Our Budget Response

Monday, May 18, 2015

Liberal Federal Government Treasurer Joe Hockey, handed down the budget last week, Tuesday 12th May 2015. This annual budget is designed to inform the Australian people where monies collected by the Government, by way of taxes and other revenue will be spent, and how they intend to collect more revenue.

In my opinion, there was not a lot in this year’s announcement because they received such backlash from last year’s budget by way of negative response from the opposition and other public sectors. If they handed down another such budget, Abbott would be out on his ear with a leadership challenge. So they are playing it safe…Very safe!

What we must all understand is Australia has a debt of approximately $660 Billion. The Abbott government did not create this. When John Howard became Prime Minister in 1996 he took on Labors debt of $96 billion. When he lost office in 2007, he handed over a sound economy with approx. $22 billion in the bank. We can thank Labor for our debt and we must pull it back if we are ever going to be able to provide decent hospitals, schools, aged care, infrastructure and a whole raft of other government supported projects.

At present we are spending 1 billion a week to run the country. We pay $96 million a day in interest, which is down from $130 million when Labor held the reins. The government collects money from us, the taxpayers. If we do not start pulling our belts in, get unemployment down and cut spending, we will be living in a third world country, with a debt we cannot service. Greece is a classic example. Their financial status now matches the Acropolis in Athens - in ruins. Greece quite literally has nothing more to sell in order to pay back its debts. Have we not learnt anything from other countries mistakes? Australia’s State and Federal Governments have already started to sell off our assets to foreign buyers in order to starve off the financial wolves. Will it be our land and resources next?

Small business was the big winner in the budget with immediate tax deductions up to $20,000 on buying equipment, cars, and machinery etc for the business. Provided the budget is approved in the Senate, business will also enjoy a drop in company tax of 1.50%.

Foreign Backpackers will pay tax on the first dollar earned, meaning when they leave the country they will not be able to collect all their tax back. I would have liked to see the government abolish superannuation contributions to backpackers as well.

The Government intends to hit multinational companies, saying they must pay their fair share of tax. I raised this in 1997. Australia is a signatory to the 1953 Double Taxation agreement with a large number of countries around the world. The agreement allows Australian companies, working in countries that are apart of the agreement, to pay their taxes here in Australia. Meanwhile, foreign companies trading in Australia pay taxes back in their country. In 1996-97 Australian companies paid $19 Billion in taxes here, yet foreign companies took out $39 Billion in taxes. Over 90% of corporate Australia is foreign owned. I would ask Joe Hockey how he intends to collect taxes if we remain a signatory to this agreement? They don’t want to change it through for fear that  it will upset foreign investment. Foreign investors buy our land, farm the product, bring in their own workers, ship the product directly back to their countries and don’t pay tax. Our governments only see it as a quick fix, bringing money into the country and don’t look beyond, into the future. When Australia runs short of food, will our foreign farmers want to feed us or their own nation? They are not obligated to sell their product here first. Our farmers are being driven from the land by foreign takeover, mining, banks, and lack of water. We have a very bleak future ahead of us if this issue is not tackled.

What is the most upsetting reality in the budget, is the government’s admission that we do have a national security problem with the allocation of $1.2 billion to make Australia safe. $450 million is for intelligence and meta data surveillance. Australia has never had this security threat in the past. Followers of Islam in this country are to blame with their hate for the west and non-believers. We will never address the cultural differences or hate by throwing money at it. This hate is not only picked up on the Internet, it is taught in the Quran and preached in mosques and schools.  We will only combat terrorism in Australia if we stop further Muslim immigration, stop the building of mosques, ban the burqa, and stop paying for their four wives and ever increasing number of children.

Child Care is costing Australians $7 billion. Questions need to be asked, why are child care workers some of the lowest paid workers in this country, yet it is so expensive to put a child in care? I would like to see a review of the child care industry costings and why it is so expensive. 

Farmers are being given $300 million in tax deductions towards water tanks and fencing. Drought is a common denominator in Australia. It has and always will have an impact on our farming. Instead of band-aiding solutions, allow the farmers to drought proof their properties by encouraging and paying them to build dams. Stop restricting farmers from building dams with legislation. Farmers must currently apply for permits to put a dam in. They must have a water license and a license for the right to take the water. This is shear madness and has been put in place to control ownership of water and pay taxes on it. Our water is being bought up by those intending to make a lot of money out of it and it has very little to do with protecting the environment, as our politicians will have us believe. Governments are destroying our farming sector, but they are not too concerned because foreign buyers are lining up to take over.   

The welfare budget is approx. $150 Billion a year. This is a disgrace and an indictment on our society.  Government welfare is not anyone’s right, it is a privilege. We are allowed this privilege because of hard working Australians paying taxes. If no one worked or contributed then we would not be able to care for the sick, aged, young or those going through a rough patch in life. If we want to enjoy a decent lifestyle in Australia, everyone has a part to play. When someone robs the government by way of welfare or health, they are robbing their friends, family and neighbours. I am of the opinion we have become a country with too many users and abusers. We are not achieving anything in the long run, someone will have to pay, maybe your loved ones. This about our future, what type of Australia do you want your children or future children to live in?

- Pauline Hanson



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