Older is not always wiser

Valerie Vaughan writes: Re. “Country for old men: little diversity in Abbott’s picks” (yesterday). Reading this article  should concern every single person in government, especially Tony Abbott. I owned and operated and highly successful business and was forced to sell this business because of a terminal illness of my husband.

Since then I have done relief work regularly. For some time I felt I had been cheated with what I felt was  an early and forced sale. After working with and under many of the new graduates on the block I realise that:

  1. I do not have the stamina I once had. Nor do I have the razor-sharp memory or the capacity to do three things at once. I do not make instant decisions, I seek confirmation.
  2. I do not have the up-to-date knowledge — no matter how much I read. I am not in constant employment.  Many of the colleagues of my era I find are in my league, but only half accept this fact.
  3. The  young people have a very different view of so many principles. This is a new world and to listen to Eric Abeitz and Bronwyn Bishop, to name just two, with their righteous attitudes of past decades makes this Liberal supporter cringe.
  4. Many of the older professionals , including me, have not moved with new ideas. We tend to feel that the way we operated was the best way. Not so.
  5. It is very disappointing to appoint so many retired politicians plum jobs when they are already entitled to large pensions. It is not capability, it is jobs for the boys … not the girls.
  6. Many private successful executives, many retired, are elected to too many boards. How can you serve and make critical decisions so many boards of companies? They are  also paid unrealistic salaries..
  7. It took me five years to realise and understand that I was past my prime, and I hate to have to admit this fact but have fortunately realised I have something to offer in the welfare situations.

I recall having a conversation with one of Bjelke-Petersen’s minders. in the premier’s later years and he said that this successful politician could converse  without any problems for 10 minutes and then he would lose track and his minders would move him on.

This article is heartbreaking for our country. I understand perfectly that all these people think they are Rupert Murdoch, but like I have had to accept … we have had our day.

Dylan Taylor writes: Why is anyone surprised? Howard was almost the same — just the males were not quite so old then. They are all older and whiter (on top) now, and Abbott has got them working for him. Is it any wonder that  women and younger voters are giving up on Abbott?

Try the lambrusco

John Newton writes: Re. “Saville’s Shout: bottoms up … listen to Buffett …” (yesterday). I’m guessing Margot Saville drank lambrusco because she thinks it’a all crap. So did I until I tasted Rinaldini Lambrusco Vecchio Moro on the advice of an Italian friend. She won’t look back.

Peter Fray

Fetch your first 12 weeks for $12

Here at Crikey, we saw a mighty surge in subscribers throughout 2020. Your support has been nothing short of amazing — we couldn’t have got through this year like no other without you, our readers.

If you haven’t joined us yet, fetch your first 12 weeks for $12 and start 2021 with the journalism you need to navigate whatever lies ahead.

Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey

JOIN NOW