The Art of the Australian Insult

Whingeing Poms
April 6, 2009, 5:09 am
Filed under: International relations | Tags:

“Most Aussies are so polite you want to slap them or so rude you want to punch them”, and,
“A brick through your bedroom window is more subtle than the average Aussie”.

Letters in Whingeing Pom magazine.

Mean Mr Rudd
April 4, 2009, 2:04 am
Filed under: Cultural Cringe, International relations, Politicians | Tags: , ,

Revelations that Kevin Rudd made a flight attendant cry drew mixed responses from readers of the Sydney Morning Herald.

“In an eight- or nine-year-old, this behaviour would be acknowledged as that of a spoilt brat. In a prime minister it is inexcusable,” argued Elizabeth Chandler of Mount Victoria.
“Let the man eat meat,” suggested Allan Gibson of Cherrybrook.

Vicki Stewart Forster wondered why anyone was worrying about the story in the first place:

“The world has been in financial meltdown for a couple of years and we have troops fighting on two war fronts, but what do our news headline focus on? A cabin attendant with hurt feelings.

Isn’t elephant-hide skin a prerequisite for this job?”

Gordon Drennan of Burton, South Australia, argued: “Kevin Rudd’s pattern of behaviour reflects very poorly on his real character. The way he expected his staff to work hours far beyond what was reasonable. Multiple instances of abuse of subordinates. A reputation for dummy spits.”

While Mike Reddy of Vincentia was unimpressed that the question had been asked in the first place:

“The journalist who quizzed Mr Rudd about an alleged example of his bad temper was plainly trying to embarrass the Prime Minister in front of a London press conference.

Undoubtedly this was a success. But I think the reputation of the Australian media suffered greater damage. Serious journalists of the world must have been scratching their heads that on the day the G20 summit passed resolutions that may help the world recover from its greatest economic challenge in 75 years, the Australian media dredged up gossip from months ago.

Australia has often struggled against perceptions of it being a colonial backwater and cultural desert populated by uncouth people with funny accents. Tabloid journalism of this sort can only underline those unfortunate perceptions.”

Hide it in the mattress
April 3, 2009, 10:53 pm
Filed under: International relations, The economy

“Don’t put your stimulus bonus under the bed, folks. According to the Opposition, that’s where the Chinese are hiding.”

Steve Forsyth, Tumut, NSW, letter to The Australian.

Brits pick on Kev
March 30, 2009, 2:14 am
Filed under: International relations, Politicians | Tags: ,

“Cool exterior belies inner chaos. May wear RM Williams boots.”
“a charisma-free zone…best known for a drunken trip to a strip club.”

British hacks pick on Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, in London for the G20 summit.

Australians behaving badly
March 30, 2009, 2:02 am
Filed under: International relations

“Cheap airfares, the expansion of dangerous “adventure travel” tours, more elderly people going overseas, more tourism to strict religious countries, a drop in travel insurance policies, an increase in the number of mentally unstable people travelling and ignorance of local laws have combined to create a grim toll on Australian tourists.”

Report on the increasing number of Australians who are likely to be arrested or die while travelling overseas. (Emphasis my own.)

Knickers in a knot over China
March 27, 2009, 10:20 pm
Filed under: Business, International relations, Politicians

“If the Government decides to issue Bonds, will they be made in China?”

Regular wit Michael Stanbridge, Bonnet Bay, NSW,, writes to The Australian in the midst of consternation after Kevin Rudd’s unpublicised meeting with China’s propaganda minister.

Sinse of humour failure
March 27, 2009, 7:11 am
Filed under: International relations | Tags:

”To the Kiwis reading this, don’t take it to heart, I seriously love you guys. But you really need to work on your sense of humour. It’s a piss-take, alright?
To Australians: Everything I’ve said is true.”

Anonymous Tasmanian expat who has offended some New Zealanders with his observations of the land of fush and chups. He says that Kiwis dress badly, their cities are boring, and they have a serious inferiority complex.