Aug 14, 2017

Rundle: Twiggy’s Tarzan antics and the problem of the white saviour

Andrew "Twiggy" Forrest's fixation with the cashless welfare card is more about him playing modern Tarzan than what is good for indigenous communities.

Guy Rundle — Correspondent-at-large

Guy Rundle


The story goes that Che Guevara, after a year of exhausting fighting in the jungles of the Congo, where he had been trying to spark socialist revolution, packed up the whole effort after a Congolese revolutionary accused him of playing Tarzan, a white hero swinging into save the poor blacks.

Andrew "Twiggy" Forrest, Fortescue minerals supremo, makes an unlikely Che Guevara. But he appears to have caught more than a touch of Tarzan syndrome after years of offering his assistance to Aboriginal people. Forrest is currently barnstorming around Canberra and Sydney, spruiking the cashless welfare card, with a film of chaos on the streets at night in some Aboriginal communities. Anyone suggesting the cashless card isn’t a magic cure to social ills is getting a serve -- such as the Greens, whom Forrest has called "the party for paedophiles".

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17 thoughts on “Rundle: Twiggy’s Tarzan antics and the problem of the white saviour

  1. graybul

    If you have “next-to-nothing” (like many living remote); CDP facilitates you will “have-nothing”. If you are breached then you are fined . . . even if you have “next-to-nothing”. The outcome invariably demoralises participants and ensures families disintegrate

  2. Marion Wilson

    Has this Forrest feller started paying tax yet?

  3. rhwombat

    All in all, it’s just a…nother brick in the wall…

  4. Chris Days

    It is simple enough: buy groceries and sell them at half price in the car park – to produce cash for other uses.

  5. lykurgus

    Who’s Jane? The PM?
    And are you under the impression that he needs an excuse to scream “paedo!” at people who don’t make burnt offerings at the altar of the Twig?

  6. Hunt Ian

    Thanks for the Tarzan analogy, Guy. Does T Forrest have shares in “community” stores? Such a brick might well have them, run by whites with stock priced by whites

  7. Hunt Ian

    Oh, and the origin of the analogy is so good. It is sad that Che did not take that lesson fully, when he swung into Bolivia.

    1. Guy Rundle

      oh thats a bit far. he was from argentina. the bolivian expedition was worth a try

      1. Hunt Ian

        Well, we all have our opinions. Argentina might have been alright but I think Bolivia was a swing too far. Evo Morales did it properly.

      2. Hunt Ian

        I hasten to add that his aims fell well short of Che’s, though I don’t take the perfect as the enemy of the good and so will not tut-tut MAS’s failure so far t0 go further.

  8. Charlie Chaplin

    Thanks for this, Guy. My mother, the 70 something, 2HD Super Radio Network talk back listener – mentioned in passing a few hours ago something about Twiggy Forrest being a great humanitarian who gives most of what he has away to charity and I figured she got it from a pro-Forrest 2HD infomercial of some kind. I got the impression the man himself was interviewed.

    Other Crikey readers can appreciate the rock and hard place I’m between, living with a smart, sweet 70 something lady with a Super Radio Network habit. Still, at least it’s useful for learning what tripe older Australians are being served up.

  9. klewso

    More Cheeta than Tarzan?
    What’s the great white chief planning in regard to that finding in favour of the Northen Land Council/Timber Creek?

  10. Phen

    Not surprised that people don’t respond positively to being surveyed on having their income managed. Doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing though – one way or another, it’ll result in more money being spent on groceries and less on grog/drugs. Twiggy is spot on, like him or not.

    1. MAC TEZ

      Simplistic successful solutions sound superb but
      causes of complicated calamities are never so cut & dried.
      Can’t see the Forrest for the Twig is wrong,wrong, wrong,
      a long way from spot on and I couldn’t like him if I tried.

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