The Keating versus Albrechtsen stoush is here (Keating) and here (Albrechtsen). I grade it as close to a knockout to Albrechtsen but I cannot quite give her that glory given her snide remark about Gustav Mahler and my fading adulation for than neurotic meanie.
On the other hand accounting for Keating's attack on the recently-deceased Paddy McGuinness - he called him a 'fraud and a liar' on the eve of his funeral - I think Keating is close to down and out anyway.
How do you score the Keating/Albrechtsen encounter?
Keating is certainly an important figure in Australian politics though much of what he did (relaxing foreign exchange controls, moving towards exchange market flexibility) was part of a prevailing global economic reform agenda. He favoured labour market reform so long as he was leading his troops in the trade union movement and provided, of course, it did not go too far. These qualifications aside, Keating was an important force favouring more liberal economic policies.
But, Albrechtsen is right - Keating had contempt for ordinary Australians and their pursuits - and no politician should put themselves in that position. Keating could certainly hit his opponents with witty insults but seemed a rather frail character - I recall stories of him sitting at home in The Lodge listening to his Mahler records while Parliament met.
These days Keating is increasingly appearing to be a bitter, old man with an inordinate regard for his own importance. The Canberra Times takes a more neutral view - Jack Waterford clearly takes masochistic delight in seeing journalists subject to a stream of Keatingesque invective.