Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen has been shoehorning figures from the Australian Taxation tables into every social interaction possible, his friends and colleagues say.
“I’ll meet you for dinner at 18:20, which, as it turns out, sounds a lot like 18,200, the current tax-free threshold in Australia” he texted a friend yesterday.
“Lovely weather forecast for today. It’s expected to get to 32.5, which is the marginal tax rate for those earning between $37,001 and $80,000 in the 2014/15 financial year,” he told a staff member as he walked into the office this morning.
One of Mr Bowen’s friends, who did not want to be named, said she was starting to become concerned. “It’s getting quite awkward. Last night we were at a Chinese restaurant, and he says to the waiter, ‘I’ll have the top two marginal tax rates, thanks. Or as you’d call them, a number 37 and a number 45. He even gave a 19% tip which, as he explained, is the … oh forget it.”
When asked if he had anything to say about the strange behaviour, Mr Bowen said, “No, nothing. Which is how much tax people earning up to $18,200 will pay this year”.