It’s a gift: Kelly O’Dwyer

Just in case you have missed the feeling of higher taxes coming down the pike, take last week’s comment from Assistant Treasurer, Kelly O’Dwyer:

No one has a right to a super tax concession. It is a gift that the government should only provide when it makes sense.

Yes, be afraid.  It’s the Canberra beltway talking.  Everything belongs to the government and anything that the ordinary punter is allowed to keep is a gift.

Just think about it: the top marginal tax rate is not 60 per cent.  The current rate of 49 per cent, including the Medicare Levy, is a gift that the government should only provide when it makes sense.

Hey, the 50 per cent ‘discount’ on capital gains tax is another gift.  Gosh, if those capital gains were taxed as annual income but then the discount is applied, that’s another gift that the government should only provide when it makes sense.

This all reminds me of the time when Tanya Plibersek – yes, that monument to public policy thinking – told us that poor people pay for the health insurance rebate paid to those on higher incomes.  Que?  Since those poor people don’t pay any tax whatsover and receive copious government transfers and benefits, I’m not quite sure how she thought this worked.

But evidently that thinking is not confined to the Labor side of politics. O’Dwyer also thinks that super tax concessions are somehow paid by other people.

Here’s the thing: the taxation of superannuation is based on the fact that the money is locked up for very long periods of time and the money must be easy to collect.  (Actually, there really should be no tax at either the contributions or earnings phase and the government knows this.  But being short of money, the gift talk is useful.)

And if you look at the Mercer figures, it is clear that only someone in the highest income decile for their entire professional life (no one, in fact) actually receives more in tax concessions than those in other income deciles when the cost of the age pension is added to the tax concessions.

So when working out the value of this ‘gift’, I would suggest that some careful calculations be undertaken to to account for the cost of the age pension as well as the way super is taxed.

On this sort of stuff, it’s hard to tell the difference between the Coalition and Labor.

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59 Responses to It’s a gift: Kelly O’Dwyer

  1. .

    No one has a right to a super tax concession. It is a gift that the government should only provide when it makes sense.

    The Liberal party are now openly communist. That ain’t no joke.

  2. johno

    O’Dwyer was trained up in Costello’s office and inherited his seat. This shows how far the talent pool in the Liberal Party has dried up.
    Still she is a young female, so she hits all the right hipster buttons, so thats OK then.

  3. Dorothy

    Judith, thank you for the excellent post. I will be voting informal at the next election.
    I had my issues with Tony Abbott, but my god at least there was a point of difference between the Liberal and Labour and he had a backbone
    This is all very depressing

  4. karabar

    “On this sort of stuff, it’s hard to tell the difference between the Coalition and Labor.”

    That is because there is no difference.

  5. A Lurker

    I wonder if the Liberals truly understand that they are committing electoral suicide?

  6. Adrian

    I’ve long thought that O’Dwyer is not up to the job. She really is struggling and indicative of he decline of the Liberal Party talent pool. Highly educated buy less smart it seems.

  7. Bruce of Newcastle

    It’s giving people a strong incentive to avoid super completely. Companies also. Especially if the can steal part of it a lefty government sometime in the future can steal all of it, like Argentina did. The obvious direction will be to contractualise wages and shift capital to company structures which don’t cop marginal tax rates of 47% plus Medicare. There is a saving of 19% and no waiting until you are on your last legs to access it.

    This super madness is so stupid it hurts my brain.

  8. Minderbinder of Qld

    It is just like comparing stupid, with idiotic.

  9. Roger

    “In a higher phase of communist society, after the enslaving subordination of the individual to the division of labor, and therewith also the antithesis between mental and physical labor, has vanished; after labor has become not only a means of life but life’s prime want; after the productive forces have also increased with the all-around development of the individual, and all the springs of co-operative wealth flow more abundantly—only then can the narrow horizon of bourgeois right be crossed in its entirety and society inscribe on its banners: From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!” Louis Blanc, 1851.

    We have apparently entered the higher phase of communist society and crossed the narrow horizon of the bourgeois. All wealth is now created and owned by the government and will be distributed according to need.

    Be grateful.

  10. H B Bear

    No one has a right to be elected. It is a gift that the people should only provide when it makes sense.

    O’Dwyer, Lord Waffleworth and the remaining dregs are making this decision very easy.

  11. Lurker;

    I wonder if the Liberals truly understand that they are committing electoral suicide?

    No Lurker, they don’t. In fact they believe they are enhancing their votability, despite every high taxing regime in history that has crashed and burned.
    They cannot see it because they do not want to see it, like a teenager hiding their face behind their hands at a scary movie, but still peeking between their fingers.

  12. Myrddin Seren

    Judith

    Yes, be afraid. It’s the Canberra beltway talking. Everything belongs to the government and anything that the ordinary punter is allowed to keep is a gift.

    Yes – hard to pinpoint the exact date, but about 18 months ago now it became clear from the kites being flown by the media commentariat that this was the view that had become the consensus among the protected classes. I have seen nothing to change my mind on this, especially memoryvault’s observations on superannuation.

    One good crisis and the bureaucrat class will go for the kill on saving and assets, towing the dopes of the political class behind them. SMOD-time

  13. Mayan

    I’m amazed that anyone ever put more than the legally required minimum amount into superannuation. And now there are people putting their rental properties into superannuation. Is there anyone who didn’t foresee where things are heading? Anyone at all?

  14. Roger

    Is there anyone who didn’t foresee where things are heading? Anyone at all?

    Yes, Mayan, they’re known in Canberra as “the people that don’t matter”.

  15. Dr Faustus

    It is a gift that the government should only provide when it makes sense.

    O’Dwyer conveniently neglects where most superannuation funds come from – the Superannuation Guarantee Charge. Superannuation tax concessions are an exchange for business taking on the legal liability to fund the retirement incomes of people who would otherwise be a burden on the State.

    It’s a gift that business should only provide when it makes sense…

  16. Baldrick

    I’m not used to a government being so generous and giving. How very socialist of them.

  17. Infidel Tiger

    Sinclair does your previous policy of not wanting O’Dwyer to be called a stupid fucking idiot still stand?

    Please confirm.

  18. when it makes sense.

    Does this phrase mean anything?

  19. thefrollickingmole

    A few years ago i stumbled across a paper written by (of course) and Australian academic which made the point that all money belonged to the government and we should shut up and be happy they let us keep some pocket money at all.

    At the time I didn’t realize I was reading the APS/ALP/LIB (but I repeat myself) advisory on the matter.

  20. a happy little debunker

    If they truly think a super concession is a gift – then they should undo the legislation and give me my money, rather than insist I cannot manage it until I’m 70.

  21. Gab

    What the bet public servants’ super is excluded.

  22. Pickles

    They’ll tax it on the way in at the top rate then tax it on the way out at the top rate. Then you’ll only be able to draw the balance fortnightly at the pension rate. When you die the dregs, if any, will be subject to death duties. All your munny bilong masta. Have I covered everything?

  23. Gab

    Covered it, Pickles. We are their servants and must work hard and pay more taxes to ensure they live in the manner none of us will ever be accustomed to. We’re a long way down the Road to Serfdom already.

  24. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    When you die the dregs, if any, will be subject to death duties. All your munny bilong masta. Have I covered everything?

    I’ve always been prepared to bet any money that an incoming Labor /Greens Coalition would introduce death duties, and a wealth tax, but a Liberal/Greens Coalition wouldn’t, would they? (sarc off)

  25. Ant

    How the hell did Costello ever put up with her in his office?

  26. Lloyd Dobler

    Remember.

    “there has never been a more exciting time to be an Australian”.

    Malcolm T. 2015

    It certainly is exciting, because this government has no direction and Bill S. cant count.

    Finally does anyone think that Malcolm me get end up in a power sharing arrangement with The Greens after the election?

  27. Lloyd Dobler

    Also what are the chances of Inheritance Tax making a reappearance, seeing as all those (a broad generalisation I know) farmers in Nationals seats are loaded and it’s not ‘fair’ that they have all this land and they probably shout at sheep and hurt their feelings

  28. Pete of Perth

    Talk about a spit roast. Graciously receiving gifts from the tax eaters at one end at one end and selling the family home to the tax eaters at the other.

  29. Marcus

    I read a few months ago that her seat (Higgins) was in danger of falling to the Greens. How appropriate that would be.

    Apart from anything else, the Green candidate could hardly be as condescending as O’Dwyer is in that statement.

  30. .

    I note the government is “cracking down” on charities that don’t submit reports.

    Maybe they’re too busy serving the community?

  31. Just interested

    Kelly O’Dwyer is what you get when you go from staffer to MP (via a bit of warehousing) with no life experience outside of politics and public administration.

    Nothing will change until Australians decide not to vote for parties who put up candidates who go straight from the university SRC to Parliament.

  32. david roberts

    Their is death duties on super 15% plus medicare

  33. Martin Slaughter

    Ms O’Dwyer is unfortunately representative of what is inflicted on the electorate these days. Gender seems to be the determining factor. presently the other criteria is being a Turnbull supporter, regardless of experience or ability. Another example is our new Assistant Minister for Disability Services. What on earth does she do with her time? A damn good earner though.

  34. Habib

    On this sort of stuff, it’s hard to tell the difference between the Coalition and Labor. Just what stuff are they differnet on, in any measurable way? We’re a one-party state, Kang vs. Kodos. O”Dwyer was another one being touted as an upcoming talent, who I knew would be another worthless, dud lawyer statist cretin. I hate being proven right so regularly.

  35. Cannibal

    What the bet public servants’politicians super is excluded.

    ftfy

    O’Dwyer is now without question the Chris Bowen of the LNP.

    Are we to adopt our best Uriah Heep attitude and show humble gratitude to the powers that be for their magnanimous gift?

  36. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    Are we to adopt our best Uriah Heep attitude and show humble gratitude to the powers that be for their magnanimous gift?

    After suitable re – education as to the blessings bestowed on you by Big Brother Lord Waffle, yes, we may be graciously permitted to do so, in the approved manner.

  37. Cannibal

    I must brush up on my doublethink.

  38. BarBar

    Kelly O’Dwyer is just mouthing what the PMO’s office has instructed her to say.

    The result of installing Turnbull.

  39. Token

    Sinclair does your previous policy of not wanting O’Dwyer to be called a stupid fucking idiot still stand?

    Please confirm.

    Let us talk about Trump, Hillary, Bernie & the rest of that lot. Fighting with those who succumbed to the Trumpkin body snatchers is a lot less depressing than thinking on how talented minds like Sinc support and enable this clusterf#$k Labor-Lite government.

    But evidently that thinking is not confined to the Labor side of politics. O’Dwyer also thinks that super tax concessions are somehow paid by other people.

    Imagine how this know nothing swoons when the treasury pubes present another PowerPoint planning another tax grabbing raid on the few wealth creators left in Australia.

  40. Robber Baron

    I left Oz when Gillard and Rudd did their best to steal from me. Turnbull and O’Dwyer have ensured that I will never return.

    These people get away with stealing because the masses are stupid and ill-informed. I really don’t know how the politicians restrain themselves from laughing when they make these announcements.

    Australians truly deserve the politicians they elect.

  41. Ross B

    Kelly O’Dwyer is just mouthing what the PMO’s office has instructed her to say.
    The result of installing Turnbull.

    Precisely…

    Disaster cubed…

  42. Zulu Kilo Two Alpha

    These people get away with stealing because the masses are stupid and ill-informed.

    Ask the masses about the things that really matter, like who’s on MKR, or what is the state of the AFL ladder, and they are full bottle.

  43. John Comnenus

    The most exciting time to be an Australian will be in the allot box at the next Federal Election. I don’t think Malcolm will be excited by what I do.

  44. The Pugilist

    The most exciting time to be an Australian will be in the allot box at the next Federal Election. I don’t think Malcolm will be excited by what I do.

    John C, we’re in Canberra so it doesn’t matter anyway. But I was thinking exactly the same thing. Been a coalition voter all my adult life. For the first time I am actively considering where else to park my vote.
    Why the hell wouldn’t Barnaby go and talk to Bill Shorten and see what he can offer the Nationals. It’s not as if the Liberals are any different from the ALP. We do not have a right wing voting option in Australia any more. Will someone please stand up and give us that choice.

  45. JamesS

    The Libs have lost my vote in the Senate, I like my local female rep MP (Abbott Supporter) however if a true conservative pops up at the next Fed election may as well go the full Monty.

  46. Stan

    The country is now truly f*cked.

  47. Nelson Kidd-Players

    In case you missed it (and in case you can stand Alan Jones in small doses), Judith had a guest segment on his show this morning, focusing on the general situation of federal taxing and spending.

  48. Nelson Kidd-Players

    And, for that matter, Bolta has picked up this post.

  49. Kool Aid Kid

    The thinking is bent all over the place. Note that John Brumby thinks our super is for nation building! Which I suppose is the natural result when the program is compulsory. So let’s get behind Carmody and scrap the whole thing. It’s a shambles and it does nothing for those who need to save. In fact it takes a big chunk of income that could otherwise pay down the mortgage.

  50. IMBMB

    Many years ago the Two Ronnies did a skit on the new Tax Forms.
    Q1 How much did you earn?
    Q2 How much have you got left?

    Please send balance to Tax Office in enclosed envelope?

    Apparently this is the new format to be approved by Ms O’Dwyer

  51. What a total airhead. Totalitarian airhead to be exact.
    We pay your salary you vacuous bimbo. It is a “gift” that the people “should only provide when it makes sense” and right now you’re not making any sense thus I call for the immediate suspension of O’Dwyer’s pay and priveleges.

  52. There’s some great extra analysis on O’Dwyer here. It explains why she appears to be incompetent for the role of assistant treasurer. Given that this has come hot on the heels of her negative gearing gaff, Turnbull will probably bench her for the foreseeable future.

    http://themarcusreview.com/2016/03/14/kelly-odwyer-on-thin-ice/

  53. Robbo

    “On this sort of stuff, it’s hard to tell the difference between the Coalition and Labor.”

    Since Turnbull became leader of the Libs there is no difference between them and Labor on pretty well everything. The probable reason for that is that Turnbull, to all intents and purposes, is a leftie and only joined the Liberal Party because it was an easier option for him to become PM. He has zero belief and commitment to the core principles of the Liberal Party and has contempt for those that do.

  54. Notafan

    O’Dwyer can change the tax rates on Super the same day she lets every one cancel their super accounts, if they so wish, and stop the compulsory contributions.

  55. Notafan

    It’s this the same MP who gets a paid flight for a nanny to accompany her to Canberra because breastfeeding?

  56. Peter Hill

    But what about changing the tax rules on the pension accounts (or should I say reducing the taxpayers’ funding) of public servants’ and politicians’ defined-benefits super funds? Or, was George Orwell uncannily prescient in his novel “Animal Farm”? Are our PS and politicians the Aussie equivalent of the “nomenklatura”- the promoted communist party members in the former USSR?

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