Dec 12, 2012

‘Mad beyond the dreams of Tamburlaine’: Rinehart book reviewed

Gina Rinehart's latest book is weirdly amateur, and portrays the mining magnate as delusional and blind to how she is being perceived, writes literary critic Cameron Woodhead.

“The rich regard wealth as a personal attribute. So do the poor. Everyone is tacitly convinced of it. Only logic makes some difficulties by asserting that the possession of money may perhaps confer certain qualities, but can never itself be a human quality. Closer inspection gives this the lie. Every human nose instantly and unfailingly smells the delicate breath of independence that goes with the habit of commanding, the habit of everywhere choosing the best for oneself, the whiff of slight misanthropy and the unceasing consciousness of responsibility that goes with power, the scent of a large and secure income.”

— Excerpts from rich people’s code of living, The Man Without Qualities, Robert Musil

Free Trial

Proudly annoying those in power since 2000.

Sign up for a FREE 21-day trial to keep reading and get the best of Crikey straight to your inbox

By starting a free trial, you agree to accept Crikey’s terms and conditions


Leave a comment

32 thoughts on “‘Mad beyond the dreams of Tamburlaine’: Rinehart book reviewed

  1. MJPC

    Thank you for an amusing analysis of a book I proudly admit will never grace my bookshelves.
    I am certain many a LNP bookshelf it will grace (they love tomes that advocate shafting the working class) however, even when it shortly gravitates to the $5 bargain table, ordinary Australians will not be tempted to buy such drivel.
    The poem (and your Fitzgerald comments) about Bjelke says it all, as does the quote regarding Lang exploring in the heat with snake companions; a bit cruel to the memory of Rose.

  2. Coaltopia

    “The very best Queenslander, especially for me.”

    Well, it’s tempting to say “archetypal” instead of best. But really “base” is perhaps the “best” word.

    (And really there’s nothing wrong with suggesting that people should avoid rushing to credit and should reign-in debt, even for the sneering super-rich – there’s a bunch more wrong with Gina than that – e.g. her funding of climate change denial).

  3. zut alors

    The Sir Joh tribute is cringeworthy.

    I want to read the stuff Rinehart didn’t include in the book.

  4. Andybob

    Gah, there is poetry after all; has she no mercy ?

  5. mikeb

    If SBS want someone to feature in a new “In their shoes” type program about living as the working poor I’d invite Gina to particpate. Difficult choices regarding the os trip or renovating might take a back seat…..and Sir Joh had a clear conscience because he was delusional as well.

  6. Christopher Nagle

    This was a difficult review to do and must have been done as an extreme call-of-duty. And somehow it was crafted so as not to play caricature to caricature. I could imagine that if her name had been Imelda Marcos, it would have been no easier. There is an almost exquisite relationship between her lack of self awareness, her ideological narrowness and her immense power and wealth; like Don Qixote in an Abrahms tank and on steroids. The combination is both fascinating and appalling.

  7. Holden Back

    You left out the important stuff: what are the mustache-drawing and tooth-blackening opportunities like?

  8. CML

    At least we had one great lady of wealth in this country. Pity Gina didn’t follow the example of Lady Elisabeth Murdoch, instead of Joh BP.
    Then she could have written a book worth reading!

  9. Microseris

    Still waiting for someone to explain how she can make $50M per day digging up and shipping out our non renewable resources and we are not entitled to a greater share.

    Its still not enough for her though.

  10. Malcolm Street

    You would probably find that Gina’s ideal household would be servicing a mortgage and quite possibly a car loan as well. IOW, they’d have significant debts for long-term infrastructure. This is where the Right wing lauding of household finances as a model for government breaks down.

Leave a comment

Share this article with a friend

Just fill out the fields below and we'll send your friend a link to this article along with a message from you.

Your details

Your friend's details