Many of the following policies platforms are interconnected. I believe in a holistic approach to society and the economy and there will be some overlay and therefore, some repetition and cross-referencing here and there. Each area cannot and should not be considered in isolation. We must combine areas and work together for the betterment of all.

Here is an overview of some areas that are of great significance to me:

Firstly, I support and encourage POSITIVE ACTION that considers ALL people and their needs, as well bringing the budget back to surplus so that we can provide for our population now and into the future, without further borrowings. A balanced approach!

“Fiscal responsibility with a social conscience”

Secondly, I am particularly concerned about and support the following areas.                                                            (NOTE: They are in no particular order)

  • The Aged, Baby Boomers and Retirees – including, helping them into employment and their own start-ups, as well as supporting them in their move towards retirement and during retirement. Many Baby Boomers are NOT asset or cash rich, contrary to what many would have us believe. They struggle to make ends meet, can lose confidence and feel abandoned, as well as being victims of a perceived unfair tax and social security system. They need our help now, more than ever! This includes fair changes to Superannuation that does not disadvantage those dependent on the pension to live and who have few assets. Those pensioners with major assets, who can afford to, should be prepared to support themselves in retirement.
  • Culture and the Arts – A supportive, respectful and nurturing culture in all aspects of the economy is essential to a balanced society. The Arts help to provide such a culture and relates to all aspects of our society and economy, in one form or another. Arts and Culture enterprises would help with Arts employment and ultimately self-sufficiency for those involved in the Arts. The Arts also record our culture, stories and history for those to yet come.
  • Small Business and Start-ups – Medium to large businesses and enterprises start out as individuals and small business, including the Arts. By supporting the little guy, we are supporting growth and prosperity for the whole economy and society in a practical sense and not just as part of a political catch-phrase. (Plus, see “Taxation” below)
  • Disability inclusion and Enterprises – We must provide benefits and support for those who cannot look after themselves, such as financial, physical, mental and emotional support, as well as activities. This is where the NDIS is such a welcome initiative. We also need to encourage and support those willing to give back to society through enterprises and projects that will grow our culture and employ people, especially those with a disability. Unfortunately, the NDIS ironically disadvantages many who actually need support, by making it difficult or impossible to access funding.
  • Education and Training – Far too often we churn out people with qualifications but little learning. We must tighten up education training, increase the levels of the 3 R’s and include Arts skills as part of the basic school curriculum. This will encourage creativity and entrepreneurship. School students must also learn life skills that they can take into the real world. Very young school students should play more and use technology much less.
  • Employment, Youth and Entrepreneurship – We all want to see young entrepreneurs growing and blossoming as future leaders, business people and future caretakers of our society and culture. They may be intelligent and innovative, but they are not experienced. We must encourage, nurture and mentor them through this process and not simply leave them to make decisions on the run.  If well-managed and guided, they will grow their enterprises and employ other young (and older) workers who can contribute to and support their journey and success.
  • Social Issues (Forced Organ Harvesting of Falun Dafa/Falun Gong, China) – We must stop the Chinese government from selling organs that have been forceably and unlawfully harvested from their innocent citizens and sold to Australian and other organ tourists (recipients). They detain, abuse and force the Organ Harvesting of Falun Dafa (“Falun Gong” in China) members in China, whose only crime is to promote peace and harmony through meditation. We must pressure the Chinese regime to stop this barbaric practice or risk losing trade with Australia. China must also be brought to justice under International Human rights Laws. People before profit!
  • Taxation and Fairness – Our taxation system must be progressive, supportive and fair. The GST taxes everyone and this broad-based, indirect tax is a fair tax if the vulnerable are compensated. As for Income tax, the more you earn, the more you pay. When we give tax cuts to lower or middle-income earners, the high income earners should receive a tax rise so that they remain at the same tax level as before. New small businesses (individuals only) should pay NO TAX on their first year of trading and a low tax rate on their second year of trading.
  • Corporate Taxation. Corporate tax levels must be reduced to help make Australia more competitive internationally and encourage growth and increased employment. This should also help to reduce profits from being transferred offshore to countries of lower corporate tax rates. We must stop thinking with an ill-informed “employee” or “poor me” mentality and realise that corporations employ workers and grow our economy. It is in their interest to continue to do this. Sure, checks and balances need to be in place to ensure that they act legally and in Australia’s interests, but if we continue to tax them heavily, relative to other countries, we will lose more industries and investment overseas. More brands will be sold off to overseas interests. Haven’t we lost enough Aussie brands already? Deeming rules for overseas profit transfers could be introduced, similar to deemed earnings of Social Security and other individuals.
  • Gold Health Card for Veterans. It is unimaginable the blood, sweat, tears and heartache that our diggers serving overseas go through to keep us safe here at home. As an ex-Army Reserve Officer and friend of several veterans, I have had a small insight into their lives and sacrifice. The horrors of war scar you for life and we can’t possibly understand what they’ve been through. The fact that they can’t talk about their experiences speaks volumes. Veterans who go on active duty and put their lives at risk, must receive full health and welfare support for the rest of their days, as well as full pensions…and not just those with obvious physical issues.
  • Lie detectors in court. Who else is sick and tired of dishonest people lying under oath and getting away with it? Lie detectors must be introduced to every situation where the “truth” is paramount and will determine guilt or innocence. Let’s stop protecting perpetrators and look after victims. Just as importantly, let’s look after justice. If you “swear” that you are telling the truth, you have nothing to fear from this initiative.
  • Negative gearing. This is not black and white. I believe, as a tax agent and accountant for many decades, that negative gearing should be allowed as one means of supporting the creation of wealth for retirement and inheritance, but only the first investment property should receive 100% tax deductions over and above the rent received. The deductions should then be reduced to 50% for the second investment and no deduction for subsequent properties. The properties/investments must also be owned, either fully or jointly, in personal names only. No Negative Gearing deductions for corporate investments.  (For the record, I don’t own any negatively geared properties in any form).
  • Capital Gains Tax (CGT) concessions. As with Negative Gearing above, concessions should be limited to 2 investments. Currently sitting at 50% exempt, this should only apply to the first property and reduce to 25% for the second property with no concession for further investments. The personal home must remain CGT free.
  • M1 expansion and light rail/trains to the Gold Coast airport. I live near the beginning of the M1 changing from three lanes to two heading south at Robina, Gold Coast. I know that this highway needs to become three lanes each way down to Elanora, as a matter of urgency and priority. Both ways are choked at various times of the day. I see it constantly. Enough talk, let’s get this done. I’m glad to see that work will shortly commence on the next stage to Varsity Lakes. Let’s also get either the light rail or trains extended down to Coolangatta (Gold Coast) airport. This will relieve traffic to the area and help decongest the M1.
  • Cruise ship terminal for the Gold Coast. It is way past time when the Gold Coast should and must have a cruise ship terminal, in a place and by means that are practical and feasible. Environment must be considered but locals must also be reasonable and not blindly say they don’t want one, at any cost. We have so much to offer tourists and the money coming here will be increased immensely by such a move in my view.
  • Independent Members and Senators – The current major parties appear to want to get rid of all Independents. Well, that didn’t work at the 2016 double-dissolution election, now did it? Quite the opposite in fact. We need Independent Senators and Members to scrutinise legislation (laws), parliamentary behaviour and entitlement abuses, whilst standing up for the people of their State, Territory or electorate. The Federal Government wants control of both Houses of Parliament (The House of Representatives and the Senate) so it can implement any legislation it chooses without Independent scrutiny and discussion. Who will keep an eye on the Parties if there are no Independents?

Finally, whilst I support in principle the right of government to legislate in accordance with its mandate, I worry that without scrutiny, dissection and amendment, the government of the day may abuse this position and use its so-called “mandate” to push through versions of legislation and additional legislation which it did not take to the people at the election.

A balanced, mature, logical and constructive review by Independents in the Parliament and Senate is essential to the passage of fair and equitable laws.  

If you think that one vote can’t make a difference, think again. With your support we can move mountains in Federal Parliament. Not just for McPherson or Queensland, but for all Australians.

This is why I am running as an Independent Candidate for the seat McPherson on the Gold Coast, Queensland.