Say ‘tax-deductible charitable donations’ three times fast!

A recent article on the Economist website discusses tax-deductible charitable donations, posing the question whether this is the most cost-effective way to fund charities, or merely a lurk whereby the wealthy can get the state to subsidise status purchasing.

Go read it, it’s really good. Then come back here, and over the fold we can discuss alternatives Continue reading

Income management

Below is an article I submitted to South Sydney Herald, and that ended up published as a guest editorial in the October edition.

It was initially going to focus on how income management could effect residents in south Sydney, especially given the high concentration of disadvantage in parts of that community. However, during my research I realised that there would be significant impacts on tenancy rights coming out of the Bankstown trial, that I hadn’t seen raised elsewhere. So that’s where the focus went.

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Superannuation and home ownership

Nicholas Gruen is right. In fact, I agree with him so much that I’ve had a half-finished blog post advocating the same idea for about six months (apparently I didn’t agree enough to finish it though…).

What he said was that if the Government is to increase compulsory superannuation contributions, in spite of evidence that they are not necessary and are likely to have negative social outcomes, then the least they can do is allow people to use a part of their savings as a housing deposit.

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Fattening up the cow

The article shows why the details of the Kurnell desalination plant  privatisation must be made public.

As I foreshadowed in this earlier post, the risk is that the Government will restrict water efficiency measures and otherwise fiddle with the regulations to fatten up the asset before sale. This comes at a cost to the community. We now have more proof that they have form in this area.