Novae Meridianae Demetae Dexter delenda est

Cato the Elder was reputed to end every speech with Carthago delenda est meaning "Carthage must be destroyed, even if the speech did not mention Carthage at all.

Carthage and Rome vied for supremacy in the Mediterranean Sea and after the Third Punic War the Romans did indeed destroy Carthage, though its remnants are now a suburb of Tunis in Tunisia.

The principle that Cato was espousing - a single minded focus on the ultimate goal of an intense rivalry - is what I think is the mission necessary to revive politics in Australia.

The enemy is identified as a group of politicians who aspire for power for power's sake, who practice the craft of politics as a conquest of wills and not ideals, who aim to achieve power through patronage and deals.

These people can be found everywhere in modern politics - but nowhere are they found in such concentration, and with such purity of ideological non-commitment, as they are in the NSW Right of the ALP.

So when I say Novae Meridianae Demetae Dexter delenda est (The NSW Right must be destroyed) it is not just the NSW Right that I am focussing on. It is those in the ALP Left, and amongst the conservatives and even the Greens who have emptied political discourse of discussion of values and ideals, and supplanted them with techniques for acquiring power and bestowing patronage.

And so I might say - in the longer version also attributed to Cato;

Ceterum autem censeo, Novae Meridianae Demetae Dexter esse delendam

"Furthermore, I think the NSW Right must be destroyed."