Letters to the editor

Focus on needs not wants

According to the Australia debt clock, the combined debt of federal, state and local governments across Australia totalled $831.08 billion at 6.30pm on Thursday, November 15 2018.

Governments are a collector of taxes, levies and charges, that are used to fund their ever growing number of programs and services, with endlessly increasing costs to Australian tax and rate payers.

The collection of revenue and the resulting expenditure required to fund them, is hamstrung by the inability of both governments and voters, to distinguish the difference between 'needs' and 'wants'.

The 2018 report, released by the Parliamentary Budget Office, on the trends of taxation, should have sounded an ominous warning to all levels of government, local, state and federal.

It determined that the Australian tax base, was narrowing at a time when the needs of spending on areas such as pensions, healthcare and education were growing exponentially.

In 1991, Kerry Packer made the following statement, during his testimony at a federal parliamentary investigation into the print media:

"I am not evading tax in any way, shape or form. Of course, I am minimising my tax. Anybody in this country who does not minimise his tax wants his head read. I can tell you as a government that you are not spending it so well that we should be donating extra."

In light of the constant overspends and failure to stay within set budgets, by all levels of government today, these deeply prophetic words highlight the requirement for only essential services and programs to be funded as a matter of priority.

There are too many examples, whereby government, not a generator of income, implements programs and services, deemed as wants rather than needs, which require long term subsidies and taxpayer support for extended periods

It is time for our governments to deliver balanced budgets, prioritise spending, focus on essential services, address the real needs of Australians and recognise the fact that sometimes, you can't always afford what you want.

Unless these deficits are addressed with a greater level of alacrity, they will be a 'millstone' around the neck of future generations for decades.

IAN MACGOWAN

Ceduna

Letters to the editor

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Streaky Bay’s Maddie Bayly-Stark has recently became an ambulance volunteer and said it was possible to balance work and volunteering.

Go Maddie Bayly-Stark!

Maddie

What a great thing to do Maddie Bayly-Stark!

Amali

 Wow! Go Mads! 

Tori

BS! fantastic work! I reckon you would be a superstar at it and could teach ME a thing or two!!! 

Richard

Yeahhhhh Maddie!! Wewww!!

Ellie

Great work mate

Kristy

Gorgeous Maddie Bayly-Stark. Good on you

Sue

Naw Maddie Bayly-Stark such a legend x

Louise

Nice work Maddie

El