May 19th 2018


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Articles from this issue:

COVER STORY The real cost of institutionalised child care

EDITORIAL AGL dismisses $250m bid for Liddell Power Station

GENDER POLITICS As Queensland transgenders birth certificates, 300 women quit UK Labour Party

CANBERRA OBSERVED No pressure on Malcolm to call election this year

NATIONAL AFFAIRS Can Greens regenerate, or are they mulch?

POLITICS Conservative shift in the Victorian Liberal Party

OPINION No fairytale ending from the Land of a Fair Go

LAW REFORM The Nordic Model: proven to curtail sex trafficking

NATIONAL AFFAIRS Committal hearing dismisses main serious charges against Cardinal Pell

GENDER AND ETHICS Transgenderism and the dissolution of identity

PHILOSOPHY The supercharged cheetah

INTERNATIONAL AFFAIRS One Belt, One Road: China's new empire

HUMOUR

MUSIC Business as usual: The sweet tinkle of falling coins

CINEMA Avengers: Last Flag Flying and Infinity War

BOOK REVIEW A hungry beast that ate up 4 million lives

BOOK REVIEW Skewed analysis of republic in crisis

POETRY

LETTERS

CANBERRA OBSERVED Bill Shorten's Budget-Reply speech: for what ails you

FOREIGN AFFAIRS Behind the U.S.-North Korea rapprochement

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POLITICS
Conservative shift in the Victorian Liberal Party


by Gabrielle Walsh

News Weekly, May 19, 2018

With Victoria getting ready to go to the polls in November, the recent Liberal State Council attracted considerable press interest both before and after the last weekend of April, when it was held.

The Liberal State Council has laid out
a preliminary blueprint for Matthew Guy
as he leads the party into the election
in November.

At the Council, a large number of conservatives were elected to positions on the Victorian branch leadership team.

ABC political reporter Jane Norman claimed that there had been a concerted effort to recruit “Christians” and “Mormons” into Victorian branches. The labelling continues, including calling “moderate(s)” those who opposed the changes. (ABC News, May 4)

Formerly, the Victorian Liberals were considered the most progressive-left branch in the country. The change is likely to see a new policy platform under its state leader, Matthew Guy.

A range of noteworthy motions was passed, indicating a conservative shift in policy.

One resolution called on an incoming Guy government to adopt stronger drug laws, with a change of emphasis from harm minimisation and the turning of a “blind eye to drug offending” to crime prevention and rehabilitation.

The resolution said: “The harm caused to individuals, their families and society generally by illicit drugs has led to a monumental impost on the Australian taxpayer, through increased health costs and a general reduction in wellbeing.”

Another successful motion called on a future government to adopt the “Nordic Model” on prostitution. The Nordic Model criminalises the brothel owners and pimps and patrons purchasing sex, while not criminalising the actions of prostitutes. It also targets sex trafficking, within the industry, and associated organised crime.

The Nordic Model has dramatically driven down demand for prostitution and sex trafficking in six European countries and Canada already. (For greater detail on the Nordic Model, see the article by Jacqueline Gwynne on page 10 of this edition of News Weekly.)

Another motion called for a stop to the implementation of the recent Andrews’ Government Children Legislation Amendment (Information Sharing) Act and either repeal or comprehensively amend the law and its associated programs.

The law was set up to identify children at risk following revelations of widespread child abuse by the Children’s Royal Commission. However it goes far beyond what is identifying risk.

As the successful resolution said, this new law aims to treat all Victorian-born children as “at risk” and to be monitored and reported on until their 18th birthday.

“It is a savage removal of privacy and has little or no control. It specifically removes the right to sue for errors and costs for errors, and it removes the privacy rights of adults who have any association with children … This is worthy of a police state,” the motion said.

Another resolution called for an incoming Guy government to respect parental rights to teach their children appropriate sex education.

It called for the banning of the misnamed “Safe Schools” program resources from Victorian schools and ensuring that “no gender fluid or relationships curriculum, or resources that teach children that a person’s gender may be different to their biological sex and that people can transition, be allowed in schools”.

The resolution called for a “review of the sex education curricula, Catching on Early and Catching on Later, and associated programs”.

To respect parental right, the resolution said that parents must be given “full information about all sex and relationships education”. They would have to sign an opt-in “consent form” for their child to participate in sex education programs.

Two other important motions were passed calling on the Victorian parliamentary Liberal Party to oppose the radical Green agenda that is crippling our electricity industry.

It called for a “policy that allows electricity generation using wind and solar but without either subsidies or ‘must take’ mandates” and “adopt and advocate a policy that maintains the continued generation of electricity using coal, gas and hydro”.

Prior to the council, two motions were pulled from the state council agenda. One of those two motions called for changes to the federal Sex Discrimination Act to re-insert the definitions of “man” and “woman”.

Another motion aimed to push back against the Victorian Health Complaints Act.

The resolution said it aimed to ensure the rights of parents of children with gender dysphoria to explore all options, including counselling children to desist gender transitioning. Currently, Victorian law locks pat­ients and parents of children with gender dysphoria out of seeking the advice that may be best for them.

All this in prospect of a Victorian election in November! Let us hope that if a Coalition government is elected under Matthew Guy in November it will embrace some of the sensible policy positions put before the recent State Council.




























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