The Meeting Place

Sunrise host thinks people on $180,000 a year aren’t rich

Popular Sunrise host Samantha Armytage has received backlash from some viewers after agreeing with Scott Morrison that people earning $180,000 a year aren’t rich.

The comment came in the wake of the recent budget release, that favours wealthier Australians at the expense of others. Prime Minister Scott Morrison defended the tax cuts for high income earners, arguing that FIFO workers deserve to pay less tax because they work hard, and aren’t rich for earning $180,000 a year.

Armytage agreed. “It depends where you live in Australia as to whether or not you are wealthy on that, in Sydney probably not,” she said on Sunrise on Thursday morning. “$180,000 sounds like a lot but these FIFO workers make huge sacrifices. They are often the sole income earner, (have) a couple of kids, a mortgage.”

These comments have been criticised as being ‘out of touch’ with Australia, and seems to suggest that high income FIFO workers work harder than the rest of us.

“If you’re earning $180,000 you’re in the top four per cent of income or thereabouts,” Ben Phillips, associate professor at the Australian National University, told news.com.au.

So, it’s fair to say that this comment may feel like a slap in the face to many Australians. It’s also good to keep on mind that Armytage is one of Australia’s highest paid TV hosts, earning a whopping $500,000 a year according to news.com.au.

In Australia, an average man earns $1,958.30 a week and an average women earns $1,751.31 a week before tax. The mining industry has the highest average weekly earnings of $2,697.50 a week. In the light of the budget’s tax cuts, which lowered taxes for the mining industry, it may be right to ask just how the industry benefits the average Australian. If we don’t enjoy any of the tax benefits or high wages, and the industry isn’t supporting public health care or education through tax, then who is it really helping?

Some of the morning show’s viewers took to social media to share their discontent.

“Most Australians are living in poverty, with a median income of $60K. Except for overpaid people on TV,” wrote one commentator.

“The suggestion that FIFO workers work hard and make sacrifices somehow devalues so many others in the workforce who do the same in different ways,” wrote another.

“Interesting that the presenter claims that the poor man earning “only” $180pa might be the sole income earner at home … he wouldn’t have to be if women had better chances of even getting a job.” This commentator’s words strike true for many Australians, during the time of COVID-19, when we have disproportionately seen women be affected by job losses and additional responsibilities.

Do you think Armytage’s comments are out of touch? Do you consider people earning $180,000 a year to be rich? How did you feel about the federal budget?

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21 comments

Right on Lucca. Oh, and by the way, KSS, Fatty Fetish. Mmmmm !!!

Do you think Armytage’s comments are out of touch? Do you consider people earning $180,000 a year to be rich? How did you feel about the federal budget?

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Yes, very out of touch --there are many getting MUCH less --  and working a LOT harder

The Budget was once again a talk fest

 

'Rich' in Australia tends to be an emotive word. Do the high earners use it? Rarely. They will admit to 'being comfortable'. To the man/woman in the street 'rich' means giving the appearance of having much more than necessary for comfort and often ignoring the needs of others with much less. Comfort is wrapped up in 'lifestyle', modern terminology I find distasteful but unavoidable. in other words, if you can buy anything you wish, when you wish, you classify as rich.If you can buy what you want but not necessarily immediately then you are in comfortable circumstances. And if you cannot buy what you need, you are struggling.The thing that Australians do question is the monetry worth of an individual's contribution in the workforce and everyone will justify his/her right to their wage packet deserved or not.

Well, I don't think Sam Armytage bothers much about derogatory comments (good on her)...here she is looking gorgeous with her new millionaire fiance Richard Lavender at the Everest Cup yesterday!

 

                     Sam Armytage stuns as she attends the Everest Cup Racing Carnival with her  fiancé Richard Lavender | Daily Mail Online

 

Picture: Daily Mail

I myself thought she looked atrocious -- that dress was just awful,  as were the shoes just IMO

Being a journalist , female and fronting a major TV programme earning major salary, I imagine Sam has developed quite a thick skin, Sophie.

If the top 4% of income earners are not 'rich', who is? Not that it matters really. 'Rich' is just a word. What matters is that at a time when there are hundreds of thousands living in poverty and the nation can't afford to address that, we should not be prioritising lower taxes for the highest income earners. We need to get back to a proper progressive taxation system that ensures those who benefit most from the opportunities our society offers pay the most toward keeping the society healthy. The progressive system was devised because those in power recognized that the highest income earners enjoy more of the benefits of living in a civilized society than the lower income earners, and it's only right that they should pay accordingly. As we've moved away from that principle, the economy has become progressively weaker and the society progressively less healthy. Therefore, clearly we need to go back to progressive taxation if we are to restore social and economic health.

Oh and yes, this journalist and Scomo insult the other 96% by claiming that people on $180,000 a year 'work hard' and 'are not rich'. They may work hard (many don't - but they probably work smart!) but they are well rewarded for their work. Conversely, millions work very hard, often in dangerous and unhealthy conditions, and are paid peanuts.

PS. Lucca, I am NOT a green eyed monster. Just a realist who thinks lower paid workers deserve a lot more respect.

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