Is our treasurer out of touch with the Australian people?

After some incorrect comments yesterday about how children today will live until they’re 150, one would think that Joe Hockey would be able to check his facts before making broad statements.

This morning on Melbourne’s 3AW, Joe said that Australians work six months of the year for the government with tax rates that are 50 cents in the dollar. This is not true, however…the top tax rate of 45 cents in the dollar is for those who earn $180,000+. Could Mr Hockey have forgotten himself for a moment and been using his own income as an example?

In his interview, Mr Hockey said, “I want to give families a bit of a break with cost of living and that’s certainly Tony Abbott’s very strong view. We should put more money into the pockets of Australians. It’s their money” – which is fair enough, but then he continued: “You’re working July, August, September, October, November, December just for the government and then you start working for yourself and your own household income after that for another six months, it is a disincentive, so we’ve got to bear that in mind. We’ve got to bear in mind that bracket creep is going to take middle-income Australians into the second-highest tax bracket over the next few years, which is a disincentive for people to work”.

Just a mere few days since the propose Medicare co-payment was brought in and then scrapped due to public confusion, it seems quite unwise for Mr Hockey to be falsely informing Australians of high taxes and the plan to put that money back into their pockets.

And this isn’t the first time Joe has incorrectly stated that Australians are paying too much in taxes but was actually referring to a tax rate that applies to the top 1 per cent of earners.

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In response to the error, a spokesman said that Mr Hockey had been speaking “in very broad terms”. The average Australian worker’s income is around $58,000, with a tax rate of around 19 cents in the dollar.


What do you think of Joe Hockey’s comments? Is he deliberately trying to deceive the public and trying to get them onside or was it an honest mistake? Tell us below.