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Sunday, April 17, 2011

Australian party's BDS costs its political leadership

Last week I mentioned that the Sydney, Australia suburb Marrickville intended to boycott Israel - at the cost of nearly $4 million.

It looks like this foray of a left wing party into world politics has cost it dearly:

NOW we know that the meddling ideological extremism of the Greens cost them the inner-city seat of Marrickville in the NSW election last month.

What should have been a shoo-in in one of the most barmy left electorates in the country resulted in more than one-in-three voters rejecting the Greens because of Marrickville Council's Israel boycott, according to a poll by a Jewish group.

This is a boycott that, by the Green-controlled council's own figures, will cost it as much as $4 million to stop using Israeli-linked products such as Hewlett-Packard computers (apparently used at Israeli checkpoints) and Motorola telephones.

The voters were first to show some backbone, after abiding years of Green dabbling in Middle East politics. But last week Foreign Minister Kevin Rudd slammed the boycott as "nuts" and NSW Premier Barry O'Farrell threatened to sack the council if it doesn't reverse its stance.

Sensing the end of his dream run, even the Greens' supreme leader, Bob Brown, rejected the boycott and distanced himself from his failed state candidate, Marrickville mayor Fiona Byrne, although he can't help offloading blame onto what he calls the "hate media" for costing his party the seat.

But he should look a little closer to home for the culprit.

Jake, a 55-year-old Jewish health professional with friends in Marrickville, was so incensed by the council's Israel boycott that he took three weeks off work to wage a guerrilla campaign against the Greens, plastering the suburb with posters late at night, accusing them of homophobia for boycotting gay-friendly Israel.

"I felt so angry," says Jake, who wants to remain anonymous. "I couldn't sleep at night, so I organised the posters, hired some utes and ladders" and enlisted the help of his son and his friends. Greens supporters harassed them, ripped down the posters, called police, and tried to intimidate Jake's young helpers, posting footage of them on YouTube.

On election day, Jake and his son organised 10 friends wearing T-shirts with "Boycott the Greens" logos to visit polling booths, prompting "Zionist pigs" abuse from greenies.

The Greens lost to Labor by fewer than 700 votes, in a seat they were favourites to snare.

The backlash was quite a shock to the Greens, whose extremist ideological baggage is at last costing them votes.
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The Middle East conflict is not a game. Yet it has somehow become a vehicle for moral preening half a world way and a badge of belonging for lazy leftists whose talents are best suited to fixing potholes, which, by the way, abound in Marrickville.
Another BDS epic FAIL.

(h/t Zvi)