There never has been, and is never likely to be, a rule that says someone who owns a company is not entitled to run it as she sees fit, within the limits of the law. Nor would such a statute be desirable, if we are serious about personal freedom and freedom of speech.

So in theory, if Gina Rinehart comes to own or control Fairfax Media -- and she is a long way off doing that -- she could do as she wished with editorial policy, hiring and firing as she saw fit to achieve her aims.