The Australian vaccine rollout is all over the news again today and not in a good way. Rather than produce a thought-through strategy and adjust it as circumstances change, the Morrison Government is flailing around in public, telling different interest groups different things.
In short, it continues to be politics over national interest:
- National cabinet meets today.
- VIC is to follow NSW in opening mass vaccination centres.
- GPS still can’t get doses and warn that hesitancy is rising.
To wit, surveyed AFR readers willing to get the jab has fallen from 89% to 81% over a month.
The politics of it all is chaotic. After last week’s declaration that Australia is a permanent prison island, then backflip to effective vaccine passports, we begin a new week with mixed messages that there is “no hurry” to open the borders (while summoning national cabinet to hurry up the rollout) and last weeks suggestion that essential travel will be allowed for the vaccinated, as well as home quaratine.
Or not. The state premiers are offside even before the meeting:
- WA said no way, Jose.
- VIC said they rely on medical not ScoMo advice.
- Greg Hunt said the ACT model for home quarantine was the right model.
Meanwhile, almost a year late, we might produce some mRNA vaccine of our own. Recalling that it was last June last year that Pfizer first asked us how much we’d want of its mRNA vaccine and was sent packing.
Finally, our progress still looks pretty sick versus Morrison Gvoernment ambitions:
But at least we’re catching Nepal: