Who’s REALLY running Australia?


A big-biz alliance told Abbott what policies it wanted

Recently an alliance of big businesses put together a wishlist of 100 policies they wanted our government to implement. I’ll discuss these policies in a second, but for now, think of them as a recipe for making the rich richer.


Look how many he adopted…

So far, the Coalition has adopted or endorsed, or is considering, more than a third of these big-biz policies. (The previous Labor government adopted one too.)

IPA policies adopted or on the cards


That alliance is the IPA

The alliance I’m talking about is the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA) – a lobby group for big business, founded in 1943. The IPA publishes ‘research’ papers and articles that are funded by big business, to serve the interests of those businesses. These papers and articles are then channeled to the news media.

Although the IPA is not obliged to disclose who it lobbies for, they have disclosed some of their donors, over the years, including:

  • News Limited
  • BHP-Billiton
  • Western Mining Corporation
  • Monsanto
  • Telstra
  • Tobacco companies including Philip Morris and British American Tobacco
  • Oil & gas companies including Caltex, Esso, Shell and Woodside
  • Tasmania’s largest logging company, Gunns

If you’ve seen or read any anti-climate change talk over the last few years, it’s probably come out of the IPA. According to the IPA’s Executive Director, John Roskam, climate change denial is one of their favourite games:

Of all the serious sceptics in Australia, we have helped and supported just about all of them in their work one way or another…”

They’ve also lobbied to have world heritage protection stripped from 74,000 hectares of Tasmanian forest.

And just in case you’re wondering if maybe they’re doing it because they honestly believe they have science on their side… they’ve also campaigned against plain packaging for cigarettes. So, no, genuine science isn’t really a factor.

For a more detailed insight into the lobbying activities of the IPA, check out John Menadue’s great article: Think tanks, cash for comment and the corruption of public debate.


What policies are the IPA responsible for?

The IPA’s ‘wishlist’ was published in two parts. You can find the originals here and here. Below is a summary of the policies they lobbied for which have since been adopted (or look like being adopted):

  1. “Repeal the carbon tax, and don’t replace it” – Abbot has vowed to do this.
  2. “Abolish the Department of Climate Change” – Abbott has already done this.
  3. “Abolish the Clean Energy Fund” – Abbott is trying to do this.
  4. “Repeal Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act” – Abbott is trying to do this.
  5. “Abandon Australia’s bid for a seat on the United Nations Security Council” – Abbott has said he’ll do this.
  6. “Repeal the renewable energy target” – Abbott is trying to do this.
  7. “Withdraw from the Kyoto Protocol” – This is on the cards.
  8. “Introduce fee competition to Australian universities” – Abbott is trying to do this.
  9. “Repeal the National Curriculum” – Abbott’s not openly trying to do this, but he has appointed IPA member, Kevin Donnelly, to lead a review of our curriculum.
  10. “Abolish the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA)” – Abbott hasn’t done this, but he is trying to cut $3.3m from it in the budget.
  11. “Eliminate family tax benefits” – Abbott hasn’t eliminated them, but he’s trying to lower the threshold for part B in the budget, and he’s also trying to freeze the payment rate for both parts until 2016.
  12. “Abandon the paid parental leave scheme” – Abbott hasn’t abandoned it, but he’s trying to wind it back in the budget.
  13. “Means-test Medicare” – Abbott hasn’t introduced this, but the Coalition has considered it.
  14. “Eliminate media ownership restrictions” – Abbott is considering it.
  15. “Eliminate the National Preventative Health Agency” – Abbott is trying to do this in the budget.
  16. “Cease subsidising the car industry” – Abbott has already done this.
  17. “Formalise a one-in, one-out approach to regulatory reduction” – Abbott cites this as the basis for his reduction of ‘red and green tape’.
  18. “Reintroduce voluntary student unionism at universities” – Abbott hasn’t done it yet, but he’s in favour of it.
  19. “Introduce a special economic zone in the north of Australia including: a) Lower personal income tax for residents; b) Significantly expanded 457 Visa programs for workers” – Abbott is considering it (preparing a white paper).
  20. “Repeal the mining tax” – Abbott is trying to do this.
  21. “Devolve environmental approvals for major projects to the states” – Abbott is doing this. He’s promised a one-stop shop for environmental approvals.
  22. “Introduce a single rate of income tax with a generous tax-free threshold” – Abbott hasn’t introduced this yet, but he’s definitely in favour of it.
  23. “Cut company tax to an internationally competitive rate of 25 per cent” – Abbott hasn’t gone quite that far, but he’s dropped it by 1.5% to 28.5%.
  24. “Cease funding the Australia Network” Abbott is trying to do this in the budget.
  25. “Privatise Medibank” – Abbott is doing this.
  26. “Reduce the size of the public service” – Abbott is trying to do this in the budget.
  27. “Repeal the Fair Work Act” – Abbott isn’t trying to repeal it, but he’s trying to undermine it.
  28. “Allow individuals and employers to negotiate directly terms of employment that suit them” – Abbott is trying to do this.
  29. “Encourage independent contracting by overturning new regulations designed to punish contractors” – The Coalition was talking about doing this, but I don’t know if they did.
  30. “Abolish the Baby Bonus” – The previous Labor government did this.
  31. “End all public subsidies to sport and the arts” – Abbott is trying to make big cuts to sports and the arts in the budget.
  32. “Rule out any government-supported or mandated internet censorship” – The Coalition has done this (p.7).
  33. “Immediately halt construction of the National Broadband Network and privatise any sections that have already been built” – Abbott hasn’t done this, but he has watered down the NBN, and is now delivering something far inferior, which includes key involvement for Telstra (which Labor’s NBN eliminated).
  34. “Reject proposals for compulsory food and alcohol labelling” – Abbott hasn’t done this directly, but he’s backing the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement, which would put it at great risk.
  35. “Privatise the CSIRO” – Abbott hasn’t done this, but he’s slashed its funding in the budget.
  36. “Extend the GST to cover all goods and services” – Now that Abbott has cut $80b from state school and hospital funding, the states may be forced to consider expanding the GST.
  37. “Negotiate and sign free trade agreements with Australia’s largest trading partners, including China, India, Japan and South Korea” – Abbott is doing this.
  38. “Rule out the introduction of mandatory pre-commitment for electronic gaming machines” – Abbott has done this.

So of the IPA’s wishlist of 100 policies, 3 have been publicly endorsed, 6 are being considered, 10 have been partially adopted, and 19 have been fully adopted.

Note that although the government has ruled out the sale of Australia Post, they were definitely considering it, so some would say it should be included in the list above too.

Oh, and the bonus prize? The wife of the IPA’s chairman is on the board of a ballet school that got a $1 million grant in the budget. To help it buy a $4.7m mansion to use as a boarding school. Meanwhile other arts institutions took an $87m cut. Screen Australia was cut by $25.1 million and the Australia Council lost $28.2 million.


Couldn’t it just be coincidence? Nope, Abbott’s in the IPA club

It’d be comforting to think it was all just one big coincidence, but sadly it’s not. You see, Abbott’s part of the IPA club. He even spoke at the IPA’s 70th anniversary, along with Rupert Murdoch, Gina Rinehart and Cardinal George Pell:

It’s quite a brown-nosing performance, so just in case you can’t bring yourself to watch it all, here’s the bit that shows how highly Tony thinks of the API:

The IPA, I want to say, has been freedom’s discerning friend. It has supported capitalism, but capitalism with a conscience. Not for the IPA, a single-minded dogmatism or opposition to all restraint; rather a sophisticated appreciation that freedom requires a social context and that much is expected from those to whom so much has been given. You’ve understood that freedom is both an end and a means; a good in itself, as well as necessary for full human flourishing. I particularly congratulate the IPA and its marvelous director, John Roskam, for your work in defence of Western civilisation.”

And remember, this is the organisation with such an appreciation of “social context” that it campaigns against plain packaging for cigarettes. And the director who is so passionate about the defence of Western civilisation that he continually publishes propaganda and psuedo-science to try to discredit the climate-change scientists who are trying to fight the single biggest threat to that civilisation.

More important, though, is this bit:

You had a great deal of advice for me in that particular issue and I want to assure you that the Coalition will indeed repeal the carbon tax, abolish the Department of Climate Change, abolish the Clean Energy Fund. We will repeal Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act, at least in its current form. We will abolish new health and environmental bureaucracies. We will deliver $1 billion in red tape savings every year. We will develop northern Australia. We will repeal the mining tax. We will create a one stop shop for environmental approvals. We will privatise Medibank Private. We will trim the public service and we will stop throwing good money after bad on the NBN.”

Still not convinced? Then try this on for size…


He even appointed ex-IPA Director as a Human Rights Commissioner

When Abbott won the election, Tim Wilson was a Policy Director at the IPA. Three months later, he was our newest Human Rights Commissioner. Even though the IPA had publicly called for the Commission to be abolished… while Tim was still a director! And despite the fact that Tim clearly wasn’t qualified for the role. Check out his Tweet below (from his time at the IPA, before his appointment as Human Rights Commissioner).

Tim Wilson's anti-free speech tweet

And just in case you’re wondering if that’s Photoshopped, it’s not. Here’s the original…


Liberal & the IPA have been pals since 1942

You get the picture…


Murdoch’s in the IPA club too

Rubert Murdoch is a donor and outspoken champion of the IPA. In fact, his dad, Keith, was one of the its founders (p.2).

Murdoch spoke at the 70th anniversary dinner too:

Although he talks a lot of rhetoric, his true colours still shine through in gems like this:

The market succeeds because it gives people incentives to put their own wants and needs aside to address the wants and needs of others…

What’s fair about taking money from people who have earned it and giving it to people who didn’t?…

too much welfare can be bad for a single mother…

we must have a press free from government intervention…

income inequality is not the right way to measure the fairness of our society”


So is one of his top columnists, Andrew Bolt

Herald Sun columnist, Andrew Bolt, is another club member. In fact, he MCd the 70th anniversary event.

Here’s his introductory speech:

Like Murdoch, he talked a lot of rhetoric, but his speech was probably more telling:

I will also thank, for a visit I had one night, at a very low moment, Tony Abbott…

it wasn’t just the IPA that won the debate… against the sort of laws that we use to stop me. The Liberal Party is promising to repeal some of the worst of the Racial Discrimination Act, and the IPA will, of course, be leading the charge to ensure that the rest also follows, and that the Liberals do not take the easy option there…

It’s hard to over-estimate the impact of the IPA. It’s very hard…

the IPA’s been on the right side of all the arguments for freedom, since it was founded 70 years ago. Freedom from government socialising the economy…

Politicians operate in a cultural space… It is up to bodies like this to define where that cultural space is and should be, and to expand the boundaries.”


And when you look at the Murdoch press, you can tell

Murdoch and Bolt’s speeches were both met with much applause. They’re clearly of the IPA, for the IPA. And thus of Liberal, for Liberal.

So it’s no surprise that their media contributions are also of the IPA, for the IPA, of Liberal, for Liberal. Bolt’s last comment above illustrates this very clearly. Let’s just look at that again, so we make no mistake how Murdoch and Bolt see the intertwined roles of the IPA and the media:

Politicians operate in a cultural space… It is up to bodies like this to define where that cultural space is and should be, and to expand the boundaries.”

In other words, ‘we need to brainwash the public, so our politicians can do what the IPA wants them to do’.

That philosophy goes a long way towards explaining some of the horrendously biased (often fictional) stories that pass for news in Murdoch’s newspapers. (And don’t forget, Murdoch controls 65% of all capital city and national daily newspapers, which are by far the most influential in setting the news agenda.)

Take these vastly different portrayals of Labor versus Liberal lies, for example:

Lib vs Lab lies


Or these outright lies about the carbon tax being responsible for gas price increases (click or tap the image to zoom in):



(Links: news.com.au story and IPART report)


Then there was this Daily Telegraph front page gem that not only pitted war veterans against disability support pensioners, but also used a stock image of young healthy people lining up to suggest that disability pensioners are all just healthy fakes, lining up with their hands out:

Murdoch Fake Photo

(Link to the Shutterstock image)


Or the Australian home page, on the morning after long-time Liberal Party staffer, Ray Carter, blew the whistle on the entire NSW Liberal Party at ICAC, claiming “everyone knew” about the slush funds that he used to launder illegal donations from property developers to the party. (Only part of the image is shown below. Click or tap to see the whole lot.)

Small Australian


And who could forget the parade of anti-Rudd/pro-Abbott front pages leading into the 2013 federal election?



The IPA features directly in a lot of media too. Here’s a snapshot of their media campaign for the year to June 2013 (from p.9 of their annual report):


I don’t have a breakdown of how many of those appearances and mentions were in the Murdoch press, but I think it’s safe to say it was a lot. (Although, sadly, they feature very prominently on the ABC too, which might be attributed to the fact that the ABC’s Managing Director used to be a senior adviser for the NSW Liberal Government. He was chief of staff to the Education Minister, Virginia Chadwick, and a senior adviser to education minister, Terry Metherell.)


Now let’s put all those pieces together…

Abbott has broken promise after promise after promise. On the eve of the election, he promised no new taxes, no cuts to health, no cuts to education, no change to pensions, no cuts to the ABC and no cuts to the SBS… He also promised to be a government of no nasty surprises and no excuses. He’s broken all those promises, and more, and he’s forging ahead as if we don’t matter. Meanwhile, he’s adopted or endorsed more than a third of the IPA’s policy wishlist. And the Murdoch press has backed him the whole way.

To me, it’s very clear what’s really going on… The IPA suggests big-biz policies, the Liberal party adopts them and Murdoch gets the public to accept them. Simples.

The only real question is why?


  1. says

    It is high time that Australians woke up to fact that we’re part of the Grand Anglophone Corpocracy. Dennis Potter’s last tv series illustrated where its leading.

  2. says

    Just looked up the name of Potter’s 1996 TV production by the BBC. It was “Cold Lazurus” Set in a dystopian future run by American oligarchs it portays a world in which an erzatz virtual realitiry is imposed on the masses. The media only exists to promulgate propaganda.

    Urban decay and squalid living conditions are the norm. Nothing is genuine, nothing authentic. All food and drink is processed addictive toxic goop. By contrast the super rich inhabit luxurious fotified enclaves. Squads of armoured police goons seek out and crush any signs of civil unrest or dissent.

    Sound familiar?

    I’m beggining to take John Pilger much more seriously. OMG has he been right all along!

  3. Al Warren says

    Well researched, clearly argued. It all makes perfect sense, of course. We’re the product – not the client, and that has to change.

  4. Steve Manning says

    Brilliant article Glenn and superbly researched.

    When you compile all these facts together, it leaves you speechless.

    Their arrogance, greed and selfishness is beyond belief.

  5. Maureen says

    Great article Glenn and very comprehensive linking all of the vested interests that are trying to destroy Australia as we know it.

    Abbott and Murdoch’s speeches at the IPA 40th Anniversary in April last year was a grim warning of what would happen if the Murdoch/IPA/Rinehart/BCA/mining industry etc Tea Party Libertarians won the election.

    We just have to hope that this information spreads far and wide. I will be sharing.

    • Nicko says

      “I believe the only way past all this is to have a political party that firstly does not accept donations and secondly incorporates and includes the fundamentally different values held by green, labor & liberal voters”

      Well that’s me! When do I expect your membership?

  6. says

    Well researched & written article Glenn. This Government is an absolute joke. What is frightening is that I am hearing exactly the same concerns & complaints from the UK and US. Our ‘democracy’ is being subverted and enslaved to big corporate. I would say quietly but frankly there’s nothing quiet about it. I think they’ve come to the conclusion that they don’t need to hide it anymore. What are we going to do about it anyway? I think what we’re seeing in Australia is likely occurring everywhere just more quickly and overtly. It’s time for Australians to stand up and ‘throw this mob out’. I truly despair at how much more destruction they can wreak on this great country if given a full term, or more…

    • Anna says

      This is because Murdoch has massive influence in the UK and US, too. Due to his getting favours from politicians over decades in both of those countries as he did here, to bypass media ownership laws.

      You may be interested to read “Murdoch’s World” by David Folkenflik, and Robert Manne’s articles on Murdoch including “Why Rupert Murdoch can’t be stopped”.

      His media empire in Britain came close to the brink in the UK in recent years due to being a hive of corruption, involving police corruption to get stories while his son was running the show. His top editors there are on trial right now over that corruption. But I haven’t heard anything recently in our media about that at all.

      And now Murdoch is busy having his papers discredit anyone who dares to oppose his and the IPAs views (by criticising or not supporting his chosen PM) by calling us activists, greenies, wreckers, extremists, leftists, hippies, dirty, bludgers, alarmists etc etc.

      And the best of all, conspiracy theorists.

      So anyone daring to join the dots as Glen has done in this article, can get written off as a conspiracy nut.

      Murdoch, the IPA and Abbott must be stopped…they can be stopped by people power.

      If he isn’t stopped, Australia could become a very different place. Murdoch supported Thatcher in de-humanising Britain. His media has influenced the increased social inequality in both the UK and US

      Already we have seen how the police are crushing student protests, and turning this into a police state. The uni student arrested today, had his arm held and pushed into a forced swing at Bishop’s car with his flag, by the security person who grabbed him!

      Unless we want our country to change forever for the worse, they must be stopped.

  7. michael says

    Thankyou for your effort in brining all this info together in one place. Ever since watching Abbott address IPA anniversary last year, I knew they were the ones in the driving seat. What a discussing bunch of extreme idealouges and sympathisers such as pell, Murdoch, Rinehart, bolt ect. Tony Abbott is their crash test dummy driving Australia off the cliff.Scary times indeed.

  8. Warren Ross says

    At least a dozen times over the last year I have rung the ABC to insist that if they are going have people from the IPA or CIS on their programmes then they should insist that these people tell us who represents their opinions. Why does the ABC act as a publicity arm of the IPA?

  9. Keitha Granville says

    The ties to the IPA / Murdoch /Rinehart and the oligarchs have been mentioned so many times before and always are dismissed as fantasy, and yet the Labor party is crushed at the same time over its ties to the union movement. In my humble opinion, both have similar power which they should not have any more than any other member of either party. Clearly there is a place for a unionist to be a member of the Labor party since it was founded by them, and capitalists need to have their place in the system. But it is time that these ruling organisations hiding behind locked doors, either union clubs or gentlemen’s clubs, were routed and shown up for their bullying and overpowering tactics. The flow of money and the stranglehold on politics has to be stopped. Any politician shown to be in the sway of anyone else should be named and booted. Any party found to be agreeing to implement ideas for favours should be relegated to the political wilderness for several terms automatically. The PM with his blatant favouring of the IPA MUST be called on it – it’s astounding that no-one in the press has raised this, anywhere !! Why ? Surely someone in the independent media has the guts to ask the questions ? There has to be some kind of consequence. We, the people, have this bizarre notion that we elect the representaitves in Canberra. Hah !! I think the last time I elected someone who actually tried to be a member for my electorate was back in the 70s. His party hated him. It doesn’t happen any more, they just don’t get pre-selection. If you want to be a man for your people don’t bother applying.
    We have to get this message across somehow, although I suspect that the vast majority of citizens don’t care much
    . Apathy is one of the greatest enemies of democracy.

    • Aleta says

      The main stream media ‘News Corp’ decides who will be in power and most Australians don’t even realise that Murdoch is in control of our country. The ABC is his current target- complete ownership of the minds of the people. Most people who vote are informed by mainstream news and will never see this page. No wonder Rhinehart is increasing her interest in Fairfax!
      Australia needs an independent tabloid mainstream newspaper- a print version of the ABC.

      • Sarah says

        A big part of the problem is that the ABC is no longer an independent news source.

        I used to get my news on the ABC news website, but since the last election I have noticed a big change in the reporting on the ABC. And a huge increase in blatantly right-wing views.

        I have felt really concerned about this, and after reading Glen’s excellent article, I can see how this change in the ABC has been able to come about, too.

        I am sure there has been a push from the IPA towards ensuring the ABC expresses more right-wing views in the name of “balance” in reporting.

        Of course there is no balance in the Australian media with Murdoch’s major ownership of not just the national newspaper and city papers, but regional newspapers too.

        The Many Daily for instance, is owned by Murdoch. That paper ran a non-stop campaign for Abbott before the election, singing his praises in every edition.

        People who read News Ltd papers, are told that the bias in the media is against the Coalition and they believe this lie.

        In every way Murdoch newspapers turns things around to be the opposite of the truth, and readers believe what they see there because his papers claim to present “fair and balanced” journalism.

        I have never seen anyone demonstrate so clearly the IPA think tank support this government has enjoyed for so long.

        Murdoch constantly demonises unions through his media because unions are the best way for workers to fight for and maintain their rights. Without unions, employers can walk all over workers rights, with the goal of lowering wages and conditions, to increase profits.

        I believe this as a big part of the why? They want an underclass of unskilled workers, competing with each other for not enough jobs. This ensures wages are driven down. There push for individual negotiating of wages gives this agenda away. The employers are the winners when collective bargaining is prevented.

        They want this to be a place where only the rich can afford to go to university, and the rest compete for a few scholarships. They want a society based entirely on competition and survival of the fittest.

        And the scariest thing on their list….their push to eliminate media ownership restrictions.

        We already have the most biased media in the Western world by percentage ownership.

        This bias has already allowed the ‘unelectable” to become electable, by reporting lie upon lie.

        How can we kick this mob out?

  10. Bronwyn says

    The world is as you dream it. It is time to dream of a different world of balance for all humanity and the planet. This should be our dream, and Australians are capable making it come true

  11. Dee says

    This has left me with absolute confirmation, anxiety and a pit of fear in my stomach for the future of my children. I am so in shock of the reality that we are in the middle of a real life sci fi horror take over of the people and am petrified about the fact that so, so, so many cannot even see this……. this has been an absolute plan in the making for decades and the drugs, stress of living via bills, rentals, the continual spinning wheel of having to work form hours to just survive weekly KEEPS most people oblivious , too stressed, drugged , too tired or financially not even able to do anything ! I now have very, very grave concern for our children and their equal rights ! A brilliant summary that I will be sharing and at the same time praying that we can wake everyone up, because its going to take all of us on this one ! THANK YOU X

  12. Direct democracy worth a look says

    If this and so many other bad tasting things about representative democracy don’t get people to start seriously thinking about the only other legitimate form of governance (direct democracy) what will. It is clear that current political parties represent corporate interest over the community. Money can never save the world only people can with a unified will. Money only allows manipulation of the masses. And politicians and corporations do all they can to control what little money gets to the individual so as to allow mass controlled manipulation.

  13. Martin says

    It may be that their abandonment of stealth in their policy agenda is driven by a kind of corporate panic – they can see the writing on the wall as the new civil society emerges. With the growing possibility of getting off the grid perhaps the most decisive element in a vision for a new collaborative future it may be a race against time for capitalism. I can’t wait.

    Fantastic work.

  14. says

    There are many calls in the above comments for a grass roots party that will fight the changes that the IPA is imposing on us, the corporate funding of politicians and the selection of candidates for parliament.

    I have launched The Third Party to deal with these problems and more.

    Beliefs and core values http://wp.me/p4D06M-3D

  15. says

    Absolutely brilliant article, this is real journalism, the kind that just doesn’t make it into the mainstream media.

    Utterly damning of the ALP, it’s not surprising, but it is nice to see what I thought was the case properly researched and investigated.

    And all delivered in a measured tone (I think I would have been frothing at the mouth by the end of writing it!). Well done.

  16. says

    Thank you, thank you thank you. I have been tweeting the list of 75, then the next 25, on and off for some time, and highlighting each one acted on, e g. No. 6 Repeal RET, also posting on my Facebook page. All the time hoping someone with expertise would pick up on and report more professionally. No one did to my knowledge, but here at last is an excellent expose. Please keep this current and constantly in the public eye, as unfortunately people have notoriously short memories. I think this is very dangerous for Australia, it is either bordering on, or is, Lubertarianism. Remember the absolute joy of Front Bench when the Carbon Price was finally repealed. IPA lauded “WE DID IT”.

    Then there is the ‘Landscape Guardians’. Another group to be feared. Not a conservation group, their only cause is to destroy any possibility of wind farms being constructed. Aligned, yes, with the IPA.

    Read this: http://www.independentaustralia.net/environment/environment-display/the-landscape-guardians-and-the -way bra-foundation,3995

    Again thank you, and please keep this reporting up.

  17. Peter Murray says

    So IPA tend to the right and you prefer the left. Nothing wrong with either but worth being grateful that both are allowed to express themselves. I have supported both sides at different times but think the last Labor government was the worst we have ever had so no wonder Abbott and Co won. I hope Labor can pick up again because a strong Opposition is needed in a democracy.

    • says

      Hi Peter. Thanks for your comment. It’s a sad reflection on Australia’s political climate that your first thought is a right vs left one. Even if I was specifically commenting on whether these policies are fair and just, that wouldn’t be about left vs right, it would be about right vs wrong. But in fact, my point here is that a small group of very wealthy individuals and their companies have way too much influence over our politicians. And we call Australia a ‘democracy’…


  1. […] Recently an alliance of big businesses put together a wishlist of 100 policies they wanted our government to implement. That alliance is the IPAThe alliance I’m talking about is the Institute of Public Affairs (IPA) – a lobby group for big business, founded in 1943. The IPA publishes ‘research’ papers and articles that are funded by big business, to serve the interests of those businesses. These papers and articles are thenchanneled to the news media.Although the IPA is not obliged to disclose who it lobbies for, they have disclosed some of their donors, over the years, including:News LimitedBHP-BillitonWestern Mining CorporationMonsantoTelstraTobacco companies including Philip Morris and British American TobaccoOil & gas companies including Caltex, Esso, Shell and WoodsideTasmania’s largest logging company, GunnsIf you’ve seen or read any anti-climate change talk over the last few years, it’s probably come out of the IPA. According to the IPA’s Executive Director, John Roskam, climate change denial is one of their favourite games:"Of all the serious sceptics in Australia, we have helped and supported just about all of them in their work one way or another…”  […]

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