Peter Smith

Is Life with Andrews & Co Worth Living?

We are suffering from a tyranny of low expectations. And, it may well last and last, with no end in sight. Be genuinely afraid. I am not referring to the kind of low expectations which results in the racism or sexism of affirmative action. I am talking about COVID cases and deaths. While most countries deal in tens of thousands we deal in mere tens and hundreds.

Numbers change a little each day but the last time I looked the UK had reported 326,000 cases and over 41,000 deaths. Australia, even with the incompetence of Daniel Andrews, reported under 25,000 cases and a little over 500 deaths. The respective deaths per million people was 610 versus just 20. In case you think the UK is an unrepresentative example. Sweden, the renegade state, had 86,000 cases and 575 deaths per million people; the US well over 5 million cases and 545 deaths per million.

Clearly, we don’t have a problem? Perhaps we do. Cases and deaths have been so few that a small cluster of new cases, which would hardly raise an eyebrow overseas, causes panic here.  And because of that, this lockdown of various degrees of severity and border closures will never end. We will forever be dissuaded or banned from appearing without masks, from getting up close and personal and shaking hands, from congregating at sporting matches, from singing in churches, from travelling freely. Schools opened and closed. A nightmare of social distancing stretching into eternity.

I’m exaggerating, surely. Why? If this virus is as infectious as they say – ‘they’ being public health gurus, the new prophets of our time – it will keep on cropping up. And, it is not contradictory to say that this is particularly the case the more people follow the rules to avoid becoming infected. Avoiding infection will guarantee the survival of the virus. It will lurk, ever waiting to strike at fresh meat – at those lacking immunity. And, in Australia, it only has to infect a relative few – no widespread virulence required. Each time, Andrews, Berejiklian, Palaszczuk, Marshall, McGowan, Gutwein; and Morrison, compliant in their wake, will flap, close things down, and prevent any build-up of immunity.

Ah! But the vaccine is coming. Perhaps, perhaps not. Then there is the question of when and how effective it will be – not to mention how safe it will be. We have a flu vaccine, yet 705 flu-associated deaths were reported between January and September 2019. As we have seen, those kinds of numbers are more than sufficient to cause COVID panic among our pantywaist leaders.

At my socially-distanced Anglican church on Sunday our organist sang my favourite hymn, “How Great Thou Art.” I couldn’t help but break the rules and sing along, sotto voce, taking care to keep my lips shut, ventriloquist-like.  Nevertheless, the minister’s parents, sitting behind me, heard me. They agreed that the hymn was magnificent and the temptation to sing along (almost) irresistible. I was reminded of Oscar Wilde’s witticism that the only thing he couldn’t resist was temptation.

Anyway, I am not sure how, but the conversation turned to whether I would have the hymn at my funeral. I said that I intended to and was looking forward to it. That was my witticism. But, when I think of the state of our civilisation – collapsing Christianity, cancel culture, political correctness, tearing down our heroes of the past, transgenderism, reverse racism, Black Lives Matter, Antifa, the Marxist takeover of universities and public broadcasting, global warming hysteria, and now this feckless and craven wilting in the face of Covid – then “O death, where is thy sting” sounds alluring.

12 comments
  • Stephen Ireland

    And now we have a Federal Court judge telling us that unconstitutional state border closures are the best way to prevent catastrophic spread of COVID-19. One wonders why we, or our politicians, needed those armies of public health officials to prepare us for the next raft of elections

  • ianl

    Stephen Ireland

    >” … a Federal Court judge telling us that unconstitutional state border closures are the best way to prevent catastrophic spread of COVID-19″

    Yes. I had always thought that the Constitution protected us from powerlust, since it is so hard to change by referendum. Yet it is no protection at all if the politicos and judiciary choose to ignore it, aided by the unprincipled screeching of the MSM. The examples of Taiwan, South Korea and Hong Kong continue to be brushed aside with silence.
    Sutton opines that a vaccine must be 80-90% effective in order to unlock the gates and call off the armed enforcers. That’s scary.

  • pgang

    All those systems and protections only work if people think they are important. To really want and believe in freedom and equality, people have to have faith in a higher authority that decrees such things. The default position for most people is not to be politically free, but to feel safe and secure. If a leader holds their hands and whispers sweet nothings about safety in their ears, then they are satisfied to watch their fellow man descend into the abyss.
    Without God telling us what’s what there is only one path, and that leads to enslavement. It might be surprising to realise how many people will be content with a comfortable, virtuous slavery.

  • lloveday

    If my wishes are carried out, I’ll not have a funeral in the usual sense, just a disposal of the body as cheaply as possible.
    But if there were to be a ceremony, and I had the choice, I’d chose Roger Whittaker’s “The Last Farewell” with the lyric “I have no fear of death, it brings no sorrow”.

  • T B LYNCH

    Sir Garfield Barwick [later Chief Justice] made his name by defending, pro bono, the case of Dulcie Johnson who crossed the SA/WA border in 1946 without a permit, for the purpose of Intercourse with her friend in Perth. The High Court ruled that, under the Constitution, which fortunately provides for free intercourse, Dulcie did not require a permit.
    This paid off big for Sir Garfield when he took the Case of Reg Ansett, and proved that Ansett likewise did not need a permit, since Dulcie wished to travel with Ansett. The government had been using permits to send Ansett broke.
    If all the State and Federal governments pass the same law, as happened in 1942 after the Fall of Singapore, Uniform Taxation was legally introduced irrespective of the Constitution.
    Dr Evatt tried the same trick with The Commonwealth Powers Act of 1942 – an act to effectively abolish the constitution – so Australia could win the Pacific War. This trick almost succeeded. This act is on the statute books everywhere except Tasmania. The Tasmanian Upper House of Independents said no one asked us and threw it out. Accordingly the trick failed.
    Dr Evatt was not deterred. He put it to a referendum in 1943. The referendum failed 30:70. Even though the ALP had a landslide in the 1943 election with only 3 opposition senators elected. Thank Heaven for the Tasmanian Upper House.
    I haven’t heard that all the States and Commonwealth have simultaneously passed the same law to prevent intercourse. Maybe I have just given them a bad idea. But if we have judges who think they are doctors and make up new laws ad hoc, then the politicians wont have to bother.

  • Peter Marriott

    Peter, Good piece well put together as usual and I agree with it all. Everyone is being stirred up into a panic here in Queensland as I type, accompanied by the usual threats and prophesies of mass deaths for any sort of questioning or non-compliance with any of the dictates, all due to a mere 10 cases that seem to have cropped up out of nowhere. Any data or detail that detracts from the doom and destruction narrative is immediately ridiculed by Government, Scientists and their every compliant lieutenants in the media….particularly if it comes from the US, and doubly so if it can be sheeted home in any way whatsoever to their President. On second thoughts I don’t agree with all of your piece…we still are allowed to sing in our C of E services here and while I do like “How Great Thou Art’ my favourite remains ‘Be Thou My Vision’.

  • Peter OBrien

    I’m with Peter. How Great Thou Art. Based on a beautiful Swedish melody.

  • Stoneboat

    Yes Peter, Life is still worth living – if only for the Hope of pointing the next generation towards God and warning them of the consequences we face for exchanging the Fear of God for the fear of man.
    .
    It will be much easier for all of us when our actions show that we know the state, in every iteration, is not God. Every day we allow our fellow Australians in Victorian to suffer under the looming dictatorship is a day closer to bloodshed in the streets.
    .
    Our life is changing very rapidly and a Nation-wide turn toward, and trust in, God is the first necessary step towards living a fruitful, quiet and peaceable life in Australia.
    .
    ‘How Great Thou Art” and ‘Be Thou My Vision” are lovely. I also like “Will your anchor hold in the storms of life“ and “Come Thou Almighty King” , which I think should be an aspirational Anthem for Australia.
    .
    Will your anchor hold in the storms of life, https://www.hymnal.net/en/hymn/h/331
    .
    Come Thou Almighty King, https://www.hymnal.net/en/hymn/h/3

    Stoneboat
    TW

  • Peter Smith

    Well Peter Marriot, along with Peter OBrien, I will stick with ‘How Great Thou Art’ as my favourite, but ‘Be Thou My Vision’ is wonderful too.

  • Tricone

    Beautiful Swedish melody indeed.
    Unfortunately, ripped off by a certain 1930s German political activist called Horst for his wretched song.
    Fortunately reclaimed after the war with several excellent recorded versions, including the title track of an Elvis album. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/How_Great_Thou_Art_(Elvis_Presley_album)

  • Elizabeth Beare

    Peter, I don’t think Christians are supposed to just sigh and give up: in as much as I know much about Christianity, anyway, which is not a lot. Certainly a heavenly reward awaits Christian believers, but it shouldn’t be raced towards in neglect of life on this earth. And in my view, life is always precious, to be lived fully until the last. So let us not get too downhearted, for there is much in the world yet to be enjoyed. Smell the roses, I believe was the mantra, and it’s not such bad advice. Also fight the good fight. That’s one old hymn I recall from my Sunday-school days. Plus Onward Christian Soldiers. Christianity is not dying, not in China, nor Africa, and it is still muscular in other places within Europe. A resurgence in the West is very possible still.

    If Australia has to face an inevitable level of Covid die-off then that is what we must face. It is a shame we can’t realise that and open our borders to start living again while we may. And we shouldn’t forget that treatments have improved dramatically and far few die now than at the start of this pandemic. Herd immunity – we should be hearing more and more about that, say we’ve flattened the curve, and we’re now ready to save those we can and face the music of what is no worse than a bad flu season, which may be ameliorated to some extent by vaccines.

  • Peter Smith

    Quite right Elizabeth, Christians should not give up. But how to fight? Just read The Benedict Option by Rod Dreher. As the title implies, he suggests that western Christians need to form mutually-supportive communities, while the world goes to hell around them. (Well, that last bit is my interpretation, but seems on the money.) He also suggests that Christians in the professions need to employ discretion to avoid being cancelled. That is, don’t deny God and JC but avoid an Israel Folau moment. It is hard to remain too upbeat in such circumstances. Nonetheless, as you say, we must ‘fight the good fight with all….’

Post a comment