The requirement for religious tax exemption is “a belief in a supernatural being, thing or principle” after that it is more or less open slather, amounting to around Thirty Thousand Million Australian Dollars lost to us per annum.
God’s golden plates which handed down the gospels of the Mormons in North America have never been seen by anyone as they have been transported back to heaven. The scientologists tell us aliens walk amongst us, The Catholics constantly change their smorgasboard of beliefs as each becomes untenable, The Anglicans protestant schism was based on the family values of Henry the Eighth, while Islamists and Jews variously cut parts off, or sew closed their children’s privates and have God on their side when killing the opposition.
And we still let them operate Tax Free? And we fund their schools. They all seek superiority, alternatively by simpering meekness or reckless threat of death or eternal damnation while they impose themselves on us. Each denies the other as associates in faith.
Why do rich old men in Rome who make a business out of scaring people to obey them on pain of everlasting damnation not pay tax on their Australian businesses?.
I can think of no act of terrorism against Australia or Australian’s that was not stated to be based on a belief in the supernatural . I am a bit frightened to think, or say, that terrorism against Australia may well be being supported by government grants and tax breaks. If even the buildings that they worship in are exempt from rates and other taxes.
Estimates of Australian Churches wealth are: Annual Revenue of the 10 biggest churches in Australia $48,000,000,000.00, (Forty Eight Thousand Million). From collection plates alone $3,000,000,000.00 (Three Thousand Million). Catholic Church assets $150,000,000,000.00 (One Hundred and Fifty Thousand Million). Other Churches assets $218,000,000,000.00 (Two Hundred and Eighteen Thousand Million).
In Australia, faith is optional and private. Who, except humans seeking to exert power, could promote such nonsenses. The spell of Judaism and Christianity is broken, at least in part by language translation . Islam (like the others used to) currently uses violence and force of arms for compliance. It asserts it can only be understood in Arabic and so even if I wanted to convert, according to them, I could not understand. Their omnipotent, omniscient, all loving God has thereby made it impossible for me to understand the one true faith. So much for universality.
Perhaps we could revert to the teachings of Moses and be permitted to stone to death even our children for disobedience? Or perhaps as a community we should just not subsidise any of them.
Federally, these subsidies apply to income tax, fringe benefits tax, and the goods and services tax. State government exemptions cover land tax, payroll tax, stamp duties and car registration fees. Local governments provide exemptions from municipal rates. Concessions may also be granted for water and power charges, volunteer expenses, retirement villages, car parking exemptions, preachers and other employees wages, buildings, renovations and up-keep.
Annually these subsidies are estimated to cost us, the Australian community, in lost revenue or direct grant, around $30,000,000,000.00 (Thirty Thousand Million Dollars) per annum.
Income Tax – at corporate rates, $15,000,000,000 (Fifteen Thousand Million). CGT $6,500,000,000 (Six Thousand Five Hundred Million)
Grants for Chaplains in Schools $30,000,000 (Thirty Million), Grants for family religious family counselling, $64 Million, to Religious Schools $5,630 Million, religious abortion counselling, $20 Million, Faith convention $2 million and Catholic Youth day $140,000,000.00 (One Hundred and Forty Million that cost us)
State Payroll tax exemptions, Stamp duty exemptions, Land Tax exemptions and Rates Lost to Local Councils amount to another One and a half Million Million lost revenue dollars.( $1,500,000,000.00)
Why is it so?
As in all things there is not much that is new. I freely admit plaguerising.
Hitchins Christopher, God is not Great.