Selected items regarding COVID-19 that I think are worth a look, amid floods of information. Occasionally updated.
World Health Organization page of all WHO COVID-19 information -♦- OurWorldinData, Coronavirus Pandemic page -♦- Wikipedia page Coronavirus Disease -♦- Updated research papers and stories about coronavirus at two of the world’s top peer-reviewed journals, Nature and Science. -♦- The Lancet Coronavirus Resource Centre.
What works: As of May 1, 2020, British Columbia had the fewest deaths adjusted for population of every jurisdiction in the United States, Canada and western Europe with more than five million people, reported Justin McElroy of CBC. Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has led the campaign against COVID-19 in the Western Canadian province. Her daily advice? Be kind, be safe, be calm.
A fairytale for our time, and a fable urging a different world.
Music for the soul. Physically-isolated musicians of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra perform ‘Appalachian Spring.’
COVID-19 charted. An excellent and real-time picture of COVID-19 in the world, offered at no charge, by The Financial Times’ Visual & Data Journalism team: Coronavirus tracked: the latest figures as the pandemic spreads | Free to read
Fight back. Advice not just for scientists, but for everyone who wants to live, and where survival will rely on facts and evidence-based decisions. Writes Timothy Caulfield in Nature: ‘Pseudoscience and COVID-19 — we’ve had enough already – The scientific community must take up cudgels in the battle against bunk.” Caulfield is Canada research chair in health law and policy at the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada.
Another scientist who’s had enough of kooks, fakes and scammers writes from hard experience with COVID-19: “I remain a born optimist. And now that I have faced death, my tolerance levels for nonsense and bullshit have gone down even more than before,” Virologist Peter Piot, director of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, who fell ill with the virus. He told Science Magazine: “The more we learn about the coronavirus, the more questions arise. We are learning while we are sailing. That’s why I get so annoyed by the many commentators on the sidelines who, without much insight, criticize the scientists and policymakers trying hard to get the epidemic under control.”
We were warned. Paul Wells in Maclean’s, April 21, 2020, is long but worth every word. Wells provides the most comprehensive explanation yet for how we failed to prepare for, and react to, COVID-19. Remember that old saw, ‘the price of freedom is eternal vigilance?’ Substitute “live” for freedom, and we might be more vigilant. Read: The doomed 30-year battle to stop a pandemic. For decades, researchers and officials obsessed with planning to stop an outbreak. Then along came COVID-19 and we were sitting ducks. What went wrong? (Free to read – but journalism is not “free,” so please subscribe.)
THIS. If I were able to read only one work about COVID-19, I’d choose this essay by Arundhati Roy: ‘The pandemic is a portal,’ a Financial Times long read on April 3, 2020. (Free to read – but journalism is not “free,” so please subscribe.)
Blame zombies. Nobel laureate economist Paul Krugman attempts to explain the horrors befalling the United States: ‘Covid-19 Brings Out All the Usual Zombies- Why virus denial resembles climate denial.’ New York Times, March 28, 2020
April 1st: FOOLS! And, no joke.
Fool’s Day was premature, will be prolonged, but hopefully not permanent.
The joke is on the infantilized imbecilic psycho-eco-sociopaths who cared for no others. Who thought invincible themselves, their kin, and their cults of greed and ideological triumph.
May COVID-19 take them all. Shame it’ll take so many innocents along with them.
Silver linings? One possibility: coming out of this still on the road, upright, heading someplace better, in a happy caravan. Please?
Fix the Social Contract. The world’s premier business and financial newspaper calls for radical change: Virus lays bare the frailty of the social contract – Radical reforms are required to forge a society that will work for all. Financial Times Editorial Board, April 3, 2020
“Radical reforms — reversing the prevailing policy direction of the last four decades — will need to be put on the table. Governments will have to accept a more active role in the economy. They must see public services as investments rather than liabilities, and look for ways to make labour markets less insecure. Redistribution will again be on the agenda; the privileges of the elderly and wealthy in question. Policies until recently considered eccentric, such as basic income and wealth taxes, will have to be in the mix.”
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