Govenment employees should pay no taxes


What sort of wild mumbo-jumbo is this you ask? Let me explain my thinking on this.

 

At the moment there are 2 classes of employees, those who produce “capital” and those who redistribute and tax that capital.

That isnt to say most government workers arent performing a service, but that service is (in many cases) provided by imposing a cost on non government workers.  By paying those employed by the government without removing tax from them it would make the true costs of government much more obvious.

It would deliberately separate the 2 classes of workers from each other, the tax payers and the tax eaters.

This would be a good thing and strengthen the legitimacy of may government employees. Few will dispute the nurse earning their salary of $50,000 per year tax fee. (there would be an overall wage drop to reflect lack of taxes). However it would make an army of non productive government workers much more nervous.

 

How much harder would it be to justify paying a ministerial researcher or spin doctor $100,000 when they lack the legitimacy to say “but I pay taxes too”?

That might start to see a more rational check on the growth of government than any other idea I can come up with. I want to see resentment and defensiveness from overpaid and overstaffed sections of the public service. I want people to be able to get angry at inefficient or poor service and shout “I pay your bloody wages”, most customers have the option of taking their business elsewhere in the private sector, the government doesnt have that competition.

I badly want public service bodies to feel under pressure to justify their payroll, and Id love that tax gobbling monster that is Canberra properly resented as the money sink it is.

 

Which brings me to my second point.

No voting without paying tax.

With a few exceptions (those who are disabled/unable to work), the voting franchise should be limited quite strictly to those who pay tax. This would prevent the cultivating of a “client class”, that section of society able to be brought at election by promising to take more from the “capital” class, to give to them. There is a reason most of our labor party hacks seem to spring from public service/unions…

Canberra and sections of most capital cities will never vote for less government as they are effectively dormitory suburbs of tax eaters. As such they tend to be well serviced, “model” sections of the community, a Potemkin village version of the real world.

Is this harsh, yup, but no harsher than digging ditches for a living and seeing 1/4 of it pay for an arts council member or ABC TV presenter.

There are the vast majority of public servants doing just that, providing a service. But Id be willing to bet most of them can point to useless “mouths” within their organisations, which, if they had to justify their position/wages, they couldnt.

 

So tell me, why should public servants/government employees pay taxes?

 

For anyone looking for a US (and far better version) of this rant, they could do far worse than this one, or even this one.

This bloke seems to sum up the US problem well

9 Responses to “Govenment employees should pay no taxes”

  1. Kaboom Says:

    Frollick, you are preaching to the converted.

    I have always maintained a tax/vote value equation. Let me explain:

    1. You can only vote where you have paid tax for the past 3 years at least. This stops the non-taxpayer voting bloc of the 18-20 year olds, who frankly (a) always vote Labor, and (b) don’t have a fucking clue about life, the universe, or anything.
    2. The tax you pay is averaged over previous three years to the FY of the election. An “average” picks up those unfortunate troughs we all experience from time to time. This gives a “value” for your vote.
    3. This is easy, easy information for the ATO to pick up, provided that you lodge your returns on time. If you don’t obey the law, well, fucking complain to someone else about the redaction of your human rights.
    4. Your “AVERAGE” tax paid equals “X” numbers of votes. There could be a baseline of 1 vote per $10,000 of tax paid.
    5. If you MINIMISE your tax through family trusts, arcane accounting procedures, insane negative gearing, then your vote is worth precisely ZERO, because, frankly, you haven’t paid your way.
    6. If you minimise your tax by living on the dole, then sorry, you don’t have any right to vote.
    7. To vote, you simply log onto an ATO website, which shows your tax dollar average, and calculates (a simple mathematical output) your Voter Value. You print off your Vote Value receipt, take it to your local primary school on election day, have its bar code scanned, and hey presto, you have voted!
    8. Someone who has paid a shit-load of tax has much more of a vote than someone who (a) pays no tax because they are a bludger, or (b) pays no tax because they think they shouldn’t pay tax because they are important businessmen. This kills 2 birds with 1 stone….

    I hope that you recognise the benefits of the Kaboom Voting System (KVS).

    I am happy to expand upon the KVS should a Government body extend its trough towards my quivering snout……

    Cheers, K.

    • thefrollickingmole Says:

      I like that plan, the more you pay the more your opinion is worth. Never happen or the lefties would dissapear overnight.

    • bingbing Says:

      I dunno, guys. That means any public school teacher, train driver, bus driver, police officer, many nurses etc. wouldn’t get a vote whilst the bloke flogging useless Chinese junk at the $2 shop could potentially get quite a lot of votes.

      However, voting should be voluntary, not mandatory.

      As for the the first groups mentioned, it does seem a bit silly that they pay taxes. I’ll buy that one for a dollar.

    • Carpe Jugulum Says:

      I have to disagree there Kabs, without the use of family trusts, and negative gearing Lady Jugulum & i wouldn’t have been able to buy our 2nd property & others and make it tax viable.

      I think you fail to understand that things such as negative gearing enable a person on a reasonably humble income to be able to invest in property and as a result increase their income and future financial security.

      Your premise that those who use these mechanisms should not be able to vote is absurd. Lady Jugulum & I paid a combined income tax for FY 2009 of $64,216. By your estimation my wife & i havn’t paid our way??????

      Voluntary voting is the viable option

    • Kaboom Says:

      Carpe, a family trust has zero benefit for property acquisition, amounting to $600 or whatever per child per annum. It is only if the Missus is a fat, lazy, non-working iconoclastic refugee from the 1950’s can a family trust start to work, but then Land Tax and other (State) taxation issues will start to bite, and the on-going cost of the legal structure is eye-watering, let alone the lack of CGT benefits which flow to an individual.

      But, I’m sure you know this.

      Plus, your use of the term “negative gearing” grates with me. Surely, you are aware that “negative gearing” is code for “making a loss”?

      If you made a loss every year of ownership, in the absence of a capital gain, you would be up shit’s creek, wouldn’t you?

      “Negative gearing”is your net rental income being less than the cost of ownership, principally interest on borrowings.

      Yes, it reduces your taxable income, but only at marginal rates. If you are on the highest marginal tax rate of 48.25%, you might get a tax deduction, but you still wear 51.75% of the loss from your own pocket.

      Any person who relies upon “negative gearing” is relying upon a capital gain.

      My belief is that the massive housing bubble in Australia is going to burst sooner rather than later (as it is mechanically unsustainable), and this market function is going to leave a hell of a lot of “negative gearers”with their arses waving in the wind over the precipice.

      I kinda like the idea of compulsory voting, even though it is biased towards the Left. It really is a proper litmus test of what the inmates are thinking. Without Googling, I can’t think of many democracies which mandate suffrage.

      I’m not trying to be objectionable (although I often am!) – I’m just trying to think through issues of consequence to Australians, so apologies for any perceived angst!

    • Kaboom Says:

      OK, having read what I wrote, I could possibly have expressed the concept in a more transparent fashion.

      Right, here comes an example of “negative gearing”:

      Say I earn $200k, and pay $70k per annum income tax. I buy an investment property for $500,000, which I rent out for $400 p.w. ($20k per annum).

      My purchase was entirely interest only, and at 7% variable, is 7% of $500,000, or $35,000 per annum.

      My loss is therefore $15,000 per annum, and as I am at the top marginal rate of 48.25%, I can deduct $15,000 from my gross income of $200,000, which makes my taxable income $185,000.

      The tax I pay reduces by about $7,000, but I have to pay the rest of the $15,000 loss, i.e. $8,000!

      This goes on until I can flog off the “ïnvestment” to the next greater fool. If I die before I can do so, I lose.

      EVERY “negative gearing” scam relies upon capital gains.

      Take away the capital gains (or, worse, interpose a family trust which requires the full monty in CGT), and it is a recipe for disaster.

      You’ve heard those ads for “Australian Defence Housing” on the radio – that marching sound you hear is the Sheriff’s bailiffs, putting up foreclosure auction signs……..

  2. thefrollickingmole Says:

    bingbing

    Nah the government drones could still vote according to the tax that would have been paid if they were on their full salary.

  3. The Wizard of WOZ Says:

    I’m kinda embarrassed to say that I’ve always thought this was the way teh govt worked in OZ.

    I ran into a govt worker at a party last week who hung it on my ignorance.

    Although at 3am it amazing how much you can twist reality to mess with the leftists…

  4. MarkL of Canberra Says:

    I’d agree with most of this, except that you’d lump all members of the military in with the APS.

    If someone puts his life on the line for the country (no matter how theoretical that might be, either), then that person deserves a vote on how the country is governed.

    I’d also include all welfare types in this. No tax, and no bloody vote either. The exception there might be old age pensioners who paid tax throughout their working lives.

    A third comment might be that if non-taxed government income recipients voluntarily paid tax on their tax-free incomes (easy to do by buying tax stamps), they’d ‘buy’ the vote that way.

    MarkL
    Canberra


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