In its hunt for savings, the Australian Government is “seriously considering” a proposal to tighten the assets test for retirees, shaving hundred of millions off the ballooning cost of the pension system.
At the moment, retired couples who own their home, and with other assets up to $1.1 million still qualify for a part pension, a position many consider untenable. The Social Services Minister Scott Morrison has strongly indicated he will look at scaling back access to the pension for wealthy Australians as an alternative to the Government’s current plan to change the rate of indexation.
In the backflip – the government pledged, via last years budget, to decouple pension rises from the ‘average (male) earnings’, instead linking them to the rate of inflation, saving the government almost $450 million a year – cutting into pension payments by as much as $80 a week – might get the boot?
Social Services Minister Scott Morrison said last week that he wanted “modest, incremental change” to the pension system, though he is still standing by last year’s budget measure and an attempt to raise the pension age to 70 – which has also stalled in the Senate :: Read the full article »»»»
Finland is scrapping cursive writing lessons in schools from next year and will instead teach children how to type, raising questions for the future of handwriting in Australian classrooms.
The country’s board of education said learning to type was “more relevant to everyday life”, a skill that Australian experts agreed was a better use of school time. Since implementing education reforms 40 years ago, Finland’s school system has consistently come at the top for the international rankings for education systems.
Finnish children don’t start school until they’re 7, exams don’t kickoff until they’re into their teens – going unmeasured for the first 6 years of education – There is only 1 mandatory standardised test – taken at 16 yo – and the difference between the weakest and strongest student is the lowest on the planet. So should we be taking notice? :: Read the full article »»»»
The Melbourne inner-city suburb of Richmond is renowned for Victoria Street, the strip that helped popularise Asian food and culture in Australia’s most cosmopolitan city.
It is also a location in which the use and dealing of heroin has been concentrated for more than 2 decades, littered with syringes, dealers brazenly hawking their poison around the bustling food and grocery precinct, locals are out of patience.
However, those trying to cope with the ongoing drug epidemic are on the verge of seeking the State Governments go ahead for Melbourne’s first SIS, Safe Injecting Site.
In 2013, researchers from the respected Burnet Institute completed a study that pointed to an SIS as a relevant resolution to this appalling situation. The ‘North Richmond Public Injecting Impact Study’ was undertaken in collaboration with the Yarra Drug and Health Forum, City of Yarra and North Richmond Community Health Centre. The research suggested that setting up a facility offering 24-hour access to sterile injecting equipment would be one of the areas only hopes of quelling the ongoing “widespread, frequent and highly visible” illicit drug use :: Read the full article »»»»
It’s a brazen bloke that’d underhandedly hide a camera in an Esky, I mean how unAustralian – where do the drinks go? – A South Australian beach goer has gone a step further, surreptitiously sneaking his Eskicam onto a popular Adelaide nudist beach.A dozen nudists chased down the naked man on South Australia’s Maslin Beach after he was spotted with the hidden camera :: Read the full article »»»»
A surprising number of Australian teenagers are choosing not to drink alcohol, new research shows. The findings - from a survey of more than 2,500 teenagers - published in the medical journal Addiction indicates that half of Australian teens don't drink.
The study also found that in the years between 2001 - 2010 the number of young teenagers - aged 14 to 17 - abstaining from alcohol rose from 30 percent to more than 50 percent :: Read the full article »»»»
As polling booths prepare to open across Perth, one political party has ramped up its media presence with that standard Aussie manoeuvre, a pair of strategically place boobs.
In this latest round of political campaigning – Senate seats for Western Australia – The Australian Sports Party has posted a joke on it’s Facebook page that has many wondering what direction – if any – the party intends to canvas punters on.
Australia has a rich history of political cranks, our last election, 2013, witnessed a cacoffiny of crazy, odd-ball candidates.
From Clive Palmer’s paranoia – the billionaire turned politician still reckons lefty Greens are funded by the CIA – to the dope (hemp if you must) party, This latest election – a senate only re-run due to bungling by the Electoral Commission – will surely see politics over-run by mental micro opinion?
The big question has to be ‘has Australian politics become, well, too Aussie?’ As minor, micro parties busily stitch together preferences, swapping deals in the hope of riding an unpredictable wave into the Australian Federal Parliament, the marriages are likely to be idiosyncratic matches, The Hemp, Sports and Sustainable Pollution Parties have little in common but are likely to swap preference in order to gain seats.
The Australian Sports Party -ASP – should apologise for the above Facebook photo, a prominent women’s rights group says. The picture is accompanied by an anecdote about the woman, described as “voluptuous” and a “babe”, who is running with a sign around her neck saying, “If you catch me, you can have me” :: Read the full article »»»»