Whatever the attributes of those groups, you could never fault them for a lack of sneakiness. Some of them even trained in Moscow to learn the dark arts of political manipulation and intrigue.
The Melbourne Timesâ€™s Bianca Hall this week has explored the interesting situation where the Greens party appear to have been caught out, simultaneously proposing a coalition between their far-left party and the Australian Labor Party while also coveting Liberal preferences in key inner-city marginal seats.
One Liberal â€“ Matthew Guy â€“ known for his principled opposition to the Greens party â€“ has cried foul, warning Liberal party members of the Greens partyâ€™s intentions to keep Labor in government, as they recently did in Tasmania.
Under the Tasmanian deal, the Greens party leader has entered the Cabinet and his lover has become Cabinet Secretary.
The effective leader of the Victorian Greens â€“ Greg Barber â€“ has made it clear he wants to be a minister in a Victorian government. Barber has previously made it clear that he was frustrated in his role as a legislator compared with the more hands-on problem solving he could do as a Yarra councillor.
Presumably Barberâ€™s elevation to the ministry could only happen in a Labor coalition although after David Cameronâ€™s Conservatives allied with the sort of left-wing Liberal Democrats in England, Barber might perhaps seek out a deal with Tories too.
Other Liberals have told VEXNEWS that Tony Nutt and Ted Baillieu plan to give the Greens party preferences â€œfor nothingâ€ and will â€œride roughshodâ€ over strong reservations expressed by the Liberal party Admin committee.
Its not just the Liberals internal processes either. The Nationals are believed to be worried about the implications for them if the Coalition is seen to deliver a balance of power to the Greens party whose own MPs profess no desire to travel beyond the Zone 1 public transport area covering inner-city Melbourne.
The ambitious front-bench Liberal Matthew Guy is aligned with the dominant Kroger/Ronaldson/Fifield clan within the Liberal party who also dominate Admin. Their view tends to be much less enthusiastic about giving the far-left Greens party anything â€œfor nothing.â€
â€œWe have helped the Greens party for nothing for too long. Theyâ€™ll have to come forward with preferences in the upper house or in a close marginal or two, otherwise thereâ€™ll be strong opposition to giving them anything,â€ one insider explained.
â€œKeeping Labor busy in the inner-city is fine but if weâ€™re going to take heat for electing Greens party MPs on our preferences they must give something back, for example a pledge they wonâ€™t enter into a coalition arrangement with Laborâ€ they argued.
â€œBarber claiming he can win Hawthorn (Ted Baillieuâ€™s seat which is held by the Liberals by a comfortable margin) isnâ€™t going to help their cause,â€ the insider explained.
On reading the article in the TMT, analysts say that there is definitely positioning going on ahead of negotiations between the Liberals and the Greens party.
â€œThe Liberals want to extract a commitment from the Greens not to enter a coalition with Labor and to preference them in a couple of close contests, in the upper house or at least talk to them about their positioning on a split-ticket,â€ he explained.
â€œDespite this recent outburst of hostilities, there is a lot of scope to do a deal, but obviously the most important aspect is secrecy, as neither Greens or Liberals want to be seen in bed together, especially after the Buswell-Carles revelations.â€