Funding of roles:
Without a doubt, you and I are on COVID. We’re tired of talking about it, hearing “experts” give their opinion on it and making it bear the responsibility for everything that goes wrong.
John Tamihere: the hangover of the Covid
Without a doubt, you and I are on COVID. We are tired of talking about it, of hearing “experts” give their opinion on it and of making it bear the responsibility for everything that is wrong.
This is generously facilitated by the lazy media which continues to update us with the daily number of cases, deaths and intensive care patients. We are affected by the numbers however, we strive to reach the light at the end of the tunnel. This COVID hangover won’t go away until we find something else besides the Ukraine war and COVID to use as a scapegoat.
People’s mental health suffers and they vent their frustrations on themselves, on each other, on society and of course on the Labor government whose popularity is declining.
I am confident that next year Dr. Ashley Bloomfield will be on the Queen’s Honors List for essentially doing her job. Without a doubt, the first months of 2020 were alarming, we were uncertain, we needed a hero and that’s what he became. However, once we took off our rose-tinted glasses, we saw the flaws in the way he blocked RAT and saliva testing last year, as well as his inability to want to share patient data to vaccination purposes. And indeed, chose lower population numbers on which to base results of vaccination success.
What COVID has brought to all of us is heightened forms of anxiety and being kept on our toes by all these so-called experts who are eager to give their opinion. But on what? They no longer tell us anything that we no longer know. We are literate, well-connected and can compare global best practices. In other words, we’re not all stupid.
We don’t need to hear about COVID anymore because we’re done, literally. The problem was resolved. We now know that the health care system is not going to collapse this winter. We still have five weeks of winter left, and then we enter spring on September 1st. We have seven weeks until September 22, which is summer time. Bring it on! The two and a half year bottling in bubble wrap meant it had to be overwhelmed.
There is no doubt that the flu season in this country, as in other countries, is cyclical with the rise and fall of winter. We now know that our COVID positive numbers are down and this is due to several reasons. We may just not be playing the game uploading our test results due to COVID fatigue. And the requirement for critical care beds is the first determinant of any litmus test that the healthcare system is working. Not only does it work, but it can respond to increases. Moreover, we are a highly vaccinated country. So, all metrics on all algorithms show that the great nation of Aotearoa has defeated COVID.
What I want to know is why we are lagging behind our neighbors in Australia who are moving on with their lives and in many cases if you test positive it is as if nothing had happened. Our Prime Minister has received terrible advice from his senior public service throughout this pandemic. What this shows you is how deep the chasm is between the politicians who set policy and the bureaucrats, willingly or not, who execute it.
The next question is, are there other variants as virulent as COVID-19 when it first arrived? The answer to this question is no. What I find most frustrating is what we don’t know. Of the death rates, we don’t know how many were unvaccinated. And we don’t know how many people who died with COVID actually died from COVID. These are very important numbers that the system does not want us to know. Being more transparent will loosen the control they have over the narrative. The same story that worries and worries us.
COVID has run its course. Here at Te Whānau o Waipareira, we will welcome back those who have been driven out by vaccination mandates. We understand why these mandates were applied at the time, but our doors are open to these employees when there are employment opportunities. It’s part of building bridges to parts of the community that have been deeply affected more than others.
Generally, we Kiwis have always had great faith in our system, and we can’t take it anymore. We are becoming aware of a lot of things that are really going on, like rising prices in the construction and grocery sectors. What we all need and want is absolute clarity to help us with our current mindset and restore our confidence in our system of leadership and accountability.
John Tamihere is a former Labor Cabinet Minister and Chief Executive of Whānau Ora and West Auckland Urban Maori Organization Te Whānau o Waipareira.