Those with most to lose unimpressed with ALP’s policy move

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Older Australians are unimpressed with Labor’s plan to deny franking credit refunds if it wins the next federal election, with more than half of respondents in the YourLifeChoices’ Friday Flash Poll saying the issue would encourage them to vote for a party other than the ALP.

The proposal to withhold taxes paid on share dividends was certainly divisive among our members, with 16 per cent of respondents claiming that the issue made them more likely to vote for the ALP at the next election.

With 1073 respondents to the poll, the results show that those most upset about the proposed change are the ones with the most to lose.

Nearly half of respondents (49 per cent) to the survey were fully self-funded, which compares to roughly 30 per cent of the general retired population, while a further 11 per cent of respondents were still employed either full time or part time.

Two-thirds (67 per cent) admitted that they owned shares outside of their superannuation and 63 per cent claimed that they would be directly affected by the policy change.

Of the 3.8 million Australians aged 65 and over, the policy stands to affect just on 10 per cent of them.

In the YourLifeChoices 2018 Retirement Matters Survey, we learnt that more than 34 per cent of the 5203 participants owned shares outside of super.

With the numbers heavily skewed towards those most likely to be affected, it was perhaps unsurprising that 60 per cent of respondents considered franking credit refunds fair, while only 31 per cent supported the tax loophole being removed.

The following are the opinions of YourLifeChoices members and not necessarily those of the writer or publisher. Some have been edited for style and grammar purposes.

“Pensioners are the new elite in today’s Australia – and so consumed with greed, selfishness and envy that they are cheering Shorten’s vicious attack on the self-funded. Sadly, they will hurt most when the policy is implemented and the damage it threatens to the economy is realised. Poor fools think there is a bottomless pit filled with money. They just don’t get that someone has to foot their bills – and destroying the lifestyle of those who not only funded pensions when they were working, but planned to ensure they continued to be lifters in retirement, may well be the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back – plunging us into deep Depression.” ~ OnlyGenuineRainey

“Tax people according to their income instead. It is not right that people can earn $110,000 and pay no tax after retirement age. Under Labor many of these people will still do that but a person earning $20,000 will have his income reduced by not refunding this franking credits. This is the same as taxing him at 30 per cent whereas the person on $110,000 pays not tax.” ~ VeryCaringBigBear

“To change tax rules that impact retirees and make it retrospective is patently unfair. It could be grandfathered for example to give those of us who dare to be self funded and do not rely on government funds for our retirement.” ~ Ferny

“The top end always takes care of itself and retirees have been constantly under attack from the current government. The last thing we need is to force self funded retirees to live off their capital rather than the dividends thereon. The result of that will be many more on the pension. What then?” ~ Mick

“Find an Independent of some standing and vote for them. The Wentworth by-election has seen the Liberal stronghold smashed. The main parties need to be destroyed and sent back to the wilderness until they get some semblance of decency.” ~ Retired Knowall

“Great and meaningful survey. My cynical view of Mr Shorten is that he is working to remove the loophole for the benefit of industry super funds. If my wife and I owned a business, we would distribute the profits between ourselves and pay tax only once. My wife and I are part owners (shareholders) in approximately 30 companies and they pay tax on our behalf hence we are entitled to claim it back if we are not liable (franking credits). We are not wealthy, but independent through 45 years of marriage, working hard and managing our expenditure to provide for an independent retirement. Shorten needs to come clean and tell us which industry super funds put pressure on the Labor party or which union leaders.” ~ Mon

“Everyone with this sort of investment only has it because it is ‘tax effective’ ie, rips off the general public. Anyone affected will just ask their accountant to find a new investment vehicle. Big deal.” ~ Travellersjoy

“Maybe sell the shares? If they are such a burden, get rid of them and use the money in another way. Luckily, we have nothing but our home to worry about protecting. Maybe pity the single pensioner who has no home and is struggling to afford their medicines and food. Some have become homeless. In Venezuela people are starving and children are on the streets. People are going through rubbish dumps hoping to find a bit of food. Watching this on TV this morning should put things in perspective about first world issues where we have food and don’t have to give away our children because we cannot feed them.” ~ Paddington

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Written by Ben

141 Comments

Total Comments: 141
  1. 0
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    Looks like the battle lines are drawn. Shorten needs to either allow some franking credits to continue to exist or face a potential loss in the polls.

    The solution is simple: put a threshhold in place after which franking credits cut out. That catches wealthy investors as it should.
    What part of retirees having been made a target and attacked relentlessly by the current government does Labor not understand? Retirees need a fair go otherwise the tax burden will simply become worse. Oh for intelligent government.

    • 0
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      Mick A better solution is to get rid of the tax free income for over 60. It only benefits the wealthy and those with big retirement incomes. Those with moderate retirement incomes wold actually be better off paying tax and getting their 15% rebate on their super pension as the extra rebate would be available to pay the tax on their extra income outside super.

      Those with high retirement income would then pay their marginal rate of tax less the 15% rebate.

      Taxing those over 60 may not get any where near what Labor thinks it can get by no refunding franking credits but Labor’s modelling is flawed and it will be lucky to get a fraction of what it modelling shows.

    • 0
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      Rubbish.
      Only a handful of self funded retirees are from the top end of town making zillions. Most of us earn around the pension. Perhaps a bit more, perhaps less. The issue is that attacking those who do not want to be pensioners will result in many joining the pension ranks when the capital is spent. Then the bastards will wail endlessly on how to fix the mess they are creating.
      As I said PUT UP A THRESHHOLD so that retirees can pay their way. This is NOT about subsidising a lifestyle of any kind!

    • 0
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      Mick Those big end of town now get their super tax free. If they are making zillions then taxing them at their marginal rate less the 15% rebate would tax them on their zillions. This will bring in a lot more tax than any threshold. All a threshold will do is allow the big end of town to arrange their affairs so they are under the threshold.

      A retired person can now have income well over $100,000 and not pay any tax on it. Labor is not going to change this. A threshold on amputated credits will not change this.

    • 0
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      A threshhold is not intended for those who are earning large incomes. It is meant for those at the other end and a few dollars going into the bank accounts of the rich will only be confetti to them anyway. If you are concerned with that then INCREASE THE TAX RATES.
      Oh yes….you only ever give the wealthy top tax cuts, never increases.

    • 0
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      They should just leave franking credit be . When it aint broke, don’t stick your grubby hands on it

    • 0
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      I agree Lothario. The current policy is right, fair and logical. Changing it will just push a lot more retirees onto the pension, but that suits Labor. It’s all about control. They can control people who are economically dependent. Labor despises the self-sufficient.

  2. 0
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    Socialism has never worked anywhere on Earth…so why trust a single word this Socialist union thug utters???? He is the captain of a ship with no rudder, no steering just a dead wish for all of us.

    • 0
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      Comrade Kali-G, modern socialism is far better & more equal to the masses than the current corrupt capitalist governments of the current era. Profit at all costs so the rich get richer & the the ever increasing gap of the poor becomes an insurmountable abyss.

    • 0
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      Thugs? Only a moron could ignore the last 6 years and trot out this sort of propaganda.
      In case you have been under a rock for that time the top end of town has made money hand over fist. Read about it here:

      https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/nov/05/joseph-stiglitz-america-should-be-a-warning-to-other-countries

      The top end also gave itself a generous tax cut and cried poor when it could not add on a Company Tax cut as well.

      What you want is a return to feudal times when the top 1% owned and controlled everything and the rest of humanity lived in abject poverty and often went hungry. Go live in America if you want that. Alive and well in ‘The Land of the (not) Free’. Australia does not need or want you!

    • 0
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      The guardian is an extreme left wing rag.
      Toilet paper

    • 0
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      I agree with Karl. Modern socialism is better than the current corrupt socialist government. However, Labor is not ”modern socialist”. We can’t afford to let either LNP or Labor hold the reins. Both are self-interested, inept, and acting against the interests of the nation.

    • 0
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      That union thug is a piece of filth, google Bill Shorten union bully boy and adulter and the tell me you would vote for him,sheesh.

    • 0
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      Be careful who you call what roy, Bill Shorten had already split up with his wife before he took up with Chloie, do you have evidence to the contrary?.

    • 0
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      He’s still a union thug, a piece of filth and a bully boy, whether technically an adulterer or not. Prize hypocrite as well. Pretends to be on the side of the battler but is robbing low income earners who strive to be self-supporting in order to over-indulge the wealthier.

    • 0
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      Unions are why you have many of the benefits you have enjoyed during your working life and your descendents continue to enjoy.

      Don’t look at one aspect of a political party but the whole entity. Don’t look just for yourself. Look at policies and practices. Do you care about the environment? Is fairness and inclusiveness important to you? Do education and health matter to you and your family? And so on and so forth.

    • 0
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      Yes, Paddington, I DO care about fairness and inclusion and health and education, which is why I could NEVER SUPPORT the ALP, much less unions.

      Unions are certainly NOT why I have any benefits. They are part of the reason life was very hard. They STOLE my partner’s superannuation – and that of thousands of others – to indulge a greedy and unconscionable employer. And they caused a devastating accident that resulted in my partner to have to resign – and leading to years of unemployment and ongoing health problems – by flatly refusing to support a complaint about a seriously dangerous (and illegal) workplace practice. They then threatened him with dire consequences if he sued for compensation, because doing so would expose the union’s failure. Not that he could have anyway, because the employer shut down.

      The union rep’s reply to requests for help to stop the dangerous practices: “”Doesn’t put me at risk, and I’m on a good wicket here. I don’t want to rock the boat.”’ But they DID strike over a trivial political issue, winning the vote by telling the greedy ‘on call’ staff that they would be paid anyway so only the low income workers would suffer.

      Now UNIONS are supporting the ALP THUG to demolish my retirement income, after I worked my guts out for 40+ years, despite incredible hardships, to save enough to be just above the asset threshold, with an income LESS than pensioners enjoy.

      Don’t ask me to believe your communist BS. The ALP is a mob of thugs, and unions are run by self-serving bullies. They have no concept of fairness, and they sure don’t give a damn about health or education or the environment. But they will use a fancy pretence to get what they want.

    • 0
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      Partly explains why Union membership is now around 15% of the permanent workforce and falling.

  3. 0
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    From some of the comments some people clearly do not understand what Franking Credits are. Companies pay tax on behalf of their shareholder, which they then return to the shareholder in the form of a franking credit which allows the shareholder to claim it back at the time of filling in their tax return because it has already been paid.
    If your income is high enough to be taxable this becomes a deduction only.
    However if your income is below the taxable threshold this tax, that you have already paid, is returned to you —- because you were not in a taxable income bracket.
    It is these people, with low incomes, that are going to be penalised because they are not going to receive this refund.
    As an example the full dividend for a share holding might be $200.00 but the company only pays you $100 and gives the other $100 as the franking credit.
    What Bill Shorten is doing to low income earners who don’t fall into a tax bracket is to keep the $100 tax return that was due to be repaid.
    It is only people who do not fall into a taxable bracket (the low income earner) that will be affected — not the big end of town.

    • 0
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      A better example is that the dividend is $100. Company pay you $70 and remit $30 to the ATO on your behalf. Franking credits are limited to 30% of the dividend.

      Looks like BHP has become the first with a buyback that is mostly a fully franked dividend. I expect more before the end of the financial year.

    • 0
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      It’s clearly an attempt to divide the population, using the same envy politics that Corbyn has so successfully used in the UK, the only people criticising the franking credits refund are the people who either don’t understand or the mischievous agents that populate this site. The tax is refundable because if you are below the tax free threshold you are not liable for the tax that has been paid on your behalf, it’s fairly simple to understand, unless of course you have an agenda to create confusion!

    • 0
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      You are correct Chat but you trivialise this. Jim’s comment has a handle on it but many investors at the top end of town utilise it as well because they manage to massage their taxable incomes through schemes of arrangement, offshore tax havens and Trusts.

      Your argument falls flat Chat when you consider what happens when you employ a tradesman for example. The tradie will pay tax on what you pay him when he fills out his annual return but YOU will not get this back. Same deal.

      The best option for Shorten to not alienate retiree voters is to put a sensible threshhold in place after which franking credits (above that figure) cease to apply. LISTEN BILL!!!!

    • 0
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      Mick Paying tradies has nothing to do with franking credits unless you are a shareholder in the tradies business.

      What sort of threshold are you talking about?

    • 0
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      The concept is exactly the same because the tradie PAYS THE TAX VIA HIS RETURN.
      I’d be suggesting a franking credit threshhold of around $15,000 to $20,000 above which any excess franking credits become worthless.
      Shorten has to decide if he wants to destitute hundreds of thousands of self funded retirees or require the top end to pay a fair share of tax. That will be both his challenge and the sign of whether or not he is worthy of the job.

    • 0
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      The difference between the tradie paying his tax is that the tradie is paying tax on his income, franking credits are the tax paid on the investors income, if you are alluding to the gst that is paid by you to the tradie who then pays it to the ato naturally you can’t claim that back nor should you be able to, but if you are running a buisness and pay gst on anything that you buy for the buisness you are entitled to claim that tax back, then whatever product you make attracts the gst that you then pay to the ato. So I can’t understand why people receiving the franking credits back when their income falls below the tax free threshold is causing so much concern, every tax payer operates under the same rules, ie if your income falls below the tax free threshold you are entitled to claim back any tax that has been paid on your behalf wether that tax has been paid through the PAYE system or through franking credits/tax, if your income is above the tax free threshold then you pay tax on that income, I know these comments won’t change some people’s minds, I just can’t understand why, there seems to be a deliberate attempt at confusion.

    • 0
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      Jim the confusion I because the non return of ranking credits policy fails the common sense rule and make no sense at all.

    • 0
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      Mick is either confused or deliberately trying to confuse others.
      No wonder labor wins votes , its supporters son’t understand simple tax and economic issues

    • 0
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      Mick, you tradie example is totally irrelevant. The Tradie pays tax on his income and HE gets back any excess if he pays more than his annual return shows he should. It’s HIS income and HIS tax. None of it ever belonged to the customer under any circumstances.

      Shareholder income is different entirely. It BELONGS to the shareholder. It’s NOT someone else’s income. It’s the SHAREHOLDER’S income. But the company pays tax out of it in the same way an employer pays tax out of an employee’s income. If the shareholder is not liable to pay tax, he/she should get it back – same as the employee does if they were overtaxed.

      The only person overtaxed in the tradie scenario is the tradie, and his tax will be adjusted if he paid too much.

      In the shareholder scenario, it’s the shareholder who is overtaxed, and therefore it’s right and proper that it should be adjusted. But Shorten says ”No, we’ll ONLY adjust it for the well off. Low income earners can be screwed.”

      Franking credit policy is RIGHT AND FAIR. If people are dodging tax, address that problem. Shorten is putting a band aid on the uninjured knee while the cut arm bleeds profusely. But he knows EXACTLY what he’s doing. He’s winning control the same way the communists did – by impoverishing people and making them dependent on welfare so they can’t rebel when things are wrong.

    • 0
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      Franking Credit change has NOTHING to do with the Tax Free Threshold. It will apply to your Taxable Income. My Taxable Income is well above the Tax Free Threshold, the Tax that I pay during the year is assessed when I complete my Tax Return and any Franking Credits from my Share Investments are deducted from my Tax Liability. Some years I am required to pay the ATO, some years the ATO pays me.
      All I have to do if this crazy legislation become law is to change my Investment mix.

  4. 0
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    A Donkey Vote Is Looming. The Choice Between Two Arse’s you still end up with an arse.
    Hea Hor
    {;-(

    • 0
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      Voters are starting to look for good Independents. They have then in places like Austria and it works from my limited understanding of their system. After all the concept of democracy involves voting in candidates who are NOT tied to a political party and who will come to decisions based on merit rather than who is providing them with funds to promote themselves at the next election.

    • 0
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      Hopefully, independents and minors will dominate and stop Labor’s disgusting grab for cash from struggling low-income retirees who are saving the nation tens of thousands every year, yet being abused by greedy pensioners who are collecting handouts from taxpayers yet demanding those NOT getting handouts be robbed.

    • 0
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      You need quality Candidates or At Least Candidates Willing To Truly Represent The ELECTORATE. Won’t Be Bullied Into Party “BS”.
      Most Electorates Don’t Have Much Choice It is one Arse over another Arse.
      Truly Independents are very few.
      {;<(

  5. 0
    0

    Australian Investors Association submission.

    This gives a good understand on what franking credits are and what people will do if Labor brings in this unfair non return of franking credits policy.

    https://asn.us4.list-manage.com/track/click?u=7bb3777772ad5e61cf370dfc5&id=8399f1ee8a&e=cf4d881274

  6. 0
    0

    I am surprised at the lack of understanding that people of all ages and education levels have of Franking Credits.

    I am one of the self funded retirees that will be affected by this change but perhaps if we all read up on the matter, not relying on Bill Shorten to educate us, we would all be better informed.

    By the acquisition of shares in a publicly listed organisation I become an owner of that portion of the company. I liken this to the apartment building where I live and have a shareholding, my apartment, which by virtue of the plan of subdivision represents 1.45% of the total building and, as a result, i am a shareholder paying 1.45% of the expenses of the building.

    Likewise, by virtue of the share-register of those companies in which I own shares, I own a portion of that company upon which I am entitled to be paid the profits as per my percentage holding. I am duty bound to declare those franking credits on my annual tax return and as the company has been taxed on the total profits before distribution, I am entitled to a refund from the ATO for taxes paid on my behalf but not due.

    Of course, Bill Shorten, has been short on detail and short on integrity by way of painting myself and my wife as wealthy people cheating the tax system through a loop hole in the tax legislation. There is no loop hole, it is legislation, correctly drafted and passed by parliament in a bid to deliver individuals the ability to remove themselves form the public purse and live a peaceful life in retirement. Thanks Bill Shorten – now tell the truth, this is being done to benefit industry based union super funds.

    • 0
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      I’d like to see a study done to prove that those on pension in an industry fund are actually getting their franking credits. Rates of return indicate to me they are not.

    • 0
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      Mon: Excellent response from a different angle. Clearly, the franking credit is a right not a privilege!

      Thankyou. I hope all of the subscribers on this blog read your analogy.

  7. 0
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    What I find interesting is the figure of “only” 10% will be affected. The next election will see those seats with less than a 5% margin being very crucial to who will form government so “only” 10% looms large in the battle.

    • 0
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      Old Man read that Australian Investors Association submission that I posted as it gives the real outcomes of non return of franking credits.

    • 0
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      Sorry OG, nothing you say is of any interest to me. I find what you have been saying over the years as condescending and quite often the opposite of what you have previously said. Yopu have the right to post in this forum, I have the right to ignore it.

    • 0
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      Good that’s your choice to stick your head in the sand and ignore the world.

    • 0
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      OG, if you read OM’s comment, he does not have his head in the sand, quite the opposite.

      If he wishes to take no interest in your comments so be it, but do not say he is sticking his head in the sand and ignoring the world. Quite rightly so, he is ignoring your comments.

    • 0
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      Oh dear we are being precious now.

  8. 0
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    Silly Billy you are only hitting the little guys.We expect that type of behaviour from the Libs not from Labor.

    • 0
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      LnP has done more for the little guy then labor ever has

      The strength of our economy, low unemployment and surplus budgets is the only sustainable way to help everyone.

      Handouts are just vote buying welfare that labor employs at the expense of long term wealth creation for the little guy

    • 0
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      If you think Labor will look after the little guy then think again. Higher GST and other taxes.

    • 0
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      Lothario OG, falling over laughing here. LNP cares about the little guy? They never have and never will.

    • 0
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      What garbage you spout Lothario, who is giving the handout now then?, your mate Scommo that’s who, vote buying is what he is all about.

    • 0
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      What handout is that, Misty? How is he ScoMo buying votes? By saying he’d rather raise the aged pension than Newstart. Or by being FAIR and letting low income earners keep their franking credits instead of taxing people 30% on income that shouldn’t be taxed, and plunging them into hardship after a lifetime of work and saving to BENEFIT the nation by $1 million or more by not claiming a pension?

      NEITHER party cares about the little guy. If Shorten cared about the little guy, he wouldn’t be letting the rich keep their franking credit tax credit while stealing from those with very low incomes.

  9. 0
    0

    How many self retirees are there that earn $110,000 a year from their super? I wish I did!! Many self retirees are lucky to have $100K in their super funds and Bill wants to steal their small franking credits which mean a lot to them/me to make ends meet.

    • 0
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      Those that earn $110,00 pay no tax on it either which doesn’t change under Labor. However the people who earns $20,000 loses their franking credits which reduces their income under Labor.

    • 0
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      Who earns $110,000 pa? Very very few.

      The issue is as OG highlights above that those making a living at pension levels are being targeted. That comes after a whole pile of attacks from the current government trying to shake out retirees after a life time of work and saving. We really do not need this and a way will be found which will come back to haunt any government which continues the attack.

      Shorten needs to be careful he does not alienate support from retirees. I have read the changing attitude from some. That leaves a malicious top end of town government or another which intends to keep attacking retirees. Plenty of Independents out there and maybe time to choose one……who is not however a Liberal in sheep’s clothing.

    • 0
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      No Mick those above $110,000 are not being targeted by Labor. If their income has no franking credits they lose nothing. If they have franking credits then they will just change their investment mix or structure so they don’t lose anything. Labor gains nothing form them at all.

    • 0
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      Alfie, in that situation you would have a part pension and still get your franking credits.

    • 0
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      Yes, Paddington. Shorten is favouring pensioners – regardless of their wealth (and many ARE quite wealthy) and hanging anyone who worked and saved and was self-sufficient as at March 2018 – demolishing their lifestyle and denying them fairness for the rest of their lives.
      And apparently you are so selfish that that’s okay with you?

      Mick, Labor has given absolute assurance that UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES WILL ITS POLICY ON FRANKING CREDITS BE CHANGED. Bowen said ”it’s set in stone now and will NOT be reviewed, no matter what opposition he sees. He insists that figures proving most who will e hurt earn less than $37000 a year aren’t valid. According to his fanciful logic, the figures are misleading because those folk reduce their taxable income with franking credits. He forgot that most retirees don’t pay tax, and most affected have their shares in superannuation funds anyway, so that is total BS.

    • 0
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      Fact Check
      There are over 200,000 people who have superannuation account balances in excess of $1 million
      More than 210,000 people have more than $1 million in superannuation, the majority (140,000) of whom are
      self-managed superannuation fund (SMSF) account holders. The remainder (70,000) are in APRA-regulated funds.
      Around 140,000 persons have more than $1.5 million in super, 100,000 in excess of $2 million and
      about 70,000 in excess of $2.5 million.

  10. 0
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    If I loose my credits I’ll be able to get the pension.

    • 0
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      No you wont – that’s the stupidity of labor’s policy

    • 0
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      Nerk you probably will if your income drops.
      Pensioners and part pensioners will not lose their franking credits. If you are so close to getting the pension then it is probably within your reach as I know some have arranged their money in a way that they get the pension and still have a lot of money.
      They have even worked with Centrelink to get and keep the pension.

    • 0
      0

      PADDINGTON – YOU ARE CLUELESS

      PENSIONERS AND SFR’S WILL LOSE THEIR FRANKING CREDITS

      NERK WONT GET THE PENSION BECAUSE THE DEEMING RATES STAY THE SAME , SO DOES THE ASSET THRESHOLD !!!!!

    • 0
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      Nerk will get the pension if he goes on an expensive cruise, or upgrades his family home – which is looking like the best option for people like him. But he will NEVER get franking credits again. They are reserved for the ELITE who were on pensions before March 2018. Doesn’t matter how poor others become, they will be discriminated against for life for having worked hard and saved a little.

      Yes Paddington, plenty arranged their money in a way to get the pension and still have a lot of money. Shorten will reward them. He’s only punishing those who did what we were all told to do for the good of the nation – SAVE and TRY to be self-sufficient for as long as possible.

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