Australian for Ballbreaker, Mate

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In a move that threatens to put the final nail in the coffin between America's love affair with Australia (the death of which began with The Facts of Life girls going Downunder and the release of Crocodile Dundee II), Australia's Labor Party now has a leader who once referred to Liberal Prime Minister John Howard as an "arselicker."

Beyond a Mad Max-style of speaking, Mark Latham is famous for breaking thee arm of a taxi driver during an argument over a fare. He's also outspoken, if a little less anatomically observant, of President Bush, calling the Texan "the most incompetent and dangerous president in living memory" and "flaky, incompetent, and dangerous."

It's unclear what chance Latham (who has said, "I hope my little boy hates a Liberal prime minister who sells out our national interest") has to become prime minister himself, or what influence he'll exert over Aussie-US relations.

NEXT: Hef Goes Def

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  1. An arm-breaking PM in Australia? A perfect mate for the police-beating FM in Germany (Joschka).

  2. If he loses the election in Australia, he sounds like the perfect person to run the Democratic National Committee after Howard Dean wins the Democratic nomination and fires Terry McAuliffe.

  3. I wouldn’t complain about Latham too much – even though he is the leader of the supposedly left-wing opposition party, he is far more libertarian when it comes to tax cuts and free markets than most of his collegues.

  4. He’ll be worth watching to see if he gives that arselicker a run for his money.

  5. Er, it’s Mark Latham.

  6. I go to that Australian news website, and what’s the first thing I read?

    “Man and his horse banned from pub”

  7. The Aussie-American romance lost its bloom — almost irreparably — with the advent of Yahoo Serious.

    Thankfully, he disappeared quickly, and we love Oz more than ever now.

  8. Andrea,

    Thanks for pointing out Latham’s real first name. It’s been corrected.

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