The Caretakers Covid-19 legislation, challenged in the High Court


#1

The Caretakers Covid-19 legislation, challenged in the High Court


Coronavirus 2020
#2

O’Doherty and Watters may have various other agendas/issues they wish to air but dissenting voices are badly needed during these times. The self congratulatory sniggers from ‘journalists’ and other twitter intelligentsia in Ireland are rather tedious.

In the UK the Cambridge Union has started to debate this, and conservative commentators like Peter Hitchins in the Mail on Sunday are suggesting that we could do with a bit of a challenge to these totalitarian powers:

Don’t be fooled by the sunshine – there are only dark days ahead

I have come to hate this beautiful weather, the loveliest spring for 50 years. I long to wake up to a filthy morning of dirty grey skies and miserable rain, like the one Tennyson described when he wrote ‘ghastly, thro’ the drizzling rain, on the bald street, breaks the blank day’. This is because I think the British people are lost in an unreal, sunshiny dreamtime of delusion, seeing the current crisis as a sort of holiday after which they can all amble off back to the world.

Congratulations to the Cambridge Union which on Thursday night held the first proper twosided debate on whether shutting the country is the right response to Covid-19, so shaming Parliament and the BBC, which have yet to do so. To take part in this event on Zoom, I struggled into the traditional bow tie and dinner jacket, to pay tribute to the Union for doing its duty where others have failed.

Let’s put the ‘Lockdown’ in the dock

So many people were quick to go to court over the European issue, which is a far smaller matter than the current wrecking of our economy and throttling of our once-safe liberties. But, so far, there has been silence in the courts over the Government’s decision to put us all under house arrest, the first attempt in history to quarantine the healthy rather than the sick. I gather this is pretty certainly unlawful, as the 1984 Public Health Act was never designed to be used for such a wide purpose. But, if it is to be tested, a group of public-spirited citizens, helped by sympathetic lawyers, need to come together quickly to seek a Judicial Review of the shutdown in the High Court. They also need to win what is called a ‘preemptive order on costs’ to ensure the Government pays for the case, as is only right in a matter of such importance. I hope this happens.

https://hitchensblog.mailonsunday.co.uk/


#3

Its clear that the greatest contribution to the spread of this virus has been the devotional attachment to progressive (neo?) liberalism (globalism for short) on the part of the western political and cultural establishment -

  1. The outsourcing of economic production to cheap offshore locations (China in particular) has resulted in an absence of PPE at home. Remember this next time its proposed that we move further away from food production here in Ireland.

  2. The ideological reflex against shutting borders (even now) in many European countries means that the virus has been free to spread across the globe and has contributed to western Europe becoming its epicentre. This contrasts with Asian countries such as Vietnam or Taiwan who have remained less impacted despite bordering China. Both moved to immediately restrict inward travel as soon as they became aware of what wa transpiring in China.

  3. A devotional unquestioning attitude to pan global institutions such as the WHO on the part of globalist political representatives (such as our own Harris and Coveney) has resulted in basic common sense being abandoned and WHO directives advising against the use of facemasks (as one example) being unthinkingly adopted. Again this attitude likely to have contributed to more deaths than was necessary.


#4

Parallels in UK being discussed in the Guardian today:

"… the key issue in the right’s current culture war is the lockdown, which is being presented as a freedom-sucking con – much like the EU. Mirroring the dynamics of climate denialism, those challenging the overwhelming consensus of global expertise cast themselves as lockdown “sceptics”. And cleaving to a rightwing populist script, these sceptics say their legitimate concerns are being silenced…

Lionel Shriver notes that no platform is offered to those outside the 89% who support the lockdown. The sceptics claim to be speaking truth to the overly frightened masses, explaining that a costly lockdown is more deadly in the long term and urging that we reassess priorities…"

"… As Toby Young put it: “Spending £350bn to prolong the lives of a few hundred thousand mostly elderly people is an irresponsible use of taxpayers’ money.” Failing the most basic moral test of any society worthy of the description, lockdown sceptics say that a recession may be more deadly than the pandemic, an idea already dismissed as nonsense.

Strikingly, these sceptics don’t engage with the actual issue with the lockdown: that it came too late, causing thousands of unnecessary deaths, even while many scientists and the World Health Organization were imploring swifter action of the like being taken by other countries. Swerving this debate, the culture-war narrative is, as ever, a rhetorical smokescreen, deflecting substantive arguments. And just as Brexit was a delivery mechanism for hard-right ideas, lockdown scepticism is about promoting an ideological agenda…"

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/apr/27/lockdown-scepticism-culture-war-brexit


#5

Note, the distorted headline of this thread is not mine, it is solely The PravdaPin’s.

Twice changed now to suit his own agenda.

So, just to make clear, I thought what was worthy of discussion was the dangers of “alternative” populist theories such as that Covid-19 poses no threat to life as per Gemma (and similar suspect theories across the credibility spectrum that have the hallmark of being designed to primarily appeal to prejudice and sentiment for political purposes.)

No doubt, Gemma O’Doherty, John Waters, and the vulnerable, mentally ill equipped people that they seem to have gathered around them are on a crusade (possibly funded by the US far right, certainly influenced by them). Anyway, they are of an ilk, and I do think the phenomenon of the effect such groups may have on the wider social body, and the point in time when increasing numbers become susceptible to such messages is important to discuss.

I have no interest in the rabid, sensationalist, reactionary, anti-government, conspiracist-addled, feebleminded ‘alt-shite’ agenda and stupid clickbait headlines of “The PravdaPin” these days. Robust criticism and reform of our government and institutions, sure.

And the site did so well for a time, E.g. “… We are not here to cheerlead the crash but rather to illuminate, to provide balanced discussion”… “we decried the spin & rhetoric that was associated with the bubble by the vested interests…”

Such guiding lights seem to have disappeared from here nearly totally now, sad to say…


#7

Well here are some facts…

Here is the Bill…

https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/bills/bill/2020/4/

and here are the Supreme Court issues it was trying to skirt…

http://www.supremecourt.ie/supremecourt/sclibrary3.nsf/(WebFiles)/8AE4D75D995AA3FA802575F3002D5D4F/$FILE/Emergency%20Powers_[1977]%20IR%20159.htm

The wording of the conferred police powers in the COVID Bill and the amendments is so interesting because it is so incredible convoluted. Unlike, say, the equivalent Bill passed by the French Government the week before.

Thats because the minister or government have no actual power under the constitution to enact through statue any provision conferring to the minister sweeping police powers until such time as the State is a War or under threat of Armed Rebellion. It does not help that the Bill was passed by a caretaker government whose constitutional power to pass any Bill, let alone one of making claims of such sweeping powers is dubious at best. That why it was all couched in terms of “voluntary” compliance. Because the “Emergency” Bill actual does not give the minister any true Emergency Powers under the Irish Constitution. All just smoke and mirrors.

The Government did not declare a constitutionally empowered National State Of Emergency because they dont have the legal power to do so. It aint War and it aint an Armed Rebellion. So you got the current Ersatz Emergency Power Bill instead.

It does not matter that Waters is a complete fucking eejit. Always was. Always will be. A really nasty fucker. Or that the people around him are the greatest bunch of tossers and loons imaginable. The government is using what is little more than Color of Law to enforce defacto house arrest on the majority of the population of Ireland and large scale abrogation of basic human rights of movement and assembly for what is turning out to be the once ever decade or two infectious respiratory disease pandemic. R0 of 1.6, morality rate of 0.5% for fucks sake. Pretty much the same as H1N1/09. And lower than H3N2/68. What would the government have done if it had be a really serious full blown pandemic. Say R0 of 5 and morality rate of 15%. Just hope we never have to find out in our lifetime.

What has been very amusing the last few weeks is the complete silence of the usually very vocal “Human Rights Activists” during this large abrogation of basic human rights by the COVID Bill . Which I think shows them up for the loud mouth self-righteous gobshites I always thought they were. Complaining obsessively about minor perceived infractions and utterly silent on the biggest mass human rights violation in the state since World War 2.

Another bunch of complete tossers.


#8

Lads this is a minority government with no mandate.

It is therefore a Caretaker government and it is reasonable to call it that.

#Roc your ‘right wing’ ‘far right’ labels seem like guilt by association.

The constitution protects our rights and it has not been amended for this lock-down.


#9

Where are you getting R0 of 1.6, and under what social conditions? Has there not been at least sixteen studies, with estimates of the R0 varying widely. - You take the mean of all those studies and you get around 2.65 as I understood.

And put that together with the 0.5% mortality rate as against the flu’s approximate 0.1% mortality rate, and also accounting for the very “novel” complete mess it can make of your lungs and other organs if you get properly sick, as another quite relatively high percentage do, and well, you cannot just stand back and let that hit the hospitals unmitigated… can you?

The question as it seems/seemed to me was to act, or not to act. And if you must act, it is also clear you must act within a certain short time frame that may not allow for certain legal and bureaucratic formalities (if we grant the point that they actually did not do so).

Finally let us assume we even grant the point that we have a brand new recent study on transmission that makes obsolete all the foregoing studies (to confirm this). Still, does that rationalise and justify the condemnation of the decisions that were taken before that study came out?

It seems they’re damned if they do, damned if they don’t. Personally, I fail to see the rationalisation and justification for it, well beyond the intent to damn them whatever they do. - It makes for a somewhat strange and sinister politics I might add.


#10

I agree with above and have been broadly supportive of the measures taken thus far.

I would suggest however that inward travel should have been stopped completely for a period. There were also what appear to have been schoolboy errors made with regard to nursing homes.

Now however, more decisions will be required as to how long it can go on before the societal damage of the lockdown overtakes the immediate health risks. The following reads like tye beginning of a dystopian nightmare ie its not much good to anyone if we contain the virus while at the same time ushering in a period of mass hunger and potential unrest.

Remember that the intiial intent was stated to be to flatten the curve such that hospitals would not become over burdened as happened in Lombardy. It was not to eradicate the virus, an impossible proposition.


#11

I unfortunately have to agree too. As an unapologetic right winger I have no patience with the Trumpian dystopia in the US or its exports to the rest of the world. I want no truck with conservatism that has abandoned both its head and its heart.


#12

This is a decent article on the rise of the conspiracy theory in the era of mass disillusionment, alienation and, crucially, the deliberate dismantling of culture.

There is a reason for the rise of this stuff and as long as a significant segment of the population remain excluded from any real degree of political representation it will continue to encroach into the mainstream.


#13

Why does such a significant cohort of alienated, disillusioned, politically homeless people exsit across western societies?


#14

No one half sane and informed could watch this and not think it absolutely despicable, imho.

The tirade was live-streamed by conspiracy theorist Gemma O’Doherty who threatened the garda with “abuse and vitriol”.

AGSI General Secretary, Antoinette Cunningham said that policing in the country during this current pandemic is the sole purpose of the current emergency plan.


#15

I wonder is the beak trolling Gemma when he barks at her each week: See you Next Tuesday


#16

Reading the transcripts, I am amazed at how accommodating, conciliating, our system is.

These pair of cranks are given the benefit of the doubt, and everything done to facilitate them, at every turn.

It is somewhat humbling to observe. It makes one realise that we have a lot of freedoms in this country we take for granted compared to many other places.

That said, there must be a way to handle cranks and bunglers so that the system doesn’t get overladen.

Therefore, yes, perhaps this is the way it is tacitly done, bringing them “through the hoops” so to speak, to ensure eventual coherency when they finally get to present their case (or not, if they can’t achieve the requisite coherency).


#19

Here is the only published R0 that is based on accurate data set. From South Korea. All other studies are based on extrapolations from partial data sets.

https://www.ijidonline.com/article/S1201-9712(20)30150-8/fulltext

The study was published on March 17’th. The simple fact is the academics writing the modelling papers tend to live in very set universes. So unlikely to search out data outside their own very small range of sources. And usually treating the process in a very theoretical way. All sources are not equal. And low grade data is toxic when it comes to models that may be used for public policy. Which most modelers dont seem to understand.

I cannot find any published Tawinese data sets so far. There is a overview in Chinese here.

https://www.cdc.gov.tw/EpidemicTheme/Index/2EvDNIFfEWyH8RlHAp1t8g

The raw data is here

https://www.cdc.gov.tw/?aspxerrorpath=/rwd/professional

The South Koreans have a lot more raw data here

The German data is interesting. It seems pretty clean. But only by accident. The fussy bureaucracy at the RKI seems to have accidentally hit upon a testing protocol that ends up with a fairly accurate data set for actual SARs CoV 2 infection deaths in Germany.


#20

I presume this is the video in question. It has garnered eight times more dislikes than likes. And when I read the first hundred comments I didn’t find a single one supporting O’Doherty. What an odious character! Like most conspiracy nutcases she has an overweening sense of her own relevance and importance.


#21

I know very little about her but based on that evidence, shes right on the edge mentally.

I cant understand why Waters would be knocking around with her.


#22

I posted a video previously of her interviewing a chemtrails conspiracy nut, and another with Christopher Lord Monckton who serially misrepresents climate science. She’s a Class A loon.


#23

What topic?