Local MP’s Where Are You?

So how many of you got pamphlets and other junk mail from candidates for parliament prior to the 2013 federal election ?

Maybe a few of you actually had someone knock on your door ?

Surely most of you would have seen large signs with a huge photo of the guy or girl they wanted you to vote for ?

I was just thinking about it all and then asked myself, “why don’t members of parliament ever ring, visit or write to me “after the election” ?

Why dosn’t my local member make contact with me (and others in the community) to ask how they are doing ? or if there is any issues they would like addressed ?

Yes l understand we can call, email or write to our local member……. but then we have to wait…… and wait… and wait…. and if we are lucky we might hit the jackpot and actually get a face to face meeting with out local MP.

The point l am making is that when these MP’s and “Wanna Be MP’s” need our vote, they pretend to care and they go out of the way to ensure we “know who they are” but once the election is over they seem to almost go into hibernation.

A good local member / M.P. should make more of an effort to speak with the local community they are supposed to represent. I understand it is near on impossible for MP’s to have one to one discussions with the people within an electorate, but surely they could do a whole lot better than they currently do.

Perhaps regular community forums, meetings etc would be a good start. Maybe a newsletter could go out advising people of what a local MP is doing and what they intend to do, as well as information on how best to contact your local MP and make it much easier for people to get issues addressed and of course speed up the response time.

It is unlikely to ever happen, but l posted this simply to remind people of the way we are being treated by these MP’s (they love us when they need our vote and they forget us once they are in)

Banks Are Screwing Us

I have a feeling the banks will become a regular topic of my future posts, simply because there is so much that frustrates me when it comes to the banks.

Do you remember when we used to get a yellow envelope (pay packet) on a Thursday ?

This pay packet came with “CASH” inside of it. Now all we get is a print out of what we earned and our pay is deposited into our bank accounts….. we have no choice in the matter these days, your and my money goes into a bank account first and we get charged to get our money out!

Apart from the fact that many of us will have experienced a technical delay or an employer oversight which meant our pay didn’t go in when it was supposed to and hence we are forced to wait another day or two before we can access our money. My biggest frustration with this whole system is the simple fact that we get charged a monthly “account fee” and we often get charged an extra fee for “over the counter transactions” and on top of all of that we get charged a fee of $2.00 (or thereabouts) to access our money through an ATM which is owned by a competing bank.

Let me summarise what has happened to us consumers over the years

  • We lost our yellow pay packet
  • We were forced to open & use a bank account
  • We loose a few bucks each month in account fees
  • We pay extra to deal with a human (over the counter transactions)
  • We are charged to access our money via other ATM’s

As far as l am concerned, we have been manipulated by the banks into thinking that this is all “fine and dandy”….. many of us will “hunt & search” for an ATM which is owned by our bank so we can avoid the $2.00 fee, but why are we forced to run around the shopping mall to find our banks ATM ? after all the ATM’s have simply reduced the need for banks to hire more staff… in fact the ATM’s have enabled the banks to make staff cut backs.

While the banks are “cutting their costs” they are “increasing customer fees and charges”……. I guess this is why banks are making record profits each financial year.

Just on the banks making record profits………. where do their “profits” come from ? Well the answer is simple it is from YOU & ME !

So when you next hear a bank has made a record profit, it simply means they have found ways of

  • Cutting back staff,
  • Moving jobs offshore
  • Charging customers more fees

(Meanwhile the CEO’s are paid obscene amounts of money)

I have had a gut-full of  the banks screwing us for an extra dollar here and another dollar there…… but what can l do ? my voice ain’t going to make them re-think the way they treat us all.

I guess that is part of the motivation behind this blog, l hope there will be plenty of people who find this site (and l am sure most will relate to this post) and rather than do nothing, please post your reply and keep in touch with us here. It may take a while, but if we can get a large group of people talking about this and other injustices we may be able to take things to the next level and force change!

My Simplistic Economy

l am a high school (drop out) educated bloke with no economics degree, but l have a simplistic view on the economy which l am sure everyone will understand.

My simplistic economy is very much like a game of Monopoly. We all start off with a few dollars and we try to get around the board (again and again) and hopefully buy an “Old kent” or “Pall Mall” and dream of owning “Park Lane & Mayfair”

We all know that in a game of Monopoly, there is a little bit of luck as the dice can either make or break you. It dosn’t matter if you start with 2 players or 10 players, eventually someone ends up with all of the cash and everyone else is broke! Of course that’s the end of the game.

In the Australian economy there is only “so much” money in circulation, yet the millionaires and billionaires keep building on their wealth. Every extra dollar that goes into the bank accounts of the millionaires and billionaires is one less dollar that the rest of us can have.

Ok so you might be wondering why most of us are doing “ok” even though these millionaires and billionaires are racking in more and more money every day ??? Well perhaps look at your credit card statement, or have a glance at your mortgage statement…….. Yes many of us are driven into debt because we have to “borrow’ money in order to make ends meet.

You may have heard Tony Abbott & Joe Hockey (along with others) talk about the need for more “foreign investment” Well in my simplistic view of the economy we are simply encouraging people to inject money into Australia’s economy today (because we need the cash circulation) but we understand that every foreign investment is made with the intention of taking “out” more than was put in. In other words, we get some cash injected into our economy now, but we will pay a high price later.

If things continue as they have done, most of us will find it harder to make ends meet and there will be more people in extreme financial hardship

As the old saying goes, “THE RICH GET RICHER & THE POOR GET POORER”


O’Farrel Out Of Touch

Most of us would have said it many times “Government is out of touch” and yes they are!

My most recent example of a government being out of touch is the New South Wales Barry O’Farrell state government.

Ok we would all agree there is a definite problem with alcohol and violence and our thoughts do go out to the family and friends of all victims. “Yes” something needs to be done, but what Barry O’Farrell has done is plain and simply wrong and irrelevant.

What is “mandatory” sentencing going to achieve apart from throwing people in jail for a long period of time ? How does that help a family who might have just lost a son or a daughter to a punch or a kick from someone who has had too much to drink ? It does nothing to reduce the rate of violent acts as many people who are intoxicated are simply not capable of thinking properly and clearly enough to consider the consequences.

Is an idiot who has had to much to drink going to stop and think to themselves “ohh better behave because of mandatory sentencing” I DONT THINK SO !

I do agree that quite often we will hear of a court case where the defendant has been dealt with far too leniently……. but that is no reason to introduce mandatory sentencing, Judges and Magistrates need to be advised of community expectations for various crimes and if a judge or magistrate hands down what is deemed a excessively lenient sentence, he or she should be held to account and warned or fired if necessary.

To reduce the rate of alcohol related violent acts we simply need to get a little bit more serious about the serving of alcohol. Pubs and clubs need to adhere to the responsible serving of alcohol a lot more thoroughly. Instead of looking at each additional drink as a few more bucks in the till, the pub and club owners need to consider the person they are serving and the general public a little bit more than they currently do. If someone has had too much to drink they should not be given another beer or another bourbon, they should be refused service and assisted to a taxi.

While writing this post l am actually getting quite angry with these pub and club owners, because they are selling as much booze as they possibly can… all in the name of making a few bucks…. but every patron who they help intoxicate is another drunk for the taxi driver to try and get home, the public to avoid and possibly for the police to deal with.

Many of these pubs and clubs are playing a huge role in causing this problem, but they would scream if they were forced to shut their doors a few hours earlier.

My position on what Barry O’Farrell has done is he has gone after the “easy target” and not really considered the likelihood of his new laws actually making a difference. For Barry O’Farrell it “looks” like he is taking a tough approach, but in fact he is taking the cheap option, because he should be looking at the pubs and clubs and winding back their hours, along with holding judges and magistrates accountable for sentences for serious crimes which seem too lenient.