Centrelink service wanting
Government bureaucracy is an ugly beast and Centrelink is a prime example of it.
I had the misfortune of dealing with the Department of Immigration several years ago when I submitted an application to remain in Australia.
After paying a small fortune and stating my name, country of origin, date of birth and what I ate for breakfast about 25 times over the course of two years, I was given the nod to remain in Australia.
The process was designed to deter all but the most determined.
But being granted residency to Australia should probably not be easy and I took it on the chin.
Centrelink, however, is a different beast altogether.
It is a public-facing department and its clients are Australian citizens and residents.
And it is difficult to deal with, to put it mildly.
I know this because my wife has had the misfortune of trying to sort out our childcare subsidies.
I am extremely grateful such a scheme exists, but it is a reciprocal arrangement.
It means we can work and, in return for affordable childcare, the Government enjoys the benefit of our tax contributions. Registering is no easy task. After many hours spent in a Centrelink office last year, my wife achieved the desired result.
Having run the gauntlet once, we thought that was it.
But at the end of last year, a bureaucrat who has clearly never ventured into a Centrelink office, and certainly not with a young child in tow, decided parents would need to re-register every school holiday.
Why? More time was wasted in the local office re-registering so our subsidy was in the system — or so we thought. Apparently not.
Our provider took the full amount, because we had apparently not re-registered with Centrelink so there was no automatic subsidy.
Our account was left overdrawn and we understand it will take several weeks to be returned.
And that is that. No apology, no immediate action.
If Centrelink were a private entity, heads would roll, people would grovel and the money would be in our account tomorrow. But it’s not, so we will wait patiently while our tax pays for the bureaucrats’ long lunch breaks and first-class travel.
And while they invent other ways to make our lives more difficult, we will continue to pump money into the system to pay for their public-servant benefits. Final Destination 6 would be too expensive to make.
It’s been more than seven years since the fifth instalment in the horror franchise — which starred the likes of Ali Larter and Tony Todd — and now Todd has opened up on the possibility of another film in the series.
He told Bloody Disgusting: “I am (surprised) but I know why there hasn’t been (another sequel). It’s really an expensive film to shoot.
“Just getting whatever accident set pieces, like for example part two with the whole traffic accident, that took a good five weeks to shoot and at least 20 million bucks. So there are other films like the Annabelle films which just focused on a doll that they can shoot for a lot cheaper and still make money.”
Dealing with Centrelink can be a time-consuming and frustrating experience.