Minimum wage increase not all good news

Australia’s lowest paid workers will receive an extra $22.20* a week.

Poor pensioner with empty pockets

Australia’s lowest paid workers will receive an extra $22.20* a week in their pay packet.

In an announcement made by the Fair Work Commission yesterday, the weekly minimum wage will rise to $694.90* or $18.29 per hour. The increase will benefit the one-in-five Australian workers who rely on award wages and those employed by larger companies under enterprise agreements, which require employers to ensure staff are better off than the minimum wage.

However, it does not take into account that Sunday penalty rates for retail and hospitality staff will be cut by five per cent from 1 July 2017. The increase, which will apply over the next 12 months, amounts to 3.3 per cent – greater than the 2.4 per cent awarded last year.

Unions, using stagnant wage growth and low inflation as ammunition, had called for an increase of $45 per week, while employer groups had wanted to see an increase of around $10.

Of the increases, the head of the Australian Council of Trade Unions, Sally McManus said, "The Fair Work Commission today made a decision to keep working people in poverty".  While acting chair of the Australian Catholic Council for Employment Relations said, "Low income families will still simply not earn enough to provide for their children and lead a fulfilling, enriching life.

"The National Minimum Wage can no longer be described as a living wage."

President of the Fair Work Commission, Ian Ross, acknowledged the increase would not be enough for some, but that it was at a level that would not deter employers from hiring new employees.

"The level of increase we have decided upon will not lead to inflationary pressure and is highly unlikely to have any measurable negative impact on employment," he said.

Noting that it wouldn’t lift all minimum wage workers out of poverty, he did note that, "It will, however, mean an improvement in the real wages for those employees who are reliant on [the minimum wage] and an improvement in their relative living standards."

*based on a 38-hour work week

Read more at abc.net.au

Opinion: Age pensioners struggle on less than minimum wage

An increase for those who earn the minimum wage is good news, no matter which way you look at it. It only serves to highlight the unfairness and ineffectiveness of the rises to the Age Pension that have occurred over the last year.

On 20 March 2016, the single Age Pension was increased to $794.80, and 12 months on, after a rise on 20 September 2016, it was increased to $808.30 – a total of $13.50 extra per fortnight. As a percentage, these rises equate to 1.7 per cent, a considerable amount lower than the 3.3 per cent received by those on the minimum wage. Indeed, if an increase of 3.3 per cent had been awarded to those on the Age Pension over the last 12 months, the payment would be $821 per fortnight.

And let us not forget that the figures quoted above are per fortnight. While the minimum wage is deemed to be sufficient at $694.90 per week, those on the single Age Pension live on just $404.15 per week. Even when the Clean Energy Supplement and Pension Supplement is added to the payment, it still equates to just $444.15 per week for those on a single Age Pension.

By no stretch of the imagination is this fair.

Do you think that the Age Pension rises should be equal to those granted for the minimum wage? Or should the Government go one step further and make the Age Pension equal to the minimum wage?

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    COMMENTS

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    grahami2006
    7th Jun 2017
    10:18am
    Totally agree with this article and this has been going on for years.
    Maybe we need a tribunal to decide how much pensioners should be paid.
    Everything goes up for both those on a minimum age and pensioners.
    Should the pollies try to live on a pensioner's wage for at least six months?
    sirrom
    7th Jun 2017
    10:20am
    Why should pollies try and live on a pensioners wage? - Pensions are designed to live/survive - that is why superannuation will be so important in the future.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    10:32am
    I noted two things with this decision:
    1. the judge concerned described the arguments against increases darin back many years as false.
    2. employer groups came out immediately to complain although I am waiting for the normal tears in front of their right wing media out lets of "we'll be ruined" and "jobs will be lost".

    It is long overdue that the top end of town was stopped. Not as though the top has not taken huge ongoing salary increases over the past 2 decades....but that is apparently 'different' to those at the bottom who cannot pay their life support bills.
    HDRider
    7th Jun 2017
    10:35am
    sirrom, you just don't get it do you? Super was NOT around for a lot of age pensioner's, and furthermore, they were led to believe the government would pay an age pension at end of working life. Something to do with paying tax all their life.
    I'm sitting comfortable, but I still feel for any pensioner who, through no fault of their own, has to rent/pay a mortgage on the miserly amount they receive after a lifetime of work. Not every pensioner was able to stow money away for retirement, maybe you did, hence your bad attitude on the subject!
    Kaz
    7th Jun 2017
    11:54am
    And sirrom what happens when pollies get a pension? Shouldn't theirs be the same?
    Trees
    7th Jun 2017
    12:26pm
    Sirrom said "that is why superannuation will be so important in the future" he/she didn't say anything about this lot of aged people having super, so don't get so upset people
    Play Fairly
    7th Jun 2017
    2:47pm
    Graham, pollies would also squeal like wounded pigs if they had to wait until the age of 70 to collect their parliamentary pensions. However, everybody else will be made to wait until 70, with aged pension eligibility age now being increased by 6 months each year for the next 5 years.
    I don't know who gave these cretins so much power to "belt up" the aged population. I recall being told as a child to show respect towards the aged, but I doubt that sentiment exists in our Parliament. Someone, all of a sudden declared that people are living longer and they must work until 70 before they can receive an Aged Pension.. This is nonsensical because, by the time many people reach 65 years of age, their bodies have succumbed to the effects of many years of hard work, especially those who perform manual work. Those who are elderly and under pension age, who are fighting a major illness will find they will be put onto Newstart. There is no Sickness Benefit payment. It is Newstart until they reach the ever increasing Aged Pension age.
    These turkeys in Canberra haven't got a clue. By their own public personas and attitude, and by their performance in their portfolios, they have rendered themselves as ineffective representatives for the aged sector in our country. Morrison, (Hockey too...he started this work till you are 70....or fall off the perch), and Tudge & Porter both need to go. The robo-debt debt fiasco should have, at least, seen Tudge thrown off the front bench.
    Yes, they should all be made to wait until they turn 70 as well, to collect their pensions.
    Play Fairly
    7th Jun 2017
    2:47pm
    Graham, pollies would also squeal like wounded pigs if they had to wait until the age of 70 to collect their parliamentary pensions. However, everybody else will be made to wait until 70, with aged pension eligibility age now being increased by 6 months each year for the next 5 years.
    I don't know who gave these cretins so much power to "belt up" the aged population. I recall being told as a child to show respect towards the aged, but I doubt that sentiment exists in our Parliament. Someone, all of a sudden declared that people are living longer and they must work until 70 before they can receive an Aged Pension.. This is nonsensical because, by the time many people reach 65 years of age, their bodies have succumbed to the effects of many years of hard work, especially those who perform manual work. Those who are elderly and under pension age, who are fighting a major illness will find they will be put onto Newstart. There is no Sickness Benefit payment. It is Newstart until they reach the ever increasing Aged Pension age.
    These turkeys in Canberra haven't got a clue. By their own public personas and attitude, and by their performance in their portfolios, they have rendered themselves as ineffective representatives for the aged sector in our country. Morrison, (Hockey too...he started this work till you are 70....or fall off the perch), and Tudge & Porter both need to go. The robo-debt debt fiasco should have, at least, seen Tudge thrown off the front bench.
    Yes, they should all be made to wait until they turn 70 as well, to collect their pensions.
    AutumnOz
    7th Jun 2017
    3:03pm
    Play Fairly,
    Good comments - now if only the pollies in Canberra read our views on the unfairness, and stupidity, of their actions.
    It is unlikely to happen in the near future though unfortunately.
    Jannie
    7th Jun 2017
    3:29pm
    Sirrom I agree with Kaz Pollies should get the same pension as other pensioners, not the inflated pension plus perks that they get. Why are they treated differently??? Also I can't understand how they qualify for any pension due to their high salaries and assets they would have accumulated. Fair suck of the sausage here Pollies should be treated the same.
    Jannie
    7th Jun 2017
    3:33pm
    Trees and Sirrom for your info some young people of today that have been made redundant for no fault of their own and finding it hard to get a job will have less super due to their misfortunes. I for one had three issues that affected my super, bad health so could not work, a marriage breakdown, and still out of work.
    Trees
    7th Jun 2017
    3:44pm
    Jannie I understand that anyone at anytime can be made redundant & it affects the super component, times are tough for the normal person at every level of life. No easy answer there & not really sure what you are getting at.
    If you mean pensions, minimum wage is not adequate, you are right.
    If you mean politicians are indulged with their perks & pension, you are right again.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    5:53pm
    sirrom - so they can get an idea what the hell they are talking about in real terms.

    Stick around - you'll catch up.... work hard, listen well..... don't get the team offside.... be a member of the team and not an invader...
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    5:56pm
    .. and never forget for one second that the current climate of part-time casual occasional work for many will inevitably result in a far greater number being reliant on pension alone in retirement.

    Talk about beating up on the lowest paid in the land.....

    Double the pension now.....
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    5:59pm
    The increased economic activity would save the retailers and the penalty rates of workers, and would be back in the hands of Uncle Guv tout de suite from successive taxations levied...unless the bosses of the retailers offshore it alongside Malcolm's millions in a tax have....

    BTW - does Andrew Robber get his $880k plus perks from his Chinese employers paid into a bank account here, does he pay tax on it here ... or is it paid into a tax haven account at 2% income tax?

    Anyone prepared to take a bet on this?
    Dotty
    7th Jun 2017
    7:31pm
    Totally agree with you Graham ! Even the minimum wage would be a help to us pensioners whether single or couple !
    By the time you pay rent, Utilities food (If you can afford it all!)clothing Medication that I pay out of my single pension an average of $30 per "Week" AS I have quite a few Medical problems that require Medication for !
    And at times I have to get my Meds over and above food !
    So its a no win No Win situation!!
    Dotty
    sirrom
    7th Jun 2017
    10:18am
    Pension are only to assist those who cannot support themselves from savings or superannuation. As we move forward superannuation will play a major part in everyones retirement -Aged Pensioners do not have the same cost of living as do workers on the minimum wage -these workers are probably paying rent (no rental subsidy for them!!!!, incur travel costs getting to and from work and have a family to support - pensioners should be over supporting family by now! and obviously no longer travel to work.
    Tommo
    7th Jun 2017
    10:49am
    sirrom,you are an idiot - we retirees have to pay the same for food, fuel,electricity, clothing etc, at a greatly lesser income than some one working. As HDRider stated, you just don't get it. We didn't have the luxury of super when we started work and it wasn't until the late 80's ( I think ) that super savings became compulsory' WE are not destitute, however, we do not consider an increase of $9.00 a fortnight life sustaining - we need to keep pace with increases just like everyone else - so, if you can, use your brain
    Tommo
    7th Jun 2017
    10:49am
    sirrom,you are an idiot - we retirees have to pay the same for food, fuel,electricity, clothing etc, at a greatly lesser income than some one working. As HDRider stated, you just don't get it. We didn't have the luxury of super when we started work and it wasn't until the late 80's ( I think ) that super savings became compulsory' WE are not destitute, however, we do not consider an increase of $9.00 a fortnight life sustaining - we need to keep pace with increases just like everyone else - so, if you can, use your brain
    Charlie
    7th Jun 2017
    11:16am
    Should age pensioners, give up travelling to the supermarket?
    How do they get food when they can no longer walk.

    How do they communicate with family when they can't afford the basic communications of the age, while nearly every teenager walks around with two thumbs on an Iphone.

    They don't go to work to the office air conditioning, but this means their air conditioning at home has to be on each day and they have rising electricity costs.

    If a person gets married at 55 they would still have children at school come 65.

    I keep getting the impression that the word "pension" is being wrongly used as a substitute for unemployment benefits.
    Or there is not enough known about what its really like to be over 65yo when body strength and health is beginning to fail and nobody will even consider giving a half day work for a university educated person with half a lifetime of permanent employment.

    There's the cost of medications and the bleak prospect of all clothing and appliances wearing out, because there is no prospect of getting any extra income EVER. I would give anything to have the problems of a healthy middle age person, only on unemployment benefits.
    Alexii
    7th Jun 2017
    11:33am
    I fully agree with you, Tommo.
    KSS
    7th Jun 2017
    12:21pm
    "If a person gets married at 55 they would still have children at school come 65." How so Charlie?
    Koj
    7th Jun 2017
    12:26pm
    Well Sirrom... you copped a few "idiot" sprays there.
    While I'm no right wing politician loving windbag, I agree with what you posted - which is that aged pensioners do not have the same costs as minimum wage earners - differences being the lack of rental support and daily commuting costs to the workplace.
    Most aged pensioners would not also have family support costs - though there is (some) relief to low income wage earners in that regard.
    Rather than spit the word idiot, reasonable folks could have argued that the difference in costs is not as great as the 3.3% and 1.7% wage/ pension increases.
    Sirrom - your earlier post above regarding pollies trying to live on a pensioner's "wage" is also relevant. As working persons it's not unreasonable to expect them to live on a working person's wage.
    I also agree that superannuation is the future key to aged persons' funds, rather than predominantly the aged pension.
    I would support the hunting direction of the baying masses regarding politician's SUPER. While there have been some measures to reduce the obscene excesses of polly super, there is still a long way to go.
    The basic super model is for self-funding - as we retire from the work force, we then draw down on our lifelong super savings. This is where the polly super goes very wrong, previously (and I suspect still) having no relationship with self funding models.
    Until such time as the workforce at large have lifelong super savings, there will always be great reliance on the age pension. Should people in general have had regard to the need for savings in their old age? Probably, though without super tax concession measures, and education/ compulsion to save, the number having such savings won't be the full pond.
    Something for some folks to think about on the bright side.... a bit down the track many of the folks now finding difficulty living on the pension won't have that problem in the future. With steadily increasing thresholds for actually accessing the aged pension, many lesser fit or capable people without employment in their 60s or 70s will face the requirement of difficult and demeaning newstart type requirements like accepting positions of paid doorknocking for charities or sales hunting, or undergoing retraining to make them "suitable for employment" in incomprehensible technical fields.
    The future aint gunna be so bright either!
    Trees
    7th Jun 2017
    12:39pm
    Sirrom you are absolutely right, minimum wage & pension are poles apart because you are at totally different ends of the life scale. Minimum wage works are more likely to have a family to support unlike pensioners who's kids should be long gone. So obviously cost of food etc. is the same but pensioners are only buying for one or two people, minimum wage could be for 3 or 4 people.
    Charlie a person of 55 years having children & knowingly having to be on the pension - seriously??? supposed to get wiser as you get older.
    Should the pension increase by the 3.3% not necessarily but you should get the CPI
    Janran
    7th Jun 2017
    1:19pm
    Why oh why are you arguing Pensioners vs. the full time working poor?

    Both groups are not paid enough to live on adequately.

    I hate to do it, but I agree that working people have more expenses that pensioners. Pensioners can receive all sorts of discounts at supermarkets, public transport, car rego., council rates, rental assistance, pharmacy and bulk billing by doctors. But it doesn't change the fact that BOTH GROUPS ARE NOT PAID ENOUGH.

    (And Charlie, only a man would be crazy enough to imagine he could get married at 55 and breed! Even if you married a woman young enough to be fertile, you'd need a better financial plan that what the OAP will provide. Seriously, you couldn't afford a wedding, let alone children.)

    START ARGUING AGAINST POLITICIAN'S "PENSIONS" AND THE BIG END OF TOWN, and those who have no idea of the daily struggles of pensioners and the working poor.
    Trees
    7th Jun 2017
    2:21pm
    Too true Janran both are not adequate but how you going to fix it?
    Charlie
    7th Jun 2017
    2:48pm
    KSS.. men are still fertile at 55. If they take a young Filipino bride they can have children at 55, and the kids will still be attending school when their father is 65. Unconventional but becoming more common.
    Charlie
    7th Jun 2017
    2:59pm
    Janran.. If a person still has children to raise at 65 and they have a good super payout at 65, that is going to help considerably. They could have $400,000 super payout and still be able to get the age pension. If they become unable to work full time between 55 and 65 they are permitted to draw their super early during this time frame.

    Its not as impossible or improbable as it seems.
    AutumnOz
    7th Jun 2017
    3:16pm
    sirrom, I beg to differ as many grandparents OAPs and SFRs)are looking after their grandchildren and feeding them until the parents pick them up in the evening. Also only pensioners living in a major city or regional city can catch public transport for shopping, however pensioners in rural areas are dependent on their cars to get from one place to another and that costs quite a bit in petrol, insurance etc.
    With the increase by one third in the cost of the green slips (NSW compulsory third party insurance)many people have cut their trips to town by half just to save some money.
    Trees
    7th Jun 2017
    3:22pm
    But surely not a good to place to be Charlie, good super payout or not it is going to make life harder as you get older having children depending on you into your 70's, not just financially but physically & mentally - just saying :)
    KSS
    7th Jun 2017
    5:17pm
    Charlie, then unless these stupid men have the income of Mick Jagger (new dad at 70) or George Clooney (new dad of twins at 56) they had better stay employed to support their offspring and nit whinge about the pension not being enough for child rearing. It was never intended for that purpose. Ever!
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:01pm
    We don't get out petrol and food and accommodation paid for as a bonus.. like politicians do....
    Anonymous
    8th Jun 2017
    6:01am
    Yes, working people have different expense levels to OAPs. They may be more, or they may be less. They have costs of working - work clothes, transport to and from the workplace, etc. They may have rent and costs to support children. On the other hand, retirees may have high health needs, high costs to support and visit family, high home maintenance costs due to the age of their home and furnishings, high car repair or replacement costs... there are any number of situations and circumstances that affect living costs and it's impossible to compare one group with another. I think it's just way past time to show some respect for those who struggle and raise both the minimum wage and the pension to a level that ensures everyone in what is otherwise a prosperous nation can enjoy a decent standard of living AND a respectable retirement.
    jeff
    8th Jun 2017
    5:47pm
    The Truth about Pensions… and the Lies of our Leaders
    Nick Minchin on the Tony Jones ABC TV Program Q & A 11/09/2008 stated quite clearly that funds were not, have not and are not collected and held in a bank account waiting for the government to pay it out in the form of the Old Age Pension, or words that meant, “exactly that.”
    As an ex Australian Federal Government finance Minister, now shadow defence minister, this man knows that his statement on that television program, was a blatant lie (and he said it with a look of such sincerity on his face).
    Well, it certainly was collected and it amassed such huge amounts that this government and those preceding couldn’t help themselves. Without any right, they plundered it and spent billions of it over the years. This was money earned by the people themselves through hard work and often deprivation (as a legislated obligation, part thereof was collected by the Tax Department for this very purpose).
    To this day this money is collected as a tax which originally, specifically, and intentionally was to fund, “the Aged Pension.”
    To dispel misinformation from Party Politicians and their spin doctors, here are some historical facts that every Australian (especially the young who are under the miss-guided belief and/or assumption that they are funding the Aged Pension from their current hard work) should know.
    The young are in fact funding their own Pension Fund and to add insult to injury they are forced to pay into a super fund.
    1939 - 1945
    World War II
    1942 - 1943
    As a Wartime measure, the Federal Government gained sole control over Australian Income Tax. Labor Prime minister (Ben Chifley) introduced three bills to establish the National Welfare Fund, to be financed by a Compulsory Contribution (levy) of one and sixpence in the Pound (20/-) on all personal income.
    Opposition Leader (Robert Menzies) stated that the Compulsory Contribution (levy) should be kept completely separate from other government income streams, that it should be shown separately on the Taxation Assessment and paid straight into a “TRUST” account, and not mixed with the General Revenue.
    Menzies said “The stigma of charity should be removed from the Age Pension.” and that “It should be an entitlement earned by the person’s personal contribution to the fund.”
    1946
    1
    Prime Minister Chifley agreed and established The National Welfare fund as at 1/1/1946.
    A “Trust” Fund with the Parliament as “Trustee.” The Compulsory Contributions (levy) commenced as at 1st January 1946. It was shown separately on the personal Tax Assessments for 1946, 1947, 1948, 1949 and 1950 and the compulsory levy was properly paid straight into the Special “Trust” fund and Welfare claims were paid out of the fund.
    The balance in the fund in 1950 was almost 100 million pounds.
    1949
    Robert Menzies became Prime Minister and he introduced Bills to amend the acts governing the National Welfare Funds.
    The Compulsory Contributions (levy) was then grouped with the Taxation Assessment and appeared as one amount on the Taxation assessments and was paid as one amount straight into the Consolidated Revenue Account. The sabotage of the National Welfare Fund had commenced.
    The Opposition Labor Party had collaborated in this sabotage by remaining silent instead of opposing Menzies’ action.
    1951 - 1985
    The compulsory levy of 7.5% now included in the tax continued to be collected and placed in the Consolidated Revenue Account treated as General Revenue and spent, until 1985.
    1974 – 1975
    Labor Prime Minister (Gough Whitlam) abolished income test for all persons 70 years of age and over and paid pensions to all people over that age.
    1975
    Liberal Prime Minister (Malcolm Fraser) cancelled the Whitlam legislation.
    1977
    Liberal Prime Minister (Malcolm Fraser with Treasurer Philip Lynch) transferred the balance in the Welfare Fund Account (approximately $470,000,000) to Consolidated Revenue Account.
    1985
    Australian Labor Government repealed acts No. 39, 40 and 41 of 1945 (The National Welfare Fund Acts). Thus the funds finally ceased to exist yet the 7.5% levy continued to be collected as a proportion of the Income Tax revenue. It also introduced the (much maligned) Income and Asset Tests, thereby excluding millions of levy and tax paying Australians from receiving Social Services Pensions.
    This money these self funded contributions paid as a percentage of the total income tax collections are today worth far more than the amount of means tested pensions paid out.
    2
    Actuaries have calculated the non-means tested entitlement due to each retiree, today is in excess of $500 per week.
    This surely debunks the politician’s claim that the generation are paying a proportion of their current taxes to cover the payments made to pensioners. The obvious short fall has been swallowed by the Government’s Taxation black hole.
    The historical summary above highlights the fact that politicians of opposing political parties each contributed to the agenda to destroy the entitlement as it was intended. Why? They had no mandate to do so, it clearly was not and is not the will of the people.
    While Party Politicians on both sides are controlled by a few people who are hidden from public view yet are open to manipulation and outright corruption, there can be no certainty of the payment of pensions.
    Only a majority of truly Independent representatives can bring about a change from Government under corporate control, to Government for the People, of the People, by the People.
    Just because a cabal of political miscreants become so greedy that they change the way a tax looks in the Ledgers, IN NO WAY REMOVES THE FACT THAT THIS TAX IS STILL COLLECTED TO THIS DAY TO PROVIDE FOR THE SUPPLY AND CONTINUATION OF THE OLD AGE PENSION - A STIPEND TO THE ELDERLY CITIZENS OF THIS COUNTRY WHO HAVE WORKED FOR DECADES OF THEIR LIVES TO BUILD A NATION AND HAVE FROM WORKING DAY ONE OF THEIR LIVES, BEEN PAYING 7% PLUS OF THEIR TAXES DIRECTLY TOWARDS THIS PENSION.
    The old age pension is not a privilege: Is not a right. Is not a gift. Is not even welfare.
    The Old Age Pension is an asset owned and accrued by each Australian Citizen who has funded this asset from their very own purse.
    The governments of the day were employed to amass, secure, invest and manage a fund that in its first 5 years bulged to almost £100,000,000, an amount that today would be worth approximately $240 million.
    They did amass, secure, invest and manage - and the figures were colossal and frightening to them and hence they conspired to hide them back into the consolidated Revenue bucket and to this day, that bucket has been brimming with a 7.5% tax collected specifically and only, for the Old Age Pension.
    No, young Australians, you are not paying for the welfare of Baby boomer's, you are paying for yourselves, new immigrants, the needy in society requiring social services and welfare, dole recipients and the bludgers, BUT YOU ARE NOT PAYING FOR THE OLD AGE PENSION OF ELDERLY AUSTRALIANS WHO HAVE WORKED ALL THEIR LIVES IN THIS COUNTRY AND PAID THEIR FAIR SHARE OF TAX.
    GeorgeM
    8th Jun 2017
    8:24pm
    Thanks, jeff, this refresher is useful for the many who don't know and for those who pretend not to know.
    Retired Knowall
    9th Jun 2017
    9:09am
    What about those that have never worked?
    TREBOR
    9th Jun 2017
    5:30pm
    The pension funding is drawn from a common pot, and the entitlement to a pension has nothing to do with the amount contributed per person... Bob Menzies said that.

    If we followed your obvious reasoning, RK, many an older lady would be without pension.
    Retired Knowall
    10th Jun 2017
    11:21am
    Kills your theory that the OAP is from amounts paid by Tax contributed . It's an entitlement if you pass the income/asset test and is set by the Govt. of the day. Everyone with half a brain knows how much the OAP is, so it amuses my in the ranting and raving by Pensioners in how they are battling to living from day to day.

    7th Jun 2017
    10:41am
    The law states that the minimum Pensioners are allowed to live on is the allocation granted to them by the Federal Government. Common Law is the Law of the People, by the People, and for the People. “Common” meaning: “The common body of the people; the community or commonalty.”
    Common Law is derived from 1215 Magna Carta’s:

    “No free man shall be taken indeed imprisoned, or exiled or outlawed, or dispossessed, or destroyed in any way, nor shall we pass over him nor send over him unless by the lawful judgement of his equals which is the law of the land.”

    The Universal Declaration of Human Rights article 17ii states ) - ”...no one shall be arbitrarily deprived of their property...” Any breach of man's or woman’s human rights shall go down as statutory offence”.
    Using the so-called ‘legal means’, such as Court Liability Orders to commit harassment in an effort to extort people into parting with their allowance they require to live on is unlawful and considered as stealing monies granted to them by the Federal Government.

    We live in a commonwealth country. Commonwealth country means: "to do no harm".
    I do not believe that anyone in the local Authority is supposed to cause harm; physical or emotional to any one of their inhabitants.
    When will our Government look into this issue affecting so many pensioners, who would like to stay in their own homes as long as it is possible, and whose little allowance cannot be compared with regular income or salaries of those who work full time?

    The cost of every day living is rising including taxes on regular bills; water, electricity, gas and especially council rates.
    Council services need to be paid for, but the additional tax imposed on us is the KILLER !
    In fact, councils are being run as private corporations instead of serving their ratepayers !
    In my opinion, any additional tax on council rate invoice should be SCRAPPED for Pensioners!
    They already have paid their taxes for most of their lives and they deserve a decent living at the autumn of their lives. PERIOD !!

    I FIND IT SCANDALOUS AND DISCRIMINATORY ON THE PART OF LOCAL GOVERNMENTS TARGETING ELDERLY PENSIONERS WITH ADDITIONAL TAX. COUNCILS ARE CAUSING HARM TO THEIR ELDERLY INHABITANTS who feel pressured to pay tax as if they were renting their privately owned properties, that they worked so hard for all their lives!

    TIME TO STOP THIS USURY !!!
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    11:34am
    Agree with inflation and suggest the 'official' numbers are false. Anybody doing the shopping and looking at prices would understand that prices have been increasing a lot in the past few years.
    Local government? Don't get me started. I live in a LGA where the rates are continually driven up and they are linked to the CPI in name only. Not only are the rates extraordinarily high but we get a garbage service and little else. There needs to be an urgent proper inquiry into local government rather than the mates club which exists between state governments and local government where the blind eye rules supreme. As I said...don't get me started.
    Anonymous
    7th Jun 2017
    11:47am
    @Ted Wards

    and I know of someone , especially at Yarra Ranges council in Lilydale, Victoria who spend up to $5.4 million a year on salaries for its senior officers, and the CEO, Mr Patterson takes home an annual pay packet of almost $370,000 ( doing what?)

    Who, the hell, do you think pays for their filthy huge salaries?!
    What will you say to this? !

    And what about millions of our taxpayers money being donated overseas to who knows whom?!

    As the Australian government is being supported by our tax money their obligation is to US FIRST !

    So, don't you dare making it sounds as if the government was doing pensioners a favour. It's the government obligation to look after their elderly citizens.

    PERIOD!

    Everyone should check out their council's senior officers salaries.
    Find out how much they pay themselves out of your hard earned money.
    DEMAND TRANSPARENCY !

    DEMAND TRANSPARENCY from politicians.

    WE, THE PEOPLE SHOULD HAVE RIGHTS AND BE HEARD!
    KSS
    7th Jun 2017
    12:29pm
    HKW you cannot reassign federal taxes to the local council just because you are a pensioner.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    1:15pm
    Maybe not KSS but it is long overdue that local councils were not permitted to levy ridiculous rates, do little, get often routine above CPI increases and waste money which should be spent on services badly as well as on the bureaucracy. That pretty well describes most councils in the country. I think ours is likely the worst offender and nothing ever changes.
    Anonymous
    7th Jun 2017
    2:17pm
    KSS

    Really?

    Doesn't it bother you how much they pay themselves?
    Did you know that council employees can get loans form the council at a much better rate than us, perhaps even at zero % ?

    Did you notice what brand cars they drive?
    And I mean: the executives?

    DO YOU WORK AT A COUNCIL?

    Government and councils should work FOR US NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND !!
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    2:34pm
    Well said.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:08pm
    User Pays Fees - another tax by another name and brought to you by that illustrious elder statesman of NSW - Nick Greiner - he who ingested for 1/4 of 1/4 share, alongside his wife for the same share, in Statewide Roads to get into the toll road business while he was state premier.

    And none dare call it corruption... just a business opportunity that happened to fall his way while he was in office....
    thommo
    7th Jun 2017
    11:00am
    The treatment of age pensioners by all of our governments is a disgrace. The pension is far too low, allowing for subsistence type living only. Australia is a rich country, yet they lean on pensioners to fix up the budget deficit at their own expense and that of the big end of town.
    It's time pensioners got their own representatives in parliament, so that equity and fairness will prevail, and put these greedy politicians in their place ..ie at the bottom rung of the ladder.
    debs
    7th Jun 2017
    11:31am
    I agree thommo
    sirrom IS an idiot!
    AND the politicians get the huge wages BUT STILL claim expenses and perks on top of that!!
    Most workers lost the right to claim perks decades ago!
    And while many workers don't even HAVE jobs the pollies are still granting themselves pay increases (the last one was more than most pensioners get total in a year)- everyone else has frozen pay rises
    And they get HUGE pensions as soon as they are sacked (voted out) They should have the same pensions as the rest of us and should only be entitled to one at the same age we are! Most of them get other well-paying jobs but still gouge the taxpayers for their pensions
    And the disability pension is the same but we have medical and pharmaceutical bills on top of all the other expenses

    as grahami2006 said - Get all pollies to live on the pension for a month (I doubt they would last 6!) and have to pay all the bills we pay - including especially rent or mortgage. Not everyone is fortunate enough to own their home
    Back date the pollies
    Trees
    7th Jun 2017
    12:41pm
    why is sirrom an idiot debs???
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    1:17pm
    Just ignore it Trees. Copped a serve yesterday as well.
    Debs cannot accept that the system cannot keep giving for personal choices. Sad really as taxpayers are happy to pay as long as money is used fairly.
    Trees
    7th Jun 2017
    3:26pm
    oh Mick you know me, when a statements out there :)
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    5:27pm
    Trees: Benjamin Disraeli: "I may not agree with what you say but I agree to the death your right to say it". We are still lucky in the Lucky Country.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:11pm
    Yes - let's not so quickly define sirrom as an idiot - he/she is just entering the arena and knows not the ropes yet.... give him/her time and he/she might come to the Light Side.....

    Simply not knowing the ropes is not a sign of idiocy ...... being an idiot when in full command of the ropes is..... it's called being a fool.

    I can train an idiot to the limit of his ability.... I cannot train a fool beyond what he will accept as true ... (old Trebor maxim)....
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:14pm
    About now, Mick - you need to clearly lay out who and what you consider to be those accepting from this government - so as to avoid any further confusion and your possible listing on the Night and Fog train when The Revolution becomes a reality....

    Choose your face carefully - the chances are limited.. as limited as the choices....

    List please - for clarification. You've been sounding terribly 'rightist' these last two days.
    JOHN T
    7th Jun 2017
    11:00am
    I think it is now time to make the pollies listen both the major parties treat pensioners as second class citizens if all of us stick together at the next election and give our vote to the party with the best policy to look after pensioners interests
    debs
    7th Jun 2017
    11:35am
    The problem with that is they all PROMISE to change, but then end up being just as money grubbing as the previous lot
    How many pay rises have THEY had in the years when they are saying the budget is in huge deficit and when should decrease social payments to solve that problem.
    HELLOOOO - decrease and freeze pollies' pay and make their pension the same as their constituents (why are they better than us??) - a gigantic saving
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    11:37am
    The solution is to form a retiree voting group, target the MPs due for retirement and vote the bastards out. It's useless voting for your favourite political party because their behaviour never changes. Voting them out is the only way to get them to listen.
    Sen.Cit.90
    7th Jun 2017
    12:56pm
    Mick, You have made this comment times before; my Q is HOW? I did sign into a Seniors Party many years ago 'Grey Power' but it was soon squashed by the two party system and the media. The two major parties will kill off any challengers ask Pauline:-(
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    1:23pm
    Have a look at the number of seniors. Large percentage of the population already and growing. The issue is that the retirement community fail to understand they THEY need to be united. What exists is the football team mentality where people want to vote for the party they have voted for all of their lives. Painful!

    There is an old saying: 'united we stand (win?), divided we fall (lose)!'
    When our community gets it through their heads that we have a common enemy ON BOTH SIDES OF POLITICS we might move forward but sadly I don't think older Australians have it in them.

    The 2 parties would be powerless if retirees united behind dedicated candidates in every seat. They won't so be happy with being a target.
    Patriot
    7th Jun 2017
    4:53pm
    MICK,
    Never a "Truer word spoken".
    Unfortunately we - collectively - don't as yet seem to be able to "Get out heads around this".
    How many of us will loose our houses to "this GREEDY CLAN of THIEVES" before we "Stand Up & Be Counted".
    How much more painful does the equation have to get before we act?!?!?!
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    5:29pm
    That is indeed the question Patriot.
    Sadly it may be suffering without end as people 'choose' to back their political footy team. Makes an intelligent person want to cry.
    Triss
    8th Jun 2017
    8:12pm
    Looking through party policies it seems only One Nation has a better pension for pensioners.
    GeorgeM
    8th Jun 2017
    8:34pm
    A retiree voting group sounds great, however most candidates who support retirees seem unlikely to win, so how does that help?

    In view of the preferential voting system, I suggest after voting one for your "retiree supporting candidate", the next preference should go to the candidate most likely to challenge the favoured candidate, and the last to the sitting candidate - to make sure the latter loses. That should get rid of all sitting leeches with their fat pensions, then maybe they will start listening. The retiree group is large enough to make a difference.

    Another thing is the lack of knowledge of Future retirees who are busy working and not paying attention to the destruction of their future pensions - somehow they need to be informed by some means. Maybe use digital communication such as the Mediscare method!
    Tom Tank
    7th Jun 2017
    11:12am
    It is a standard approach by governments who lean to the right of politics to institute a policy of austerity. This essentially means that welfare of all types is cut and of course in their minds age pensions are welfare.
    They never seem to consider increasing tax payable by the wealthy, or crack down on tax minimisation by changing the various means that can be achieved.
    The end result is spiralling down of the economy as it is not the wealthy that keep the economy ticking over. The amount of disposable income the average person has is really the only true measure of how rich a country actually is and in Australia we are going backwards.
    The I hear somebody say that tax cuts for the big end of town will create jobs? That is such a furphy but it is always trotted out in times like these. A business only employs the number of people needed to run that business and any tax cut just adds to profit.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    11:39am
    We both understand the game and the lies to send the top more money. Never changes.
    Read my response to John T above for the solution.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:17pm
    Yes - I said long ago that Australia - if it was the twelfth most prosperous nation in the world - was a prosperous nation based on false premises.... since the prosperity was savagely divided.
    Ted Wards
    7th Jun 2017
    11:19am
    Ooo as someone on a wage I know of people who work full time and get less than the pension for a single person and pay taxes etc. I know its tough but at least we do have a pension when many countries don't and people work well into their old age. I know some of our members complain bitterly about the amount they live on and tell us about going out to lunches, gambling and so on. I feel for those who are genuinely struggling and cannot make ends meet but having traveled to countries where there is no welfare system at all, I cant help feeling that perhaps we should look at what we do get and acknowledge the fact that yes, our Government does still provide for our elderly. I know this view wont be popular and I pay more in tax than most people earn per fortnight, but at least pensioners at the moment get their pensions. When I get to the pension age in 30 years or more, what will I be facing? No I am one of those women who didnt start earning super until it was made compulsory so I wont have the super balance that people assume will exist.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    11:41am
    You might have noticed that the current government is going from one attack to the next where retirees and pensioners are concerned.
    Whilst I agree with your information I need to say that the future is not looking very bright. If the current lot had the numbers in both houses things would be much worse so think carefully for what you want Ted.
    Anonymous
    7th Jun 2017
    12:05pm
    @Ted Wards

    and I know of someone , especially at Yarra Ranges council in Lilydale, Victoria who spend up to $5.4 million a year on salaries for its senior officers, and the CEO, Mr Patterson takes home an annual pay packet of almost $370,000 ( doing what?)

    Who, the hell, do you think pays for their filthy huge salaries?!
    What will you say to this? !

    And what about millions of our taxpayers money being donated overseas to who knows whom?!

    As the Australian government is being supported by our tax money their obligation is to US FIRST !

    So, don't you dare making it sounds as if the government was doing pensioners a favour. It's the government obligation to look after their elderly citizens.

    PERIOD!

    Everyone should check out their council's senior officers salaries.
    Find out how much they pay themselves out of your hard earned money.
    DEMAND TRANSPARENCY !

    DEMAND TRANSPARENCY from politicians.

    WE, THE PEOPLE SHOULD HAVE RIGHTS AND BE HEARD!
    Theo1943
    7th Jun 2017
    12:32pm
    HKW, you sound upset about your local Council. Unfortunately this situation with local Councils is quite common in Australia. There is very little accountability in this area of government.

    Capitals make my eyes go deaf and I therefore ignore everything in capitals.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:20pm
    Nobody works full time 38 hours for $444 a week...... unless they are a 457 or an Indian working for 7/11.... or unless they are a junior.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:25pm
    .. and we don't live in other countries - we live HERE - so our social and economic conditions must suit us HERE - not there.

    You work on a wage and pay more tax than most people earn (let me check that one).... yep - that's what she said... on a wage - pays more tax than most people earn a fortnight.....

    Where's Michael Caton when you need him - somebody tell 'er she's dreamin'..... or has no real idea of what the value of money is when you have little....
    Grateful
    7th Jun 2017
    11:32am
    You can thank Tony Abbott for reducing the payments made to pensioners to equate with the CPI. THAT'S why we have received those pittances since HIS decision.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    11:43am
    Actually both Abbott and Turnbull led governments coming after retirees and pensioners. This is a game in progress and it is not over by a long long way. Only the mentally challenged think that the current batch are going to look after retired Australians. The writing is on the wall though and God help us if the bastards get a majority in both houses.
    Eddy
    7th Jun 2017
    12:53pm
    Sorry Grateful but I think you are incorrect. The OAP is still indexed by the PBLCI (Public Benefit Living Cost Index) or CPI, whichever is the greatest. These days the difference between PBLCI and CPI is small. At last increase on my two pensions in January 2017 (DFRDB, indexed by PBLCI, and CSS indexed by CPI) the difference was 0.1%. That is why last indexed increase was so small not a change in index methodology.In previous years, say over the last 20 years, the difference in the increases between PBLCI and CPI is about 70%.
    However there was a proposal in the 2015 budget to revert OAP to CPI with effect in 2017, as far as I am aware this has never been presented to parliament yet.
    Mick you are right, last time the liberals had a majority in both houses we got Workchoices.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    1:25pm
    And the current batch are much much worse than Howard and his cronies, some of which are the same MPs who have gotten worse once rejected by voters.
    mike
    7th Jun 2017
    11:43am
    The Government is continually hitting the pensioners the retirees and the disabled. Hockey called the disabled rorters and also destroyed the retirement plans of an estimated 560000, those who worked and saved under then current laws, whilst the bastard pocketed not one but SEVERAL multiples of $288 pn the travel allowance rort to pay for a Canberra mansion that he openly boasted he bought through lying and cheating. The stopped pensioner concession prescriptions because they said there was no money for welfare, but suddenly found $200million to compensate the pharmacies for loss of profit. Now Bastard Turnbull has carried out the BIG BANK THEFT. Hitting the major banks, the very banks that kept our economy safe whilst the rest of the world went down during the WFC, again hitting the retirees, the mum and dad shareholders, our super funds have plummeted, our kids mortgages, who battled to find affordable housing competing against chinese developers and investors, will see their mortgages skyrocket. And for what, so Bitch Bishop can fly vip to attend another dog and pony show, or send another $400million overseas. After voting for the bastard Liberals for over 50 years, I an now voting Pauline.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    11:47am
    So who put both Abbott and Turnbull into office mike? Surely 'somebody' voted for these people. Maybe ask some of the posters on this website about 'pink batts and school halls' let alone " you have high electricity prices because of the Carbon Tax" and " budget emergencies". Yet that is precisely what some on this website still believe. And you wonder how the bastards get in????
    inextratime
    7th Jun 2017
    12:00pm
    Compulsory super was introduced in 1992. It was not the 9.5% that it is today . So someone working in a modestly paid job did not have much going into super. Then in 2007 the gfc when super a/cs actually took a hit and for a few years post gfc interest on super funds were low. So many retirees have low super balances and many still rent premises. Rents are increasing as fast as real estate prices. Find a place under $350 a week in Sydney is getting very difficult. So pension less rent = about $120 a week. Take out food, electricity, travel, petrol, health care. And people still think there's not a problem ?
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    1:27pm
    What we all missed in the great superannuation promised by salesmen is INFLATION. The million dollar super doesn't buy you a lot and people might have been better off buying a house or two as well as a minimal amount of super.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:32pm
    In 1992, even at full rate of contribution and guaranteed regular income for working life, it sill needed to operate until 2042 - i.e. fifty years of working life - in order to bear fruit.

    Last time I looked, this lot hit the panic button in 2013, after twenty-one years (not even half the operating life a a super scheme for any individual), then saying that pensions etc would be too costly in the future, thus indicating clearly that their view was that super would NOT make any difference.

    Then they chopped some superannuants off at the knees with their changes, so as to cut some off from a part pension.

    Then they pursued and continued to pursue policies that would result in lower employment and a reduction to part-time pleading for a casual job for the many... and expected that super and taxes would continue to provide mightily for a government bent on raising costs at every turn.

    Why do I suspect, with good reason, that we are being sold one almighty lie here about the 'state of the economy'?
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:33pm
    I remember Keating's blurb - "wouldn't you like to retire with $350k in super?" Nowadays $350k in super might (MIGHT) net you $15k - less than the pension.
    Aussiefrog
    7th Jun 2017
    12:06pm
    Can we really compare minimum wages and pensions?
    Minimum wages are for people actually doing work and getting paid for their service.
    Pension is a payment given to someone who doesn't work who doesn't provide a service.
    That been said pensions are inadequate.
    Lookfar
    7th Jun 2017
    4:37pm
    Aussiefrog, having a race to the bottom betweern inadequate pansions and inadequate basic wage is just succumbing to the super-rich game, divide and conquer, in fact an inadequate basic wage does not allow anyone to save up for their old age, yet alone then getting hit with the inadequate pension. Your statement that the pension is a payment that is given to someone who no longer works is completely ignoring a life of work, and is also ignoring a whole class of people who do very little work, - the rich, yet who are allowed to keep the money they have often not earned.
    If they don't keep their side of this unequal agreement, the poor may not keep their side either, and effect a redistribution, - after all, it is only equitable societies that survive in the long term.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:34pm
    Pensioners work hard at being pensioners... it's a tough life, but someone has to do it after they turn 65....

    7th Jun 2017
    12:19pm
    The problem with all of these cases, be they minimum wage or pension, is that there is a mystical number used as a base. The CPI. We are led to believe that there are about 100,000 items which make up the calculation of this magical number but good luck trying to find what these items are. Apparently a busy little team of people go shopping for these items and the difference is calculated, quarter by quarter. I wonder if the administrators will allow me to say that this is bullshit?

    Who are these people and where do they shop? What are the magical items that are include and what goods and services are not included because of "volatility"? Do these bust people go to places like Woomera, Gulargambone, Alice Springs, Kalgoorlie or Broken Hill to check the prices? I'm betting that they do not and that means that all Australians are being rated on a capital city price change.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    1:30pm
    I have debunked the CPI for years. The reason for this is the fast rising prices of most commodities whilst the CPI figure indicated zilch. Of course some things have dropped in price too but one has to ask why it is getting tougher and tougher to live if the CPI is what is routinely claimed.
    I consider the CPI in the same basket (case?) as Chinese economic data: massaged to say what both governments want it to say.
    Anonymous
    7th Jun 2017
    3:23pm
    And don't get me started on the way the unemployment figures are massaged MICK.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    5:30pm
    Agreed. The same scam being played out with new jobs. A total lie dressed up as statistics.
    Rae
    7th Jun 2017
    5:49pm
    Not one complaint about the NSW Green Slip increase to outrageous amounts, to insure strangers, with the explanation for the increase being the amount of fraud. Honestly. Not one complaint by the MSM.

    No plan to contain the fraud or lower the yearly increases.

    For those on pensions the Green Slip now costs more than the rego.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:38pm
    It used to be a 'basket of goods' - which even then didn't take in the full cost of rises in cost of living.

    "In the case of the Australian CPI, this methodology involves devising a basket of goods and services representative of those acquired by metropolitan private households during the course of a full year."

    Full info here - well, as much as you'll get from a numbah crunchah - BTW I used to work for the ABS.... and even then raised my eyebrows and doubts about some of the figuring.... you can't eat crunchy numbahs....

    http://www.abs.gov.au/Ausstats/abs@.nsf/0/CFFA42B90CA68CD2CA25765C0019F281?OpenDocument
    AutumnOz
    7th Jun 2017
    6:39pm
    Rae, my Green Slip bill came in a few days ago - I phoned the number given to receive an explanation and discovered it went to some gov't department....totally useless as the phone didn't answer.
    It is a disgrace, my green slip now costs almost twice as as much as a fortnights age pension. No-one relying on an age pension can afford that amount.
    Especially as most have a clean driving record and are expected to pay the costs of those who constantly make claims on the insurance companies.
    It stinks in my opinion.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    7:07pm
    You should check that carefully Autumn - my Green Slip cost me around $368 from memory - and I have a big Ford Territory... no accidents, no traffic fines, full bonus, pensioner discount and country address.....

    They might figure you have an under 25 driver or something.... check your application form.

    Can't be $1600-1700... surely... that sounds more like a hat turned backwards V8 owner at 20 in a Big Red Car.. (ah do believe mahn's faster than yours - 'cause mine's a RED one!)
    Rae
    8th Jun 2017
    8:54am
    Yes mine was just over $400. It is ridiculous cost to cover strangers in accidents. Their own insurance and the health system should have covered them anyway. This is just a compulsory government sponsored insurance rip off. It wasn't needed.

    The point was the excuse that fraud is causing the rise but no ideas about ending the fraud. Perhaps huge jail terms and loss of everything idk caught might be a dis incentive.
    AutumnOz
    8th Jun 2017
    11:03am
    Trebor and Rae,
    I am 71 and my car is 20 years old so that may be the difference, the actual cost was $681 which is ridiculous in my opinion as we live in the country and only go out each fortnight to shop as the petrol costs are so high.
    It is just another way to stress older people out or maybe out of this world.
    Karl
    7th Jun 2017
    12:22pm
    Neither. The aged pension is a safety net, not a socially provided 'living wage'.
    Fairness
    7th Jun 2017
    1:24pm
    The safety net to which taxpayers, old and young) contribute, so it is fair that it should be paid at the appropriate time....!!
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:44pm
    The pension is a right bought and paid for.. keep up in class...

    For your benefit:-

    http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/94713ad445ff1425ca25682000192af2/8e72c4526a94aaedca2569de00296978!OpenDocument

    Hence the policy of the Trebor Party that all be paid the pension and then taxed at income tax rate for all income, gifting and fringe benefits over and above.

    You'll never see a single politician or crony or fat cat wanting to go there... they'd have to pay heaps.... but for too long those with plenty have been allowed to get away with far too much, thus creating the 'budget crisis'.

    How would your Peter Costello go if taxed on his parliamentary super, and all his other income strands and perks? Top tax bracket and paying a hefty sum into consolidated revenue, he would... as an example.
    KSS
    7th Jun 2017
    12:37pm
    Just how is a wage increase for the very low paid an attack on pensioners?

    Pensioners also get other financial 'rewards' in the form of state given discounts for things such as driving licences, car registrations, rates, etc not to mention additional items such as health cards, pensioner discounts at stores and some services e.g. hairdressing all of which have a financial value that low paid workers do not enjoy.

    And just for the record, the 1.7% increase in the pension in September 2016 was far higher than the increase in my wage last year which was 0%.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    1:32pm
    Welcome to the 0% club KSS.
    Discounts are not all that much really so don't overplay that one. I must get my health care card though. Been meaning to do that.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:46pm
    Don't complain, KSS - you need to eat it so as to not be a 'leaner' and carry your share of the load for 'budget repair' etc...

    The fact that you pay less tax due to changes now is meaningless to the numbah crunchahs in Cambra - they don't figure that lower wages and salaries mean less tax, and thus a greater 'budget crisis'....

    If pensioners get it so good - become one...........................
    Theo1943
    7th Jun 2017
    12:53pm
    Exclusions from CPI
    Calculation of the Treasury Underlying Rate

    Treasury's underlying rate is calculated by removing from the CPI those items whose prices are directly influenced by highly volatile, seasonal or policy factors. Table 1 outlines the items that are removed and the reason for their omission.
    Govt owned dwelling rents
    0.382
    Mortgage interest charges
    6.608
    Local govt rates & charges
    2.190
    Household fuel & light
    2.339
    Postal & telephone services
    1.715
    Consumer credit charges
    2.498
    Automotive fuel
    4.698
    Urban transport fares
    1.212
    Tobacco & alcohol
    7.475
    Health services
    3.961
    Pharmaceuticals
    0.820
    Education & childcare
    1.939
    TOTAL EXCLUSIONS
    48.868%




    This amounts to the removal of items that account for about 49% of the CPI while maintaining a balance between excluding the appropriate items and still having an adequate coverage of items to be priced.

    Estimates of the Treasury underlying rate have been calculated back to 1971 and were first published by the Australian Bureau of Statistics in 1994.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:47pm
    Link me up, Scotty - it might be the same link as mine....
    Theo1943
    7th Jun 2017
    7:50pm
    http://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Parliamentary_Departments/Parliamentary_Library/pubs/MSB/feature/UNDERLY
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    9:17pm
    Argh - thankee, squire! **touches forelock**.

    I'll look at it now...
    Fairness
    7th Jun 2017
    1:17pm
    Of course it is what this government intends..why look after aged, they are going to die anyway..they can hasten that!! (They have probably become funeral directors also..)
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    1:34pm
    Look on the bright side Fairness there will be plenty of houses available when our generation passes on. So maybe retirees should not be forced out of their homes by the current wicked government. What think you YLC community?
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    7:11pm
    Exactly - economic triage the old bastards - those who will make it past ninety, those with a chance with treatment, and those who won't make it are dumped by the wayside...

    Kinda reminds you of that Band of Brothers episode where the dead troopers were laid out like frozen firewood at Bastogne..... one on top of another like logs......
    Maggie
    7th Jun 2017
    1:22pm
    While I agree that it is difficult to live happily on the age pension, we do have to remember that people who are still working have to find money for transport to and from work and most probably need more clothes than people who are at home all day.

    It is also fair to remember that a great many of the people who are still working have dependents - kids who are at school, eating huge amounts of food as they grow, and growing out of their clothes at a terrifying rate. These same kids need the technology that is available to do their homework etc.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    1:36pm
    "Happily"? People in places like India are dirt poor but leave Australians for dead in the happiness stakes. Happiness has a very small money component. I'll attest to that.
    Anonymous
    7th Jun 2017
    2:26pm
    I would like to hear you talk when you reach your retirement age...
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    2:40pm
    Been retired for some 10 years now.

    You need to experience my extended family HWK. Thank your lucky stars you have a good one.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:48pm
    Mick - you must be my cousin.....
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:49pm
    Mick - you must be my cousin.....
    tisme
    7th Jun 2017
    1:22pm
    the government pays me 3.50 an hour to care for two people 24/7 i dont get minimum wage or anything else because im not legally recognised as a worker under the law.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    1:36pm
    Are these people relatives?
    tisme
    7th Jun 2017
    1:39pm
    what difference does that meake ?? it means I cant 'work ' and it saves the govt a bundle in aged care and disability etc
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    1:47pm
    Just indicating that people look after their parents and relatives because they love them. No other reason. It's not a 'job' and never used to be paid employment like now from what I understand. Have I got that wrong?
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    7:12pm
    Pensioner carer should be paid double..... the costs are astronomical and not only monetary costs....
    inextratime
    7th Jun 2017
    1:30pm
    Karl - who said the pension was a safety net ? When was that announced ? What happens when the rent is higher than the pension, with increases happening every six months. What happens when health insurance goes through the roof, electricity prices increase, petrol, food, phone charges, the list goes on. The safety net better be made out of a very strong material else its gonna split right down the middle.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    1:40pm
    Whilst I understand your legitimate concerns inextratime the pension is really a safety net. It should however factor in the real cost of living which is quite subjective. I copped a fair spray yesterday from one poster when I suggested that she should be looking at areas outside of Sydney to make things work. We all have to live within our means and as long as a pension is going to be fair that is all that matters. Pensions should never be determined by people choosing a lifestyle and crying poor when their demands are not met. It has never been about that ever.
    Trees
    7th Jun 2017
    4:37pm
    I don't see the pension as a safety net for those that are on the pension now or close to retirement.

    The compulsory super didn't kick in until 1992 majority of 30-40 year old's at that time in principle should have a sizable nest egg to retire on so then the pension will be a safety net for less fortunate people who suffered illness, injury etc. who were no getting the SGC from an employer.

    Up until 1992 wasn't it a guarantee that the pension would be for everyone & a livable amount? & aren't the majority of the retirees now the "generation" before compulsory super contributions?
    AutumnOz
    7th Jun 2017
    6:46pm
    Yes Trees, you have summed up the problem so many people are facing.
    Some companies did have private super schemes but not enough to pay a decent pension once the worker retired.
    The Public Service did have a decent super scheme and most public servants, who worked most of their lives in the public service, retired to a comfortable existence.
    As for most manual workers there was no scheme available and they are now retiring with little or no safety nets of their own and are totally dependent on the OAP.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    7:18pm
    This self-serving 'safety net' concept is precisely why I advocate a single roof Australian retirement package scheme as many times before... put everyone into a retirement package scheme based on taxation from many strands outside of income tax (which all pay) to provide a minimum (as has occurred here for 100+ years now), and then add a premium for income tax paid and compulsory contributions (let's think about those two for a moment - maybe remove the income tax segment since the compulsory contribution is inherent in income level), and add in contributions made by the person outside of the CC to a maximum per annum - and pay them their pension out of that.

    All to be held under one roof as far removed from grasping political hands as possible and all treated according to the same rules and conditions.

    All income, fringe benefits and gifting (Clivagina Airlines flies Clive and Gina for free is a gift) over and above, to be taxed at income tax levels.
    Travellersjoy
    7th Jun 2017
    1:46pm
    Absolutely agree.
    Moongold
    7th Jun 2017
    1:51pm
    Pensioners should of course get at least the minimum wage. They're at the most dependent time of their lives, especially with health declining. They need all the help they can get. It's so EASY for some younger people to criticise people in these declining years, but society in fact needs to get a grip, and to wake up to REALITY. Pensioners who don't have their own home are often forced to decide between absolute necessities (such as food OR medications), and as the government does not and apparently won't for some reason put a cap on whatever private landlords demand from tenants, with rents continuing to rise and permitted with NO regard for the aged, just these two factors can shove the aged way below the poverty line. If something goes wrong with their ageing cars (if they have one) and they have no savings, they are then left with no transport, and this is really tough if the live in a rural area. These truly deserving pensioners (such as myself) don't go out at restaurants, attend functions, buy costly clothing, or even eat well - we are forced to live close to on the street, in fact. Truly nutritious food has to be sacrificed due to the high prices, and so rubbish like white bread and rice (no nutritious value) are supplemented, and are NOT good for health. Very often the food helps from such as the Salvation Army are way beyond "use by" dates and also much needed to sustain health is not even provided - it's mostly canned and/or highly-processed food on offer. Urgently-needed dental services such as bridges or capping are out of the question altogether, and many medications aren't even listed on the PBS that they need and which are caused by simply ageing. Some insult the aged by claiming "they should have saved more when working" - but that is simply ignorance of what can happen in life. You can save all you want but having dependent children, becoming invalid or unwell on the long-term, or just sad life circumstances, can take all the savings, sometimes almost overnight! In all, age pensioners, who should be treated with respect and given a decent standard of living, who have done the "hard slog" and contributed taxes, who are often left without a partner and who battle every day and who need the care of others at an increasing rate, should be given in fact FIRST care priority in society, not shafted down to the level of rats who have to try to survive from what they can scrounge. That is what it's coming to, and it is a TOTAL SHAME to the government of Australia. On top of this, and all the worries the aged already have, the prospect of having to go into an Aged Care Home is becoming an absolute terror in this country - that entire system should be culled and protected from obviously sick/incompetent "carers" and "nurses" who should not even be allowed get near dependent and elderly people. I think it is shocking the way the aged are ignored and even ridiculed and insulted by idiots who one day will have to go through much worse, in fact, if something is not done to rectify these problems. Millions of dollars are totally thrown away on rubbish by those "who have" every day, (especially Parliamentarians and celebrities etc) - yet you never see ANY of them making helpful gifts to the aged. It's disgraceful.
    MICK
    7th Jun 2017
    2:59pm
    Some good points but others lack understanding:

    1. Putting a cap on private rents
    You do not understand the market as you are not in it. Work out the costs of buying a rental property let alone the interest costs and then factor in Capital Gains Tax when sold. Investors do not have rental property so people can live in them for free. If you are looking to blame then blame governments for flogging off subsidised housing. They should never have done it bit did so because they wanted to waste taxes on bling rather than community needs.

    2. Nutritious food
    We cook much of our own food and buy a lot of raw ingredients. The cost of these is pretty reasonable especially if you buy in season and then preserve when things are dirt cheap. We spend around $100 pw and eat like kings. It is possible!

    3. Saving for retirement
    Now here is a matter of conjecture where views often depend on the side of the fence you are on. I am in agreement with this and IT IS TOUGH. Many of those who have a house and a few bob tucked away can attest to people they knew on their journey in life you spent their money on fun. Whilst a few (not many!) have circumstances thrust on them most CHOOSE to live a life where the words 'hard work' and 'sacrifices' have no meaning. We'l have to agree to disagree on this one as the story of my life, and I dare say many other people who took the same road, might seem like fiction. As I said above it's tough. Now we get by and so far have managed an overseas trip every year. This has only been the result of going without for some 35 years and the odd bit of good luck here and there.

    4. "The government" is US. You and I. There is only so much money to go around. Where I consider retirees to be hard done by is that the current government is taking money from both retirees and workers and giving it to the wealthy as well as sanctioning tax frauds by multinationals who generally pay no tax in Australia and rich Australians like our PM who have offshore tax shelters to also avoid the Australian tax system. You might want to take this up with the PM and the media which never says anything more about this.

    I can understand your bitterness but Aussies have always battled harsh realities in their lives. USE THE BALLOT BOX WISELY is my best advice and never reward bastards in politics with your vote.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    9:29pm
    When I was young, one of the great joys was doing the family rounds at Christmas, and even then many of those people were retired and living on pension... I'll never forget the Scottish grand-mother whose husband was killed in the trenches, and whose short bread and cake were the best.. and they (she and her second husband who was a shy man from the same trenches, who hardly mixed with visitors) always had a pot of excellent stew on.... and everyone was welcome..... and nothing was spared to provide for visitors on special occasions.....

    It was always a joy to visit all the old people and pensioners in the family - now they are viewed as enemies of the people, and as enemies of the state, for simply wanting to retire in some comfort and have their own roof over their own heads, and eat in some comfort, they are even left alone and lonely and without support and sometimes in abusive situations ...... and all they wanted was to be left in peace after a lifetime of work, often hardship often wrought by government mis-management, and sometimes even war and losses, and to not have to abide by the dictates of jumped-up twerps who they wouldn't piss on in a Victorian forest fire.....

    Is that so hard? For these dicks in Cambra it is......

    A pox on all their houses...... they may prosper in this life, but in the next they will be shoveling coal at the furnaces of Hell....

    7th Jun 2017
    3:07pm
    It's not just the Age Pension, but other pensions too. I'm on a Disability Support Pension which pays a pittance relative to the cost of living. At $510 per week (including Rent Assistance), it's well below the minimum wage. I'm struggling below the poverty line! And I have to buy a raft of medication, pay for the computer and phone etc. It leaves very little to buy essentials like food. Plus, having to have haemodialysis at Westmead Hospital shows that I have a very hard life...
    Hilily
    7th Jun 2017
    4:42pm
    I worked in full time employment for 50 years at a rate always considerably less than men and there was no superannuation until my last two years of work.
    I was a fully trained in my profession and for a time paid an additional taxation levy so there would be a pension for me when I retired.
    Now I am considered to be a burden on this society that I served so well and I truly resent having been reduced to survival mode at the last part of my life.
    nena
    7th Jun 2017
    4:54pm
    Just a moment ago I went to confirm the buying of a single bed. Surprise...surprise..., 2 months ago the price was $250.00 and today it was $329.00. I´m on a single pension which has increased less than 2%. No wonder we are getting poorer and poorer while the politicians, above all, are getting richer and richer with the benefice of the famous negative gearing!!! Yep, this is democracy.
    saintagnes
    7th Jun 2017
    5:02pm
    All I know is that we "survive" on the aged pension. We have no debt, and we never had the luxury of super. We have never been unemployed. Please take note of the word "survive" - we do not thrive. We do not have fancy cars,fancy home, fancy lifestyle, we shop at the op shop, we grow most of our own fruit and veg (and share it) we volunteer in our small rural community, we do not drink, we do not smoke and we do not have many holidays. Our health is not the best.
    The pension is a pittance - it should be at least the same as the minimum wage.
    nena
    7th Jun 2017
    5:08pm
    ...and you do not live.
    GeorgeM
    7th Jun 2017
    5:03pm
    As usual too many diversions from the topic above.
    Yes, Age Pensions should be linked to / same as Minimum Wage - at least for all who have paid taxes here for 20 years, with No Asset or Income tests, with all actual income above that fully taxed. Those who do not qualify under this criteria could have current pension based on current tests. I think that would be fair to all, and reduce Centrelink costs. No problem with funding if these moron politicians ensure fair taxes are collected from large companies & rich who minimise taxes, by ensuring a MINIMUM TAX is paid on gross income by all.

    Just to show the above is not unreasonable, compare with how much current politicians (new MPs since 2004) get. See link below:
    http://www.aph.gov.au/about_parliament/parliamentary_departments/parliamentary_library/pubs/bn/1011/superannuationbenefits

    The current system allows them access at 55-60 years (latter limit being phased in by 2025), with no Assets / Income test after a mere 8 years service, and STARTING at $92,500 based on 50% of current salary of $185,000) - FOR LIFE. Also, they can have additional pensions if they are Ministers, etc. Repeat - NO ASSETS or INCOME TESTS EITHER!

    All of us have a duty to GET RID OF THESE PARASITES, as they have proved neither side has any intention of helping current / future Age Pensioners!
    Hilily
    7th Jun 2017
    5:15pm
    Totally agree with your last sentence George.
    They are where they are to help themselves.
    Hilily
    7th Jun 2017
    5:15pm
    Totally agree with your last sentence George.
    They are where they are to help themselves.
    Trees
    7th Jun 2017
    5:50pm
    I am going straight home to talk to my darling daughter about getting into politics so that she can keep me in the style I am accustomed to. If that's whats on offer & nobody is out there protesting then its onwards & upwards for my little offspring, into politic's she goes...
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:53pm
    I told my son years ago to get into a party, suck up to everyone, follow the majority and be a good drone, and you'd be set for life....
    AutumnOz
    7th Jun 2017
    6:55pm
    George,
    By insisting on "paid taxes here for 20 years" you are excluding all those Australian born women who had to quit work when they married as they only paid taxes whilst working before marriage, then the looked after husband and family for the next however many years before he became old enough to retire. There were few women who did work after marriage it was certainly no encouraged by most employers.
    Those women are now of an age to need the old age pension and to make them dependent upon their husband having paid taxes for 20 years is most unfair.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    7:23pm
    Being a resident and shopping etc incurs taxes.. all such are taxpayers... been through that before. Not only income tax is the issue.

    EVERYONE pays taxes from their first spend - the only issue under discussion here is how much needs to be contributed to guarantee an entry level pension (under the Trebor scheme as laid out above and many times already)... bet it twenty years or whatever....
    GeorgeM
    8th Jun 2017
    12:43pm
    AutumnOz, I agree with your objection - perhaps allow for the period when taxes were paid by husband / wife as well! The point of this was to stop freeloaders who slip into this country to avail of our pension schemes from qualifying without ever contributing to this country. However, TREBOR scheme is also very valid.

    So many ideas, but first - we need to get rid of the current politicians who have feathered their nests, but are happy to stuff everyone else up. Otherwise, nothing will ever change.
    AutumnOz
    8th Jun 2017
    1:34pm
    GST has been in for quite a long time now so it does raise a lot of revenue for the government.
    I used to think we needed a specific senior's political party but have now decided we can also achieve the notice of the major parties by voting for Independents or any other people not affiliated with a major party. I agree they probably won't get in in most electorates but it will shake up the major parties who assume they will win hands down.
    We also need to educate people on how the preferential voting system works and make sure they understand that THEIR preference VOTE decides where their vote goes and has nothing to do with whichever party says their preferences go to LNP or Labor etc. the preferences of the major parties appear on the How to Vote papers handed out at the election but the vote is actually up to the person voting to name their own preference.
    Off my soap box now.
    TREBOR
    9th Jun 2017
    5:40pm
    GST instantly raised costs of living and started this mad ever-descending spiral into Hell called the eternal conflict between wages and costs of living (not the mention the costs of loving when you look at the disasters wrought by easy divorce and feminism)....

    Not only that, but governments Federal and State have, as a direct result of the GST, had more billions flow through their filthy hands than ever, and the only visible outcomes are waste, destruction of living standards, rising costs of living, and endless new costs added on the working people.

    Get rid of the GST, get rid of your current governments of two parties, and start again with a clean slate.
    Joy Anne
    7th Jun 2017
    5:50pm
    Totally agree with the article. Pensioners live below poverty line. Since Turnbull got in and attacked Pensioners, Medicare, Home Dr Service, Prescriptions non generic medications. Pensioners have gone at least $100 a fortnight less. Rents keep increasing. Qld Transport have increased 6 months rego by $25 last 6 months and now about to increase again. I pay 60% in rent of my pension. Very Hard to Live. Even started selling things off to live.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    5:52pm
    Equal to the minimum wage - for years the pensions has steadily been eroded by rising costs that are not allowed for in calculation of CPI. Need I go on?

    Power for a start - up times three at least and still climbing... fuel costs .... shopping costs ...... tolls where none existed before ..... gas ...... everything in retail...

    I used to run a GPI for myself - I could, in 1997 on half the pension I get now, buy three pints of Guinness a day... now I look twice before I consider one.... sad, innit?
    Trees
    7th Jun 2017
    6:23pm
    Nope no need to go on TREBOR - you're late to the party & its getting late for you but lovely to hear your thoughts
    Anonymous
    7th Jun 2017
    6:31pm
    if you had done the same in 1997 as you professes in 2017, you would not in that position to-day, yet reading your normal comments I very doubt you have changed your habits,
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:56pm
    Been running the ex to her doctor's things... glurg.. just part of the duty first I always accept...

    Heemie - you have no idea who and what I am - go home and do your homework, there's a nice little boy. Your English needs work, lad.... capitalisation works for a start.. your capital punishment is becoming tiresome, but must be part of your generational deficiencies....
    Anonymous
    7th Jun 2017
    7:47pm
    thank God for that, to know you would be the ultimate punishment for any sane person.
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    9:32pm
    In your case, sir, I sincerely hope so...... there is no more deserving soul on this earth .... but you ain't seen nothing yet, as Shakespeare said....

    7th Jun 2017
    6:20pm
    am I the only one who after reading the comments of mick to realise that he/she is an investor, owner of houses offered for rent, see his last comment "putting a cap on private rents", his/her answer"you do not understand the market as you are not in it" or one of his earlier comments "move to the country where rents are lower", so is it any wonder our mickey is all for increasing the pension so he/she can put the rent up!!!!
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    6:58pm
    Slum Lord? Maybe..... he's been sounding very Thatcherite lately... something in the beer, methinks... or that French wine..
    Anonymous
    7th Jun 2017
    7:50pm
    what comment would you expect of the other half of the siamese twins?
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    9:33pm
    You are delusional as well as uneducated... go do your homework.

    You need it....
    Pamiea
    7th Jun 2017
    7:40pm
    Hard to live on the pension and I truly feel sorry for anyone who is renting. I own my little place and am thankful for that. I don't have heaps of super cos we came into it too late. Yes let the pollies get their pension at age 70 and give them only the aged pension if they are entitled to it.
    Anonymous
    7th Jun 2017
    7:51pm
    agree
    TREBOR
    7th Jun 2017
    9:34pm
    Don't forget to pay pollies the age pension and then tax them on all income strands, gifting and fringe benefits they receive daily, Pamiea ...... that'll make them scream like the wounded pigs someone mentioned above....
    *Loloften*
    8th Jun 2017
    5:29am
    For the past few yrs all pension recipients have been seen & treated as bludgers. Facts:-
    -most of us were in our early/mid 40s prior to Super beginning, @ only 2%
    -approx ave f/time hrly working rate was $10 -$13 & salary tax rates were higher
    -we bought a home, paid 17% interest on our mortgage & it didn't go below 8% for the then allowable 25yr loan
    -there used to be an understanding that pensioners did not pay any tax, 'til Howard introduced the GST, now we pay 10% on everything except our cheapest wkly cost...food
    -we lost approx 12% of our Super to Keating's "Recession we had to have" + another approx 12% during the GFC
    Do the sums....most current retirees (except Pollies & Public Service employees) would be lucky to have retired with somewhere between $250,000 - $300,000
    Now a touch of reality in old age:-
    -our homes, for most, are over 40yrs old & in need of many repairs/updates
    -often one spouse sadly develops major health probs. In my case my now late husband of 30+yrs was diagnosed with advanced cancer in his mid 50s & had 5 major operations + radiation/many bouts of various Chemotherapies during which he used up all his accumulated long service/annual/sick leave (I stopped work to look after him, our children were adults) & he finally had to stop working a yr later...most sadly passed away @ 62. By then, b/c we had Top Private Health Insurance, we not only used up all my fairly meagre Super but had to withdraw $150,000+ over those yrs to pay for the difference between the rebates & all the enormous medical/hospital/Specialist/treatment costs (+ continuing Top Health Insurance) but also happily pay to fulfil some of my beloved's Bucket List in between the Ops/Chemos etc when he felt well enough to travel (his choice/his itineraries). We had paid off our mortgage just a few mths prior altho' I would have more than happily re-mortgaged our home if needed but luckily not. He was granted a Disability pension when had to stop work thanks to his Chief Oncologist completing the Medical part of his application. I was refused either of the Carer's payments which would have been considerably more than the meagre Newstart Allowance, we couldn't live on our then "income." Only granted the Carer's payments (both) when re-applied with home-visiting Palliative Care Nurses encouragement/help a few mths prior to my husband's death (money wasn't my priority then). This is not a "feel sorry for me" story as 4 of my close friends have had similar "stories." However, as an age pensioner for past few yrs, I only have approx $70,000 left. I can't live on a single pension with ever increasing Council Rates/all Insurances/elec, gas,water/car maintenance/normal small home maintenance + big protective adorable dog & lge family. It won't be nearly enough for the many larger repairs necessary to my old small home + replacement of my 20-25+yo appliances (heating/cooling/fridge/stove/dishwasher/dryer), some no longer working; my late husband's (sold my older one for $2000 a few yrs ago) 17yo car won't last much longer & I'm now blessed with 6 grandkids & have saved our Govn'mt $$$$many thousands by minding them (no taxpayer funded Childcare payments to any of my family) & who I could never disappoint by not buying 'em pressies for Christmas & their birthdays. I can no longer mow my lawn (pay for it) due to a dislodged lower vertebra after the yrs my beloved leaned on me when needed to walk (+ lifting him in/out of seats & car), prior to finally needing a walker. This is forgotten, ignored by most these days, especially all our Politicians. I look fwd to supporting anyone with compassion/understanding who starts a "Pensioner Support" Political Party prior to the next Fed election - will be happy to help as still fit/healthy.
    We need a Senior Revolution.
    AutumnOz
    8th Jun 2017
    11:29am
    I am sorry to hear of you misfortunes. Centrelink is not known for its compassion to people who really need their services.
    Agreed that we need a Senior Revolution.
    My mind is willing to run for Parliament but my body is now too weak to be able to do so. Chemo is very unkind to our bodies and often stops us from doing the things we would love to be able to do.
    I tried to talk my daughter into it but she was horrified at the idea - I even told her about the politicians rorts to the system but that horrified her even more.
    Ah Well. Perhaps someone else on this forum has a younger relative willing to represent the seniors.
    Becca
    8th Jun 2017
    7:31am
    The only way pensions will improve is if all pensioners stand together and make a big protest to parliament. ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS. As far as the politicions are concerned is, Out of sight out of mind. It must be bought to everyone's attention, especially slashed all over the media. No politicion likes BAD PUBLICITY.
    Becca
    8th Jun 2017
    7:31am
    The only way pensions will improve is if all pensioners stand together and make a big protest to parliament. ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS. As far as the politicions are concerned is, Out of sight out of mind. It must be bought to everyone's attention, especially slashed all over the media. No politicion likes BAD PUBLICITY.
    Aussiefrog
    8th Jun 2017
    9:30am
    Couldn't agree more.
    alinejordan
    8th Jun 2017
    9:11am
    the labour government increased the aged pension measurably and regularly. only since the coalition has been in power have we been receiving paltry increases of a few dollars per fortnight twice a year. give credit where credit is due..
    Pass the Ductape
    8th Jun 2017
    10:01am
    Nothing changes! There was, is, and always will be, ways to keep the slaves in check - even in todays modern world.
    sirrom
    8th Jun 2017
    10:56am
    Hi Kaz- These days Polliticians have super just like any other workers - and they can salary sacrifice as well. When they leave Parliament - same rules apply - they cannot get it until reach retirement age (or60) Again same rules apply.
    TREBOR
    9th Jun 2017
    5:44pm
    Poor darlings - forced to pay into their own super, add as much of their discretionary income as they like to it against a fat future, and then forced to take it at 60 without paying a razoo of tax on it except for the discretionary income added at a concessional rate.

    It's a fraud..... they don't get 'market return' on their super investment - they are guaranteed a massively more preferential addition by the government, whose only market is robbing the poor to feed these bastards.

    They should be forced to put their super into a normal fund like everyone else under the same rules.... and then be treated the same as pensioners for assets and incomes after 'retirement'.
    sirrom
    8th Jun 2017
    10:59am
    Trees & HD Rider - do you think I am stupid or is it you? - read what I said- Pensions are designed to live /survive - and I also said Super would be so important in the future.
    **
    Pensions will be there for those that do not have anything else to fall back on - now and in the future.
    Trees
    8th Jun 2017
    4:00pm
    can you read sirrom? - I backed you up on that hahaha
    keandha
    8th Jun 2017
    5:37pm
    I assume everyone wanting the aged pension paid at the same rate as the minimum wage would want all other benefits also increased to the same amount, including unemployment benefits?
    If so who in their right mind would work for the minimum wage, or even $100 over it, when they can get the same payment for not working. Imagine the blow-out in the CentreLink budget
    20 odd years ago when I was working I was on about $600 a week. With a couple of kids still at home and rent and work expenses I was struggling, when I got retrenched at the age of 59 I bought a small home $93,000 with my payout. Now as a single pensioner with a small super payment of $190 a month I am in a far more stable financial position. Think it over!!
    TREBOR
    9th Jun 2017
    5:47pm
    Since it all returns to consolidated revenue very rapidly - the lower your income the faster it does so - raising all benefits would not affect the government's bottom line one iota, but would certainly benefit retailers, those standing to lose their penalty rates because 'retailers are doing it tough', and the economy overall by generating a viable level of activity.

    Now somebody try to explain to me that when the peasants are getting too much, the economy is 'overheated' - term brought to you by Gauleiter Keating way back now...
    TREBOR
    9th Jun 2017
    5:26pm
    Oh, yes - regular jailer's pets they are, those Minimum Wagers! What I'd give for a year on minimum wage... regular spoilt they are...

    (apologies to Monty Python's Life of Brian)...
    Anonymous
    9th Jun 2017
    8:17pm
    tremor, hard to come up with something original
    *Loloften*
    12th Jun 2017
    10:24pm
    Hahaha Trebor....luv it. Not asking for minimum wage ($600++), just similar age pension increases. Reckon could survive on $500/wk.
    keandha
    11th Jun 2017
    3:58pm
    Having reached the age of 83 maybe my mind isn't as sharp as it was. So could some-one explain how raising the pension and unemployment benefits to the minimum wage level, and therefore making it more profitable for people to be on the dole rather than working for anything close to the minimum wage isn't going to affect the economy
    Anonymous
    11th Jun 2017
    6:30pm
    naughty, naughty keandha, you should not ask those easy questions in these columns as anybody with any brains would know the answer, just don't forget, most contributors to these columns are brainwashed by the lefties and would no know if their ar.. was up or down unless told by their masters.
    keandha
    12th Jun 2017
    4:02pm
    Thanks 99 I'll go and stand in the corner until I can behave myself.
    Anonymous
    12th Jun 2017
    4:41pm
    that is my boy
    Blossom
    13th Jun 2017
    11:26am
    I think I recall one of the Your Life Choices staff trying to live on the Age Pension (I think it was for a week or fortnight) to find out how difficult it can be.
    I also remember it beinbg said that Politicians' salaries etc. are set by an independent tribunal (a Govt. body). I know there has been at least one politician say their pay rise wasn't justified and try to refuse to accept it and was told it's not possible. One donated some of the increase to a charity which isn't getting any Govt. assistance at all.

    13th Jun 2017
    1:30pm
    What would anyone think about this?
    Australian Federal Police officers forced to work second jobs as tradesmen just to support their families.
    Members of Australia's elite police force are having to work second jobs as tradespeople to support their families.
    Over 300 Australian Federal Police officers were part of a survey that revealed 40% have less than $400 in disposable income per month, forcing many to find more work.
    The federal government are planning to cut a $5000 allowance to officers working in Sydney, Australia's most dangerous city, as part of the new budget.

    More than half the force say they will quit if they follow through with the plan.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4594778/Australian-Federal-Police-working-second-jobs-tradesmen.html

    Should we still pay any more tax?
    Who takes all these money?


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