On the occasion of the passing of Sir Arvi Parbo AC (10 February 1926 – 1 May 2019), giant of the Australian business community and in particular its mining sector, we pay tribute to Sir Arvi and reproduce a speech of his which appeared in an IPA Review of 1989.
His address included this timeless wisdom:
What appears important to different people seems to relate to what they do. Politicians talk about “political reality” as superseding everything else; if you are not elected, other things do not seem to matter much. People in the industrial relations area regard what they call “industrial reality” as governing everything, which usually means awarding with great unction the lion’s share to the lion! You might therefore say that when I am holding up “economic reality” as the key concern, I am simply reflecting my own background. This is probably true to some extent, but I submit to you that, in the end, economic reality is what governs all our lives, including those of politicians, union leaders, industrialists, and everyone else – even social workers. We can ignore this reality for a time – at a cost – but we cannot avoid it for any length of time. The cost of ignoring it in the short term will eventually have to be paid. Regrettably, it is never paid by those in power who make economically bad decisions but by the citizens: by you and me.
It can downloaded as a PDF here.
in the end, economic reality is what governs all our lives, including those of politicians, union leaders, industrialists, and everyone else – even social workers.
The original of the header image can be found at the website of Mannwest, here. It was edited for size. The three gentlemen shown are Ron Manners, Geoffrey Blainey AC, and Sir Arvi Parbo AC