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It was billed as a once in lifetime boom that was going to bring unimaginable fortunes to the ‘wild west’ – but Western Australians are now questioning where all the money went, as the sweet FIFO jobs begin to evapourate.
After last decade’s discovery of even more precious minerals in the soil, immediate interest made it’s way to Australian shores in the shape of foreign mining interests.
Those lucky enough to get a job in hi-vis were able to spend big – and so was the state government.
However, it quickly became clear that aside from the usual 90% that is scraped east by the Federal Government, the rest of the coin wasn’t going into anything that was being promised – like hospitals, better roads and, above all, light gotdam rail.
That was, except for a few things that no one was really thinking about in the dexamphetamines fuelled hysteria of new money. The Westerners were treated A new sports stadium and the redevelopment of the Swan River foreshore in the form of Elizabeth Quay.
But then the boom stopped and the only thing that remained were the substance dependencies developed by cashed up inked up FIFOs who are now comming to terms with the fact that they’ll never be paid $250k a year again, for anything.
This led to a major dip in expected revenue for the WA Coalition government who had budgeted all future spending on the income it expected to derive from iron ore when prices were at their peak, because it was of the opinion of most politicians, with no background in geology, that the deposits were never ending.
Ten years later and the only tangible, touchable remnants of that decade of surplus is a 30 can block of Emu Export stashed in the kitchen by frugal Liberal MPs just before last election.
“This, and the sleeve tatts on every single bloke over 25 are the only things that remain from our ore rush” said former Liberal Premier, Colin Barnett.
“The jets skis have been seized, there’s defunct open cuts sitting in the middle of the bush with poisonous silt all through them”
“But, we’ve got this box of tins to get through yet. I’ve got Troy Buswell coming over this arvo and we’re gonna have a bit of a go. Just to reminisce on when we were kings”