A story has appeared on a republican web site that ACM is plotting to take over another constitutional monarchist group.
There is absolutely no truth in this story. The author is given to quite vicious comments about the Royal Family and to reporting what he claims to be their private conversations.
He is sometimes described as a royal commentator; in a column on the Crikey website he was long described as a republican royal commentator, an oxymoron if ever there were one.
That site has an appalling record for bile and invention; it is the modern version of the yellow press. It is controlled by a leading republican who was until recently a deputy chair of the ARM as well as being its director of media communications.
…monarchists disagree among themselves – of course…
It is of course true that monarchists disagree from time to time. It would be unrealistic to think that we would agree on everything. We mention some examples below.
But that is not evidence of some plan to take over another organisation.
We are busy with our agenda, and our constant adherence to our mission and charter, rather than in entering into infantile and pointless campaigns of this nature.
…head of state….
One example where monarchists sometimes disagree is as to whether we have an Australian as head of state, as all governments say we have – when it suits them.
One monarchist prominent in another organisation has sometimes condemned us for this. But at other times has declared the Governor-General to be the head of state .
He revealed to the prominent republican columnist Gerard Henderson that during the he had written to the Palace to ask them to remove all references to The Queen being Head of State of Australia. Dr. Henderson naturally revealed this, and he has not been contradicted.
Monarchists also disagree as to whether Australia can be described as a crowned republic. On this our Charter, drafted by Michael Kirby, says some monarchists ( these have included Michael Kirby, John Howard, Tony Abbott, Justice Ken Handley and Professor Flint) – say Australia is a already a republic, a ‘crowned republic’. Not everyone agrees: our Charter acknlowedges that.
…Royal Anthem "too British" says monarchist…
This is a surprising example of how monarchits can disagree. One person prominent in another monarchist organisation not only disagreed with our campaign for the playing of God Save The Queen as the Royal Anthem at the Melbourne Commonwealth Games.
He even made this public by writing to The Australian dissenting from our campaign and saying “God Save The Queen” is “too British”. His intention was presumably to weaken our campaign; loyalists nevertheless distributed texts of the National and Royal Anthems. When a bar of so of the Royal Anthem was included in a medley, the whole stadium stood and boomed out God Save The Queen.
…monarchist campaigning for Malcolm Turnbull…
This is even more surpising, and confirms that the constitutional monarchy movement is a broad church indeed. That prominent monarchist who thought the Royal Anthem "too British" even campaigned – vigorously – for Mr. Malcolm Turnbull in the seat of Wentworth in the 2007 federal election. (Mr Turnbull had led the republican campaigns both at the Convention and in the referendum.)
This campaign was aimed at the long time loyal monarchist and sitting member Peter King. Peter King had initiated and coordinated the very first monarchist response to the formation of the ARM, convening a meeting including Michael Kirby, Lloyd Waddy and others which led to the formation of ACM.
The campaign went so far as to involve a lunch for selected monarchists just before the election in a prominent Sydney club. All sorts of calumnies were alleged against the monarchist MP Peter King.
There was a call to those present to circulate the message among monarchists in Wentworth to vote against Peter King.
We at ACM have never attempted to stop the growth and development of other monarchist organisations. We have attended meetings over the years to forge unity but not to effect takeovers.
An there are several organisations. There were five of the 1998 Constitutional Convention where, led by ACM which had received well over 70% of the monarchist vote, there was a high level of co-operation.
There are half a dozen monarchist groups existing today. We think that is marvellous. The more the merrier.
…republican site …
The republican site putting out the untruthful story is controlled by a leading republican who was until recently a deputy chair of the ARM as well as being its director of media communications.They have dismissed ACM National Convenor Professor David Flint as no more than a “perma-tanned Indonesian-born blow- in.”
Apart from engaging in such racist slurs they have a record in publishing fantasies.
….Claim: Queen orders PM to prceed to republic…
First, they dreamt up a story earlier this year that The Queen had ordered Julia Gillard to bring on a republic. This they said was to be announced at CHOGM in Perth.
….Claim: Prince William cancels Australian honeymoon…
They said that because of this ”scoop", Prince William called off the Australian honeymoon he and Catherine had never planned.Then they reported that The Queen wished to be “a proactive signatory and participant in our Constitutional coming of age.” They said Prime Minister Gillard planned to discuss this with “a small group of trusted advisors, and only then (to) call a special caucus meeting to discuss a plan of action before making any public announcement.”
They said Julia Gillard was furious about their disclosure. The ABC unwisely mentioned this story on The Insiders, but then called off an interview the next day about it.
…Claim: IRA’s Gerry Adams didn’t come to Australia to campaign in the referendum…
Third, they denied a reference to the fact that the IRA’s Gerry Adams came to Australia to campaign for the Yes case in the 1999 referendum . This was dismissed as an invention.
Their media director even sent this e-mail to Professor Flint:
” When did Gerry Adams come to Australia in 1999 and when did he ask Australians to vote yes to the referendum? No one seems to be able to find any record of either event.
“Are you quite mad, a habitual liar or just an idiot? "
But in “Winning new ARM approach,” 14 September, 2010, The Australian commented:
“It took us two seconds to discover Adams visited Australia for eight days in February 1999; we used the internet.
“As for the other matter, here's a snippet from The Sun-Herald at the time:
"Mr Adams also urged Australians to vote yes in December's republic referendum.’I believe in the republic as the democratic form of society,' he said. 'I don't have time for monarchies of any kind.'
"We hope that helps.”
…Claim: Malcolm Turnbull didn’t try to change the referendum question…
Fourth, they said we were lying when we asserted that Malcolm Turnbull and the ARM wanted to remove two words from the referendum question, "president" and "republic".
Their proof? It was that Malcolm Turnbull did not mention it in his book.
But all of this was in Hansard and in the media. The details can be read here .
…Claim: ACM's statistics are false…
They were greatly upset by the statistics showing a large number of readers flocking to our principal website which annually attracts well over 12 1/2 million hits annually as well as over 3 1/4 million page views.
In addition, our Facebook page has attracted over 23,000 fans. Without any evidence and without checking with us, the republican site declared that it is “clear" we are paying for some overseas “service to pump up its numbers.”
Our statistics are supported by most reputable source. Then they claimed we were paying a respected polling organisation to engage in “push polling”.
While we were considering our position we noticed that these comments were suddenly removed – and not by us.
As soon as they were removed, an article appeared on the republican website referring to their removal. A coincidence, or just a rather infantile setup?
Readers will appreciate that with a record like this – and these are just some of some selected examples -their ludicrous suggestion that we are planning to take over another monarchist organisation should be taken with a grain of salt.