Any Bob Hawke, Paul Keating or Malcolm Fraser facts? I need them for my project.


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Didge Doo answered

A simple Google search will give you the political facts but some things may be harder to turn up.

For instance, did you know that Malcolm Fraser lost his trousers in a Memphis bordello? You can read the story in the Australian at this link but even that may not give you the best line. A journalist, looking for the juicy bits, went to the motel and asked the guy on the desk whether Mr Fraser had been dressed normally. "I don't know," quipped the man. "I don't know what Australian prime ministers normally wear."

 BTW Fraser was infamous for his oft-repeated quote "life wasn't meant to be easy" which he trotted out if his policies were unpopular. Most people didn't realise that it was really only part of a quotation from George  Bernard Shaw's 1921 play, "Back to Methuselah". The complete quote is, "Life is not meant to be easy, my child, but take courage, it can be delightful."

The saddest story about Bob Hawke is also about infidelity. His wife, Hazel, had stuck with him through all his campaigns and, unlike many politicians' wives, had earned great respect. Toward the end of his term as PM he started an affair with his biographer, Blanche d'Alpuget, and abandoned Hazel who was then suffering the early stages of Alzheimers. Great man!

Can't tell you much about Keating -- a political midget alongside the other two -- but, during his tenure as PM, a journalist at the Sydney Morning Herald once wrote that his spell checker rejected "Keating" and suggested instead "cheating". It seemed appropriate for a politician.

FYI PCs were still making their way into the Australian workplace during the 1990s and spell checkers were very strange beasties indeed.

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