The main recommendations contained in the IAC's reports on rural references are outlined. The Commission's reasoning on four issues that are widely viewed as important to the formulation of rural policy is examined. The four issues are: assistance to industry; terms of trade; uncertainty and instability; and adjustment policy. Criticisms are made of the IAC's argument on these issues, and some inconsistencies between reports are indicated. It is concluded that the IAC has made a valuable contribution to the discussion of rural policy in Australia even though its recommendations are sometimes sounder than the argument offered to support them.