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etimegev 22nd Apr 2015 06:28

It's the politics of envy. One would have thought that the ALP could have come up with something better to help to undo the economic mess which they created.

Or is it just about using that envy to paint the present Government as black as they can but by posturing as "helping" with no intention of such a policy ever getting through?

MTOW 22nd Apr 2015 07:34

I think the government could fix the part pension problem by rewarding self-funded retirees who DON'T take any government handouts with the same rebates on rates, rego etc. as they give to pensioners. I have relatives who are considerably better off than I am who have organised their finances so that they get the part pension, not for the small amount of pension they get, but for the rebates they get as pensioners. I don't believe this should be allowed, but I know there are many who would disagree with me.

The pension should be a safety net, not an entitlement, as too many see it.

Worrals in the wilds 22nd Apr 2015 08:22


I think the government could fix the part pension problem by rewarding self-funded retirees who DON'T take any government handouts with the same rebates on rates, rego etc. as they give to pensioners.
I agree. Over time I'd make it tougher to get the money pension, but I'd compensate by offering 'pensioner' rates/rego/pharmacutical discounts to all people over 65.

alisoncc 22nd Apr 2015 09:25


The pension should be a safety net, not an entitlement, as too many see it.
What total BS. Universal superannuation only became compulsory in Australia in 1992 under the Keating Govt. Prior to that for the average person, unless they were in a strong union, it wasn't mandatory for an employer to make any contributions and few did.

If I get the chance I will run up my other computer. It has some of the spiel about the age pension from forty-fifty years ago, when governments actively promoted the belief that a proportion of income tax was earmarked to provide for a pension when people retired. BACK THEN IT WAS A BLOODY ENTITLEMENT.

I started work in 1960. Initially in the armed forces, then as a LAME and then briefly as a charter pilot, then moving on as an Eng in the IT industry. Up until 1992 NONE of them made any super contributions. During the whole of this time I made significant contributions via income tax on a monthly basis. The fact that successive governments have chosen to spend all their income and have failed to put any aside for their pension committments is now my problem? No bloody way.

Worrals in the wilds 22nd Apr 2015 09:40


If I get the chance I will run up my other computer. It has some of the spiel about the age pension from forty-fifty years ago, when governments actively promoted the belief that a proportion of income tax was earmarked to provide for a pension when people retired. BACK THEN IT WAS A BLOODY ENTITLEMENT.
Agreed. That's why any change has to be gradual. There are still plenty of people who were told they would be guaranteed a pension, so IMO that should be accomodated. However, for anyone who entered the workplace from the late 1980s onwards that is not the case.

Of course even people entering the workplace since the 1980s have been led to believe that the retirement age would be sixty. Hockey's proposal that those people should now be forced to work until they're seventy shows that he has no understanding about what many Australians actually do at work. Sure, a lawyer, bank worker or other desk jockey with good health may be able to work until they're seventy or beyond. How about a baggage handler, labourer, cleaner or jockey? Yeah, nah. While in many ways sixty may be the new fifty, that doesn't apply to knees, hips and cardio fitness. :sad:

In short, while you guys got sold out by the government on the whole pension thing, it seems that we've been sold out by the government on the whole retirement thing. The one constant between Baby Boomers, X and Y is that we all get sold out by the government. Presumably the Millenials will die at their desks/ posts, then be ground up and turned into biscuits.

Naturally, as Clare points out said government MPs still retain their awesome super scheme, low retirement ages and perks for life. This just adds ammo to our collective BS radar whenever said well-rewarded MPs wax lyrical about what the rest of us should be sacrificing for the nation. :bored:

chuboy 22nd Apr 2015 12:03


Originally Posted by John Eacott (Post 8951750)
Ah, the politics of envy.

So, it is better in your world to set nothing aside for your retirement safe in the knowledge that the State (sorry, taxpayers to the State) will not only pay you but give you subsidised welfare in the form of rates, health services, etc etc. That's right, 'tax concessions' are also the remit of the state pensioners.

As opposed to working industriously throughout your years, paying tax on income, GST, contributing to society, growth and employment and then being accused and vilified for planning on a set of 'rules' which the ruling class then deem unsuitable and use for change. And having planned to look after yourself with no benefits whatsoever, be deemed 'rich'.

By the way, do some arithmetic and work out a few simple requirements.

How long do you expect to live past retirement age?
Assuming 20 years, what do you calculate the average Australian wage will be?
On a return of 5%, how much do you need in your self funded super to give you the average wage not just now, but in 20 years?
Allow for the superannuation rules (Federal) that require a minimum of 4% to be paid annually to the pensioner, thus depleting your fund should returns drop below that 4%.
Also allow for no relief on medical, rates, registration and all the other 'tax concessions' that pensioners receive. Pay full price for everything that is considered a 'tax relief' for State pensioners.
Also allow for stock market fluctuations, minimal interest rates from banks, variable housing market valuations, and all other impacts on your superfund.
Also allow for the changing regulations that tighten up the way that a self managed fund can be run, and how to anticipate for such changes.

Phew! Do you feel better having gotten that rant out of your system? :eek:

There's no envy about it. Removing tax concessions for the wealthiest people with the most money structured in just the right way is not the same as saying "spend all your money and save nothing for your retirement". We are talking about people with millions in super, accumulated at a concessional rate of course - less than that of someone who works full-time at say Cotton On - who go on to pay themselves a very comfortable wage in retirement totally tax free. Or even worse, receiving a government pension with a net worth well into the seven figures.

There is no right to feel entitled "having paid one's fair share of tax already in life" because frankly that has not happened, you are simply cheating your country.

Billions in foregone revenue, just like negative gearing and CGT concessions. Very low hanging fruit, but difficult to pick because it's the old rich people with lots of time on their hands who are worst affected. Who cares if you kick the poverty-stricken while they're down? No one important anyway. Not so if you start muttering things like "you won't get tax free income from your giant nest egg anymore". :hmm:


Maybe you're right. I should just sponge off the State (taxpayers) and join the professionally outraged; easier and less time consuming.
You may not think so, but taking advantage of loopholes that allow you to pay little to no tax on a very comfortable income is sponging off the State.

Disclaimer: I take advantage of the concessional tax rate on super by salary sacrificing some of my wages to minimise my tax. I'll freely admit it's a rort, and I'll shamelessly continue to take advantage of it on the proviso that I will not complain one iota if they ever change the rule and make it more sensible - so that people are encouraged to contribute to super without it becoming the unsustainable mess it is now.

SOPS 22nd Apr 2015 13:46

Well, I have always paid PAYE tax, my wife and Imhave worked our arse off, and have a few million in super and investments and money in the bank. What should I do....give it all to the neighbours...the postman...and Guy who arrived on the last boat?

I really don't get it.

Hempy 22nd Apr 2015 13:52


Originally Posted by SOPS
What should I do....give it all

Nothing like a touch of melodrama to get your point across..

SOPS 22nd Apr 2015 14:12

I'm sure that's what the Huggy Fluffs want.

Hempy 22nd Apr 2015 14:20

if 15% counts as 'all' in your books, I hope you have an accountant

Worrals in the wilds 22nd Apr 2015 14:31


What should I do....give it all to the neighbours...the postman...and Guy who arrived on the last boat?
How sweet of you. Make sure you give to registered charities so it all counts as a tax deduction. Otherwise you'll be being truly charitable, and that's not the modern way ;).
Over the years I have also payed lots of PAYE tax (thanks to working my arse off) as have most of us. What the government does with all that money is cause for concern, because currently it doesn't seem to filter down to people that need it.

MTOW 22nd Apr 2015 20:38

So after we've all had our little rant of mock outrage, are we agreed? People in retirement with (let's call it 'above average') assets should not be receiving government pensions.

However, if that was to be adopted, since these people would no longer be receiving government handouts, wouldn't it be sensible for the government to reward them, after they've passed retirement age, with the same rebates for car registration, council rates etc. that they 'reward' those who have not been as successful in providing for themselves?

I think even the Libs could sell that one to the public. (But given the way they've failed to sell damn near every other policy they've tried to introduce since 2013, maybe not.)

John Eacott 22nd Apr 2015 21:33


Originally Posted by chuboy (Post 8952111)
Phew! Do you feel better having gotten that rant out of your system? :eek:

snip

You may not think so, but taking advantage of loopholes that allow you to pay little to no tax on a very comfortable income is sponging off the State.

I take it that you didn't (as suggested) do the arithmetic and work out what is needed to create an income equal to the average wage in 20 years time or even worse: 20 years after you retire? Whether it is your money in a self funded super fund, a managed fund or (heaven forbid) the taxpayer's funded pension that you may draw upon. Work it out and then stop and think about those who use the rules as they stand (not sponging off the State) only to face howls of indignation from the manufactured outrage bus.

If you seriously think that a few million in a super fund is 'wealthy' then you haven't 'done the math'.

Hempy 22nd Apr 2015 22:41

Al-Furqan Islamic Centre has shut it's doors today.


This statement is to announce that, effective immediately, Al-Furqan Islamic Centre is ceasing its activities and closing its doors. This decision has not been taken lightly. We believe that given the constant harassment, pressure and false accusations levelled against the centre particularly by media and politicians this is the best course of action for the protection of the local community, its members, and the broader Muslim community that is often implicated in these insidious campaigns.

chuboy 22nd Apr 2015 23:02


Originally Posted by John Eacott (Post 8952628)
I take it that you didn't (as suggested) do the arithmetic and work out what is needed to create an income equal to the average wage in 20 years time? Whether it is your money in a self funded super fund, a managed fund or (heaven forbid) the taxpayer's funded pension that you may draw upon. Work it out and then stop and think about those who use the rules as they stand (not sponging off the State) only to face howls of indignation from the manufactured outrage bus.

I think you have made a few bung assumptions with your arithmetic.

The average wage, which I presume to be the median wage as the mean wage is artificially inflated by a few people's very large salaries, should be more than enough to live comfortably in retirement. If you have accumulated millions in super then you ought to have paid off a mortgage and so you have only utility bills and rates to pay for, in addition to food for yourself and perhaps your spouse and pets. Oh and some mostly taxpayer-funded medication of course :ok:

The rest is all disposable income. Your living expenses are generally lower. So whether a person would even need the "average" wage to live comfortably in retirement is debatable - especially if we are talking about people's retirements decades into the future when both partners in a relationship will probably have a decent chunk of super to draw upon.


If you seriously think that a few million in a super fund is 'wealthy' then you haven't 'done the math'.
Fundamentally the question is not whether x million in super makes you wealthy, it's about why drawing and storing wealth in a super account ought to entitle you to hefty tax concessions. If there was no such tax loophole in place today, would anyone here be able to make a case for opening one? I doubt it.


However, if that was to be adopted, since these people would no longer be receiving government handouts, wouldn't it be sensible for the government to reward them, after they've passed retirement age, with the same rebates for car registration, council rates etc. that they 'reward' those who have not been as successful in providing for themselves?
Well there's an idea. Someone who lives in a developed, first-world country with a great education system, clean water, free healthcare, a stable economy and a very pleasant climate, and STILL manages to live to past retirement age definitely deserves a gold star, a pat on the back from the government and a reward.

But seriously - if you are going to argue for a 'reward' in the form of pensioner concessions, you'll have to come up with a better reason than "we looked after ourselves, aren't we responsible, we deserve something for that". Or maybe I should write my MP and ask about a centrelink rebate for the ingredients I just made into my breakfast for the morning? :}

Maybe you would feel better if, like changing the name of a king hit to a coward punch, the government officially decreed that "pensioner's/senior's discount" be renamed "pity concession"? You know, for all those people we pity for not having the foresight to financially prepare themselves for retired life.


Well, I have always paid PAYE tax, my wife and Imhave worked our arse off, and have a few million in super and investments and money in the bank. What should I do....give it all to the neighbours...the postman...and Guy who arrived on the last boat?
Yes SOPS - all of it and preferably more if you have a piggy bank stashed under the mattress :rolleyes:

John Eacott 23rd Apr 2015 03:19


Originally Posted by chuboy (Post 8952675)
I think you have made a few bung assumptions with your arithmetic.

The average wage, which I presume to be the median wage as the mean wage is artificially inflated by a few people's very large salaries, should be more than enough to live comfortably in retirement. If you have accumulated millions in super then you ought to have paid off a mortgage and so you have only utility bills and rates to pay for, in addition to food for yourself and perhaps your spouse and pets. Oh and some mostly taxpayer-funded medication of course :ok:

The rest is all disposable income. Your living expenses are generally lower. So whether a person would even need the "average" wage to live comfortably in retirement is debatable - especially if we are talking about people's retirements decades into the future when both partners in a relationship will probably have a decent chunk of super to draw upon.

Fundamentally the question is not whether x million in super makes you wealthy, it's about why drawing and storing wealth in a super account ought to entitle you to hefty tax concessions. If there was no such tax loophole in place today, would anyone here be able to make a case for opening one? I doubt it.

snip

Again you have (deliberately?) missed my point that those SFSA such as SOPS and I do not receive any benefits such as rate relief, medical benefits, registration relief, etc, all of which adds to our cost of living; especially medical costs as one ages. Friends who qualify estimate that the pension benefits are worth ~$30,000 pa. The Labor proposal doesn't even index the $75k limit, thus leading to decreasing standards over the years as the cost of living steadily rises. The average wage 20 years ago was just under $550 per week: it is currently $1,128 as of January 2015.

Of course, those who receive tax-payer funded pensions do get these 'tax concessions/benefits'; good luck to them.

But to propose an ill conceived party political policy from the likes of Mr Shorten on his taxpayer funded, guaranteed, index linked politician's pension decrying the productive sector of the workforce is, without doubt, the politics of envy. And you have swallowed the dogma hook, line and sinker.

edited to add:

All this consideration of 'hitting the wealthy' is predicated on the current return of about 5%, so it effectively impacts those with c.$1.5m invested. Return to the better interest rates of nearly 10%pa and you will then be impacted with a nest egg of less than $800,000. Still feel that Labor's plan is aimed at those storing wealth in a superfund, chuboy?

John Eacott 23rd Apr 2015 04:04

If a political party were to seriously look at the mess that is our current superannuation system, they could do worse than review the Registered Retirement Savings Plan used by the Canadians.

Contributions are tax deductible (tax free, essentially), interest/investment returns are tax free in growth, and the only tax levied is on withdrawals made when retired.

This allows a substantially larger investment base on which to gain growth, and an equitable taxation on retirement. And it would also (if applied equitably) bring the politicians benefits into line with the electorate that they 'serve' :ok:

Worrals in the wilds 23rd Apr 2015 07:10

The main reason the super system is a mess is because both sides of politics keep messing with it :ugh:. From the word go it's been used as a partisan political football to score cheap brownie points. I usually support Shorten, but I think he's screwed up with this. $1.5 million is not a huge superannuation package, and many of us who entered the workplace after the introduction of mandatory super will have larger superannuation savings than the current retirees, without really trying.

Of course, in the meantime, successive govenments between now and my retirement will no doubt mess it up even further.
And yes, the Canadian system sounds like a good one.

John Eacott 23rd Apr 2015 07:43


Originally Posted by Worrals in the wilds (Post 8952861)
I usually support Shorten, but I think he's screwed up with this. $1.5 million is not a huge superannuation package

worrals,

Don't be fooled: it is not a $1.5m limit, but a $75k limit which is currently the income from 5% of $1.5m.

Come a better interest return (8-10%) and the super-fund amount to produce that return is only $750,000 to $937,500. Hardly the domain of the rich and wealthy.

Worrals in the wilds 23rd Apr 2015 07:48

Cheers, thanks for that. :8
For couples, is it individual or combined?


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