Today’s Re-Tweets (about the #floodlevy)

This is my last word on this #floodlevy (well, I’ll say that for now but knowing me…). Of course I’ll answer comments etc, but I’m not going to waste any more space on this blog for this matter. I was going to add this as a comment on the last post, but I think it deserves the attention of its’ very own post. But no more after this… ok??

Actually, these are not my words… they’re the words of those Aussies on Twitter who felt the need to say something about this levy. I have tried not to choose only those that mirror my view… hell, I’m not really all that sure what my own view is anyway.

I wanted to get a general idea of public consensus on this, and Twitter seems to be a good (and increasingly popular) way of getting it. Some of the following are tweets from politicians, some are from news sources, and some are from every-day nobodies just like me. Some are for the levy, some against, some with a political bent. Some are heartfelt, some indignant, some rather ignorant and mis-informed. Some are serious and some are very tongue-in-cheek… but they’re all the words of people like us… Aussies.

I’m pretty sure that whatever your particular view, you’ll find it voiced amongst all of this. And I’m also pretty sure that some of what you read will frustrate you. I wasn’t aware how much I RT’d I started copying them in here… sorry for that. But I would encourage discussion, if that’s what you choose. … we really can’t find any reasonable answer without discussion, can we?

As for me… well, it won’t affect me so why should I care? More importantly, why should my opinion matter??

These are the tweets that I Re-Tweeted immediately after Julia Gillard’s press conference, and through to the evening of Jan 27 2011. They are in no particular order, apart from the order that I Re-Tweeted them. I start with the tweets Julia Gillard made herself directly after the conference.

  • JuliaGillard The Gillard Govt will make an upfront payment of $2billion to Qld so rebuilding can start in flood affected communities immediately.
  • JuliaGillard The #floodlevy will not be paid by anyone directly affected by the floods, as I explained in my speech today JG
  • JuliaGillard Someone earning $60K will pay less than $1/week for the #floodlevy. A calculator is available here JG
  • macleanbrendan Damn! I dropped $4 down a drain pipe. I was gonna use that to buy a coffee to stay up and complain about the #floodlevy.
  • scottpettet I don’t object to the flood levy, but I DO object to the poor handling of public monies that now sees us needing a levy #floodlevy
  • phil_bonanno after cycling through 2 rounds of stimulus payments, Australian retailers were about to get back on solid footing. Then came the #floodlevy.
  • koosli Your donation is to help people. The levy is to rebuild infrastructure. They ain’t the same. #floodlevy
  • RightNowImBored #floodlevy wow more tax? pretty sure there’s a special slush fund, that the gov have collected over the years, saved for natural disasters
  • patriciakumar fiscal mismanagement (whatever the fuck that means) by gov doesn’t mean we make qld suffer for it. #floodlevy
  • GreensMPs Greens remain open to flood levy but climate program cuts make no sense #floodlevy
  • AshaAvani RT @shanecollihole “Join the Julia Gillard Flood Donation. Actually, you don’t need to sign up… You’ve all joined!!!!” #floodlevy
  • nic_in_zurich @JuliaGillard Canceling climate change programs to pay for flood impacts is a quick fix with longterm negative impacts #floodlevy
  • skkng @ClaireRConnelly I don’t mind paying, but this govt doesn’t know ‘to save money for a rainy day’ or manage its money full stop. #floodlevy
  • bellelumiere I am pro #floodlevy & happy to give what is fair and reasonable to help build infrastructure within my country. Under $5 seems fair to me.
  • 3AW693 Wayne Swan tells 3AW a ‘National Disaster Fund’ will be discussed in coming months but defends today’s tax announcement #FloodLevy
  • rexmal The PM gives us a brand new Flood Levy & we complain, how ungrateful are we? #floodlevy
  • debonbon If you earn $60,000 a year and are whining about paying a whole $50 you are a selfish prick. #floodlevy
  • hmoffatt lots of ignorance on display on #floodlevy . donations are irrelevant, they are going to Qld govt fund and Red Cross (Vic), not federal govt
  • SheedysLeftFoot I’d support a #floodlevy, if it was fair and permanent and used to protect all Australian’s against Flood, Fire and Drought.
  • grantstowell Julia just made a donation to the flood levy on my behalf of approx $190. I already support the Salvation Army. #slappedagain #floodlevy
  • Princeyprince Probably it is not very clever to rebuild houses in the same spot using the $ from the #floodlevy
  • girlclumsy Someone on $100,000 a year will pay an extra $250 in #floodlevy. Might mean they get the new iPad a few weeks after release. #hmmm
  • peterjcaseytwit I will cheerfully double my #floodlevy in order to fund action on climate change AND help the flood-ravaged.
  • seekereleven My understanding is that I will be paying all of a $1.50 per week on the #floodlevy. I’m happy to do so. Suck it up whingers
  • mrchriswagner When reading the comments on all the #floodlevy stories, it frightens me how aggressive and uninformed Aussies are #thebigwet
  • SawHole I think some Australians think the only type of giving they need to do is tossing a coin at the Salvos @ the pub. #floodlevy
  • clairealana My my, hasn’t this #floodlevy got people talking.
  • kristinalford RT @mtchl: Hey Gillard, I’ve got a wild idea for funding recovery from a climatic disaster. How about A PRICE ON CARBON! #facepalm
  • I_enigma @3AW693 NO – just look at the bushfire rebuilding (or lack of) and look at newcastle some 20yrs on #floodlevy
  • erin_richmond I DON’T object to #floodlevy, but can someone explain to me why the govt can’t dip into this ‘contingency reserve’? Is it purely political?
  • misskylie77 So a day after Australia day, we are discovering that “mateship” & a “fair go” have a price #irony #floodlevy
  • montyhamilton Govt should be able to fund $5.6b natural disaster if it can fund $43b #NBN & $42b stimulus; insulation program alone cost $3.9b!
  • branwelltravers I’d prefer to pay a #floodlevy of $1.44 a week rather than the government cutting funding to the schools, hospitals and defence. #Auspol
  • piers888 I want to pay the #floodlevy just to annoy Tony Abbott
  • timreverb If you’re going to take 1% of my income to pay the #floodlevy, please don’t blindly rebuild on flood-prone land.
  • ShitMyRangaSays Mmmmm latte. #floodlevy
  • OsheaDean People are being incredibly two faced about the #floodlevy – you either want to help (as many professed passionately) or you don’t.
  • RobLindner89 A good government should put money aside for natural disasters. Why didn’t ours? What did they spend it on instead? #floodlevy
  • MavericSpeedcus consider the #floodlevy a forced donation to those who need our help. i’d rather pay $100 than watch all my shit go underwater #stopbitching
  • davesact $50 for $50,000+ earners and $250 for $100,000+ earners… Harden up and pay the bloody #floodlevy 1.8 Billion off 5 Billion bill.
  • auTODAY #floodlevy Julia will need to convince the hung parliament her package is good || LOL pardon the pun via Ten news
  • Tranda_Paton “@JuliaGillard: Someone earning $60K will pay less than $1/week for the #floodlevy. //Ridiculous and I am not a fan. Should allow donations
  • matthern Not exempting charitable donors is a disincentive – I suspect that next disaster more may hesitate to donate. Your thoughts? #floodlevy
  • GPRollins You have no idea how depressing it is to make a mostly tongue in cheek comment, only to find Abbott has had the same idea. #FloodLevy #NBN
  • JLStockdale @JuliaGillard Does our government determine what is fair or do the constituents? #laborfail #floodtax #npc #floodlevy
  • doddas Not sure how I feel about #floodlevy. I want to help an have donated but if it’s based on the Medicare levy it won’t effect me.
  • d0connor Well I’m off to drink beer, possibly vodka or gin mixed with an assortment of juice products as well. #floodlevy
  • I_enigma RT @hapidaze: is not impressed by the stoopid #floodlevy I pay my taxes, get little in return and now I’m slugged again.
  • rudeboyninja I’ve already donated more than the pittance the levy will cost me & happy to chip in a bit more to help out. Damn conservatives! #floodlevy
  • HLCoops people need to get onboard with the #floodlevy – we expect our leaders to make these tough but necessary decisions
  • icanseeit @JuliaGillard Your #floodlevy is unfair, unnecessary and ridiculous. What about money in the contingency funds? You need to do better!
  • NathanLee Screw the #FloodLevy instead tax miners, cut school chaplains, stop private school rorts & tax churches =$billions. #AusPol #qldFloods
  • branwelltravers Abbott and the Liberals have a very short memory – Gun Levy, Stevedoring Levy, Milk Levy, Ansett Levy & Sugar Levy #FloodLevy #AusPol
  • Matt_Kunkel If one schooner a week is what it will take to get this country moving, I’ll happily pay a #floodlevy for my mates in need
  • emmsyish The #floodlevy isn’t to rebuild houses, it’s for infrastructure. The ignorance. It hurts.
  • Pete_of_Eltham So if I quit my job for a far lesser one, get my wife out in the workforce, earn the same, I pay 90% less. #floodlevy Total crap.
  • StGusface Flood levy to cost most NOTHING Median wage is 45k #floodlevy #fact
  • jazir1979 how does “affected by the floods” equate to “received a Disasster Recovery Payment”? #floodlevy @JuliaGillard
  • Dpek #floodlevy = escape for insurance companies Tranda_Paton Where are The Hollowmen when we need them? #floodlevy
  • nightkhaos @GPRollins *slams head against the way over and over* No. Just no. I have explained why that won’t work 3 times TODAY. #nbn #floodlevy
  • princessnowhere I’d be really fucking surprised if anyone earning $50-100K+p/a would’ve NOTICED the #floodlevy amount if they hadn’t been told about it.
  • branwelltravers As Australians we believe in mateship and a fair go for all especially in times of trouble. #floodlevy
  • NewsAtEleven Alternative to #floodlevy: Legalise gay marriage and use the incoming tourism bucks. Simple AND gets the UNHRC off your backs, Julia.
  • bglilley I’d pay the #floodlevy (don’t earn enough), but I’m opposed to it. Delay the surplus and increase net spending.
  • Godismylawyer #floodlevy news crew spoke to vols saying keep up the work guys you wont have to pay the levy wrong they were from brigades not affected
  • miss_yolie @Keg I know right. The incompassion of people astound me. It’s as though they’ve been asked to part with their first born. #floodlevy
  • tmc071 waddawewant?qld fixed after the floods!! whendowewantit? NOW! youwantustopaywhat??? #floodlevy
  • climatecentre Beggars belief that govt would choose to cut climate programs 2 fund climate-related disaster relief RT @senatormilne
  • laurafayepoole Mixed reaction to #floodlevy in Vic town Charlton, hit by floods. Some say the levy isn’t a long term solution to natural disaster rebuild
  • boscoross This is a one-off levy; there will be no more floods! #floodlevy BabsNation #6pm
  • Hugh Rimmington “Most people won’t pay anything” towards the #floodlevy. Huh????
  • stewie48 gillard = ABSOLUTE COW!! #floodlevy
  • benjya85 Interesting reading people’s opinions on the #floodlevy. Personally I don’t mind, I’m just over the threshold, but it will hardly affect me.
  • John_Hanna I got a cheaper wine for dinner tonight. Can pay my #FloodLevy for an extra 8 weeks. #Win
  • jenelleeeeee The #floodlevy is for infrastructure. Without infrastructure society can’t function. Quit whining, its not that much.
  • jamesdrax I believe in being charitable by my own choice, not to have money forcibly scooped from my pay packet by the state. #floodlevy
  • johnkung Is it Tuesday? Why are there so many tightarses around? #floodlevy
  • ajs071 Are the people who cannot afford booze and smokes but still buy them, are these the people against this levy? #floodlevy
  • ShortBlokeJosh Is this #floodlevy to help qld get out of debt or to rebuild?Where was the #firelevy when Victoria had Black Saturday ? #Ivedonated
  • jameslee84 Budget Surplus is not our problem! RT @paulsnedden@JuliaGillard, why did I bother donating if Im now being forced to donate again?#floodlevy
  • heather2711 I do not like this flood levy. Why aren’t there provisions for disaster recovery already built into the budget? #floodlevy
  • givemethecure The irony of the #floodlevy angering the “Small Government” opposition is that they expect the “Big Government” they oppose to pay for it
  • WhyPaulHowes Our Qld marginal seat retention strategy has started today. Thanks for the $1.8 billion Australia! #floodlevy #auspol #swan13
  • nayby69 I’m for the #floodlevy, I’m not for some being excluded (low income, flood victims). We need to come together as a nation to rebuild!
  • amosaikman Given this precedent, will there be a means test governing which natural disasters deserve a #floodlevy from now on? @JuliaGillard
  • dbreban_18 It seems the only groups supporting this tax are unaffected income earners and left wing journalists. #floodlevy #auspol
  • geehall1 RT @theheraldsun: Bligh thanks Australians for levy #qldfloods
  • abcnews Barnett defies Abbott over flood levy.
  • dougoldmeadow Will my #floodLevy be used to build flood levees so as to avoid further Flood Levy’s ?#StuffIWonder
  • EdHobbs75 Aussies happy to take the $900 bribe that landed in their bank account back in 2009 but they’ll be crippled by $1 a week #floodlevy
  • azizikhan Aust public don’t want a business driven govt. Like S’pore. So you end up with paying tax. You get what you put in. #floodlevy
  • I_enigma @stormbikes don’t worry – I agree with you, I got shouted down this morning #floodlevy
  • PrettyPennyLane #floodlevy so will this money only be used for Qld flood affected infrastructure or flood affected infrastructure in other states as well?
  • BeachyPeach Would be interested to see if any people bitching about #floodlevy receive any gov benefits like baby bonus and the family tax benefit.
  • JohnnyCowan We all need to do our part, we can’t say we love the people and country without making a contribution. the #floodlevy is needed!
  • vijaybala Me thinks #Labor’s $12.7 billion cash handout in 2009 could have been put aside for a rainy day (literally) #floodlevy
  • josephryan79 Not averse to #floodlevy, needs 2 be spent in right place, not rebuilding on floodplain. Don’t know why we don’t have the $ already though!
  • EggplantHero The idea that just because you can “afford” a tax it is a good thing is ridiculous. #floodlevy
  • tmc071 oh dont start on the fireworks again. #floodlevy
  • Mezmoo74 think I would have preferred the politicians to take a pay cut than to force a tax on everyone #floodlevy
  • fdonnelly If the #floodlevy gets passed, I hope the govt controls and spends the funds better than they did with the BER
  • master_grundy If the Libs were prepared to give some margin on getting on the budget into surplus, perhaps the #floodlevy wouldn’t be needed.
  • speckledblack the idea of the #floodlevy sucks, it’s not about how much money ppl lose from it. It’s a bucket of cold water after the generous donations
  • Andy_Downunda When it comes 2 rebuilding after natural disasters shouldn’t we b influenced more by desire 2 help rather than our after-tax income? #auspol
  • 612brisbane 612 ABC Brisbane #floodlevy poll. 493 votes SMS/Twitter/phone. Permanent levy 38.7%, No levy 34.3%, One-off levy 27.0%.
  • brisbanetimes Flood damage bill to be revealed today by Treasurer Andrew Fraser
  • geehall1 @5MillionPeople: #green programs in #Australia have bn hit hard by spending cuts to help pay for #qldfloods #vicfloods

For the record… these are my #floodlevy related tweets…

  • OneGreenBus This flood= temp #floodlevy What about Cyclones Another levy? Nother 4 bushfires? This sets precedent Perm #disasterfund wld b better option
  • OneGreenBus We Aussies DO support mates UnAussie tht govt wants 2 MAKE us pay more #floodlevy If needed ask Don’t take How bout incent 4 lge bus donats
  • OneGreenBus #floodlevy incent 4 lge bus donats
  • OneGreenBus Collectng temp #floodlevy instead of perm #disasterfund not v smart Weather happens Would b nice 2kno we covered nxt time Looking long term
  • OneGreenBus @JuliaGillard @TheQldPremier #floodlevy ASK us 2contribute more U know we will Weve all seen just how much we will give

And finally… just a little food for thought…

  • philo_quotes The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook. ~ William James
  • Emperor_Bob A fanatic is one who can’t change his mind and won’t change the subject. ~ Winston Churchill
  • Emperor_Bob Keep cool; anger is not an argument. ~ Daniel Webster
  • Bern_Morley Hommus. Who knew. #Ilikeit




  1. January 29, 2011 at 4:05 pm

    @OneGreenBus (This started as a Twitter reply, lol)
    I’m not Aussie and I don’t know the political “climate” there, but whatever the #floodlevy entails, it will seem ineffective to some folks. I read through some of your RTs and I do sense some general disgruntlements among Aussies… which is totally understandable. I can only imagine the loss and despair that is surely prevalent throughout eastern Australia and my heart goes out to everyone affected. I do like your personal tweets though re permanent disaster fund, which seems logical. That’s not an ingrained aspect of the government in Oz? I guess its different in the States… we have an agency for EVERYTHING, which is a good thing/bad thing scenario… which might just explain part of our trillion dollar deficit.
    Good Post. ~das~

    • Tina said,

      January 29, 2011 at 4:29 pm

      Thanks for your comment das. 😎
      But that’s the main problem.. we have had a number of funds in the past that were supposed to be kept for times of disaster. Generally though, I think those massive reserves of money were used to prop up the economy. That worked at the time, but I have to wonder at what cost? … and whether it was all really necessary? …and should we be angry at being ripped off time and again? … and why should the govt get away with ripping us off after a flood (it’s called ‘looting’ if the general public do it… ‘Un-Australian’ if shops do it… ‘bad business practices’ if the insurance companies do it… )

      To be honest, it’s kind of surprised me, this uproar. I give up trying to work out who’s right and who’s wrong. But I do know this… A couple of weeks ago I wouldn’t have expected this dissention between Australians. A couple of weeks ago we were busy pulling together. This levy has split camps again… as most taxes and levies usually do. Maybe that means that everything is back to normal now. 😉

      Disappointed that this has all come up, especially now. I wish we could have had a little more of that ‘warm afterglow’ feeling before the bickering started again. Or perhaps that’s just my cynicism talking… 😉

  2. twistyman said,

    January 29, 2011 at 9:49 pm

    Sad to see the shift…but sadly a fact lately in the realm of professional politicians and those that handle/train them .. and the people…

    its “all to the walls mates” when it could be your land/home….
    but now that some are spared, or still think “can’t happen to me”
    we start to get the “don’t give a rats ass..and I’m not paying for that” BS ..

    like what I see in Canada and US is the take care of my job today from politicians..
    I don’t want to pay from the rick…..

    and being stuck in need, with 0 compassion from politicians and rich, but tons of lip service for the down trodden….

    and what none of these wise political/rich sages (barf..!!) say or talk about is ..
    what are the next generation(s) going to do/have…

    Just when did everyone become so myopic that they will cut corners and save $$ on the backs of their own children……

    what happened to makng a better life for your children..???

    at this rate the only thing they’ll be leaving that will be any good by then will be gas masks and floatation devices….

    god help the next those in power sure as shit won’t……

  3. Tina said,

    January 30, 2011 at 9:36 am

    As usual Twisty, you speak wise words. I myself am ready to just comply and say ‘who cares’. When it comes down to it, it IS only a few dollars a week. On top of that, anyone who was affected by flood will be exempt from paying the levy. And it will be means tested, so it works out that only the richest in the population has to pay. In all honesty, I DO believe that those on higher incomes should have a duty to share some of that wealth. I DO think that in terms of fairness, the government have done a good job of choosing who to aim this levy at… and honestly, those are the people who have less right to complain about the cost in the end.

    .. but it still comes back to human rights and fair play. I don’t like the fact that ANYONE is FORCED to contribute to another emergency fund when the last is sitting in an account propping up our economy. I think we deserve the service we’ve been promised, is all…

    And, at the risk of offending someone younger than me…

    Perhaps I can only see the potential hazards here because I’m old enough to REMEMBER how some of the previous funds (plural) were wasted. Perhaps it’s only because I’m a secret conspiracy theorist… or a little distrustful of government. Perhaps I’m just turning into a whinging old woman.

    But… Perhaps some of those younger ‘FaceBook’ generation should do some research, have a REAL think and make an informed decision, rather than jumping on the ‘our poor mates’ band-wagon that the government is happy to parade around. Some comments read like a 17 year-old’s new status… ‘Oh I’m so sad because no-one wants to help our flooded mates’…. written not out of thoughtful contemplation, but out of ignorance driven by popular opinion and the desire to be accepted… heard… whatever.

    Sometimes I wonder how long it will be until we all have a ‘like’ button embedded in our foreheads.

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