Around the Nation
by Tom Van Dusen
When it comes to the Crazy COVID-19 Conundrum, just who can you believe … who can you trust?
Can you trust Ontario and national political leaders who seem to sidestep and backslide at every turn? Or health care bigwigs who may be more reliable on the science side but are also contradictory and confused at least some of the time?
These are the decision-makers — not all are guilty — we less-informed regular folks are discovering aren’t necessarily doing what they’re ordering and recommending. While most of us were sticking close to home over the Holidays, masking, sanitizing, distancing, isolating and whatever else, many of them were winging to Caribbean getaways for some R & R.
Maybe they deserved some pampering! We all did. But the rabble stayed home for the most part, shuttering and sheltering against the next C-19 wave.
The ones caught with their pants down — revealing bathing suits — have been dumped or demoted. Their bosses didn’t have any choice. The optics are simply too preposterous. In these delicate, contagious times, you can’t keep people in leadership roles who blatantly disregard their own edicts.
There are no doubt others we don’t know about plodding about their business as usual — which is mainly taking care of our business — and hoping they aren’t outed by political or professional enemies.
And what about the wildly misguided decision to give antidote jabbers Christmas and Boxing Day off just as the vaccination program was getting underway? I know that dim idea wouldn’t have come from program leader retired Gen. Rick Hillier, a soldier’s soldier who never quits until the job is done. Hillier apologized for the gaff, even taking responsibility for it.
Since then — the Holiday period — the whole anti-COVID Crusade seems to have gone down the proverbial privy hole. With the latest lockdown proving to be absolutely ineffective, rudderless “leaders” are stumbling around, issuing increasingly desperate orders and guidelines as numbers of new cases continue to climb.
Other than kill off dozens more family businesses while big box and liquor stores continue to thrive, the current lockdown has accomplished zilch … exactly the same results as the original lockdown. Don’t these “experts” ever learn? They’ll say their modelling, or forecasting, suggests the spread would have been much worse without locking down but that’s unproven idle speculation.
Panic is setting in and Ontario Premier Doug Ford isn’t trying to hide it. Vaccine is running out, numbers are going off the charts, none of the random measures are working. Ford is even eyeing his neighbour, equally desperate Quebec Premier Francois Legault, and wondering if that province’s untested, unenforceable plan for a curfew starting Jan. 9 might work here.
The answer is a resounding: It won’t work in either province! The virus will continue to find its way around the feeble obstacles tossed in its path; only the various vaccines will rein it in when they’re finally widely distributed and get a grip.
Until then, the contradictions continue, including a government advisory rather than outright ban against foreign travel while airlines continue to offer package deals to entice general consumers and cabinet ministers to climb on board.
While these dismal droplets of discrepancy continue to fly around, let’s not forget that when you extrapolate the COVID cases across the entire population — which our leaders never do — the percentages of infected and deceased evidently do not yet represent a risk inspiring universal fear — even among the brightest minds publicly telling us to be afraid.