This is Italy right now. More infections per capita than the UK, just one fifth as many vaccinated, but restaurants and shops are open, there are no stay at home orders or travel restrictions, and schools are open.
Hola from Spain. More Covid cases per capita than the UK, and, yes, we've vaccinated five times as many people. But guess which country permits its citizens to dine, shop and socialise?
Sweden's Covid case rate is double our own, and our vaccine rollout puts theirs in the shade. But clearly they care more about freedom, mental health and the economy. Shops, restaurants and schools are open, and seeing friends is not illegal.
If only we could live somewhere that values freedom a bit more, like, I don't know, Russia?
Bars, restaurants, shops, the whole lot, are open, even though the UK has vaccinated 10 times as many people per capita.
Don't get me started on America's sensible states.
As some have pointed out, Italy does have restrictions on travel between regions, which I'd forgotten about. But when you can meet friends for a beer or lunch, or even in your home (!), shop, visit a museum, and even get you hair dyed blue, it's a hell of a lot better than here.

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More from @ollysmithtravel

19 Feb
This cracking analysis from UEA microbiologist David Livermore reveals just how pointless our border controls are.
He writes: "Will travel restrictions, and threatened 10-year prison sentences for those who flout them, protect us from new variants? No."…
"Firstly because the South African variant is already circulating in the UK and is doubtless under-detected. Secondly, because they will continue to be imported from elsewhere in the world and, as a trading nation, we cannot isolate ourselves."
"And, above all, because E484K mutations have emerged independently here, notably around Bristol, and will continue to do so."
Read 5 tweets
13 Feb
By adopting China's lockdowns, we copied a country that:

- Is committing genocide
- "Disappears" or imprisons journalists and activists, and harasses their families
- Tortures animals
- Executes more people than the rest of the world combined…
- Operates a terrifying social credit system, like something out of Black Mirror
- Censors all media and the internet
- Persecutes LGBT people
- Jails religious leaders
- Runs forced labour camps
- Harvests people's organs

- Is to blame for Covid, whether thanks to its penchant for killing exotic species to use for "medicine" or because the virus escaped from the Wuhan lab
- Covered up the outbreak of the virus and hindered attempts to investigate its origins…
Read 5 tweets

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