– “Quite a lot of westerners had enormous problems staying isolated during this pandemic…”
Government and media have failed us. Where to start?
Background – the “news” media daily undermines public understanding of and trust in science, and it drowns out critical thinking with sensationalism.
That’s because it’s the corporate media; it can’t encourage critical and evidence-based thinking in its “news” articles, because (1) that would undermine the effectiveness of the advertising that funds it, exposing its hypocrisy – “here, go on holiday // it’s irresponsible to go on holiday during this pandemic”, “here, this plastic crap / fast fashion will make you happy and sexually attractive // any kids your sexual attractiveness results in will suffer horribly from the effects of over-consumption and pollution”, and (2) it would undermine the power of the media to influence voting patterns by its depictions of politicians personalities rather than their policies, voting records and records of honesty.
Preparation – We had two whole months between Wuhan locking down and covid-19 becoming a problem in the UK. In that time the government and media could have (1) informed the public of social methods of stopping the spread, (2) encouraged the public to adapt their living arrangements into mutually supportive groups for the duration of social restrictions, (3) outlined the social restrictions exit strategy – “at present we have hardly any test kits, but we’re sourcing them. When we have many times more test kits than covid cases, we can move to a green zone strategy maintained by trace, test and quarantine. Green zones will need no restrictions.”
Provision – the government promised money to businesses rather than the population. The ideology of “no work means no income” overrode common sense, forcing the most vulnerable on zero-hours contracts to continue working no matter how unsafe their conditions. Instead, a Universal Basic Income should have been implemented, and all fixed costs suspended by law – rent, standing charges, council taxes etc.
Duration – due to the above derelictions of duty, most countries’ lockdowns have had to continue for several months each time. People and businesses can endure a week or two of lockdown quite easily, but three months is intolerable.
Of course people had difficulty remaining isolated – no preparations were made, it wasn’t monetarily practical, and there was no end in sight. Instead, stupid phrases like “this is the new normal” were promoted by government and corporate media.