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Monday, June 21, 2010

Rudd selective with the facts

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Kevin Rudd is keen for good press releases. His latest opportunity came with the signing of a number of iron ore mining agreements. Rudd used the opportunity to highlight the fact that the mining tax had not impacted the mining industry.
"Australia and China signed more than $8,8-billion of commercial and mining deals on Monday as a senior Chinese leader urged closer trade ties, in a sign that Australia's mining tax has not deterred investment". [Mining Weekly]
The problem with this interpretation is that China needs iron ore, and in the short term it has to come from Australia, and there is no question that a great deal of it will come from Australia regardless of any imposts Rudd imposes. The problem is that Rudd is encouraging iron ore investments in Indonesia, PNG, maybe even New Zealand (despite its remoteness from China) instead of Australia.
Another problem is that the $8.8 billion in investment, is all oil/gas and iron ore projects, where Australia has a strategic advantage because of tight supplies or location advantage. Basically, this is the problem with this tax. It says that if you identify an opportunity, and the government has the capacity to extort some concession from you, it will do that. It will 'arbitrarily' tax you UNLIKE the rest of Australian industry. Meanwhile Google is paying just 0.1% income tax in Australia because the Australian government has no power to extort Google, because unlike mining, Google has the flexibility to move its operations offshore.
I would also suggest to you that small business in Australia are being denied Google Checkout services in Australia because the Australian government wants to tax Australians through Google Checkout more than it wants to encourage Australian small business. More 'authoritarian' extortion. Fair tax you think? It was always about the money
No tax is fair by definition. Any charge which is involuntarily or does not relate to the value of services rendered is 'arbitrary' taxation, and that is slavery.
Retain some sympathy for miners and investors who have seen wealth destroyed in sectors outside iron ore as well, i.e. coal seam methane, gold, copper, lead, zinc, etc. These commodities entail little in the way of strategic advantage. Investors in mining services are in limbo because they do not know the implications of the tax.
Slowly we slip into 'arbitrary' fascism and unthinking, unprincipled people say nothing. Where will it end. It always ends with killing. First it will be political activists disappearing. Don't expect any international interest, as the same game is occurring in all countries around the world. This is becoming normal. It will end in civil war. The government will make a broader imposition in terms of its implications, and you will think 'enough is enough'. By then you will think where did it start. At what point did I allow my principles to slip away.
Frankly, I would prefer to have some empathy for the rights and interests of people, because I don't want to benefit from parasitism like Kevin Rudd. I will probably benefit from Rudd's actions since I have shares in a PNG iron ore company (MGK.ASX), however its not the point. One has to make a distinction between one's financial interests and one's principles, which ought to relate to human nature, not arbitrary ideas bounced around in Rudd's head, or even parliament, which is about as rational as Rudd. Morality is not a numbers game. The concept of a Senate was never a workable solution if there was no measure to ensure reason was the standard of value.
There is a moral issue here. Kevin STRUDD is a parasite with the most deprave values. Don't wait until the next election to tell him so. Australia cannot wait. Every day this tax is under consideration is another day of lost wealth for Australians, as the stock market slowly grasps the impact of the tax.
Andrew Sheldon
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