Mining tycoon Gina Rinehart has slammed those jealous of Australia’s wealthiest, asking them to cut down on drinking and smoking and start working harder, The Australian has reported.
In a scathing attack on what she calls the country’s “class warfare”, Ms Rinehart inisists billionaires like herself are doing more for the country by creating jobs.
Ms Rinehart’s opinions were published in her regular column in Australian Resources and Investment magazine.
Related: Rinehart, the woman behind the billions
"If you're jealous of those with more money, don't just sit there and complain. Do something to make more money yourself - spend less time drinking or smoking and socialising, and more time working. Become one of those people who work hard, invest and build, and at the same time create employment and opportunities for others,” Ms Rinehart writes.
In the column, Ms Rinehart also warns Australia is risking its position by adopting “socialist” policies and high taxes similar to the ruined European economies.
Related: Rinehart loses billions and title of world's richest women
"The terrible millionaires and billionaires can often invest in other countries," she writes. "And if they do suffer, what does that really mean? Maybe that their teenagers don't get the cars they wanted, or a better beach house, or maybe the holiday to Europe is cut.
She also suggests the government should lower the minimum wage of $606.40 a week and cut taxes to stimulate employment.
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Ms Rinehart's column has evoked reactions from the political spectrum.
Federal Health Minister Tanya Plibersek said Ms Rinehart should try living on the minimum wage before calling for it to be cut.
Australian Greens Senator Lee Rhiannon, told Seven she respected success but Ms Rinehart was not self-made.
"She's accumulated wealth from her family."
Senator Rhiannon said workers were out there creating the wealth.
Ms Rinehart last week attempted - and failed - to sell a 5 per cent stake in Fairfax after the company unveiled a massive $2.732bn loss.
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