2012 hasn’t been a good year for Tony Abbott. Just a week ago, the right-wing leader of the Australian Opposition Party was called out by Prime Minister Julia Gillard on the basis of misogyny, and the 15 minutes of speaking time PM Gillard was allotted in Parliament was spent grilling Mr Abbott with an honest, rabble-rousing rebuttal that would make Germaine Greer proud.
Needless to say, Mr Abbott has an ambiguous relationship with women. It’s unclear as to whether he considers women his equal, or his inferiors. In 2009, he came under public fire for wrapping his arm around his deputy Julie Bishop, calling her (sic) “my loyal girl”. People were not sure if he was praising Bishop, or patronizing her. Not surprisingly, Abbott was called a slew of names as a result of this political faux pas.
Abbott is also quoted to have said: “If men really have more power than women, is that really a bad thing? What if men were by nature and physiology, better suited to holding positions of authority?”
Not surprisingly, the mainstream feminist community took this opportunity to play moral guardians, and promptly jumped on the propriety bandwagon in attack of his 1950s right-wing sensibilities.
It’s obvious that Mr Abbott has over the years, crafted a hyper masculine, old-school corporate image for himself; a paragon of masculinity that GQ magazine would certainly approve of.
For those of you who don’t browse through the magazine section in the book store, GQ is an extreme right-wing men’s magazine which espouses extreme hegemonic masculinity, constantly attempting to police men on how they ought to behave, dress, interact with women, etc. The ideal man, according to GQ from my observation, is:
-Conservatively dressed (Being married to the traditional corporate uniform, the suit and tie)
–Heterosexual, or straight-acting (I think the subtle homophobia in mainstream men’s magazines is pretty obvious, judging by the fully-dressed men and half-naked women in provocative poses, and its constant refusal to feature scantily dressed men and persistent ridicule of men who like to wear provocative, eccentric clothing, e.g. Jared Leto)
In other words, GQ and its strict, 2-dimensional ideal of masculinity is what keeps men stuck in the 50s. It is Tony Abbott’s answer to the pervasive and permissive liberal culture that began in the 60s; it’s the patriarchy’s means to “straighten everybody up”, and get everybody back to their strict gender roles as they were in the days of the Mad Men: Man as a stiff, buttoned-up and conservative patriarchal protector and provider, and woman as the asexual Stepford Wife, her eyes too busy focusing on the sandwich she’s making to notice the beauty of the male form.
Besides his remarkable athleticism (he was a superb boxer and football player in his university days, and still runs marathons even today) and some would say, super-macho persona, Abbott is careful never to be caught dead in anything but his predictable corporate uniform of tailored, form-fitting dark suits, and never without a tie. In that regard, Abbott is the very symbol of masculinity befitting a GQ cover boy: That of the stiff, buttoned-up 1950s patriarch (e.g. Don Draper); a “man’s man”, so to speak.
Love him or hate him, Abbott is possibly Australia’s most controversial man. While America has Chuck Norris as its symbol of comic hyper-masculinity, Australia has Tony Abbott.
To pay tribute to such a fascinating enigma, I thought it appropriate to compile 25 random facts about Tony:
- Every night before going to bed, Chuck Norris checks his closet for Tony Abbott.
- Tony Abbott doesn’t read books. He stares them down until he gets the information he wants.
- Some people ask for a tissue when they cry. Tony Abbott asks for a body bag
- Tony Abbott rubs his muscles with liquid hot magma after working out.
- Ninjas want to grow up to be just like Tony Abbott. But usually, they just grow up to be assassinated by Tony Abbott.
- Tony Abbott uses hot sauce for eye drops.
- Tony Abbott’s workouts are so hardcore that by the time he’s done, everybody in the gym is puking and crying.
- Once you go Tony, it is physically impossible to go back.
- Tony Abbott is so straight, he makes pencils look bent.
- Tony Abbott’s enemies once sent a gang of assassins to his house. They were all assassinated – By Tony Abbott himself.
- Freddy Krueger, Jason Voorhees and Tony Abbott once met at a bar. “Oy; OY Jason, Jason!”, “Guess how many kids I killed last night; 10 kids, 10 fucking kids, bro! hahaha” =D, chirped Freddy. Jason was not impressed. “Pft; just kids?”, he sneered. “Like; some of us actually kill GROWN-UPS, you idiot. You know what? Why don’t you grow a pair of balls and start killing people your age for a change?” “Last night I killed like 10 actual GROWN-UPS! hahaha”, boasted Jason.”You guys are both noobs,” sneered Tony. I kill more people than both of you combined each time I make a speech. They all drop dead from laughter!”
- As a young boy, Tony Abbott stalked the jungles of Australia, killing crocodiles and eating them.
- Tony Abbott’s toilet bowl doesn’t take shit from anybody – Except Tony Abbott.
- Tony Abbott can tame Germaine Greer.
- Grass is eaten by Rabbit (Primary Consumer),Rabbit is eaten by Fox (Secondary Consumer), Fox is eaten by Crocodile (Tertiary Consumer), Crocodile is eaten by Tony Abbott (Alpha Consumer)
- Tony Abbott once got bitten by a rattlesnake. After 3 days of excruciating pain and agony… The rattlesnake died.
- A young man once called Tony Abbott a fuddy duddy. That young man is now on life support.
- Tony Abbott once played Russian Roulette with a fully loaded gun and won.
- Tony Abbott does not own a coffee pot or a frying pan. He boils his coffee with his masculine rage, and fries his eggs in his sweat blood and tears.
- No one can truly understand Tony Abbott. Just as nobody can truly understand Chuck Norris.
- Tony Abbott sang for his church choir when he was a little boy. Eveybody within a 500m radius went deaf because their ears could not take the heat of his booming masculine voice.
- Tony Abbott can do Gangnam Style with Chuck Norris sitting on his back.
- Earthquakes are a man-made phenomenon. They occur every time Tony Abbott does his push ups.
- Hercules, Mulan and Krusty the Clown were walking through a magical forest one day, when they came across a hut which read “Award for world’s strongest man”. “That must be me =)”, gleamed Hercules, and went in. Sure enough, out came a smiling Hercules, grasping on to a big fat medal. A few minutes later, they came across another hut which read, “Award for world’s most kickass feminist”. “That’s my call boys!”, chirped Mulan, and entered the second hut. Sure enough, out came a smiling Mulan, grasping on to a big fat medal. A few minutes later, they came to another hut, which read “Award for world’s most outrageous clown”. “H-H-H-H-H-H-H-H-H-HUUUUUUUUU!” “Well kids, that must be ME!”, shrieked Krusty, and rushed into the hut. A few minutes later, Krusty emerged from the hut in tears, and said, “WHO THE HELL IS THIS TONY ABBOTT?”
- Tony Abbott once went for a One Direction concert, and when they got to the song ‘What makes you Beautiful’, Tony got really angry. Said Tony, “Of course I don’t need make up to cover up, you fool! I’m sexy and I know it!”