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Oct 21, 2010

CRA boss; “If you can’t trust the government, …”

There is an old saying, “An honest politician is one who when bought stays bought.”

Sam Walsh, the CEO of Rio Tinto Iron Ore is apparently one of those old fashioned businessmen who long for the good old days when politicians had that sort of integrity. As result he is my nominee for the Gerald Starnes medal for the silliest statement by a business leader this year.

“If you can’t trust the government, who can you trust?” Yeah, right. (About 1:10 in.)

After the mining companies had the Rudd government on the ropes prior to the last election, CRA along with BHP Billiton and Xstrata sold out to Gillard in a sweetheart deal for lower rates of taxes to themselves.

Now that the election is over there now seems to be some confusion between these companies and the government as to what the wording really means. Did these sellouts seriously expect Gillard to stick to the agreement when they are no longer needed?


  1. It's amazing there's still so much corruption. It's something one associates with a Third World nation, yet there's still business buying favors from politicians. I don't like it one little bit.

  2. Well its been said that "All power corrupts ..."

    Corruption has gone hand in glove with the state since the beginning of history. The right to decide issues for others creates a market in its own right, which only gets bigger as the power of the relevant authority increases.

    Big government = big corruption.

    Gillard has been paid back already to some degree by BHP Billiton whose CEO has been good enough to call for a carbon tax to be back on the agenda in order to give 'certainty' to business. Naturally the government agree. This was probably part of the deal.

  3. I was trying to make a list of who you can trust more than the government, but even after I dropped the categories of wild canines with rabies, reptiles, and flesh-eating bacteria, I still overwhelmed your bandwidth.