SIR – We are continually told that the government has “followed the science” in these “unprecedented times”.

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We pay government to lead, not follow. Science advises. That advice can be broad and needs interpretation and suitable application by experienced and capable government.
Science can be cold, without compassion or nuance. Effective government shows leadership and direction in those areas.

Monday next week is unprecedented, it has never happened before, but we do know a lot about how it will pan out; we have experienced others like it and we have rehearsed how to prepare for it.

If we ignore previous experience and disregard our rehearsals, then it is truly unprecedented in its potential to harm.

It is the same for Covid-19. We have rehearsed how to be prepared for it, we know a lot about it and we know how it will pan out and yet we have basic failures of process that have cost lives.

Of course, there is success which has saved lives. Someone did the maths and realised that “herd Immunity” was a disaster born out of hope, desperation, and financial security rather than social responsibility and community safety.

Part of our problem is that due to narrow appointments, based on ideology and loyalty, we possibly have the least experienced ministerial cohort in history who now face the sort of test that experienced past holders would have been stretched by. Few are coming out of this with credibility.

The daily sport of putting an ill-prepared, inexperienced minister up against Piers Morgan exposes the paucity of ability available. Mr Morgan is not a liberal leftie relishing the anguish of the government and yet he has yet to be taxed in his investigative strategy.
We can look to America and see that things could be worse. But we can see that things could have been, and could be, better.

Phil Emmel,
Christchurch

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