Category: COVID-19

Coronavirus Victoria: Thousands’ of truckies entering Victoria from NSW without permits, says Victorian Transport Association

Transport industry groups want less onerous COVID-19 tests for drivers, but health experts warn they are less accurate.

The Victorian Transport Association says thousands of truck drivers are crossing the state’s border each day without a permit and shunning testing requirements designed to shield against the NSW coronavirus outbreak. The peak industry body estimates between 15,000 and 19,000 trucks are entering Victoria daily, the vast majority from NSW. A Victorian government spokesperson said there were 9800 valid permit holders.

Source: Coronavirus Victoria: Thousands’ of truckies entering Victoria from NSW without permits, says Victorian Transport Association

A Conservative Radio Host Mocked the Vaccine. Now He’s Hospitalized With COVID. – Mother Jones

Phil Valentine’s family says he regrets his position and pleaded with listeners to get vaccinated.

Source: A Conservative Radio Host Mocked the Vaccine. Now He’s Hospitalized With COVID. – Mother Jones

Dying Trump Supporter’s Last Words: ‘Please Go Get Vaccinated…This Is Nothing Nice’ | Crooks and Liars

Dying Trump Supporter's Last Words: 'Please Go Get Vaccinated...This Is Nothing Nice'

Morrison’s advice “It’s up to you”

Except that was never going to happen. A brief perusal of Brad ‘Bradster’ Vinnard’s Facebook page shows a deep antipathy towards COVID vaccines, a love of Trump and other right-wing causes, and his love of Harleys. His Facebook comments were the usual hodgepodge of extremism and conspiracy theory, that the vaccines were unsafe, unproven, no worse than the flu, a means for government control, etc. Just the usual paranoid delusion so often seen by followers of Donald Trump.

Source: Dying Trump Supporter’s Last Words: ‘Please Go Get Vaccinated…This Is Nothing Nice’ | Crooks and Liars

Republican Self-genocide — and Darwin | The Smirking Chimp

Even more crucial to the Republican campaign of killing their own people rather unsoftly are the right’s media personalities. A preppy Fox News host says “maybe [the vaccine] doesn’t work and they’re simply not telling you that.” A Newsmax host agrees with the Wisconsin senator, saying “I feel like a vaccination in a weird way is just generally kind of going against nature.”

Source: Republican Self-genocide — and Darwin | The Smirking Chimp

Indonesia’s coronavirus cases hit a record 54,500 in a single day, overtaking India to become epicentre – ABC News

Workers in protective suits carry a coffin containing the body of a COVID-19 victim to a grave for a burial

Indonesia’s health ministry reported 54,517 new cases and 991 deaths on Wednesday The country’s real daily case count could top 200,000 by the end of the month Health authorities fear the Delta variant could hit more remote areas

Source: Indonesia’s coronavirus cases hit a record 54,500 in a single day, overtaking India to become epicentre – ABC News

Coronavirus Australia: Kevin Rudd claim reveals the call Scott Morrison never made

Prime Minister Scott Morrison and NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian  announce COVID-19 financial relief.

Scott Morrison faced an inevitable question in the hours after former prime minister Kevin Rudd confirmed he had spoken to the global chief executive of Pfizer two weeks ago to ask for more vaccines to be sent to Australia. That question? When did Morrison speak to the Pfizer boss, Albert Bourla? Prime Minister Scott Morrison and NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announce COVID-19 financial relief. Prime Minister Scott Morrison and NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announce COVID-19 financial relief.Credit:Wolter Peeters The answer? Never. The Prime Minister told Sky News on Monday he had met one of Pfizer’s senior directors in Europe last month but had mostly spoken to the company’s Australian managing director.

Source: Coronavirus Australia: Kevin Rudd claim reveals the call Scott Morrison never made

Just get the jab(s) – » The Australian Independent Media Network

While some have good and valid reasons, such as allergies to one of the vaccine components to consider in regard to this or any other vaccine, the majority of us have nothing to fear except fear or irrationality itself. Jane Gilmour produced a lot of statistics in The New Daily that proved there is more risk in using a battery drill or driving to the local green box hardware store next weekend than getting a blood clot from the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. So, while this website doesn’t profess to offer medical advice – do yourself (and the rest of us) a favour as soon as you can – just get the jab(s).

Source: Just get the jab(s) – » The Australian Independent Media Network

We’re sorry we looked down on you Victoria – see you on the other side of lockdown

Sydney is in a stricter lockdown and we might be here some time.

Listen, Victoria . . . We’re sorry, ok? A couple of months ago, Gladys Berejiklian spoke for much of the state when she said: “I fear for Victoria and I worry about what their government may do. I hope we have demonstrated to other states it is possible to manage an outbreak and not shut down a city.” Not one of us shouted her down, at least not publicly. We so assumed that in this state our systems were better than yours that we either just pitied you and your endless lockdowns, or looked down our long noses at how badly you had stuffed it up. And now look at us. We stuffed it up by not doing what you told us to do: go early, go hard.

Source: We’re sorry we looked down on you Victoria – see you on the other side of lockdown

Australian-led team finds animal, not lab, COVID’s ‘likely’ origin

An Australian-led team of eminent biologists has backed up the theory COVID-19 probably originated from animal-to-human transmission via a Wuhan market, rather than the Chinese city’s virus research lab. A critical review paper into the origins of SARS-CoV-2, the disease that causes COVID-19, has concluded it is most likely of zoonotic origin – jumping from an animal to a human. The review was released on Thursday as a preprint, which means it is not yet peer reviewed.

Source: Australian-led team finds animal, not lab, COVID’s ‘likely’ origin

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Antivaxxers Want You To Believe Vaccines Don’t Work Against the Delta Variant. They’re Wrong. – Mother Jones

While there is plenty of reason to be optimistic, experts say we’re not out of the woods just yet. “Even if we are fully vaccinated and all our lives are starting to go back to normal,” Shafir says, “COVID-19 is still a pandemic.” To see our way through this, she says, we need to minimize the chance of transmission “to the greatest extent possible.” The fewer cases there are, the less opportunity the virus has to evolve. As she puts it, “The pandemic isn’t over anywhere until the pandemic is over everywhere.”

Source: Antivaxxers Want You To Believe Vaccines Don’t Work Against the Delta Variant. They’re Wrong. – Mother Jones

Australia needs COVID rollout and reopening targets, experts say

We have been currently in the First Phase for 18months of unfulfilled promises Mr Morrison

“It should have always been the plan. It should have been a race. It’s taken [the PM] 18 months to realise it. And Australians are paying the price for his complacency,” Mr Albanese said on Twitter.

Source: Australia needs COVID rollout and reopening targets, experts say

Tourist hub Bali swept up in Indonesia’s harsh lockdown despite 71% vaccination rate, as country’s infections spike — RT World News

Tourist hub Bali swept up in Indonesia’s harsh lockdown despite 71% vaccination rate, as country's infections spike

Given Bali’s popularity with tourists and its status as an economic hub, the immunization efforts have focused heavily on the island, where around 71% of residents have been vaccinated so far. Amid a recent spike in cases – seeing about 200 per day – the island remains closed to international tourism, including for vaccinated sightseers, allowing only Indonesian nationals and those with special permits to travel there. It boasts a population of some 4.3 million. Since the pandemic first emerged in late 2019, Indonesia has seen some 2.2 million cases and nearly 60,000 deaths.

Source: Tourist hub Bali swept up in Indonesia’s harsh lockdown despite 71% vaccination rate, as country’s infections spike — RT World News

A Guide To Covid Vaccinations OR Naked Men Startle Deer… – » The Australian Independent Media Network

The stroll-out by Hunt and Morrison

Like the vaccine rollout, someone else will need to take over if it’s going to be finished any time in the near future.

Source: A Guide To Covid Vaccinations OR Naked Men Startle Deer… – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Privacy rights jeopardised with Covid apps tracking every move – Michael West

covid data misued

Law enforcement agencies have a cavalier attitude to the right to privacy and a “whatever it takes” attitude to raiding databases of personal information, writes Greg Barns. Given the treasure trove of information now available from all the Covid tracing apps, strong penalties and laws are needed to ensure evidence obtained from those apps cannot be used in legal proceedings.

Source: Privacy rights jeopardised with Covid apps tracking every move – Michael West

Vaccine Refusal in Trump Country Makes It a Sitting Duck for COVID Delta Variant | The Smirking Chimp

It took four weeks for Delta to become the dominant COVID strain in Great Britain, and at present it has spread to more than 60 countries worldwide.

Source: Vaccine Refusal in Trump Country Makes It a Sitting Duck for COVID Delta Variant | The Smirking Chimp

Australian scientist on WHO team which investigated coronavirus origins in Wuhan defends team’s findings – ABC News

A man with white hair and wearing glasses and blue scrubs smiles in a labratory.A World Health Organization report into the origins of COVID-19 found the virus likely started with bats before spreading to humans via another animal But in recent days, US intelligence officials have been investigating a previously dismissed theory the virus may have leaked from a laboratory in Wuhan Medical virologist Dominic Dwyer, who visited Wuhan with the WHO team, says no new evidence supporting the lab theory has emerged

Source: Australian scientist on WHO team which investigated coronavirus origins in Wuhan defends team’s findings – ABC News

What’s the ‘Indian’ variant responsible for Victoria’s outbreak and how effective are vaccines against it?

The COVID-19 variant responsible for Victoria’s latest outbreak is one of three Indian variant sub-types, which spreads more easily than the original strain. Here’s what we know so far.

Source: What’s the ‘Indian’ variant responsible for Victoria’s outbreak and how effective are vaccines against it?

10,000 contacts and 100 exposure sites as Victoria lockdown begins

Victorians are waking to their fourth lockdown in 15 months, once again sparked by hotel quarantine, but the state’s chief health officer said it was “absurd” to blame a failure of contact tracing. More than 10,000 close contacts have been identified as the Melbourne cluster grew to 26 infections on Thursday, and virus detectives are racing to track everyone down. The list of exposure sites also swelled to more than 100 locations.

Source: 10,000 contacts and 100 exposure sites as Victoria lockdown begins

Victoria lockdown: Victoria needs to accept that mistakes were made

Lines of people wait to be vaccinated at the Exhibition Building in Carlton on Thursday.

It’s a convenient falsehood that Victoria could have avoided a lockdown if it weren’t for the mistakes of other jurisdictions. Again we are told to believe that this was a crisis inflicted on Victoria, not inflamed or aggravated by it.

The lockdown purpose isn’t to stop the virus but its “spread”. The spread can’t be stopped without effective vaccinations and quarantine. Morrison failed on both counts and continues to do so. However, this Ch9 writer says Victoria has to share the blame. Vaccination reduced the spread in the UK from 60k a day to 2000 similar massive reductions have been seen in the US. Yet Smethhurst says Vic should “share the blame”. Morrison’s 2% vaccination success certainly doesn’t cut it yet Hunt and Morrison keep chest banging. They refuse sole responsibility for quarantine on our borders because if they make a mistake they then can’t “avoid the blame”. Politics is their priority for Morrison is the first to deny any blame and first to share the state’s success. The virus well it’s a political opportunity as long as he can seem to be doing something while doing nothing and control the narrative with Ch9’s help.

Source: Victoria lockdown: Victoria needs to accept that mistakes were made

COVID is surging in unvaccinated Taiwan. Australia should take heed

Alarm bells rang internationally last week when Taiwan announced it was moving to its second highest COVID alert level after a recent surge of cases. The country last year recorded zero cases of community transmission for eight straight months. The recent increase in cases has led many people to wonder: what happened to Taiwan’s COVID success story? One part of the answer is a very slow vaccine rollout. Australia should take heed.

Source: COVID is surging in unvaccinated Taiwan. Australia should take heed

Why Strongmen are Losing the Fight Against Covid | The Smirking Chimp

Since Covid-19 exploded in India, the prime minister, Narendra Modi, seems more intent on controlling the news than the outbreak. On Wednesday, India recorded nearly 363,000 Covid cases and 4,120 deaths, about 30 percent of worldwide Covid deaths that day. But experts say India is vastly understating the true number. Ashish Jha, dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health, estimates that at least 25,000 Indians are dying from Covid each day. The horror has been worsened by shortages of oxygen and hospital beds. Yet Modi and his government don’t want the public to get the true story. One big lesson from the Covid crisis: lying makes it worse. Vladimir Putin is busily denying the truth about Covid in Russia. Demographer Alexei Raksha, who worked at Russia’s official statistical agency, Rosstat, but says he was forced to leave last summer for telling the truth about Covid, claims that the daily data in Russia has been “smoothed, rounded, lowered” to look better. Like many experts, he uses excess mortality – the number of deaths during the pandemic over the typical number of deaths – as the best indicator. “If Russia stops at 500,000 excess deaths, that will be a good scenar

Source: Why Strongmen are Losing the Fight Against Covid | The Smirking Chimp