By Andrew Vickers, General Secretary of the Australian CFMEU Mining and Energy Division
Fair Go for Billionaires is the CFMEU Mining and Energy’s new ground-breaking campaign to focus public attention on Tony Abbott’s absurd promise to repeal the Australian Labor Party’s new Resources Tax and hand billions of dollars back each year to the rich and powerful mining magnates – including executives from BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto.
Spearheaded by The Chaser’s Charles Firth with our Union’s National Media Director Paddy Gorman, it will feature a series of five web videos and a website to help build a community around this issue.
The five videos point people back to the website, which allows people to explore Abbott’s promise further and to register their support for handing the billions back to the downtrodden billionaires rather than frittering it away on hospitals, schools, increased superannuation and other such public needs.
The website also features a Wealth Calculator web app, which allows people to type in their annual salary and then calculate how many minutes it takes our wealthiest mining magnates to earn that and also to see how many years it would take you to reach the fortune of the billionaires Abbott so generously wants to assist.
Fair Go For Billionaires bills itself as a “grass-roots organisation of ordinary, everyday billionaires.” Instead of attacking Abbott for his generosity towards billionaires, it uses humour to poke fun at the absurdity of his promise of taking $10.5 billion from the Australian people to put back into the pockets of the wealthy
Fair Go For Billionaires understands that Abbott’s $10.5 billion promise must be paid for somehow – and they’re supportive of all the “reforms” needed to achieve it whether it’s cutting schools or digging into hospital budgets. These are all explained in “extended edition” videos on the website.
But most of all Fair Go For Billionaires is about making people realise that in this election there is only one candidate for billionaires: Tony Abbott. The slogan for the ad campaign is “Abbott Understands” – he understands the concerns of ordinary, everyday billionaires.
The website will employ social media tools, such as Facebook buttons and Twitter clients so that people who share the goals of Fair Go for Billionaires can spread the word online.
The creative director of Manic Studios, Charles Firth, says humour is the perfect approach for Tony Abbott’s policy. “Tony Abbott’s promise is so absurd that all we have to do is explain his actual policy and people think it’s hilarious. The Abbott team are the real comedy geniuses here, promising to hand $10.5 billion to the mega-rich in the lead up to an election. You couldn’t write satire that showed off Abbott’s true colours as well as his promise does”, said Charles.
 “Some people said we should attack Tony Abbott for having this policy – but humour is a much better way to spread the word. I’m sure it’s what Tony would have wanted when he was writing the policy”, the founder of The Chaser Charles Firth said.