By Paul Collits. Featuring the Paintings of Sir Arthur Streeton.
The recent, unnerving revelations about unvaccinated Environment Protection Authority
staff being forced out of their jobs were jolting for New South Welshmen; huddled inside as so many of them are, with the wettest summer now autumn in living memory, making it easy to understand how the drenched green of the British Isles sparked the naming of the Australian colony.
Unvaccinated public servants have until the end of the month to comply with a New South Wales government vaccine mandate, or face being sacked.
In a heavy-handed warning letter, staff at the State’s Environment Protection Authority have been told to either comply or risk termination of their employment.
Such threats are supported by the as of last October newly minted Premier Dominic Perrottet’s Department of Premier and Cabinet.
Hopes of a return to sanity after two years of Covid derangement have at best only been slowly fulfilled.
In response to another employee’s enquiry regarding vaccination requirements, the Premier’s Department’s responded that NSW was transitioning to “a new COVID-19 normal”.
This second letter, written on behalf of Minister for Employee Relations Damien Tudehope, confirmed “many NSW government agencies have a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination requirement in place”.
Sometimes we are all stranded in a tiny terrible diminishing circumstance. We have been consistently told to respect the science, and there is absolutely no scientific justification for this administrative and bureaucratic madness.
As if the situation wasn’t confusing enough, politically and in every other sense, Liberal MP Tanya Davies has joined protestors outside NSW Parliament criticising her own government over vaccine mandates, which have been described as “defying sanity”.
THE NSW MP for Mulgoa told assembled protesters this week that she was “dismayed” her own government had gone “a step too far”.
“As Liberals we believe in individual freedom and individual responsibility,” she said.
“The two are intertwined. And I can’t quite tell you exactly how I felt when I read those words in that media release.”
The protesters, who were chanting “sack them all” and “we want freedom”, had gathered to oppose Premier Dominic Perrottet’s decision to force workers in a number of industries to submit to trial COVID-19 vaccinations.
Mandated industries included education, health, emergency services and volunteers.
All this begs the question, just how widespread are employment-related vaccine mandates in the Rum Corps State?
The NSW Premier’s unspoken endorsement of, or at least his tame acquiescence in, all of this
largely hidden Covid Fascism – it has been well and truly off the front pages – says plenty about his
priorities and his core beliefs attachment to his core beliefs. And the emerging picture is not reassuring,
especially for those who placed faith in him, based on his stated principles and what we know of his
background. He has been in the job long enough now to make some assessments of his performance on
the issues that matter to his base.
So, it transpires from one of the Premier’s Department letters to an unvaccinated employee of the NSW
Public Service that we are now facing a “new normal”. The agency’s words. Second, it emerges that
“many” NSW Government agencies impose vaccine mandates on their staff.
Not just front-line health workers. Oh no. Perhaps just about everyone on the public sector payroll.
Third, and astonishingly, the Premier’s Department was also at pains to point out that that it was NOT the Premier’s Department imposing the vaccine mandates on agency staff. This is an astonishing admission to make, unless one takes the cynical view that it is precisely and strategically stated in order to give the Premier a let-out clause. Plausible deniability when Nuremberg Two finally comes around and politicians are, one hopes, in some way held to account.
One assumes that “fully vaccinated” for NSW Government employees will mean boosters, third, fourth,
and yes, apparently a fifth, and who knows how many more after that.
All this comes as the faith of governments all over the world in the capacity of non-pharmaceutical Covid
measures in “stopping the spread” is utterly collapsing, and where vaccine mandates, too, are being
withdrawn or wound back.
It also comes at a time of real and worsening staff shortages across many professions and industries. It also comes at a time when we have incontrovertible evidence that unvaccinated emergency workers were excluded from helping in the Northern New South Wales and Queensland flood disasters. A wickedly unacceptable policy has now, therefore, become tragedy and farce rolled into one.
One wonders, too, just how many other NSW employers are enforcing vaccine mandates, in the
“freedom of choice” State. I know that NSW universities promote the lunacy of Covid Safe ideology, the new official State religion. Schools we know about. Child care centres, no doubt. BHP, for goodness
How many other workplaces are sacking or in some way excluding the unvaccinated? We know that
huge numbers of people are resigning from their jobs. Perhaps most are involuntary. Why are not
journalists asking? How different is New South Wales from Victoria and Western Australia, the Covid
pariah States? God knows what risks EPA employees pose to members of the general public, many of
whom have now got Omicron/Covid, or are said (falsely) to be protected through vaccination.
Professor Ramesh Thakur has written on Australia’s massive up-tick in Covid infections AFTER the vaccines arrived in
numbers. In particular, he asks: “Does the country, or any private company or public entity including a university, really want to lock itself into a never-ending cycle of boosters, which is a very real prospect both on overseas trends and also on the numbers of vaccine doses Australia has already purchased or ordered? Apparently, they do.
How many employers are insisting on vaccinations? The American Covid sceptic stalwart and prominent libertarian Tom Woods points out: “The virus psychosis is alive and well among private employers.
Even when policymakers across the globe are finally catching on, or at least are feeling forced to loosen
the rules, human resources-driven employers everywhere are doubling down, and it doesn’t seem to
matter what the government in any jurisdiction might say or believe. HR departments seem to have
taken turbo-charged doses of the Covid Kool-Aid. The safetyism that has taken over the world and
public culture these past two years is utterly embedded in workplaces, especially among corporates.”
Columnist with The Australian Janet Albrechtsen has written recently of the general malaise of HR departments: “Indeed, I am routinely swamped with growing concerns from people at all levels inside
companies who are too afraid to speak out about dreadful practices of HR departments. Many
are too afraid to expose the malign influence of HR executives as powerful and capricious
arbiters of culture, where mere allegation is enough to end careers. Too afraid to point out how
easily HR departments can bully a chief executive, board and employees alike.”
“Human resources” doesn’t get to the heart of what these departments do now. They have
become corporate police departments armed with vaguely drafted internal codes of conduct to
enforce, often capriciously, their version of morality.
Many of these departments are staffed overwhelmingly by women. Those who propagate
diversity are the least diverse. They are the only corporate groups immune from gender quotas
but paradoxically might benefit most from different perspectives, the best kind of diversity.
Bosses are about to become the next Covid rule makers. This isn’t just a New South Wales, or even just an Australian problem. It is a global phenomenon. It is no coincidence that the World Economic Forum has “public private partnerships” as its mantra. The corporate sector has been up to its ears in Covid mania. Lucy Burton is The London Telegraph’s Banking Editor. She states: “The shift in responsibility from the Government to individuals will not be easy in workplaces given how the virus has divided Britain. As the PM Boris Johnson finally rids himself of this virus and heads off to never-never land, companies must accept that they are the new Covid rule makers.”
Indeed. And it isn’t just about working from home and self-isolating when ill. It is about the basic right
to work for many.
One of Tom Woods’ American readers reported: “I was let go from my executive job at one of the “big 3” global major record labels yesterday because I am not vaccinated. I have 3 months left of (remote) employment should I stay. I was hired during the pandemic in August 2020.
“I quote from my official letter from HR: ‘Even if you were prepared to wear a mask, social
distance and/or submit to regular COVID-19 testing, this would not adequately mitigate the
direct threat of illness to you, your co-workers, or the third parties with whom you are expected
to interact as part of your job without an undue burden on our business operations.”
“I knew my days were numbered when the company sent out a very stern internal email top of
November with a deadline for filing a religious exemption (which I did immediately) and a
deadline for submitting a vaccination card. They even waived the carrot of an additional 4 days
off during the holidays for compliance. In bold letters they said, “your employment will be at
risk” and “all new hires are required to be vaccinated as a condition of employment.”
They have since announced that boosters are required after 5 months of initial vaccination. That’s a lot of paper to chase.
Then there is the vaccine segregation. There are ways of making corporate life miserable, short of
sacking people. Here is another of Tom Woods’ hundreds of readers with dystopian tales from
corporate USA: “But when that policy came, it was strict and unforgiving. It’s effectively segregation. In company policy documents, unvaccinated employees are referred to as threats to the vaccinated.
Unvaccinated persons are barred from company premises and from associating in-person at all with their coworkers on company time or on the company dime. There was and is no testing
option available. It’s vax or nothing.
It’s important to note that none of my co-workers actually cared about my vax status. If it had
just been up to them, I would have been welcome. But because of paranoid, idiotic corporate
overlords and VPs who openly admitted they were terrified about being around someone who
hadn’t taken the jab despite being triple-vaxxed themselves, I had to sit on my friend’s couch
and attend these meetings over zoom while everyone else three miles away was in an office setting
What about the US Supreme Court decision outlawing Biden’s vaccine mandates for corporates? Not
universal relief, alas, as The Defender notes: After the U.S. Supreme Court last month froze the Biden administration’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for large private employers, some companies — including Boeing, General Electric and Starbucks — dropped plans to implement the mandate.
Others, based on guidance issued in 2020 by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission,
left the mandates in place.
Most of the large employers that opted to mandate COVID vaccines for their employees, even
though the Supreme Court ruled they didn’t have to, have something in common: BlackRock and
The Vanguard Group have ownership stakes in them.
The last point is a whole other discussion. It is sufficient to note that many corporates are owned or
controlled by investors who also invest in drug companies. It is the bottom line talking here. Principle
comes last, even principle mandated by the highest court in the land.
BlackRock and Vanguard don’t just benefit from sales of COVID vaccines. As it turns out, they
also have ownership stakes in technology companies developing vaccine passports and digital
Big Tech again. And the perfect alignment of woke belief systems and corporate greed. The list of
American companies which have mandated vaccines for their workers is a long, long list. A who’s who
of corporate America, across all sectors. Companies, too, with global reach. With offices everywhere.
Read the list and see just how much the Covid pandemia and its associated vaccine religion is driven by
the private sector.
Referring simply to the Covid State is to miss much that has been going on, and to be alarmed at our prospects of leaving the Covid State behind us, even as governments the world over are now nervously re-assessing their blunders and cruelty. This is now a Vanguard/Blackrock-led Pandemia.
Here is just one example, from Citigroup: Danielle Thornton was in the school pick-up line waiting for her children when she learned she would face a life-changing choice: get the Covid-19 vaccine or lose her job of almost nine years at the bank Citigroup.
She and her husband had watched for months as bosses across the US introduced vaccine
mandates, knowing the family might face this moment. Then, in the form of an email on her
phone, it arrived.
“We had many, many conversations about it,” she says. “But ultimately we decided that our
freedom was more important than a pay cheque.”
Danielle is one of thousands of people across America opting to lose their job rather than get
the Covid-19 jabs. They represent a small minority. Most employers that have introduced such rules – about a third of the country’s biggest companies and 15% of small businesses – say the vast majority of their staff have complied.
The land of the free? The rule of law? Democratic exceptionalism? Nope, no protections for Danielle.
The BBC’s insistence on a “small minority” is self-serving rubbish. The narrative that the resistance is
“tiny” has been going all the way through the pandemia. At the time of writing, just 64.9 per cent of
Americans were double vaccinated, with 79.5 per cent in Australia.
The extent to which corporates are insisting that their workers sign on to the “Covid safe mantra” is
truly, well, corporate. It is as if HR departments the world over were simply waiting for this thing. To
give them a new meaning and work schedule. And the corporatised unions love all the Covid safe
rubbish as well. When you add bureaucrats to the mix, you are asking for bureaucracy. Covid Safe
And we need to remember that now public sector agencies, in line with the New Public Management
thinking initiated in New South Wales by Nick Greiner and his side-kick Gary Sturgess in the late 1980s
and early 1990s, are just about as corporatised and woke as anyone can get. The urge of public sector
agencies to out-business the business world is palpable.
As many of Tanya Davies MP’s readers have reminded her, it isn’t much use being able to visit Kmart if
you don’t have a job. And it seems that the Fair Work Commission is no protection. The Human Rights
bureaucracies are a joke. They enforce farcical identity rights and ignore rights that are fundamental. They look the other way when real abuses are occurring right in front of us.
The legal system continues to oppose basic workers’ rights, from corporate lawyers who give advice to employers to employer groups.
Here is but a sample. Legal adviser to Catherine Dunlop the accountants professional body CPA Australia says: “Vaccination doesn’t prevent transmission and it can’t prevent someone getting sick but, based on the advice and the evidence that’s currently available, it’s the very best measure of protection. If it’s justified on health and safety grounds, employers can issue a lawful and reasonable direction that employees must be vaccinated.
“As a result, employers’ health and safety obligations tend more towards mandatory vaccination
in those states than they did previously.”
At least she acknowledged the limited efficacy of vaccines, without, alas, also recognising that, in terms
of the rights and obligations of workers, this should be a deal-breaker for vaccine mandates. They are
evil AND they do not work. The idiocy of the mantra “you must be vaccinated so my vaccination works”
is embedded in society, thanks to all the propaganda and lies, and employers are caught in the crossfire.
Who would ever expect them to stand up and be counted, especially corporates that are governed by
As Lucy Burton of the London Telegraph noted, with society “split” over Covid and vaccine mandates in particular, corporates have to decide where to place their chips, both in the face of likely worker safetyism and customer safetyism. Do they stand up against the Covid zeitgeist and stand with individual rights, or do they cave?
I am not optimistic, despite the evident shift in global public sentiment towards Covid totalitarianism.
With lines blurred, governments still spruiking vaccine ideology – despite the also emerging evidence
that they are both dangerous and ineffective – and employers being both woke AND turning to jelly in
the face of perceived legal complexity, legislators need to step in and step up and make it
straightforward for employers. Not likely in the current political climate in Australia, with politicians and
their corporate (mainly Murdoch, the ABC and the Nine-Fairfax cabal) often leading the charge in the
othering of the unvaccinated.
This is why Ron DeSantis’s example in Florida is so important. The Governor of Florida recently noted at
CPAC that his State had refused “to outsource Faucism to big companies”. DeSantis understands what it
is to be a leader, a statesman, not merely a politician. Australia is, sadly, full of the latter. In fact, DeSantis stated that, had Florida not led the way, the USA might have ended up looking “like Canada or
Australia”. Oh dear.
It is one thing for governments, and the Australian Prime Minister until the election in May Scott Morrison to say, “we don’t discriminate on the basis of medical apartheid”. The Governor of Florida has actually made it illegal for anyone to so discriminate. Anything short of this is hollow when you have half the employers in the country shutting out the unvaccinated. Like the Environmental Protection Agency in NSW is doing, on former conservative hope Premier Dominic Perrottet’s watch.
These actions are creating widespread institutional and social chaos.
But the forces of freedom are still in the minority when it comes to resisting corporates. Independently own small businesses will struggle to survive the globalist, corporatist revolution under way. As will workers.
The traditional mediating institutions that might once have risen up to preserve our way of life – the Church, unions, the family, communities – already under extreme pressure before Covid, have been eviscerated.
Supply chains are shot. Federations are fragmented beyond recognition. Civility has been replaced by
sneering and dobbing. Law enforcement now terrorises citizens.
A new chaos is emerging. The law is no longer a refuge from tyranny.
At a rational policy level, the Cult narrative is collapsing. As American political satirist CJ Hopkins suggests: “The vast majority of humanity are suffering from post-traumatic stress, having been terrorized, gaslighted, threatened, bullied, and otherwise systematically mind fucked by their governments, the media, and “health authorities” on a daily basis for the past two years, and we’re all exhausted and at each other’s throats, and many of our businesses and incomes have been ruined, and inflation is spiralling out of control, and a lot of us are still being gratuitously demonized, segregated from society, banned from traveling, and forced to submit to invasive procedures and wear medically-pointless symbols of ideological conformity on our faces.”
The official narrative is dead, or dying. The Covidian Cult is coming apart. No one but the most
fanatical New Normals believes there is any real justification for imposing mandatory “vaccination,” “quarantine camps,” segregation of “the Unvaccinated,” or any of the other “Covid restrictions.”
“The virus” is no longer an excuse for mindlessly following ridiculous orders and persecuting those of us who refuse.
The last two years were not a dream. They were not even a nightmare. They were instead a nightmarish reality, the painful damage of whose resultant, scandalous public health crimes is in real danger of being forgotten for good, until next time perhaps, but leaving us a more compliant and obedient as well as a heavily vaccinated people.
Will there even be an inquiry into Australia’s fascist Covid responses?
Sir Arthur Streeton (1867- to 1943) is one of Australia’s most admired landscape painters. His work is closely associated with New South Wales.
Paul Collits is an Australian freelance writer and independent researcher. He publishes widely across a number of Australia’s leading publications and has been one of the country’s single most cogent commentators throughout the Covid era. He has worked in government, industry and the university sector, and has taught at tertiary level in three different disciplines – politics, geography and planning and business studies. A collection of his writing published in A Sense of Place Magazine can be found here. He posts regularly at The Freedoms Project here.