Letters to the editor

STUNNING: The winner of Bega Valley Shire Council's World Oceans Day photography competition people and the ocean category is Toni Ward with this image.
STUNNING: The winner of Bega Valley Shire Council's World Oceans Day photography competition people and the ocean category is Toni Ward with this image.

Freedom of expression

I agree with former Human Rights Commissioner Gillian Triggs about "Israel Folau's right to express his religious view", albeit irrational, hurtful and based on fairy tale beliefs, comfortably sitting in his luxurious pad. However he conveniently omitted to mention the liars, cheats, charlatans, impostors, sociopaths, phonies, tricksters, exploiters and most of all the paedophiles, rife (but mostly hidden) within the churches including his own.

Bernard Lagarenne, Merimbula

Surviving on the pension

I retired in 2012 after working from age 14 to age 65 and my wife and I applied for the pension.

I always believed in my latter years I would at least be left with my dignity. However applying for the pension certainly blew a hole in that theory.

Besides those who are well off the rest of us have to rely on the age pension just to survive.

Currently the basic wage of $740.80 is supposed to be the minimum weekly amount you need to just get by and that is for one person.

The individual age pension for single people is $463.10 per week. Married couples get $349.05 individually per week.

Another question is why on a weekly basis as one part of a married couple you get $391.75 less than the minimum wage.

Ask yourself how you would pay rent, buy electricity, decent food and health care etc without a single luxury with this pittance.

Older Australians including your parents' grandparents and great-grandparents built Australia into the lucky country.

Why then when they are at their most vulnerable is their dignity taken away and they are forced to live day by day and make a choice of paying their bills or eating?

Doesn't happen to our long suffering politicians does it?

Kevin Rudd - $200,000PA pension plus an estimated $300,000 for PA, office and travel expenses.

Julia Gillard - $200,000PA pension plus an estimated $300,000PA, office and travel expenses.

Paul Keating - $140,000PA plus travel and phone expenses.

Poor buggers, I don't know how they survive?

These are just a few of the myriad of politicians who still have their hands in our pockets many, many years after they are no longer politicians.

I also seriously doubt if any of these people are subject to the same horrendous assets test

As pensioners we are only allowed to earn $87 per week single or a couple $154 per week before they start taking 50cents in the dollar off our pensions.

However all these politician can make a motza sitting on boards and public speaking engagements which I doubt has an affect on their huge pensions?

Doesn't matter which party is in power this injustice is perpetuated by them all while at the same time at midnight sessions of parliament they vote themselves huge pay rises.

Age pensioners like third world citizens have to rely on handouts from family and others to survive

Australian gives billions of dollars in aid to foreign countries and refugees.

What about diverting some of it to pensioners who are becoming refugees in their own country? Charity begins at home.

Enough is enough, it's time to level the playing field.

It's time to lobby politicians of all parties at all levels of government on this issue.

Remember one day this could be you or members of your family.

Name supplied but withheld on request

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