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The budget: punishing people with the temerity to earn a decent living

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Frank O'Shea was forwarded an email today - that suggests some sections of the community are less than pleased with the latest Federal budget.

Dear Merriden,

You are the only one to whom I can write to complain about the budget by that horrible man in Canberra. Can you imagine the cheek of him hitting people like us just because we have the temerity to earn a decent living. You know as well as I do how hard it is for families like ours to live on our combined incomes. I don't know how those on a bare $150k will manage.

That nasty "Mr Bird"

At least we don't have to pay for child care, but school fees are just as bad and they are going to go up next year when they start work on the velodrome. It will be particularly hard on you with the two girls in one school and Tom in another; at least we get a small reduction for the twins.

Talking about twins, when I think of all the extra money we had to fork out so that the IVF people could guarantee that we would complete the family in one go — don't know what I would have done if I had to be off work for two pregnancies. And not a penny from the government to support what was a perfectly reasonable decision. Remember how we used to laugh at Clive and Julian when they suggested we could try the old way rather than visiting that lovely man down in Macquarie Street. The old way was all right when you are younger, but life is too serious for that kind of thing now.

It's all well and good telling women that they should pursue a career, but when we do and we get somewhere in our job, they punish us like this. That's Labor for you; that nice man Hockey would never do something like this. Tony described it as class war. He has a lovely way with people, don't you think: cycling and swimming and surfing and telling the government how awful they are. Mind you, I wish there weren't so many Catholics in his crowd.

The twins have their hearts set on going to Disneyland. We suggested last night that we might go to the one in Hong Kong instead, and they went off to their room to check it out on the internet. If they insist on America, we will all have to travel economy class. That might help them change their minds. I know they are only ten years old, but the other kids would give them an awful time if it was found out. By the way, I heard the other day that Amie Tyrell-Bufney was in economy class when she flew to Paris for her advanced music classes. Don't say it to anyone, as it could easily be traced back to me.

But coming back to Labor and that horrible woman who runs the country. Not even married and living with that man. She doesn't have the responsibility of bringing up children, what with interest rates and the GST and GFC and ABC. She doesn't have to worry about the tennis lessons and the horse agistment and your girls' ballet classes.

If the interest rates go up again on top of the budget cutbacks, we will have to economise somewhere. Perhaps we will stop our contributions to PETA and Greenpeace. Those poor donkeys being flogged to their bare flesh out in Campbelltown and the monkeys in Africa and the horrible Japanese killing the lovely whales.

I don't trust that budget man, Mr Bird. Remember how the Head used to tell us at school to be wary of any man who has mixed grey and black hair, that it was a way of suggesting experience and youth at the same time and that they were after only one thing. We used to giggle and wonder what she meant. He went to a government school you know, Mr Bird, and honestly you can tell.

Horse agistment - doesn't pay itself

Clive is working late tonight, not sure what he's doing — something about dividend, though why it is always on a Wednesday evening I don't know. And to make it worse, it's cook's night off. He will have to cut back on the single malt and be satisfied with the mixed stuff instead. Sorry, blended. But we are determined not to change our cars; they are a small luxury and God knows when you consider how long it takes to get to and from the city, they are more important for what they say about you than as a way of getting around.

I'm glad we voted for Hockey. He said to Alan today that he would bring on an election. Good on him. But you poor thing, you would have to vote for Malcolm again and I know how it sticks in your craw to give a vote to someone who thinks that people like us are responsible for the floods in Queensland.

Sad times indeed, Merriden. We will discuss it further at Doyle's on Saturday evening. I hope it isn't going to be too cold. Tell Julian that it is smart casual and I will try to get my fellow not to wear his tie.

I hope you don't mind me emailing you like this. I rang, but Julian said you weren't home yet.  
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