“I was wondering why you chose orange for our party colour James.” …In deviant circles, apparently the orange hanky out of the male back pocket or an orange scarf or bandana sends a message to deviants that ‘anything goes’. We won’t elaborate, suffice to say that in deviant circles ‘orange’ code invites abuse.
But this is exactly the approach of control freak, James Ashby. Just ask the Slipper. Since installed as the Liberal Party’s puppet master of Pauline Hanson, as chief of staff Ashby has elevated himself to the party’s ‘Dungeon Master‘. Ashby controls and steers Pauline Hanson utterly.
Hanson “senior moment” backfires
Last month Ashby got Pauline Hanson (62) to turn against her own devotees, a pensioner couple in Western Australia, whom Pauline Hanson had once described as the only people in WA she could trust.
Then two weeks ago, just before the state election, she unceremoniously threw them out of Pauline Hanson One Nation (PHONY), scrapping the loyal memberships of married couple Ron McLean (87) and Marye Louise Daniels (79) and terminated their executive positions of State president and secretary.
Ashby drafted the dismissal in a formal letter, telling them that their conduct had been reviewed and that their memberships and positions had been formally cancelled and expelled from the party forthwith.
They had done nothing wrong. Ron and Marye’s association with Ms Hanson goes back 20 years. Ms Hanson sought their help last October to screen and short-list PHONY party candidates for the March 11 State election last Saturday. The couple have been responsible for vetting and pre-selecting PHONY party candidates for the WA election. They were heralded just months ago as “the only people” Pauline Hanson could trust with the task of engineering PHONY’s establishment in Western Australia. The senior couple set up their Kewdale home in traditional Perth as the party’s headquarters and interviewed candidates there.
But Ashby (38) just thought they were too old – actually anyone over 62, Pauline’s age. Ashby’s instead chasing the hipster demographic. May be he’ll pick up. Clearly he’s not interested in matures, especially normal ones.
Understandably, the couple are gutted by Ashby’s arrogance and prejudice, having spent hours vetting candidates and pouring tens of thousands of dollars of their own money into helping PHONY become a political force in Australia since the 1990s.
Mr McLean told reporters at a shambolic media conference on Thursday March 9, just two days prior to the WA election,
“She said: ‘Ron, I’m sacking you from the position on [the] agriculture [ticket], I believe you’re too old and you’ll be 91 when the term’s finished.”
Ashby confirmed with Fairfax Media that the pair’s age had been a factor in them being rejected for pre-selection. WA PHONY party leader Colin Tincknell told Sky News the party had found “a younger, more virile candidate” to take Mr McLean’s position on the ticket.
Ron and Marye’s say, “They are devastated, hurt and quite emotional … they feel betrayed and let down,” a source said. They then revealed that they had expressed concerns about Senator Hanson’s chief of staff James Ashby controlling the West Australian division from his Queensland base. Ashby is from Nambour on the Sunshine Coast, north of Brisbane. Marye said Ashby’s resented by many PHONY party operatives for the power he wields.
“Oh, James Ashby’s present everywhere,” Marye confirmed.
So quite rightly, the pair have engaged a lawyer to file an anti-discrimination claim against Senator Hanson for telling Mr McLean he was “too old” to run for a seat.
Ron and Marye have a case under Australia’s Age Discrimination Act 2004, probably Section 23 in which it is unlawful for a registered organisation (Pauline Hanson’s One Nation), the committee of management of a registered organisation or a member of the committee of management of a registered organisation to discriminate against a person, on the ground of the person’s age by 2(b) “depriving the member of membership or varying the terms of membership; or 2(c) “by subjecting the member to any other detriment.”
The couple’s lawyer John Hammond said proceedings had been filed in the WA Equal Opportunity Commission and a full explanation about the dismissal had been sought in writing from Senator Hanson. Hammond stated, “We do not agree that anyone should be told that they’re too old to stand for Parliament,” he said, citing Bernie Sanders, who was 74 when he sought the Democratic nomination for US president last year.
“If that’s the path they want to go down, so be it. It’s not a good look having an 88-year-old run as a candidate.“
Ashby preferences Liberals – how unsurprising?
If you’re an extra for the Liberal Party like Pauline Hanson, then it’s to be expected that you preference the Liberal Party first, and conversely in a back room deal the Liberal Party preferences Pauline Hanson.
Such was the Liberal Party head office deal orchestrated by James Ashyby with Malcolm Turnbull at the party’s Jewish Westfield Tower HQ in Eastern Sydney – just a short ten minute drive from Point Piper. Liberal fundraiser Arthur Sinodinos defended the WA deal “Our job is to treat them as any other party. That doesn’t mean we have to agree with their policies.”
It is part of Ashby’s strategy to align PHONY party with his warped concept of Australian ‘mainstream’ – hipsters, ignorants, ethnics, deviants. That is why Pauline is out there hugging Asians for the mainstream media.
A month before the WA election, Pauline’s PHONY party announced it’s preference-swap deal with the Liberals, justifying it to loyal previous One Nation followers as “sensible and pragmatic.” The Ashby soothsaying was aimed at saving the Barnett government from defeat to Labor and hand PHONY party the balance of power in the WA upper house.
And WA Premier Colin Barnett welcomed the preference-swap,
“I wasn’t part of those negotiation but I think it is a sensible and a pragmatic result,” he said, He believed Pauline Hanson’s One Nation was more acceptable to mainstream Australians than it was 20 years ago and he did not believe its supporters should be described as racist. See photo above. Pauline’s out there hugging Asians, deviants and Liberals so she must be mainstream.
At the same time, the Liberal deal was obviously a treacherous slap in the face to the long alliance with The Nationals. It was to cast the Nationals into the political Gibson Desert.
As if Ashby cared? After being ion top with Slipper from the Nationals, Ashby is keen to put that experience behind him. The Nats never helped out at his strawberry farm anyway.
At the same time, hypocritical Pauline Hanson likened Colin Barnett to “spoiled milk that should have been thrown out”, she later confessed.
In the aftermath of the WA election Pauline almost cottoned on to Ashby, almost.
“Doing the deal with the Libs has done damage to us, in all honesty. It was a mistake,” she said. “We are really going to have to have a good look at this because all I heard all day leading up to this election was ‘why are you sending your preferences to the Liberal party?’
“It’s like when you’ve got milk in your fridge and it’s starting to go sour, you throw it out, and that’s what they should have done.”
But Ashby and his Liberal minders hit back. He explained that his strategy to get the balance of power for PHONY was for Pauline as a kingmaker to force Liberal Barnett to quit and his replacement held by the short and curlies by Pauline.
What did original One Nation candidates expect after Pauline’s twice betrayal to he WA supporters?
Why do the think the original One Nation WA party split from the selfish bitch long ago?
So David Miller and Dane Sorensen got furious over WA Liberal preference deal and threatened to disobey Ashby as a result last month.
“I feel like I have just received a kick in the fangs by our own party,” one candidate said. “The party is selling me and the constituents out.”
In an email to other disgruntled PHONY candidates, Mr Sorensen said the PHONY party had provided total disorganisation and stupid directives.
“We, the scum, are just cannon fodder. To say I’m not impressed, is an understatement. It amazes me that this ‘party’ expects us to all fund our own campaigns and then find out that they are manipulating us behind the scenes. We are just Ashby backroom bargaining chips.”
So slow to wake up! PHONY party candidates have started openly defying Ashby’s directives from on high, threatening to give their own instructions of directing preferences.
Ashby’s bullying of Pauline’s candidates
The PHONY party expulsion of candidates has become systemic.
Axed Queensland candidate Shan Ju Lin (an Asian) says Mr Ashby is “in sole control of the information that Pauline has to make decisions with on party matters”.
She said she’d been unable to discuss the matter directly with Senator Hanson, who she said was “totally reliant” on her chief of staff, Ashby.
She said she had “no problems pulling the trigger on candidates that are not suitable to run as candidates in my party. “It’s like David Oldfield from 20 years ago. The party is once again in danger at the very moment it could otherwise rise to success.”
In December 2016, the party’s former federal senator for Western Australia, Rod Culleton resigned from PHONY citing a fraught relationship with Senator Hanson, a lack of respect from party colleagues and a slew of policy differences with the PHONY team.
“Policy decisions have been run in morning media, with no consultation, discussion or agreement from the party room and personal attacks and undermining, un-Australian behaviour towards myself and my team, has been ongoing and terms dictated to the team,” Senator Culleton said in a statement.
He accused Ashby of trying to force him to resign and wielding control over his office.
“I can no longer tolerate the lack of party support for my positive initiatives, including the recent abandonment of PHON’s pre-election commitment to a banking royal commission.
“Since my election to the Senate, I have consistently remained committed to all of the policies and pre-election promises, however my PHON Senate colleague’s public record, shows they have not.”
“I would have thought it reasonable to expect some measure of support or at the very least, some discretion and respect from the party leader and my party colleagues – there has been none,” he said. “The PHON leader’s rants against me have been accompanied by demands for my resignation and control over diaries, office management and staffing by Senator Hanson and her chief of staff, James Ashby,” he said. “The irrational dictates have caused only distrust and disunity.”
Hanson replied, “Rod was a pain in my backside to tell you the truth, I’m glad to see the back of him.”
Sandy Baraiolo fell out with Ashby over control of her Facebook page and “micro-management” of other PHONY candidates.
Ms Baraiolo, who was PHON’s candidate for Thornlie, said she was even asked to supply the password for her private Facebook account.
Ms Hanson axed Ms Baraiolo in a letter sent on Wednesday, saying she’d failed to follow “the party’s policies in regards to social media account permissions”.
Instead, Ms Baraiolo ran as an independent, said the experience gave her sleepless nights. “I honestly feel totally and utterly gutted,” she said. “I’ve been made to feel like a petulant two-year-old.”
The 52-year-old is president of her local ratepayers association, vice-chair of Gosnells Neighbourhood Watch and sits on other school boards and community groups.
“I thought I was making the right decision,” she said. “For me, it was all about helping my community.”
After creating a campaign Facebook page, she had her administrator status removed, which meant she couldn’t add content. She then created a mirror site, which angered control freak Ashby. She followed directions to delete the site which was linked to her private account, then Ashby demanded her password, which she refused to do.
“I have only ever acted with integrity … People are being micro-managed to the point where you can’t do anything,” she said.
The other dumped candidate, Dane Sorensen, said his request for how-to-vote cards were repeatedly ignored, “culminating in my decision to print my own”. “The printing of my own cards was totally offensive to the staff member who was instrumental in having me removed,” he said.
Ms Hanson last night described Ms Baraiolo and Mr Sorensen as “rogue candidates”. “They were dis-endorsed because they were rude, arrogant, they wouldn’t follow direction, you couldn’t talk to them about anything, they felt they could say and do whatever they wanted to do,” she said.
Former PHONY candidate, retired bricklayer Ray Gould, before the election declared he had “had enough” and abandoned his candidacy. “Nothing has been up front. We haven’t been told the truth from day one,” he said.
PHONY upper house aspirant Richard Eldridge was also unceremoniously dumped by Ashby text message.
Spots don’t change. PHONY is made up of ex-Liberals and so is just as chaotic and clueless as the Liberal Party.
Now, as the party implodes just days out from the election,
Time for James Ashby to go “bottom” in the party relationship! Youch!
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