14th Apr 2014
Treasurer warns of Pension changes
Treasurer warns of Pension changes

Despite Opposition protests that it would break an election promise, in an attempt to improve Australia’s bottom line, Federal Treasurer Joe Hockey has flagged possible changes to the Age Pension in the upcoming budget.

Changes would include an increase in the Age Pension eligibility age - Mr Hockey has pointed to the United Kingdom, where the Age Pension qualifying age is set to increase to 70 over the coming decades.

Currently in Australia the Age Pension is indexed to the average weekly earnings of an Australian male, but Mr Hockey is suggesting that this be changed to indexing based on inflation (i.e. CRI), which  could leave pensioners worse-off.

The Treasurer has stated that Australians are relying too heavily on government payments, “Obviously we’ve got to have a sustainable welfare system and there is a serious question as to whether our current welfare system, which was designed in the 20th Century, is sustainable in the 21st Century when we have significant demographic challenges.”

Shadow Treasurer Tony Burke has warned that, if it goes ahead with these changes, the Government will be breaking an election promise not to change the Age Pension. “The promise was - no changes. Full stop. No qualification. No changes to pensions.”

And leader of the Greens Christine Milne says that asking those in physically demanding jobs to work through to 70 is unreasonable. “Apart from asking people, especially those who’ve worked in physically demanding jobs all their lives to keep working until they’re 70 - if they can’t they’ll have to go onto New Start which won’t in any shape or form be able to support them.”

Commentators have expressed concerns that these changes will simply mean people being moved from the Age Pension onto other, less suitable, welfare payments.

Read more at the ABC News website

Read more at the Herald Sun website

Opinion: Punished for growing older

It seems likely that the “significant demographic challenges” Mr Hockey believes Australia is facing include Australia’s ageing population, made up mostly of hard-working, tax-paying Australians. Shame on you, you hard-working, tax-paying people for causing such problems.

And we all know you want nothing more than to retire at the tender age of 65 in order to grab your Age Pension payments from the poor government. Who wouldn’t want to rely on the Age Pension? Greedy, selfish. Could you not simply remain young and pay ever-increasing taxes? How dare you affect the country’s bottom-line so. What were you thinking?

What. A. Joke. No, Mr Hockey, nobody wants to rely on the Age Pension. It’s already so low as to make living on it a financial juggling act worthy of the circus. And changing the way it is indexed will only exacerbate this situation.

It’s all well and good to raise the age of eligibility to 70, but how does the Government intend to ensure that employers will employ people until they are 70? Older workers often cite their age as a barrier to finding work - ageism in the workforce is a real and persistent problem in Australia - how will forcing more people into this job market help matters? Those who can’t find work will simply end up on Newstart Allowance, moving them from one form of welfare to another with lower entitlements.

But even if we ignore the obvious realities of the Australian workforce, speaking as one human to another, how is it right or just to tell those who have paid taxes all their lives that no, you can’t stop working. We’ve changed the rules. The line has been moved. And when you do finally catch up to this elusive and ever-increasing Age Pension age, you’ll get less than those before you for your trouble?

Mr Hockey, when you are framing your May budget, think back to your election promises, and don’t punish Australians for getting older.

What do you think? Should you grit your teeth and ‘take one for the team’ in order to help balance Australia’s budget? Or do older Australians deserve better than these broken promises? And, in the light of the proposed changes to the Age Pension, how do you feel about the Government's six-months paid parental leave plan?





    COMMENTS

    To make a comment, please register or login
    pete@nakedhydroponics
    14th Apr 2014
    10:14am
    Why has the word "superannuation" not been mentioned? People in my age group may not have had super all their working lives, but surely by the time they're talking about raising the age limit, most if not all workers should be self funded shouldn't they?
    They problem is, many retirees now who could be self funded are opting to spend their super and then go on the pension anyway.
    SuzeB
    14th Apr 2014
    1:21pm
    I've been fascinated by this too, Pete. Most pieces I've read on the subject seem to take the view that the pension is the only option. Absurd. Those who don't want to be working till they're 70 need to try and keep employed and add their own extra payments to their EMPLOYER PAID superannuation. As for broken promises, I no longer get over-excited about most of them. It's near impossible to get through to people who immediately put up a mental barrier when any threat to their handouts is mentioned. I'd probably lie too in this situation.
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    2:49pm
    pete@ and SuzeB - the aim is to have people self-funded to a large degree - so yes I would agree with you. I do have some reservations about the Super access age being 70 the same as the Age Pension, especially if you can self-fund - providing you have enough to survive through your retirement. But those people wanting to will get around this by accumulating assets outside Super as well.

    I know there are some in the community that will have had REAL difficulties saving as they were always on very low incomes. However, many people do have good opportunities across their lifetimes to avoid being reliant on the kindness of an unknown future government, either partly or completely, but chose not to take on that responsibility.

    I have little sympathy for those in the latter category, who whine about what the government is going to do TO them - or most commonly is not doing FOR them. They made a conscious choice to be reliant on government generosity in their dotage. People should be happy they get given enough to survive on. There are huge numbers of younger tax payers supporting this retirement choice that would no doubt rather they could unload the burden.

    The age pension is only an unwritten contract between younger tax payers and the elderly. Eventually these younger ones will hold the reins of power in government. What if they then consider that Hockey was nothing but a reckless spendthrift regarding aged welfare benefits - and tighten much further? Choosing to be reliant on government kindness precipitates some significant life-affecting consequences.
    in2sunset
    14th Apr 2014
    2:51pm
    Oh to be as optimistic as you SuzeB!! 2 things - (1) just WHERE are all these jobs for the over 50's, and (2) WHERE are all these employers that will hire an older age worker? I am in my mid 60's, and till the age of 45, lived and worked on the land till we lost the lot. (drought, banks, mother's illness). Since then, even with stacks of courses and training that I have paid for, I have rarely had more than low paid, casual jobs. Even now, all I can manage is a part-time job, due to end in March 2015. Still leaves a few years till aged pension eligibility. The number of times I have applied for a job, travelled miles for an interview at an agency only because they want to 'see what you look like'. Not at all interested in ability or work ethic. I have very minimal superannuation, and that is not because I have been reckless. I have gone without holidays, given up my much loved hobby, and on the 2 weeks I don't work, rarely leave my house because I can't afford to. It fills me with dread to think of all the time I will have free when I do retire, but I won't have the funds to afford to do anything. Funny though - I see my sister who left the farm early, lived on the wild side and now has the last laugh. Lives in a lovely 2BR housing commission unit, had 2 kids to different fathers. Got the single parent pension plus maintenance from 2 dads, and worked cash on the sly (some years ago now). She's been on 2 cruises and overseas twice - not me. As soon as the maintenance & single parent pension dried up, she managed to get on the Disability Pension (still not quite sure why) but no incentive to get off it. Here I've been, struggling like mad to try and live comfortably, and all I get is kicked in the teeth, time and time again. A few years ago, I went to the funeral of a friend who took his own life because he could not face the prospect of years of struggle on the aged pension, yet he had a wide circle of friends. As I now approach that retirement age, NOW I know what he meant. I will try and work as long as can, but physically, my body is wearing out. Try working on a farm for 30 odd years. It needs more than just my willingness, but I am positive that governments have the attitude that older people aren't as strong and vocal as young ones, and besides, they hope we will all die off quickly. Voila!! - no more aged pension to pay!! Problem solved!
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    11:00pm
    Have to disagree Harvs (Again) but if access to Age Pension is raised to 70 then surely access to Superannuation should also be raised to 70, also "Transition to Retirement" should be raised to 65, after all "Fair is Fair ".
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:11am
    You are possibly right, but those keen to circumvent government imposed rules will take the required steps to provide for their early retirement. It is a matter of finding the appropriate tax vehicle. There are always cause and effects from decisions regulators make - a possible reduction in voluntary Super saving, or lower consumer spending to enable people to achieve their goals, are just some of those risks.
    Patriot
    14th Apr 2014
    10:19am
    When the age pension was introduced, All Australians were required to pay an extra Levy (Tax) which would be "Set Aside" like an investment guarantee for when the time came that those people would be drawing on this when retirement age was reached.
    This would have ensured that adequate finance was available and so "The plan was good!".
    This is what the HANSARD outlines when the Age Pensions were introduced, but - as usual - this good scheme had to be "Debunked" and the Conservatives later ransacked (means stolen) the funds that were already set aside and converted them into consolidated revenue to be squandered with the rest of the taxes we have paid.
    At that time it was also decided that "The the then active taxpayers at the future time" would bear the burden to pay for the Age Pensions as they became due.
    Now- of course & as per usual - the story changes once again as it is claimed that there are inadequate funds to meet this commitment.
    How do you know when a politician is lying: "When you see his lips moving!"
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    10:52am
    100% correct Patriot, at the same time as the Abbott government claims there has to be cuts to the bottom end of town they are increasing hand outs plus decreasing taxation to the top end of town. I realise that the Labour party is in complete disarray but surely people could see that Abbott is an extreme Rightist along with his front bench, but still they voted him in. He is breaking every promise that he made to get elected, but I hope there is one promise he doesn't break, and that's to call a double dissolution if his hand back to the Miners is rejected by the Senate, that's the only hope that Australia has to stop this rapid slide back to the eighteenth century.
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    12:54pm
    I've also posted in the past a Tax Office document that showed that a significnt rise was set in income tax to cater for 'increased welfare programs' etc. Sorry Tony and Fat Joe - the pensions are paid for. You and your fat cat mates go find money somewhere where you are wasting it.
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    10:47pm
    I wish people would spell Labor correctly, Labour is not the name of the Labor Party.
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    11:09pm
    Strange Misty, I have two independent dictionaries Collins and Readers Digest and they both tell me it is Labour.
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    11:23pm
    Sorry moorlands, check out the Labor Facebook Page or Google it if you don't believe me, The Australian Labor Party is the correct title.
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    4:45am
    I think ANYBODY should learn to Spell the Name of ANY political party correct as soon as ANY PARTY enacts THE WILL OF THE AUSTRALIAN TAXPAYER.
    Unless this is so, I take the right to spell their name any way I like and call them whatever name I see fit! Who B****y cares!
    Misty
    15th Apr 2014
    9:10am
    Ok Parttio if that's the way you want it.
    Jude
    15th Apr 2014
    11:10am
    Not that I care, but why do they use the Americanised spelling? It used to be Labour Party before 1912 but an American born Labour politician persuaded the party to adopt the American form of spelling.
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:40pm
    The Labor Party is The Labour Party after they took the 'U' out of it........
    tisme
    14th Apr 2014
    10:20am
    As a carer of family I don't have superannuation being on the job 24/7 for30 years I don't think I will live to 70. why is it the polies spend us into debt ( not to our benefit )yet they don't have to pay it back ?? they are the only ones thatdont suffer. its way past time the people got up out of their apathetic arm chairs and turned on the polies like the Egyptians did
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    1:07pm
    I've just been reading The Arab Spring and it is truly amazing how very much of the basic reasons for that Spring resonate with conditions here.
    Our country is as bad as a corrupt third world dictatorship - say as Marcos Philippines or even the current China which is nothing more in reality than a continuation of the same old - with all the good 'opportunities' - just like here - going to the mates and the party faithful, who, like the mandarins of old, make billions out of it.

    Read my comments here - I'm dead serious.

    http://www.ozpolitic.com/forum/YaBB.pl?num=1397439061
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    7:44pm
    We will have to throw Tennis Balls at them !!..Johnny Never Never took our weapons ?? ..He must have known the future !!
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    4:47am
    Grappler,

    You're right!
    GREED, GREED, GREED & SELF INTEREST!
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:38pm
    Indeed particolor, Wee Johnnie knew full well what he was doing and why. he is the ultimate fascist in my books, but the rest on both 'sides' are only just behind him.

    We'll have to rely on People Power - my lady in Indonesia is a judge appointed after the Marcos collapse, and she knows full well what I mean.
    Travellersjoy
    14th Apr 2014
    10:23am
    I am a woman over 65 years with minimum superannuation and a full age pension. Most people on the age pension are women over 65 with no superannuation at all.
    Clearly the Liberals think our lives are not worthy, that our lifelong contributions to Australian society through depression, war, and work are worthless.
    The Rudd changes to the pension were the first in decades to offer a small aid to all us old women to keep the pension within cooee of cost of living in Australia, while the value of everything else eg GST component, are eroded by rising costs.
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:42pm
    Actually 51% of retired men have as their only income the Aged Pensions as opposed to 42% women... according to the ABS.... it seems that rather than having little to no super, many women inherit from the old man his super and the house etc.....
    Travellersjoy
    14th Apr 2014
    10:28am
    Too many businesses including multinational corporations depend on our taxes. Hockey should be tackling corporate and middle class welfare, not assaulting the elderly.

    I note the person to mention superannuation is a bloke. Most age pensioners are women. Most women have little or no superannuation.
    PlanB
    14th Apr 2014
    10:33am
    I never had super when I was working--and I agree that to expect people to work till they are 70 is selfish and not on as there is NO way you can carry on working if you are in a physical type job. I note the pollies were very quick to grab their large pay rise AND their lurks and perks when THEY retire
    SuzeB
    14th Apr 2014
    1:34pm
    I'm a female pensioner with little or no superannuation. I budget very carefully. I doubt we'll suffer too much with changes. I suspect any changes will be aimed at the future, given everyone who works now has superannuation. Those who want to retire early need to keep working and pay extra into their funds. And there are people with assets of over a million bucks claiming superannuation. Ridiculous. Things change - we have to adjust. Such a privileged country and we whine and whine and whine about our handouts.
    FrankC
    14th Apr 2014
    5:13pm
    I noticed last night that Hockey said "these actions will affect people of my generation" . Yeah, but not you, you can retire whenever you like on your super and all the fringe benefits that go with a retired politician. !
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    4:50am
    SuzeB
    Just do nothing and it won't be long before you're Winging & whining along with us in tune.
    Don't trust the B's and believe what they tell us!
    doclisa
    15th Apr 2014
    10:59am
    SuzeB
    no not everyone has supper. Particularly after the tiney bit we had got stolen by the twelve years olds the governemnt put in charge of it, and the fees for the super funds are way way stupid and a rip off. I am a woman of 56. and i have always been in part-time and contract work. I had a tiny super, but they would not let me have it when I got sick and had to stop work. So I had to sell my home ( a tiny flat) to pay the mediacl costs etc. and was not entitled to any assistance because i now had cash in the bank. they then lost all my super in the crash. so no home no super no pension. This is what happens to women. I think they are attacking and punsihing the wrong group.
    Waterbabe
    14th Apr 2014
    10:30am
    Has anyone ever noticed that each and every time there is a change of government, we hear shrieks of anguish from the new government that the previous government has left mayhem in it's wake - a huge black hole that only a strict budget will remedy.
    And of course, only attacking the age pension and putting it in an armlock before administering a nasty dose of purgative will suffice to create this remedy.
    As you will no doubt find, come budget time, after acceding to public outcry, the Libs will do a backflip and find another way of reducing the deficit - the plan they had all along will seem a much sweeter dose of purgative by comparison.
    Ho hum (yawn).... we've heard it all before.
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    12:57pm
    Hear, hear.... It's just a re-runof the same old story - cringe and whine about how 'bad' the previous 'other side' government left things, and pretend it's all crisis while sipping on latte`s and good whiskey, then sit back and say what a wonderful job you've just done - not only rescuing the Australian public from a terrible previous government, but doing it in style and without hurting you all too much.

    Must be worth a pay rise or two such good management! maybe a bonus to the 'commission of audit' unelected swill (when I want your opinion, as a voter, I'll ASK for it!)
    harold
    14th Apr 2014
    10:49am
    I am a woman over 65 with minimum superannuation. I have worked my whole life from the age of 19 to age 66, paying taxes the entire time. I have never drawn any government payments in those 47 years.
    If I lived in the US I would be entitled to Retirement based on my Social Security earnings record.
    If Australia didn't have so many politicians we would be able to pay hard working citizens a decent pension.
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    12:58pm
    I also post here:-

    http://www.ozpolitic.com/forum/YaBB.pl?num=1397439061
    Kevie from Buderim
    14th Apr 2014
    10:50am
    Let us remember that the Global Financial Crisis was caused, not by pensioners, but by the greed of financial manipulators... The people who caused the problem are now largely back to where they started and the cycle starts again, yet those who had no part in that dark world of greed and avarice, and are most vulnerable, are being asked to sacrifice in order to bolster the wealth of the privileged few.
    It is little wonder that political landscape are becoming unstable and it is a trend that will continue worldwide. Australia will be no exception.
    Jen
    14th Apr 2014
    2:03pm
    Well said, Kevie.
    Indy_Lopos
    14th Apr 2014
    10:51am
    The current system does have to be changed but not in the way that Joe Hockey is proposing.
    Changing the entitlement age to 70 will have a much more sinister effect than shifting from Age Pension to Newstart. Why? More people are eligible to at least get a part pension than to receive other benefits like Newstart especially if they own a second property.
    The current system makes people (especially older people) shy away from legally getting married because if they both own a property and get married then the assets test will stop them getting other benefits like Newstart. And the age pension counts super as an asset and so the same people getting married may be unlikely to get a part pension or the associated concessions just because they are married - yes, technically it applies to non-married partners as well but they mostly get away with being treated as singles.
    I even heard people suggest that because of the stupid discrimination against married couples they would seriously consider getting divorced just so that they would be treated more fairly for government benefits!
    At the moment the assets test prevents a married couple (earning a low income) from even partial pensions (and hence getting aged concessions) once they have assets (excluding house they are living in) of about $1.1M (which is nothing for someone with a property in Sydney).
    So under the current system one can have a substantial house to live in without affecting Newstart or Age pension entitlements but as soon as a married couple have a moderate second house it affects everything and the way property prices are rising even less people will be eligible for benefits in the future.
    Who know what other changes governments (Labour or Coalition) have in mind so that even less people will be entitled to government benefits like Newstart or Age Pension in future.
    The other real issue in raising the future pension eligibility age is that older people (as young as 50) who lose their jobs already have great difficulty in securing another job and this will only exacerbate the situation unless even people who can't get Newstart are entitled to get free education to enable them to change careers.
    Stop pick on older people - Labour or Coalition! Help older people who want jobs to get jobs and that will help the budget!
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:50pm
    Indeed! A Grappler Party initiative is to reduce costs of living by the abolition of many of the current rorts, and then progressively scale back the retirement age to 53 - thus allowing 35 years of genuine prosperity in which to grow and prosper, and a few good years left to enjoy life.

    It's a complex issue, and my hands are working on it.... a start is to cut out 'privatisation' with the extra layer of costs, including the massive 'bonuses' to 'CEOs' and 'board members' who just happen to be political cronies or family or past politicians.

    Then we are working on a concept paper for the development of the Pilbarra as a steel manufacturing complex/megapolis, using power from solar and wind and Timor gas, as well as the introduction of a permanent body of water into the Lake Eyre Basin that will provide a mini-climate change and open up the Interior (and provide fish, lobsters, and waterfront properties for the many). These are called the twin GAIA Projects - the Greater Australian Infrastructure Advance project and the Great Australian Inland Aquifer project...
    grandma
    14th Apr 2014
    10:51am
    Why should anyone be penalised for growing old, when single people can have child after child and be paid for them? Why should the youngsters of today qualify for a payment for staying home and looking after their newborn. Whilst these changes may not greatly affect me at my age I still feel it is unfair to reward those having a child out of wedlock or staying to home to look after a newborn, we made do in our day and both of these situations could have been remedied yet how do we reverse ageing?? How do we reverse declining health due to age? Sorry I do not think this decision is fair, true superannuation will help those that it will affect mostly but will it be adequate when the time arrives? Perhaps the pension should also be indexed into two tiers, those that have worked and those that have sat back on benefits when they could have worked. I worked hard all my life but I also enjoyed some of the benefits from that, a decent holiday each year and a home, I considered those things were my reward for doing so, I paid my taxes so the politicians could get rich, I had to give up all the joys of being with my children at home when they were little, why shouldn't there be adequate benefit at the end when the funds run out and we can no longer support ourselves?
    raymondp
    14th Apr 2014
    11:05am
    I totally agree with what you are saying.
    Allieannie
    14th Apr 2014
    8:46pm
    You are mistaken. "single young people can have child after child and be paid for them". You are wrong. It has all changed. Please please don't think being a sole parent today is easy...I shall direct you to a website to read how hard sole parents are doing it under today's conditions.
    http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/federal-election-2013/a-singleminded-struggle-to-get-by-20130822-2se9f.html
    If you are on Facebook please read these stories they will make you weep with the frustrations.
    https://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CCsQFjAA&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2FNoNewstart4Families&ei=n7tLU8_jGILz8QWrkICgDw&usg=AFQjCNF38FvfuVoRJogCNOmsnhyOhN6KbA&sig2=BPIZpZTzVhaPEjKU_RKl4Q&bvm=bv.64542518,d.dGc

    You should not believe what you hear, believe what is the truth. Is this what you want for those children who will probably be caring for you in your nursing home??? IF they are lucky??
    All babies deserve their mums. All children deserve at least one parent to be there for them every day and not exhausted from working menial and tiring jobs while they are 'farmed out' into care. Think before you judge.
    Blossom
    14th Apr 2014
    9:21pm
    Allieannie, you now get baby bonus that older parents never received.
    I agree with some of your points, but some Mothers have babies by a different Dad each time. Don't tell me it doesn't happen because I personally know one who has 4 children and know of another one who has 2 or more. I know it is hard for Mums to get work. You should also be getting a Govt subsidy for your Childcare
    raymondp
    14th Apr 2014
    11:03am
    Hockey, include in those budget cuts - no wage increases for you pollies for 12 months. What a joke, in a couple of months time we will see that they have voted themselves a wage rise, just wait and see. I am on a pension and only an extra $100 per month from my measly super. At this rate I have about 5 years and the extra runs out. Think about people like me Hockey and all your other cronies. Why Australia, why did you put this lot of mongrels in power.
    qbeebill
    14th Apr 2014
    11:03am
    Well Mr Hockey, you want the Pensioners to carry the weight of Australia, So you are breaking a Election Promise, By not increasing the Pension .. In-deed you are going to decrease the pension by having it increase by only the CPI... and rasing the age limit to 70years old , what a digrace.. And of course, only attacking the age pension and putting it in an armlock before administering a nasty dose of purgative will suffice to create this remedy.
    As you will no doubt find, come budget time, after acceding to public outcry, the Libs will do a backflip and find another way of reducing the deficit .
    I call on all Pensioners to band together and Fight this Unfair Government.. If Mr Hockey wants to correct the unbalance it the Budget to it to those who can afford it.. Hit the Politions salary,s and there Superanuation which they do not Pay towards. Pensions for life , ??? This may help maintain the Budget Line .. And again Increase the Aged Pension , for the ones who need it...Bill Kerr
    qbeebill
    14th Apr 2014
    11:14am
    I have watched the Sessions of both the sennet and the House of Reps on TV , and you all behave like a bunch of School Children.. Whe you break the rules of Parliment you should be fined..And loss part of your Salary.. Then perhaps you will treat the privlage you have of Serving Australia in your High Office and the Australian People with the correct manner...Bill Kerr
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    11:03am
    Salary sacrificing into Superannuation which is simply a Tax dodge should be abolished, anyone who can afford to pay extra money into Super would never have to claim an Age Pension, also abolish Transition to Retirement another Tax dodge, Then Negative Gearing on Investment Property another Tax dodge. That is just three Tax dodges, there are dozens more.
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    12:26pm
    OR...

    Abolish government age pensions, except as a safety net for the very needy and get people to take responsibility for their own retirement.

    People will then learn how not to rely on governments for their existence, learn to invest and manage money and use whatever is available to them to ensure they can have enough to survive through retirement.
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    2:37pm
    Hit a raw nerve did I Harvs?
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    3:03pm
    Nope, not in the slightest.

    You either learn the rules of the game and control your own retirement destiny or become a pawn of government welfare whims and largesse. IF this site was representative of the population, it is interesting how many have abdicated their retirement income stability (and associated stress levels) to nothing more than fickle present and future government budgets.
    leapyearbaby
    14th Apr 2014
    3:25pm
    I agree with you Harvs. Thanks for the comment. There's a lot to say for a positive attitude and having control of your own retirement destiny but it also has to do with living within one's means and being content.
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    4:59am
    Harvs,
    Just wait until the bankers collapse the stockmarket. We'll then soon see how much good planning for your "Self Funded" retirement has done you!
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    5:00am
    Harvs, You'll learn, the B's get you one way or another as the game is rigged in such a way that the ordinary slave at the bottom of the "pecking Order" cannot win!
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    9:49am
    That is why so many people now have SMSF's - you totally control where the money is placed and manage the market risks. If you treat it like casino money, you will lose it. If the market crashes (hopefully) you use your capital to take advantage of the opportunities that then arise. It is all about managing risk - government or otherwise - and to do that you ensure you have as much control as you possibly can. You are generally only a victim of markets or the government if you choose to be.
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    3:27pm
    Harvs - how many SMSF owners went down with the consecutive plunges in the market? ALL! As Patriot says - you are just a nothing at the bottom of the chain.

    The guy who wrote A Gang of One about his incarceration over an absurd conviction for defrauding NatWest bank - said that here had learned that when anyone amasses great fortune they do so at the expense of countless others. He was a banker elite.... he knew what he was talking about. He grew up in a Glasgow orphanage and competed his way up the chain - then realised that he was doing what the rip-off merchants he'd know as a kid were doing....

    Same with your banking giants - pure psychopaths....
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    5:13pm
    Your frame of reference is SMSF's that abdicate to others when you say ALL went down, as that is not factually correct.

    A number of people do all the day-to-day investing and managing of all their assets themselves. Those that choose to do it that way have instant and complete control of all their assets and can buy and sell in seconds on the share market or move it from one bank to another as quick as the bank will transact,etc. They refer to and rely on no-one else except themselves.

    Some people really enjoy managing their money and many of them did considerably better in the GFC than the big funds because they took action quickly and went defensive to minimise any loss - and then made money since.

    14th Apr 2014
    11:24am
    Historically pensions were originally set to a very high age level, so only a minor few of the population who managed to survive long enough actually got a pension. There was no real impost on tax payers at this time as it was nothing more than a kind gesture to a handful of people. Through the largesse of government and people’s expectations, this has now evolved into an entitlement for everyone due to our longevity, but with ever increasing tax burdens on the generations of people still working and paying tax to keep those pensions funded.

    Governments of course want their cake and to eat it. During our lifetimes they want us to consume and not save (so we can increase our GDP annually) – which most of us do with great delight. We pay our taxes and then expect at the end of our working lives that we can rely on the kindness of strangers in government to keep us in the manner we were somewhat accustomed. Herein lies the great mismatch and misunderstanding by people about relying on government welfare.

    I acknowledge a limited number of people will have very difficult lives and absolutely no chance to prepare for their own retirement and that some decisions about pension ages could make their lives challenging. However, for a great many others they consider the easy way out to prepare for retirement is to totally abdicate that responsibility to an unknown future government and its policies, including age levels of access and so enjoy spending their money and not planning.

    If you have lived more than 40 years you well understand how often governments change the rules associated with ‘entitlements’ and the effects we see on others. To NOT then pay attention to what you have seen and then take the required action to protect yourself from those inevitable changes during your lifetime when you have the means to do so, you have failed to plan and making a conscious decision to be a VICTIM and not be in control. To say you have not had the opportunity of Super is not a reasonable excuse; there are other ways for providing for your retirement.

    If you have had opportunity to provide in part or whole for your retirement, but took the ‘easy’ way out by relying on the kindness of some future government to assist you - then you are MUCH braver than those who observed what governments can do to entitlements - and significantly sacrificed consumer spending during their lives to avoid being reliant totally on government welfare.

    The government does NOT have to provide for us to have a comfortable old age – and at an early age – they are only a safety net.
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    6:10pm
    The first government that no longer provides a safety net will be out quicker then you can say Jack Robinson, maybe even start a revolution.
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    11:02pm
    An interesting idea is a revolution.

    But if the revolutionaries need the tax money provided by the generosity of younger generations and the government of the day in order to eat and survive, have you thought how this revolution might be funded - or just how quickly it could be starved of momentum?
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    3:30pm
    Read 'Intervention and Revolution', Harvs. I've studied terrorism/counter-terrorism and I can assure you that once people are reduced to a level where it no longer matters ... it no longer matters and they prefer to die on their feet.

    There is a revolution taking place right here, BTW - what you are discussing is an insurrection.
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    3:30pm
    Read 'Intervention and Revolution', Harvs. I've studied terrorism/counter-terrorism and I can assure you that once people are reduced to a level where it no longer matters ... it no longer matters and they prefer to die on their feet.

    There is a revolution taking place right here, BTW - what you are discussing is an insurrection.
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    5:39pm
    The.Grappler, the issue you have is that people have NOT been reduced to a level where it no longer matters. That is when they are starving, cold and likely homeless. Until they are, you have some dissenters and some grumbling, but no revolution and definitely no insurrection.

    And just assuming you had an insurrection, what would you do if you won? Force the younger generations back to work at gun point so they can pay higher taxes, whilst working in the less burnt-out buildings that remained, so you can go back and get a pension that was paid at a level more to your liking? I am sure that will work!

    You have to get your head around the fact that no-one is likely to let the majority starve or be out one the street, therefore providing no opportunity for your revolution to gain momentum. Our ruling elite are corrupt without doubt (not all), but it is not yet endemic at all levels of society like the Middle East and others.

    The developed countries ruling elite globally know how to control their populations by giving them just enough and throwing a good war to distract them from the real issues if necessary, and will continue to do so for as long as they can to ensure they maintain power.
    Bes
    14th Apr 2014
    11:25am
    Here I GO AGAIN! In Australia we suffer from OVER GOVERNMENT!
    The Westminster system bestowed upon Australia by England was originally designed as ONE government for ONE country. Upon Australia being surveyed and it's sheer size being established, England settled for SIX states to be governed separately by SIX state governments overseen by SIX state Governors. Fast forward to the 21st century!
    Why do we need SIX state governments that historically have proven that they do little other than incur debt?
    State governments are voted into power with a FOUR year tenure. Four years is the extent of future planning in which stop gap plans are introduced and certainly cost us dearly. (such as two lane freeway extensions with the provision for three lanes in the future? Along with infrastructure projects that incur cost blow out as being par for the course! etc.)
    State governments continually plan to sell off public assets! State governments, upon gaining power, continually raise prices! State government continually blames the previous party although there is little between their style of governance, other than the wording! All GOVERNMENT are elected to govern our taxes to the very best of their ABILITY in the best interests of both the state and the electorate (the voting public).
    SIX State governments, SIX State Opposition governments, a FEDERAL government and Opposition Federal government.
    NO POLITICIAN will lose entitlement no matter what cuts are made to the populations pensions and public services!
    So my question is, what is the biggest expenditure incurred by the Australian POPULATION?
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    3:34pm
    Bes, I'll take a guess, would the answer be Pig Feed?
    terry1950
    14th Apr 2014
    11:56am
    Why is it that politicians think when they get into government that they can change the world age and service pensions have been around for a long time and as a general rule they are deserved most people on pensions have paid tax all there lives and still pay with the GST a person at 70 will be limited to the work they will be able to do.
    The polly who gets into government is guaranteed a very large sum for the rest of his/her life.Why cant the government take a stand against those people who are rorting the dole system.
    Allieannie
    14th Apr 2014
    8:52pm
    The number 'rorting' the 'dole' ( aka Newstart) system is tiny. It is just not worth it. Please look up how much Newstart is and see if you could find a place to live and then pay for electricity and water et al out of it. You can't!!! It has gone nowhere since Howard's time. Please get your facts right...visit "Human Services" on your Govt website and see what it really means to be 'on the dole'.
    Nan Norma
    25th Apr 2014
    6:59pm
    Allieannie. You say very few 'rort' the 'dole' because its not worth it. Well many older people in the future will be pushed into trying to live on the dole because no one will employ them. That will save the goverment a heap of money. I'm sick of hearing the politicians telling everyone the country is going broke while at the same time they give themselves obcene pay increases. What does it take for a revolt.
    Misty
    25th Apr 2014
    7:33pm
    Every one who voted for the LIB/COALITION will get what they deserve I hope, which is a big fat nothing, every one knew what Abbott, Hockey and Co WERE GOING TO DO SO I HAVE NO SYMPATHY AND SO DON'T START WHINGING.
    Polly Esther
    14th Apr 2014
    12:03pm
    Oh gee it's a bugger. Makes one feel like selling up, packing up, and immigrating to a really great country like North Korea or China for instance. Then one would really have something to fart about. No bugger it all, on second thought I don't really have it too bad here, so I'll settle down and make do with what I've got, something that's not too damn bad after all.
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    1:17pm
    Cuba ain't so bad.... disciplined and cheap and April sun etc...
    leapyearbaby
    14th Apr 2014
    1:36pm
    Thoroughly agree with you. There's something to be said for appreciating what we've got. Certainly makes for a happier lifestyle.
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    3:43pm
    I agree, especially if you have the money to enjoy it. ( I will beat your nasty comments to it) yes I do have the money to enjoy it, many don't, that's why principles were invented.
    Nightshade
    14th Apr 2014
    12:12pm
    PRIOR TO ANNOUNCING ANY PENSION CHANGES
    TREASURER JOSEPH BENEDICT HOCKEY WILL ANNOUNCE
    THAT THE AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION
    AND
    THE SPECIAL BROADCASTING SERVICE
    WILL BE SOLD OFF
    THIS WILL SAVE AUSTRALIA
    ALL UP
    INXS OF SOMETHING LIKE 28-30 BILLION DOLLARS EVERY YEAR
    AND EVER RISING
    AND NOT THE $4 ODD BILLION WE WERE LED TO BELIEVE........
    I'll be back later... sorry
    Nightshade
    14th Apr 2014
    12:15pm
    p.s.
    just befor I run...
    They are going to get a headache worrying so much about our pennies & half pennies
    WHEN THE REAL MONEY IS BEING FLUSHED DOWN THE TOILET MATE !
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    4:00pm
    Nightshade, At least if the ABC were abolished we would have no differing opinions so all this argument would stop, and we could rely on Rupert for "Truth in Reporting" but what is going to happen to all those Leftie, Commie, Comrades, bastard presenters? they will certainly not be eligible for Centrelink or Age Pension because those will have been abolished especially for those that have ever criticised Abbott.
    ramnet
    14th Apr 2014
    12:26pm
    Punishing our pensioners is truly the lowest act of all. Society fails us all when it targets the weak , the sick and the frail. This government has decided to attack pensioners and sick people in hospital and made them the scapegoats for past budget failures. It has not however identified that there is a much bigger problem for much of our youth in that many are paid obscenely high wages , they maintain a drug/drinking culture from Thursday through to Sunday the results of which are seen in hospitals every week and ambulance drivers and support staff in hospitals live in fear of being assaulted by these morons. The government will allow this to continue without penalty yet attack someone like myself with incurable cancer who has paid taxes all their working life and now needs minimal assistance but Mr Hockey has changed the rules by pulling a rabbit out of his hat and effectively pulled the rug out from under everyones feet. The changes to the pension are laughable - no 50 year old can get a job these days so someone over 60 has no hope and if you happen to be ill with an incurable cancer like myself no-one will employ you and you are not well enough to work anyway so the new rules will consign the baby boomer generation who did not have any superannuation for the first 20 years of their working lives anyway to the scrap heap of life . Why everyone blames the baby boomers for all the world's ills I am at a loss to understand - probably jealousy . Mr Hockey and Mr Abbott have pushed us into a US style pension and health system where the government provides no support and no care so we should all be voting them out at the next election. A government that cannot provide a basic safety net for its own citizens fails the basic test of looking after its own people first so it loses all rights to respect , support and re-election. You have lost me forever but the Labor Party are much worse - we need a new force in Australian Politics - one that cares for those of us who live here now , contributed to this country , paid our taxes and do not deserve to be punished in our older age years.

    Ken
    Melbourne
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    3:34pm
    Totally correct, Ken - we need a new force in politics here. I sympathise with your situation entirely,.
    big al
    14th Apr 2014
    12:26pm
    I also think Mr Hockey should think hard about there election promise, no changes to the pention? and the political suicide that will confront them in 4 years, If he want to start trimming things he should start at the TOP not the BOTTOM, when you read about ex premiers colecting $500,000 per year, and costing the tax payer $1000 a day for a villa in Rome, it makes my blood boil, and surly there is lots more waste, as we all know the only thing the two sides can agree on is there fat retirements, I stupidly thought after the Labour parties reckless term, the Abbott government would have had more brains, wrong, surly if he is looking at creating more $ they will look at, other misused welfare payments, and the g.s.t. another election promise, and that is an open cheque for the government, he talks about the U.K. why are they following them like sheep ? why cannot see their mistakes, and learn.

    I have worked in the building industry, self employed, only claimed welfare once in the ressesion we had to have, paid all my taxes, have no super like many in our industry, I am now 62 worn out and looking for a few years rest till the lights are switched off, SHAME on you liberals.
    qbeebill
    14th Apr 2014
    1:13pm
    Why should Ex Premiers collect $500,000 per year and $1000 a day for a Villa in Rome... Stop these roots ..When they leave Government it should stop..They have large Superanuation Payouts..Save our meney for those who really need it The Pensioners...Bill Kerr
    yakillinme
    14th Apr 2014
    12:39pm
    do the voters realise who they voted in.....you get what you ask for
    leapyearbaby
    14th Apr 2014
    2:09pm
    Yes and I can see the good changes already happening. Things are much more positive where I live and I can tell you our state was on the bottom of the pile.
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    2:23pm
    I Agree !!
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    2:27pm
    Leapyearbaby.. Tell us all about these Good Changes You see happening all around You ???....???..Please.. !!... I might consider moving........
    leapyearbaby
    14th Apr 2014
    2:55pm
    Building roaring after a period of stagnancy. Plumbers, carpenters etc hard to get because they are so busy. Daughter waited for 6 months to get a person to replace a roof. We waited 18 months to get a carport built. Giving away tomatoes, relish, jam because of a glut after a wonderful season. Carparks at homemaker centre packed with customers. No family member unemployed! Fantastic!
    homemaker centres packed with people buying.No fami
    big al
    14th Apr 2014
    3:05pm
    I dont know where you are hear in S.A. it is dead we are becoming the welfare state
    Hillbillypete
    14th Apr 2014
    12:45pm
    Well I am going to put my 2 bob’s worth in for what it’s worth, were I live there is not a doctor with in 100 klm’s that will bulk bill you unless you are on the AGE pension, being on DSP (same money) does not matter at all to them, I look after a sick wife 24/7 and find it hard to sit in a hospital for 4 hours to see a doctor who will just tell me go and see your family doctor, so what’s the point, well I turn 65 in August and now how many years is it going to be before I can afford to see a doctor that will bulk bill?
    rtrish
    14th Apr 2014
    1:02pm
    I am sorry to hear this, Pete. People do not realise that being on the DSP means you have even more health issues but no extra $$ to pay for them. As to turing 65 in August - it is my understanding that people currently almost 65 will be able to claim for the Aged Pension. I am in this situation right now and am currently transferring over to the Aged Pension (birthday coming up soon). Best of luck.
    Supernan
    14th Apr 2014
    12:46pm
    As small business owners, we fed our kids, paid off a mortgage, ran a car, kept up with utilities & paid our taxes, but could never afford super. Just as we could afford it, they made us pay super for our employees & again could not afford our own. Paid tax since we were 16, retired at 71, never had any Gov support. Still working a little to pay for our health insurance & not be a burden Public Health system & surviving on part pension. Wonder why we are consider unworthy of our part pension by Joe Hockey ?
    Chookman
    14th Apr 2014
    12:58pm
    Julia Gillard was demonised by the media and many seniors for introducing a price on carbon - earning the moniker "Juliar" and she only broke one commitment. I am anticipating the same level of outrage and convoys to Canberra led by Alan Jones et al if the current government changes the age pension, cuts funding to the ABC or fails to keep its word in relation to any other pre election commitments in relation to education or health.
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    6:06pm
    I can't see that happening though can you. Alan Jones, Ray Hadley etc would never admit that this government could get things wrong, they like a lot of people who post here do not live in the real world.
    ozzie
    14th Apr 2014
    12:59pm
    Indeed, as many have said....."bugger about with Pensions at your own peril next election"....I wonder if the majority that voted for the Conservatives knew what the "Mad Monk" & his "Monkey" would do??!! As one other poster said.....Australia can easily run a deficit without an worry.....we ran a deficit for decades, and are still one of the strongest economies in the world. This is all "vaudeville" stuff to make it seem like the "sky is falling"......when it's not. The Conservative's "God" of a "surplus" is not going to happen any time soon, regardless of what they do. They should start praying to another "God" Keynes.....we live in a mixed economy....and Government intervention to keep the wheels turning is quite OK. "Leave it all to the market" won't work....we'll end up like the majority "poor in the USA" & I for one don't envy that huge number of "middle class poor" in the USA.....just look what it does to their crime rate!!

    One oft overlooked point is that the "transfer payments" that include Pensions, aren't tucked away in a tin under the bed!! People SPEND those funds, and therefore stimulate the economy, which in turn leads to employment, profitable Companies & the re-couping of outlays via taxation. That's the problem right at the minute & into the next few years.....this lot will have overseen the greatest loss of employment since the Depression.
    ozzie
    14th Apr 2014
    1:01pm
    Don't for a minute "believe" the Unemployment stats. The rate is only low because (a) people (mostly aged) are giving up looking and/or (b) retiring. In future the "Participation Rate" is the indicator to watch.....
    Brissiegirl
    14th Apr 2014
    1:03pm
    Hockey is no better than Julia Gillard who lied about the carbon tax. The government (that I voted for) pre-election promise was that there would be no changes to pensions, eligibility etc. whatsoever. On 28/3/14, the Prime Minister's commitment was further confirmed by the Acting Branch Manager, Seniors and Means Test, Dept. Social Services when he said,
    "A small reference Group has been established, chaired by Mr Patrick McClure AO, to provide the Government with options to ensure Australia's welfare system is sustainable, effective and coherent, and encourages people to work.

    "This review will not be looking at the age pension."

    I suggest that Joe Hockey and Tony Abbott explain themselves, and do it very fast.

    By the time their dire predictions about pension affordability come to pass, won't the vast majority of Australians be paying our own pensions from superannuation accumulated over decades?

    A major reason that Gillard was dispensed with was because of her propensity to lie. Joe Hockey - people have been saving and planning for their retirements for years, they have made long term decisions based on prevailing rules and regulations - and now you suddenly think you can go around threatening us. We are a big voting demographic and you if you think you are going to make us pay a price in the form of anxiety, insecurity and confusion - we will make you pay in votes. Let's not forget it was Labor's vote buying sprees that got us into this mess. But we do not expect any party to tell us one thing before the election and something different after. This is happening. I always suspected Joe Hockey was a buffoon, but now I'm convinced. One more thing - keep your grubby hands off the family home. We don't slave and go without to be penalised for not relying on government funded housing. Thank you very much.

    14th Apr 2014
    1:03pm
    When I read comments here - I am absolutely amazed at the utter lack of support that the former Pensioners party or whatever it was got - why is it, do you think, that so many even here seem not to see that we need a brand new party that will do things right for a change instead of the same worn-out old rubbish over and over?

    Is everyone too scared to try? Or would your prefer the same old politician self-enrichment and mate handouts on boards and in CEO positions and so forth, and the same old 'gee, women (etc) are doing it tough' getting huge salaries, education opportunities most of us would never dream of,and massive handouts to sit at home and play mummy for six months?
    Patriot
    14th Apr 2014
    2:21pm
    Grappler,
    Wholeheartedly agree.
    I have mentioned the Pensioner Party a few times in this forum but, as you are aware, I don't think it did any good.
    No good crying that the current parties are CRIMINALS when you're not prepared to change. TAKE THEIR HEADS OUT OF THE TROUGH!!!!
    As Albert Einstein once stated: "Insanity is doing the same thing, over and over again, but expecting different results".
    Let's get rid of the CRIMINALS and give some others a go!
    However let's also not forget what Thomas Jefferson said: "The price of liberty is eternal vigilance."
    Let's ourself become vigilant and ensure that our kids get educated to be so.
    TOGETHER WE STAND - DIVIDED WE FALL!!! This is more true now than ever in the years ahead.
    Patriot
    14th Apr 2014
    3:10pm
    The Australian Sovereignty party is another one that has some excellent ideas!
    Especially Citizens Referendum & Voters veto principles which will allow The People to Call referendums on issues and overturn decisions made by them on our behalf.
    I believe CIR is not advertised as part of their platform yet, but I have been promised that it will be as they're working on it.

    http://www.sovereigntyparty.org.au/
    grandma
    14th Apr 2014
    4:44pm
    Perhaps those that wanted to change to the Pensioner Party or other minorities didn't do so because of lack of faith that party would actually get in and the preferences would go to a party they never want to support. Go to a system of one vote one value and they would probably romp home, which is exactly why no government is game to issue a referendum on it.
    Kato
    14th Apr 2014
    1:08pm
    Bes you are right on the money:) cut the size of both state and federal govt's. we don't need them JOE needs to cut there age of entitlements. why do e;lect awhole parliament of ministers and they then end up choosing a dozen or so to run everything. get rid of a prime minister and all the other lackey's have the Govener general be head of ALL states. and hire some well paid and educated up to date people who are expert in the fields overseen by the Govener General. a much far cheaper system. screw the old people and you are only going to last one term Joe. and that will apply to any future govermant.
    Cassius
    14th Apr 2014
    1:09pm
    Why can't Pollies wait until retirement age before drawing their excessive pension.
    Why should we fund offices, staff, travel etc for past premiers, prime ministers, governors etc.
    How about leading by example
    somers79
    14th Apr 2014
    2:10pm
    Casius, I totally agree, why can't polies lead by example. How much money would be saved if we didn't have to pay the pollies travel, money to fund an office for them etc? They got paid extremely well while in office why do we have to pay them to continue to live the high life when they want pensioners to live in poverty!!!! If that's the way they want things to be then I'll advise my boss what account I want my pay and allowances paid into when I retire, can't wait to hear his response. How did so many misguided people vote this idiot in? Why does every country in the world praise our previous government for doing a great job during the GFC? Why does Mr Rabbott oh I mean Mr Abbott think he is smarter than the most brilliant financial masterminds in the world??
    catmacdav
    14th Apr 2014
    1:10pm
    How dare you Joe - I remember a promise being made not so very long ago, that no changes would be made to pensions. Unfortunately for me I am not in a position whereby I have money to throw around, I survive on the pension. Punishing the elderly - hope you can sleep at night. Why not shed some of your earnings and perks. SHAME ON YOU JOE.
    archer
    14th Apr 2014
    1:13pm
    I am surprised everyone is surprised
    Patriot
    14th Apr 2014
    2:24pm
    Yes - Before the election they all sprucked heaps of crap just to get their head in the trough. Isn't this always the same?
    The real recognition when he/she (a pollie) is lying is when their "Lips are Moving".
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    2:53pm
    AHH!! Bananas !!..I'm NOT Surprised !.I knew and warned You before the last Election what You were going to get !.. Now eat Your Broth and Crust and be thankful !!
    Rob
    14th Apr 2014
    1:14pm
    If this was France, the people would be out in the street by the hundreds of thousands right to the seat of power. In Australia, we sit in the old armchairs watching the tennis, football, etc. whingeing, but never doing anything about it. This is a country rife for a takeover of anything or any power. The APATHY is the reason why we have reached this point and, who is responsible, previous governments that have created such terrible financial mismanagement of our taxes. There should be a commission hearing into the matter and people brought before it to answer some very difficult questions. Not to worry, the problem is soon to be solved with simply selling off more of our valuable assets, including land. Alas, it is too late!
    leapyearbaby
    14th Apr 2014
    1:18pm
    I am a 70 year old woman who rolled my super into an investment and receive an allocated
    pension. I have a Commonwealth Seniors Health Card but receive no other benefit.
    I am convinced that most people complain because they live beyond their means and have a mindset that they expect the Government to keep them. Come on! Accept responsibility for your own welfare, enjoy life and leave the benefits for those who really need them.
    Hillbillypete
    14th Apr 2014
    1:28pm
    Come on Leapyearbaby, pull your head out of the sand! do you have a mortgage? think you have a bank full of money! think of all those that don't.
    leapyearbaby
    14th Apr 2014
    1:33pm
    I don't have my head in the sand. All around me I see people moving their money and assets around so they can get part pensions and I consider this is part of the big problem....the expectation they they are owed by the government.
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    4:22pm
    Now hold on Leap, you are 70 years old so Super contributions only applied to part of your working life?, you rolled your Super into an Allocated Pension and you receive no other Government benefit. At your age your employer contributions would have been a maximum of 9%, so you must have been on a massive pay packet which resulted in a massive Superannuation if you are now not eligible for even a part pension?
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    4:28pm
    Ah Leap, sorry I have just realised, were you a politician?
    leapyearbaby
    14th Apr 2014
    7:16pm
    Sorry, you're barking up the wrong tree. I'm a retired school teacher who decided when I retired to take my super, roll it over into an investment fund and take an allocated pension instead of limiting myself to the government pension because the rumour at the time was that the funds for pensions would run out. Seems I made the right decision.
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    11:45pm
    Apologies leap for calling you a politician, no offence intended, but you must agree that as a Government Employee with taxpayer subsidised Superannuation throughout your career you were in a privileged position, the majority of pensioners were not afforded that privilege but had to rely on what little they could save.
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    5:09am
    leapyearbaby
    Just wait till the Bastard bankers collapse the stockmarket. I'll see you in the Pensioner cue after that!
    Anonymous
    16th Apr 2014
    9:58am
    leapyearbaby I agree with your sentiments. If you get no government assistance, you have probably salary sacrificed into Super or saved, apart from just the government Super % component, to ensure you have enough assets to be comfortable. It meant you did what most people here have not done - simply planned for your own retirement. I know a guy who has had only really low paid jobs all his life and unless you knew his background would think him quite simple. He owns several houses because he started investing early in life and learnt how to look after himself financially. Most people have opportunities and you have taken yours.

    HOPE is not a retirement plan - I think you are also observing regret.
    seabird
    14th Apr 2014
    1:19pm
    What scares me most - we came from a mostly 1 tax income producing family to a 2 tax income producing family - but with our legal migrants that we are encouraging to Australia we are returning back to a society of mostly 1 tax income producing family - & yes all current pensions were long budgeted for, but the money was mishandled - how will our pollies cope when we are back to mostly 1 income families...........Really, if they were serious, show us........bring their own superannuation schemes back to reality - the same as the average person...........and stop rewarding bad decisions...........no golden handshakes when they leave parliment
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    2:57pm
    That's right Mate !!..Whack them on New Start !!!
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    3:02pm
    PS.. Because they certainly wouldn't find another job with their Track Records !!
    Kato
    14th Apr 2014
    1:23pm
    Joe instead of coming up with the same crud as when you were with Howard show us a bit of inititave and let us see that you have learnt and grown, not just sat on your fat arse in opposition. what are you going to do about the rising youth unemployment, there will be no one to fill the positions of the old people you are going to screw because YOU have no plan for
    them. no training no skills no jobs. what a moron.
    Rock
    14th Apr 2014
    1:24pm
    If the Govt is truly wanting to save money, the politicians should only get a pension when they reach retirment age of SEVENTY too. It's discrimination ! If they lose thier job as a politician - then get another job - not a pension, or WE ALL WANT THE PENSION TOO. Also get rid of the "After Politician Perks" when they finish in Govt - Free travel etc. Ohh, the millions that would be saved and we'd be back in black in no time.
    Wendy HK
    14th Apr 2014
    8:19pm
    Ooooh! I sooooo agree with this!!!!!!
    Abby
    18th Apr 2014
    10:34am
    Well said Rock - after all the Politicians will live longer as well
    Nikolai
    14th Apr 2014
    1:26pm
    I think it is about time this page was relabelled The Labour Party Page - why the hell are all these people over 65 whinging, I am in my late seventies and worked until I was 73 albeit part-time for the last few years. What everyone is forgetting that most people over 65 left school at 15, university was only for those who could pay for it - nowadays everyone seems to need to go to uni and they are in their late twenties before they start work so they should work to a greater age than 65.
    Brissiegirl
    14th Apr 2014
    1:37pm
    Are you saying brickies, labourers, painters, concreters, nurses, truckies, tree fellers, and all the others who do the heavy lifting for this nation can keep up the pace until they are 73? Oh come on. We are all living longer, dosed up on pills and getting spare body parts, but our quality of life isn't much better. I don't think I want my kids operated on by a surgeon in his 70's. I think the Liberals are better at managing money, but they should not have LIED and their paid parental leave for high paid women is a joke. They can find the savings and the first stop should be they work until they are 70 too. If they are thrown out - do what everyone else has to do - find another job.
    geebee
    14th Apr 2014
    1:52pm
    Yep Nikolai, I agree. We're just at the usual 'scaremongering article' stage and already many seem to take it as an opportunity to vent their anger against the government, without even waiting to hear what measures will be taken in the budget. I believe more responsible 'journalism' is required here. The increased life expectancy and blow out in the dependancy ratio of the population need to be addressed, we just can't ignore facts and hope they will go away. I'm sure the truly needy aged pensioners will not be targeted, but those others rorting the system must be.
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    10:58pm
    Nikolai the Labor Party is spelt this way not Labour Party.
    SuzeB
    14th Apr 2014
    1:36pm
    And of course nothing's happened yet, but hysteria sets in as usual. :D
    geebee
    14th Apr 2014
    1:54pm
    so true, agree with you there, SuzeB
    leapyearbaby
    14th Apr 2014
    2:03pm
    Yes, I agree. Pity a few more people wouldn't appreciate what a great country we live in instead of this mass hysteria before there are some real facts on the table.
    Patriot
    14th Apr 2014
    2:32pm
    I'm not thick enough to believe that - if we don't kick up a stink now right at the beginning - those CRIMINALS would be benevolent enough and consider that the "Poor Old Pensioners" should be left alone.
    If/when they think they can get away with it whilst at the same time keeping their heads in the trough, they'll "skin us alive" and more the GREEDY BASTARDS!

    And , no I don't have super! However, I can proudly say that we have always been a ONE INCOME family and therefore did not have to put our kids into daycare and so draw more Govt support at that time!
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    4:55pm
    And they came for the??, and I said nothing as they said wait and see, then they came for the ??, and I said nothing as they said wait and see,then they came for the Pensioners but by this time it was too late to wait and see.
    seniorsid
    14th Apr 2014
    1:40pm
    What are you suggesting pete@naked hydroponics, that we all strip off and dangle our feet in the water? Your claim that,"most, if not all workers should be self funded" must come from some research! To assist you in your in depth research, may I suggest your read an article published by Inside Story, written by Brian Toohey on the 3rd Feb 2011. He points out that admin costs for super are in the billions and the return on your money over 10 years is 3.3%, even then that is not guaranteed as it is similar to playing the share market!
    The super system costs $1,2 Trillion, and the Government holds $18.2 Billion in unclaimed Superannuation.
    Superannuation was introduce as a compulsory deduction. in 1992, by the Keating Government, backed by the unions, without asking the voters, is this democracy? I left Australia in 1990 because it was almost impossible to get employment, even as a qualified Naval Architect, I applied for countless jobs, not only in my field but in all areas, only to be told I was over qualified for the job! So I went overseas where skilled workers were welcomed, prior to that I had paid the Australian Government 36 years in taxes and never once claimed the dole, now due to my age, not my ability, I am unemployable, maybe I should have been a politician and retire in luxury, regardless of my performance. I notice there is no suggestion of reducing their pensions!
    seniorsid
    14th Apr 2014
    1:40pm
    What are you suggesting pete@naked hydroponics, that we all strip off and dangle our feet in the water? Your claim that,"most, if not all workers should be self funded" must come from some research! To assist you in your in depth research, may I suggest your read an article published by Inside Story, written by Brian Toohey on the 3rd Feb 2011. He points out that admin costs for super are in the billions and the return on your money over 10 years is 3.3%, even then that is not guaranteed as it is similar to playing the share market!
    The super system costs $1,2 Trillion, and the Government holds $18.2 Billion in unclaimed Superannuation.
    Superannuation was introduce as a compulsory deduction. in 1992, by the Keating Government, backed by the unions, without asking the voters, is this democracy? I left Australia in 1990 because it was almost impossible to get employment, even as a qualified Naval Architect, I applied for countless jobs, not only in my field but in all areas, only to be told I was over qualified for the job! So I went overseas where skilled workers were welcomed, prior to that I had paid the Australian Government 36 years in taxes and never once claimed the dole, now due to my age, not my ability, I am unemployable, maybe I should have been a politician and retire in luxury, regardless of my performance. I notice there is no suggestion of reducing their pensions!
    pete@nakedhydroponics
    14th Apr 2014
    2:04pm
    I'm suggesting Sid that the whole (stated) purpose of compulsory super was to cover this very situation.
    Obviously, the more self funded retirees there are, the less burden on the remaining tax payers.
    I fully agree that this idea of pushing the eligible age is stupid, considering anyone over fifty is struggling to find employment. Even if they do, aren't they taking a job away from someone younger?
    The entire purpose of "labour saving devices" is implicit in the name. In the 70's we saw the 40 hour week drop to 38 hours -for workers- and expected it to drop to 35, as with office sitters. Now we're told we have to work longer hours and longer years when technology has progressed almost unbelievably.
    What went wrong?
    By rights -if we weren't carrying so many fat cats and dead wood- we should all be working less, not more.
    moorlands
    15th Apr 2014
    11:14am
    seniorsid, there once was a separate levy that was supposed to finance Age Pensions, ( much the same as Superannuation today) as the Levy grew the Government could not keep their hands off it so they stole it. I believe Australian Superannuation is worth trillions and I already sense greedy eyes, how long do you think it will be before Governments steal that ( In Australias best interest you understand), already it is being mooted that "Lump Sum Withdrawals " shall cease. Be very afraid, get your money out now and happily pay your taxes as I do.
    Mak
    14th Apr 2014
    1:54pm
    Yakillinme with your dumb comments. The reason for the drastic cost-cutting in the up-coming budget is due to massive incompetence of the last government who threw money away as if there was no tomorrow.
    Patriot
    14th Apr 2014
    2:34pm
    And you think that making a massive donation from the Aust taxpayers to the Bankers (who are ample fat as it is) is not in the same ilk?
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    4:59pm
    Mak, Love your Avatar, Suits you sir , suits you.
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    6:16pm
    It all started when John Howard was Treasurer and left the incoming Labor Party a huge debt to pay off.
    Rosey
    14th Apr 2014
    1:58pm
    Why does the government pick on pensioners all the time. Most of us have worked since we were 14 I did so did my husband we bought our kids up to work . I looked after my sick husband for ten years never asked for help' What annoys me most is these teenage on the dole who can afford tattoos and alcohol but do not work as they know tats will put employers off . They are the ones to start jumping on not the poor pensioner.
    fair-go
    14th Apr 2014
    2:04pm
    How many people, who are horrified with the proposed changes to the aged pension, have picked up their pencil and voted for this government? If those who have, are reading this forum, perhaps you should not complain to others who haven't voted this government into power but accept that YOU had a hand to play in this decision under consideration. It is a pity that the rest of the nation has to cop whatever the outcome.
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    3:14pm
    Exactly !!.. And I will bet its 90% of the comments I've read that voted for the Lying Clowns !!...
    Patriot
    14th Apr 2014
    6:14pm
    Not me!
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    6:19pm
    Agree totally and you would think most Seniors would have learnt better wouldn't you.
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:12pm
    Not me - I voted Republicans for a solid change of some sort - any sort...

    Will Peter Cosgrove be our last Governor General? Overseeing the resignation of the Empire like Mountbatten in India? I trust so, Peter.
    Misty
    15th Apr 2014
    2:35pm
    No such thing as a Republican Party in our country.
    Cheryl
    14th Apr 2014
    2:05pm
    Cuts, cuts, cuts. Why is there no positives anymore, no wonder we all suffer from depression. Doesn't the aging population have a voice anymore? We kept this country running but they don't want to give us assistance as we age. Maybe they should just round us all up and put us in a compound. I am a widow living on a single pension, its a struggle to keep the budget under control with all the price rises.
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    7:54pm
    I was shown around a Pet Food Factory the other other day !! It made Me Very Nervous !!
    muzza
    14th Apr 2014
    2:27pm
    I would like to see the Govt. raise the age for the Dole and new start allowance - I know of kids who cant wait to leave School and go on the dole - if they raise it to 20 or 22, maybe these kids would have the incentive to find a job. Why should they get these benefits when they don't contribute and likely never will
    Allieannie
    14th Apr 2014
    9:02pm
    There are NO jobs for kids who do not have at least year 12 and hopefully Uni qualifications. You are living in the past. Try to keep up. This is not the 50's/60/'s/70's and certainly NOT the 80's. Times have changed and without some qualifications the kids are left in limbo. And now THIS govt has stopped supporting TAFE and Apprenticeships..cut cut for the young as well as the old. Please keep up! or shut up.
    Not Amused
    14th Apr 2014
    2:28pm
    Call Hockey's office and tell them what you think of Hockey's attempt to change the standards/eligibility/level of age pensions. If you don't take a stand, if you don't remind them that Abbott promised no change to pensions, they will think there is no public outrage. Hockey's number: (02) 6277 7340
    Patriot
    14th Apr 2014
    2:53pm
    Just rang and gave the message to his secretary.
    OF COURSE, he was unavailable!
    Cheryl
    14th Apr 2014
    2:57pm
    I've have voiced my outrage with Mr. Hockey. I am hopeful all age pensioners are doing the same.
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    7:58pm
    Cheryl.. I did the same thing I hollered down a Sewer Pipe and got the same result You'll get !!!
    Gra
    14th Apr 2014
    2:33pm
    How on earth did Joe Hockey get to become Treasurer when quite simply he obviously is atrocious at maths and has little understanding of anything else? Make people work until they are 70 then let them retire just in time to organise their own funeral - how gracious of you Mr Hockey. Make the old people work while the young sit around on their blot unable to get a job - a job that would be available if people were allowed to retire at an earlier age.
    The way most employers are going now, people are employed on short term contracts and permanent-part time so even if they do have a job there is no guarantee of what their income is going to be week to week so it is extremely hard for them to make the decision to salary sacrifice or make additional super contributions even if they wanted to.
    If the government wants to improve their bottom line how about they look at cutting spending in the area of politicians superannuation, gold passes, all the entitlements of past PM's to start with. Hockey wants us all to share the load, well let the pollies set an example - if they can get their snouts out of the trough long enough.
    Patriot
    14th Apr 2014
    2:59pm
    You know the saying: "It's who rather than what you know".
    Patriot
    14th Apr 2014
    3:02pm
    May be he is a member of the Australian Equivalent of the "Skull & Bones" society or possibly the "Bohemian grove?"
    We have become so americanised now, may be we have the equivalent to those organisations?
    anony
    14th Apr 2014
    2:36pm
    a nasty little government which guts the public service of funds by lowering taxes and then guts it further by cutting programs and policies to ribbons. never admitting that they don't care about citizens. they lie through their teeth and obfuscate to get into office and then do their robbing hood games to rob the poor to feed the rich.
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    8:19pm
    By the time Paddy had gutted and skun the sausages there was nothing left for tea !!
    Alexia_x
    14th Apr 2014
    2:38pm
    Why doesn't Mr Hockey fix his sight on the enormous salaries of politicians and their enormous raises every year?
    That would certainly take the weight off their never used carcasses and the inflated economy of our country, rather than the meagre amounts of old age pension that old Australians receive.
    If pensioners are supposed to live on their pension, why do politicians get such huge salaries (for doing not much at all) when all they need is much less?
    And why, when they retire, do politicians get such big amounts of money to live for the rest of their life in comfortable retirement while pensioners must scrape and watch carefully their expenses? Are pensioners lesser human beings that the politicos?
    What about rotten politicians than abuse the system and still have a huge salary, even after defrauding it?
    I honestly cannot understand what is so difficult to fix economic issues for "profesional" men like Mr Hockey, when theissues are so clearly defined and also I do not understand why these people are still in goverment and have the power to dictate what
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:15pm
    Wait for the chorus line to say ,'if you pay peanuts you get monkeys' - as if somehow by paying more than peanuts you get better monkeys, when all you get is monkeys.

    I'm a firm advocate that a politician should live on a minimal amount and go to his/her electorate at year's end and ask them if he/she deserves a rise and how much...

    Once more - I like to rip 'em a new one as much as possible:-

    http://www.ozpolitic.com/forum/YaBB.pl?num=1397439061/0#5
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:21pm
    On your question of "Are pensioners lesser human beings that the politicos?" - I long ago arrived at the conclusion that people in 'power' = positions of trust and leadership rather than control - are the world's purest psychopaths, and have not one iota of thought or feeling for anyone else.

    I was just reading a book by a man sent to prison in the US over Enron (he had nothing to do with it, you work it out), and he cited an incident where the department of justice applied pressure to him to 'rat out' his two friends, by bringing in his wife who had stolen his daughter (he was the custodial parent) and was wanted on a summons in England for doing so.

    He was, as anyone would be, stunned that someone would blithely sit there and try to pressure him into confessing to and pointing the finger at his friends over something he had not done, while using as a lever someone wanted on a criminal charge in Britain, then going home and hugging his own children.

    THAT is the mindset of many of these scum we allow to rise in this country, and many others, and also many in business.

    Purest psychopaths, and time we ousted the lot.

    14th Apr 2014
    2:40pm
    The ONLY proper and decent way for the Govt to save money is for all politicians to take a PAY CUT...their salaries are dragging the country down...and if they touch the Pensioners then we shall DRAG THEM DOWN !!
    Not Amused
    14th Apr 2014
    3:06pm
    Gillard said to Abbott, "Game on". Abbott thought to himself, "Game over". Joe Hockey threatens retirees, "Game on". Retirees now say to Treasurer Hockey, "Game over."
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:30pm
    That's why he is One Chance Tony - I've pointed out elsewhere that the only reason that turkey has been handed the reins is because of the utter stupidity and short-sightedness in its over-focus on socialist ideas such as 'equal outcomes' and 'women issues' (as if these are so important and have nothing to do with the equivalent men's issues) and so forth.

    He should take careful note of that - the States are moving away from Liberal and back towards Labor - but hesitantly - that should tell the bloody lot of them that they are all on the nose with the voters - and it is way past time to pull up their socks or say good-bye.

    Sir Fat Joe of the Hock Shop is just one example.. there are many others.

    Nor more corruption with croneyism appointments to 'CEO' jobs in QANGOS and 'privatised government businesses' - nor more insider trading a la` Obeid - no more mega handouts for life to self for great work done running the country into the gutter - and no more beating up on those impoverished by stupid policies, such as the unemployed, partially employed and many pensioners, who, left alone without all the social engineering may well have retired with a lot more than they have now, instead of being poor from being beaten up by industrial relations fiascoes to suit every little Mussolini who thinks he is a big boss, piss poor management at all levels including up to PM, rip-off divorce and custody laws that leave many with nothing, affirmative action for groups accorded 'accredited victim status', and so forth.

    All utter nonsense and totally destructive of the many.
    Old Fella
    14th Apr 2014
    2:47pm
    Warmed by the passion in most of the comments. Left wondering however on the basic arithmatics. My first job paid me eleven pound ten shillings a week say $23.00 my first adult wage paid me some twenty three ponds a weeks say $46.00. At the time $46 was an acceptable average wage and liveable income. For me , maximum savings achievable at any time of my working life , represented a 10 to 15% of net salary, with the lions share (85%) of wages received paid out in taxes and living costs. Continuous employment over 48 years and use of savings provided a home and raised a family. Assuming compulsory super supports an income equivalent to 50% of the average wage at retirement, I accept every annual cost of living increase, forces retirees to accept discounting further their continued existence and acceptance of a reduced 35% (85%-50%) of living standard for the remaining time of life they have. For those without super and without tangible assets an even more miserable existence.
    Any government that can deny its population some welfare consideration is not governing for all its people. Why the current government hasn't also considered and flagged legalising euthanasia for the old at this time ,as a real alternative to counter its citizens ageing, also seems out of step with its political philosophies.
    I have some sympathy with the thought that the welfare state in its present makeup is not sustainable . Why not set the retirement benefits of our politicians as the base standard for all and as our current treasurer has stated - everyone and all share carrying the Australian national existence and hopes.
    Allieannie
    14th Apr 2014
    9:07pm
    Never ever believe that the 'welfare state is unsustainable'...that is a Capitalist, right wing lie. That is straight from the rich man's mouth. It is NOT true. We are a wealthy country but the wealth is being ripped out by individuals like Rhinehart and Twiggy et al. The rich never pay their fair share. They should. The Mining tax was only for the 'super tax' on top of anything over a top price....They have sold us a pup. Welfare is always affordable. Always. Rich subsidies are NOT.
    Old Fella
    14th Apr 2014
    2:47pm
    Warmed by the passion in most of the comments. Left wondering however on the basic arithmatics. My first job paid me eleven pound ten shillings a week say $23.00 my first adult wage paid me some twenty three ponds a weeks say $46.00. At the time $46 was an acceptable average wage and liveable income. For me , maximum savings achievable at any time of my working life , represented a 10 to 15% of net salary, with the lions share (85%) of wages received paid out in taxes and living costs. Continuous employment over 48 years and use of savings provided a home and raised a family. Assuming compulsory super supports an income equivalent to 50% of the average wage at retirement, I accept every annual cost of living increase, forces retirees to accept discounting further their continued existence and acceptance of a reduced 35% (85%-50%) of living standard for the remaining time of life they have. For those without super and without tangible assets an even more miserable existence.
    Any government that can deny its population some welfare consideration is not governing for all its people. Why the current government hasn't also considered and flagged legalising euthanasia for the old at this time ,as a real alternative to counter its citizens ageing, also seems out of step with its political philosophies.
    I have some sympathy with the thought that the welfare state in its present makeup is not sustainable . Why not set the retirement benefits of our politicians as the base standard for all and as our current treasurer has stated - everyone and all share carrying the Australian national existence and hopes.
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    8:27pm
    I got 5 Quid and Menzies Slugged Me 2 Bob TAX !!...WTF ??.. I'm 68!!

    14th Apr 2014
    2:52pm
    WITHOUT OFFENCE I say that Mr Hockey has his own pension time covered, he will go out with a mint of pension money...like all pollies do..thus his attitude towards pensioners makes him to be no more than a hypocrite, and that is an offence not only to the aged, but to decent thinking folks of all ages...young or old. The rich rule over the poor...and I've never heard of a poor politician, have you?
    Patriot
    14th Apr 2014
    3:05pm
    I just would not be so polite to the HYPOCRITE

    14th Apr 2014
    2:56pm
    NEXT Mr Hockey will be offering a free coffin if folks die early
    Patriot
    14th Apr 2014
    3:04pm
    Shut up, he might just take you up on that idea.
    But then again, you yourself might be eligible for a "Stiff Award" (sorry for the pun) granted by his party mates!
    Because, from the govt's point of view, this idea might look OK.
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    3:32pm
    AH yes indeed..... A PATRIOT COFFIN..what a great idea...LOL
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    6:24pm
    Stop it,you guys are KILLING ME, (excuse the pun).
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    6:26pm
    Nice to have a bit of humour here.
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    8:07pm
    Stop Coffin!! You'll wake the Sleeping Pills !!
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    5:16am
    You guys must all have been sleeping in the cutlery drawer. You're so sharp!
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:32pm
    Yeah - but it'll be a cardboard one like the gyppoes use..... get 'em in the ground afore sunset....
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    3:05pm
    Could I please dispel this myth ( which as it repeated so often I suspect that it is a directive from Party Headquarters to use it) that Age Pension was only meant to be a "" Safety Net "
    NO, NO, NO, IT WAS NOT, it originated in the UK to provide an income for when reaching an age that income from employment ceased , and a separate tax was paid and set aside to cover it, Australia as part of the Commonwealth followed suit. In the UK that separate Tax was not stolen ( Unlike in Australia) which means even if you are a millionaire in the UK you can if you wish draw your Age Pension that you had contributed to, I hate to say it but the majority of wealthy people in the UK are more honourable than our Australian Wealthy. ( I digress) in Australia those separate Tax contributions were stolen and lumped in with all other taxes, probably ( if current policy is anything to go on) so that the tax rates for the wealthy could be reduced. In closing can I add that I am a completely Self Funded Retiree, but I am not a Hypocrite.
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:34pm
    Absolutely correct - the Aged pension is not a 'safety net' pure and simple - it is an absolute right and entitlement paid for over years in advance, and the only stipulations and restrictions on it are if the potential recipient owns or earns more than a specified amount.

    Again - I have previously posted a Tax office document that showed that income tax was raised several times to cater for increased welfare spending.

    Welfare spending is paid for.
    Dotty
    14th Apr 2014
    3:12pm
    I think of the promises that were made in the last Election and its cruel of Mr Hockey to even consider the age changes and the struggles that most over the pensionable age are now struggling with to try and survive !
    And I cant see these Politicians trying to live on what we now live on after paying taxes for three thirds of my life and I am now 76 years old !
    They retire with a nice big nest egg after being in Politics for about 20 years max !
    I would love to \see any of them try and survive on what we are having to after the taxes we have paid to help keep this Country going in the past and are now being thrown on the scrap heap as trash !
    We cant help it if we age Mr Hockey !
    And I am one that is entirely dependent on the aged Pension !! Dotty
    rital
    14th Apr 2014
    3:22pm
    I don't understand all the whingeing and the shock,horror,surprise about the pension changes. We all know that the Co-alition has always been there to protect the wealthy against the riff-raff poor. All you people who voted for Tony Abbot's lot should have looked into what they stand for not their promises. Now they have started to pull out the rugs, from Medicare, the Pension and even the ABC. Why am I not surprised? You voted for them-live with it.
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    3:34pm
    I do not vote..... I do not favour any hypocrite
    Not Amused
    14th Apr 2014
    3:57pm
    They could make a fair saving by selling the ABC. It no longer represents the entire Australian community. It is embarrassingly the taxpayer funded media wing of the Labor Party.
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    6:33pm
    What a lot of rot, the ABC is no more a Media Wing of the Labor Party then any other form of Media, you Right Wing Fanatics see conspiracies every where.
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    6:34pm
    Don't watch it if you don't like it, simple.
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    5:17am
    The ABC tells far fewer lies than the commercial (media Moguls controlled by the bankers) channels!
    Not Amused
    14th Apr 2014
    3:28pm
    Give them hell.
    You people are the nation builders, the sons and daughters, mothers and fathers who worked your bums off for these fat cat overpaid pompous early retired on big salaries politicians who are targeting retirees with only a few years left in them as the people responsible for a budget mess that you did not create.

    Joe Hockey's number: (02) 6277 7340.
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    8:23pm
    What's HELP LINES Number ??
    Betty Blue
    14th Apr 2014
    3:38pm
    Here was another guy worried about the economy.....
    "The budget should be balanced, the Treasury should be refilled, public debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed lest Rome become bankrupt. People must again learn to work, instead of living on public assistance."

    Cicero - 55 BC
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    6:03pm
    Good quote - interesting how much we have not learnt over the last 2000 plus years!
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    6:38pm
    So pensions are not new then if they were around in the year 55 BC.
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    8:14pm
    This reminds Me of Nero Fiddling while Rome burns !!
    justjanet
    14th Apr 2014
    3:40pm
    Not too many politicians work till there 60 let alone 70 and when they do {if they do TWO years ] THEY GET A NICE FAT PAY OUT SO IT SHOULDNT WORRY THEM IF THE PENSION IS A PITTANCE they should have saved enough to live the life of Riley till they pass away
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    8:33pm
    justjanet..And have You noticed that they all live to 108 ? Or does it just seem like that ?..
    Hobbit
    14th Apr 2014
    3:42pm
    Whatever changes they propose should be applied to all MP's and Senators. We could save a bundle if they all had to wait until 70 yo before they could get their super.
    justjanet
    14th Apr 2014
    3:56pm
    Well said Biblo 47
    Jude
    14th Apr 2014
    3:56pm
    For a start, for the writer of "Opinion" above, eligibility for the age pension is not being raised from 65 to 70 by Mr Hockey as it has already been raised to 67 by the Labor Party, over a gradual period; so we can assume that if there is a further increase that will be gradual as well. It won't affect current age pensioners. I can't see the point in laying the blame on one particular party for these increases, as whatever savings are made will not be immediate and by the time any savings are made there will probably have been several changes in government. I also don't understand why Mr Hockey is comparing Australia with UK as they have an entirely different system with pension payments based on a person's National Insurance contributions during their working life. Their current pension eligibility age by the way is 65 for men and 61yrs 9mths for women, gradually rising until by 2018 it will be 65 for both ,,,after that they start the gradual rise to 67.
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    5:12pm
    You are correct Jude in using your example of National Insurance contributions in the UK, the same system applied in Australia, can you name the year that my Australian contributions were stolen? as surely myself and others should be entitled to a pro rata pension for the years before our contributions were stolen?
    Anonymous
    14th Apr 2014
    6:19pm
    moorlands - you are self-funded.

    Be grateful with what you have and for a great country and tax system to have enabled you to accumulate those assets for your retirement.

    Stop wanting additional tax payer funded 'entitlements' that you don't deserve. You are self-funded - the country has already given you ALL your dues.
    moorlands
    15th Apr 2014
    12:13am
    Hang on Harvs, In the past you have said that we should play the system to avoid paying Tax, now when I suggest that I should get a refund of my pension contributions prior to them being stolen, you are calling me greedy? I have stated also that if I wish to live in a decent country then I have never resented paying my share, you convinced me that I was foolish for not taking advantage of the Taxation Loopholes, now you have me confused.
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:18am
    Firstly, it is illegal to avoid paying tax, but legal to minimise it.

    I paid too much tax for possibly 20 years - but it was not until I understood the rules of the game that I knew that was happening to me. I paid what tax was required and kept less for my own future benefit.

    In my late 30's I started learning the rules of the game - in no small part through being incensed by Packer's stand on tax in the 80's. I again paid what tax was required, but then kept more for my own future benefit.

    However, I have no expectation that even one cent of those initial 20 years of full tax payments is now somehow my ‘entitlement’. An entitlement to social security through an age pension is viewed in Australia as a right, based on need, not something that can be bought by paying a financial contribution.

    High tax rates or otherwise gives you no entitlement, or claim, to any past or future tax money’s paid.
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    5:26am
    Harvs,
    I - basically - cannot see any problems with Moorlands "Point of debate"!
    If you were paying Car Insurance and - later - found out that the company NEVER covered you anyway, would you not demand your premiums to be refunded?
    I totally agree that the UK cannot be compared to Australia! In Holland, the same style scheme operates!
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    10:56am
    moorlands is confusing the amount of tax you can pay if you choose not to use the readily available, basic legal tax minimisation rules. He believes he is then entitled to a tax refund of a non-existent age welfare component. Tax you have paid will NEVER be a saving scheme or plan. Governments spend money faster than the average consumer can blink - and save less as well. You take your savings as you go in the reduced amount of tax you DON'T pay - there is ZERO in the ATO's bank account to draw on later. It will never be a bank.

    Australia does not have a specific aged pension payment scheme included in our taxes. An aged pension in Australia is a right, based on NEED - and is an unfunded liability paid for by the taxes by the still working generations. An unwritten contract between the young and the old - that recipients of present pensions HOPE will be honoured by those tax paying generations.
    lindy
    14th Apr 2014
    3:56pm
    If Hockey has his way with the "retire at 70" I predict he will be retiring at the next election.
    No worries.
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    4:07pm
    I contacted Joe Hockey's office and told the staff to read the comments here and pass them on to the Treasurer so I hope they do that. I have no sympathy for any pensioner who voted for the current government as they knew in advance that the Lib Coalition Govts top priorities are looking after the Big End of Town and the wealthy. Juia Gillard broke 1 promise and for a good cause, you only have to see what is happening to the weather and our environment and if this government changes pensions, superannuation and cuts to the ABC then that will be 3 ELECTION PROMISES they have broken and will it cause the same uproar in the community?, I doubt it.
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    8:43pm
    Yes !! and the Carbon Tax is being sent Directly to the Sun God !!..
    Correction.... To future Polly Pay Rises !!..
    moorlands
    14th Apr 2014
    10:50pm
    Misty, what on earth are you on about, I was just looking for the footy results.
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    11:09pm
    Well moorlands you won't get the results from Joe Hockey's office.
    spud
    14th Apr 2014
    4:30pm
    The present pension is inadequate and pensions are having it tough to survive on it. So, how can it be justified to decrease the pension. As fare raising the working age to 70 - this would probably suit some people who are healthy and in jobs that are not too taxing but a large proportion of jobs are heavy work and age does not allow for this. Also getting a job when you are mature aged is not easy so how can a person get a job or keep one until they are 70? Election promises made to not change the pension are so much thin air - if you make a promise you should stick to it - not just say it so as to get elected. These changes are made by politicians who are earning enormous sums with large pensions waiting for them on retirement - how can politicians have a realistic idea of what it is like to live on an age pension.
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    8:52pm
    OH!! Stop it !! I'm 68 and got a job counting Paddle Pop Sticks ! 100 to the bag they told Me ! I get to 14 usually and then forget where I was ??.. but I'm getting better ! I got 22 in a bag the other day before My WTF Altz something cut in !!!
    Con Troversy
    14th Apr 2014
    4:33pm
    It's ok for people like Joe Hockey to come up with garbage like he has (bashing Old Age Pensioners) HE will receive a pension for life at whatever age he retires..Paid for by MANY of those same Pensioners... !!! .Hippocrit !!! This is only the beginning from the likes of Hockey and his cohorts... One Term Government...The alternative is not much better..!! They are still naive , elitist no idea Politicians.. God help Australia.
    maxchugg
    14th Apr 2014
    4:43pm
    I was amused to hear the cost of keeping a retiree on the pension. So many years at so many dollars a year.
    But let's take a look at politicians. What would be the total cost when a politician retires?
    The retirement age for most of us is about to be lifted to 70, so a large number won't live long enough to collect, and those that do won't collect for very long. But retirement at 50 is something easily achievable for a politician and usually retirement brings in its train the prospect of plum positions requiring little effort but returning massive income.
    Oldmac
    14th Apr 2014
    4:51pm
    Yes I can picture it.Thousands in late sixties doing the mandatory annoying of employers each week in order to get Newstart. CEntrelink having to add thousands of extra staff..Where is the savings? Improve the present situation. Make the 2 week income to be $540 for couples to encourage one partner to work if able.
    Kezzo
    14th Apr 2014
    5:13pm
    HELLO FOLKS
    IS IT NOT TIME THAT WE OLDER AUSSIES ACTUALLY STARTED TO POLITICALLY SUPPORT A PARTY THAT WILL REPRESENT US ???
    EVEN START A NEW PARTY.
    FEDERAL AND STATE POLITICIANS ENTITLEMENTS SHOULD BE PARALLELED WITH THE AGE PENSION. THEIR SYSTEM NEEDS OVERHAULING COMPLETELY. I AM TIRED OF THERE PARTIES PROMISING ONE THING AND DOING ANOTHER ...ALL FOR THE VOTE AT THE NEXT ELECTION .... Mr HOCKEY NEEDS TO COUNT THE AGE PENSIONERS IN HIS ELECTORATE...
    TIME TO DO SOMETHING INSTEAD OF SITTING ON OUR COLLECTIVE BUTT CHEEKS AND CONSTANTLY COMPLAINING .... WHAT DO YOU THINK ????
    Wendy HK
    14th Apr 2014
    8:31pm
    I'll vote for a new party!
    Collectively "older Australians" would have a lot of clout if we banded together.
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    5:30am
    The good thing is that there are new parties "springing up".
    The sad thing is that there are to many of them and so the votes will be splintered and none of them will get into power to represent us!
    Why cannot we amalgamate (like NLP & Labour as there is only outward difference between them) and STAND ad a UNITED FRONT!!!!!
    Only the will WE THE PEOPLE win this BATTLE!
    Abby
    18th Apr 2014
    10:45am
    There have been two attempts to start a new party for Older Australians on this Forum.

    Both failed because of lack of interest from YLC Members

    It seems the Seniors are entrenched iin either Labor Liberal or Greens and nothing will move them from it.

    All they seem to want to do is bash the other party - "it is their fault"
    All the Major Political Parties are only too aware of that.
    Misty
    18th Apr 2014
    11:12am
    Well I think it was the Age Pensioners as you call them that helped get this government over the line, and as an Aged Pensioner who didn't vote for them I have no sympathy for any one whinging now, you knew what to expect.
    Misty
    18th Apr 2014
    11:12am
    Well I think it was the Age Pensioners as you call them that helped get this government over the line, and as an Aged Pensioner who didn't vote for them I have no sympathy for any one whinging now, you knew what to expect.
    bartpcb
    14th Apr 2014
    5:22pm
    The Liberal government is targeting the retirees because they (the retirees) are the soft target and can do little to fight back. The rhetoric about pensioners costing the country to much is a clumsy smoke screen, that if repeated often enough will be believed!!! The fact is that all the persons with Superannuation have reduced the overall government pension reliant personnel by some considerable amount, and therefore the so called government burden. As usual the Libs are targeting the people that have nothing to negotiate with and are at their scant mercy.
    Brissiegirl
    14th Apr 2014
    5:48pm
    You are dead right. Ever since superannuation was introduced, governments dined out on the fact that people who hadn't contributed long enough to become self-funded, were increasingly reducing the pension budget by receiving reduced pensions. People who only receive part-pensions are not anywhere near as burdensome as those who do not put aside any funds for their retirement. They should not be pilloried or punished for their thrift. Joe Hockey - you will never recover. You are welcome to start a "national conversation" but if you think this will be a one-sided done deal, you will take Abbott under with you.
    Dot
    14th Apr 2014
    5:29pm
    Pensioners are a very easy target for Governments. Maybe the government go one step further and reclaim the pensioners homes after their death. Wouldn't that be a nice scoop.
    Back on the bandwagon in reference to refugees. Back in 1950 parents applied to come to Australia after world war 2. Recommendations, young, healthy with no criminal record plus on a 2 year contract. No benefits, no rental assistance, no baby bonuses, you were on your own. Worked till they retired.
    Todays refugees have the support of some political parties, lawyers working on their behalf, refugee supporters and if succeed in getting Australian entry receive monies beyond their widest dreams. Now that is where all cuts should be made. On foreign aid, United nations, refugees and so on. Billions Australia could save. One could also mention Politicians payout and how much is it costing us for their life style, they continue leaving well into their 8'0's and '90's.
    particolor
    14th Apr 2014
    9:01pm
    Dot..Do You think they should have left a lot earlier ?...
    GeorgeB
    14th Apr 2014
    9:04pm
    I agree with Pete that many retirees spend their super, and I am one of them, however the answer to that problem is very simple.
    NOBODY gets a super payout, ever! Instead, convert all super to annuity payments. Divide the payments according to life expectancy. If the person dies one week after retirement the super fund keeps the money, however, if the person dies fifteen years later than expected the payments continue, unchanged, as they will be subsidised by those who died early.
    Also, for those who don't have enough super to cover their pension deduct the pension dollar for dollar from the super payment.
    moorlands
    15th Apr 2014
    12:17pm
    GeorgeB , methinks you have inside knowledge of the Abbott Government.
    Blossom
    14th Apr 2014
    9:10pm
    A lot of people who work longer than 65 y.o. devellop medical problems by the time they reach 70 and are no longer able to enjoy their retirement as originally planned. Re. Super, you can bet if the age of retirement is raised money you receive from it will be taxed --yet again. You pay tax of your gross income from which you paid into super before it became possible to salary sacrifice. We are taxed over & over -those of us who have worked for our living and future are taxed on gross income, interest we get when we save some of our wages, all the rates and taxes we pay full sum on. Those who claim benefits from Centrelink instead of working if physically able to do so, get concessions on many accounts, often get housing assistance and pay no taxes. I don't mind my taxes from the past helping genuine cases but those who have no intention of ever working and sit home all day and watch TV, hang out in shopping centres or go surfing all day frustrate me.
    Fred
    14th Apr 2014
    9:59pm
    Why do people refer to the pension as a hand out or a government kindness. Are they forgetting that the government works for us? (Our leaders have). It is high time all these politicians were brought to heel. We need a new party that will dump state governments and take Australia back to being the reasonably egalitarian society that it was when i first arrived. Major decisions should be put to referendum as it seems non of them can be trusted to do the peoples will.
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    5:34am
    Come on REVOLUTION!
    pixii
    14th Apr 2014
    10:15pm
    Instead of cutting aged pensions from those unable to have accumulated Super , or in my case , lost a lot of Super in 2008 GFC , and cut money from people with limited years of work ahead of them, or over the age already, STOP the paid Maternity leave !, the comments here repeat that older people should have worked & saved ,etc so wouldn't that same logic apply to a woman wanting a baby? Save for that planned expense,! And to get paid Maternity leave when the salary figure is top at $150000 , why should that family get a benefit , they have years ahead to work & get more Super ,and I'm about to be a first time grandma , ! these payments to the younger folk now , and on these high incomes , is absurd, they should be able to afford the child ,
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    5:38am
    RIGNT ON!
    Only one problem, the new baby is considered to be a TaxPayer in the not to distant future and therefore is of benefit to "the Powers that BE".
    On the other hand, pensioners are a liability and should be dead as soon as possible after they retire!
    so, if you want to please Joe & Tony: "JUST DROP DEAD"!
    chertl
    14th Apr 2014
    10:34pm
    You took the words I was going to say Pete. When I was working we didn't have super until the 80's so didn't have the opportunity to have much to fall back on. The workers of today will be better off with their super as they have the chance salary sacrifice extra monies as well to help build it up. Good luck to the future generations as you will be better off than we are.
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    5:41am
    Cherti,
    And you really trust that the next GFC is not coming soon in order to swipe these Super Funds and transfer them into their (the Bankers) asset portfolio.
    It wont be long before the are allowed to LEGALLY call us SLAVES!
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    10:49pm
    I think after watching Q & A tonight that the PUP Party will put a stop to a lot of the Libs plans as they will hold the balance of power.
    ozimarco
    14th Apr 2014
    11:06pm
    All I can say is: you voted for this mob, now shut up and live with the consequences. I said before the election that any pensioner voting for the Coalition must have rocks in their head. You didn't seriously believe the Coalition would keep their promises, did you? If you did, you are very naive. So suffer Australia until you wake up and have the good sense to elect a government that believes in governing for all Australians and not just the minority at the top of the heap.
    Misty
    14th Apr 2014
    11:16pm
    Totally agree with your comment ozimarco.
    squirrel
    15th Apr 2014
    12:15am
    You are one of those true believers who cant see the corrupt ways of the, forgot its name party. She said no carbon tax during my term. Wot was her name again.
    BPiAChair
    14th Apr 2014
    11:46pm
    There are thousands of people approaching pension age in Australia who have worked in European countries especially the UK, who are unaware they may be entitled to a part pension from that country. BPiA [www.bpia.org.au] will assist anyone who has worked in the UK investigate and help them discover this extra retirement income to which they are entitled and show them how to even boost it from here. BPiA is a non-profit volunteer association of almost 12,000 members. Our mission is to achieve universal pension indexing but we will aid those who wish to discover this extra income stream for such people are usually delighted with our knowledge and join us to help in our campaign against an intransigent British government. So visit our website and contact us for some help.
    squirrel
    15th Apr 2014
    12:02am
    Hockey, you had better not break the promise made regards pensions. We never forgave julia gillard for her lie regarding the carbon tax. Desent aussies dont suffer liars, they give them the flik at the first opportunity. Our oldies, and im one of them, deserve to be funded fairly for a lifetime of effort to uphold our culture and living standards. Deny those countries whos people choose to kill and rape each other any handouts. Instead look after our own and to hell with UN statutes and signatories.
    Misty
    15th Apr 2014
    1:01am
    The Labor Party was no better or worse then most Governments and ok Juia did break 1 promise but for a good cause and if Tony Abbott and Joe Hockey break 1 or more will you be just as critical then?, I doubt it , True Believer of the Liberal Coalition Party. Who got us through the GFC?, NOT THE LIBS THATS FOR SURE. I know the Labor Party needs to reform but they are still better for the average person in the street then any other party that's for sure. Can't wait for the PUP to start the fireworks when Parliament resumes.
    Misty
    15th Apr 2014
    1:07am
    squirrel I do agree with you about Foreign Aid, after seeing all the homeless people sleeping on the streets of Sydney, I live in the country, I do think charity begins at home and until we can look after our own people properly Foreign Aid should be curtailed or suspended all together.
    Misty
    15th Apr 2014
    1:12am
    Sorry Squirrel, I didn't mean to insult you every one is entitled to vote for whom they like, that's the beauty of living in this country isn't it, that we have the freedom to do so.
    RayC
    15th Apr 2014
    12:06am
    By comparison, the average "Baby-Boomer" (I hate that term!) would be paid FAR LESS tax-payers money in retirement than your average "Joe Hockey"/"Julia Gillard" etc, BEFORE OR AFTER retirement. These politicians waste more, and grab more, taxpayers money and destroyed more jobs than a city full of "Baby Boomers" ...in the name of commerce. Find us some politicians who are willing to REPRESENT this country rather than destroy it. It is hard to tell "The Left" from "The Right" - they all sound the same. Sadly, DICTATORSHIPS rule the world - Democracy is dead - the evidence is indisputable . . .
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    5:45am
    TOTALLY AGREE!
    particolor
    15th Apr 2014
    7:37pm
    ME TOO !!
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    6:47am
    Hi Guys,
    Download this FREE and VERY EDUCATIONAL book
    http://cdn2.collective-evolution.com/assets/uploads/2014/01/How-To-Change-The-World.pdf
    Let others know what you think.
    Misty
    15th Apr 2014
    9:19am
    Don't you ever sleep or are you a Night Owl Patriot?.
    Patriot
    15th Apr 2014
    6:47pm
    Don't spend much time in bed as there is where most people die.
    Instead, I elect to be a burden on this government for a long time!
    I have paid enough tax during my time!
    AlbertC
    15th Apr 2014
    7:49am
    well.well well ! don't say i did not warn all you people out there that abbot is a typical liar i said to you skeptics what he would do well now you better eat your words. look at was he plans to do and what he is already doing like labeling all unions as criminal elements and trying to get them outlawed a case of the kettle calling the pot black bum and if this idiot gets his way you will all end with contracts and no fair pay wake up you people who call yourselves osies and get rid of him the useless pom. have a nice day.
    Swinging voter
    15th Apr 2014
    8:31am
    The comments here reflect widespread anger and from a highly influential voting demographic. Abbott and Hockey would be well advised to first discuss what is proposed as did Howard with the GST. None of this was mooted during the LNP campaign. If they go ahead and make budget changes along the lines Hockey is airing, Labor will spend the next 2.5 years advertising Abbott's pre-election video promise, "no changes to health, no changes to pensions." It was Gillard's pre-election lie, along with other matters yet to be inquired into, that disgusted the voting public. Abbott promised no changes to pensions and health. If Hockey's first budget proves that promise to be a lie, Abbott is done and dusted. Australians will not suffer liars.

    15th Apr 2014
    8:49am
    I think there's a very elite group of wealthy citizens who should come under intense scrutiny as to how much of a drain they are imposing on the economy with their constant huge payouts from Govt coffers, and various other substantial amounts of taxpayer freeloading.

    This groups "entitlements" have been ingrained into the nations psyche for decades, and they scream loudly if those taxpayer "entitlements" show any sign of being curtailed or reduced.

    This elite group are called "politicians". They should be the first to give up their "entitlement" claims and their "middle class welfare" drain on the economy.

    I wonder why this group is always excluded from any "research" or "committees" or "white papers" when it comes to seeking ways to save expending the taxpayers money?
    Swinging voter
    15th Apr 2014
    9:03am
    Abbott said, 'We will be a no surprises, no excuses government … You could trust us in opposition and you will be able to trust us in government … This election is all about trust.''

    Mid-life Australians arrange their retirement finances over several years. What Hockey is suddenly proposing in relation to pension eligibility is as untrustworthy and devious as Gillard and Swan. In fact, because the public trusted Abbott and voted for a "no surprises" alternative, Hockey's chest beating performance appears to be masochistic governmental hari kari. Just watch their polling dive. If the budget makes any change to pensions, or eligibility, they will never recover. Older Australians might have senior moments, but we have memories like elephants when it comes to overpaid, pompous politicians.
    Jude
    15th Apr 2014
    8:54am
    For my generation, (over 70's) growing up we had the belief that once we started earning an income we paid our taxes so that when we retired from the workforce we received an age pension- as an entitlement, not as welfare. Things have changed over the years and we are now apparently considered to be welfare recipients and we often hear complaints by some of the younger generation that their taxes are used for funding age pensioners. To anyone who thinks that way- in my day we paid higher income tax than the current generation. did not get austudy, did not get first home-buyer's grants, a baby bonus was just a few dollars; many married women stayed at home to raise their children therefore did not have superannuation...and the list goes on and on. Current taxpayers may be footing the bill for pensioners but you could say we pensioners paid for your home grants, youth allowance etc. etc. I'm not complaining, that's just how things go; but it is annoying when people start bellyaching about the high cost of pensioners to the taxpayer.
    One of the problems when changes occur is that not enough consideration is given to the past as with the lack of superannuation and so lack of opportunity to be a self-funded retiree. Another is the fact that it used to be the norm for a bride to be a few years younger than the groom, then pension eligibility came roughly at the same time with the husband 65 and wife 60. That of course has now changed and we have situations where the husband is eligibility for the age pension but his wife has to go on newstart for a few years.
    Changes obviously need to be made, but those affected by the changes need to have more consideration given to them as in the difficulty of holding a job or being able to perform heavy labour in your late sixties.
    Anonymous
    15th Apr 2014
    2:00pm
    Jude - Well written, and spot-on on all points, thank you.

    In my working life (now ended, as I'm well into retirement), I grossed over $50M in my businesses - of which the Govt took a much larger portion, than I ever did.

    In fact, I never paid myself, as the business proprietor, any more than $35,000 at any point in my life - preferring to plough excess funds back into business growth, new equipment, more employees, and business equity.
    In fact, at one point some of my best employees were grossing over $100K a year in the early 1990's - when I was still only getting $35K for running the business.

    Out of that $50M I grossed, the Govt took 22% sales tax on everything from parts to office equipment, fuel taxes, vehicle taxes galore, payroll taxes, stamp duties (not just on property, on every finance contract I signed for new equipment), property taxes, transfer taxes, cheque taxes, and minor taxes by the thousand.

    If the Govt of the day now states they have no ability to fund pensioners retirement - after those same pensioners have spent their lives building Australia up to where it is today, with their efforts - then what have they wasted our taxes on??

    These politicians should be held accountable for mismanagement of our economy, in the same vein as any fund manager is held accountable for financial losses.
    doclisa
    15th Apr 2014
    10:51am
    There are a few things that ought be redefined by this interest they have in punishing people who have already paid their share through taxes and hard work. and punishing those who did not lose the money in the first place. Perahps if we instead stopped, or moderated the fuel compensation to oil and mining companies to make a saving. and let the people who have trustingly paid their tax and worked hard their whole lives enjoy their lives for a while. you know we pay about 7 billion a year to mining companies to make their fuel considerably cheaper than what we pay. maybe thats the kind of subsidy we should decide we cant really afford any more.
    Reeper
    15th Apr 2014
    10:53am
    Don't make this a political issue; the ALP can wail and cry now, but they had it on the cards a long time ago. Should the age increase occur, it is a sure bet it won't just happen, there will be a run in time with most within possibly a decade of 65 continuing to retire at that age. Superannuation is the norm today; it places some responsibility into the hands of the individual and is certainly more flexible with salary sacrifice and so forth. My only concern is that I am 64 and could never physically last another 6 years in the work force...but I know I won't be abandoned
    Misty
    15th Apr 2014
    11:07am
    You hope and IT IS A POLITICAL ISSUE, when promises are broken isn't it?, or is it ok for one party to be punished for a broken promise but not the other?, I don't think so.
    Swinging voter
    15th Apr 2014
    11:35am
    It already is a political issue. Abbott, if he doesn't pull Joe Hockey into line, has given the Opposition enough ammunition to ensure a one term government. As a man who enjoys a comfortable lifestyle, does anyone think Clive Palmer is going to switch on the green light for any changes to pension age, payments or eligibility? Gillard was (rightfully) punished for lying about the carbon tax so what's good for one lot is good for the other.
    Jude
    15th Apr 2014
    11:15am
    Wow, did we have all this fuss when the Labor Party increased the pension eligibility age to 67?
    Swinging voter
    15th Apr 2014
    11:37am
    My husband is an electrician. There's no way he can climb into roofs, crawl under floors until he's 70. He's 60 now and battling to do his trade. He won't fall into the 70 category, but it's not all about us.
    archer
    15th Apr 2014
    9:21pm
    Yes
    Radish
    19th Apr 2014
    6:21pm
    Strange that...I never knew they had even done it until recently.
    How come there was not a hulla bulloo from the ABC...nah surely not biased are they??
    greatgolly
    15th Apr 2014
    2:38pm
    I've read all the comments so far and there is so much missing, either purposely or by ignoring other pertinent facts; all I hear is moan and groan over those who get old age pensions, basically, but nothing said about politicians pay, politicians pensions, which most claim and then still work for a salary, too, then there are all their perks, gold cards etc...

    I hear nothing about those families where all the family is on disability and if there are four or more they get in excess of $1,500 pw into the household and maybe more, or where they breed for need and family units exceed 5 or more children and the father doesn't have to work or won't because he couldn't earn what he gets on welfare! Couple who live together with well planned excuses why they shouldn't be classed as members of a couple but don't and get two single pensions.

    If, and I say if the head of DSS and did the job correctly, finding all the above, but finding they are genuine which a lot are not, then how about allowing into that household the basic wage only as if the head of the household was working; too, where there is more than one member of the household on disability, only allocate the basic wage into that household as if the head of that household was working; I'm sure by now you are getting the gist of what I'm talking about, then the welfare bill would be cut by about a third and old age pensions are not tampered with because that's how it could be.

    Are, but our politicians you ask, well, for a start abolish State Governments as they are too costly and we are already over governed, re-vamp local government as Mayors and councillors should not as Queensland does, get large salaries, allowances, and perks; go back to super-councils, one per State with sub-councils if necessary and those are made up of Mayors and councillors that get allowances for what they donate to the service of the people as an honour!

    Trust me, I'm not being as harsh as I once was when I firmly believed, and still do that all workers should get the same pay, but the higher up the ladder you go the more perks you get, but when you leave or retire that goes too, the perks that is. Too, any money earned in this country from its produce including exports, the money does not leave the country, the only reason money leaves this country is for the purchase of imports and services necessary for obtaining said import. I do believe even coming close to this would make Australia one of the wealthiest countries around and one where all are equal, and that goes for the politicians as well, to hell with their massive salaries, perks, gold card, free holidays after they leave parliament and no secretary or free office, they no longer serve they go back to the basic wage. A national insurance scheme for all for health so that no matter who it is, they get equal care!

    One last thing, we should bring back capital and corporal punishment, a sentence is a sentence, and every man and woman should do 2 years National Service, it never did us any harm and I think it would bring back some of that lost respect our youth so lack!
    Anonymous
    16th Apr 2014
    8:12am
    Corporal punishment was fairly arbitrary from my experience.

    So maybe we bring it back and flog the occasional pensioner in a shopping centre for whining too much, or something arbitrary like that. If they died during the flogging, well that would just be - capital.

    Yep - sounds like a good idea to me.
    Dolphin Haven
    15th Apr 2014
    4:11pm
    One must presume that Tony Abbott will be working until he reaches the age of 70 and receive the same amount of pension and cuts as us poor people who dared to live over the age of 70. Of course there is a shortage of money, billions spent on the boat people sent over from Malaysia and if that is not enough we are now spending millions to find their aeroplane. May I ask why Australia is paying for that? The one thing I do agree with, we should pay a reasonable amount for Emergency hospital services and also a small amount towards bulk billing at doctors, Many years ago we ran an Opera House lottery to pay for the Opera House why not run a lottery to fund hospitals and everyone can receive decent medical care. The next question is, I am 70 would love a part time office job, my brain still functions perfectly - do you think anyone would employ me?
    particolor
    15th Apr 2014
    7:46pm
    Definitely not in Politics !! .. They don't do Brains !..
    wally
    15th Apr 2014
    6:42pm
    With the Federal budget due to come out in a month's time, I don't think I will worry about it too much as I do not think all the details have been set in concrete yet. Still, now is the time to make our feelings known regarding pensions. We might be able to secure a better deal than what has been proposed so far.
    I would not be surprised to see the brunt if the pensioner/ grab for money fall on those who will be pensioners when they reach 67, I think current age pensioners will dodge that particular bullet but that the younger workers will wind up carrying most of the cost of the changes. I would also predict that future pension increases will be less frequent and in smaller amounts to diminish the cost to the government and the taxpayers. Bitter medicine for all, but will the pain be equitably distributed? That is the Big question.
    particolor
    15th Apr 2014
    7:50pm
    Equally Distributed ??.... They are looking for a New Jester for next Batman Flick !!.
    Thought of Auditioning ??
    guyra2
    15th Apr 2014
    9:25pm
    If the Government is so concerned about the bottom line.......what a very constructive and considerate move it would be for the politicians to drop their wage closer to it..I have no super or secret sorces of survival...I exist under the pressures of todays rising pricees just as many of us pensioners do..........We may not have money or luxuries Mr.Hockey...but we all have relatives and good memories come the next time for election.
    Rosie Girl
    15th Apr 2014
    11:20pm
    Mr Hocking Please leave us Pensioners and the elderly alone..
    you and your collegues all need to have your Pay reduced...
    Jacks
    16th Apr 2014
    3:08pm
    It's typical Liberal government principles. The contemporary Liberal Party generally advocates economic liberalism (see New Right) and social conservatism.

    They want to shrink welfare, they want to shrink public services, they want to shrink the role of government.

    16th Apr 2014
    6:04pm
    EASY to fix Mr Hockey..just give him a bottle of WINE..works a treat in NSW
    Dolphin Haven
    17th Apr 2014
    5:19pm
    Another comment I would like to make - who are all these people who work as volunteers - pensioners of course. Having worked for a marine rescue service for twelve years, many hours with no pay. Marine Rescue operates 24hrs 365 days per year and are all manned by volunteers. Then there are all the other emergency services mostly run by volunteers mostly by pensioners. The list just goes on and on. We are not all couch potatoes and just sit back to receive our pension. The government needs to target the bludgers, the younger generation, I know people who have been on benefits for years and are not even interested to have a full time occupation. There are jobs out there if you really want one, even if it is just cleaning or gardening.
    Jurassicgeek
    17th Apr 2014
    6:42pm
    the aim of the super was to have everyone as self funded..however many of us came into the super scheme way too late for it to be any real benefit..The problem being is that most employee super accounts are not managed correctly..most of us do not have a clue about investments etc...and consequently most supers only pay marginally more than bank interest and in my case went into the negative for a few years...instead of making us work till we drop we should be paid a reasonable pension so we can actually enjoy ooy retirement..I'd like to see Hockey and co survive on what we get..
    GeorgeB
    18th Apr 2014
    2:57pm
    I notice my article has been deleted, possibly for being slightly off topic, but more likely because it was too hard hitting. Has anyone else been censored?
    deebee
    19th Apr 2014
    11:51am
    If Prime Ministers and State Premiers leave the country in a worse state than when they take over, they should forfeit their pensions. This type of action would stop irresponsible wastage of taxpayers money on back of the envelope poorly thought out schemes. It always falls to the Liberals both State and Federally to bring their respective budgets back into surplus. However, the Rudd/Gillard amateurs and their team have pretty well destroyed Australia.
    Misty
    19th Apr 2014
    12:06pm
    We wouldn't be enjoying the lifestyle we are now if Labor hadn't saved us from the GFC, give them credit fort that at least and stop whinging, don't forget the deficit John Howard left Australia in when he was Treasurer too, it works both ways the Libs aren't angels, they make mistakes too.
    Misty
    20th Apr 2014
    2:03am
    Deebee if you Google John Howard's time as Treasurer you will find that of the $96 Billion left by the Hawke Keating Government almost half that deficit was left by the previous Malcolm Frazer Government when John Howard was Treasurer, Labor left $300 Billion this time but after 7 months the Liberals have the debt up to $600 Billion so you tell me how that works.
    deebee
    19th Apr 2014
    11:58am
    All Gold Cards for ex Prime Ministers should be abolished. Also their office and secretary should be done away with in retirement. No free overseas travel. They should pay their way like the rest of us. And, as for Carr wanting pyjamas in business and first class travel - he should get real. He was kicked out of State politics before he was thrown out.
    Misty
    19th Apr 2014
    12:09pm
    I do agree with you here deebee, 100%, Bob Carr should try travelling 20 hours in economy and then he might have something to whinge about and anyway he could have upgraded to First and paid the difference couldn't he.
    Nan Norma
    19th Apr 2014
    8:45pm
    The goverment wants to lower my aged pension while it gives a refugee single mother with six children a public funded house and pays her a pension. Something is VERY wrong here.
    Nan Norma
    19th Apr 2014
    8:45pm
    The goverment wants to lower my aged pension while it gives a refugee single mother with six children a public funded house and pays her a pension. Something is VERY wrong here.
    Nan Norma
    19th Apr 2014
    8:45pm
    The goverment wants to lower my aged pension while it gives a refugee single mother with six children a public funded house and pays her a pension. Something is VERY wrong here.
    MAC22
    24th Apr 2014
    6:08pm
    I would love to have continued to work, and wanted to do so when I reached 59 years. However, I worked with the QLD govt at the time, and after coming back from a short sick leave (1 week) after an accident at work, my job was gone, it became non-existent with no explanation whatsoever. I asked if there was something else I could do, with no response. I refused to sit at a new desk with nothing to do, so I left. Six months later, a previous boss had returned to my department, and asked if I would be interested in returning for approximately 3 weeks, sorting their whole filing system. I did this and thoroughly enjoyed my time, and everything was shipshape once more. There was still no more work for me and once more I was unemployed.

    I have tried for other jobs but once they know how old I was, they became uninterested no matter what my skills and demeanour were.

    I felt so depressed, as I wanted to work. I have finally come to terms in regards to this experience and keep my self busy, and budget very well, and yes I am now on a pension, but happy, and feel discriminated against. Not many businesses want older people working in their establishment. MAC22
    Misty
    25th Apr 2014
    7:40pm
    I know changes have to be made so we can pay our vulnerable in the future but there are better ways of doing it then what the government is allegedly proposing, I dread what sort of a future my grandchildren are facing, why did this govt block Labor's proposal to lift the Super Contribution to 15% that at least would have helped a bit.


    Join YOURLifeChoices, it’s free

    • Receive our daily enewsletter
    • Enter competitions
    • Comment on articles