So, the budget came down on Tuesday. It was one hefty budget, with a crap load of initiatives, but it seems that the biggest deal is the means testing of welfare payments to restrict families who earn over $150,000 from the baby bonus ($5,000 for a new slug) and Family Tax Benefit Part B ($125 a fortnight).
Ok, am I being short-sighted in thinking that if you earn $150,000 jointly in a household, you’re probably doing ok? Is that extra $125 a fortnight going to help with the cleaning lady? Need it to do some extra detailing on the car(s)? Maybe you needed to put that extra money away for your annual trip to the Maldives?
Get your hands off it. Welfare payments are for the people who are less fortunate. Perhaps they work in lower earning positions, perhaps they aren’t as savvy or smart, or perhaps they would rather do a job they love, earn less money but be happier in the process. Whatever the reason, it shouldn’t matter.
This country has been riding on the ‘Howard Train’ for too long. Greed, money, luxuries and spending have been the order of the day in the last 11 years, but as a whole the country has forgotten about a social conscience or helping those less fortunate.
Let’s take a look at some comments from the Daily Telegraph today –
My husband and I earn a combined income of $150,000 and do not consider ourselves “rich”. Why should we miss out on the baby bonus and other family tax benefits available to other working families? We work hard, just as hard as any other worker whether they earn $30,000 or $100,000 – Belinda, Bateau Bay
So, Belinda, you have to be “rich” to avoid benefits, but because you don’t consider yourselves rich, you should get them? No-one’s saying you don’t work hard (where was that in the budget?)
The term “working families” obviously stops when you achieve $150,001 in joint income. Ridiculous. Those of us in this position have worked long and hard to get there. – Justin, Sydney
Your point being, Justin? Is this just a statement to show off how much you earn, or are you trying to say something? Just piss off and work harder. Then you can afford that Rolex you’ve been eying off.
I’m sick of how everything is always for families. There’s never anything for singles. – Paul, Newtown
Wah Wah Wah. Maybe if you weren’t such a whinger, you wouldn’t be single. You want the baby bonus? You want Family Tax Benefits? What exactly do you want? The tax cut doesn’t cut it? You want less tax on the booze to help you pick up? Not quite sure really.
Look, I could go on all day, and honestly there were a couple of things in the budget that I am not that happy with (FBT on laptops and not enough assistance to the elderly), but overall I am pretty happy with it.
Oh and another initiative from the Budget was to ensure that International touring acts use a local support band on their tour.
The painfully annoying Piers Akerman had this to say:
“The Government will provide $1.7 million over four years to ensure that international touring companies employ at least one local band or artist as a support act. This will boost the employment opportunities and exposure of Australian music industry performers technicians.”
Which is an absolute load of retro-garbage.
Call this the Budget’s 2020 Rear Vision Summit gesture to Cate Blanchett, Hugh Jackman, Russell Crowe and the other celluloid celebrities Prime Minister Rudd aches to hang out with.
Call this a sad joke. The sort of sad Labor joke most people thought went out of fashion with the failure of Ausmusic, the Labor-funded folly of former Victorian Federal MP and perennial adolescent Pete Steedman.
Treasurer Wayne Swan must be a frustrated air guitar player with a deep commitment to the Labor luvvies in the performing arts if he thinks it is smart to inflict higher ticket prices on concertgoers who will be forced to endure a performer they didn’t wish to see or hear solely to satisfy an ALP whim.
As for those international groups which might prefer not to be handcuffed to a performer or act, will they be compelled to kick in to some union-dominated “industry” slush fund?
This measure will boost bad performers and, doubtless, add its measure to the inflation dragon the Ruddites have vowed to slay.
I mean, no-one really gives a flying fuck what this guy has to say, as he is about as far up his own arse as you can go, but seriously.
This will “boost bad performers’? What the hell are you talking about Piers? It can only increase global exposure of our quality local music scene as well as providing an amazing opportunity for small local acts to experience playing on a big stage.
Mr Akerman always has to bring it back to his hatred of Unions, ” will they be compelled to kick in to some union-dominated “industry” slush fund?”. Go fuck yourself your dim prick.