfort after earning a minimum wage for most of your life, suffering extensive ill-health and disability, and copping massive costs for a sick child. Because I did it. And my grandmother did also. And personally I think the guy who didn't do as well with a far better start in life is more likely to be the ''total moron'', no matter how many fancy letters he claims after his name. The proof is in the pudding. Sorry the truth hurts, Knows-nothing, but you should have considered that risk before you started abusing and insulting. As I recall, you took a dislike to me because I defended against your vile abuse of ALL FEMALES.

And no, my grandmother was not an 'idiot'. She had two years of schooling, but could hold her own in a debate on ANY subject, was more widely read than 90% of the population, dazzled everyone with her memory of fact, and had astonishing creative abilities that enabled her to support 6 kids through the Depression with an no husband support and to buy her own home before the end of it, as well as feeding half the neighbourhood and all the visiting swaggies. Also taught herself to be a midwife and cared for all the women in a remote rural area where doctors and nurses were in short supply. If that's an ''idiot'', we need a lot more of them in the world. Come to that, we need a lot more like me and a lot less like you, since I made it to self-sufficiency from a very disadvantaged start and you didn't despite far better opportunity.

I am sorry if the facts offend, Knows-a-lot, but when you dish out insults....
Knows-a-lot
14th Jan 2018
11:32am
"I know that people who achieve a PHD honestly get more than double the minimum wage, Knows-a-lot."

SIGH. More ignorance from Madam Pluvial. I personally PhD recipients who are unemployed and on the dole.

"And I know that it's possible to retire in modest comfort after earning a minimum wage for most of your life, suffering extensive ill-health and disability, and copping massive costs for a sick child. Because I did it. And my grandmother did also."

So you want a medal? Big deal! I think you're full of (sh)it, actually.

"And personally I think the guy who didn't do as well with a far better start in life is more likely to be the ''total moron'', no matter how many fancy letters he claims after his name."

I certainly DID NOT have a better start in life. I've had an incredibly hard life from the start. As I said earlier, you know next to NOTHING about me, you stupid cow.

"Sorry the truth hurts, Knows-nothing,"

You wouldn't know the truth if it hit you on your ugly head with a sledgehammer, Madam Plasmodeum.

"As I recall, you took a dislike to me because I defended against your vile abuse of ALL FEMALES."

Who cares? I only abuse bitches like you, who utterly deserve it.

"She had two years of schooling, but could hold her own in a debate on ANY subject"

All that shows is she was unlearned, but had an over-inflated ego.

"dazzled everyone with her memory of fact, and had astonishing creative abilities"

That's what I do. But it doesn't take that to raise six kids. That's just hard work - which even a drone could do.

"Come to that, we need a lot more like me and a lot less like you,"

EXACTLY what I think: more like me, less like you, Pluvia.

"since I made it to self-sufficiency from a very disadvantaged start and you didn't despite far better opportunity."

How many more times are you going to parade this whiny crap? All it shows is your pathetic need for sympathy.

I'm not sorry that the TRUTH I articulate might offend you, but when you dish out insulting garbage, expect it back in return, with interest...
Hairy
8th Jan 2018
11:19am
I object to being called a welfare recipient it is and always was a pension until politicians raided it and tacked it on to CES . Single mothers and other welfare recipients depleted the pension fund in about 4 years.australian politicians are nothing but a mob of lieing thieves and rorters .they should be sued for discrimination and the incorrect use of words under their PC rules.personally I will be boycotting anything to do with commonwealth games because if the PC crap.these excuses for humans who come up with this crap are bastardising the English language . It’s time to get real,Black is black white is white and shite is what this goverment and certain people have running from their mouths ,yes shite rainbow shite .
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
11:23am
Hairy, do you object because of discrimination?
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
1:39am
Sounds like he objects that his pension fund was tacked onto CES and absorbed into 'consolidated revenue' - that slush fund that politicians use for whatever use they wish while disregarding the bills falling due.... like some pokie addict going to the club, they don't put food in the family lockers before spending like sailors...

Pensions and other Social Security are bills falling due - and they require payment NOW, and up to the correct value.
Joy Anne
8th Jan 2018
11:20am
IT IS NOT WELFARE. THERE USE TO BE A PENSION FUND AND THEY THE LIBERALS TOOK ALL THOSE BILLIONS AND PUT IN THEIR REVENUE.
WE ARE ENTITLED TO THE PENSION.
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
11:28am
That was last century and certainly not this century.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:45am
.. and when and how did it change, OG? Simply by the theft of that fund into consolidated revenue? Been explained to you countless times that does not change the strand or its intended use.... just because you hold water from a river in a single big dam doesn't mean it will not continue to be used by those townships downstream.......

Get your mind, right, Luke.. use for force and not the farce..
Richied
8th Jan 2018
12:38pm
There wasn't a pension fund. It has always been funded from general revenue.

http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/94713ad445ff1425ca25682000192af2/8e72c4526a94aaedca2569de00296978!OpenDocument
MICK
8th Jan 2018
2:19pm
Not that long ago OG. In your lifetime.
What happened from my understanding is that a levy was put in place to fund pensions and then the government of the day decided to roll this into consolidated revenue. So now in time we can forget about the levy which is being kept whilst retirees are told they are not getting their (taxed) money back. Tough luck. Go eat gruel.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
2:46pm
http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/94713ad445ff1425ca25682000192af2/8e72c4526a94aaedca2569de00296978!OpenDocument

"The new pensions, which were financed from general revenue, came into operation in July 1909 and December 1910"

"There was a further development of specific relevance to social security in 1945. The Commonwealth split the personal income tax into two components. One, the social services contribution, was to be used exclusively to finance social security cash payments."

Anyway, read through the whole thing.... plenty of meat there as well.
roy
8th Jan 2018
3:18pm
MICK, we are waiting, any answers yet?
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
11:21am
Calling the OAP welfare while it is coming from the Welfare Budget doesn't worry me. I couldn't care what they call it.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:45am
It's the Social Security Budget, Frank... to be frank...
MICK
8th Jan 2018
2:20pm
No different to tax cuts for the rich. Is that welfare because it is money being doled out to the wealthy??????
roy
8th Jan 2018
3:16pm
MICK for PM, sorry to be so repetitive but I feel really strongly that he will be our saviour.
Grateful
8th Jan 2018
11:23am
Current income earners who are enjoying ALL the huge benefits that age pensioners provided from THEIR income tax should not complain. They are simply paying to use for what WE worked hard and paid for.
This government and that of the Abbott "government" are an absolute disgrace and have always alienated age pensioners, so, nothing's new there. They will pay the price withing 20 months!!!
Cowboy Jim
8th Jan 2018
11:39am
Always moaning about the current government and the Abbott one.
It was Hawke and Keating having killed the universal pension and given us the asset and means test. And Labor made us work to 67 years of age. No referendum, just an add-on after the Budget. Do remember the culprits!
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:46am
Yes, Jim - goes back to The Silver Bodgie and his co-conspirators, with their government of wrecking a silly nation......
MICK
8th Jan 2018
2:21pm
The will Grateful. Not sure even a smear campaign or anti Labor propaganda campaign from the Murdoch lot will change that.
roy
8th Jan 2018
2:34pm
Grateful, If Shifty Shorten and his "gang" get is, we are doomed, all of us.
The union bully boys just cannot wait, mark my word.
But if MICK is PM we will be living in Utopia, yeah.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
2:49pm
'Union bully boys' don't run the show n this country and are a minute minority in reality, other than in the fevered imaginations of weak-kneed governments and managers who are incapable of effective consultation and negotiation, and in the dark minds of certain parts of the media who are forever searching the gutters for some fearsome equivalent of 'Reds Under The Beds' to frighten a gullible populace with.

Only a fool believes there are 'Union bully boys' on every corner... and that nonsense label is being used to hide the reality of government and management bullying of the workforce.

If there were real 'Union bully boys' out and about there's be plenty of dead managers....
roy
8th Jan 2018
3:14pm
Read all about the union bullying at the Commonwealth Games and parts of the building trade in Brisbane or is it all fake news.
libsareliars
8th Jan 2018
3:55pm
Spot on Grateful
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
10:11pm
Pardon me, roy..... (not again)... that's called negotiation from a strong standpoint, and if these demands were in fact bullying or standover those doing it would be in court.

Don't believe everything you read in the papers.... they have an amazing and unfounded tendency to hyperbole..

When I studied Journalism 101, it was made clear that every news article was designed and implemented to support a pre-established point of view.

I nearly fell off my chair... they were stating what Gore Vidal said once on late night TV - 'All mainstream media is propaganda'.

Pardon me, Roy - is that the chat that got the news through?
Hairy
8th Jan 2018
11:26am
If it’s welfare why is it suddenly a pension when it’s paid to a politician .answer that one Gaz
Triss
8th Jan 2018
12:34pm
Because they write the words, Hairy. When the government of a third world country lines it’s politicians’ pockets and ignores the poverty and inequality of its citizens it’s called corruption.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
2:51pm
No, no, Triss - in a Third World dictatorship that is 'sound economic policy' and 'giving to the people'..... (LMAO)... El Presidente would never rob his people.. you've his word on it!!!
Thogo
8th Jan 2018
11:28am
Not only is the pension an enintitlement it is most definitely a right. As a now self funder, because my Sydney home became a mini gold mine and I moved to a regional city, I get nothing, is that fair, well probably it is. But should good fortune prevent me from getting what I worked so hard for?

Jon
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
11:30am
So where is your entitlement and right then?
Triss
8th Jan 2018
12:38pm
It has been redirected into the politicians’ salary raises and pension and perks raises.
Rae
8th Jan 2018
2:02pm
No indeed but past governments have stuffed up big time.

Selling off income raisers and middle class welfare hard to undo now as those receiving it are up to their necks in trillions of dollars of debt.

Retirees on the other hand still own the last unmortgaged assets standing.

It was always going to come to this once everything had been sold off or given away to foreign corporations and foreign governments with a longer time frame than 4 years.
MICK
8th Jan 2018
2:23pm
Ahhh yes Rae. So now time to plunder unencumbered assets from the private sector and then nationalise the superannuation system (and roll that into consolidated revenue). The end game? Have to find money for handouts to the wealthy.........but lets not call it welfare!
roy
8th Jan 2018
2:29pm
What is your answer if you were PM MICK?
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
2:52pm
Hence the need for a retirement packaging scheme totally out of the hands of politicians and way beyond their reach.. unless they want to send in armed troops and take it by force.... the good old Bolshevik way...
roy
8th Jan 2018
3:12pm
I'm sure Shifty Shorten and his cronies wouldn't be beyond that TREBOR, I wouldn't trust them as far as I could throw them especially that Shanghai Sam Dastyari. Should he not be on trial for treason, just asking?
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
10:17pm
It could happen - in a History of Scotland there is a reference to the post-Jacobite revolt... complaints were sent to the Crown over 'the continuation of war by other means' - meaning the laws that imposed deeply on the Scots.

It is what happens here and often - a 'government' decides it wants something so it just makes it a piece of legislation.. if it's money you can guarantee it's bi-partisan, so there is every chance that a 'war by other means' could be carried out to gather in those vagrant dollars that are out of political control.

There is no need to go in with guns... only to make it the rule.... and either 'side' of The Tag Team could do that.

Sam Choy Bow? A laugh a minute... but that business in the pub was a bit off... more than a bit....

He didn't actually give secrets out to the Chinoisie (that we know of), he merely alerted them to the fact of phone surveillance and such.... stupid... so it's not treason, but he should be charged with something.
Rae
9th Jan 2018
9:14am
Possibly yes roy but then so should a certain trade minister brought in for special deal organising. We still don't know what he promised China but it must have been good. Giving them Darwin was naughty don't you think? They have a supply line right down the guts of the country and all they need is Serco to fall into line with more promises and money.

If the second part of s44, the bit that covers treason was called into play there might be a whole bunch of both parties up before the High Court.

Pity the Attorney General isn't up to scratch.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
12:03pm
Certainly it should be the end of Dastardly's political career... if a Senator/Minister cannot be trusted with his/her security clearance or with sensitive information (even though it is obvious that he would be monitored and should be), how can he/she be trusted with the handling of the nation?
Hairy
8th Jan 2018
11:29am
This goverment is turning the youth of this country against there grandmother mothers father and grandfathers . That’s if they havnt died from a heart attack from the prrsecution
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
11:32am
The youth today know exactly how much goes into welfare as the ATO tells them how much of their tax pays for welfare. Pity it wasn't done years ago as we would have been a lot better off if people had know what it was costing them.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:47am
It doesn't, OG - all social security comes out of consolidated revenue..... that's the line the theft of the retirement funding was based on....
Rae
8th Jan 2018
2:07pm
Ha. With the countless tax cuts and tax concessions for childcare etc these young people have no idea of how much taxes we paid before the neoliberal attack on the welfare state started.

I once asked the ATO how much tax I'd paid and they don't keep individual records apparently. It would be up in the millions and if the last few governments had been employees I'd have sacked the lot of them.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
2:54pm
What about a retrospective payment for childcare allowance for us, Rae? How muck would each pensioner be worth in a tax-free handout to equalise with the modern handouts for childcare?
Rae
9th Jan 2018
9:22am
Quite a bit TREBOR. I only ever took the Maternity Leave twice for 12 weeks each time at half pay.

Then I paid a little over half my take home pay for childminding.

This went on for 9 years so I figure the $10 000 x 9 would be jolly nice to add to my self funded income. Haha.

Today they fuss if half your pay goes to housing. Bizarre.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
12:33pm
I took a year off with my son when I was on $100k+ (1992 money) - say 50% of that indexed would be around $150k now - then the daughter - a nice little windfall.. then the costs of nannies and childcare for years... yes - a nice little nest egg for me and the kid's mother both.

That might begin to put into perspective the very real cost of subsidising childcare and PPL. These are distinctly luxury items in these days of often desperate economic survival, and certainly are a burden on the Budget.

This is the kind of WELFARE outside of the Social Security Budget that needs to be looked at.
Hasbeen
8th Jan 2018
11:30am
This would be a good article if Leon did not have to lie to try to guild the lily.

Tax concessions granted to industry are not welfare, they are the sprat used to catch the mackerel of investment in industry.

You can not blame industry if our tax laws & the tax department don't then get our share of the profits.

If you want to talk about welfare, you have to include the bloated sheltered workshop the bureaucracy has become.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:49am
All well and good until the mackerel heads for the Caymans.....

I've explained countless times that investment for the sake of pure profit with no genuine and lasting benefit to the nation is not the kind of investment this nation wants or needs.
bob menzies
8th Jan 2018
11:31am
there re some excellent comments made - when pensions were introduced in 1907 it was a pittance and then you could get a pension at 55 but life expectancy was 59 and in any case less 4% of people managed to live long enough to get an OAP. So it was not a big expense for government - in 1949 pensions became a reasonable amount but still then life expectancy had not changed much since 1907 so cost was not a big issue for government.
Today though people are living much longer and some are living long enough to get much more than they or there partner ever contributed in taxes. Sadly also there are some immigrants who have arrived here in past 25 years having never worked and now getting an OAP (most would have got nothing from the countries they came from).
Keating knew this in 80s and introducing compulsory super in 1991 was a step in right direction. However it needs to be at least 15% (not current 9.25%) so that by time someone has contributed for 40 years they can retire at a rate better than OAP.
There will always be a need for an OAP but it should only be for genuine cases.
I would add that unless you or your partner had contributed taxes for 40 years one would not be entitled to a full OAP and anyone who has not been in Australia for say 15 years would get ZERO.
The so called family benefits (Howard middle class welfare) must be reined in.
I was a little confused with comments re health and defence - they are not welfare - although re health everyone has to realise it is not free and everyone should make a contribution.
One day soon some politician will wake up and realise that there are now over 4 million voters over age 55 and growing each year so that are now the largest block of voters (largely ignored to date0
Cowboy Jim
8th Jan 2018
11:48am
Good point about immigrants, came here myself in 1970 and in 1973 was told by my Embassy to stop paying contributions to my pension fund as they are working on an agreement between the 2 countries and Australia would be paying my pension after 65 years of age. I believed them unfortunately - the agreement is still there but instead of having a decent pension from overseas I find myself on a part pension and $100 a month from overseas which is taken into account by Centrelink. In those days we did not think about constant political changes to Age Pension system.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:53am
Every time this issue comes up, I ask for a definition of what is actually included in 'welfare' (as separate from Social Security, which stands alone and includes all pensions and unemployment benefits and sickness benefits etc)...

Anyone?

I'll start:-

Childcare subsidy

PPL

Corporate tax cuts

Funding to get certain groups 'back into the workforce'

Support for new migrants (I exclude refugees, who are a different category)

Business concessions not afforded to the average Jo/Joe when both are in the business of earning money

Subsidies to superannuation including the massive contribution per capita to politicians etc

Refusal to install a tax regime to capture money that flees overseas

Anyone? Anyone?
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
11:55am
Simple, really - all of these taken together constitute a far heavier burden on the Budget (not the economy) than Pensions do.
Triss
8th Jan 2018
12:56pm
But why point only to age pensioners, bob menzies? You only have to look at ex politicians who have been on taxpayer-funded pensions for decades. They ran out of whatever contributions they paid years ago and they’re collecting a damn sight more than OAPs.
In my opinion, this finger pointing at pensioners is vilification and discriminatory and should be stopped,
Richied
8th Jan 2018
1:11pm
Comments of health and defence (I think you're referring to my comments) were made to indicate that people pay taxes covering a range of things, not just the social security/welfare bucket.

We all get benefit from health (and it can be argued that health services are a form of social security - it is a safety net of services for society; if they weren't there, doctors and hospitals would have to be fully funded on a user pays basis or through charity) and defence (this is security - whether it is social security is debatable :-) )
bob menzies
8th Jan 2018
7:38pm
Triss - excellent point re politicians and I might add high court judges - it is obscene what they get and although it was ceased in 2007 those pollies who entered before then are protected. So I am with you - I think both should be addressed. There are still some people getting OAP that is questionable. for example should someone living in a $5m + home in eastern suburbs of Sydney get an OAP (I say NO and yet it is happening - should immigrants who have been here for no more than a few years get a full OAP when they reach OAP age (again I say No).
Possum
8th Jan 2018
11:32am
I am extremely annoyed by the aged pension being referred to as “welfare”.
I am 71, I have five children. My children have been given a good education thanks to my husband and I working sometimes two jobs to provide our kids with the best opportunities we could.
All five have NEVER been on the dole, four of the five have degrees and my youngest obtained a ticket (at his own expense) enabling him to earn big money working away from home for several weeks at a time.
At 71 I am still working 10 hours a week.
Is it our fault that we didn’t have SUPERANNUATION when most of us started work at 16 !!
NO NO NO, and since I have worked ever since I was 16, I have no problem receiving the measly pittance from the Government - in fact I believe I deserve it
bob menzies
8th Jan 2018
7:44pm
Very hard to disagree with you - however did you know that even in 60s super then called defined benefits did exist for some - e.g. public servants, military, government bodies such as CSIRO, Telecom, Aus Post and a few large companies also offered them to some staff. Many of those people could start their pension at age 55.
We give Keating credit for introducing compulsory super but a number of countries had varying forms of super from early 60s.
Until compulsory super has been in for 40 years (2031) we won't know whether it will reduce the OAP cost burden. Unless compulsory super goes to 15% it probably won't.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
10:20pm
I always argue it should be a 'life-span' of a working life = fifty years, bob mingus* - i.e. 2041(about the time some claim the petroleum will run out - but they're the pessimists - the optimists say around the 2060 mark)... how interesting....

My WW IV book series, that begins in 2041, follows the crash wrought by the petroleum vanishing....

* in high school my nick-name was Ming.... Menzies is pronounced Mingus...
East of Toowoomba
8th Jan 2018
11:38am
Regardless of what it is designated, the facts of the matter are that many hard working tax payers have parents and grand parents who either are or will be aged pensioners as well as claiming for themselves or family and friends who claim other government payments such as parenting payments, disability support and family tax payments.

I don't imagine tax payers really mind that their tax goes toward these payments being as they are safety nets they may even need to claim themselves at some point. It means our nation looks after its own citizens. I for one never minded that a portion of my earnings was diverted to my old mum who was on the aged pension until she died at 70. Better that than supporting her financially ourselves when we were busy trying to pay off a home and support a young family.

I think it is a marvelous thing that we can all contribute towards making life easier for all. I would certainly not like to live in a society that had such little regard for citizens that there were left to fend for themselves should they be unable to work.
weary
8th Jan 2018
11:41am
Our generation paid for those above us and those below us. We saved for our future retirement. Only to be denied our due entitlement of a pension because we had saved for our retirement. Shame on the greedy politicians who refuse to pass laws to ensure multi-national companies pay their fare share of taxes. Shame also on politicians who continue to receive outrageous pensions and perks as soon as they leave office. No mention of their pensions being treated as welfare. Weary
Rae
8th Jan 2018
2:16pm
Enough taxes were paid by us to build many, many revenue raising assets that should be pouring money into treasury but that now pour that money into foreign bank accounts.

Damned if I care if the stupids who sold everything off and destroyed the tax base are whining now about unaffordability.

Fools all of them.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
10:21pm
Hear, hear!!
thommo
8th Jan 2018
11:41am
First of all, older Australians are ENTITLED to an age pension - it is not welfare. I am now retired (aged 70), having worked all of my life and paid taxes for the betterment of our society, including paying taxes for those on unemployment benefits, and those on the age pension.
It is what a decent society does for it's population, being fair and compassionate, but that is not the case with this present hard-right wing LNP government. Just look at the Tories in it. Dutton, Corrman, Abbott, Morrison, Turnbull et al..All leaners, but not one lifter.
And they demonise those on the age pension as "welfare", while they themselves are the biggest burden on the taxpayer, with their expenses rorting, large salaries and taxpayer funded taxpayer funded pensions for life...They are the bludgers and they have the hide to call me one.
Abbott and Morrison changed the assets test as from 1.1.17 to the detriment of age pensioners (many of whom either lost the pension or had it reduced severely, thus stuffing up their retirement), but this government will rue the day they did this, come the next election, when every retiree will be at the ballot box with a bat in each hand to ensure this mob get turfed from government.
This country is rich enough to pay every age pensioner a decent and respectable pension to live out the remainder of their days with dignity, and if this govt won't do it, we will put in a government which will....
Richied
8th Jan 2018
1:22pm
It is the demonization of welfare (in all its forms) that I think is the problem.

Being part of a society means you play your part, and society supports you when needed. Googling a definition of 'welfare' returns this - the health, happiness, and fortunes of a person or group. That's definitely a good thing yes? It shouldn't be demonised.

We get welfare from society in the form of free concerts, subsidised or free health services, and social security. As society members, we are all entitled to get those.

Aged pensions were set up as a safety net (they've always been means tested so people who didn't need them, didn't get them) for people who lived longer than expected, and so that no one needed to live in poverty.

'welfare' and 'entitlement' are not mutually exclusive - to make them so implies welfare is bad, and everyone should get their entitlement (even if they don't need it).
Rae
8th Jan 2018
2:21pm
The aged pension was not always means tested and was not originally a safety net at all. It was a bit like childcare rebates now a recognition that businesses couldn't pay worker's enough in many cases to provide for themselves.

We wouldn't have this problem if wages hadn't disconnected from productivity around 1975. Worker's receiving the same amount of profit share as back then would be paying a bit more tax.

Everything since around 1970 has been designed to destroy the welfare state. This is entirely deliberate.
Richied
8th Jan 2018
3:07pm
Actually Rae, When aged pensions were introduced, they were indeed means (and asset) tested. You couldn't have income from any other source exceeding 26 pounds a year. The asset test (own less than 310 pounds)was removed 2 years later but the means test remained throughout.

And it was most definitely built as a safety net (saying it isn't so doesn't make it not so). The original debate focused on the lifespan of people, and on what would be sufficient for the government to pay so that people didn't live in poverty. The means testing demonstrated that it was not an automatic entitlement (you only got it if you needed it). The final debate (which delayed federal government implementing the scheme) was about how to pay for it (whether a separate fund should be set up, or whether it would come out of general revenue - the latter prevailed).

To make clear it was not to provide a 'comfortable' existence, the pension in 1906 was 2 pounds a fortnight. By comparison, the average income (for men) was 6 pounds a fortnight.

The minimum wage in 1906 was 4 pounds a fortnight, twice the age pension. Minimum wage remains twice the age pension.

But of major importance was that aged pensions were not available to women. So an older married couple today would be financially 60-70% better off than when the aged pension was introduced.

One thing that has changed dramatically since 1906 is the amount of 'in kind' support provided to older people. In 1906 there was almost no support. Today 40% of all 'value' from governments to older people is through 'in kind' support - that is, the government funds a further 40% on top of the aged pension to older people.

Adding these factors together (couples now get pensions, 40% 'in kind' support) puts the total government support for older people at around $61k - this is around 60% of the average household income, and above the amount most commentators advise as the amount a couple need for a comfortable retirement (MoneySmart site puts this at $59k).
Rae
8th Jan 2018
6:37pm
Thanks Richied. Then seeing the median income is around $43 000 trying to save for your own retirement seems a bit pointless doesn't it?
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
6:48pm
You still haven't answered my question, Richied. What, specifically, is this ''in kind'' support and who gets it? Maybe it's big subsidies to corporations that purport to provide something or other to select groups of aged. Personally, I'm not aware of getting ANY ''in kind'' support (or any other kind, for that matter) and I don't know anyone - including full pensioners - who do, other than small discounts on rates, car registration, and licenses and maybe cheaper pharmaceuticals, but that certainly doesn't go anywhere near putting incomes of pensioners at 60^ of average household income. 1/4 of aged pensioners are living in poverty. To suggest that pensioners - even pensioner couples - are enjoying an income of $61K a year is thoroughly absurd. And I know ''self-funded retiree'' couples, who are just over the assets threshold, getting less than $20K a year with ZERO benefits. Seems to me someone is fantasizing, or the government is just telling big fat lies.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
10:07pm
"Ten seconds... which will it be:-

a) Government have no idea
b) Someone is fantasising
c) This is all a mistake
d) Government is telling big fat lies...... four seconds.."

"Lock in d), eddy... Government is telling big fat lies!"

"You want d? You serious? Look - I'll give you another shot... for Wun Millyun Dullahs!! (laughs) you REALLY want to lock in d)? Want the second chance?"

"No, Eddy - I'll stick with d).. I'm positive!"

"All right then - it's your shot at Wun Millyun Dullahs... won't get another shot.... and the answer ... for WUN MILLYUN DULLAHS ....is....................... right after this break for our news headlines..."
inextratime
8th Jan 2018
11:44am
You can call the pension anything you like. However compared with the amount of money shelled out to Public Servants, at an all time high, just check the increase in numbers that the QLD state government employ and the pension take is chicken feed. Besides it gets spent on consumables which puts it all back into circulation minus the gst which goes back to the government. Then take a look at the defence budget...and the various grants that get handed out and the cash economy and big business tax reduction scams I mean schemes...LOL what a joke.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
3:28pm
Don't forget the countless billions wasted on 'Airships corporations' and such, duplicating public service functions so as to provide lifetime incomes for party mates etc.

And then there are the countless billions 'offshored' for submarines and railway carriages that could equally be built here with the money remaining within this economy and paying workers to be off unemployment benefits.

But stoopid is as stoopid does, as they allus say down in Green Bow, ALABAMA!
Old Geezer
8th Jan 2018
11:45am
Looks like someone has decided to cut down tall poppies again.

Well I'll have my final say and say good luck and I hope the government adopts all my ideas so that this country can once again prosper.
inextratime
8th Jan 2018
11:53am
You have to be kidding !!
Rae
8th Jan 2018
2:26pm
That would work if we still owned the country and our assets OG but unfortunately we don't.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
3:29pm
We don't want opium poppies growing in our fields to feed the addictions of the planet.......
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
8:57am
The country wouldn't prosper adopting your idiotic notions, OG. It would be totally stuffed. It's foolish ideas like yours that have created the economic dilemma we have now. What we need is a sensible system that encourages and rewards honesty, diligence, and responsible living, while recognizing the need to look after the less affluent so that we foster social health.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
2:00pm
Actually, OG, I don't see any evidence of anyone cutting down tall poppies. Seems tome they are being well fed and cultivated. It's the healthy ones that are striving hard to grow that are being cut. The weakest strugglers are looked after to an extent, as long as the support is only bare sustenance and delivered with a clear message that they are inferior and to be denigrated at every turn. Those who strive hard and grow to a moderate height are attacked - primarily by the tall poppies, who are perhaps terrified of competition for their sunlight?
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
9:30am
Actually I think the government is trying to turn us all into Tall Poppies, they certainly shower us with enough BS.
Knows-a-lot
16th Jan 2018
10:39am
"I don't see any evidence of anyone cutting down tall poppies."

Further evidence of your total blindness, Ms. Pluvial. As a kid, I experienced first-hand the Tall Poppy Syndrome rampant in this country. It is *still* frowned upon to be head and shoulders above the hoi polloi.
Kali-G
8th Jan 2018
11:46am
THE GOVERNMENT SHOULD CEASE PAYING BILLIONS IN FOREIGN AID AND BILLIONS TO ABORIGINAL CAUSES!
TIME TO SAY STOP!
LOOK AFTER AUSSIES FIRST AND NOT IMMIGRANTS
TIME TO VOTE A CONSERVATIVE GOVERNMENT IN AND GET RID OF THE 2 SOCIALIST ie LNP and ALP AND THE DESRAPTIVE COMMUNIST GREENS....THEY ARE OUR ENEMIES!
KSS
8th Jan 2018
2:36pm
You mean Aboriginal people are not Aussies?
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
10:23pm
No - self-declared Indigenous.... no relation to Australians... unless they choose to be.... choice-mobile, son - that's what it's all about....
BrianP
8th Jan 2018
11:46am
Genuinely amazing quality of wisdom exhibited amongst the participants of yourlifechoices membership. Wisdom that comes with age and experience.

Seriously - we have the ability as a group to do something worthwhile to benefit the people of our country far more than the pitiful leaders we have now. If only there was a way to work together without the infighting and corruption that exists amongst politicians now.
Nanna
8th Jan 2018
11:57am
I guess the only power we have is in our vote, but unfortunately individual MPs are forced to support the party line so we are really voting for a party, not an individual whom we believe represents our views.
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
1:01pm
Nanna, often your vote is just ignored as was the case in West Sydney seats which voted overwhelmingly NO for SSM. However their Representative Ministers chose to ignore them.
Jannie
9th Jan 2018
3:58pm
What do you suggest BrianP? there are no real leaders at present and I for one do not know who to vote for anymore. The governments of today are not listening to the people they just do what they want. Pauline is my choice she has guts and is right about so many things going wrong in Oz. I am appalled at the lack of senators sitting when she has the podium, what are these senators doing? Nothing as far as I can see. How many honest hours of work do they put in??
Nanna
8th Jan 2018
11:51am
The only valid argument here is that posed by Curious i.e the facts. Everyone seems to have forgotten that 7.5% was added to our income tax all those years ago and this was intended to go into a specific fund to cover aged pensions. The fact that a subsequent government decided to take this money out of the specific fund and add it to consolidated revenue does not change the fact that workers have funded their aged care pensions. If you pay for something, are you not entitled to it? The Government of the day chooses to forget this fact as it is an inconvenient truth.
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
12:25pm
Nanna, You are right about the additional taxes. However, it's time to realise that Curtain and Chifley needed the money to balance the budget and lying to Australians was the only way of getting the tax accepted. It was another clever political move by the Labor Party who had no other choice. After 75 years you have a right to be angry.
If only we had listened to Joe Lyons proposal in the 1930's.
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
1:16pm
The only option available to Labor in 1941 was to raise taxes. We were in deep poobah. The previous government had printed a lot of notes for the war effort. Inflation was running rampant and cost cutting was not an option. Taxes had to be raised. Curtain and Chifley had to lie to us. I don't hold it against them and you shouldn't. There was a war on.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
1:46am
That's what Stalin said..... about political dissidents...

(watch how you step around that space)....
Rae
9th Jan 2018
9:45am
Yes Frank back then under the gold standard it was important but now when money means nothing and can be winkled into existence willy nilly it doesn't matter except for inflation. I believe we have asset inflation now which would suggest tax rises or rate rises rather than cuts.

As a primary producer we don't need to let other nations have our stuff for nix. There will be other buyers.

The currency wars destroyed our industries. It is now time to guard the resources in a resource depleted world of 7+ billion.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
7:31pm
Indeed.. been saying the same for years now - as a resource supplying nation we (who's this WE, White Man?) ...Australia acts as if it is a buyer's market, when the reality is it is a seller's market.

As many times before, if WE make the rules on taxation etc, and those lovely 'investors' bolt - their competitors will leap at the chance to fill their market share.

Same applies to the Apple industries that come here to sell only, using Offshore to handle their administration and such and thus evading massive tax here.... if WE set the rules on a minimum tax and mandatory running of your operation HERE with a minimum local partnership (say 50% as a starting point in discussion), and they bolt, their competitors will rush to fill the gap and will play and pay by the rules we set and still walk away with a healthy profit.

Saying they will not stay here is just scare tactics from a government paid off to say such things so as to allow the kind of Robber Baron investment that same government is letting in.
Sandian
8th Jan 2018
11:57am
Okay. There are more than ever older Australians who may have to depend on the pension. Let's not forget that these older Australians paid taxes the same as everyone else and the revenue from those taxes would have been higher than it is now. So was there any foresight on behalf of the government at the time to allow for the baby boomers' retirement as the baby boomers paid for the pensions while they were working or was it spent on elaborate projects across the country while the revenue was high. Whoops!!
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
12:06pm
Increasing life expectancy has partly driven the ageing of the Australian population. In 1901, only 4% of Australians were aged 65 years or older. By June 2010, this proportion had risen to 13.5%, and is projected to increase to between 21% and 23% by 2041. I have already reached my life expectancy at birth and the Doc told me I had another 20 years at least!!
auzie3136
8th Jan 2018
12:08pm
You are absolutly right Curious about that also it used to be on your payslip that was when you had proof that this moiney was paid by you towards your pension. I actually saw this on a friends payslip many years ago. Somehow it suddenly disapeared and was never again seen. Or it weas intentionly errased hoping nobody would remember.
johnp
8th Jan 2018
12:10pm
Old aged pension was originally paid for in mid 1900s in an ongoing manner by Govt increasing tax to cover that. So that increased tax remained but later the assets test introduced to remove old aged pension. So govt effectively stole the aged pension out from under self funded retirees. Anyway Australia is low on the list for western countries, for percentage of revenue going to aged people.
Richied
8th Jan 2018
1:29pm
Means testing (including assets testing) has always been part of aged pensions.

http://blog.cpal.com.au/realiseyourdream/age-pension-short-history/
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
5:19pm
Not true, Richied. Assets testing was introduced by the Labor government in 1984 after being abolished completely in 1976. No test applied for persons over 70 for many years.
Rosret
8th Jan 2018
12:12pm
He ain't heavy. He's my brother.
Rae
9th Jan 2018
9:48am
Yes and he's needing less than 1% of GDP which certainly isn't heavy either.
tisme
8th Jan 2018
12:19pm
im an unpaid carer , the govt gives me 3.50 an hour to care for ( I have cared for 4 family members disabled etc ) at once . all they have to do is pay me what they owe me , ( those who care for strangers get minimum wage etc . and I might be able to afford to retire . as it is now I have no superannuation , nothing. and they dare call carer payment , age pension welfare ........................
Star Trekker
8th Jan 2018
3:09pm
I care for 3 family members and what little superannuation I have is from working odd jobs. My super wouldn't even cover 1 months OAP. If they paid me the going rate for a nurse (I qualified before I married) I wouldn't complain. But I have saved the government mega $$$$ in home care and hospital stays.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
1:48am
Don't mention that - I'm a carer and if I divide $124 by 38 hours work.... add in the cost of petrol for running etc..... I want a negative gearing system for future incomes.... offset my losses against future income...
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
9:13am
Hey Trebor, it just went up about 50c, didn't it? Now be nice and say ''thank you''.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
10:11pm
Damn - you're right! I think it became $125.10 a fortnight... good thing I don't have a canary to feed... let alone a cat....

I reckon a pensioner who is a carer should get double pension - separate but equal pension... one carer's and the other aged or whatever...
RayL
8th Jan 2018
12:30pm
My entire working life I paid the 7.5% levy (as did everyone else) to fund my retirement. It is an entitlement not welfare. Perhaps the Federal Treasury could stipulate the welfare that retired politicians are receiving like Kevin Rudd, Julia Gillard sponging $300,000 each per year, plus office and staff (for what?), plus travel etc.
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
1:18pm
I think the Howard government went a long way to correct that by dropping taxes.
Richied
8th Jan 2018
1:37pm
I don't agree with 'sponging'. Politicians pay compulsory contributions like everyone else (the percentage differs, but not by much). Politicians need to set up and manage self managed super funds if they want to make additional contributions (they cannot make additional contributions directly to their standard 'fund' because the standard 'fund' is general revenue - this is done so there is no perceived or real conflict of interest - politicians can't manipulate general revenue to give them a personal benefit, which they could if they paid into a super fund).

So when they retire, they get a 'pension' which is like an annuity from a super fund, except because it comes from general revenue it is called a pension. This annuity is a percentage of their income.

To say they are sponging implies they made no contributions, when indeed they contributed between 5.25 and 11.5% of their total remuneration each year.
Rae
8th Jan 2018
2:32pm
Yes Frank but why drop them just as millions of us that paid high taxes were retiring. Pretty shortsighted.
Triss
8th Jan 2018
3:49pm
But like I pointed out earlier, Richied, there are ex politicians who have been on the taxpayer funded pension for decades and must have used up any contributions they put in many, many years ago therefore, as their pensions are not asset tested and many of them are multi millionaires, they are spongers.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
4:20pm
Statistically, 80% of the benefits of the Howard governments tax cuts and handouts benefited the wealthiest 20% of the nation, and the bottom 20% got virtually nothing. So I don't see how that went any way to correcting anything for me of for most others here (I very much doubt the majority here were in the top 20% of income earners in the Howard era?)
Wstaton
8th Jan 2018
11:57pm
Yep Rainey, Trumps just gone and done the same thing. Damn It! he is such a genius.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
9:03am
He was a genius to get himself elected promising exactly the opposite, Wstaton. Boy, did he fool the people!
Knows-a-lot
12th Jan 2018
7:03am
No, Pluvial twit, it's because Yanks are really dumb on average.
Frustrated
8th Jan 2018
12:35pm
I would very much like to see the true figure of what our politicians cost the tax payer, their total cost, all salary and allowances and benefits and allowable tax deductions and if there are any other costs i haven't named please include them, ALL costs to the tax payer!
Nanna
8th Jan 2018
12:51pm
Agree with you Frustrated. Unfortunately most of our politicians' first priority seems to be to secure their own financial futures.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
3:32pm
Each elected representative costs the taxpayer around $2.5m a year for allowances etc and salary.

That's over ten times the income of a back-bencher.

Be nice to even be an assembly line worker and earn - say $900 a week and have ten times that in sustenance money.....
Tib
8th Jan 2018
12:37pm
Older Australians have been supporting the liberal party far too long, they don't support us.....Time to vote the mongrels out.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
1:50am
I'd change that 'liberal party' to politicians...... pure and simple...
elephants
8th Jan 2018
12:45pm
Well figues can show anything they want them to. So giving these break downs Hah. They waste so much monies use tax payers $s for personal things like lunches , flights for theirselves & partners. Paying of a whole lot of things they shouldn't. They get so much extras besides their pensions it's a DISGRACE. The money that is sent overseas , the monies the refugees get is more then our pensions. PLEASE EXPLAIN .So for us to beleive anything they say is hilarious.
johnp
8th Jan 2018
12:49pm
Yep I agree. Also see these links for the latest scandalous behaviour re politicians' flights and families
http://www.couriermail.com.au/rendezview/when-will-politicians-get-the-message-on-perks/news-story/dba7f703b010db39adcf3225dacded2e?utm_source=The%20Courier%20Mail&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=editorial

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/andrew-laming-family-trip-sparks-taxpayer-anger/news-story/4244760da7eec2692db4a1da9d27bcb3
Not a Bludger
8th Jan 2018
12:51pm
I paid tax all my life and do not get a pension.
Hence, a pension is not an entitlement - it Is welfare!
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
12:58pm
You SHOULD get a pension. It's a moral and ethical ENTITLEMENT, whatever laws the corrupt and dishonest have made and are enforcing.
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
1:04pm
Me too Not, if it were an entitlement I too would be receiving a pension. People who come into the country as refugees can get a pension straight away. So is that an entitlement?
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
1:17pm
Actually, I don't think refugees do get a pension straight away, Frank, although they get other aid. I believe they have to wait a few years to qualify for an age pension. But that aside, the answer is NO, they are NOT entitled. But those who contributed to Australian society are - morally and ethically.

The fact that laws and policies are not ethical doesn't change what's morally right.
Adrianus
8th Jan 2018
1:32pm
Rainey, once an asylum seeker is given refugee status they are have the same entitlement as given to a permanent resident. This includes someone who has paid taxes for 50 years. The usual waiting period for a new resident is 10 years.
The newly arrived resident’s waiting period and qualifying residence requirements are not applied in the case of refugees or humanitarian visa holders. This is in recognition of the special circumstances under which people in these categories have come to have permanent residency in Australia—that is, as refugees with no other means of financial support.
I don't wish to labour the point that refugees have preferential treatment because I believe overall a genuine refugee does not. I mention it only in the context of the argument of "Entitlement or Welfare." How can the same benefit be regarded differently because of the circumstances of the recipient?
Cowboy Jim
8th Jan 2018
1:51pm
Maybe you were just too careful with giving money out for essentials, preferring to shovel it all away for the next generation, but will
know how to get rid of it I am sure. I see 2 kinds of people where I live: people living like the poor and the others shoveling their pensions into slot machines. The pension would be quite adequate without our pokies.
TREBOR
8th Jan 2018
3:35pm
You would under The Trebor Scheme - but you'd be paying tax on all those goodies you managed to get as tax deductions along the way along with a preferential ride.

See if Ebergeezer will accept a pension on those conditions I've laid out...... receive pension, pay tax on all income and imputed income over and above, including all fringe benefits and deemed assets that should be incurring income.

He'd die before he accepted that deal, same as any politician would.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
1:13pm
I would love to see some statistics on how much our generation paid to support our elders, given that when I was young there was no assets test - not even an income test for a long time - AND given that there was generally only ONE person in each household paying tax to support FOUR older folk, whereas now almost all households have two income earners.

There may be more retirees today than a generation ago, but are there more than double? Because if not, the burden on the young is FAR FAR LESS than it was on us. Yet I never once heard a complaint from anyone when I was young. And I certainly never heard politicians making the disgusting statements they are making now. It was a privilege to honour our obligation to support our elders after all they had done for us and for society.

I am appalled that today's politicians are encouraging greed, selfishness, and gross disrespect for the aging and denying older Australians the right to their dignity. How a society treats its aging says a great deal about its decency and integrity, and calling the Aged Pension ''welfare'' and whining about the cost is not saying anything good about our society.

Fortunately, I believe most younger Aussies agree with us. Those I speak with are generally as disgusted as I am with politicians and are very keen to see older Australians supported to live well and treated with respect and appreciation.

Those who brand the aged pension ''welfare'' and complain about the cost need to remember that they will retire one day, and their generation will pay a very high price for supporting the current attack on seniors. They are already worried about the changes to retirement age. If they woke up to themselves and stood with our generation in demanding a change of attitude to the aging, they might find that their prospects for the future improve.

Ultimately, there is no better incentive for hard work and responsible living than the promise of a comfortable and enjoyable retirement, so it's really silly to be discouraging endeavour by denying Australians that right. Productivity just might soar if we accepted that a generous pension is not a burden, but an excellent investment in economic and social health.
Triss
8th Jan 2018
5:47pm
Well put, Rainey.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
12:43pm
The policy thrust is clear if the end game is to produce a majority peasant class with little to nothing, and have an elite ruling class running the whole deal on behalf of everyone, including the organisation of The Hunger Games.

Looking at the actual outcomes from policy directions over the past forty years, there are not many options on what that end game is,to me at least.
KB
8th Jan 2018
1:15pm
Pensions should only be granted to people who cannot support themselves Age pension should only be given to retirees when money has run out rather than as a top up, Future governments are not going to be able to support every one, With the help of modern medicine and technological advances people are going to live longer, I understand that people have paid taxes and feel that they are entitled to the pension. Future government s will have to fins better way of utilizing pensions. Maybe the govt should look at a tax retirement fund for people who have retired a bonus tax refund for at the end of the working life.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
1:25pm
And if we pursue that policy, we will find that vast numbers will be deliberately unable to support themselves in old age, because people will see that there's no point in working and saving. When there's no benefit from endeavour, endeavour ceases, and that will cause far bigger problems than people living a bit longer. We are already seeing people who could be self-supporting planning not to be, because they are better off with less savings.

As for technology and medicine extending life... it has to date, but I will be very surprised if the next generation doesn't have a far reduced life expectancy given their unhealthy lifestyles and the destruction of the environment.

Government looking at a tax retirement fund for people who have retired? Menzies tried that - after a fashion. It just gave corrupt politicians a massive windfall and deprived all who should have benefited.

Australia spends less than HALF what other developed nations spend on the aged. And every other developed nation is looking at increases in the cost while Australia's costs will remain static until 2050 and then start to fall due to compulsory superannuation. These wild stories about unaffordability and unsustainable increases are BLATANT LIES. We can afford far more generous pensions, and properly rewarding people for a lifetime of hard work would provide an incentive that would boost productivity enormously and reduce the damaging welfare mentality.
Richied
8th Jan 2018
1:52pm
Rainey - if the super scheme is seen as a benefit (eg. tax breaks), then people will see that working hard and putting money into super is beneficial, and will rely less on government support.

It's a balance between the extreme capitalist view of user pays to the extreme socialist view of society pays.

As an optimist, I believe both major parties do indeed look at all forms of social security from a relatively centrist perspective, with flavouring their views with their left or right tendencies (so slip towards user pays, or towards society pays).

That we're having this discussion, and that generally the split between posts that support either 'society should pay more' and 'individuals should support themselves more' indicates to me that for the most part governments has managed the balance fairly well while trying to maintain a modicum of control over the federal budget.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
2:35pm
But Richied, it's NOT a benefit to the right people. It's benefiting people who would never be pensioners anyway under any conditions (except a universal pension). It's depriving those who need help to accumulate a retirement fund, so it won't reduce government support at all. Conversely the assets test is depriving those who save, so it will discourage saving and increase dependency. The whole system is back to front!

People who say ''individuals should support themselves more'' are being absurd, because they then support policies that punish those who do support themselves more and reward those who don't!

I agree individuals should support themselves more, but we need to acknowledge that many cannot and it would be cruel and inhuman to deny them adequate support. At the same time, we need to acknowledge that if the system punishes endeavour and responsible lifestyle, there will be less of it and more dependency. We need a balance, and no, the government has NOT got it fairly right at all, because it has created a monster that is impossible to administer, encourages and rewards cheating and manipulation, drives irresponsible living, and leaves many who worked damned hard and saved well with far, far less than they'd have if they hadn't bothered at all.

The solution is simple, really. Either a universal age pension and tax retirees, or abolish the assets test and apply an income test that only considers assets in so far as it applies a deeming rate to assets that COULD feasibly be better used but are deliberately placed into investments that return poorly (including extravagant family homes). The test would be much simpler and much fairer in every respect and would remove the incentive to manipulate and the disincentive to saving.
Triss
8th Jan 2018
5:56pm
I would suggest, KB, that your idea of only getting a pension when all money has been used up is a false economy. You haven't thought of what that bit of money put by might be needed for - to fund a nursing home eventually, to be used for medical/hospital/doctor fees. Everyone needs a certain amount of 'buffer' money and, just because they are on a pension does not make you superior to them.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
12:45pm
Ah - here he is! I forgot KB (I forgot you were standing there.. you may go now)... to tell us that nobody should receive a pension unless they have expended every cent and every asset.

Somebody tell 'im 'e's dreamin'!
Charlie
8th Jan 2018
1:19pm
Maybe stop calling unemployment benefits a pension.
Cowboy Jim
8th Jan 2018
1:53pm
Call it Sasso again like in the old days, huh??
Supernan
8th Jan 2018
1:55pm
Totally agree with someone who said the current generation wont live longer than this one ! The unhealthy food & excess alcohol & drugs will see to that ! Dont care what they call it - but they have no right to call us burdens ! We employed people, paid taxes, paid off a home, worked into our 70s - how can that be called bludging ? Who expected low interest rates ? Global Financial Crisis ? Continual change in Pension Rules ?

By their constant rubbishing of the elderly, the young now think we all have money stashed away - so we've become targets of crime. Bag theft, house breaking. We are now seen as easy targets with big stashes hidden away ! So untrue its laughable ! ! They have a lot to answer for. My generation - the war babies - had it tough !
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
2:24pm
I agree, Supernan, but I'm a little more optimistic about the younger generation. I think a very large proportion are happy to pay for aged pensions and would like to see our generation treated better. I think many are disgusted with the politicians and their selfishness and have great respect and care for seniors.

When the assets test change was being discussed, a preschool teacher in my neighbourhood told me she was sending notes home telling parents she was teaching their kids to tell all and sundry ''You leave our grandparents alone. They worked hard and they deserve to be well looked after and treated with respect''. I was amused, but she said she got many letters of congratulation and not a single dissenter.
jonty
8th Jan 2018
2:06pm
Corporate welfare and 'sweetheart' deals with have long been the biggest blight on society.
They have been well hidden and disguised with so called confidentiality clauses.
If big business doesn't get what it wants it packs it's bags and clears off.
Most of them are not good corporate citizens and it's about time the archaic 'their only responsibility is to their shareholders was abolished' because it allows them to do whatever they like especially since they were allowed to self regulate.
The media of course always prints whatever is to the corporate and pro corporate government advantage, and why wouldn't it with the huge tax cuts coming it way over the next 10 years.
Every day the media is bashing the lone individual whilst big business the trickle-down good times are still to come !!!!!
It's about time voters voted for what is best for them instead of voting with the politics of envy which targets the pensioner and the jobless who are barely making ends meet.

Oh and by the way don't even read what Old Geezer has to say, he is just the mega rich stooge despite his protestations to the contrary.
Rae
8th Jan 2018
2:42pm
Yes jonty the decline of worker's wages drags on and on. Business has been grabbing a bigger and bigger share of productivity for decades now not paying an equitable share to the employees and also refusing to pay taxes correctly. All the while complaining that wages are too high while shovelling billions into tax havens, indulging in excessive bonuses, share buybacks and other non productive actions.

Rather than call out greedy profiteers the media attacks the aged and unfortunate. Pathetic really.
Dee
8th Jan 2018
2:13pm
Time we moved to universal basic income to stop this finger pointing. But before I go- has anyone calculated what tax we pay to support the parliamentary pension scheme ( not welfare because not means tested- is that how it works?)
Rae
9th Jan 2018
9:55am
Didn't they steal half our gold and put it in their own little fund in a tax haven where it isn't transparent.Costello and Howard.
Then cut taxes just as the first boomers started retiring.

Together with a whole lot of the funds from those privatisations of our assets built with our taxes.

The parliamentary pension scheme is well hidden now.

Future Fund indeed.

Perhaps it should be brought home and put back into consolidated revenue where it should have gone in the first place.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
12:53pm
Under the Trebor scheme the futures fund would be returned to these shores and would go straight into national retirement fund, when and where politician etc entitlements will be reviewed in the light of their other income strands etc, in order to fit into the same rules as everyone else.

Word of caution - if one mass of OUR money was spirited away overseas with a little fanfare - there exists the clear possibility bordering on probability that other strands have been similarly offshored for various purposes - including for the personal use of those doing the offshoring. These others receive no fanfare and no public acknowledgement..... is there some truth behind the idea that our aid programs are actually shams to cover the transfer of our national wealth to havens?

We have public servants dealing with billions here - as I said - we've seen many examples of such putting money into accounts for their own use.....
Andy
8th Jan 2018
2:22pm
anyone that says it is welfare is an idiot, not even going to waste my time explaining, how about they brag about how much they waist on immigrants

8th Jan 2018
2:22pm
Some people are just thick - especially the lefties
The pension is means tested - therefore it’s welfare
If it wasn’t means tested , it would be an entitlement
Dee
8th Jan 2018
2:28pm
Actually I am sure it has been proven that the right wing folk are more stupid. It is their unfounded clinging to outdated, ineffective economic policies that is the real inducpcation of the sad state of their brain matter. The sad thing is that they have managed to completely screw the country.
roy
8th Jan 2018
2:42pm
Ha ha ha ha, you are some comedienne Dee but keep the red flag flying high comrade.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
5:33pm
Actually, Dee is right. I'm no leftie, but I've observed that the right wing extremists are totally illogical in their ranting and incapable of comprehending sensible argument, let alone of researching. They also seem incapable of telling the truth, except on those rare occasions when the truth benefits them financially.

It's been proved conclusively that there is a direct link between self-interest and lack of intelligence - ie. that intelligence is reduced in proportion to increased selfishness. Since most of the right wing folk are very selfish, it follows they are also of very low intelligence. And I think those of us who are observant see that evidenced often.

That said, plenty of lefties are also selfish and therefore stupid. It's the moderates in the middle who are intelligent and logical, but unfortunately most moderates have better things to do than activate politically, so the stupid are the ones being heard and indulged.
Knows-a-lot
12th Jan 2018
7:06am
You're not exactly logical yourself, Ms Pluvial.

"It's been proved conclusively that there is a direct link between self-interest and lack of intelligence"

Mathematics is the only discipline where anything is "proved". And your assertion is untrue anyway. There are plenty of highly intelligent selfish people.
KSS
8th Jan 2018
2:53pm
There may be countries around the world that have 'universal' pensions for the aged citizen and there are varying models of that i.e. some are based on a percentage of your final salary, others around total contributions you made over 35 years of work for example.

Australia has none of this. The only entitlement Australians have is to make an application for the pension. The pension itself is not based on the amount (or indeed any) contributions or working life. It is based on need as assessed by the current rules and regulations. Therefore, it is not and cannot be an entitlement. Not everyone gets it and those that do don't get the same amounts.

Therefore, like it or not, the pension is indeed welfare and is primarily being paid for by the taxation of those currently working and those still paying income tax. Those are facts!

There will always be those who for any number of reasons have not saved for their own retirement. Those in genuine need should of course be supported and at a level that allows for basic life requirements such as housing, utilities, food, health, clothing to be covered.

The trouble is, there is this continuing sense of entitlement by those coming up to retirement that somehow this (and every other Government) owes them a pension purely on the basis of "I worked all my life and paid taxes". We are now 25 years on from the introduction of compulsory superannuation. In about 15 - 20 years time we should see the numbers of people on Government pensions start to fall as the current over 75s begin to die off (as we all will), the numbers in the workforce for longer increase as the pension application age rises towards 70 years and the numbers with compulsory superannuation increase. But we still have to get through that 15 - 20 years timeframe.

In the meantime, those with savings for their retirement should be using that money for just that - funding their retirement not squirrelling it away for their kids or splashing out on expensive holidays and houses just to be able to get some level of Government pension. And those that didn't will continue to receive welfare based on their assessed need according the current rules and regulations in place at any given time.
Rae
9th Jan 2018
10:01am
Are you suggesting Australians should not take holidays KSS but save the money for retirement? I think the hospitality industry might be unhappy about that.

Or that those that timed their holidays for retirement go without because they didn't indulge when young and working.
KSS
9th Jan 2018
8:43pm
We all make choices Rae about what to do with the income we get. There will always be those who will spend what they get and others who save as much as they can. Compulsory super goes some way to evening this out by forcing people to save for retirement. And funding retirement is what it is for, not splashing out on expensive holidays or bigger houses or other 'non-assessable' assets to end up leaving it to the kids whilst expecting to get welfare in the form of a Government paid pension.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
9:16am
So the choice to spend freely is valid and should be rewarded with taxpayer-funded handouts, financed largely by those who DON'T spend freely, but the choice to save is NOT valid and should be punished harshly. Is that your position, KSS? I'm not allowed to enjoy the retirement I planned and worked hard for, nor to leave anything to my children, because YOUR BRAND OF JUSTICE demands that I forfeit my savings to subsidize the lifestyle of those who made the opposite choice?

Employer-funded super is for funding retirement. I agree with that. Many current retirees never got much, or anything, in employer-funded super. There's no respect for the fact that their savings might well have been accrued by hard work and frugal living, and they should be allowed to now enjoy the rewards.
Kathleen
8th Jan 2018
3:00pm
Taxpayers work three hours each week to pay for Centrelink bill BUT they have to work SIX hours to pay for corporate and business welfare.
Luckily we had enough offspring to cover ours and other people’s.
Between my husband and I we worked over sixty years as well and happily helped others needing Centrelink payments and pensions.
Setting the generations against each other is destructive and misleading.
We should all be hounding the big avoiders and those making money from the misery of others.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
5:10pm
How much of that 3 hours is to pay for the expensive administration and policing of a grossly inefficient and hideously complicated system, I wonder?
Kathleen
9th Jan 2018
2:04pm
Yes Rainey, correct,too much wastage!
Believer
8th Jan 2018
3:02pm
If the government stopped their pay rises and allowances and perks the debt would reduce quickly. They won't ever get my vote!
roy
8th Jan 2018
3:06pm
Which government would that be Believer?
Believer
8th Jan 2018
3:05pm
I started work at 15 and today the youth don't start till 19 or 20, think they are entitled to take a year off or have everything before they have earned it.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
12:56pm
... and the overseas trips where they don't even have to kill people as a way of life ......
renya
8th Jan 2018
3:06pm
Not everything in life can be planned. So many things can upset and hinder the best of efforts to "save for the future". Not all of us have managed to be self-funded retirees with 2 children, a nice house in the suburbs, investments, a double income life in a great job, with a great spouse - also working at a well-paid job, great health etc etc. I know. Worked hard all my life at two and three jobs at a time. Now someone here will no doubt condemn me for being stupid enough to have 8 children and thus deserving to be a drain on the system. But I only had a month or two off paid work over an entire working life of 50 years. Married to a spendthrift, a wanderer who kept moving towns, making ends meet was hard. Thankfully he left when the youngest was 1. No child support given ever. A sick child with dozens of visits to hospital before he died, a job loss just as finances were looking up, a divorce - these things drained the purse. This is not a sob story as I don't' want pity. Wages over the years were low and superannuation only amounted to $40,000. I raised my children to work hard (they saw me do it) and encouraged them in their education. All of them went to university and paid their own way through life. But every cent I earned as a single parent went towards making sure my children got the best start in life. I am very proud of them all and what they have achieved, things I could not manage due to the things I mentioned before. All of them are married/partnered with partners who also work full-time. Two of my adult grandchildren also work full-time. So don't tell me I 'failed to provide for my old age'. These 16 people earn a total between them in excess of $2,000,000. I am sure they don't mind that part of their taxes are being used to pay my aged pension. And i am pleased they won't have to put up with the insults being hurled around about people on "welfare" who 'didn't plan a proper future".
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
4:11pm
Well said, Renya. Congratulations! And you are absolutely right. You have every right to a pension, and it's no burden for society to pay one. But equally someone who did a little better, but also has kids earning high wages and paying high taxes, and paid a lot of tax themselves, ought to be entitled to a share of the national pie, instead of being bullied and deprived for the ''crime'' of having worked hard and saved well.

The wealthy get huge handouts in the form of grants and tax concessions. The young pick up first home buyer grants, childcare subsidies, and a host of other benefits our generation never received. And please don't give me this ''you got free university education'' BS. Most of didn't get past intermediate level at high school unless we had rich parents. We never got to even contemplate university, free or otherwise!

It's time for the government to acknowledge the contribution our generation made to society and show some respect and appreciation, and to structure a sensible, fair and respectful aged pension system that doesn't punish hard workers and doesn't disrespect people like you, who did their best but couldn't put much aside for old age.
moke
8th Jan 2018
3:14pm
We paid our taxes when we were working and it was thought that it would partly go towards our pensions when we were not able to work any more. WHAT HAPPENED TO ALL THAT MONEY, many workers in the old days were on very low incomes and were not able to save enough for old age and did not get what the government workers did. I do not believe it was called superannuation then but I know that a relative of mine working in a government position finished up and had a nice payout available. Should my taxes only have gone to political pay outs. Of course what they get would not be called Welfare (Garbage)
floss
8th Jan 2018
3:14pm
What about our new arrivals, how much do they cost and have not paid one cent in tax.
roy
8th Jan 2018
3:45pm
floss, and they probably never will, a lot of them that is. A very small percentage will be an asset to Australia but the rest!
Kali-G
9th Jan 2018
9:08am
THAT IS 101% TRUE!
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
12:57pm
If overseas experience is anything to go by, roy, you are totally correct there.
Old Dog
8th Jan 2018
3:18pm
Why bother?This page looks like Question Time sounds and it gets the same results - bugger all.
Richied
8th Jan 2018
3:22pm
My last post on the topic.

1. Welfare is a good thing and shouldn't be demonised (here's the first Google definition that pops up - "the health, happiness, and fortunes of a person or group"). That looks good to me.
2. Aged pension is welfare. Calling it something else is I think just political correctness, because it implies other welfare recipients are lesser people.
3. The taxes someone paid all their life does not feed into a fund that pays for this 'entitlement'.
4. Entitlement and welfare are not mutually exclusive. All Australians are entitled to claim welfare, and all welfare is (and should remain) means tested to ensure only those who need it get it.
5. 100+ years ago when federal government introduced aged pensions, most people worked 50 years yet only 4% of the population reached the age when they could get it (and then, only men). Now, average working life is around 40 years, yet 89% of the population reach age pension age (and now men, women and couples can claim the pension), and will live on average 22 years past retirement age. All of this adds up to an enormous increase in cost to the government.
6. When aged pension was introduced, it was around 1/3 of minimum wage - it remains that today.
7. 100+ years ago then there was no 'in kind' support given by government - now 40% of all support is 'in kind' with the remaining 60% being 'real' dollars in the form of aged pensions. So even a single person is at least 40% better off now than when aged pensions commenced (couples now have a nominal value of support from the government of up to $61k - better than the Moneysmart figure of $59k required for a comfortable retirement).

So, huge cost blow-out; massive improvement in standard of living (over the past 100+ years) for older persons; singles payments remain at the same comparative level from 100+ years ago.

Every successive government has had to deal with these issues, and I contend that, on balance, we've managed to 'stay the course' and continue to provide a suitable safety net for those in need, while trying to balance the budget.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
7:40pm
" Aged pension is welfare. Calling it something else is I think just political correctness, because it implies other welfare recipients are lesser people."

Calling it welfare is just political correctness, there is no reason to call it anything but what it has been for decades - Social Security - and nobody here has suggested that other Social Security recipients are a lesser breed - at least not this little black duck (cet petit canard noir).

Again your thinking is close, but you remain unattached to the core realities of OUR social security system... either because of a baked-on ideological position or too much faith in the media.

Be careful - you are looking like an LNP plant with this insistence that all is fine in the Shtaat off Denmark.. I don't think you are, but you are one of those educated and knowledgeable enough to think, but not always to the valid conclusions. Perhaps you over-rely on some level of academic training.... that does you little good in the real world....

8th Jan 2018
3:26pm
Good old liberal hating Mick and his pet topic Superannuation! Wel Mick, isn't it funny how Paul Keating (remember him, the treasurer who didn't believe he should have to lodge a tax return), continually claims he was the architect of our current superannuation system. Funny that! And so many super funds are now controlled by former union officials - but Mick still bangs on that it is all a Liberal conspiracy! Let us know when you are ready to come back to the real world, Mick.
roy
8th Jan 2018
3:43pm
Big Al, don't hold your breath. MICK is the most intelligent person on this site and really should be our PM or Treasurer at least.
He will shoot you down in flames and accuse you of following the "party" line.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
12:59pm
Bloody Partyliner.. would've been a great aircraft if had a decent navigation system and the right rudder hadn't been prone to jamming over ..... (you been reading my Abbott Crash Investigations series?)...
Curious
8th Jan 2018
3:27pm
Bravo to those who see through the government's power play at the expense of all of us for generations. Reading through your comments here, we seem to be happy to complain about the injustice and callous management of the finance of the "welfare" for the older Australians. It begs the question; why do we elect the government? If we elect a government to look after our welfare at the national level, how do we make the government account to the nation with transparency?

The postal vote for the marriage equality has proven our people power to stubborn politicians, who refused to listen at their own peril. On this subject of "welfare entitlement", I think the grey brigade's voices need to be heard on a national platform. Let this generation of politicians know the baby-boomer generation didn't raise them up in Australia to be disrespectful.

I am 72 years of age and have been working hard. I am a self-funded retiree and I still pay taxes. I trusted our government to look after everyone for us. The Treasury Report has broken this trust. What is the government going to do about it? What are we going to do about it?
bobby
8th Jan 2018
3:30pm
I have always voted Liberal, NO MORE!
roy
8th Jan 2018
3:39pm
You'll be sorry if Shifty Shorten and the unions become our "leaders'.
God forbid.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
1:21pm
Most thinking people want neither the LNP nor Labor these days - both have failed this nation while in pursuit of their personal ideologies .. the trouble with ideological pushes via government is that once you start they never end.... always just one more little river to cross.....

Better to do without them entirely.
ex PS
10th Jan 2018
8:38am
We just have to keep voting the bad performers out, until they get the message. Big business may have a lot of money to donate to campaign funds, but they still only have one vote.
By voting in an opposition you are not necessarily saying they are better, you are actually saying the previous government was incompetent and paid the price for it, you have to do better or pay the same price.
By keeping an incompetent government in place you are rewarding them for doing a bad job, and that makes no sense.
Knows-a-lot
16th Jan 2018
10:45am
roy, better Shorten as PM than the piss-weak Turdball and his fascist cronies.
Careworn
8th Jan 2018
3:33pm
I wish the government had warned people years ago about this instead of letting us believe that we would be looked after with a pension and not be made to feel such a burden on society. Does the government want the elderly to be despised by tax payers? I worked in many jobs when I was young and not all had superannuation or, in the early days, equal pay with men. It's all very depressing as some of us didn't have the opportunities that they have now.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
4:03pm
They didn't warn about it because there was nothing to warn about, except that the privileged would turn unbelievably selfish and greedy and start telling a lot of lies about the affordability of pensions. We spend less than 4% of GDP on aged pensions and the expenditure is falling. Other nations spend 8 - 9% and rising, yet have universal aged pensions without means tests and as far as I can tell, nobody much is complaining. Why would they, when they know their turn will come? I think the problem in Australia is the people who are paying are being threatened that their turn won't come, and seeing oldies bullied and denigrated. No wonder they resent having to pay when they think that what lies ahead for them is likely to be even worse!
VeryCaringBigBear
9th Jan 2018
2:15pm
They have been warning us for as long as I can remember. Those charts showing the big increase in retirees as the baby boomers age is old news. Even Keating told us that there would be time when we couldn't afford the OAP. Looks like that time has come or is not too far off to me.
ex PS
10th Jan 2018
8:43am
It is not that we can not afford the OAP, it is that governments have not got the intelligence to manage the budget in a way that looks much further than the next election.
If a business spends it's money on items that do not support the running of that business and then can't pay their bills, do we blame the customers, or the people who have charge of the purse strings.
OnlyGenuineRainey
17th Jan 2018
8:36pm
We can very comfortably afford the OAP. It's costing half what other developed nations spend and predicted to FALL, not rise. And it's costing no more as a percentage of the average wage than it has for at least two generations. Anyone who swallows the government's lies about it being unaffordable hasn't done any research.
Mutley
8th Jan 2018
3:46pm
Hey, I'm 85 and my wife is 84 and we are grateful for receiving a part age pension. We worked to the retirement ages, paid all our imposts and now feel totally entitled to what we get from the government. We pay all taxes that are levied and live a contented life with what we receive from the Governments of the day. However, a "Royal Commission" into plugging all the income tax loopholes would be money well spent.
teacher
8th Jan 2018
3:50pm
Re complaints about distribution of taxes to age pensions, I was born in Australia and have worked in the business administration and TAFE teaching industry for 60 years and am still working part time. I have paid taxes for 60 years. So what is wrong with my being paid back some of this tax as an age pensioner? I have already contributed 60 years of taxation to 'welfare'. Where the system might be seen to fall down is if the age pension recipient did not live and work in Australia and pay taxes for any length of time.
Rodent
8th Jan 2018
3:57pm
For those interested in reading the Govt use of the term Welfare read this link FULLY

https://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/rp/rp1516/WelfareSpend?print=1
Knows-a-lot
8th Jan 2018
4:12pm
The sooner we kick the Lieberal-Hillbilly COALition vermin out of office the better. They are totally incompetent and toxic.
roy
8th Jan 2018
6:36pm
Yeah, vote for Shifty Shorten and Shanghai Sam, god help us if they get in.
Knows-a-lot
9th Jan 2018
7:49am
They're far better than the Lieberal bastards or the Greens. ALL of the major infrastructure in Australia came courtesy of the Australian Labor Party.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
8:59am
OMG! And you claim to be educated, Knows-nothing! Glad I'm not.
Knows-a-lot
12th Jan 2018
7:08am
I'm better educated and know vastly more than you, Pluvial dimwit. Learn some history.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
7:50pm
You are sure not demonstrating either intelligence or education, Knows-a-lot. Try making a sensible comment for once instead of constantly insulting. You are really making yourself look like a nasty fool.
Knows-a-lot
13th Jan 2018
9:15am
You're speaking of yourself, Pluvial oaf. You are parading your unintelligence and lack of education. Try making a sensible comment for once instead of constantly insulting. You have shown yourself to be the paragon of a nasty fool.
Knows-a-lot
8th Jan 2018
4:12pm
How much is shelled out on parasitic ex-politicians' pensions?
Jannie
8th Jan 2018
4:43pm
Plus refugees and immigrants from other countries.................
roy
8th Jan 2018
6:35pm
Country shoppers after our welfare, we are so stupid.
Knows-a-lot
9th Jan 2018
7:53am
I agree, Jennie and roy. I'd stop ALL immigration, and let genuine refugees stay here only until the problems in their own country cease. Then they'd be sent back. Australia is overpopulated. If it were up to me, there'd be zero Muslims, zero Indians, zero Chinese, and zero Africans.
Jannie
8th Jan 2018
4:36pm
Instead of telling taxpayers what it is costing them for pensions etc. what everyone needs to know is what it is costing each taxpayer for benefits for refugees and other immigrants. Tell the do gooders etc what we are dishing out to people from other countries.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
4:42pm
How about telling today's taxpayers how much seniors contributed to building the affluent society they live in today - and how VERY affluent it is compared to the world we worked in during our younger years. My partner commented, the other day, on the cars lined up in the beach parking lot. All brand new SUVs. And all the owners young mothers or fathers or youthful surfers. We were in our late 50s before we got our first new car. And as for those 4+ bedroom, 2.5+ bathroom, 3 living room, double garage, landscaped McMansions... well, that sort of residence was a pipe dream for most of my generation.

My kids have no issue with paying tax to support the aged. They are grateful that we sacrificed a lot to send them to university and get them into professions where they earn a good salary, and they remember how tough life was for us. They would NEVER call the aged pension ''welfare''. Their only gripe is that it is far too mean and handed out disrespectfully and without the appreciation seniors deserve.
roy
8th Jan 2018
7:18pm
Rainey, how many of those SUV's are on credit and the enormous mortgages for the mansions wow, a crunch is around the corner and boy will there be many many tears and lots of mortgages called in by the banks. It's not far away now believe me.
Knows-a-lot
9th Jan 2018
7:54am
Rainey is projecting her jealousy again.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
8:26am
Another pointless ASS - U - ME, from Know Nothing. I'm stating facts. This generation is well off compared to past generations. Ours was well off compared to those before us. That's how it SHOULD be, and I have no issue with that. But the fact is that today's seniors contributed a great deal to that affluence and instead of condemning them as a ''burden'', the government should be ensuring that the young learn to appreciate our contribution to society and recognize that a healthy and enjoyable retirement is fair reward and necessary as an incentive to young workers to maintain and grow productivity.

Yes, Roy, some of the good lifestyle is unwisely financed. Maybe if the government focused a little less on elder bashing and a little more on exposing how our generation actually got to where we are now, the young would learn better economic management skills and that nation would have far fewer problems.
Knows-a-lot
9th Jan 2018
11:30am
More mindless drivel from the asinine Rainey. She has delusions of adequacy.

Pray tell, Rainey. what positive things have have YOU contributed to society? (I have taught hundreds of people, composed original music, and written six books.)
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
1:37pm
KAL - please -that's enough. It's not your fault that your education has been limited to specific strands...... we forgive you.

Now cut out the personal stuff.... children - you can't fight in here - this is the WAR ROOM!

I've written more books than that but only published a very few... I reckon only one in fifteen attempts at some writing is worth much to many.
Knows-a-lot
12th Jan 2018
7:10am
TREBOR, I'm also autodidactic, so am quite polymathic. I'll back off when that idiotic witch does.
Old Man
8th Jan 2018
4:46pm
The way the tax system as regards an age pension was explained to me this way. When I was young and starting off in the workforce, a portion of my taxes was used to help pay for the various pensions/welfare. The taxes I paid were not put aside for my benefit as those who are working, now that I have retired, will have a portion of their tax payments earmarked for pensions/welfare for those who need it. As regards what they choose to call an age pension is totally irrelevant. It seems that there is some snobbery involved by those who look down their noses at the title "welfare". They're probably the same people who call their dog, "Phydeaux.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
5:05pm
Yes Old Man. I was told ''you pay tax to fund social health measures and essential services, and social health measures include support for the aged who have done their bit and are now entitled to their rest, and when your turn comes to retire, the young will pay taxes to support you.''

There was a fund earmarked to provide for social welfare and there was a designated 7.5% levy for the purpose of maintaining that fund, but the theft of that money by the corrupt shouldn't change the fact that each generation must make their contribution and each generation should, in their turn, have their time of paid rest. That's a requirement for a healthy capitalist system, and sensible people recognize that the capitalist system will collapse if we cease to recognise that a degree of responsible socialism is needed to maintain a healthy capitalist society.
johnp
8th Jan 2018
6:07pm
"Phydeaux."
Love it and I buy from "Tar-Jay"
;-) ;-)
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
6:51pm
San Vancent and Sal Vos....
robmur
8th Jan 2018
4:53pm
The government is forever having a grizzle about welfare and that aged pensioners are a burden on the Australian society. If the government wanted to save a few dollars, here are some recommendations:
1. Bring home all Australian troops stationed in the Middle East. A saving of $2 million a day.
2. Severe cuts in the number of immigrants into Australia each year for the next 5 years.
3. Exclude all refugees for the next 5 years.
4. Enforce income tax on ALL MULTI NATIONALS. No hiding profits overseas.
5. Introduce the Universal Pension for all men and women over the age of 65 by the year 2020 Look at the New Zealand model, there is lot of merit in what the government is doing over there.
6. Increase the Medicare levy by 2 cents per person for those earning $150,000 + per annum.
7. Abolish all state and territory governments and implement a universal federal government with the appropriate ministerial councils in each state and territory by 2025, cutting out the huge expense wasted on the duplication of areaS like health, education, law enforcement, transport regulations, housing, infrastructure (East-West tunnel in Melbourne) etc.
You get the picture. Just needs some clear and level headed thinking to modernize this country , stop wasting money, and not mention the word WELFARE AND COSTS when talking about pensioners. There are far too many pensioner living below the poverty line. What a disgrace and what are any of our political masters doing about it? NOTHING BUT GRIZZLE.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
5:06pm
Just abolish superannuation tax concessions to the wealthiest 20%, and negative gearing and capital gains tax concessions. That would wipe out the national debt.

The one cost that no responsible government should ever be focused on cutting is the cost of social health, and welfare is a major component of social health.
roy
8th Jan 2018
6:34pm
Stop negative gearing, that's for sure.
roy
8th Jan 2018
8:39pm
Stop the Chinese buying Australia, investigate all properties sold to the Chinese especially in Sydney and re possess them. Investigate all Chinese Real estate agents and go through their books with a fine toothcomb, I could go on and on.
Knows-a-lot
13th Jan 2018
9:17am
Shut the Chinese out completely and start deporting them. They've been raping Australia for centuries.
Eddy
8th Jan 2018
5:18pm
Seems I have heard this sort of nonsense before. I have seen it on YouTube, the propaganda put out in the 1930s by the Nazi's in Germany to justify the elimination of the physically handicapped and mentally retarded from being a burden on the Nazi economy. I know in advance that the ideologically blind contributors to this forum may object to this comparison, but if the shoe fits.......
What is the rationale for this report? It is probably designed to create inter-generational conflict to justify some very nasty outcomes for those least able to look after themselves. I look at my 94yo mother-in-law and wonder what the Treasury has in mind for her. She may be a perfect candidate for whatever their purposes. She is frail, nearly blind and virtually bed ridden but she is also a war widow who, like the Queen, served in WWII.
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
5:26pm
It's the old ''divide and conquer'' strategy. Get the young hating the old, the conservatives hating those lobbying for gender neutrality, gays and trans genders hating Christians, parents angry with educators.... ANYTHING to divide, so that we don't focus on the incompetence of politicians and the real issues government should be addressing.
Knows-a-lot
9th Jan 2018
7:55am
Gender-neutrality? It's a chimera. Wake up!
downunder
8th Jan 2018
5:20pm
All nice and fine, but lots of the pensioners will still vote for this ruthless, incompetent Government, unfortunately. They don't learn or are too stubborn to learn
OnlyGenuineRainey
8th Jan 2018
5:25pm
Or they realize that our hopeless political system leaves them very little choice
roy
8th Jan 2018
6:33pm
Or they will vote for Shifty Shorten and his gang, God help us. borrow borrow borrow spend spend spend.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
8:09am
Roy, I despise Shorten and his gang, but I deal in FACTS, not political propaganda, and the FACT is that Howard and Costello wasted far more than any Labor Government, with 80% of the waste going to the richest 20%. They wasted most of the profits of the boom and created major obligations that were unaffordable once the boom ended. Despite having to deal with those unaffordable obligations - that handed out to the richest 20% - the Rudd/Gillard governments managed to steer Australian through a major global financial crisis in far better economic health than any other developed nation. And this government then came in shouting about how it was all Labor's fault and they would fix it, and have driven the debt through the roof.

Neither party is any good, and it's damned difficult to decide which is worse. The Greens are a disaster. Most of the minors are useless. I don't see much promise in many independents, and the system doesn't give them much scope to do any good anyway.

Bottom line is the country is stuffed because of the two-party system and the greedy, useless fat pigs who milk the taxpayer daily and hand out to their buddies to ensure their funding continues and one of the other major party retains power - and I don't think either care much which, because their policies are very similar and certainly equally wasteful.

If you are going to criticize a party, at least deal in facts.

Howard and Costello were lucky to be able to cover up their extravagance with boom profits, but they were the heaviest spenders and the biggest wasters - by far - this country has ever seen. And the worst of it was their spending was almost entirely to benefit the wealthy, not the nation.
Knows-a-lot
12th Jan 2018
7:11am
Spouting endless drivel again, Pluvial Goose.
Triss
8th Jan 2018
6:45pm
According to a survery done by the University of Adelaide taxpayers are not burdened with pensioners, in fact they are saved from a lots of spending.
"Older Australians are actively involved in unpaid voluntary work. Australian volunteers contribute
approximately 700 million hours of unpaid work to the community every year. The University of
Adelaide has calculated the economic value of this voluntary work to over $200 billion. Older Australians
currently contribute the highest number of volunteer hours of any other age group with one in four
Australians aged 65+ participating in voluntary work".
The Federal Treasury needs to wind its neck in.
roy
8th Jan 2018
7:19pm
Stop negative gearing NOW.
floss
8th Jan 2018
7:36pm
Great post robmur it must be the only way we can go.
David
8th Jan 2018
9:10pm
Typical of this Federal Govt. I paid taxes my entire working life which included tax to pay for the old age pension which was underhandedly absorbed into general revenue. My wife & I receive zilch & no we planned for retirement & get nothing. To label retirees a financial burden is nothing short of insulting. Politicians are the burden!
roy
8th Jan 2018
10:14pm
Vote Shifty Shorten in next time.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
12:26pm
At least we'd send a message to the morons in power that their policies are unacceptable and we won't tolerate them.
Knows-a-lot
12th Jan 2018
3:36pm
Those "morons in power" are smarter than you.
OnlyGenuineRainey
15th Jan 2018
8:45am
There's no evidence of that in their performance.
Knows-a-lot
15th Jan 2018
4:47pm
Yes, there is: your stunning unintelligence. Politicians simply could not be dumber than you. If you think that politicians are "morons" then on that criterion you should be Prime Minister (or should that be Prime Moron?).
OnlyGenuineRainey
17th Jan 2018
8:16am
I'd do a far better job than the self-interested egomaniacal fraudsters rorting to claim allowances they have no right to. I'd use some plain common sense. And the nation would be far better off for it. In particular, the aged and disabled would be much better off, because my first priority would be ensuring the tax system was fair and equitable and it properly funded good social health.
Dot
8th Jan 2018
9:36pm
ONLY POLITICIANS AND REFUGEES ARE ENTILTED TO TAX PAYERS MONEYS. TO THE REST OF YOUR WHO HAVE CONTRIBUTE AND WORKED HARD STIFF BICKIES. ONE FORMER LABOR POLITICIAN MADE 91 TRIPS OVER FOUR YEARS COMPLIMENTS OF ALL YOU DECENT, HONEST AUSSIES.
roy
8th Jan 2018
10:13pm
And I thought it was only the wicked LNP, eh MICK, so the ALP are not faultless after all, my my.
Dinosaur
8th Jan 2018
10:24pm
Like many others over the years, we have all made contributions via taxes and the like. Money would have been utilised in the very same way, ie pensions, welfare etc. I don’t recall whinging about it. I don’t recall to many other people whinging about it. It’s the cycle of life, albeit coming to the end of same. If this poor excuse for a government was more capable of better management and the people within stopped feathering their own nests we may get somewhere. Perhaps they would just like us to drop of the perch for their convenience.
Patch25
8th Jan 2018
11:07pm
The Federal Treasury report saying that the average taxpayer pays $1800 per year for age pensions is seen as an issue and may be correct but it does not say that pensioners still pay tax from their meagre $444 per week single pension. 10% GST on purchases. 10% on so many Federal and State Government fees. I would say that average single pensioners may pay more than $1000 in GST and hidden tax every year. So the $1800 figure reduces to $1000 payed by average taxpayer. Lets now apply this to married aged pensioners and see how they are disadvantaged.YOUR LIFE CHOICES SURELY YOU ARE AWARE OF WHAT i AM SAYING. WHY DON'T YOU TACKLE THIS "HARD"
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
7:49am
Correct, Patch25. And then add to that the fact that the spending by pensioners generates business profits and jobs and that means there's more tax collected, and the spending that results from the extra profit creating extra jobs is taxed indirectly, and then that spending creates more business profits and more jobs, and so the BENEFICIAL cycle continues. And if pension outlays were INCREASED, there would be more business profits and more jobs and more tax revenue.

How come Treasury doesn't include the statistic on how much extra tax revenue is generated by paying pensions? Conversely, below I noted some of the massive waste paying millions to people who have no need of it and most likely DO NOT spend it in ways that benefit society as a whole. So which extravagance should we reduce? And which group should we denigrate with nasty labels like ''welfare recipient''? Which pollie was it who said being on ''welfare'' was something to be ashamed of and embarrassed about?

Time for a concerted retaliation I think. Perhaps YLC could prepare a counter-report and publish it?
KSS
9th Jan 2018
8:55pm
Weren't pensions raised at the time of the introductions of the GST in order to compensate them for the increases. How quickly people forget.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
11:49pm
These increases are calculated on averages, KSS. They never properly compensate those whose incomes a well below average. I was living on a subsistence income at the time and I can tell you the ''compensation'' was a sick joke. It went nowhere near covering the additional costs. The problem is that the well off just don't understand the spending patterns of the poor. And subsequent increases were always less than the actual cost of living increases.

Besides, whether or not pensions increased doesn't change the fact that pensioners pay tax. I don't think anyone forgets. They just deal in the facts of the here and now - and the fact is that pensioners DO pay tax.
professori_au
9th Jan 2018
12:55am
perhaps the government needs to put it into perspective. What is the proportion of tax paid by workers over a productive worker lifespan. I understand a figure of 7%, correct me if this figure is incorrect and provide the correct figure. This was a mandatory tax to be paid over the working life and then it was the age pension. I do not have the stats for the average worker input but believe this is a considerable figure. Add to that interest. Next, What is the retirement life of the average worker? The difference between the total tax/pension plus interest would then make up an entitlement, the balance if applicable would be the welfare.
When the government can provide accurate and honest figures, and deduct the difference then we will have real figures. We might even take this further, separate interest on the tax paid (compounding interest and as governments have dipped tax, which should have been kept in a separate fund instead of the government putting it into consolidated revenue. Perhaps there is also income earned from interest paid by the government for the use of the pension tax. Now we are approaching what is the real figure for an entitlement and what is the real figure for welfare. The other question might be by what authority or writ enables the elected politicians to make their own terms and conditions for a special pension, especially as it comes from the tax burden government has put on the people and exempted the large corporations.
professori_au
9th Jan 2018
4:06am
Following my last comment I will add they did not include voluntary or mandatory superannuation. What compensation has been paid for the mismanaged funds or those that were not paid by employers from the employer contribution. How much of this money has been "acquired" by governments in consolidated revenue fund. Also just how much benefit is received will depend on how long you live past the age of retirement. So many factors! Now who owes the taxpayer and retiree what? The real concern is not what has been paid by tax in the past from the pensioners who worked when Australia was not a basket case of lost industries, corporations moving off shore, etc. resulting in an increase of people unable to 2ork due to a lack of quality training, new businesses to take some of them up or where people are forced into voluntary jobs, which pay no wages to be taxed etc.
VeryCaringBigBear
9th Jan 2018
7:06am
I agree the OAP is welfare.i don't know of any other country where people can part of a wealthy family and be on welfare. I retired at 55 cashed in my super and bought a mcmansion. I then bought the grandkids a house each and travelled the world for 5 years. At 65 I had distributed and spent enough money to qualify for the OAP with full benefits. Today my family pay for my living costs, health insurance and maintenance on the house. I use the OAP to travel and enjoy myself. I don't know of another country where one could have such a good retirement.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
7:43am
And that's precisely the problem with the OAP in Australia. Idiots have created a welfare mentality and encouraged manipulation and cheating by being cruel and unfair to those who work hard, save well, but cannot - through no fault of their own - be fully self-sufficient in old age. The foolish change to the assets test made many who lived responsibly and are honest far worse off than they would have been if they'd lived it up more and saved half as much. It's mind-boggling that anyone could be so STUPID as to implement a policy like this, but they have, and now they complain about the cost of aged pensions! It would be far, far less if the system was respectful and fair. But then it wouldn't serve the interests of the rich cheats who vote for the morons who made the change, would it?
VeryCaringBigBear
9th Jan 2018
8:03am
I don't think there is a problem at all with OAP. A'll one needs to do is plan for retirement 10 to 15 years before retirement age and it's a good system. The asset test was too generous and many saw it coming so it made no difference to them. I don't know why other families don't distribute wealth like ours has so all members prosper and get maximum welfare as well. One of my grandkids also gets an allowance to study at uni.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
8:55am
BigBear, that's a very cruel comment. Those most likely to be impacted harshly by the system are the less educated who have struggled and gone without a great deal to accumulate savings that they THINK will benefit them in old age and prevent more of the hardship that has typically created a perspective that makes them very fearful of being poor. They are not savvy enough to plan 15 years ahead, or even 5 years ahead. They go through life trusting the system, until they reach the point where they have needs and they suddenly discover that the system wasn't trustworthy.

Clearly you support a corrupt system that feeds clever manipulators at the expense of the genuinely needy and the honest hard workers.

Good luck to you if you can exploit a disgusting system that invites this kind of exploitation and then denigrates the needy, protesting about the costs of supporting them. But I don't think decent people should be endorsing a system that fosters and rewards behaviours like yours. It's hurting the nation as a whole badly. It's denying those in genuine need to feed greed, and it's imposing costs on taxpayers that is generating division and resentment. Nobody should defend such policies, no matter how much they personally benefit from them.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
9:17am
And some might suggest that you might actually need those extra savings in the future, if the government continues to cut welfare. Your rort might be short-lived, and then what, BigBear. Some are electing to suffer the unfairness now in order to ensure they can get by in future years. I really don't know which approach is best, because the way things are going the whole damned system could collapse and leave us all with nothing,
VeryCaringBigBear
9th Jan 2018
10:32am
Well Rainey I really can't see what I would need any extra savings in the future for but I guess I could downsize if the family didn't want to help me out. Somehow I really don't think they are stupid enough to not help as mcmansion has more than doubled in value since I bought it and they are all for a lottery win when I die. I jokingly tell them if I have to downsize that I will donate the leftover to charity.

Sure the world might collapse but even dollars in the bank are useless if there is no food etc to buy.
Rae
9th Jan 2018
10:35am
Big Bear is simply pointing out the new reality.

I have a few friends who re organised after that stupid 2015 budget by selling up and gifting. Building lovely new houses worth millions and will achieve the full pension and entitlements

They saw the lack of safe investments and that the hundreds of thousands needed to achieve the same result was a poor strategy.

Pity Hockey and Morrison didn't see it.

The truth is the resource wars will collapse the system within decades anyway.
VeryCaringBigBear
9th Jan 2018
10:45am
I saw it as simply stupid that my grandkids had to borrow money at a much higher rate than I was getting in interest and saw it as a much safer investment if I invested in their homes instead or buying rental properties etc. The good thing is that I was also helping out the whole family so everyone can prosper now and not have to wait until I die.

No only that I was then able to get a bonus in the form of the OAP and all the benefits.
ex PS
10th Jan 2018
8:54am
BigBear has a point, I am seriously considering giving my son the money to buy his house and just charging him interest only for his loan, playing it by the book has seen us go backwards.
Our son will end up with everything anyway, why not help him and ourselves at the same time?
This way we will get the OAP and a healthy supplement from our son, win win situation.
Funnily enough we were quite happy to be fully self funded, until the government started dicking us around.
My security is the fact that we will simply move in with our son if he reneges on his payments, no way will he want that. LOL
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
1:38pm
PS if you charge your son interest it will be counted as income. My family just pay my bills and foot the bill for any maintenance on the house. They don't like me mowing as they think I will have an accident so they also pay a mower man. There is nothing to say you can't pay another person's bills. If I need say some new furniture they will gift that to me as well. I sometimes feel I knock back much more stuff than I allow them to give me. I have an unwritten rule that they have to ask me before considering any gifts as they know that anything I don't use I will just donate to charity.

Even without being able to get the OAP I would have distributed my wealth amongst the family as it just makes sense to do so. What good is money to me at my age?
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
9:47am
I see your point BigBear, but my thoughts are that any funds changing hands are only captured as income once it hits a bank account. I have enough faith in the way we bought up our son to know that any debt owed to us by him is like money in the bank.

Likewise to expand on your advice, we pay virtually all our bills via Credit Card and pay the full balance each month, as you say there is nothing to stop someone paying your bills for you. I find the scenario quite intriguing.

I am not worried about money as we are quite comfortable, I just don't like being treated like a fool by government and will do what I can to turn the tables. As I said, I was happy to be totally self funded, until the government decide it was a good idea to mess with my long term plans. Just because I have managed my budget well long term, does not mean government can raid my coffers to make up for their incompetence.
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
10:30am
The OAP system is full of loop holes. I know one old lady who withdraws a couple of hundred each week in cash in excess of her needs and then takes it across the road and deposits it in her grandkids accounts. She gets rid of an extra $10,000 a year more than she is allowed to by doing just that. For all intent and purposes Centrelink think she has spent the money herself. Many also withdraw cash and use the mattress bank but that is not a good idea for ladies living alone.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
7:39am
Since we are talking about what welfare costs, here is some useful information about other costs - and remember welfare is generally sustenance for those who have inadequate means of support All of the below is obscene WASTE by greedy pigs who have no respect for taxpayers.

In 2016 former prime minister John Howard claimed the equivalent of 21.5 years’ worth of Newstart allowance in expenses
Tony Abbott claimed more than 37 years’ worth
Peter Dutton claimed more than 55 years’ worth
Scott Morrison claimed more than 61 years’ worth
Malcolm Turnbull claimed more than 105 years’ worth
Julie Bishop claimed nearly 113 years’ worth
According to the Federal Budget, the cost of maintaining our 226 Federal MPs in 2015/16 was 36,120 years’ worth of Newstart allowance
The fossil fuel industry in Australia receives the equivalent of more than 350,000 years’ worth of Newstart payments in annual subsidies
The estimated cost of tax evasion in Australia each year is somewhere between 399,000 and 427,500 years’ worth of Newstart payments
On average, a federal MP costs the equivalent of 156.75 years’ worth of Newstart payments each year
Former federal MPs entitlements cost the equivalent of 2,138 years’ worth of Newstart allowance annually
The Newstart allowance has not increased in real terms in over two decades
Two decades ago the base salary of a federal MP was twice the average wage, today it is nearly three times the average wage
Oh, and Human Services minister Alan Tudge, claimed about 39 years' worth of Newstart allowance in expenses last year.

Now, if the Treasury Report had included THAT information, I wonder which groups taxpayers would be angriest with?
Knows-a-lot
9th Jan 2018
7:57am
The Liberal vermin should be shot for treason.
VeryCaringBigBear
9th Jan 2018
8:05am
I can't see any problem with any of that as it is just part of the entitlements if their job. The heads of our public companies get many times those figures.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
8:19am
The heads of most companies are grossly overpaid too, BigBear, but at least they have to demonstrate some level of performance. The morons milking the public purse are doing nothing but harm. And there's a huge difference between collecting pay for boosting company profits and collecting pay for stuffing up the lives of the ordinary taxpayers who are compelled to pay your stinking obscene and dishonestly claimed expenses. We don't HAVE to contribute to the salaries of heads of companies. We can made a free election not to be shareholders and even not to buy from them.
roy
9th Jan 2018
9:41am
Knows a lot, just imagine Shifty Shorten in charge
Knows-a-lot
9th Jan 2018
11:33am
Yes roy, I can and do. Australia would be better with Shorten in charge. Far better than Turdball.
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
9:53am
I imagine it every night before I go to sleep, it puts a smile on my face that lasts till morning.

But I am having second thoughts, "Shifty Shorten", that makes him sound dishonest, maybe now having access to such inciteful political input I should change my mind, but the other option is "Turdball", no I will stick with Shifty.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
8:00am
Um... it appears a taxpayer earning $58,000 a year is paying just under 7.5% of his/her wage to cover welfare. Given that - as I understand it - our generation paid 7.5%s into a ''welfare fund'' for the future, in ADDITION to paying tax to cover current welfare costs, I don't see grounds for complaint. Even if we only paid 7% in total, I see nothing wrong with someone on $58,000 a year paying 7.46% of their income toward helping the needy and keeping society healthy.

Of course, that money could be far better spent if IDIOTS didn't support paying manipulators and cheats generously and destroying the incentive to save for old age.

And at least SOME of the current welfare is in the form of childcare subsidies and other benefits that flow back to the average taxpayer, whereas our generation got very little in the way of welfare while we were earning a wage. So that should be taken into account also.

Maybe if the Treasury Report was more comprehensive and honest and put facts in perspective, they government would find out what younger Australians really think of an essential program that is benefiting everyone in society - as opposed to the non-essential and very wasteful handouts that proliferate? But of course the aim wasn't to find out what Aussies want their tax dollar spent on, was it? It was to divide and create resentment so that the stinking government could justify more cuts to the programs that benefit society most, to fund more obscene handouts to those who are just plain GREEDY.
DaveL
9th Jan 2018
8:04am
Welfare does only relate to payments to individuals. There is corporate welfare, subsidies paid for all manner of prop ups.
All welfare is spread over Federal, State and Local government. No one, to my knowledge, has attempted to combine all this welfare and come up with a cost total figure.
Everyone wants "fairness", so paying your taxes should be on everyones agenda. The Tax system needs revamping, but there are too many living off the "Tax Payer" for this to happen.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
8:20am
And no wonder, when the system is geared to ensure that those who live off the taxpayer are generously endowed while those who work their guts out and save well are bullied and deprived.
pinky
9th Jan 2018
8:15am
We have experienced over the past 8 months how some Social Services staff treat aged Australians who are seeking help and information from Centrelink as second class citizens. It is hard not to believe that the aim of a number of the senior people in the Assessment and the Appeals area are not remunerated by how successful they are at rejection Pension Applications and ensuring that those Applicants are not made aware of the information that Social Services staff have available that would assist the Applicant to satisfy the criteria that the Social Services staff administer and impose.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
8:48am
An uneducated friend who had significant disabilities - both mental and physical - after major childhood abuse and deprivation in an institution, suffering huge injustice, abuse in the military, a work accident that was never compensated - applied for a disability benefit at age 64.5 years of age, finding he simply could not continue heavy physical labour and didn't have the education to do anything else.

A very young recent uni graduate dressed to kill and dripping diamonds interviewed him, totally ignoring a request from his spouse to interview her about his known psychological problems that resulted in him putting on an act to appear capable because appearing needy had always resulted in denigration and punishment. The graduate had no psych or medical training whatsoever, yet she overruled 6 doctors and claimed he was ''not disabled'' because he ''didn't appear to be in pain during the interview or when standing up to leave''.

He reported she giggled all the way through the interview, asking inane questions and laughing when he dismissed the question with a joke, because that's how he'd survived years of injustice and abuse. She completely ignored the entire 80 pages of documentation by doctors, including detailed pxych reports.

Her recommendation, in writing, was that this fellow be paid Newstart, compelled to do voluntary or community work 3 days per week, given physiotherapy and counselling, and phased back into the workforce within 3 years - by which time he'd be nearly 68!!!!

Fortunately, the spouse wrote a complaint and appeal and it was so emotional that Centrelink referred her to a social worker, who promptly instructed the fellow how to fill out a new application and ensured that the next interview was with an appropriately trained and empathetic person and the spouse was interviewed as she had requested. The application was approved, but payment was not backdated because the approved application was a new one - as was necessary because the old one had not focused on mental illness (which the fellow didn't like to admit) but on physical disability - which the young privileged Centrelink assessor claimed was not sufficient to qualify him for benefits.

This is only one of many similar stories I've heard from seriously disadvantaged folk who have, despite hideous problems caused by childhood abuse in institutions and years of suffering major injustice, have worked hard, lived clean, and paid taxes for decades before finally begging for help when they just can't go on any longer.

I can only guess as how many others - who have suffered different kinds of trauma or crisis and injustice - suffer at the hands of some of these Assessment and Appeals staffers. And the worst of it is, the girl in question was promoted shortly after this occurrence. A Centrelink report stated that she was ''counselled'' about her decision. She should have been sacked for gross incompetence and appalling arrogance!
Knows-a-lot
12th Jan 2018
3:39pm
Jeez, you're a genius at vacuous waffle.
ex PS
9th Jan 2018
9:22am
The insistence on the government to refer to the O.A.P. as welfare is a well thought out dishonest plan to desensitize the public in regard to the treatment of Retirees.

Nobody will stand for a Pensioner being kicked around, but there is no sympathy for "Welfare Recipients". This is a well planed cynical attempt by the government to set the working population against the Retiree.

It is a war of words, and this government is quite adept at subtly redefining words to shape public opinion and achieve what it wants. Much to be expected from an organisation top heavy with lawyers who could not make it in the real world of law.

Has anyone stopped to think, if your parents can't get enough from the O.A.P. to live on, will you support them out of your own funds, and how much do you think that will cost.
VeryCaringBigBear
9th Jan 2018
10:34am
My family supports me already so why can't other families support their elders too.
ex PS
9th Jan 2018
4:29pm
I am glad that you can count on support from your family, but the point is, you should not need to be supported by your family, you should be given the opportunity to use your own funds to support yourself.
VeryCaringBigBear
9th Jan 2018
6:30pm
It's only fair as I distributed all my wealth helping them all buy homes and paying off their HECS debts.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
6:50pm
So what is NOT fair is that you qualify for a pension and someone who earned less but retained it for expenses in old age doesn't. I don't begrudge you anything, BigBear. Good luck to you. But the system is seriously flawed when you get a pension and people who have less but didn't ''play the game'' don't.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
7:13pm
Precisely why I've held the line and refused use of the term 'welfare' to refer to social security.

I also hold a medal for holding the line over refusing to label men 'males' and women 'females' in social sciencebabble, since the use of such terms renders them no more important than guinea pigs in some experiment.. or lab rats liable to the execution chamber when there is no further use for them.

Many years ago, as anyone who ha studied with feminists will tell you, they managed to introduce into 'social science' the concept that 'words have power' and used that to progressively ban the use of certain terms.. a process that continues to this day with the Commonwealth Games coming up and the diktat that specific gender terms etc must not be used....

The problem, as usual, with the superficially laudable process of removing discriminatory words etc - is that they are then replaced with equally discriminatory words that are at least as offensive to others... there is no discrimination in saying 'Ladies and Gentlemen' - it is, in fact, a mark of respect in that it elevates the entire audience to a status of person worthy of respect, regardless of their blue singlets and rugger shorts and socks etc (and then there's the stuff the men wear, too)....

This has echoes in every aspect of feminist theocracy - in that there is no genuine attempt to 'bring down' or 'destroy' any allegedly 'patriachal' society - all that the 'feminists' want is to replace men in the top spots in the same corporation with women ... a status that will only apply to the elite few while the rest become no better than serfs single with kids on part-time casual.

I start and end with the feminists because it is they who laid the network out for each and every movement that has come very close to destroying this nation and society.... and in order to recover this nation needs to go back forty years and start again.
OnlyGenuineRainey
9th Jan 2018
11:36pm
Now Trebor, don't go trashing women. Tib and Knows-a-lot have caused quite enough upset with their sexist posts.

Seriously though, I agree with you completely. I have no time for ratbag feminists. They have done horrendous harm to society - and particularly to women. Of course they are a noisy minority, but they've stuffed up the lives of millions of good women who were quite content with the status quo. And of course stuffing up women's lives means you stuff up the lives of men. families, communities, and the entire society. But they will never stop. One wonders what the real agenda is, and where it will end.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
3:53pm
I adore women, Rainey - I despise feminists.... nothing in this world unfair or sexist about a fair criticism.
Knows-a-lot
15th Jan 2018
4:57pm
It's the feminists who are, ipso facto, sexist. I just condemn all parasites and idiots, many of whom happen to be women.

"... good women who were quite content with the status quo."

Yeah - that status quo being to bludge off men, to send them to war where men die in the millions to protect the women (e.g. men being sent the dreaded white feather during world war 1 by women safe and cosy on the home front, to compel them to meet their doom), to have men do the dirtiest and most dangerous jobs for peanuts, to die on average younger than women, to have men's children and superannuation robbed from them by parasitic harridans. "Good" women? My sainted arse!
Knows-a-lot
15th Jan 2018
5:00pm
"Now Trebor, don't go trashing women."

He didn't. He trashed feminists and feminism. Yet another example of your sloppy 'thinking', Madam Pluvial.
Jannie
9th Jan 2018
9:36am
Just read about Sudanese mother of jailed son who is a gang member. She states she needs more money from Centrelink to stop her 6 children from taking up a life of crime. Listen to this she gets $2500 per fortnight...................... She also states not enough work for her children so they have to go on welfare also. So what are our so called politicians doing?? we cannot sustain the immigration growth due to no work and poor infra structure. Stop immigration before it is too late...................
Knows-a-lot
9th Jan 2018
11:34am
Absolutely! It's time to begin deportations of such ethnic filth.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
7:14pm
Put the kids out into street crime so they can earn an honest living....
bigpella
9th Jan 2018
11:02am
Your article states "The cost of ‘welfare’ is again being touted as a burden on Aussie taxpayers. It's not the pensioners that are causing the burden, it's the foreign companies that are allowed to take billions and billions of dollars out of the country without paying tax through loop holes in legislation. How many times does one hear a CEO of a company say "we are acting within the law" but morally borders on corruption or fraud?
Governments of both persuasions have allowed jobs, with loss of taxpaying workers, to be exported overseas all in the name of globalisation. Result: Less tax available to the government. Turnbull and Shorten aren't interested in the people, especially the ones that worked from 1950 to 1990 to give us a basis for a sound economy, all they are interested in is lining their own pockets and winning the next election.
KSS
9th Jan 2018
1:35pm
So why has my comment of yesterday been removed? And without explanation!
Jannie
9th Jan 2018
3:52pm
KSS I did not see your comment can you post it again? I would like to know who is editing our comments also. Your life choices needs to send our comments to the right person in high places.
TREBOR
9th Jan 2018
7:15pm
No idea - it weren't me. I have no objection any thought being put out for public scrutiny, where it can sink or swim on its merits.

Indeed, sir, re-post it.
Jannie
9th Jan 2018
3:59pm
YOUR LIFE CHOICES PLEASE SEND OUR COMMENTS TO OUR GUTLESS GOVERNMENT.....
Stone the Crows
9th Jan 2018
11:45pm
If all politicians both State and Federal reverted to their previous job pensions when they left politics . I don't think they would be so hard on pensioners , who have worked all their lives ,for a little peace, quiet and enjoyment before they shuffle of this planet .
OnlyGenuineRainey
10th Jan 2018
7:58am
A little further perspective: It appears that the percentage of income working Australians contribute to cover the cost of welfare hasn't increased for a couple of generations, given that when it was shown as a percentage on tax returns - many, many years ago - it was 7.5%, and according to figures quoted here, it's 7.45%. But oldies know that welfare now includes a lot of benefits for younger taxpayers that were never on offer when we were young, so in fact that contribution of younger taxpayers to welfare has FALLEN significantly.

We know for a fact that Australia spend less than half what other developed nations spend on aged pensions. We also know that despite a lot of lies, the cost is NOT increasing and is expected to stay static until 2050, when it will begin to fall due to compulsory superannuation.

We also know that more money is spent loading the coffers of high income earners through superannuation tax concessions than is spend on aged pensions, and that concessions do not reduce the cost of pensions because they primarily benefit people who will never need a pension anyway. i.e. They are a waste of money and are deceptively promoted.

And we now know that while the government is claiming aged pension increases are unaffordable, and therefore it's inevitable that 1/4 of our aged MUST live in poverty, they are planning to gift $65 billion to companies, and they freely admit that there will be virtually no benefit EVER in terms of employment or economic growth, and any minimal benefit that will occur will not occur until after 2050.

$3 billion saved by cutting pensions was ''a necessary saving''. They justify turning younger Aussies against the aged by ranting about some $38 billion spent on aged pensions being ''unaffordable''. Yet they happily gift $38 billion to high income earners in unnecessary retirement-fund top-ups, and they claim we can comfortably afford to gift $65 billion a year to companies, knowing full well that it won't achieve the purpose for which they claim it is intended.

Anybody smelling rats yet?
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
9:11am
The most anyone can put into super for a tax benefit is now $25,000. That is not much of a benefit for high income earners as it is taxed at 30% and the top tax rate is about 47%. $4250 is not much to someone who earns $500,000 plus a year.
johnp
10th Jan 2018
3:17pm
Agree with Rainey; this issue also needs a much higher profile esp within the main stream media.
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
4:48pm
Media knows it would make a fool of itself as the people who benefit the most are not high income earners.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
9:11am
BigBear, people with $1.6 million in super can reap unlimited income tax free in retirement, and every cent in accumulation mode in super, which I don't think is limited at all, is taxed at concessional rates. Your figures are DEAD WRONG and grossly misleading.
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
10:21am
Tax free income from a super fund has already been taxed with most not actually benefiting form it as they lose their tax offsets.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
12:23pm
That's nonsense, BigBear. I can buy a couple of rental properties with my super money and receive income and the profits are paid to me as a pension after retirement, I pay no tax on them. If the beneficiary is in accumulation mode, they pay 15% instead of their marginal rate - which may be close to 50%. That's a huge discount.

That money isn't ''already taxed'', and it would be taxed - potentially at a high rate - if received individually by a worker rather. Similarly, company profits to shareholders may be taxed prior to distribution, but if so the tax is refunded to the recipient through franking credits, but the super fund still profits from receiving dividends that would be counted as income and taxed at the marginal rate if received by an individual.

I know folk who've put lump sums into super that was never taxed and received huge tax-free pensions as a result. One source was sale of a copyright. Not one cent of tax if it's not drawn out of the Fund prior to turning 55, and if it's then drawn as a pension, it's tax free. Too many lies justifying tax concessions.
VeryCaringBigBear
11th Jan 2018
4:02pm
Rainey it is still taxed even if it is only 15%. Super also has the lots risks mainly that the rules can be changed going forward. I weighed it all up and to me it was a better strategy to do what I did and then I had control over the assets if the rules changed. The money invested in my house is also tax free no matter who gets it after I die whereas super can be highly taxable when received as a inheritance.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
9:23am
You are missing the point, BigBear. People are plunging money into super to dodge tax. That's costing the nation money. Why is it okay, in the view of the wealthy privileged, to spend $38 billion++++ loading the super funds of the wealthy, and a crime to spend $38 billion (static and due to fall) on pensions for those who never had the same advantages and therefore never enjoyed taxpayer-funded benefits?
VeryCaringBigBear
12th Jan 2018
2:55pm
Rainey putting $25,000 to save a maximum of $4250 is hardly plunging money into super. Most of that if not al would be put in by high income earner employer so earning 30% tax for the government coffers. We certainly don't have 9 million taxpayers earning $500,000 plus a year so that $38 billion figure is complete rubbish.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
7:44pm
It's Treasury's figure, BigBear, confirmed by the Opposition and independent analysts. And it's rising fast. And 80% of the benefit is flowing to the highest 20% of income earners. Are you saying the government would lie? Why, when it makes them look so bad? If they were going to lie, it would be to tout a smaller figure and greater benefit to lower income earners.
VeryCaringBigBear
13th Jan 2018
8:13am
Maybe you should look into that $38 billion further as we don't have 40 million people in this country let alone 40 million taxpayers.
OnlyGenuineRainey
14th Jan 2018
8:40am
But... but... but.... nobody seems to question $37 billion on aged pensions. I know which of the two figures I'd consider to be more credible. But then, belief comes down to politics, doesn't I?. It's ''greed'' when the poor want a small share of the pie, but it's ''entitlement'' when the affluent manipulate to take more than their share. It's fair to inflate the numbers and lie to demonize the poor, but we must NEVER expose the obscene selfishness of the well off.
Bes
10th Jan 2018
11:00am
HOW DID WE GET INTO THIS CRAZY SITUATION?
When the Coalition showed their true colours you got angry and elected the ALP/Greens.
When the ALP/GREENS showed their true colours you got angry and elected the Coalition.
It has ALWAYS been ONE or the OTHER, and with an electorate full of complacency they TAKE US FOR GRANTED!
THEY ARE OPENLY TRADING AUSTRALIA AWAY TO FOREIGN COUNTRIES!
WE ARE DYING IN OUR STREETS and they tell us to be vigilant, while it costs a fortune to keep up the surveillance on people THEY brought into our country!
When a new or other Party suggests to you that NEITHER Party is looking out for YOUR best interests….you say they can’t be trusted and it would be crazy to vote for a new party!
BUT the real definition of CRAZY is doing the same thing OVER and OVER again
And hoping for a different RESULT!
WAKE UP AUSTRALIA!
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
1:39pm
What crazy situation? I think if one plans for retirement then they are in a great situation.
TREBOR
10th Jan 2018
3:55pm
Man - you gotta be rich to even think that way..... many people don't get it that good....
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
9:09am
No Trebor - not necessarily rich. But reasonably affluent and willing to play a dirty game with rules devised by the unconscionable, selfish and greedy who have no regard for the future of the nation. And according to BigBear, OG, and a few others, those with the integrity to decline to play should suffer.
wellwisher
10th Jan 2018
4:42pm
It is very disrespectful to call Aged Pension as welfare. All of us has paid taxes through our working years to support welfare and aged pension. Welfare misuse in the country can easily pay for aged pension. Govt. spending on disability pension is a welfare and drastic steps are required to stop the misuse of this welfare. The government has continually eroded the aged pension entitlement and is finally refusing to return the money paid in tax by us during our working years. The government in power seems to be working only for rich who are rorting the tax system through the abuse of negative gearing and manipulating money through tax heavens, complex family trusts and other means.
VeryCaringBigBear
10th Jan 2018
4:46pm
I love being on welfare OAP and I certainly don't find it disrespectful at all.
ex PS
11th Jan 2018
9:58am
By the way BigBear has organised his retirement I would say he is faring very well indeed.

No nothing wrong with welfare, but there is a lot wrong with a government that has a policy of demonizing those who need to access it. Make O.A.P. recipients welfare receivers and it is easier for them to avoid public opinion when they decide to screw them over.
OnlyGenuineRainey
12th Jan 2018
9:09am
There is a lot wrong with demonizing those aged who need a pension. There's a hell of a lot more wrong with demonizing and depriving those whose responsible life choices and hard work positioned them with somewhat lesser needs, but still far from wealthy.
JoJozep
11th Jan 2018
10:45am
It's funny how we attack politicians for their poor response to the nation's problems. Do we need to look inwardly at why we voted them in in the first place. I bet it was because of self interest, human nature tells us to survive, we have to get what we personally (as opposed to what we need), want.

If this is at the expense of others, at least we personally survive. So it's like shopping, buy crap and that's what you can expect. So those pushing personal bandwagons and causes, shut up and let the general public have a say.

If I had a liking for a politician, being LNP or Labour or independant, I feel insulted hearing them called Shifty Shorten, Dull Dutton, Pig Iron bob, ScoMo, etc., though some have earned the title through sheer arrogance and incompetence. They're the ones we voted for in the past. When you vote for a party, you get the excess baggage warts and all that comes with it.

It's the policies they promote that count. So what policies is the present government promoting? Some say the most important policy is to bring the budget back to surplus. Yes, but at what cost and effect?

Painting pensioners as a drain on society. Cut "welfare" spending.

Saying Big business will make the nation prosper, thus lower taxes.

Spending big on defence.

Lower taxes.

Put out enticing election promises. This is based on knowing these will hardly get through the senate after election.

These are the weapons politicians use to lure the gullible to vote them in. They do not or ever mention the disastrous consequences or their negative impacts on society as a whole.

Pensioners are a fairly easy target, and painting them as a welfare drain would appeal to middle income Australians, thinking they will get tax relief not contributing towards pensions. Young people never look too far ahead, when sooner rather than later they also will become dependant on a pension.

Tax relief for big business (BB) will generate prosperity. Here is what BB will actually do. BB will do things to improve their bottom line or profit to become more efficient- 1.Reduce costs (read sack workers/staff). 2. Reduce wages 3. Pay hefty bonuses to their top Ceo's to increase profits (read sacking workers/staff). 4. Shift profit to overseas tax havens (read rob Australia of any gains) 5. Pay as little tax in Australia as possible (read robbing Australians of deserved profit. 5. Reduce services (read shifty Australia Post) to reduce costs. 6. Do little maintenance or anything that costs money (read poorer train services, power transmission faults etc.,) 6 Downsizing, (read raise prices, inferior products, smaller building requirements).

Spending big on defence. Are we being threatened? A good defence force is worthwhile. but only if it is for defence. Sending our planes to Syria/Iraq to bomb hapless villages so as to keep the Air Force occupied, or our troops to Afghanistan. To do what exactly? Getting our major equipment from Overseas costing Billions with Aussie Dollars going out like a house on fire and ending up with half a dozen of this and that, then spending more billions servicing them, may be a military major's or Air Force or Naval Chief's dream, but why do Pensioner's have to bear the brunt.

Lower taxes. Generally for BB. It is disgusting companies like Apple, pay little or no tax in Australia. To give them a further tax break is obscene. How many Apple products are produced in Australia?
You don't need to be a brain surgeon to figure that one out. Where is our car industry gone? Ford, GM and Toyota in the US and Japan know that cheap labour and Robots are the key to low prices. How can we buy these products that benefit the big corporations overseas when there are fewer and fewer Australians working, so one day the Corporations will fall on their own swords, there won't be anyone buying their cars. See what happened here with world cutting edge technology. We designed and produced the first GM Commodore electric car in the world. Never heard of a Commodore that was 100% electric or a 100% electric Ford Territory (not a hybrid). That's because Detroit shut both projects down so as not to compete with their inferior designs which Australia beat them to the punch by a full four years. So where was the LNP government with help for these budding industries, cut down before they were even announced?

Getting back to the point, It's politicians' policies that impact on everyone and not so much personalities. Here the press has a lot to answer for, because they like to promote the person not their policies. These are the news grabbing headlines, things like eating a raw onion gets more press space than a 60 billion submarine deal.

Wake up Australia. We are heading into oblivion.
OnlyGenuineRainey
11th Jan 2018
12:06pm
Who would you suggest we vote for then? Personally, I don't see we have any valid options, and that's my beef. The system is so messed up that we can't even vote out those with policies we dislike, and telling them falls on deaf ears.
Knows-a-lot
12th Jan 2018
5:44pm
Yes we do - the DLP.
JoJozep
12th Jan 2018
9:15am
Rainey, you're right about limited election choice. You ask who would I vote for? Personality wise I like some politicians in the LNP but dislike a lot of them, probably more than I like. Policy wise, Labour leaves all other parties for dead. They are streets ahead on everyday things like education, health,the economy (yes, they have the average working Australian in front, and don't kowtow to big business and they avoided the meltdown under the GFC). Their immigration policy is more humane and we should consider the plight of the less fortunate displaced by wars we helped to create. I don't like opportunistic economic migrants, though guess who allows in immigrants if they are rich business people, yep, the LNP, showing their hypocrisy. All the other parties don't have a big picture so their policies either don't exist or their narrow vision leaves the majority of the population in the cold.

Note carefully how the LNP always tries to paint the Labour party as inferior, to make themselves look good. I can't stand their motto of "born to rule" as they always favour the rich and upper class first, thinking if you make people rich, they will generate wealth for the rest of the economy. Well, you tell me how many people who become rich, turn around and help the poor. Pig's arse said one famous rich person who I did admire as a very honest person when it came to dolling out his wealth. So get the message right LNP, making some lucky people rich WILL NOT trickle down to the less fortunate. Everyone is born with self preservation and greed and the rat race sees to it that this fault of human nature is maintained. That keeps the rich rich and the poor poor.

Politics stinks in Australia, so all we can do is choose the party with the majority of good policies. That's my view.
VeryCaringBigBear
12th Jan 2018
2:48pm
Australia just cannot tolerate another Rudd and Gillard let alone a Shorten to create an even bigger mess.
Knows-a-lot
12th Jan 2018
3:41pm
It's the Lieberals and the Hillbilly-morons-in-ridiculous-hats that are destroying the joint, BigBear. The ALP are builders - and have been ever since WW2.
Knows-a-lot
12th Jan 2018
5:45pm
Two alternatives: Pauline Hanson or the DLP.
ex PS
14th Jan 2018
10:26am
God, if Pauline Hanson is the answer, it must have been a really stupid question.
Knows-a-lot
14th Jan 2018
11:39am
Hanson herself is none too bright, but she is a lightning-rod for the important issues. And there's the DLP.
professori_au
12th Jan 2018
6:44pm
I have been ready the many comments and if I was the government I would be concerned. Recapping some comments that the aged pensions was payment for service made by a politician. correct. I was also a payment made through our taxes a percentage and I cannot recall the actual figure but I believe it was around 7%. so the pension contract was paid for. Another point made was well woman came into the workforce so the pension had to apply to them. why not? woman were exploited then as they were paid roughly 75% of a male wage, so I would argue that I a hidden tax that government and industry colluded with. When I was in the public service a director friend asked me to comment on the proposed compulsory superannuation. My response was the concept was good. However, unless it went into a special fund that government could not get their sticky fingers in many people would not receive a full pension. Also, superannuation should not be industry or union controlled and would need some sort of guarantee from the government of the returns. How many have lost their superannuation or had it reduced because of poor investment by the corporations set up to manage the funds. Also how many times has government changed the rules. Someone made a comment that people invested in super to get out of paying tax. You don't get out of paying tax because when you go to receive it you will be taxed then. It is only the very rich and powerful that government assists to get out of paying tax, not you or I the Mr and Mrs Average. These are just a few comments on what I could go on and on. My understanding of Welfare was something given without bias or conditions. It was part of the community psyche; to help someone in need and you did it because you wanted to and not because there were conditions or obligations. There are still thankfully people in the world who do these things without any expectation of getting something back
Budge
13th Jan 2018
9:06am
Aged pensioners should never be classed as welfare recipients!
Those who have worked and paid tax all of their lives helping to keep this country running.
Generally those people who have contributed most to society ie care workers, are amongst the lowest in terms of income and assets. If anything a bonus should be paid to those who have worked all of their lives, especially if with nurses and teachers, they have worn their bodies out doing so!
Grateful
13th Jan 2018
11:33am
Calling the pension "welfare" must be the classic oxymoron of the century. T
That government which pays some pension to a couple, for example, who live in a million dollar home and have an additional $800,000 in other assets, while reducing the pension by 50% for each dollar earned over $150 p.w.. The highest "tax" rate for anyone!!!
It needs a total overhaul, starting with an overhaul of that government.
OnlyGenuineRainey
14th Jan 2018
8:31am
Yes, well be thankful for being subject to the income test and only paying 50%. Many subjected to the cruel assets test pay well over 100% ''tax' - regardless of the value of their home, which in some cases is very modest. Many suggest that's okay though, because apparently it's a crime to save for retirement in this country unless you can very wealthy. The middle of the road saver couple is bashed until their savings reduce to less than $500K, which results, quote logically, in people manipulating to appear to have less, which in turn results in higher pension costs and less for the genuinely hard up. Dumb logic!

You are right. The system needs a total overhaul. The first priority needs to be ensuring that the neediest are adequately looked after, but the next should be ensuring there is a fair reward for effort and incentives for people to work and save, while at the same time cultivating a conscience in regard to tax - an understanding that it the cost of living in a healthy society and it's a privilege and honour to be able to pay and not something ANYONE should seek to minimize - just as it's shameful to take more welfare than you need. (But people will while the penalty for being ethical is so harsh.)
Blondie
13th Jan 2018
3:00pm
I think the most amusing, and naive comments on here, has to be ' gender fluidity theories'! Really?! I think perhaps information re human sexuality needs to be learned by some in our community. NO ONE chooses ' gender fluidity'......the broad spectrum of human sexuality is in the individuals' genes. As for the correct definition of the pension: NOT welfare, but part of a humane country's support of its aged population, fulfilling the social contact with its citizens. Play nice, people.....cease the nastiness, point scoring, and yes.....IGNORANCE.
Knows-a-lot
14th Jan 2018
11:41am
Tell that last sentence to that ignorant harridan Rainey.
TREBOR
14th Jan 2018
6:44am
Oh, well - got YLC half-persuaded about the propaganda value of the use of terms like 'welfare' - they put it in inverted commas now to signify that this is merely a provisional use of a word and is not a definition! Three or four more years and they might refuse to use that derogatory term for social security.

Damn - the work is hard... but the work is mine.
jzb
15th Jan 2018
11:54am
Why not cease giving money to hundreds of countries around the world and look after it's own citizens first, pay off the national debt and then think about helping others!!!
bill
15th Jan 2018
2:48pm
it is definitely not welfare It is a scheme that we have paid for in one way or another for our entire working lives and is unfortunately treated as a football by not only the present but also past governments.
need a few more bucks for parliamentary pension??......hit the OAP
more money for a dodgy campaign??......hit the OAP
waste money on a plebiscite ?? hit the OAP
clowns will always elect clowns to positions of power and in Australia those clowns run the country.
Pensioners are treated like third class citizens and its time that their welfare was prioritised.
Franky
18th Jan 2018
2:24pm
The age pension needs to be universal and is a right of every working Australian after paying tax all their working lives. It's totally wrong to asset and means test it, I don't know of other developed countries that do this.


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