Another three things

A bluffers’ guide to Saturday’s elections in Queensland, plus further items of marginal interest.

No Newspoll this week it seems. News you can use:

• Queensland’s elections on the weekend are covered in extensive and ongoing detail here. To cut a long story short: the state by-elections of Bundamba and Currumbin resulted in victories for the incumbent parties, namely Labor and the Liberal National Party respectively; Adrian Schrinner of the LNP was re-elected as lord mayor of Brisbane; and the LNP have almost certainly retained a healthy majority on Brisbane City Council. In Bundamba, the LNP ran third behind One Nation (and probably shouldn’t have bothered to run), whose presence in the field also took a bite out of the Labor primary vote. Labor did manage to improve their primary vote at the LNP’s expense in Currumbin, where One Nation is a lot weaker, but the latter’s presence means they will get a lower share of the combined preferences and thus fail to bite into the LNP’s existing 3.3% margin. There has been no notional two-party count, but scrutineers’ figures cited by Antony Green suggest Labor received an uncommonly weak 71% share of Greens preferences.

• Roy Morgan’s promise that it would provide further detail on its half-way intriguing findings on trust in political and business leaders (see here and here) has borne disappointing fruit. Rather than provide the trust and distrust scores as most of us would have hoped, a follow-up release offers only blurry impressions as to the specific attributes that caused the various leaders to be trusted or distrusted, in which “honest/genuine” and “integrity/sincerity” were uselessly listed as distinct response options.

• The Tasmanian government has delayed the date for the periodical Legislative Council elections, which this year encompass the seats of Huon and Rosevears, but only from May 2 to May 30. The Tasmanian Electoral Commission says this will give it more time to “ensure electors have access to the voting process and to maintain the integrity of the 2020 Legislative Council elections during the COVID-19 pandemic”, which presumably means a greater emphasis on postal, pre-poll and maybe telephone voting.

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.

1,029 comments on “Another three things”

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  1. I noticed the reporting of a covid 19 case in West Irian, a province that provides the western border of PNG. The PNG border with Indonesia is porous.
    The healthsystem and state of health in PNG is possibly something beyond third world.
    Swine flu has reached the highlands.
    Australia’s border with PNG, mostly running through the Torres Strait is a ramshackle mixture of islands and reciprocal travel rights.
    Has the government given thought to the potential difficulties in the movement of the Covid 19 virus along this route?
    Do we have another disaster looming 1000 times the magnitude of the cruise ships?
    Are the members of the Morrison LNP government aware of this imminent danger.

  2. Bucephalus @ #896 Monday, March 30th, 2020 – 11:25 pm


    ADF personnel on field training and deployment do significantly more than 13 hour days for 5 straight. I have fallen asleep while standing up in a moving vehicle after having less than an hour of sleep per night for 3 days straight. When I worked FIFO in construction we did +13 hour shifts 13 days straight, a day off and then back into it – I used to do 6 weeks on and 2 weeks off on that work rate.

    You can’t be serious. Two of my sons and many of my friends do FIFO. They’d roll on the floor with laughter if you compared their workload to that of a frontline medical worker.

  3. Bucephalus @ #896 Monday, March 30th, 2020 – 10:25 pm

    I have fallen asleep while standing up in a moving vehicle after having less than an hour of sleep per night for 3 days straight.

    Can’t say I’d trust someone in that state to provide quality medical care to others. Or competently protect themselves from exposure to a very contagious disease.

  4. Barney in Tanjung Bunga @ #898 Monday, March 30th, 2020 – 8:27 pm

    Danama Papers @ #892 Monday, March 30th, 2020 – 8:14 pm

    Vogon Poet @ #697 Monday, March 30th, 2020 – 3:41 pm

    What happens to all the workers that worked for business’ that have been forced to close down by the government ?
    Get paid for not showing up ?

    What happens to all the casuals who technically aren’t employed by the lies of Woolies, etc., but are in fact employed by labour hire firms? Who gets the subsidy, Woolies or the labour hire forms? Does it get given to Woolies who then have to pass it onto the hire firms?

    What a bloody mess.

    The labour hire firms are the employers.

    Woolies pay them and they then pay the workers.

    I know that, but who gets the subsidy, Woolies or the labour hire firms?


    The first covid19 case in Iran was reported From in Qom on Feb 19. Necessarily, infection must have occurred some time earlier in February, and most likely arising from human-to-human transmission that occurred in January or earlier.

    There is no identified source case for Iran. Considering they had no means to test for and define cases until mid January at the earliest, there is no way of knowing how long the virus had been circulating prior to Feb 19.

    Maybe the DNA sequencing can clarify that.

  6. RI,

    I share (well, shared) an office with an Iranian gent who explained the prominence of Qom in Iran’s COVID-19 adventure. To paraphrase him:

    You know Qom is a religious centre, with many religious schools. It is also an expensive town, populated by the Iranian aristocracy and religious leaders – if a person has any stature, then they have a residence in Qom.

    You are probably also aware that the Chinese Govt has a “problem” with muslim Chinese citizens. One way they are managing the “problem” is by trying to shift the muslim population towards Shi’a sect, because it is seen as more consistent with Chinese communist ideology.

    So, some parts of the Chinese Govt sponsor young Islamic scholars to study in Iran, to learn about Shi’a traditions. And if you study Islam in Iran, you study in Qom.

    I’m sure you can join the dots.

  7. Danama Papers @ #906 Monday, March 30th, 2020 – 8:43 pm

    Barney in Tanjung Bunga @ #898 Monday, March 30th, 2020 – 8:27 pm

    Danama Papers @ #892 Monday, March 30th, 2020 – 8:14 pm

    Vogon Poet @ #697 Monday, March 30th, 2020 – 3:41 pm

    What happens to all the workers that worked for business’ that have been forced to close down by the government ?
    Get paid for not showing up ?

    What happens to all the casuals who technically aren’t employed by the lies of Woolies, etc., but are in fact employed by labour hire firms? Who gets the subsidy, Woolies or the labour hire forms? Does it get given to Woolies who then have to pass it onto the hire firms?

    What a bloody mess.

    The labour hire firms are the employers.

    Woolies pay them and they then pay the workers.

    I know that, but who gets the subsidy, Woolies or the labour hire firms?

    The labour hire firm would as the employer.

    It would then be up to them and Woolies to negotiate any variation in their contract.

  8. There is no identified source case for Iran. Considering they had no means to test for and define cases until mid January at the earliest, there is no way of knowing how long the virus had been circulating prior to Feb 19.

    You don’t have a licence to extrapolate back earlier than January simply because the identity of the source case in Iran is unidentified.

    At a doubling rate of every 3 days, it only takes about a month to end up with 1000 cases, and a further 2 weeks or so to exceed 50,000 cases. If Briefly’s Patient Zero of mid-February had been infected at the beginning of January then he or she should have already had around 50,000 mates at that time. But that was not the case.

    Given the maximum 14 day (often much less) latency of symptoms, Patient Zero in Iran was clearly infected sometime in mid to late January, not months before as Briefly suggests.

    This ties in with every other nation that imported infected coronavirus tourists and business people from China: the exportation of the virus out of Wuhan to the rest of the world started in mid to late January, not months before.

    Given also the extreme infectiousness of coronavirus, plus it’s always exponential growth pattern no matter where it takes hold (until defences and isolation strategies are put in place) the proposition that it lay dormant in Iran or anywhere else for months, way back into 2019, is clearly a misleading diversion.

  9. “December 2019
    China to The West.
    – We have an awful virus. At first we played an internal stupid political game and denied it. We soon realised this is too dangerous to use for political gain. We have now put the country into lockdown. It’s coming your way. Don’t play popular politics and wait until your media pressure you to do something.
    Take action.

    January 2020
    The West to China
    – We don’t believe you

    China to The West.
    – Take action

    The West
    – No.

    February 2020
    The West to China
    – Well we got a bit, but no cause for concern.

    China to The West.
    – Take action

    Italy to the rest of The West
    – Guys this is serious, maybe we should listen.

    The rest of the West:
    – Shut up Italy, it’s just a flu killing your old pensioners because they kiss each other on the cheek

    China to The West.
    – Take action

    The rest of the West (sans Italia)
    – Stay out of this China, you had so many deaths because you eat bats.

    China to The West.
    – Take action. It effects everybody.

    Italy to China
    – Help

    China to Italy
    – Here is everything we know. We are sending medical staff and equipment.

    Italy to China
    – Thanks

    The rest of West to Italy
    – WTF Italy, they’re lying to you.

    China to the rest of the West
    – We can help. It affects everybody.

    The West
    – No it doesn’t.

    March 2020
    The West to each other:
    – Shit, this is looking bad. But not as bad as it was in China.

    China to The West.
    – Take action

    The West
    – No

    The media in the West
    – Take action

    The West
    – We’re fucked!

    The media in the West
    – It started in China

    March 29th 2020
    The West to China
    Fuck you China, this is your fault, why didn’t you say anything?

    The blame the lies solely with the inadequacies of Western Governments for the slow response to something they had ample warning about.

    In particular Trump and Johnson have blood on their hands and should be imprisoned for allowing their citizens to die when the deaths were preventable.”

    (Unknown author)

    From Facebook

  10. Barney
    Nice summary but where China has some blame comes before that and by blame i am not referring to the eating of bats? and it comes with a question mark because that isn’t entirely certain.

  11. Some good news – completely off topic:

    ” The Australian Energy Regulator (AER) has approved the Regulatory Investment Test – Transmission (RIT-T) for the proposed $230 million upgrade of the Queensland-New South Wales Interconnector…

    “The Liddell power station is scheduled to close in 2023, which will reduce the generation capacity in NSW. The proposed interconnector upgrade will allow more electricity to be exported from Queensland to New South Wales avoiding the need for costly new generation…

    “The investment is expected to deliver $170 million in net benefits to consumers and producers of electricity and to support the ongoing energy market transition. The cumulative benefits are expected to exceed the investment cost within seven years…

    “The AER has fast tracked its consideration to support the timely completion of this significant project. TransGrid expects that construction of the project will start immediately in March 2020, with delivery and completion of inter-network testing expected by June 2022…

    “The project is expected to add an extra 60 cents to the transmission component of annual customer bills in New South Wales.

    Emphasis added. Transmission is cheap.

    This will involve uprating the Liddell to Tamworth 330 kV lines and installing new dynamic reactive support at Tamworth and Dumaresq, and shunt capacitor banks at Tamworth, Armidale and Dumaresq.

  12. South
    Apparently Trump was warned by American intelligence in January or February but reportedly Trump choose to listen to President Xi.

    There was debate here in late January when many Chinese students were coming for the start of the new university year and it is completely possible that the Chinese were quietly telling other governments about the situation.

  13. So far the EUs economic response has been a bit crap.

    They got away with that with the GFC; not sure how well it’ll play this time. They seem to be pushing the response back onto the member states.

  14. “Mexicanbeemersays:
    Tuesday, March 31, 2020 at 1:19 am
    That is the structural problem with the EU because budgets are up to individual states.”

    Indeed. There seems to be a singular lack of significant action though from the ECB. Can the ECB issue eurobonds to raise money (or just print it)

  15. “That 100k target didn’t last long, then.”

    Nope. It’s going to be interesting to see the reaction.

    I’m expecting it to be fairly muted.

  16. Wow. The place where I grew up Stonnington Melbourne is the hot spot for infection in Victoria. Wealthy entitled people travelling and breaking the rules in all sorts of ways. Doesn’t really surprise me.
    Menzies lived around the corner from where I lived, after he retired. We would ride our bikes down Haverbrack Avenue where he lived. Which he called “Have a look Avenue”. Just as a point of interest.

  17. My son was on holiday in Bali, and got one of the last flights out. He was in isolation, no symptoms, in Perth when his work booked him on a flight to Broome to do 2 weeks isolation in Broome. The flight got to Broome and he, along with others were flown (at his expense) back to Perth. I think they waited outside the (small) Broome terminal.

    (He works for in the Aboriginal Communities sector.) He is able to do half his job online.

    But no-one knows wtf is going on. He assumes after doing weeks (another 2??? who knows?) he can fly to Broome and then do another 2 weeks in Broome maybe before going out to the community. Or whatever.
    I told him to try to get a test under the new guidelines.

    So while it might seem fine and dandy to ScottyFM, it is clear as oily black mud on the ground, especially in the regions.

    Oh, and FIFO workers, apparently are still using some Communities shops and fuel stations in some parts of the country.

    My son’s one brought their kids back from boarding school about three or four weeks ago. Now they have shut the front gate. No cash is being dispensed (so less likelihood of people going to Broome to buy stuff not available in the community store.) Some of the older people have decamped to an island, I hear.

    As I said, clear as mud.

  18. Dandy Murray says:
    Tuesday, March 31, 2020 at 12:09 am

    I share (well, shared) an office with an Iranian gent who explained the prominence of Qom in Iran’s COVID-19 adventure. To paraphrase him:

    You know Qom is a religious centre, with many religious schools. It is also an expensive town, populated by the Iranian aristocracy and religious leaders – if a person has any stature, then they have a residence in Qom.

    I can see how there would be frequent human exchange between Qom and the Muslim population of China. That makes a lot of sense. Wuhan is not a Muslim centre. So I’m not sure how that all ties together. The eruption in Qom and the diffusion of the virus among Iran’s elite can probably be attributed to the common assembly of people for worship.

    This is interesting…

    Economic and Technological Development Zones
    Hubei Jingzhou Chengnan Economic Development Zone was established in 1992 under the approval of Hubei Government. Three major industries include textile, petroleum and chemical processing, with a combined output accounts for 90% of its total output. The zone also enjoys a well-developed transportation network—only 6 kilometres (3.7 mi) to the airport and 4 kilometres (2.5 mi) to the railway station.[22]
    Wuhan East Lake High-Tech Development Zone is a national level high-tech development zone. Optical-electronics, telecommunications, and equipment manufacturing are the core industries of Wuhan East Lake High-Tech Development Zone (ELHTZ) while software outsourcing and electronics are also encouraged. ELHTZ is China’s largest production centre for optical-electronic products with key players like Changfei Fiber-optical Cables (the largest fiber-optical cable maker in China), Fenghuo Telecommunications and Wuhan Research Institute of Post and Telecommunications (the largest research institute in optical telecommunications in China). Wuhan ELHTZ represents the development centre for China’s laser industry with key players such as HUST Technologies and Chutian Laser being based in the zone.[23]
    Wuhan Economic and Technological Development Zone is a national level industrial zone incorporated in 1993.[24] Its size is about 10-25 square km and it plans to expand to 25-50 square km. Industries encouraged in Wuhan Economic and Technological Development Zone include automobile production/assembly, biotechnology/pharmaceuticals, chemicals production and processing, food/beverage processing, heavy industry, and telecommunications equipment.
    Wuhan Export Processing Zone was established in 2000. It is located in Wuhan Economic & Technology Development Zone, planned to cover land of 2.7 km2 (1.0 sq mi). The first 0.7 km2 (0.27 sq mi) area has been launched.[25]
    Wuhan Optical Valley (Guanggu) Software Park is in Wuhan East Lake High-Tech Development Zone. Wuhan Optics Valley Software Park is jointly developed by East Lake High-Tech Development Zone and Dalian Software Park Co., Ltd.[26] The planned area is 0.67 km2 (0.26 sq mi) with total floor area of 600,000 square meters. The zone is 8.5 km (5.28 mi) from the 316 National Highway and is 46.7 km (29.02 mi) from the Wuhan Tianhe Airport.
    Xiangyang New & Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone

    Hubei is an important economic zone in Central China. It makes a lot of sense that the Iranian elite, under pressure from US sanctions, would be seeking to develop economic and political relations in China and that this would lead them to many places in China, including Wuhan, where person-to-person transmission of the virus could occur.

    It also makes sense that China would be trying to favour the Shia branch of Islam and would be encouraging exchange with Iran.

    Both Iran and China have been actively encouraging two-way interaction. It’s easy to see how religious exchange as well as tourist, trade and investment travel led to Qom becoming a locus for infection.

  19. It’s idiotic on its face to characterise human-to-human transmission of a new virus with unknown characteristics as an ‘export’. Likewise it would be facile to describe it as an ‘import’. The virus sustains itself by spreading. The vectors are human. The virus was travelling incognito until early January when it was first described in Wuhan when it was identified as the cause of an outbreak of SARS-like illness in Wuhan in December. The virus was isolated on 7 January.

    On 31 December 2019, the WHO China Country Office was informed of cases of pneumonia unknown etiology (unknown cause) detected in Wuhan City, Hubei Province of China. From 31 December 2019 through 3 January 2020, a total of 44 case-patients with pneumonia of unknown etiology were reported to WHO by the national authorities in China. During this reported period, the causal agent was not identified.
    • On 11 and 12 January 2020, WHO received further detailed information from the National Health Commission China that the outbreak is associated with exposures in one seafood market in Wuhan City.
    • The Chinese authorities identified a new type of coronavirus, which was isolated on 7 January 2020.
    • On 12 January 2020, China shared the genetic sequence of the novel coronavirus for countries to use in developing specific diagnostic kits.
    • On 13 January 2020, the Ministry of Public Health, Thailand reported the first imported case of lab-confirmed novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) from Wuhan, Hubei Province, China.
    • •
    Situation update:
    • As of 20 January 2020, 282 confirmed cases of 2019-nCoV have been reported from four countries including China (278 cases), Thailand (2 cases), Japan (1 case) and the Republic of Korea (1 case);
    • Cases in Thailand, Japan and Republic of Korea were exported from Wuhan City, China;
    • Among the 278 cases confirmed in China, 258 cases were reported from Hubei Province, 14 from Guangdong Province, five from Beijing Municipality and one from Shanghai Municipality;
    On 15 January 2020, the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare, Japan (MHLW) reported an
    imported case of laboratory-confirmed 2019-novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) from Wuhan,
    Hubei Province, China.
    On 20 January 2020, National IHR Focal Point (NFP) for Republic of Korea reported the first
    case of novel coronavirus in the Republic of Korea.

    The resident Sinophobe should take note that by 20 January, when just 282 cases had been identified in total, and when the virus would most likely have been circulating undetected in Iran, it had been identified in just three countries outside China. In each case the virus had been detected by the countries concerned.

    The closure of Wuhan commenced on 23 January…within days of the first deaths being recorded.

  20. The Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas’ general business activity index for manufacturing in Texas dropped to -70 in March 2020 from 1.2 in the previous month. It is the lowest reading since series began in June 2004, as the production index, a key measure of state manufacturing conditions, dropped to -35.3 from 16.4, suggesting a notable contraction in output. The new orders, capacity utilization and shipments indexes fell to its lowest since March 2009 during the Great Recession. Perceptions of broader business conditions turned pessimistic, as the general business activity and the company outlook index went down to its record low. In addition, labor market measures indicate employment declines and shorter workweeks this month, as the employment index fell to -23 from its near-zero reading in February. Finally, expectations regarding future business conditions turned negative, as the indexes of future general business activity and future company outlook dropped significantly.

  21. Speaking of timelines. This graphic also has a bunch of notes on what happened, when in China..

    Covid19 wasn’t isolated until Jan 7th.
    There wasn’t a test for it until Jan 13th.
    Wuhan was shut down on the 23rd.
    Another 15 cities were shut down on the 24th.
    Lunar New Year holiday began on the 25th.

    And as you can see from the graphs, the shutdowns had almost immediate effect on the rate of transmission, although it took 12 days for this to go through the pipeline.

    Could China have responded faster? Yes, but only in hindsight and not by much. They didn’t have a test until Jan 13 and without a test you’re very limited in what you can do. In hindsight they could have shut things down a week or so sooner and they could have put the brakes on travel sooner. Would this have prevented spread to the rest of the world? I doubt it. There were probably already infected people flying to other countries before the doctors twigged to it in late December.

  22. Need

    Testing is now so important. To stop the virus, we must consider how to move to mass testing. Vo, the town in Italy where the first death occurred, provides the template. All 3,000 residents of Vo were tested by the University of Padua. When 89 people tested positive, they were isolated. In the second round of testing, only six were positive. Those six remained in isolation. Vo has had no more deaths. Vo eliminated the virus by testing and isolating the infected.

    Testing and isolating should be the objective of every government.

    Our problem is that we have 25 million people and not 3,000. We do not have enough tests for everyone to be tested, let alone re-tested. However, the countries that have been most aggressive with their testing – South Korea and Germany – have been some of the most successful in flattening the curve of the contagion. A government that is promising a stimulus package of many billions of dollars can surely afford to spend a billion on testing. The virus is the greatest risk for the economy. The only way to hedge the risk is to test.

  23. Cud Chewer

    check out what teh Chermans are doing. Having had the virus could turn out a big plus for people
    “You could give immune people something similar to a vaccination certificate that could allow them exceptions from limits on their activities,” Helmholtz Institute epidemiologist Gerard Krause told Der Spiegel.

  24. Wuhan was the place it was definitely sequenced first, as they have traced it back to a market not an international airport I think China’s conclusion that it stated in China is pretty right.

  25. Listened to a “sterilisation” expert (not sure that’s the right word) talking to Norman Swan about the problems in quarantining people in hotels not furnished like hospitals. One point was that air-cons for safety needed an extra filter that was expensive.
    Also said that the ideal way of removing virus from skin (I think he called it ‘touchable surfaces’) was first with soap and water, wait a full minute, then with hand steriliser (ethanol etc).

  26. @Manda_like_wine
    · 7h
    Nevada, a state in one of the richest countries in the world, has painted social-distancing boxes on a concrete parking lot for the homeless to sleep in.

  27. Good morning Dawn Patrollers

    The extraordinary scale of this new wage subsidy will be a relief to many. The astonishing question is whether it will be enough writes David Crowe.
    The Australian describes the government’s wage subsidy scheme as a “depression buster”.
    Paul Kelly says this is the most momentous and unprecedented fiscal decision in our history.
    The secret sauce in the government’s A$130 billion JobKeeper payment is that it will be retrospective, in the best possible way writes Peter Martin.
    Australia’s $130 billion JobKeeper payment: what the experts think.
    Sam Maiden goes to ten questions about the $1500 wage subsidy people need answered.
    Euan Black reports that unions are warning huge chunk of casual workforce could miss out on the coronavirus wage subsidy.
    The rules around social distancing to prevent further contagion are finally clear. It is now up to all Australians to do the right thing exhorts the SMH editorial.
    According to Ben Butler The Reserve Bank has been quietly working out ways it could establish a government-backed facility to help superannuation funds pay redemptions allowed under new rules to deal with the coronavirus crisis, even though the idea has so far been rejected by the treasurer.
    Aren’t the banks lovely to let their home loan customers take a six month break from mortgage repayments! Only one catch … they are charging compound interest; interest on their interest. Michael West reports on the hardship of the banks versus the hardship of their customers.
    Tim Elliott says that the scariest part about what is happening now is speed. The speed with which rumours become reality and the implausible becomes normal. The speed with which our assumptions are overturned.
    The AFR says that the pledge made by the big banks to back their customers is about to be tested when they start choosing which businesses to save or let fail, as the biggest demand shock in 100 years batters the economy.
    Carer advocates and unions are demanding the disability sector be given access to aged care-style retention bonuses and basic personal protective equipment amid warnings some workers would be no worse off if they were receiving the boosted dole payment.
    Stephen Bartholomeusz opines that the coronavirus could finally drive a stake through the heart of the over-leveraged zombie companies that have been kept alive on a diet of cheap and plentiful credit following the GFC.
    Dana McCauley reports that Greg Hunt has intervened to save private hospitals at risk of collapse.
    Elizabeth Knight writes that the whole retail supply chain is now in damage control but if Myer survives, a real new look Myer may emerge from the retail wreckage.
    Cara Waters explains how we can all do our bit to help small businesses.
    Peter Hartcher thinks an economic hurricane is hurtling towards the South Pacific.
    Bears hibernate, companies don’t says a sceptical Shane Wright.
    The Guardian’s view on key workers is that applause is not enough.
    Peter Greste writes that the coronavirus underscores the crucial role – and responsibility – of the free press in a crisis.
    Kevin Rudd says that fixing the NBN should be a national priority once the coronavirus danger eases.
    People assume that we’re vulnerable to false information. But even in times of crisis, common sense usually prevails writes Hugo Mercier.
    Coronavirus has seriously tested our border security. Have we learned from our mistakes wonders research fellow Jacinta Carroll.
    Scotty from Marketing is not up to the job of leading this nation through the current crisis, writes Ross Jones.,13741
    Jeremy Baskin explores the concept of universal basic income for Australia.
    School Principal Jenny Allum does not think we will see a learning revolution as a result of this experience.
    The idea of moving 50 per cent of your retirement funds to cash and bonds at a time when interest rates are at a record low has the potential for loss warns Noel Whittaker.
    Tasmanian childcare centres are on the brink of collapse because of plummeting attendance and no support.
    The idiot Trump called Nancy Pelosi a “sick puppy” yesterday, after the House speaker said the president’s mishandling of the coronavirus crisis would contribute to deaths in the US that might have been avoided.
    Trump says Republicans would ‘never’ be elected again if it was easier to vote. FMD!!!!

    Cartoon Corner

    David Rowe

    Alan Moir

    Mark David

    Peter Broelman.

    Glen Le Lievre

    Andrew Dyson

    Matt Golding

    John Shakespeare

    Sean Leahy

    John Spooner

    From the US

  28. Lizzie

    Nevada ‘s social distancing boxes indicate someone is thinking about infection amongst the homeless.
    Which is more than what Gladys is doing.
    Ignoring infection amongst the homeless doesn’t make it disappear.

  29. Morrison and his cronies have shown they are willing to pay employers by subsidies to keep current employees.

    Why not do the same with the employers to hire those who are unemployed and capable of working ?

    There should never be anymore forced work for the dole activities again

  30. Trump-loving megachurch pastor arrested for packing church with hundreds despite COVID-19 warnings

    A Florida megachurch pastor was arrested on Monday after repeatedly flouting warnings by local officials not to hold services during the coronavirus pandemic.

    Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister announced the arrest warrant Monday issued against Pastor Rodney Howard-Browne, who led crowded services Sunday at his at The River at Tampa Bay Church, reported WTVT-TV.

    “His reckless disregard for human life put hundreds of people in his congregation at risk and thousands of residents who may interact with them this week in danger,” Chronister said.

    The sheriff estimated 400 to 500 worshipers packed Sunday’s services, and he chastised Howard-Browne for telling his followers that the coronavirus was a hoax.

  31. Maude Lynne

    I’m reading that many of the ‘facilities’ available to the homeless are now inaccessible. Including soap.

  32. Rick Wilson: Trump voters are about to pay a terrible price for cheering on his early coronavirus denialism

    In a column for the Daily Beast that was equal parts sad and furious, GOP strategist Rick Wilson warned Donald Trump’s most rabid fans that are about to pay a personal and horrible price for supporting the feckless president because the coronavirus pandemic is slowly coming to their states — and it is going to hit hard.

    “Every day, we see a president prove himself unworthy of risks and sacrifices already accepted by first responders and health-care workers—and unworthy of leading a nation of which much, much more will soon be asked,” he explained

    “But COVID-19 is coming to pay a house call they won’t soon forget, and the damage in some of the places in this country where the Trump-Fox party’s support is the most passionate and unwavering will be staggering,” Wilson warned. “No, MAGAs, this isn’t a disease of the degenerate socialist coastal elites states. The coronavirus doesn’t see this through the lens of Flight 93 Trumpism; it’s about to scythe through red states, red districts, red towns, and red neighborhoods while giving no fucks what’s on Fox, MAGA Twitter, or on the local Sinclair agitprop outlet. “

  33. ML
    Not sure if the move is out of care for the homeless or fear ‘they’ will spread it to ‘naice’ people given these sort of moves.

    Las Vegas bans homeless people from sleeping on the street

    Those activities become a misdemeanor beginning 1 January, punishable by up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine.

    “It’s criminalizing the homeless,” the Rev Leonard Jackson, the associate pastor of First African Methodist Episcopal Church in North Las Vegas and director of the regional Faith Organizing Alliance, said during a morning protest outside City Hall.

  34. A lot of comments criticising the money going to the private employment firms before the employers. Will it ever reach the employees?

  35. poroti, yesterday

    Old and ill in the UK ? Ensure you look spritely at all times
    ……..Imperial College Healthcare revealed on Sunday that fewer and fewer marginal patients are being selected for ventilator treatment…Intensive care for coronavirus patients is now being limited …… a major NHS London trust has conceded ….


    That looked to be the case to me last week when I was watching the daily figures being published 🙁

    I opined same to my 70-something Mum over the weekend lest she was tempted to relax her current full lockdown regime

  36. lizzie says:
    Tuesday, March 31, 2020 at 7:38 am
    A lot of comments criticising the money going to the private employment firms before the employers. Will it ever reach the employees?


    Valid points

    Also how many employees will actually be saved, a lot of businesses can claim they haven’t lost 30% or 50% to not keeping and paying the employees

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