Mr President, Not far from where you sit, some 10 metres from the entrance to this old chamber, there’s a wonderfully imposing canvas.

 

It depicts the decisive moment in Australian history: the landing of the First Fleet at Sydney Cove on 26th January 1788.

 

The painting by Algernon Talmage is called the Founding of Australia, a founding marked by the arrival of Western civilisation on this continent.

 

It’s an appropriate entrance statement for this place, the mother of legislative power and progress in Australia.

 

Despite attempts by both sides of politics to either abolish it or silence it, for nearly two centuries the Legislative Council has, by and large, been a civilising force in New South Wales.

 

Over the years, the ALP has expelled more of its MLCs for failing to vote for the Council’s abolition than are here representing Labor today.

 

Among conservatives, George Reid in 1895 dissolved the parliament on the single issue of Legislative Council

obstruction, pledging (he said) to “clear the fossils” from a “rotten and corrupt” chamber.

 

And he hadn’t even met Eddie Obeid.

 

Crooks and scoundrels aside, this place has been true to Talmage’s painting.

 

It has honoured the founding principles of our nation: that progress is possible through parliamentary debate and deliberation; that in a land of hard work and meritocracy, every citizen can and should receive a fair go.

 

For all its pitfalls and failings, the Legislative Council has always redeemed itself in wanting to extend the reach of Western civilisation and advancement in Australia.

 

Until now.

 

Like so many parts of our politics that have changed quickly in recent times, there are voices here who do not believe in the virtues of the West, who do not acknowledge the nation-building achievements of our culture and our country.

 

It’s like a scene from The Life of Brian, a case of: What has Western civilisation done for us?

 

Only advanced healthcare and education; architecture, engineering, information technology, free speech and the rule of law.

 

In fact: this chamber, this parliament, in this city, all our public institutions and the material comforts we take for granted – none of them could exist without the greatness of the West.

 

Without the advances that began with the Enlightenment and Industrial Revolution and continue to this day.

 

Yet still, among the Leftist elites, among the social engineers and cultural dietians, sneering at our civilisation and its achievements has become their new pastime.

 

They preach diversity but practice a suffocating cultural conformity, wanting everyone to be just like them.

 

They argue for inclusion but as soon as a Christian, a conservative, a libertarian, a nationalist, a working class larrikin, an outsider from the vast suburbs and regions of our nation disagrees with them, they crank up their PC-outrage machine to exclude them from society.

 

They are tolerant of everything except dissenting values and opinions – meaning, of course, they are tolerant of nothing that matters, only themselves.

 

This is the Leftist curse through the ages: the recurring history of those who so badly crave control over others, they lose control over themselves.

 

In their lust for authority, they lose their respect for the rights of others.

 

Like a scene from Orwell’s Animal Farm, the Green-Labor-Left has become the thing it originally opposed: elitist, would-be dictators taking away from working class communities the things these battlers value:

 

The right to speak their mind.

 

To say they love their country and want Australia Day to stay.

 

To practice their Christianity, openly and freely.

 

To send their children to school without the garbage of Safe Schools, Wear-It-Purple days, ‘HeadRest’ indoctrination and the other crackpot theories making some NSW classrooms more like a Hare Krishna meeting than actual education.

 

And when they go to work, the chance to do their job without being bombarded by employment quotas, ‘unconscious bias’ training and a long list of unspeakable, taboo words – scary, scary stuff, like ‘guys’ and ‘mums and dads’.

 

The New Left are the new primitives of our time: junking the importance of evidence, of recorded history, of biological science, to pretend that all parts of our lives (especially race, gender and sexuality) can be fluid, that everything we know and feel around us is, in fact, ‘socially constructed’.

 

Mr President, they’re peddling Fake News.

 

We haven’t been brainwashed by ‘capitalist hegemony’ as the post-modernists argue.

 

People know and understand the things they see and feel in their lives.

 

It’s called evidence.

 

Our personal characteristics and identities are fixed, not fluid.

 

With few exceptions, people are born either male or female.

 

We shouldn’t be confusing young people and risking their mental health by pushing gender fluidity upon them.

 

We shouldn’t be taking away from parents their essential role as the primary carers of their children – in matters personal and sexual.

 

We shouldn’t be changing the purpose of our education system: transforming schools from places of skill and academic attainment into gender fluidity factories.

 

Most of all, we shouldn’t be losing sight of the interests of mainstream, majority Australia.

 

In the last national census, for instance, 13 hundred Australians identified as transgender.

 

But to listen to the political and media coverage of this issue, you would think there were 13 million.

 

Mr President, Everywhere I travel, parents and grandparents, workers and communities, tell me how concerned they are about Australia’s direction.

 

They ask me, ‘What’s happened to our country; where has this nonsense come from?’

 

The answer is clear.

 

The Leftist project, then and now, is about control.

 

Having, with the fall of the Berlin Wall, lost the struggle for economic control, the Left got smarter.

 

It shifted from the Cold War to a culture war.

 

It moved from pursuing economic Marxism to pushing cultural Marxism.

 

Instead of trying to socialise the means of production, it’s now trying to socialise the means of individual expression and belief – our language, our values, our behaviour.

 

Instead of seeking revolution at the top of government, it has marched instead through our institutions – a tactic that’s harder to combat.

 

The elites have been remarkably successful in this cultural invasion.

 

Our abiding national traditions of free speech, merit selection, resilience and love of country are being lost, not just in the public sector – in schools, universities, public broadcasters, major political parties and government agencies – but also in large parts of corporate Australia and the commercial media.

 

The rest of us are the Resistance to this national takeover.

 

Our chief ally is evidence.

 

Evidence and human nature.

 

Through the power of reason and enlightenment, people want to have a say about the things that are important to them.

 

They want free speech.

 

They want freedom of religion and belief.

 

Australians are also a tough yet fair-minded people.

 

It comes from our origins in colonial times, the things depicted in Talmage’s painting.

 

The Australian story in settling a harsh and sometimes hostile continent on the other side of the world is one of the most remarkable in human history.

 

Leaders like Arthur Phillip and Lachlan Macquarie, in little more than a generation, turned a penal colony into a civilisation – building what has now become the best nation on Earth.

 

It was achieved through resilience and mateship – the Australian habit of toughing it out and treating others as equals.

 

Jack is as good as his master.

 

It’s in our nature to treat people as we find them – to judge them on their individual merit, their work ethic, their community contribution.

 

This is what makes identity politics – subdividing our people on the basis of race, gender and sexuality – so foreign to the Australian way.

 

Just as the old Soviet Union fell over because human nature wanted economic competition and individual wealth and excellence, I believe these new mutant strains of social control – post-modernism and identity politics – will also fail.

 

They run contrary to the nature and evidence of our lives.

 

Mr President, I ran for parliament to be part of the fightback for freedom and fairness.

 

NSW One Nation took 34 detailed policies to the election, including a detailed package for human rights reform.

 

We believe NSW needs new laws protecting freedom of speech, especially on university campuses where so much of academic and student freedom has been lost.

 

Sometimes we laugh at the absurdity of political correctness but at its core, it’s an insidious movement, a handbrake on liberty.

 

If you control someone’s language, you control a big part of their lives: how they interact with others, how they communicate in society, their feeling of belonging.

 

Like every other Australian, I own my own words, I know what I mean by them.

 

Like so many Australians, I refuse to allow my words to be controlled by strangers: by the elites with their confected outrage and PC-censorship.

 

In truth in society, offence is taken, not given.

 

It’s a personal choice, based on assumptions about what someone meant by their words.

 

Yet only the person speaking those words truly knows what was meant.

 

As the great John Cleese has pointed out, telling a joke about someone doesn’t mean we hate them.

 

We love the people we joke about – the Irish, the blondes, the gays, everyone – as they’ve helped to bring humour and joy into our lives.

 

The other problem with political correctness is in knowing what’s genuine and what’s not.

 

So much of the offenderati, the outrage industry, involves the fabrication of offence – saying that their feelings have been hurt solely for the reason of closing down their political opponents.

 

PC is riddled with these internal contradictions.

 

Let me give an example from this parliament.

 

Labor MPs are not allowed to say two words – ‘white flight’ – even though they are a truthful expression of what’s happening in Western Sydney, having been identified by Luke Foley.

 

It’s a sad day for democracy when MPs can’t talk about the evidence in their electorates.

 

Then last year in the Blue Mountains, when Michael Daley launched a wrong-headed attack on Asians with PhDs, the two Labor MPs in the room stood mute.

 

So the Labor leader who had it right – his words can’t be repeated, while the one who had it wrong went unchecked, for months on end.

 

Go figure.

 

NSW needs freedom of speech laws, even for its own MPs.

 

And also new laws for the protection of religious freedom.

 

Mr President, as I’m sure you appreciate, many migrants came to Australia to escape religious persecution.

 

Now they are saying the problems in their home country have followed them here.

 

I’m not a Christian but I recognise the vital contribution of Christianity to our civilisation: its vast social and charitable work; its teaching of right and wrong in civil society.

 

Mr President, I stand with Israel Folau.

 

In his own private time away from his job playing football, he’s a preacher at his community church and naturally, he quotes the Bible.

 

He believes, as millions of people have believed for thousands of years, that sinners go to Hell.

 

As per his valid religious faith, he loves the sinner but condemns the sin.

 

Yet for his beliefs, his Christianity, he is not allowed to play rugby, to chase the pigskin around the park.

 

How did our State and our nation ever come to this?

 

I was on Folau’s list of sinners, more than once actually.

 

But as I don’t believe in Hell, there was no way I could take offence.

 

Those claiming outrage have fabricated their position solely for the purpose of censorship.

 

This is not an argument about diversity.

 

The Wallabies have no female players, no disabled, no elderly, no middle aged.

 

They are selected from a tiny fraction of the young, fit, athletic male population.

 

By excluding a committed Christian, they are making their game less inclusive.

 

And as for Folau being a role model for young gay men, one only needs to state this proposition to understand its absurdity.

 

Footballers are not role models for anyone, other than in enjoying their sporting ability.

 

I say to any young person: if you are looking for guidance and inspiration in life, study Churchill, Lincoln, Reagan and Roosevelt, not Todd Carney.

 

By the way, that’s Ronald Reagan, not Reg Reagan.

 

Mr President, I believe that no Australian should live in fear of the words they utter.

 

No Australian should be fearful of proclaiming four of the most glorious words of our civilisation: I Am A Christian.

 

No one should be sacked by their employer for statements of genuine belief and faith that have got nothing to do with their job.

 

The Folau case exposes the new serfdom in the Australian workplace: how big companies, the corporate PC-elites are wanting to control all aspects of their employees’ lives – their religious and political views, how they speak and think, how they behave, even in their own time away from the workplace.

 

This is a stunning intrusion on workers’ rights.

 

Yet far from condemning the new serfdom, Labor and the trade unions have been cheering it on.

 

As per our One Nation election commitments, I will be moving legislation for the protection of free speech, religious freedom and the privacy rights of workers.

 

Mr President, The fightback for freedom is long overdue.

 

As is the fightback for fairness.

 

I mentioned earlier that for most people, identities of race, gender and sexuality are fixed.

 

People are born a certain way and shouldn’t be judged by the things in life they can’t change.

 

To do so is to practice the poison of identity politics.

 

It’s become the great obsession of Leftists everywhere; even though for normal people, it’s not the way in which they live their lives.

 

No one wakes up in the morning and thinks ‘I’m male or female, I’m black or white, I’m straight or gay’.

 

They start their day as workers, as parents, as family members, as community contributors.

 

Not only is identity politics irrelevant to most people, it’s a betrayal of social justice and social democracy.

 

In the 80s and 90s we were told to look through a person’s race, gender and sexuality.

 

Things like skin colour were irrelevant to a person’s true character – to their work ethic, to the way in which they care about others, to the individuality of their existence.

 

There was no need to lump them into broad, unrepresentative categories based on the primitive notion of how they look.

 

When I was first elected to Federal Parliament in 1994, if you had asked me: Who typically is the neediest person in your electorate, the one you are trying to help as a Labor MP; I would have said: A white working class man living in one of Campbelltown’s public housing estates who had been restructured out of manufacturing work in the ‘80s and now faces the indignity of long-term unemployment and welfare dependency.

 

How silly of me.

 

How little did I know.

 

Now I’m told he was an example of White Male Privilege, that the bum out of his pants was actually a rainbow shot up his backside.

 

Mr President, international studies have shown that Australia is one of the most racially tolerant and fairest nations on Earth.

 

Through equal pay and employment opportunity laws, we have also achieved large slabs of gender equality.

 

Australia now has more female than male university graduates, lawyers, GP doctors, vets, teachers, office managers and public servants.

 

When the Prime Minister’s Department tested for evidence of ‘unconscious bias’ in its 2017 BETA study of workforce recruitment practices, it found that the only type of bias was against white men.

 

Women, ethnic groups and Aborigines enjoyed favouritism in the workplace.

 

This is the truth about Australia and the fair-mindedness of our people.

 

Mr President, Identity politics is a zero-sum game.

 

It uses employment quotas and other forms of institutionalised bias to favour one hand-picked identity grouping over another, regardless of personal need.

 

This causes enormous resentment among those who miss out because they have the wrong skin colour, the wrong gender, the wrong sexuality – things they can do nothing about.

 

Divisive identity politics subdivides our society, destroying its sense of common good.

 

And it leaves the Rainbow Left impotent: they have no solution for the white welfare dependent man in a public housing estate.

 

In fact, far from helping him, perversely and tragically, they define him as part of the problem.

 

Imagine how he feels when he sees other identity categories gaining special treatment.

 

Mr President, I have studied these things all my adult life and I come to this chamber convinced there is only one way of running a fair society and that’s through merit.

 

The best person for the job must get the job, regardless of race, gender and sexuality.

 

This is why One Nation proposes to abolish employment quotas and other identity-based forms of discrimination.

 

Let me say something about identity politics at the other end of the political spectrum.

 

When Pauline Hanson approached me to run for One Nation, I insisted on all discriminatory clauses and policies being purged from the party’s platform.

 

When this happened, we were able to campaign as a pro-merit, anti-discrimination party in the NSW election.

 

I was particularly pleased that the party ran its first Islamic candidate, Emma Eros, in the seat of Hornsby.

 

In the social media storm that followed, some anti-Islamic fundamentalists told me they couldn’t vote for us as long as a Muslim was representing One Nation.

 

Privately, I thought “So be it”.

 

I oppose discrimination in all its forms, whether it’s the new anti-white racism of the Left, or the flawed belief of some that all Muslims are evil, inspired by the Koran to cut our throats when the Caliphate is called.

 

Islam, like all religions, is diverse in its range and intensity of belief.

 

It gains more public attention because, at one extreme, when it’s bad, it’s barbaric, with the horror of radical Islamic terrorism.

 

At the other extreme, it has some great people, such as the Indian Fijian community in South-West Sydney.

 

Kicked out of India for being Muslim and then kicked out of Fiji for working too hard, they have come to Australia and set up businesses, with a strong work and study ethic.

 

I know several of these families and I’m proud to call them friends.

 

As I am for Emma Eros.

 

As a party, One Nation can’t go around calling on migrants to integrate yet not support someone like Emma, who has.

 

A licensed plumber and businesswoman, she talks Western, dresses Western and works hard Western-style, yet also practices a moderate, conservative strand of Islam.

 

She’s a wonderful example of what multiculturalism should be: a seamless blend of the best of our country and her traditional beliefs.

 

Whether we are talking about the extreme Left or extreme Right of politics, the challenge – a work in perpetuity – is to overcome ignorance – for people to cross racial and religious boundaries and get to know each other, building a more trusting and cohesive society.

 

Mr President, The rise of identity politics has coincided with Australia losing control of the scale of its immigration program.

 

Governments seem to think we owe the rest of the world easy entry into our country when, in fact, immigration policy should be framed for the benefit of the people who live here now.

 

Big Australia immigration has flooded the labour market, holding down wages.

 

It has also flooded the housing market, driving up demand and prices.

 

It’s fuelling Sydney’s congestion and over-development crisis.

 

This city cannot continue to grow at 100,000 per annum, at a severe cost to the environment and residential lifestyle.

 

Whether someone is a longstanding resident or they recently came to Australia and Sydney, we are all in the same circumstance: crawling along car park roads, standing on crowded trains, trying to combat congestion and urban sprawl.

 

For a government struggling to build a couple of tram tracks down the main street, the promise of better planning is a hoax.

 

We know this problem well in Western Sydney.

 

For 40 years I’ve been arguing that jobs and services need to come to our region before the people do.

 

It’s the reason I got into politics in the first place.

 

If anything, in this era of high immigration, the problem is getting worse.

 

None of the lessons of the 1970s and 80s have been learned.

 

Look at the proposed Aerotropolis, surrounding the Badgerys Creek Airport site.

 

The government talks about it like it’s a cross between Silicon Valley and Disneyland.

 

But it’s looming as just another excuse for urban sprawl and under-servicing.

 

The government says it’s building a new city the size of Adelaide, with 1.3 million people.

 

Yet remarkably, there are no plans for a new public hospital, only a so-called ‘integrated health facility’ servicing less than 20 percent of the proposed population.

 

Adelaide has four public hospitals.

 

The Aerotropolis: None.

 

I say to the government: fix this problem.

 

It’s a huge priority for One Nation.

 

You’re creating the youth capital of Australia between Penrith and Camden.

 

It needs not only a new public hospital but also a specialist children’s hospital to cope with rapid population growth.

 

Mr President, Earlier I asked where the attacks on our country and our civilisation are coming from.

 

Here’s the problem: I’m not just talking about the usual suspects from the Green-Labor-Left.

 

I’m talking about Liberal and National Parties that have been paralysed on these issues, that haven’t stood up for freedom of speech, freedom of religion and meritocracy.

 

Specifically in this place, I’m talking about a Coalition Government that tried to abolish greyhound racing in NSW,

surrendering to a belief that animal rights are more important than human rights.

 

I’m talking about a National Party that under Minister Adrian Piccoli allowed the monstrosity of post-modernism, of fluidity theory, to run through the NSW school curriculum.

 

The Nationals used to believe in the basics of school education.

 

Sure, they’re still committed to young people learning the alphabet, but it’s the LGBTQIWTF version.

 

The rot set in under Piccoli, who amazingly, became a mouthpiece for the Teachers Federation.

 

He broke the golden rule of sound education policy in this State: when the Teachers Federation says something needs to be done, do the opposite.

 

Through a loss of academic standards, testing and grading, NSW’s school results are going backwards compared to other States and other countries.

 

There’s no one thing that’s gone wrong in the education system.

 

What we are experiencing is system failure: multiple problems feeding off each other, a downward spiral in standards and outcomes

Teacher quality has collapsed in many government schools, to the point where it now resembles social work, more than academic instruction.

 

The curriculum has been infested with ideological content, with high school English becoming a tutorial in identity-politics.

 

Student resilience is being lost, replaced by snowflake schooling, where only half-an-excuse is needed to avoid testing and grading.

 

Useless fads, like ‘growth mindset’, ‘soft skills’ and ‘progression points’ are also clogging up the classroom.

 

The ‘All Must Have Prizes’ mentality is leveling out notions of excellence and effort – like the old Soviet Union, no matter how students perform, they all get the same result and recognition.

 

In disadvantaged communities, a ‘welfare school’ model has emerged, whereby teachers pursue pastoral care and student happiness as their primary goals, rather than results and career paths.

 

I must say, Mr President, these developments break my heart.

 

One of the best parts of my life was attending Hurlstone at Glenfield – by far the best school in South-West Sydney, until Piccoli ripped it off us with his hare-brained scheme for moving it to Richmond.

 

The tragedy of declining school results is that they hit disadvantaged students hardest.

 

I can tell you, a good school is a poor kids passport to a better life.

 

There’s a mountain of work to be done in restoring these opportunities, in uplifting the standards of NSW education.

 

It’s all there in the One Nation policy platform.

 

Measurement is the key.

 

The old adage in public sector management applies: what gets measured gets done.

 

And in NSW schools, we measure very little.

 

The repair job in education is massive: hours of discussion, hundreds of questions to be asked and answered, scores of policy ideas and reform proposals to be advanced.

 

And that’s what I’ll be doing throughout this term of parliament – my word I will.

 

Mr President, I’m concerned for the future prosperity of our State.

 

There are two clear and present dangers to the NSW economy: I’ve mentioned one, in education.

 

The other is energy policy.

 

This involves a basic question of responsibility.

 

This government and this parliament has no greater duty of care to the people of NSW than to keep the lights on: so our essential services can continue to save lives, our households can continue to function and our businesses can continue to grow.

 

History shows and commonsense confirms the best way of doing this is through reliable, dispatchable baseload power.

 

To build the system on a strong foundation of fulltime, 24/7 power generation, on top of which intermittent, part-time sources can then play a role.

 

When the peak demand hits (invariably in summer) and accidents hit the system (again in summer), around-the-clock baseload power is our best insurance policy against blackouts.

 

The two ways of achieving this are through nuclear power and coal-fired stations.

 

Yet across the country, nuclear is banned, while coal is being run out of the market through the subsidies, targets and special deals being offered to renewable energy.

 

The Australian Energy Market Operator has said that in the decade to 2015, the equivalent of 30 percent of NSW’s peak electricity demand is being lost in power generation.

 

It’s being replaced by a patchwork system – a series of part-time power sources, the effectiveness of which rely heavily on weather and environmental conditions.

 

When the sun’s not shining, there’s no solar power.

 

When the wind’s not blowing, there’s no wind power.

 

When the water supply runs short, there’s no hydro.

 

Even gas power is limited, due to access and pricing issues in NSW – meaning it’s best suited to peaking plants, rather than 24/7 baseload.

 

These are part-time sources of power.

 

Yes, it may be possible to cobble them together in a way that meets full-time electricity demands.

 

But the risks are high.

 

We are talking about a privatised, vertically integrated market where normal pricing signals don’t apply.

 

There are perverse incentives to short the market, as we have seen with AGL.

 

In terms of green technology, there’s another leap of faith: reliance on the rapid development of battery storage.

 

Good luck with that.

 

For all the PR hoopla about Elon Musk’s battery farm in South Australia, it has a capacity for meeting the needs of the Tomago aluminum smelter in the Hunter Valley for just 8 minutes.

 

In truth, the projections for energy production and peak energy consumption in NSW are beginning to separate, in the wrong direction.

 

The State is losing its energy self-sufficiency.

 

The likely tipping point, a heightened risk of blackouts will occur in the summer of 2022/23, following the closure of Liddell.

 

As a parliament, our responsibility, our duty of care to the people of NSW is to make provision now, right now, for this contingency.

 

We have to stop sleepwalking into disaster.

 

Mr President, I’m not a climate denier.

 

I respect all forms of science.

 

But just as much, I don’t believe in running public policy through the work of zealots.

 

And that’s what renewables have become – a new pagan religion, whereby the Green-Left wants to hand over human control of our energy grid to the vagaries of the weather, through wind and sun worship.

 

We are being asked to change the climate by relying on the weather – a high-risk, paradoxical way of planning for the needs of a modern economy.

 

There is a place for renewables in the system.

 

But it must be supplementary to baseload power, not the other way around.

 

Currently the Federal Labor Shadow Minister for Energy, Mark Butler, is promising the Australian people a new era of “dispatchable renewable energy”.

 

Yet when the wind is not blowing and the sun is not shining, there is nothing to dispatch.

 

Butler will end up being the Minister for Blackouts.

 

Mr President, our Asian economic competitors must be laughing their heads off.

 

Australia is the world’s most resource-rich nation yet we have some of the world’s highest electricity prices, and we’re shedding generation capacity that would otherwise meet 30

percent of public demand during the hot summers of the nation’s largest State.

 

NSW should be a global energy super-power, with abundant nuclear, coal-fired, gas and renewable energy.

 

How can this goal be achieved?

 

I have confidence in the new Energy Minister Matt Kean.

 

Under his policy leadership, it would be wise for the government to pivot away from a renewables fetish and emphasise the importance of energy security and affordability.

 

One Nation offers its cooperation in implementing 6 vital changes:

 

  1. Upgrading the capacity of our inter-state connectors, especially into coal-rich Queensland;
  2. Bundling up the State Government’s electricity consumption and putting out to tender a supply contract exclusively for additional coal-fired power;
  3. Abolishing all targets, subsidies and special deals for renewables – leveling the playing field on the production side of the market;
  4. Abolishing the government’s Climate Change Fund, which has become a slush fund for projects unrelated to climate change. This would cut electricity prices for households and businesses;
  5. Immediate approval of the Santos project at Narrabri to overcome the State’s chronic deficiency in gas supply – this is no longer an environmental or land use issue, but a question of keeping the lights on;
  6. In longer term planning for the State, lifting the ban on uranium mining and nuclear power, as per the Deputy Premier’s policy. I can advise the House that yesterday I gave notice of a Private Member’s Bill for this purpose.

 

Mr President, I’ve had a fortunate life.

 

As a child, my parents told me to study hard at school and I did.

 

As a young man I had the honour of being Labor Mayor of my hometown, Liverpool, building facilities that should have been built 30 years earlier.

 

Then I had the opportunity to serve in the House of Representatives, doing what very few Australians ever have a chance to do: running to run the country at a general election.

 

For the past 14 years I’ve had the greatest joy and responsibility of my life: as a home dad, as a primary carer, giving support and all my love to my wife Janine and our three children, Oliver, Isaac and Siena.

 

When I left the Federal Parliament in 2005, the words of the former Member for Bass, Warwick Smith, echoed in my ears: “Every day you spend away from your children is a day you never get back.”

 

The days and years with my children have been the best of my life but now they are so much older and, through them, having seen what the government school system has become, it was time to come here to do something about it.

 

On 23 March, among the minor parties on our side of politics, three MLCs were elected – two from One Nation.

 

I congratulate my friend and colleague Rod Roberts on his election and thank those who made it possible: our party leader Senator Pauline Hanson, a committed patriot who would do anything for her country.

 

Our highly dedicated NSW One Nation officials Mick Jackson and Amit Batish, all our candidates, party workers and volunteers.

 

I especially thank my campaign manager Corrine Barraclough, who was magnificent in every respect.

 

I also thank Alan Jones, who at various times gave me a chance when no one else would.

 

No one in Australian public life does more research or is more thoroughly across his brief than Alan, making him not only a great broadcaster but a great fighter for Australia.

 

Most of all, I thank the people of NSW who have given me a second go at parliamentary service.

 

To top the personal vote, below-the-line, at the election confirms a special responsibility.

 

Our supporters are a long way from the centre of political power but they hold a powerful belief in what politics should be.

 

They are salt-of-the earth people without a parliamentary or media megaphone of their own.

 

So they rely on parties like Pauline Hanson’s One Nation to fight for the things they love about their country.

 

Mr President, For those of us who believe in the virtues of Western civilisation, who treasure the advances and values of the Enlightenment, who look at Talmage’s painting and marvel at its meaning, this is the fight of our lives.

 

Our ethos, sir, is simple:

 

No surrender.

 

No surrender in any debate, in any institution, on any front.

 

No surrender in trying to take back our country,

 

That, Mr President, is why I’m here and what I’m fighting for.

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