Friday, September 08, 2023

Failed vaccine mandates

In Australia, the vaccine efficacy that preoccupies state premiers – who imposed the mandates – is getting re-elected. As Premier Andrews put it when he won the Victorian election in a ‘Dan-slide’ last November, ‘Vaccines work!’ In Queensland, Premier Palasczcuk is so keen to repeat the act that she’s hired Andrews’ adman.

But who will last longer? The mandates or Palasczcuk? On Friday 1 September, Health Minister Shannon Fentiman (mooted to be a front-runner to replace the Premier) announced two-week consultations on removing the mandates, two years after they were imposed in September 2021.

Queensland’s Chief Health Officer (CHO) has already said they should go but the power of the CHO which seemed almost unlimited at the height of Covid hysteria has diminished now that he is proposing something sensible.

A group called Doctors Against Mandates mounted a legal challenge to the mandates on 12 March 2022. Within a fortnight of receiving 13 affidavits from medical professionals and six reports from international experts, the CHO revoked the mandates for health workers in the private sector. Unfortunately, mandates which cover the public sector health are still in force.

One of the most damning indictments of vaccine efficacy was filed in relation to the doctors’ challenge to the mandate in the Supreme Court of Queensland early this year by the state’s Chief Health Officer Dr John Gerrard. It revealed that once 80 per cent of the population were vaccinated and the borders opened in December 2021, not only did Covid cases explode, peaking at 18,500 per day in January, but 80 per cent of the 176 Covid deaths were in people who had had one or more Covid vaccine jabs. Most were double-vaxxed but 13 were triple-vaxxed and one died after five shots. In other words, the vaccines were duds. They failed to stop the pandemic or prevent the vulnerable from dying. All the bullying of the unvaccinated, preventing grieving Australians from comforting their dying loved ones or attending their funerals, denying a pregnant woman in New South Wales permission to cross the border and get urgent medical treatment which meant she waited 16 hours to fly to Sydney, and lost one of her twins – it was all for nothing.

Did the Premier rush to apologise for the damage done by the ‘failed vaccines’, to quote Bill Gates who profited heavily from his investment in the Pfizer jab? Of course not. The information was only made public last month by Rebekah Barnett in her excellent substack Dystopian Downunder.

Far from apologising, Queensland Health is still threatening disciplinary action against ‘hundreds’ of workers who ‘did not comply with their employment contract’ by getting jabbed.

Infectious disease physician Paul Griffin supports ending the mandates but thinks the biggest risk is that ‘people will think the initial rule was wrong, which,’ according to him, ‘isn’t the case’.

That’s the nub of it. The government doesn’t want to admit that the vaccines are useless and the mandates were morally, scientifically and practically wrong.

The only reason it is ending the mandate is because it can’t replace the more than 2,100 healthcare workers who were stood down or forced to resign.

‘We have global workforce shortages, so I think it makes sense now to reconsider this mandate,’ Fentiman says.

‘If someone wants to now reapply for a job with Queensland Health who is not vaccinated for Covid, they’ll be treated the same as any other worker.’

Despite a massive increase in Australia’s international immigration intake and wage hikes in the health sector, acute shortages persist, not least because the repeatedly vaccinated healthcare workers repeatedly get Covid-19. This was observed in a study of more than 50,000 US healthcare workers in the prestigious Cleveland Clinic, which showed the more often you were jabbed, the more you caught Covid.

Interstate migration into Queensland, predominantly Victoria, and NSW, the states worst affected by lockdown lunacy, has increased demand for health services.

National excess mortality of over 13 per cent this year has increased pressure on hospitals.

The dramatic spike in ‘dying suddenly’ is recorded under ‘other cardiac conditions’ in Australia’s provisional mortality data. Deaths from January to May are 15.5 per cent higher than the baseline average and 1 per cent higher than the same period in 2022.

Deaths due to diabetes were 22 per cent above the baseline average in May 2023, and 1.4 per cent higher than in May 2022

Deaths due to dementia including Alzheimer’s were 18 per cent above the baseline average in May 2023, and 2.1 per cent above May 2022.

Each of these causes of death has been linked in studies to the spike protein in the virus and/or the vaccine. For example, a paper from Larson et al. at Linkoping University, Sweden published on 1 September presents evidence for the initiation or acceleration of Alzheimer’s disease and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease by the spike protein.

When the mandate for health workers ends in Queensland, flagged for 25 September, only NSW, Victoria and South Australia will be left. Will that be the end?

Who knows? In the US some colleges and hospitals are trying to bring back mask mandates.

Scott Gottlieb, former head of the US Food and Drug Administration and now on the board of Pfizer is talking up the next booster.

The latest variant has been named after Eris, the Greek goddess of ‘strife and discord’. What is the plan? A rerun of lockdowns and Black Lives Matter on the rampage in the run-up to the 2024 Presidential election? Skeptics have their own name for the variant – BS.24.7.


Racist duck hunting regulations

The recent state parliamentary report into recreational native bird hunting gives Victorians a taste of the kind of division the Voice to Parliament will have across every area of life in regional Australia should advocates for constitutional change be successful at the October referendum.

The report, almost 300 pages long, lays out a recipe for the kind of race-based division of laws and rights that the federal government would make permanent nationwide.

Without any solid justification – except, it would seem, that some people do not like bird hunting – the committee has recommended the Victorian government end recreational bird hunting on all public and private land from 2024.

Only that would not apply to everyone. According to the committee, the hunting rights of ‘traditional owners’ should be retained.

Other key recommendations include that the government introduce additional protections for ‘Aboriginal cultural heritage’ sites and current penalties for ‘cultural destruction’. The committee even recommends a government re-education program that would require hunters to learn about ‘Aboriginal cultural heritage awareness’.

One of the claims made in support of the committee’s proposed restrictions is that bird hunting is a niche practice and only 0.4 per cent of Victorians hold a bird hunting licence.

It is not clear whether the committee questioned how many ‘traditional owners’ are currently exercising their hunting rights. One gets the impression that it would not matter to the committee members, as its position is that one category of Victorian deserves greater protection.

This goes right to the heart of the concern of a growing number of Australians when it comes to the proposed Voice to Parliament, that laws are increasingly being used to separate people into different groups.

Brazen in its divisiveness, the Victorian parliamentary committee said it would be too cruel if Victorians who do not have Indigenous heritage were allowed to continue to hunt, but it would not be too cruel if those Victorians were Indigenous.

The same concerns became a flashpoint in Western Australia recently, with the confusion and concern generated by proposed Indigenous Cultural Heritage laws. These now abandoned reforms would have mandated property owners obtain permission from local Indigenous authorities before even a fence post could have been dug on land only slightly larger than a suburban block.

The Western Australian reforms were abandoned after overwhelming community pressure following statements of the newly appointed Premier Roger Cook let the cat out of the bag saying his ‘cultural heritage laws do the same thing as the Voice.’

Claims that people should be divided and given different rights would become more commonplace if the indigenous-only voice to parliament – a parallel system of political representation based on race – is inserted into the Australian Constitution.

The federal government’s proposed constitutional change would establish the voice and give it the constitutional duty to make ‘representations’ to the Parliament and the executive government. This means the voice would be empowered to intervene at all stages of the lawmaking process – not just the drafting, review, and debate of laws, but also the right to make representations about how laws are enforced.

There is no limit to the scope of matters that the voice may make recommendations. If passed, the Voice would have the right to make representations to the government ‘on matters relating to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’. This, in effect, means any issue because all Indigenous Australians are Australians, and the law applies to all Australians equally – or at least it should.

Any disputes in the lawmaking process between the Canberra Voice to pParliament and the elected Parliament will not be resolved democratically. Because the Canberra Voice to Parliament will be enshrined in the Constitution, it will be the High Court that will determine the scope, rights, and powers of the Voice and adjudicate disputes.

The Victorian bird hunting inquiry demonstrates how issues of general concern can quickly be hijacked by activists pushing a divisive agenda and demands for separate treatment can be accommodated by dismantling the principle of equality before the law. At the referendum on October 14, 2023, this could become a permanent feature of our way of life.


Single-sex schools have the academic advantage, NAPLAN data reveals

When prospective parents agonise over the decision to enrol their daughter in a single-sex school, Campbelltown’s St Patrick’s College for Girls principal Sue Lennox has a simple answer: “Boys get away with stuff because ‘boys will be boys’ and that is a dreadful lesson for girls. That is what girls at co-ed school learn,” she said.

“When girls are in class without the boys, they can be themselves. It is a safe place where they can ask questions. They don’t feel they have to be anyone in particular because there are no boys. They grow in confidence.

“In co-ed schools, some subjects are considered ‘boy subjects’ and some are considered ‘girl subjects’. That is absent here.”

An analysis of NAPLAN results from across the country’s 304 single-sex schools shows there is another advantage to segregating boys and girls: they both perform slightly better when it comes to academic results.

After accounting for socio-educational background, the analysis by Catholic Schools NSW using NAPLAN test data from 2019 to 2022 found the single-sex advantage was particularly pronounced when it came to numeracy scores in boys’ schools.

Students enrolled in boys’ schools typically scored between 11 and 12 points higher than those in co-ed schools, after accounting for socio-educational background, the report said.

“Overall, the results of this analysis imply a modest academic advantage for single-sex schools, with the advantage generally greater for boys’ schools than girls’ schools,” the report said.

When it came to numeracy, girls who went to a single-sex school scored on average three points higher than those who attended a co-ed school, after differences in social background were considered.

There are about 284,000 students across the country enrolled in single-sex schools. While they might be performing better academically, the share of all students in those schools across the country declined slightly from 7.2 per cent in 2018 to 7 per cent in 2022.

The shrinking share of students in single-sex schools is likely driven by the fact that many boys schools have decided to open their doors to girls, the report said.

In Sydney, that includes Marist school Corpus Christi College which opened its doors to girls in year 7 this year. It followed North Sydney’s Marist Catholic College North Shore which went co-ed in 2021.

The $41,000-a-year Cranbrook in Bellevue Hill will open its doors to girls in 2026, and Newington College in Stanmore is also weighing up a possible shift to co-ed.

Flinders University researcher Dr Katherine Dix analysed NAPLAN data ranging from 2010 to 2012. She found in numeracy that students at boys’ schools were one school term ahead of students in girls’ schools. However, her research found single-sex schools offered no added value in academic results over time when compared to co-ed schools.

She now believes girls’ schools remained popular because the values they promoted were attractive to parents, while that was less the case for boys’ schools.

“Wanting to develop strong independent young women is a stronger driver in a traditionally male-dominated world. The same driver is not there for single-sex male schools,” she said.

Chief executive of Catholic Schools NSW Dallas McInerney wants single-sex schools to remain an option for parents. He warned that going co-ed by admitting girls should not be considered a quick-fix solution to help a struggling school.

“Just as we believe in parental choice between sectors, it also extends to the type of school be it co-ed or single sex because different children are better suited to different environments,” he said.

“There are a number of different reasons we might want to bring together two single-sex schools on a single site. But as a general principle, one section should not be called upon to save a failing school of the opposite sex. Don’t bring in girls to salvage a struggling boys’ schools.”

At St Patrick’s in Campbelltown, Rebecca, 15, said when she compared the school to her co-ed primary school she preferred just having girls in the classroom.

“It is a lot more quiet and focused,” she said.

Abigail, 15, said she liked the close friendships she had made at school, while her classmate Diadem, also 15, said she liked being in a supportive environment of an all-girls school.

“It is a sisterhood, I feel really encouraged to do my best,” she said.


Truth-telling body using ‘make-believe history’: Blainey

Eminent historian Geoffrey Blainey has accused Victoria’s Indigenous “truth-telling” body of drawing upon a “make-believe” version of history in its latest report, arguing claims Aborigines had democratic decision-making processes prior to 1788 are wrong.

The Yoorrook Justice Commission’s report claims Aboriginal Victorians had “collective decision making” at the heart of their societies before the British Empire colonised the land in 1788, and uses this history as a basis for its calls for “decision-making power, authority, control and resources” in both the child protection and criminal justice systems to be transferred to Indigenous Victorians.

But Professor Blainey says the commission is ignoring the authoritarian and at times violent nature of relations between Indigenous groups, suggesting their version of history is closer to the views of Anthony Albanese and Dark Emu author Bruce Pascoe than those of historians. The commission said the report had been produced after “12 months of intensive research and evidence gathering”, while Professor Pascoe said he had never claimed there had been no violence in ­Aboriginal society.

ANU WK Hancock Distinguished Professor of History Ann McGrath accused Professor Blainey of “having an imaginary argument with Bruce Pascoe”, claiming the historian has “turned away” from the conclusions of his seminal history of Aboriginal Australia, Triumph of the Nomads.

Yoorrook’s report on Victoria’s child protection and criminal justice systems, published on Monday, states: “Before European invasion, First Peoples were independent and governed by collective decision-making processes with shared kinship, language and culture. They belonged to and were custodians of defined areas of country.”

Professor Blainey said “many scholars” disagreed with this view. “The idea that Aboriginals practised ‘collective decision making’ comes from Bruce Pascoe and our Prime Minister. Their belief that Aboriginals invented democracy 80,000 years ago is make-believe,” the University of Melbourne emeritus professor said.

“Traditional Aboriginal society tended to be authoritarian, and far from democratic. My book, The Story of Australia’s People: the Rise and Fall of Ancient Australia, discusses the kind of historical ­errors which are now embodied in the Yoorrook verdicts.”

The book won a Prime Minister’s Literary Award in 2016.

Professor Blainey said many experts also disagreed with Yoorrook’s claim that “the systemic racism which persists today has its origins in colonial systems and institutions”.

“There is plenty of evidence that Aboriginal tribes or ‘nations’ thought that they were innately superior to their neighbours,” Professor Blainey said.

He cited a reference in his preface to Triumph of the Nomads to an Indigenous Victorian “meeting a black tribe living only 100 miles away” in the 1840s, and commenting “They are foreign in speech, they are foreign in countenance, they are foreign altogether – they are no good”.

“Brutal warfare existed between Aboriginal peoples, but it is not even mentioned in this week’s edict. Victoria was not the Garden of Eden before 1788, nor after 1788,” Professor Blainey said.




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