Among all the vegetables in the crisper drawer of Sky After Dark (SAD), Paul Murray has a regular spot, I believe; and like all the other people there, he is a right wing nutter. However, he has just come out with something so astonishing and hilarious that it makes you wonder whether he is in control of his faculties, or what level he reached in his education. Like many in the Liberal Party, he is foaming at the mouth to try to damage Victorian Premier, Daniel Andrews, who is dealing with a severe second wave of Covid-19 infection in the state. Andrews shows up for his press conference every day, and with his chief medical officer, Brett Sutton, answers questions often for an hour or more. The fact that even after weeks of this abuse from the Liberal Party, they cannot seem to dent either Andrews’ composure, his popularity or the support the Victorian community has shown for the lockdown. This is in stark contrast to Scott Morrison, who sends out others to deliver bad news, simply will not answer questions if he doesn’t like them, and whines about the lockdowns or the Labor states’ border closures. This inability to dent Andrews is driving the Liberals and their fellow travellers nuts, so that now, they are getting desperate, to the point of losing all reason. This is exemplified by what Murray said a night or two ago: ‘Melbourne will have to endure a 112 day lockdown for 661 deaths, while Italy had 35,524 deaths and a 58 day lockdown and London saw 41,549 people die and their lockdown only went for 104 days. He followed this with “This doesn’t make any sense.1” Indeed.
This lunacy has clearly spread to other parts of the Liberal Party’s public relations firm, NewsCorp. Murray’s figures were recycled by Sophie Elsworth, National personal finance writer & columnist for Murdoch-owned newspapers, who tweeted: “Lockdown in Victoria versus rest of the world: – Italy, 35,534 deaths, 58 lockdown days – China, 4634 deaths, 77 days – London, 41,569 deaths, 104 days – VICTORIA, 661 deaths, 112 days….2”
Neither of these Brassicas* seem to be aware that the figures they quote are actually making the case for a more sustained lockdown. The longer and more effective the lockdown, the fewer the deaths. It is difficult to understand how their numbers could be construed even remotely by Murray or Elsworth as supporting their argument. I know it is unlikely to be the case, given their previous utterances, but one could be forgiven for thinking that these bizarre efforts by Murray and Elsworth are designed to undermine Murdoch’s media empire.
*Brassica: A genus of plant in the mustard family (Brassicaceae), which in this context, appropriately, includes vegetables such as the cabbage.