When independent federal MP Tony Windsor checked the messages on his mobile phone yesterday, one opened with a quiet, emphatic male voice: "You die. You die you f---ing c--t". It only got worse after that.
Windsor was not shocked. The 60-year-old former farmer has served in state and federal parliaments for 20 years.
"I've had death threats before, but not as many. So I'm on a popularity curve," he quips. He had three more on Tuesday, for instance. Are there more nutters abroad these days? Windsor doesn't think that's it.
He says it's part of a broader campaign targeting him and the other three crossbench MPs who helped Labor form a minority government after the election last year. "It's not a constituent who's got angry and snapped over a custody case or some other matter. There's a degree of orchestration in the emails and common language in the phone calls - the police have picked up on that. It's more of a political exercise.
"It's not so much about carbon tax or national broadband - that's just the hitching point. It's aimed at destabilising the government, destroying the hung parliament."
Who is doing the orchestrating? Talkback radio: "That's the link point," Windsor says. Shock jocks have been broadcasting his phone numbers and email address and urging listeners to besiege him with complaints.
Windsor has no beef with people who disagree with him, he says, only with people who try to intimidate him.
The shock jocks are the volunteer sergeant-majors in the "people's revolt" summoned by the commanding general, Tony Abbott.
The Opposition Leader has said he anticipates "tens of thousands of people" will "bombard" Labor and the independents to stop the proposed carbon tax.
Labor was indignant yesterday that two Liberal frontbenchers had likened Julia Gillard to the Libyan butcher, Colonel Muammar Gaddafi.
The National Party's Senate leader, Barnaby Joyce, never short of a colourful phrase, nonetheless showed restraint: "Obviously I don't think Ms Gillard is a person to be compared to Colonel Gaddafi, a tyrant and a murderer," he told Sky News.
But Abbott declined all opportunities to distance himself from the comparison.
He said he wouldn't use the Gaddafi comparison himself, but "what I can't stop is the anger so many people feel about what they think is a betrayal by this government".
His strategy of angry oppositionism, after all, depends on anger. He was careful, nonetheless, to insist on civility in the debate.
But Windsor worries: "There's been an elevation of incitement in the political messages out there. It's pretty fragile. It only takes one unhinged person and it will change everything."
Will the anger have its desired political effect? Will it persuade Windsor and the other independents to switch support from Labor to Liberal? "It has the opposite effect," says Windsor.