It’s remarkable to me how many lock down apologists in the mainstream media and armchairs around Australia are seizing upon mere conjecture as support for their argument to destroy the healthcare, natural freedoms, economy of 25 million Australians with the clumsily blunt response to yet another pandemic of unsustainable lock downs.
I’m not being very charitable with my attribution of objectives. But neither are many on the other side of this polarised debate, accusing dissenters of wanting people dead. Such retorts are beneath contempt. It is entirely accurate, though, to say lock down apologists are cavalierly dismissive of the known and published costs to the health and lives of the entire nation. Instead they appeal to article’s like this one in The Australian, the gist of which says don’t just worry about dying – you may be permanently “disabled” if you catch COVID-19.
Now that we know the mortality rate is nothing approaching the hyper-exaggerated rates falsely advertised and there is no hope of eradicating the CCP virus with economic devastation, lock down apologists are desperate for another reason to stick to their guns.
The article claims (my emphases added):
“The COVID-19 pandemic could leave Australia with a long-term epidemic of people suffering from heart disease, lung scarring, diabetes and other chronic conditions as warnings grow that young people who contract a severe illness may face a life of disability.”
“The research suggests that abnormalities detected in blood samples of infected patients are linked to diabetes, liver dysfunction, abnormal levels of cholesterol and higher risk of coronary heart disease.”
“The research, [not yet published], may flag that COVID-19 infections could trigger a massive increase in the healthcare burden across the planet.”
“We don’t know yet whether these long-term effects are permanent, but certainly there is evidence of long-term issues with lung damage and damage of the blood vessels around the body including the heart.”
“The great fear in this is the unknown nature of this condition, which we haven’t really seen before. This is something that we could pay for later.”
Sorry, lock down apologists: this isn’t a gotcha. This is at best an educated guess.
You know what isn’t wild speculation?
There’s been a 20 per cent increase in pleas for help from mental health groups. But 400 actual suicides just in Victoria, so far, this year is not really a problem compared with increased risk of diabetes and heart disease, right?
Former Australian of the Year Professor Patrick McGorry, the executive director of youth mental health organisation Orygen, has described people suffering “a perfect storm” of combined increasingly severe lock downs, [directly-resulting] unemployment and inadequate funding for the health response to the governments’ “cure” for pandemic. He explained:
“With another six weeks of a much more severe lock down, people losing their jobs and youth unemployment, the consequences are severe on mental health and we are really seeing it… Those lives from mental health and suicide are just as precious as the people in the aged care homes who are dying from COVID.”
Orygen’s head of suicide prevention research, Jo Robinson, added:
“We’ve got a lot of mental health concerns around the coronavirus lock down and the financial implications and what the knock-on effect might be on suicide rates.”
Media and lock down apologists alike are, sorry, were super keen to rely on hyperbolic modelling about projected deaths from coronavirus without government intervention. Did they stop to consider the modelling by the co-director of the Brain and Mind Centre at the University of Sydney, Professor Ian Hickie?
Prior to the latest round of home detention by Dictator Dan, those models estimated suicides could rise by 750 to 1500 deaths per year, with rural and regional areas suffering the most.
According to a statement from Beyond Blue:
“Through July, as Victoria reintroduced Stage 3 restrictions in some locations, contacts about anxiety spiked 50 percent and contacts about depression doubled [200%].”
Data (not “expert” guesses) collected in England shows attendance at hospital emergency departments has halved since the pandemic was announced, causing their health system’s leaders to urge people to get treatment. They are deeply concerned that people who are suffering serious problems such as strokes and heart attacks today – not speculatively, possibly, maybe in the future – are failing to seek treatment.
The lock down is adversely affecting children’s health too. According to a leaked NHS email, doctors are even reporting children coming in late with ruptured appendixes and blood poisoning.
There’s been a huge reduction in cancer screening too. Richard Sullivan, professor of cancer and global health at King’s College London, warned the impact on years of lost life “could be quite dramatic”, given cancer patients tend to be younger than those dying of coronavirus. Later diagnoses for conditions like cancer may not show up in death figures for another year or two.
Analysis by the Institute for Fiscal Studies notes a 1% drop in employment leads to a 2% increase in chronic conditions such as obesity and diabetes, affecting the poorest in society the most.
As long as they don’t die this year, of, or with, coronavirus – right? As long as someone who caught it didn’t have any other resulting long term health issues, nothing else as trivial as suicide or cancer should impede our experiment in “necessary” tyranny – right?
I’m well and truly fed up with lock down apologists talking as if the blunt, big government response they dogmatically defend is a zero sum game; as if the only lives at mortal risk from government action or inaction are those who just catch the Kung Flu.
With good cause President Ronald Reagan once observed:
“The nine most terrifying words in the English language are, I’m from the government and I’m here to help.”
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Dave Pellowe is a Christian writer & commentator, founder of The Good Sauce, convener of the annual Australian Church And State Summit and host of Good Sauce's weekly The Church And State Show, also syndicated on ADH TV. Since 2016 Dave has undertaken the mission of arming Christians to influence culture through events from Perth to Auckland, videos, podcasts and articles published in multiple journals across Australia and New Zealand. [more]