Sunday 20th of September 2020

rattus fracas .....

rattus fracas .....

Costello plays down PM biography comments …..

Federal Treasurer Peter Costello has downplayed comments he made in a biography of Prime Minister John Howard.

Extracts of the book, published in Fairfax newspapers today, reveal Mr Costello remains bitter about a leaked 2001 memo from then Liberal Party president Shane Stone, in which he cops much of the blame for the Government's woes.

He is reported as saying he read it as "an attempt to finger him for the Government's maladies."

And Mr Costello appears to blame Mr Howard's office for the leak, telling the book's authors only one copy was written and given to Mr Howard, yet somehow the memo made its way to a reporter.

But Mr Costello says the leak is way down the list of things he worries about.

Costello Plays Down PM Biography Comments

Where his bread is buttered

Costello praises PM's economics despite criticism in book

Federal Treasurer Peter Costello is playing down reports that he disapproves of Prime Minister John Howard's economic management.

The quotes are contained in a new biography on the Prime Minister, and have Mr Costello describing Mr Howard as a poor reformer when he was treasurer in the Fraser Government.

The biography also says Mr Costello has expressed concern about the sustainability of current Government spending.

Speaking in Bendigo in Victoria today, Mr Costello said Mr Howard had run the best federal government since Sir Robert Menzies.

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Menzies was running a patronising government to a sheltered workshop... How can you top that? — Unless you're a government running a sweat-shop while making everyone pay through the roof for board? Brilliant, Mr Costello... The best federal government since Menzies? Rubbish... You know exactly why not... And that bitterness you spread earlier? No amount of sugar can make it sweet... Howard has given this country the rough end of the pineapple for too long. Unfortunately, Mr Costello, you have no guts and prefer your slippers and bed-robe while caving in, like Smithers to Mr Burns, rather than fight Rattus treasurus failii good and proper...

Leaking "mystery"...

Costello's Howard comments a 'damning indictment'

The Federal Opposition has seized on revelations from a new biography on Prime Minister John Howard, saying they show that he is a threat to the economy.

The extracts from the biography quote Treasurer Peter Costello appearing to suggest that Mr Howard leaked a memo critical of him six years ago.

Opposition treasury spokesman Wayne Swan says if Mr Costello does not trust Mr Howard, neither should Australians.

"This is a damning indictment of the Prime Minister's record," he said.

But Mr Howard denies he or his office leaked the memo.

"To this day it remains a complete mystery to me how it got into the public domain," he said.

Mr Costello is also quoted as saying he worries about the sustainability of some Government spending, and Mr Swan has tried to use that against the Government too.

"The Prime Minister has been spending irresponsibly, according to the Treasurer," he said.