Simple as ABC – a public radio/TV licence

  At first glance, Treasurer Scott Morrison’s plan to slash $83.7 million from the ABC operating budget seems mean-spirited. At second glance, when he tells reporters ‘everyone has to live within their means’, it still seems mean-spirited. The Budget proposal comes at a critical time for the ABC, which has been dealing with cumulative cuts of $254 million since 2014. The Federal Treasurer, having painted the picture large, sent a hospital pass to Finance Minister…

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Don’t touch my dividends, Dude

There have been few occasions when dividends made it on to the front pages or lead item TV news. The first time was when Treasurer Paul Keating introduced the dividend imputation scheme in 1987, largely as a way of eliminating the double-taxing of company dividends. From that day, Australian investors were given franking credits on the dividends they received on their shares. This had the welcome effect of boosting the investment return for the investor…

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Chasing the youth vote

Some of you may remember Federal Opposition leader Bill Shorten’s bid for the youth vote last year, proposing a voting age of 16. There was a hue and cry about this (in the meaning of a loud public outcry…from the French huer or loud cry). Shorten’s gambit coincided with his worst-ever polling (17%) in the preferred leader stakes. The nation’s voting age should be lowered to 16, he said, because young Australians do not see…

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