6th Mar 2018
Opposing views on the adequacy of the Age Pension
Author: YourLifeChoices
Opposing views on the Age Pension

YourLifeChoices asked the Federal Government, the Opposition and a key welfare organisation for their responses on whether the Age Pension was sufficient to meet the needs of retirees living on the edge.

The question

The current Age Pension, with supplements, for singles is $894.40 per fortnight. The YourLifeChoices Retirement Affordability Index™ has found that fortnightly expenditure for the cash-strapped single – that is, a person who rents – is $863.64. The situation for cash-strapped couples who rent is worse – a fortnightly pension each of $674.20 (with supplements) and a fortnightly expenditure each of $687.04. The drivers for the latest cost-of-living increase are fuel and power. Even with the modest rent assistance supplied, these retirees are living on the edge. What is the solution? 

The answers

Spokesperson for the Department of Social Services

The Australian Government appreciates the important economic and social contribution that senior Australians make to our community and is keen to ensure that all pensioners’ living standards are safeguarded by the Age Pension system.

Pensions increase regularly. Base pensions are indexed twice a year – in March and September – to the higher of the two increases in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) and the Pensioner and Beneficiary Living Cost Index (PBLCI). 

PBLCI was introduced to ensure pension indexation better reflects changes to pensioners’ costs of living. It takes into account the goods and services pensioners buy – not what the rest of the community buys. The PBLCI basket of goods and services is weighted to recognise that pensioners spend more of their income on essentials, including food, health, clothing, telephone calls and postage.

After indexing to price increases, base pension rates are then benchmarked to 41.76 per cent of Male Total Average Weekly Earnings for pensioner couples combined. The single rate of pension is two-thirds of the combined couple rate.

These arrangements ensure pension rates are more responsive to pensioners’ actual living cost increases and keep pace with community living standards as measured by wages.

Since 20 September 2017, maximum pension rates are:

  • $894.40 a fortnight or $23,254.40 a year for singles;
  • $1348.40 a fortnight or $35,058.40 a year for pensioner couples combined.


The YourLifeChoices Retirement Affordability Index™ has found that fortnightly expenditure for a single pensioner who rents is $863.64 and fortnightly expenditure for pensioner couples who rent is $687.04. The question compares these amounts to the fortnightly pension rates listed above.

However, pensioners who rent in the private rental market can also receive Rent Assistance. Single pensioners who live alone may be eligible for Rent Assistance of up to $133 a fortnight, while couples may be eligible for Rent Assistance of $125.40 a fortnight.   

The question also mentions increases in costs of fuel and power. Where the costs of goods and services purchased by pensioners increase, these increases are reflected in the CPI and PBLCI, which are used to index pensions.

The Government provided a one-off Energy Assistance Payment to recipients of the Age Pension, Disability Support Pension and Parenting Payment Single, as well as to veterans and their partners who are paid the Service Pension, the Income Support Supplement or relevant compensation payment. The payment provided one-off assistance to those who have been impacted by recent increases in energy prices and who have limited ability to earn extra income to cover the additional costs while other energy reforms take effect. The rate of payment was $75 for singles and $62.50 for each eligible member of a couple and was received by the majority of recipients by 30 June, 2017. The payment is non-taxable and does not count as income.

For people who are struggling financially, Centrelink has social workers who can assist in several ways, including helping with claims for payments and providing information about, or referring customers to community support services, including the Commonwealth Financial Counselling Program. 

The program provides confidential financial counselling services free of charge to people in low-income groups who are experiencing financial difficulty.

An appointment to see a social worker can be arranged by phoning Centrelink on 13 2850 for the cost of a local call. Calls made from mobile phones may incur additional costs. 

Jenny Macklin, Shadow Minister for Families and Social Services

We can’t allow the Government to make any further cuts to the Age Pension.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and Treasurer Scott Morrison proposed axing the Energy Supplement in the 2016 Budget, but haven’t been able to get this through the Senate. 

Axing the supplement would cost new single pensioners $14.10 a fortnight or $365 a year. Couple pensioners would be $21.20 a fortnight or around $550 a year worse off.

We also need to ensure we maintain the link between wages growth and pension indexation.

In the 2014 Budget, the Abbott Government tried to cut pension indexation by $23 billion over a decade. It would have seen the pension cut by $80 a week after 10 years.

On the issue of deeming rates, it has been nearly three years since the rates were adjusted.

Interest rates have fallen from 2.25 per cent in February 2015 to 1.50 per cent today, yet Mr Turnbull has done nothing.

Deeming rates are supposed to reflect returns across a range of investment choices available in the market, but the Turnbull Government has failed to act by lowering deeming rates. It is well past time that he acted, and brought them into line with real rates of return.

Labor understands that in today’s low interest rate environment, pensioners find it very difficult to get a reasonable rate of return on their savings.

The Turnbull Government should do the right thing by lowering the deeming rates to provide some relief to Australian pensioners. 

Joel Pringle, Advocacy Campaigner, The Benevolent Society

Recent research by The Benevolent Society shows that people on the Age Pension who are renting are increasingly forced to choose between mashing food instead of seeing a dentist, or turning off the hot water system and dealing with the health consequences later. This is how people manage when the basic costs-of-living exceed their income.

Utilities are one factor in cost increases, but the running down of Commonwealth Rent assistance and social housing stocks are the greatest factors causing hardship in private rent.

Other factors that result in people doing it tough on the pension include illness and being or becoming single. In response, we hear governments blaming people for their circumstances – an attempt to shift responsibility from the fact that government decisions create the economies and society that we live in.

Addressing poverty and hardship are a priority.

Instead of tax cuts, the Government could bolster Rent Assistance or subsidise dental health care. Governments have politicised the Age Pension over many years, and the solution is to hold them accountable for it.   

Here is the December-quarter Retirement Affordability Index™ ready for you to download in PDF format.

 Last year, we spent many long hours creating and testing a ‘one-stop-shop’ online tool that helps pre-retirees and retirees plan or check their pension entitlements. The result is the RetirePlanner™ – yours for just $19.95. And the amount is fully refundable if you’re not totally satisfied. 

 

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    COMMENTS

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    Cowboy Jim
    6th Mar 2018
    11:02am
    Couple to separate officially, one partner giving a daughter's address for CentreLink purposes - 2 single pensions equals $46000 per annum instead of $35000. Have seen it done time and again. If you have no assets and no other income you will get away with that, no
    worries. Should you get caught they won't put you in jail as that would cost even more. Most people probably do not know that common rort because they live in better off locations.
    Puglet
    6th Mar 2018
    1:05pm
    CB your idea of ‘separating’ would help those who are really struggling and I’d never criticise anyone who does it. But why should those who need extra help have to commit a crime in order to eat, and pay bills? When we do this sort of thing we allow successive governments to pretend there is no problem and that’s wrong. The aged have contributed to the riches this country has and it is shameful that Australia doesn’t care enough for the vulnerable to ensure they are well fed and warm.
    Anonymous
    6th Mar 2018
    2:05pm
    Bloody thieves
    jackie
    6th Mar 2018
    5:12pm
    Isn't this what Julie Bishop is doing? She claims a lot more money too.
    Anonymous
    6th Mar 2018
    6:18pm
    Does that make it right

    Bishop has no morals and neither are those that rort the system to get more benefits
    patti
    6th Mar 2018
    11:25am
    At least if you are part of a couple you can pool your resources. It is very hard for a single who lives alone to afford all the outgoings. It cost the same to have a light on or to heat a room, however many people are in that room. It costs the same to register, insure, and put fuel into a car, however many people travel in it. Am I making sense here?
    Cowboy Jim
    6th Mar 2018
    11:35am
    You make some sense patti but most of the people in my neighborhood run 2 cars as they always had 2 cars when they were working and are not willing to change their way of life. In my case
    we have one car only but our lives are not always like being joined at the hip. We spend our days differently and certainly need more money than our parents did - Dad gardening and Mum knitting and doing conserves. Also they had one plug in a room and a radio was on and later a TV and every evening like Dave and Mabel. Today's couples could not be further from that.
    sunnyOz
    6th Mar 2018
    11:52am
    Patti - you are so right. I am a few months off Old Age Pension eligibility, and being single, scares me like hell. I have many friends - both couples and singles - already on the full OAP, and without exception, the couples manage far better.
    My elderly neighbor in her mid 80's - her husband died 2 years ago, and she has experienced first hand how much the financial drain is, when going from couple to single pension. As she said - all the bills really stayed the same - electricity, rates, health insurance, home insurance, car insurance and rego (needed due to rural area and no public transport). She said even food bill has only decreased marginally. As she says, you can't buy half a lettuce for half the price - she still needs to buy the lettuce, just ends up throwing most of it (unless she eats all meals in a row with lettuce!)
    On the other hand, I have 2 close friends (one male, one female) who have been friends ONLY for over 50 years. Both still with mortgages when they hit OAP time, they pooled their resources and built a dual living single house - each have their own private living area, but with joint kitchen (each have own fridge), laundry, etc. And no mortgage! The absolute HELL they go through with Centrelink is a disgrace! They can now afford to live, it is security when one is away, the guy needed day surgery recently - friend drove. But Centrelink are desperate to stop paying 2 x single OAP... More people will be doing this - I suppose next they will be trying to push 2 males or 2 females onto a couple pension! Can't win!
    jackie
    6th Mar 2018
    12:28pm
    I agree patti it is cheaper living as two instead of one.
    missmarple
    6th Mar 2018
    4:04pm
    Quite true patti, I am alone and pay private rent, live in a rural town with no big supermarkets to save on shopping, to do this I have to travel 1 hr 1way cost of petrol etc, and when the Government say pensioners get a raise twice yearly whoopee a whole $6.00 and everything else goes up as well twice fold
    Farside
    6th Mar 2018
    4:22pm
    You often hear singles complain about the disadvantages compared with couples, yet you don't see suggestions on how singles can get together to share as with couples.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    6th Mar 2018
    9:36pm
    I disagree. As a couple, we need a much larger home than I would need as a single, with accompanying higher rates, insurance and energy costs. I have special dietary needs so we don't combine food purchases. We need two vehicles because we have very different hobbies, interests and activities. Singles can share costs just as easily as couples if they wish to.

    I know many singles who share and get much more income between them than a couple who declare their union honestly, and I see that as grossly unfair.
    Anonymous
    7th Mar 2018
    6:05pm
    Only Greedy Rainey wants more and more - and if she can syeal that from the wealthy , shes happy
    Need 2 cars,
    need twice the house, need this , need that
    Its not NEED Greedy - its WANT
    And you WANT it for free
    George
    7th Mar 2018
    8:28pm
    It is a ridiculous system which promotes couples to separate (or pretend to be not couples), with many singles also sharing accommodation (without being labelled couples, but sharing costs) corrupting the system.
    It is also ridiculous when one person in a couple becomes eligible (based on Age), then they only pay half of a couple's rate, not the single's rate.

    It would be far better to scrap any couples rates, and simply pay everyone a single rate - no need to check if you have a partner, and since when (refer Barnaby)!
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    8th Mar 2018
    1:08pm
    Raphael, I DO NOT draw any kind of pension or benefit, so I am ENTITLED to the house and cars I deem necessary for mine and my partner's comfort. I earn the money to pay for these things, and I pay tax to support others - many much richer than I - who get pensions. I even pay tax to support GREEDY DISHONEST PEOPLE who claim pensions they don't need after gifting all their money. So don't accuse me of greed.

    I was stating FACT - that many couples are no better off than singles, for a multitude of reasons. It is NOT a fair assumption that singles suffer the same costs as couples. Neither is it sensible to encourage marriage breakups or dishonest claims of not being in a relationship because the pension penalizes honest people who are in relationships. George is correct on that point.

    And anytime now, I will accept your apology, Raphael, for your untruthful and insulting accusation. I get nothing for fee and I want nothing for free. Get it through your thick skull, and stop being so nasty. As for the wealthy, IF I could take anything from them, it would only be repayment for the massive theft and exploitation I've suffered. But I cannot and would not try to take anything from the greedy scum who take pride in ripping off this nation and then dole out vile insults with no attention to facts.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    8th Mar 2018
    1:10pm
    BTW. I'm sure I saw a claim by you, Raphael, that you only make comment and do not engage in personal attacks. Well, it doesn't get much more personal, vile, or dishonest than the attack you make on me here. So don't ever again pretend virtue.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    9th Mar 2018
    3:32pm
    Sounds to me OGR that you let pride get in the way of getting what you are entitled to receive.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    10th Mar 2018
    12:01pm
    Not pride, BigBear - PERSONAL INTEGRITY. Something you clearly lack. And respect for the hard-working taxpayers who fund pensions and clearly want them to benefit the needy and the deserving, and NOT THE CHEATS.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    10th Mar 2018
    5:36pm
    Well your warped sense of integrity is cheating out of what is rightfully yours to have.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    11th Mar 2018
    7:06am
    No, my INTEGRITY is enabling me to hold my head up in the community and know that my honesty is benefiting others. It's ensuring I don't have to be ashamed of depriving others of what is rightfully theirs by cheating and selfishness.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    11th Mar 2018
    12:24pm
    Charity begins at home not at someone else's discression if you should be given it.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    12th Mar 2018
    6:38pm
    ''Charity'' is giving to those in NEED, not those in unmitigated GREED.
    Troubadour
    6th Mar 2018
    11:58am
    Yes we are managing now OK - but very basically. It does concern me how I or my husband would manage if and when one of us dies. You still have to use the same utilities and they are the main source of expenditure. On one pension it will be much harder to balance.
    Jansview
    6th Mar 2018
    12:37pm
    Trust me, it is. All the utilities still cost the same. Same costs to run the car, even food costs aren’t much cheaper. Lawns still have to be mowed and if your like me and not able to do them yourself. Repairs that a man can do around the house as a woman you have to learn quickly or pay other people. The list goes on. At least is you rent you call the landlord or letting agent. Not if you own your own home.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    7th Mar 2018
    10:38am
    I would sell up and buy a smaller home with no lawns or gardens, and since due to health issues, I have to pay a mower man now, I would be far better off. Everything you say is circumstantial. It's not a question of single or married, but rather personal situation.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    11th Mar 2018
    12:28pm
    Mowing is my favourite job and the day I can't drive around on my ride on is the day I realise that the time has come to leave this mortal world.
    Jansview
    6th Mar 2018
    12:32pm
    I am on a DSP, I’m 61 and was assessed several years ago as being able to work less than 8 hrs per week. That means for me it is almost impossible to earn extra money from any source or, as we all know, then Centrelink is on our case. I own my own home, so house and contents insurance, water, power, gas, council rates, lawn care, the list goes on. I have a 9 year old car, so rego, petrol, tyres. It hasn’t been serviced in over 12 months because I can’t afford it. Health Insurance. Medications, even with the Health Card. I take 8 different prescription medicines every day. Then there’s groceries. I sat down this week and started doing a spreadsheet of all my outgoings. For the next 3 pensions I’ve calculated that even without the lawns, medicines, food or petrol there is nothing left, and that includes a $500 top up from an allocated pension fund. My point here, it’s not only renters doing it tough. I gave up a job to look after my Mother for 8 years - she had very bad mobility and dementia issues. That would have saved the Government thousands, but cost me thousands. When I did put her in a home they killed her with neglect in less than 6 months. None of us like handouts I’m sure, and if I could work I’d love to but a) I couldn’t do it consistently because of my health but also b) where is the incentive. There isn’t any. If a person is willing to work after retirement age make it tax free. Don’t hound them to report earnings every 2nd week and then cut the pension back because they’ve gotten off their bot and done something.
    KB
    6th Mar 2018
    2:10pm
    It is tough on the DSP as I am on it too, There will be a little increase in March.I am sorry about the way your mum was treated. Every state has a Seniors Card which entitles you to free public transport and discounts. I looked after my mum too and I know how know how hard it I Best of luck you.
    jackie
    6th Mar 2018
    5:15pm
    Jansview...you are lucky you got the DSP...there are many sick people on NSA...I think the DSP is more than the Aged Pension too.
    TREBOR
    6th Mar 2018
    5:30pm
    Same Jackie - I was the one who fought Howard for the introduction of the Utilities Allowance for DSP - I posted the 'Reality Cheque' from the Department Of Second Class Pensioners, and shamed the little bastard into offering it just before his final, fatal election.
    SuziJ
    7th Mar 2018
    8:42am
    Jansview, I am also 61 and on a DSP. It was granted just under 20 years ago.

    I live in a Rural city, and don't have an expensive rental cost. My DSP is just enough to pay for all my expenses, with not much left over to put aside for any contingencies, eg new battery or tyres for my car.

    Jackie, the DSP, Carer & Age Pension all pay the same. If you rent, then add the $133 per fortnight in rent assistance, too.

    The increases don't take into account the price we have to pay for private health, which is going to go up again just after we get our first rise for the year. Mine's going up by around 90 cents (extras cover only), nor the price of our utilities which usually rise in July. Mine rose by $40 per bill, which puts paid to any increase in the pension we get.

    The 41.76% of the AWME should be at least 65%, and the single payment rate should be at least 75% of the couple rate. Then we, as singles may be able to afford the prices we have to pay, which doesn't change what the energy companies charge you, as you pay the same price for a 2 bedroom unit here for a single, as you would pay for a couple.

    6th Mar 2018
    12:54pm
    I was doing ok on a single DSP pension, then I got married at age 64 for the first time, So then my pension was reduced to the married rate. Now I'm 65 and had to apply 3 times to go on OAP because of Centrelink stuff ups. But now my migrating wife who is not yet a permanent resident of Australia is legally allowed to work but my pension is then reduced even further. Some fortnights all I get is $220 Our wonderful government expect a foreigner to support me because they wont. All I can say is never marry a younger working spouse if you are retired, The pension is all I have by the way no other income at all. So not every Australian gets the OAP at all, not the full one at least.
    HS
    6th Mar 2018
    1:41pm
    I went to a local dentist in 2008 to have a broken tooth repaired. The receptionist said that I need to have my teeth cleaned by the dentist's assistant for $260 before the dentist could see me plus it would cost more for the work done by the dentist. I walked out thinking whether the dentist would be happy to be charged $260 for having his/her car washed and cleaned before a car mechanic could service his/her car.
    OAPs can not afford dental care, not at these rip off charges. Many OAPs are living with rotted teeth. Many OAP's are struggling to afford their utility bills let alone the expense of dental care. Insurance premiums are loaded with levies for fire services and ambulance services, etc.
    Jenny Macklin, Shadow Minister for Families and Social Services is a real trooper for the OAPs. Never give up Jenny !
    Anonymous
    6th Mar 2018
    2:05pm
    HS, Most towns have a government dentist, I went the other day, it cost $45 a visit, May be your local hospital has one there. You may have to wait a while to get in, but that's ok.
    TREBOR
    6th Mar 2018
    5:32pm
    Rinse with mouthwash/de-plaque stuff, run the dry electric brush over that - then brush with toothpaste. Teeth feel like slick rocks... smooth as marbles....

    I was shocked when the government dentist told me they weren't clean because the silly teeth kept committing root nerve suicide.... buggar - what do I have to do?
    HS
    6th Mar 2018
    8:57pm
    Thanks stay single.
    HS
    6th Mar 2018
    9:08pm
    Thanks TREBOR but your advice is useless for anyone with rotted teeth or no teeth left to speak of.

    I'll tell my grandson to become a motor mechanic and charge $260 for a mandatory wash and clean of customer's cars before he starts any work on them. At least this way he will be able to afford the excessive dental care charges. Dentists need cars in good working order as much people need good smooth marble teeth.
    KB
    6th Mar 2018
    2:01pm
    It is hard if you are on either a disability or aged pension, Bothe payments will go up a little in March. Patti I agree with you. I am single and my daughter lives with me .We pools our resources together to pay the bills. Neither of us have car Centrelink has ways and means of finding out if you are rorting the system even just to make ends meet,
    TREBOR
    6th Mar 2018
    5:35pm
    A very little in March... cant wait to hear if we get an extra $0.50 or maybe enough to buy a loaf of bread on special.

    As a carer I spent nearly a tank of fuel Saturday night chasing up a doctor and a pharmacy for the ex who needed urgent medication, and her scripts were locked in the local pharmacy. All the way to the big city and back.

    Should be on the politician no pay for service and fuel system.
    HS
    7th Mar 2018
    3:34am
    Under the current Liberal government the pension indexation resulted in a $156 per year increase. Under the previous Labor government it was double that, approx $312 a year.
    Axing the supplement would cost new single pensioners $14.10 a fortnight or $365 a year. Couple pensioners would be $21.20 a fortnight or around $550 a year worse off.
    Cost of living, food health, clothing and housing is going up but OAPs are going backwards.

    Pensioners in the below mentioned countries receive
    100% of a working wage when they retire. Pensioners in the UK are suffering the worst deal of any OECD country, whereas Croatians receive 129% of their working wage.

    Pensioners in the Netherlands, Turkey and Croatia receive more than 100% of a working wage when they retire. Indeed, Dutch and Turkish pensioners get 101% and 102%, respectively, but Croatians receive a generous 129%.

    That is according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), which analysed data from its 35 member countries and a number of other nations. The data, compiled as part of the OECD’s Pensions at a Glance 2017 report, also reveals India (99%), Portugal (95%), and Italy (93%) have very competitive pension rates.

    The lowest pension in the developed world are mentioned below:-

    - At the other end of the scale, pensioners in the United Kingdom suffer from the worst deal of any OECD country, receiving just 29% of a working wage when they retire. To put this into perspective, the OECD average is 63% and the average for EU member states is 71%.
    Elsewhere, the pension rate in the United States is 49%, while in China, which is home to more than 1.4 billion people, the rate is 83%, OECD data shows.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    7th Mar 2018
    10:47am
    UK worst at 29%. But if I read the article correctly, Australia is worse than that at less than 21% for a member of a couple (41.76% for a couple combined) and about 28% for a single. Are my calculations correct?
    HS
    7th Mar 2018
    11:42am
    I think it's more like 31.4%
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    7th Mar 2018
    3:08pm
    Still pathetic, HS. But thanks for that. I'd like to see how the calculations are done. Regardless, it makes Australia appear very disrespectful of it's ageing by comparison with other nations.
    HS
    7th Mar 2018
    7:26pm
    According to the OECD graph New Zealand OAPs are better off then Australian OAPs.
    George
    7th Mar 2018
    8:31pm
    Thanks, HS for the details. Instead of YLC focusing on Renters, other targeted groups, the pension simply needs to be lifted across the board, as homeowners also have large costs which renters don't have.
    HS
    7th Mar 2018
    9:45pm
    http://stats.oecd.org/viewhtml.aspx?QueryName=604&QueryType=View
    floss
    6th Mar 2018
    2:10pm
    I am not a pensioner but do not believe the treatment they are getting is fitting to the people that helped build Australia. The present Federal Government seem to be down on pensioners for reasons best known to their selves.
    Jansview
    6th Mar 2018
    3:32pm
    My friend has just turned 74, he has no real savings as he lost a lot of money due to bad financial advice when he retired and then the GFC hit and that was it for his savings. He is on the Aged Pension but also works two days a week doing bookwork. His pension is cut each fortnight, he has to report in like a dole bludger. The Government keeps telling pensioners they need to work on, but they just never give them any incentive to do so. My brother is also retired but because his wife is 65 1/2 she still has another 6 months before she can go on a pension so she’s working part time in a shop. My brother’s pension is cut though because she’s ‘still working’ - for a pittance. He occasionally gets a bit of taxi work but has to monitor that closely because again his pension is cut but he can only work until he’s reached his Work Credit limit. The pollies make sure they don’t suffer any hardship though and keep adding to their perks.
    SuziJ
    7th Mar 2018
    8:57am
    You sister-in-law should find out if she's eligible for the Age Pension, even though she is still working part time. Then if she's granted the pension, she may be able to cut down her hours.

    From July 2017, the age pension eligibility age rose from 65 to 65.5. Get her to test her eligibility from Centrelink. She should be eligible NOW, and not have to wait 6 months.
    KEVINJ
    6th Mar 2018
    4:42pm
    Poster 'PugLet", 4god's Sake,- AUS cares, heaps, IT is the Despicable "Full Of THem-SELVE S" & BrainDEAD TraveL ETC daily RORTG mongrelBRED politicians WHO doN'T care a 'TinKerS'. - YRs ago i was makg some Str & Venue based VIDeos wi T ABBOTT. a "FED": remmbr him ? ? I thought he was O.K, not like, "ALL the Others". But as "P.M", appar he Muffed It, BIG time & so"Fell on his Sword". NOW, he &, 1 0 0 s of 1,0 0 0 s Await, TURN BULL, to do thr Same. Job of "P. M", - is a Real "Poison CHALICE". Pays POOR.. Deputy pays Heaps better &, u can Tell a country Lies, abt WATER,-the Abv Brain-DEAD, Mongrel BRED "'REAL CRACKER'" pollies think,- THEY, 'OWN'. But we Have knews, for the "CONGA LINE OF SPIVS" they All are.. NO one Owns, - WATER. -This SITE Needs to V quickly ATTRACT, record Breaking POSTERS, givg their "ALL", abt Mongrel AUS politicians, WHO, have "STOLEN" FROM, KID'S FUTURES. With
    Millions of POSTS, we can 4ward the "RecordeD" posts, all over the WORLD, to other SCUM Bag GOV-TS. Which Equals, EVERY country, on the PLANET.. IT would be Likened to,a REAL Informa Revolution. To destroy PPL ahead of Their LUNATIC political POLIcies -LIKE,-"RUDD - GILLARD- RUDD" dangerous CLOWNS. Who made AUS a Laughing Stock, across the WORLD. If well-meaning PPL will 4go Insulting T.V & fill ths Very U N-Usual Site UP with experiences & get Teen-Agers To Read some, they will B better informed when lookg2 have a FAM, bec, we Don't Know, What "AUS GOV-T Wrecking BALL" Or plural, if APPLIC, is yet, to BeFall Us, b4, we RULE, the MongreLs. We know they are, BLOOD SUCKERS. Y not EDUCATE, Teen-Agers, with a FREELY avail, "EDGE", for the getting - Taking.
    jackie
    6th Mar 2018
    5:20pm
    WTF?
    TREBOR
    6th Mar 2018
    5:36pm
    I agree with your sentiment.........
    shirboy
    6th Mar 2018
    4:56pm
    I have noticed the disparity in pension payments for single person (widow) versus a couple.
    $12,000 dollars difference is huge. Owning my home & paying all the usual bills & insurances that keep inflating constantly takes it's toll on my ability to "stay above water".
    Anonymous
    6th Mar 2018
    5:08pm
    That's so true. I am really starting to think that if you own a house and live alone ,Rent the house out ,get a small camper ,and become a grey nomad, ( if your health is up to it) Better still take a FB with you, BUT don't get married. Owning your home now days can be a mill stone around your neck. To many bills to pay out every fortnight.
    jackie
    6th Mar 2018
    5:18pm
    stay single...that's a great idea. shirboy could lease a room to international students or tourist from overseas. There's another option.
    KEVINJ
    6th Mar 2018
    5:53pm
    &,What About the - EVIL, CRIMINALLY AUS GOV-T SANCTION-ED, RIP-OFF, to have a LEN S
    put into an EYE. PRVT HOSP Robber BaRon "FEE" where i was, as 'D S P' recipi, $ 1,300 for just Arrv 7.30 am, LENS in ABT 8.30, with $ 7 3 0 for Anithesist "Attending", $ 1 0 0 off, I F, paid, in 30 DAYS.. & $ 800 for Eye D R, -the Total for a piece of "Plastic" put IN by, MACH & MicroScope, Like $ 3,300. I F this $ 1,3 0 0 charge By PRVT HOSP, is NOT THEFT, WHAT I S ? ? ? O.K, the HOSP gave Me Coffee -&, SandWiches B4 leaving Premises by 11 am.. GOV-TS (#would)#wonder W H Y, we are S O Anti-, them, (Gov-TS), wouldn't THEY ??? ( # I T ) is Y, we R, Entitled, to Refer to "POLLYS",-as BLUDGERS. -MOST only, boringly "Y A P", at, Drawn Out lengthS, in Par-L I A mnts.. BUT, weirdly, they ALL are, S O differenT, after, they Have 'SO' "Kindly" given Us their 1 S T SPEECH.. I study them, to Laugh At, DIFFerence,- i see, in the "POLLY", later, in a "POISON CHALICE" Job {role } ESPecially, - a State ""P R E M I E R"". Re-read ABOUT,- just 1 LEN S, in EYE, BURGLARY cost.. & I did NOT recv, Any GOLD.
    Cowboy Jim
    6th Mar 2018
    6:49pm
    KEVINJ - take your medication please, tried to read your stuff after 2 nice Scotch whiskies, still does not make sense.
    TREBOR
    6th Mar 2018
    9:34pm
    I think he had a lens put in an eye and it cost him $1300 at a private hospital when he was on DSP and the entire operation cost $730 + $800 + WHATEVER FOR A TOTAL OF $3300.

    But they did give him sandwiches and coffee before booting him out, and politicians rabbit on in Parliament and are otherwise uselss and the State Premier job is a poisoned chalice.
    TREBOR
    6th Mar 2018
    9:36pm
    No, Mr Ambassador - El Presidente was not declaring war on the United States - the interpreter got it wrong between 'warm' as in feelings and 'war'...... could you stop the bombings now?
    TREBOR
    6th Mar 2018
    9:39pm
    "Guatemala" by Trebor - in which our long-running hero and his band of siblings are in the US Embassy there, seeking a solution to the insurrection, with a gorgeous lady as leader of the opposition there, and a ruthless military dictatorship needing to be brought to heel.....artificial intelligence suicide bombers, a rogue Special Forces lady laying a trail of dead bodies after her gay best friend is killed, air strikes by Archangel drones, and the full Monty...

    Finish it one day...
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    6th Mar 2018
    9:50pm
    The aged pension system is illogical, unfair and economically unsustainable in the extreme. It defies comprehension how any politician can be stupid enough to justify such an appallingly inefficient and inadequate system.

    It pays people to be spendthrifts, gift their assets before turning 60, over-invest in expensive housing, cheat by pretending not to be a couple, or hide assets. It punishes harshly anyone who saves for retirement - unless they achieve substantial wealth. It sets unrealistic deeming rates and ridiculously unrealistic return assumptions for those assessed under the asset test, while allowing some high income earners to keep drawing part pensions. It allows some with over $825K to enjoy concessions while others do not. It treats a 90-year-old with assets well in excess of reasonable needs (given that he has very little life left) the same as a 65-year-old whose savings potentially have to last another 30+ years.

    If you put aside $20,000 to cover the cost of eye surgery that you know will be needed sometime in your 70s, you pay a penalty of 7.8%+ on your savings and potentially have to spend that money on living expenses before the eye surgery is needed. If you get a compensation payout - intended to cover medical and special care costs - the government strips you of most of it by denying you a pension until it's all spent on living expenses, leaving nothing to cover the costs it was intended for.

    And despite all these flaws - or maybe BECAUSE they result in cheats, manipulators and big spenders getting pensions they shouldn't receive, there is not enough to pay an adequate rate to the genuinely needy.

    It's a STUPID system that only a half-witted moron could endorse, which speaks volumes about our politicians who can't see the woods for the trees. We were promised a total overhaul when the assets limits were lowered, but once again we were duped with lies from people who speak with forked tongues. They will wreck the nation before they admitthat the system is stuffed up.
    HS
    7th Mar 2018
    2:49am
    OnlyGenuineRainey, You stated that "It defies comprehension how any politician can be stupid enough to justify such an appallingly inefficient and inadequate system"
    When you take into consideration that MPs get a government pension immediately they quit parliament irrespective of the fact that they enter the private sector employment then you will understand that most of them don't give a 'rats a^rse" whether ordinary citizens on OAP are coping badly because of an inadequate pension or not. As long as MPs and ex-MPs are taken care of that's all it counts, bugger the rest and there is nothing we can do about it no matter how loudly we whinge.
    Anonymous
    7th Mar 2018
    7:38am
    So true, They are turning good people into liars ,cheats, and thieves. And its also true that we can't do anything about it HS. Both major political parties are the same now days, and neither give a stuff. So that's why there is a lot of lying, cheating and thieving going on.
    Cowboy Jim
    7th Mar 2018
    9:37am
    Well Rainey, I talked to an older bloke about that $20'000 you mentioned to be put aside for future surgery. Told me he put about that amount away before he turned 65, gave it to his solicitor in his
    strong box for safe keeping. Of course, he gets no interest but since you mentioned 7.8% interest in missed pension money he made a lot of sense to me. Cannot really do the same once you're on the pension because you told them about all your assets.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    7th Mar 2018
    10:32am
    I hope his solicitor is trustworthy, Cowboy Jim! I wouldn't trust a lawyer as far as I could kick them, and that's not very far! They are a greedy bunch of hypocritical, unconscionable thieves, and although I'm sure there are some who are honest and ethical, I've yet to meet one. I sure wouldn't entrust my savings to anyone in that profession.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    7th Mar 2018
    10:35am
    Anyway, the fact that people can manipulate their way around a bad system doesn't in any way improve it or justify it's flaws. It just highlights the wrongs in it. BigBear keeps ranting about how he cheated the system by gifting to his grandchildren, and OG praises people who ''plan'', but all they are doing is condoning a system that punishes the honest and diligent and rewards dishonesty and unethical and immoral behaviour.

    The system is WRONG and it needs to be fixed. It's not just hurting pensioners. It's hurting the nation as a whole.
    George
    7th Mar 2018
    8:37pm
    Good comments, OGR, and HS. There is only one issue - the system cannot and will not be fixed as HS has explained as it is too comfy for current politicians. So, the only options are to:
    a) Demand a complete "scrap and replace with an Universal Pension system", and
    b) all Retirees to write to their MPs demanding the above. Those MPs who won't take up the case, need to be turfed out at the next election by voting them last in preferences.

    I will give below a brief of what all can write to MPs - my suggestions which will benefit all.
    Cowboy Jim
    8th Mar 2018
    9:55am
    Take your point about solicitors Rainey. In my case the firm only has my papers, wills etc, with them and you might be right about trusting them with cash. But then a private strong box is expensive, has to
    be fire certified as well. Had a look at the ones at Bunnings but some
    -how they remind me of the old Oxo tins, certainly not fireproof, all academic now. Funds are in the bank with CL approval.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    9th Mar 2018
    3:40pm
    Just do what others do and put the $20,000 in the mattress bank.

    OAP system is great and all it takes is a bit of planning and one can do very well on it.

    Why change such a great system?
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    10th Mar 2018
    11:59am
    It's a stinking system. Why change it? Because it only benefits cheats, dishonest manipulators, and bludgers. It gives far too little to the genuinely needy and harshly punishes honesty, integrity and effort. And that's bad for the nation.

    Some of us, UNCARINGBigBear, have integrity. We DON'T WANT a system that encourages people to be dishonest and immoral. I understand that you have no ethics and are happy to have a system in which unethical people prosper, but most Australians prefer a system that encourages moral and decent behaviour and supports the needy and the deserving rather than the cheats.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    10th Mar 2018
    5:29pm
    No one that follows the rules is dishonest, immoral or unethical and anyone who thinks thet are are just jealous they didn't do the same themselves.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    11th Mar 2018
    7:08am
    Wrong, BigBear. Exploiting a flawed system is legal. It's NOT moral, honest, ethical, or decent. And I could NEVER be jealous of a cheat.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    11th Mar 2018
    12:30pm
    Those who fail to follow the rules of the game are the cheats.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    12th Mar 2018
    6:36pm
    No, Those who abuse the system, taking unfair advantage of rules that were not meant to facilitate benefits to people who have no genuine need are the CHEATS. Like YOU, BigBear. There's no escaping it. The system was NOT designed to be abused by gifting money to qualify for a pension you don't need. So doing that IS CHEATING. You are taking from people who have genuine need, and that's both dishonest and selfish in the extreme. It's unconscionable.
    Nancy
    6th Mar 2018
    11:43pm
    My husband is in a Nursing Home, We own our own home, both on single pensions.ALL of his pension plus most of his small investment goes to the nursing home.
    I pay all bills for house out of my pension, rates, gas. electricity, ect. I buy his clothes, and pay his chemist bills . Service the car. I have breast cancer and other medical conditions so also have chemist bills. My daughter lives with me and with out her help I would find hard to survive .
    Age care homes are expensive, Money taken out for labels, outings. ECT
    Dental bills, example every three months, dentist cleans and flourides my husbands teeth $299. It,s never ending . Managed to get him on Gov dental list , but may take years before
    an appointment comes up. He,82. I am 78.
    Im grateful for any increase in pension. Nancy
    Anonymous
    7th Mar 2018
    7:48am
    I'm hearing you Nancy, I think pensioners should not have to pay rates, or house insurance for that matter, That would be a big help. Lets face it ,I only pay house insurance encase the house burns down, There is a %99 chance it wont, So it wouldn't cost the government much to rebuild every house that did and it would help us in retirement.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    10th Mar 2018
    12:09pm
    And what of the struggling self-funded who are as hard up or even worse off, in some case, than pensioners, Staysingle? Should they just have to drain away all their savings until they are as poor as pensioners, and have NOTHING to show for decades of hard work and going without?

    The aged pension should be universal, but I will NEVER agree with continually increasing handouts to the lazy and irresponsible. A few years ago, Brisbane flooded. People who had paid many thousands in insurance premiums rightly received payouts to repair or rebuild. People who didn't got government handouts. Why? Where is the fairness in making taxpayers compensate for laziness and irresponsible behaviour, while insurance premiums rise because less people are willing to invest in something that has ZERO value when you can put your hand out to the taxpayer instead of paying your way?

    If rates and house insurance are free for ANYONE, they should be free for EVERYONE in retirement - not just those who didn't provide for their old age.

    I recognize that some COULDN'T provide for their old age, and they deserve help, but most COULD and didn't bother, and there's no way to differentiate reliably, so there should NOT be discrimination against those who did what's good for the nation.

    The GIVE ME mentality has wrecked this country. We need to restructure in a way that rewards effort and honesty fairly, while still supporting the genuinely needy adequately. We need to GET RID OF THE HANDOUT MENTALITY THAT IS ENCOURAGING LAZINESS AND DISHONESTY.
    silky
    7th Mar 2018
    9:21am
    isn't it amazing, our political leaders always hit the pensioners/retirees pensioners, but never touch the rip off users of the welfare system.
    disillusioned
    7th Mar 2018
    9:49am
    This is the most uncaring government I have yet experienced. They seem to be only interested in feathering their own nest (or "nests" for a number of them) and delivering as few benefits to the population as possible, be it a "slash & burn" policy for welfare services or screwing the "oldies" for everything they can get out of them, because our group is considered "unproductive", i.e. not wage earners. I know where my vote will go next elections, I am surprised this mob got back in!
    George
    7th Mar 2018
    8:40pm
    Unfortunately, the Govt and Opposition responses haven't answered the Question - whether the Pension is adequate or not. Also, the 3rd respondee is merely another weakling not demanding any strong across the board solutions, just asking for a few crumbs!

    I will suggest a few points myself - to help any forum members who wish to take up with their MPs.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    9th Mar 2018
    2:55pm
    They can't answer because the public backlash if they claim it is adequate would be horrendous, and if they say it isn't they then have to do something about it to avoid an even worse backlash. Labor don't want to be in a position of having to promise to fix things if they get into power, because they just might!
    George
    7th Mar 2018
    8:41pm
    Here are suggestions for all to write to their MPs NOW.
    We have a Broken Pension System - an ongoing significant issue affecting 100s of thousands of Australians - which is being ignored by BOTH major parties, with BOTH having attacked the pensions system.

    GOAL of a PENSIONS SYSTEM:
    “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 & When? Former Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies, at the time the pension scheme was introduced in 1946.

    KEY PROBLEMS:
    Various articles such as by Ben Hale in The Courier Mail on 10th Jan 2017, titled: “Arrogant politicians should be ready for a pensioners' revolt”, have explained the full history of Pensions in Australia including how Pensions, which were to be paid for by a 7.5% tax (which is still included in individual tax rates), were destroyed by both Labor and Liberal parties.

    In spite of Mr. Abbott’s promise “No Change to Pensions” before he got elected in 2013, Mr. Joe Hockey, with support from Mr. Abbott, and further support from Mr. Morrison & Mr. Turnbull to implement the Bill in Sep 2015, introduced a new Assets Test from 1st Jan 2017 which doubled the rate at which pensions were reduced above maximum Asset limits. An already inadequate Pensions system was thus dragged further down into a complete mess. This has resulted in a HIGHLY UNFAIR ASSETS TEST that severely punishes people who saved some money, as those over the Assets Test limits ($253,750 for Singles and $380,500 for Couples who are Homeowners) have their pensions cut back at 7.8% rate ($3 per fortnight, or $78 per annum, for every $1,000 by which they exceed these limits for Assets). Thus, if they earn 5% (considered a normal return) on assets, they are actually losing more pension than they earn from the portion of Assets over the limits! Thus, we have all heard that many people are severely tempted to spend their assets through cruises, etc, and thus increase their pensions – how ridiculous, and what a joke of a system!

    Except, of course, that fancy Pensions System set up for Politicians – who get it without Assets or Income Tests (including people serving in high-paying positions such as Mr. Joe Hockey, and many, many more). Politicians also do not have to wait for Age 67 to get their pensions. Also, the Pension amounts are massive (compared to ordinary pensioners getting maximum $23,254 for Singles and $35,058 for Couples) from 50% of base salary (currently around $200,000) after 8 years service to 75% after 18 years service, PLUS other extras based on positions held! WHY? Most people cannot see any reason why there should be a different system for Politicians. Yes, they should get back their Contributed Super and Employer Contributions – just like any other people at the same pension age, and nothing more. Their eligibility should be under the same rules as other people!


    SOLUTIONS:
    The obvious solutions to reform this disgusting system are:
    a. Remove all Special Pensions for Politicians, Bureaucrats, Judges, etc, i.e. anyone on the public payroll. Any Remuneration Committee must have Pensions & Super removed from their scope, with both Pensions and Superannuation Contributions rules to be same as for other people.
    b. Everyone must have access to the Same Pensions System regardless of occupation (except those on private Defined Benefit schemes who should not be eligible) – stop this Discrimination against the people by Politicians.
    c. Implement an Universal Pension System without any Assets or Income Tests – that is the current practice in ALL Advanced countries, WHY NOT in Australia? This can be, say,
    i. at Current Individual Pension Rate + 20% (NO need for Family / Couple Rates – NO NEED TO CHECK WHO HAS A PARTNER), or a similar Dollar rate worked out as a Percentage of Average Weekly Earnings, indexed as at present.
    ii. Along with this, allow only limited non-taxable Caps on Superannuation benefits for tax-exempt Incomes, e.g. maximum of 5% earnings on maximum $1 Million considered non-taxable.
    iii. Tax ALL INCOME above these two incomes on full Tax Rates as at present.
    iv. This should apply in full for anyone who has been a Resident of Australia for a minimum of 15 years, and taper down to a low 50% rate for those with less years of residence pro-rata – to avoid this being a carrot for new migrants coming in late close to pension age.
    d. The above change to Universal Pension will free up a lot of Centrelink staff and thus reduce Govt costs and is entirely affordable. It can be automatically calculated and administered by ATO with simple software.
    e. Re-start a new Futures Fund to put aside the 7.5% Taxes collected to allow earnings on it to be used to fund any future pensions. Roll into it the money from the current Futures Fund being used for politicians, etc. Administered without Govt interference, say as a Public Corporation.
    f. To absolutely ensure Funding is there long-term, the Govt MUST also implement a MINIMUM TAX system - say 20% of Gross Income for Companies, without any shonky deductions, especially any Overseas Costs, and 30% for Individuals (which includes the 7.5% impost for Pensions). USA has a MINIMUM TAX, WHY NOT Australia? This reform is an immediate necessity now, as we have an environment where many Companies and Rich Individuals are paying ZERO or Negligible taxes.

    CONCLUSION:
    Urgent Action is needed to raise this issue in Parliament. Please refer any Doubters to Ben Hale’s article as noted earlier, as most Retirees (especially the 420,000 Part Pensioners who lost some or all pensions from Jan 2017) are getting ready to revolt just as Mr. Hale as noted. Pensioners and Self-funded Retirees are angry and WILL take action – however, they also have a major opportunity now to fix the system and have a win-win outcome for Pensioners, Self-funded Retirees (many more than the 420,000 mentioned) & the Party(ies) adopting the Solutions listed above.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    9th Mar 2018
    3:51pm
    I can't see any pollie supporting it at all. It dogs from the rich and gives to the lazy people.
    George
    9th Mar 2018
    11:45pm
    VCBB, you missed the point about people getting ready to revolt - that means ready to turf out all current seat-warmers who won't support such change. How? By all concerned (not you) voting them last in preferences, noting there are several 100s of thousands of such concerned / affected & interested people. If you don't allow pollies to retain their seat for 8 years, they don't get their fat, undeserved pensions, that's why many will listen.

    BTW, talking about lazy people, note the obvious typo in your post, VCBB, regarding "It dogs from the rich .." - go to sleep, lazy idiot, you can't even type correctly! This is only meant for people who wish to support, no pressure on you!
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    10th Mar 2018
    11:55am
    It's true that the government gives to lazy people. It does NOT rob the rich. It hands out to them also. And BigBear is a classic example of the type that get handouts that SHOULD be given to the needy. He gave his money to grandchildren so he could claim a pension he had no moral right to. I really think it's a big rich for him to be commenting as he did, but then he doesn't WANT change, because he is happy to dishonestly manipulate to take money he neither needs nor has any moral right to.

    The people who are being robbed are the hard-working, HONEST, and responsible upper working class and lower middle class, who strive for decades to save for a comfortable retirement and than have it all taken away to hand to bludgers, cheats, manipulators, greedy rich, and a minority of genuinely needy and deserving who get far too little.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    10th Mar 2018
    12:24pm
    Thanks for your suggestions, George. I agree with much of what you say.

    Over past months, I've seen some glaring examples of what's wrong with this country. Two people told me of their experiences:

    1. A man worked hard for 50 years, bought a home, supported and educated a family, saved well, then cared for his aging father for 25 years. His sister was a drug addict who never held a job and didn't come near, or contact, their aging father for 25 years - from the time he stopped work and could no longer hand her money on demand. Father left his money to son as thanks for 25 years of care, declaring he didn't want it spend on drugs. Sister challenged will. Courts gave her 75% of the estate because ''she was needier''. She put nearly all the money into a house so she could stay on full welfare. She is now better off financially than her brother, who, having a modest home and savings, only gets a small part pension. Her brother is rightly asking ''Why the hell do we work and save?''

    2. A woman (Mrs A) and her husband worked hard in low-paid jobs for 50 years to raise and educate a family, pay off a home, and accrue some superannuation. Having lost her father when very young, she had a trust fund left by her father. Mother remarried and had another daughter (Miss B) but marriage failed and husband failed to pay support, despite being wealthy. Mrs A. gave her mother her trust fund to enable her to live in modest comfort and educate Miss B. Miss B's father died and left her substantial money but having never worked a day in her life, and indulging in a lavish lifestyle, Miss B squandered it all. Mother left most of her estate to Mrs A. saying it was recompense for having given up her trust fund for her mother and sister, and for caring for Mum in her old age. Miss B challenged the will and was awarded 80% of the estate because ''she was needier''. Miss B bought a luxury home to enable her to remain on the pension. Miss B, who never worked in her life and spent freely, is now far better off than Mrs A, who worked hard and went without to save. Yet Mrs A doesn't qualify for a pension because of her savings.

    This is the stinking destructive system that is ruining this nation by sending a strong message to people that working and saving is futile and if you bludge and cheat, you will get endless handouts. IT HAS TO STOP. It's not just the politicians overindulgence that's the problem. It's their attitude that anyone willing to learn how to profit from dishonesty and exploitation should be indulged, and anyone who behaves with integrity and works hard should be trampled on. And sadly a lot of naïve pensioners think that by attacking the workers and savers and just demanding more for the have-nothings, they can solve all the problems. They don't get that when there's nothing left to work for, people will quit and THERE WILL BE NOTHING FOR ANYBODY.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    10th Mar 2018
    5:27pm
    Another good reason to distribute your wealth before you die as you control where it goes. The more of your stories I read OGR the more grateful I am that I made the decision to divest my wealth to my grandkids.

    We have such an awesome OAP scheme that allows people to help their families and then get the full OAP. I can't think why anyone would want a better system.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    10th Mar 2018
    5:38pm
    Dogs sounds good to me as most here treat the wealthy none other than dogs with fleas.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    11th Mar 2018
    7:09am
    Decent people, with a social conscience and compassion for those in difficult circumstances, want a system that supports the needy rather than one that feeds the dishonest greedy, BigBear. UNCARING greedy, self-serving people with no integrity support a bad system that only advantages the dishonest and selfish.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    11th Mar 2018
    7:11am
    And no, nobody in Australia treats the wealthy poorly. It's the workers - working class and lower middle class - who are treated like dogs with fleas, so the rich can continue to pillage and plunder and steal and cheat.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    11th Mar 2018
    12:34pm
    Gee I'm glad I am one of those who are defined as needy now.

    The workers are not doing well today because there is no pressure on employers to increase wages. We need more workers to stop being lazy and create their own businesses and employ more people.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    12th Mar 2018
    6:34pm
    Not everyone is suited to running their own business, BigBear, and with the increasing power of huge monopolies and huge risk attached to expensive franchises, it's getting harder and harder to compete. Shopping centre owners are vultures offering unconscionable leases. I've seen dozens of very good businesses forced to close.

    What we need is a government that is focused on creating a healthy society, rather than feeding the greedy rich, the bludgers and the cheats. I never liked unions, but a union revival now would probably be good for the country.
    Jurassicgeek
    9th Mar 2018
    11:49am
    if there wasnt so many snouts in the trough from pollies and other knobs,stopping aid to corrupt regimes there would be enough for an increase to a decent level pension..something has to change
    moke
    9th Mar 2018
    3:50pm
    Its about time the big wigs looked a bit deeper into the cost of living for some pensioners. If you attend a medical practice that does not bulk bill and have to go often even after medicare you are up for quite a large sum, also if pharmacy requirements are many, after the pension increase you will find often up goes the cost of medicines and some are not cheap but must be taken for health reasons. A good idea would exempt sole pensioners from GST I think that would save a little since some things are not only taxed but have GST included. You may think I am a whinger but I have just had 2 doc bills for $120 each and a specialist bill for $520 this in 1 month and a new medicine for $32 a month plus those 5 already in use. So forget about air conditioning or a meal out hope the POLLIES are enjoying their selves with their poor income and allowances.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    10th Mar 2018
    5:41pm
    I don't get charged by GPs, specialists and pay little if anything for the very occasional meds I may need.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    11th Mar 2018
    7:04am
    Yes, but you cheat the system and take what you don't need, leaving much less for those with genuine needs, and then you brag about how well off you are. Sick and disgusting, BigBear.
    VeryCaringBigBear
    11th Mar 2018
    12:39pm
    I don't cheat the system at all. Only a fool would argue and pay when it is not required.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    12th Mar 2018
    5:15pm
    You cheat the system, BigBear. Giving money away to claim a pension you don't genuinely need is CHEATING THE SYSTEM.

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    almost a grey hair
    14th Mar 2018
    10:42am
    HS I would like to know where you collected this information on other countries, not to poo hoo your comments, but because I have an interest in this area. You failed to mention NZ. I would like to point out that in NZ you get the OAP at 65 regardless of wether you were able to or had an interest in providing for yourself. The NZ way provides incentive to have a better retirement by getting the pension without asset and income tests and using your own investments. Ps there is no stamp duty or capital gains tax on investment properties

    20th Jun 2018
    5:36pm
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    11th Jul 2018
    4:05pm
    The single rate of pension is two-thirds of the combined couple rate, thank you for this information and take a visit to this link https://www.couponseye.com/ where you can get latest discount offers.


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