To The Australian How can the Liberal Party regain strength and impetus in our national affairs? Michael Sexton analyses problems ("Liberals face decline amid shifting public priorities", 23/4), but does not provide ideas for reform. The greatest mistake the party can make, as Malcolm Turnbull has helped show, is to turn itself into a second centre-left party. Rather, it must "go right", but this must be done in an intelligent manner. What does that require? Firstly, a new effort must be made to build a narrative of Australia as a great nation with further greatness ahead of it. This means celebration of the British settlement, our roles in two world wars and several minor conflicts, our pioneering history and our construction of a modern free nation based on an outstanding constitution which it is difficult for the left-wing zealots to erode. Secondly the party needs to associate itself strongly with sacred tradition - not just Christian tradition and certainly not "old-fashioned" Christian practice. Leave atheism and rationalism for the ALP and the Greens. Thirdly, and most painfully, the party must detach itself from the "anti-racism" zealotry that has done immense harm to our sense of who we are and where we can go. This, especially, will call for gallantry and honesty; for there are very powerful interests opposed to such necessary reform. And fourthly the party must not allow its identity to be primarily tied to business and economic issues. These lack glamour and have been over-emphasised in recent decades.
Nigel Jackson, Belgrave, Vic
*Responsibility for electoral comment authorised by K. W. Grundy 13 Carsten Court, Happy Valley, SA.