Senators have voted down a motion to freeze their pay

All but six of 75 senators have voted down a motion to freeze their pay.

Senators have voted down a motion to freeze their pay

A motion to freeze senators’ pay until a budget surplus is delivered was voted down yesterday, with just six of the 75 senators voting for the motion to pass.

Ex-Government Senator Cory Bernardi and Liberal Democrat David Leyonhjelm raised the surprise motion yesterday. The motion was supported by Cory Bernardi, David Leyonhjelm, fellow crossbenchers from the One Nation Party and Jacqui Lambie.

The Government, Labor and the Greens all voted against the motion. Greens leader Richard Di Natale said that he was sympathetic to the intent of the proposal, but the Greens could not support the motion as it stands.

Should pay increases for senators be linked to performance?

Read more at The Australian

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    COMMENTS

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    4b2
    23rd Mar 2017
    10:31am
    Another stunt from the Senate, while the motion was never serious, they are prepared to cut wages fro the lowly paid hospitality workers (reducing penalty rates), cut benefits from the lowly paid by freezing benefits, but trying to pass Tax cuts to big business, and pass increases to highly paid parents for child care (this is welfare for the wealthy, at least introduce a income limit)? Really? When are we ever going to get Politian's who care for the people.
    Star Trekker
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:07am
    Totally agree. Hit the low paid, give more to the wealthy.
    MICK
    23rd Mar 2017
    7:26pm
    Hang on, am I missing something?
    Federal pollies doubled their pay around 5 years ago. Pay for the rest of the workforce, with the exception of the top end, has remained all but static. Now they want more?
    Greedy bastards. If the electorate got off its lazy rear end and got stuck into the lot of them this might not be happening.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    7:37pm
    Read below - none of the big two or their lap-dogs will be getting my vote... again.
    disillusioned
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:16am
    Of course! Typical government "fat cats"! Look after No 1 and let their constituents rot. It's interesting how their mind-set and value-system changes once they get into a position of power! To heck with the people who voted them in!! Nope, once in power, their hands are in everyone's pockets except their own! Typical pollies!!
    Idontforget
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:42am
    I think you should have used the word Parliamentary fat cats instead of Government. Remember, it was the LNP, the Labor Party and the Greens that voted down the motion to freeze their pay.
    KSS
    23rd Mar 2017
    12:37pm
    And all the other Independents Idontforget.
    inextratime
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:22am
    Says it all about the current crop of political leaders. They once said that pollies needed to be paid well to attract talent. Well that didn't work.
    in2sunset
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:24am
    Don't mind them getting a pay rise but should be the same as what everyone else gets. And no extras when they leave, and their super the same as everyone else. That's fair...but pie in the sky.
    Kaz
    24th Mar 2017
    10:03am
    Agreed
    Kaz
    24th Mar 2017
    10:03am
    Agreed
    Knight Templar
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:29am
    It may well have been a stunt but if nothing else, Senators Bernardi, Leyonhelm, Lambie, Hanson and her One Nation Senators have exposed the Government, Labor and Greens Senators as hypocrites. Financial belt tightening is fine for others, especially retirees, but not for themselves.
    WindyGap
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:37am
    Totally agree. I''m sure none of us retirees expected them to take any kind of cut.
    Eddy
    23rd Mar 2017
    5:07pm
    I see this a stunt by Senator Bernadi to gain himself some undeserved publicity. The senator, and his cronies, could not care less how the budget was balanced. If this means taking from the poorest in the community then so be it.
    Before we metaphorically tar and feather our esteemed senators let us see how they vote when the Remuneration Committee makes their next recommendation for a parliamentary pay rise.
    jackyd
    23rd Mar 2017
    5:45pm
    Eddy, Cory Bernadi is one of the few politicians that considers the net fed gov debt as serious.
    In fact Cory sees that debt ballooning out to one Trillion dollars before the budget is in surplus unless a significant change occurs in the conduct of the Senate. You should support those that view the bottom line as paramount to sound governance.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    5:48pm
    You'll be drowned out by the chorus of Ayes, Eddy. Perhaps when they pass their next pay rise recommendation by a vast majority you will start to awaken to the reality of these people.

    If it was a stunt - that part of it worked like a charm.
    Eddy
    23rd Mar 2017
    9:27pm
    Ruling out a parliamentary pay rise would at most be symbolic, the amount saved would at best be a few million per year. The only way to a budget surplus is to increase revenue and curtail spending. So rather than applaud Sen Bernardi for his empty gesture ask him to champion tax reform so all sections of the community pays an appropriate share relative to their means. What I would like to see is the bi-partisan debate on tax reform we should have had before PM Howard bought in the GST (despite stating he would not do so before 1998 election, preceding Julia Gillard's 'No Carbon Tax'), but then maybe I am just dreaming that both sides of politics could agree on anything.
    Other measures Sen Bartnardi could champion if he was so concerned about the budget could include scrapping the $50billion in tax cuts to the wealthy and overseas investors, cut back on negative gearing, stop engaging in overseas military deployments, cut waste in government services, get back overpayments from Social Security (but in a proper way, not RoboDebt), voluntary euthanasia for those that no longer wish to inhabit the planet. I am sure that other respondents that could add to this list but this is only a start.
    Eddy
    23rd Mar 2017
    9:42pm
    Let me conclude by stating I have little respect for Sen Barnardi. If he was a man of genuine integrity he would have resigned from the Senate at the same time he resigned from the Liberal Party. All those South Australians whom voted Liberal 'above the line' have been betrayed. If, as reported, he established a website for his group before the election then he was probably elected under 'false pretences'. Why did he contest the last election as a Liberal rather than as an independent, if he had the courage of his convictions he would have made his intentions known before the election and let South Australians make their electoral decision accordingly.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:02pm
    So it is in no way symbolic that hundreds of thousands will cop a pay reduction?

    Lead from the front, Eddy.... that's something the overpaid clowns we elect have yet to learn. They think it's just a business in which you have a captive payout every week.

    Saving a few million over a few people is not the same as saving a few billions over a few million people, and it is not just the amount 'saved' (since the government actually loses when people who work for a living earn less) - it is the amount PER PERSON.

    Get your mind right.

    No way these clowns will get my vote again.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:05pm
    What is seriously symbolic, Eddy - is that it is 'all right' to chop the wages of the working people and the retired, and that is fair game - but that the wages of their 'betters' are above reproach and are to be held sacred. If that isn't symbolic of a totally out of touch government apparatus, I don't know what is.
    Eddy
    24th Mar 2017
    2:04am
    Sorry Trebor, I thought the subject was parliamentary pay rises and Sen Barnardi's motives not pay rises in general. While I may not have used the words you used I do think I agree with the sentiments you expressed on general pay rises.
    Eddy
    24th Mar 2017
    11:10am
    Jackyd, I don't understand where your projected trillion dollar deficit is coming from but lets look at Australia's debt in comparison to other countries. While these figures relate to the situation as at June 2015 they are may help bring this debate back to reality. These figure are the ratio of public debt (for Australia that is the total debt of Commonwealth and State governments) in relation to Gross Domestic Product (I have rounded the figures for clarity).
    Australia just under 30%
    USA nearly 105%
    UK nearly 90%
    Canada over 80%
    NZ about 40%
    India close to 50%
    China about 30%
    Japan nearly 230%

    I think these figures how Australia is in a good position debtwise in relation to other copuntries
    TREBOR
    24th Mar 2017
    11:25am
    Not being critical here, Eddy - I was just wondering what percentage a relatively small economy such as ours can 'absorb', and what is considered 'healthy'...
    Eddy
    24th Mar 2017
    11:58am
    Trebor, not being an economist I can not answer your question on what is absorbable or healthy. Australia's economy is 19th (as at 2015) in the world so I do not think that makes us a small economy. Our 2015 GDP was 1.15 trillion US dollars (compared to USA at about 25 trillion).
    Make your own conclusion.
    ps I hope I properly understood the websites I visited to get these figures as they are written in the strange language used by economists
    jackyd
    24th Mar 2017
    12:42pm
    Eddy, you may fine that Cory Bernardi shares most of your concerns if you weren't such a closed shop.
    As for other world economies, why on earth should this country go down the same fiscal hole when we have a comparative low modernist population and the great natural resource abundance.
    It's called Pollywaffle.
    jackyd
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:36am
    At least Cory and some other crossbenchers tried, the others must see a long row ahead in returning the budget back to surplus as they keep on knocking back savings measures for the sake of political opportunism.
    Unfortunately we will all be paying for it through higher taxes and cuts to services, all ready happening.
    Tom Tank
    23rd Mar 2017
    12:12pm
    This motion by Bernardi is somewhat suspect and he was probably playing politics. Those who supported the motion have a history of wanting cuts to services such as health, education, welfare etc. and this may have been the thrust behind the motion.
    Given the circumstances politician's income on all fronts should be frozen until a proper taxation regime is put into place where everyone, particularly overseas corporations, pay their proper share.
    If the gas exporters paid our government what they pay the Qatar government in royalties and duties for their gas we would not have a budget problem.
    We probably wouldn't have the energy problem Turnbull is currently talking up either.
    Jess M
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:46am
    Everyone should be worried about penalty rates. Remember that poem. First they came after .......and I didn't speak out. Then they came for the.......and still I didn't speak out. Then they came for the.......and still I didn't speak out. Then they come for me - and there was no one left to speak for me.
    We have many others on penalty rates not just hospitality and if they can say Saturday and Sunday are just like other days what if they start going after penalty rates for Police, Firemen, Ambulance and Nurses?
    4b2
    23rd Mar 2017
    12:25pm
    Very appropriate Jess M. This is the thin edge of the wedge. A return to Howards work choices and Union Bashing. Anything to take the focus the governments lack of initiative. They are still prosecuting Phony Tony's policies.
    So much for change.
    Blossom
    23rd Mar 2017
    8:30pm
    They will find that emergency personell won't volunteer to work extra shifts during emergencies if there is a disaster situation as they did during bushfires.
    Eddy
    23rd Mar 2017
    9:58pm
    No Blossom, emergency personnel will always put public service ahead of their own needs, always have, always will. And our political masters know it and exploit it.
    My wife was a nurse, during the nursing strikes most nurses 'volunteered' to look after their patients, unpaid and unheralded, they could not walk out on them, despite what some sections of the government claimed and the media reported.
    That's the way it is Blossom, and when the emergency is over the government will applaud their efforts, and then stab them in the back.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:07pm
    "emergency personnel will always put public service ahead of their own needs"

    What then are elected stooges? They are there to do a job 24/7/365 - not ride in luxury.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:08pm
    You are close, Eddy - you just need to take that next logical step.
    alfie
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:48am
    To ask politicians to accept a wage freeze is simply a waste of parliament time. We can't be that naive to believe that it will ever pass. Their performces deserve no merits because it is party driven first to gain power rather than putting Australia first.. they keep talking about working together for Australia but never do. What they are doing is dividing Australia in half.
    niemakawa
    23rd Mar 2017
    10:44pm
    Most Australians are not only naive but complacent and show little or no interest in what really matters for this country. The 2 main political parties have been passing the baton from one to the other since forever. Both have adopted a Globalist strategy to the detriment of the people of Australia. Yet the proletariat continue with the same old. When they have a real opportunity to impose change they falter k at the last hurdle , get cold feet and vote the same "mob" be it Libs or Labor into power. The independents have not really achieved much either as Australia is getting further and further into debt. I am a Nationalist and proud to be so and Australia will always come first for me . International relations are of course important but there is no need for this Country to keep supporting other Nations to the extent to which it does. We persist with an immigration policy that has not and never will provide any long term benefit for Australia, as most of the new arrivals over the last 10 years or so have become a burden on this Country, politically, financially and socially. Again this a a result of the Globalists who have pushed this agenda and continue to do so. There is no hope or future for this Country by continuing supporting or voting for Libs/Lab/Greens and most of the independents.
    jackyd
    24th Mar 2017
    1:07pm
    What's the answer. ...the single party state of communist China seems to be going along ok....driven by slave power, high pollution, over population, environmental destruction etc etc.
    But the middle class want to come here and live, and can't blame them for that.
    floss
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:55am
    They froze mine and then removed it.
    grounded
    23rd Mar 2017
    12:29pm
    I wonder how Xenaphone and his Xenaphonies voted?
    jackyd
    23rd Mar 2017
    5:50pm
    Nick Saxaphon is always blowing his trumpet!
    Blossom
    23rd Mar 2017
    8:24pm
    In the past Nick has objected to being given a pay rise. He was told Parliament didn't set the wages, some fancy tribunal or something similar set them. He was told he would get an increase whether hew liked it or not. Guess who pays those peoples wage. He rang up talk back radio and commented about it. He is not impressed with other members of parliament who don't agree with a wage increase.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:11pm
    Yes - another one of those 'independent' tribunals who make the decision - and whose pay packet relies on the same decision. They get the same rise as the polies..... why would they recommend against a 1000% increase? It's only public money - and then they wonder why there are 'dole cheats' etc..... it's only public money.....
    niemakawa
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:14pm
    He is probably sitting down in the club playing the pokies being a hypocrite that he is.
    Rosebud
    23rd Mar 2017
    12:29pm
    It's very easy when you do it to someone else. The DISGUSTING HYPOCRITES.
    Not Senile Yet!
    23rd Mar 2017
    12:51pm
    There is quite a Simple Solution to this Hypocrisy ..... What is it?
    The Baby Boomers need to Stop Voting for Party Puppets from the LNP..LABOR...and the GREENS!
    There is no honour in what. they are doing!
    The one thing demanded of an Mp is Honour!
    That is why they get addressed as ...The Honourable Minister For @#$@#$!
    If they choose not to be Honourable then they simply DO DESERVE TO GET YOUR VOTE!
    Nor do they deserve to get any Voyes from ALL YOUR FAMILY MEMBERS!
    Next Election...Fight Back....get your Families to join you and Put the Party Puppets LAST!
    That is how you SACK THEM!
    So who then do you Vote for?
    Think about that for a while....because the only Honourable MP's Fighting this Mob....seem to be Independants....like Jacquie Lambie...and others!
    Next Election give your and your families Votes to Independants....at least they are not Silent....they will serve their electorates....and Most are honourable!
    The more Independants there are in both Houses....the more they have to Negotiate....instead of Dictating!
    Maybe...just maybe....The Independants can STOP THEM from attacking the 90% with Cuts based on the 10% that do the wrong thing!
    Really people....it is Time to Boot the lot of these Party Puppets out of Our Parliament!
    Take a Stand...go on...I dare you!
    Vote them all LAST next election!
    Stick it right up the Lot of Them...they deserve it!
    Spondonian
    24th Mar 2017
    8:00am
    You will never change the status quo with the 2 main parties untill you get rid of preferance voting , they can control you too easily .
    KSS
    23rd Mar 2017
    12:56pm
    Well at least Cory Bernardi, David Leyonhjelm, fellow crossbenchers from the One Nation Party and Jacqui Lambie now know what it feels like to have their moves blocked by the Senate!

    This was nothing more than a grandstanding stunt. Given the Senate has done everything it can to block savings (and no doubt will continue to do so) having an open-ended time period (until a budget surplus is delivered) was never going to be agreed because they didn't know when it would be 'unfrozen'. After all there is a precedent - Mr Abbott and Mr Hockey froze politicians and top public servants salaries in the 2014 budget for a year. Mr Rudd did the same in 2008. Both times it was agreed. The difference this time is that there was no defined timeframe. No-one would vote that and that is what makes this so transparently a stunt.

    Not to mention that the whole thing was clearly hatched in secret then sprung on the Senate without warning or consultation. Exactly the sort of juvenile antics we have seen from this cohort before.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    5:51pm
    I suspect, rather, that those cross benchers made their point and cemented their place in the hearts and minds of the Australian voting public.

    I await the next FedElect with glee.... I'll be chortling as the dominoes fall one after another....
    jackyd
    24th Mar 2017
    12:47pm
    I hate to think what's going to be left standing though Trebor!
    eggles01
    23rd Mar 2017
    1:01pm
    Well now this shows the TRUE nature of the greens,they are just in the parliment to grab what they can get and have not any respect for Australia or the Australian people, we can only hope the followers of this gangerous anti anything party that would help Australia and the Australian people voted out in the next election,wake up you people and realise what this party is all about,them selves-them selves-them selves and bugger Australia and the real Australians people
    Knight Templar
    23rd Mar 2017
    3:39pm
    Spot on eggles01. The Greens are pathetic, hypocritical social justice warriors who have no principles. Their socialist policies are designed to ensure their own personal monetary and political enrichment regardless of the pain and suffering it creates for others.

    They are totally intolerant of dissenting points of view and are hell bent on destroying what's left of Australia's manufacturing industries. It's supporters are essentially inner city elites who rarely travel beyond their comfort zone which at best is no more than a few hundred metres from their favourite latte establishment.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    5:54pm
    Always was my belief about The Greens after I read a bit on the European Greens... political opportunists who on their score card will do anything to gain more seats and power.

    Sounds familiar in history somewhere... lessee now (the old Professor Emeritus digs through a raft of old tote sacks for the relevant learned tome.... ah.. yes... the NAZI Party!).........
    floss
    23rd Mar 2017
    1:18pm
    The comment by Tom Tank as to the gas royalties should be giver a lot more air time ,the biggest and most important stuff up ever carried out in Australia lets hear more about that not about pay increases for greedy senators.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    5:58pm
    And a host of privatised ventures, offshore investments in resource procurement, tax concessions, providing infrastructre for foreign investment to utilise to gain profit and offshore it without paying taxes here.... you name it...

    All resources should be vested in the Government, not in private hands on 'claims' etc, and any and all offshore investment should be in conjunction with a 51% local share, and all management and handling must be done HERE in Australia - not by visiting firemen from Offshoria, not by remote control from Faroffistan, and not from a HO quartered in the Cheapasyacanget Islands. They also put up a surety against their future tax burden, they pay their taxes here, and they are then free to claim those as deductions in Taxhavana or wherever....
    HKW
    23rd Mar 2017
    1:29pm
    Should pay increases for senators be linked to performance?
    =========

    What performance? ! That Australians are getting poorer and the politicians are richer?! !
    People work hard sacrificing their own time on weekends and yet the government introduces penalty rates. How disgraceful !!

    Until electricity, gas and water are not nationalised
    Until council rates and insurance cost won't go down
    Until the common peoples of Australia lifestyles won't improve

    None of the politicians deserves any pay rise !!!!
    KSS
    23rd Mar 2017
    1:40pm
    HKW please comment on facts and not a distortion of it. It was Mr Shorten who set up the Fair Work Commission and appointed his preferred hand chosen Commissioner and an Independent umpire to conduct the review. Mr Shorten and Mr Turnbull BOTH agreed to abide by the decision. The Commission made its determination and yet you now complain the Mr Turnbull is delivering on his promise and not a word that Mr Shorten is not.

    BTW, this Government did not introduce penalty rates at all.That was 1947 when the unions argued that people needed more money for working outside normal hours. The problem now is that the old 'normal hours' are no longer 9-5 Monday - Friday yet an archaic payment system persists.
    Tom Tank
    23rd Mar 2017
    2:25pm
    As well as an archaic payment system there is still the major sporting events on over the weekend. They should be moved to mid-week so those who work weekends can see them.
    Oh there might be a problem with that because the crowds won't be as large and that type of event is mainly about the money.
    The change of the working week away from the old times, I never worked 9-5 anyhow as where I worked always started much earlier than 9am, came about mainly because of the push into weekend trading.
    It was the old story of businesses pushing for something they wanted then whinging about the cost.
    The Business Council isn't open over weekends, funny that given they are so keen to see others working then.
    If it is too expensive to run over the weekend than don't open. Easy fix.
    KSS
    23rd Mar 2017
    3:24pm
    "It was the old story of businesses pushing for something they wanted then whinging about the cost."

    Well I would agree with that Tom Tank IF people were not actually going shopping, wanting entertainment, buying take away, wanting Sunday morning breakfast in the local cafe and so on. As it is, Australia is now a 7 day a week trading place. Most people expect to be able to shop, eat, play when they want, where they want.

    Saturday and Sunday no longer have the same meanings they used to. People are not going to Church and refraining from any form of work in favour of 'family time' and reading the bible. Society has moved on and so should archaic things such as 'penalty rates'.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    6:05pm
    KSS - you just shot your own argument in the foot - people shop etc on Saturday etc because they are mostly working M-F.... hello... entertainment has always been mostly for weekends etc.... Sunday morning breakfast at the caff is a treat after the working week is over.... and you have time to enjoy it instead of Chew and Shoot through...

    Every argument you put up is repudiated by the very facts you present.......

    Saturdays and Sunday are NOT ordinary days - you can't watch the NRL Grand Final at 3am Wednesday morning... or even at 3pm Wednesday.....

    While ever Saturday and Sunday (etc) remain special days in most ways for the majority - there is NO argument to reduce payment for work done on those days.

    Does Parliament sit Saturday and Sunday? Go stand in line at Cambra Airport Friday afternoon and see for your self....
    KSS
    23rd Mar 2017
    8:01pm
    I hate to burst your bubble TREBOR but sport does NOT run Australia. Maybe it did once when players were amateurs and they had a real job during the week. But like everything else times have moved on. Time you did too.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:20pm
    Neither does the government......

    But then - the issue is that ALL such things - including the day off for those advocating that all days are the same - fall on Saturdays and Sundays and public holidays.

    Again - do you see Parliament sitting on Saturday or Sunday or on a public holiday?

    Only in a desperate crisis.... which is never at the moment.... you'll find your polies at football games and at the races etc over the weekend..... or spending 'time with their family', like everyone else might wish to do.

    Did Kerry Packer go to the races on a Tuesday? NO - because the top races are held on the weekends...

    Are police rostered primarily to cover Monday night to Wednesday night? NO - they are rostered to cover Thursdays (pay day for many), Fridays when the rage is on, then Saturdays when everyone is partying, and then Sundays to catch the hung over still over the limit.

    You are deliberately evading the real issue here - even those who push this agenda do not consider that it is their duty to work on Saturday, Sunday or on a public holiday. You may argue that business owners do that - that is the path they have chosen and they have no meaning in any discussion of wage earners .... if they don't wish to do it and pay the correct wages, they can leave the playing field.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:21pm
    You didn't even begin to burst any bubble of mine - time you moved into reality for a change.
    Boof
    23rd Mar 2017
    1:47pm
    The motion was put in such a way it could not be upheld. Salaries Frozen until the budget is in the black. Ridiculous. If they had said, frozen for 4 years maybe. But, by the time the budget is in the black. Hell will be Frozen.
    Frank
    23rd Mar 2017
    1:49pm
    Remember the Senators were invited to just 'freeze' their pay while the low income and vulnerable people/families will have theirs 'cut'. Not only are they hypocrites but are without any trace of compassion; so much for caring for the Australian public. They are all the same!
    niemakawa
    23rd Mar 2017
    11:24pm
    The day of reckoning for them is not too far away.
    Joy Anne
    23rd Mar 2017
    2:17pm
    ABSOLUTELY DISGRACEFUL. Why don't you ask the people of Australia about this.
    IN FACT, the people of Australia should decide what Politian's wages should be then vote on Perks as well. They are robbing the people of Australia and I am sick of this. Take from Pensioners to fill there own pockets
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    6:07pm
    I've long advocated they should be paid a retainer of $50k, plus real costs and electoral allowances that are for genuine use - and the people of their electorate should vote annually on any bonus they may receive.

    For $50k ONLY the very best intentioned would come to the party and stand for election.

    The way to attract genuine talent is to REDUCE politicians's stipends and allowances to attract ONLY those who genuinely want to do the JOB.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    7:02pm
    For those who genuinely do not understand - political talent is defined as being a good performer in the closed, smoke-filled, beer and skittles arena of the party rooms.... not anything whatsoever to do with any genuine talent to actually do a job on behalf of this country.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    7:03pm
    You see 'talent' handed a plum seat because they are a good fund raiser, or local branch secretary or whatever, or are just connected in the 'right' ways... not because they can actually do the job.

    It's a reward for being a party sycophant....
    Strummer
    23rd Mar 2017
    2:28pm
    If the salaries of senators were linked to performance, most of them would have to pay us.
    Anonymous
    23rd Mar 2017
    4:11pm
    That was my thought also, Strummer. I think it's a great idea, actually! Maybe they could pay all the retirees who are struggling as a result of government incompentence?
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    6:08pm
    Class action - but all the class would be on one side of the question.......
    Baby Huey
    23rd Mar 2017
    2:28pm
    I think Paul Keating's favorite term describes the Libs, Labor, and the Greens best: SCUMBAGS.
    The pom
    23rd Mar 2017
    4:10pm
    I think he also said a lot of other nice things about the Senate, I think I remember such words as unrepepresentative swill, and many other compliments
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    6:56pm
    That was it.... but Keating was trying to push for the abolition of the Senate then.... under the false assumption that the Senate was not elected to do a job that might not agree with the HoR.

    We hear the same now from the 'right' parties - they demand the 'right' to govern without constraint because they are the majority in the House.

    Well - unfortunately for that point of view - government here is composed of the House, the Senate, the Public Service, and the Judiciary, all of which have a role to play in Government entire - and are protected by separation of powers, while having NO obligation to agree with every move of the House.

    That's one reason Howard removed the promoted heads of government departments and made them anew into contracted employees whose tenure relied on adhering to the dictates of the government of the day.
    HKW
    23rd Mar 2017
    2:51pm
    The performance:
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/derryn-hinch-latest-of-several-politicians-caught-sleeping-on-the-job-20160830-gr4xuy.html

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3343641/Malcolm-Turnbull-Julie-Bishop-Federal-MPs-caught-looking-bored-sleepy-final-week-parliament.html

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/warren-truss-looks-like-he-fell-asleep-in-parliament/news-story/e31c93861e37c9b0f35e78b5935e9119#&gid=1&pid=1

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/video/2014/jun/19/politician-sleeps-video

    https://www.google.com.au/search?q=australian+politicians+asleep+at+the+job&client=firefox-b&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwi385Gz3OvSAhWHlJQKHRo9DNIQ_AUIBigB&biw=1920&bih=898#imgrc=cq_ElbDwqcWuDM:
    moke
    23rd Mar 2017
    3:18pm
    Another selfish move by the money hungry big wigs. Will they never accept that there are others in more need than them.
    niemakawa
    23rd Mar 2017
    10:46pm
    Unlikely.
    Nerk
    23rd Mar 2017
    3:33pm
    The only time these morons agree on something it is a pay rise.
    niemakawa
    23rd Mar 2017
    4:39pm
    Hypocrites the whole bunch of them. These "bastards" need to be exterminated.
    TREBOR
    23rd Mar 2017
    5:45pm
    Pay freezes and rate reductions are ONLY for the peasants? What's wrong with you people - you expect the Lords and Masters to starve or something?

    Now you see the battle lines drawn for any future push to amend politician 'entitlements' - no way are they going to accept any of that rubbish.

    I will not be voting for any of the majors again this next time around, nor for their lap-dog parties - they have shown nothing to justify getting my vote.
    Julian
    23rd Mar 2017
    8:18pm
    These parasites get paid more to do less.

    We're screwed.
    Julian
    23rd Mar 2017
    8:18pm
    These parasites get paid more to do less.

    We're screwed.
    niemakawa
    23rd Mar 2017
    10:47pm
    You are being to kind.
    gadsby
    24th Mar 2017
    7:09am
    lol they want their payrise ,where will they get the money??easy take it off the pensioners,
    these people are on a different planet.
    Spondonian
    24th Mar 2017
    7:54am
    How do they get to vote on their own pay when they also get vote on OUR pensions. Their big excuse for their big saleries is, this is what equivalent positions in industry get, . Ok so they should not get any raises untill they ballance the books or show a profit , oh silly me they are trying to do this by cutting our pay and pensions.
    TREBOR
    24th Mar 2017
    11:28am
    Exactly what I say - government is not a business and does not operate on the same lines - there is no equation between the greed of business people and payment for service to the public.
    Old Geezer
    24th Mar 2017
    11:04am
    Good on them they deserve every penny they get. I certainly wouldn't do it for what they get.
    mogo51
    24th Mar 2017
    11:09am
    Politicians want to hope they never get 'performance based' pay, they will owe US.
    blue trumpy
    24th Mar 2017
    11:22am
    Obviously 69 of the 75 senators are more interested in themselves than the future of Australia and the people who voted for them.
    Needy not Greedy
    24th Mar 2017
    12:06pm
    Eddy, are those Debt in relation to GDP figures correct? How the hell can the Kiwis be just above us, I have travelled that country extensively on holidays and apart from sheep and cows grazing everywhere they appear to have little in the way of any heavy industry, no minerals to talk about, yes they have a great rugby side but that's about it, and yet they finish higher than us in the Happiest Country list announced this week and talking with pensioners over there they are far better off, all get full Pension, no damn asset test, and if you keep working after Pension age (which many do) no income reporting! Something dramatically wrong in the system here for sure.
    Eddy
    24th Mar 2017
    2:39pm
    I think the figures are correct, I relied on economic websites for the details. Comparing NZ with Australia could give skewed results. The NZ GDP is about $US200Billion, Australia is about $US1150Billion. From this I can deduce the net public debt in NZ is about $US80Billion, while the net public debt for Australia is about $US345Billion.
    The next question is 'what constitutes debt'? For instance Australia has contracted about $50billion to build a fleet of submarines over about 20 years or so, is that $50billion counted as a debt even though the money will be paid out progressively over many years? How much of that debt has been used to build infrastructure which has an offsetting economic value.
    Debt by itself is not necessarily bad, it is what the debt is used for that can render it good or bad.
    jackyd
    24th Mar 2017
    6:53pm
    Net federal gov debt is close to 500 Billion without the States and Territories.
    Check the Australian National Debt Clock site for details.
    The 345 Billion was the Labor/Green figure when Abbott took office but oh boy, didn't he get hounded out of office for daring to rectify the situation.
    The screams of protest from the ABC about a1% cut per annum now they are forced into cutting 100 staff with hardly a whimper.
    The joke is on all of us unfortunately.
    jackyd
    24th Mar 2017
    7:46pm
    Oh bloody hell, I just checked the site and net gov fed debt has ballooned out to 548 Billion and escalating fast.
    This should concern everyone no matter what political perspective.
    If we are not concerned for ourselves then be concerned for the generations ahead and their diminishing services let alone the effects of a real financial crisis that may strike in the future.
    Results. .global depression
    Results. .war.
    johnp
    24th Mar 2017
    2:12pm
    they are inc control of their own financial affairs and destiny whereas most of us are not. As a result they abuse the privilege; simple really
    johnp
    24th Mar 2017
    2:12pm
    they are inc control of their own financial affairs and destiny whereas most of us are not. As a result they abuse the privilege; simple really
    srs21
    25th Mar 2017
    8:37am
    Anyone truely surprised of that outcome. Not this little black duck that's for sure. Lol
    Josie4
    25th Mar 2017
    4:55pm
    When I watched Jacki Lambie give her speech in the Senate last week, she seemed to be speaking to an almost empty room. It's not the first time I've noticed this. Where are they al? What are the rest doing? How many hours a week are they supposed to be in the Senate. Can someone explain to me what they could be doing????l
    Old Geezer
    25th Mar 2017
    5:10pm
    Probably having dinner as her speech would not have been considered important business and their presence would not have been required.
    Josie4
    25th Mar 2017
    4:55pm
    When I watched Jacki Lambie give her speech in the Senate last week, she seemed to be speaking to an almost empty room. It's not the first time I've noticed this. Where are they al? What are the rest doing? How many hours a week are they supposed to be in the Senate. Can someone explain to me what they could be doing????l
    Anonymous
    27th Mar 2017
    11:52am
    Many years ago, one of my children went on a school excursion to Canberra to learn how our country is governed. When she returned, I asked what she had learned. She replied, ''That you silly adults choose greedy people to put MP after their name and then pay them huge amounts of money to take fun trips to far away places and do lots of sleeping in their chairs on the rare occasions they bother to attend parliamentary sessions. And while you work hard for peanuts, they do nothing at all and get paid bucket loads for stealing half your earnings.''

    She wasn't far wrong!
    GrayComputing
    27th Mar 2017
    11:49am
    Politicians forget who voted them in.
    They all take their brains out and leave them in a jar the moment they walk into the parliament. (G+S)
    phaxer
    28th Mar 2017
    4:40am
    Should pay increases for senators be linked to performance?
    No it should be across the board through all facets of Goverment. Performance of our Goverment regarding both major parties has been atrocious. Pollies are using the lazy susan system of electing leaders. We the constituents should be the ones electing leaders not pollies who are screwing our country. Why are they screwing our country? Everthing that is dear to us has always been neglected. Climate change - The Great Barrier Reef - The increasing restricions on pentioners and centerlinc recipiants - medical system is a joke. Why?? Because we have jugheads who don't know how to solve our problems. I believe that we should engage a Pacific Island Government to run our country not these buffons that is the "Australian Government".
    niemakawa
    28th Mar 2017
    4:56am
    You have it in a nutshell. Trouble is most politicians are pontificating on the World stage , looking for International acclaim for their endeavours. Instead they have an obligation to meet the needs of genuine Australians, but most show little or no interest in doing so. Australia must always come first.
    mogo51
    7th Apr 2017
    11:22am
    If they were paid on performance,they would owe us. Little kids in the candy store,
    billie
    7th Apr 2017
    1:55pm
    When are ALL polititions going to tighten their belts? Or is that only the for pensioners and low income persons.????


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