Friday 22nd of January 2021

desperate mabel on a cruise to nowhere...


The Federal Government has struck a deal with the country's 657 private hospitals, giving the Commonwealth access to another 34,000 hospital beds to help tackle the coronavirus crisis.

Key points:
  • A third of Australia's intensive care capacity is in the private sector
  • Staff and equipment will be made available to treat people with coronavirus
  • Private hospitals faced an uncertain future, with restrictions on elective surgeries


The private hospitals will also be required to free up much-needed personal protective equipment and essential equipment like ventilators.

In exchange, the Commonwealth will guarantee the survival of private hospitals during the period while elective surgery, which is their main form of income, is cancelled.

"It will bring over 105,000 full and part-time hospital staff, including 57,000 of our amazing nurses and midwives," Health Minister Greg Hunt said.

"It guarantees them their future … but most importantly it brings their resources to the fight against coronavirus COVID-19 in Australia."


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enough fuel for the old spirit...

If social media is any guide, the funniest family joke in these times of self-isolation is telling your parents that the bottle shops are closing down and watching them panic.

It’s been these kind of internet pranks, including mocked-up news reports from the US-state of Illinois, have led to panic buying of alcohol in some areas of Australia and forced retailers to introduce purchasing limits.

Retail Drinks Australia, representing independent retailers, introduced voluntary purchasing limits this week in a bid to ensure everyone gets a share of of their favourite lubricants.


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Three crew members from the stricken Ruby Princess cruise liner who were suffering acute respiratory symptoms have been admitted to a Sydney hospital.

The three were among 1100 crew quarantined on the ship off the coast of Sydney as the number of confirmed Australian cases from the ship jumped to 215 by Sunday night.

The latest development comes as all 797 passengers from another cruise liner docked at Fremantle, the Vasco da Garma, were allowed to disembark over the weekend. Six hundred went into quarantine in Perth hotels and 197 were transferred to Rottnest Island on Monday.

The New Zealand passengers were flown home on Sunday morning.

And after a stand-off in WA with German cruise liner the Artania about who would treated its infected passengers, 29 out of 41 who tested positive for COVID-19 will be cared for at a private health facility in Perth.


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opportunism in the shadows of toilet paper roll shortages...

Putchists in the Shadow of the Coronavirus

by Thierry Meyssan

While the public’s eyes are riveted on the progression of coronavirus numbers, a profound reorganization of the executive is taking place, giving primacy to senior health officials over policy. In the shadows, bankers and soldiers are agitating in the hope of confiscating power for their own benefit.

Many governments in industrialized countries decided to respond to the Covid-19 epidemic by confining their populations. This strategy does not stem from medicine, which has never practised isolation of healthy people, but from good management of medical resources to prevent a massive influx of sick people so as not to clog hospitals. Few industrialized countries, such as Sweden, have rejected this administrative approach to the epidemic. They have opted for a medical approach and therefore do not practise generalised containment.

The first lesson of the current period is therefore that in developed countries, administrative logic is now superior to medical experience.

Yet even without medical expertise, I have no doubt that millennia of medical experience can be more effective against a disease than bureaucratic recipes. Incidentally, if we continue to observe the current phenomenon, we can see that, at the moment, Sweden has 10 deaths per million inhabitants, while Italy mourns 166 per million. Of course, this is only the beginning of the epidemic and these two countries are very different. However, Italy will probably have to deal with a second and then a third wave of infection, while Sweden will have acquired group immunity and will be protected from it.

The primacy of senior health officials over the elected representatives of the people

This being said, the widespread containment of capital goods not only disrupts the economy, but also modes of government. Almost everywhere, we see the word of politicians fading in the face of that of senior health officials, who are supposed to be more effective than they are. This makes sense because the decision to contain is purely administrative. We have collectively agreed to fight for our hospitals and to prevent disease, not to fight it.

Unfortunately, everyone can see that, contrary to appearances, we have not become more efficient. For example, the Member States of the European Union have not been able to provide the necessary medical equipment and medicines in good time. This is the fault of the usual rules. For example: economic globalisation has resulted in there being only one manufacturer of artificial respirators, and it is Chinese. Tendering procedures take several months before they are available, and policies are no longer in place to override these procedures. Only the United States has been able to solve this problem immediately through company requisitions.

France, which during the Second World War, under Philippe Pétain, experienced an administrative dictatorship known as the "French State", has already experienced a political takeover by senior civil servants over the past three decades. We then spoke of ENArchie. Identically and without her being aware of it, she deprived politicians of the knowledge of the administration that the accumulation of local and national mandates conferred on them. From now on, elected officials are less well informed than senior civil servants and have all the trouble in the world to control them.

Just as senior health officials suddenly find themselves vested with an authority that does not normally belong to them, so bankers and the military aspire to the same promotion at the expense of politicians.

Bankers lurking in the shadows

The former Chancellor of the Exchequer (Minister of Finance), then British Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, published an op-ed in the Financial Times [1] In it, he argues for using the fear of Covid-19 to achieve what failed during the financial crisis of 2008. At the time, he had failed to create a global financial government and had to settle for mere consultation with the G20. It would be possible today, he continued, to create a global health government. And to consider which powers should be associated with the permanent members of the Security Council.

There is no reason to believe that this global government would be more successful than national governments. The only thing that is certain is that it would escape any form of democratic control.

This project is no more likely to succeed than that of the world financial government. Gordon Brown was also a staunch supporter of keeping the United Kingdom in the European Union. Again, he lost.

The deep US state lurks in the shadows

Historically, in all crises, attempts are made to use the argument of "urgency" to change Power without the public having time to think, and often this is successful.

On January 30, 2020, the WHO declared a "state of public health emergency of international concern". The next day, Secretary of Defense Mark Esper secretly signed a Warning Order stating that NorthCom was to stand ready for possible application of the new "Continuity of Government" rules.

These rules are classified Above-Top Secret, meaning that communication is restricted to persons with the highest level of clearance and with a Special Access Program (SAP).

It should be remembered that the principle of "continuity of government" was forged at the beginning of the Cold War. It was designed to protect the United States in the event of a nuclear war against the Soviet Union and the death or incapacity of the President, Vice President, and Speaker of the House of Representatives. According to a written directive from President Dwight Eisenhower, a replacement military government was to provide immediate continuity of command during the war until democratic procedures were restored [2].

This replacement government was never requested, except on September 11, 2001, by the National Counter-Terrorism Coordinator, Richard Clarke [3] However, if the country was undergoing a terrible attack, neither the President, the Vice-President nor the Speaker of the House of Representatives had died or been prevented from doing so, which led me to conclude that it was a coup d’état. In any case, President George Bush Jr. regained his prerogatives the same day in the evening and no explanation was ever given of what happened during the ten hours of suspension of his authority [4].

According to the best Pentagon expert, William Arkin, in Newsweek [5], there are now seven separate plans: 

- Rescue & Evacuation of the Occupants of the Executive Mansion (RESEM) to protect the President, the Vice President and their families. 

- Joint Emergency Evacuation Plan (JEEP) to protect the Secretary of Defense and key military leaders. 

- Atlas Plan to protect members of Congress and the Supreme Court. 

- Octagon, about which nothing is known. 

- Freejack, also unknown. 

- Zodiac, still unknown. 

- Granite Shadow, which provides for the deployment of special units in Washington and stipulates the conditions for the use of force and the passage of places under military authority [6].

Note that RESEM is intended to protect the president and vice-president, but can only be applied once they are dead or incapacitated.

In any event, the implementation of these seven plans would be the responsibility of the United States Military Command for North America (NorthCom) under the responsibility of an illustrious unknown, General Terrence J. O’Shaughnessy.

It should be remembered that under US law, this man is required to become the dictator of the United States only in the event of the death or incapacity of the three principal elected officials of the federal state, but in practice, his predecessor, General Ralph Eberhart, has sometimes exercised this power without this condition being met. Eberhart, now 73 years old, is the head of the major US military avionics companies.

General O’Shaughnessy told the Senate Armed Services Committee on February 13 that NorthCom was preparing for the worst. To this end, it liaises on a daily basis with the ten other US Central Commands for the World [7].

NorthCom has authority not only over the United States, but also over Canada, Mexico and the Bahamas. Under international agreements, it can, on its own initiative, deploy US troops to these three countries.

In 2016, President Barack Obama signed the top-secret Presidential Policy Directive 40 on "National Continuity Policy". FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate signed Federal Continuity Directive 1 two days before President Donald Trump took office, specifying some of the details at lower levels.

They’ve thought of everything, and are prepared for the worst. The outbreak provides them with the motive to act. So the questions asked by Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian about a possible deliberate release of the virus by the US military make sense.

Thierry Meyssan


Roger Lagassé




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Meanwhile The Donald and all the Democrats who fought like dogs and cats about "impeachment" HAVE NO CLUE. The coronavirus is a real threat. It's a nasty disease, but Gus has placed the last sentence of Thierry Meyssan in bold. See: 

an uncomfortable notion: the coronavirus is an escaped/released bioweapon...


And I we do not obey the orders, this mostly written by Gus for the young people — some of whom seems to be ignorant of the disease threats and of police powers — we're fucked... 


Be patient...


restoring the old queen to fight covid19....

The Queen Mary ocean liner may be brought out of retirement after over half a century to help California fight the coronavirus outbreak as America’s latest floating hospital ship.

While few details were given, city officials said they are in talks to convert the ship into a medical facility in anticipation of a surge in COVID-19 patients that could overwhelm land hospitals in the weeks ahead, the Long Beach Post reported.

“The City is coordinating plans regarding care facilities and more to ensure that we remain prepared to serve the needs of our community,” Long Beach officials said in a statement. “The Queen Mary remains in consideration, and we will have a plan to announce in the future.”

The British-built vessel is owned by the city, where it has been moored since its retirement in 1967 to serve as a museum, hotel and tourist attraction. There are more than 300 rooms aboard the ship.

The Queen Mary would become the latest floating medical center to join the coast-to-coast battle against the coronavirus following the deployment of two US Navy ships last week.

The USNS Comfort arrived in New York City harbor last week on the front lines of the growing pandemic, while its sister ship, the Mercy, was docked in the Port of Los Angeles. The two ships can each provide up to 1,000 hospital beds for non-coronavirus patients to free up space in land hospitals for those with the disease.

The virus has so far sickened 198 people in Long Beach as the state total climbed to more than 12,000 on Saturday.


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extra rations...


A waiter or someone who handles food on the Ruby Princess was the likely source of a deadly outbreak of coronavirus in Australia, NSW Police has revealed.

Key points:
  • Eighteen deaths and hundreds of confirmed COVID-19 cases have been traced back to the Ruby Princess
  • NSW Police said there have been offers to repatriate certain crew members onboard the ship
  • Medical assistance is still be given to the 1,000 staff onboard the cruise


Detectives have begun interviewing thousands of witnesses about what they knew about potential COVID-19 cases on board the cruise ship before it docked in Sydney more than three weeks ago.

Since disembarking, 18 passengers from the ship have died and hundreds of more confirmed cases have been linked to the vessel.

NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller said early indications suggested an infected crew member was most likely responsible for the outbreak.

"That would seem to be the most obvious point of transmission — someone that is handling food on behalf of multiple hundreds of people," he said.


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back on terra firma...



meanwhile, covid19 may have saved the bay...



Maria Poulos, Convenor of Save the Bay Coalition, has responded with a letter, emailed to Brad Milner (Executive General Manager Commercial, Technical and Legal) and Ingrid Emery (General Manager, Infrastructure and manager of the Yarra Bay / Molineaux Point project):

Dear Cruise Capacity Team

The decision to place the detailed business case on hold is a welcome development. However, we all know that this project should just be cancelled.

The NSW economy will not be able to support projects that bring little return on investment to the Australian taxpayer. Our home-grown tourism industry must be supported in the Post-COVID-19 recovery phase, not foreign-owned/registered industries that don’t pay taxes and do not hire locally.

The Cruise Capacity project was never going to deliver the economic and social benefits or return on investment the cruise industry would have us believe, even with the questionable figures provided in the Cruise Development plan. In addition to the dubious economic benefits of this project, it was always going to be a public safety hazard located next to high hazard chemical and gas bulk storage facilities. I won’t repeat the environmental and cultural concerns as the Government was obviously unmoved by these legitimate and well-founded objections raised by the community. It NEVER made sense to contemplate destroying a beautiful part of Sydney to cater to a foreign industry that doesn’t even pay taxes here.

We urge you to consider a capping of cruise ships into Sydney and invest in shore to ship power, improved infrastructure at existing facilities and strengthening of environmental regulations and biosecurity at our ports. A clean, sustainable and regulated cruise industry is far preferable to turning Sydney into a polluted, congested and mass transit cruise hub catering to the low-end of the cruise market. What a vision for Sydney!

We would be grateful for the following information:

1/ Will you be releasing the community outcomes report? We committed considerable time and energy to your consultation process and would like to see the results of that.

2/ Will you be continuing work on the detailed business case (notwithstanding the announcement) given that contracts/tenders for different aspects of the final business case would have already been awarded? Or will you be suspending all work at this time?

3/ Are you able to release the preliminary strategic business case at this time?

Finally, the communities of Botany Bay and beyond request that you cancel the project and focus on building the capacity of existing ports to make them state-of-the art ports that commit to meeting global environmental and sustainability standards. 

Kind regards


Now is the time to reinforce the message the Port Authority, its political masters and the cruise industry and tourism lobby groups are hearing loud and clear – after COVID-19, the cruise industry needs to strive for sustainability and social acceptance rather than continue to pressure communities to accommodate its insatiable growth ambitions.

So if you have the time, please write your own heartfelt letter to:

Brad ( and Ingrid ( or to Chief Executive Officer Philip Holliday (





We know that the "Cruise Industry" is hated in Balmain, Sydney, because the ships that berth there burn unclean fuel and their smoke can be "toxic"... But trying to take them to YARRA BAY is criminal. Yarra Bay is a secret paradise in Sydney, though already very close to cargo ships terminals and the airport. Adding the cruise ship industry to the area would spell disaster for this corner of Sydney which is used by many families with kids because it's protected from wind and waves.

As well as being a peaceful village, Yarra Bay is near to La Perouse National Park and home to a few quaint set ups that have been traditional for many years... We know that with cruise ships, would come large terminals, hotels and other paraphernalia that would destroy this lovely corner of Sydney.

Covid19 has placed a temporary halt to this development proposal... Let's hope the proposal bites the dust and that the minister responsible(?) for the idea, Andrew Constance (unless it's another silly one from Gladys), should I name him, see the importance of Yarra Bay as it is.  


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spin-fudged cruise review...

A NSW Health review of its handling of the Ruby Princess cruise ship has been savaged at a special inquiry for including "spin, bias and weasel words".


Key points:
  • The NSW Health review assessed the cruise ship as "low risk" prior to docking
  • Commissioner Bret Walker SC described the review as "bias" intended to have a particular effect on the reader
  • Dr Sean Tobin from NSW Health insists the review was an "honest account" 


The undated, anonymously-authored document — mistakenly left marked as "draft" and "confidential" — was ordered by Chief Health Officer Kerry Chant, according to her colleague Sean Tobin.

Dr Tobin, the state's Chief Human Biosecurity Officer, was emailed the report and suggested changes after he sat on a panel that assessed the Ruby Princess as "low risk" prior to its March 19 docking in Sydney's Circular Quay.

The report claimed influenza was the "likely" cause of illness on board, despite only half of the 48 flu tests returning a positive result.


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cruise booking are going gangbusters...

COVID-19 has ravaged many industries, forcing them into dramatic reinventions. Now, as we gradually re-open, American businesses that have successfully adapted to the restrictions are better prepared to weather the new circumstances. The $150 billion cruise industry, which is heavily dependent on a middle-class customer base, has paradoxically emerged as one of the winners in this new economy, as 2021 bookings surge. 

Some 30 million people went on a cruise in 2019. Yet as early as March, analysts were ringing the death knell for ocean liner travel after 700 individuals contacted COVID on the Diamond Princess and an additional 25 ships also reported cases. Dr. Anthony Fauci of the National Institutes of Health warned the public in March not to “get on a cruise ship” during a Meet the Press appearance. Surgeon General Jerome Adams on CNN that same month advised older Americans and those with medical conditions to “rethink taking a cruise.” 

The industry suffered another black eye in mid-May when reports surfaced that 100,000 crew members were stranded at sea, some without pay, due to the complicated legal guidelines about releasing and repatriating individuals from ships with COVID occurrences. 

While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has docked cruise travel until at least late July, the top three cruise lines, Royal CaribbeanCarnival, and Norwegian Cruise Line, stated that although bookings for the balance of 2019 are down, and some itineraries have been canceled, bookings for 2021 and 2022 are at parity with historical levels. The volume of advance purchases is especially encouraging. As Mark Kempa, Norwegian’s chief financial officer commented in a recent earnings call, “we have taken a significant amount of new cash…during a period where we had a horrific news flow and we had essentially zero marketing in the market.” 

Some analysts say that many are comfortable booking cruises because the cruise companies have loosened their cancelation requirements to allow straight refunds. Others are generous 125 percent credit packages for cancelations. 

The cruise industry’s amazing resiliency may seem counterintuitive but it’s not all that surprising when you consider its mass appeal and ability—proven through history—to reinvent itself


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scummo is covering up a federal snafu...

Federal officials will be shielded from direct scrutiny at the NSW inquiry into the Ruby Princess cruise ship amid accusations the Morrison government has failed to co-operate with the investigation.

The federal decision means the special commission will have to report without being able to question two federal officers who helped clear the ship to disembark 2700 passengers in Sydney in March.

Commissioner Bret Walker has issued a legal summons to hear testimony from one of the officials, a Department of Agriculture worker who granted permission for the ship to enter port, but was rebuffed again on Monday.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison promised to co-operate with the inquiry on April 21 and insisted on Monday he had done so, but he did not explain why the two officials should not appear to give evidence.

Asked why he did not encourage the two officials to come forward and speak to the special commission, Mr Morrison said the government continued to help the inquiry.

"I said we would co-operate with the inquiry as we have with other inquiries, and that’s exactly what we’ve done," he said.

More than 1000 cases of COVID-19 are estimated to have come from the Ruby Princess passengers who disembarked in Sydney on March 19, four days after Mr Morrison said ships would only put passengers ashore "directly under the command" of the Australian Border Force.

A federal Department of Agriculture biosecurity officer did not complete the checklist required for travellers with illnesses, which led to errors in a report that led to formal permission for the ship to disembark.

An Australian Border Force officer gave permission for passengers to leave the ship but made a mistake when checking health tests for some of those passengers.

The ABC revealed on July 31 that the ABF officer thought the passengers with "flu-like symptoms" had tested negative to COVID-19 when they had only tested negative for the common flu.

After hearing from dozens of state officials as well as the ship’s crew, Mr Walker issued the summons for the federal biosecurity officer to appear at the inquiry but encountered objections from Canberra.

The Australian Government Solicitor argued the commission did not have the jurisdiction to question federal officials.

Labor home affairs spokeswoman Kristina Keneally said the commonwealth was responsible for border control and should be accountable in the Ruby Princess inquiry.

"All Australians had to live with the consequences of Scott Morrison’s failure to stop the Ruby Princess," she said.



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400 cruise ships await demothballing...

You would have to be a true fan to take a cruise these days. Perhaps even a mega fan like the elderly German lady who complains of her suffering in the sunshine on the deck of the Mein Schiff 6 cruise ship. The trip to the Greek isles is her 50th cruise, but she needs a bit of champagne, she says, "because I’m so sad.”

The culprits behind her melancholy are two other ships from the travel conglomerate TUI, which have just passed within waving distance, the Mein Schiff 3 and the Mein Schiff 5. Both have been mothballed in the eastern Mediterranean for the past six months due to the coronavirus and are manned solely by skeleton crews. The visit by the ships was intended as a surprise for the passengers aboard the Mein Schiff 6, a nice greeting that also sent the message: "Look, the TUI fleet is still here.”

For the elderly German lady, the meeting of the sister ships is also a wistful reminder that she has already booked her next trip for November on the Mein Schiff 3 to the Canary Islands of Spain. At the moment, though, it is uncertain whether that cruise will actually depart as scheduled. Germany’s center for disease control, the Robert Koch Institute, declared the Canary Islands a high-risk area for the coronavirus earlier this month.

The voyage of the Mein Schiff 6 through the Aegean and Ionian seas is the first cruise with shore leave to be offered by a German cruise company since the lockdown in March. Only 687 guests are on board, but more than double that would be permitted under the current corona rules. The trip is unlikely to be profitable for TUI Cruises, which carry around 2,500 passengers in normal times. But that’s not the goal.

A Paralyzed Industry

The voyage is aimed at proving that it’s still possible to go on a cruise, that passengers have nothing to fear - that cruises are safe and the hygiene rules work. It’s not only the future of TUI Cruises that is hanging in the balance of the experiment, but also that of the entire cruise industry.

Few other industries have been as paralyzed by the pandemic as cruise ship tourism. Until the coronavirus struck in March, many companies, including German operators like Hapag-Lloyd Cruises, AIDA Cruises and TUI Cruises, knew only one trend: growth. More passengers, more ships, more destinations, greater profits. In 2019, the cruise industry employed 1.2 million people around the world. Last year, 3.1 million ship passengers came from Germany alone. But those kinds of numbers are now a thing of the past.

Once the pandemic began spreading around the world, the leisure ships were suddenly seen as threats and were no longer allowed to call at international ports. And not without reason. Earlier this year, the British Diamond Princess became a coronavirus nightmare when it experienced an outbreak in Japan and was quarantined in the Port of Yokohama. Out of 3,711 people on board, 712 ultimately became infected with SARS-CoV-2 and 14 died.


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