2021: Let's Buckle Up for Hypocrisy
Happy New Year everyone. For those that hoped 2021 was going to be a better year, well that sort of belief is very similar to blind faith and optimism.
Unlike that scene from Buffy, Giles is able to restore the world to normality. I don't see that happening to us in 2021. The proof of it is clear in just the first couple of weeks of the year where we are already seeing a ton of hypocrisy and control whether it be from private enterprises and/or governments. Whether it be the locking out of citizens of your own country (even state) to allowing an International Tennis Tournament or the censoring and selected language of media outlets. Buckle up for hypocrisy folks. Here is a list of events that have occurred that shows we are in for a frustratingly bumpy ride.
Australian Open 2021
A highlight and the beginning of my home's major events calendar. A calendar that was disseminated in 2020 following the cancellation of the Formula 1 Grand Prix and worse of all, the loss of the AFL Grand Final. So here is the thing, I get it. The Victorian Government want to get back to having Melbourne as the Major Events Captial and any risk of losing something like the Australian Open Tennis is quite major. But this is where it ranks of hypocrisy. At the time of this, the state of Victoria locked its own citizens out of the state. If you found yourself on the wrong side of the state border you were rounded up and imprisoned in a hotel room for quarantine on return, with a $3000 bill on top. You now have to apply for a "Visa" to come home. Add to this the fact that Australian's who are overseas can't even get home because State Premiers refuse to lift the cap of incoming arrivals of their own citizens. To spend millions of dollars to bring in Tennis Players and their teams but lock out your own citizens and bill them to come home? Where's the priority here? You can find a way to make a Tennis tournament work but you can't find a way to allow your own citizens to come home? The right call would've been to cancel or delay the Aussie Open to the Spring of 2020 and prioritise the care of your own countrymen.
At the hight of this instant shutting of the state borders, that's right, my American colleagues are flabbergasted that you can't travel freely in Australia anymore without the correct documentation.
Unfortunately, a bunch of wayward travellers looking for an Indian Restaurant in country Victoria had Google Maps accidentally take them into New South Wales, as they returned, despite being in a part of NSW that had zero cases of COVID, they were locked away for 14 Days in a Motel as they were seen as a threat to Public Health for crossing the border. There was no lee-way here for an innocent mistake, yet they were treated as a BioHazard.
Or I suppose in this case "I would like to have tried that Indian Restaurant."
Mirada Kerr's Quarantine
Unlike those poor travellers looking for an Indian Restaurant who found themselves locked away as a threat to Public Health, Australian Supermodel Mirada Kerr flew into Australia and was permitted to bypass the Government Hotel Quarantine facilities and quarantine at home for two weeks instead. An opportunity that many others would prefer to do in order to save the bill of $3,000+ for a two-week stay with no fresh air. Kerr was permitted to do her two-week stay at home. Yet she didn't. After a couple of days at home, she left her property and was picked up by police two hours away from where she had declared she would spend her two weeks. She had left the property to see a sick relative who was in palliative care. Now my heart bleeds here, but do you have any idea of how many people are currently locked away in Hotel Quarantine and not permitted to leave and have missed out on opportunities to say "farewell" to a loved one. Kerr only received a warning by Police. Kerr is also not the only high profile person to be permitted to bypass Hotel Quarantine and do quarantine at home or a venue of their choosing. But to be permitted special circumstances to bypass the Hotel and then to break the rules and only get a slap on the wrist? One rule for some, one rule for others.
A New White House
With a new Administration comes some growing pains. However, when the new President issues a mandate that all persons on Federal Property are required to wear a face-covering and then doesn't do so themselves then it's right of any journalist to ask the question. Instead, the response from the new White House Press Secretary, Jennifer Psaki. wasn't a simple "the President is feeling quite foolish at that" or "as the President was providing a photo op he opted to not wear the mask, just as I am not doing right now whilst I speak to you." No, the response was:
"I think we have bigger issues to worry about at this moment in time,"
A classic deflection of a topic. Now yes I'm sure the President has does have far bigger things to worry about. But you can't applaud a policy of a mandatory mask order then flout it and expect to dodge the subject like that. I can't help but think of the outcry that would've happened to that sound bite if former Press Secretary Kayleigh Mcenany had said that to the Press about President [CENSORED] #doublestandards
Whilst we are on the Biden White House. Prior to January 20th, the United States of America was averaging more than 1 Million Jabs a day. One of the first things the Biden White House set was a target of 100 Million jabs in 100 days saying that people said it couldn't be done. Well, it seems the country was already on that trajectory if you just kept the current process going for 100 days. However, this is being seen as a wonderful "new policy" when in fact it was already happening. How about the media start reporting some facts, like how jabs numbers are starting to fall due to the State Governors. With Vaccines actually having to be thrown away due to expiring its own shelf life.
We have seen online platforms starting to shut down free speech or speech it clearly doesn't agree with. Now it's perfectly fine to shut down hate speech or threatening behaviour. But when you continue to allow other outlets on the platform. Governments that have appalling Human Rights records such as China and Iran for example or even organisations like BLM or ANTIFA that have violent associations within its ranks but they are permitted to stay. It's an agenda and means these guys are now publishers not a free speech platform. Evidence came when, like him or hate him, President [CENSORED] is disconnected from his followers whilst he is calling for peace? As the new President would say:
I was actually winging my way home on January 6th and the flight had access live Cable and I was keen to watch both the House and Senate to see if the "billion to one-shot" was going to occur. But we saw that the former VP was leaving it entirely to the houses and would not overturn a result or send it back to the states. Rightly so, that would have been an abuse of power and have lead to massive legal avenues to be explored. However, listening to what the Republicans were saying it was entirely fair to say, let's do a bipartisan audit for the next ten days and either proof or disprove the vote. This would've done more for American Democracy that any media report. For three years we had a narrative of foreign interference of an election and now you have quite a few red flags raised and it's brushed under the carpet? As Ted Cruz referred to "even if it's only 10,000 fraudulent ballots, what's to stop it being 100,000 in four years or 1 Million in eight years? Democrats and Republicans had a shot to officially shoot down the voter fraud debate right there and then by doing a bipartisan audit and could've proved to America (and the world) that there isn't a problem with their electoral system. From a political perspective, an official audit of the vote officially proving Biden the victor would also work in favour of the Democrats and would've discredited the Republicans further. Yet the argument was that this was destabilising democracy. Really? As I said, you could've humoured people and upheld your democracy and Constitution in one go. Instead, it went down the path of "when they do it, it's wrong! when we do it, it's alright"
Now yes this was a disgrace. Although you have to ask, how? I mean America you had your entire Government, bar the President in one building at one point in time and yet it can be overrun like that? As we would say in Australia:
"It doesn't pass the pub test."
But I digress, it was the narrative that was pushed following this. For months riots have run, well, riot in Portland and Seattle with nothing being done. Instead, Police are just quitting the ranks as they feel helpless and media and local governments don't do a thing but call these events as "Mostly Peaceful Protests" or "the summer of love" yet when this event occurred it was immediately deemed a riot and must be stamped out at all costs. I*agree! But you can't be selective with your language and choose which battles are just. That's up to the people to decide, not a bureaucrat or a newsroom. Throw the book at both acts of violent behaviour. One rule for all, not just for some.
We haven't even hit February yet. So Happy New Year but as I also say, buckle up for a year of hypocrisy.