The phrase UnAustralian has long resonated deeply with the bogan. The bogan knows that it is Australian; indeed, the best kind of Australian. Anyone who disagrees with things the bogan likes is therefore not Australian. QED. However, something has occurred this week that gives us pause, as we consider the possible death of one of the classic bogan-baiting calls of all time. This is kind of like when Liberace died.
Much has been made of the success (and phenomenal ROI) of the mining companies’ campaign against the MRRT, or RSPT, or GREAT BIG ROCK TAX (GBRT) of late, as for a piddling investment of about $22 million, the likes of Rio Tinto, BHP, and Xstrata managed to put the kybosh on a tax that would have cost them as much as $100 billion. Such a meagre investment was all that was required to convince sufficient bogans that their well-being, their incomes, their VERY WAY OF LIFE was at threat because the government sought to tax the extraction of goods that were technically part bogan-owned in the first place.
Do the maths, because the Australian Leisure and Hospitality Group (ALH) certainly have. In other words, Woolworths have. Woolies, who own 75% of the ALH and over 10,000 pokie machines nationally, are ready to take their case to the bogan. They have witnessed the value for money on offer in convincing bogans to act against their own interests, and, in tandem with the Australian Hotels Association (AHA), are ready to punch out a $20 million propaganda campaign to convince the bogan that its happiness and well-being are conditional upon allowing large corporations to run armies of one-arm bandits. Because, like all canny operators in a bogan-facing sector, Woolies have learned that to gamble on the bogan’s stupidity is to make a sure bet.
For the rest of this week’s post, head over to the Macrobusiness Superblog! It’s no ordinary blog.