The Rising Cost of Prosperity

I was talking to a friend this week about her tax arrangements. It seems that over the years her level of taxation has risen (at least in her perception) in spite of a fairly constant income in her business. We discussed her various arrangement (family trust, business net profit, personal income) and it revealed that she was, in fact, making more money. But the bite of the increased tax was her focus. The truth is that more tax is actually a contra-indicator… it tells you that you’re doing well (or you need a new accountant!).

I could really identify with her though, because recently at Frazer, Holmes and Associates we had to re-file for insurance. Here in Australia you have to pay for Work Cover (against a potential accident at work for your employees) and Professional Indemnity insurance (we deliver a professional consulting service). This year it went up, dramatically. I felt the sting and my immediate thought was “ouch they’re putting the fees up!” But Sue assured me it was a good sign: more insurance meant more work, more consulting coaches on board, don’t stress it.

These thoughts were far from my mind earlier in the week as I rounded a corner at dawn, with two oncoming trucks beaming their headlights toward me. Then “bang” I hit something. I figured it was a rock or something falling off the back of the passing truck. Instead I discovered a Kangaroo had ungraciously committed suicide by walking in front of my car. Oops. In for repairs, I had time to consider the fact that I had actually seen four or five kangaroos on my recent travels to Canberra in the morning, several close misses. Those Kangaroos are contra-indicators. Breeding is up because grass levels are up because rainfall is up. The country has come back to life after ten years of drought. It’s just hard to see it that way!