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EDITORIAL: People of Orange let down by state and feds

Sloppy effort from the PM. Wiki.

The federal Liberal-National government, aided and abetted by the NSW Liberal-National government, has let down the people of Orange terribly in recent weeks.

The federal government's blunders regarding widespread availability of rapid antigen tests (RATs) simply continues a pattern of incompetence that stretches back to its inability to order sufficient vaccines when it had the opportunity.

The state government, under new premier Dominic Perrottet, is fast losing the political capital built up during Gladys Berejiklian's reign.

Perrottet's libertarian streak (personal responsibility, no need for government intervention) caused him to look foolish when he was forced to do a 180 recently on mask mandates and QR codes.

With queues for PCR testing stretching into the distance, people have been advised by the powers that be to only seek these tests if absolutely necessary.

Otherwise, just go and buy a RAT and do it at home. Except none are available, as our story shows.

Yet again, no foresight.

And prime minister Morrison's attempt to blame his tardiness on his fear of undercutting private business was just feeble.

“We’re now in a stage of the pandemic where you can’t just make everything free,” Morrison told Channel 7’s Sunrise program on Monday.

“When someone tells you they want to make something free, someone’s always going to pay for it, and it’s going to be you.”

Yes, we understand that it's our money.

This is a strange time for the prime minister to be putting budgetary concerns ahead of a public health crisis, given the hundreds of billions of dollars splashed around in the last two years, including fat slabs of non-refundable cash to big businesses making greater than usual profits.

And why play Scrooge now, just months before the Liberal-Nationals face the nation at the polls?

Australians, including the people of Orange, have done their part in the heavy lifting - wearing masks, staying home, losing shifts and jobs, not seeing family, not going to school, checking in relentlessly to businesses and everywhere else - and deserved much better.

There is a business in Orange that had bulk RATs available in mid-November. If the staff there knew what was coming, why not our elected leaders?


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