Quote of the day 23rd December 2020

“This is the way that the politics of pandemic plays out. Even though it is untrue that new variant Covid has only been detected in the UK, it suits our neighbours to act as though this were a repetition of the BSE/CJD “mad cow” epidemic that ruined British beef farming a generation ago. 

“The fact that the first instances of the mutant coronavirus were found in Kent, England’s gateway to the Continent, strongly suggests that it did not originate in this country. The speed with which the second wave has spread elsewhere implies that this or perhaps other mutations are at work across Europe.”

“Yet surely the bigger picture is more important. The whole world now believes that the UK is a uniquely dangerous place to be, or with which to have contact, when the truth is rather different. 

“The latest death toll reported here was 215 yesterday, a 7.7 per cent rise on last week. That is worrying, but it still compares favourably with France, where the latest count was 351 deaths, or Germany, where it was 710. It is the same story with new cases and hospital admissions: the UK is at the lower end of the scale in Europe. 

“Of course this could well change, but at present we can do without the patronising sympathy of Thierry Breton, the French EU Commissioner, who said yesterday: 'It’s a tragedy what is happening in Britain.' The Commissioner should take a look at Belgium, where he is based: it has the highest rate of deaths per million in the world.

“As for the United States: its numbers, admittedly in a much larger population, have already far surpassed anything imaginable here, with around 200,000 new cases and nearly 2,000 deaths a day. The US death toll is approaching a third of a million, making it a racing certainty that Covid will kill more Americans than died in the Second World War.

“None of this is to suggest that we in this country should feel in the least complacent.”

(Daniel Johnson, extracts from a piece on The Article site about the perverse responses to the discovery of a new strain of Coronavirus. You can read the full article here.)


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