(Image: Mitchell Squire/Private Media)

Had Peter Dutton been able to leave his male pattern baldness as it was, he'd be in a much better position than he now is. The fuzzy circle of hair around the ears is not only the mark of middle age, it is also the mark of acceptance and contentment with life's lot: with ageing and no longer being the blade you once were.

But during the Coalition's decade of waste, they needed someone to play the hard man. Dutts proved to be that man, and the fact that his gleaming pate says "punk" helped cement that reputation.

A bald head marks you apart from the human herd, and it's not much of an exaggeration to say that it has nobbled Dutton for the job of opposition leader (how good that sounds!) almost before he has started. Tanya Plibersek and others should stay away from the insults. It's our job to say the last time we saw Dutton he was coming out of John Hurt's stomach in a spaceship (I think we have some footage of his preselection now).