but you did not listen.

The delta outbreak was avoidable

I’ve called Covid about as accurately as anyone. Figure out a way to test vastly more people? Check. Identify that “MIQ” would be an ongoing disaster? Check. Yell from the rooftops about what a bad idea the Trans Tasman Bubble was, and state clearly how and why it would end in multiple lockdowns across both Australia and New Zealand? 

Oh you better believe I got that right.


As a New Zealand and Australian trained scientist (BVSc, Massey; DVM, GradDipMedPhys USyd), I am an expert in public health, epidemiology, and zoonotic diseases. Covid is all of those things. Perhaps it is not so surprising that I am able to get these things kind of right.

 

What has been surprising, however, is the capacity of New Zealand’s “scientist” elite and political classes to just straight up willfully ignore me... But they do. This is not a partisan thing; though the "right" are a bit less overt about it than the "left" (as pictured). The "right" just go with ignoring; the "left" go with actively blocking accurate and highly informed scientific views out. Neither seems ideal.

blockedblockedblocked.jpg

this is just a few.

I tweeted inconvenient facts at them; for example "No actually Shaun Hendy is reliably wrong, he is not an expert in any relevant field. That is why he is reliably wrong about Covid.", as well as links to my other writing. Nothing offensive; just inconvenient facts.

This is not how science works; I am always delighted to have my work questioned, debated and build upon; if I'm wrong, I want you to prove me wrong! That's how the scientific method created the astonishing modern world we all live in.

Whereas intentionally blocking the views of other scientists is antithetical to science; it is how one creates a backward-sliding society.

That's what New Zealand's Chief Science Advisor is doing. Our Minister for Food Safety is ignoring a highly qualified expert in the field of food safety; an Associate Minister for Research, Science and Innovation is blocking the views of an innovative scientist.

An enlightened and democratic society cannot progress in this way. This intolerance of difference of views always ends badly for the societies that go down this path.

Here's how the delta outbreak happened

 ¹“Sydney returnee likely source of Covid outbreak”, Sam Sachedeva, Newsroom, 19 August 2021.

Post-mortem

So as it turns out, I was rather spot on. The one area where I would suggest change is needed is with the required/ideal vaccination rate; bump that up higher to hopefully over 80%, due to Delta. All things considered, that’s a fairly minor flaw/change to what I said would happen and what I said should or could happen... I’m going to go ahead and just give myself a pass on that.

 

But here’s the thing; if NZ hadn’t opened the trans tasman bubble - as I said not to; even in spite of our abysmally flawed “MIQ” system; this or a similar outbreak may have been avoided entirely. Our largest city may not have needed to lock down; we might be trucking along nicely with our vaccination rate; and we might now be heading into summer without Covid (Extra Spicy) spreading in the community. That would be a very nice situation to be in, wouldn’t it?

 

Alas, we are not in that situation.

 

You only have yourselves to blame. I told you this would happen. You did not listen.

You played a stupid game, enjoy your stupid prizes.