SWANNING AROUND THE UN – In an Australian fairy-tale of the past few decades, he was an ugly duckling from Queensland who turned into a giant turkey in Canberra. And now one of the worst Treasurers in living memory is getting a United Nations gig:

Former treasurer Wayne Swan has been appointed to chair an eminent expert group advising the United Nations on tax policy and government spending.

Mr Swan attended the first meeting of the group, which comes under the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, in Bangkok in December.

The group, described as 18 ‘renowned experts and experienced policy makers’, was set up to advise UNESCAP on ways to help UN member states implement the 2030 agenda for sustainable development.

Just wow. The man who, together with his then boss Kevin Rudd, set Australia on the path of debt and stagnation will be now advising poor countries around the region how to repeat that miracle at home. Rudd, of course, only got a UN toilets gig, which is a much more appropriate and telling statement about his experience and legacy.