It is a truth universally acknowledged in systems thinking that many policies have a completely counterintuitive impact.

It is now completely obvious that his has been the case with the policies of the New South Wales, Victoria, and Federal Governments to abandon all attempts to control the Omicron variant of Covid.

The first attempts to control variants were based on a fairly simple model of containment.

In Victoria everybody endured a long period of lockdown and isolation after which the restrictions could be eased and life could return to normal. The economy began to pick up.

Then the omicron variant arrived and Prime Minister Morrison and freshly minted Premier of New South Wales Dominic Perrottet decided to reverse all previous policy. In the absence of any clear leadership, Victoria followed suit. Everybody hoped that letting what appeared to be a milder form of the virus run its course would let the economy open up faster than previously.

It proved to be a disastrous decision because of differences in dynamics came into play.

What has happened, in effect, is that a good proportion of population went into voluntary lockdown concerned about the unknown impact of the new variant and distrustful of the two crazy people in charge of the Federal and New South Wales governments. Instead of opening up the economy, they have effectively almost ground to a halt.

Seeking a way forward together

As omicron spread at a frightening rate, a large proportion of the workforce was immobilised with a virus which proved to be far more virulent than expected. This group of people has had a negative reinforcing effect on the downward spiral of fuel economy particularly in relation to the logistic chains relating to supermarkets and food supply.

National case numbers are now running at around 100,000 a day and the health systems began showing signs of collapse with covid cases being moved out of hospitals and into hotels.

With 350,000 cases a week in Victoria, it doesn’t take a mathematical genius to work out how long it will be before vital infrastructure such as hospitals, transport systems, ambulance systems, supermarkets and schools will not have staff to run them.

Did no one think of this before they decided to let a highly contagious virus loose in the community?

This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.

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