“Tony, (confidentially) you are a fuckwit.”

What was the last “Abbott administration” like? Meet Tony Abbott, 1979 president of the Sydney University Students Representative Council: “It seems an immutable fact of human nature that most people like to exercise power if they can. How often do we hear bureaucrats asserting some or other community ‘need’ and suspect that what really is at issue, is official desire to regulate and command”. So the man said in the pages of Honi Soit, the Sydney Uni student paper. Reading this recently in the Sydney University library, made me think what might seem like gaffs on the election trail, are actually decades old perceptions held by the man. I suspect for Abbott, “…what really is at issue, is official desire to regulate and command”. How we judge others, finally, we judge ourselves.

How did the young Abbott judge himself? He saw himself as a reformer of the SRC, moving to remove compulsory union fees that he felt were being unjustly spent on “groups such as International Socialists, South African terrorists,” – the anti-apartheid movement in south Africa – “ultra militant feminism, homosexual proselytism and environmentalism gone to crazy lengths.” He was seen by others in the SRC as a rightwing radical, bent on defunding the body which gave him his political leg up. Of the SRC, he cried in the pages of Honi Soit, “Why are we tolerating funding such a mad-house”

When a motion of his to implement a referendum on campus regarding VSU was blocked procedurally by the Council, he took the matter to the NSW Supreme Court & fought the Treasurer & General Secretary of the SRC at the time, Paul Brereton, and won. Tony chastised Paul Brereton in the pages of Honi Soit at the time, “With your support money has been given by this S.R.C to the Kimberly Land Council, the Aboriginal Support Group, the active defense of homosexuals and the Labor Club”. When the referendum was put to the student body it was defeated, and Tony did not get his satisfaction until 2006, when, as a minister in the government, Howard successfully passed VSU legislation despite widespread opposition from students nationwide.

How should I describe what the SRC was like in Abbott’s day? In the words of Abbott: “I notice that the front office wall has been decorated with homosexual posters,… (the receptionist) … stares sullenly and uncooperatively especially when I take them down and ask him not to replace them with others of a partisan, socio, sexual bent… I walk down the corridor to my ‘office’. It is finally time, I decide, to remove the condom which has been pinned to my door. It rather clashes with the lesbian posters that have been plastered there. A notice I had placed on the door reads “Tony (confidentially) you, are a fuckwit”.”

Abbott made more enemies than friends in his days as SRC president. Of the many altercations, two that noticeably blew up in the pages of Honi Soit were a dispute with his first employees, the front office staff at the SRC, and a long running grudge against the women’s collective on campus. What did the women do to enrage Tony’s ire? According to Tony they were “grim faced, overall-clad, hard, strident, often lustfully embracing in a counterfeit of love, one is forced to consider the “feminist” misnomer”. This particular perception prompted a response from a member of the women’s collective, Penny Pether; “It is tragic that someone can envisage no form of embrace or physical contact other than the sexual; cannot comprehend that between caring individuals … an embrace can be an expression of fellow feeling… devoid of sexual significance.”Another member, Julie Atkinson, wrote “Tony Abbott’s cliche and stuffed-up views of feminists provide excellent proof that those male misogynist attitudes have not changed in 100 years.”

Of the aforementioned dispute with his front office staff, one student wrote in to Honi Soit, “a visitor to his (Tony’s) office when leaving the SRC said loudly “Don’t much care for your office staff, Tony. Scurvy looking lot. I’s sack ’em all.” Tony’s immediate reaction was to laugh. When approached later Abbott’s (response) was “A fellow had been to seen me. He made a comment about the scruffy, disreputable state of some people in the Front Office and I laughed because it happened to be true…” From what can be deciphered, the dispute centered around the fact that his staff had different political views, and were homosexual, a crime in NSW until 1984.

Among other letters included in the Honi archives include an apology from Mr Abbott for missing an SRC meeting due to sport commitments, and comments about his fashion sense from one reader, “[I]..won’t speculate on how anyone who dresses like Mr Abbott does can seriously set himself up as an arbiter of taste in the manner of dress.” [G. A. Pearce from UNSW wrote into Honi Soit, “May I politely ask: how did the students at Sydney Uni possibly elect such a representative?… (I wonder) just why the ABC interviewed someone with such extreme, inapt views.”] It seems not all that much has changed.

28 thoughts on ““Tony, (confidentially) you are a fuckwit.”

  1. Daniel I have no doubt that your extensive fashion sense serves you well at uni. I’m sure I’m impressed just like all your fellow students and we would find it fascinating to discuss your ideas and observations on other men’s dress. But you being a self-appointed political activist, I would have expected more than the usual shallow mentioning of feminist, homosexual and aboriginal land council issues. Are you using their name to try to add some importance to your lack of political enquiry or are you preaching to your very small circle that always agrees with you? To date, your behaviour shows a person intent on gaining power and exercising it without the courage to state your own intentions. (Didn’t have the courage to explain your wonderings as to how he got elected either, or are you just living in a Michael Moore conspiracies paranoid world) Long live the political groups that can never seem to reach their objective while being supported by light weight political masturbators, like yourself, comrade shallow.

    Wondering why you waste air.

  2. Also, Jim, I find it flattering that you are trying to stalk me by searching “daniel jones political sydney” in google…. who are you working for?

  3. Dear Dan,

    I’m sorry, but I have to agree with Jim on this one. I mean, the above post says absolutely nothing about you personally. How could I possibly divine any kind of idea about you as a person from it?

    I mean, are you operating under some ridiculous delusion that blogging can be something other than an exercise in self-aggrandising introspection? Because that’s what Wikipedia is for. Maybe you should start a wiki, instead.

  4. Dear Spencer,

    I shall move my unreferenced opinionated introspective political tirades of well referenced unopinionated objective fact to wikipedia infuture. Infact, I think Tony Abbotts entry is due for an update.

    Yours to Troll,


  5. eeer….. I believe possibly we have the wrong fuckwit.
    Accept education is a tool, the application is far more difficult.
    In 65 years I have seen more educated idiots than I have seen effective and productive individuals.
    You Sir are a classic example of: “Experience teaches a hard school but fools will learn no other”
    Might I say YOU are a total dimwit! obviously destined to the higher ranks of Juliars lamentable …. party. A true example of: “if ignorance were bliss why are there not more happy people in the world”

  6. Juliar… fuck that’s clever. Two words… to make one! With a combined meaning! Got this from Barnaby Joyce did we? The Australian? Channel Ten?

    You are a ignortarded fuckbicile. (I’ll let you work that one out)

    Seriously. If you’re going to sound like a complete fucking moron, at least be original.

  7. Ok, let’s make it simple for people like Jim, some facts:
    1) my best friend was in SRC at this time, he explained to me with detail and quoting from Minutes, the proceeding of those SRC Meetings. Tony is indeed a mean-minded bigot of the first order.
    2) There is nothing “confidential” about it, the secret is out.
    3) No amount of criticism of the the reporter, by the likes of Jim, can change the above. Sorry to say, sad little Jim.

    • I am a labour voter.yet at this point in time neither party is directing the country in a good way.they r both the same old shit.i must stress that if and only if the one true leader we have in this country MALCOLM TURNBULL,was in charge,that liberals would for the first time change my vote.unfortunately, a loser like tony Abbott seemingly will get in.nobody likes u tony.my vote therefore will be going to Clive palmer.sorry Malcolm

      • just personalities who still have the destructive anti-progressive liberal DNA. Turnbull is f’n us on broadband. the real “faceless men” to be worried about are those pulling the puppet strings of the liberal party – corporations, anti-clean energy lobby, murdoch, rienhardt, etc, etc. Make Labor look like angels.

  8. I was there when Phony Tony said all these things (and more), destroyed the Liberal Party at Sydney Uni (having decided not to try to take over the Labor Party as a power base as they were too strong to just allow him to waltz in) by turning it into a vehicle for him to push his message from Bob (Santamaria – his political and spiritual mentor, then and now) and then destroyed the SRC as well. His attitudes and practices have not changed he was a lazy thug and a bully then and he is still so today. He is interested in no philosophy and he has no vision other than to take down that which he has been taught to disapprove of – he is now playing this out on the national stage – to all our detriment. He remains the fuckwit he was then – no surprise other than that he was able to peddle his limp three word slogans and a complete policy vacuum into a Federal victory at the polls.

    • Thanks for the comment. I’m interested in what you said, that Abbott “…decided not to try to take over the Labor Party as a power base”. Was there a ‘Tony Abbott’ faction before he entered the Liberal Party? Was this ever on the cards?

  9. Where are the commenters of Jim and Rene’s ilk these days? Probably crying into their respective alcoholic beverage of choice, realising that they have made a terrible, terrible mistake.

  10. Thanks jones for providing more info to ruminate over.The mystery to me is how Mr abbott is able to maintain power and control over his cabinet.I am also confused as to why the trolls are working themselves so hard…..Why do people want to protect this bully?…strange times.

  11. I am guessing that Tony and his troll followers are either psych/sociopaths or they have an exceptionally strong “us verses them” psychology that allows those people to be good to those in their arbitrarily defined inner circle and yet horrific to those outside it. With fMRI technology and new research it is possible to identify people with sociopathic brain patterns. If this test can be shown to be both a valid and reliable tool for identifying this pathology, then just as someone with narcolepsy is excluded from flying passenger jets, psych/sociopaths should be excluded from public office.

  12. <

    North Coast Voices ( http://northcoastvoices.blogspot.com.au/ ) bought me to this site.

    It's quite obvious that Tony (Fuckwit) is still learning ….. only now he is in a position to get his "Masters" in the degree of "Fuckwits" that he has aspired too for so long …… but that has eluded him, since his Uni days.

    Its so easy to write that, but the truth is that "Slick' Abbott has had his powerful "Masters" help him out every step of the way.

    Without a concerted effort by Murdoch and Pell "Slick" Abbott would still be a failed seminarian sitting on a backbench of mediocrity.

    • When Tony Abbott was President of the SRC, he was in the Democratic Labor Party at the time. There was a Liberal Party on campus, he did not join. The DLP was from a time when some Catholics split from the Labor Party due to what was seen as an over accommodation to communists.

      • Brendan Nelson, who was the former Coalition Education Minister and Minister for Defense, was from the age of 13 until 1991 in the Labor Party. His father was a trade unionist. Brendan Nelson also used to work at a medical practice with David Crean, the former Labor leader and Minister Simon Crean’s brother, who himself was a Labor member for State Parliament in Tasmania. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brendan_Nelson

  13. Hi Daniel, I know this is old now but could you tell me where you got that stuff about TA calling the ANC “South African terrorists”? I’m trying to dig a little deeper into his views on South Africa in the 70s and 80s.

    • Sure, it’s in one of Tony Abbott’s presidential reports from Honi Soit 1979. There are a few physical copies floating around as well as microfilm. Honi Soit used to have an archive in the SRC of papers, but I did see evidence that 1979 was removed around 2006/2007. I know exactly where 1 copy is, and possibly 2 further copies. If you’d like to tell me how to contact you I could inform you.

      • I apologize I did not cite the exact source at the time, this was due to the political nature of it and the fact that student politicians can be zealous enough to go an destroy the historical record.

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