Big corporations, whether in the USA or in Tunisia, have links to politicians.
Enron founder Ken Lay and his family were among President Bush's biggest financial backers.
Big corporations benefit from their links to top people.
In the USA, the top 'Fortune 500' corporations now account for over 80% of the USA's GDP.
Some people support the toppling of Ben Ali in Tunisia because his family had links to many businesses, including banks, hotels, construction, newspapers, supermarkets and pharmaceuticals.
Imagine you are an American company involved in the dealership in Ford cars or a French company running Monoprix supermarkets.
The law requires you to have a Tunisian partner.
Very many countries, not wanting to be taken over by big global corporations, insist that foreign businesses have 'local' partners.
So, you can choose a member of the Ben Ali family, or, some poorly connected person.
It is not surprising that your Chairman, Board of Directors and your shareholders are happy to have a member of the Ben Ali family as partner.
This allows you to get things done more quickly.
It is not necessarily corrupt.
An Australian friend tells me that when he set up a business in Indonesia, and had to have an Indonesian partner, he deliberately chose a retired Admiral with good connections.
Tunisia is probably less corrupt than the USA.
1. In September 2010, Tunisia ratified the international treaty banning cluster munitions, becoming the first country in the Middle East and North Africa to do so.
Tunisia is not believed to have used, produced, stockpiled, or transferred cluster munitions.
2. The 2010 Corruption Perception Index was released by Transparency International on 26 October 2010.
The report shows that Tunisia is the least corrupt country in North Africa.
August 2010: The 2010 report of the Oxford Business Group on Tunisia referred to the stability and social peace prevailing in Tunisia.
4. September 2010: Tunisia has the most competative economy in Africa, according to the report on world competitiveness 2010-2011 published by the World economic forum of Davos.
It thus moves ahead of numerous EU member states such as Spain (42nd), Portugal (46th), Italy (48th).... Tunisia's ratings in 2010. Cached
5. January 2010: Tunisia is ranked best Arab state as regards quality of life with 59 points out of 100, moving up 3 points compared with 2009, by "International Living'' magazine , out of 194 countries. Tunisia's ratings in 2010. Cached
6. August 2010: US "Newsweek" magazine ranked Tunisia first in Africa in its "100 best countries in the world'' ratings based on social, economic and political data. Tunisia's ratings in 2010. Cached
7. 2010: The report on human development published by the UNDP ranked Tunisia 7th out of 135 countries in terms of 'long-term development indicators'. Tunisia's ratings in 2010. Cached
8. September 2010: Tunisia is ranked first in the Arab region and 6th in the world as regards the access of handicapped people to ICTs, according to ratings announced in Vilnius (Lithuania) by the United Nations at the 5th forum on the governance of the Internet (IGF 2010). Tunisia's ratings in 2010. Cached
9. July 2010 Tunisia's foreign trade registers 31.1% growth.
10. Tunisia has a very low crime rate. In 2002 Tunisia's murder rate stood at 1.22 /100 000, the lowest in Africa. (Country Profile: Tunisia)