BORED with 2020? OK, fast forward a year.
It’s October 2021. England have just won the Euros, but there were no fans there to watch them beat Portugal 5-1 in the final (goals from Sterling, Kane, and three Ronaldo own goals).
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We’ve all had the Covid vaccine, in June — another triumph for the UK, it was designed in Oxford. Everyone was looking forward to a proper Christmas and getting back to normal.
But there’s a problem — the vaccine is only effective for three or four months. Herd immunity does not work — or at least only works for a while. Exactly the same as with normal flu.
Autumn comes along and there’s a sharp rise in infections. Hospital admissions begin to soar.
Knee-bending man of mystery Sir Keir Starmer demands action must be taken. So do those epidemiologists advising the government.
Exactly a year from today, Boris Johnson finally gives in and announces a lockdown covering half-term and beyond. And he warns us we will probably have to abide by the “rule of six” this coming Yuletide.
Pubs and restaurants are closed — those that were still in business. Everyone is back in their masks. There’s a run on hand sanitiser and bog paper.
Sound familiar? You bet. And you can pencil in the same scenario for 2022 (apart from England winning the Euros, obvs) . . . and 2023 and beyond.
It’s another Groundhog Day in a battle we cannot ever win. Until we learn to live with this virus.
Remember, back in March we were told that the whole thing would be over by the summer.
Then it was autumn. Now it’s July 2021, according to the experts. There’s a certain pattern emerging, no?
So far this year there have been three million — three million! — cancelled cancer checks. God alone knows how many deaths that will lead to, further down the line.
The average life expectancy in the UK is 81 years. The average age of death in people with Covid is 82.4 years. Covid — the illness you have to be dead to die of. This is the problem. In attempting to stop the spread of a disease which is of vanishingly small danger to 99.9 per cent of those who contract it, we’re endangering the lives of hundreds of thousands of others. While destroying the economy and trampling on our individual rights and sense of community.
The scenario I have outlined is a long way from being far-fetched.
A vaccine probably won’t last for very long. And so this whole charade will stretch out for years into the future — unless we take a different approach.
This is why I hope Boris Johnson stands firm against a second lockdown, or “circuit-breaker” as Starmer puts it. All that will do is slow, a little, the current rate of infection.
But Covid will be back, well-armed and ready. We cannot hibernate for ever.
VIRUS IS RESILIENT
We were right to go into lockdown in March. Right to insist on mask-wearing on trains and buses. Right to wash our hands and use that hand sanitiser.
But we now have a better grip on what this virus can do. It is very resilient and contagious. But it kills almost exclusively the very old and those who have under-lying medical conditions.
The answer now is for those groups — including me, given that I’m 60 — to take their own precautions, to be aware of the risk. And for everybody else to live their lives as we did once before. If you can remember what that was like. Because Covid ain’t going away.
Less is more
SOME good news, then, in this fairly miserable world. The German population is decreasing for the first time.
I don’t say it’s good news because I don’t like Germans and this means there will be fewer of them. Quite the reverse.
Easily the biggest problem we face as a planet is spiralling birth rates.
Almost all of our ills, directly or indirectly, stem from over-population — including, of course, climate change.
The fewer of us there are, the happier this place will be.
No ‘likes’ for know-all Meg
OI, you – get off that social media site!
That’s the latest message from Meghan. A woman who knows everything about everything. And is not shy to tell you all about it.
Meghan says social media sites are addictive, like a drug. OK, Megs. You have to say, for a couple continually whining about Press intrusion, they do an awful lot of jabbering to the Press. Either telling us how to live our lives, or lecturing us about racism, or bleating about how hard their own lives have been.
Whereas, in truth, their greatest hardship is deciding which one of their 18 bathrooms they should use for their morning poo.
U.N. says I must shut up
CONGRATULATIONS to the latest countries elected to the United Nations Human Rights Council.
As you might imagine, they are all countries which have an absolutely bloody marvellous track record in defending human rights.
So welcome, then – China, Russia, Pakistan and Cuba.
Beyond satire, isn’t it? It’s a wonder North Korea didn’t grab a place.
Meanwhile, the United Nations Entity for Gender and the Empowerment of Women has found an important new battle to fight. It is waging war against “manterruptions”.
This is when a bloke politely breaks into a woman’s monologue to tell her she’s talking s*** and isn’t it time she started getting dinner ready?
It’s clearly one of the biggest problems facing the world. The UN says manterrupting is: “A patriarchal act that is linked to man’s epistemic entitlement that makes it very natural to speak over others and to hold the floor for longer than is proper.”
OK got that? Onwards and upwards.
DID you do that Government job app thing, where you fill in your details and Rishi Sunak decides what job you should be doing?
Great fun. I think we should all be diversity and inclusion officers. Well paid and pointless.
The Trussell Trust, a charity that runs a whole bunch of food banks, is advertising for one.
Salary £62,000. Not bad, huh?
Just remember, when you donate to these charities, where a lot of the money is going.
Please don’t be daft
APPARENTLY one in eight British people think Covid is a “plot”.
A scheme dreamed up by our giant lizard overlords to subdue us for ever. Or something.
There are even some out there who think we were infected with Covid by aliens.
“Ha ha ha, Earthlings. We are going to give you a slightly annoying cough for a few days. That’ll teach you.”
And others who think that the Government will use a Covid vaccine to implant us with stuff that tracks our movements.
These are probably the same people who thought that both 9/11 and the moon landings were a US government hoax.
Sheesh, people. Just take a look at Bojo and Trump.
You think they’re capable of devising something so ingenious?
Thing is, though, these whacko conspiracy theories make it harder to challenge the way this crisis is being managed.
SUPERMARKET chain Iceland has just launched a chicken nugget into space.
This was to celebrate the 50th birthday of the store.
It’s heartening to think that the nugget will still be circling the earth when Iceland celebrates its 100th birthday. Utterly immune to cosmic rays, meteors, space debris. As if made of an entirely indestructible material, covered in salt.
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