It is not as well known as it should be that Bob Hawke and Paul Keating took a sledgehammer to our trade policy when they decided to expose the full range of Australian manufacturing to unbridled international competition. Their decisions undermined not merely our manufacturing industries. They also took the same sledgehammer to our capacity to maintain our farm sector in its traditional way. What’s more, they effectively dismantled all of the protections governing employment that had existed since Federation. A recent article in The Australian newspaper by Jamie Walker (June 28) perhaps illuminates what might have been the driving force behind the Hawke/Keating commitment to what they characterised as “economic reform”. Thirty years later it has been revealed as anything but “reform”.