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Writing on the wall?

By David Southwell - posted Tuesday, 12 October 2021

Melbourne has become the Covid protest centre of Australia.

Once priding itself on being Australia's most "liveable city" the CBD and surrounds have increasingly seen chaotic disturbing scenes of riot police and protesters clashing.

Fittingly. with Crown Casino sitting across the Yarra River. the mayhem can be reminiscent of "Biff Town", the dystopia created by the alternate timeline Trump-like gambling mogul Biff in Back to the Future 2.


However, it's not a greedy garish lout sitting high up in the Crown Towers that has caused this situation but rather a Labor government financed by and beholden to construction (see previous article - "Who rules Victoria") and public sector unions.

It is the public sector that has most abysmally failed Victoria during Covid.

Andrews wanted Victoria to run hotel quarantine, he argued for it in National Cabinet and boasted the state was ready and "had done the work".

The gargantuan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), a super department created by a merger in 2015, was given the job.

So self-confident was the DHHS that after a month they released an inhouse video congratulating themselves on how well the program was running.

If there is one aspect of the Andrews Government that works brilliantly it is the ability to brag, a tone set from the top.


As is now sadly well-known, Victoria's attempt at hotel quarantine was catastrophic and led to a 112-day lockdown with over 800 deaths.

For reasons not quite satisfactorily explained, a dodgy security outfit was hired from a non-preferred list of tenderers, safety protocols were either never in place or blithely ignored and those who voiced increasingly desperate warnings were ignored.

Victorian Police had been asked to provide security and establish a chain of command, as happened in NSW, but said they'd rather not … and that was that apparently.

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About the Author

David Southwell is a writer and editor living in Melbourne.

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