I sent this to The Australian around 10 days ago but despite repeated reminders, they’ve not even done me the courtesy of responding. It is clear that the clampdown by Murdoch media on anything that might rock the boat of the false narrative (a once-in-100 year pandemic!) that’s been created by the media over the year 2020 will not be allowed to be published.
But I must keep moving. So here’s the piece:
The Western civilization is about maximising individual liberty subject to any necessary government intervention in which the social benefits exceed social costs. In such consideration, the defence of liberty is an invariant, deontological principle. Any valid intervention by the government is a utilitarian or functional constraint, being at all times subordinate to the moral imperative of liberty.
Totalitarian, collectivist regimes have no space for such niceties. No eyebrows are raised in China, for instance, if Xi Jinping imposes draconian lockdowns for the first time in human history. But for some unfathomable reason, Australia decided to embrace China’s approach and switched off key elements of Western civilisation from mid-March 2020, with Australia’s politicians behaving almost like “headless chooks”.
Policy must never be made on the run but every public health policy last year has been made on the run by first overturning all approved pandemic plans and then recklessly adopting Jinping’s unproven inventions. It was known in February 2020 that this virus adversely impacts mainly the very elderly but instead of protecting this age group, untargeted society-wide lockdowns were imposed. Our youth and children have been grievously harmed in the name of preventing the deaths of the elderly. Professors Anna-Mia Ekström and Stefan Swartling Peterson have concluded that least as many people have died across the world as a result of the restrictions to fight covid as have died of covid directly.
Public health is quite unlike private, i.e. individual, health. Being a collectivist concept, it is vulnerable to the risk of centralisation. It can do a lot of good when its scope is limited to the supply of clean water and sewerage services but it can go astray when one-size-fits-all interventions are enforced. As F.A. Hayek would say, such interventions remove from consideration the insights and benefits obtained from the knowledge of local circumstances – which then dooms the society to inefficiency, apart from risking a breach of ethics and human rights.
It is to prevent such outcomes that our public health laws insist on stringent proofs for any intervention. But in haste to adopt Jinping’s inventions, both the Liberal and Labor parties tossed aside the proofs required by the principle of proportionality and the requirement to consider ethics and human rights.
Moreover, Australia’s purported arguments for border closures and lockdowns are built on an edifice of lies. This has been a relatively minor pandemic – at worst in the league of the Hong Kong flu. It is nothing short of criminal for health officers and Liberal and Labor party politicians to claim even today that this is a once-in-hundred years pandemic.
We know this because one Western nation – Sweden – did not fall into the trap set by CCP’s fake videos of people falling down and dying on the roadside from covid. Sweden followed its standard plans and refused to impose coercive lockdowns or quarantines. It had no border closures and no mask recommendations. Hysterical epidemiological modellers predicted 100,000 covid deaths in Sweden by June 2020 if it didn’t lockdown. Thumbing its nose at them, Sweden ended the year with around 3,000 excess deaths (as per the analysis of Nobel prize winner Michael Levitt).
I have yet to find any official pandemic plan or any manifesto of the Labor or Liberal parties that says that Australia would be shut down for two years to deal with minor pandemics. Are we now going to do this every few years? Moreover, such policies are inappropriate even if this were actually the Spanish flu.
The situation is being aggravated by attempts to get everyone to take the vaccine. Anthony Albanese has asked us to “Do it for Australia”. I take the flu shot each year to protect my personal health. Any benefits to Australia are incidental. But in this case the situation is a bit more complicated.
Health Minister Greg Hunt has stated on 20 February 2021 that “the world is engaged in the largest clinical trial; the largest global vaccination trial ever”. This is correct. We only have emergency use authorisation for the vaccines. This means they must be used only for a serious or life-threatening illness where it is reasonable to believe that the vaccine is effective and its benefits outweigh any risks, and when there are no adequate approved, alternative medical countermeasures.
The primary endpoint for these vaccine trials has been PCR-confirmed symptomatic covid-19. Many experts believe that these studies should have examined whether the vaccine prevents frail elderly people from dying, something also not possible to determine from the studies given their small sample size in this age cohort. Neither do we have any detailed analysis of the risks and benefits of the vaccines for different age groups. Such data will only emerge from post-market studies.
Even so, I believe the vaccines should be considered by those over 75 or by those with significant co-morbidities. At all times, though, individual freedom and choice must prevail.
Given the ongoing bipartisan support for the destruction of human rights in Australia, I have now been compelled to organise political resistance to both the Liberal and Labor parties with the support of thousands of youth and hundreds of organisers. If the booing at the Australian Open is an indication of the angst building in the community, I expect this movement to become a tsunami. The plan is to nominate candidates from participating minor political parties and ensure that incumbent MPs are placed last on the ballot.