Preparing for the COVID 19 Mutant

Posted by Lyall Small to the Covid 19 Update blog in response to commenter Critical Anlayzer and the Blogmaster to concerns about new strains of the virus.

I think that the difficulties that Barbados has been experiencing in dealing with the new clusters over the last 3 weeks or so is going to be very important in showing the way towards developing additional home grown or regional methods for combating the virus, especially since the cost of the new vaccines might be somewhat prohibitive and indeed that new mutant strains could make some of these vaccines ineffective.

I saw a report recently that the new English mutant of the virus is not only more infective than the older variant but was also likely to result in more deaths. In addition, there was a suggestion that the existing vaccines might not be effective against one or more of the new variants. If this is true we might have to take a new tack and use a new suite of methods to exclude and control that new strain when it gets here. If the effectiveness of vaccines is compromised other methods may have to be developed and used to control the virus.

High Relative Humidity has been claimed to be a low-level environmental deterrent to high infectivity levels of the virus. High temperatures has also been claimed as being a factor that operates in a similar manner. So too have been Sunlight (high UV levels) and consequential Vitamin D levels. I have not seen the research which has fully demonstrated these effects on the virus but the claims of the efficacy of these factors could be researched and the results incorporated into protocols for control of the spread of the virus in combination with the tried and true use of masks, social distancing, washing of hands and even exclusion.

Tracking Bracelet

The work that has started with the Electronic GPS bracelets on monitoring and control of the movement of visitors suggests to me that Government might be able to significantly reduce its overall Covid-19 quarantine costs by introducing a system where non-symptomatic locals who have been in contact with positive cases could be also fitted with these bracelets and be self-quarantined at home with regular visits by the Covid-units Doctors and Nurses instead of immediately being put in an expensive Government quarantine or isolation facility once they test positive for the virus.

200 comments

  • The dude in the briefing explained clearly that Covid is going nowhere, as we have been hearing for months and months, so first let that sink in. They have no control over it and aren’t likely to get any.

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  • United States joins COVID vaccine push for poor nations, stays in WHO – United States joins COVID vaccine push for poor nations, stays in WHO: https://barbadostoday.bb/2021/01/21/united-states-joins-covid-vaccine-push-for-poor-nations-stays-in-who/

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  • With all the press conferences we have had the blogmaster is unsure why it has taken this long to dispatch samples to the lab given the urgent need to know to update public communication and public health strategies to effectively fight COVID-19.

    Samples sent to Port of Spain to check for new strain of COVID-19 – Samples sent to Port of Spain to check for new strain of COVID-19: https://barbadostoday.bb/2021/01/21/samples-sent-to-port-of-spain-to-check-for-new-strain-of-covid-19/

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  • I agree with what the author has posited. It is becoming clear that the virus is becoming embedded, as not enough was done early by China, or globally, with the idiot Trump backing out of the WHO and not supporting measures to combat the virus.

    However, I also wonder if the recent variants, surfacing suddenly as soon as the vaccines were announced as ready, is not peculiar. Although I generally do not believe in conspiracy theories, I am wondering if the virus is not a deliberate attempt at depopulation. Not the vaccines, that silly theory about Gates and so on is nonsense. But the virus itself, is it a very well designed biological weapon? Moreso, we see how the treatment on poor health people like Trump has worked. If he actually had it. So, why is that treatment not widely available? That part makes no sense and no, money is not the answer, as it is a global issue.

    But back to the actual dealing with it. Yes, the Caribbean is in a special place, where there is opportunity to operate in ventilated spaces. The building style from developed countries of closed air environment, needs to be thrown out and those buildings retrofitted to open air environments. Let the breeze flow and the fresh air in. This part has been evident for years and one reason why sick building syndrome happens in Barbados. Because air conditioning and high humidity do not go well together, when building are not maintained especially.

    Idiocy of the highest order. Maybe that is an area where the architects and engineers can assist and push, as David suggested, redesign and retrofit of all of these buildings.

    The ideas on local environment make sense, if we compare to what has happened in the large countries during winter. The cases numbers, even before the variants, increased. The colder and darker weather clearly helped the virus.

    Together with the various treatments and what the author has raised as to the local environment, the island should be able to move forward. But it must move forward. People need money and a country cannot shut down forever.

    We can hope that the vaccines still give some protection, but in the meantime, move forward with a plan to deal with the crisis.

    Liked by 2 people

  • DavidJanuary 23, 2021 4:12 AM I agree. That is not good enough.

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  • @Crusoe

    Covid 19 has exposed the way we have been doing things in Barbados and many other countries. We must desist from politicizing the challenge we have to confront for the foreseeable future. What should be evident by now is that we have to find ways to coexist with the virus. Possibly others to come.

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  • Critical Analyzer

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  • Critical Analyzer

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  • Critical Analyzer

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  • “Although I generally do not believe in conspiracy theories, I am wondering if the virus is not a deliberate attempt at depopulation.”

    man makes plans and our ancestors laugh.

    the ones with all the grandiose depopulation plots for others are the ones very likely to go extinct…unless they’re reabsorbed into the BLACK group, the earth’s original indigenous people, if there’s no ease, the only way for them to survive a raging, shape shifting, wildly mutating virus.

    one plague lasted a whole decade…long time ago

    Karma is a biting bitch…they used a naturally occuring virus for their vile agendas and now it’s out of control.

    Again, for the self hating black faces, our body stores vitamin D, we are melanated people, and as Cuddear said a couple of hours in the sun daily, coupled with the new normal of protecting yourself from infection and it’s a win win for Black skinned people …..let that sink in when you pretend otherwise and continue to adopt a false wannabe white identity that can mean ya death..just because ya so indoctrinated that ya want to be in someone else’s skin..

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  • “This part has been evident for years and one reason why sick building syndrome happens in Barbados. Because air conditioning and high humidity do not go well together, when building are not maintained especially.”

    anyone who has lived in cold countries and worked in aircon buildings KNOW that you get 90% poisonous air meaning you breath in what everyone else exhales for 8 or more hours a day and only 10% fresh air is available, not enough to keep lungs healthy, and with all windows closed, chest infections and sick building syndrome is a given….always adopting the negatives from other countries would do that, talking shite about first world status..and end up with a bunch of unhealthy and dead people..

    there should be no airconditioned buildings in sunkissed countries….especially while knowing that leaders like the ones in Barbados have an aversion to maintaining anything.

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  • With all the press conferences we have had the blogmaster is unsure why it has taken this long to dispatch samples to the lab given the urgent need to know to update public communication and public health strategies to effectively fight COVID-19…….(Quote)

    Good management of the virus. World class. Let us play a guessing game, rather than get a scientific epidemiological model from which to work.

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  • You mean the the models being used by the UK, US and Canada?

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  • The question to be asked does barbados have the financial resources to combat two strains at the same time

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  • We do not have a choice unless you believe Barbados is able to construct a cocoon to isolate from the world for the foreseeable future. The virus is not going anywhere soon.

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  • We had a choice but the lazy leaders took the worst choice which has depleted our financial resources towards our health system and place country into the foreseeable future of more lockdowns and infections

    Btw did anyone listen to the Canadian economist Carlos Forte comments on govt Covid policies
    His remarks speaks to a great level of concern of govt insistence on not listening to other health officials advice

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  • Everybody is an expert.

    Liked by 1 person

  • DavidJanuary 23, 2021 6:36 AM

    Everybody is an expert

    Xxxxxcc
    Makes for early morning laughter
    and a comment which a paling red feathered bird would make
    In any case that kind of news reel should be posted on BU

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  • Your advise is noted, we will lickdown Barbados for the next few months until we achieve herd immunity. The blogmaster urge you to wear your mask in the Covid infested country in which you reside. Real Bajans will work together to overcome this chat.

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  • David uh full.of jokes sounding like Bostic who said that “this top shall pass”
    That barbados would wrestled COVID to the ground
    Presently barbados has two fights on its hand one of control which now seems to be a fight beyond completion
    Avoiding the risk of having to combat the new mutant
    Pray tell how these two would be accomplished if our borders remain open

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  • We are not going to lay down and play dead. We will continue to fight to survive which is what being resilient is all about.

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  • Btw David take note that those COVID infected countries make daily changes in their policies
    Policies which are in effect geared against increasing infections
    Hence America has instituted a policy wherby citizen or non citizen must present a validated negative test result before entering the country
    No one comes in without the test result
    Now pray tell why hasn’t barbados instituted such a strong policy

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  • “Hence America has instituted a policy whereby citizen or non citizen must present a validated negative test result before entering the country. No one comes in without the test result. Now pray tell why hasn’t Barbados instituted such a strong policy.”

    Hmmmm……..

    I believe sometimes you ‘make up things as you go’ and present statements that are inaccurate…… a situation that could be solved, if only you do a little research before posting comments. But the problem is, you’re more interested in criticizing to score cheap political points. unfortunately you’re encouraged and your inaccurate statements endorsed by someone who professes to be a stickler for ‘historical accuracy.’ The hypocrisy is overwhelming.

    Perhaps you may find the below information from Barbados’ COVID-19 travel guidelines, interesting.

    “Persons travelling to Barbados from High and Medium-Risk countries must have a negativeCOVID-19 test result in order to enter the country. These tests must be taken at an accredited or certified facility/laboratory within 3 days PRIOR to arrival. Persons travelling from Low-Risk countries are strongly advised to take a COVID-19 PCR test before arrival. These persons will be allowed to present results of tests taken up to 5 days prior to arrival.”

    “Test results must be submitted via travelform.gov.bb and travellers are required to bring a copy of the results with them. These test will be checked for validity. Persons travelling from countries within the Very Low-Risk category, who have not travelled to or transited through any country designated as High, Medium or Low-Risk within 21 days prior to travel to Barbados, are not required to take a COVID-19 PCR test prior to or on arrival.”

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  • Critical Analyzer

    The new mutant is nothing to fear and as far as mutations are concerned. If it is more contagious it will most likely also be less deadly.

    What we need to be more concerned with is the collateral deaths and long term health issues caused by solely focusing on COVID. I willing to bet we have more deaths caused by the COVID mitigation measures than from COVID itself.

    That is why properly reported statistics are so important to determine if the cure is worse than the virus by answering questions such as
    – Are stress related deaths and illnesses up?
    – Are suicides up?
    – Is financial ruin increasing? This affects the previous two questions as well as crime rate and future livelihoods amongst other things.

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  • Critical AnalyzerJanuary 23, 2021 7:35 AM

    One the first point. The UK variant is supposed to be 30$ more deadly, per the UK PM. The South Africa variant avoids antibodies against prior infection.

    On the second point, you are right. People have to live. So along with that was discussed above, stick with the rules of masks and washing hands, things need to get moving.

    Liked by 1 person

  • That should be 30% more deadly.

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  • Barbados policy does not go far enough
    In that it still allows people to enter without the test followed by barbados having to provide testing and isolation premises for visitors to be quarantine
    I had expected an early morning yardfowl to overlooked such important details of the Barbados Covid policy for visitors to enter
    Meanwhile the USA newly instituted policy is more stringent and takes into consideration a overall view to the nation and people health

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  • Effective January 26, the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will require all air passengers entering the United States (including U.S. citizens and Legal Permanent Residents) to present a negative COVID-19 test, taken within three calendar days of departure or proof of recovery from the virus within the last 90 days​. Airlines must confirm the negative test result or proof of recovery for all passengers two years of age and over prior to boarding. ​Airlines must deny boarding of passengers who do not provide documentation of a negative test or recovery

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  • As usual bajans are behind the curve no forward thinking always trying to catch up , I have been social distancing from my wife well before covid. came around.

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  • @ Hal,
    If the rumours are true, we in the UK will have to forfeit yet another foreign holiday in some far away exotic destination.

    Some people do not get it. They cry out “keep the borders open” or ” we have to learn to co-exist with covid-19″. These people are aware that our government does not have the funds to purchase sufficient levels of the vaccine to treat their population.

    It’s time for these people to put on their big boy’s pants or their big girl’s blouses and for them to develop a home grown domestic/regional market which could possibly be extended to the export market.

    Times have changed. The tourism market will remain dormant for a lengthy period. Thank God!. Let’s get real people.

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/jan/23/summer-holidays-cancelled-uk-faces-big-decision-on-border

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  • And your suggestion is to close the borders and starve. The borders are open but we have protocols to govern entry. Because of the challenge the virus presents we have to continually tweak and enforce rules and exercise self discipline. What we cannot do is retreat to a hole in the ground and pull the cover over our head.

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  • Critical Analyzer

    @Crusoe January 23, 2021 7:38 AM

    This is where accuracy in reporting and misrepresenting statistics is of importance. PM Boris Johnson also stated ‘may’ which means they are not sure yet. He should not have only stated facts or state they are investigating. Speculation is for us and the news media, not for officials who should know and not speak suppositions in official reports.

    Secondly the 30% increase is misleading and more fearmongering with statistics. It is from this quote reported on in the Guardian’s rticle based on evidence presented.

    Explaining the scale of the difference, he said for every 1,000 60-year-olds infected with the new strain, perhaps 13 or 14 might be expected to die, compared with 10 in 1,000 for the original strain.

    Strictly comparing the deaths of 10 per thousand vs 13 per thousand is misleading i.e. (13-10)/10 * 100 gave then that 30% increase stat. However, a more accurate representation of the statistic is (13/1000 *100) gives a 1.3% case fatality rate in the new variant vs (10/1000 *100) gives a 1% case fatality rate of the original strain.

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/jan/22/new-uk-covid-variant-may-be-more-deadly-says-boris-johnson

    https://edition.cnn.com/2020/12/21/uk/coronavirus-variant-uk-intl/index.html

    This is the head reason people like me want the raw numbers and not their interpretation.

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  • “It’s time for these people to put on their big boy’s pants or their big girl’s blouses and for them to develop a home grown domestic/regional market which could possibly be extended to the export market.”

    let them keep it up with their dependency tourism with minorities at the top and blacks at the bottom, let’s see how long they last….am taking bets.

    ” I have been social distancing from my wife well before covid. came around.”

    you were long looking for an excuse, hope she gets herself a young stud…lol

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  • Adolph Hitler, showed how a country can be rebuilt after losing a war. The German nation was humiliated under the treaty of Versailles which was drawn up the victors of the first world war. They had to cede large tracts of territory to other nations. They became pariahs within Europe.

    Under Hitler, the Germans became 100% self-sufficient. We should assimilate Hitler’s ambition to create a strong and self-sufficient nation and not one that is forever focussed on being reliant on the patronage of predominantly racist tourists to earn our keeps. Covid-19 has presented a great opportunity for Barbados to become a wiser and wealthier country.

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  • There you go with the personal abuse, which, according to your chairman, is indicative of someone who is unable to sustain a sensible debate. However, ‘be that as it may,’ (if I may borrow one of your phrases), there is no person on BU who epitomizes ‘yard-fowlism,’ other than you.

    You’re giving the impression that visitors are being allowed into Barbados haphazardly……. without direction or planning, when you know that’s not true.

    The only fundamental difference between the USA’s expanded policy and that of Barbados, is:

    “Air passengers are required to get a viral test (a test for current infection) within the 3 days before their flight to the U.S. departs, and provide written documentation of their laboratory test result (paper or electronic copy) to the airline or provide documentation of having recovered from COVID-19. Airlines must confirm the negative test result for all passengers or documentation of recovery before they board. If a passenger does not provide documentation of a negative test or recovery, or chooses not to take a test, the airline must deny boarding to the passenger.”

    The USA announced their expanded policies on January 12, to be implemented two weeks later on January 26. What is there to suggest Barbados not implementing similar policies as well?

    The following link provides useful information as well.

    https://www.ivisa.com/barbados-blog/important-information-about-the-barbados-covid-19-test

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  • ya might not have to close the borders, with UK tourists soon to be scared like hell to travel, it may get closed for yalll….THEN WHAT?

    with NO diversified economy in place..

    with medical marijuana opportunity for certain people only being officially rolled out yesterday, when many have long moved on because BLP is so anti-black and full of shit…

    can’t wait to hear the big plan…

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  • TLSN the govt. doesn’t have enough money, ??? 240000 pop x 20 bucks thats only around 5 million , thats pocket change for some people on the island Melnyk Cow etc . What you have to do is what smart business people do, to the banks ….(if you dont help us we will go bankrupt and you will lose everything ) and the banks give them a bail out . How much do you think those 50 million dollar villas will be worth if the island becomes toxic. I don’t think its about money, maybe politics ,maybe bad advice maybe govt slow to react but what I am sure most of you can agree on ….its trumps fault.

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  • ” And your suggestion is to close the borders and starve ”

    Are you for real.

    Mendicants to the left of me. Mendicants to the right of me.

    Barbados is an island of mendicants ruled by a class of mendicants.

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  • “Covid-19 has presented a great opportunity for Barbados to become a wiser and wealthier country.”

    they love their dependent status and will double down on the idiocy just to keep it…..Covid is nearly 1 year old on the island, bet ya we will still be repeating that for another 3-4 years or however long the virus lasts.

    jackasses are more concerned with showing ya how wrong ya are….even if it’s right before ya drop them in a 6ft hole.

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  • @ David BU

    I’m one who is in favour of closing the borders to countries where new variants of COVID-19 have been identified.

    However, the previous lock-down did not tourism sector only, but all sectors in Barbados. The unemployment rate grew to 40%, which may even be much more, if you take unregistered businesses into consideration.

    A second lock-down would result in a further increase of the unemployment rate. So, ‘government’ is faced with the dilemma of protecting jobs and the lives of Barbadians at the same time.

    One ‘BU regular’ opined 40% unemployment would have resulted in rioting in some countries. He has been advocating for another lock-down, which would obviously increase the unemployment rate. I eagerly await his thoughts on the issue, if that occurs and the rate goes to 50%.

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  • @ Lawson,
    You have quoted that the vaccine costs 20 dollars. I presume you mean Canadian dollars.

    Under Barbados’ non-tranparent procurement methods the cost of that vaccine would be at least five-ten fold should we receive it. The covid-19 vaccine market place will be manna from heaven for the numerous crooks on the island.

    20 dollars! LOL!

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  • @TLSN
    @Angela

    The problem is once an idea has found root in some Bajans heads there is no moving it. There is a logic that to close the borders will starve people. No amount of arguments will move them from such folly. This is what they believe and they are sticking with it.
    It is not just a lives versus livelihoods argument, it is one about critical thinking. The option to close the border to ALL travellers is so obvious there is no real argument against it.
    Then there is the simplicity that to close the border to travellers for two weeks is to close it to goods and services; there is also the economic argument of reserves, but I will not digress.
    With the new variants (UK, South Africa and Brazil) now showing signs of greater infectivity and of greater resistance to the new vaccines, if ever there was a good time, now is it for closing the borders.
    In the light of not knowing government epidemiological modelling, it is very difficult to say what the thinking is behind government policy. But we can take guidance from other jurisdictions.
    We have had numerous changes of the guard: the resident, Bostic, Santia, Dr Walcott, Liz Thompson, the Czar, Drs Forde, George, Best and Cave; an number of strategists and PR people.
    What is the message they are trying to get across. One minute it is about clusters and community spread; next it is about hazard allowances; the next it is about quarantining and isolation. What is the message?
    The snide remarks about waiting to claim ‘I told you so’ are stupid suggestions which should be ignored. That someone who claims to have all his or her facilities could think Barbadians would like their friends, relatives, neighbours and fellow citizens should die just to prove a minor political point is so perverse and corrupt it is not worth even thinking of.
    But it is the thinking of some on BU.

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  • @Artax

    You are aware the new strains are in most if not all of our key tourists markets?

    https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2020/12/31/which-countries-have-reported-new-variants-of-covid-19

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  • TLSN canadian tourists in florida get them for free, I have read they go from 3 to 37 bucks now if you go with the chinese one its 6 bucks but an hour later you want another one. Yes I am using canadian $$$ but considering what I get for it on the island they seem near equal.lol The govt has to make a law jail time for profiteering.

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  • @Artax

    The upside to the surge in Barbados if there is one problem is that it has provided an opportunity to stress test Covid 19 systems to be better prepared for another surge and f/when it comes. We cannot hide from it. We can only manage to our best ability.

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  • The government has fired the COVID TOURISM bullet and like all fired weapons the projectile cannot be put back in the gun. Its unfortunate that this tourism philosophy was not well thought out and evaluated for consequences. We all know that NO BAJAN GOVERNMENT will admit this was a mistake and change course but conitiue down the same disastrous path.

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  • faculties……

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  • This is not an issue for simpletons. Sometimes there are no easy options. And when there is no obvious option the thinking maybe to do nothing, or maintain status quo.

    Certainly 500 years of globalization cannot be undone overnight. Nobody, no country, has found that an easy option.

    As a results open economies like Barbados arr forced to make life or death decisions more akin to countries with a history militarism. Countries accustomed to sending parts of the populations to their death, as a matter of course, survival.

    We see no easy answers beyond those previous presented by nations.

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  • As far as I’m aware there is no simple rapid test to determine if a particular Covid-19 case is derived from a mutant or not and where it came from directly or indirectly. Special expensive and very scarce equipment and expertise is necessary to characterise mutants as contrasted with say characterizing a virus as covid-19. Therefore it could be quite expensive to consistently monitor the mix of variants coming into and infecting persons in a small country.

    I think there is a distinct possibility that more than one mutant is already here aggressively building up its market share.

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  • This government remains stubbornly attached to keeping our borders open. There’s a reason for this. They (the government) are obsessed with maintaining the “Brand Barbados” image. A brand that excludes the majority of her population (and I’m referring to all the racial groups) and a brand which is unsustainable at all levels.

    I witnessed some of the highlights of a funeral march of a prominent Barbadian citizen a couple of days ago. There was a line of marchers, headed by a group of extraordinary talented drummers. I believe the music style was tuk based. Alongside the marchers was a sergeant major type who was barking out orders to the marchers to keep time.

    I have never witnessed this spectacle before. However this to me is the genuine “Brand Barbados” not the fake one on the South or West Coast reliant on foreigners and tourists.

    Let’s close those borders; and let’s rebuild the country.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @Crusoe
    However, I also wonder if the recent variants, surfacing suddenly as soon as the vaccines were announced as ready, is not peculiar. Although I generally do not believe in conspiracy theories, I am wondering if the virus is not a deliberate attempt at depopulation. Not the vaccines, that silly theory about Gates and so on is nonsense. But the virus itself, is it a very well designed biological weapon?
    +++++++++++++++++++
    Why do people get a flue shot every year? Because the virus changes from year to year and so it appears that the Coronavirus is behaving in the same manner. The scientists change the makeup of the flue shot annually to combat what they believe is the version that will present it self and going forward they will probably have to follow the same route for Coronavirus which makes one believe that the virus or some variant will be around for a long time as it establishes itself in the population.

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  • @ David et al

    I have tried to abstain from commenting on this issue because I realized that the greatest threat to us from a prolonged COVID crisis, is our lack of financial and resources needed , in terms of medical supplies and personnel.
    It is also difficult to criticize the government because we know that the economy was under pressure before COVIDand the administration did not create the virus.
    However, any economy that sees its major economic sector decline by 90 per cent is a ICU economy. We therefore need to be very nationalistic because our resources at this time are being stretched beyond our capabilities.
    We have to admit that it now calls for citizens to be self disciplined and follow the protocols. It was pure folly to believe that any country was” COVID” free. It is also extremely dangerous to have muddled communication messages.
    This is not about “ real” Bajans fake Bajans,Bajans in England or the USA. This is not about anything other than Barbados and the the hope that we can collectively do our best to save our country. Any other thinking is self defeating and counter productive.
    Press conferences in national crisis should not degenerate into gotcha stupidity. Quite frankly I think that the removal of the Czar Richard Carter was a huge mistake. From a pure communications point of view he and Health Minister Bostic scored high In believability. Once that team was broken, we saw a little too much political PR creeping in.
    One of the reasons we were so successful at the beginning of the crisis was the fact that we were comfortable with the message and the messengers. We need to quickly get back there.
    We cannot afford to falter at this stage. We have done very creditably so far.
    As for the shut down it should be clear that if the numbers keep climbing ,closing down the country would be the only alternative.
    We survived slavery . Let us give constructive criticism if we think it necessary but in a national crisis let us park for now the petty political crap and useless personal jabs at least when discussing COVID.
    This is about our country.

    Liked by 2 people

  • “You are aware the new strains are in most if not all of our key tourists markets?”

    @ David BU

    Yes, I’m aware. All the more reason why ‘government’ should diversify the economy. John A has been suggesting we should invest in agriculture and alternative energy.

    But, it seems as though Barbadians are the only people in the world who’re refusing to accept tourism isn’t going ‘bounce back’ anytime soon.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @William

    Thanks for your comment but it is about real bajans rallying. The interest of the #throwashadecrew is well known. You cannot be nationalistic and constantly frame feedback using negatives. This is a difficult time and hard choices /decisions must be taken.

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  • @Artax

    Agreed but you are also aware reducing our dependence on tourism will take time and this is assuming we can achieve it with the right decisions being made.

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  • A relevant idea to debate is why Canada, a country with a population of 38m, should buy vaccines for nearly eleven times its population, a total of 414m?
    That is a serious moral question. My assumption is that the liberal Justin Trudeau is planing to play vaccine diplomacy with underdeveloped nations, by offering vaccines to those that want to play political footsies with him.
    By the way, did the eight vaccines that the president and her mates got came from Canada?

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  • I agree with lyallsmall there is more than one mutant on the island

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  • If I understand Pachamama’s thoughts he is stating that the government of Barbados is relaxed with the collateral damage that covid-19 will cause. Her priority or mantra is to keep the gates of hell open as long as the economy keeps ticking over.

    The poor natives will be sacrificed in the same manner as those who fought in the trenches of the first world war. Like lambs to the slaughter.

    Liked by 1 person

  • “It is also difficult to criticize the government because we know that the economy was under pressure before COVIDand the administration did not create the virus.”

    William…they’ve also stubbornly and ARROGANTLY refused to DIVERSIFY the economy, something myself and others have been beating a drum about for 8 YEARS and longer on the blog…they send out their yardfowls all the time to see what’s being posted, so they CAN’T see they didn’t see it..

    ..my sympathies lay with the current and future victims of these two useless ass governments.

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  • Is BU an agent of the CIA engaging in information warfare and biowarfare collecting history of everyone to predict their life
    Their anti-China war agenda chat is somewhat worrying

    Fred Locks – True Rastaman

    So Jay say
    Rasta don’t work for no CIA
    Jah sent us here to show the way, oh yeah
    Rasta don’t work for no politician
    True Rastaman is a good and upright man
    So he will live, yes he’ll live for evermore
    Through Jah mercy, he’ll endure

    So Jah say
    According to your work, you will get pay
    So try to live in an upright way
    Tell the people what Jah say, yeah

    (..)

    True Rastaman don’t his trust in gun
    He puts his trust in the older, older one
    He’ll never give his strength unto the beast
    So you better leave him, leave him in peace

    So Jah say
    According to your work, you will get pay
    So try to live in an upright way
    Tell the people what Jah say, yeah
    Tell them to watch and pray
    Don’t let them go astray
    Tell them what Jah say

    Like

  • Do you really believe after IGNORING WARNINGS for years, any of them will take advice now, unless it’s coming from the cabal of crooks, which is ALL BAD ADVICE…but the only one that’s welcomed…people like myself have long moved on and advising those who are intelligent and will listen.

    Like

  • I read the statement by Boris who said it seems that not only is the new strain more contagious, but it appears to be more deadly. As the UK was the mother of this new version I will therefore go with that view until more is said based on facts as opposed to fiction. I don’t think trying to keep up with the types of covid will be possible though. After all we have an Australian and a South American version as well so far. What we need to pray for is that no new variant presents itself that is vaccine resistant.

    The other question is will covid ever be fully eradicated? Has the common flu been eradicated? No but we have learnt to live with it year after year. We take out flu shots and move on. Will we also have to do the same for covid? Will every year mean a annual vaccine ?

    My point is if you place the politics and BS aside no one is in a position at this stage to say based on current scientific data what the future holds for us. We therefore will wear our mask and depend on testing for now. I for one do not see the vacinne either as the silver bullet against covid. We do not know if the vaccine will last for 3 months, 6 months or 6 days at this point. We also don’t know in the future if a vaccine resistant variant is out there.

    I said here months ago that we need to accept the post covid economy will be completely different to the pre covid one. So will the post covid way of living. For this year at least the masks will be part of our life as will be sanitizing. All we can do is trust that our screening and protocols will hold up. The introduction now of rapid testing is a big plus which should now take a major load off the lab, as only positive rapid test persons would now go for a confirmation lab test. That should of been done since last year. Better late than never though.

    So in closing folks welcome to the new post covid world. Only time will tell how long we will have to live in it or what else lays around the corner as mutations occur.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @ WURA
    We will never admit that the traditional corporate sector only embraced tourism because it gave them the opportunity to get in bed with expatriates who looked mostly like them. They cut billions of dollars in deals while throwing scraps st the black political class, who only wanted a dinner , drink at the hotel bar and a damn free room.
    You are correct. Diversifying the economy meant moving away from retailing and the white folks did not want that. They destroyed agriculture and they raped the tourist industry but the pathetic black political class and their lackeys will never admit it.
    To truly diversify the economy we have to pump millions into small black owned businesses .Between the banks and those who own the best lands , it would scarcely happen , in any meaningful form , until we get politicians with balls.

    Like

  • @ William

    I am sorry for butting in on your conversation, but a lot of what you have said are simply wrong. The call for nationalism is questionable. I am not a Barbadian nationalist, and find it rather st range how nationalism can come in to communicating government policy.
    The observation of the protocols has nothing to do with nationalism, they are global and came from the WHO, CDC, PHE and other leading public health organisations. In Barbados we have simply adopted them.
    As to government communication policy, it has been chaotic from the very beginning and continues to be. What is the message they are trying to get across?
    As I understand it, the Czar was a sociologist seconded from his regular place of work and was appointed because of his experience with Ebola victims. I am not quite sure what his experience was. As I understand it, there are epidemiologists at the UWI; why was one not recruited to the CoVid task force?
    As a viewer, government’s CoVid message is so mixed up that it gets one confused. You, like me, want a resolution of this plague and soon, but exaggerating how we are dealing with the problem does not help.
    Communications is about credibility, authority, getting people to listen and obey. Neither Bostic nor the president has any of these qualities.
    The best communicators we have had so far are Santia and Dr Walcott, both of whom spoke quietly, with believability and listeners got the impression they were telling the truth as far as they knew it.
    Then as to the ‘experts’: CoVid is a public health crisis and the local expert is Dr George. His problem is that to talk to people at a time of crisis dressed like a gangster is offensive.
    Would you like to know the guy who is going to carry out heart surgery on you came in dressed like a dread-locked Ninja Man? Presentation is the biggest part of communication. He must look the part. It is not just about his knowledge.
    Further, medicine is like any other discipline. All may be doctors, but some are neurologists, ear, nose and throat specialists; cardiologists; gynaecologists; obstetricians; etc. All nurses are not ICU specialists.
    Finally, the economic issues are totally irrelevant, nonsense about starving. There is a way out: impose a mortgage repayment and rent holiday, give interest-free loans to households, order those who can to work from home. Business support can be worked out too, but we must separate the economy from the hotel sector. If you want to discuss the economics of CoVid, I can do that.
    We must be frank with ourselves in public debates, or play to the gallery.

    Like

  • Has anyone noticed in the brief that Boris still has not recovered from his bout with the virus, it also has long term and long lasting effects, so this is not the time to listen to dumbass politicians who are only interested in keeping Black people dependent for the the long term, think for yourselves. Think about your welfare and that of your families.

    Like

  • “Between the banks and those who own the best lands.”

    between the banks and those who STOLE THE BEST LANDS….one and the same.

    Like

  • “We will never admit that the traditional corporate sector only embraced tourism because it gave them the opportunity to get in bed with expatriates who looked mostly like them.”

    as for those parasites, they should not be allowed to live off the backs of Black people ever again and definitely not for another generation, let them starve…right along with the trash for government ministers that have allowed it for all of 54 years.

    Like

  • @John A

    A useful perspective stripped of the usual BS deposited by others.

    Like

  • @ Crusoe January 23, 2021 4:22 AM
    (Quote):
    But back to the actual dealing with it. Yes, the Caribbean is in a special place, where there is opportunity to operate in ventilated spaces. The building style from developed countries of closed air environment, needs to be thrown out and those buildings retrofitted to open air environments. Let the breeze flow and the fresh air in. This part has been evident for years and one reason why sick building syndrome happens in Barbados. Because air conditioning and high humidity do not go well together, when building are not maintained especially.

    Idiocy of the highest order. Maybe that is an area where the architects and engineers can assist and push, as David suggested, redesign and retrofit of all of these buildings. (Unquote).
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    One of the more sobering and intellectually sound contributions to BU.

    You are indeed ‘blessed’ with more than just a dose of that rare combination of ‘natural’ commonsense and intellectual gravitas.

    You have gone straight to the heart of that ‘foul-air’ matter which has contributed to such high incidences of the so-called sick building syndrome (SBS) and widespread respiratory ailments especially asthma ‘plaguing’ a small island ‘bordering’ the open Atlantic Ocean.

    Fresh (clean) air and ready access to potable water are two of the basic ingredients in any prescription for the good health of a nation.

    It would serve as a bout of intellectually stimulating fresh air if our resident polymath of an engineer Grenville Phillips 11 could shed some scientific light on your thesis.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Critical Analyzer

    Don’t worry this pandemic will be over in a few months now it has served its dual purpose of torpedoing Trump’s re-election bid and making billions in profits from vaccines that will be pushed to be updated and administered every year just like the flu shot to keep the money train rolling in.

    WHO has already changed back to the original guidelines for reducing false positives

    https://worldnewsera.com/news/startups/who-releases-new-tightened-guidelines-regarding-the-diagnostic-criteria-for-covid-19-pcr-positive-no-longer-means-you-have-covid-19-you-need-a-second-test-to-confirm-you-have-the-virus-tech-news/

    https://redstate.com/michael_thau/2021/01/20/total-coincidence-alert-who-issues-new-c19-guidelines-requiring-2nd-test-for-symptom-less-on-day-biden-takes-office-n313400

    Like

  • Artax, David;

    I think that the occurrence of new mutant strains might presage a significant change in how Barbados can best treat with Covid-19. There will have to be a clear rationalization of targeted resource inputs into the engines of our economy to maximise and even-out the outputs of that economy. I think that rapid knee-jerk reductions in tourism inputs will not work and that the welcome stamp initiative should continue but that gradual strategic targeted increases in assistance to other aspects of the economy must be made to ensure to the extent possible that Barbados survives the pandemic without retrogressing to semi-failed statehood.

    Agriculture is the only sector that has shown increases over the last year but this has essentially come from import substitution and many small inputs from small farmers. Many people have started back-yard gardens. Shade houses have been proliferating, etc. etc. But I suspect that foreign exchange earnings from Agriculture has fallen.

    Massy has made significant profits and it is possible that a number of other big players in the distributive trade sector might be rivalling them but foreign exchange is probably going in the wrong direction. Expansion in Solar energy production shows much promise re. saving of foreign exchange. Repurposing of Hotel Plants to support additional Offshore Universities and even High Schools might be growth areas that could bring in significant foreign exchange. Indeed, it might be possible to design new education systems based on utilization of Zoom technology and the earnings of foreign exchange by teachers from the development of new subject modules. The Entertainment industry can be brought into the fold of significant sectors contributing to the economy through the inputs of our excellent and talented entertainers who are no less talented than those from the developed world. The Sports sector should be assisted to find ways of earning foreign exchange in a Covid-19 world.

    These are not new ideas. I suspect that Government is already working on refining and planning strategic inputs into a number of areas to underpin our survival in the current Covid world and into a post- Covid environment.

    Like

  • Axes of Evil is at home and abroad
    Seems like WWIII kicked off in Y2K
    Non Stop Wars are on the slow burn

    Q:
    Are you expounding a new philosophy?
    A:
    A new philosophy?
    It isn’t a new philosophy
    It is the world’s philosophy
    It is the philosophy of humanity
    It is the philosophy of the Commandment of Jah
    Given down to man, seen
    The inadequate distribution of the earth’s resources, seen
    Is causing complications upon creation, seen
    And, all those things, the unconstitutional laws and injustices
    Man’s inhumanity to man, all those things cause complication upon creation, seen
    The domination of one nation to another nation, all those things cause complication, seen
    Those are the things that we the youths have to rise up and see in this time
    ‘Cause Jah call upon the youths for they are strong, physically, mentally and sporitually

    Q:
    What should they do?
    A:
    Well do as the conscious youths do
    Everyman is supposed to know what consciousness is, in this time
    Every youth rather, No youth is supposed to ask any youth what he should do, he is supposed to know
    Because every youth that come in this time, is created with a certain amount of consciousness
    That is more than his parents, or his parent’s parents, seen
    And, he is supposed to be conscious enough to know what he should have done,
    Or, what he is supposed to be doing, seen

    Like

  • Ignorance rules, that’s why they keep finding themselves in the same retrograde position over and over…..now everyone who is anyone is so over them..no one has the time, it’s now or never forward movement….most will be left behind…they can stay right where the hell they are…..

    Like

  • TLSN

    That is not our point. Our point is that the virus is controlling the agenda and that policymakers everywhere have to make choices from a changing set of variables not unlike what happens in war. Nobody in Barbados and most of the world is so accustomed to this type of war fighting. That their decision making, as good as it may be in the moments, cannot guarantee desired outcomes.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @CA
    Came when there were 72 comments and don’t think I will read them all.

    Saw this
    “Strictly comparing the deaths of 10 per thousand vs 13 per thousand is misleading i.e. (13-10)/10 * 100 gave then that 30% increase stat. However, a more accurate representation of the statistic is (13/1000 *100) gives a 1.3% case fatality rate in the new variant vs (10/1000 *100) gives a 1% case fatality rate of the original strain.”

    Nice piece of work you did there. Yes, we need to know what is our baseline or what is our true denominator.

    Like

  • I saw a close supporter of Mia suggesting …AND RIGHTLY…since neither Barbados nor any other Caribbean island will be able to GO THIS ALONE and come out unscathed…to REMOVE THE BORDERS, INSTITUTE ONE CURRENCY and one passport…AND SUPPORT EACH OTHER, COMBINE RESOURCES, a win win…but he may be the wrong complexion to be that intelligent and forward thinking….since he so insightfully recommended what can save small islands…i have not heard a word in agreement.

    Africa is doing it on a much larger scale, even establishing THIS YEAR…ONE PASSPORT…..because even with all those resources…they’ve come to realize that INSULARITY AND COLONIAL IDIOCY, IS KILLING THEM…

    it will kill small islands even faster…and only one or two have any natural resources worth shouting about.

    Like

  • “Nobody in Barbados and most of the world is so accustomed to this type of war fighting. ”

    an unseen foe that can only be viewed through a microscope….has rendered all the bombs, nuclear weapons and heavy duty artillary etc….totally useless..

    last virus happened 102 years ago…they are just as helpless now as they were back then…with all the technology and this and that available. There is no out thinking such a well endowed enemy.

    Like

  • Waru what???? h1n1….sars….mers…..west nile ….hong kong… 102 years come on man

    Like

  • @ David

    Thank you. I am not interested in discussing the covid issue around the basis of Mia should of done this or that. I hold no interest in that, what i would like to see us do however is look at the bigger picture of how a sustained covid presence will affect our day to day lives and our economy. I know that is not as much fun as the party politics BS but that is where we need to go.

    If you recall from March I said we need to reposition our economy to one of FX dependancy to one of FX retention . I focused on agriculture and alternatice energy as 2 areas ripe for the picking. One thing is for sure tourist and locals need to eat and consume electricity. Today as far as I am concerned we have done neiter in any large scale.

    As we speak January is practically over and for February and March most of the few reservations the hotels had were cancelled. So what is the plan for the next 11 months? We know we can’t depend on tourist receipts, so with a major shortfall in FX revenue what are we doing about it? Will we borrow more FX with the hope that tourism returns next year, or will we diversify the economy into areas that will reduce FX demand?

    These are the conversations i wish to have with our leaders. Come and tell us what is the plan? I will also now commit to BU Hansard the following statement.

    Be it known that the shop keeper hereby forecast that the first quarter of 2021 will show the largest drop in economic activity against the corresponding period of last year, when compared to any other quarter on record against its comparative period. Be it recorded today on the 23rd day of January in the year of our lord 2021.

    Like

  • We already have ‘one passport.’ Prior to independence of the English Caribbean territories, each island had a British passport bearing the individual island’s name. The CARICOM passport carries a similar format.

    Instituting one currency, removing territorial borders and combining resources are all good ideas. However, Caribbean unity continues to be hindered by ‘stumbling blocks’ such as some islands have remained under the control of English, French, Dutch and US governments, while some others aren’t interested in unifying.

    Whereas islands such as BGI, SVG, GND or SLU have to find medical and financial resources to combat COVID-19, for example, Martinique, Guadeloupe, Marie-Galante and St. Barthélemy, being overseas departments of France, are guaranteed those resources from the French government.

    Like

  • @ WURA-War-on-U January 23, 2021 10:56 AM
    (Quote):
    “Nobody in Barbados and most of the world is so accustomed to this type of war fighting. ”

    an unseen foe that can only be viewed through a microscope….has rendered all the bombs, nuclear weapons and heavy duty artillary etc….totally useless..
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    And it was an ancestor of Covid-19, commonly known as the “cold” virus, which was brought to the so-called New World by the European invaders and decimated the indigenous populations whose immune systems were totally unprepared for such an invasion of that European-introduced version of the Corona brand of the viral plague.

    What should be of major concern is the rapidity of the spread of the ‘modern’ virus especially its mutated versions given the global awareness and the many preventative protocols enforced by the travel industry and the customs and immigration authorities across the planet.

    Like

  • Does anyone know the number of hotels; guest houses etc. that were authorized to host people under quarantine?

    Like

  • “Waru what???? h1n1….sars….mers…..west nile ….hong kong… 102 years come on man”

    West Nile killed someone just this past week in US….short term annoyances….but not on the scale of this bad boy…nor the one from 102 years ago that took out 50 million and shortened life expectancy..I was in US for all that you mentioned, not many were at risk and very small amounts died…much different ball game. I remember Canada shut down the borders immediately for Sars….couple weeks later you weren’t even hearing about it anymore.. we were children wehn Hong Kong flu was around, some people got sick but never knew anyone who died…although many did.

    ” In the case of the 1918 pandemic, the world at first believed that the spread had been stopped by the spring of 1919, but it spiked again in early 1920.

    Before COVID-19, the most severe pandemic in recent history was the 1918 influenza virus, often called “the Spanish Flu.”. The virus infected roughly 500 million people—one-third of the world’s population—and caused 50 million deaths worldwide (double the number of deaths in World War I). In the United States, a quarter of the population caught the virus, 675,000 died, and life expectancy dropped by 12 years.”

    Like

  • Miller…they’ve now entered unknown and unchartered territory…let them go playing fast and loose again, and they will see.

    Like

  • @John A
    I am of the opinion that we need an immediate fix and there is none. That is why we have to stick with the girl we brought to the dance.

    When would you expect benefits from alternative energy to be available and what happens meanwhile.

    Like

  • @ Theo

    The alternative energy farm that Bizzy set up at shop hill in December was set up and generating power all within 90 days.

    Most vegetable crops and food crops can be grown within 6 weeks to 3 months.

    Sorry that excuse for doing nothing can’t fly with me.

    Liked by 1 person

  • (I deliberately left out agriculture)

    Like

  • They played games with the alternative energy concept for years, busy looking for foreign crooks to help them line their pockets, played game with the medical marijuana because they still don’t want it in Black hands, same scenario….they never wanted to invest in agriculture, now they reap the grapes of wrath..

    Theo..it’s all they know, and consciously cannot do any better…..always subconsciously on the road to destruction…the uppity mentality is their collosal downfall.

    maybe they can ask PLT to help them with a new game plan, am already committed elsewhere. An immediate fix is to throw open Caribbean borders and that is still a 1-2 year affair to get things going and jumpstart a CARIBBEAN ECONOMY. No quick fixes available, they’ve wasted too much time on backward ideology and listening to minority thieves.

    if we don’t point out their weaknesses, they’ll refuse to acknowledge that they have any…masters of denial and bs.

    Like

  • @ John A January 23, 2021 11:13 AM
    “As we speak January is practically over and for February and March most of the few reservations the hotels had were cancelled. So what is the plan for the next 11 months? We know we can’t depend on tourist receipts, so with a major shortfall in FX revenue what are we doing about it? Will we borrow more FX with the hope that tourism returns next year, or will we diversify the economy into areas that will reduce FX demand?”
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    A very informative and prescient analysis there, Master John A, the simple country shopkeeper!

    The country is heading down a one-way road of forex depletion whose storage tank of forex fuel is being supplied with borrowings instead of earnings.

    Yet the country is still importing Mercedes and 4×4 vehicles which can only be driven at a maximum speed of 80 km per hr. on the makeover cart roads in the 2×3 island.

    The policy-makers are even preparing to grant licences to potential importers of marijuana for so-called medicinal purposes.

    Whose foreign exchange would be used to finance such an ‘airy-fairy’ commercial venture when this budding industry is ‘ripe’ for the application of the principle of import substitution?

    The foreign reserves borrowed from the country’s bankers of last resort, the IMF?

    Like

  • This crab mentality among small leaders has continued to reduce the islands significantly since the Federation of Fools couldn’t even get off the ground……nothing has changed, we can only hope that NOW THAT THEY’RE FORCED TO LOOK AT THEMSELVES….they too will be repulsed at who and what is looking back at them.

    Like

  • Alternative energy
    Govt or private companies?
    What is the scale?
    What is needed
    What are the costs?
    Technology readily and easily available?

    Buzzy may have been at it longer than3 months.

    Like

  • @David

    Thanks for the info, but with all these players how does the Gov’t keep tabs on them to ensure that no one was breaking the rules?

    I read where the Australian city of Brisbane shut down for a few days because someone working at a local eatery (pizza place I believe) came down with the virus. This was an anomaly based on their contact tracing regime and they wanted to know how that happened. Turns out that a worker at a hotel hosting quarantine guests moonlighted at the Pizza place (and lied about it). Australia is doing very well compared to other countries in fighting the spread the authorities shut down a city because of one case.

    Other countries are now playing “catch up”.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Shutting down and then reopening, slows the spread according to experts. It’s always for a short period, the alternative is deadly.

    Shut down by Feb 1, reopen by the 14th…and take it from there…i have no sympathy for stupid leaders who will have to live with no tourists anyway, when UK shuts down,

    Like

  • @ Hal
    Looking good and communicating effectively are two different things, Bradshaw is chopping up the message under her portfolio which is education.
    You are way too harsh on Bostic. He was both effective and believable.
    I never connected nationalism with communication. I simply said that in a crisis we should be more nationalistic and look at Barbados rather than petty party /political squabbles.
    A doctor dressed immaculately and dispensing the wrong advice and one dressed less professionally but giving the correct advice should be a no brainer.
    I understand proper dress but the few times I have seen the doctor in question, I honestly cannot recall him being as poorly dressed as you described.
    As for a COVID debate all I can say is that COVID has exposed our underwear and unless we overcome it and use the post COVID period effectively, we would be where we are now for the next hundred years.

    Like

  • COVID-19 cases at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH) increased from four to ten over the past week, but management there is reassuring both staff and the general public that established protocols are working.

    https://www.nationnews.com/2021/01/23/ten-covid-cases-qeh/

    Like

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