It was a simple and straightforward Liberal Party smear tactic : print up leaflets that tell voters if they vote for Labor, they are voting in support of terrorism.
What could possibly go wrong with such a plan?
Except getting caught and photographed in the act...
But come on, it's easy to condemn those Liberal Party leaflet distributors. You just don't understand. The Liberal Party is about to be destroyed at the polls. There is no tactic too dirty, too undemocratic and too disgusting not to try.
I suppose it's all a matter of interpretation. You can interpret the 'A Vote For Labor Is A Vote For Terrorism' leaflet as a tactic straight out of the sewer. Or you can see it as not unexpected from a political party that has seen great gains over the years from marginalising Muslims and fearing up the public over women in burkhas.
Or maybe we don't understand sophisticated Liberal humour. After all, that what's the wife of one of the men responsible is now claiming it was. Just a joke.
Just because they stuck a Labor Party logo on the leaflet and claimed it was from a Islamic group that supports suicide bombing, doesn't mean those who had the leaflet stuffed into their letterboxes were supposed to take it seriously.
What do you mean you don't get the joke? What's wrong with you?
I mean, everyone's done it, haven't they?
Got pissed, jumped on the computer, designed and wrote and then printed off a few hundred copies of a leaflet where you pretend to be a fictional religious group thanking your opposition political party for supporting terrorists who killed more than 80 Australians in the Bali bombings, then rounded up a few mates and gone letterboxing those leaflets through your neighbourhood.
Who hasn't tried to stir up some anti-Muslim sentiment in their own neighbourhood after a few too many, a couple of days before a resounding Liberal Party defeat at the polls?
Where's your sense of humour? It was a joke.
Well, that's what retiring western Sydney Liberal Jackie Kelly is claiming was the intent of the anti-Muslim, 'Labor Supports Terrorists' leaflets her husband, Gary Clark, and his "bunch of drunk" mates wrote, printed up and then distributed through suburbs like St Mary's and St Clair.
Kelly said anyone who actually read the leaflet would be amused :
"On first read it is quite funny..."
"If you read it you would be laughing. Most people who have read it have sort of said that's a Chaser-style of prank."
"Pretty much everyone who reads it chuckles."
Jackie Kelly was still laughing about the leaflet, which used the deaths of more than 80 Australians in the Bali bombings to spread around some anti-Muslim fear, when she was questioned about it earlier today.
So let's take a look the fake leaflet put together by Jackie Kelly's husband and his Liberal Party mates (all without her knowledge, of course, even though they used her house as a base for the distribution) decorated with Labor Party logos and under the name of the fictional Islamic Foundation Australia :
"We gratefully acknowledge Labors [sic] support to forgive our Muslim brothers who have been unjustly sentenced to death for the Bali bombings," it says.
"Labor supports our new Mosque construction and we hope, with the support and funding by Local and State governments, to open our new Mosque in St Mary's soon."
Comedy gold! Gold!
These people are demented.
Jackie Kelly has offered up a variety of explanations this morning for how her husband and senior members of the Liberal Party came to be busted stuffing these leaflets into letterboxes in Western Sydney late in the evening :
"I think its intent is to be a send-up, but it obviously hasn't worked..."
"He hates the unions, my husband."
But Jackie Kelly was disgusted. When she managed to stop laughing. She was not disgusted at her husband and the leaflets he helped to think up, print and distribute, but at the Labor Party and union "thugs" who tried to stop the Liberal Party members from terrorising the locals :
" ... an ALP goon squad, which I understand was led by some unionists, have chased down and hunted down and tried to intimidate. I understand there was even a fight," she said.
No wonder conservatives hate the unions so much. They get in the way of Liberal Party hate campaigns.
This is why so few Liberals and conservatives try their hands at comedy. Obviously, their sense of humour is too complex for mere mortals to understand.
John Howard is really going to be looking forward to answering questions about this at his last major speech of the election today.
For those who missed the link above, you can read the leaflet in question here.