ALP wants to take back the party from itself. Labor Party hacks such as Darcy Byrne want to take back the party from the faceless men. “That’s why I am standing as a rank-and-file delegate,” he says in campaigning for the NSW Policy Forum. “We need to take control of our policy agenda away from political operators.” Away from political operators? As has been pointed out to Crikey, Byrne sits on the Left executive and works in the office of parliamentary powerbroker Anthony Albanese. “He is a political operator,” insists our correspondent.

Policy forum comes with spam. Meanwhile, Labor members are being inundated with mail from candidates for the forum. One complains about unwanted email from Ian McNamara: “I’d already tried to unsubscribe from whatever list they were spamming me from when I received two unsolicited emails from Dave Latham. I posted on Ian’s campaign Facebook group wall to ask where he got my email and why my repeated requests to have my details removed from ALP lists were ignored. My post was deleted within seconds.”

It’s always been in the back pocket. Nothing new in Greg Combet receiving more covert briefings from his department, as we suggested yesterday, assures one former senior public servant: “I can assure you that back pocket briefings are a normal part of the briefing process no matter who is in government.” We figured.

Uni reconsiders recruit. Which prominent university is apparently having second thoughts about the real value of its recent star recruit as it discovers more about the individual’s previous employment history?

Dumb email for smart TV. Does someone at the ABC have a problem with Waleed Aly? This email was dispatched yesterday afternoon …

Peter Fray

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