Letters, December 31

Currently the government’s regressive tax system via ‘‘bracket creep’’ taxes middle class households to the hilt.
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Recently the National Centre for Social and Economic Modelling revealed that average workers earning $78,000 today will wind up in the second-highest tax bracket next year, paying 37¢ for every dollar earned over $80,000. Rising wages and inflation will push more than 1.8million Australians into the second-highest tax bracket over the next four years.

In 1955 the top tax rate, (then 66per cent) cut in at 15 times the average weekly earnings.

The equivalent in 2014 would be taxpayers earning $850,000.

The top tax rate today, including the Medicare levy, is 49per cent on incomes over $180,000 which in 2013 was about 2 times average weekly earnings.

Once again the Abbott government’s Tea Party extreme right-wing policies confirm it is the rich who are the winners while the rest of us live a day-to-day existence.

John Macleod, Berry

Many who voted for Tony Abbott’s government are now very disappointed. His budget was unfairly aimed at lower income earners, pensioners and the unemployed.

If he was realistic he could have done much more; like the following list I have made.

■ Stop the purchase of a new submarine fleet and fighter aircraft. We must stop believing we are a major world military power. This is the nuclear era.

■ We should cut back on unskilled migrants coming here.

■ Parliamentary salaries should be frozen until we are back to surplus.

■ The basic wage should be lowered to $12 an hour to enable small business to employ more.

■ Stop the wealthy using superannuation to avoid income tax.

■ No more middle class welfare payments like the parental leave for the wealthy.

■ Raise income tax for high earners to 55¢ in the dollar. (It was 60¢ in Keating’s government.)

■ Help manufacturers to export with tax concessions.

We all know what should be done except the politicians.

Tony Foot, Unanderra

The only way to bring calm to the troubled financial waters drowning our great nation is for the Abbott government to raise GST to 15per cent.

Leave food and medicines GST-free and tax everything else at a much higher rate. A pension increase will protect the poor and needy.

It [2015] is going to be a terrible year for everyone and there is no easy way out to avoid what lies ahead. Let the ones who have money to spend shoulder the burden.

Which is what John Howard said when he introduced the GST in the first place.

Dave Cox, Corrimal

Barry Swan (Mercury, December 27) expects to be compensated for every little thing. I’m pleased council is not spending ratepayers’ money when they don’t have to.

Would Barry pay for damage if the tree had been growing in his front yard and damaged someone else’s property in the same circumstances? Don’t say your insurer would, because if you weren’t liable, they wouldn’t pay either. Bet Barry is the sort of person that makes a claim against a shoe manufacturer each time he gets a hole in a pair of socks.

Ross Taylor, Thirroul

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