Off with his head

I’m having trouble working out whether this is a positive story or a hatchet job: Explosive text messages of a Labor political ‘assassin’. It’s the lead story in The Oz. It begins:

The federal Labor MP embroiled in the branch-stacking scandal discussed the possible “decapitation” of an ALP colleague, savaged Bill Shorten as a disloyal and ungrateful private schoolboy, and wished for Daniel Andrews’s “political death”.

Federal Labor MP Anthony Byrne also attacked one former NSW powerbroker as a “crooked, corrupt f..k’’ and dismissed his federal colleagues as lacking the “judgment, understanding and intelligence’’ of ousted Victorian minister Adem Somyurek.

Among dozens of text messages sent by Mr Byrne to his longtime friend Mr Somyurek over a two-year period, the federal MP describes a female Labor figure as a “ratf..ker’’….

The Victorian backbencher uses graphic language to express his hatred of political enemies, including former Left powerbroker Alan Griffin. “I want Griffin destroyed. I want his head cut off and then I am going to piss on his corpse,’’ he wrote.

I only wish it was the Victorian Liberal Party they were discussing in thinking about how to deal with Labor and Daniel Andrews. The weirdest part about how this article is written is that it discusses “the possible ‘decapitation’ of an ALP colleague” as if it was meant literally. And the Herald Sun has the same kind of front page – Vile Text Bombshell – pretending this is an anti-Labor scandal when what it really does is solidify Daniel Andrews as Premier.

Honestly, what’s wrong with any of these quotes? This is politics as it really is.

Anthony Byrne’s secret text messages

Byrne: “Dastyari is such a crooked, corrupt f..k.”  [Referring to former NSW Labor Senator Sam Dastyari.] — 31 Jul 2017, 9.29am.

Byrne on Michael Danby: “Good riddance to the bastard.’’

Byrne: “I am going to cut that moccas (sic) head off.’’  [Referring to a former Bill Shorten adviser.] — 18 Sep 2017, 9.30am.

Byrne: “Griffin has tried to f..k me on a redistribution…..this is a cluster f..k.’’ [Referring to former federal Labor MP Alan Griffin.]  — 8 Nov 2017, 9.40am.

Byrne: “I want Griffin destroyed. I want his head cut off and then I am going to piss on his corpse.’’

Byrne: “….Hope Daniel (Andrews) enjoys the victory. I hope this signs his death warrant politically.’’ [Expressing anger treatment of former state minister Jane Garrett.]

Byrne: “Left are playing around Afghans. I am about to dynamite that tonight with Afghan ambassador.’’

Byrne: “Now there is a picture of a man who gets his just deserts.’’ [Reference to former Victorian treasurer John Lenders who was caught up in the red shirts affair.]

Byrne: “No support from Shorten whatsover (sic). He makes me sick to my stomach with his ingratitude….if I saw Bill today I would throw him out of my office.’’

Byrne: “I am up here literally saving the party on national security…..’’

Byrne: “Mate. Just letting you know that providing I get relected (sic) at the next election, next term will be my last term. Just wanted to give you some time so you can start thinking about who you want to replace me with. BTW when I leave I will have nothing further to do with politics unlike Conroy and others who have nothing better to do. So to be clear, when I leave that’s it. I will go back to being a civilian which I am very much looking forward to….you are the first to know so giving you that courtesy. Best Anthony.  — 1 Nov 2018, 9.33am

Byrne: “ Shorten doesn’t know so I’d appreciate you not telling him….will do so myself when there is some space.’’

Byrne: “He (state minister Martin Pakula) needs to be driven out of parliament.’’

Byrne to Somyurek: “ Not one of them is anywhere near your level of judgment, understanding and intelligence.’’

Byrne to Somyurek: “Mate. Good luck with national executive vote. Wish I was there to see it. To have picked yourself up from the canvas the way you have done to become a minister, a very powerful powerbroker and to now be on national executive is an astonishing achievement. It takes enormous courage and intelligence to achieve what you’ve done. Well done mate. AB

Byrne: “Because if she (Labor operative) mucks you up I will make sure she guest stars in the next four corners hatchet job on China. Which I will be on. Watch her, she’s a ratf..ker.’’

Byrne: “At the end of the day he is a white Anglo Xavier boy. He’s never put anyone into parliament. And he’s never thanked me for getting him preselected after Conroy tried to … me’’

Byrne: “I really want to destroy Mocca to make a point. We have to make an example of him to teach others not to play around.’’

Byrne urging Somyurek to go federal: “This is why you need to get up here. They all r (sic) a mess.”

Byrne: “On the plane with Bill and the drunk (female Labor figure). She’s dribbling shit.’’

Byrne: “Can you please meet with this Indian kid anyway. Everyone is so happy to keep things the way they are in my office. (ALP figure) is a nice guy but not the killer I need….even to have him doing something around this would be good. He clearly can recruit…..’’  — 12 Mar 2019, 9.53am

Byrne: “Sometimes I miss the old days when we were at war. At least we were fighting for something and there was energy and drive. I feel like it’s a morgue at the moment.’’

Byrne: “Apparently (staffer) is too busy to door knock those Afghans for me on the weekend because he’s with (another Labor figure).’’

Byrne: “Can you ring (staffer Alex) Stalder. She compiled that master list…then (another staffer) rings her telling her you called do she feels cut out of the loop on the list she compiled.’’

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29 Responses to Off with his head

  1. stackja

    ALP will excuse all this.

  2. Phill

    Oh dear. A politician, raised in Kalgoorlie, worked for Kevin Rudd, uses harsh language? What is the world coming to?

  3. Old School Conservative

    I’m beginning to like this bloke’s forthright attitude.

  4. John snowy Bowyer

    Can we stop with all the Initials and the silly prissy *** just spell it out. We are all adults here and if anyone complains tell them to fuck off!

  5. candy

    It seems unethical and very worrisome to reveal someone’s private messages.

    Maybe illegal? How did the Australian come by them, I wonder. Is nothing private.

  6. duncanm

    Among dozens of text messages sent by Mr Byrne to his longtime friend Mr Somyurek over a two-year period,

    how on earth does this information get released ?

  7. Sinclair Davidson

    This is the sort of story that really excites insiders. Who cares? The government is still the government. They won the last election. There will be another election – they’ll probably win that one too.

  8. Ed Case

    Someone tech savvy planted in Somyurek’s office a couple of years ago with access to his phone?
    Just a guess.
    Also disturbing is that The Oz has been a player in the takeover of the Labor Left by the insane.

  9. Bruce of Newcastle

    I’m amused that Dastardly found his way into this mess.
    He has great natural talent.

  10. Beachcomber

    I think this is a hatchet job by the ABC-Media “Ministry of Truth” and Andrews on their right wing opponents in Labor. Like you say, does it really matter if the Labor toads abuse and insult each other?

  11. Phill

    “Political Capital” in these circles has little to do with friendship, likability or favours owed, but who has the dirt on the other guy. In this case, Byrne said he would cooperate with the investigation into Somyurek , and Somyurek fired back by releasing the texts that Byrne had sent to him over the past few years.

  12. Cynic of Ayr

    Like I give a shit what labor does to hang itself, I do agree with the privacy issue.
    Telephone conversations were once sacrosanct. It was illegal to record a telephone conversation, thus converting it to “text.” (As is the recording is akin to the permanency of text.)
    So, how is it legal to reveal a text message, which is as a telephone “conversation.”
    Oh, of course! For the “common good”!
    I wonder if the pollies in this set of debacles might be wondering, “Maybe I should have enforced the privacy issue when I had the chance to do so?”
    Nah… It was supposed to catch Lib/Nat pollies, not us.

  13. Entropy

    I actually like the cut of this this Byrne dude’s jib.
    Perceptive chap.
    Pity he’s Irish.

  14. Yarpos

    They really think they are masters of the universe, dabbling at tbe butt end of politics in Australia.

  15. H B Bear

    Even the Liars can’t stand Peanut Head.

  16. tombell

    Former telecommunications minister stephen conroy says the clandestine recording of somyurek is legally fine – provided all you did was put somyurek on speaker phone (without his knowledge) and record that ( as distinct from planting a transmitter or some such in his office – just as you could’ve had someone in your room listening to the speak phone and transcribing). as someone used to playing dirty pool I have no reason to doubt conroy on this point. I expect he took competent advice so as to cover his backside.

  17. Ubique

    What we all know is this behaviour is standard operating procedure in the ALP and has been for decades. The media just choose not to report it as part of their role in helping Labor win and retain government. When you see a public breakout like this you know it’s a factional war with the media being used by one side as a weapon against its opponents.

  18. H B Bear

    Don’t watch your sausages being made.

  19. H B Bear

    Albasleazy comes out of this looking more piss weak than usual.

  20. theleftfootkick

    Old Gough Whitlam called his cabinet ministers?

  21. John A

    Hmm, my local member in the south-east suburbs of Melbourne, Viktoriastan.

    I don’t like his party policies, I didn’t vote for him (and still won’t) but at least this area can put a right-winger into the Reps.

    I am now a little more confident about the political leanings of this demographic.

  22. Perfidious Albino

    Candy – it looks like Somyurek showed the text messages to The Australian himself, in retaliation for what appears to have been his presumed old mate AB stitching him up with the office recordings.

    Question is, who/what made AB turn on his old chum Adem?

  23. Terry

    ‘but at least this area can put a right-winger into the Reps.’

    Hmmm, is the port wing-flap now considered “right-wing”? Sure, it’s inboard of the port wingtip and port aileron, but…

    Misidentifying where the right-wing is, is at least partly responsible for our aircraft being in an uncontrolled spiral dive without anyone upfront with the knowledge or skills to recover.

    Instead, we have Chief-Hostee “I gotta plan” Scomo (em, “Cabin Manager”) insisting we need more left-wing over, full power, and point straight at the ground.

    Yeah, we all know how this one ends…

  24. 2dogs

    Hope Daniel (Andrews) enjoys the victory

    Clearly this has all come out because over a dispute between Daniel Andrews and Somyurek. It seems 60minutes’ branch stacking story was leaked/orchestrated by Andrews to effect a political execution.

  25. 2dogs

    I’m having trouble working out whether this is a positive story or a hatchet job

    This story would have been Someyurek’s erstwhile insurance policy.

    It didn’t work, as Andrews apparently thought he can whether the damage from it.

  26. Squirrel

    Amidst all the ordure on Sunday night, I thought Somyurek’s reference to (some) ALP volunteers as “passive aggressive gay kids” was drolly insightful.

  27. gary

    This issue seems a hatchet job on Dan Andrews for getting too close to China. If it is a hatchet job, it is good to see (and surprising) that there some people in Labor who don’t hate Australia and don’t want to see it destroyed (or “progressed” as they may say).

  28. mareeS

    It is just amusing, because Labor has nothing else to offer than kindy games.

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