Guest post by Sara Lunam
I have been trying to decide what is worse – the offer of a knighthood to an ex-public servant approximately six months out of office, or the acceptance of that knighthood by the recently ex-public servant?
Ashley Bloomfield, whose salary working New Zealanders paid, did not have his contract renewed. Whether it was his choice or not we will not know nor do I for one, care.
However, what I do care about is the insult to the country and to the other fine statesmen and women who have earnt their knighthoods by their selfless commitment to communities, country and humanity. Sir Edmund Hillary as a great pioneer springs to mind as an exemplar of our New Zealand values, strength and courage. His world recognised achievements and commitment to his community made us all so proud.
Ashley Bloomfield, a paid public servant arguably “doing his job” does not stand shoulder to shoulder with Sir Ed. His achievements, whatever they may be, bare absolutely no comparison. Sir Ed won the admiration of the world for his achievements, Ashley is not so acclaimed. In fact, the world is asking questions and in some cases now mocking New Zealand’s response. It is clear to most thinking New Zealanders that Ashley Bloomfield was the affable face of the Government’s political response to Covid19. Despite being the Director-General of Health, he was the government puppet who did not honour his medical oath.
Alongside his leader Jacinda Ardern, he gave voice to, and enforced, the most egregious loss of human rights in the country’s history. For the damage and human losses he inflicted, he receives one of the country’s highest honours. This makes me feel sad and ashamed, not proud.
His was not a leadership response. Leaders strategise, plan and act. They think ahead, weigh up both sides of the available information, do not discount any source and constantly refresh their strategies and tactics as new information comes to hand. They show passion and commitment, take calculated risks, and stand their ground. They take their people with them.
Leadership by the Director-General of Health was absent. The government demanded a strategy and a response that ignored fact and generated fear to ensure compliance. He acquiesced. The medical advice offered by experts such as the Covid 19 Technical Advisory Group was often ignored by the government and Bloomfield was complicit, possibly a willing participant, in this deception.
The strategy and tactics in response to COVID19 were myopic, ego driven and political, and flew in the face of international experience, trends and recommendations. Further they ostracised those who had views differing from the political narrative, despite the supporting data being available from medical experts. The unfortunate consequence of this “experiment” meant Bloomfield oversaw and worse, participated in, a political response that:
- Worked to build fear in communities, ignoring facts and data about those truly at risk and crafting a strategy to ensure “one size fitted all”
- Participated in a public relations exercise of spin and mistruth
- Instituted responses that saw discrimination (and apartheid) rampant in New Zealand with families and friends turning on each other as they made differing choices
- Forbade early treatment of Covid with widely used and existing drugs known to be safe and effective. Further, he did not look to alternative treatments that were known, and were proven overseas, to support a speedy recovery
- Stole basic human rights, including what was supposed to be our inalienable rights to bodily autonomy and freedom of choice
- Lacked any semblance of compassion, dictating that loved ones could not be with dying relatives and New Zealanders could not return to their country
- Imposed strict mandates and lockdown criteria that showed no respect for the needs of humans, steeling jobs and sources of income from many, and isolating even more
- Ignored the poverty, domestic violence, mental health, and elevated suicide statistics that are directly attributed to the lockdowns
- Demonstrably lacked any ability to have the Health ministry he oversaw provide support and ongoing medical services for those affected by other health issues, for example cancer screening
- Knowingly told lies to the public about a wide range of issues, not the least of which was the efficacy of the vaccine, the PPE held in NZ, the management of quarantine facilities and so on … this list is long.
- Held the sole power and authority to issue jab exemptions to the vaccine injured and those with pre-existing conditions but granted a rare few, even to those who were clearly vaccine injured
- Ignored the increasing vaccine injury and fatality numbers. Also chose to ignore the increase in the all-cause mortality figures. For example, in the year ending September 2022 there were 38,052 deaths registered in NZ. That’s an increase of 3,474 on the corresponding period a year earlier. The official Covid death toll is 3,500 in total for the preceding THREE year period! Surely the impact of vaccine harm could not have escaped the Director General of Health’s notice?
- Did away with the medical concept of Informed Consent and the lawful and ethical requirements for this. Instead, he oversaw a regime of coercion, bullying, censoring and punishment for people that sought to be informed.
- Ensured that many good doctors who held strong to their ethical views and their commitment to the Hippocratic oath were discredited and fired from their medical practices by mandates enforced by the faceless and hypocritical bureaucrats of the NZ Medical Council.
But worst of all he approved, recommended, and oversaw the use of the experimental vaccine on our children! This politically motivated decision flew in the face of advice received from the expert medical panel and international recommendations and practice. The harm has been undeniable and visible daily.
This overreach is unconscionable and demonstrated an absence of ethics, morals and humanity and a presence of ego, ambition and power. In former times we would not have believed it possible.
That a public servant can receive a knighthood some 6 months after he leaves office for overseeing a failed political response to a flu-like illness that the general population has a 99.97% chance of recovering from is an outrage.
Further, that it was gifted before the Royal Commission reports its findings is not only a sham but is an insult to those fine selfless statesmen who deserved their honour.
Shame on you Jacinda Ardern and shame on you Ashley Bloomfield! You deserve each other.
This Kiwi stands ashamed and mortified that our prestigious national recognition has been so dishonoured. As it is not earned by a standout feat recognised on the world stage, it must be the price for your silence?