Mungo MacCallum on Covid-19

As so often with Morrison, there is no overall strategy – simply a series of reactive measures which, he hopes, will do the job unless a next one is needed. and then another one, and another one …

Scott Morrison insists that his message is clear – the government is fully on top of the coronavirus crisis, there is no reason for doubt or uncertainty.

Well, up to a point, prime minister. Viewed individually, ScoMo’s present barrage of edicts are indeed firm and unequivocal. If they are taken at face value, there is no room for confusion.

But the problem is that, taken together, they are not only confusing but often self-contradictory. As so often with Morrison, there is no overall strategy – simply a series of reactive measures which, he hopes, will do the job unless a next one is needed. and then another one, and another one …

The basic dilemma that has still not been resolved is whether we are to treat this as a disaster on a truly monumental scale, a crisis like the great pandemics of the past, rivaling world wars and the Great Depression in their long term destruction; or a temporary set back – a severe one, no doubt, but an aberration that can be managed with a shit load of taxpayer money a dash of discipline and patriotism until we bounce back and a resiient Australia resumes its triumphal progress under the steady and stable hands of the coalition.

In the first scenario, we have closed our borders, the Reserve Bank has taken unprecedented steps to save the remnants of a devastated economy and a quasi state of emergency is in place – there is even talk of the free-enterprise government considering nationalising sections of industry and rationing essential goods

But on the other side, gatherings have been limited but not shut down, schools, universities and even casinos remain open for business, and although I have been condemned to home isolation, I am able — indeed encouraged – to watch TV sport in which groups of athletes indulge in as much close personal contact as possible.

And there is confusion at all levels. In spite of Morrison’s worthy initiative in bringing the state and territory leaders into a national cabinet, he has mean-mindedly excluded the federal opposition .. Anthony Albanese has pointedly not been offered a guernsey. Although the idea is apparently to coordinate a nationwide approach Tasmania has effectively seceded from the mainland. Mixed messages galore.

And there is little point in telling everyone else to shut up and do what we are told, when those telling us admit that things are changing too fast for even them to catch up. The chief Medical Officer, Brendan Murphy, said last week that the schools would, must, stay open – for now, but if circumstances changed, so would the policy.

Fair enough, but hardly reassuring to those who are already conflicted about what to do with their children. The Catholics are in open warfare, and some others in the private sector are voting with their feet. The arguments are complex and there is sense on both sides.

Morrison is adhering to the official, current, advice – he says he is happy to send his own children to school and for what it’s worth I feel the same about my grandchildren. But I do not regard Morrison’s – or my own – preference as making the position, or the message, unequivocally clear.

It would be nice to think that the resumption of parliament will sort it all out. Perhaps such wishful thinking is about all we have left.

Republished with – I devoutly hope – the kind permission of John Menadue

934 thoughts on “Mungo MacCallum on Covid-19

  1. NO WONDER THE DUNNY PAPER KEEPS ON RUNNING OUT ON ME
    by John Shortis

    I’m showing true resistance
    Sitting on my toilet bowl
    Two metres social distance
    Between each toilet roll
    Another can of kidney beans
    For breakfast, lunch and tea
    No wonder the dunny paper keeps on running out on me

    Running out on me
    Running out on me
    No wonder the dunny paper keeps on
    Running out on me

    I’ve made the big decision
    I’m at home to stay
    So I’m watching television
    Sixteen hours a day
    My neighbour’s brought a curry dish
    It’s ScoMo’s recipe
    No wonder the dunny paper keeps on running out on me

    Running out on me ETC

    Being panic buying (Panic buying)
    Buying everything in sight
    If the virus doesn’t get me
    Then the TV dinners might

    To fit my brand new freezer in
    I’ve had to renovate
    Now that I have food to last
    Till twenty-twenty-eight
    All those frozen pizzas
    Jalapeno, pepperoni
    No wonder the dunny paper keeps on running out on me

    Running out on me ETC

  2. Note the bit in Alex Pareene’s article about the “real economy” vs saving the rich.

  3. Another comforting thought about Tacker’s recent peaceful passing is it was all over before the need to explain that the banning of physical contact does mean no hand licking of visitors or friends passing the gate and absolutely no bottom sniffing of strangers on the street.

    We have a huge railed yard, back and front. I wonder how apartment dwellers and their pets are coping?.

    • I am so sorry to hear about Tacker. I know what that is to say goodbye to a furbaby, and every single one of them never leaves my heart. And I do not care what anyone says, Rainbow Bridge exists.

      Many virtual hugs.

  4. Hi again!

    Hope everybody is well and free of the Corona Virus and the Fear of Corona Virus? Mum managed to catch a cold which caused me worry: at 99 + 1 month she has no immune system left. She managed to give me that cold but I have shrugged it off already. I am worried about my sister, 69 and still teaching primary school. Being on any number of stupid fad diets which means she is anemic and has soft bones

    As I texted my fave niece: if we get through this without being infected (. . .or worse) it is partly due to our dogs: niece has a small dog of terrier and chihuahua mix and my jack russell/maltese terrier bitch (had to have her put her down just before Christmass: I had always assumed she would die under the wheels of a car as she loved to escape (to return 5-10 minutes later, she knew where food appeared) but it was her other passion, eating anything that had the slightest smell of food on it, that wrecked her stomach and blocked her bowel. Anyway, dogs and cats that go outside and back inside bring some dirt and germs which means their owner’s immune system has to work fairly hard, keeping it in good shape.

    Hmmm, eating anything. . .last April I was in Tassie, staying at the B&B I always stay at, and had ordered a chili pizza. It lived up to its name, I had to eat it slowly else too bloody hot! Burn mouth! I ate all but one biggish slice and told Demi, let us go and lie down. I woke up two hours later and my immediate thought was “That pizza box is no longer on the table” nor was it, but the bitch did not make too much mess opening it, fortunately. My thoughts were: she would have bolted the pizza slice like dogs bolt all their food and dogs have hardly any taste buds so her mouth would have been OK but—did she drop some redhot farts?

    I took Mum to the Barossa last Friday, even our GP could not gainsay that, we did not get close to more than 2 people. Getting stir crazy is no good either!

    In the US Trumpy seems intent on making COVID19 as bad and dangerous as possible, still holding rallies and encouraging his idiot supporters to pack churches at Easter. Words fail me, not even Scummo is that daft!

    I had made a plaintive plea to sister (who looks after Mum while I in Tassie so that has to coincide with SA school holidays) for one or two more days longer in Tassie—woah! “You ARE coming back on the Saturday night ferry, eh?” and my fave niece chimed in “Mum has to teach!” So I booked THREE weeks ferry/accommodation. THAT caused a stir, I am selfish etc etc. Don ’t care. If the Corona virus measures are relaxed I will do just that, if not I will get the guy who receives the trees I ordered and looks after them to plant the trees into planter bags and I will take 3 weeks in April to spend in Tassie. HOPE I can travel in Sep tho: looking after a demented senior who is incontinent AND on diuretics (YES, UGH!) is not easy and the offers of respite from sister and nieces has NOT eventuated, too easy to leave it all to me. Well, I am not made of cement and need respite.

    Grubbing in the clay of my block, seeing the vision I had being made real is so invigorating!

    Not easy work, the soil is no longer pure clay but it is heavy work still!

    I have pears from England, Belgium, France and Australia (“Packham’s Triumph”) and apples from France, UK, America and Australia—the Granny Smith of course.

    I love the names and the backstories to the names: Bramley’s Seedling. This was a tree started by a young girl who planted 5 apple pips in a pot. Her name was Mary (my younger sister’s name) and she looked after the seedling that appeared and the only one that was any good got planted in the garden and it flourished and the apples were great. Her name was not Bramley, that was the name of the butcher who bought the house, land and tree 40-odd years later and, when an orchardist wanted to take “cuttings” aka scionwood he was allowed as long as the apple was named after the butcher. Some may know Bramley’s Seedling as the most popular cooking apple in the UK. Lots get added to cider crushes. There was another apple variety found by another Mary: anybody know which Mary what the name of the apple variety is?

    There is an apple variety called French Crab which may be French but is not a crabapple.

    There are two Australian crab apples. Huonville crab has red skin, red flesh, even red sap! Fine to eat, juice or turn into cider. The other is the Ranelagh crab, finally ripens in the last week of AUGUST! Lovely little red apples.

    Anyway, keep washing those hands, keep hands away from your face, practice social distance, fucking break out now and then and keep safe!

  5. Glad to hear it was just a cold. Developing symptoms like that at this time would be cause for a major “panic” .

  6. Can anyone anywhere explain to me why the Prime Minister has declared this is a National Emergency and then closed Parliament and left the capital? So who is running the country? Did Parliament agree to its own
    closure? Did I miss something? When was there debate on this? Surely the Opposition has some rights here? If Morrison wants to resign and the Opposition can’t take over, can’t we have Malcolm back or some other sensible person in the Coalition? Or aren’t any of our elected representatives wanting to earn the money we’ve paid them all these years?

    • Because he can, I suppose.And because he’s a lazy, incompetent fool.

      It’s even worse though – he has appointed a bunch of Liberal Party mates (plus Greg Combet) as a commission to look after the things his government should be taking care off.

      He might as well bugger off back to Hawaii for all the use he’s been and will be while Australia tries to cope with a pandemic.

      This is a good thread on the “National COVID-19 Co-ordination Commission” – not one medical person on the board, let alone an epidemiologist. Just a bunch of business heads plus his good mates Gaetjens and Pezzullo.

      All the names are here –
      https://www.pm.gov.au/media/national-covid-19-coordination-commission

    • Paul Little formerly Toll Holdings has displayed his uniquely poor judgement in handling the Covid19 crisis in his role at the Melb Grand Prix Corporation refusing o cancel the Grand Prix before the teams left Europe. The Grand Prix was cancelled on day 2 when the teams refused to race and the Premier Dan Andrews stopped spectators entering the track

      If the Grand Prix had been cancelled a week earlier Melbourne would have had far fewer infections

      Appointing Paul Little to Morrison’s Covid19 Coordination Commission is akin to appointing the person who permitted the Ruby Princess passengers to disembark

    • People who worked for Toll Holdings before it was sold to Japan Post say that Little was a micromanager. He would have been unable to grow Toll Holdings any larger.

      I think he is an appalling choice for a national board in this crisis

    • Labor objected to the ‘closure’ of Parliament, but they did it anyway. If we survive this virus, we are going to end up thinking we are in hell. This is the start of the dictatorship in Australia.

    • Told youse there had been a coup.

      First he sends parliament home, in recess for five months, so there can be no parliamentary oversight of anything he or his ministers do, no holding to account, no scrutiny.

      Then he appoints a commission of cronies to allegedly “solve problems” (his words) created by the virus, something parliament should be doing at no extra cost to taxpayers. Instead he decides to enrich some lackeys by placing them in charge as an executive board. This new commission will be based – very conveniently – in the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.

      The first media statement from the commission is all about forcing people who have no work to relocate to somewhere this board believes they will be useful and commandeering unused “equipment” for repurposing.

      I can’t wait for the next report. It will probably be something about giving us all coloured armbands denoting our plague status – black for infected, red for infected but recovered, white for not yet infected etc.

  7. Thank you to the Pubster who gave us “shop like a Russian”. Over the last week I now feel qualified to declare I have been “shopping like a Russian” . Gave an ex workmate who is Russian a good LOL when I told him. So to all of you my second fave Russian word Davai ! ………… fave is Zapoi. That they have a word for such a thing wins it for me.

    p.s. Zapoi- the colloquial meaning not the literal meaning 🙂

  8. For the first time in this pandemic, after reading on Twitter of a guy who did not get to see his Mum before she died today, the tears are starting to leak out of my eyes.

    The world will be in grief, and mostly we all will be alone in it. It is not just the death of people. We are seeing the death of what we know as the world before February 2020. We hope for something better, an improvement, but it is a time of great change, and there is a palpable sense of it.

    If it was a pizza, we would each get a slice.

    There is a powerlessness when we know we cannot protect our loved ones, and that we are relying on the acts of strangers to keep them safe.

    Our media and social media bombards us with the worst behaviour, overwhelming stories of kindness, heroism and goodness. Our faith in the acts of strangers for the common good is in tatters.

    There will be more suicides. That is a given. One does not have to have read Durkheim to realise that. But as he found all those years ago, suicides go up when the social fabric is damaged.

    We have no Churchill, Roosevelt, or Queen Elizabeth 1st to place our unreserved trust in to lead us out of trouble. Just when we needed a cool head, a seasoned leader and negotiator capable of informing the people clearly of the situation, and of making the sacrifices needed seem reasonable, we have weak and fearful men in charge, And they are men, albeit with females in collusion.

    And by sitting at home it seems we have nothing that we can do to help. The most important thing is not to do anything. We just have to sit and wait to see if the medical professions can do what our government cannot, which is hope, at least.

    We have people seeing grandkids or parents for maybe the last time, or not depending on fate and medicine. How incredibly sad is that?

    So we have confused, powerless, possibly grieving people connected by whatever electronic device they got before the shops shut (and who is going to fix, replace it if it breaks down?) with no leadership, no good examples from the top echelons of town and with conflicting information. Hope can erode fast.

    And our gov’t has the ‘Out to Lunch’ sign up for the next five months!

    My tears are falling for all of you, not just for myself. It seems like the end of the world, and I do not greet it with a sense of rapture or a smirk.

    I do remember Arthur saying with a little smile and a hand stroking my hair, ‘Never mind lass, you never know what the future will bring, it will be alright you see.’ As Arthur witnessed ww2 very up close and personal, I take heed of his words.

    But except for some cheesy ‘when we get over the bridge to the other side’ phrase, there is nothing to reassure us that this emerging bungle won’t end up as a massive clusterfvck killing thousands more than it should.

    Our government should resign now.

    And I am sending a virtual hug to anyone who needs one.
    >—-(^_^)—-<

  9. Breaking social distancing guidelines and self-isolation rules in NSW will get you an immediate on-the-spot fine of $1000 and possibly a spell in prison.

    Great.

    What happens if you are one of the army of newly unemployed people and are flat, stony broke? How do you pay a fine? I suppose it’s straight to jail for you, where you will cost the NSW government a great deal more than $1000 in bed, board and guarding.

    And what happens to the real criminals while all the Mr and Ms Plods are chasing anyone they think might be standing too close to another human or breaking their self-isolation?

    Have any of the over-paid, over-privileged loons who came up with this “punishment” thought this through?

    Coronavirus social distancing breaches could lead to fines and jail time, NSW Police announces
    https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-25/nsw-police-will-fine-breaches-for-coronavirus-social-distancing/12089732

  10. While I don’t wish to exaggerate, Leone, I think the “over-paid, over-privileged loons” are only too likely to have thought this through with their usual compassion.

    • No, Fiona, they aren’t intelligent enough to have been part of the original conceiving of this one. Even so, they, the originators, must surely know by now that it’s out of hand, gone too far. Are they intelligent enough to withdraw a bit with some reasonable effect? That is all we can hope for at the moment. Compassion has never been part of their thinking either – praying, perhaps?

  11. My apologies if this sounds over the top, but it’s something I need to say.

    All of you Pubsters, whether commenting or lurking, are my better angels. You comfort me with your optimism despite the dire outlook, you ground me with your practicality, and you give me that spark of hope that we will – eventually – throw these complicit, greedy, egregious bastards down!

    • Yes Fiona, despite how it appears there is still a ‘shadow army’ of people out in the community waiting with pitchforks for the bustards. 🙂

  12. PTMD

    We have no Churchill, Roosevelt, or Queen Elizabeth 1st to place our unreserved trust in to lead us out of trouble

    They are not the equivalents but I have found watching the daily round up by NZ officials and the occasional Ardern address @ the NZ Herald site very calming. No help here but it is so reassuring that there is still humanity,compassion and plain honesty in a time of strife in the world. Listening to pollies here is to end up despairing of humanity 😦 Stupid voter and evil murdoch grr.

    As for the guy who lost his mum today. A similar story in an NZ paper so so sad. His beloved grandmother had died and his granddad is in the early stages of Alzheimerers , both were in a retirement village and due to NZ restrictions he cannot be there for his g’dad and the funeral plans are out.

  13. Nah! The CrimeMinister wants Australia to be a Pentecostal paradise for the rich with himself as a combined High Priest/Dictator and all us plebs reduced to slaves. (Slaves are permitted in the Bible.)

    And you thought The Handmaid’s Tale was fantasy!

  14. Yeah, the Pub and we Tragics aren’t a bad example of the sort of small group optimism we’ll need springing from wherever and allover to ultimately somehow unite world-wide and beat ‘this thing’ whatever it is! I can’t do more than hope for that and my old knees have done too much running over many years to get down now and help me pray!

  15. This is frightening stuff

    COVID-19 in Australia – Understanding Exponential Growth

    My name is Serge Rogov and I’ve been working as a data scientist for 7 years. I made this page because I believe that Australian mainstream news messaging is inconsistent with the reported case figures and first-hand accounts from colleagues working the front lines or the education sector. Exponential growth is a difficult concept to grasp. One looks at the numbers and they seem reasonable, so you take measured action. But in 3 days those numbers double, and in another 3 days they double again. Suddenly 100 cases becomes 500 and then 2000. The only way to control exponential phenomena is to get ahead of the curve. The charts below indicate that we are only days away from reaching a critical point where the cases will exceed the capacity of our healthcare system.

    My intent is not to incite fear, but urgency – we must act before we reach the tipping point. Please, everyone, follow tried-and-tested social distancing right now, as other countries have done with great success. Let’s all work together to overcome this crisis.

    https://coronacurve.io/

  16. Good morning Dawn Patrollers

    The UK is “days” away from releasing 3.5 million self-administered finger prick tests, available for purchase online or at pharmacies, that could prove a game-changer in easing the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/europe/game-changer-britain-days-away-from-releasing-millions-of-coronavirus-finger-prick-tests-20200326-p54dyy.html
    Matthew Knott tells us how Trump has turned the daily coronavirus briefings into his own reality.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/north-america/hallucinogenic-dreamscape-how-trump-turned-the-daily-caronavirus-briefings-into-his-own-reality-20200325-p54dly.html
    Former Reserve Bank governor Bernie Fraser has said the move to provide early access to superannuation was “ideological” and it could cause further problems for Australians in the future.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/a-triple-threat-critics-slam-policy-allowing-early-emergency-access-to-super-20200325-p54dof.html
    Dana McCauley reports some experts are saying that the impact of the coronavirus on mental health could be seven times that coming from bushfire anxiety.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/coronavirus-impact-on-mental-health-seven-times-bushfire-anxiety-20200325-p54dwg.html
    The SMH editorial says that the latest virus rules were needed but they do not go far enough.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/latest-virus-rules-needed-but-do-not-go-far-enough-20200325-p54dvu.html
    The Australian reveals that the NSW Port Authority was warned of a “gaping hole” in bio­security screening in the weeks ­before the Ruby Princess fiasco, with a leaked email urging officials to conduct more rigorous checking of cruise liners and cargo vessels before the coronavirus pandemic struck.
    https://www.theaustralian.com.au/nation/coronavirus-leaked-email-reveals-warning-on-cruise-ships/news-story/262186a830edf4d09f2c01152c5cc0dc
    The coronavirus recession has arrived and it’s showing its ugly face says the editorial in The Canberra Times. It tells us why we need a true government of national unity that includes politicians from both sides of the chamber.
    https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6695294/the-coronavirus-recession-has-arrived/?cs=14258
    It took this virus to expose our meanest streak – the pitiful Newstart allowance writes Mark Mordue.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/it-took-this-virus-to-expose-our-meanest-streak-the-pitiful-newstart-allowance-20200227-p544tq.html
    Discretionary retail is in free fall given consumers’ reluctance to shop and the government’s advice to stay home where possible, yet shopping centres remain open. Jennifer Hewett explores why this is so.
    https://www.afr.com/policy/economy/angry-retailers-slap-down-government-s-rhetoric-20200325-p54dt1
    Rental property owners would be given tax relief by the federal government in return for waiving or reducing rents, under one option being considered by the Morrison government reports Phil Coorey.
    https://www.afr.com/politics/federal/tax-breaks-for-landlords-who-grant-rent-relief-20200325-p54dn7
    Gay Alcorn tells us what Australia can learn from New Zealand’s coronavirus response.
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/25/clarity-and-compassion-what-australia-can-learn-from-new-zealands-coronavirus-response
    This article from Jess Irvine about human behaviour is well worth a read.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/six-ways-to-hack-your-brain-to-survive-the-covid-19-shutdown-20200325-p54dsw.html
    Greenpeace’s David Ritter writes that beyond the initial urgent response required to safeguard our families, children, grandparents and friends, our leaders have before them a moment of reckoning.
    https://www.canberratimes.com.au/story/6693405/when-we-rebuild-our-economy-we-must-do-it-with-sustainability-in-mind/?cs=14258
    The Australian welfare system has always been needlessly cruel. Now it’s punishing half the country says Tom Hawking.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/mar/25/the-australian-welfare-system-has-always-been-needlessly-cruel-now-its-punishing-half-the-country
    The world’s largest asset manager BlackRock has called on governments globally to move quickly and relieve cash flow pressures faced by various sectors of the economy or risk a “full-blown global recession” from the coronavirus pandemic.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/banking-and-finance/blackrock-recommends-aggressive-temporary-fiscal-stimulus-20200325-p54dpt.html
    Data out this week from the University of Sydney reinforces what Australians have been repeatedly told: Stay the bloody hell home. The coronavirus outbreak could be under control in just over three months if eight out of 10 Australians abide by the social distancing regulations.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/coronavirus/2020/03/25/coronavirus-control-social-distancing/
    Jennifer Duke tells us that financial counsellors are warning bushfires and the unfolding coronavirus pandemic could cause a surge of desperate people taking out predatory loans.
    https://www.theage.com.au/politics/federal/fears-more-desperate-people-will-take-on-payday-loans-after-fires-coronavirus-20200313-p549qu.html
    The Morrison Government has the task of assisting thousands of people left struggling after job losses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, writes Dr Jennifer Wilson who says we reap what the that government sowed.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/we-reap-what-the-morrison-government-sowed,13723
    John Lord writes about the public versus Scott Morrison.
    https://theaimn.com/the-public-versus-scott-morrison/
    At a time when the rest of the world is facing meltdown over the coronavirus pandemic, there is something deeply unedifying about China’s attempts to capitalise on the crisis to further its own global ambitions writes the London Telegraph’s Con Coughlin.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/asia/china-can-t-escape-responsibility-for-wuhan-flu-20200325-p54dsn.html
    The New Daily tells us which industries are still hiring amid the coronavirus pandemic.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/finance/work/2020/03/25/workplaces-hiring-coronavirus/
    Under coronavirus, pro-market ideologies are overturned around the world. But it’s too little, too late writes Jeff Sparrow.
    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/mar/26/under-coronavirus-pro-market-ideologies-are-overturned-around-the-world-but-its-too-little-too-late
    Does the Government bail-out a company which is 91% foreign owned, Virgin Airlines, and which pays no tax? Anthony Klan reports on a classic case of political influence.
    https://www.michaelwest.com.au/the-club-will-virgin-australias-political-influence-deliver-taxpayer-subsidies-for-its-foreign-shareholders/
    Former union boss and Labor minister Simon Crean has urged workers, businesses and the government to come together in a grand bargain to offer training, wage subsidies and new jobs in thriving industries to the unemployed during the coronavirus crisis.
    https://www.theage.com.au/politics/federal/unions-and-employers-racing-to-strike-job-saving-deals-20200325-p54dt6.html
    Funerals should be postponed and governments must implement body-handling procedures in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, writes Dr Romain Fathi.
    https://independentaustralia.net/environment/environment-display/we-must-be-ready-to-manage-dead-from-coronavirus,13725
    Shane Wright shows us how job ads ‘fell off a cliff’ in late March.
    https://www.theage.com.au/politics/federal/job-ads-fell-off-a-cliff-in-late-march-20200325-p54dol.html
    Scientists in the United States are waiting for approval to start a human trial to see if the blood plasma of people who have already fought off the disease can help boost the immune system of others.
    https://www.theage.com.au/world/north-america/scientists-look-to-stone-age-blood-treatment-in-lieu-of-virus-vaccine-20200325-p54dp0.html
    The New York Times looks at the cost/benefit view of C-19 deaths and prevention.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/can-we-put-a-price-tag-on-a-life-covid-19-shutdown-forces-a-new-look-20200325-p54dse.html
    Nomination for “Arseholes of the Year” are open. Here’s the first.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/chinese-backed-company-s-mission-to-source-australian-medical-supplies-20200325-p54du8.html
    And what about these two arseholes!!
    https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/wealthy-couple-return-from-skiing-with-coronavirus-then-do-not-self-isolate-20200325-p54du5.html

    Cartoon Corner

    David Rowe



    Mark David

    Andrew Dyson

    Alan Moir


    Dionne Gain

    John Shakespeare


    Matt Golding

    Johannes Leak
    https://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/ed31ffaafb155bc331411bbd4644905b?width=1024

    From the US











  17. Prince Charles is in “self isolation”, along with Camilla, the cook, the butler, the maid and on it goes.

  18. Some great comments here last night. Well comments here are usually great anyway, but I can feel a lot of care and support for everyone coming through on the posts.

    My current working theory. This lot are being so useless because they are so busy setting up ‘groups’ of their croneys to work out how they can get even more of us under their complete control. They are not interested in doing anything to help the rest of the population, they only want to grab and grasp everything they can while no one is paying attention. When/if this crisis is over, we will find we end up all being worse off, but ‘they’ of course will thrive.

    • Even the royal family is not able to escape the virus, so we can hope that the CrimeMinister and his hand-picked lackeys will also succumb – to the worst extent possible.

    • The “shopping centres will remain open” comment really floored me. Shane Warne nailed it with his comments.

      How on the nose can the CrimeMinister be to lose the support of Shane Warne?

      Two days before he made that tweet and started demanding a total lockdown he tweeted this –

  19. Went to Woolies – no toilet paper, no tissues. How ridiculous for a big shop like that. I believe Office Works sell TP but it’s probably closed. Next time I’ll wear my garden mask. Too many people don’t respect the rule of distancing. I found myself zigzagging in the aisles. Some discipline at the register though.

  20. I’m starting to wonder about the “Great TP Drought of 2020” . Surely the producers have cranked up production, mad if they didn’t. The stores for quite some time have clamped down on how much people can but and yet there seems SFA to zero on the shelves. Where is it ,where is it all going ?

    • I’m wondering where all the product is going.

      Australia produces all the food and household essentials we need, we do not need to import toilet paper, tissues or food.

      Supermarkets – at least in NSW – can now have deliveries 24/7, trucks are arriving at supermarkets, production of everything, not just toilet paper has been increased and yet the shelves are still empty.

      A few days ago I saw a TV interview with a manager of a warehouse for one of the supermarket chains – he was standing in front of pallets loaded with toilet paper, stacked metres high, enough to supply umpteen supermarkets.

      So where has all the stock gone?

      We can get plenty of fruit, vegies, dairy and meat, at least around here we can, but the stuff that people have been hoarding – toilet paper, tissues, hand sanitiser, flour, canned vegies, pasta etc is not being restocked.

      What the hell is happening to all the supermarket stock?

      No 1 Son tells me things are slowly getting better at Coles and Woolies, but not much better. I’ll see over the weekend, I have to go to the chemist so while I’m there I’ll pop into Coles and see what the situation is like. I’m not expecting much. After that I will organise deliveries. I’m over traipsing around supermarkets with more empty shelves than stock and I’m not interested in “shopping like a Russian” – going out every day to see what I can find.

    • Found a stash of flannel amongst my fabris I had forgotten (yellow, how appropriate) and have cut into it for “family cloth” as an attempt to save the tp for more extreme moments – not overly fond of soy-based inks on my bum… It’s amazing the relief that such an old fashioned idea has made to my anxiety levels, and it’s still possible to get laundry powder at this point.

      Mind you, I am also digging out my ancient copies of “The Homesteader’s Manual” and “Mrs Beeton”, just in case. Just wondering if there are rabbits still on Herrison Island in the middle of the Swan!

  21. “But of course, daaaahling, WE don’t need to self-quarantine …”

    • Only poor people get The Plague.

      Could they do their self-isolation in a nice safe prison cell? Solitary confinement of course, with extra time added for being arseholes. And no facilities in their cells, just a bucket and a blanket.

  22. Now hairdressers can take as long as they like with clients the next round of panic-buying might be avoided.

    Hair dye!

    Before the CrimeMinister changed his mind on the 30 minute limit there was talk of how hairdressers might work around it. One of the thoughts was to apply a colour in the salon and the client would then go home and rinse it off. If you are going to do that it would be easier to buy a DIY kit and use it at home.

    Fortunately the CrimeMinister’s change of mind means we will most likely be saved from brawls in the hair care aisles at chemists, supermarkets, Priceline and Big W

    The CrimeMinister must have worked out it takes about three minutes to trim his sparse and rapidly disappearing hair. No doubt thought he was being generous by allowing 30 minutes.

    • I think his wife might have yelled at him. Doubtless she has her hair coloured, she’s 52, more than old enough to have grey hair.She would understand from her own experience just how much time it takes just for a colour at a hairdresser’s without all the added extras like blow-dries, trims, foils etc.

  23. I agree with this 110%

    Close the booze shops as well. Just order a delivery if you cannot live without alcohol.

  24. I’m liking the NZ police commissioner’s turn of phrase when talking about the Level 4 measures just introduced. 🙂

    “We’ll be the friendly face of police…until it needs to be something else

    .

    “If people won’t comply, we do have the authority to detain them, take them to our place and give them time to contemplate their decisions.”

  25. Did everyone get their SMS from the government telling us all to wash our hands, obey the rules on social distancing and stay home if sick?

    I deleted mine, treated it as spam.

  26. We have a new deputy CMO, but he’s still spewing the same government propaganda.

    This one is an infectious diseases expert.

    Nick Coatsworth, an infectious diseases specialist at Canberra Hospital and Australian National University academic, has been appointed the fourth deputy to Chief Medical Officer Brendan Murphy to help communicate health updates to the public.

    During an interview on ABC TV on Thursday morning, Dr Coatsworth appeared to back up comments made by fellow Deputy Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly on Wednesday that there were “two schools of thought” about how to respond to the coronavirus outbreak

    https://www.theaustralian.com.au/nation/coronavirus-dcmo-fans-flames-of-medical-dispute-takes-aim-at-norman-swan/news-story/30749a497cb5f55173424345960e8c64

    I still prefer Dr Norman Swan. .

  27. At last – only a few weeks too late – someone is using their brain.

    A Qantas charter flight from Honolulu arrived in Sydney Airport overnight to repatriate 292 passengers who were on the Norwegian Jewel. The boat has been at sea with no landing and with no one coming onto the ship for 3 weeks.

    While the ship has reported no acute respiratory illness on board, the NSW Health International airport screening team screened all of the passengers on arrival.

    Five passengers with symptoms were transferred to hospital for COVID-19 testing and isolation. The remaining well passengers were transferred to a Sydney hotel to be in self-isolation for 14 days

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2020/mar/26/australia-coronavirus-lockdowns-social-distancing-live-updates

    Why are Australians still going on cruises? You’d think they would have more sense, but no, still doing it.

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