Christian Kerr writes:

The Australian‘s leader writers say almost everything that needs to be said about the Snowy sale today:

There is a great deal of old-fashioned economic nationalism
in arguments against the Snowy sale. The idea that Snowy Hydro is now
owned by all Australians ignores the obvious fact that there is no more
reason for governments to have capital tied up in a power company than
there was for them to own airlines, or banks, as they used to, or a
phone system, as Canberra does now. Certainly, the sale is being driven
by the financial incompetence of the NSW Government, whose 58% share
means it has most to gain from the sale. But this in itself does not
make the deal a bad idea. Because if sinister foreigners ever looked
like taking control of the Snowy, Canberra’s Foreign Investment Review
Board has the power to block takeovers from overseas, as occurred when
Shell tried to buy Woodside in 2001. Perhaps the ban on foreign
ownership will be enough to silence critics. But don’t bank on it,
because what they really want is no sale at all…

Almost
everything. You can add two points. First, why are Bill Heffernan and
Kay Hull and other agrarian socialist on the Government side concerned
about the sale? Surely they are for economic and market reform? If it’s
OK to expose Australian workers to IR reform, surely farmers should
start paying the full market price for water. Isn’t that
environmentally sound, too?

Second, someone really needs to hit
at the hyperbole of the opponents of the sale. Douglas Nicholas, the
brains behind today’s letter from prominent Australians opposing the sale
says: “There are indications to suggest that this question transcends
all boundaries – socio-economic, cultural, age, educational – and may
have produced wider agreement among our population than any issue in
our history, including the overwhelmingly supported referendum on
Aboriginal citizenship.”

Get your hand off it, mate! How much of
Australia depends on the Snowy? This is yet another SCAM issue –
something that runs big in the Sydney/Canberra/Melbourne triangle yet
is irrelevant to the rest of the nation. Not that people in on the SCAM
remember the rest of the nation often.