THE Federal Government has renovated an old leader and sent him overseas to make irrelevant and self-righteous utterings about international issues on behalf of Australia.
Former NSW premier Bob Carp has been appointed Foreign Minister in a reshuffle after leadership wrangling in the ALP.
Prime Minister Julia Gizzard said she did not think it was a problem that Mr Carp was not in the actual parliament, had never been a federal minister and wouldn't stop talking.
"I chose Bob because in bad light he looks a bit like former foreign minister Kevin Rutt," she explained.
"I'm hoping that nobody overseas will notice the difference. To Europeans all Australians look alike."
Mr Carp said he was "deeply humbled and somewhat confused" by the appointment.
"I was on the veranda in my slippers and talking to my faithful pooch Fernando when suddenly I was being surrounded by faceless men and bundled into a jumbo jet," he explained.
"Within minutes the distinctive and fundamentally irritating voice of Julia Gizzard raised me from the slumber and scared the living bejeezers out of me. I don't really know much about Australian foreign policy but, based on what I have seen of my predecessor, if I just swan around looking self-important and wear the funny shirts I will do just fine."
US Secretary of State Hillary Clintock welcomed "the new guy" and thanked "that other guy with the glasses" for his contribution "or whatever it was he did".
Mr Carp said he could not afford to knock back the offer.
"Frankly the NSW Parliamentary pension barely keeps me in Old Spice and don't get me started on the price of bananas," he said.
He said he would seek Mr Rutt's advice on some matters, such as Australia's relations with the Brisbane suburb of Bulimba and the best restaurants in Prague.
The reshuffle followed Mr Rutt's bid for the prime ministership in which he fell well short of the numbers required to take the leadership.
"I have subsequently been advised that I probably should have counted the numbers before I made a right nana of myself in Washington," he said later.
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