The Bill Shorten-led Labor Party has declared war on self-funded retirees, inviting them to vote for another party.
The Australian Conservatives are only too happy to welcome those who have sacrificed and worked hard to provide for themselves, lessening their reliance on government, in their retirement.
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Sky News host Peta Credlin says the opposition has become ‘cocky’ following Chris Bowen’s (pictured) comments that those who disagree with its policy to scrap full tax refunds on dividend income should 'not vote for Labor' at the upcoming federal election.
Ms Credlin says Labor's proposal is ‘bad policy’ and it’s ‘turning out to be even dumber politics’ to change superannuation rules again.
Labor's 'desperate attempt' to increase its tax base, Ms Credlin says, has galvinised many voters in the lead up to this year's election.
An opinion piece in today's The Advertiser says as we are on the cusp of an election, how the war is resolved is crucial.
The core of the war is treasury spokesman Chris Bowen’s commitment that Labor will abolish the system of dividend imputation credits.
These are payments to investors from companies that have already paid the necessary tax on their profits. Banning this is questionable on a number fronts.
First, the process was arrogant because it was announced as a firm commitment, which will have serious implications for many thousands of voters.
Second, when Mr Bowen realised a backlash was growing in intensity, he stated the opponents “were perfectly entitled to vote against us”.
This was an amazing comment at the start of an election campaign.
In fact, there are reports self-funded retirees are already planning to do just that with many of them turning to the Conservative Party.
There are important social and economic implications of the policy. The Labor Left has long had an ideology of transferring wealth from the rich to the poor.
But the apparent assumption that all superannuants are rich is quite simply wrong. The majority are living frugally, trying to look after themselves and not be a drain on the aged pension system.
They often depend on the franking benefits to pay their bills. Removing their access to these could force them to restructure their savings and rely on the aged pension.
In this case, a new government could save money on the one hand and then pay out massive new amounts to aged pensioners does not seem to make any sense.
Given the breadth and intensity of the negative reactions to the policy, we may have an interesting election after all.
The process was arrogant because it was announced as a firm commitment.
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