Politics, Poetry and Reviews

Federal Election 2019: Meet the Liberal Democratic Party


Website: https://www.ldp.org.au/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LibDemAus/
Low Taxes. Small Government.
Individual Responsibility.
Themes: Dog-eat-dog libertarians.  Fond of guns and free speech.  Not interested in the environment.  Very much an ‘I’ve got mine’ philosophy.
Upper House: NSW, QLD, SA, TAS, VIC, WA
Lower House: Bean, Calare, Fadden, Fairfax Farrer, Lyne, McPherson, Moncrieff, Parkes, Rankin
Preferences: This lot are way too libertarian to tell you who to vote for, apparently.  Except in NSW, where they like HEMP, Pauline Hanson, Small Business, Science and the Pirates.  Interestingly, the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers don’t get a look in – I’d have expected them instead of One Nation.
Previous reviews

Policies & Commentary

I reviewed the LDP back in November, ahead of the Victorian State election, and I doubt they’ve changed a lot since then, but let’s review recent media releases and see what they’ve been up to.  It’s mostly been David Leyonhjelm saying things that annoy me.  (This is probably not his actual intention in saying them.  Though he seems like the sort who would consider my annoyance a bonus.)

  • Leyonhjelm thinks that NSW is a nanny state, and that the North Sydney Council wants to suppress everyone’s freedoms.
  • He feels that people should be able to choose which school they send their children to, rather than being restricted to catchment areas, because competition is healthy.  This would not at all lead to already disadvantaged schools losing funding and resources and becoming even more disadvantaged.  (Or maybe it would, but that’s just the downside of not playing to your strengths in the free market.)
  • Leyonhjelm released a video that claims to debunk myths on climate change.  It doesn’t.  All it does is say that Australia’s contribution to coal production is relatively small compared to global production, so we might as well keep on doing it.  Basically, unless we can make the big polluters stop, which he reckons we can’t, we have nothing to gain by stopping pollution ourselves, so we shouldn’t.
  • He supported a bill delaying eligibility of migrants to receive welfare
  • He wrote in favour of right-to-die legislation
  • He wants to legalise cannabis, and also pill testing.  Hey, that’s two things I agree on!!
  • He spoke against gender quotas, and also explained that there isn’t any such thing as inequality in Australia, because we all have the opportunities.  (Isn’t it strange that white men are so much more meritorious than the rest of us?)
  • He thinks that people who oppose live exports are a bit silly.
  • He made a speech thanking ‘young brown people’ for their contribution to Australia.  This turns out not to be sarcastic (it’s a little patronising, but I don’t think it intends to be so), and – bizarrely – he highlights racial discrimination against immigrants as a problem, but thinks it will go away in time.  It’s a bit bizarre – he pretty much says, hey, this group of people are doing it hard, which is really not very fair, and I don’t think we need to do anything about it, but respect to them for giving it a go.
  • He opposed a bill to prevent sharing of abhorrent violent material.  You know, the one they brought in after the Christchurch massacre was livestreamed on Facebook?  Yeah.  That one.  His argument is that it makes S&M videos illegal, which… may be true?  I don’t really trust his judgment on this.
  • David Spender made a speech saying that those of us who like refugees so much should house them in our own homes.
  • He thinks that changes to family law are unfair on dads.
  • He wants to use nuclear power to fix climate change.
  • Both he and Leyonhjelm object to the Murray Darling Basin plan in its current form.  This particular press release came shortly after the final report on the fish die-off.  Also, apparently fish kills are normal, as are droughts.

Not a lot of change, here.  The disregard for the environment continues, as does the lack of compassion.  I’m still pretty boggled by that video thanking brown people, because it so clearly means well, but oh dear.

I still have a huge problem with the LDP’s ‘Freedom at all costs, especially if the cost is to someone else’ philosophy of life.  I can’t see that changing, either.  I see that Leyonhjelm is not running as a candidate in the current election, incidentally.  He missed out on a seat in the NSW State Election, so I’m not sure if this is retirement or regrouping.  I’m afraid I can’t say I’m going to miss him.

Eurovision Theme Song as determined by me, very objectively

Guy Sebastian may have inadvertently written the perfect anthem for the LDP back in 2015:

Do whatcha, whatcha, whatcha want
Do whatcha, whatcha, whatcha want
Do whatcha, whatcha, whatcha want
Oh, get on it, ooh, get on it

Also… the LDP originally made it into the Federal Senate by a stroke of good luck – they appeared ahead of the Liberal Party on the enormous NSW Senate ticket, and thus got a higher-than-usual share of the vote via would-be Liberal voters who were not careful readers.

That’s not going to happen this time – they are well down the alphabet on every Senate ballot paper.  It may be wishful thinking on my part, but I am inclined to suspect that they have already achieved the best Federal result they are ever going to get.  Their achievements just haven’t been that notable.

Which makes the other part of the chorus rather apt, too.

I don’t want tomorrow
Oh baby, tonight’s so good, tonight’s so good
This is one tough act to follow
Oh baby, tonight’s so good

Don’t let the door hit you on the way out.





  1. Zahri

    The answer is retirement from politics! Leyonhjelm wrote a very long rambling post after discovering he had prematurely accepted victory in the NSW election, largely complaining that he wasn’t interested in trying to hold the Lib Dems together any more and it was someone else’s turn.

    Who knows how long that will last, but at least it seems to be an admission of the reality that if he couldn’t get a NSW Legislative Council seat, he wasn’t getting another Senate seat.

    • Catherine

      Aha! I missed that one – must have been too buried in grants.

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