In a massive body blow to the Greens political party, there has been a massive leak of secret internal documents and emails exchanged among the highest-ranking Greens party officials in Victoria and Australia.
It gives outsiders an unprecedented insight into the inner-workings of the secretive extreme left-wing party.
Fairfax and the Sunday Herald Sun have now all run articles on the saga, including an AgeÂ front-page horror story for the party normally lovingly embraced by that newspaper.
While insisting to The Age on Saturday that they were “relaxed” over the leaks, VEXNEWS understands they are in a state of “paralysis” over the issue, unsure about who is leaking and what they are trying to achieve. Experienced political observers believe this kind of dysfunction is typical of extreme-left parties as they internally compete to be the ruler over their own small domain.
The famed VEXNEWS Investigations Unit has also obtained stunning secret internal Greens party documents that reveal a breathtakingly cynical, manipulative, sleazy, hopelessly divided, top-down, sneaky and Stalinist political operation:
â– They reveal that Bob Brownâ€™s own office is involved in rorting his printing allowance and media manipulation and spin of the most cynical and deceptive kind;
â– They point to a dangerous instability over tactics and policy within the Greens which aims to establish itself as a â€œbalance-of-powerâ€ between the two major parties, Labor and Liberal;
â– They show the Greens partyâ€™s desperation to silence and stymie its critics, using standover tactics to silence â€œsmaller groupsâ€ with lawyers and intimidation;
The release of the documents to VEXNEWSâ€“ frequently marked â€˜confidentialâ€™ and â€˜not for distributionâ€™â€“ shows that simmering tensions within the party have exploded just as their poll numbers had appeared to peak, with Greens party Senate candidates Dr Richard Di Natale and former communist Lee Rhiannon confident of winning. Former Marxist Adam Bandt is confident also of winning the lower house seat of Melbourne although has suffered from a surprisingly lacklustre campaign on the ground.
PREFERENCE SCAMS EXPLODE IN McEWEN
The single biggest image problem faced by the Greens party, their double-dealing and sneakiness over preferences has been brought to the fore in sensational reports which extensively quote the Greens party candidate in McEwen, Steve Meacher, expressing anger about the nature of his partyâ€™s sneaky preference schemes.
The Age’s report on the carnage within the Greens party over preference deals designed to get them elected to the Senate with Laborâ€™s help:
The Greens candidate for the marginal outer Melbourne electorate of McEwen, Steve Meacher, was livid after being told by a party campaign co-ordinator that his seat was one of 54 included in the deal.
”When I am asked, as I will be, I will not lie to defend this deal, which will cost primary votes in McEwen.”
The candidate for Bendigo, Kymberlie Dimozantos, responded the next day, urging Mr Meacher not to withdraw his candidacy, telling him: ”We need people like us so that the Greens don’t turn into ‘just another party’, which I am sad to say is happening.”
Mr Meacher said the preferences deal had ”made a liar” of national campaign co-ordinator Ebony Bennett, who had said in an email: ”In the Greens, our local branches make preference decisions. At this election, some Greens local branches have chosen to preference Labor ahead of the Coalition in a number of lower house seats.”
Mr Meacher said: ”I made my position on preferences perfectly clear on several occasions and I have been over-ruled without consultation or even the courtesy of a phone call.”
Ms Dimozantos wrote: ”I think it is pretty rough that the media knew a deal had been made here in Bendigo before me. ”
Several of the emails make it clear that senior Victorian Greens party figures including Hugh Rundle â€“ a self-described Greens party â€˜hackâ€™ and Victorian party media adviser Tom Maclachlan conspired to distribute printing done for Senator Bob Brown â€“ a Tasmanian Senator â€“ in other states, including Victoria. VEXNEWS understands this is a breach of federal parliamentary entitlements which allow the member to use taxpayer resources only to inform voters within their electorate and certainly not in other states. The Greens have issued a non-denial denial about whether they distributed the taxpayer financed preferences brochure in Victoria, although it is common knowledge among Greens party dissidents that Brownâ€™s office has been servicing Victoria in this way for some time.
When Liberal backbencher Andrew Laming was accused of wrongdoing with his printing allowance, there was an Australian Federal Police investigation, no less than that is appropriate in this case.
THE GREENS ARE POLL-DRIVEN CYNICS AFTER ALL
The documents show that Bob Brownâ€™s own staff are involved in an astounding level of obfuscation and spin over their secret dealings. Erin Farley, who works directly for Brown explains how much damage this does them with naive supporters who have bought into the Greens as idealists myth now totally punctured by these Greenileaks documents:
Senator Brown’s media adviser, Erin Farley, wrote in an email on July 19: ”Our research shows that preferences are an extremely damaging issue for us to talk about. Talking about preferences makes voters think a vote for the Greens is not meaningful, that it is being stolen from them and put somewhere they didn’t decide, and that politics is about backroom deals they are not part of.”
Nothing like the home truths brought out in a focus group. A VEXNEWS focus group revealed our articles are too long, occasionally contain typographical errors, are about obscure matters not of relevance to the working lives of ordinary people and fail to disclose the identity of author in a way that is annoying. The Greens party market research (theyâ€™ve not previously admitted they conduct it) has told them that rather than seeking improvement from them in the way VEXNEWS readers do, but rather they oppose the central, manipulative operating ethos of the party itself on the issue of how-to-vote cards. They even position themselves as being opposed to the distribution of HTVs while cynically negotiating preference deals with Labor and the Liberals to gain benefits from those same cards. Farley is right to be concerned about the consequences of being exposed for such humbug.
“Our research shows that preferences are an extremely damaging issue for us to talk about.Â Talking about preferences makes voters think a vote for the Greens is not meaningful, that it is being stolen from them and put somewhere they didnâ€™t decide, and that politics is about backroom deals they are not part of.” Greens party leader Bob Brown’s staffer Erin Farley being candid with the comrades…
Despite Bob Brownâ€™s staff admitting they conduct â€œresearchâ€ into what voters want, many Greens party candidates frequently denounce a poll-driven populist approach to politics.
Around the same time as Farleyâ€™s memo, Greens Victorian Senate candidate Richard Di Natale wrote:
Dam poll driven politics. Narrow one dimensional snapshots of a single point in time are meaningless
Melbourne candidate Adam Bandt, who we are told was this year directly involved in focus groups of Melbourne voters opined:
Seriously we are spending less on trains than we are on border protection shows just how poll driven govts are
The party leader Bob Brown, who VEXNEWS has learned takes an avid interest in focus group research conducted by the Greens party and their advertising agency Cyclone (who also represent the strongly anti-Greens party Master Builders Association and a number of shopping centre developers and operators). In an interview with Laurie Oakes on July 11th, Brown deceitfully condemned his opponents for being poll-driven when his own staff are briefing his candidates on sensitive issues arising from their own pollling:
I mean this is a poll lead LaborÂ party. We have polls leading everything.
They are truly lying liars who lie.
USING & ABUSING COMRADES
Melbourne western suburbs Greenie Janet Rice â€“ who was defeated by the Greg Barber/Richard Di Natale forces for the lead Senate position â€“ is running #2 on their Senate ticket.
In an email sent to the shadowy Greens party preference boss Ken McAlpine and copied throughout the Greens party hierarchy on July 30th, Rice expressed her approval for the partyâ€™s complex preference deals but noted:
â€œMy only niggling concern is about preferencing socialist alliance as law as we do â€“ I think they will be pretty grumpy with us which may need some managingâ€¦ on face value I would have put them ahead of the secular party and mayne onÂ the basis that theyâ€™ve been around and have been solid allies for a while but presumably you have reasons for preferencing them where they areâ€¦â€
Indeed, the Greens party had many cynical reasons and appear to have made these decisions on the basis of what they could personally gain from them rather than any principled-based decision-making.
FRANK CHARACTER ASSESSMENTS
Indeed, the Greens partyâ€™s leaders express a contempt for their fellow minor parties.
The Greens party preference negotiators in Victoria, Stephen Luntz and Ken McAlpine describe the Carersâ€™ Alliance candidate Chris Monteagle as â€œnaive and perhaps unreliableâ€ and refer to the way they have manipulated Socialist Alliance, an anarchist called Toscano and the Secular party into preferencing them in return for little.
They also explain the Greens partyâ€™s cynical reasons for giving preferences to the Sex party.
The Greens are also working hard to manipulate the media, according to their internal working documents.
Emails written by Szilvia Csanyi, the Greens partyâ€™s campaign and communication adviser, show the extent of their manipulation and Stalinist centralism.
One headed â€˜weekly campaign bulettin(sic)â€™ sets out â€œthe linesâ€ Greens party â€˜candidates, consultants and convenorsâ€™ are given to repeat on the Victoria Bushfire Royal Commission.
It directs anyone seeking clarification to ring Greg Barber and urges the comrades to refrain from expressing their true thoughts on issues related to bushfire risk:
â€œWe have to be as disciplined as we can be on this issue.â€
On July 26, party activist Ken McAlpine suggested a strategy the Greens might be able to ”get away with” for the rest of the campaign.
”I think that if the current zeitgeist remains, as the election gets closer â€¦ we can even get away with the following lines, which in most circumstances I would consider to be too corny: ‘People are telling me this is the shallowest campaign even. But I say, don’t give in to spin, cynicism and despair.
”There is an alternative. The Greens offer hope – hope for a better tomorrow’.”
And if youâ€™ve ever wondered why it is that ABC Radio talkback is dominated by those friendly to the Greens party, part of the explanation comes from an email distributed many dozens of Greens party members on Tuesday July 20th by Tom Maclachlan. He was concerned to ensure that his party leader Bob Brown was met with supportive texts and phone calls from â€œdedicated volunteersâ€ pretending to be ordinary listeners.
The Greens party spinner Maclachlan directs members to call and text the Jon Faine show to â€œdistribute the following messagesâ€ to help spin their way out of their preference deal sleaze embarrassment and advance their cause in other ways. It describes the show as an important vehicle for their propaganda as Faine often sets the news agenda of the day in Melbourne. We doubt heâ€™ll be pleased to discover that heâ€™s been serving as their dupe for a long period of time.
Stalin would be proud at the bald cynicism of these people.
The Greenileaks documents also show that de facto Victorian party leader Greg Barber cracks the whip quite frequently against more junior party figures.
In one amusing email exchange in late July, Barber and his brother-in-law Richard Di Natale and colleague Sue Pennicuik reprimand #2 Senate candidate Janet Rice for responding to survey questions about suicide prevention on her own initiative rather than have the answers filled out for her party by Barber or one of his elected colleagues.
It is just one of many manifestations of the exercise of power by the MPs over the unelected, like Janet Rice, who is believed to regularly complain of being locked out of the â€œmajor decisionsâ€ by the powerful figures of Barber and his brother-in-law Dr Di Natale.
PUTTING THE FRIGHTENERS ON
For the edification of comrades, one of Bob Brownâ€™s staff sent a copy of the full-text of a VEXNEWS article for the consideration of the ominously named â€œAttack Response Groupâ€. As The Age sets out, this group run out of the office of party Leader Bob Brown exists to suppress or silence politicial criticism of the Greens party:
in an email written after a meeting of the attack response group on July 23, Emma Bull from Senator Brown’s office requested each state branch check local contacts ”for lawyers who may be willing to give pro bono advice if injunctions are required at any point” and for ”contact details for solicitors who are willing to write ‘cease and desist’ letters to frighten off people (will work only with smaller groups, not with the other major parties)”.
Bull by name and nature it seems.
Members of this secretive and sinister Greens Party Attack Response Group include Senator Sarah Hanson-Young, NSW local councillor Lesa de Leau, ACT Greens hack Simon Copland, Victorian Greens media manipulation operative and ex Balmain basket-weaver Tom Maclachan, the imported Szilvia Csanyi and Chris Redman who works for little-known WA Greens senator Siewert.