Victoria: ‘I’ve never known so much anger towards any government in this country’. From letters to the editor at The Australian, on Dan Andrew’s handling of the Victorian covid outbreak.
I’m in Melbourne and I’ve never known so much anger towards any government in this country. I’m not talking about people in my particular bubble either. Shopkeepers, people standing in supermarket queues, are talking. And they are livid. What’s more, I’ve been gladdened to hear, they know exactly why Andrews and his government needs to be thrown out. What they don’t understand is why they can’t do it now.
Look at how Chairman Dan and Bill Shorten ascended to their leadership roles. Apparently it was solely based on mastery of their party’s internal mechanisms and fiefdoms. The attributes and skills that got them to the top — internal politicking, scheming, intimidation and headkicking. What we have on display now is someone who excels in these areas and has zero real word job experience.
You can see it in the tone at Andrews press conferences, it’s mostly hidden but it’s there. He’s like the schoolyard bully who finds himself lost at sea alone in a storm. He’s got no idea what to do and nobody left to threaten or try to intimidate.
I agree that the left media in Victoria don’t give O’Brien and the Liberals exposure. I was at a meeting where I heard him say they ring all news services every day about their press conferences and they don’t turn up. Then every day I see people say ‘who is the Liberal leader, we never see him.
Victoria may not be a tyranny and Andrews may not be a dictator, but he is disturbingly revelling in his position of power. Saying things like ‘ … that is not acceptable to ME’ and ‘I cannot do this on MY own’ paint the picture of someone suffering delusions of grandeur.
Most political decisions are opaque or complicated, and people aren’t often really all that short about where their interests lie.
But with a pandemic, it’s simple. I don’t want to get sick! Leaders who are seen to have taken actions (eventually!) that prevented sickness are richly rewarded in the polls — the PM, and all the premiers except Victoria’s, are riding high in the polls. Hugely popular. It’s a simple, clear thing for government to do — protect us from what might be a dangerous disease. But fail, and we understand that too.
Dan Andrews is expert at political infighting, so he blames voters:
For return to lockdown, the Premier blamed “creeping complacency” and “old habits” — the self-exonerating “look what you made me do” of politics. …
Victorians didn’t respond to a second lockdown last week like Serbians, who torched Belgrade and stormed parliament. But there is bafflement, disappointment and more than a touch of righteous fury with their government.