Loose cannons

Issue 

Beaming personality

"Get that smirk off your face. I can hear it over the radio." — A caller on Neil Mitchell's 3AW talk-back radio program to Treasurer Peter Costello.

Charisma

"Arrogant nitwit", "smug, arrogant arsehole" — Some of the most common responses from voters in the federal electorate of Higgins to a Morgan opinion poll which asked them, "What, if anything, worries you about the Liberal member, Peter Costello, being elected in the seat of Higgins?"

Pollie talk

"Labor has a good environment policy... As I said, we've got a good environment policy... As I said, we've got a good environment policy, and at the general election campaign you will see our environment policy laid out on the table." — Keiran Boland, ALP candidate for the seat of Aston responding to questions from journalists about Labor's policy on the Kyoto greenhouse protocol.

Egalitarian

"... only 6 per cent of the 7.3 million Australian households ... hold more than 60 per cent of the country's investable assets. This is fairly egalitarian on a world scale: only 3 per cent of households hold 70 per cent of investment assets, according to BCG's research across 27 countries." — Australian Financial Review, July 14-15.

The world's just a bowl of cherries

"And then we can move on to some things that ought to be low-hanging fruit like Jordan and Chile and Singapore and even Vietnam..." — US House of Representatives member Jim Moran speaking in favour of a free trade agreement between the US and Australia.