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About Jeor

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    Lord Commander, Night's Watch

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  1. This is a really significant one. The Premiers have been the ones with the real power here, and one of the unforeseen consequences of the reaction to COVID-19 has been to really lift the profile of state leaders in Australia. In the past they've generally suffered from a lack of cut-through and an ambivalence about who they are and what they do, but now they're very much household names. Even though they must all have incredible stress and heavy workloads, I think premiers have generally become much more loved by their states as they are the ones doing all the work and hard decisions, while ScoMo is very remote and out of touch.
  2. Yes, the vaccinations are the real problem and ScoMo bears a lot of the blame for that. The demonisation of AstraZeneca in particular and the overplaying of all the risks is egregious. They should have opened AZ to everyone (after consultation with GPs) to begin with. That being said, ScoMo takes a lot of heat over the closed borders but I think that blame needs to be shared with the Premiers. It seems odd that Labor leaders like Palaszczuk and Andrews are getting next to no flak (or indeed praise) for strongly campaigning for arrival numbers to be cut, and then Morrison is being blamed for being heartless etc when he's essentially doing what they wanted. Less than two weeks to go here in Sydney...supposedly. I don't think this will go on for 3 months like Victoria, but I am anticipating the lockdown will be continued at least into mid-August. A bit harder to reopen now that schools appear to be transmission sites and Delta is so easily caught.
  3. Sydney has another two weeks of lockdown, and now Melbourne's gone down for a lockdown again too. Crazy to think we squandered so much time with vaccinations! To be fair, of our political leaders I think ScoMo comes off the worst. Daniel Andrews was brutal and copped a lot of flak, but it kind of worked in the end, and Gladys Berejiklian actually has quite a lot of political capital in NSW which she built up by not locking down earlier, and she's using that dry powder now.
  4. Saw that news - pretty crazy, though not entirely surprising given how COVID is going. I guess they figured going ahead with a second-string side was better than postponing the series.
  5. Great win by NZ. Forgot about the reserve day when I predicted draw! Really happy for New Zealand, especially after their World Cup heartbreak. Now they can say they have something tangible for this once-in-a-generation team that is firing on all cylinders.
  6. I have to say, I'm liking the fact that bowlers are getting a look-in now. A decade ago it was pretty commonplace to find most Test sides full of 40+ averages. It will be nice to go back to a time when a 40 average really meant something and where 50 was the mark of an all-time great. I haven't managed to follow the NZ/India Test as we made the trek down to the snow for a week (Yes, Australia has snow...though it's pretty poor), but it doesn't look like I'm missing too much! Draw looks odds-on at this stage.
  7. Good match so far, finely balanced. NZ had a subpar first innings, could have been so much more but also could have been so much less if it wasn't for Wagner thumping a few at the end. NZ are back to the tough lower order days of Vettori et al, to have guys like Santner etc in the side who can bat - and a guy like Wagner down at number 11. England have steadied the ship, I think they're in a decent position if Root can go on to get a score. NZ will miss Boult in these situations - he would have been letahl in English conditions and would have been the go-to guy to break a dangerous developing partnership like this.
  8. Glad NZ is getting to see some more Test cricket, particularly at Lords. They've got an incredibly good team, they should be playing as much as possible. As good as their bowling attack is, I think a lot will depend on Williamson and ensuring that they can put together decent scores against an English attack in home conditions.
  9. Sad as it is, Naomi Osaka withdrawing was probably the only way to cut the Gordian knot for this particular tournament and situation. I hope that she gets the treatment and understanding that she needs. It was interesting she mentioned the 2018 US Open (where Serena pulled the rug out from under her and was at least partly responsible for Osaka crying at what should have been a joyous moment), though that might be more just about when she entered the spotlight rather than the circumstances of that infamous US Open final specifically. Personally, I don't think Osaka helped herself with some of the earlier statements about not wanting to answer repetitive questions and not wanting to face people who doubt her. Mental health is a charged and polarising issue, and needs to be handled really carefully. As rigid as the French Open organisers were, Osaka herself made quite a few unforced errors (pardon the pun). However, she is only 23; and all of us (regardless of age) are allowed to make mistakes. I just hope she gets good advice (psychological, career, public relations) going forward. While the issue isn't resolved in the long run, hopefully this does open the door to having proper discussions about what to do in future circumstances.
  10. I don't know for sure, so this post is just speculation. But I imagine that participating at press conferences are a contractual agreement that the player signs up to when they compete in the tournament. If Osaka was going to refuse to do it, ideally she should have negotiated that beforehand rather than make a false representation by agreeing to it and then not keeping up her end of the bargain. It's a house of cards for journalism if Osaka gets off for it, but the Grand Slams probably need to review some of their contracts and impose stricter fines and/or proper procedures for refusing to do press conferences (and what might be acceptable excuses for missing them). Having a non-partisan assessor of mental health would probably be part of it, too.
  11. NSW Labor is in a complete mess. The Berejiklian government seems reasonably competent, sensible and not particularly exciting. In this mould they're very much like the Bob Carr premiership of the 90s. Probably not a good comparison for the current Labor party given that Carr went on for a decade. It's still two years until the next election though, so whoever gets the Labor leadership will have a chance to build something. The Coalition has benefited (?) from having a few leadership changes so they still seem pretty fresh despite having served three terms now. Gladys has only been around a little while, people seem to like her and she seems to have a bit of common sense, she may get a good run in here.
  12. Hah, yes. The guy was an excellent spinner and if Warne hadn't been around, MacGill easily would have played 100+ Tests and got 400+ Test wickets. Poor guy just suffered from terrible career timing. Still no idea what the kidnapping was about, although the cops have said there was no personal/monetary debt involved, which was what I first thought when I heard of it.
  13. To keep it going as long as they did was quite a feat. And I imagine in some way they may have helped morale for a little bit. But it was always going to be a mighty struggle to get to the finish line. Right decision in the end.
  14. As long as the outbreaks are limited to specific teams, the IPL may still be able to continue through a combination of postponements and rescheduling. But if it spreads to a larger number of teams I think they're going to be in trouble.
  15. It's a difficult call to make but I can see why they'd want the IPL to continue. With strict lockdowns, tragedy and suffering everywhere, and the way that cricket is embedded in the national psyche it seems like stopping the IPL would really hurt what little morale might be left, even if a lot of the international players are out.
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