The world’s richest woman, Australian mining tycoon Gina Rinehart, urged those “jealous” of the wealthy to “spend less time drinking” in an article blasted as “insulting” by Canberra yesterday.
Rinehart, whose family iron ore prospecting fortune is worth $30.1 billion (R253bn), hit out at those envious of the rich.
“There is no monopoly on becoming a millionaire,” she wrote in an industry magazine column.
“If you’re jealous of those with more money, don’t just sit there and complain. Do something to make more money yourself – spend less time drinking or smoking and socialising, and more time working. Become one of those people who work hard, invest and build, and at the same time create employment and opportunities for others.”
Rinehart blamed what she described as “socialist”, anti-business policies for the plight of the poor, urging the government to lower the minimum wage and taxes to promote investment.
Treasurer Wayne Swan said: “These… comments are an insult to… Australian workers who go to work and slog it out to feed the kids and pay the bills.”
Mining union president Tony Maher said: “At the same time as trying to import cheap foreign labour and avoid paying tax, Rinehart claims it’s millionaires and billionaires who are the greatest for social good. What planet is she living on? She should spend less time ranting and more time sharing.” – Sapa-AFP