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Good Australians and the banality of evil: how segregation became widely accepted public policy
History does not repeat itself, but it often rhymes
One year ago today, West Australian Premier Mark McGowan imposed the toughest proof of vaccination (POV) restrictions in Australia, bringing about wide-scale state-sanctioned segregation for the first time in WA since the shameful race-based segregation imposed on the First Nations people of Australia.
The segregation policy was introduced incrementally, with workplace mandates taking effect in December 2021, followed by proof of vaccination requirements for large public venues. Finally, on 31 January 2022, proof of double-dose vaccination was required for almost every aspect of daily life for those aged 16+, including:
To keep your job (75% of WA jobs required double or triple vaccination)
Entry to aged care or hospital facilities as a visitor
Eating or drinking in a cafe, bar, or restaurant
Entry to nightclubs, live music venues, sports venues, theatres, galleries, cinemas and museums, the zoo, amusement parks, and so on
Going to the gym, yoga, or any other fitness studio
Accompanying your child to a play centre
McGowan said that he expected these restrictions would be in place for “a very long time,” possibly even “years.”
The alcohol ban in particular was blatantly vindictive and, echoing the ugly protectionist policies of our recent colonialist history, was perceived by many as a targeted attempt to coerce Indigenous groups into vaccination.1 The ban was dropped 18 days later after strong pushback from liquor stores over of loss of income, verbally and physically abusive customers, and the unwillingness of staff to show up for shifts that would require them to enforce POV on said abusive customers . The swiftness with which the alcohol ban was dropped hinted at the power of forceful pushback, but, in true Australian style, it was only in pursuit of alcohol that ground was gained. On all other fronts, West Australians by and large complied.
The West Australian population was so highly vaccinated at this point, (the work mandates having made sure of that), that while the POV restrictions did edge a few per cent of the population over the line,2 it seemed more politically motivated than related to public health strategy.
Good West Australians had done the right thing by rolling up and getting jabbed. The entire vaccination campaign had been predicated on the myth of ‘community protection’ (get jabbed, protect others). Good West Australians now deserved to be protected from the threat of infection from the unvaccinated. And so McGowan delivered.
Myth and misinformation
On announcing his plans for the complete medical-based segregation of West Australians, McGowan called on the myth of transmission prevention as his primary justification. McGowan painted the unvaccinated as a public health threat to the vaccinated, assuring the vaccinated that these new rules were necessary to keep them safe:
”We want the public to be confident in these public settings, and that they’re only mixing with other vaccinated people - people less likely to be carrying or able to pass on the virus.
It reduces the risks posed by unvaccinated people, bringing the virus into busy, populated settings.
… if you choose to remain unvaccinated, and at this point, it’s certainly a choice. You’re choosing to put yourself at risk, you’re choosing to put the people around you at risk, and you’re choosing to increase the burden on our health staff.”
In January 2022, there was no shortage of observational data (Israel, South Africa, Gibraltar) to show that double-dose vaccination was about as effective at preventing the spread of Covid as sweeping the ocean back out to sea with a house broom. Further, the available studies on the Delta variant (which by now had been almost entirely superseded by Omicron) were mostly household studies (ie: not measuring community transmission), with weak and variable results regarding transmission. Even Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla had stated, a week prior, that “two doses, they’re not enough for Omicron.”
McGowan’s advisors were either painfully behind the times, or wilfully misdirecting him. We cannot know which, because the ‘health advice’ that McGowan constantly deferred to has not been made available to the public.
But myth is impermeable to fact. The campaign of misinformation forged on, and segregation became the new normal.
The unvaccinated became pariahs, a development largely supported by Good West Australians.
The myth of transmission prevention was just one prong of the misinformation campaign. The government, health officials and the mainstream media (MSM) relentlessly spread misinformation about the proportion of unvaccinated West Australians in hospitals, admonishing this tiny group for taking more than their fair share of hospital beds. This was a lie, one which has not been corrected publicly by any of the officials or outlets who promoted it.
McGowan also took pains to mischaracterise those with legitimate concerns as belligerent morons, calling unvaccinated protestors extreme right-wingers who just wanted to “cause trouble,” and telling them to “grow a brain.” The MSM gleefully amplified the vilification of the unvaccinated, reductively labelling any and all who were not double-dosed as “anti-vaxxers”, and calling them selfish, stupid, and all manner of other demeaning descriptors.
Though the segregation policy was unpopular with an alarmed minority, McGowan’s labor party won the majority of WA seats at the federal election of May 2022, a win largely credited to McGowan’s popularity as state leader.
The harshest of the POV restrictions rolled back in June 2022, with the unvaccinated being allowed to return to gyms, cafes and most other venues. However, workplace segregation is still mandated in some industries, and is allowed at the discretion of individual businesses to which mandates do not apply.
Similar scenarios played out in all Australian states and territories, all of which imposed work mandates and POV requirements to varying degrees.
None of this could have happened without the support of the public. When I surrendered my ticket to an event at the WA Art Gallery in January due to not being allowed in the building, not one of my friends who went without me expressed outrage, concern, or even disappointment. These were Good Australians, the compliant majority who passively allowed segregation to occur, as though this was how it had to be.
Like Good Germans, who supported segregation of the Jews into ghettos based on the public health advice that this group of people was more likely to spread typhus, Good Australians swallowed whole the myth of Covid vaccine-prevented transmission. Good Germans and Good Australians alike turned their thoughts away from foundational human rights and medical ethics, dwelling rather on how sweet life would be once the public health threat had been dealt with by whatever means was necessary, for the greater good.
For more insight into the public health origins of the Holocaust and of the Good Germans who allowed it, I highly recommend this article by Felipe Rafael, which I discovered via Arkmedic’s blog.
The MSM must take the brunt of the blame for the indoctrination of Good Australians in support of pandemic segregation. As with Nazi propagandising of Good Germans, Good Australians were barraged daily with fear-mongering histrionics and two-dimensional cheerleading from the MSM, who reinforced at every turn that segregation was not only necessary, but that it was morally right.
In pursuit of Covid grant money and clicks to generate ad revenue, publishers paid ‘journalists’ to moonlight as glorified parrots. Squawking ‘safe and effective!, selfish!, anti-vaxxer!’, they fulfilled their agenda of escalating the public's emotions (more clicks), and, most importantly, encouraging people to get vaccinated3
The medical fraternity are to blame also. Reeling off relative risk reduction figures provided to them in pharma brochures; relying on research conducted and funded by Big Pharma, in journals funded by Big Pharma; denying valid requests for vaccine exemptions so as not to upset the regulators; gaslighting the vaccine injured into taking anxiety medication in lieu of proper medical help.
The banality of evil
In a report for the New Yorker titled ‘Eichmann in Jerusalem—I’ (1963), Holocaust survivor and political philosopher Hannah Arendt coined the phrase ‘the banality of evil’ to describe the utter ordinariness of Adolph Eichman, a Nazi bureaucrat who had been responsible for organising the transportation of millions of Jews and others to concentration camps in support of the Nazis’ Final Solution.
Observing Eichmann during his hearing in the Nuremberg Trials, Arendt found Eichmann to be bland, absent the capacity for original thought and empathy. He spoke in “the same stock phrases and self-invented clichés”, as though his thoughts were not really his own, but catchphrases that he had appropriated from those around him.
”The longer one listened to him, the more obvious it became that his inability to speak was closely connected with an inability to think; that is, to think from the standpoint of somebody else.”
Eichmann exemplified how ordinary people could participate in unspeakable evil by ‘just following orders,’ without even considering the nature and implications of the tasks they were performing.
How is this different from the orientation of the shilling journalists and unquestioning medical practitioners? It’s not. Eichmann was just unlucky that the Nazis got as far as they did in actualising their eugenicist utopia.
*It is disputed whether Mark Twain actually said this, however the meaning holds.
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Down the Wombat Hole expands on the protectionist nature of the WA Government’s coercion of Aboriginal communities into vaccination. Read Isaac’s summary of what happened in the remote community of Wilcannia.
During the two weeks leading up to the enforcement of full POV restrictions, the proportion of eligible West Australians aged 12+ to receive their first dose increased from 94.7% (16 Jan), to 97.6% (31 Jan). The proportion of double-dosed West Australians increased from 87.3% to 91.1%, respectively. These figures did not take into account ineligible West Australians, which would include anyone who had been issued with a vaccine exemption.