Loose cannons

November 6, 1991

Chose wrong constituents

"For seven months he performed the high-wire trick of remaining faithful to his poor and clamorous constituency while trying to stay in power." — Time magazine on Haitian President Jean Bertrand Aristide, overthrown in a military coup.

Wrong democracy

"You said you would help those countries that formed democracies. Where's the beef? Please send more cash." — Ethiopian vice minister of foreign affairs Tekola Hagos discussing aid from the United States and other wealthy nations in the five months since the country's new government came to power under left-wing president Meles Zenawi.

Free market

"Staff morale in ASIO is so bad in some quarters it has sparked fears within the government that disgruntled officers will leave and reveal highly classified information." — Sydney Morning Herald, November 2.

People's choice

"It was the media who made me and it was the media who won the election for me as lord mayor." — Perth lord mayor and former Fraser government numbers man Reg Withers.

People's parliament

"I think it's finally a recognition that the people's parliament has decided the state's laws." — NSW industrial relations minister Michael Fahey after the passage of the repressive Industrial Relations Act by the minority Greiner government.

A very little

"Around this country, those people who felt Labor governments at state and federal level were going in the wrong direction can now breathe a little easier." — Tasmanian independent MP Bob Brown following the defeat of the Field Labor government's resource security legislation.

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