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Fun With Numbers And Why Welfare Should Only Go To The Deserving

“This year the Australian government will spend on average over $6,000 on welfare for every man, woman and child in the country. Given that only around 45 per cent of the population pays income tax, the average taxpayer must pay more than twice this amount in tax to fund welfare expenditure.

“In other words, the average working Australian, be they a cleaner, a plumber or a teacher, is working over one month full-time each year just to pay for the welfare of another Australian. Is this fair?”

Joe Hockey

A few weeks ago, I struggled to work out what on earth Joe meant by this. There are so many strange calculations in this that I suspect he was hoping that we just didn’t think about it and got angry at those people who are getting welfare.

Except that, apparently, the Australian government is spending $6,000 on every man, woman and child. Of course, this is an average. So I – as a taxpayer – am very angry that I’m not getting my $6,000 and it’s going to some lucky bastard whose got no job and gets to watch daytime TV in between surfing at Bondi while playing video games on their iPod.

And, as Joe pointed out – I’m working a month a year just to pay for the welfare of another Australian. And yes, it’s not fair. So I decided not to think about it and get angry. Can this person come and do my job for that month? That would be fair.

When I suggested to an unemployed teacher that they could come and work instead of me, they were quite enthusiastic until I pointed out that they wouldn’t be paid – it was just to make it fairer because, after all, I’m working that month to pay for their welfare.

But even though I couldn’t convince somebody to work for nothing, I decided that Joe’s idea of telling us how long we’re working to pay for things was a good idea.

Taking average weekly earnings at approximately $1437 for a full time employer and multiplying this by 52, this means that the average taxpayer is paying approximately $12467 in tax each year.

So, the average taxpayer is working for 37 years to pay for the grant to build the Science Wing at the elite private school down the road.

The average taxpayer is working for 402 years to pay for the PM’s grant to Manly to build a new grandstand.

And finally, the average taxpayer is working for a million years in order to pay for the jets we intend to buy. Although this one makes me angry because if we have to work for this long the retirement age will have rise again, and, like the unemployed, these planes don’t work! Sorry, I forgot the money for this had been set aside, so it’s really no cost at all.

With commitments like these, I can see how I can’t possible spend a month working to support someone on welfare.


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  1. Dan Dark

    When Smokin’ Joe left school, they should of given him a box of rods, because he never really grasped the basics when it comes to numbers and maths, Kaye Lee was a maths teacher maybe she has an old box somewhere that she can dust off and send him, I will even pay for the postage 🙂

  2. Bill Morris

    What about annual holidays Ross, averaging at least a month that you are not at work. Fair compensation for your contribution to the welfare of another Australian. Elite schools don’t need grants, that’s what school fees are for and surely Manly’s grand stand will serve as a monument to the most dishonest PM Australia has ever seen and a symbol of silver-tail achievement

  3. Mike Wilkinson

    It means your average taxpayer is working their entire lifetime to pay for one year of Abbott or Hockey too! Now that makes me angry!

  4. Kaye Lee

    CHOCOLATE maker Cadbury recorded a $127 million profit in the year Prime Minister Tony Abbott promised the company a $16 million grant to revive factory tours.

    The Government argued the SPC situation was different because the Cadbury money would go into tourism, but the Commission of Audit said that funding should be abolished.

    Nearly 10 months after the election promise, Cadbury has yet to lodge a business development plan with Austrade.

    But a Cadbury spokeswoman said plans were being shared with the Government.

    “We are in dialogue and looking to define the project scope,’’ she said. “Their expertise is helping to put forward the best business case.’’

    Last year Cadbury negotiated with the State Government for a $400,000 grant to develop a “Cadbury World’’ in the Isobar building on the Hobart waterfront.

    Right to Information documents obtained by the Mercury show Cadbury reverted to a factory tour some time between January 2013 and Mr Abbott’s promise in August.

  5. pimmento

    That was so funny, but yes I would like your job for a year and you spend a year living on what I survive on…people do incredible things to try and get into the workplace, but sadly it is never enough…so yes I would love to be back in the workplace.

  6. Kaye Lee


    I sit here with no power to make the changes that seem so obvious to me (my family says I have despotic tendencies) but I see so many people ready willing and able to contribute to our society and we seem unable to marry them up with opportunities to do so. This is the real waste in our society.

  7. Keitha Granville

    It was yet another one of Joe’s fatuously stupid foot in mouth comments – like the offensive wind turbines. I am beginning to seriously question the level of education that some of our leaders have attained. Or did they just pay for some degrees or qualifications cos they wreren’t smart enough to actually earn any ? I don’t mind my taxes supporting someone on welfare – my husband is on a pension so I am effectively paying for him too. Actually, can we specify what we want our tax dollars to go to ? That would be great ! I vote no to the fighter planes and the concessions to miners for a start, then we could afford to give more to those who ACTUALLY need it to survive.

  8. Mozzie2

    AS I flew over Melbourne last week I looked out at the sprawling city and the infrastructure I helped to build. Those people today will get all of this for free, roads communications etc.Do they think that that they don’t owe previous generations something for this. Or is it all theirs by entitlement.

  9. Bob Lawson Paulson

    We could add up what it costs to rear a child ,It would be staggering .But we can’t stop caring for them because they cost so much ,Joe was some sort of Infant at some time (to our misfortune ) ,but his Parents raised him they never shirked their responsibility ,like this Gov’t is doing .

  10. Möbius Ecko

    That’s a incongruous analogy Mozzie2.

    The current generation is working and paying their taxes, levies and rates to build the infrastructure for future generations, and the future generations will do the same. Only now we have a government that believes those taxes, levies and rates should be taken away from infrastructure and given to the wealthy so there is little for future generations.

  11. CMMC

    Everyone is a taxpayer, due to the GST.

    Don’t let them keep making this redneck distinction whereby Income Tax payers are more noble and deserving than those on welfare.

    We all feed that Cash Cow in Canberra every minute of the day.

  12. Kaye Lee

    That bastard Morrison has finally admitted that he has indeed handed asylum seekers to the Sri Lankan navy. I have just rung his office to vehemently express my disgust and I would encourage everyone else to do likewise. Let’s give those spin doctors something to do.

    These are his phone numbers

    Canberra (02) 6277 7860
    Cronulla (02) 9523 0339

    I also took the opportunity to tell the spin leeches my disgust at paying $8 million for kids to search through the internet for my opinion while they sack our Disability Commissioner. It was a very cathartic experience.

    Update: the girls answering the phone at his Cronulla office just hang up on you. Great democracy we have going here!

  13. Kaye Lee

    The Commission notes that it would be a flagrant violation of international human rights and refugee law to return asylum seekers to their country of origin without conducting a fair and robust assessment of their claims. The Australian Government must act consistently with the principle of non-refoulement by ensuring protection for asylum seekers from removal to a country where they face a real risk of significant harm

  14. DanDark

    I am on to it, ringing now, he is a murderer Morrison the Mangler, oh and they don’t want to hear it, had a go about the 8 mill to trawl the internet, she quickly hung up,

    And the other number, I said “he will pay for harming and intentionally killing asylum seekers, March Australia is coming to you very soon, start running Morrison” and a few more words, “Tony is a fake” she eventually hung up, cos I don’t hold back when I ring these fools, cowards that’s all they are cowards

    and I left this on Miss Wicks facebook page this morning 😉
    After she left comments about “it being a big week) lol
    Kaye,now I am mad, takes a lot, but shit that’s it, both guns blazing now, they are going to cop it 🙂

    This week is an important week, the public will find out the lie, there is no budget emergency, PEFO and MYEFO a 2nd grader could work out how Smokin Joe cooked the books, Tones has dual citizen ship, he forgot to renounce his British citizenship, he is a knuckle dragging Neanderthal, you will not destroy this country with your nazi ideology and propaganda Miss, the election was rigged, Australia did not give phoney Tony a mandate, missing boxes of votes in Indi, found in corner, and nasty mirabella was gone, in a blaze of dust, if you keep up on the track you are on Miss Wicks, you may just regret treating this country and humanity like a door mat, that you can screw and think that it’s ok, It is not, and your gov is sliding into oblivion, those old theft charges you are hiding are about to all come out, a secret is a secret till exposed, and you libs have been caught with your pants down, and your hand in the cookie jar, yes this will be a big week for the Aussie people, when we see the back of your fake gov, rupert has failed, he might just turn on Tones like the feral dog Rupert murdoch is, watch this space, cos it’s coming Rupie is not happy, he and the rest of the fat cats want their share of Aussie, they want it all, well over my dead body Missy 🙂 have a great week you lying deceiving piece of useless human…

  15. Doobasdad

    Mobius Ecko. Every time one of Hockey’s target audience catches a train, makes a telephone call, drives on a road, they are using infrastructure he or she did not pay for. Yes future generations will contribute to build new infrastructure, like Abbotts Point but nothing like what has been built by these very people that Hockey would deny a reasonable retirement to. No new Hydro Electric schemes, perhaps repair a few existing highways and build projects for the miners, yes. But the bulk of what the current generation acquire for free, will have been paid for and built by those very people who would be denied a fair retirement. Do you seriously think that the current generation will build as much as they inherited? Of course not.They might have built an NBN for future generations had they the balls to stand up to this Government. But it was all too hard.

  16. Möbius Ecko

    That’s it Doobasdad.

  17. John Armour

    We all feed that Cash Cow in Canberra every minute of the day.

    Sorry CMMC, taxes fund nothing.

    Taxpayers do not fund anything

  18. Maria

    Joe has demonised those people who receive welfair. Is he just talking about those on the dole watching tv, well I think they are too busy looking for the demanded amount of jobs applications. Or is he also including the aged? The aged and disabled have also been targeted. Where does he get off wanting to take food out of people’s mouth when he is eating lobster and smoking cigars. The bad feelings he is promoting in the community are simply part of this disgraceful gov scare tactics feeding into peoples greed and selfishness. Go Joe you are on a winner and will be putting people on the street. Will YOU have them all over for a steak bbq, I doubt it.
    This gov is on the way out and I hope no one will employ you for what you are doing to this once great country which YOU are putting in the gutter.

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