The following is an excerpt from Chapter Five of David McKnight, 'Beyond Right and Left: New Politics and the Culture War', (Allen & Unwin, Sydney, 2005).
[Apart from the Iraq war]'there is another war of values, and it is the culture war being fought within the West. This is the war between those who feel that on the whole our values and traditions are sound, and those among the intellectuals who argue that they are simply a cloak for racism and brute power.
- Editorial, The Australian, 12 April 2003
At its heart Howardism is about the culture war. Howard knows that Australia must change and he has long championed economic liberalism and deregulation. But Howard sees no need for cultural reinvention driven by the urban intellectual elites.
- Paul Kelly, The Australian, 27 October 2001
In early 2004, the Prime Minister, John Howard, sparked a brief but intense national debate about the values taught in public and private schools. Parents were increasingly sending their children to private schools because, he said, 'they feel that government schools have become too politically correct and too values-neutral'. The acting Education Minister, Peter McGauran joined in, adding that too many government schools were 'hostile or apathetic to Australian heritage and values'. Treasurer Peter Costello backed his leader. Parents turned to private schools, he said, because they delivered hard work, achievement by effort, respect for other people and strong academic standards.