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Melbourne looks like ‘Pyongyang by the Yarra’

WolfmanOz

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Seeing that COVID-19 is moving to a new phase in the UK, rather than de-rail the thread with what is happening in Melbourne, I thought I'd start a new thread.

I have to admit my sanity has been severely tested, where I and my family are now living in a defacto police state, where we have been under hard lockdown for 80+ days and been under some form of lockdown/restrictions since mid-March, without respite.

Many here probably don't care what's happening half way around the world, and I get that, but this will give me an outlet to express what is happening here, just as a means of release. It's a little long to start but I'd appreciate any support from this community.

The following 6 minute YouTube video gives you a very good glimpse of what it's like in Melbourne:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xsjnoiOAst0

Photos like this below (a young woman arrested on the beach because she was 5.2km from home - the limit is 5km) just reinforce the jackboot approach but these photos and videos also underscore a more disturbing issue. Namely, the ease with which many Governments around the world have imposed harsh restrictions on freedom of movement and freedom of speech, amongst others.

Although Daniel Andrews is near the zenith of this oppression, he is certainly not alone in his zeal and most of us have noted his enthusiasm. More broadly, Morrison plays his role as jailer with Australians being barred from leaving the country. The Federal Government have been shown as completely impotent in maintaining any semblance of federation. The States do what they damn well please and send the bill to Canberra. Every now and then, the PM or the various Premiers leak out small concessions that are enthusiastically promoted by the MSM. We all knew the MSM to be complicit but their singular lack of inquisitiveness into the various modelling used to frame the COVID response and consequent policing is akin to cowardice. Elsewhere, the very few media voices of dissent are abused and harangued by a chorus of “karens” and other useful idiots.

We may make dark jokes or comments about the similarities with Hitler and Stalin, North Korea and the former East Germany but I think the world may have reached a tipping point. Namely, the broader populations in most countries have overtly demonstrated their utter compliance with authoritarian Government. Protests are generally small and are confronted by Police in riot gear. Overwhelming force by Police is displayed, and used, with no fear of any subsequent enquiry or consequence.

BLM was able to stir up 10,000 people at short notice yet protests against Andrew’s harsh and draconian laws that snuff out basic freedoms can generally muster no more than a few hundred, at best. These protests should attract tens of thousands – hundreds of thousands – but where are the people?

Police have amply demonstrated their use of social media and phone location pings to track down recalcitrants and issue fines. Methodology we were assured was only to be used to catch hardened criminals and terrorists has been turned on the general public. Other laws allow warrant-free entry to your home (under the vaguest of criteria) and the removal of any ‘thing’ for alleged transgressions such as posting on Facebook. The laws allowing increasing intrusiveness into our privacy have proved their worth to the authorities and have been used with alacrity.

Our lives will never be the same again. Too many politicians have had the scent of real power in their nostrils and too many citizens did nothing about it. The world has changed, but not for the better and has widely opened the door for the next despot with the broader population kneeling as the Police underscore their willingness towards enforcement.

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sycophantia

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That all sounds pretty grim. Mind you I think a sizeable proportion of Britons would welcome a more draconian level of control, I suppose its difficult to strike a balance. I'm hopeful that people, especially in the West, will revert to their normal behaviour once we have some sort of control over this pandemic
 

WolfmanOz

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That all sounds pretty grim. Mind you I think a sizeable proportion of Britons would welcome a more draconian level of control, I suppose its difficult to strike a balance. I'm hopeful that people, especially in the West, will revert to their normal behaviour once we have some sort of control over this pandemic

The issue here in Melbourne is that the 2nd wave was caused by the ineptness of the State Govt.

Being an island continent one of the things we had to get right was quarantining returning travellers from overseas. In Victoria the Govt refused the use of the army and the police and used private contractors without any training (they did get "diversity" training FFS). They got infected around June and it got out into the community (note every other state used the army/police).

The consequences have been catastrophic.

Melbourne/Victoria has accounted for 90% of the deaths in Australia (766 out of 854 and most have been in the aged care facilities, all bar 19 have occurred in this Govt induced 2nd wave) and 20,073 infections out of 26,752. But when compared to Sydney/NSW which is the biggest state in terms of population they have had 53 deaths (only 4 since June) and 4,017 infections.

Compared to the UK and Europe the numbers are relatively low but are out of all proportion to the rest of the country.

Then the State Govt reacted by announcing a toothless inquiry where every public servant and politician have used the Sgt Schultz excuse "I know nothing" or "I can't recall"; coupled with the most draconian and longest lockdown in the world where the place has become a literal police state. It was like the arsonist then putting out the fire they lit and then flooding the place.

As I've commented before in the Coronavirus thread, I'm relatively "lucky" in that I retired a year ago; but my youngest daughter is doing her final year at high school prior to uni next year (she is coping magnificently); my eldest daughter is having to put off her plans for getting married (weddings are banned); my son has lost his job and will have to move back home to his mum (my first wife); our best friends will have to sell their house as their business has collapsed . . . and we still have at least another 5 weeks of curfew/lockdown, assuming we can a hit a target of 5 new infections per day (in a city of 5.5 million people). So in all likelihood we will continue to the end of the year.
 
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BillyDee

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So the target is 1 infection per million a day?
The current UK stat is 17 per 100,000 for a week...
[Edit, England, not UK]
 

VanWolfie

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Our lives will never be the same again. Too many politicians have had the scent of real power in their nostrils and too many citizens did nothing about it. The world has changed, but not for the better and has widely opened the door for the next despot with the broader population kneeling as the Police underscore their willingness towards enforcement. QUOTE

WolfmanOz,
I empathize very much with your plight. I describe what is happening as "friendly ('we have your back, we will look out for you; we're all in this together,' etc.,) fascism." the end result of which is the loss of freedoms, a re-fashioning of what constitutes 'normality,' and an expectation that people must conform abjectly because the situation has been constructed as a life-and-death issue. Now for the people who contract the virus, it is. But for most political leaders it is an opportunity to verge on totalitarian power and call it 'democratic.'
 

WolfmanOz

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Spot on VanWolfie ! unfortunately I like you phrase "friendly fascism".

It's no longer a matter of left-wing or right.

Here in Melbourne/Victoria the state govt. is far-left, whereas in the UK you have a supposedly right-wing Govt. Both are unfit to be in govt. with their trampling of civil liberties plus their sheer incompetence in trying to manage COVID-19.
 

VanWolfie

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Spot on VanWolfie ! unfortunately I like you phrase "friendly fascism".

It's no longer a matter of left-wing or right.

Here in Melbourne/Victoria the state govt. is far-left, whereas in the UK you have a supposedly right-wing Govt. Both are unfit to be in govt. with their trampling of civil liberties plus their sheer incompetence in trying to manage COVID-19.

One of my greatest disappointments in life, particularly during this pandemic, is when people who believe in the left of center principles I support actually act in totalitarian ways toward anyone who dares to disagree or contend with them. In fact (and this is the most disappointing fact) they are often far worse in their selfish and egotistical behavior than some of right of center colleagues. But then, one shouldn't be surprised because totalitarianism happens at both extremes of the political spectrum. As I look at how things have developed over the last seven months or so, there really does seem to be a left-wing ideology framed around testing, regardless of symptoms, that seems to be set on invoking panic in the general population. Contrasted with this are the right wing idiots like Trump and Johnson and the world is in a hell of a mess. I have a 43 year-old daughter who insists that it is not a pandemic but a 'plan-demic' designed to create pandemonium that results in compliant dependence. I don't go quite that far but I do have a great deal of skepticism about what is happening and am somewhat convinced that there is something sinister going on.
 

WolfmanOz

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Well it just gets even more surreal here in Melbourne - if you recall the Steven Spielberg/Tom Cruise movie Minority Report . . .

Consider the latest and most alarming push by State Premier Dan Andrews for even more complete power and control over every aspect of the lives of Victorians – especially those who dare to ask questions of what he and his government are doing to freedom, democracy and human rights.

Called the COVID-19 Omnibus (Emergency Measures) Amendment Bill, it overrides all other laws and legislation with the exception of the Charter of Human Rights (which the government ignores as it is not binding), the State Constitution Act 1975 and the laws created by the Bill itself.

The Bill would give police the power to preemptively detain anyone with COVID-19 or their close contacts even if they haven’t broken the law. All that’s required is that the officer THINKS THEY MIGHT breach restrictions in the future.

The Bill has passed the Lower House and it's 50/50 whether it will pass the Upper House.

The Bill confers an extraordinary power to the Secretary of the Department of Health to appoint public servants as “authorised officers” with the same powers as police. However worse than that is a provision which allows the secretary to appoint any of the following as an “authorised officer” . . .

The Bill outlines some of the roles and powers these “authorised officers” may be able to exercise under the State of Emergency powers. They include being able: to detain any person or group of persons in an emergency area for the period reasonably necessary to eliminate or reduce a serious risk to public health; to restrict the movement of any person or group of persons within an emergency area; to prevent any person or group of persons from entering an emergency area; and, to give any other direction that the authorised officer considers is reasonably necessary to protect public health.

These powers given to untrained “authorised officers” could lead to shocking outcomes, particularly if citizens can be co-opted to assist. We have already seen examples of police heavy handedness in Victoria with police raids on housewives, the busting down of doors and so on simply because people have promoted on social media protests against the current health regime.

The new legislation places “no limit on detention time, no legislative oversight and no clear avenue for appeal.” Those detained would be placed in quarantine facilities to be monitored by authorities i.e. concentration camps/gulags.

The law would also see the arrest, not only of anyone the state deems a “conspiracy theorist” and therefore likely to neglect current restrictions, but also their family members and close contacts even if a crime has NOT been committed.

The most ominous aspect of this is the notion of “pre-crime”. Citizens who have committed no crimes can still be detained !

This should frighten every single Victorian, no matter how much you may see him as the Messiah. Indeed, when you have even leftist groups warning about this swing into tyranny, then you know it is getting really bad.

Put simply, this means you can be locked up and detained indefinitely at the whim of a designated officer. There is no provision whatsoever for a review of the detention. Ultimately a person may have to apply to the Supreme Court to grant an order of Habeas Corpus for release. These extraordinary powers are arbitrary and extreme.

They are a draconian attack on civil liberties the like of which Australia has never seen before. Further because all laws are overridden there would appear to be little recourse to any excesses by an authorised officer or their civilians co–opted by them. These laws are so broad and ill-defined that you could be detained for almost anything.

These laws will operate side by side with the powers that already have Melburnians locked in their own homes for 22 hours a day; where the first-ever curfew in Australia’s history is in place; where freedom of movement is banned; where police and ADF personnel patrol the streets to enforce mask-wearing; where $5000 fines are handed out if you attempt to breach internal state borders and so on.

These proposed laws are unjust, unnecessary and unjustified. They are a direct attack on citizens’ civil liberties. Even if this Bill is not passed it says much about the mindset of the Victorian government that it is prepared to assail its citizens’ rights. This Bill is a direct assault on our democracy. It should be rejected by the parliament.

This government has utterly lost it. Andrews is on the most reckless and most dangerous power trip perhaps ever witnessed in Australian history.
 

Alan

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I'm about as far away from knowledgeable about Australian politics as it gets, but I'm really, REALLY struggling to grapple with any analogies to what's going on in any western country right now with fascism, much less Pyongyang.
 

Paul

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These proposed laws are unjust, unnecessary and unjustified. They are a direct attack on citizens’ civil liberties..

This seems to be the crux of your posts and trust me every person thinks their government is handling the pandemic abysmally but you are coming across as someone who has a cellar full of assault rifles waiting for the glorious uprising?
You say " already have Melburnians locked in their own homes for 22 hours a day" but the newspapers are saying the curfew is from 9pm till 5am ? We had a similar lockdown were you were only allowed out for shopping, exercise, fetching medicine etc is that what you mean ?
 

redvictor

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Anyone who thinks any of this is about a virus are truly kidding themselves. I bet the govts around the world can't believe how easy it was to kick everyone into their line of thinking. If we don't stand up soon then the world will not be able to come back. We've already got adverts to download the govt app so they can follow you wherever you go. Next will be health passports, which you will have to have to go anywhere, then we have the vaccine which will be mandatory. It's a very slippery road.
Btw Wolfman OZ, those laws you have were enacted here about 2 weeks after the virus hit. They kept it under the radar but basically the police have the powers to arrest and detain anyone for pretty much anything now, in the name of the virus.
 

redvictor

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This seems to be the crux of your posts and trust me every person thinks their government is handling the pandemic abysmally but you are coming across as someone who has a cellar full of assault rifles waiting for the glorious uprising?
You say " already have Melburnians locked in their own homes for 22 hours a day" but the newspapers are saying the curfew is from 9pm till 5am ? We had a similar lockdown were you were only allowed out for shopping, exercise, fetching medicine etc is that what you mean ?
They took Aussies guns away.... A lockdown for 80 days with a 12 people in 1 million case rate? You are kidding right? You know that there's more chance of dying getting hit by a marble thrown from Mars than dying from the virus with that rate don't ya? You've been played fella.
 

Tony Towner

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..
 

Kenny

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We've already got adverts to download the govt app so they can follow you wherever you go. .

Don't need an app for that.

I hope someone is employed to track my movements.

They will be well bored knowing I walk the dogs and occasionally pop in town.
They would have got excited today as I took a new route but only visited a carpet shop and popped in cafe for a flat white.
 

Paul

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They took Aussies guns away.... A lockdown for 80 days with a 12 people in 1 million case rate? You are kidding right? You know that there's more chance of dying getting hit by a marble thrown from Mars than dying from the virus with that rate don't ya? You've been played fella.

Didn't they take the guns away after the Port Arthur massacre ?
 

Paul

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Face looks a little exposed, could do with closing that in a bit for better protection.

As long as he's got the hood to stop the government reading his thoughts he's Ok although I doubt it will protect him from the real worry of marbles falling from Mars !
 

redvictor

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As long as he's got the hood to stop the government reading his thoughts he's Ok although I doubt it will protect him from the real worry of marbles falling from Mars !

Reading obviously isn't your best skill then..
 

Paul

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"You know that there's more chance of dying getting hit by a marble thrown from Mars than dying from the virus with that rate don't ya? "

Go on then educate me, oh learned one, and show the working out as well so I can best understand.
 
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