Tag Archives: Vaccines failure

Too little, too late, for everything


When a politician rises to the top of his profession we expect that he or she has always wanted the job, and that he or she has meticulously planned every step along the way. I would argue that Morrison is aware of his limitations, but he rose to the top despite not having a plan. He believes in his own luck, because he really believes that God has a stake in the game. Why not throw your hat in the ring, if you believe in divine providence?

Scott Morrison seems never to have planned for anything. He wasn’t ready for the Prime Ministership. He just put his hand up when it became clear that Malcolm Turnbull lacked the political skills to protect his position, and that Peter Dutton was unacceptable, not only to the Liberals who were voting for a new leader, but for the Australian electorate at large. So his run was fortuitous, and landed him the top job, with no preparation, and no relatable skills with which to sell himself to us.

Some of the antipathy toward Dutton has dissipated. That will be attributable to his change of portfolios, and also to the nature of the Ministry of Defence. His role at Home Affairs was too powerful to trust him with, and Defence is the sort of portfolio where most of us are happy to see someone who can focus, and stay relatively quiet, and in the case of Dutton, stay out of our private lives and communications. It is after all, the portfolio which directs our armed forces, and most citizens are content to allow our defence chiefs to potter about, and to not smash the china (pun intended). So unless the U.S. wants another war, we’re close to being safe. Australia does not elect to go to war by itself.

The bushfires of 2019-2020 were our first exposure to Morrison, and he showed us what he was like from the outset. It was all about him, and what he would deliver to those who needed help. The Defence Force was his to deploy, the payment of volunteer fire fighters was his decision, the excuses were picked up from the side of the road (definitely NOT climate change related; arsonists lit most of the fires; the fuel load was high, which could be conveniently used to divert blame to the states.

With responsibility comes reward. It was not a huge leap for him to choose a holiday in Hawaii. He felt he deserved it, and as befits a small time thinker, he would take the reward before he had earned it. He then tried to hide it, which provided further proof that he was not up to the job.

Morrison on holiday

He must have felt that he could leave the country to its own devices, and that no-one would enquire as to his whereabouts. Leaders of modern nations have responsibilities, and obligations, to a wide range of stakeholders. Citizens, Ministers, other Governments, both inside Australia and internationally, need to know that there is somebody in charge. In emergencies they need to be ‘on the ground’.

It is beyond understanding that he would absent himself from his duties during an existential crisis for the whole of the East Coast. Secondly he put his staff members in an unenviable position, in that they were expected to join in on the deception. This attitude of protecting their boss at the expense of the rest of the nation, has fuelled distrust of the Prime Minister’s Office ever since.

We now wonder why he visited his family in Sydney for Fathers’ Day, when so many others of us had been stopped from seeing our families. We have all heard tales of children being kept apart from their parents, of cancer patients not permitted to access treatment if they live on the wrong side of the border, even of dying parents left to die alone. That did not bother Morrison. He has risen further than he expected, and the privileges of rank are there to be used. He earned them. I am sure he reminds himself often that it is his due.

The explanation lies in the particular nature of this accidental Prime Minister, and his choices and work history. He has always managed to be appointed to plum jobs because of his connections. Those jobs have been mainly middle to upper management, as a sort of Regional Manager. He appears to last a couple of years, and to then move on, leaving behind conflict and, as often as not, there are legal or accountability issues. Reports into his corporate behaviour seem to go missing, and there is always a patron willing to put him forward for the next gig.

He fell into parliament, after a smear campaign against his pre-selection opponent. That campaign was later proved to be false, but the damage was done. An amusing sideshow has been the career of Craig Kelly. Destined for the electoral scrap-heap, he was saved by a direct intervention by Morrison. Morrison over-rode the Liberal Party’s decision to dis-endorse Kelly at the 2019 election. He saved him, only to lose him to the cross bench, and then, more odiously, to Clive Palmer.

His record over the pandemic has been similarly mercurial. Pro-lockdown, anti-lockdown, pro-income support, anti-income support. Won’t build quarantine stations, yes he will. Will buy vaccines, but he wants the cheap ones. Totally transparent, as when he told us all to not accept the AstraZeneca vaccine, and then in favour of it, to almost every age. It is definitely not a race, it is a race. Now it is a race which can be won by starting slowly, but then powering home. In other words, he is making it up. The worst part is that he changes his mind according to reactions to his last pronouncement, rather than for the country’s good.

Our decent Prime Ministers have a larger calling. Their remit appears to have been to work for the good of Australia, whereas Scott Morrison’s motivation appears to be getting his pay, taking his holidays when he is ready, see the family when he wants to, and win the next election.

Scott Morrison needs to reflect on why he seems to be so unpopular, and why his every action is endlessly dissected. It is because he doesn’t hide his disdain for the common people, and the people are discovering that fact. He also appears to be fairly keen on Scott Morrison.

How can we trust Morrison’s word, or his motives, on anything?


Scott Morrison has now been Prime Minister for over three years. That means he has spent more time in the job than Turnbull, Whitlam, Rudd, or Abbott did. In those three years he has built a reputation as a man whose word cannot be trusted, and as a man who has given both his Ministers, and his back-benchers, a free pass, no matter what they are caught out doing, or saying. All they need to do is to vote with the Government.

Some say a one seat majority can do that to a Government, but the scandals and the behavioural issues during Morrison’s ascendancy have plumbed new depths. Morrison himself has been implicated in many of them, but even when his hands have been demonstrably ‘clean’, the behaviour he walks past has only served to highlight his elastic ethics, and a seemingly wilful blindness regarding community expectations.

If it wasn’t so tragic, it would be amusing to track the disappointment of those who confuse the crude hucksterism of the Hillsong Church with Christianity. Practising Christians need to stop bleating about his disavowal of Christian principles, and wake up to the fact that the so-called “new churches” are just another dodgy import from the U.S., like the gym equipment advertised on afternoon television.

Many of us have expected this most overtly ‘Christian’ of our leaders, to call Enough!, as new rorts supersede older rorts, as racist dog-whistling continues apace, and Ministers asking for ‘favours’ from other Ministers continues to undermine the very character of our democracy.

Mr Taylor, for example, has had little luck lowering carbon emissions, possibly because he is so busy asking for favours from his colleagues. Sometimes he receives favours even when he has not asked for them, as in the case of the water buyback scheme. It is a most accommodating Ministry.

The changing landscape of newspapers in particular, and the broader media generally, has shaken up the quality of reporting, and the idea of holding power to account, has been almost universally degraded. In the case of the Murdoch media, standards are so low that one might as well watch a game show, as expect objectivity.

Consider the rabid response to the ABC’s Four Corners episode this week. A report, using sourced opinion from Fox News insiders, criticised what is known throughout the thinking universe, as Fox News’ correct calling of Arizona for Biden, and then the shameful sacking of a loyal employee for doing his job, demonstrates their passion for objective news. You cannot then publish over forty articles attacking the show, and to then deny a campaign of vilification.

Years after the bushfires of 2019-2020 the bushfire relief is still being parcelled out, mainly to coalition seats. Some of the victims of the bushfires are still waiting to have their land cleared, but bad luck if you live in a Labor seat. Car parks, sport grounds, buying land, or water, from donors, stacking the AAT with drones, keeping Christian Porter in the Ministry, accepting George Christensen’s and Andrew Laming’s support-they all speak of incompetence and a lack of moral fibre.

After the utter shambles of Robodebt, the Morrison Government has the hide to start it up again. This time they are sending out debt notices to people who were overpaid during the pandemic last year. Many of the debts are very small, but when you try living on less than $300 per week, repaying debt with the threat of legal action is not only dispiriting, it is cruel.

It also exposes the awful double standards of this rabble of a Government. Firstly they pursue the poor for unproven debts. Their next step is to be found to have acted illegally, and ordered to repay all the debts recovered. As a kind of grace note, they then terrorise the same demographic (the poor), to repay any over-payments, caused by their own indifferent drafting, and hopeless messaging, regarding those pandemic payments.

Treasurer Frydenberg is seen by some as a future Prime Minister. This must be seen as a distinct possibility, because John Howard, Tony Abbott and Scott Morrison have all succeeded to the job, and we all know the level of their capabilities. So it is clear that ability is not a pre-requisite for success. It makes Bill Hayden’s comments on drover’s dogs winning elections somehow relevant.

Frydenberg managed to waste $25 billion of taxpayers’ money on JobKeeper last year. He overlooked inserting a claw-back provision, which is a standard measure by which the ATO claws back money over-paid to corporations.

Close to $9 billion was paid to firms whose turnover not only failed to decline as forecast, but actually increased. So the young, inexperienced Treasurer of Australia has lost $25 billion of our money, and doesn’t have a way of getting it back. His leader, Scott Morrison, thinks asking for its return would be to engage in the politics of envy.

Do you trust him to open up the country, safely?

So, would you put him in charge of opening up the country, in the midst of the Delta variant, which is now running rampant through Sydney? Firstly he wanted the country opened up, then he wanted to follow medical advice and close it down; then he wanted to ‘hurry up’ the medical advice, then he wanted to lock down, then he wanted the states to accept full responsibility for everything, then he wanted to give us hope as we waited for the dawn. Lately he has been cherry-picking medical experts, searching for the opinion du jour, which might suit his latest shift.

The vaccination of all Australians was not a race, then it was still not a race, but it was more important to finish well than to start well. Amidst all the tap-dancing around the truth, and the weird word choices he makes, ask yourself why he chose AstraZeneca as opposed to Pfizer. And if he is so concerned about costs, why pay PWC $11 million to not deliver them? Did the Government have a claw-back provision if it was unable, or unwilling, to provide vaccines on time?

I have seen some estimates of the relative costs of the two, with AstraZeneca costing around $6 a dose, while Pfizer can command $22 a dose. Could it be that our leader chose the cheap one, with the attendant problems with vaccinating the country? The problems are immense. No talk of reaching milestones will remove the necessity of vaccinating special needs groups, and workers in crucial industries.

Groups like the aged and the disabled need vaccination, but their carers and nurses do, too. Aboriginal communities need to be vaccinated, because many have underlying health issues. Children are noticeably being infected by this variant, so can he include them when calculating vaccination rates?

Considering his Government’s almost total lack of competence, I would not put him in charge of getting the morning tea. I certainly trust Daniel Andrews way more than I do the twits in Canberra.

Morrison dropped the ball on his two jobs


The failure of leadership in Australia has been demonstrated, once again, by the mis-steps of our so-called leaders. They then exacerbate the problem by not owning their mistakes, and blindly asserting, against all the evidence, that they are following ‘medical advice’. They pick which pieces of medical advice suit them. This is like saying “God told me to do it”.

Morrison and Hunt had two jobs between them

Scott Morrison and Greg Hunt had just two jobs to do. The pandemic had been weathered, the people were feeling safe and even trusting. The dynamic duo merely had to manage the return of Australians stranded overseas, and as a final grace note, to get everyone vaccinated.

We all know their repeated refrain that they don’t even eat breakfast until it is cleared by ‘medical experts’. So it is almost impossible to believe that they have not acted on the desperate need to build dedicated quarantine facilities, rather than to rely on often second rate hotels for quarantine. As every premier and every health officer, in all the states, continually remind us, the hotels are for tourists. They are not quarantine stations.

If we can afford to send Matthias Cormann jet-setting around the globe on his very own VIP jet, we can afford to build some quarantine hubs. Equally, if we can afford to spend $600 million on a great white elephant, a gas fired power station, we can afford to build quarantine hubs.

They don’t need to be luxurious. I once worked in Dampier in W.A. and the accommodation was cheap, but it separated the workers, and if needed, it kept us away from the town. Job done. These villages are everywhere in the outback, some even abandoned, if the mine has closed up, and moved along. How hard would it be to find some workers’ huts, and move them? Or if it is too difficult to find some, build some of our own!

Is Morrison doing everything?

The Victorians have even done the preliminary research, scoping out the best sites. All the Feds had to do was to evaluate the site(s) and proceed, or reject the proposal. But no – the Morrison Cabinet is very different from any I can recall. It is not run like a boardroom, but more like a mediaeval court, with Morrison seemingly dictating policy, ministerial responsibilities, their daily talking points, even the colour of their ties. So he hedged, daily. The best we have seen is that it might be worth considering.

Consider the fact that no Minister ever disagrees with Morrison. No Minister appears to have any original thoughts; they all just go along with the ‘group-think’. So if Morrison is too tied up with all the scandals he daily deals with, perhaps he was too busy to make a decision on quarantine hubs.

We have plenty of evidence that ‘Morrison from Head Office’ is not a great planner, nor does he last very long in his jobs. He has been known to ‘absent himself’ when he feels like it, and the practical day to day stuff often escapes him. Maybe the ministry has picked a dud to follow?

We still have many thousands of Australian citizens stranded overseas. They have a right of return, and whether they are in India or Scotland, we want them back, safely. So what possible reason for the hold up?

If everyone was vaccinated, we would still need quarantine hubs

Recent developments in previously virus-free countries have again proved that this virus is here to stay. Taiwan and Singapore have recently let down their guard, and they have been swamped. Now it looks like the same is happening here. A leak from Adelaide (quarantine) moves to Melbourne, then it moves to southern New South Wales. Where next?

Part B of the optimum plan would be, by overwhelming consensus, vaccinate everyone you can. The results in the U.S. and the U.K. have been miraculous. We forget the horrifying numbers from last year, but they are possible even here, especially with the dangerous variants now arriving. So vaccination is key to long-term protection.

Here is where this badly led, banana republic we call home, decides that, firstly we will wait and see. What were they looking for – a better price? So we missed out on the first batches of vaccines, and then we put all our eggs in the one AstraZeneca basket, and we went to market late. A first year purchasing officer would know that you should diversify your suppliers, so as not to be disappointed when you definitely need the supply.

Another of the reasons for such a rookie failure is that, because of this Government’s war on the Public Service, we have a multi-national contractor ‘handling’ the supply and distribution of the vaccine. What could go wrong with a multi-million dollar contractor not having any experience in something as tiresome as purchasing stuff, and then distributing it? Scotty from the Office, who does not hold a hose, doesn’t buy vaccines, and it seems neither does his fancy contractor.

The next ‘joke’ in this farce is the Government decided that “it is not a race”, kept to that position for four months, until it was actually a race. As per Government policy, even after the Victorian outbreak, Michael McCormack, the Deputy Prime Minister, was on auto-play, repeating the line about there being no race, and so was Dan Tehan, our Trade Minister. One or other of them then explained the difference between a race and a hurry, I think.

They may still be in awe of his last election victory, but let us not forget he sits on the thinnest of margins. So for whatever reason, Morrison declares policy, and he sends various Ministers out to spread the word. We can only hope that the Premiers can save this country, because the no-hopers in power in Canberra could not organise a trip to the lavatory.