What an exciting article! Not entirely because of the subject matter, but for all the intrigue and politicking going on and because of the insights it has on how manipulative business can be.
Some points I found interesting:
1. Foreign investment in Qantas, the Australian National airline is capped at 49 percent, while no such limit applies to Virgin Australia.
So, although Australia is a sovereign and free country, it’s businesses could potentially be owned by foreign interests (which could be Governments). And those foreign influences could eventually put all sorts of pressure on Australian Government decisions. There are many situations like this all over the world. The problem is most people don’t know about them and even when we do, changing the situation is complex and costly.
Lesson 1: Business is more powerful than Government. In fact, Governments actually serve the interests of Business. Not people. A collusion of sorts between Business and Government that over-rides national borders. An ‘elite’ that seek personal gain and advancement by hiding behind the idea of nationalism.
2. Virgin CEO asserts “Qantas no longer dominated the Australian domestic market and faced tough competition from Virgin”.
The content of that statement is irrelevant – He could be right. And he could be wrong. Surely there is data and figures that show the market situation of the Australian airline market. What matters is that he makes a statement, that he puts on a show and creates noise for the market.
Lesson 2: Today’s Business is about bullying, aggression and elbowing the opposition. If one is not an aggressive, dramatic, bully; one can’t survive in business today.
3. Virgin has hired a commercial lawyer to assess whether Qantas CEO’s comments had defamed Virgin’s board and management and whether they will have an impact on its capital raising and its share price. Qantas dismissed the threats, saying it was comfortable with the statements it had made.
What a show! Major organisations do not make statements without first gaining approval from their legal teams. If both organisations’ legal teams believe themselves to have a case, it follows that the legal system is not about solving a problem, it’s about negotiation. Business and Government are almost immune to the legal system. It’s one big game of tit-for-tat and protecting one’s back. It’s a question of who can get the most from negotiations and how much compromise and benefits each party can gain.
Lesson 3: Business is about one-upmanship. And, the legal system is a whole lot of smoke and mirrors – it is not fair, and it has gapping holes in it. In order to truly understand the broken world we live in, one must understand the broken legal system! Lawyers are business people in disguise. They forge deals, they negotiate, they network.
It’s interesting to look at the world around us and see what other lies the misguided public is being sold.
Have a peaceful day.