The Centre for Public Integrity has published analysis of political donations and government contract work for Big 4 firms EY, KPMG, Deloitte and PwC. What’s the scam?
The scam is legalised corruption on an industrial scale, a $1.4b a year scale. In Booming Business for Big Four Comes At a High Cost, the Centre has issued a tight bit of analysis but nothing we haven’t been rabbiting on about for years: rising donations, surging income from the outsourcing of government.
The Centre labels the return of billions in consulting work in return for millions in donations the “Return on Investment”. Say no more … except that one thing missing is here that the Big4 are partnerships, opaque structures which means they have no responsibility to disclose anything about their financials.
The government could insist they incorporate. It could whack a withholding tax on them which could withhold tax in the event of mischief, it could stop them buying lawyers to use ‘legal professional privilege’ to stonewall the Tax Office in litigation. And much more. It could act decisively on the PwC scandal. Has the Commonwealth DPP been briefed as to charges for the dozens of partners involved in selling Commonwealth secrets to multinational tax avoiders?
Michael West established Michael West Media in 2016 to focus on journalism of high public interest, particularly the rising power of corporations over democracy. West was formerly a journalist and editor with Fairfax newspapers, a columnist for News Corp and even, once, a stockbroker.