In ‘The Adventure of Silver Blaze’, one of the Sherlock Holmes short stories, Holmes is sent to investigate the disappearance – on the eve of an important race – of a champion racehorse called Silver Blaze, and the death of its trainer John Straker.

In what has become a famous exchange known as ‘the curious incident of the dog in the night-time’ between Scotland Yard’s Inspector Gregory and Sherlock Holmes, Gregory asks Holmes, ‘Is there any other point to which you would wish to draw my attention?’

‘Yes’, Holmes replied, ‘To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time’.

‘But the dog did nothing in the night-time’, said Gregory.

‘That was the curious incident’, Holmes replied.

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That the dog didn’t bark told Holmes the person who took the racehorse was known to the dog. The thief was not a stranger. It was an inside job.

This exchange has become symbolic of the need to speak up or ‘bark’ when something is amiss.

Rest assured, here at the Australian Family Party we will not hesitate to bark.

There is no doubt South Australia has economic and social problems that it is going to have to solve – high mortgages (forcing both parents out to work), high cost of living (educating and raising children, power prices, water prices), health (bulk billing, ambulance ramping) – and social ills caused by the rupturing of family relationships.

Our State also has economic and social goals it wants to achieve.

But all we seem to get are endless announcements and pronouncements – ninety per cent of which is all BS according to our Premier – about ship building, green hydrogen, 24/7 pharmacies, upgrading Main South Road and all manner of other government grants and subsidies.

The Australian Family Party believes it is the family that should be the State’s top priority.

We believe it is time to strengthen the family, to protect the family, to fight for the family.

Let’s face it, your family is the only thing you’d take a bullet for.

Family provides meaning, belonging and security. Strong family relationships reduce depression and anxiety disorders, strengthen the immune system and speed recovery from surgery.

We all know there is no model or perfect family – every family is flawed in some way because it is made up of flawed human beings. But the family is the place to cultivate the right way to view life and the world around us. These are indeed difficult times, but we’ve known hardships before. They are the snakes and ladders of life and these too will pass.

The Coincidence - a novel by Gabriel Moens

Social ills caused by the rupturing of family relationships – divorce, de-facto relationships, fatherless households, single mothers bringing up children, high housing costs – lead to a breakdown in society.

Family breakdown is costly. Mental illness costs the economy $200bn a year. More than 3,000 Australians take their lives each year. More young men take their own lives than are killed in road accidents. Boys raised in father-absent environments are five times more likely to commit suicide, ten times more likely to abuse drugs, fourteen times more likely to commit rape, and twenty times more likely to end up in a correctional facility. Fatherless households are a dreadful problem.

As are divorce, domestic violence, loneliness and addiction to alcohol, gambling, drugs and pornography.

Suicide rates are on the rise. Rates of depression have sky-rocketed. Drug overdoses, the ICE scourge – something is very wrong.

As The Australian’s Paul Kelly has said, ‘An alarming number of people are damaged, lonely or depressed. This is the road Australia is travelling.’

The Australian Family Party believes we can serve Australia best by putting the family first.

We can build up society by building up the family. Faith and family, a sublime combination.

Which brings us to the South Australian by-election for the seat of Dunstan, caused by the retirement of former Liberal Premier Steven Marshall.

Matthew Abraham, who has been covering SA politics for a very long time, said before the last State election that he could see no ideological differences between Liberal and Labor.

“Steven Marshall is now essentially a Labor premier”, he said.

In 2017, Christopher Pyne, then leader of the Liberal Party’s left-leaning, progressive faction and mentor to Steven Marshall, said the Liberal progressives were winning the internal battle against the Party’s conservatives. “We’re in the winning circle”, he said.

How well did that work out for them?

Well, both men are now gone, the Liberal Party having lost both State and Federal elections in 2022.

In South Australia, the Liberals have now elected a more conservative leader in David Speirs to help them return to the real winning circle.

As a token of support – the Australian Family Party believes David Speirs has earned the right to lead his party to the next general election – we will be preferencing the Liberal Party – see How-to-Vote card (right).

The Australian Family Party’s candidate in Dunstan is Dr Nicole Hussey. A former research scientist who now teaches biology and chemistry, Nicole has had a wide experience in the medical/scientific sector and has direct knowledge of our education system.

The by-election is on Saturday 23 March, with early voting from 12 March – 22 March.

If you would like to help Nicole, please let us know here (choose Federal Director from the button list).

Thank you for your support.

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Bob Day AO is federal director of the Australian Family Party. His former roles include federal Senator for South Australia, national president of the Housing Industry Association, director of the Centre for Independent Studies and chairman of North East Vocational College. Bob was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in 2003 for service to the housing industry, the community and social welfare – particularly housing the homeless. [more]

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