To a boy with a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

We should be cautiously encouraged by the emerging bipartisan approach to indigenous issues, with its increasing emphasis on self determination.

But there is one jarring note: the bizarre proposition (from Noel Pearson amongst others) that the market alone, particularly through the uniquely Western notion of private land ownership, can undo centuries of post-colonial trauma.

The market has its uses, but this is not one of them. It has worked well for telecommunications and resources, been slightly detrimental for public utilities, and disastrous for healthcare, education and prisons. For cultural and social fragmentation, it is more likely to be a cause than a cure. But to a boy with a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

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