Dick Smith tell us what he really thinks about Australia today 209



View Profile

Dick Smith is worried about the future of Australia. The much-loved philanthropist has given his honest opinions about climate change, politics and the collapse of his former retail store.

When Dick Smith started his electronics store, he and his wife had only $610 together. However, in 1982 Dick Smith sold what was a profitable business for $22 million. Dick says this pay-out allowed him to pursue his passions for the environment, and contribute more to charity.

This year’s collapse of Dick Smith electronics is still a source of sadness for this Aussie icon, though. “The merchant bank or whatever the people call themselves bought Dick Smith from Woolworths for $90 million, which it was properly valued at, and then floated it 18 months later for something like $500 million”, Dick explained.

“I just couldn’t see how that could be legal, how that could be proper, how that could be moral. The people who invested in it lost most of their money. That disappointed me greatly because it just didn’t seem the right thing to do”.

Without Dick Smith electronics, the man himself has been able to pursue more personal passions, though. Dick Smith told the ABC he is truly worried about Australia’s environment. “I can’t believe that we’re not completely wrecking the world”, Dick explained.

Dick says he has seen environmental damage on an international scale, especially during a helicopter trip he conducted back in the 80s. “As I flew, most of the time it was in smog or smoke, the amount of clearing that was going on, the huge cities, you could just see five billion people were damaging the earth tremendously”, Dick said.

The Aussie philanthropist is hopeful that change will come though. “We need a young person who says to every politician: ‘Look, you can’t have perpetual growth. It’s impossible.’ We need to live in balance”. Dick has previously hinted that he may contest the Sydney seat of Mackellar, in our next federal election.

“Our present economic system is a type of Ponzi scheme, which are illegal in this country”, Dick adds. “We haven’t put enough aside for our pensions, so we need a huge influx of migrants to pay taxes. The problem is that when those migrants get older you’ll need even more people. It’s the classic non-sustainable Ponzi scheme”.

Of course, it remains to be seen whether Dick will formally enter politics, but “I have been asked to stand and I am thinking about it”, he has previously said. “I would only do it as an independent”.

“I’ve never kidded myself for a second that my own successes come from my own brilliance”, Dick added. “It’s come because I live in this incredible society with 23 million hard working people. It’s a stable society that’s allowed me to do really well”.

Would you like to see Dick Smith enter Aussie politics? Do you think Dick can be trusted more than our average politicians?

Starts at 60 Writers

The Starts at 60 writers team seek out interesting topics and write them especially for you.

  1. DS is an extraordinary Australian. I especially liked his comparison of our pension problem with a Ponzi scheme.

    1 REPLY
  2. Dick Smith is an honorable man and he is right about immigration and not only with Pensions but they are trying to boost Government coffers, more people spending and paying taxes is a supposed boost for the country. But when there are not enough jobs to go around, it seems pointless to me to bring in more people to go on welfare. I am not against immigration, but I am for common sense

    3 REPLY
    • You have just said everything I intended on saying Libbi, well done. If Dick goes into POLITICS it wouldn’t take long for other politicians to be feeling the pressure, I just wish he was here in VICTORIA because he’d have my VOTE, instead of the egotistical MORONS we currently have to put up with.

    • Please go for it Dick Smith..many have faith in ..you can only have immigration when you have a country that is sustainable..at present ours is unbalanced and teetering..More people more strain on everything!…these govt’s seem to forget the populations is increasing..as our latest immigrants have three or four children already tagging along behind…and our health and education already being cut…we are a big country..but much is arid.

  3. We don’t need another Dick in politics, there are far too many of them already!

    1 REPLY
    • Hahaha I agree about the fact there are toooo many there at the moment Peter, but I think this Dick is different from the rest?

  4. With someone who’s really loved Australia like Dick has, well it might be the fist time Australia gets an honest politician. Yes we could do with poli’s like Dick Smith

    2 REPLY
  5. I look around me and read articles about the catastrophic situation in our oceans, damaging mining operations continued deforestation, irresponsible clearing. It is becoming despairingly predictable. How many mining operations and industries go broke or leave the country with government having to foot the bill to clean up. How much do we know about the damage from our behaviour but do nothing. The legal separation between the company and its decision makers needs to be rethought and directors and CEOs made criminally and economically liable for the damage done by the company.

    3 REPLY
    • Not only is government (i.e. the people) left with the cleanup bill, but that same Government was subsidising the operation in the first place in many cases! A “lose-lose” situation for taxpayers.

    • We desparately need Dick Smith( and the likes of him)…for his leadership…his love for our land Australia…for wanting to put Australians first and foremost….then we will be able to have younger aspiring politicians…wanting to go into politics for the right reasons….not to feather there own nest.

  6. It would be great if someone such as Dick Smith got into politics but sadly without a large number of like minded people getting in with him it would not be of benefit.The system will prevent him making a difference .That is politics .The Don Chipp era was a hope but it could not be sustained.Would love to see a group that actually wants to look after the little people and the future of the country but those who are elected are just looking after themselves .Last election some thought Palmer was a hope but look at how he has treated his workers hiding behind companies rather than taking responsibility.There needs to be a revolution by the masses for change .The two party system needs to go they are too much the same .

    4 REPLY

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *