Falling for Anything
As politics demands increasing conformity, the greatest mistake is to mirror your opponents values. Unfortunately that's what is happening in our State parliaments.
I was at a business function recently where there was a lot of talk about politics. Many members of the business community are traditional Liberal supporters because their policies have historically been seen as superior to the alternatives.
The mantra of lower taxes, less regulation and smaller government usually resonates with those who are, or have been, in business. I still think they do but too often now the advocacy isn't coming from State Liberal governments.
One conversation (about State Politics) struck me as particularly insightful. A senior business leader said:
At the very least we used to be able to say they (the Liberals) were better than the alternative. I am not sure we can make that claim any more.
He was referring to South Australian state politics and he makes a good point.
The Liberals have dithered and slithered around pushing fringe issues and not tackling the big stuff. They caused a mighty hullabaloo by changing the land tax regime to make it 'fairer' - that's code for the government being better off in the long run.
The SA Premier has been lacklustre to say the least and I am yet to find a single person who can confidently state what he stands for. When asked he has only ever been able to mouth banal platitudes and stock phrases.
His Labor opponent has been unashamedly positioning himself as a pro-business candidate and it seems to be resonating with the business owners.
Rather than focus on getting the state economy right, the Liberals in SA are focussed on abortion reform and breaking their election promise to reform the SA safe schools program.
It seems whatever progressive social reforms the previous Labor government were loathe to embrace the Liberals are now determined to advocate.
It's not much difference in scandal plagued NSW. The government push to adopt the Greens' clean energy and drug policy is a betrayal of the traditional Liberal voter.
In the other mainland states, the Liberal oppositions have barely laid a glove on their Labor counterparts.
It says a lot about the state of politics and the political divide. My interpretation is that all politics has drifted to the left as the conservative voice has been marginalised and many previous advocates have been cowed into silence.
There's bullying too. If you fail to embrace the weird and wacky world of the new left you become a target risking your career, personal safety and mental health. That often stops new voices from emerging from the whisper zone.
The political left have proven to be very successful in making the normal now seem abnormal.
It's not just the social issues either.
Above and beyond the LGBIQXYZABC agenda you now need to support the right political team, reject white people, ignore the reality of socialism, pretend looters are peaceful all while suspending common sense and rational thought.
There are many in the traditional centre right party of politics who seem willing to do exactly that in an effort to be seen as modern and inclusive. These lefty-libs look to use the internal faction system to eject their conservative 'enemies' while embracing the political ideas of their opponents.
It's a crazy recipe and one doomed to ultimate failure. It reminds me of the old saying "if you fail to stand for something you'll fall for anything".
Right now, it seems too many Liberals have fallen for everything and there are very few even left standing.
I hope that changes. We need to redress the imbalance of ideas and ensure the voice of common sense remains alive and well.