Unhappy with Shorten grab for super

Richard Randall, Paynesville


In Australia we have all accepted a fair and reasonable welfare system to assist the needy through difficult times.

The system has developed throughout the decades, and been supported by both major parties.

The ‘politics of envy’ which Bill Shorten and the Labor Party have now clearly embraced is totally un-Australian, and is leading us down an unpleasant path.

I started work in 1957, aged 17 in local government, and was fortunate to have superannuation to which I contributed six per cent of my salary, and my employer contributed 6.5 per cent.

I worked for 20 years in the system and accrued $6000.

I believed that superannuation was encouraged by governments as a responsible means of saving for retirement, so I used that $6000 to set up my self-managed superannuation fund when I started my own business in 1978.

Throughout the early years I brought up my three children and eventually paid off my mortgage, whereupon I was able to contribute a little more to my super fund.

I do not live in a million dollar house and have never indulged myself with expensive hobbies or buying boats, caravans, four-wheel-drive vehicles or extensive overseas holidays.

I have instead chosen to contribute more than the required nine per cent of my income to provide for a happy and secure retirement.

The Labor government under Mr Keating imposed a 15 per cent tax on super, but I still persevered, believing that ultimately I would have a better retirement with my investment. I am not a rich fat cat.

I worked and paid my taxes for 55 years from 1957 to 2012, and still qualify for a part-pension from Centrelink.

My super is all invested in Australian company shares, which makes me a ‘part owner’ of those companies, and as such I share their good and bad decisions and contribute to their income taxes.

So why, Mr Shorten, shouldn’t I share the fully-franked dividends which I have paid for?

Your policy will mean a drop in my pension of 22 per cent.