Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Emperor Barnett, political parties and the loving embrace of corporate money

 'Corporate wealth translates into political power through campaign financing, corporate lobbying and the revolving door of jobs between government and industry; and political power translates into further wealth through tax cuts, deregulation and sweetheart contracts between government and industry. Wealth begets power, and power begets wealth,''
Jeffrey Sachs
2013 has started exactly the same for the corporatocracy that runs Western Australia, despite the scandals and crises that surround the Barnett Government over its loving embrace of  the corporate and business sector.

The money continues to flow from the corporate and business sector to the Liberal National Parties.

The West Australian, the state's only daily paper, reports such political corruption matter of factly and without a hint of concern (perhaps because it relies on the same corporate and business elite for its adverting revenue).

And don't expect to see the Labor Party do anything about this "political corruption". Like the Liberals they are more than happy to take corporate money. And they too take huge amounts of money by offering corporations direct access to Leaders, politicians and decision makers at various Leaders Forums and national and state 'conferences'.

Journalist Kate Batians reports that:
Big business, mining companies and property developers have continued to pour money into the coffers of the WA Liberal Party, which received the lion's share of donations last financial year.

WA Electoral Commission annual returns for 2011-2012 show property and Kreepy Krauly magnate Terry Jackson, a long-time donor, made the biggest donation to the Liberals of $250,000.
In total, the Liberals received almost $3.9 million in donations and other income compared with the Labor Party's $1.85 million and the Greens' $355,000.
The Liberal Party also received $51,445 from the Commonwealth Bank, $50,000 from Perdaman Chemicals and Fertilisers and $37,525 from Woolworths.
Wellard, the State's biggest live- stock exporter, doubled its contributions to the party from $25,000 in 2010-2011 to $50,000 in 2011-2012.

The company yesterday denied it was punishing Federal Labor over its decision to suspend live exports to Indonesia in June last year.

A spokesman said the payments were for Wellard's annual membership to the Leaders Forum, in which big companies pay $25,000 for exclusive access to Premier Colin Barnett and his ministers.

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