Eyewitness: As the world copes…


…with COVID-19

Countries of the developed world are in the throes of vaccinating their citizens as fast as they can: the US has already gone past the 1 million mark, and we’ll see those numbers accelerate stratospherically in the new year. But as fast as they can vaccinate, their rates of infection are spurting faster upwards. Why? Well, there might be any number of reasons, but the sentiment of half of the country gives a clue. After 19.4 million infections and 335,000 deaths, that demographic who refused to wear masks are now insisting they “won’t be taking no vaccine”!! Yes, dear readers, there are still people who believe that the earth is flat!!

And they like saying that WE “natives” are backward!! But what’s most interesting is that these same developed countries have not only arranged for vaccines to be produced and stockpiled to cover every man, woman and child in their borders – and then some. They’ve prevented their pharma companies from supplying us in the Third World!! Vaccines, vaccines everywhere, and not a dose for us! So, what will they do with all those extra vaccines – even as millions of us wait anxiously?? After all, they have expiration dates! Your Eyewitness predicts that, like with their stockpiled wheat and butter to benefit farm prices etc, we’ll be getting the leftovers. You just watch and see!

We’re now hearing that we won’t be getting our COVID-19 shots till mid next year. But that “arc of justice” that we hear about definitely operates to balance out things: as our infection and fatality rates keep falling, those in the developed world are careening out of control. Let them go figure! And, of course, they’ll be the guinea pigs for us on the vaccines that will eventually trickle down to us. then again, your Eyewitness hasn’t even gotten around discussing the even more deadly mutant varieties that are sure to pop up – as one already has in Britain.

Now, dear reader, you may be thinking that your Eyewitness is reveling in an uncharacteristic bout of schadenfreude – and you’ll be absolutely right! While he’s a great believer in the free market and all that, he does believe that the “invisible hand” in such a market doesn’t mean an “absent hand”. It simply means that – like the Wizard of Oz – we just shouldn’t be able to see it working to ensure that there’s some equity. The arc of justice includes distributive justice.

In the meantime, it would appear that our “backwardness” in the Third World might be helping to keep our infection rates down.

Some say the TB vaccine we all had to take – and the First World had developed beyond – is the reason.

…the Govt helps

Even as PNC Leader David Granger collected his $25,000 COVID relief, and complimented the Ali Administration for the initiative, some in his erstwhile constituency have been crying “wolf!” about the Government “discriminating” in the roll out of the programme. But when the line Minister (Social Security) gave out the numbers, it was clear they were using the time-proven “Hot Cook Up” strategy for distribution. You start with the outlying regions, and finally come in to the two populous ones – Reg 4 and Reg 6 – on the centre!

Now, Guyana has at least 210,000 households, according to the 2012 census, and 153,376 of them have already received their cash. Reg 1: 8,124, Reg 2: 13,675, Reg 3: 44,097, Reg 5: 20,857, Reg 6: 3,509, Reg 7: 752, Reg 8: 364, Reg 9: 7,503, and Reg 10: 13,996. In this way, all the distributed manpower can now be focused on the two largest regions.

But the complaints show that the PNC alarmists didn’t even check with Ramjattan to see if Berbice had been serviced!

…change beckons

Well, there’s one thing we know for sure: things will never be the same when we finally get past this COVID- 19 pandemic.

The home office – and working in pyjamas – will be standard!