Blog, Art, Photographs

Author: James (Page 2 of 8)

Recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic requires reassessment and reform

The COVID-19 pandemic is a disease that we did not have in our communities before November-December last year. It is now embedded in those communities in almost every country. Because of its virulence and easy transmission, it remains for an indefinite period a public health hazard requiring changes to personal behaviours. We have been prepped for that by over two months of restrictions.

As responsible governments initiate gradual release and rebuild their economies, it is imperative that they ensure that people understand that we cannot resume the kinds of social interactions we had before the pandemic.

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Australians seemingly oblivious to ongoing COVID-19 dangers are only part of a larger political problem

COVID-19, Lockdown, the end of Phase 2, Reflections on Australia, 17 May 2020

The fact that Australia has dodged a bullet with a relatively low number of COVID-19 cases and deaths could be its undoing as it is clear that enough people don’t take the ongoing dangers of the pandemic seriously enough, nor the ongoing incompetence of governments that refused to plan for the inevitability of the pandemic and dithered on action because they place a low priority on the liberty and welfare of the people.

We are not going to go back to “normal”, especially since politically Dutton “The Fascist” and those who embrace authoritarian totalitarianism are trying to seize the opportunity to turn Australia into an authoritarian state.

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Are Italians ready to adjust to the “new normal” in the next phase of pandemic restrictions?

COVID-19, Lockdown, the end of Phase 2, Reflections, Italy, 16 May 2020

As the COVID-19 restrictions are eased slightly on Monday, Italy faces the same problem as elsewhere – the promise of a second wave while gradually opening up the economy. Restaurants and bars will open for internal service after a couple of weeks of serving take-away food and drinks. That internal service is to maintain the social distancing of the past three months.

However, in Italy – compared to other countries – the government only imposed a one metre separation, which scientists tell us is not enough, certainly indoors.

The new decree provides for masks and gloves to be worn indoors in commercial businesses and enclosed public spaces. We are used to that now after weeks of that requirement. It has been already imposed by shops, pharmacies and supermarkets that have regulated entry to maintain social distancing.

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Morrison’s neoliberalism impels Australia towards neofascism

When a neoliberal government sabotages every element of democracy it takes us down the road to neofascism and Australian Prime Minister Morrison heads such a subversive Regime. Neoliberalism and neofascism are joined at the hip: they both involve the subversion of the state, aided by corrupt neoliberal government, and its takeover by corporate interests that supplant core democratic principles such as the protection of the welfare of the people, the violation of human rights, the white-anting of civil liberties, the asset-stripping of government services and their handover to private corporations for profit (so-called privatisation). The underbelly of this state of affairs with its lies and ideological mythology is an authoritarian proclivity and a tendency toward totalitarianism with its centralisation of power and the mass surveillance of citizens. These conditions have been impelled by successive Liberal and National Party Regimes since John Howard’s deceitful and reprehensible government set Australia on this dreadful path of selling out the nation.

James McDonald
12 May 2020


Televangelists are media conmen where praying is preying, idiocy is spirituality, theology is business, and hypocrisy is morality.

James McDonald
10 May 2020

Trump’s Administration politicises the law

The subversion of US democracy continues under Trump and his feckless sycophants who demean US influence in the world, treat Allies in bad faith, ignore the welfare of the people, and with authoritarian chaos undermine the law, the Constitution, the Presidency, morality & decency.

In response to this Tweet from Representative Adam Schiff:

Flynn pled guilty to lying to the FBI about his illicit Russian contacts.
His lies do not now become truths.
This dismissal does not exonerate him.
But it does incriminate Bill Barr.
In the worst politicization of the Justice Department in its history.


James McDonald,
8 May 2020,

Opinion or belief does not “balance” science

Uninformed opinion doesn’t matter: science does. Neither opinion nor beliefs balance science – science is a process of empirical observation, testing of theories, the replication of results, and the expansion of knowledge. There are theories based on research, investigation and observation across a large range of scientific disciplines. Neither belief nor opinion is a theory: they produce pseudoscience. Thus, conspiracy theories aren’t theories at all – they are beliefs, conspiracy beliefs.

James McDonald,
8 May 2020,

Looser restrictions don’t signal the end of the COVID-19 pandemic

The loosening of restrictions and stay-at-home strategies might be seen by many as an end to the crisis. That is not how pandemics work. The ignorance, stupidity and calculated callousness of national governments in the UK and the US have cost of tens of thousands of lives as a direct result of duplicitous and science-denialist inaction by so-called leaders who refused to act on the advice of scientists and medical experts and fatally held off the inevitable shutdowns to slow the spread down. Setting aside the amorality of these failures, there have been many hopes expressed by these charlatans for the easing of the virus over the northern summer. The fact is that the SARS-Cov-2 is a new virus. Scientists conducting tests on its survivability and infection do not yet have the answers. The following article – written in clear lay persons’ language – explains: “How Might the Change of Seasons Affect Covid-19?

James McDonald,
5 May 2020,

Living with Italy’s Phase 2 lockdown

COVID-19, Lockdown Phase 2, Reflections, Italy, 6 May 2020

Today, 6 May, marks two months of lockdown in Italy and the third day of the slightly lifted restrictions, which continue to put staying at homer at the core of acceptable arrangements

The daily mortality figures show a national downward trend at 236 deaths in the previous 24 hours, still a very serious situation. In Umbria, there were no extra deaths and 6 new cases. More people are in the streets since the Phase 2 Declaration but for the most part respecting the social distance rules.

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