News National Don’t choke on your Weeties. It’s Paul Keating’s greatest hits
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Don’t choke on your Weeties. It’s Paul Keating’s greatest hits

paul keating
He's the punchiest PM we've ever had. Photos: AAP / Getty
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Paul Keating has recently accused Malcolm Turnbull of failing dismally in his time as prime minister.

“You choke on your Weeties,” he said.

Mr Keating is recognised as having one of the great minds in Australian political history. With his blend of wit, intelligence, charm and arrogance, here is a taste of some his past quotes:

“The little desiccated coconut is under pressure and he is attacking anything he can get his hands on …What we have got is a dead carcass, swinging in the breeze, but nobody will cut it down to replace him.” (on John Howard)

“Soon we will be at the stage where he will be offering us a free set of steak knives.” (on Howard’s 1996 election campaign)

“I had a lot of time for him, and I was so sorry for him the day he resigned. He was like a squashed tomato.” (On John Gorton voting himself out of office on March 1971)

“I would forbid him going to the Senate, to account to this unrepresentative swill over there …”

“APEC is bigger than all of us – Australia, the US and Malaysia and Dr Mahathir and any other recalcitrants.” (to the Malaysian PM)

“The thing about poor old [Peter] Costello is he is all tip and no iceberg … He’s the greatest L plater of all time.”

“You boxhead, you wouldn’t know. You are flat out counting past 10.” (on Wilson Tuckey)

“Like being flogged with a warm lettuce.” (on Dr John Hewson)

“I suppose that the Honourable Gentleman’s hair, like his intellect, will recede into the darkness … We’re not interested in the views of painted, perfumed gigolos … Can a soufflé rise twice?” (on Andrew Peacock)

“You had an important place in Australian society on the ABC and you gave it up to be a pop star … with a big cheque … and now you’re on to this sort of stuff. That shows what a 24-carat pissant you are, Richard, that’s for sure.” (To Richard Carleton)

“I was nearly chloroformed by the performance of the Honourable Member for Mackellar. It nearly put me right out for the afternoon.” (on former Liberal shadow treasurer Jim Carlton)

“Mr Speaker can I have some protection from the clowns on the front bench? … [They] could not operate a tart shop.”

“The Honourable Member has been in so many parties he is a complete political harlot.” (on former SA premier Steele Hall)

paul keating
Paul Keating has a run-in with actors Russell Crowe and Paul Mercurio at the 1992 AFI Awards in Sydney. Photo: Getty

“That you, Jim? Paul Keating here. Just because you swallowed a f—ing dictionary when you were about 15 doesn’t give you the right to pour a bucket of s–t over the rest of us.” (to former ALP MP Jim McClelland)

“I think Australia has to be a country which has the ‘Welcome’ sign out.”

“Politicians come in three varieties: straight men, fixers and maddies.”

“One tires of combat, although I can still throw a punch you know.”

“The accounts do show that Australia is in a recession. The most important thing about that is that this is a recession that Australia had to have.”

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