By Roger Mitchell, Stevensville
Regardless of the source (questionable) or its comparison to other viruses and outbreaks, there is one thing which is clear to me–the response to the corona virus, Covid-19 pandemic, has been completely blown out of proportion to the threat posed by it. It has been and is being proven to be no more deadly than a really ugly flu, as Dr. Allan Supak mentioned recently. (https://bitterrootstar.com/2020/05/overreaction/)
Shutting down the entire economy and whipping people into a froth of fear over this was unwarranted. There were better ways to handle it. Isolate those most at risk–the elderly and those in nursing homes. Encourage those with underlying health issues–obesity, diabetes, heart problems, etc., to stay at home and be cautious. Encourage workers who became ill to go home until they were well again. Be alert for “hotspots” and take appropriate action if, when, and where they popped up. Allow healthy adults and young children full freedom to go about their daily lives.
These and other similar methods would have been sufficient to mitigate the threat while allowing general society to achieve herd-immunity. Instead, we have turned our entire world and society upside down and shaken it hard, gaining virtually nothing in the process. Gaining nothing, that is, unless you own and control major banks and large corporations, in which case, you have gained a lot. Admittedly, this is hindsight, but hindsight is always 20/20.
There is that which is seen–the life-threatening and potentially devastating corona virus, the heavy-handed official action to it, and the acquiescent, fearful public reaction in the face of both. These have been front and center, non-stop, 24/7, in your face continually for several months now. No one can claim ignorance of the events.
There is also that which is not seen–the future consequences of locking down an entire economy, ordering people to go inside and stay there, telling people their jobs and businesses were not “essential”, refusing to allow people to work in order to make a living and pay their bills, forcing people (social creatures) to act in an anti-social manner, etc. These consequences raise questions.
What will happen to all those small businesses which had to close their doors? What will happen to all those people who lost their jobs? What will happen to states, cities, and counties which have lost a huge amount of their tax base? What will happen because the federal government has blown its debt balloon to an enormous, unprecedented size? What will happen because governors found out that they could issue unconstitutional edicts and get away with it? What will happen because everyone fell into line with those edicts? What will happen because the international supply chain has been broken? What will happen to us in the days ahead? This list could go on and on.
Isaac Newton’s Third Law of thermodynamics reads that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. We have just experienced the action. We are going to find out what the reaction is. My guess is that we will probably not like what we see. My guess is that it’s going to be much more ugly than a really ugly flu.
But, hey, we owe it to ourselves!