Flat Earth: Order] Order] You bunch of ratbags

Click to follow
The Independent Online
SCUMBAG] Sleazeball] Ratbag] Gutless spiv, thug, boxhead] Pea-brain, harlot, foul- mouthed grub]

These fine parliamentary phrases from Australia's Prime Minister, Paul Keating, somehow do not seem out of place when they ring through the House of Representatives in Canberra. But it is difficult to imagine them amid the more decorous torpors of parliamentary life in Indonesia, Australia's northern neighbour.

Yet so impressed is President Suharto by the robust way the Aussie prime minister addresses the loyal opposition that he has ordered his cabinet to study edited television highlights of Mr Keating in action. Perhaps Downing Street should investigate the prospects of selling edited highlights of Mr Major at Question Time to the fledgling democracies of Eastern Europe. On the other hand, all they would really hear above the shouting would be: 'Order, order, order.' Not many learning curves there.