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"...public opinion deserves to be respected as well as despised" G.W.F. Hegel, 'Philosophy of Right'

corporate power « Previous | |Next »
November 13, 2013

I watched part one of Kerry O'Brien's interview of Paul Keating on ABC TV last night. In it Keating refers to his working class background in Western Sydney and his break with old style Labor with his embrace of the market and private capital as wealth generators.

There was no mention of corporate power or how business corporations belong on the inside of political power. They are part of the nexus of power that creates public policy and their interests have now been woven into the fabric of the main political parties in Australia. Corporate capital increasingly controls almost all our politics and in doing so truncates parliamentary democracy and turns it into a form of show biz.

PopeDpoliticshowbiz.jpg David Pope

The conservative politics of corporate power is expressed by Maurice Newman, chairman of Abbott's business advisory council. Newman, a climate science denialist, says that Australia's average weekly wages were too high, that there was a need for workplace reform and reckoned the adoption of the Gonski education reforms and national disability insurance scheme were ''reckless'', given the size of the country's debt.

He also called for a review of Australia's competition laws, suggesting they should be diluted rather than beefed up to enable big companies to merge to get the ''necessary critical mass in a small domestic market without running up against trade practices issues''. This is necessary to avoid Australia becoming a branch economy, and if Australian companies are to become national champions at home then there needs to be a rebalancing the interests of consumers and businesses. To fail to do this is to encourage companies to shift to more friendly domiciles, sell to foreigners, or, if all else fails, to close their doors.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 8:03 AM | | Comments (10)


"Newman, a climate science denialist,"

The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI), the Australian Industry Group (Ai Group), the Business Council of Australia (BCA) and the Minerals Council of Australia (MCA) say delaying the repeal of carbon pricing would be “deeply unhelpful” for business as it imposes big costs on business.

They backed the LNP so that Australia would get rid of carbon pricing

Yep, according to business, the carbon "tax" means that business confidence is falling even though the election of an Abbott Govt and reducing the size of the public service was meant to restore business confidence.

Things ought to be booming to counter the rapid end of the mining investment boom. Retail sales ought to going gangbusters.

climate change denialism is strong amongst the corporate elite, such as David Murray and Hugh Morgan, with their attacks on climate change scientists.

WTF? Did anyone else see this on TV today...?

Did I really see Abbott whining about Labor having an unreasonable (or maybe negative) attitude?

I always take this former PM with a dose of salt.
The issue discussed here turned up during the recall of events involving Rex Connor with Keating murmuring an aside about the prerogatives of property and dismissing public ownership as virtually unthinkable,even without providing evidence of any rational argument to justify such a statement.
I mean, why own resources ourselves (as a community) when we can farm these out to middle men?

corporate power--an example. Laws to enable James Packer to build his new casino at Barangaroo are pushed through NSW Parliament. Packer's casino and hotel will be on public land and be up to 60 storeys high.

Speaking of corporate power and the so called conservatives who want to let the "free"-market rip whats left of human culture and the biosphere to shreds unfettered by green or red tape, not much has been said (yet) of the in-the-pipeline Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement and its all encompassing implications.

So true, John.

The TPP has serious implications for the whole planet. From what we've been able to deduce, it's a minefield for human rights and the environment. And nobody in power seems to want to talk about it.

No doubt, those who do voice their concern will be painted by the MSM as latte-sipping, communist, greenie, bleeding-heart tree-huggers. Of course Howard's aspirationals will just follow the script.

Re John, read some where on FB the governemt will try to ram it through the Senate on the last sitting day this year.
The current Wikileaks dump has it as we suspected, a naked capitulation by almost all concerned to a Wall St designed agenda, that suffoates all democracies.
Elsewhere, I watched one of the bosses trying to peddle labor dereg/importation as a moral virtue on Latteline a night or two ago.

David Llewellyn-Smith says that Kevin Rudd's most enduring legacy is:

the rise and rise of vested interests, which has now made it nigh on impossible to favourably reform policy that is in the national interest but not in certain sectional interests. That will weigh on the economy for a very long time.

Hasn't corporate power always stood for their sectional interests?