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Marr on Abbott: nine things you didn’t know about Tony

From David Marr’s Quarterly Essay, “Political Animal, The Making of Tony Abbott”, here are nine things we didn’t know about the man …

Tony’s Catholicism is of a recent vintage. His grandfather, Marr explains, “had made a bargain with God that were his family to survive a voyage to Australia in the early months of World War II they would go over to Rome. Untouched by torpedoes, the Abbotts converted with some fervour”. This may explain why he burns with the zeal of the newly converted, unlike “cultural Catholics” who believe that if several generations of their family have regularly attended Mass then they don’t have to (my husband).

As a teenager, he had a very odd attitude to sex. ”I was sorta wrestling with this idea of the bloody priesthood, and I kept saying, ‘No, no! No sex! Against the rules! Then I’d say, ‘Oh, all right’.” And this was in the 1970s?

When his girlfriend, Kathy McDonald, became pregnant, 19-year-old Tony was unwilling to marry her as it would rule out the priesthood. It would also mean he could not apply for a Rhodes Scholarship, as it was then open only to single applicants. The  relationship broke down when she was seven months pregnant but he came to the hospital when the baby was born and held him for a few minutes, before he was adopted out. (Thirty-five years later, the son was found not to have been Abbott’s.)

He is alleged to have physically intimidated and punched the wall next to Barbara Ramjan after she defeated him in the election for the president of the Students’ Representative Council at Sydney University. Asked by Marr about it, Abbott said he had no memory of the incident, but put out a statement on Saturday saying that it had never happened. He said, she said …

His views about homos-xuality are scarier than we think. At university, writing in uni paper Honi Soit, he takes the reader into the SRC Women’s Collective, full of women who are “grim faced, overall-clad, hard, strident, often lustfully embracing in a counterfeit of love”. Marr also quotes Abbott as writing to High Court judge Michael Kirby that he had trouble with the idea that homosexuality should be regarded as acceptable, rather than simply accepted; “especially when the overwhelming weight of tradition holds that it is in some sense sinful”.

Abbott’s sister, Christine Forster, has recently come out as gay, a decision Abbott is reported to have accepted. This may be an example of another Catholic trait — “to hate the sin but love the sinner”.

On the first date with his now-wife Margaret Aitken, he explained to her the history of the Democratic Labor Party split. And she still married him! (Was this a way of ensuring there would never be s-x on a first date?)

His handwriting is appalling. Even his numbers are illegible. When he was health minister, someone on his personal staff had to tell public servants what was actually scrawled on their submissions.

He is engaged in a strange war with his body. Marr writes: ”He walks as though he has to will each leg forward. It’s curious in a man who is so obviously fit. His face is skin and bone. He smiles but his eyes are hooded. The overall effect is faintly menacing, as if he’s about to climb into the ring.

I’ve noticed that when talking to Tony, he often leans forward and bounces slightly on the balls of his feet, a bit like a kangaroo. Maybe he just has poor circulation and his toes are numb. For a few years, we saw a great deal of his taut torso, often clad in a pair of red budgie-smugglers. But no longer.

His minders — and perhaps his wife — have said no to Speedos and Lycra,” writes Marr. “Even so it can be said that never in the political annals of this country have so many seen so much of so little.” All of this may explain why…

He loves physical deprivation. The essay contains an excellent anecdote from writer Peter Fitzsimons, who played rugby with him in the 1980s:

Abbo never saw a scrum that he didn’t like … what he most loved, and I mean this, was doing it when the conditions were appalling. One night in June, 1989, it all came together. A howling wind, screaming imprecations at the devil. Sheets of rain without end. A whole quagmire of mud to work with. Situation perfect … as we maddened muddy wombats staggered after him. Forty minutes in, as our eyeballs rolled with exhaustion, I dinkum remember looking at his own beatific countenance, all grin and ears, the rain pouring off his uncovered head and having this distinct thought: ‘I think he’s a little bit insane — in a hugely likeable way.’”

In private, he opposed WorkChoices. According to Marr: “He thought WorkChoices harsh and bad politics: ‘A catastrophic political blunder because it undermined the Howard battlers’ faith in the prime minister’s goodwill.’ He and another Catholic warrior in the government, Kevin Andrews, contested the proposals in cabinet. Abbott was particularly concerned with the abolition of the no-disadvantage test, which had set a safety net under earlier workplace reform.”

At the end of this excellent essay, Marr sums up Tony the politician in a paragraph:

An aggressive populist with a sharp tongue; a political animal with lots of charm; a born protege with ambitions to lead; a big brain but no intellectual; a bluff guy who proved a more than competent minister; a politician with little idea of what he might do if he ever got to the top; and a man profoundly wary of change.

He’s a worker. No doubt about that. But the point of it all is power. Without power it’s been a waste of time.”

  • 1
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    Interesting. Loved the first date story.

    Just on TA’s locomotion:
    They say that professional cyclists aren’t very comfortable walking and avoid doing much of it. With all those road miles in their legs, they are much better adapted to riding than walking. Perhaps Tony’s gait reflects this — and whatever training he did that morning. The pugilistic nature of his body language is plain to see.

  • 2
    Kevin Tyerman
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 1:45 pm | Permalink

    How very “New Idea” of Crikey….

    Leading the title of the daily email “Marr on Abbott” instead of “Saville on Marr on Abbott” has an inference that David Marr, having very recently left the Fairfax stable, is actually writing for Crikey…

  • 3
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    ARCHIBALD: Perhaps it’s the same action as developed by many Hollywood actors to depict cow hands and/or quarter-horse riders. An action which seems to be remarkably free amongst conventional riders/show jumpers/eventers, etc.

    You don’t think he walks like an ape, acts like an ape, etc, etc?

  • 4
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 1:52 pm | Permalink

    Clarification. Conventional riders/show jumpers/eventers, aren’t given to walking like apes.

  • 5
    David Hand
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

    Well there you go. The one policy insight Marr can produce is that he was and remains opposed to Workchoices.

    All the other fluff will play well down here in the Crikey Crypt.

  • 6
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    I dinkum remember looking at his own beatific countenance, all grin and ears, the rain pouring off his uncovered head and having this distinct thought: ‘I think he’s a little bit insane — in a hugely likeable way.’”

    What a great description. Alfred E Newman from MAD magazine?

  • 7
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

    I consider him to be an unlovely person of no consequence to me until the disclosure of his role in the imprisonment of the unlovable Pauline Hanson.

  • 8
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

    I don’t like playing to personal types and mannerisms, but to me, that slightly delayed rolling gate seems to smack of indecision, slight shyness even, not the striding confidence of a real leader. I’m afraid the thought of him on the world stage makes me a bit queasy. ( which it would do anyway, even if he didn’t walk funny!) Imagine he and Barack Obama walking towards each other on stage or something? Who would you vote for?

  • 9
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    In other words, DAVID HAND, he has no policies.

  • 10
    Zac Evans
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 2:35 pm | Permalink

    @David Hand, have you read Marr’s essay or are you just basing your claims on the snippets posted here? (ie. “Hand on Saville on Marr on Abbott”)

  • 11
    Steve Carey
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

    Quite an achievement. I don’t like what Abbott stands for, yet all this featherweight huffery and puffery makes me dislike him a little less. It’s like trying to land a punch with a duster - is that the best you can do to assassinate his character… he WALKS A BIT FUNNY?

    He may not have been alone in the 1970s in being anti-gay. If he’s come to think differently from personal experience, good for him.

    And one of Peter Fitzsimons’s trademark blokey you-shoulda-been-there stories (an “excellent anecdote”?) reveals he MIGHT HAVE ENJOYED RUGBY TRAINING WHEN IT WAS RAINING. Heavens above, let’s break out the straitjacket right away, shall we?

    Thin stuff, Crikey, very thin indeed.

  • 12
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 2:59 pm | Permalink

    Without power it’s been a waste of time.”
    It is how that power will be exercised that is the great unknown and concern. I don’t think even knows what he aims to achieve with the power if he ever becomes PM. Where is the vision beyond getting into the Lodge?

  • 13
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

    David Hand
    Perhaps you didn,t notice the DLP reference which is not fluff but in Abbotts DNA . Santamaria all over again with the attack style innuendo but lacking the flow , too many ahhs and that ridiculous laugh . Apart from a few liberals the party is actually the DLP rebadged . Even Joyce is DLP in National dress which is why Abbott gives him full rein to mouth off without rebuke .

  • 14
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

    one of the many concerns i have regarding abbott is the fact which is quite ofter quoted was that he was a boxer at school and from some accounts was quite good at it

    whiilst boxing is regarded as a sport the main aim of the boxer is to belt his opposition into submission in order to win the fight

    some people could even regard the sport as condoning physical violence

    perhaps this explains abbotts supposed threats to the lady after the universaty unions elections ?

  • 15
    Ronson Dalby
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

    It’s worth having a look at this 20” minute interview of Marr speaking about Abbott:


  • 16
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

    STEVE CAREY: If you had been around in the 1950s, 1960s, you would know that thanks to the DLP there was a blanket on any social development which we would consider to be normal behaviour today. The fact that Tony Abbott worships the thought processes of the late Bartholomew Augustine Michael (call me Bob) Santamaria is a clear indication of the former wanting to drag this country back to that era.

    Should the possibility of Tony Abbott becoming PM eventuate, the first thing will be to deny all forms of birth control-please refer to his record as health minister in the Howard government-to women. Backed by a cabinet of ultra conservative Catholics, and with some sympathy amongst Labor Catholics, this country will be headed for our own dark ages.

    The above scenario is too horrible to contemplate. Therefore mocking his walk is a least risible.

  • 17
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 3:29 pm | Permalink

    @ Venise
    We’re all apes really, aren’t we? Watch the great apes even for a few minutes at the Zoo and we find their mannerisms are all too familiar. Apes sometimes posture to make themselves look larger and more dangerous than they really are. This threating behaviour is undoubtably better than any excercise of their true destructive potential.

    Comparing politicians to their fellows is more worthwhile. Comparing and contrasting Abbott with one of his local contemporaries like Latham (“I’m just a guy having a go” - at single mothers for a start.) or some of the other contenders for office these days like Romney’s new ultra-lean ulta-conservative “running” mate, Paul Ryan, is more instructive. A disproportionate focus on physical activity is a form of the manic defense. The story about the rugby practice suggests a hunger to find something transcendental in physical striving. He doesn’t apparently put that energy into preparing to govern - developing policy or getting across the key portfolios. In this time, where the media have all but abandoned holding him to account, he hasn’t needed to - thus far at any rate. His private personality - where he was frank about the fatal errors of JWH’s WC or dealing with the independents after the last election - is more interesting than his public persona which seems like the same sort of masquerade we saw on display in Tampa recently.

    Before his tilt at the leadership, Abbott used to be quite blunt about his unacceptability to the majority of the electorate due to his particular kind of conservatism. He has to pretend to be otherwise to sell himself to the swinging vote - and so, pretty much, to most politicians these days. The lack of room for those in the current government to pursue any sensible accomodation with the obvious hot potato issues reflects the same sort of compromises. Some of these guys must wonder why they ever got into politics but, I’m guessing, not TA. His path in the priesthood was toward being the top guy - Archbishop of Sydney. He still wants to be the top guy. Where to from there?

  • 18
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

    The head damage from getting hit too many times shows; maybe even the reason for his simian like gait and attitude?
    The article in the weekend papers most frightening point was that he wrecked everything he touched to please his master Santamaria. Everything evil in his bizarre cloistered world had to be destroyed and he did that with single purpose. He has not created one thing other than a human life, and even then he managed to wreck that; No humanity, no grace no charm and absolutely no regret.
    Well no effing way should he be let any where the leadership of this country. No way. He should remain the loser he is. He has already cost the liberals any credibility they had and is well on his way to wrecking them too.

  • 19
    Peter Ormonde
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

    Many thanks for this revealing insight. As a lad attempting to sowing my wild oat I would routinely take along a copy of Bob’s News Weekly and read my intending victim some of the racier snippets. This strategy left me an ideal candidate for Holy Orders (which was no doubt the intent).

    Folks who have read my comments here know that I rarely “play the man” where Tony is concerned, but I recall that TV doorstop of 18 months or so ago when he was asked a direct question and lapsed into a strange sort of brain freeze - a bit like Max Headroom or a scratched CD. I suspect there’s more than just curious walking involved in Tony’s wiring issues.

  • 20
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

    @!DRMICK - “He has not created one thing other than a human life, and even then he managed to wreck that;” - What???

  • 21
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 3:47 pm | Permalink

    Who knows what Abbott thinks, or are his convictions - those sort of matters seem to depend on who he’s talking to at any particular moment, and how much he wants their vote.
    He is, if anything, “flexible” and a “whatever it takes” political animal .
    To me his “Banton” attitude pigeon-holed him for me - it takes a certain personality to think like that.

  • 22
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

    MIKEB: I think DRMICK might be referring to the apparent discovery of the child of this union. All the TV stations were informed about Tony Abbott’s discovery/rediscovery of his long lost son. Ditto the print media. At the height of this love in it was discovered that A) The lad wasn’t his, and B) He worked for the ABC TV. As you know, the irrepressible Rabbott regards the ABC as a communist organisation. It all turned out to be a PR disaster for the mad monk, even better I think it all coincided with a huge Christian gymkhana being held-at the tax-payers’ expense-in Sydney. I’ve forgotten the year it occurred.

  • 23
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

    @Venise - yes I knew that but thanks anyway. How did Abbott “wreck” a human life from this episode? He has three daughters who I assume he hasn’t “wrecked”. Jeez i can’t stand his politics but this sort of attack is not fair.

  • 24
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

    He had a very odd attitude to sex”. Heh, that’s rich coming from a lefty, who probably thinks that men shoving their fists up each other should be celebrated as heralds of enlightenment and progress . Anyway, who cares what Marr says. The guy’s on drugs.

  • 25
    Peter Ormonde
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

    Well done Cr*key … another triumph of mechanised moderation.

  • 26
    gautillard dellron
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

    tony abbott’s daughters are hot.
    (i’m allowed to say that cos it’s true)

  • 27
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    The part about intimidating a woman who defeated him in an election makes complete sense. It is easy to imagine a testosterone charged young Abbott not coping with defat by a woman, especially when you remember how he dealth with Niciola Roxon besting him at the Health Debate, and Julia Gillard beating him at an election. He swore at Roxon on national TV, and has spent the last 2 years intimidating Gillard at every opportunity. The guy clearly has both anger management issues and problems with women. Neither are great qualities in a PM.

  • 28
    Steve Carey
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 4:26 pm | Permalink

    VENISE ALSTERGREN - let me get this right. You’re saying that Tony Abbott’s very first act as Prime Minister would be to ban birth control? (“Should the possibility of Tony Abbott becoming PM eventuate, the first thing will be to deny all forms of birth control.”) That’s absolute nonsense.

    I’d be happy to bet you $100 that on the first anniversary of the sad day on which he becomes Prime Minister (I dread the day) birth control will still be legal in Australia.

    Further, that no legislation in any way restricting or limiting any form of birth control will have been passed in that year. You up for that? Willing to put your money to this statement? Or perhaps it was just a rhetorical flourish, and you don’t really believe what you’re saying?

  • 29
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    Being anti gay was pretty widespread back in the 70’s, particularly for blokey, sporty types. Fortunately community attitudes have moved on since then, although some still remain mired in the past. As for strange attitudes to sx, I think they was pretty widespread back then among young people who had emerged from 13 years in the Catholic school system. Most of us managed to grow out of them.

    The story about his allegedly intimidating his SRC opponent is a bit of a worry. It’s “he said she said” and it’s probably impossible to establish the truth after all these years, so I’d have to give Tony the benefit of the doubt on that one. If the story was that he decked a male environmentalist or Labor supporter in the course of a robust political discussion (and I have no knowledge of anything like that), I think I’d believe it.

  • 30
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

    of course David Hand read the entire article …. at (altogether ! ) …… 3.45 !

  • 31
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 5:13 pm | Permalink

    Just so that I have this clear: On one hand, everyone is decrying the state of journalism in this country and on the other… This is the best you’ve got? Riiiight. You could’ve torn Abbott apart with his contradictory positions on climate change, for his recent interview on the ABC, gone through his school years in-depth to find out if there’s anything there that proves he has even an ounce of sense…

    And instead, oh, his hand-writing’s appalling! Well, if that’s bad, you should see my Doctor’s.

    As for the Speedo’s… Isn’t it interesting. We have a female Prime Minister which another female comments on her jackets - to great shock and outrage. Yet here we have a male who’s constantly criticised for his…. wait for it… swimwear and that’s ok.

    If Tony Abbott was female, there would be high holy outrage unleashed at those comments.

  • 32
    Peter Ormonde
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 5:14 pm | Permalink


    If Tony Abbott was female, she would not be leading the Liberal Party.

  • 33
    Elizabeth Thornton
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

    Interesting. I stood as a candidate for the Greens in Tony Abbott’s electorate. The quality of the voters was outstanding !

    So many with anti Green venom which sounded just like Alan Jones.

    One person even asked me why the Greens had done nothing about Coal Seam gas ?

    The stench is there Tony Abbott is loved by the unloveables.

  • 34
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

    The only thing Abbott is good at is throwing punches. If you vote for him you need your head examined. WAKE UP AUSTRALIA HE IS EVIL

  • 35
    David Hand
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

    Zac and Izatso,
    Of course you’ve got “Hand on Saville on Marr on Abbott”. What else is required on a fluffy -nothing - spiteful- lefty diatribe dished up for the faithful.

    This is just more sheep from Animal Farm bleating “Four legs good, two legs bad, four legs good, two legs bad”. Crikey’s version is “Tony is evil, Tony is evil”. I expect a daily uncomplimentary story about him right up to the election.

    Talk about a campaigning journal. I suppose it’s more comforting than talking about Saturday’s local elections.

  • 36
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

    @PETER ORMONDE: Yes, yes and the Liberal’s would never let an Aboriginal get into the Federal lower house, while the Labor party would *never* vote for a White Australia Policy, or implement mandatory detention or send Asylum Seekers off-shore…

    … oh wait.

  • 37
    Peter Ormonde
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 5:55 pm | Permalink


    Its interesting actually this “catholicisation” of the Libs of late. Used to be a bit of a closed shop actually - Anglicans only thanks. Phil Lynch was the first tyke to win a cabinet slot as Treasurer, that was under Fraser. And my goodness did that cause rumblings amongst the propertied classes (especially in Melbourne) … they knew that papists would be hammering down the doors once the lily-livered Liberal Fraser gave them a toehold.

    George Pell for Governor General!

  • 38
    Corbett Marian
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

    I agree with David Hand that there’s nothing in the Marr article to inform readers about Abbot’s policies. We’ve got Marr’s psychoanalytic take on Abbot, but lets have the policy detail. Abbot is a social conservative for sure. What does that actually mean for his policy agenda? We don’t know. That’s the sneaky thing about Abbot- he’ll run around everywhere giving his dog whistles - then plead innocence like a catholic in a confessional box. He says he’s gunna ditch the mining tax. At least he’s straight on that. Personally I think he’ll be a conservative wrecking ball. Mr Marr - people need to know the detail of what is a stake. Gonski?Disability insurance? Mining tax? Overseas workers? Environment policy? I fear Abbot is more conservative than the public realize.

  • 39
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

    I dislike Tony Abbott’s politics as much as the next sane person, but please, Crikey, keep the stories focussed on the man’s policies rather than his past. Articles like this are shameful ad hominem attacks that contribute nothing to the national discussion of politics. The Left should be above this sort of counter-productive tabloid drivel.

    There used to be a general principle within reputable media outlets of not discussing aspects of an individual politician’s private life in public. I am ashamed of David Marr for stooping to such vindictive, gutter writing, and even more ashamed of Crikey for taking up the story. Truly pathetic.

  • 40
    Jeremy Williams
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

    I thought it was interesting that in the leigh sales interview, Tony had a disrespect vibe toward Leigh. I’ve seen him challenged by male interviewers on the ABC and he doesn’t come across so disrespecting. I also think a big part of the attraction of politics for him is the sport of it rather than an idealism to make australia better.

  • 41
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

    Where were your concerns when everyone gets stuck into Julia’s past?? total bloody hypocrisy from another lieberal troll.

  • 42
    Peter Ormonde
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 6:46 pm | Permalink


    I think a lot of women pick up on this, explaining some of has unpopularity in that quarter - that an a degree of common sense. Not so much what he says, but how he says it. Can;t help being patronising and awkward. It’s built-in.

  • 43
    Terrence Burns
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    Like the Liberals who turfed out Gough, they were bastards then - they are bastatrds now.

  • 44
    Hamis Hill
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

    On that “Catholic” thing, the disproportionate representation of same across all the elected governments is a problem, and on this point as a “staunch” member of this religious minority Abbott simply cannot be representative of all Australians. He could actually be a saint but he has chosen to remain partisan to a minority extreme. The Liberals can do better and did have a better, more representative leader in Malcolm Turnbull. And who can ignore the complaints of Malcolm Fraser about his own former party? Well most of the present liberals! Gerard Henderson’s Menzies Child
    might explain this phenomenon of “Catholic” dominance, especially his SMH article “How Menzies Child Has Changed”, where he exlained how a burgeoning “catholic” midddle class abandoned their down trodden working class Labor roots and aspired to ape their betters.
    “Catholic” is in inverted commas because there is no typical “Catholic” stereotype.
    Mary Mackillop was, for example of Scottish, not Irish heritage.
    Abbott, like Santamaria, comes across as a caricature, as a fake, and lacks that roundness of authenticity that people tend to detect subliminally. Hence his unpopularity IMHO.
    And we know that some like Santamaria believed that attack was the best form of defence.
    In his case he was defending the war criminals of his religion who escaped to Australia, post WWII, along the infamous Vatican organised “Ratlines”. What is Abbott defending?

  • 45
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

    I find his refusal to marry a woman he throught he impregnated, because it would intefere with his option of becoming a priest, the most damning.

  • 46
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

    I’ve only read the SMH extracts & this teaser from Margot but, thus far, it seems that MM is a good example of a ‘hollow man’, without intrinsic values and desperate for someone/something to fill the void, no matter how bizarre, bashing other blokes, or tumbling them in the mud and let’s not even mention the definition of a scrum…
    But, onto higher thing, he’s… err… umm, sorry, it’s Tony Abbott, all surface, no centre, hard but brittle.
    Can’t recall chapter & verse (possibly, Corinthians 13:1?), something about “If I become a sounding brass… but do not have love, I am nothing..”. Yeah that’s MM.

  • 47
    Peter Ormonde
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 7:55 pm | Permalink


    So we’re reduced to trading biblical bits…. no shortage of material….how’s this then:

    There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.”

    Proverbs 6:16-19

  • 48
    Peter Ormonde
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 8:03 pm | Permalink


    This time the Mother of Moderation has gone too far in her pursuit of naughty words - even finding the very Good Book itself is not beyond her eagle-eyed scrutiny and suspicion.

    In other words, I’ve sent you a quote for the bible but it has been gathered up in the Cr*key net of propriety and niceness.

    These Cr*key nuns make the Spanish Inquisition look like agents of Gomorrah!

  • 49
    Malcolm Street
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 8:11 pm | Permalink

    Beachcomber - it’s worse than that - the other reason was that it meant he wouldn’t be eligible to be a Rhodes scholar!

  • 50
    Posted Monday, 10 September 2012 at 8:22 pm | Permalink

    Sounds like he should be playing NRL.