Curiously, the government has had little to say about the strife Rio Tinto and its former CEO, Tom "sovereign risk" Albanese find themselves in with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission over the small matter of a $3 billion write-down on its Mozambique coal mine debacle -- and what the company told investors about it.

Imagine if a trade union and a former union boss were facing fraud charges relating to $3 million, let alone $3 billion. Michaelia Cash would have been out of the blocks in a flash, demanding Labor explain its links with the union (and berating female journalists for failing to chase the story). Especially if the union was in the middle of dealing with another scandal about bribery involving its most senior executives.