What does a modern day Liberal Party look like?

What does a modern day Liberal Party look like?

From Donald Trump to Jair Bolsonaro and Rodrigo Duterte, right-wing populism has seen a sharp resurgence in almost every part of the world. So, what does this mean for the right-leaning Liberal-National party in 21st-century Australia?

If you’d like to find out, come to La Trobe University’s next Bold Thinking event: ‘The Honourable Julie Bishop MP on politics, leadership and the Liberal party‘.

The Hon Julie Bishop MP will deliver a keynote speech on conservative politics in Australia and next steps for the Liberal party drawing on her experience as former Deputy Leader and Foreign Affairs Minister.

Afterwards, Francis Leach will facilitate a high-powered panel discussing the challenges and opportunities facing modern conservatism. Alongside Ms Bishop, the panel features La Trobe Emeritus Professors, sociologist John Carroll and political expert Judith Brett, and incoming academic journalist Andrea Carson.

To whet your appetite for the event, here’s a taster of what to expect.

Julie Bishop enjoying the battle.

Julie Bishop

Top of the bill is Liberal Party superstar and current Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Honourable Julie Bishop MP. You know who she is. Her resume is long and impressive.

Here’s an excerpt from Ms Bishop’s recent keynote speech at the ‘Women in National Security Conference’ in Canberra, in which she argues that the world has seen a crisis of confidence in democracy, warning of the dangers of populist policies that feed off social unrest to score quick political points.

Judith Brett

La Trobe Emeritus Professor of Politics, Judith Brett, recently wrote a piece in ‘The Conversation’ titled, ‘The Morrison government’s biggest problem is climate change denial’. Brett places this alongside ‘a lack of coherent economic narrative’.

Not shy of sharing her opinion, you can find out what Brett thinks about the future of a party with an ‘identity impervious to evidence’.

Read Brett’s full article here.

The house of representatives.

John Carroll

Sociologist John Carroll wrote an article for The Australian, titled ‘The Five Planks of Political Conservatism’. He describes these as:

  1. ‘Respect for Order’, meaning clean streets, safe neighbourhoods and so on.
  2. ‘Love of Country’.
  3. ‘Respect for existing institutions and the nation’s past’.
  4. ‘Scepticism’ in regards to extreme ideology and fanaticism.
  5. ‘Unidealistic Realpolitik’, which is a fancy way of saying ‘long term defence strategy based on prudence, preparation and vigilance’.

Read the full article for a more in-depth understanding of where Carroll is coming from.

The Australian flag.

Andrea Carson

Then Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s self-appointed 2013 role as ‘Minister for Women’, highlighted what some see as the Coalition Party’s ongoing problem with gender representation.

Incoming associate Professor at La Trobe, Andrea Carson, provides a nuanced account of the Coalition’s relationship to gender in politics, outlining her research into the attitude of voters and parties on the left and the right.

Read Carson’s full article here.

Want to know more? Come and see this distinguished panel discuss conservatism in 2018.

Buy tickets

When: Thursday 22 November 2018, 6:30-8:15 pm.
Where:  The Sofitel Arthur Streeton Auditorium, 25 Collins Street Melbourne.
Cost: $15 General Admission. $7.50 Students/Concession. Free: Under 18 (accompanied by an adult).