Tag Archives: BHP

When Was Gillard’s TV Dirty Deal Really Made?

15 Feb

On July 13 2010, journalist and radio personality Michael Smith interviewed then newly-ascended prime minister Julia Gillard to discuss “her” new mining tax deal:

“Now, the debate [with the mining companies] got bogged down in a lot of, uh, you know, some name calling, some conversations that lacked respect and good will. What I did as prime minister was got the good will back into that debate by cancelling the ads on TV…”

No doubt Gillard was here referring to her (apparent) post-ascension offer to the Big 3 miners, to cancel the government’s pro-mining tax advertising. She says that she did so as a gesture of “good will”.

In your humble blogger’s opinion, this claim does not pass the sniff test.

Three weeks prior to the Michael Smith interview, the following article appeared in the Australian Financial Review; it was the very day after Rudd’s ousting –

June 25, 2010 – Rio Tinto Ltd says it has suspended its anti-resources super profits tax (RSPT) advertising campaign and is “cautiously encouraged” by Julia Gillard’s pledge to negotiate with the sector.

Ms Gillard, who ascended to the prime ministership after Kevin Rudd declined to contest a leadership ballot, told her first press conference as parliamentary leader she would throw the doors open to negotiate with the mining sector.

She also suspended the government’s pro-RSPT advertising campaign, provided the mining sector shelved its ads against the tax.

BHP Billiton Ltd, the Minerals Council of Australia, the Queensland Resources Council and the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies Inc all pledged to immediately suspend their anti-RSPT ads.

“As a sign of good faith, we have suspended our advertising,” Rio Tinto said in a statement.

“This commitment is, of course, dependent on the government’s willingness to properly engage on the threshold issues.

In other words, their “sign of good faith” was clearly conditional on Gillard playing ball, and renegotiating (ie, “properly engage”) the core elements (“threshold issues”) of the mining tax design.

There is something else quite interesting to consider here.

Apparently it is possible to suspend a multi-million dollar TV and print media advertising campaign within 24 hours.  That is the implication from Rio’s statement “we have suspended our advertising” in swift response to new PM Gillard’s supposedly impromptu “good will” gesture.

It gets more interesting when we look at how quickly BHP Billiton, the prime mover in the anti-RSPT campaign, apparently managed to pull their advertising campaign. From ABC News, first posted June 24 2010, 12:32pm AEST:

Gillard, BHP can ads in mining tax truce

Julia Gillard will can the Government’s mining tax ads as one of her first acts as prime minister, and has called on the mining lobby to do the same.

Mining giant BHP Billiton, which is among the companies leading the campaign against the tax, has responded by suspending its ads.

The second biggest, Rio Tinto, followed later in the day

Sky News is reporting that the mining industry’s main lobby group, the Minerals Council of Australia, is also suspending its advertising campaign.

Impressive.

Barely 2.5 hours prior, the ALP caucus had chosen Gillard to be the new prime minister.  BHP was very quick-off-the-mark to suspend their advertising in response to Gillard’s gesture of good will, wouldn’t you say?

There is a Big Question arising out of all of this.

Was there any discussion or deal made with any/all of the Big 3 – particularly BHP – to suspend their advertising prior to Rudd’s knifing by Gillard?

It is an important question.

Because some have claimed that Gillard was “given the nod” by the Big 3 foreign miners to topple Rudd, and have suggested that the issue (promise?) of the withdrawal of their anti-mining tax advertising was already on the table prior to the coup; that Gillard knew the miners would pull their TV advertising before she made the decision to challenge Rudd for the leadership:

JULIA Gillard was “given the nod” by the big three mining companies – Xstrata, Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton—to challenge Kevin Rudd’s prime ministership, knowing the advertising campaign against the mining tax “would be pulled”.

… The revelations come from an article written by Mr Rudd’s friend and actor Rhys Muldoon, published in the latest issue of The Monthly magazine. He questions whether “the party backroom boys” could “have sought tacit approval from the miners for a change at the top to seek an end to the damaging impasse” on the tax.

Does anyone seriously believe that BHP Billiton et al only decided to hastily suspend their advertising campaign in response to new PM Gillard’s immediate gesture of “good will”?

Does anyone seriously believe that Gillard and/or the ALP “faceless men” did not come to an agreement with the Big 3 miners on the specific issue of stopping their politically damaging TV advertising, prior to the knifing of the prime minister?

If Gillard knew that BHP was prepared to pull its TV advertising campaign on the condition that the mining tax be negotiated from square 1, then why not tell PM Rudd?

If Gillard knew that BHP – a foreign-owned mining corporation – was prepared to pull its TV advertising campaign on the condition that a democratically-elected PM be removed from office, why not tell PM Rudd?

Why not help the national leader to whom you had repeatedly and publicly declared your loyalty, with devising a strategy to deal with this foreign corporate “threat to democracy”? (Swan’s words, directed at Aussie miners)

Why challenge for the leadership … other than out of sheer greed and selfish opportunism, a preparedness to sell out the best interests of the nation’s citizens (and the very concepts of representative democracy and national sovereignty) for the fulfillment of your own naked ambition?

The widely-propagated story that Julia Gillard, the loyal deputy PM, the Great Negotiator, reluctantly agreed to be elevated to the prime ministership because “a good government has lost its way”, and only then made a brilliant, impromptu gesture of good will towards the Big 3 foreign-owned mining giants by suspending the government’s TV advertising and calling on them to do the same, simply does not pass the sniff test.

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More Dirt On Gillard & Swan’s Dirty Deal

14 Feb

MacroBusiness.com.au reader and commenter “Mav” draws our attention to journalist Paul Cleary’s book, “Too Much Luck”.

In it, we find more dirt on Gillard and Swan’s dirty deal with the multinational miners.  Cleary’s tome sheds new light on the collusion between ALParatchiks such as then ALP national secretary Karl Bitar and BHP Billiton, the foreign-owned miner leading the anti mining tax campaign, in overthrowing a popularly-elected prime minister:

As soon as Rudd sprang the new tax on the industry, the big three companies decided they had to kill this plan – and they decided to play dirty. When London-based Rio Tinto, Melbourne-based and London-listed BHP Billiton and Swiss-based Xstrata put their collective weight together, they are a formidable combination. Their total combined value on global sharemarkets is $450 billion, 86% of which is in foreign hands. The three companies are worth more than the size of Australia’s federal budget, about one-third the size of the entire Australian economy. Together they embarked on a savage lobbying effort to bring down the proposed tax by attacking the government and its prime minister. They began this extraordinary campaign before the proposal had even been put into legislation, and before the parliament had had the opportunity to review it.

BHP led the offensive, establishing a ‘war room’ inside its Melbourne head office. Run by senior financial executive Gerard Bond, along with senior staffers and external consultants, this team worked on the project for about seven weeks. BHP commissioned its own focus-group research, which was used to drive a $22 million TV and print-media blitz and a targeted lobbying campaign that included Geoff Walsh, a former national secretary of the ALP and former staffer to prime ministers Bob Hawke and Paul Keating. BHP spared no expense on the campaign, which reported directly to CEO Marius Kloppers.  External talent included the market-research specialist Tony Mitchelmore and the corporate strategist John Connolly. Mitchelmore had been plucked from obscurity by Labor to work on the Kevin07 campaign and had stayed on doing qualitative research before working for BHP on this campaign. He organised an intensive round of sixteen focus-group sessions, which revealed that many participants believed Rudd’s proposal had come out of left field and was likely to derail the one industry that was keeping Australia’s head above water. Realising that they had a good chance of killing the tax, the miners adopted a ‘whatever it takes’ approach…

The miners’ efforts were spectacularly successful. Seven weeks and four days after unveiling the preliminary plan, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd was deposed and so was his tax… Big Dirt, as the three companies were now known, executed regime change two months before the voters exercised their democratic rights at the ballot box. Having subverted a functioning democracy [TBI: aided and abetted by Gillard & Swan], mining executives were celebrating in airport lounges around the country…

Immediately after becoming prime minister on 24 June, Julia Gillard turned her attention to thrashing out a deal with the three multinational miners. Eight days later, she announced a breakthrough that cut the marginal tax rate from 40% to 22.5%, restricted its scope to coal and iron ore, and added some creative accounting concessions for the big miners… A raft of emails released under FOI shows that BHP was very much running the show. Its executives drafted the heads of agreement before emailing it to Wayne Swan’s office for approval.

Repeating her ‘moving forward’ mantra, Gillard announced the compromise like this: ‘It moves things forward whether you’re a coal miner in the Bowen basin, a contractor in Karratha, an opal miner in Coober Pedy or a young worker in Sydney’. In fact, the MRRT deal made life worse for smaller Australian-based miners by removing the resource exploration rebate and by awarding big miners a significantly lower tax rate. For iron-ore miners with mature projects, which means the big companies, their projects would be taxed at 36.4 per cent – close to or even below current levels – whereas small or medium-sized projects would pay an average rate of 48.9 per cent, according to modelling produced by Treasury and released under FOI. The big miners benefited from a concession that allows them to calculate deductions for tax purposes using the market value rather than the purchase price (or ‘book value’) of their assets, providing huge depreciation allowances. The small and medium Australian players were not represented in the negotiating room, and the new deal actually reversed the central and laudable aim of the RSPT – that is, reducing the tax burden on start-up operations, which are penalised by the state royalties because the impost is paid when production starts, rather than after the company actually begins to make a profit. The success of the multinational miners in securing these concessions, and in beating voters to the punch, reveals the perverse world order in which we live: an advanced country can possess enormous riches but lack the capacity to do what is clearly in its own long-term interest…

Not only did the miners change the prime minister and change government policy, they went on to brag about how their coup had stopped similar schemes from spreading around the world…

Exactly one week after Gillard announced the compromise, Rio Tinto’s American chief executive, Tom Albanese, told a group of mining executives in London that the Australian experience should send a salutary message to governments around the world. Governments should ‘learn a lesson’ from the episode, he declared. A few months later, Xstrata’s chief executive, Peter Freyberg, was still bragging…

BHP’s executives managed to avoid bragging, although this company did more than any other to bring down the tax and Kevin Rudd. The total cost of the campaign was $22 million. The Minerals Council of Australia, which is largely funded by the big three companies, spent $17.2 million, while BHP spent $4.2 million on its own and Rio $537,000. Cabinet ministers in the Gillard government say that Geoff Walsh delivered the Mitchelmore research directly to the then ALP national secretary, Karl Bitar. These claims are strenuously denied by Walsh. But the BHP research is understood to have panicked the Labor heavyweights, prompting them to move against Rudd even though he still had a commanding 4 percentage point lead in the national newspoll.

If it is true that former ALP national secretary Karl Bitar, in cahoots with Gillard and Swan, acted to overthrow a prime minister on the basis of private research data provided directly to him by BHP, a foreign-owned company demonstrably seeking to change government policy, then this is more evidence of treason on the part of key figures in the ALP.

Gillard, Swan, and Bitar should be in jail.

UPDATE:

Peter Martin has more, in the Age today:

Gathered on one side of the cabinet table were the newly-installed Prime Minister Julia Gillard, her Treasurer Wayne Swan and her Resources Minister Martin Ferguson. On the other were the heads of Australia’s three big mining companies: BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Xstrata.

Absent were the key people from the Treasury – the ones who really understood the tax being discussed.

As the then Treasury head Ken Henry later told a Senate committee: “We were not involved in the negotiations, other than in respect of crunching the numbers if you like and in providing due diligence on design parameters that the mining companies themselves came up with.”

Gillard and Swan consciously chose not only to exclude the locally-owned miners from the negotiations. They also chose to exclude Treasury officials – folks who just might have more of a clue than a dodgy lawyer and a career political hack with an arts degree – as well.

Conclusion? Gillard and Swan did not want any intelligent outside scrutiny of the BHP-drafted deal.

Hence their persistent “commercial-in-confidence” response cited ever since, in attempted justification of their refusal to let the details come out.

Barnaby Absolutely Nails It. As Usual

13 Feb

“Well, they’re trying to work out how to pay it back [$260b Federal debt]. So they devised the mining tax; the trouble is, of course, the people who came to help them out with that were the major mining companies, and they devised a mining tax where they don’t actually pay any tax. They said we’d have a mining tax, [BHP’s] Marius Kloppers said ‘You certainly will’, and then Marius Kloppers whipped out a pen and a paper and he gave them one. And it’s working very well for BHP. It’s working very well for Xstrata. And good luck to them, I mean, if a fool invites you to their office and opens the chequebook then you just start writing out your own cheques…

… So they’ve come to this conclusion: they have no money. They have to go finding money. So, first thing they do when they try to look for money is set up a class war. Or, things have to start with a moral prerogative, ‘We must find evil people'”…

They’re going to go and – obviously – just flog the money out of people’s super. Simple as that…

It’s so sneaky.” – Senator Joyce

Alas, I have long neglected to catch up on Senator Joyce’s YouTube channel.

It is the best place for you to enjoy catching up with, and hearing the latest from, one of the few politicians left in this country who might, just might, actually have a genuine devotion to interests other than his own.

Like his constituents, for example.

And the Australian people and nation as a whole.

About a week ago there were a bunch of new videos uploaded to Barnaby’s YouTube feed. The following one is particularly topical, in light of the recent media and political focus on superannuation, and the mining tax. Note in particular from the 1 minute mark, after Barnaby’s delightfully authentic, unpolished and rambling preamble:

Note independent Senator Nick Xenophon’s helpful correction towards the end. And see my recent post Your Super Screwed By The Laboral Party.

I maintain the view sent to Senator Joyce some months back.

The Nationals … and if not the Nationals in toto, then he himself … should split from their ‘senior’ Coalition partners, and go independent.

As a matter of principle, and integrity.

And participate in forming a new government with whomever they wish, according to their own principles and the views of their constituents.

Not those of the Liberal Party’s machine men.

IMO, the Liberals are no better than Labor.

Tweedledum and Tweedledee.

The Laboral Party.

Swan’s Tax Avoidance Scheme

13 Feb

Quelle surprise!

A stunning revelation emerges.

From the Sydney Morning Herald:

Miners hoard credits to avoid resources tax

Mining companies Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton have built up a combined arsenal of $1.7 billion in tax credits that can be offset against future mining tax liabilities.

Exactly as predicted here on this blog, way back in December 2011 (GilSwan Conned – Mining Tax The Greens’ Pit of Despair)

Note well how the “progressive” (ie, international socialist) SMH follows the ALP (ie, international socialist) party line, by immediately switching the focus of this awful tale of inequity away from international companies, and onto an evil billionaire “Tall Poppy”.

Local Aussie miner, Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest:

And billionaire miner Andrew Forrest confirmed to Fairfax Media that his iron ore company, Fortescue Metals, would not be paying any tax under the Gillard government’s minerals resource rent tax this year.

Mr Forrest, who challenged Treasurer Wayne Swan’s claim that the tax would still raise billions in revenue for the government after being watered down during [exclusive] negotiations [by Gillard and Swan] with [foreign-owned multinational giants] Rio, BHP and Xstrata, appears to have been vindicated after Mr Swan’s admission that the tax has net a paltry $126 million in the six months to December 31.

”The record stands for itself,” Mr Forrest said.

And to make sure you do not miss the underlying propaganda message – that the real “evil” here is your fellow Aussie-made-good entrepreneur – the SMH chooses to headline the article with a photo of Mr Forrest.Not with one of the foreign-owned BHP, RIO, or Xstrata chief executives.

Wayne Swan would be pleased (The Galactic Hypocrisy of Wayne Swan ; Swan’s Anti-Australian Rant A Smokescreen For Treason).

While the focus has been on the dramatic shortfall in mining tax collections compared to original Treasury projections of more than $10 billion over four years, the most recent financial accounts of Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton show the two miners have built up $1.1 billion and $637 million in tax credits respectively.

The credits did not reduce the amount of company income tax they had to pay, but can be carried forward to offset future mining tax liabilities.

Just as predicted here.

Speaking of credit, we should give credit to the SMH for devoting one (1) whole paragraph to a misleading and deceptive recognition of the fact that the vomitous Wayne Swan singled out Aussie miners like Twiggy Forrest for exclusive vilification while belching out his galactically hypocritical smokescreen for treason:

Mr Forrest’s recent MRRT brawl with the government has seen him subjected to criticism from Mr Swan – part of which was his inclusion in the ”badly behaving billionaires” club that included Clive Palmer and Gina Rinehart. Sources have said that Mr Swan included Mr Forrest as a member of the billionaires in an essay in The Monthly – against the urging of his advisers.

Misleading and deceptive?

Yes.

In seeking to further the progressive (internationalist) agenda – in this case, through minimising damage to the PR image of huge multinational oligopolies, while enabling damage to the public image of successful local/national enterprises by invoking “Tall Poppy” syndrome – the SMH propagates the old revolutionary socialist strategy of “class warfare”.  And conveniently neglects to inform readers of the full picture.

You have to find that, at blogs like this.

Indeed, you have to read right down to the last two paragraphs of the SMH article to gain even an inkling of the truth – though of course, it is still not explicitly spelled out:

The major mining companies are loath to talk about the tax that they negotiated with the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, and Mr Swan. They have kept their heads below the parapet this week as Mr Swan has been in the firing line.

The government has responded to the attack by suggesting various changes to the tax but the prospect of a big overhaul before the election is unlikely. The campaign by BHP, Rio and Xstrata that led to the super profits tax being replaced with the more benign MRRT was so potent that Ms Gillard will not take them on again over the next seven months.

Remember, the article is headlined with a generic “Miners hoard credits…” title.  And a photo of Aussie miner, Twiggy Forrest.

Only the fully alert and informed reader, one who knows that BHP, RIO, and Xstrata are majority foreign-owned multinational giants, is likely to note the above bolded words at the very end.

And possibly, just possibly, have a dawning realisation that something fishy … something against the best interests of Australians … is the real truth behind this story.

UPDATE:

Too late, Independent Andrew Wilkie wakes up and smells the coffee; says Andrew Forrest was right –

Mr Wilkie told Fairfax Media that he had been wrong to believe Treasury predictions of company liabilities under the renegotiated tax instead of the alternative arguments put forward at the time by Mr Forrest.

Mr Forrest had complained that the compromise to allow miners to write off the long-term value of assets from their mining tax liabilities had allowed the big three miners off the hook.

It is beyond argument that the government was wrong, is wrong, and Andrew Forrest is right,” he said.

For readers who have not read my earlier posts on this topic, the key point to understand from the above is this: A major reason why the redesigned mining tax favours the multinationals – unsurprising, since they designed it, in secret, with Gillard and Swan – is that the Big 3 miners have vast existing assets. Their redesigned tax allows them to write off the “market value” of their existing projects, and thus claim credits against any MRRT liabilities.

UPDATE 2:

Via Andrew Bolt’s blog:

Wayne Swan specialises on perhaps this government’s defining characteristic – to meet argument with personal abuse. And there is no fouler example than this – Swan accusing miner Twiggy Forrest in 2011 of being a tax dodger for warning of exactly the flaw that has made Swan’s mining tax a colossal flop:

Wayne Swan has accused mining magnate Andrew ‘’Twiggy’’ Forrest of trying to avoid paying tax, describing as ‘’bunkum’’ new analysis suggesting the world’s biggest miners would get a free ride under Labor’s mining tax..

Mr Forrest said new analysis by accounting firm BDO revealed Treasury forecasts of an $11 billion budget boost from the MRRT were an ‘’absolute fiction’’.

He said tax would allow the world’s biggest miners to wipe out Australia’s smallest because of the huge deductions available for the industry’s biggest players

EXACTLY what I argued back in 2011. A mining tax, designed by the Big 3 foreign-owned multinationals, behind closed doors, with the local miners locked out, in cahoots with the traitorous Gillard and Swan, one that enables the Big 3 to increase their oligopoly over the Australian mining industry, at the expense of far smaller, locally-owned competitors.

And claim tax credits and deductions for doing so.

I Was Right – Mining Tax The Greens’ Pit Of Despair

30 Mar

Back in December, a mining industry executive walked your humble blogger through the details of the GilSwan mining tax. He helped us all to see that Julia and Wayne have done it again. The mining tax is a high farce. One that will produce the opposite result of what the Government – and especially the Greens – have proclaimed.

Far from “spreading the wealth” of the mining boom, we saw that the MRRT will help the Big 3 foreign miners to increase their oligopoly, at the expense of local miners. And, it will smash another yawning chasm in the government’s budget. Making us all poorer (see GilSwan Conned – Mining Tax The Greens’ Pit Of Despair).

Now … 3 months later … after the legislation has passed into law … “expert” analysts have come to a very similar conclusion.

From The Australian (emphasis added):

BHP, Rio tax take forecasts ‘too high’

THE Gillard government’s forecast of $10.6 billion in revenue from the mining tax over the next three years is looking increasingly shaky, after expert modelling by three investment banks found the nation’s biggest miners would pay much less than expected from July 1.

Analysts at Goldman Sachs estimate that the world’s biggest mining company, BHP Billiton, would pay just $443 million under the minerals resource rent tax in the next financial year.

Modelling by UBS suggests rival miner Rio Tinto would pay a minimum of $US472m ($454m) on its dominant Hamersley iron ore unit in Western Australia, which would fall to zero after three years.

Meanwhile, analysts at investment bank Credit Suisse said their modelling had shown that Fortescue Metals Group, the nation’s other big iron ore producer, would have a maximum potential MRRT liability of $US200m in 2014 but this would fall away in later years.

The Gillard government has said previously that the three big miners who helped design the MRRT – BHP, Rio and Xstrata – were expected to account for 90 per cent of the revenue.

It is counting on raising $3.7bn from the MRRT next year but analysts doubt whether this is possible given the massive deductions available to the big miners that recognise the tens of billions of dollars they have spent on their operations over decades.

Revenue is also likely to be affected by falling commodity prices, a higher Australian dollar and rising costs since Treasury released its latest MRRT projections in May last year.

Any shortfall in MRRT revenue poses a significant risk to the government’s budget position because Wayne Swan has committed the $10.6bn over three years to superannuation reforms, company tax cuts, small business instant asset writeoffs and regional infrastructure funding.

*shakes head sorrowfully*

[ Insert perjorative of reader’s choice here ]

Mining Tax Con – Another Huge Hole In The Budget?

3 Dec

Yesterday your humble blogger received information from an experienced mining industry source concerning the Minerals Resource Rent Tax (MRRT).

Information that represents potential dynamite to the Gillard government.

Blasting a huge hole in a budget that is already shot to hell.

This industry source suggests that Gillard and her pack of no-business-experience-disconnected-from-reality incompetents, along with the equally disconnected-from-reality “modellers” in the Treasury department, have been comprehensively conned by the clever accountants and lawyers  of the Big Miners.  This source believes the design of the legislation is fatally flawed; so much so, that a consequence of the last minute change to a key threshold made by Gillard to gain the support of Andrew Wilkie to pass the bill, means that the government now may not receive any revenue from their MRRT at all. Or at the least, it may be quite a number of years before they even begin receiving any.

I have some serious follow-up research to do before bringing readers this story in full.

Stay tuned.

Gillard “Mad Dog’s Breakfast” Devours Australia For Benefit Of Foreign Interests

16 Jun

Have you stopped to think carefully … and deeply … about why a (supposedly) democratic and (supposedly) poll-driven government persists with pushing through big “tax” policies, when polls consistently prove that the majority of citizens oppose them?

Is it really a matter of high-minded “belief” and “principle”?

Or, is it really about something far more low-brow and prosaic – selling out Australia for the benefit of big foreign interests.

One only need pause to scratch below the surface of the political rhetoric, and reflect carefully on the evidence, for the answer to become crystal clear.

From The Australian, June 15, 2011 (emphasis added):

Mr Forrest [head of local Aussie miner Fortescue Metals] slammed the draft laws for the mineral resources rent tax, released on Friday, as a “mad dog’s breakfast” that would benefit Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton and Xstrata at the expense of the smaller, local miners – and that could trigger legal action if it went unchanged.

“I think there are many companies, a government or two, and ourselves, who will mount a High Court challenge,” Mr Forrest said.

“It is not my preference. My preference is to speak to the Treasurer, explain to him that the reason why the multinationals agreed to this tax in just three days from (Julia) Gillard being appointed (Prime Minister) was because they were protected from it and everyone else had to pay.”

The Gillard government’s carbon dioxide “tax” scheme is designed with exactly the same malevolent, Australia-loathing intent as the mining tax.

Global mining giant BHP Billiton’s South African CEO, Marius Kloppers, has been directly and intimately involved in the by-invitation-only, closed-doors negotiation over the design of both of our Green-Labor government’s great big new “tax” schemes.

Consider very carefully what Kloppers has angled for, in his sweetheart deal with Gillard on the carbon dioxide “tax”.

From The Australian, September 16, 2010:

A(nother) key consideration would be to give industries exposed to the tax a rebate, Mr Kloppers said, because without a global price, these companies would become uncompetitive and might consider shifting polluting assets to countries without a carbon tax.

Sounds reasonable, right?

Wrong.

It’s a sneaky, deceitful, anti-competitive, market-monopolising ploy. One that would completely absolve BHP of any costs at all under the “carbon tax”, while penalising all of their smaller competitors – our local, up-and-coming Aussie miners.

Which is why our much-maligned local Aussie businessman (and indigenous philanthropist of the first order), Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest, was on to this scam like a flash.

From the Herald Sun, Sept 22, 2010 (emphasis added):

Mr Forrest said that Mr Kloppers’ carbon tax plan was designed to help BHP.

“He says you get a complete rebate if you are an exporter. BHP is a total exporter so he is embedding a tax that will be paid for by everyone else, a la the minerals resource rent tax.”

Consider too, the recent Open Letter by “13 leading economists” in favour of a carbon dioxide “pricing mechanism”.

10 / 13 of whom are directly connected to the banking industry.

An Open Letter whose leading light, former ANZ bank economist Saul Eslake, is now employed by the Grattan Institute.  An “independent public policy think-tank”.  One that was set up and funded by the Australian Government… and BHP Billiton.  An “independent” institute featuring none other than … you guessed it … BHP Billiton’s Marius Kloppers on its Board of directors.

“Independent” my @$$!

Let there be no misunderstanding.

Everything that this government does, is done with the deliberate intention of weakening our country – destroying our local industries, impoverishing households, and weakening our government financial position.

Why?  Because our every act of wilful economic self-harm, has benefits for non-local (ie, foreign) interests.

The evidence is unmistakable.

They really are, quite literally, selling us out.

Once upon a time, what they are doing was called “treason”.

And punished accordingly.

The MRRT and the proposed “carbon pricing mechanism” have both been deliberately designed – and secretly negotiated – to place an unfair burden only on local Aussie companies.  To the benefit of the monster multinationals such as BHP Billiton and RIO.

The carbon dioxide “tax” / trading scheme is deliberately designed to destroy our nation’s natural low-cost energy advantage (coal-fired power).  To the benefit of the international bankstering cartels such as Goldman Sachs and friends.

Consider also, this very interesting fact.

Our Green-Labor government does not even know – officially – who owns more than 60% of the $200 billion public debt they have racked up.

Now, the “independent” (there’s that word again) Reserve Bank of Australia “estimates” that 73% of our debt is owed to (unidentified) “non-residents” of Australia. But our government’s own department, the one that actually sells our debt, officially doesn’t have a clue.

The writing is on the wall, dear reader.

Because both of the two big economic “reforms” that are about to be legislated by our Green-Labor government – led by life-long “creeping communist” Julia Gillard – are designed to devour Australia.

For the benefit of foreign interests.

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