Time to fiddle with politicians wealth too 642



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It seems that this year in the budget, everything goes in the effort to find the dollars the Government was not approved to reclaim last year.  There is talk of banking taxes, changes to eligibility for the pension and other cutbacks, placing stress on many everyday Australians.  Could it be time that politicians and government employees take some of their own medicine, cutting back the generous superannuation allocations that are kept aside for them.

It used to be, more than ten years ago, that Politicians received a lifetime pension, if they served nine years in Parliament.  They would get  75 percent of their salary with incremental pyrites as future MP’s pay levels rose.  The perfect privilege for the pain of politics many people used to say.

All this changed in 2004 when Mark Latham terminated the program.  Politicians elected to federal government since then now receive a comfortable, or perhaps some would say, abundant superannuation contribution amount similar to us everyday people.  Those elected before 2004 are planning on enjoying their pension from the previous program.  These people include, Joe Hockey, Tony Abbott, and Christine Milne.

So let’s use Abbott as the example.  He’ll receive a handsome salary, at 75% of his current salary, or the one he is at when he leaves Government.  He will also receive staffing, free travel by air, and an office, forever more.  No surprises that this adds up to quite a large amount of money.  Some say it could be as much as $500,000 per year for each of these people living off the government purse into their now lengthy retirements.

Whether they earned the right to this by living through the last decades of Government is not what I want to discuss.  What is most important to discuss here is, as pressure is placed on wealthier retirees to forgo their access to the pension, or to adapt to changes to the superannuation industry to create savings the government can bank on, shouldn’t our politicians who are benefitting from an out of date program do likewise?

It is interesting to note that this situation only applies to the pollies who have been participating in Australian politics for longer than eleven years today.  These are our parliamentary leaders, on both sides.  Both sides benefit spectacularly as they impose challenges or limits on other Australians.  So where is the conciliation?  Surely these leaders could give a bit to get a bit of conciliation with other Australians who are being asked to cut back? 

Rebecca Wilson

Rebecca Wilson is the founder and publisher of Starts at Sixty. The daughter of two baby boomers, she has built the online community for over 60s by listening carefully to the issues and seeking out answers, insights and information for over 60s throughout Australia. Rebecca is an experienced marketer, a trained journalist and has a degree in politics. A mother of 3, she passionately facilitates and leads our over 60s community, bringing the community opinions, needs and interests to the fore and making Starts at Sixty a fun place to be.

  1. Of course they should but will they no way let u get the pensioner or retiree who has saved for years for. Thor retirement

  2. The old saying ‘Do as I say not as I do’. Of course they should have to forgo some of these ‘benifits’! They are being hypocritical

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  3. politicains and Bannanas have the same thing in commomn they start out green turn yellow then become rotten so nothing will ever change in life

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  4. awww, poor souls, stuck in the limelight, the press on your doorstep 24/7, never pleasing everyone, no personal lives..well its their choice…too many perks!

    2 REPLY
    • So do other people have press on their doorstep 24/7, like Artists, Actors, Singers. Suck it up Princesses, you choose the life, you choose the work, you asked us to vote for you, you said you would do your best, work for us, but what have you given us in particular over 60′ nothing but grief. You give yourselves unneeded pay rises, free travel, great Superanuations, wages, office and office staff for life. Just who else gets these Perks and Lerks? You give our hard earned taxes away to any poor little foreign country that cries for help, but won’t help your own citizens. Including those in I. The N.T. That lost their homes in cyclone Pam and Nathan, where did this money go too, Vanauatu of course. Homeless people in bigger numbers than ever roam the streets looking for a roof over their head. government housing cut, Indigenous housing cut, Mental Health cut, No rehabilitation facilities for drug users. More Jails been built because this is the only place you can put mentally ill, drug users amongst jail birds. Our taxes given to refugees for housing, cars, education yet again can’t look after our citizens born here. Where are your priorities?

  5. They should reduce some of their benefits & also stop some of the “perks” ex Prime Ministers get, after all they were SACKED from that position.

    11 REPLY
    • I have always maintained that ex politicians were sacked when removed from parliament. Perks should be removed

    • As I understand the situation Tony Abbott is trying to do just that but he is copping a lot of oposition from all sides .

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      • Where did you get that little snippet of information Ian?? In spite of being an avid follower of the political reporting in this country, I have never heard that one! Would be interested to know!

    • We have for too long, paid ousted politicians big handouts. I agree it needs to stop, age of entitlment?? Start in your own cess pool Jo Jockey.

    • They are very quick to vote in payrises etc for themselves, no arguments like schoolkids between the parties then. They go on about how they are working for the people & listen to what we say,which is a load of garbage. Maybe they should use some of their perks to pay for rehabilition for young men suffering stress trauma after fighting overseas, or increase pays of nurses & teachers,

    • Perks should be removed from ALL politicians as they don’t need them. They usually get other jobs and earn more millions anyway.

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      • Yes Janice… I agree. If we leave a job or get sacked…. that is IT!! No ongoing payments or perks. We get another job. Likewise our Parliamentarians. …..they earn enough money when in Parliament to save for their retirement along with Super. When they leave or are sacked (when they get voted out)…. that shpuld be IT!!! No more payments or perks of ANY kind. The only thing that happens with ANY government is that the rich get richer & the poor get poorer. How they sleep at night I don’t know. They need to live on OUR pension for a month with no outside extras. Then they might see. But… I’m dreaming coz it ain’t gunna happen in our lifetime!!!!

  6. How do they have the hide to meddle with our pensions, while doing nothing about their own? This constantly astounds me, they call us leaners but the truth is there or no bigger leaners in this country than them. They are a law unto themselves and we can’t do a thing about it. I hate all this pension stuff..I hate the hostility it causes with people in here that I am sure I would like without all this crap.. and I hate all the worry and stress this Government is putting us through..while they feel no pain themselves

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    • Why do we have to pay pollies a pension that australia can’t afford for doing nothing!!!

    • The “age of entitlement” is over, says the government. That is directed at us, not them. Why they can do this? Because they are all “narcisists” (& remember Abbott’s own words, “I am only answerable to God”) & looking after only themselves & their mates, the rich.

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      • So in everything, do unto others what you would have them do to you … that is what God says … so Abbott has a lot of answering to do

    • Selfish narcissistic control freaks who simply do not care about others especially the pensioners who built our nation and didn’t have their hands out for entitlements

    • What a joke!!!! They want to undercut pensioners every where you turn and yet we have worked hard and saved all our working life to be able to enjoy the last years in some sort of comfort !!! Should have gone into politics for peace of mind knowing that one will always be paid a substantial amount to retire on!!! Don’t do as I do, do as I say ???!!!!!!

    • Because they can. Because we enable them to do so. We keep doing the same thing, but expect a ‘different’ outcome! The idiot in charge of the Treasury portfolio is a carpetbagger, profited from the hardship of the GFC, he is now a ‘Pastoralist’ he owns so much land! Would he be negatively gearing? What do think! And he points the finger at ‘leaners’ the galling hypocrisy of the Hockey clan is hard to take.

    • That article is badly written! Wealthy retirees don’t *have* access to the pension. Modestly self funded retirees barely do. This is about a wealth grab though, that will leave Gen X destitute in our old age because there’ll be no incentive to stick our money away for 25 + years.

    • Notice that none of the politicians ever talk about the fact that those they are attacking will in fact be leaving ‘inheritances’ to their offspring, not only in unprecedented numbers, but in terms of actually being able to assist their children to pay a good chunk of their Mortgages off! So we have in fact looked after two generations! And probably ensured our grandchildren will have an Apartment by the time they are 18! Yes us baby boomers really have been a drag on society, we should hang our heads in shame!

    • I don’t have a problem with retired PM’s getting some kind of pension but the buck has to stop there. The politicians under the new super are still on a much better deal than we mere mortals have with our super. You also have to remember that unless you were lucky enough to work in government departments/organisations such as Dept of Education or at State run power stations most retirees, at this stage in time did not start super until their 30’s or later and then if you changed jobs, even in the 80’s you only got your contributions not the employees contributions. So basically over the last 30+ years we have all had to work, live and save for today and tomorrow. So you accept we are going to be the first generation to have to support ourselves once we retire so we just accepted it and got on with the slog. You got in and save as much as you can while educating and helping your kids, many well into their late 20’s, get an investment property or two, shares etc all the while helping your ageing parents who battle to make ends meet on the pension. Then the government keep moving the goal posts, apply new taxes on investments etc etc. they wonder why we get angry when they pick on the so called ‘wealthy retirees’

    • It matters not that those in power will always exploit the powerless for it is always in nature the truth, those that seek power will always deny the need for Charity or generosity.

    • True Robina but only if we die relatively young. Yes we were such a drag on society that many of our children opening state that they are not prepared to work as hard as we did. They can’t see the point when people who spend on holidays, boats, cars and living on the extravagant side retire and go straight onto a pension. I kind of have to agree with them to a point. Our generation had work hard, be self sufficient drummed into us. We planned retirement, calculated how much we are going to need in retirement worked to get to that amount or just beyond only to find that they change the rules again. Why is it that a politician who doesn’t even make it to being a Govt Minister, gets a pension, x amount of free travel each year for themselves and their spouse and many hang around in the back blocks getting on various committees which also pay well. This is 2015 and we should all be treated the same. It is unfair, they should lead by example not set themselves above everyone else.

    • I have sent messages about this & other things to my local member, no good just complain about this on here, we need to let them know we are not happy about it, we employ them & we have a voice, we need to use it.

    • Politicians should all be under exactly the same superannuation rules as the rest of Australia. Who was it that said that “…the age of entitlement is over”?? Exactly!! 🙁

    • I absolutely agree with you Libby, Hockey stands up there preaching to us like some sort of messiah telling us to tighten our belts. You are spot on they are the biggest leaners and the are so far removed from reality it is scary. They are using tax payers money to hire private jets to fly all over the place to spread their proper gander. Not ever have they said that they will cut their huge tax payers perks and salaries. It cost millions to support all these leaners once they leave office. What really irks me is that they stand there waving the finger at us as if we are to blame. I have been working since I was sixteen and have never been out of work so we should get a good pension.

  7. Of course they should, they are ripping everybody off with their unbelievable perks and they should have the same pension as everybody else if they are entitled to a pension, somehow I don’t think they would be. The system here stinks

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