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Hurl abuse like a Prime Minister
Hurl abuse like a Prime Minister

It's generally agreed there's something missing in the quality of our political debate these days.

Gone are the days when our leaders displayed that intangible x factor known as 'vision'.

Also missing are the genuine performers; those politicians who made the colosseum of parliament their own and could reduce their opposition to nothing more than 'intellectual rust buckets' or 'gutless spivs'.

And no politician made parliament their own quite like former Prime Minister Paul Keating.

Over his 27-year political career, Mr Keating reduced some of our best and brightest to rubble as he spewed invective over the despatch box.

"What we have here is an intellectual rust bucket," Mr Keating said of Opposition leader Andrew Peacock.

When asked in 1992 why he wouldn't go to an early election, Mr Keating leaned in with a glint in his eye and said to John Hewson, "Mate, I want to do you slowly".

Hewson was also a 'shiver looking for a spine to run up', while another parliamentary warrior, Wilson Tuckey, would be 'flat out counting past 10'.

Former Treasurer Peter Costello was a favourite target, at various times Mr Keating called him a 'low altitude flyer' or 'all tip and no iceberg'.

John Howard couldn't escape Keating's wrath, he was either a 'desiccated coconut', 'a dead carcass swinging in the breeze', or simply a sucker.

Try as they might, today's crop of politicians lead by Anthony Albanese and Cory Bernardi can't quite achieve the oratory highs our former PM.

But now there's a handy app storming up the iTunes charts that can help today's pollies learn a thing or two about how to insult with style.

The PJK Insults app, created by Sydney based software company Synthetica, was released only yesterday, but has overtaken global phenomenon Angry Birds on the iTunes charts to become the top paid app.

For just 99 cents, users are given randomly generated insults straight from the mouth of the former Prime Minister.

The app is the brainchild of Synthetica's Dan Nolan, who says he came up with the idea one day at the pub.

"I think it was my friend Jen Bennett who jokingly said 'What if you had an app that insulted you like Keating?'. Well it got filed away as a 'what if', but then a few weeks ago someone mentioned it again and we had a bit of spare time so we went to work on putting it together."

Once Apple was convinced Paul Keating was an actual public figure in Australia, the app was released and quickly became a hit in the Twitterverse as users called each other intellectual hobos, yuppies or simply Joh Bjelke-Petersen.

The insults are all phrases used over the years by Mr Keating himself, filed into a data base and generated at random.

"We trawled through insult archives online, articles Keating had written, even insults attributed to him and pulled out the bare bones of what constituted the insults, his particular turn of phrase and way of speaking," Mr Nolan said.

"We then built a script to generate several thousand insults and worked on tweaking and tuning that and the outcome was a few hundred insults that the app could randomly generated."

The app has proved so popular (it has 12 users in the US, and at least four Pakistanis are currently calling each other 'bare arsed intellectual gigolos'), the scumbags at Synthetica have plans for an update with more insults.

So keep an eye out you sunlamp abusing specimens of human chloroform, you gutless spivs, you useless fops.

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