- Satyajit Das
Australia’s prosperity relies on the continent’s extraordinary natural — primarily mineral — riches and good fortune. But economic, financial, environmental, geopolitical and societal pressures now threaten the nation’s high living standards. The COVID-19 pandemic is the first of many trials to come. Lacklustre reform proposals are mired in ideological necrophilia: ideas which have been tried and failed. Politics is trading insults and slogans. Institutions lack the quality, skills, organisational memory and courage to deliver the required solutions. A disengaged citizenry are focused on preserving their entitled way of life, refusing to accept that the well of plenty is approaching exhaustion. Critics are derided as permanent professional pessimists, the doubting Irishman Hanrahan in John O’Brien’s poem warning of ‘roon’. Cognitive dissonance is a national religion.
Written in accessible, acerbic prose, Fortune’s Fool cuts through these issues to expose Australia’s current dilemmas and choices. It dissects the pandemic, global trends, Australia’s narrow ‘house and holes’ economy and its dependency on China, spotlighting a political paralysis that must be overcome and the changes that are urgently needed. For Australians remotely concerned about their own future and their children’s, as well as the country’s, Fortune’s Fool is essential reading.