Founder of the Australian Conservatives, Senator Cory Bernardi says Australia is at a crossroads, where the line stands between authoritarianism or freedom. We spent a morning in Canberra discussing the temper of the nation, the rise of Conservatism in Australia and why the Senator believes sound fiscal policy will fuel SMBs and big business under his leadership…

By Joanne Leila Smith

Like all Schools of Thought each has its origin in one bright spark, which usually emerges in a chaotic moment in time. If we look, for example, to Sigmund Freud as the father of modern Psychology, or René Descartes, whom is widely considered the first modern western European philosopher, we might cast our eyes post-war; to the ‘new world’ in North America, when, during another tumultuous period of civil unrest was playing out in the United States during the 1950s.

A young Yale graduate, William Frank Buckley Jr., established The National Review in 1955, which firmly posited Buckley Jr. as the father of Modern Conservatism in western discourse (Classical Conservatism has a few distinctly different tenets from the Modern which we won’t unpack here).

Few modern Conservative voices resonated as widely in western politics as Buckley Jr., and today, his legacy is still highly influential – and identifiable. While Modern Conservatism spawned a few less desirable offshoots, such as extreme radical nationalism, nativism, some shared traits of neo-liberalism, neo-conservatism and aspects of what’s currently been dubbed the post-Christian alt-right, the ideals of traditional conservatism is still the most adhered-to ideology in the west today – with views held by most of the body politic; its tenets are based in upholding law and order, tradition, and the moral authority of Judeo-Christian doctrine (think western leaders such as Washington, Adams, Eisenhower, Churchill, and Truman) all of which pledged to uphold and defend the values of the west and its cultural foundations.

If we move further ahead in time, to the southern hemisphere, we may point to one of Australia’s most recent and vocal advocates and defenders of Modern Conservatism, whose policies are very clearly influenced by Buckley Jr., South Australian Senator, Cory Bernardi.

While Senator Bernardi may not be beloved by most of mainstream Australian media, his base, since launching the Australian Conservatives in 2017, aft

Cory Bernardi, Australian Conservatives, INDVSTRVS, Joanne Leila Smith

Cory Bernardi – Coaxing Conservatives out of the Closet

Founder of the Australian Conservatives, Senator Cory Bernardi says Australia is at a crossroads, where the line stands between authoritarianism or freedom. We spent a morning in Canberra discussing the temper of the nation, the rise of Conservatism in Australia and why the Senator believes sound fiscal policy will fuel SMBs and big...


Tanya Jackson-Vaughan, INDVSTRVS, Joanne Leila Smith, RACS

Tanya Jackson-Vaughan – On Strangers in a Strange Land

Our sense of belonging is not just rooted in seeing reflections of the same faces in our streets, but in acknowledging that all peoples share the same desire for self-determination, and, to have a place to call home. We chat with Pro Bono Australia 2016 !MPACT25 Winner, Executive Director of RACS, Tanya Jackson-Vaughan...


INDVSTRVS, Joanne Leila Smith, Emma Gilthorpe, Heathrow Airport expansion

Emma Gilthorpe – A People Mobiliser

After the world recovered from the shock of Britain voting to leave the EU in June 2016, socio-economic and political uncertainty still prevails. However, if the recent green light by the UK Government in October 2016 for Heathrow to proceed with the hotly-contested Heathrow Airport expansion is anything to go by, one could...


Shannon Sedgwick, Joanne Leila Smith, Global Media Risk, GMR, INDVSTRVS

Shannon Sedgwick – An Invisible Light

While the battle for freedom of the press was once perceived as a third world casualty, we are now seeing western democracies openly challenge what has traditionally been viewed as a one of the cornerstones of democratic principles. We spent an afternoon chatting with a devastatingly gorgeous and introspective Global Media Risk CEO...


Joey Williams, Joanne Leila Smith, INDVSTRVS, The Enemy Within

Joey Williams – The Pensive Pugilist

After spending a day in Wiradjuri Country with former NRL player turned professional boxer Joey Williams, we left feeling humbled by his journey to establish The Enemy Within; an ambassador charity with Suicide Prevention Australia that educates at-risk youths. For Williams, fighting for genuine national reconciliation is central to the success of his...


Dirk Ziekenheiner, Joanne Leila Smith

Dirk Ziekenheiner – A Fairdinkum Firey

While most of us go about our day job relatively stress-free, Senior Firefighter Dirk Ziekenheiner digs deep daily to help others in oftentimes life-threatening situations. Instead of finding a serious chap, we were delighted to spend an afternoon with a reflective, jovial champion that left us feeling like there’s always some good to...


Captain Mona Shindy, Joanne Leila Smith

Mona Shindy – The Considered Captain

As a young engineer, Mona Shindy was one of three women to first serve on a Royal Australian Navy warship HMAS Canberra in 1992. Fast forward to 2017, a warm and articulate Australian Defence Force Captain Shindy gets candid about leadership, empathy, and starting conversations that matter… By Joanne Leila Smith Since the...