The longest, most oppressive lockdowns in the world. Squads of coppers firing rubber bullets at protesters, cracking people’s skulls in full public view and smashing old ladies into the road and pepper-spraying them. A government which refuses to admit the slightest responsibility for its hotel quarantine scheme killing nearly 900 people.

The next election has got to be a slam-dunk for the opposition, right?

Don’t bet on it. Like many supposedly conservative parties, the Victorian Liberals are apparently determined to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory by doggedly going along with everything the far left in power says. Any actual conservatives must be rigorously silenced and purged.

Opposition Leader Matthew Guy threatened to expel MPs who post controversial comments online from his party room, staring down outspoken conservative Bernie Finn at a meeting on Tuesday.

Two Liberal sources confirmed to The Age that Mr Guy was forceful at Tuesday morning’s party room about recalcitrant MPs within his team who displayed “bad behaviour” on social media, in a direct swipe at Mr Finn who was publicly repudiated by his colleagues just last week.

That “bad behaviour” amounts to criticising premier “Dictator Dan” Andrews and his goons and castigating the party for meekly going along with the socialist premier’s so-called “gay conversion therapy” ban.

Colleagues last month criticised Mr Finn over social media comments likening Victoria Police to “the modern incarnation of the Despot’s militia”. And on Friday morning, after the party’s new leadership confirmed it would not change laws banning gay conversion therapy if elected, Mr Finn posted on his social media: “Given the choice of Labor and Labor Lite, Victorians will invariably vote for the real thing”.

Calls have been growing, from both the Moderate and Right faction, for Mr Finn to lose preselection for his safe number one spot on the Western Metropolitan ticket.

After all, the last thing a conservative party wants is to actually criticise their far-left opponents, or address the sort of culture-war issues that are clearly of great concern to their conservative supporters.

Mr Finn said he wanted to discuss the Coalition dumping plans to amend the ban on gay conversion therapy at next week’s party room meeting.

Liberal MPs said Mr Guy was vehement that the party’s stance on the ban on gay conversion therapy would not change […]

The Coalition last week gave an “iron-clad guarantee” it would not amend the new laws, after The Age earlier revealed it had quietly promised faith groups it would make changes if it won next year’s election.

The amendments would have probably reflected some of the concerns it raised during the parliamentary debate about the rights of children and parents seeking assistance with gender dysphoria and sexual identity issues, and the rights of religious and medical practitioners providing that care.

Ironically enough, Liberal leader Matthew Guy claims that:

“This is about Victoria, this is about providing an alternative to the state … and what [Victorians] expect is an alternative government to get on with the job of providing that alternative, and I won’t have anything else.”

The Age

Except for actually providing an, um, alternative.

I’m sure it’s just a vicious rumour that the opposition’s campaign slogan for the next election will be “WeStandWithDan”.

Daniel Andrews. The BFD. Illustration by Lushington Brady.

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How to Lose the Next Victorian Election
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Lushington D. Brady

Punk rock philosopher. Liberalist contrarian. Grumpy old bastard. I grew up in a generational-Labor-voting family. I kept the faith long after the political left had abandoned it. In the last decade...