With the impact of Melbourne’s stage 4 lockdown now being fully felt attention has finally turned to the economic and mental health cost of lockdown. On the midweek edition of WilmsFront my guest is Rukshan Fernando of the Real Rukshan channel. His way of life and livelihood has been greatly affected by the coronavirus lockdowns.
Then later on Graham Young, Editor of Online Opinion and Director of the Brisbane based Australian Institute for Progress returns to the show to help analyze the great mainstream media retractions of 2020.
Victorian Coronavirus Lockdown
Rukshan worked in the wedding industry which was heavily restricted under stage 3 lockdowns and under stage 4 in Melbourne weddings are illegal. He was initially supportive of the lockdowns but has grown frustrated with the lack of transparency and accountability from the Andrews state government.
There are still not many answers other than through leaks to the media about how the breaches of Melbourne’s hotel quarantine occurred. A video was published by the Herald Sun showing bureaucrats from Global Victoria patting themselves on the back for their role in the hotel quarantine. The only formal scrutiny so far the Andrews Government has received is this week through the Parliament’s Public Accounts and Estimates Committee.
Rukshan is concerned about the current enforcement approach to the lockdown. Premier Daniel Andrews and Police Commissioner Shane Patton during their press conference appearance have levied police state threats and blamed ordinary Victorians for the spread of the virus. There was disturbing vision of a woman being tackled to the ground and arrested for not wearing a face-covering even though she had a medical exemption.
Rukshan was particularly angered at how the Melbourne Black Lives Matter rallies in June were permitted to take place without much deterrence given the amount of sacrifice he and others had made to contain the virus. He is uncertain as are the rest of us if this will be the final lockdown and if authorities will continue to overreact to outbreaks in the future.
Real Rukshan Links
Network 10 Cutbacks
The coronavirus pandemic has fast-tracked major cutbacks and redundancies at mainstream media outlets with their traditional revenue streams collapsing.
The latest mainstream media cutbacks are at Network 10 again. This includes Kerri-Anne Kennerley leaving its Studio 10 morning program and all news bulletins to be broadcast from Sydney and Melbourne. This follows Network 10 axing its news and lifestyle website 10daily back in May.
Graham Young Links
Kerri-Anne Kennerley, Natarsha Belling and Tim Bailey all axed as Ten cuts across the network – Mumbrella
Bauer closes eight titles including Harper’s Bazaar, Elle and Instyle – Mumbrella
News Corp print closures leave regional media on life support – AFR