Friday Flash Poll: Who was your favourite prime minister?

Bob Hawke was one of Australia’s favourite sons, but was he one of our best PMs?

Friday Flash Poll: Who was your favourite prime minister?

Bill Shorten described Bob Hawke as ‘Labor’s greatest son’ and political leaders from here and around the world have sent condolences and high praise of Bob Hawke both for his time as leader and as a great man.

Tony Abbott said about Bob Hawke “He had a Labor heart, but a Liberal head” for which he has copped a flak in the press and from other politicians.

Bob Hawke will go down as one of Australia’s favourite prime ministers, but was he one of the best? Political veteran Laurie Oakes seems to think so.

Bob Hawke gave us Medicare which has certainly improved and often saved the lives of countless Australians. Even if this alone was his legacy, he’d have done more for this country than many PMs before him and since. But, along with Paul Keating, he opened trade with Asia and delivered on policies that ensured both prosperity and social equality. He certainly left his positive mark on Australia and Australians, which is an achievement maybe only a minority of PMs can put on their resume.

But he was more than a prime minister. His personality and ability to endear himself to the public will also go down in history. No one could ever forget that video of him celebrating Australia’s America’s Cup victory. He certainly passed the pub test, too. In fact, he once drank himself into the record books, when he was the fastest man to ‘skull’ a yard of beer during his days at Oxford.

Bob is famous for once saying “The things which are most important don't always scream the loudest”.

His passing will not go unnoticed, and it certainly put a sober note on the final day of federal election campaigning, but the show will go on, just as Bob would have wanted.

We'd like to know who your favourite post-war prime minister was and who you think has done the most for Australia. So why not join us in our Friday Flash Poll and share your thoughts?

Click on the link below if the quiz doesn't automatically load

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And of course, share your thoughts on your favourite prime minister in the comments section below.





    COMMENTS

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    4b2
    17th May 2019
    10:30am
    Paul Keating had a vision and a plan for Australia and Australians. I cant think of any other Politician who had his vision and plan for this country. We have seen his benefit of 28 years of continual growth.
    GeorgeM
    17th May 2019
    11:26pm
    Keating was clearly the worst - crazy ideas without any thought of impacts is NOT vision, just the thoughts of an arrogant fool who unfortunately also followed these through with destructive actions.

    He gave us the biggest Recession (which he arrogantly claimed we "had to have") most of us have experienced, which destroyed tens of thousands of jobs, destroyed thousands of marriages, homes of people who couldn't afford his 19% interest rates (and lost jobs) and I also heard about suicides, set in motion the shutdown of manufacturing in this country (mostly gone now), hit Retirees (increased women's pension age from 60 to 65, introduced the hated Assets test for age pensions, also Deemed Income for age pensions Income test, shut down the pension fund set up by Chifley), created chaos in the share market and investment property market (with wild interest rate changes, and negative gearing on/off rules), sold off the CBA, created conditions for a new Outsourcing (low cost) industry destroying local jobs, etc, etc, etc. He did the Liberals work for them without their trying! He now fights for his Chinese employer, calling our respected intelligence agencies "nutters"! Seriously!
    GeorgeM
    17th May 2019
    11:29pm
    Hawke was a good man, unfortunately he appointed this rogue as a treasurer who went out of control, and who ultimately came back to bite him and sent him prematurely, at age 62, into retirement.
    Franky
    17th May 2019
    10:34am
    Paul Keating was in my view the only Prime Minister who had a vision for Australia, the only true statesman. I still always enjoy reading his comments on today's sorry state of affairs. We haven't had true leadership in this country, our Kiwi neighbours are more fortunate. The exchange rate says it all
    Batara
    17th May 2019
    10:55am
    I am flabbergasted that 16 from 39 people at time I did the survey put John Howard as our best PM. I am one of the 5 who put Howard as our worst ever PM. The reason I regard Howard so negatively are primarily the destruction of the union movement that was his mission in power. On top of that on the world stage he led us into a war in the Middle East on false pretences. To cap off the things I dislike about Howard the division of politics in Australia that was further developed by his acolytes Tony Abbott. I have not even mentioned the lie of children overboard, but that too. All in a John Howsrd is deserving of recognition as our worst ever PM. Can those who voted for him name one good thing he did?
    Rod63
    17th May 2019
    11:08am
    He is way down my list, too, Batara, just above Abbott at the bottom, BUT he did bring in the gun controls after Port Arthur and deserves credit for that as there was much opposition on his side of politics.
    4b2
    17th May 2019
    11:13am
    Cant agree more He is a shocking example of extreme right wing ideology a sad throwback to Thatcherism. My biggest disappointment was his introduction of taxpayers funding bankrupt business to save his brother from serving a jail term. This was a huge abuse of power. His raciest policies and lack of vision for the country has left us with the rabble we have today.
    Paddington
    17th May 2019
    12:08pm
    I voted once for John Howard so he must have impressed me at that time. Abbott is worse.
    Credit needs to be given where due and Howard addressed the gun thing so we did not go down the road of America.
    wisky171
    17th May 2019
    12:35pm
    Howard got us out of debt , lowered interest rates ,lowered tax as well, which helped business and home buyers. Introduced gst which got rid of sales tax .which state governments kept raising mostly by labour. Rudd & Gillard put us back in debt, Shorten will increase it .
    Howard''s gun laws were a good thing too.
    wisky171
    17th May 2019
    12:35pm
    Howard got us out of debt , lowered interest rates ,lowered tax as well, which helped business and home buyers. Introduced gst which got rid of sales tax .which state governments kept raising mostly by labour. Rudd & Gillard put us back in debt, Shorten will increase it .
    Howard''s gun laws were a good thing too.
    Agnomen
    17th May 2019
    12:50pm
    Actually Labor increased the surplus in the year before the GFC. Since then the Liberals have left Australia with staggering debt.
    Anonymous
    17th May 2019
    5:08pm
    Howard got us out of debt only because the little bastard privatized public infrastructure. And we're still suffering for it.
    wisky171
    17th May 2019
    8:40pm
    a lot of ordinary people have had to get out of debt by selling assets etc homes business
    wisky171
    17th May 2019
    8:40pm
    a lot of ordinary people have had to get out of debt by selling assets etc homes business
    Batara
    18th May 2019
    7:39am
    Paddo, yes I did overlook the gun control. That is probably the only decent thing Howard has done in his lifetime. Wisky 171 - I disagree with everything you wrote. Howard rode good fortune in the mining boom and squandered the wealth generated. Rudd was slammed by the GFC, but the Coalition leaning commentators forget all about that. Swanny saved Australian society from the effects of the GFC - Australia stood out as the nation that rode that disaster better than any other. It is now up to Labor to correct the distortion resulting from mismanagement by Howard followed by the lat six years of inaction.
    Batara
    18th May 2019
    7:39am
    Paddo, yes I did overlook the gun control. That is probably the only decent thing Howard has done in his lifetime. Wisky 171 - I disagree with everything you wrote. Howard rode good fortune in the mining boom and squandered the wealth generated. Rudd was slammed by the GFC, but the Coalition leaning commentators forget all about that. Swanny saved Australian society from the effects of the GFC - Australia stood out as the nation that rode that disaster better than any other. It is now up to Labor to correct the distortion resulting from mismanagement by Howard followed by the lat six years of inaction.
    Razor
    17th May 2019
    11:21am
    A great man, great Australian and great Prime Minister. This lot we have now don't even come close. RIP Hawky.
    Dobbo1
    17th May 2019
    11:33am
    Gough Whitlam got my vote as the best PM, as he had the foresight to end conscription, which meant I did not have to go to a war which should not have involved Australia. He also got the raw deal when he lost office in 1975, and set up Labor for the next generation of Labor politicians, including Bob Hawke!
    Dobbo1
    17th May 2019
    1:22pm
    FOOG
    Colours
    17th May 2019
    2:09pm
    Agree completely.
    Rae
    18th May 2019
    6:36am
    I agree. For a lousy $4 billion his plan to nationalise our mines, gasfields and uranium industry would have set Australia up for wealth to share instead of being owned by foreign investors who take most of the profits away.

    Foreign owners sacked Whitlam. Ordinary Australians have paid the price ever since then.
    Viking
    17th May 2019
    11:46am
    Bob Hawke did many great things but the consequences of some of them were very negative. One of the things he is credited with is the reform of Australia's import Tariffs. He also effectively told the Chinese, 'you have great prospects of growth, let Australia be your quarry!' The drastic reduction of import tariffs under Hawke/Keating lead to the demise of many manufacturing industries in Australia and the jobs going to China. So is this is the mark of a great union leader and a great prime minister? Lets put things into to perspective, he did a lot of good but he destroyed many of the jobs he claimed to protect!
    Karl Marx
    17th May 2019
    11:54am
    As well as introduce asset testing of pensioners
    Nascar.
    17th May 2019
    12:01pm
    Not long to go old Goat.
    Paddington
    17th May 2019
    12:05pm
    Hawke was the whole package. He was competent and a man of the people. He was brilliant and along with Paul Keating they were a magnificent team.
    Sundays
    17th May 2019
    12:09pm
    True. Vale Bob Hawke
    Sundays
    17th May 2019
    12:07pm
    For me it was the great Gough Whitlam. He brought us into the 20th Century. Free University, equal pay, racial discrimination act, moved us out of Vietnam, introduced Medibank and various social welfare reforms. On a personal note, he introduced the national sewerage program which made a big difference to many
    Paddington
    17th May 2019
    12:09pm
    Gough was great too!
    Farside
    18th May 2019
    12:26am
    truly amazing that Gough actually achieved so much with possibly one of the worst cabinets since Federation
    Paddington
    17th May 2019
    12:14pm
    This is a big help for tomorrow and getting Labor in. It is putting the values of labor front and centre. Hawke honed his skills from his time heading the unions and brought his larger than life persona to his job as PM. People will link Hawke to Labor tomorrow. Maybe Hawke’s last big gesture to his beloved labor movement and Australia.
    Viking
    17th May 2019
    12:32pm
    Just a pity many of the jobs he claimed to protect were in fact destroyed by his own policies. One day we may have a government that thinks 360 degrees and looks at the consequences of its actions but then with only 3 year terms why would they?
    wisky171
    17th May 2019
    12:38pm
    Must be a lot of miss informed people out there fhen
    wisky171
    17th May 2019
    12:38pm
    Must be a lot of miss informed people out there fhen
    KSS
    17th May 2019
    12:38pm
    Yes vote Labor if that us your wish. But don't do it out of nostalgic sentiment for a time and person past. Mr Shorten is no Mr Hawke, Witlam or Keating.

    If ever there was a candidate who thinks more about himself than Australia, just listen to what Mr Shorten said yesterday evening about Mr Hawke' s passing. Mr Shorten made it all about himself!
    Sundays
    17th May 2019
    12:47pm
    KSS, I think you’re confusing Bill Shorten with Tony Abbot.
    Paddington
    17th May 2019
    12:59pm
    KSS, your ears need tuning. Shorten has been touched by this passing as have Tanya and all in the labor movement. Hawke liked Shorten and he was waiting for his victory tomorrow. Shorten was his friend like many others. Hawke obviously kept his hand on the labor wheel long after he left and still is by taking the attention away from the negativity and into a mourning period. Labor is united and try saying that about the LNP.
    Sundays
    17th May 2019
    1:18pm
    Whereas Tony Abbott’s tweet has received around 4,000 negative responses.
    KSS
    17th May 2019
    2:24pm
    What did Mr Abbott say that was negative? The bit where he said "Bob Hawke was a great prime minister. In my judgment, he was Labor's greatest prim minister"

    Or perhaps it was when he said "All Australians should mourn someone who changed our country for the better because he was always prepared to argue his case, even if it meant first persuading key people on his own side."

    Or was it when he said

    "His (Mr Hawke's) key achievements financial deregulation, tariffs cuts and the beginning of privatisation - went against the Labor grain as Labor's more recent policy direction shows.

    You might almost say he had a Labor heart but a Liberal head."
    Certainly the Coalition supported nearly all of his big reforms helping to make his tenure a time of economic revitalisation"

    Now please explain WHY is any of this disrespectful and why is it deserving of so much scathing attention when actually it is nothing but the truth. And it pays due respect to Mr Hawke as a PAST prime minister.
    KSS
    17th May 2019
    2:27pm
    Paddington wrote:

    Hawke obviously kept his hand on the labor wheel long after he left and still is by taking the attention away from the negativity and into a mourning period.

    God help us then if Mr Hawke was really still driving the bus. God only knows what Mr Shorten & Co will do on their own!
    Sundays
    17th May 2019
    2:43pm
    KSS if you can’t see that calling a great Labor prime minister and Union man as having ‘a Labor heart but a Liberal head’ an insult then you’re more out of touch than I thought.
    Anonymous
    17th May 2019
    3:45pm
    Sundays you socialists are easily upset by a few words get over it.
    Sundays
    17th May 2019
    6:25pm
    Timing Roby, timing
    Paddington
    17th May 2019
    11:01pm
    KSS, actually it shows solidarity, something missing with the LNP unless you count Palmer and Pauline. Going to the master for support and wisdom shows common sense. Being able to produce your team rather than doing a solo act says they are united. Shorten will be a chairman as stated tonight on The Drum and utilising all the skills within his party whereas ScoMo would need to negotiate the far right and that would be so very hard to do. The nationals are not playing nice either as they feel side stepped. I feel sorry for some decent people in the LNP who would have wanted a banking royal commission and the NEG.
    Farside
    18th May 2019
    12:32am
    KSS, no question that Shorten is not a Whitlam, Hawke or Keating but then nor is it 1973 or 1983 and the world has moved on since then presenting a different set of challenges. History may prove Shorten to be the man for the times, we know the Abbott, Turnbull and Morrison were woefully inadequate.
    KB
    17th May 2019
    12:39pm
    There are a few that I could pick equally John Howard who led us into war that we should not have entered into children and other refugees overboard. The only decent thing he dis was to bring in gun control after the Port Arthur shootings.. Gough Whitlam ended conscription which affected my family .Bob Hawke was a good l leader because he introduced Medicare so that people could afford to go to the GP.At least he made unpopular decisions which people ended up respecting RIP Hawke
    ceejay
    17th May 2019
    12:39pm
    Definitely not Bob Hawke. Ask all the workers at Bougainville PNG, and mining sites in Western Australia and Western Queensland in the late 60s and early 70s. Hawke sold them down the proverbial loo during his time as ACTU President and before with his mate, Jack Edgerton. He was a womaniser, drunk and unfortunately, a liar. While I acknowledge he was the quintessential Aussie bloke, he was responsible for some poor decisions while leader of our great nation! Shame, that we disciplined Barnaby Joyce for changing wives, while Bill Shorten and Bob Hawke did the same thing. No one really knows how much Hazel Hawke had to put up with during her marriage to Bob. Being a good woman, she stuck by her man despite his philandering ways...then got dementia for her troubles while he was living the high life on his Parliamentary Pension and kudos as a former Aussie PM.
    KB
    17th May 2019
    12:39pm
    There are a few that I could pick equally John Howard who led us into war that we should not have entered into children and other refugees overboard. The only decent thing he dis was to bring in gun control after the Port Arthur shootings.. Gough Whitlam ended conscription which affected my family .Bob Hawke was a good l leader because he introduced Medicare so that people could afford to go to the GP.At least he made unpopular decisions which people ended up respecting RIP Hawke
    ceejay
    17th May 2019
    12:39pm
    Definitely not Bob Hawke. Ask all the workers at Bougainville PNG, and mining sites in Western Australia and Western Queensland in the late 60s and early 70s. Hawke sold them down the proverbial loo during his time as ACTU President and before with his mate, Jack Edgerton. He was a womaniser, drunk and unfortunately, a liar. While I acknowledge he was the quintessential Aussie bloke, he was responsible for some poor decisions while leader of our great nation! Shame, that we disciplined Barnaby Joyce for changing wives, while Bill Shorten and Bob Hawke did the same thing. No one really knows how much Hazel Hawke had to put up with during her marriage to Bob. Being a good woman, she stuck by her man despite his philandering ways...then got dementia for her troubles while he was living the high life on his Parliamentary Pension and kudos as a former Aussie PM.
    Eddy
    17th May 2019
    2:03pm
    ceejay, you forgot what I regard as the worst thing BH did, support big business against the airline pilots, using the RAAF to destroy so many good men's careers to help a millionaire mate. Not what one expected from a union man.
    KSS
    17th May 2019
    2:29pm
    So Mr Hawke was a man with a Liberal head and a Labor heart then as Mr Abbott said.
    Viking
    17th May 2019
    4:11pm
    KSS. certainly what he did regarding drastically reducing import tariffs and destroying hundreds of thousands of manufacturing jobs was very much a Liberal heart; not unlike the other job destroying "end of the age of entitlement (not for him though)" Liberal heart Joe Hockey who dared Ford to shut down manufacturing in Australia, Ford did and the others followed suit. I don't support Abbott but I don't understand this faux outrage of what he said regarding BH. Surely most Liberals would regard a Liberal heart as a positive and Laborites can't honestly deny some of the 'Liberal' things he did.
    Arisaid
    17th May 2019
    4:53pm
    So true about the airline pilots. He destroyed so much business in FNQ. No-one could get in and out of Cairns. Many accommodation places had to close. People had to leave the area because there was no work Schools lost teachers as there were less children. Our milkman had to stop as there wasn't enough business for him. The local hairdresser had to close. Whole floors of large hotels were sealed up. All of this had a flow on effect. It was horrendous. Thanks (NOT) BH
    andromeda143
    17th May 2019
    12:56pm
    Hawke was indeed a great man and PM. Just to correct one mistake which commentators are perpetrating about him. He did not give us Medicare. Whitlam introduced it originally as Medibank and Fraser made it free and universal. Hawke changed the name and took away the free-of-charge label, making the Medicare levy in order to fund it.
    Anonymous
    18th May 2019
    12:30am
    Well said.

    17th May 2019
    1:34pm
    Menzies to me was number 1 followed by Hawke and Howard - worst by far was Turnbull followed by Mcmahon then Gillard and Rudd.
    Pass marks to Keating, Fraser.
    No opinion on Gorton or Abbott.
    Whitlam was chaotic
    Observer
    17th May 2019
    1:47pm
    I guess we've forgotten the many things Menzies did for Australia, a lot of which are wrongly attributed to people like Whitlam. Introduction of free Uni (Commonwealth Scholarship for any Australian who could get acceptance into a Uni); Started Medibank; post-war immigration policies; home and family values; establishment of the Liberal Party and LNP coalition for some.
    JAID
    17th May 2019
    1:50pm
    I don't think it possible or reasonable to pick.

    Ben Chifley-Reasonably competent running an inclusive government of post-war repair before the export surge really kicked in.

    Robert Menzies - a long incumbent and builder of modern post-war government, within an entrepreneurial context and with notable movement toward the present socialist agenda.

    John Gorton - I have always thought him quietly responsible for growing the flexibility in the Australian psyche capable of accepting the changes of outlook wrought in the Whitlam Government.

    Gough Whitlam - Almost a dictator but genuine, articulate and responsible for a significant boost in Australian confidence. His government with many strong ministers and feats good and bad should be chiefly known for that great lift in attitude his government presided over.

    Malcolm Fraser - presided over a long period of calm gradual change. He lacked precocious vision but wore the solid centrist hat of a statesman.

    Robert J Hawke - The showey face on a team kept in good form. I don't know how much credit for the reforms of the time can really be put down to him rather than Paul Keating but holding the team together during the first part of that process was a worthy feat.

    Paul Keating - Fairly clearly a strong partner if not the key to substantial and necessary reformation of his age. Insight we would hope to have in all our leaders.

    John Howard - incumbency alone would make his a powerful contribution. With some stand-out interventions as with Guns, Boats and East Timor his was measured government that maintained its sails and a pretty even keel through some testing times. Reform is important but that stability is also a feat.

    The rest did as well as can be expected. There is always room for improvement but we have not been badly served.

    He is too new to add to the list but it surprises me how quickly Scott Morrison has got the measure of the job and how easily he takes to it. Time will tell whether or not that extends to truly creative leadership, certainly the early reforms of the likes of Whitlam are not on the scoreboard but that doesn't mean he may not be capable especially if he can hold a good team together.

    Not a lot of chance of that though I think. The demise of Bob Hawke 2 days from the election is bound to create at least a percent of supportive fond reverie. As it certainly has among media commentators everywhere (especially the ABC :=) ) Labor will really have to mess up to lose this election with that timely injection. As it was, pundits suggested Labor was in the winning lane though I suspect that coming into the last days it was more neck and neck with the Coalition actually a sniff ahead. Even Scott Morrison's generous and genuine tribute to Bob is unlikely to buy back much of that percent. My bet: it will be a minority government. Before Bob Hawke's demise a Coalition led one with substantial right of field reliable support and now a Labour/Green one. It will be interesting to see how reliable Green support is especially if di Natale 'relinquishes' the position (or gets relinquished.) Though that may not happen sheerly for fear of getting the Paul Keating-hungry but not Paul Keating-visionary Hanson-Young in the leadership position.
    David
    17th May 2019
    1:52pm
    Regardless of what side of politics at least you knew where both Howard & Abbott stood. Apart from Hawke & Keating & Morrison the rest were/are chameleons at best & will sway whatever their minders & spin doctors deem will garner the most votes. I wonder whether (off the record) they sincerely believe that half of what they spout forth they sincerely believe in terms of Australia or their ideology?
    floss
    17th May 2019
    2:11pm
    Not Motor Mouth Morrison after the deal he did with America to bring in another two scum bags that America rejected , I could never trust this man to lead Australia.
    Bridgit
    17th May 2019
    2:32pm
    I have to correct you there!
    Turnbull and Obama did that deal - not Morrison!
    floss
    17th May 2019
    2:15pm
    RIP. Bob Hawke a great Aussie.
    Anonymous
    17th May 2019
    3:48pm
    Great Bloke who deserted his wife when she got dementia and went off with a floosy nothing but a low life.
    Brissiegirl
    17th May 2019
    2:21pm
    Bob Hawke was a dinki di Aussie and people loved him. He did the dirty on Hazel who supported him on his way to the top. He was a womaniser and a flawed man, but in the bigger picture he was a great Australian leader. Even though he was President of the ACTU, he didn't allow unions to govern in fact he brought the air force in during the greedy pilots strike and I admired him for keeping 'the unions under control. Paul Keating was caricatured as the undertaker, due to his miserable, nasty style. He made us battle through 17% interest rates and the recession Australia had to have. His nasty nature hasn't mellowed over the years. John Howard was economically stable and I always felt safe when he was PM. He ran good governments and acted quickly on gun laws. He protected our borders and encouraged aspirational Australians. He was a statesman in every way (imo). For the first time in history we now have a man with renewed allegations of rape readying himself to live in the Lodge. A man who swore at an innocent little pie shop lady and told her she had lost his business when he was angered by some minor matter. Shorten is a lying, inarticulate socialist who doesn't come within cooee of Hawke and Howard. His condolence words last night looked pathetic compared with Morrison's fluent, honest words. Shorten can't even speak properly, his "v"replacing "th"sounds so un-educated it's embarrassing. He doesn't have the ticker or the ability to tell the truth and only when we feel his socialist hand inside all our pockets will the population wake up. He has a questionable past and between him and Plibersek, married to a convicted drug dealer, well what will we have come to if he gets over the line.
    Anonymous
    17th May 2019
    8:11pm
    I can't beat that Brissiegirl you hit the nail on the head but I think these parasites socialists are going to get in heaven help us.
    Paddington
    17th May 2019
    11:13pm
    Well you play dirty. A lot of that has zero relevance especially Tanya.
    So you want the LNP. Let’s look at them. I won’t do gutter analysis though!
    They are not united. Most of them have been hidden because no one likes some like Michaela Cash for example. I have never seen any support for her.
    The far right within the Libs would make ScoMo’s job very difficult unlike Shorten’s who has a united team behind him.
    They were too slow agreeing to the banking royal commission and the NEG could not get through because of the cli ate deniers.
    ScoMo put his arm around his ‘friend’ and said he supported his PM. Many believe ScoMo’s hands are not clean and that he outsmarted Dutton who is also much disliked.
    That’ll do for now!
    Viking
    19th May 2019
    4:44pm
    Paddo, I don't like Michaela Cash because she grassed on Bill Shorten giving us all a new car. Remember, "under Bill Shorten, the car you drive today won't be the car you'll drive tomorrow? With a brain like this and a voice like a thirsty Cockatoo she would be wasted in opposition. Clearly she outclasses the rest of her party with her strategic thinking, poise and well modulated public speaking ability; no promotion without merit here!!
    GeeDub
    17th May 2019
    2:22pm
    I didn't like any of them (but 'suffered' here only from early 1977). As a result, I most certainly do NOT have a 'favourite'. Hence I could not continue with the survey! Why could we not have had a "None of Them" choice?! I don't forgive Hawke and Keating for 'allowing' mortgage interest rates to get in the 19% region circa '89. As a result, we were forced to sell the only home we have ever built. A pox on all of them really; they are not up to much compared with many people I know in 'ordinary' life. That said: Toby Abbot is GORGEOUS!!
    Brissiegirl
    17th May 2019
    2:59pm
    Being female I can add (again, imo), Tony Abbott was a damned good looker in his young days.
    Rod63
    17th May 2019
    5:25pm
    @ GeeDub: Hahahaha!
    Foxy
    17th May 2019
    10:34pm
    ...... Abbott?? Trip to SpecSavers required? Or perhaps "blinded" by the hideous bright red budgie smugglers? lol
    Viking
    19th May 2019
    4:49pm
    Brissiegirl, yes when he was about three. He probably had more brains then too.
    shirboy
    17th May 2019
    3:26pm
    I have a press photo taken in Canberra showing Bob Hawke conducting a school band of which my granddaughter belonged & standing in the background is my late schoolteacher husband observing the scene.
    Adrianus
    18th May 2019
    1:20pm
    It is said that a photo can say a thousand words, but a photo becomes more when it tells many stories. I would like to see more male teachers and more Labor leaders like Bob Hawke.
    TREBOR
    17th May 2019
    3:58pm
    I'm not 100% sure we have great PMs - they are, after all, merely the mouth-piece for their party and I am left bereft of understanding as to exactly how they earn their pay. It's not as if they have special access to 'Er Maj or anything these days for major decisions on any policy... it's long been the day of The People As Sovereign and such things hardly count any more...

    Bring on King Archie...
    Lookfar
    17th May 2019
    4:12pm
    Brissie Girl, if you are really a woman, why aren't you supporting Julia Gillard? just because she is a girl too? - so many women allow jealousy to cloud their minds, - Julia introduced many good reforms and policies, - the men always deny it, and is one of the only politicians who promissed something, (no Carbon Tax) and then realised her male advisors had made a mistake, - the which she wore, and had the guts to admit it was a carbon tax, if you looked at it that way, - for which honesty the men of Australia crucified her, - including you Brissie "girl" - don't think so despite your proclaimed lust for the tight "budgie" pants he wore to go bike riding, - like all bike riders.
    Bob Hawke's main mistake was introducing Neo Liberalism, - - he was popular, but not all that smart, as neither is Tony baby. nor was "Pig Iron Bob Menzies, who sold the japanese the steel they needed to bomb us, despite all the signs. IMHO, most af Australia's prime ministers have been a litany of failure, which is why we have lowered the bar so low that even Morrison could have been seen as having good points.
    Problem with constantly lowering the bar is that eventually only worms can get under it, - do we really want worms to guide our country through the much more difficult waters ahead?
    Anonymous
    17th May 2019
    4:22pm
    Okay Lookfar how about we ring Donald Trump he might be the man we need
    Brissiegirl
    17th May 2019
    4:58pm
    Hi Lookfar, below the belt comment about me proclaiming "lust"for tight bathers - all in your mind my dear. I just thought he was a handsome man in his young days, nothing whatsoever to do with bathers. Of course speedos are the uniform for surf life saving. Pollie pedalling for charity is something we don't see in too many politicians. Julia Gillard broke up 3 marriages (that we know of) all men with children so why would I not prefer Abbott, a family man who has 3 lovely daughters, and a long-term devoted husband - why wouldn't I prefer him to Gillard with her involvement in the AWU Workplace Reform Association scandal? Gillard repeatedly hurt the women in Abbott's life over and over naming him a misogynist, she had no thoughts for how that attack would have hurt them. Any man living in a happy four-woman household knows much more about family life than back-stabbing hoe-wrecking Gillard. And if you are unable to get it that some women really don't appreciate poor conduct of other women, I can easily give permission for the moderators to call my number and confirm my gender. Yes women can be jealous that's why Gillard knifed Rudd causing him to cry in public then turned her sights towards Beyond Blue what a hypocrite.
    Rosret
    17th May 2019
    9:14pm
    Lookfar, it is a mistake to think females want female leaders.
    There are some very good female politicians and through history there have been some very powerful and respected women.
    I would never vote on gender. I vote, as most do, on merit.

    17th May 2019
    5:06pm
    Whitlam, Hawke and Keating stand head-and-shoulders above the pissants of the Liberal Party.
    TREBOR
    17th May 2019
    5:54pm
    Looking good until you included The Undertaker...
    BruserSnr
    17th May 2019
    5:53pm
    KB, Medicare is simply compulsory Health Insurance. It has been eroded to the point, those that want decent cover, are required to take out Private Health Insurance at exorbident cost, and still pay Medicare levy. I don't thank Bob Hawke for Medicare. Before Mr Hawke, we all had the choice to insure or not.
    Gardengirl
    17th May 2019
    8:15pm
    SO many inaccuracies
    Rosret
    17th May 2019
    9:17pm
    Oh yes - how time changes history!
    Rosret
    17th May 2019
    9:03pm
    Robert Menzies was the longest serving Prime Minister. Most readers on YLC would not remember him because they were only children. However I do recall my father saying he was an incredibly good orator. He didn't ever get voted out and in the end he retired from his position.
    I think we all know Bob Hawke and we will remember him as a prominent personality who achieved considerable changes in our time.
    JAID
    18th May 2019
    12:38pm
    On the contrary Rosret, I suspect that most here would remember Mr. PigIron Bob very well.
    The name of course remembers a mistake in his early career outbalanced by his lifetime achievement.

    All leaders make mistakes some like Messr.s Whitlam and Keating have a terrific knack of popular name calling which makes those mistakes stick.
    FEDUP
    18th May 2019
    3:41am
    Paul Keating, was very bad, his statement of "Banana Republic" brought on the Recession we had to have...Crap.
    Sold his Pig Farm, then inside of a month opened up Australia to the Danish and Canadian Pig producers to bring in their products. Almost overnight wiped out our industry.
    Bad time to have a poll, a day after the former PM died, the sympathy rides along with him,
    Lest We Forget Hazel.
    JAID
    18th May 2019
    12:27pm
    Very true re. Paul Keating FedUp. Yet, on balance he seems to have been behind much that had to change. As with almost all the others we can point to significant negatives but it is the balance that we end up judging.

    I at least think that he was able (in other important areas) to recognise the writing on the wall and have cultivated the power in place to change things accordingly. Of course, Tony Abbott is correct and Kristina Keneally misses the point entirely (probably electioneering;) excepting at the fringes, the most valuable things which Paul Keating and his party achieved were things that the Coalition would like to have achieved. It would have been far more difficult for them since an accord with the labour movement would be crushing especially with Messrs. Hawke and Keating actively prodding the movement along to ensure their long-term vision of eventual leadership.

    Paul Keating will go down as opportunistic, callous and self-serving, possibly even nasty but also an achiever, a strategist with insight and some humour. I don't even think he would mind that description and hope he does not.

    Yes, I reckon reverie and the sympathy vote will tip this election opposite to the way it would have gone before Bob Hawke's demise. I hope Australians are smart enough to see through the last couple days of smarmy media hype and vote undisturbed whatever the way they want. (ABC and JJJ - it seems to be burnt into their journalists or so-called know-it-all reviewers)

    19th May 2019
    2:02pm
    I think Scott Morrison is going to be my favourite PM
    A wonderful honest caring man who will achieve great things for Australia and future generation Australians
    maxchugg
    20th May 2019
    1:09pm
    I don't have any favourites, although I believe history will be kind to Tony Abbott.

    Curiously, for a long time the one I liked least was named Malcolm, who was a Liberal, but that Malcolm has been easily replaced my another Malcolm who was a Labor in Liberal clothing.

    Unfortunately Gough Whitlam, who was on par with both Menzies and Churchill, is handicapped by a couple of total idiots in his cabinet, otherwise he would have also been a front runner in my opinion. His wicked sense of humour was always enjoyable, for example, his story about a new book, "The Wit and Wisdom of Malcolm Fraser" which consisted of 300 blank pages. Another story attributed to Gough was that Malcolm was dejected after being rejected by a girlfriend but cheered up when his father bought him an Aston-Martin.
    maxchugg
    20th May 2019
    1:09pm
    I don't have any favourites, although I believe history will be kind to Tony Abbott.

    Curiously, for a long time the one I liked least was named Malcolm, who was a Liberal, but that Malcolm has been easily replaced my another Malcolm who was a Labor in Liberal clothing.

    Unfortunately Gough Whitlam, who was on par with both Menzies and Churchill, is handicapped by a couple of total idiots in his cabinet, otherwise he would have also been a front runner in my opinion. His wicked sense of humour was always enjoyable, for example, his story about a new book, "The Wit and Wisdom of Malcolm Fraser" which consisted of 300 blank pages. Another story attributed to Gough was that Malcolm was dejected after being rejected by a girlfriend but cheered up when his father bought him an Aston-Martin.
    Mad as Hell
    23rd May 2019
    5:14pm
    'Bob Hawke on a life in power' with the ABC listen app

    https://abclisten.page.link/tUX35Z3ZkA83HgX49

    Great interview by Richard Fidler


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