By now I’m sure all Liberals in Australia would be aware of the following article on the NSW Division, which appeared in the Australian a few days ago:
“The once dominant right faction is starting to fracture. Its religiously conservative elements, commonly referred to by detractors as the hard Right, are displeased with a group of right-wingers they believe are turning their backs on the social conservatism that has long defined the faction.”
And so on.
This article is unfortunate, but also expected; I think everyone knew it was just a matter of time. As those of you who know me are aware, I have gleefully retired from the Liberal factional scene, and indeed largely moved on from party politics. Instead, I simply want to be engaged in the battle of ideas – to fight for the values of individual freedom and the free market that have led to unparalleled prosperity. As part of this, I shall support anyone who will advance the battle of ideas. Faction, sub-faction, or even party matters little to me any more (Clinton – you win ALP preselection one day, you’ll have my support!). As the current stoush does, however, impact rather deeply on the political dynamic in NSW, I do feel it appropriate I add some of my own observations, particularly my experiences at a Young Liberal level.
The first thing that struck me about the attack launched upon Alex was the frantic spinning of reality by his detractors. I note the following paragraph:
The view of the former group is that Hawke and his allies are prepared to water down their social conservatism to appeal to Malcolm Turnbull and his new leadership team, which includes Joe Hockey and Christopher Pyne, both well-identified Liberal moderates. In other words, they are being accused of political opportunism: suppressing their hard right tendencies for political preferment by a more moderate new leader and his team.
Which is a rather good effort at spin. Pity it has no link to reality whatsoever. If there was even a shred of truth in allegations Alex has betrayed his principles, I would be the first to join the chorus condemning him. In a heartbeat. My thoughts on Malcolm are well known, as are my repeated refrains for the party to once again reimburse true conservative values. Don’t even get me started on the fact you could count everyone who supports the free market in the NSW Parliamentary wing of the Liberal Party on one hand with several fingers left over.