Author: Brian Toohey

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  • AUSTRALIA

    How super hurts the poor and middle income earners

    • Brian Toohey
    • 26 March 2015
    6 Comments

    Although the age pension will cost about $49 billion in 2017-18, it is means tested. In contrast, superannuation concessions are heavily biased in favour of high income earners. Both sides of politics pander to the wealthy and the cosseted finance sector, which want certainty that nothing will stand in the way of their super bonanza.

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  • ECONOMICS

    Australia's new secret police

    • Brian Toohey
    • 09 October 2014
    7 Comments

    Suppressing information can actually damage national security. President Kennedy intervened to get the New York Times to withhold sensitive details from a report about the imminent invasion of Cuba by CIA sponsored exiles in April 1961. Times executives said Kennedy later told them, 'If you had printed more about the [CIA] operation, you would have saved us from a colossal mistake.'

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  • ECONOMICS

    Super's evil empire on shaky ground

    • Brian Toohey
    • 10 June 2014
    15 Comments

    The superannuation industry inhabits a cosseted world in which the money pours in thanks to a combination of government compulsion and tax concessions. The foundations of this empire are criticised for how the tax concessions create an expensive form of upper class welfare, and for the harmful effect of compulsory super's artificial expansion of the finance sector. The Abbott Government shows scant concern about either aspect.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    So much for Labor values

    • Brian Toohey
    • 13 October 2013
    9 Comments

    Amid all the post-election talk about Labor values, no one within the party has explained how the appalling behaviour exposed by the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption could have occurred if senior figures took any notice of these supposedly cherished values. It is not credible that most NSW state and federal Labor MPs, and key officials, had no inkling of Obeid's behaviour while a backbencher or minister.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Black hole budget will penalise the poor

    • Brian Toohey
    • 06 May 2013
    9 Comments

    Labor is struggling with a $12 billion write down in anticipated revenue for 2012-13 after Treasury bungled the forecasts. It could cut back on government assistance to those who can fend for themselves. But it has chosen to penalise the poor, with those on the parenting payment being switched to the lower Newstart. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Australia's nebulous borders

    • Brian Toohey
    • 03 September 2012
    3 Comments

    Looking at a map of the Australian coastline gives no clue about how far Australia's territorial claims extend. As a result, Australian policy makers aren't eager to embrace suggestions that Asian countries disputing possession of small islands and rocky outcrops should resolve their differences by assigning ownership to the closest country.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Electricity price hike won't give us clean energy

    • Brian Toohey
    • 01 July 2012
    16 Comments

    For most Australians, Government compensation for the carbon tax won't cover the steep rise in the cost of electricity caused by unrelated investment in infrastructure. That was not its intention. But the carbon tax will still not ensure the price of 'dirty' electricity is high enough to make coal-fired generators uncompetitive and force a 'clean energy future'.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The age pension was fairer than super

    • Brian Toohey
    • 01 April 2012
    8 Comments

    Paul Keating says he changed superannuation from an elite system to one which would include 'the bloke running behind the garbage truck'. But a new elite has left the garbo in the dust. Labor's core constituency and the economy would be much better off with the age pension rather than super. 

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Rudd's risky fear of Beijing 'bastards'

    • Brian Toohey
    • 03 June 2010
    8 Comments

    An earlier generation of politicians feared impoverished Asian hordes would pour down and eat our lunch. Current PM Kevin Rudd worries their offspring can now afford to come armed with the latest weapons and steal it. His fretting comes at great cost to the nation.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Politicians should not put people in jail

    • Brian Toohey
    • 09 January 2008
    1 Comment

    Terrorism involves the ancient crime of murder. Dr Mohamed Haneef is not charged with murdering anyone, nor involvement in any murder. The ministerial prerogative exercised by Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews should not exist. From 26 July 2007.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    Politicians should not put people in jail

    • Brian Toohey
    • 25 July 2007
    8 Comments

    Terrorism involves the ancient crime of murder. Dr Mohamed Haneef is not charged with murdering anyone, nor involvement in any murder. The ministerial prerogative exercised by Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews should not exist.

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  • CONTRIBUTORS

    Brian Toohey

    • Brian Toohey
    • 17 May 2007
    10 Comments

    Brian Toohey is a columnist and feature writer for The Australian Financial Review, and columnist for The West Australian and The Canberra Times.    

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