Loss of face worse than loss of lives?

By December 31, 2020Australian Politics, Society

The bizarre behaviour of the New South Wales government in dealing with the recent outbreak of Covid-19, which started in the northern beaches and has spread to several other places, is mind boggling. The motivation seems impossible to understand until you realise that the lockdown and mandating of face masks instituted by the premier of Victoria, Daniel Andrews during the recent outbreak in that state, worked spectacularly well. The reason the Premier of NSW, Gladys Berejiklian cannot adopt those tried and true methods to suppress or eradicate the virus, is precisely because they worked in Victoria and to emulate them would be to admit that the Andrews got it right, and the abuse he received at the time from members of the Victorian opposition, the ‘ruperters’ of the Murdoch media and members of the federal Coalition government, was just toddlers throwing their toys out of the playpen. Given the content of the opprobrium aimed at Andrews during the Victorian lockdown, the metaphor is appropriate. One can only hope that Berejiklian’s unwillingness to cause all those toddlers to lose face by instituting a more stringent lockdown and mandating facemasks, as well as her allowing the third test to take place at the Sydney Cricket Ground does not end up killing people. Playing politics with people’s lives is a very low act.


  • jim says:

    While what is suggested is correct, we should not forget that it was the incompetence of the Andrews government, for which no-one is prepared to take responsibility, that led to several hundred unnecessary deaths in Victoria. I also have serious doubts about playing the third cricket test in Sydney.

    • admin says:

      It certainly was a monumental stuffup in hotel quarantine that apparently caused the Victorian outbreak. However, it seems that the NSW outbreak is a stuffup too, by not requiring favoured people to enter quarantine when they arrive in Australia.

      • Jess Evans says:

        Is that true? I haven’t heard this.. I have a german twitter friend who is coming over later this month on a business trip. Wants to see me. I asked about quarantine and he said “i am already in quarantine in Germany, due to the business trip. If i test negative on arrival in Australia, no quarantine will be required” . Mind blown. I almost started typing that of course quarantine would be required, it is for everyone.. and then realised who is in Government and their track record with mates and industry, and said nothing further. We will see.

  • Jon says:

    That’s simplistic imo Jim. Ultimately the virus was brought to aged care homes not by government and its agents but by ignorant, complacent, self-centred individuals, primarily private “security” workers. Despite world headlines and a barrage of Fed and state govt media these people appear to be some of the very few in this country who were oblivious to the contagiousness of C19 and its dangers to older people. Govt action and inaction (eg not paying sick leave, not making it an offence to enter an aged care facility while ill or where a worker had contact with possible carriers, not making regular testing compulsory for certain workers, ignoring resourcing issues which had been exposed to the Morrison govt in the RC), senior Vic public servants behaving foolishly and dismissively, and private facility owners all contributed. We of course have the huge advantage of hindsight when considering what should and could have been done.

    Shirking responsibility is a hallmark of politics in this country. That trait/character flaw has been championed by conservatives in Canberra for at least two decades. It was also a characteristic of church and other leaders involved in massive institutional abuse, so why stop now? Frankly it appears to be an Australian trait that we don’t seriously hold any of our leaders to account for anything, we’re too f’ing self-centred and complacent to care. Or maybe “we” have just given up on the eternal vigilance warning.

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