I have not failed 10,000 times. I have successfully found 10,000 ways that will not work — Thomas Edison
The above words are very applicable to conservative Australia in November 2017. Although we have only tried a handful of ways of making our weight felt in political and social life, it’s enough to point very clearly to what definitely won’t win the immense battles we have ahead of us.
This month we are seeing the culmination of a decade-long war waged by the global left’s representatives within Australia.
Didn’t know you were in a war?
Those are the best type and the easiest to win; waged through entertainment, media suggestion, educational institutions and constant political pressure.
The latest battles in this war involve same-sex marriage; the Dean Smith bill and the government’s manic determination – seen in last week’s announcement it will change the parliamentary sitting calendar – to get the legislation passed by Christmas, regardless of whether protections for the 38.4 per cent who voted ‘no’ in the plebiscite, religious and other conscientious objectors are in place.
For those who have been watching events in the Liberal and National Parties, it was no surprise. And herein lies the issue that shows more clearly than any other how deeply in trouble our country is. We expect lunatic policies from The Greens and we expect Labor to follow, but the Liberals have been a bulwark against that extremist shift with a steadfastness of (semi) sensible policies. Howard, in particular, was very adept at blunting moves from the left and resisting the cacophony of pseudo-social pressure brought by the lefts’ power centres.
All of this has gone.
If you find a conservative in the Liberals and Nationals, it’s a happy coincidence. Worse, it gives the impression that the party might actually still represent mainstream Australia when it does not. The left has managed to take over the only institution in the country that had the power to stop them and the problem lies in the power structure that is selecting candidates that are more at home in Labor’s (dwindling) right faction.
There is a vast gulf when it comes to the views and ideological beliefs of candidates and the general membership of the party. Most Liberals are appalled that a man such as Malcolm Turnbull, who is clearly more at home in Labor, should have been given the leadership of the party. They are appalled that the PM could bring down a budget that was clearly written by Wayne Swan. Conservatives are horrified that multiple members of the parliamentary wing are enthusiastic supporters of such reality-bending concepts as gay marriage.
It should be crystal-clear to conservatives now that there is no protection coming to society from the Libs or Nats. The key things they could be relied upon to protect, the nation’s finances, the civil institutions of society and national defence have all been abandoned by the coalition. Simply put, they are now the left; Labor’s further left and the Greens are now openly revealing their communist intentions. To put it another way, the ideological positions and practices of both major parties are so close that they are by default a single party. Any divisions and contentions they may have are mere spectacle, theatre and distraction. No matter which is in power, they continue the ongoing leftward march.
This brings me to my initial comments about Edison and learning how not to do it.
If we conservatives want a political party that will represent our true values, we will have to build it ourselves. It is a monumental task but if we care for our children and grandchildren, we must act.
Here’s a list of what doesn’t work:
Political parties led and controlled by popular personalities. This has been tried ad nauseam in Australia for the last thirty years. The power always gets concentrated in the hands of one or two people (normally one), members are ignored and decisions are made on the lam. You only have to look at the performance of third force political parties to see this in action. Idiotic policies are made under pressure, campaigns tanked, and years of member’s work flushed down the toilet.
Trying to convince the major parties to come back to earth to live with us. It would take all day to list out the lobby groups that try this day in and day out, and here we are, exactly where the left wants us to be. So much for that idea as a long-term strategy.
Media campaigns. These can have some effect but measured against the force of government that spends 36 per cent of GDP, is akin to stopping the tide with a bucket.
The only option open to us is the one we should have focused on a decade ago and that is to create a grassroots conservative political party that is truly controlled by the members. A party that sends people to parliaments to implement the policies that we want, not a party controlled by politicians that implement what they want.
Those in parliament are our servants. We are not theirs.
It is not an easy road that I propose, but an essential one.
Since the 1940s either the Liberal-National Coalition or the Labor Party has ruled Australia. For more than 70 years a two-party duopoly has ruled our lives and by logical extension, those who rule those parties.
This situation must change.
Ask yourself the following questions:
How can a nation with such abundant natural resources and human talent, be in such enormous debt?
How can a nation with such abundant energy resources have the highest power prices in the world?
How can it be, that a nation with 30 per cent of the world’s uranium, has virtually no nuclear industry?
How can the world’s largest island nation, with high strategic maritime defence requirements, be relying on overseas powers for our submarine fleet? For that matter, how can such an island nation have virtually no shipbuilding industry?
How could a nation, built on hard work and fierce independence, have such a high welfare bill?
How can a nation with such a proud history, have an education system that systematically teaches our children a black armband view of our past?
The answer to these question rests with the two parties that have led us to this point. They are leading us further out into the wilderness and calling it paradise.
It is not the destiny of Australia to be a beggar state or a welfare case. It is not our destiny to spend our days wringing our hands, anxious about sins past, real or imagined. It is not our destiny to be a nation of baristas and tour guides. Australia was meant for far greater things on the global stage but it will not be handed to us. The parties that rule us will not surrender it willingly and the media will vilify anyone who attempts to break their stranglehold.
So let us not repeat the mistakes of years past and keep on making the same old light bulb that doesn’t work and let’s start making one that will work.
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