Politicians’ Pay Rise vs Paramedics, Police, and People on Welfare

Politicians in the Australian state of Victoria
are on the road to riches having already received a massive pay rise on 16 September this year
with another one due on 1 July 2020. In total, Premier Daniel Andrews and his ministers
will receive an 11.8% pay increase with Andrews’ salary rising $46,522 per year bringing his
total salary to more than $441,000. Other MPs will see a more modest increase
of 3.8%. This means the Premier of Victoria will be
the second highest paid politician in Australia, second only to the Prime Minister who has
a salary of almost $550,000. As a kick in the guts to the people who do
actual work, Victoria’s public sector workers such as paramedics, police, and train drivers,
will only receive a 2% increase. To be fair to the politicians, their salary
is actually determined by the so-called Victorian Independent Remuneration Tribunal. One must wonder how independent they really
are though, as the Tribunal was established by the Andrews’ Government, and its chair,
Warren McCann, who has a long career in senior public service positions, is paid at a daily
rate of $1217 (although, it’s only a part-time position). Fellow tribunal members, lawyer Jennifer Acton
and Barbara Belcher (also a former senior Commonwealth public servant), are paid $1100
a day. As the news headline says, they’re “raking
it in”. I think the “Independent” in the Victorian
Independent Remuneration Tribunal is similar to the “Democratic” in the Democratic
People’s Republic of Korea. But I might be just being cynical. When asked if the decision passes the metaphorical
“pub test”, Andrews replied, “You can make your own judgements about
those matters. I’m not a commentator on these things. I think some people would be upset about any
pay rise for politicians. Other people would take a different view. I made a commitment to make this an independent
process and I’ve delivered on that.” When asked if he works harder than ambulance
drivers and police, he said, “Self-praise is not worth a lot anyway. Me and my team work as hard as we can every
day to deliver against the commitments we’ve made. I acknowledge … we are well-paid for the
work that we do.” When asked about the independence of the Tribunal
regarding the pay increase he said, “I have had no involvement in this, no member
of parliament has had any involvement in this. The government said, ‘well look let’s
change the system, let’s give it to an independent tribunal to take it out of the hands of the
pollies’, and they’ve brought down a decision. My pay, the pay of politicians has not been
set by me.” When asked about the miserly 2% increase for
public sector workers, he said, “The wages policy of the government has
to be set by the government so there is a very big difference. The wages policy is as stated. The Treasurer… has laid that out very clearly
and I’ve got no plans to change it.” United Voice Victorian secretary Ben Redford,
had these words to say, “We’re looking at a situation where Victoria
would have the best-paid politicians but the worst-paid paramedics. I challenge Daniel Andrews to find one Victorian
who thinks that’s OK.” Leader of the Victorian Nationals and Deputy
Leader of the Opposition Peter Walsh, criticised the pay increases, “I think it is obscene that we see the Premier
of Victoria getting such a large increase, while he is actually telling workers they
shouldn’t get an increase. It’s absolutely hypocritical of the Premier
and the fact that he hid from the media and went to Shepparton unannounced shows that
he is just ducking this issue totally. It is Mr Andrews’ legislation, it is his
Special Minister of State that has been driving this. He should be accountable to the people of
Victoria.” At the federal level, unemployed people will
see their Newstart Allowance increase by a whopping $3.30 a fortnight, or a bit under
24c a day. According to Woolworths Online, that means
you’ll be able to buy an extra packet of Chicken Flavoured Noodle Soup or a 12g lolly-pop
every second day. Woot! Although there used to be a time when the
Newstart payment was almost the same as the pension, those days are gone. Newstart is now only about two-thirds of the
pension. If this trend continues, by 2070, Newstart
will be only half of the pension. If you’re still unemployed by the end of
the century, expect it to be only about two-fifths. I suggest using your $3.30 pay rise to stock
up on Chicken Flavoured Soup and lolly-pops as soon as possible. What are your thoughts? Are politicians paid too much? Is the Victorian Independent Remuneration
Tribunal actually independent? Maybe I’ve got it all wrong. Maybe the Democratic People’s Republic of
Korea is actually democratic. Let me know below.

Maurice Vega

26 Responses

  1. The major issue is that being a politician seems to be viewed as a career rather than a public service. People should have real lives in the real world and rotate into politics for a few years then get on with normal life again.

  2. I’m thinking of walking into the local cop shop and staying to them I no longer consent to be governed by this treasonous government. And that they should probably wake the fuck up too

  3. You know the population is TERRIFIED to take action when an unjust decision like this is made and no one does anything … game … set … match. We lose

  4. Hey daily rant australia, as you know yesterday with the whole global climate change protest. A Rmit educator who has DR title who send out an email for his students to attend the rally in return to gain full marks on their assessment. As you mention couple times your an educator in uni, how does this whole thing works?

  5. Their pay should be dependent on the median wage. If the median wage in the private sector doesn't go up then neither should theirs.

  6. People on welfare deserve a pay cut.
    Politicians should get paid a commission based of the income of the average working Australian.

  7. Many of us should have our pay cut, if we are not worth what we earn. Many of us earn way too much. Wages should be set on supply & demand, that's basic economics. Once your wage lowers to what your worth you have a job. Newstart should be abolished, the best welfare is a job & If your worth just $3 an hour, then that's all you should get.

  8. That obscene pay increase obviously isn't performance based. Lucky for comrade Andrews that the electorate in Victoria is stupid enough to keep voting his corrupt arse back into power. Soon the place will resemble the failed state of California but the drones will keep voting labor, keep protesting en mass against the climate change scam and keep sending their children to state schools where left wing teachers brain wash their kids.

  9. I don’t even clear $1200 a week working 48hrs a week, in all weather conditions. Bureaucrats actually make more than the politicians they advise.

  10. Politicians should not be paid unless means tested and approved at Centre Link. Those dow bludgers do nothing except leech off the working class.

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