Four Big Problems Exposed By The Pandemic
May 1st, 2021 | CW
The Coronavirus pandemic rages on and I’ve noticed a few blind spots in our national conversation. Since this is Poletical and you get hot takes here that you never get anywhere else… let’s begin.
Problem #1: Our healthcare system is absurdly fragile
The media in this country is constantly screaming the alarm about “out of control” Covid plague and it’s fed and cultivated by our politicians. We hear about case numbers and variants and whatever other panic inducing propaganda the media can dream up. When you turn down the volume on everything though and just look at the numbers, it’s hard to figure out what all the fuss is about.
First of all, Covid case numbers are high, but the reality is that for the vast majority of people Covid is just a bad flu…if that. Case numbers don’t matter that much other than to provide a leading indicator of fractional hospitalization numbers that may occur later as a result.
Those rising hospitalization numbers are what worries people because they don’t want the healthcare system to collapse due to swamping by Covid. Again though, look at the numbers. The amount of people in the hospital (and in the worst cases the ICU) doesn’t look that bad. I’m not going to avalanche numbers in this brief because the numbers change daily, but look it up for yourself and stop believing the hype. The numbers aren’t that bad.
What is bad, is that numbers this low can push our fragile healthcare system to the brink of collapse. These numbers show just how delicate and instable our system is. Nobody seems to want to look at it from that angle because it’s bad form to criticize people working in the system right now who are doing their best. We also have a culture in Canada in which people worship our healthcare delivery as a point of national pride. Healthcare systems are what separates us from Americans and we all know that America has a healthcare system in which everybody pays for everything out of pocket, but in good old Canada everything is free!
The longer conversation that needs to happen after this wave ends is, “Why is our healthcare system unable to cope with a relatively mild influx of patients?”
Can we seriously open up a conversation regarding this? Can we for once start looking at the dozens of countries that rank higher than us on the WHO healthcare chart and see if we can’t innovate and update our healthcare delivery? Can we entertain notions of modernizing our healthcare system so the next time a few dozen extra patients need an ICU bed in cities like Ottawa and Edmonton, we’re not scrambling around in a hysterical panic?
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The answer is likely no, since this is after all Canada, and nothing ever changes. The bigger lesson is for you,the reader reading this. Take charge of your healthcare needs. Fight for your interests in the system we’ve got and prepare for alternatives if the need be. Think ahead as much as possible. Get yearly check-ups so small problems don’t turn into big ones, because when this is all over our hospitals are going to be backlogged for years. People will be dying from lack of treatment and this is at a time when the average age of a baby boomer is only 62.
Imagine where we’ll be in ten years.
Problem #2: Long term care homes are a nightmare
Long-term care homes have been a problem in Canada long before Covid. We used to get stories about abuse and theft and horrible living conditions. Old people warehoused and waiting to die in pseudo-hospital type facilities with disinterested workers unwilling to do more than the minimum.
My grandparents were terrified of the prospects of ending up in “the old folks homes” and did everything they could to avoid it. These were “Greatest Generation” elderly, at a time when care facilities should have been easily affordable and higher quality. They weren’t then and they haven’t improved.
When Covid happened these places went from pseudo-hospitals to death camp prisons in a matter of months. These situations were total dystopian nightmares…to the point where residents were asking for doctor-assisted suicide because life sucked so bad inside these places. Cut-off from friends and family and surrounded by 12 Monkeys-styled precautions led to ample amounts of depression and despair.
Oh… and massive amounts of Covid death.
People called for extra protection of long-term care homes due to senior’s vulnerability, not enough changed. Many of these places are staffed by low wage workers doing multiple jobs. In one case a woman working in one of these homes was literally homeless herself. Not great for minimizing the spread of a deadly virus.
Canada needs to do way better by our elderly and provide safer, cleaner, nicer care homes staffed by higher paid, better trained people. Will this ambition be fulfilled when Covid is over? The answer is no. Canada will not be doing any such thing. Mostly because nobody seems to care and secondly because Canada will be broke by the time Covid is over. Spending money on long-term care supports will not be fiscally realistic when we’re the second most indebted country in the world.
You, the reader, needs to realize this and look out for your parents or elderly loved ones. Help them to avoid long-term care facilities with whatever means you have available.
Most importantly: SAVE FOR YOUR OWN RETIREMENT.
Someday you’ll be too old to live without help and putting aside some cash and letting it grow for your elderly self is the only responsible option. We live in a country drowning in debt and the majority of people have claimed that they are $200 away from serious financial trouble and/or bankruptcy. Do what you can to not be one of those people. Otherwise, you’ll be spending your golden years in a prison-like dystopia wallowing in your own filth and isolation.
Canada will not help you.
Problem #3: People don’t love freedom
I was listening to Danielle Smith on The Western Standard podcast as she talked to a variety of guests about the lockdowns. You know, those lockdowns in which politicians scramble around looking for stuff to ban or shutdown or make illegal in a desperate attempt to micromanage the spread of a global virus? Yeah, those lockdowns.
Anyway, Danielle expressed dismay that people seemed to not appreciate freedom. They aren’t recoiling from lockdowns like she had expected and instead they are cheerleading our political rulers for more and stricter policy. She thought freedom loving Canadians wouldn’t stand for the level of authoritarian measures that we’ve seen. She was wrong and disheartened.
I’m not sure why she’s so late to the party.
I would’ve thought that someone in her position would have been red-pilled long ago regarding the true nature of the average Canadian. This seems to be a blind spot for Canadian conservatives. I remember Maxime Bernier running on freedom during the last election and getting about 1% of the vote as a result.
Canadians hate freedom. The old adage that a people who are willing to trade freedom for security will lose both and deserve neither has never been so true as it is today. Realizing how situations like East Germany during the Cold War could arise is now illustrated for us in living colour.
“Oh, but it’s a pandemic!” they say.
Is it? I understand that it has been a deadly disease, especially for people most vulnerable…those over 80 with multiple co-morbidities. I’m not diminishing their deaths by keeping perspective, and the perspective is that statistically speaking and inside the bigger picture, Covid has basically been a really bad flu that effects very few people.
" Realizing how situations like East Germany during the Cold War could arise is now illustrated for us in living colour."
The lockdowns were an extraordinary measure meant to “flatten the curve” for two weeks in order to give hospitals enough time to prepare to deal with the worst-case scenarios. 14 months later, politicians are addicted to lockdowns for optical reasons, while simultaneously failing to take real measures that would help stop people from dying. Instead of ensuring vaccines, restricting international flights, providing extraordinary resources for hospitals and long-term care homes,our politicians are taping off the kitchen supply sections at Wal-Mart and preventing people from eating at Boston Pizza. We’ve spiralled down to persecuting churches and setting up roadblocks and enacting curfews and policing outdoor hockey rinks and the worst part of it all…people love it and want more
Polling indicates that people are totally onboard with whatever extreme authoritarian measure can be proposed. Apart from Jason Kenney, who’s digging his own grave for a variety of reasons, and increasingly Doug Ford…all these politicians are thriving, none more than failure-in-chief himself, Justin Trudeau.
Low-info Canadians that accept everything the CBC throws at them are eager to give up freedom over a really bad flu and they believe they’ve got the moral high ground to demand more…of everybody and of everything. Hysterical toilet paper hording Karens and Covidian Dougs (Ford) are the new Henry and Marthas of the Canadian median and we’re all going to pay a heavy long-term price for this.
The only upside is that this heavy-handed approach has allowed government to drop the mask so to speak. We now know that the Charter of Rights and Freedoms isn’t really a thing. It’s just a piece of paper that lawyers can give a working over until politicians decree whatever they want in the name of whatever is convenient.
Secondly, conservative-minded, freedom-loving people now know the score in a very real way. Depending on the reactions of your friends, family, and neighbours you have a scorecard for who to trust and who not to. Revealing the truth about people is a lesson that you shouldn’t forget.
Problem #4: Our ruling class is incompetent
The clown-world antics by our ruling class are too numerous to recount in a thorough manner. Off the top of my head…
Sending our PPE to China during their outbreak without realizing we’d have a shortage of our own.
Not stopping international flights from coming into Canada early on due to fears about being considered RACIST.
Disingenuously telling people not to wear masks early on, because they didn’t want a shortage for healthcare workers and then later correcting course with messaging that encouraged mask wearing.
Spending borrowed money to help the Covid fight overseas.
Using draconian lockdowns as a repeated first line of defense in order to demonstrate government activity, rather than as a last resort to flatten the curve in order to give hospitals some lead time to prepare for the worst.
Travelling to sunny destinations while telling everyone else to stay at home.
Doug Ford heading to his cottage after telling everyone else to stay at home.
Brampton mayor Patrick Brown playing hockey with his buddies on a rink that was closed to the public due to Covid.
Allowing BLM protests across the country after telling everyone not to gather in groups and then justifying it with argy-bargy about masks and social distancing because fear of being considered RACIST.
Favouring big box stores over small businesses with lock-down policy.
Putting the police to work against the citizenry with Gestapo-like tactics. (The kid taken down by police for skating. The family fined $800 for rollerblading. The Quebec family that got their home invaded during Christmas for having visitors. The church pastor jailed. Demands by government for random check stops to see who is driving in vehicles and why. Roadblocks between provinces…it just goes on and on.)
That’s a long list and I just wrote it from memory in like ten minutes. It’s insane. What’s even more insane is that during these past 14 months while all the above was happening…no real solutions were taking place. They weren’t figuring out how to make vaccines for Canadians. They weren’t ensuring that we’d have access to vaccines…a delay that we are now paying for dearly. They didn’t secure or improve long-term care homes in any significant manner. They didn’t pump up preparations at hospitals in a sufficient manner…results from which we are now watching unfold.
Policy was all lockdowns and massive amounts of printing money/running extraordinary deficits and giving it to people and businesses in order to keep them afloat during those lockdowns.
What was the end game here? At first back in March of 2020, it was “two weeks to flatten the curve” in order to give hospitals enough time to prepare for the pandemic to come. Then over the spring/summer of 2020 it was low-key lockdowns for six months during which time it seems like people thought Covid was over for some reason. “We’re sure better than Trump’s America!” was the refrain.
Then September happened and numbers started going up and then we were back to hard lockdowns. Then even harder lockdowns by Christmas. Now it’s even harder hard lockdowns and it doesn’t seem to matter. All while the vaccine roll-out was bungled.
Somewhere along the line politicians, public health officials and the public alike seemed to think that “two weeks to flatten the curve in order to give hospitals time to prepare for the pandemic” meant, “Lock-downs until Covid is gone and nobody ever dies.”
We got begged, pleaded, and scolded for not behaving our way to successfully eliminating Covid…even though that is virtually impossible, especially once the virus is out there in the environment. I suspect people may have been mislead by the seeming success of China’s lockdowns. Remember though that they decided to just stop reporting Covid cases. We’ll probably never know how many people really had Covid or died because of it. And yes, island nations seemed to do pretty well too. Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Taiwan…harbors and airports and not worrying about RACISM tended to have a lot of impact on slowing things down…but Covid is still out there. Covid is now a global reality, and it will likely be here to stay. Cold, flu and Covid season will likely be the new normal.
That’s the lucky part of this equation. Covid turned out to be fairly minor. Yes, it killed people and was a global “pandemic”, but when you really assess the numbers, this wasn’t the plague we were all worried about back in March of 2020. Covid is basically a really bad flu and it acted like it. Imagine if we had a real pandemic that was more deadly and contagious.
Now imagine if we had a real pandemic that was more deadly and contagious, AND we had the same ridiculous ruling class that we have today.
Our ruling class is demonstrably trash. They are incompetent, negligent, hypocritical, untrustworthy, unqualified, and debilitated. These criticisms transcend party lines and regional jurisdictions. Every level of government both appointed and elected are radically deficient and solutions must be found.
The main lesson learned is that the government does not indeed “have our backs” and we should, indeed, not have theirs.
These are four lessons we should learn, but probably won’t. As herd immunity arrives and Covid keeps mutating into variants that spread more easily, but prove less deadly, people will eventually adjust to the new normal. The impact on the culture is going to be toxic in the near-term as Covid Karens refuse to give up their compulsive hysteria and politicians addicted to power keep introducing anti-freedom policies in the name of “safety”.
In the long term, however, this sort of authoritarian progressivism may be the sort of ingredients we need for a brighter and more right-wing future. Already people are quietly becoming more and more anti-woke on the down low, and progressive darlings like climate change and racism are met with derision inside knowing groups of people. The issues from Covid are just another lesson that normal people are being forced to learn. When normal people keep getting pressed harder and harder it can push them in our direction and, before too long, we might be seeing something interesting begin to happen.
Here’s to hoping…
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