The Campaign Begins

‘RENEWAL, not revolution.’ It quite literally could have been taken from Emeritus Pope Benedict’s book on why we should be wary of false cultural ruptures in history and those who promote them. Ratzinger was thinking of Vatican II. Anthony Albanese is thinking of coronavirus. As a slogan, it’s clever. The Catholic Church’s big mid-1960s ‘renewal,’ however, comes with an apposite cautionary tale: what started as a reno ended with a permanent revolution of radicalism, experimentation and division. Australians sense their country has been changed and may never be the same again. What concerns voters is not lost dignity or rights withdrawn from a minority but that ‘measures’ taken to ‘combat’ covid, unless dismantled, will ruin their own enjoyment of life.

They want a compliance dividend and – inflation or weak economic growth notwithstanding – that isn’t much to ask. The problem, however, is that compliance in the face of tyranny so debased their own sovereignty that, whether they realise it or not, they’re on the liberty dole. This much freedom is enough to survive on, says the state, but no more. When Mr Albanese talks of renewal, he means of government, not democracy. He needs to distance himself from extremists like Daniel Andrews and what they have done over the past two years if he ever wants to be taken seriously as an agent of Benedictine gentility. His theme has gone awry before. In 1918, the editor of Il Popolo d’Italia – Benito Mussolini – summarised his own program as “renewal, not revolution.”

We are seeking renewal — not revolution. Not a rejection of everything that has gone before but building on the enduring values which have helped make this such a great country.” Anthony Albanese

What we’re about is getting governments out of your lives, because I think Australians have had a gutful of governments in their lives in the past few years, and they’re looking forward to getting back in the driver’s seat, and I want to put Australians back in the driver’s seat.” Scott Morrison

Morrison Would Be Worse

Nobody has explained the case for sending the Liberals to rehab for three, six or more years better than Gerard Henderson, albeit inadvertently. Late last month, the executive director of the Sydney Institute wrote a column for The Australian in which he posited an argument from history for the Liberal Party’s base to eschew minor parties (including Voice Of astroturfers) and stay loyal to the cause. The cause is re-electing an LNP government because, as usual, Labor Would Be Worse. He referred the rebellion-curious to the 1943 election where, assailed by “no fewer than six non-Labor parties competing against Labor and, on occasions, each other,” Arthur Fadden – the successor to ousted UAP leader Robert Menzies – went down to John Curtin in one of the biggest conservative losses in Australian history. Henderson notes it was this division in non-Labor ranks that inspired Menzies to found the Liberal Party which he led to a famous victory in 1949. Thus began a 23-year party domination of federal governance.

The moral of the story is supposed to be unity at all costs but it could also be that the Liberal Party, like the old UAP, has run its race historically and needs to evolve into something else. Henderson the Liberal loyalist should have given his thesis more thought: if the atomisation of the early 1940s was necessary to engineer something better, maybe today’s Hansons and Kellys are the heralds of a Menzian reformation. When I heard what another Liberal loyalist, Michael Kroger, said to Liberals frustrated with the Morrison government via Catherine McGregor last Friday, the case for creative destruction became compelling. “Well, the message is: stop being so selfish,” he spat. “Stop being so unrealistic. Stop being so indulgent that you think you can get everything from a government.” (Audio: from 18.27).

People who formerly voted Liberal, if only because L.W.B.W., do not want “everything.” They want a prime minister who doesn’t lie about “voluntary” vaccinations he knows damned well are forced. They want a prime minister who doesn’t play Penn & Teller with the Attorney-General on religious liberty. Oh yes, they wanted the media to pick the Jack of Spades (the Folau clause) rather than the Queen of Clubs (the forgotten conscience clause that would have prevented Annastacia Palaszczuk from coercing Catholic hospitals to host and book homicides). They did not vote for Net Zero. They have no interest in ‘climate change’ or electric ‘cars.’

Kroger and Henderson believe conservatives will come home to the mama of Liberal management of the economy and forget things like government thuggery, legalised murder and genuflecting to Gaia. Two tips for these gentlemen (both of whom I like and respect): first, anti-Liberal Liberals – let’s call them 49-ers – are no longer ‘conservatives’ (a brand name that Ming pointedly avoided). Second, on tense: Labor would be worse? At a state level, they have been worse than anything seen in this country’s history and Scott Morrison backed them every goosestep of the way.

You want realistic, Kroges? Hold my hose.

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12 Responses to The Campaign Begins

  1. Terry says:

    Well, I suppose pouring one extra can of fuel on the tanker fire the Liberals started would be worse…technically.

    The “Labor/Greens made me do it” excuse is not particularly compelling and is unlikely to save the arsonists at election time. Nor is the excuse that the Labor/Green blob wanted to burn the tanker as well, were clapping and cheering them on, and would have done so anyway.

    Trying to turn up with a fire truck to play the “hero” of the self-made crisis is also unlikely to work (particularly when you’re a day late and a dollar short and all that’s left is a burnt-out wreck).

    I think it is clear that the best solution is to simply keep the matches away from people that cannot be trusted with them.

    While the Labor/Greens blob gets busy burning their own tankers for the next 3, 6, or 9 years, the rest of us will get busy building something that won’t burn as easily and finding people that can actually be trusted to keep it safe (you know, like they were supposedly elected to do).

    Don’t call me anymore, Scotty (from marketing) – I ain’t buying. You’re number’s blocked Scammo. Just go away.

  2. Entropy says:

    I agree that the needs to be some cauterisation to fix some pretty sever, self inflicted wounds in the LNP. No doubt at all.

    However, where would an ALP government leave AUKUS and the nuclear subs? Or defence more generally? Because nothing else matters over the next five years.

    And on secondary issues, what will happen to education op under an ALP government? Regional jobs? Agriculture?

  3. Tel says:

    We recently had NSW local government elections. Not super important when you consider the state can override them at any time.

    I noticed in many areas the Liberal Party candidate for council did not even list “LIBERAL” as party affiliation and simply left it blank. On the other hand the ALP did show their party colours and genuine independents would have “INDEPENDENT” listed.

    Is that common? Being so ashamed of your party that you blank out the name?

  4. Rex Anger says:

    Is that common? Being so ashamed of your party that you blank out the name?

    I do remember a time post-Julia when the ALP revamped all their local Member posters and signage to take away the ALP logos.

    Same poster, same colours, typeset, mugshots and other details. Just no ‘Australian Labor Party’ labelling.

    Not that it mattered. We all knew…

  5. Not Trampis says:

    Any person who has allegiances to one party is a fool.
    Allow any party two terms in government then turf them out and give the other side a go. Having a Leader who is very suspect need not matter as Tony Abbott

    It is clear the Liberal party should not have won the last election. They have had no agenda. They have run out of ideas. They clearly need some time in opposition to get thinking about what sort of party they are.
    To take one example saying stronger economic growth is all the fiscal consolidation you need is breathtakingly ignorant at best.

  6. Rex Anger says:

    Any person who has allegiances to one party is a fool.

    You’re so cute when you self-beclown, Homer Paxton.

  7. Boambee John says:

    Non Compos Mentis

    Good to see that you have finally grasped the concept of starting a sentence with a capital letter, and ending it with a full stop. Now, if you can only manage to work out the use of commas, you will be one step closer to attaining primary school standard (but there are more steps after that).

    Together, we can get you up to this minimal standard.

  8. Boambee John says:

    PS, it is a pity you did not manage to finish the sentence about Tony Abbott, but, small steps!

  9. Shy Ted says:

    It’ll be all politics now, aiming to destroy new and minor parties and their candidates. Ably abetted by the meeja.

  10. Ed Case says:

    Arthur Fadden – the successor to ousted UAP leader Robert Menzies – went down to John Curtin in one of the biggest conservative losses in Australian history.

    Was there an Opposition Leader in 1943 with 6 non Labor Parties?
    I’ve read there is some doubt about that, other sources say Billy Hughes.

  11. Ed Case says:

    Is that common? Being so ashamed of your party that you blank out the name?

    Yeah, Labor have got to do it often in Qld, since there’s a new scandal every week!

  12. a reader says:

    I voted for everyone that wasn’t a party member in my local council elections. Sadly that meant I provided no support for Liberal, Labor, Greens or Animal Justice.

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