Never before has Australia, even in wartime, been governed by a grand coalition of parties and governments, underwritten by big business and with the mainstream media tranquilised. Unlike the ancient Roman republic, this is not a dictatorship constitutionally empowered to confront an emergency. It is a coup.
One thing is clear.
Australia desperately needs a blueprint for the handling of future pandemics, which are not only inevitable, but some experts say, will be more frequent.
Never again must Australia stumble into a cure far worse than the disease.
There is, as previously noted here, one person acclaimed internationally for pandemic planning and communication, our 28th prime minister, Tony Abbott. No one is more suited to head the Royal Commission which should be entrusted with this task.
But to return to my critique, false comparisons should no longer be made with European and American death rates. As a remote island nation, ours should be better than Taiwan’s, rather than fifteen times worse. We should be closer to Fiji’s zero rating.
As to the creation of the national cabinet, this was only achieved through the notorious long march of the Left through our institutions. The result is the differences between Coalition and Labor politicians have significantly narrowed and moved to the left. This explains why, for example, New South Wales’ Nationals MPs were so eager for abortion law ’reform’ involving infanticide.
The national cabinet was designed to ensure a consensus, even one which is wrong, as it clearly was. Disregarding world’s best practice and our advantage as a remote island nation, panicked by modelling with a proven record of gross exaggeration, and with support both from the alleged Andrews-Berejlikian total shutdown faction and the usual big business suspects, an unjustified lockdown became inevitable.
Meanwhile, having suffered a terrible press during the bushfire crisis, Prime Minister Scott Morrison decided to try to ‘duchess’ the media. That proved surprisingly easy to achieve — just offer special intimate briefings in the cabinet room. Thus tranquilised, the mainstream media’s principal message became ‘we are all in this together; we all must do the right thing’.
Even global warming helped. The mercury shot up in Sydney, as it often does during the city’s delightful Indian summer. Thousands did what Australians do, they went to the beach. A media photograph was whisked around the world, but not indicating that normal compression distortion suggested people were far closer than they actually were. Like exaggerated modelling, this was manna from heaven for power-drunk elites dreaming of a serious lockdown. But as with their constant calls to reduce CO2 emissions, this was on the clear understanding that this would affect neither them nor their class.
Without serious media analysis and the advantages of true competitive federalism, an essentially uniform lockdown was imposed with reckless indifference as to either the power to impose it or its illegal interference with the common law rights of Australians to be in business, especially small business. Or indeed, the right to work, to receive medical attention including surgery, to attend marriages, to bury their dead and even sit on a park bench.
So much so that, as explained last week, this imposition constitutes an actionable misfeasance in public office which will lead to a record billion-dollar class action with every chance of success.
The problem with such elites is that, to paraphrase Adam Smith, they seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public.
Our ancestors discovered the answer to Acton’s warning that power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely. This is in those constitutional checks and balances, the separation of powers, the federal division of powers, the Crown’s reserve powers and the freedom of the press. But as with Adam’s warning about people of the same trade, when the elites get together and rule by consensus, those checks and balances tend to melt into oblivion.
The result is tyranny and as Mark Steyn observes, tyranny is always capricious. This contrasts with the rule of law; indeed, it is its very opposite.
As the considerable Australian jurist Sir Guy Green explains, the rule of law means three things.
First, everyone, and particularly government, is subject to the law.
Second, citizens may do anything not prohibited by law or which does not infringe the rights of others.
Third, government may not do anything save that which the law authorises it to do.
On all points, the National Cabinet failed and failed dismally.
That the lockdown was and is a tyranny was demonstrated by their caprice in indicating support for and initially granting an exemption from the lockdown ‘law’ for anarchistic far-left led protesters animated by a distant event in Minneapolis. While contemptuous of the law-abiding public, most politicians today demonstrate a fearful cowardice in relation to the Left’s mass law-breaking as we saw in Sydney during the Australian Technology Park riot, the occupation of Martin Place by soi-disant ‘homeless’ and the Left’s regular disruption of peak-hour traffic.
The best the National Cabinet could offer was their obsequious pleading to assorted anarchists and communists not to break the lockdown ‘law’, if indeed it is valid law, which I doubt.
This is yet another example of a broader phenomenon, the readiness of the elites to endorse the fashions of their global confreres in New York and London, no matter how foolish and how contrary to common sense that zeitgeist is.
This rush to madness has become a useful part of the armoury of forces determined to destroy Western civilisation, the principal representative of which today is the sinister Chinese Communist Party.
I summarised the principal failures which result from this approach last week in a proposed national address for the prime minister, one which I note, he has not yet given.
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