WAR! WHAT IS IT GOOD FOR? $270 BILLION, IT SEEMS
According to The New Daily, Scott Morrison will today announce a 10-year, $270 billion military package, to include long-range missiles, armed drones, and anti-submarine warfare capabilities.
The funding, which follows the $1.3 billion cyber-warfare boost outlined yesterday and comes as Australia grapples with a recession, is $75 billion more than a figure originally outlined in Malcolm Turnbull’s 2016 Defence White Paper.
In his address at the Australian Defence Force Academy, Morrison will claim the record spending comes ahead of “a post-COVID world that is poorer, more dangerous and more disorderly”.
FUN FACT: Permanently increasing JobSeeker to above poverty-levels would cost between $7-17 billion a year — not including the net economic benefit from supporting low-income spenders — while the ABC’s job-destroying 2020-21 budget has been cut from $1.181 billion to $1.065 billion. Just some figures to keep in mind next time we are told what Australia can and cannot afford!
VICTORIA PUTS POSTCODES ON LOCKDOWN
Following Victoria’s surge of more than 250 new confirmed cases over the past five days, ABC reports that 10 Melbourne postcodes will re-enter stage three “Stay at Home” restrictions for four weeks from midnight tonight, with both residents and visitors to be subject to the four, now-standard reasons for leaving their house:
- Shopping for food and supplies
- Care and caregiving
- Exercise (outdoor only, with one other person or members of a household)
- Study or work that cannot be done from home.
Entertainment, sporting and beauty facilities in affected postcodes will again be forced to close or shift to takeaway-only — minus, again, for some reason, hairdressers — and affected businesses can register their interest for one-off, $5000 grants at Business Victoria.
And in terms of enforcement, The Age reports that Victoria Police will again start issuing on-the-spot fines and take a “booze bus” checkpoint-style approach to regulating traffic in and out of suburbs — an approach that, if the April/May period is any guide, can only mean good things for Melbourne’s disadvantaged and migrant communities.
NO BONK BAN: As the updated hotspot Q&A explains, residents in affected households have been told they cannot visit or receive visits from friends and family members except for caregiving/compassionate reasons or receiving services, however partners may visit each other as long as they otherwise stick to the new rules.
LET’S NOT PLAY THE BLAME GAME
As The Age reports, Premier Dan Andrews has announced a judicial inquiry into Victoria’s management of hotel quarantine after a number of cases through late May and early June were linked to breaches. Andrews has requested that international flights be diverted from Melbourne for the next fortnight in order to reduce quarantine pressure.
Although more than a thousand residents have refused tests amidst an ongoing blitz, the premier also noted the government can only encourage people to reconsider and that “forced testing almost certainly involves more contact than the system we have now” — the alternative, as the paper unpacks, would be extremely legally and ethically murky.
On the state front, Queensland has excluded Victoria from its plan to lift their hard border on July 10, although residents can still enter but must go into hotel quarantine for 14 days at their own expense; South Australia will scrap its plan to reopen its border with the state on July 20; and, while NSW will not shut out Victorians at this stage, Premier Gladys Berejiklian has urged residents not to “welcome” anyone from Melbourne.
LIES SPREAD FAST: In a good reminder that smears and falsehoods perpetuated by both politicians and journalists have real, lasting consequences, 42% of participants of a new Essential poll falsely believe that “many of the new cases of COVID-19 in Victoria have been from people who attended the Black Lives Matter protest”. While a handful of infected people attended the rally, there is still no evidence anyone was infected at either the Melbourne or national events.
USA COULD SEE NEW CASES RISING TO A LEVEL OF 100,000 A DAY
Finally, in a devastating reminder of just how much worse this could all be, CNN reports that America’s coronavirus task force head Anthony Fauci has warned Congress that he wouldn’t be surprised if the US sees new cases of coronavirus rising to a level of 100,000 a day.
The news comes as New York, New Jersey and Connecticut aim to double their list of states under new interstate quarantine rules, and after the US reported more than 40,000 new cases on Friday — its biggest daily spike yet. Total cases currently sit at 2.7 million, and deaths at 129,170.
PS: In case you’re wondering what the guy overseeing all this is up to, AP reports Donald Trump has secured a temporary legal block against his niece, Mary Trump, publishing her book Too Much and Never Enough: How My Family Created the World’s Most Dangerous Man.
THEY REALLY SAID THAT?
You can listen to the music.
Announcing that patrons will have to stay seated when Queensland nightclubs reopen on Friday, the Queensland premier inadvertently creates the coolest COVID-19 crime yet: Footloose revolution. [Note: Crikey does not endorse Footloose revolutions].
“Well, it’s baaaaaaaack! But it never really went away. Following a brief respite in some areas of the world, COVID-19 is returning everywhere, everywhere. In the US it simply rages on, unabated.
“As the ultra hot spot of New York started to abate, midwest areas and southern areas which explicitly spurned active measures due to politics are now starting to hot up. They will presumably feed back into areas like NY and California, just as they start to get things under control.”
“A long overdue conversation about racial and cultural diversity is slowly washing through the Australian media.
“And SBS, the multicultural broadcaster, where diversity is baked into the charter, is the latest news organisation to apparently fail the test.”
“Murdoch watchers are about to see in real life how Lachlan handles the dilemma his father regularly faced: how to choose between the political right (in this case, Trump) and the likely political winner (almost certainly not Trump).
“It’s not just the polls, with averages currently showing Joe Biden up about 10%. It’s the perceptions leaking out of the Murdoch family bunker on New York’s Sixth Avenue — the same building that houses the headquarters of both Fox News and News Corp’s The Wall Street Journal and New York Post.”
READ ALL ABOUT IT
Coronavirus spike: why getting people to follow restrictions is harder the second time around — Kristina Murphy, Harley Williamson, Jennifer Boddy and Patrick O’Leary (The Conversation): “There may be many different interpretations of the reinstated restrictions. Also, having been granted some freedoms after the initial lockdown period, people will be reluctant to go back. Together, this makes compliance even more difficult to enforce. During the initial stages of lockdown in April, we carried out a survey to find out what factors motivated public attitudes towards compliance. Our findings will be particularly pertinent in the coming weeks.”
‘Give it everything we can’: the case for putting winning first and expense second in national security — Jim Molan (The Sydney Morning Herald): “Imagine if you will, the smashing impact of black summer fires and the health and economic impacts of COVID-19, plus a regional conflict. We can breathe a sigh of relief that we have passed through a particularly bad time, but now looking to the future, it can get much, much worse, and we must prepare.”
- See also: Molan’s separate but functionally identical “We’re going to need a defence force with real bite” ($) at The Australian.
On Israeli annexation, Australia is MIA — Michael Chaitow (Meanjin): “Western governments across the world are standing up to Israeli plans to annex the West Bank, but Australia’s voice is conspicuously silent. Indeed, Australia has played a prominent role in the region since H.V. ‘Doc’ Evatt, former Attorney General and President of the United Nations General Assembly worked to secure the Partition Plan of November 1947 that ultimately led to the establishment of the State of Israel. Since then, Australia, like many Western allies has withheld its criticism of Israel, speaking out only occasionally relating to matters of peace, security and democracy.”
HOLD THE FRONT PAGE
WHAT’S ON TODAY
The National Press Club will host NSW Review of Federal Financial Relations — Supporting the Road to Recovery, an address from NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet, panel chair David Thodey, and panel member Jane Halton.
The Senate COVID-19 inquiry will hear from charities including Foodbank Australia, Red Cross and First Peoples Disability Network Australia.
Science writer Rebecca Giggs will launch her debut book Fathoms: the world in the whale in an online, immersive audiovisual Wheeler Centre event.