Letter: Joe Hockey's tax focus is wrong
JOE Hockey is quite right in saying that our tax system needs an overhaul and needs to be brought up to date in a modern and well-thought-out exercise.
Where we differ is when Mr Hockey starts to explain that we pay too much tax on income and that the consumption tax (GST) needs to be dramatically increased to keep our society and welfare system viable.
The brutality of Mr Hockey's first budget made it crystal clear who will be called on to do the paying and it certainly will not be the wealthy elite, who are treated like koala bears, (protected species) by the LNP when it comes to being asked to pay even a little towards the budget of the country where they receive their often ill-gotten incomes, with negative gearing and superannuation tax exemptions among the legal rorts available.
What Mr Hockey would have us believe is that income taxes are very high for higher income earners and companies in Australia compared to other similar countries, but a quick Google search reveals that our income tax rates are near the bottom of these lists, especially for corporate taxes and income from unearned investments such as superannuation.
What really is needed is to impose a fair rate of company tax of about 35%, and a progressive income tax rate from zero for workers earning under $50,000, up to 75% for the highest individual earners, with no concessions or exemptions.
Australians who choose to make their money in Australia and use tax shelters overseas, such as golfers, tennis players, mining magnates etc should be forced to pay their fair share, and if they fail to do so by residing in other countries, their citizenship should be rescinded, their assets and bank accounts frozen and paid into the federal coffers.
That would enable our country to maintain and improve our society, in a fairer and more equitable way rather than Mr Hockey's way that would continue the unfairness that has been the trademark of the LNP.