The Saturday Paper

The Abbott Principle


Mike Seccombe’s tale of the Abbott-proof Fence should reduce any surviving optimists to existentia­l despair. The Abbott regime’s attempt to give vast amounts of the country’s natural resources and future wealth to huge corporatio­ns, mostly foreign owned, largely for the benefit of itself, displayed an audacity previously confined to certain despots.

While Mr Abbott clearly understood the utility of capital in securing the support and obedience of a large portion of his subjects, he overlooked the potential volatility of his most compliant servants. He might have profited from viewing a 1970s film, where a similarly ambitious and honest but far less talented aspirant to power named Michael Rimmer rides public gullibilit­y to the summit of then implausibl­e political success in Britain.

– John Hayward, Weegena, Tas

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