Age Pension: changes better than the alternative

It’s easy to forget that the Age Pension changes were actually the preferred option.

Age pensioner counting cents after pension cuts

Many age pensioners will now have received letters in the post confirming the changes to their Age Pension. For some, the news will be good, but for others, 2017 will kick off with less income being received.

So, who will benefit? This has caused much confusion, mainly due to the way in which it was announced. When the changes were first outlined, there was an increase of $30 mentioned and many age pensioners thought they would be receiving that amount as an increase, but no, this is not the case. While the increase will vary, with $30 being the maximum increase per fortnight, it actually refers to those 120,000 on a part Age Pension who will receive a higher payment and the 50,000 part age pensioners who will now receive a full Age Pension.

And who will be adversely affected? Unfortunately, for around 91,000 age pensioners their payments will be stopped and a further 235,000 will have their pension payments reduced.

Many people are surprised that such changes have the support of the Opposition, the Greens and the Australian Council of Social Services (ACOSS), but what has been lost in the narrative is that these changes were actually seen as more acceptable than those initially announced back in 2014 when Tony Abbott was Prime Minister and Joe Hockey was treasurer.

Joe Hockey proposed the following changes in the May 2014 Budget: 

  • the qualifying age for the Age Pension would rise from 67, as it will be in 2023, to 70 by the year 2035
  • pension payments would be indexed only in line with the consumer price index (CPI)
  • the income and asset test free areas would be frozen for a period of three years
  • the deeming thresholds for financial investments would be reset (reduced)

The outcry that followed these changes was vociferous and the Coalition Government soon realised that they were not going to pass the Senate, nor be well received by the public.

Between the fallout from the 2014 Federal Budget and the announcement in May 2015 of the now legislated changes, many possible pension scenarios were mooted, one being the inclusion of the family home in the asset test.

Ultimately, it was decided that amending the asset thresholds and doubling the associated taper rate would be better received.

Those who are losing their Age Pension or will see it reduced, may beg to differ.

Opinion: Older Australians clear on Age Pension definition

If there was ever any doubt how older Australians feel about the Age Pension, YourLifeChoices members have let us know.

On Thursday we ran a quick poll that asked how you saw the Age Pension: an entitlement, a safety net or a handout. From the 2346 response we received over four days, 86.57 per cent, or 2031 YourLifeChoices members agreed that it was an entitlement.

Source: YourLifeChoices December 2016

So why then, if this is the general consensus, is there such a rush to ‘punish’ those who have for years, paid taxes to be able to receive this entitlement?

For the last seven years we have known that the qualifying age for Age Pension would increase to 67 eventually. Yet pensioners have had only 18 months to adjust to the fact that they may lose some or all of their Age Pension.

This doesn't just affect those who are currently receiving the Age Pension, but also those who have planned to retire in the next few years and have based their income calculations on the previous thresholds.

If eight years notice prior to the 1 July 2017 commencement of a gradual change to the increase in Age Pension eligibility age is possible, could the same consideration not have been given to those whose retirement plans will be hardest hit?

By all means look to balance a budget that we’re told is out of control (today’s MYEFO will confirm this), but do it in a way that people aren’t immediately penalised.

Those who will lose their part Age Pension or have their Age Pensions reduced are by no means millionaires – they’re just hard-working Australians who were fortunate enough to save a little over their working life. It would have been fairer to have excluded current pensioners from these changes, applying them gradually over the next five or 10 years. This would not only have given pre-retirees the chance to actually do something to offset the change, but it would also have given people several more years of superannuation contributions to help buffer the loss.

While these changes may be perceived by politicians as the lesser of two evils, they do very little to help the retirement income of those Australians already struggling to make ends meet. And may further discourage many more Australians from saving for retirement, as they will expect last-minute changes to the rules.

What do you think? Should the changes go ahead? Would introducing them more gradually have made them easier to absorb? Or is it better just to get the change over and done with?

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    COMMENTS

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    dougie
    19th Dec 2016
    10:26am
    The Pension is not an entitlement and never has been. It was introduced to help those on retirement who did not have the opportunity ie. earnings, to save for their retirement. Those who through fortune or family estates who were able to care for themselves were always expected to. Then greed came into it and everyone wanted a share and has been getting it. Now when the cow is drying up the tears start to roll and people who have much to bless themselves with want to freeload. This so that they can pass everything on to their families intact. What will the family do generally - an overseas trip - new expensive cars and boats.etc. Three generations from shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves was the old saying. Be honest with yourself if you have investments which are earning you good income do not call on the community to support you. By the same token if you are in need but waste the money on drugs - grog and pokies then you are not entitled to a hand up. Those who can work should work and no matter the work do it for themselves. Most of us in life have had to at some time work in positions not to our liking but we did so until we could move on to what we wanted to do. No the pension is not an entitlement it is a hand up.
    Dobbo1
    19th Dec 2016
    10:40am
    Hi Dougie, a bit harsh with your comments. I suppose you were one of the 28 who said it was a handout! In other words you are in the Minority who think that way.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:40am
    I agree one should have to append their capital as well as the interest on that capital. The days of getting the OAP to leave the kids an inheritance have gone. The heirs will have to now go economy not first class on their trip to Disneyland. That is how stupid the OAP has become by paying people who don't need it but they take it anyway as it's nice to have.
    dougie
    19th Dec 2016
    11:39am
    Dobbo1,
    No I do not think it is a handout and if you read my post you will see that I am not against the needy receiving the payments for OAP just the Greedy. I do not believe that I am a minority and in fact when discussing this very subject around our various groups and friends I find that I am in a majority. Sorry my co poster but like Malcolm I have become very wary of polls and the way they are taken to achieve the results people want.
    Dougie
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:07pm
    Nonsense - pensioners have the right to live in their home at the standard they have purchased with a lifetime of input to this nation - what they do with their assets is none of your or the government's concern.

    Simple answer is to pay everyone the Pension and tax all income over and above that at the going rate for income tax, and look deeply into those who have no apparent means of support but live the life of Riley....

    That last should scare a few here who claim hidden resources etc, and no tax etc.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    12:26pm
    My main issue is with the serious inconsistencies in the system and the gross unfairness - which has been made very much worse with changes that don't advantage the neediest one bit, but hurt some who are in genuinely difficult circumstances (despite maybe APPEARING to the IGNORANT to be well off!) due to special needs.

    The fact is that our generation was promised a pension as an ENTITLEMENT - paid for by special contributions to a retirement fund that SHOULD be adequate to serve the purpose it was designed for if filthy corrupt thieving politicians had left it alone. But now retirees are blamed for the dishonesty of politicians!

    The pension system needs revising to eliminate the powerful disincentives to saving and striving for independence. The new assets test is just plain STUPID and very destructive, because it makes it more advantageous to buy a huge house and take a cruise than to put money aside in investments to try to fund your own retirement.

    The system also encourages manipulation and even cheating, because it's so grossly unfair and so punishing to some - yet far too generous to others.

    It CAN be fixed such that the total cost of pensions reduces but people are allowed to be financially secure in old age if they worked and saved, and we prioritize benefits for the neediest. But that takes a lot more brains than a STUPID ''let's just reverse this change we made a while back. That'll save some dollars''. No. It won't. Because it might have been an unwise change back then, but investment returns have crashed and it's no longer viable to offer 7.8%+++ to people to divest savings that are only earning between 1.5% and 5%.

    It's time our overpaid fat cat politicians demonstrated competence. Throw the system out and build another from the ground up that is actually fair and economically sustainable. Or, better still, go ask a housewife who raised a family on the smell of an oily rag and retired with a few bob in the bank to show overpaid morons how to manage money properly.
    jackie
    19th Dec 2016
    12:33pm
    dougie...When the Pension was first introduced it was literally for the destitute.

    http://www.nma.gov.au/online_features/defining_moments/featured/age_and_invalid_pensions
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    12:36pm
    Very few if any of your needy people would be effected by these changes. Let's face it these people have not had the chance to accumulates large amounts of money being poorly educated, disabled and inflicted by all other sorts of reasons why not.

    Any housewife with a few bob would also not be effected as it takes more than a few bob to be effected by these changes.

    All I can say if people want to make 7.8% then they simply need to spend their money instead of saving it. Let's see the habits of a lifetime be changed. I very much doubt it as it is extremely difficult to do.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    12:53pm
    OG, you are full of crap! But of course greedy overprivileged want the responsible battlers to be deprived because they don't buy the drugs and spend up big on junk food and gambling - all the things the greedy rich make their profit from.

    Only an IDIOT would say someone with maybe 3 decades to live with no earning capacity should spend their money and risk future poverty.

    Of course someone who thinks we shouldn't celebrate Christmas could be expected to be IGNORANT and NASTY enough not to acknowledge that some folk who saved are still needy because of special circumstances. You are also cruel and nasty enough to say people born with a disability shouldn't be allowed to live. I know who should be exterminated, and it's not the cripples!
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    12:56pm
    Jackie, you may be right about that, but the world turns and we make progress. Things change - hopefully usually for the better, but not this time around. That said, if you really want the destitute to be prioritized, you would oppose a change that gives them nothing and couples with an expensive house and half a million an extra $30 a fortnight! And you'd sure oppose a change that encourages people to spend up big and put their hand out because it punishes being responsible.
    Triss
    19th Dec 2016
    12:56pm
    Dougie, why does the government invariably reduce the age pension to get the country out of a debt the politicians have racked up?
    The unfounded pension blowout for public servants stands at something like over $100 billion and rising. We have millionaire ex bureaucrats and ex politicians drawing 10 times more than age pensioners from a funding that isn't there, they're the ones who should be having their pensions cropped or stopped. The more we grumble but accept it the sooner the government will decide to stop age pensions altogether and direct it into the pockets of retired judges and pollies, etc.
    Rae
    19th Dec 2016
    1:57pm
    Or you could do as the government has and cash in those investments earning you money and splash the cash until it is all gone.
    Emps
    19th Dec 2016
    3:38pm
    When reaching the old age retirement age it is an entitlement. It is age pension. What motivates the green eyed monster as it does here as in the USA. Why do they get it? is it deserved? who's paying for it? Can the government afford it? What about us?, what about them. I get part UK pension, it is a given, never been questioned, never had a please contact us letter, nothing at all, just my regular entitlement. Just as it is and always has been in the UK, an entitlement, never questioned, accepted. That is what the old age pension is, and should be the given here also.
    Farside
    19th Dec 2016
    4:33pm
    Rainey, you and others repeatedly and consistently bang on about our generation being promised a pension as an ENTITLEMENT paid for by special contributions to a retirement fund. This is simply not true as a brief review of history indicates. You may recall reading about it in The Argus http://trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/11333964

    In 1943 the Curtin Government introduced an additional levy on personal income tax from lowering the tax threshold from £156 to
    £104 per week which, along with a payroll tax levy from employers, was credited to a new National Welfare Fund. There was, however, no direct link between contributions and benefits and the pension.

    It was separate to the Consolidated Revenue Fund but ultimately, the National Welfare Fund ended when subsumed by Consolidated Revenue Fund. This process started in 1952 when it was decided appropriation from the Consolidated Revenue Fund should be equal in amount to the money paid out of the National Welfare Fund every financial year. That move meant the Fund ceased to have any direct relationship with tax collections and therefore any prospective contributory scheme to finance social security.

    Although the National Welfare Fund intended to establish a base from which a national superannuation fund could be operated, it was in practice merely an accounting device until its abolition in 1985 despite the tax continued to be collected at a rate of about 7% from income earners.

    The National Welfare Fund was effectively wound up some 60 years ago and its enabling act repealed more than 30 years ago so perhaps its time to get over it. There was no money in the Fund to be stolen by future pollies as it was simply unsustainable from the get go.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    9:38pm
    Farside - as fine a piece of chicanery and theft as ever took place.... as long as the tax continued to be drawn against it - it remains in force even though its waters were dumped into the Consolidated Revenue Dam...

    Twisting words will not alter that sovereign fact - and only the establishment of a GENUINE Sovereign Fund for ALL Australians and not just the select group including politicians, in a position where it cannot be touched by the same politicians etc - and into which pool funding for all retirements in placed under strict watch guards - will end the current rorting of retirement funds going on.
    GeorgeM
    19th Dec 2016
    11:40pm
    Agree with your comments, TREBOR, that pension continues to be an entitlement as the tax impost of 7.5% continued through our working lives.
    Also, your comments "Simple answer is to pay everyone the Pension and tax all income over and above that at the going rate for income tax, and look deeply into those who have no apparent means of support but live the life of Riley...." are spot on.
    They just need to make sure all Multinationals, Large companies and rich individuals are forced to pay their fair share of tax by changing the defective tax rules.
    Farside
    20th Dec 2016
    6:54am
    George, the OAP is not an entitlement and there has been no 7% levy for more than 60 years. The progressive tax rates have been revised so many times and the tax act modified so much that it is an exercise in futility to try and find meaning and purpose today in an act that was a dud 60 years ago and repealed 30 years ago.

    The suggestion favoured for going forward should be taken up with your local representatives and try to persuade them to your cause.

    Even better, you and others of similar opinion should become part of the political process where you add diversity and might affect and influence change rather being part of the noise on a predictable blog space.
    TREBOR
    20th Dec 2016
    8:21am
    There was never a 7% drop in income tax levels to cater to the dropping of that title..... if there had been wouldn't the LNP be trumpeting it from the rooftops now to 'justify' their invasion?
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:36am
    The old age welfare like the other Centrelink payment. It is definitely not an entitlement as it is not dependent upon how much your worked, how hard you work or how much tax you paid, how many kids you, how many pets you have etc. It is dependent upon how much or rather how little wealth you have and is for those who don't have enough for the basics of life in retirement.
    *Imagine*
    19th Dec 2016
    11:44am
    Centrelink payments are not dependent on how much wealth you have, but rather where that wealth is held, and how you can manage to 'hide it' from the army of bureaucrats paid to administer this stupid, inept, unfair so called "retirement income system."
    It is not a retirement income system, it is an evolution of ill informed decisions made by self interested or incompetent, politicians ruled by Party policies. The sooner we have a complete overhaul of the taxation and welfare system the better. Unfortunately the same incompetents will be the ones who do this. Best just roll over and take it, until such time as Party Politics self destructs.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:09pm
    You miss the point, OG - and deliberately so - the point is that it is an entitlement for contributing to the nation - not to some fund .... that has been hijacked by government and placed in their personal sovereign fund for their retirement. Different rules for the ruling class....

    Time to punish all the offshore phantoms with a massive tax or return policy.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    12:23pm
    Except those who contributed the most don't get a razoo. No entitlement there.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    12:35pm
    Oh, you are so right, OG (for once!). Those who slogged their guts out for lousy pay nursing, building roads and power lines, cleaning public toilets, working for charity, raising and educating kids who now pay high taxes and potentially create great new innovations.... Any of those contributors who struggled to save from their inadequate incomes and made it to part-self-sufficient get nothing.

    But the overpaid senior bureaucrats, politicians, CEOs, high-flying executives and prosperous business operators get MASSIVE superannuation tax concessions, negative gearing reductions, use family trusts to redistribute income, use off-shore havens to hoard money tax free.... on and on it goes. They pay bugger all and get everything. And more than half the time their incompetence and stuff ups are responsible for the social, health and administrative problems that are costing society so much today.

    But let's keep on bashing and robbing the battlers who built the nation and got bugger all benefit for it, and loading the coffers of the greedy rich. Eventually, the tower will topple. But the greedy rich are making sure when it does their foreign bank accounts are fully loaded and THEY don't suffer for the disaster they caused.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:43pm
    That's because of the assets test - they have no need. Why should someone who gets a sweet ride in life get an extra sweetener on retirement, that they don't need?

    Now don't go twisting my words and say that means OAP is a safety net - it's not.

    Pay everyone OAP and tax income and earning assets over and above, investigate those who are loitering with intent with no apparent means of support....

    Easy enough for a government with the cojones.... not going to happen because it will mean all those rorters called politicians would have to fork out tax on their lifetime incomes, and we can't have that, can we?
    Triss
    19th Dec 2016
    1:09pm
    So, Old Geezer, why aren''t the pensions of Centrelink called Welfare? Yes, they've paid super but I'll bet the amount is nowhwere near what they'll need for the length of retirement they'll have therefore they'll be living off the taxpayer which makes it welfare. And they are also allowed to work without losing part of their pension.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    1:36pm
    Because the OAP is not a pension at all. It is a Seniors Welfare Payment.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    1:57pm
    Actually, it's a Pension Entitlement we bought and paid for under the legislation that applied when most of us were working, but thieving bastards stole it, and some people condone theft (as long as they are not the victim!)
    Slimmer Cat
    19th Dec 2016
    2:24pm
    If it is a PENSION ENTITLEMENT then everybody who paid Tax should should get that pension entitlement. Those who paid most tax get nothing and in a lot of cases are still paying tax. The majority getting the OAP are getting more now than they ever paid in tax.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    2:41pm
    Yes I am one of the lucky ones that gets nothing and still pay tax. It's about time others did some of the heavy lifting as well so that why the asset changes are a good step in the right direction.
    Farside
    19th Dec 2016
    4:38pm
    The OAP and other Centrelink payments are not entitlements. They come under the heading of Social Security and Welfare. Don't believe me, then do yourself a favour and check the budget papers for the last 25 years.
    Triss
    19th Dec 2016
    5:13pm
    Trebor, I wonder how much would be saved in administration if like you say, everyone got the OAP and were income taxed. Quite a considerable saving I would imagine.
    Triss
    19th Dec 2016
    6:25pm
    It is a pension, Old geezer, that's why it is called a pension.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    9:31pm
    Nope.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    9:43pm
    Slimmer Cat - you too miss the point - it is not dependant on the amount put in by the individual - it applies equally to all, but is fringed about by an assets test.

    Again - as I said above - there is zero reason anyone who can pay a large amount of tax in life has done it tough - they have no need for OAP on retirement.

    HOWEVER - if the Pension assets test is to be applied to OA Pensioners - the value of the houses of ALL retirees should be taken into account, and those who don't receive OAP should be taxed on their home value - just to make things equal, you understand...

    Not on my watch will you see fat cats living on top of luxury for life while pensioners are forced to sell their homes to live..... be advised.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:41pm
    People are taxed on their houses. It is called rates which OAP pay very little yet get the same benefits of those who pay them in full. That is certainly not a fair playing field at all.
    Anonymous
    20th Dec 2016
    6:51am
    There he goes again with his ill-informed CRAP. Put it in the toilet, OG. You are a moron! The rates discount is very small indeed and pensioners still pay huge rates, which is why the claims about the relative costs of homeowning vs rent are BS! It's very expensive to own a home. Yes, it's an asset - one that most of us worked very hard and went without a lot of luxuries over 3 or more decades to pay for. And one that at least 60% of non-home-owner retirees COULD HAVE OWNED if they had been a little more responsible and not blown their pay living it up.

    I have great sympathy for those who genuinely couldn't buy a home. But bashing homeowner pensioners is vile and bad for the nation. And lying about benefits is a recipe for social and economic collapse. It's happening now, because of arseholes like you who can't deal in truth and show respect for others.

    Trebor, I'm with you all the way.
    Farside
    20th Dec 2016
    7:03am
    OG, tax on houses in the form of rates goes to provide local government services only. They are not yet taxed at a federal level as part of an annual land tax contributing to the consolidated revenue fund.

    Any economist will tell you that introduction of a comprehensive land tax is by the most effective and efficient means to fund and bring about taxation and economic reforms. It will ensure that property is applied to its optimum economic benefit. It would result in more property turnover and sustainable economic development. This would benefit first home buyers in particular. Retirees and empty nesters would be motivated to downsize their properties and apply the freed up capital for investment or consumed in improving quality of life.
    TREBOR
    20th Dec 2016
    8:24am
    OG - nobody ever took away your ENTITLEMENT to an Old Age Pension - you simply don't fit the bill for getting it. It's like women having the RIGHT to try out for combat postings in Infantry etc - to date - as far as I am aware - NONE has made it past the post.....

    You can have a right/entitlement up the kazoo to your eyeballs - but that doesn't mean you QUALIFY for it.

    Do get a grip..... the Socialist thinking of the LNP is spot on right there..... when it suits them, of course. Take it up with them....
    Janran
    20th Dec 2016
    1:08pm
    It sounds like a great idea (by TREBOR), for everyone to get the OAP and be income taxed. Unfortunately, as George pointed out yesterday, the rich are well schooled in how to avoid paying tax - that's how they got rich in the first place. THEY are the reason why we are in this revenue/spending predicament, because we aren't collecting enough tax from those who can well afford to pay it. THEY have no moral compass, just gifted accountants.

    And do you think our present Govt has the ability or will "to make sure all Multinationals, Large companies and rich individuals are forced to pay their fair share of tax by changing the defective tax rules."? Dream on...

    Yes, the admin. savings would be considerable, but the losses in tax collection would easily overtrump the savings to revenue.
    Retired Knowall
    20th Dec 2016
    4:31pm
    Wrong TREBOR - Women were integrated into the services during the late 1970s and early 1980s and can now serve in most positions in the Australian Defence Force (ADF), including combat roles.
    Tarzan
    19th Dec 2016
    10:37am
    Your quick poll has no meaning when you are talking to a 60's plus audience and your assumption that those losing some or all entitlements are by no means millionaires is only partially correct as many live in residences worth over a million dollars.
    It is not a perfect world and I for one would like to see changes, Polly perks, Centrelink rorts, cheaper health insurance, all assets included in pension calculations, less money going in overseas aid when we have crippling poverty and homelessness at home.
    Merry Christmas everyone.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:46am
    Christmas is one of the reasons for crippling poverty. People spending money at Christmas on gifts that aren't appreciated and food that is isn't necessary and tastes awful as well. Just because that is the thing to do!

    I gave up celebrating Christmas a long time ago myself. I'd rather just give people stuff when they need it not because it's Christmas, birthday etc. As for Christmas food well I don't like it so leave it in the shops. No booze for me either.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:10pm
    Gotta live somewhere - why not in the house YOU bought and paid for instead of public housing and receiving rent assistance.

    Stoopid is as stoopid does, as they say down in Green Bow.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    12:40pm
    Why should it surprise anyone that you are Mr Scrooge reincarnated, OG! An inhuman creature with no capacity for empathy or human love, much less for the ability to enjoy a festive occasion as it was intended to be enjoyed and has been enjoyed for centuries.

    I will celebrate Christmas by preparing a special meal for my daughter, her husband, and my beautiful little disabled grandson. I will decorate a tree with lights that excite a baby boy. I will wrap special gifts that tell my grandchildren ''I think about you. I care about you. I want you to know I love you.'' I don't overspend. But I do celebrate in the way Christians believe we should. And I take the opportunity to send messages of love and caring to friends and relatives - hoping to bring a little joy into their lives and reassure them of the goodness of MOST people.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    12:48pm
    Good Rainey I do those things all year long not just at Christmas. You don't need a tree or fancy wrapping paper etc which really just destroys the environment and accumulates rubbish.

    I'll leave religion alone but have definitely ideas on that too.
    grounded
    19th Dec 2016
    1:46pm
    Australians - by and large - have become a nation of welfare bludgers....the 'Government' owes me a life and living.

    I grin to myself about all the 'hard working souls' who have sacrificed and toiled to make Australia great. What self indulgent spin.

    Who caused this? Politicians...tit feeding a whining, consumer driven public in times of national economic plenty...to the point that that same whinging public now demand top dollar, regardless if the country is near stony broke.

    Oh, but we are not broke they chortle....the Pollies are earning heaps. The bit the pollies sup up wouldn't rate on any scale....given there are no more than 550 odd of them....just a cop out by the greed driven, whining hard toiling Australians.

    Take a look at consumer debt in this country....all that land fill crap you purchase...and then equate it to 'maxed out' credit cards. The bulk of Australian's are up to their eye balls in debt....keeping up with the 'Jones'...and these same Australian's tell me the 'Government' is loaded. What brilliant economist they are!

    The 'Government' is the People...never forget that. The Government' is not some outer space body that was put here for the bludgers and whiners to milk and bash forever....

    Oh...these hard working Australians....LOL...Where?
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    2:13pm
    I wish I could find them too so I could get them to do some of the work I do but shouldn't at my age.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    2:13pm
    There are lots of them, grounded, and they are the ones being persecuted while those who didn't work hard party.
    dweezy2176
    19th Dec 2016
    2:15pm
    "Your quick poll has no meaning when you are talking to a 60's plus audience" .. very agile & innovative .. why would anyone under 55 be spending time on this site .. let's face it the Gummint targetted OAPs' because they were an easy target .. no more, no less!
    It's the pollies pension scheme that should be brought into line as well as all the non-means tested public service pensions .. if these gravy train wankers want to work after retirement .. NO pension ..!
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    9:47pm
    So you're not an Australian, Rainey? Good-o - then stop whining about what Aussies are entitled to.... in the meantime remember the next time you drive on the roads, ride the rails, go to a house of learning etc - all that was built by the generation you are now lambasting for being 'greedy' for expecting their entitlement to a Pension, and who are exercising their right in THIS democratic country to raise their objections to changes and to theft of their property by people who massively over-pay themselves for life just to rort others.
    Anonymous
    20th Dec 2016
    7:01am
    Trebor, where did you get the idea I'm not an Australian? And I'm NOT lambasting anyone who built roads or rails or anything else of value. They are the folk I'm defending. I'm lambasting the corrupt politicians who overpay themselves for buggering the nation, the incompetent overpaid bureaucrats, the filthy rich CEOs and company directors who pay no tax, the high income earners who hoard their money overseas to dodge tax, and those rich enough to pay fancy accountants to shuffled money between family trusts and set up negatively geared investment schemes.

    I think you've confused me with someone else, because I'm 100% on your team, mate. And for the record, I grew up in abject poverty and suffered horrendous injustice as a THIRD GENERATION Aussie whose parents were persecuted and tormented by very cruel and inhuman bureaucrats who profited from legalised crime. I struggled all my life to rise above hardship and give my kids a better chance at life than I had. Still working, well past retirement age, and grateful that I can, but disgusted at the way the government is treating our seniors and the damage they are doing to the economy by bashing the people who do what's good for the nation, propping up deadbeats and no-hopers, and encouraging more and more people to be reliant on the taxpayer for support.
    TREBOR
    20th Dec 2016
    8:34am
    Didn't you slag Australians as a whining bunch? Or was I mistaken, in which case I apologise.

    However - let us all be on the same page here - the Right (or Entitlement) to complain about changes and even current circumstances is the right of every individual - nobody has to 'suck it up', 'take some cement', or whatever when they are being fed sh!t by people who use the food saved to feather their own nests mightily, and then borrow massively to sustain THEIR lifestyle, then find some more dung piles to feed the 'masses'.

    A government divided against its people cannot stand........my ancestors here set foot on this land at a time when the population was under one million.... and built empires ... I watched this country go to rack and ruin in my lifetime, and fall increasingly under the jackboot of 'governments' of 'left' and 'right', each intend on some absurd ideology and agenda that ALWAYS implies offering pain to the peasants who are not of the groups chosen for either 'Accredited Victim Status' or preferential treatment in some other way.

    We have been treated like sheep for the slaughter here, and as if we are some kind of dead weight on this country - when the truth is that it is those pushing these insane agendas (such as 'equal opportunity by numbers', 'global economies' etc) who are the dead weights on this country. At one time this country was steadily getting ahead - now it has been sold out for thirty pieces of silverside and a few tons of ore to profit less than 2% of the population, including those that work for wages there.

    I don't think we need to look any further for the current approaching demise of this once great nation.... and yes - I will continue to 'whine' about it - and as much as I can as many times as I can.
    TREBOR
    20th Dec 2016
    8:35am
    **blushes** How did I do that - it's 'grounded' who needs public hanging, drawing and quartering.... my apologies...
    George
    19th Dec 2016
    10:54am
    It is interesting that politicians do not cut their own pensions. The Parliamentary pension is probably the most generous in the world indexed for life at our expense!. Perhaps they would like to share in the savings.
    "Groucho"
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:57am
    Parliamentary pensions are very different to the OAP welfare one. They are part of a salary package like many other positions in the private and public sectors. Anyone can become a polly so if you want one put in the hard yards and you might just get one. No hard yards for the OAP.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:14pm
    Not a salary package we the people signed up to for the politicians. They created that one for themselves and it can hardly be for their contribution to the nation.

    I only drive that car, man - I had no part in its design and was handed a Henry Ford choice - any colour as long as it's black...

    Why not put the parliamentary pension issue up at the next election as an individual issue vote? See how it goes then......

    What 'hard yards' does a politician put in? Join a party and suck their way into favour by abiding by the party line? They certainly don't do much of a job of handling the helm of the country.

    "No hard yards for the OAP" - not worth discussing....
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    12:58pm
    OG, only a blind dumb fool would claim politicians put in ''hard yards''. The folk who put in the hard yards in this nation are the ones being screwed by mongrels and slandered by you.
    Triss
    19th Dec 2016
    1:19pm
    I agree with you, Trevor. The only policies the parties are ever unanimous on is a salary rise which often leads to a pension rise. The separation of public and private sector pensions and work perks amounts to gross corruption in my opinion.
    I notice in Transparency International that Australia has again slipped down.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    2:51pm
    Too many hard yards for me to be a polly Rainey.
    Ausdigga
    19th Dec 2016
    10:56am
    A much more acceptable way of raising a huge amount of money would be to tax all money leaving Australia, ie the 36% of largest companies DO NOT pay tax here .The fact that they are donating large sums to the big parties tells anybody that can think who calls the shots in Australia. They will never be forced into this while the sun rises in the east, they could man up as the Brit's did but don't expect any change in our lifetime !
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:59am
    We live in a world economy no longer an Australian one so multinationals have the right to pay tax anywhere in the world. Only way to fix this is reduce our tax rates so that they pay tax here not elsewhere.
    Janran
    19th Dec 2016
    11:33am
    Yes, the world has been duped into believing we must be competitive in the global economy. So Australia and other small fish like us have sacrificed our manufacturing base and our farmers are held to ransom by global prices, while overseas children and other slaves do the work for peanuts.

    Meanwhile, the EU and USA subsidise their farmers. It's a total misnomer to suggest there can ever be a level playing field when workers overseas do not have decent working conditions, such as we have in Australia.

    Ausdigga has it right - tax money leaving Australia - only then will we come close to a level playing field.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    11:59am
    One can just imagine the discontent if we close our borders as the prices of everything skyrockets.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:16pm
    You're way behind again, OG - we do NOT live in some mythical 'world economy' - our costs and income structures are perforce those of THIS country's economy - we live here - not there.

    Your kind of thinking is dead, buried and cremated - not necessarily in that order.

    We live in AUSTRALIA - we pay our bills HERE - not somewhere else.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:19pm
    OG - you are mistaking trade for the absolute obligation to participate in all ways in some mythical global economy. Nobody said we shouldn't trade with the turd factories of this world - just that we do not belong as part of their lifestyle, values, and economic structures.

    When Julia Gillard and co decided we should become part of Asia - Keating and so forth - I said then we have no desire to be part of Asia - just to trade with it. If they wish to forsake their market share here - let them go - someone will replace their market share and abide by our rules.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:20pm
    You seem to imagine that the buyer must be the one to grovel, OG - haven't you heard that the customer is always right?
    Circum
    19th Dec 2016
    4:26pm
    O.G More and more it seems to me that you are pushing the Liberal party line.From supporting their pension changes to supporting lower taxes for multinationals.Many of your comments are robotic ie: word for word copies of what you had typed earlier as if reading from a script.Are you being paid by the party to make your comments?
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    4:33pm
    If I am getting paid they are sending the pay check to the wrong address. I have not a member of the Liberals and no have been. I don't even vote I elections as they are so rigged that my vote is worthless. I turn up at a polling booth usually a prepoll one so I don't make a special trip and get my name marked off and walk out.

    Anything I type are my ideas. I am influenced by nothing or no one. I do and say what I believe is right. It matters not to me if people don't like what I do or say.
    Anonymous
    20th Dec 2016
    6:44am
    Influenced by no one... and far too bigoted and stupid to learn from others. Thank goodness you DON'T vote. One less moron damning the nation to administration by dangerous incompetent corrupt fools! That's got a be a small blessing. Now if we just persuade all the other bigoted IDIOTS like you to also stop voting there might be some hope for the country.
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    10:53am
    Rainey the results of an election are already know long before anyone casts their vote. They just make it look like it is not. Your vote makes no difference at all.
    Not a Bludger
    19th Dec 2016
    11:33am
    Taking away an in place payment, as this government has, is retrospectivity in any language and should not have been done.

    However, to introduce such changes at a future date at least allows for some planning.

    No wonder some 300,000 retirees are very p----d off, myself included!
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    11:55am
    It was passed by government some 18 months before it is going to be implemented so it is not respective at all.

    I agree with the government as anyone with the current levels of assets that will have their pension reduced or cancelled doesn't need it. I am grateful for the government for making these changes.

    People have had more than 18 months to plan for this and if you didn't take advantage of that time to make changes then it's your fault not that of the government.

    Some 300,000 are p----d off because the party for them has ended and they will now have to do what they should have been doing all along. Supporting themselves without welfare.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:22pm
    Are any of those assets edible, OG?

    Can you eat a Windbag or a boat or a nice home you bought and paid for over fifty years?
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    12:24pm
    But you can seel a Windbag and boat and eat with the proceeds.

    It would have to be the top of the range Winbag and a luxury ocean cruiser to be worth the sort of money those effected have.
    Not a Bludger
    19th Dec 2016
    12:26pm
    You are wrong Old Geezer - taking away something that is in place is RETROSPECTIVE
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    12:38pm
    So taking away candles and replacing them with electric lighting was a bad idea because it was retrospective. Ha ha tell me another one.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    1:01pm
    18 months notice of a change that you need FIVE YEARS to plan for is retrospective, OG.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    1:32pm
    So you need five years to plan for it the Rainey.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    1:59pm
    Too late, OG. People needed five years BEFORE IT WAS IMPLEMENTED. I also note that there were no financial planning calculators available that worked on the 2017 rates, so people can't plan ahead. I still can't find one.

    The change was RETROSPECTIVE, and that's criminal.
    Rae
    19th Dec 2016
    2:08pm
    They should have allowed Defined Benefit pensioners the choice of continuing on as they elected or taking a 16X lump sum. As they and anyone else with allocated pensions had handed over the hard saved ready and could not change or prepare for change.

    I still like the idea of a universal pension and marginal tax on all other income. That would at least be fair.
    Farside
    19th Dec 2016
    4:50pm
    There is nothing about these changes that is retrospective in the ordinary sense of the word. Indeed, 18 months notice was given.

    The OED defines retrospective in a legal sense as taking effect from a date in the past. Backdating the changes would have made them retrospective.

    https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/retrospective
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    9:53pm
    So people work a lifetime and put enough away to own a Windbag and a boat to have a little quality time (phrase brought to you courtesy of the PC Industry) in their twilight years - and they are now scum getting a free ride by expecting a pension.

    Told you before - easy fix - pay everyone the pension and tax all income and perks over and above that, and look carefully at what constitutes perks and what is a non-earning item, and focus on those who have hidden assets that are returning to them money outside their declared incomes, and flog them on the public stocks if need be.

    No more indexed politician pensions, no more perks such as an office and staff for free, tax on their lovely incomes from the pensions and their jobs and their perks.... reel in all the rich rorters of super and perks.....

    What a windfall! Budget Crisis solved in one year!!
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    9:56pm
    A Windbag and a boat do not EARN income, and they are not substitutes for something you would otherwise pay for, and thus are not perks..... Harry Fudger The Chocolate King getting free rides on a Fudger private aircraft IS a perk... since Fudger would be paying for air fares or hire instead..... therefore Harry will be in deep chocolate once this legislation comes in.... and will be spewing as he opens his wallet and lightens it a bit into the public coffers...
    Anonymous
    21st Dec 2016
    11:16am
    Farside, they are retrospective when they place those who have sufficient advance knowledge to plan around them in a favoured position and cripple those older folk who don't have sufficient advance knowledge to adjust their plans. There was NOTHING ACCEPTABLE that anyone just retired or about to retire could do under the laws as they stand. People needed FIVE YEARS' notice.

    19th Dec 2016
    11:36am
    That settles that. A very bitter pill for at least 28 to swallow.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    11:57am
    All it tells me is that this forum is full of those who have been effected by these changes and does not represent all those on the OAP.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:23pm
    Nonsense, OG - send not to ask for whom the bell tolls - it tolls for thee.......
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    1:02pm
    I'm not affected, OG (or ''effected'' either - which means I didn't implement the change!)

    I just care about the future of the nation and I hate seeing IDIOTS stuff it up so badly.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    1:20pm
    That's because you are still working Rainey. You are however upset because you will be affected by the changes when you retire.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    2:12pm
    Another IDIOTIC BASELESS ASSUMPTION from the master ignorant ASS! Don't bother to check facts, OG. Just rant on and display your ignorance and arrogance. You are a complete and utter fool - but a very nasty and dangerous one, sadly!
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    2:46pm
    Well be it a fool but remember a fool and his money are soon parted but I get wealthier every day so I just can't be a fool.

    Not too sure where you get your facts and advice from Rainey but please tell me so I don't go there.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    9:58pm
    Yes - OG pays no tax, takes no tax concessions, has hidden assets that return him unregistered money, and becomes wealthier by the day....

    He will be among the first investigated when the new rules come in.....
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:39pm
    Thanks for your concern Trebor but I have nothing to worry about as my affair are all well within the rules of the game.

    The new asset rules will make no difference to me as I'm not even registered with Centrelink.

    Of I have hidden assets please tell me where to find them as I know nothing about them.
    TREBOR
    20th Dec 2016
    10:48am
    Ah - but that's the point - the rules are what are under the microscope... look at penalty rates.. look at job tenure.... look are Pension thresholds etc.... why then should the rules of investment etc be sacrosanct since the very vast majority of such have resulted from a tax concession of several kinds in the first place? Why should politician, senior public servants, CEO remuneration and perks etc NOT be under the microscope? Why should business tax concessions not be under the microscope?

    We are supposed to be living in desperate times - soooo desperate that we need to rob the Pensioners of their homes and assets built up over a lifetime of contribution to this country, and force them into penury and rented accommodation..... all of which will produce a longer-lasting and deeper imposition on the Social Security bill.....

    Why should any sacred cows be sacrosanct when the country is starving to death..... eat the rich! More protein in the Soylent Green..
    Boomah52
    19th Dec 2016
    11:41am
    I'm one of these dumb people who spent all their money on their children when they needed it whilst growing up. Most of the money I earned was spent on their future. My money went into the economy spent on things like courses, sporting equipment and sporting trips around the country. Soon I will be receiving the full pension and as far as I'm concerned it is an entitlement. My money is out there...
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:24pm
    Yup - I've done all those bad things.... (hi, Paul Kelly - see ya some time)....
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    12:39pm
    I've done all those bad things too.
    Mousee
    19th Dec 2016
    12:01pm
    Retrospectivity is unethical as it changes the goal posts for those who have been working to one regime. Had the Government said that from January 2017 the goal posts would change that's fine, as people could work in one playing field.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    12:15pm
    It is not retrospective at all as it was passed 18 months before it will be implemented. That is the government told everyone 18 months ago that the goal posts were changing.

    If you are effected by these changes then you have more than enough capital to live on until you draw down enough to qualify for the OAP again. The capital won't help you after you are dead so the government rightly says you have to spend it.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    1:04pm
    It's RETROSPECTIVE.. People needed more than five years notice to make changes given the current rules. Financial planners are telling people they have no realistic options. (Well, mine is telling folk to break up 45+ year marriages or trade their home up to a mansion!)
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    1:18pm
    18 months is ample time Rainey and if you can't get your affairs in order in that tie then you simply aren't trying. Most people however left it to the last minute and wonder why they can't do it.

    Financial planners need to educate themselves with changes as they happen as I do not wait for the next seminar to explain the changes.

    By all means break up your marriage and by a mansion if keeping the OAP means so much to you. The stamp duty alone on a mansion will take years to recover at the current OAP rate. Sounds like stupidity to me. Better to be thankful with what you have and use it instead of welfare.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    2:04pm
    Wrong again, OG. It comes down to Centrelink rules - which enforce a FIVE YEAR plan. The government creates that situation, then doesn't acknowledge it when making changes, and that's WRONG.

    It's not a case of being thankful for what you have. It's a case of having enough to survive after having planned and saved and sacrificed for 50 years to make sure you did. Taking it away after all that effort to give to people who didn't make those sacrifices will stuff the nation. But rich bastards don't care. They will always be okay no matter what. They just keep hoarding and justifying the policies that ruin our nation, because all they care about is themselves.
    Rae
    19th Dec 2016
    2:15pm
    I wouldn't trade up Rainey. You ask yourself how this government is going to get revenue as the money dries up. They will want those houses. Nothing surer. In fact probably better to trade down.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    3:18pm
    Talk in the financial planner world has all that coming.

    There was a decision recently about including the excess value of houses over a certain amount in the pension asset test. Figures being floated were from $1 million up.

    There is even talk of a tax on excess bedrooms in an OAPs house.

    Another thing talked about is the OAP becoming a debt to be paid out of your estate.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:02pm
    All talk - family home sacrosanct or include all homes and invite rebellion. Tax one person's bedrooms you tax all excess bedrooms, or face rebellion. Try double dipping by making the OAP a debt and you face rebellion and the risk that the movement will begin to include all such payouts during lifetime as a debt, and that includes tax concessions to mining, serial home pushers, businesses and so forth.

    I doubt any of you want to open that Pandora's Box - and any such moves will inevitably result in Downfall of this government and of any that supports the same idiocy.
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    12:37pm
    They would have to include any welfare, childcare, tax concessions, unpaid HECs etc in that estate thing and I doubt they'll do it.

    Also the costs of the family home would have to become tax deductible for it to be classed as an asset.
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    1:04pm
    I agree Rae the sooner those HECS debts are included in the estate the better. People are doing uni course after uni course in their retirement for something to do knowing that they will never have to pay it back. This is simply not fair on those who are burdened with the debt for years of their working life's.

    I don't regard a car as an asset but it is under the assets test. NO deductions are allowed there so why would the costs of the family house be any different?

    The family home will be included in the assets test before this decade is out.
    Dave
    19th Dec 2016
    12:09pm
    All our working life we were told by governments to save, save, save for your retirement to supplement the pension. So we did and went without many pleasures to do so on a low income. Now we are told - "thank you - we are going to take away your pension and give it to those who spent all their money". Where is the fairness in that? Did the politicians say that because pensioners are going with less or without, we will reduce our very large pay packet?
    Triss
    19th Dec 2016
    5:06pm
    Yes, Dave, and I've been going without in order to pay off my mortgage just, it seems, for the government to smack their lips and tell me I need to pay for it all over again if they means test it for the pension.
    As far as I'm concerned my house is means tested in a way because if I didn't have a house I would get extra on my pension for rent subsidy, as I do have a house then the government is making a saving on me and every other home owner. If my house is ever means tested then I will be charged twice, once for means testing and again for no subsidy.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:03pm
    Today we dropped off some excess vegetables from our luscious gardens for an older couple, both infirm, who also have a mortgage and are doing it tough.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:04pm
    Well said, Triss - the pure idiocy of attempting to force pensioners to sell their homes and go into rental, thus immediately raising the social security bill, is clear to anyone with half a mind....
    Teddy
    19th Dec 2016
    12:13pm
    I always find the statement that aged pensions are paid to those 'who have worked hard and paid taxes all their lives' fascinating. If that is the case then why are they being paid to women who have not been in paid employment and hence have not 'paid taxes'. Am I to understand that those who have spent most of their lives on unemployment benefits or in prison are not getting the aged pension. Are those who worked in really low paid jobs all their lives not getting the aged pension?

    On the basis of this argument everyone who 'worked hard' and 'paid taxes' should get the aged pension including those who were well remunerated for their work and everyone who didn't 'work hard' or didn't 'pay taxes' should be exempt.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:29pm
    You reckon being a house carer and family rearer and protector and so forth is not Work?

    You're kidding....people functioned - and function - as a socio-economic group called 'the family' (not to be confused with The Family of Mafia fame) - a 'family' can be an individual or whatever. and is bounded only by the rules of marriage, de facto or otherwise, and is a condition of birth (or no birth for some).

    That socio-economic group may have changed in nature a little over the years - but still remains as the core. Women, as part of that socio-economic group have always contributed their share and have been entitled (non ™) to the benefits thereof.

    (the above spoken and written by The World's Greatest Anti-Feminist, brought to you as a public service announcement)....
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:30pm
    Also view the policy of paying everyone OAP and taxing all income over and above at the going rate... simplest solution, and would catch all the fat cats.
    Peanuts
    19th Dec 2016
    12:20pm
    Of course the Pension is not an entitlement. It may be in New Zealand, where everyone is ENTITLED to it. In Australia it is a welfare safety net for those who did not save for their own entitlement. And paying taxes is not about contributing to your retirement, its about, mostly, paying for other peoples welfare.
    Teddy
    19th Dec 2016
    12:54pm
    The description widely used is 'worked hard all their lived and paid tax' not 'worked or paid tax'. Not only does the definition exclude homed based parents it also takes no account of people who did not earn enough to pay tax but made huge contributions through community activities such as surf lifesaving and rural fire brigades.
    Retired Knowall
    19th Dec 2016
    1:13pm
    If you pass the income and/or assets tests then you are entitled to the OAP. Whats so hard to understand?
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    1:22pm
    Agree the OAP is welfare then.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    1:26pm
    It's not hard to understand, Retired Knowall. We all know the rules. What is hard to fathom is how anybody can justify them. They are WRONG WRONG WRONG WRONG WRONG, and bad for the nation. And the assets test change made it worse.

    Some of us want to see positive change for the better - a fairer, more economically sustainable system that acknowledges that most of today's retirees had little or no super and their savings came from personal sacrifice, and that acknowledges that just because you put money aside for a future need doesn't make you needier or more deserving of taxpayer funds than someone who either won't incur that future need or didn't care enough to budget for it.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    1:38pm
    The asset test changes are a positive change for the better that will provide money where it is needed not just nice to have.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    1:55pm
    So you keep saying, OG, but you are too dumb to know the difference between ''affected'' and ''effected'' so clearly we can't expect an intelligent assessment of the real facts from you, OG. You have demonstrated that you are brainless and totally ignorant, as well as nasty.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    2:49pm
    Yes one has an "e" and the other word has an "a". Even you should know that.

    OK stop telling me I need a new spell checker.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:07pm
    Talking to a couple yesterday - they are selling their home and downsizing up the coast - and gave a rough figure of how much they would put in the bank and live off the interest. I told them to be careful - the ATO regards bank interest as income and will seek to tax you and you'll find you don't have anywhere near what you think.

    Nope - the interest is going into super fund, topping that up.... god move.
    mike
    19th Dec 2016
    12:27pm
    My economics teacher told me many years ago, its not about the money, its control. Every government in the world wants to control its people. If you discovered a mountain of gold and gave it to the Gov, they would say Thank you very much and go and build a half dozen aircraft carriers, and still hound the middle class, the poor and the disabled. When Stalin wanted to introduce Communism, he had to destroy the peasant class, who on average owned 5 acres of land, were self sufficient, very religious and wanted no part of communism. 50 million people died in the class struggle. Hockey needed to destroy the middle class, who were becoming more and more financially independent and more difficult to control. Hockey attacked those that worked hard and saved and rewarded those that drank and smoked and played the pokies and generally had a good time. He himself rorted the travel allowance to pay for his Canberra holiday house that he openly boasted he got through lying and cheating and stealing. Good one Stalin Hockey.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    1:06pm
    Ah, you nailed it Mike! Congratulations on having the rare intelligence to understand what it's really all about and not being dumb and tunnel visioned enough to swallow politician's lies.
    Rae
    19th Dec 2016
    2:21pm
    In a nutshell. Knowing is being at least one step ahead of them.
    I'm thinking gold a buy right now.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    3:21pm
    The only gold I would ever consider buying is rough gold. However the price of gold is still declining.
    Bes
    19th Dec 2016
    12:28pm
    We constantly hear about how the Australian Aged Pension may come to an end and Pensioners may also be forced to sell the family owned home as the Government could run OUT of money.
    How come we never hear of welfare running out of money or foreign aid running out of money?
    When you think about it, a majority of the electorate WORKED, paid tax AND paid a mortgage to buy their home while FUNDING Education Health Welfare Foreign Aid ……and long retired Politicians who give nothing up!
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    12:32pm
    I could argue with 3-4 here all day, but they are fighting trench to trench - better just to seal them in their caves and starve them out....
    Farside
    19th Dec 2016
    12:32pm
    Just because 86% of respondents believe the OAP to be an entitlement does not make it so, and no matter how often it is repeated in blog comments. It is not a matter of perceived fairness, equity or contribution to nation-building. It just means 86% have misunderstood the OAP and are believing their collective wishful thinking. One is only "entitled" to receive an OAP if one is eligible after satisfying the means tests and reaching a qualifying age.
    Sorry.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    1:09pm
    You are right of course, Farside. But corrupt politicians can make whatever rules they please, and to hell with the consequences. That doesn't make it right, moral, ethical, or just. And SOME of us are willing to fight for what is right, moral, ethical and just and GOOD FOR THE NATION, rather than just accepting and regurgitating the untruths told by those who are destroying our society and ranting on about what the wrongly-made laws say.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:11pm
    Sorry 'bout that - that's the way democracy works here...... we don't have five hundred votes for the rich guy and one for the poor guy - that kind of nonsense has been dead for over a century.... it's called Universal Male Suffrage - and once it came in those same Chauvinist Pigs took less than three years to vote in Universal Female
    Suffrage to go with it... (another broadside hits the Feminist bridge structure - she's on fire and down by the stem... time for the torpedoes)...

    Time to catch up with your thinking.... the OAP is an Entitlement (non ™) bounded by rules....... those rules are what is under discussion - not whether or not OAP is an Entitlement (non ™).
    Nan Norma
    19th Dec 2016
    12:32pm
    What everybody seems to be forgetting is that asset tested pensioners are already losing $1.50 a fortnight. This is when bank accounts are earning far less and essentials like household goods earn nothing at all, and cars actually cost money. Rego. insurance etc.
    Old Man
    19th Dec 2016
    12:53pm
    To those who suggest that an age pension is an entitlement, the original legislation of 1908 would suggest that it is only to be used for those who need it, not those who want it. The following is a partial history of age pensions;

    "The Commonwealth aged pension initially provided £26 ($52) per annum to men and women over the age of 65 years. This figure was just under one quarter of the 'basic wage' which was decided in 1907 by Justice Higgins. To be eligible for the pension, an individual had to be able to meet a number of criteria. They had to have resided in the Commonwealth for more than 25 years and to be of 'good character,' (despite the latter not being defined). Non-residents, the Indigenous people of Australia, Asians and Indigenous people from the Pacific Islands, New Zealand and Africa were completely excluded from claiming the pension.

    To ensure that those who were most in need of the pension received it and also to limit the cost to the government, the 1908 Act also provided that the Commonwealth old-aged pension be means and asset-tested. An individual who had an income of more than £52 ($104) per year or owned property valued at more then £310 ($620) became ineligible for the pension."

    There has been a number of amendments since the inception but, to my knowledge, the means and asset testing has never been altered except for substance. In respect of the current changes to pensions, I think that Your Life Choices has done this subject to death. Maybe now is the time the subject should be dead, buried, cremated.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    1:12pm
    No, Old Man. The subject should NOT be closed until the government acknowledges that they have GOT IT WRONG from a moral and ethical perspective and they are DAMAGING THE NATION with their error. It doesn't matter what some historical declaration says. What matters is what's good for the country today. And what's good for the country today is NOT bashing people who saved and making them worse of than folk who didn't. It's not about need or greed. It's about common-sense economics that build a nation rather than tearing it down.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    1:35pm
    The crux of the agreement is that entitlement sounds better than welfare. Sorry folks you need to stop pulling the wool over your eyes and see it how it is welfare nothing more. It is not even a pension so I'll call it what it is a SENIORS WELFARE PAYMENT from now on.
    Old Man
    19th Dec 2016
    4:42pm
    You may be correct Rainey, my suggestion was to the moderators in this site. I've had enough of talking about super and age pensions in this forum. All the things you have said only feed your supporters and draw adverse comments from your detractors, neither of which have anything to do with those politicians who can change matters. May I respectfully suggest that you write to your local member with what you have responded to my post to ensure that politicians are aware of the perceived problem.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:15pm
    It's not welfare - welfare is the aim or policy or approach to ensuring people are adequately provided for - social security is the payment of entitlements earned.....

    One is the philosophy - the other the action, and never the twain shall meet while ever the taxpayer funds social security.... and everyone pays tax every day in one way or another, and social security is not dependant on the amount of tax any individual pays, since it is a pool of funds.
    Anonymous
    21st Dec 2016
    11:26am
    Old Man, I've written countless letters to politicians. Only thus far found one powerless senator who had both the intelligence and the courtesy to listen. Every other one is TAKING MONEY DISHONESTLY AND NOT DOING THEIR JOB. They demonstrated total incompetence, inability to comprehend simple English, and appalling rudeness. And they get paid a fortune to behave like that and bugger the nation!
    thommo
    19th Dec 2016
    12:53pm
    Well if the age pension isn't an entitlement as some of you argue, then it should be.
    One cannot live off the age pension without times of great stress and deprivation.
    These changes, grossly unfair and unjust, did not include an 'grandfather' clauses, and those adversely affected will never forgive this LNP government, nor the Greens (who collaborated with them in these changes) and Labor (for not standing up for pensioners and rejecting these changes).
    These politicians made these changes to help the budget bottom line, instead of taxing the big end of town who are leaners.
    These politicians also don't subject themselves to any austerity measures either, with their fat salaries, fraudulent lurks and perks and overly generous fully funded taxpayer pensions for life.
    The last election saw the Calithumpian parties get elected, all because the mainstream parties are neglecting those on the bottom rung of the ladder.
    So we can expect this trend to continue and let's hope a PENSIONER'S PARTY will be elected at the next election so that age pensioners will restore the assets test and give the current lot a kick in the pants...
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    1:15pm
    You are absolutely right, thommo. Good to see someone on here with a brain and thinking capacity! Mike's comment above was also spot on. Happily, there are a few here with the intelligence to look past politician's spewed out crap and think about what is real and where this nation is headed.

    Sad that some are so consumed by self-interest that they can't see the wood for the trees.
    Jtee
    20th Dec 2016
    2:16am
    Good comments. We are told The pension cost is too high and needs to be reduced for the sake of the budget. What about the over-generous maternity leave allowance where people are paid the equivalent of their annual salary even when it is as high as$160,000 pa. There is also a Dad and Partner allowance of a two week block of around $600 pw.

    These were political decisions to keep pace with the Labor party but what a waste of money. At the most these payments should have only reflected a typical Centrelink payment.

    Politicians' entitlements should only be paid for the equivalent number of years they have been in service and only come into effect at the age of 65.

    Look at Australia's own budget before giving overseas and only donate where and what we can afford.
    Supernan
    19th Dec 2016
    1:22pm
    Like everyone else I think the pension needs to be restricted to those who need it. But disagree with the way it is allocated. We are lucky we concentrated on paying off our house rather than travel, go out, smoke, or party. Also know some could not buy houses due to illness, etc. But never understand why a owning a house is so discriminated against ! Ours is over 40 years old & falling apart ! It costs a lot to run. yes we could sell & move. But its near our son, near Drs, chemists, hospital, etc So it will just have to fall down around us. We only get a part pension due to our assets. Do we want to keep our assets for our kids ? No we want it for our medical care, that way we dont burden the already over run medical system. Also when we have to stop working full time - we are both 74 & not 100% fit - with money in the bank, we can still afford to maintain our house once our part pension is our only income. Oh how terrible we are !
    pinky
    19th Dec 2016
    1:40pm
    I believe them to be totally unfair. At 73 years of age and never having been on any sort of pension I believe I have earned a reasonable aged pension that enables me to provide food & shelter. We have saved a little money ..but that now appears to be to my detriment as the taper rates require that small amount above the threshold of $365,000 to be able to earn income at a rate exceeding 9% to equal the amount of pension I will now forgo. The government, nor its future fund are able to earn at such an investment rate. Why does the government and their highly remunerated & superannuated bureaucrats believe that an aged pension can?
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    1:46pm
    You have to decide whether or not it is better to have the extra capital and a little less OAP or spend down your capital to get the full pension. I know what I'd do.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    1:53pm
    And in 15 years time when the money is gone and you need aged care, the government is up for far more than if they'd enabled you to hang on to a few badly needed dollars.

    At very least the change should have factored in age and set a lower taper rate for younger pensioners.
    Rae
    19th Dec 2016
    2:30pm
    Where on Earth will the government get money in a few years time Rainey. They'll have a toll road, submarines and not much else.

    As this imposed austerity kicks in we will get poorer. It must be planned for some unknown reason. No one could be as stupid as to sell everything making money and give it all to some off shore mob and think everything fine.

    Even the $50 billion planned as rebates to corporations that don't pay tax anyway is laughable. That's where this pension grab is destined but you have to wonder exactly where the money is really going to.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    2:35pm
    Good Rainey hopefully there will be no need for aged care in 15 years time so that argument doesn't hold up either.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:20pm
    All the old bastards will have died of starvation by then or freeze to death in winter or cark it from the heat.... unless they're rich and they can get into a nice air conditions and catered aged care facility...

    I think I'd rather take a boat and drive it off the edge of the planet....
    Pepper
    19th Dec 2016
    1:42pm
    In the U.K., you pay tax on your earnings plus National Insurance stamps to cover your pension. This makes the state pension an entitlement regardless of your personal circumstances. Perhaps Australia can learn something from the Poms!
    Rae
    19th Dec 2016
    2:31pm
    Sounds like a sort of government run defined benefit pension scheme.
    Rae
    19th Dec 2016
    1:54pm
    I realised when privatisations started and then continued and then became a field day of selling our taxpayer funded assets that times would get very tough and soon.

    You can't sell off your income earning assets and do more than create a one off surplus that was spent on war games and political favours and entitlements.

    The billions of yearly dividends earned by these assets are long gone now and the government scrimps and thieves and betrays to rake in a few billion here and a few there.

    Save carefully people because these incompetent fools will bankrupt the Nation and it won't take them long.

    It is pensions today, the family home tomorrow and new taxes and charges and so forth and so on.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    2:01pm
    Yes Rae, but we can't save. The government has guaranteed it's not possible for those who can no longer earn and aren't asset rich. They have to drain their savings just to survive. What do they do tomorrow?
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    2:39pm
    Just live for today and tomorrow will take care of itself. That's how I have lived all my life as your life could be over at any time.
    Rae
    19th Dec 2016
    2:42pm
    I'm trying to save still Rainey as much as possible. I do as much as I can myself home wise and try to avoid those senseless splurges of money. And try to stay as fit as possible because if the Greens and ACOSS have their way the health insurance rebate will go and so will my health insurance because it will be too expensive at that point.

    Savers are being crucified to pay for the neo liberal debt bubble.

    When that bubble bursts it will be very very nasty and a few dollars saved will be very useful I expect.

    Once your savings go down under the cut off point you will get the welfare though.

    The alternate is to set up a trust by gifting for your dependents and then live on $150 000 for 5 years until the OAP cuts in.

    I'm surprised a financial advisor or accountant hasn't been able to sort it for you.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    3:35pm
    I don't have any trouble saving Rainey. If you are invested well one should be doing very well in this economic climate. Having money in term deposits is not a good investment as it has a negative return nearly every year after inflation and tax.

    I doubt if the rebate will ever be taken away from health insurance because our hospitals can't cope as it is and would be a disaster if more people relied upon them.
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    12:56pm
    How surprising OG. Who would have thought increasing the size of the population by 25% with no new hospitals would be a problem.

    Isn't it grand to realise such foresightful leaders are running the show?
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    4:50pm
    Just keep healthy and stay away from hospitals and they aren't a problem.

    Anyway there will be ample room in the private system soon as more and more people pull out of private health insurance.

    19th Dec 2016
    2:10pm
    The changes should definitely NOT go ahead. The taper rate, if an assets test is to apply, should be geared to factor in current investment returns and to take account of a retiree's age and future life expectancy. To force people to drain their savings ahead of a potential period of high need is foolish and cruel.

    A much more sensible approach would be to use the assets assessment ONLY for deeming purposes and means test INCOME (the higher of deemed or actual) only. That would encourage people to save to be as self sufficient as they can. Instead, the new taper rate encourages irresponsible spending and reduced saving and will result in much higher pension costs in years to come.

    And it's grossly unfair, because the income test is generous, and people who can't earn high investment returns suffer most, so the system favours the privileged and hurts the disadvantaged, which is precisely the opposite of what the government claims to aim for.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    5:32pm
    Very few if any disadvantaged people would be effected by the changes in the assets test so I really don't know what you are whinging about Rainey.
    Anonymous
    21st Dec 2016
    11:17am
    How the hell would you know you arrogant ASSS who trades soley on WRONG ASSUMPTIONS? I've encountered hundreds who are AFFECTED (you can't even write English, you dope!) who are genuinely disadvantaged. Not that self-satisfied pigs would care!
    Old Geezer
    21st Dec 2016
    1:47pm
    I guess I'm right then Rainey and you are having a whinge about nothing.
    niexfu
    19th Dec 2016
    2:15pm
    I got a feeling that if you are going to take money from pensioners than spending will be a lot less, and for me that spells a recession which it cost the government more money than the pension that is going to be taken off from the people that worked so hard for it, Kevin Rudd gave us money to avoid a recession and this government is going to create it
    Rae
    19th Dec 2016
    2:54pm
    Very possible. It will depend if those wallets snap shut or not.

    Seeing as it is the savers they are hitting we may very well see a consumption drought from the self funding crew.

    After all a lot of the spending is entirely discretionary and a habit that can be stopped.
    MiteMike
    19th Dec 2016
    2:24pm
    I still have not figured out how these changes will effect my wife and myself, but I still remember my mother, from the day I got my first pay packet at age 16 telling me "Don't worry about paying tax, when you retire you will get the pension payed back to you so you can live reasonably"
    Now we find we must delay simple necessary things, or maybe cancel many long term plans (held over for more than 50 to 60 years).
    Why do politicians not have to share the load (aggravated by decisions they have made or supported)

    ! ! ! SHARE THE LOAD TOGETHER ! ! !
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    2:38pm
    I got told the day I started work that the pension would not be available when I reached retirement age. They were right it wasn't available for me.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:22pm
    In Faroffistania they don't have pensions? I thought it was two Faroffistani drachmae a week...
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    1:10pm
    Your mother would have never imagined future governments would cut taxes, introduce negative gearing, halve capital gains tax, sell all income producing and revenue raising assets,sign contracts with overseas companies and pay excessive government sponsorship fees, pay childcare fees, pay baby bonuses and add 25% extra population in just over a decade at a cost of around $250 000 each. Never in a million years would any sane person see that coming.
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    1:17pm
    We didn't even have electricity in the house I grew up in so my mother had enough to do without worrying about all those things.
    Gunner
    19th Dec 2016
    2:40pm
    I recommend you refer to the history of the Old Age Pension, Dougie...relevant facts can be found in an article by Kaye Fallick 14 Dec 16. ....3 June 1908 the Old Age Pension was passed by Parliament replacing State pension schemes and it was means tested..... in 1912 the family home was exempted from the means testing. .Clearly the introduction of the old age pension was intended as an entitlement....something that some in our Government and some of the more fortunate in the wider Community would like to see changed. The article is a good read and can be found in this forum.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    2:43pm
    That was last century when people only live a couple of years after they retired. It's a different ball game today with a lot more old and them living 30 year or more and with big bucket lists to fill.
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    1:16pm
    Absolute rubbish OG. That is one of those my dog ate the homework excuses that nobody believes any more. The simple fact is the governments have mismanaged the economy from around 1975.

    We had a hope of being a very rich nation of very rich people, like Saudi Arabia, but our governments gave it away to the Elite masters in return for those petty entitlements they get and a chance for fame.

    Now Gia gets a Stateroom on the World, the French and Chinese get most of our lovely money and we can't afford to keep promises.
    Chrissy L
    19th Dec 2016
    2:43pm
    As one of the 235,000 who have their pension reduced. I have written to all the major parties expressing my disappointment with them in the way they have treated older Australians who have tried to put a bit away for their later years. To date, there has been no response from the P.M. or the Greens Leader. Why am I not surprised! After heading advice from Financial Planners to be able to live a 'modest lifestyle,' I now find that the goal posts have changed yet again, and more belt tightening is required to ensure my small nest eggs lasts for another 20 years, my estimated lifespan. The Age Pension is an entitlement, it is what we have paid taxes for all of our working lives, whilst paying high interest rates on our mortgages, child care costs with no subsidies or family payments. Maybe I did it wrong, I should have chartered a helicopter from time to time, built a McMansion or shopped where Julie Bishop does. Perhaps by being careful, I did it all wrong only to have Politicians on large incomes and perks steal it off me in my retirment!
    I agree with Raineys' comments and Thomos' suggestion of a Pensioners Party I am sure it would get a lot of support. I certainly will not be voting for any of these Politicans who voted to steal off the elderly who are on modest incomes and are an easy target. What happened to targeting the Multi-Nationals who pay little or no tax, looking at negative gearing for people with more than one investment home etc. This legislation is totally unfair and the sooner a Leader emerges who has the "bottle" to do something about it, will get my respect and my vote at the next election. We all are not suffering from memory loss Malcolm....watch this space!
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    3:00pm
    Centrelink collects all sorts of statistics. One being OAPs capital. It would not surprise me that one of the reasons for this change in the assets test has been that OAPs capital has not been reducing as they age. This statistic would have told the government that people don't need the pension as they have capital they are not using. So if you don't use your capital then the government will realise that it has not tightened the assets test enough and tighten it up further. So belt tightening may be a bad thing to do.

    OAPs not spending their capital are their own worst enemy.
    Rae
    19th Dec 2016
    3:02pm
    Not to mention capital gains tax. Now if the changes Howard made to the self funded retirements is unaffordable I suggest the halving of capital gains should join it. Charge the correct amount of tax on capital. Why should the wealthy be a protected species?
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    3:13pm
    Capital gains may take years to be realised where as income is realised when it is paid. There needs to so incentive for capital gains otherwise inflation and taxes would not make it worthwhile. Lack of investment does not make a healthy economy.
    Farside
    19th Dec 2016
    5:26pm
    OG is on the money – "OAPs not spending their capital are their own worst enemy." The notion that retirees can sit on assets to pass on by way of inheritance is folly and unfair to those who truly deserve welfare support.

    Rae asks the question "Why should the wealthy should not be a protected species?" - the answer is they should not. The 50% subsidy on personal CGT should be abolished.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    6:59pm
    Sounds fair to me as long as the asset sold is costed at today's value so that the only gain made is more than today's value.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:24pm
    Why should OAP capital decrease, OG? Does YOURS? Would you object if it did without reason?

    A principal of 'old wealth' is 'never touch your capital' - but that's fine for the peasants, eh?
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:30pm
    One's capital will decrease if you spend more than it earns. I use my capital all the time sometimes it goes down in value as well as up but over time the trends is up.
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    9:31am
    OG WE do not have a healthy economy. Debt, rabid immigration and austerity do not encourage a healthy economy. Speculation for capital gain does not a healthy economy make either.

    Over time capital gains is not much but the stock and house flippers and business flippers could be certainly made to pay their fair share.
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    9:33am
    And yes OG the proper deductions for costs and time would come into the equation. Investors would have nothing to fear but speculators would pay up for bubble gains,
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    10:43am
    Very few people will bother speculating or even investing in Australia if all their gains are take way by tax and inflation. That's already having hurting our economy and will get a lot worse if that happens.
    Aussie
    19th Dec 2016
    3:45pm
    My god Old Geezer ... i do not beleive your comments in this post ... in my book you are very insensitive maybe you do not have family to care for and you have been a nasty piece of work during your working days now you are so angry with everybody and everything and making the most insensitive comments again and again.

    Please be inform about the pension, the reason for the creation, the development and the safety net that provide to people that have nothing in life and work like dogs for many years paying taxes and contributing to the retirement of others so please I suggest you reflect on your comments and learn to be a nice person during this christmas.

    Merry Christmas to you and hope God give you a better heart for you remaining years of life
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    3:58pm
    I have no problem with those OAPs. I do however have a problem with those affected by the asset changes that are whinging because they have lost a few trinkets so that those in need can be better looked after going forward.

    I don't celebrate Christmas as it has become too commercialised and is now about money and nothing much else.

    There is also nothing wrong with my heart but thanks for your concern. I won't have time to reflect upon my comments over Christmas as I have a lot of work planned while others waste their time with useless partying.

    I hope you are not disappointed with your hope in God. I certainly won't be.
    Aussie
    19th Dec 2016
    4:06pm
    No OG ...your answer is as expected no worries mate ...My God is with me and hope will be with you

    I am not a full religious person but I believe in God ...so I will pray for you

    Take care
    Nan Norma
    19th Dec 2016
    5:40pm
    OG. You are the real Grunch. I can now predict your replies. I think you're just having fun stirring everybody.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    7:02pm
    No I'm a realist who tells it how it is. Christmas is nothing more than a commercially driven time where people get together with people they don't like and wonder why they did.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:25pm
    He's a schill for the Labor Party who ensures that nobody will ever accept this government's moves..... couldn't possibly be anything else the way he goes on.....
    Aussie
    19th Dec 2016
    3:51pm
    To all ...... I honestly believe that OG and others like dougie are very unhappy people and getting theirs enjoyment by upsetting us pensioners they are rich and have self retirement so of course they do not give a Sh.... about anybody else.

    Do not enter in arguments with this people you are helping them to enjoy their games.

    Ignore OG, dougie and others ... do not play their games.

    I did I only kick OG because he deserve a kick on the bum from time to time
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    4:04pm
    I am a very happy person and very satisfied with my lot. I just hate whining people and like to set the facts straight for them.

    I also wonder why people just can't except that there are people with different views to their own. So what do they do. They try and discredit them by saying silly things like they are unhappy people etc.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:27pm
    Your version of facts holds as much water as a colander..... you've been bombarded with facts and references for months now and not one thing has changed in your blurb....

    That's accept - your lack of an Australian start in life is showing....
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:53pm
    Unfortunately I am a native of Australia as I was born here. No exotic start in life for me.
    Fisherman
    19th Dec 2016
    4:05pm
    Did I understand it correctly when it was reported that Malcolm Turnbull has taken out a loan from the IMF recently? The report (can’t find the reference) said the loan was for a $100 BILLION each year, for 3 years. Its purpose was to ensure the funding of services by the Australian Government. Given that the IMF was bankrupt, and now controlled by Rothschild interests, it would be nice to know what the interest rates are?
    Maybe this could be the catalyst for all the baby boomers with Australian birth certificates to start invoicing the Australian Government for royalties. Has the Australian Government committed the Australian people as collateral for the IMF loan repayments? I would propose a fee of $1,000 per week for each birth certificate holder as reasonable. Some people are already proposing a Universal Basic Income (UBI) along similar lines.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    4:08pm
    Your birth certificate was sold to the insurance companies years ago so they get the money not you.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:29pm
    Common practice for governments, though some would have it that borrowing $300bn over three years by Labor was absolute waste, whereas the same by the LNP is good management........

    Good thought on the birth certificates....
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    9:27am
    This was always the plan right from when the privately owned Central Banking system was established by those few top families.
    old frt
    19th Dec 2016
    4:40pm
    I agree OG most super companies tell you that you need a million $ fund . You don't need that
    when your 80+ , they just want the fees they can charge you on that balance. draw down some of your capital & you will live extremely well , your kids will get over it .
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    4:46pm
    Financial planners also get paid fees based on your capital balance they manage. So it is their interest to tell you to preserve your capital for all those expenses that just might happen. Too many vested interests rather than what's good for the client.

    My kids keep telling me it's my money so I should spend it rather than leave it to them.
    4b2
    19th Dec 2016
    5:17pm
    What a great Government we have. The budget (AKA a plan for Australia Future) is out of control, we are heading for a downgrade from triple A to who knows what, and who is to blame the labour Party of course. No ScoMo you asked for the job fix it. Instead of attacking the elderly and low income earners you need to increase tax on business, collect the outstanding tax from large foreign companies, and look at your won perks and benefits to cut before any more attacking the elderly.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    5:26pm
    It's about time that the people affected by changes were attacked as they certainly don't need the OAP as they have more than ample in assets to provide for their needs without being greedy and getting a top up via the OAP.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:30pm
    Not income-earning assets, OG - do you flog off yours to get cash or do you keep them in the running?
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:51pm
    I don't have any non-income producing assets. If they don't produce income to me they are not assets. My car is definitely no asset as it's cost me money. However my computer is an asset as it makes me money.
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    1:25pm
    Watch out OG under the governments ideals you would sell that computer and build a drive way. You'd sell the car too because poor people don't drive cars.

    You'd have a lovely new driveway going nowhere with nothing on it and no money coming in.

    Sort of a LNP plan.
    Joy Anne
    19th Dec 2016
    5:20pm
    Dougie you must have been the 1%, this is an entitlement after most of us have worked 45 yrs for the pension and most of us did not have any or very little superannuation as this came too late for most of us. We paid our taxes and this money was put aside for many yrs in an account to pay for this until our greedy politians spent it on things that were not important at the stage but on their huge salary increases and perks that they have abused for years.
    Rodent
    19th Dec 2016
    5:46pm
    This may be difficult to get across - but here goes

    as at June 2016 there are 2,538,161 Age Pensioners
    Of that Total 1,234,479 are Home Owning Couples- of that Number 97,327 will receive SOME form of Increase to their Pension, BUT 264,585 will EITHER lose part of their Pension or lose the whole pension.

    Of the Grand Total there are 187,650 Non Home owning Couples-of that Number 1502 will receive an increased Pension BUT 3172 will EITHER lose part of their Pension or the whole Pension

    Of the Grand Total there are 665,054 Single Home Owners - of that number 28,218 will receive an increased Pension BUT 97,570 will EITHER lose part of their Pension or the whole Pension

    Of the Grand Total there are 450,978 Single Non Home Owners - of than number 2069 will receive an increased Pension BUT 6330 will Lose part of their Pension or the whole Pension.

    Its Interesting to look at the LOSES expressed in % terms of the Groups, ie Home Owner, Non Home Owner, Singles or Couples- they reveal this

    Home Owner Couples Loses as a % of their total = 21.43%
    Home Owner Singles Loses as a % of their total = 14.06%

    BUT

    Non Home Owner Couples Loses as a % of their Total = 1.69%
    Non Home Owner Singes Loses as a % of their Total = 1.40%

    Really is revealing who the targets really are in this change?
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    6:00pm
    Non home owners are still way behind those that own their house. If they bought a house they would not be able to afford to buy a house equivalent to the majority that own their own house. Also they would be eating into their capital to pay rent for anything decent today.

    Centrelink statistics would have revealed that these people are using their capital whereas the home owners are not. These statistics would reveal that home owners with other assets didn't need the OAP as they had ample capital to use but were not using it. So if they didn't need the OAP then why give it to them?

    That is what those statistics are telling me and other statisticians would have come to similar conclusions.
    Anonymous
    20th Dec 2016
    7:21am
    At least 60% of non-home-owners could have owned a home if they hadn't been so irresponsible and wasteful in their younger days, OG. I can't find a single non-home-owner anywhere who wasn't far more able than I to pay off a home, given their circumstances during working life. They just didn't bother. And banging on about how hard they have it and handing out more to them encourages the next generation to be similarly irresponsible - which is why home ownership rates are falling. It's NOT the cost of houses. The lifetime cost of houses is LESS than for my generation because of low interest rates, and people have far more money to put toward the mortgage because other goods and services are cheaper relative to wages and household incomes are higher.

    The problem in Australia is a government - and dim-witted morons like OG - driving a welfare/entitlement mentality and punishing endeavour and responsible living.

    Of course C/link stat reveal renters are using their capital. Most of them never learned to conserve anything. They just blow it all and then whinge.

    Now, I apologize to the minority out there who were genuinely unable to buy a home because of hardship, crisis or trauma, and I'm really sorry you are struggling. But you ARE the minority. Most renters are renters because they were irresponsible. If I could pay off a home, and my mother could pay off a home, and my grandmother could pay off a home, then almost every Australian could, because all of us suffered unbelievable hardship - beyond the imaginings of 99% of the population.

    But see, my mother - for example - bought the cheapest block of land at the furthest edge of a country town and built a teeny tiny one-bedroom cottage with a combined bathroom/laundry, and pocket handkerchief kitchenette (smaller than in most caravans - way smaller actually!). She worked like a slave building up the soil with lawn clippings begged from neighbours and planted vegetables. She lived with bare floors for years, painted the house herself to save money, made curtains with recycled fabric discarded by wealthier neighbours... The whole family slept in one bedroom until she could afford a small extension. At one time she made do with a beat up old caravan as an extra bedroom! She was determined just to OWN her home, no matter how hard it was, and it was hard for someone whose only income was a widow's pension, back when pensions were nowhere near as generous as they are today.

    But if she'd been born 20 years later, she'd be one of the ones losing their pension because they are supposedly ''millionaires''. She'd still be living in that humble little pocket-handkerchief, and thrilled to own it, but she'd have half a million in the bank as a result of hard work (scrubbing other people's floors to supplement her meagre pension income) and very frugal living. And she'd be suffering punishment for it and asked to sympathize with people who had ten times more income than she did and cruised the world or played the pokies instead of paying off a mortgage.

    Again, my apologies to those who faced genuine hardship and couldn't buy a home, or bought one and lost it. I know there are some genuine cases, and I sympathize. I'd like to think the government could provide more affordable housing for you. And I'm furious that people are living in public housing in NSW who can well afford private accommodation.

    BTW. OG, you are NOT a statistician. Dream on IDIOT. Statistician deal in FACTS, not wild unsubstantiated and utterly STUPID assumptions about matters they have no clue about.
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    9:20am
    We need a housing bubble crash to take their greedy eyes off the homes that now look so nice. With the costs stripped out ie mortgage payments, purchase price, rates, insurances, maintenance, renovations the damn houses probably owe us money anyway. Then there is depreciation. My house is worth nothing when you do that.
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    11:00am
    I might buy a house if the market crashes enough where I can find some good value.
    Triss
    19th Dec 2016
    6:19pm
    Forget the words 'entitlement' and 'handout', Google a pension is a human right.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    6:55pm
    But the OAP isn't a real pension. It no more than a Seniors Welfare Payment.
    Nan Norma
    19th Dec 2016
    7:57pm
    OG. You're like a broken record.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    9:19pm
    Unfortunately I need to repeat myself a lot because none of it seems to sink in.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:32pm
    He IS a broken record - in fact THE broken record.... and neither fact nor reason nor reference material will sway him from his dogma.... not until his karma runs over it anyway....
    Drifter
    19th Dec 2016
    6:31pm
    I think you should be over 64 to get a pension and the maximum should be no more than the AWOTE and you should get 1 trip a year for $2.50;
    BUT no plane travel (not even humble business class, and not even monthly) and no secretary and no office premises !
    Oh are politician excluded ?
    disillusioned
    19th Dec 2016
    7:49pm
    Who benefits? Well, Joe Hockey benefitted, being rewarded for his lousy job as the Treasurer by being awarded an ambassador's role in the US and a huge salary on top of his already huge polly's pension and entitlements. The LNP benefitted by being re-elected by the gullible who were under the misaprehension that they could fix the Budget, and most of them get an increase in their perks and salaries. Did I benefit? NO!! I lost my small amount of Age Pension and entitlements because of canny investment over the years in a Super fund that did well, so I'm being punished for my frugal lifestyle - don't smoke, drink alchohol, gamble, live in a small home unit, etc. Those not so frugal will do better than I have under the LNP scheme, brought in by Abbott's government with the support of the Greens. When I voted for Abbott (stupid me), my son said "Mum, I think you'll regret it!" and how right he was!! No more LNP voting for me - EVER!!!
    Snowwhite
    19th Dec 2016
    9:01pm
    Disillusioned I so wish other pensioners would think things through like yourself but they just keep voting these moronic Fascists back into power!
    Chrissy L
    19th Dec 2016
    8:14pm
    OG, why should I have to spend the little I have accumulated? I want it there for any medical emergency, old age care, renovations to my home, to visit my aged Mum in the UK, whilst she still recognizes me, to show her some love and respect. It is my money, what I have saved by being careful and not extravagant. I have a modest income in 'super speak' I don't buy designer clothes, I don't live the high life and why should I, if I chose to try and make it last me! I have paid taxes for all my working life, sometimes ovr 50c/$ just to have Malcolm T, Scomo, Abbot, Di Natale and friends decide I am getting too much pension, when I live on less than $30,000/pa. Seriously, this is grossly unfair and I hope all Part Pensioners NEVER, NEVER, forget this injustice, Unite, and VOTE with their feet at the next election. Remember what happened to Campbell Newman in Queensland, when he got carried away with himself and did not listen to the people?
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    9:16pm
    You don't have to spend the little you have accumulated but if you are affected by the asset test changes then you have just a bit more than a little bit accumulated. You have ample to do all the things you want and for those things that financial planner tell us we need to save for but rarely happen.

    Be thankful for what you have got and think how lucky you are to be able to do all those things and not be living in financial hardship where you never could.
    Anonymous
    20th Dec 2016
    6:42am
    OG, you should take classes in math. And if it were not impolite to ask Chrissy L her age, maybe I'd suggest you should do some fact finding before you display your arrogance, bigotry and pig-headed stupidity.

    You have no idea what expenses Chrissy L might face down the track and not the faintest clue how many years her savings might need to last, with rising prices, falling investment returns, crashing asset values, a high investment risk environment, no bank interest, and no earning capacity.

    Only the world's nastiest and most bigoted IDIOT would make comments like you do based on wild assumptions about people you know absolutely nothing about, and on IDIOTIC BLIND POLITICAL AFFILIATIONS that are destroying Australian.

    I thought Hitler was a monster, but I'd support bringing back gas chambers if they were used for people like you.
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    10:56am
    Rainey you have been talking to too many financial advisors who have a vested interest in keeping people's capital intact as they don't want to take a pay cut if it falls.
    Anonymous
    21st Dec 2016
    11:31am
    Wrong again PRIZE ASS. I work it out for myself - 100%. Unlike you, I have a brain and some common sense.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    9:21pm
    Wow I certainly agree with the latest tip from Simple Savings.

    'CANCEL' CHRISTMAS AND GIFT YOURSELF A HOLIDAY INSTEAD!

    Think you can't afford a holiday this summer? Think again! Last Christmas we were trying to decide if we could afford an extended family holiday this year (my parents, siblings and the various kids). The general consensus was 'no'.

    The next week one of my friends complained that they'd spent $1500 on Christmas that year. I was horrified at the amount, but it made me actually get out the trusty calculator and add it up. I was surprised/shocked at the amount I actually spent.

    Presents for family x 10 = $400
    Presents for friends x 4 = $100
    Presents for teachers and kids' friends = $50
    Food and alcohol Christmas/Boxing Day = $200
    Travel expenses (one night accommodation + petrol) = $150
    Work parties, drinks, lunch dinners and so on = $200

    Grand total = $1100

    I called my parents and siblings and got them to do the same calculations. Between us all we spent a whopping $5000 on Christmas! Now obviously there are ways that we could cut back on the cost and other costs you can't avoid, but what we decided to do this year was cancel Christmas and have a week's holiday instead. For $2000 we've booked cabins for the adults (the kids get to camp). The kids are excited, I'm happy I don't have to worry about what presents to get anyone and best of all we get to have the holiday we wanted. Even after the cost of fuel, food and activities we should still be well in front!
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:36pm
    No more scraps from the kitchens for the orphans and the lepers.... no more merciful hangings and beheadings ........ and cancel Christmas!

    You are letting the government down here, OG, by not spending at Christmas in the magnitude you should... tsk, tsk.... Uncle Scotty WILL be mad at you...
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:49pm
    He must have been mad at me for years then as it's a long time since I spent money at Christmas. I might have a look for a bargain after Christmas.
    Chrissy L
    19th Dec 2016
    9:48pm
    OG, I really wonder about what planet you are on? I know I can spend it if I want to, but I don't, I am trying to keep some back prudently for times, maybe difficult times ahead. Rainy days, as my parents taught me. I do not have a lot of money, I have a little bit set my to help me into my old age. I absolutely know what financial hardship is like I grew up in the slums of Manchester UK and I have seen poverty first hand. I agree we have to help people in financial hardship and I do. However, don't lecture me about my modest savings, I have worked very hard, honestly, for it and do not appreciate you or the government telling me what to do or how I should spend it. There are plenty of other options the government has to recoup money to fix their budget deficit, starting with themselves negative gearing and their rich mates. Elder abuse is a crime and they should be at the front of the queue for prosecution for this crime.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:25pm
    Elder abuse you have to be joking. No wonder it is on the rise if people think this is elder abuse.

    Neither I or the government is telling you what to do or how to spend your money. All government is telling you is that if you have more assets than the new limits then there is no OAP for you.

    Yes by all means take away negative gearing but I hope you don't rent as rents will skyrocket as demand out strips supply for rental accommodation. Who will this hurt? Certainly not the rich.
    TREBOR
    19th Dec 2016
    10:37pm
    Poor people don't use houses!
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:44pm
    No they rent them instead.
    Anonymous
    20th Dec 2016
    6:36am
    So right, Chrissy L. But the saddest part of all is that what the government is doing will destroy the economy, and the poorest will suffer most.

    They are creating a welfare mentality and a view that hard work and saving and taking responsibility for yourself as far as you are reasonably able are crimes to be harshly punished. The end result is a nation of people who have an expectation of being supported entirely by handouts, and we can't afford that.

    Encouraging and rewarding people like you is what will restore this country to good economic health. By all means support the needy, but send a strong message that you can pull yourself up from poverty and hardship, and you need to work and save to do that. Maybe they should pay people like us to teach others how, instead of bashing people like you who did what they should be encouraging and rewarding.
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    9:06am
    Take away negative gearing and that stupid capital gains halving. Both encourage speculation.

    I have done quite nicely positively gearing cheap rental property.

    The tenants are happy and so am I and we pay our share of tax.

    Negative gearing is losing money and is a crazy idea.

    If you make a decent Capital gain after time adjustment then pay your damn tax on it. Again this is mostly speculators getting wealthy at ordinary citizens expense.

    Oh and add a transfer tax on money transfers over seas too while at it.

    There budget balanced and people saved.

    There will be plenty of rentals from proper landlords not house flippers and tax dodgers.
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    9:10am
    Rents do not skyrocket either as vacancy rates are rising and people can only pay what they have. The velocity of money limits rents.

    This government is withdrawing money from the system and giving it to wealthy multinational corporations by the billions.

    The money supply is shrinking and they are doing it deliberately for political ideology.
    taylah
    19th Dec 2016
    10:39pm
    everyone should wake up, this is an expedient decision, allegedly helping the bottom line short term. All it means to the ones who have either lost their pension or had it reduced, means they spend their super quicker and end up on the pension longer. Won't affect this gov but will cut in quickly over the next two or three years.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:43pm
    At least most of the money will be spent in Australia not overseas on first class trips to Disneyland.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    11:06pm
    Dream on, fool! They are all going abroad. You get better bang for your buck and spend down faster overseas. And most don't want to help the Aussie economy, since they have been screwed over by bastards and now are being bullied by nasty dopes.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    11:11pm
    There is an awful lot wandering around Australia so if most are going overseas then people are much better off than they make out.
    Anonymous
    20th Dec 2016
    6:31am
    OG, It's those who are gaining $30 a fortnight who are wandering around Australia, - oh, and some of the homeless who have nothing and can only afford to live on the road in a caravan. There are lots of them out there, and they did NOT benefit from the taper rate change that was sold with a pack of lies about it helping the needy.

    Quite a lot working are their way around also.

    If you weren't such a bigoted prick you might actually learn what's really going on in this country. But bigoted pricks are always stupid because they are so locked to their wrong assumptions and bias that they can't absorb facts.

    The people losing out with this STUPID and DAMAGING taper rate change might have done a bit of travel in Oz and spent money that would have generated PROFIT and JOBS and TAX REVENUE, but instead they will blow a heap overseas and then come back with their hands out for ''welfare''. Good on them! Sad for the nation and the taxpayers, but it's what the arsehole overpaid idiots in power deserve - to see their precious deficit go through the roof and be exposed as the incompetent morons they are. And when it happens, you'll have even more egg on your face. Hopefully it will be thick enough that you won't be able to see and you'll piss off from here. A lot of people will cheer.
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    8:59am
    Admit it OG you had a terrible time at Disneyland and flew cattle and are just jealous.

    Besides which I actually believe anyone can fly first class to Disneyland. They just need to set up a Business or corporation first and it becomes a bloody tax deduction.

    Or be a multinational and lend yourself 15% interest money and get our taxpayers to send you a huge cheque to fly in a damn private jet to Disneyland if you want.
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    10:50am
    Never been to Disneyland and it's not even on my bucket list.

    Anyway I wouldn't fly first class I'd take my private jet instead.
    Anonymous
    24th Dec 2016
    1:40pm
    Rainey, you're full of tripe. I've taken a ride halfway around Australia (in a rented camper - I can't afford to buy a 'van) - and everywhere my wife and I went, we found those "poverty stricken pensioners" doing the "lap of Australia", were driving $100,000 4WD's, and towing $120,000 caravans!!

    They all had substantial properties they'd locked up and left behind - and no doubt they had huge holdings in blue-chip shares and large superannuation accounts they'd filled with tax-free earnings over the last few years!

    The numbers of "poverty-stricken pensioners" we came across, that were touring Australia with nothing to their name, were so low as to not even register.

    You seem to forget that you need to find substantial amounts of money for fuel for touring Australia, and "poverty-stricken pensioners" don't have that kind of money.

    Neither do they have the funds to buy expensive caravans. Seen the prices of caravans lately? Even a modest secondhand 'van will set you back $40,000. It's nothing to spend $100,000 on a new caravan.

    The poverty-stricken pensioners reside in out-of-the-way, dirt- cheap caravan parks, in little country towns - living in a wreck of a $500 'van, that they have managed to buy to put a roof over their head.

    They add annexes to their 'vans from scrounged building materials, and the shires turn a blind eye to any building code infringements by them, as they know they have nothing.

    You need to take a tour of these places sometime, it's a real eye-opener.

    I for one, am with OG on the changes - the people who are losing pension payments didn't ever deserve the amounts they were getting, as no way could they be classed as "in need".
    Needy not Greedy
    19th Dec 2016
    10:50pm
    As another of the part pensioners getting a cut (we are lucky because although we will only get $34 a fortnight we retain our pension card which will soften the blow for our necessary medications) in speaking with the senior accountant at our bank, he explained that this is only a bandaid fix by Turncoat and his cronies, those that have lost total pension or most of part pension will now have to draw heavily on their superannuation, the spreadsheet he had shows that a married couple will withdraw around $54,000 per annum based on what the banks self funded retirees average is, unless interest rates were to skyrocket (not going to happen) all of these affected people will have drained their asset down to level where they can get part pension again in around five years, and a few years later full pension, the accountant said they believe the next move will be to make our homes an asset as well so as to force people into selling and buy the government a few more years, great strategy but eventually all that money will be gone, I guess that is when they will hand out the cyanide syringes !!!
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    10:59pm
    The pension card should only be given to those on a full pension so you may have to give up your poisons as well. Good thing too as most are no more than money earners for the rich drug companies with just placebo effects.
    Anonymous
    19th Dec 2016
    11:05pm
    Needy not Greedy, this is what people just don't seem capable of understanding - that if you force people to drain their savings you end up with more pensioners drawing bigger pensions. Older retirees might be okay. Some will die before the crunch comes. But younger retirees who can't earn will be a far bigger burden on the taxpayer because of this stupid assets test change, and the nation will suffer. Those who accept simplistic nonsense and don't think through the long term complications are condemning the next generation to hardship.
    This accountant is right. I just hope he's speaking out loudly and to the right people. Eventually, we have to somehow make the politicians hear. (Difficult when loud mouthed fools like OG keep bellowing their BS!!)
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    11:09pm
    That accountant is just trying to justify his job nothing more. The only difference it will make is that people just won't leave their capital behind for their kids first class trip to Disneyland and have to go economy instead.
    Needy not Greedy
    19th Dec 2016
    11:26pm
    Christ can someone drown that dumb Old Geezer in a bucket, I used to feel really sorry for him thinking the poor old bugger was suffering from senility, but the more I read his posts the more certain I am that he is a healthy wealthy antagonistic prick picking up a pay check from Turnbull (tax payers) I must be a bit slow too because quite a few of you guys had him sussed out long ago, big bucket of water and your foot on the back of his neck for a few minutes should do the trick, try and save the water.
    Old Geezer
    19th Dec 2016
    11:33pm
    Well where is that pay check then as it hasn't been sent to me? I could use it like a lot of you do because it is simply nice to have even though I don't need it.
    Anonymous
    20th Dec 2016
    6:23am
    I agree Needy not Greedy. He is a really obnoxious individual, and the world would be a much better place without him and his kind.
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    10:36am
    Ha ha when I say something Rainey you don't agree with you try to put me down. Well a good try but I also have the right to put my view across too. So stop being so defensive and be thankful for what you have and not envious of what others have.
    Charlie
    19th Dec 2016
    11:11pm
    Why does it have to be an entitlement, or a safety net. Can't it be both?

    It actually is both, because the compulsory super does not have retirement needs completely covered yet.

    Even so, it is still possible to spend all the super at the casino, how does a person live then.
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    10:51am
    It's neither as it's simply welfare.
    NGE
    20th Dec 2016
    12:46am
    To Old Geezer. I am sick of reading all your nasty ill-informed comments. I think you just like to see your name in print, but you don't fool anyone..despite what you say YOU ARE A LIBERAL PLANT and a totally abhorrent one at that. Please please give us all a break from your rantings.
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    10:29am
    Never!
    Chrissy L
    20th Dec 2016
    1:15am
    Right on NGE. I used to think Freedom of Speech was a good thing until I read some of OG's rantings. I for one will be ignoring him or her as of now!
    Irishwolfhound
    20th Dec 2016
    3:36am
    The age pension was brought in as payment from wages to be paid out as a retirement 'wage'. See this article http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf The money came from your wage and went into a special fund for the pension, to be draw ot as payments when you stopped working. Unfortunately Me Malcolm Frazer took all the money that had been accumulated in that pension fund, and put it into "General Revenue" because he had made a muck up and had no money in the Government coffers!! So Pensioners lost all that they had paid in to the fund, and were treated as beggars for waning what they had paid for in good faith! Working people paid for their pension from their wages, so in no way is this a handout or a safety net - it is an entitlement that we the working people have paid for!
    Anonymous
    20th Dec 2016
    6:20am
    Correct Irishwolfhound. Sad that some arrogant and self-centred people can't understand this and support a unified demand that the government recognize these facts and show respect for our seniors. Over time, superannuation will help ease the burden of costs to support retirees, but those who never benefited from superannuation deserve a dignified retirement and the benefits they bought and paid for. And most importantly, they deserve the respect of a truthful message to the populace. If todays seniors have to suffer hurt because of the stuff-ups of successive governments, at least they should be entitled to know that the younger generations know the truth and they should be entitled to apology, NOT BLAME.
    Farside
    20th Dec 2016
    7:28am
    Irishdog, you should do some more in depth research. The national welfare fund was a dud a long time before Fraser Government repealed the act in 1985. The fact is the fund did not have income from the early 1950s and ended up becoming an accounting exercise with the government contributing the equivalent of what the fund paid out from consolidated revenue.
    Trevine
    20th Dec 2016
    6:20am
    I think the changes should be made gradually then people get used to it rather than rushing into it. Why don't they cut the politicians pensions? If they do I'm sure they can bring the budget to surplus ver soon.
    Rae
    20th Dec 2016
    8:51am
    They can never bring the budget to surplus. They have sold anything that made money and given it all to big business. They have cut taxes to the bone. They do not charge for the wealth being extracted from the mines and wells.

    Where do you think they will get revenue to fund a budget?
    PIXAPD
    20th Dec 2016
    7:05am
    It was good to be a person with 'NOTHING' and get the full pension, no changes for me
    Snowflake
    20th Dec 2016
    9:49am
    I have just had $95 a week taken off my part pension. Now down to $150 a week to live on.
    So, it would seem that I now spend my money to live on until such time as I can get a full pension and then I wonder how do I pay for all the everyday things that will continually come up over my retirement years. Dental, nothing cheap about dentists, car repairs or replacement, medicines that may not be covered by rebates, well the list could go on and on. Looking bleak but within six months instead of living happily on a part pension I will legally rearrange my finances and receive the full pension. You dumb arse politicians are not as smart as you think.
    I had some problems working out why I dislike the current political system and I have finally come up with the answer. They have no accountability. They waste money with impunity and then claw it back from those least able to afford it. Like the 300 brand new, in their plastic, chairs for the Canberra Taxation office that were recovered because the interior designer didn't like the colour. The frequent change of name of government departments which cost us millions in printing, change of logos and so on. Or the ACT health offices which were brand new and totally gutted because a certain beaurecrat didn't like the layout.Government waste is rife and I for one would like to see some accountability for all this waste of money. And for those that just see this as a drop in the ocean just remember one grain of sand is an important part of a big beach.
    NGE
    20th Dec 2016
    10:05am
    I agree Snowflake. I am a single OAP who has just had $270 pfn cut from my pension. How many people do you know who can adjust their meagre income ($30K) to losing $7020 all at once. I will now have to live on $23k pa. Not fair
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    1:22pm
    If your income has been cut then you have all your capital to use. It's time to spend the proceeds of your savings not keep them for others to squander after you die.
    NGE
    20th Dec 2016
    5:41pm
    Congratulations Old Geezer. You win the SUPERCILIOS arrogant, haughty, conceited, disdainful, overbearing, pompous, condescending,PRICK OF THE YEAR AWARD. Please GO AWAY
    Anonymous
    21st Dec 2016
    11:23am
    An utter disgrace, NGE. I am so sorry to hear that you are being treated so unfairly.
    Anonymous
    21st Dec 2016
    11:34am
    But according to OG, you should have to GIFT all that hard-earned money you saved for YOUR old age to taxpayers so it can be GIFTED to people WHO DIDN'T SAVE. And when the economy collapsed because EVERYONE wants handouts and NOBODY works and saves (because there's just no point) the IDIOTS who endorsed this stupid policy will wonder what went wrong.
    Cranky
    20th Dec 2016
    10:09am
    I am satisfied that I am entitled to the aged pension, but at the full rate. Why should a married couple be penalized for the sake of a single pension, many of whom never worked a day in their lives. I worked for over sixty years hoping that I would receive a fair reward for my services to the public etc., but no the government is intent on supporting the bludgers being let into our country, who have never given anything, but receive generous handouts, and are in fact treated better that the Australian pensioner. When you move about your daily chores take a look at the cars the people be let into our country drive and then you will understand where I am coming from. Dougie wants to wake up to himself. It is obvious to me that he is one of those persons who needs to get a life and think about the poor pensioners who have, liked myself worked a life time just to see politicians take all the benefits. The pensioner get a measley couple of dollars rise every six months, but when the politicians, including those in local government get a rise in is in the thousands and their lerks and perks are also increased in line with that of their pension rise. Why should politicians be treated any different to other pensioners. It hurts when a politician gets a huge pension and goes out and get another job, but doesn't lose any of his pension, but if ordinary Australian pensioners earn more than a couple of hundred dollars than allowed to earn centrelink docks their penson. I thought we have a Commonwealth Discrimination Act which prevents discrimination. Lets be fair and treat our aged with the respect hey deserve. Grumpy old geaser (Max Jackwitz)
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    10:33am
    If you wanted better than the welfare in the form of the age pension it was up to you to provide it for yourself not rely on the taxpayers for the luxuries of life.
    Anonymous
    21st Dec 2016
    11:37am
    Cranky, marrying or co-habituating with a partner and being honest about doing so is another of the sins this government punishes harshly - along with saving for your future and planning and being responsible.

    According the LNP and dimwits like OG, we should all live for today and put our hands out for welfare tomorrow, and when the economy collapses, we should all starve (if we are not dead by then!)
    Janran
    20th Dec 2016
    1:11pm
    It sounds like a great idea (by TREBOR), for everyone to get the OAP and be income taxed. Unfortunately, as George pointed out yesterday, the rich are well schooled in how to avoid paying tax - that's how they got rich in the first place. THEY are the reason why we are in this revenue/spending predicament, because we aren't collecting enough tax from those who can well afford to pay it. THEY have no moral compass, just gifted accountants.

    And do you think our present Govt has the ability or will "to make sure all Multinationals, Large companies and rich individuals are forced to pay their fair share of tax by changing the defective tax rules."? Dream on... this Govt wants to pay them more! Like the overseas corporations who aren't polluting as much as they used to.

    Yes, the admin. savings would be considerable, but the losses in tax collection would easily overtrump the savings to revenue.
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    1:20pm
    I would just donate it all to the charity of my choice or even create one of my own and claim a tax deduction for the lot. Good thing is that the money goes where I want it to go.
    Janran
    20th Dec 2016
    4:32pm
    You could donate it to the LNP, OG. But is it tax deductible? Surely political parties aren't classified as charities, are they? It's a mockery to real charities if they are.

    Would it be possible that the income from an OAP would put you into a higher tax bracket?
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    4:41pm
    No it would not put me in a higher tax bracket as it would be donated to charity. Definitely not to the LNP. I might even spend a bit on a business trip or 2 as well.
    Janran
    20th Dec 2016
    5:05pm
    It would certainly be a waste of taxpayer's funds to give you the OAP. I would hope that all pension and welfare money is spent straight back into the economy to create demand, to help farmers and small regional businesses. You know, the multiplier effect.

    But it nearly made me puke to think that public money might go to your (tax-deductible) business trip. No doubt you know all the rules of how to avoid paying tax while growing your nest egg. You may be clever but you have no shame.
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    5:32pm
    Good I got your attention. Now you know how stupid it is to give people the OAP who don't need it. Same thing is happening with the current high asset test. It's great that the government has done something about it so it will have more money to spend where it is needed.

    Also I still have all that money handed out during the GFC invested and it's growing very nicely. That's how stupid that idea was as well.
    Rickardo
    20th Dec 2016
    3:58pm
    Thanks to the latest reduction in part pensions, I wonder how many of us will now have to re think staying in a health fund. Surely the dam government wants people to remain in these funds instead of relying on the public system. Ned Kelly is starting to look good.
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    4:43pm
    Well I'm not about to join the queues in the public system myself and not have a choice who treats me.
    Retired
    20th Dec 2016
    4:54pm
    This change to the age pension is one more policy from the neo liberal elites whose already failed policies are destroying the middle class and decimating the lower class.
    Their "Balance the Budget" mantra is not good economic policy. It is an ideological scream from the ideological bankrupt ultra right wing of the Coalition and the ALP.
    It isn't working and will soon decimate the perpetrators of this garbage.
    Janran
    20th Dec 2016
    5:26pm
    Well said, Retired. It's incredible to think the LNP have tripled the deficit but are still blaming Labor for the first third of it. And people swallow it! The LNP won't listen to Labor's plan of reducing the deficit by clamping down on negative gearing or Capital Gains benefits, but expect Labor to roll over and implement legislation to rob the poor and steal our kids' futures. "It's Labor's fault we can't implement our bills" they say. No, it's because your bills suck.

    If the Far Right keeps this up there will be a people's revolution. I just hope the people aren't stupid enough to think that Clive Palmer, Pauline Hansen, Derryn Hinch, Nick Xenophon, Trump, etc., are the answer. The good thing about this lot is at least they say what they think. Trouble is, they often think crap.

    Oh, for a real leader...
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    5:35pm
    It is good to see the government is reigning in the excesses.
    Janran
    20th Dec 2016
    5:48pm
    What Govt?
    Janran
    20th Dec 2016
    6:01pm
    What Govt? And what excesses? Surely, negative gearing or Capital Gains benefits to the rich are excesses.

    OG, you are shameless and you've convinced me you are probably an LNP stooge, regardless of your denial. Or perhaps you have your own exclusive and elite platform called "The Business Leeches Party", with the party motto "we'll suck you dry".
    Old Geezer
    20th Dec 2016
    10:38pm
    Current Affair did a good job tonight and put the whole lot into perspective. They has a northern beaches toff lady whinging like there was no tomorrow and then had a fellow explained what was happening. He said people can have a $3 million dollar house and $1.1 million in other assets and still get the OAP. Everyone then agreed that this needed to be fixed and the government had done the right thing in bringing in the new assets test. Well done Current Affair.
    Mad as Hell
    21st Dec 2016
    7:42am
    I will Never vote Liberal or Greens in any election, federal state or local.
    Anonymous
    21st Dec 2016
    11:21am
    If Current Affair showed a toff lady and someone claiming people can have a $3 million house and $1.1 million in other assets and still get the pension, they were being very narrow, tunnel-visioned and biased.
    Yes, that's true, but there are two sides to every story. The other side is that people can have a $150,000 shack and only a few hundred thousand to last 30+ years, and looming health bill and other major expenses, and GET NOTHING. And then there's their neighbour who has a $3 million house and spend $200,000 going around the world 4 times and gave $1 million to his kids and gets the pension.

    The changes were STUPID, WRONG, UNFAIR and ECONOMICALLY DESTRUCTIVE, and only biased morons who haven't the brains to see that there are much better solutions are defending them.
    NGE
    21st Dec 2016
    12:01pm
    Well said Rainey. I concur with all your sentiments in this blog. Keep up your fight with OG, we are all behind you.
    Janran
    21st Dec 2016
    1:16pm
    I am still working so I don't know very much about the OAP. I don't watch ACA (way too tabloid for my liking) and I can't understand what happened. OG wrote " They has a northern beaches toff lady whinging like there was no tomorrow and then had a fellow explained what was happening. He said people can have a $3 million dollar house and $1.1 million in other assets and still get the OAP."

    Was this fellow who explained what was happening correct? Can you or can't you have a $3 million dollar house and $1.1 million in other assets and still get the OAP? I hope not.
    Old Geezer
    21st Dec 2016
    1:38pm
    Yes you can Janran under the OAP current asset test. The people affected by the change in the asset test are wealthy people that never should have been given the OAP as they have more than ample to support themselves. It doesn't affect the genuine OAP with a few assets at all. The sort of people Rainey is whinging about won't be affected by this change.

    OK there are ways one can reduce their assets before applying for the OAP but quite frankly if you have enough money that you need to "hide" then you are just being greedy and taking money from the government that technically you may have but is it morally right?

    Another things that amazes me is that the OAP is mere peanuts a year for these people "hiding" their assets so I really hope it is worth all the trouble and expense. I think not myself.
    Nan Norma
    26th Dec 2016
    8:09pm
    OG. I understand how I can have a $3 million house and still get the pension, but please tell me how I can have $1 million in other assets and get the pension.
    Janran
    27th Dec 2016
    1:09pm
    Yes, Nan Norma, I was pretty sure the assets test was much stricter than $1.1 million in other assets (before the fringe benefits like a health care card cut out). Is someone telling porkies?

    And is that for a couple or a single?
    Old Geezer
    21st Dec 2016
    1:56pm
    Only this morning I was helping out a bloke who mows lawns and cleans up people's yards as he was having trouble keeping up his workload due to Christmas. One old lady who has a house worth well in excess of $2 million bought me out a cool drink so I sat down with her in the shade. She told me she was going to lose her part pension and asked me if she could leave it longer between mows. I said you probably could but it would take longer to mow and would probably cost you more per mow etc. I told her I didn't think she would save much in the long run. On the way back we got talking about it. My mowing friend thought it was a bit mean of the government until I told him how much money she would have to have to lose the pension. He couldn't believe anyone with that much money would be getting the OAP. He is now thinking about putting his mowing rates up instead.
    Janran
    21st Dec 2016
    7:13pm
    Are those figures for a single or a couple?

    I can't believe I'm about to say this - I agree with you in principle. But surely there are other circumstances where people (like Rainey who looks after disabled family members), on part pensions who desperately need those fringe benefits such as a Health Care Card and the pensioner discounts for rates and utilities?

    We don't know their circumstances so maybe we shouldn't judge so harshly. It's not necessary to be arrogant and hurtful.
    cdbstock
    22nd Dec 2016
    11:03am
    For simplicity, country economic & political reasons the age pension should be paid to all of pension age. The cost to the budget would be app $27B pa & the cash benefit would be app $13B pa BUT there would be substantial economic & political benefit. My estimates are based on various published stats & would benefit from expert analysis - it is warranted - perhaps by DHS. See below for details
    Costs:
    Assume avge part age pension (PP) is 1/5 full age pension (FP) = $165.3 pfn = $4297.8 pa (FP = $661.2 pfn)
    If A = No FP at 31/12/16 & B = No PP at 31/12/16 & C = No pension age but not receiving any age pension
    Then No FP at 01/01/17 =A+50000 & No PP at 01/01/17 = B-280000 (B-50000-230000)
    So, if A is increased by 50000 at 01/01/17 & FP = $661.2pfn & assuming the 50000 PPs were receiving 90% of the FP, the cost to the budget is $661.2x26x.1x50000 = 0.9B
    Of the 2.4M receiving pension at 31/12/16, assume A = 0.4M & B = 2M & assuming C = 0.6M
    Then cost to budget of adding B + C to No receiving FP = 2Mx$661.2x26x.75 + 0.6Mx$661.2x26 = $26.7B
    Total cost to budget if all at pension age received the full age pension $26.7B

    Benefits:
    1 Cash benefits:
    Centrelink staff: 100staff @$100k = $10B pa
    DVA staff: 10@$100k = 1B pa (no analysis of individuals’ assets/income)
    ATO staff: 10@$100k = 1B pa (ditto)
    DHS etc: 10@100k = 1B pa (policies analysis)
    Total cash benefits = $13B pa
    2 Economic benefits – general:
    Substantial reduction in expenditure on homes
    Substantial ‘down-sizing’ to free-up cash & to account for reduced number at home
    Less home assets nationally – home assets are largely unproductive
    Greater savings/investment & consumption
    3 Political benefits – general
    Appeals to mid to high income earners
    Improves the economy
    Reduces ‘Big Government’
    Removes the argument for inclusion of the ‘home’ in assets tests re age pension
    Removes the need for ‘income’ testing re age pension
    Janran
    22nd Dec 2016
    4:19pm
    In dollar terms you are still $13.7B short.
    One of the real benefits would be that rich people would start using their money more productively rather then hiding and hoarding it, as you alluded to. But would they pay more tax? Mmmm, it's not their habit.

    The main obstacle I see is that all people under 50, except those unemployed or in business, are forced to contribute to Superannuation, with the idea being that there won't be an OAP for them.

    I'm not sure about the exact numbers, but I understand there are not enough young taxpayers to support the burgeoning baby boomer numbers retiring, or about to retire.

    There'll always be arguments by people who are on the border between getting benefits or not depending on means testing. I'd hope intelligent policy-makers would lean towards generosity rather than punish genuinely struggling people. But that people can have a $3 million dollar house and $1.1 million in other assets and still get the OAP is over-generous in my opinion.
    cdbstock
    22nd Dec 2016
    11:11pm
    Tks Janran
    If they downsize yielding spare cash a proportion will be consumed yielding GST - the remainder will be 'saved' = 'investment' - & that is a good, productive activity for our economy - in both cases our GDP would be
    increased & tax from the increase in investment (profit/jobs/GST) would result. A bi-product would be the eventual decrease in the average value of houses (new & augmented houses wouldn't be artificially large & expensive) & that would help the first home buyer
    More comments, please!
    Macca
    22nd Dec 2016
    9:48pm
    Do you oeople ever get off slagging one another?Let's form an Australian Patriots Party and come to a common consensus on retirement benefits for all .Surely we have all been through hard times as well as our parents and most of us have come out the othet side.We know what it's like to go without ;to share a bath with sisters or brothers or hand me downs.To sleep on the floor or share your house with cousins how had no place to live.Yes we went without but became better for it.We learnt to work for what we wanted and to share .Why have we changed to a life of entitlement? What we need to do is stop changing the rules and weed out those who abuse system.We won't to be as independent as we can and yes le.ave my daughter and grandsons with a start in life..
    Janran
    23rd Dec 2016
    11:52am
    Who are you replying to here, Macca?

    I agree with you on keeping the rules consistent (as long as the original rules are sensible). The trouble is that:
    1) Our politicians are more concerned about winning the next election rather than serving their constituents, so good policy-making suffers. (Look at the present federal govt - their policies are driven and controlled by a hand full of entitled men on the far Right, who actually represent a very small proportion of the public. They are threatening to leave the LNP and I hope they do).
    And 2), our whole economic system is geared to benefiting the top end of town, so the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.
    So sometimes it is absolutely necessary to change the ground rules.

    Yes, I grew up on hand-me-downs (which I was grateful for), shared a home with cousins (one disabled), along with 8 siblings, and one bath a week (shared), but it's not a big deal if it's all you know. I was blessed with loving, caring parents so I know the true worth of what I call "a high standard of living". Sure, we didn't have much stuff but we were truly rich.

    I like the idea of an Australian Patriots Party, but the word "patriotism" has been hijacked by bigoted, flag-waving piss heads since the Cronulla Riots. To consider yourself patriotic to Australia but not recognise the First Australians as deserving and important members of our lucky society, or to acknowledge the on-going disease white colonisation causes them, is hypocritical.
    cdbstock
    24th Dec 2016
    4:05pm
    Thanks for the article Debbie
    Regarding your ideaof a basic payment to all - ie a univesal age pension
    For simplicity, country economic & political reasons the age pension should be paid to all of pension age. The cost to the budget would be app $27B pa & the cash benefit would be app $13B pa BUT there would be substantial economic & political benefit. My estimates are based on various published stats & would benefit from expert analysis - it is warranted - perhaps by DHS. See below for details
    Costs:
    Assume avge part age pension (PP) is 1/5 full age pension (FP) = $165.3 pfn = $4297.8 pa (FP = $661.2 pfn)
    If A = No FP at 31/12/16 & B = No PP at 31/12/16 & C = No pension age but not receiving any age pension
    Then No FP at 01/01/17 =A+50000 & No PP at 01/01/17 = B-280000 (B-50000-230000)
    So, if A is increased by 50000 at 01/01/17 & FP = $661.2pfn & assuming the 50000 PPs were receiving 90% of the FP, the cost to the budget is $661.2x26x.1x50000 = 0.9B
    Of the 2.4M receiving pension at 31/12/16, assume A = 0.4M & B = 2M & assuming C = 0.6M
    Then cost to budget of adding B + C to No receiving FP = 2Mx$661.2x26x.75 + 0.6Mx$661.2x26 = $26.7B
    Total cost to budget if all at pension age received the full age pension $26.7B

    Benefits:
    1 Cash benefits:
    Centrelink staff: 100staff @$100k = $10B pa
    DVA staff: 10@$100k = 1B pa (no analysis of individuals’ assets/income)
    ATO staff: 10@$100k = 1B pa (ditto)
    DHS etc: 10@100k = 1B pa (policies analysis)
    Total cash benefits = $13B pa
    2 Economic benefits – general:
    Substantial reduction in expenditure on homes
    Substantial ‘down-sizing’ to free-up cash & to account for reduced number at home
    Less home assets nationally – home assets are largely unproductive
    Greater savings/investment & consumption
    3 Political benefits – general
    Appeals to mid to high income earners
    Improves the economy
    Reduces ‘Big Government’
    Removes the argument for inclusion of the ‘home’ in assets tests re age pension
    Removes the need for ‘income’ testing re age pension
    Fair Go
    19th Jan 2017
    8:17pm
    Our system needs a major overhaul. If people were taxed for their pensions, then there would be no arguments about "entitlement" or anything else. This what they do in Europe, and look how well off their retired are! No arguments, no Centrelink snooping and no grizzles as to who should or shouldn't get the pension. They all get it, as they have paid for it. No squabbles, sounds so easy, but no, we can't do that! Makes me wonder.


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