I just got my first vaccine shot and it gave me a lot of feelings to reflect on, especially seeing teenagers and a few children there, overhearing stories about kids, etc. This should forever be known as the pandemic that very simply did not need to be. 🧵
The pandemic entered global news in January 2020, with just 59 cases. 21 months ago. It wasn't immediately certain it was a new coronavirus, but it was a high possibility. For those unaware, SARS was also (caused by) a coronavirus. Covid-19 is pretty much a sequel.
On the 20th it was certain that this was a new coronavirus, and cases were spotted in Thailand and Japan. The US began monitoring and a single day later they found their first case. What I'm saying is that it was very obvious very quickly that this was going to be a problem.
On January 23 China locked down Wuhan and the nearby Huanggang, around 18,000,000 people in total. This was with only 500 known infections and 17 dead. I'm not a simp for China's government, but they apparently know how to actually deal with a pandemic.
Are China's numbers a bit fudged? Probably. A little digging shows that their expected deaths from a lot of other things went up, when lockdown behaviours would expect them to go down; likely a good chunk of deaths attributed to other things were actually on covid.
But frankly, given no warning, enormous population and population density, their deaths could be 100 times higher and it would still be a very impressive response. Also? Maybe don't throw stones in glass houses. That's not what we're talking about. cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspecti…
The point I'm making is that China locked down, hard and fast. And as a result - in spite of being the origin of the virus and having REAL bad conditions for it - they have way less deaths than the USA and a shadow of their deaths-per-capita.
Vaccine development first made news in May. They began trials in July, 6 months after the pandemic began. Things were going well; anyone familiar with medical science will tell you, after all, that something has to be extremely promising and extremely safe to even get to trials.
The first vaccine to be given approval and begin rollout happened in the US on December 11. Approximately 11 months after the pandemic began; 9 months ago. We're almost as far from the initial vaccine approval now, as it was from the beginning of the pandemic.
I shouldn't need to say this, but Trump, and conservatives in general, spent this ENTIRE TIME downplaying it to levels that, frankly, should see them tried for mass murder. theatlantic.com/politics/archi…
And, y'know, raising hysteria about vaccines. washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/…
Despite vaccines getting approval back in December, most people didn't have the opportunity to get an appointment until the last couple months. There's a hell of a lot to discuss on this front... But honestly most of it can be summarized with this. khn.org/news/rather-th…
This was only in April, but please keep in mind: there's no practical reason another company couldn't have pledged the same thing back in December 2020. Not to even mention how much faster vaccine development could have been if it all data was made public.
I don't want to make Trump out to be an archvillain - he's one particularly rancid cog in a fully broken system - but he could have mandated corporations to do this. Granted, he's not entirely evil/stupid not to have; as this article goes over, the whole vaccine industry sucks.
It's just not very profitable. Doing good things, in general, isn't profitable, or beneficial, for the person who does them; this entire pandemic has just kind of been one giant example of that and it's the whole point I want to make.
From Day 1 conservatives have been downplaying the virus and second-guessing vaccines, because it meant more money for them to keep people working. Panic? Lockdown? The ongoing demands for stimulus? Less money, all of them.
From Day 1 the vaccine research, production and rollout has been laughable. Because doing it effectively would mean less money. Companies don't share research, they don't share test results, they don't share production duties: they compete.
x companies spend y time all researching the EXACT SAME THING. Every company in the market means more people doubling up on what they're doing, means less efficiency and more wasted time.
Bill Gates, the man who ensured the Oxford vaccine wouldn't become open source, saw his wealth increase from 63b to 130b since 2000 when he started the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. This garbage isn't done for the world's benefit; it's done because he profits.
Without the people who raised hysteria and tried to keep people working for their bottom line, we could have had immediate, heavy, *SHORT* lockdowns that you got *PAID* for. This could have happened in January 2020, 21 months ago.
With actual unified cooperation on vaccines and without corporations running on a profit motive, who knows how much quicker research would have gone, how much quicker we would've gotten to a finished product, and how much quicker it would've been rolled out.
Without a doubt, at the very least, you would've been getting jabbed at the beginning of the year, instead of the end of it.
That's not to even speak of anti-vax and vaccine hesitancy; the US is only at about 50% fully-vaccinated and that roll-out is getting real slow real fast. It's looking like it won't be long before everyone who wants to be vaccinated, is.
Why? You guessed it; because spreading fear is profitable. The ENTIRE ANTIVAX MOVEMENT began from a person who wanted to replace the standard MMR vaccine with his own patented variants.
This is just another notch on capitalism's belt, is what I'm trying to say. We have enough food to feed every person on Earth twice over. We have enough houses to house them all, enough medicine to treat them. But we don't. We lock it behind money; behind profit.
fun fact I found while researching this: AstraZeneca's CEO not only got a fat bonus of ~$25mil recently, he also quietly sold his home in Sydney, which is currently experiencing a very large surge of covid cases. lol.
When these millionaires and billionaires cause damage, they just leave. Because they can afford to. They're so used to it, and it's why the biggest billionaires are reflexively trying to do the same with the entire planet. It's instinct to just leave.
Anyway, aside from Capitalism Bad, I guess I just wanted to express some regret/apologies/condolences to the kids I saw and heard about today. Covid has eaten up 2 years of my life when it probably could've been like a quarter of that if we actually, y'know, cared.
But I'm 32. It's not a huge deal. I'm out of school, I'm over my club phase, there's no huge pressing passion that I'm trying to become The Best at so I can capitalize on my youth. I'm kinda just on cruise mode at this point.
Every so often I think of what it would've felt like to lose 2 years when I was a teenager. Losing 30 to 32? No big deal. 16 to 18? Holy crap. Those years felt SO IMPORTANT. As a trans person I'm especially familiar with the 'lost time' concept and it SUCKS.
Anyway yeah, sorry, I hope you don't feel too bad about the lost years, blame capitalism, let's tear it down. Y'know the usual.
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