EDITORIAL: COVID is killing us in more ways than we think

The pandemic is killing us in more ways than we think.

Grocery costs
As more and more workers book off sick, production slows at grocery providers, distributors and suppliers. As production drops off, sales decreases follow and profits decline. The companies involved must act accordingly. So expect grocery bills to rise soon if they are not already hitting new highs.

Travelling and vacationing as done in the past, is exactly that, in the past.

Cruise ships are finished. Cruise lines are sunk. A few who have tried resurrecting their business have been hit by new coronavirus attacks. The business is finished, possibly never to revive again.

Air travel is next on the list. There still is a need for it for some travellers, business rather than vacations but the days are countable. The safety of the aircraft cabins or in the airports may be arguable but who wants to risk it. Now think about your destination. No country in the world is in the state it was in just six months ago. Some destinations are absolutely no-fly zones, either they are not permitting flights in or their country is at such infected rates, no one wants to fly there.

Even car travel is in jeopardy. Where do you want to go? Quebec? Are you serious? The next province away…doubtful. Never mind accommodation and restroom visits enroute.

Garage sales and decluttering
Many people are house cleaning while imprisoned in their home cells. But who’s buying? Many of the sellers may even have hopes of supplementing lost incomes but again, the buyers are not as interested as the Saturday and Sunday afternoon-in-the-country drivers of bygone times.

Cinema theatres are obviously out of the question. But notice how television is reaching back into dusty archives for movies as everything old is being relabelled new again and the new is becoming old very quickly. Even television series are going the way of endless repeats, with no new episode production because of the pandemic. Hollywood is on hold. All that’s left is television news with its endless spectrum of COVID news, each network trying to outdo the next to retain viewers.

American news is the most interesting for many reasons. The president claimed he was the aura, the lodestone of the media. He may be right and the more he does, the more the media reports it. No matter how outrageous his latest action may be, it is news that viewers want to see. Like rubberneckers viewing a traffic accident, unable to resist slowing down to gawk. Then, we watch from ‘the far north’ as the arguably greatest country in the world is brought to its knees by a little tiny virus. And sadly, the death toll there rises incredibly each day. The colouring of the American map displaying pandemic panicked states painting the entire nation red.

Facebook, Amazon, Google and Microsoft
And then the technological/retail behemoths profit more and more with each passing day. Zuckerburg, Bezos, and Pichai care little about the shrinking middle class, care as little about congressional hearings to criticize their monopolies and their actions. We cannot affect change in our favour and the politicians can’t either or won’t as they are in the pockets of these companies themselves.

New normal
It is a sad time and we need to find solace from within ourselves, from our own families and close friends. The authorities offer us platitudes and bandaids. From Canada’s Tam and Henry, to America’s Fauci and Birx, to the WHO’s Dr. Ryan and Dr. Adhanom, everyone offering the expected bromides. We are stuck for the next few years. Don’t believe it? Watch the movie Contagion, produced nearly 10 years ago but oh so close to where we are today.



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