Yet again, those hard earned tax dollars are being spent on ‘stuff and nonsense’.
Apart from the stay at home and watch daytime TV crowd, who gives a ‘rats’ about Oprah and her 300 guests touring Australia?
I brought this up at a ladies craft morning recently, and there were women there who categorically believed Oprah was paying for this trip herself, and out of the goodness of her heart, was bringing the 300 guests with her! Talk about naivetivity.
Supposedly bringing the Day Time TV host to Australian will help boost tourism and local jobs, but at what cost one asks?
While in Down Under, Oprah will be taping several episodes of her talk show. It is unknown what the total cost of the trip will run Oprah. However, she is receiving some financial aid from the taxpayers in Australia. The government funded exorbitant vacation will cost $3 million ($2.7M USD).
In conjunction, Qantas airline will be partly financed with funds in the annual tourism budget. “I think it’s money well spent,” Martin Ferguson, Australia’s Minister for Tourism, said in a statement. “This truly represents an amazing opportunity to showcase Australia, the warmth and hospitality of our people and the depth and breadth of everything our country has to offer visitors from around the world.”
The government for the state of New South Wales, where Sydney is located, will hand over between $1 million and $2 million of the country’s investment in the trip. It seems that the state has high hopes that this luxury vacation for 300 will help to boost tourism.
Tourism is worth over $23 billion to the New South Wales economy and employs over 8 percent of the workforce.
If you think that because you are paying the bill for this extravaganza, then you have a right to know where the money is being spent, think again!
Australians may have paid for Oprah Winfrey’s ten-day tour down under but when it comes to finding out exactly what their money has gone towards, there have been no answers.
Oprah’s 300 guests have arrived in the country to much fanfare, despite the fact they are an anonymous bunch of Americans and Canadians, but details of exactly what they and the talk show queen herself will get up to is none of our business apparently.
Despite using $4 million of taxpayer money to fund Oprah’s trip, confidentiality agreements have led to much of the trip being shrouded in secrecy.
The reason for the secrecy, Harpo Productions states, is for the security of Oprah herself.
However a spokesperson for Tourism Minister Martin Freeman said that the Government had not signed a confidentiality agreement but would not release details as “they are here to make a show for Oprah, not for Australia.” Source: news.com.au
Someone needs to remind the Tourism Industry in Australia that The World is in the middle of a major financial crisis. (GFC) The Average Joe on the street can ill afford a luxury overseas holiday to Australia. He is in fact finding it difficult to pay for his children’s ongoing education, health care costs, and mortgage repayments…. Oh I forgot, he has to buy food as well.
Being hopeful that this Oprah Razzle Dazzle, will rake in millions in tourist dollars, is simply pie in the sky right now.
Why the Australian people weren’t asked if they wanted to spend gazillions on this spectacle I don’t know. After all it is their money that is being thrown about. Sure it’s nice to see a favorite celebrity from time to time, but not at the expense of the Australian Tax payer.
So NO, it’s not true that Oprah paid for all this out of the goodness of her heart. It is you and I and our hard earned money footing the bill for this fiasco.
Personally I was rather disgusted to hear that the Sydney Opera House was renamed the ‘OPRAH HOUSE’ – even in jest. She is welcome Down Under, as are all overseas visitors, but I will be glad when the OPRAH Circus Crew have all gone back home, and we can get back to normal, spending our hard earned taxes on something more fitting. How About building some holiday accommodation for disadvantaged Australian children, or arranging holidays for Australian shut-ins and the elderly?