Something for the weekend

Random notes: a WA only poll on coronavirus, some detail on the elections in Queensland last Saturday, and a look at Donald Trump’s counter-intuitive poll bounce.

The West Australian had a Painted Dog Research poll of 500 respondents on attitudes to the coronavirus, with field work dates undisclosed – or at least its website did, as I can’t see any mention of it in the hard copy. What the online report ($) tells us is that 71% believed the federal government should “enforce a full lockdown”; that 25% expected three months of social distancing, and 23% six months; that 18% were extremely worried about losing their job by September, with another 42% slightly worried; and that 68% were most concerned about the health impact, compared with 28% for the economic impact.

Other than that, I have the following to relate about Queensland’s elections on the weekend, which I’ll put here as the dedicated post on the subject doesn’t seem to be doing much business:

• As the dust settles on the troubled counting process, it’s clear the Liberal National Party has enjoyed something of a triumph in the election for Brisbane City Council, extending their 16-year grip on the lord mayoralty and quite probably repeating their feat from 2016 of winning 19 out 26 wards on the council. Incumbent Adrian Schrinner leads Labor’s Pat Condren in the lord mayoral race by a margin of 5.5%, although the latter gained a 4.0% swing off Graham Quirk’s landslide win in 2016. The ABC projection is awarding 17 ward seats to the LNP, to which they look very likely to add Enoggera, while maintaining a slender lead over the Greens in Paddington. The Greens’ combined council ward vote is up 3.4% on 2016 to 17.9%, and they retained their sole existing seat of The Gabba with swings of 12.2% on the primary vote and 8.5% on two-party preferred.

• However, it was a less good performance by the LNP in the two state by-elections, where all the detail is laid out at my results pages for Bundamba and Currumbin. The party finished a distant third behind One Nation in Bundamba, which remains a safe seat for Labor, and have only narrowly held on in Currumbin, where Labor has achieved a rare feat for a governing party in picking up a swing of nearly 2% at a by-election. Party leader Deb Frecklington would nonetheless be relieved by the result, since a defeat in Currumbin, which a pre-election poll suggested was in prospect, would surely have imperilled her leadership, despite her being able to point to the highly unusual circumstances in which the election was held.

• Speaking of which, I offer the following numbers on the ways the enrolled voters of Bundamba and Currumbin did and didn’t vote, with the qualification that there is an indeterminate number of postals still to be counted — perhaps rather a few of them, given I understood that there had been a surge in applications (although it seems a number of applicants never received their ballots).

Finally, a few thoughts on the situation in the United States, elaborating on a subject covered in yesterday’s post here by Adrian Beaumont – you are encouraged to comment on that thread if you have something specific to offer on matters American, and in particular on Donald Trump’s confounding opinion poll bounce over the past few weeks. I sought to put the latter event in context in a paywalled Crikey article on Monday, the key feature of which is the following comparison of his approval rating trend, as measured by FiveThirtyEight, with comparable trend measures of my own for Angela Merkel, Boris Johnson, Emmanuel Macron and Scott Morrison.

The upshot is that leaders the world over are enjoying a “rally around the flag” approval bounce, and that Donald Trump’s looks meagre indeed compared with his colleagues across the Atlantic. I feel pretty sure that the lack of a clear bounce for Scott Morrison is down to the fact that there have been no new numbers since Essential Research’s poll of over a fortnight ago, with the surges for Merkel, Johnson and Macron being concentrated since that time.

It’s also interesting to observe that Trump’s improvement has not been consistently observed. The chart below records his trends so far from this year from the five most prolific pollsters. For some reason, Rasmussen, the pollster that is usually most favourable to him — and which is accordingly the most frequent subject of his vainglorious tweets on the odd occasion when it reaches 50% — has in fact found his approval rating going in the direction he deserves. There is also no sign of change from the Ipsos series. However, the improving trend from the other three is more in line with the many other pollsters included in the FiveThirtyEight series, hence its overall picture of his best ratings since his post-election honeymoon.

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.

2,303 comments on “Something for the weekend”

  1. So, according to the research cited by briefly very early this morning, the Chinese have known since the first SARS outbreak that bats were reservoirs for the disease, and that it was mutating, but still they re-opened the Wet Market, continued to catch bats and eat them. Great. Thanks guys.

  2. Great. Just great.

    There was a dead lizard in the mail. But that wasn’t the unusual part. Australia’s wildlife “coroner”, forensic veterinary pathologist Dr Lydia Tong, performs hundreds of autopsies on native and exotic animals each year, many of them from zoos; others, such as this shingleback lizard, the victim of a multibillion-dollar global trade gone wrong.

    This time the reptile had its own unusual traveller – a parasite never before seen in a shingleback.

    “Straight away that was a clue that it might have been handled with another species, maybe there had been a jump,” Tong says. “It’s hard to say but that’s why we monitor and investigate these kinds of infections so closely with wildlife. The trade is a melting pot for it.”

    From live monkeys smuggled through customs to tigers shot or bred for their bones, soaring demand for wildlife, dead or alive, has spawned the world’s fourth-largest contraband market – right behind drugs, humans and guns. Gram for gram, rhino horn and endangered turtles are now worth more than cocaine. But experts warn the world’s latest coronavirus outbreak shows the trade threatens more than just animals.

    As people push farther and farther into the last wild places, diseases previously unknown to humanity are making the leap across species lines. Vet and epidemiologist Dr Jon Epstein says habitat loss, global travel and a persistent appetite for wild animals have created a “perfect storm” for the next human pandemic. And Asia’s infamous wet markets – where both the deadly 2003 SARS outbreak and now the latest coronavirus COVID-19 are thought to have started – remain ground zero.

    Early research suggests the world’s most illegally trafficked animal – the endangered pangolin – could be the very species that passed on the virus to humans.

    https://www.smh.com.au/world/asia/how-does-an-epidemic-spread-and-what-does-the-wildlife-trade-have-to-do-with-it-20200129-p53vvm.html

  3. Good morning Dawn Patrollers

    David Crowe asks, “What is the endgame? Is it herd immunity, eradication or a long hibernation until the vaccine comes? What is the strategy to get there?” and he calls for more open disclosure and trust from the government.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/cowe-20200402-p54ghg.html
    More from Crowe who says that Morrison used to throw barbs at Labor’s spending he may find it hard to unwind the huge changes unleashed to fight the coronavirus.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/but-wait-there-s-more-how-the-help-today-comes-with-a-cost-tomorrow-20200402-p54gjx.html
    The SMH editorial says that now is precisely when Parliament is most needed. There must be proper scrutiny of the untold billions the government is spending to support the economy and bail out whole industries. The bail-out is necessary but it creates opportunities for waste and corruption.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/morrison-must-let-parliament-act-as-watchdog-during-crisis-20200402-p54ghv.html
    The Senate standing committee for the scrutiny of delegated legislation on Wednesday agreed to meet and report regularly in the coming months to scrutinise all new laws made by the executive while Federal Parliament is not sitting. But look who is the chair of the committee. Concetta Fierravanti-Wells!
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/covid-19-emergency-measures-to-be-scrutinised-for-civil-liberty-overreach-20200401-p54g62.html
    Greg Barns is concerned that laws created in a crisis are very rarely rolled back. This certainly worth reading.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/laws-created-in-a-crisis-are-very-rarely-rolled-back-20200331-p54foj.html
    In this strangest of times, the unlikeliest of allies are coming together for the greater good says Greg Baum.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/under-the-democracy-doona-rarely-have-bedfellows-been-stranger-20200401-p54g2r.html
    Australia’s coronavirus testing scheme has exceeded 1 per cent of the population for the first time – a world-leading rate that experts say is keeping the national death toll well below the hardest-hit countries.
    https://www.afr.com/politics/federal/lag-likely-in-australia-s-coronavirus-death-rate-20200402-p54gbz
    Gladys Berejiklian has pointed the finger at the troubled Ruby Princess cruise ship, warning staff onboard may have misled NSW Health about the extent of illnesses in passengers.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/premier-says-ruby-princess-staff-may-have-misled-nsw-health-20200402-p54gkb.html
    The AFR says that the US is entering ‘deepest recession’ ever as 10m claim jobless benefits.
    https://www.afr.com/world/north-america/us-into-deepest-deepest-recession-ever-as-10m-claim-jobless-benefits-20200403-p54gmq
    Here is an excellent contribution from a paramedic on the front line of the C-19 fight.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/behind-our-masks-we-paramedics-wear-the-strain-of-coronavirus-20200331-p54fs4.html
    “Scott Morrison says there are no more unions and bosses, just Australians working together in the national interest. That is upending Australia’s inflexible industrial relations system. Will it ever be the same again?”, writes Jennifer Hewett.
    https://www.afr.com/work-and-careers/workplace/changed-rules-for-the-ir-club-20200402-p54gio
    Vital Signs: Scott Morrison is steering in the right direction, but we’re going to need a bigger boat writes economics professor Richard Holden.
    https://theconversation.com/vital-signs-scott-morrison-is-steering-in-the-right-direction-but-were-going-to-need-a-bigger-boat-135209
    Richo gives Pauline Hanson a good serve here.
    https://www.theaustralian.com.au/commentary/coronavirus-pauline-hanson-is-blind-to-the-bleak-winter-ahead/news-story/78c61edbe306305531f3ac0640c8ba45
    Malcolm Farr has landed at The Guardian and writes that it’s a gauge of the PM’s optimism the Covid-19 menace will be defeated that he is already preparing us for the moment the cash taps are turned off.
    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2020/apr/02/morrison-insists-nothing-lasts-forever-especially-the-coronavirus-spending-spree
    Michelle Grattan dreams, “Imagine if we could extract a permanent vaccine against hyper-partisanship from COVID-19”.
    https://theconversation.com/grattan-on-friday-imagine-if-we-could-extract-a-permanent-vaccine-against-hyper-partisanship-from-covid-19-135450
    Maritime law expert Tim Stephens tells us that the law of the sea prevents us dispatching these hulking hotels off our coast.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/the-law-of-the-sea-prevents-us-dispatching-these-hulking-hotels-off-our-coast-20200402-p54gfx.html
    While Australia is enduring a severe crisis, many people are putting their own problems first and not considering others worse off, writes Noely Neate.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/australias-selfish-society-needs-a-reality-check,13755
    The Team Australia approach that is helping us beat this challenge will most likely return to the old ideological lines of how best to pay down the debt and deficit says Phil Coorey.
    https://www.afr.com/politics/federal/at-the-nightmare-s-end-politics-as-normal-will-be-bliss-20200402-p54g9u
    Pru Goward writes that when this terrible pandemic is done killing, ruining and frightening, the world’s post mortems will start. Close attention will be paid to the role data, or the lack of it, played in misinforming decision-makers and how better data could have saved lives and money.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/data-doctor-the-patient-needs-more-data-20200331-p54fr4.html
    Today the national cabinet will consider putting commercial landlords on the $130 billion JobKeeper scheme as it looks to ward off a collapse in commercial real estate in shopping centres and offices around the country. That won’t be enough for many of the rapacious ones (of which there are many).
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/national-cabinet-to-consider-including-landlords-in-jobkeeper-scheme-20200402-p54gkf.html
    Tim Jones outlines instances of this government displaying its neoliberalism hypocrisy.
    https://theaimn.com/neoliberalism-covid-19-and-priorities-hypocrisy-exposed/
    COVID-19 killed visa privatisation but questions about the PM’s mates remain. Michael Sainsbury reports on the Government’s backflip as the coronavirus kills off the private consortia’s dreams of a tourism honey pot.
    https://www.michaelwest.com.au/government-visa-backflip-as-corona-virus-kills-off-consortias-tourism-honey-pot/
    Supermarkets are being forced to cut promotions and products as the virus shutdown tightens supply lines and hits profit margins. Woolworths this week confirmed it has ditched many of its regular weekly specials as it struggles to keep up with demand prompted by the coronavirus outbreak.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/finance/consumer/2020/04/02/coronavirus-supermarkets-specials-products/
    The Australian government will re-launch hundreds of flights to deliver fresh produce to key international markets as part of a $170 million boost to an export sector grounded by the coronavirus emergency. Return flights, under the program, will provide an opportunity for Australia to import medical equipment and medicines.
    https://thenewdaily.com.au/news/coronavirus/2020/04/01/coronavirus-freight-flights-australia/

    In this interesting article Peter Wicks says Centrelink could prove to be missing link towards a progressive government.
    https://independentaustralia.net/politics/politics-display/centrelink-could-prove-to-be-missing-link-towards-a-progressive-government,13753
    The oil market’s April apocalypse could reverberate for years to come writes Bloomberg’s Ben Sharples.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/markets/the-oil-market-s-april-apocalypse-could-reverberate-for-years-to-come-20200402-p54g8k.html
    New social distancing restrictions and forced isolation are likely to trigger a perfect storm for potentially devastating effects on men’s mental health and wellbeing writes mental health expert Zac Seidler.
    https://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/health-and-wellness/men-don-t-go-it-alone-pick-up-the-phone-20200331-p54fiq.html
    Rob Harris explains the results of a tracking survey that shows we are becoming more confident with the handling of the coronacrisis.
    https://www.theage.com.au/politics/federal/australians-feeling-more-confident-about-coronavirus-response-20200402-p54gjf.html
    A Harvard University economist warns that the global recession the world is heading towards could be far more severe than first thought.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/mother-of-all-financial-crises-harvard-economist-warns-global-recession-could-be-worse-than-feared-20200402-p54g8n.html
    Mike Foley reports that industry groups and climate change experts are calling on the government to use the economic recovery effort after the disruption from the global coronavirus pandemic to generate jobs and economic growth by rolling out low-emissions technologies.
    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/ambitious-climate-action-a-double-win-for-economy-in-coronavirus-recovery-20200402-p54gj3.html
    Tony Featherstone suggests that innovative thinking could help some stood-down employees use this time to develop new skills and qualifications in anticipation of a changing economy.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/small-business/free-management-education-for-displaced-workers-needed-20200401-p54g7c.html
    Dr Anthony Fauci, the United States’ leading expert on infectious diseases, who has become a regular at President Donald Trump’s coronavirus briefings, will receive enhanced personal security after receiving threats following his repeated pleas for Americans to help slow the spread of the deadly pandemic, officials said on Wednesday. It seems it pays to be ignorant over there.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/north-america/after-threats-anthony-fauci-to-receive-enhanced-personal-security-20200402-p54gl7.html
    Stephen Bartholomeusz says the government shouldn’t rescue airlines or super funds from their own ineptitude.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/government-shouldn-t-rescue-airlines-or-super-funds-from-their-own-ineptitude-20200402-p54gck.html
    And the AFR editorial says that learning the right lessons is essential if we are to recover well. The way out of this is not to lock taxpayers into losing bets on industries or companies.
    https://www.afr.com/policy/economy/economy-won-t-take-flight-shackled-to-zombies-20200402-p54gcf
    The High Court’s quick judgment in the case of George Pell has fuelled expectations that Australia’s most senior Catholic cleric could walk free from jail before Easter.
    https://www.smh.com.au/national/high-court-comes-to-swift-judgment-in-george-pell-case-20200402-p54gfa.html
    Meanwhile two more of Pell’s (alleged) victims have come forward.
    https://www.theage.com.au/national/new-allegations-of-child-sexual-abuse-by-pell-emerge-20200402-p54gbs.html
    Harvey Norman has cancelled its interim dividend despite just weeks ago reporting a jump in sales thanks to the coronavirus pandemic.
    https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/harvey-norman-cancels-dividend-despite-virus-sales-spike-20200402-p54gli.html
    Well they ARE dumb, aren’t they?
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/europe/megachurch-meeting-in-mulhouse-seeded-france-s-coronavirus-epidemic-20200402-p54gdq.html
    In true form the Philippines’ president has threatened to order police to shoot “troublemakers” and stop a massive food and cash aid if people resort to riots and defy a lockdown imposed on millions to fight the coronavirus outbreak.
    https://www.smh.com.au/world/asia/shoot-them-dead-duterte-threatens-people-who-defy-lockdown-20200402-p54gj4.html

    Cartoon Corner

    Alan Moir

    David Rowe

    Jim Pavlidis

    Matt Golding




    Simon Letch

    Johannes Leak
    https://cdn.newsapi.com.au/image/v1/fe62a9d115a6d2b9318b4dbec67a5eda?width=1024

    From the US












  4. And just to prove there are idiots from all over the world, remember those American ‘Spring Break’ revellers who were going to party, party, party?

    The Austin outbreak is the latest to result from a group of college students who ignored social-distancing guidelines, went on traditional spring break trips and have now tested positive for the coronavirus. Many of them appeared to be under the mistaken impression that young people are not as likely to get the coronavirus as older people are. Students at the University of Tampa, the University of Wisconsin-Madison and other colleges have tested positive after returning from spring break trips to Florida, Alabama, Tennessee and elsewhere.

    The defiant attitude, at a time when millions of Americans were hunkered down at home and staying away from school, work and relatives, was embodied by Brady Sluder, a young man on spring break in Miami who declared from a packed beach: “If I get corona, I get corona. At the end of the day, I’m not going to let it stop me from partying.” Sluder, whose television interview was shared widely, later apologised on Instagram.

    https://www.smh.com.au/world/north-america/dozens-of-us-students-contract-coronavirus-on-beach-resort-holiday-20200402-p54gdf.html

  5. Jim Molan and other liberal and national party cronies were claiming that this would wake up the beasts

    Now we know what the beasts are cruise ships

  6. Yep. Yep. And yep, from David Crowe:

    Australians deserve to have the health objective articulated and subject to real scrutiny, with at least two changes. First, Federal Parliament – after it resumes on Wednesday to vote on the economic plan – should have a continuing role in testing the health strategy. The British Parliament has a committee that has heard testimony from health officials during the crisis. Australia can surely do the same.

    Second, state and federal governments need to release their modelling on the pandemic. The commonwealth’s deputy chief medical officer, Paul Kelly, suggested on Tuesday he would do so this week. On Wednesday he backtracked. Voters should be able to see the information.

    Morrison and his government have done much this week to shore up confidence. But why stop there?

    https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/cowe-20200402-p54ghg.html

  7. Thanks BK.

    The obvious reason why the govt will shut parliament down is to avoid scrutiny and be able to act unilaterally. It allows ministers to go into hiding, which brings to mind Peter Dutton. I read the other day that he continues to do a weekly interview with 2GB which begs the question of why not front other media, especially TV interviews.

  8. Thanks William for the comparison charts of world leaders bounces, and their starting positions.

    I keep hearing from my right wing family members how Trump’s ratings have improved – possibly parroting Murdoch and SkyNews.

  9. A good news story:

    Following in the footsteps of Tesla and Dyson, a satellite company under British billionaire Richard Branson’s Virgin empire has also jumped into the emergency business of making hospital ventilators, a life-saving machine for treating severe COVID-19 patients.

    Virgin Orbit, a company under Virgin Group, announced Monday that it has developed a “bridge” ventilator, a simple machine used primarily on recovering patients and those with mild symptoms. The device is ready for mass production at Virgin Orbit’s Long Beach, Calif. manufacturing facility in early April, the company said, pending approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

    https://observer.com/2020/04/virgin-galactic-division-make-covid19-ventilator-richard-branson/

  10. By George BK you’ve done it again.Thanks for the Dawn Patrol.

    Sadly all may be lost as the photo below shows that the Gummint continues with the relentless chemtrail attack. I believe that the intent of this latest is to lull us all into believing that existing arrangement for “Franking Credits” are just what’s needed for the common weal.

    https://science.howstuffworks.com/transport/flight/modern/what-are-chemtrails.htm

    The trail of clouds that billow from an airplane streaking across the sky can be mesmerizing for children and adults alike. Jet engine traffic has become so common that it’s not unusual to see several lingering streaks in the afternoon skies. And though many think these cloudy bands are beautiful against a bright blue sky, others are alarmed by their mere existence. Some people with concerns believe these cloudy trails are exacerbating global warming, while others have more elaborate theories, including that governments are secretly releasing harmful substances into the air and land via airplanes [source: The Keith Group].

    Newcastle will be the first to succumb as this photo shows – taken just a few moments ago. If you are reading this I will be laying in a paddock waiting for the wallopers to collect me.

    Will somebody put the kettle on please ❓ ☕

  11. Hugh Riminton
    @hughriminton
    · 21h

    A veteran GP has contacted me to urge people to wear face masks when going out. He says scarves will do – just wash them each day with soap and water. “WHO considers changing guidance on wearing face masks”
    #COVID19au https://theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/01/all-uk-hospital-staff-and-patients-should-wear-masks-says-doctors-group?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

    Remembering that Riminton’s wife is undergoing cancer treatment and they are self-isolating (upstairs/downstairs) at home. He is feeling very vulnerable on her behalf.

  12. ”The West Australian had a Painted Dog Research poll of 500 respondents on attitudes to the coronavirus…”

    It has a net disapproval rating of 100%…

  13. The White House is expected to urge Americans to begin wearing cloth masks or face coverings in public to help prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus, in a reversal of its earlier recommendations, according to a federal official involved in the response.

    The announcement could come as early as Thursday.

    White House coronavirus task force officials have been considering whether to recommend that face coverings be routinely worn in public because of increasing evidence that infected people without symptoms can spread the virus, according to internal memos and new guidance provided to the White House by the CDC.

    “In light of these new data, along with evidence of widespread transmission in communities across the country, CDC recommends the community use of cloth masks as an additional public health measure people can take to prevent the spread of virus to those around them,” according to the guidance, a copy of which was obtained by The Washington Post.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2020/04/02/coronavirus-facemasks-policyreversal/

  14. Did someone mention “Chemtrails”?

    Some people with concerns believe these cloudy trails are exacerbating global warming,

    The country folk in banjo territory firmly believe that certain governments and ag companies and big farming companies are putting chemicals in the contrails to stop it raining. The drought is not due to global warming but chemtrails. And the purpose is to either force small farmers to buy ag products to help them with the drought or sell up to the big farming companies at low cost.

  15. 91 new cases in NSW which should mean high 200s/low 300s again Australia which means a likely growth rate getting close to 1.05 and a doubling rate (oops – time) close to 14 days.

  16. Wuhu Flu home town’s life after the virus. A peek into our future ?
    ————————————————

    Walking into a Wuhan subway station Wednesday, Wu Shenghong, a manager for a clothing manufacturer, used her smartphone to scan a barcode on a poster that triggered her health code app. A green code and part of her identity card number appeared on the screen. A guard wearing a mask and goggles waved her through.
    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=12322101

  17. The important numbers from NSW;

    The death toll in NSW remains at 10. There are 209 patients being treated for COVID-19, either in hospital or in their homes, and there are 42 people in intensive care, with 22 of those people on ventilators.

    This is virtually unchanged for the last 3 days

  18. Sarcastic smile.

    Aaron White @AaronKinKin1
    ·
    3m
    BREAKING: MP Peter Dutton is feeling much better after PM confirms Mr Dutton’s QLD child care centre’s can remain open throughout the #COVID19 crisis. Mr Dutton’s profits are now guaranteed by the Commonwealth after CMO rules children #Coronavirus immune.

  19. Prime Minister Scott Morrison says the 16,000 Australians who left the country after “do not travel” advice was issued are unlikely to “find themselves high on the list” to be returned.

    The Prime Minister told radio broadcaster Alan Jones this morning he was “bewildered and frustrated” when he read the figure, which was released by the Department of Home Affairs yesterday.

  20. Western Australia will be the first state to introduce hard borders, promising to turn back even its own residents at checkpoints and airports if they try to come home.

  21. Budget heads towards record $155 billion deficit, but PM Scott Morrison says reductions in parliamentary and public service pay aren’t on the cards.

  22. Australia’s avocado growers are urging brunch lovers to keep up their smashed avo habit at home after a dramatic crash in the market set off by the coronavirus shutdown of cafes and restaurants.

    The food-service industry is a massive market for avocado growers, taking fruit that doesn’t make the premium grade sold in fruit shops and supermarkets.

    Key points:
    Premium-grade fruit prices are expected to continue slipping as the Australian harvest peaks
    Retailers are considering selling avocados by the kilogram to shift more fruit
    Sellers offer tips for picking and storing avocados

    https://www.abc.net.au/news/rural/2020-04-03/farmers-ask-people-to-smash-avocado-at-home-during-coronavirus/12113448

  23. Michael J. Biercuk
    @MJBiercuk
    ·
    2m
    Ok, I’m growing a bit incredulous about Australian #COVID19 numbers. Are #publichealth authorities still only allowing tests for people who had overseas travel or contact with known clusters? If so, that would totally miss community transmission (the biggest risk).
    @apglo

  24. From SAHealth;

    To date, there are a total of three cases in South Australia who are classed as local transmission in SA.
    All other confirmed cases have recently returned from overseas, interstate, or are a close contact of a previously confirmed case.

    I get the need to calm and reassure. But there is an element of marketing here. There is no mention of the number of undetermined cases. And I do wonder at what is defined as “close contact”. If a person catches the virus from an overseas/interstate case it should be considered community transmission unless that person was in the same household as the traveller (which may be their definition). And separating interstate travellers from community transmission cases is also concerning unless it is people testing positive at the border or if they had immediately isolating when they returned and then tested positive.

    Waving the ‘only 3 community transmission cases’ banner is misleading. And they know it. They have FOUND 3 community cases. They know the actual number is much higher than this especially considering the rules around testing. Getting the social distance message out isnt helped by the wording of these media releases.

    That is what is eating Gilbert Gripe today.

  25. Ok, I’m growing a bit incredulous about Australian #COVID19 numbers. Are #publichealth authorities still only allowing tests for people who had overseas travel or contact with known clusters?

    Testing criteria has been expanded in WA. Frankly I’m incredulous that in this day and age people continue to use ‘Australia’ when what they really mean is NSW.

  26. lizzie, they have definitely eased the testing rules here in SA. A sniffle wont get you one. An uncontrollable dry cough might. Suspicion of pneumonia or obvious breathing difficulty will. That is from anecdotal evidence and chats with a couple of GPs. My guess now… this easing would be especially so if you are near a hotspot like the Barossa.

  27. Testing criteria has been expanded in WA. Frankly I’m incredulous that in this day and age people continue to use ‘Australia’ when what they really mean is NSW.

    Here we go.

  28. US Navy called a ‘disgrace’ for dismissing captain after letter begging for help for sick crew went public

    The captain of the nuclear aircraft carrier the USS Theodore Roosevelt begged for help while the coronavirus quickly spread among his crew. While Capt. Brett Crozier may have been on track to be an Admiral, he’s now been relieved of command.

    “We are not at war. Sailors do not need to die. If we do not act now, we are failing to properly take care of our most trusted asset — our sailors,” Capt. Brett Crozier wrote.

    It prompted outrage online as people demanded he be reinstated. Many noted that the captain only received help after the letter was released to the public. Amid the chaos of the crisis, the White House, Pentagon and Trump government has been caught flat-footed as they scramble to make up for lost time.

    https://www.rawstory.com/2020/04/us-navy-called-a-disgrace-for-dismissing-captain-after-letter-begging-for-help-for-sick-crew-went-public/

  29. The stand-off between cruise ship companies, the New South Wales government and Border Force appears to be over, with two ships departing overnight and another five expected to leave after refuelling and restocking this weekend.

    NSW Police commissioner Mick Fuller confirmed at a press conference on Friday morning that two Carnival ships departed overnight and five Royal Caribbean ships will depart after refuelling and restocking on the weekend to head back to their port of origin.

    “A wonderful outcome for all,” he said.

  30. Morning all. Thanks BK for the excellent summary roundup. The news for the Covid19 fight in Australia does seem to be good, but is terrible for both Covid19 and the economy in the US. Those are the worst unemployment figures since they started collecting statistics in the current form (i.e. post depression).

    We will need a stimulus package (Scomo IV) but it should not focus on dying industries. We need to start new ones. Andrews was investigating power grid upgrades to support more wind farms in Vic. NSW and Qld should be doing the same. A lot of people are also going to get an unpleasant shock later this year about how much their super and house is really worth. Less than they thought.

  31. [Michael J. Biercuk
    @MJBiercukOk, I’m growing a bit incredulous about Australian #COVID19 numbers. Are #publichealth authorities still only allowing tests for people who had overseas travel or contact with known clusters? If so, that would totally miss community transmission (the biggest risk).]

    Maybe Michael J can address his credulity problem by pressing a few keys to answer his query before expressing his suspicion.

  32. From Israel. Apparently the unemployment rate was 4% before the strict social distancing measures were introduced there. 😮

    According to data published by the Israeli Employment Service, the number of unemployment benefit claimants climbed to over 1,036,500 on Thursday, or 24.9% of the workforce.

    Since the start of March, almost 880,000 new applications have been received by the Employment Service. Among the new applicants, 89.2% are employees placed on unpaid leave and 6.6% have been made redundant.

    https://www.jpost.com/Breaking-News/Israels-unemployment-rate-climbs-to-249-percent-623367

  33. ‘More from Crowe who says that Morrison used to throw barbs at Labor’s spending he may find it hard to unwind the huge changes unleashed to fight the coronavirus.’

    And once this is over Labor should really go to town on Fidel Morrison’s arse.

  34. ‘“Scott Morrison says there are no more unions and bosses, just Australians working together in the national interest. That is upending Australia’s inflexible industrial relations system. Will it ever be the same again?”’

    Yes.

  35. Army Warned in Early February That Coronavirus Could Kill 150,000 Americans

    While the president was still downplaying the COVID-19 epidemic, an Army briefing shared with The Daily Beast shows the service warning of the scale of death Trump now concedes.

    An unclassified briefing document on the novel coronavirus prepared on Feb. 3 by U.S. Army-North projected that “between 80,000 and 150,000 could die.” It framed the projection as a “Black Swan” analysis, meaning an outlier event of extreme consequence but often understood as an unlikely one.

    In other words, the Army’s projections on Feb. 3 for the worst-case scenario in the coronavirus outbreak are, as of this week, the absolute best-case scenario—if not a miraculous one.

    https://www.thedailybeast.com/army-warned-in-early-february-that-coronavirus-could-kill-150000-americans?ref=home

  36. mundo

    Moses Morrison is getting a lot of praise just for “being in charge”. There are others who are wondering what has happened to all the rorts and scandals. Lucky Moses!

  37. ‘Michelle Grattan dreams, “Imagine if we could extract a permanent vaccine against hyper-partisanship from COVID-19”.’

    Don’t recall Grattan ever suggesting anything similar when Abbott/Turnbull/Morrison et al went feral.

  38. Bucephalus, I will keep it simple for you a shell is a projectile, the casing is made of iron or steel and filled with explosive. When the shell explodes the casing breaks in to chunks large and small which fly in all directions to maximize the damage caused this is called shrapnel. The case you mentioned is brass and it holds the propellent and does not fly to the target but stays in the gun until it is ejected by the gun crew. This case serves two purposes one is to hold the gun powder and the second is to seal the breech on firing. A final fun fact not all artillery uses brass cases once the shell gets to big to handle the propellent charge is kept separate in bags and is loaded in to the gun after the shell. i.e large naval guns.

  39. Dandy Murray says:
    Friday, April 3, 2020 at 1:11 am

    Rates continue to drop but I expect to see them leveling out soon, as indicated by the lower CI.

    The reinfection rate is below 1. It is a pretty good outcome. Looks like this is it and we won’t be going into full lock-down.

  40. So, I missed the discussion with all the usual suspects last night. For NSW, by day of reporting, the cases with unknown origin now appear like this:

    88, 145, 170, 207, 228, 250, 275, 307, 336.

    So, a 10% increase with a doubling time of 7 days going on the last 5 days that has decreased from the 20% or so. Not much variation in the last 5 days either. As for whether the testing is picking up enough cases, there are three layers of evidence to consider:

    -ICU admissions/deaths. As has been said several times, low ICU admissions/death rates suggest strong testing procedures, however they are out of date due to the lag time. NSW is going extremely well on this measure, and has been all along.
    -Demographics of positive tests. This needs larger numbers but gives us much more up-to-date data. Remember as the virus spreads you’ll initially get anomalies in the ages of people who test positive just from low numbers. As it spreads, you will get a regression to the expected values, that is the proportion of the ages of people in society will be similar to the proportion of the ages of people infected. The higher the skew to the people who are most affected in your sample (i.e the elderly), the less mildly affected people you’re picking up and the worse the testing. I can’t see the age breakdowns for the positive tests of local transmission (acquired overseas is not helpful data), but I haven’t looked that hard, but I would suggest NSW Health probably has.
    -Geographic spread of local transmission. I’m still not sure how useful this is as a proxy measure and not drawing too many conclusions.

    Still, we’ve bought ourselves quite a bit of time.

  41. Is now the time for a Federal ICAC

    Billions of dollars loose in the wild – perhaps the National Cabinet will, in its collective wisdom see this as a necessary corollary to the infinite mercy and bounty of the keeper of the purse.

    Maybe forgiveness of sins incorporated in a new ICAC. Shonks and spivvery to the date of commencement pre forgiven.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *