Territory Stories

The Northern Territory news Sat 21 May 2022



The Northern Territory news Sat 21 May 2022

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NT news


The Northern Territory news; NewspaperNT






Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin.; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin.

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News Corp Australia

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Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.

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News Corp Australia



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Saturday May 21 2022 NEWS 17 V1 - NTNE01Z01MA Matt Cunningham Rabbit holes of no return A SAD incident this week marked the latest chapter in the steady decline of our civilised society. A few days after resigning as chief minister, Michael Gunner took his family to the Darwin Ski Club for a quiet late afternoon drink. It should have been a relaxing time enjoying one of this countrys best sunsets. A time to finally unwind and give back to his family after 5 years in the Territorys hottest seat. But, instead of enjoying some long overdue family time, Gunner, his wife, Kristy, and two young children were subjected to some absurd harassment. A man armed with a camera phone approached the former chief minister who was holding his infant son and started aggressively asking him questions about Covid vaccination. Gunner kept his cool and calmly walked away. His wife was clearly understandably upset at the intrusion. This entire unsavoury incident was, of course, posted on Facebook. Its hard to imagine something like this happening 30, 20, even 10 years ago. But, fuelled by the mindbending madness of social media, the great, laid-back, happy-go-lucky Northern Territory appears to be morphing into something more akin to the post-Trump United States. This was not the first time Gunner and his family had been subjected to this sort of behaviour. During his chief ministership he was screamed at by an anti-fracker in the carpark of the Karama Shopping Centre and had his home address repeatedly yelled out by an anti-vaxxer at a protest rally. The antis of the left and right share this (once) un- Territorian aggression. A belief that their cause is so worthy that their very existence is at stake that no measure is too extreme for those who stand in their way. Gunner is not the only politician in recent years to be subjected to this sort of behaviour. After the 2016 election, John Elferink was driven out of Darwin after death threats started arriving in his mailbox. Its no coincidence this sort of behaviour has increased with the uptake of social media. The algorithms are driving those inclined to click down a rabbit hole for which there can be no return. They divide our world into black and white. Good and evil. With no room for any shade of grey in between. We are fast losing the art of disagreement. Issues are no longer worth debating in a civilised and sensible manner. Better to flick the switch straight to abuse, or better still, call for a good cancellation. The truth doesnt matter, only the side. We only need look to the US to see where were heading. A society divided into tribes with no middle ground. This doesnt mean chief ministers shouldnt be scrutinised. Holding the powerful to account is an important part of democracy. Being able to publicly criticise your leader is a right not enjoyed in many countries. But, if youre resorting to harassment, its usually a pretty good sign youve already lost the argument. It could be said incidents such as the one Gunner and his family endured last week are better ignored. That to highlight them only promotes similar behaviour from others. But at some point we need to call this out. To reclaim the sensible centre before too many of us fall into the abyss. For a Northern Territory where a former chief minister cant enjoy a quiet drink at the pub is not the Northern Territory I want to call home. Algorithms that divide our world into black and white flick the switch straight to abuse and destroy the art of civilised disagreement Former chief minister Michael Gunner was harassed while out at a Top End pub with his family. Picture: Supplied. Monkeypox infection found in two states A VICTORIAN man is in hospital after being diagnosed with monkeypox, while another in NSW is also suspected of being infected. Victorian chief health officer Brett Sutton said the man travelled from London, via Abu Dhabi, arriving home on Monday. The man had developed symptoms prior to boarding the flight, then sought medical care almost immediately after arriving home. (He) had an extremely astute GP, who has thought of monkeypox and referred him for testing, which has led to early diagnosis, early isolation, Dr Sutton said. The man was in a stable condition at The Alfred Hospital and is expected to make a full recovery. There are very few close contacts that have been identified. Ob viously, the GP is one of them, Dr Sutton said. Dr Sutton said there would be people in Australia born after 1980 who would not be vaccinated against smallpox, which would protect them from monkeypox. Australia should expect to see more cases emerge but not expect border closures. Flu-rona rising threat as Covid curbs relaxed HEALTH professionals fear the impact rising flu cases are having on Australian kids. The nation is going through a flu-rona after Covid measures and border closures stopped the flu from spreading over the past two years. It has led to renewed calls for parents to book their kids, especially those five years or younger, in for a flu jab, with vaccination numbers down on previous years. The Royal Childrens Hospital lab in Melbourne has revealed a 400 to 500 per cent increase in flu cases over the last two weeks alone. The hospitals medi cine chief Tom Connell said several children had been hospitalised with the virus. As a paediatrician I think the surge is going to continue, Mr Connell said. In the vast majority of flu cases it will be a relatively mild illness, but theres still about 1 to 2 per cent of children who require medical care in hospital. The hospital also urged parents to get their kids vaccinated as influenza was its main cause of admissions for children under five before Covid. Never seen anything like it energy price rise tip ENERGY bills are set to more than double as retailers announce up to 130 per cent price hikes. Four Australian retailers, including Discover Energy, Mojo Power, LPE and RE Amped, have notified their customers via a letter and email that they will be hit with an unprecedented price increase come mid-June. One Big Switch Energy expert Joel Gibson told Ben Fordham that every Australian household can expect a price hike letter over the next three weeks. Weve never seen anything like this. Weve never seen price rises like this in Australia, he said. LPE has slapped some Queenslanders with a 100 per cent increase in rates, while Mojo Power has emailed NSW customers, telling them they will see a 58 per cent rise although its daily supply support charge will drop 29 per cent. Discover Energy notified NSW and SA residents some peak rates would rise by up to 95 per cent on top of a 130 per cent supply charge leap in NSW and 45 per cent in SA. Mr Gibson has urged people to check their bills so they are aware of any price rises. Kids in danger Joel Gibson Monkeypox

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