Darrin Hodges is hardly the prettiest individual on the Australian far-Right. His appearance suggesting, as one of our colleagues has mooted, a close relationship with the rat family, we suspect that Darrin's fascist friends are given to making sudden embarrassed winces whenever the unlovely visage of the Sutherland Shire's least popular son pops up in the Australian media.
Darrin is something of a thinker - or so he would like to believe. And Darrin has a plan. A Very Cunnimg Plan.
At its most complicated, Darrin's Plan is to copy the BNP, lock, stock and lies.
And so it is that - just like the BNP - Darrin has put his Jew-hating, anti-black credentials in his back pocket and now sports those of the born-again anti-Muslim persuasion, because - as the BNP and Darrin will have it - Moslems comprise a religion, not an ethnicity. And, if you're attacking a religion and not an ethnicity, how ever can you be called a racist?
Darrin is one of those far-Rightists who, having for years peddled the white supremacist line, has grown increasingly frustrated by the lack of any tangible success. On the factional and turbulent Australian far-Right scene this lack of success is hardly surprising, since - much as their British counterparts - Australian fascists seem to hate one another more than they hate anybody else.
Darrin's overarching hatred is for Australian Nazi and sometime Australia First Party big-wig Jim Saleam, who he refers to in one of his many incriminating but judiciously terminated blogs as "a criminal lunatic" and an "oily spiv". You'd never know that Darrin was once his loyal lieutenant. Darrin believes that racist hard-liner Saleam was in harness with Australia First leader Diane Teasdale, the pair conspiring to expel the newly-coined "moderate" on charges that certain of his internet postings did not reflect well on Australia First.
Disproving the hypersensitive Hodges's theory, shortly after his own expulsion Teasdale sent Saleam packing, and this latter pair now run rival versions of the same organisation. For his part, Darrin contented himself with denouncing the "Australia Faggot Party", basing his denunciation on the recollections of the AFP's John Drew, who recalled sharing a flat with a noisily sexually active homosexual in the 1960s.
Darrin spent many happy years posting on the Nazi Stormfront Down Under forum, as well as maintaining his multifarious blogs. He felt that the forged Protocols of the Elders of Zion were essential reading for all Nutzis, and opined: “I’m more interested in the purer form of fascism… and while I don’t subscribe to the whole ‘worship Hitler’ thing, his comments on multiculturalism and politics in general are still just as relevant today as they were 70 years ago”.
Not subscribing to "the whole 'Hitler worship' thing" is what marks you out as a moderate on the far-Right, even if you are "interested in the purer form of fascism" - whatever that is - and believe that "... he [Hitler] laid a foundation that we should build on".
Perhaps Darrin believes that the "purer form of fascism" is something close to anarchism?
Just a few weeks after Diane Teasdale tore up his Australia First membership card, the ubiquitous Darrin turned up with fifteen of his young male friends at Sydney Town Hall to protest against the APEC summit, taking place elsewhere in the city. Dressed in black clothing, and wearing dark glasses and scarves to obscure their faces, they carried, according to Antipodean anti-fascist @ndy Slackbastard, "three long banners — with slogans reading ‘Australia: Free Nation – Or Sheep Station?’, ‘Globalisation is Genocide’ and ‘Power to the People, Not Political Parties’ – which were joined together to form a three-sided bloc, within which those gathered assembled to form a ‘black bloc’. The group also distributed a leaflet, and claimed to belong to a group known as the ‘New Right’, one which — as other statements on the banners and on the leaflet stated — consists of ‘National Anarchists’ espousing a ‘Traditional-European Revolutionary’ philosophy".
Darrin's flirtation with "national" anarchism - and, along the way, a group of Tibetan monks - was short-lived as the moderate fascist-racist cast about for ideas - any ideas - that would bring salvation for the Australian lunatic fringe, and so he jumped aboard the brand spanking new Australian Protectionist Party, made up largely of expellees from Australia First. Darrin is now its New South Wales chairman.
From the beginning, the APP sought to jettison the political baggage carried by Australia First, claiming to represent a "new expression on an Australian Nationalist perspective". Exactly how "new" can be seen on Darrin the moderate's personal website, where the oversized rodent gives full vent to his vicious Islamophobia in post after predictable post, and in his statement to the Canberra Times that "if you're an Asian, you are an Asian" - and most emphatically not a white Australian, or any kind of Australian, for the matter of that.
Long an admirer of Nick Griffin, with whom he says he corresponds, Darrin has swallowed the Griffin = Success fairy-tale hook, line and sinker, saying: "The BNP is a successful nationalist party ... Griffin rescued the BNP from the murky depths of right-wing extremism", and: "We look to the BNP as it is one of, if not the most successful nationalist party in the anglosphere and see no reason why we cannot draw ideas from them."
Perhaps Darrin and his comrades took this drawing on the ideas of the BNP a little too literally, as an early disgruntled would-be member sourly informed Stormfront Down Under that the APP was a "scam ripping money off White Australians hoping to protect the future of this country and the heritage that is theirs".
Recently Darrin was presented with an opportunity to shine in council elections held in south Sydney's Sutherland Shire, which also happens to include Cronulla, the 2005 scene of vicious racial conflicts enthusiastically fanned by the Australian far-Right - almost certainly the origin of an anonymous text message received by hundreds of Australians exhorting whites to gather on Cronulla beach to attack the "wogs and lebs".
Extolling "traditional and family values" (while neglecting to mention that he was once contracted to maintain the servers of a company dealing in decidedly non-traditional adult products and pornographic material), and railing against the "Asianisation" of Sutherland Shire, Darrin found himself treading on some very stony ground, achieving a thumping 2% and last place, and thoroughly demoralising the go-ahead Australian Protectionist Party's tiny following. To add insult to injury, in a nearby division of Sutherland Shire, Darrin's former friends in Australia First obtained double the APP vote share, even though they also came last, with 4% of the vote.
Rather than send for the Flying Doctor to cure their ills, the APP has sent for the Flying Führer, as detailed elsewhere on this blog.
Exactly what Darrin and the APP brethren hope to learn at the feet of Nick Griffin isn't clear to us. They have already toned down their public expressions of racism, never mention The Jews, won't talk about the Holocaust, and rant against everybody's favourite punch-bag, the Muslims.
Maybe Darrin will come away thinking what a whizz it would be to set up a record label or a fake trade union? Perhaps Nick will impart the dark arts of BNP accounting to a spell-bound audience all dreaming of retiring as quickly as possible to their own pig farms in the Outback? Or he could do several sessions on the fine art of purging, for having so much experience in that regard.
The truth of it is that Nick hasn't taken the BNP anywhere - rather, as we have previously noticed (posts passim), what little success came the BNP's way happened despite Nick Griffin and his tantrums and his purges. Didn't you notice May's abysmal election results? Or those of the May before it? Hasn't it occurred to you that in a climate never more condusive to the electoral prospects of the BNP that Nick Griffin has signally failed to advance the party in the one arena that matters? Why do you think Nick got his redundancy package sorted out when he did - could it be because he knows his members will one day make contact with the reality of his sham "success" and turn him out?
Oh, deluded Darrin! Nick Griffin can only teach you how to fail - and since you already enjoy failure, frustration and factionalism in great and unending abundance, you really do have nothing at all to learn from the Flying Führer.