No one could sensibly argue that it was not time to begin to live with the virus once a high proportion of the population was double vaccinated.
However, rushing into a more normal world with gay abandon was irresponsible.
It is very clear that there was little or no risk planning done to get Australia ready for the easing of restrictions. Good risk planning would have seen ministers and their officials identify the potential risks arising from lifting this or that control and how best to manage those risks. In other words, what actions were needed to prevent PCR testing capabilities being overrun, supply chain problems, severe pressure on health and hospital systems and so on.
Australia had had at least 12 months - and arguably longer - to learn from the misfortunes and mistakes of other countries and to develop plans to avoid them. Governments failed to do so and, as a result, we have the current state of chaos.
Scott Morrison's inability to lead has been exposed again; what does he not hold this time?
The least he could do is apologise for the mess he has got us into. State and territory leaders should do likewise.
Regrettably, the sacrifices we all made over the last two years appear to have been made in vain.
The Prime Minister continues to perceive schools primarily as a handy child-minding service and blithely markets as magnanimous his government's offer to fund half the costs of rapid antigen tests for any surveillance testing that state jurisdictions might attempt to program into COVID-safe return to school plans ("No consistency on the return to school", canberratimes.com.au, January 21).
No matter that the public generally, let alone many essential workers and services, still can't access or afford such tests to help protect others in a fertile Omicron environment.
Despite there being no national framework for the return to school, as initially talked up by the PM on January 5, he and his trusty treasurer no doubt will now sit back on the side lines and yap at any state and territory that does not follow the PM's recent strident demand that "schools and the kids go back and stay back".
They ignore at their peril the public's growing awareness of the Coalition's contribution to the additional havoc about to be wrought on anxious staff, unvaccinated children, weary families, other close contacts, learning environments and local economies.
If the LNP don't like the mild criticism being dished currently on the PM (nothing like the paroxysms over pink batts by the LNP) their defenders such as Mr Stivala (Letters, January 18) should step back and see conservative governments don't actually do risk management.
Businesses such as Harvey Norman saw the need for RAT kits and stocked up. The LNP federal government did not.
Company boards all spend time preparing for the risk management of a worst case scenario.
Conservative politicians do not. They reassure, then believe their own fairy tales. Their neoliberal ideology tells them that governments are the problem, not the solution.
Expert modelling warned before Christmas that COVID would spike dramatically. Health Minister Hunt gambled that the experts were wrong.
Right from the start the LNP had the "Djoker" visa fiasco up their sleeve and rode the border protection diversion as long as the polling was favourable.
This government is ideologically driven and diplomatically inept. Just ask any retired diplomat.
Voters aren't mugs. They can smell a fake a mile off.
We have had 74 deaths from COVID on the one day; the highest number in Australia since the pandemic began.
Aboriginal communities in northern Australia, largely free of the virus until now, are awash with it. The virus is rampant in aged care homes.
Workers are being forced to return to work even when it is unsafe to them, their workmates, and their customers.
RATs are as scarce as rocking horse poo without any real explanation.
We have reached a situation approaching chaos. This is what the Morrison-Perrottet axis has reduced us to courtesy of "let it rip", "pushing through" or whatever inane slogan is most expedient.
Decency would suggest resignation. But that's unlikely.
At roughly the same time as the Doma development at the foothills of Mt Ainslie gets underway and destroys Aboriginal heritage a large sign appears at the top of the walking trail up Mt Ainslie.
The sign mentions that Mount Ainslie Nature Reserve is a significant Ngunnawal women's cultural place and has long been used by Ngunnawal women for women's ceremonial business. Large letters proclaim "Thank you for caring for Ngunnawal Country".
I wonder the how the ACT government can be so insensitive and hypocritical.
One lucky billionaire tennis player's 10 day ordeal with Australia's immigration regime is over.
He is back home with family, friends, and a safe, secure future.
That is not the case for the hundreds of refugees being held in immigration detention, many of whom have been incarcerated for nearly 10 years, and with no end in sight.
Djokovic came to Australia to compete in a tennis tournament and win lots of money.
The refugees came to Australia fleeing war and persecution, seeking protection, dreaming of a safe and secure future.
The Djokovic debacle has highlighted the arbitrary nature of the application of immigration policy in Australia. And how easily issues become politically weaponised.
Decades of politically-driven immigration policy has led to the mass 'warehousing' of people in immigration detention centres, enormous human suffering, as well as exorbitant expense to the taxpayer. And no end in sight.
In this election year, can anyone offer us anything better?
It must say something that, despite my advancing age, I remain as optimistic as Crispin Hull ("Here's How Independents Could Clean House", canberratimes.com.au, January 18) in believing that the sickness infecting our political arrangements can be cured and find myself agreeing with almost all of his prescriptions.
But I can't agree with his proposal to give Parliament the power to veto appointments to our courts and tribunals. While no doubt well intentioned (who isn't appalled by key legal roles being assigned to cronies?) we have the example of the USA to deter us from that path.
With the US appointment process being so open, the personal opinions of the nominee become the factor that determines whether they get appointed.
And, with many members of political parties nowadays holding views well outside those of the mainstream, we find that judicial candidates must also embrace more extreme views if they are to get a gig.
Consequently, I believe that Crispin's position on this matter would ultimately undermine the integrity of the institutions his article otherwise defends.
Thank goodness Crispin Hull sees a way out of our current failing, problem-ridden government ("Here's How Independents Could Clean House", canberratimes.com.au, January 18).
He considers that "the big hope" for wiser government lies in a hung parliament with six or more independents holding the balance of power. Those MPs should then "concentrate on process and good government" by establishing reforms including in relation to integrity, reducing lobbyists, and reforming the donations system.
Once those basics are in place, the needed changes re energy, environment, economy, refugees and so on will ensue at last.
Re: "Rich get richer: Wealth of world's 10 richest men doubled in pandemic - Oxfam" (canberratimes.com.au, January 18).
Oxfam is to be applauded for doing the research to let the rest of humanity know about the stark inequality. But there is no real surprise in the revelations.
The rich have always been getting richer and the richest richer still.
That's why the overwhelming part of humanity is in such a poor state.
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