Cartoon – Clean up the Planet or…………………..!!

I’m not sure about the angry god chucking viruses at us but I am sure that if we carry on the way we are sooner or later we will let loose a virus that will make this one look like a toy.

We are opening up wilderness, butchering wildlife and taking wild animals back to unhygienic markets. We will encounter viruses that we have never encountered before. Instead of killing just 2% one of them might wipe us all out – or at least 99% of us. It’s happened before. It will happen again – unless we learn from our mistakes and take more care of nature and treat it with respect.

Thanks John Peachey!

The World’s Best and Worst countries at dealing with Covid-19.

The World’s Best and Worst countries at dealing with Covid-19.

Things do not happen by chance.

Some countries were prepared, reacted quickly and were effective at dealing with the pandemic. Others were appalling.

The Best Countries

CountryTotal number who contracted the diseaseNumber of deaths
Taiwan6757
New Zealand205925
Iceland539226
Singapore5821829
Vietnam134735

A set of countries that, before this all took off, you would not necessarily imagine doing that well. But they were prepared. They shut their borders, tracked and traced and got completely on top of it.

The Worst Countries

CountryTotal number who contracted the diseaseNumber of deaths
USA19,800,000343,000
Brazil7,620,000195,000
India10,300,000149,000
Mexico1,140,000125,000
UK2,430,00073,000

It looks like a list of countries run by populist narcissists! This bunch were unprepared, complacent, did not prepare, dithered, denied and were utterly ineffective.

How does it feel to be in the top five most incompetent and useless? Nearly a million unnecessary deaths between the five of them!

The NHS is overwhelmed

John Peachey sent me this.

This is a message from one of my wife’s contacts…(backed up this evening’s Ten o’clock news.)
Dear friends….
The reason I posted yesterday on Emily’s comment was that I had to go to hospital yesterday due to my Oxygen Sat levels dropping.  What I saw there was overwhelmingly sad.  They were too busy to see me and I ended up coming home.  Not before I had to wait outside in the freezing cold for 2 hours, already feeling very unwell. 
The doctors and the staff were at a level of stress that I could not explain here but will never forget.  When the doctor finally phoned and said I could come in I told him I had returned home to bed.  He was so upset, almost in tears begging me to go back to Reading and that he was so so sorry that I had to wait outside.  I cried when I heard him so upset. I just kept on saying over and over again, it’s not your fault, it’s not your fault.  Screened off, there were Covid patients lying on the floor and rows of ambulances outside treating patients inside, acting as extra beds.

I am deeply concerned that there are still people who are mixing freely and not taking this illness seriously who have no idea what the NHS is having to deal with.  It is a serious situation, and I can say with first hand experience that the NHS is clearly overwhelmed.  Certainly at the Royal Berks Hospital. 
Stay safe. xxx

The Corona Diaries – Day 275

A cold wet drizzly day – not too pleasant for my daily walk – all coddled in raingear. The summer and ambling along in shorts, T-shirt and sandals seems a long way away.

But the days are drawing out!! The Solstice has passed. Our naked frolics in the woods has drawn the sun back. It’s heading our way!

A lot to be said for naked frolicking!

Back home I’ve been playing Sean Taylor as our bubble played poker. I’m desperately trying to win the house back! This gambling is very addictive!

Meanwhile out in Coronaland the new strain is gleefully going berserk but the ports are once again operating. The huge queues of lorries that piled up are beginning to move. Good practice for Bexit. Everyone in the south is going to have to get used to Kent being a lorry park.

Our millionaire friends and Eton schoolboys are steering the country where they want it! Giving out their contracts to their chums! So glad they’ve gained dominion over us!

The virus is having a great time. In The USA, Brazil and UK it is on the rise. 3200 deaths in the States, 968 deaths in Brazil and 691 deaths in the UK! Meanwhile, in New Zealand and Vietnam there are just a handful of cases and no deaths!!

Well after 275 days of daily 10K walks I’m a lot thinner and fitter, still haven’t become ill and am looking forward to a strange Christmas!!

Stay safe!!

The Corona Diaries – Day 248

Well incredibly, I still have not had Covid. I suppose that is not surprising because we are not have contact with people, but it wasn’t really what I was expecting.

I do now know of a number of people who have had the illness with varying degrees of sickness, and one who has died (a 52 year old cyclist).

With Christmas looming we are steering clear of meeting up with family. We might have a get together when we’ve had the vaccine!

Today started sunny so we decided to head for the coast and have a walk by the sea.

There were lots of wading birds along the water’s edge. Great to see.

Back home I’ve been working on my poetry books and listening to some early acoustic Dylan. He was brilliant, wasn’t he?

Meanwhile, out in Coronaland, Mad Trump continues to rail and whine. He is now saying that he must have won because of the size of his rally crowds! Poor fool hasn’t realised that it is the size of the vote that counts – not the rally crowds! They are just the fanatic nutters.

His incompetence killed another 2313 people yesterday. Can you believe that??? If this had been a terrorist attack the USA would be nuking people. That is now over 263,000 people dead in the USA compared to 25 in New Zealand. Jacinda Ardherne was presiding over 1 new case yesterday. She did it right. He did it wrong and is still doing it wrong. At this rate Biden won’t have too many left to preside over! It’s a catastrophe.

In the UK we are still in lockdown but had another 18,213 new cases yesterday. I think people have stopped paying any attention to our clown in chief. He’s an idiot. We had another 695 deaths.

In Brazil it is zooming up again – 47,898 new cases and 654 deaths!

Populism is taking a heavy toll on people. Hopefully we have learnt our lesson – but I doubt it. People are daft.

I’m getting back to my poetry. Stay safe everyone. A vaccine is coming!

Poetry – You Set Me Free

You Set Me Free

You opened up the rainforest

And set me free.

You sent in the loggers

And released me.

Your hunters and merchants

Took me to distant lands

Your wet markets and butchers

Have blood on their hands.

Now I’m in your blood

Breeding rapidly.

I bet you are glad

You set me free.

Opher – 13.9.2020

Covid-19 – another pandemic set loose by our own stupidity.

We continue to open up the inaccessible regions.

We hunt and catch the poor creatures who live there.

We put them in cages and sell them in markets.

We ship them around the world in terrible conditions, all crammed together, starving, thirsty, terrified.

We keep them in insanitary conditions.

We take them to market and slaughter them.

Their blood is on our hands.

The wet markets release virus after virus – HIV, SARS, MERS, Swine Flu, Avian Flu. There has been a stream of them.

Are we going to all this terrible trade to continue?

I think it’s as bad as slavery!

How long is it before a virus is released that will wipe us all out?

Poetry – I’m Winning

I’m Winning

I’m sprayed into the air.

I soar into your nose.

I dive into your cells.

And lurk upon your clothes.

I live in your blood

And mess up your heart.

I scar your lungs

And take your brain apart.

I rob you of oxygen

And all your energy.

Nothing you can do

Is going to bother me.

I’ll rob you of your jobs,

Create no end of strife.

I’ll wreck your families

And even take your life.

Opher – 1.11.2020

Hanging in an aerosol in the air waiting to be breathed there is a new virus. It’s a parasite that eats your living flesh, a minute vampire.

It sets up in your nasal cavity and lungs, replicating and sprayed out into the air.

It invades your blood vessels destroying lungs and damaging heart and brain.

We call it Covid-19. It’s nature’s pay-back for our invasion.

We are swamping the planet. We are invading the most inaccessible places and cruelly snaring the most beautiful creatures. They are transported across the planet, crouching terrified in tiny cages, waiting to be butchered alive in wet markets.

No compassion is wasted on these creatures. They are seen as meat.

We deserve all we get!

The Corona Diaries – Day 209

We went for a long walk today. Out in nature nothing changes. The coronavirus means nothing to the rest of life on this planet. It is refreshing. But it is also sobering. Nature doesn’t need us. We are far too big for our boots. We are dispensible. For all our arrogance, for all our impact, we are nothing more than just another species of life. We are of nature and part of nature but not in control of nature or more important than nature.

As I walked I found myself thinking that one day we will be gone. Nature will not miss us. It will regenerate. Our cities and artefacts will decay. We’ll be a thin layer in the rocks – a strata of self-importance. One day a virus will do for us all. Nature will shrug and move on.

Good riddance. We were too stupid and too clever, too destructive and thoughtless. We don’t deserve to be here.

Back home I was playing some Alexis Korner and thinking that at our best we can be so good. Why are we so bad?

I wrote my harper book and was despondent.

This virus is a warning. We need to change our ways or bow out.

All around me the incompetence shines.

In the UK – 16,171 new cases with 150 deaths

In the USA – 52,774 new cases with 679 deaths

In Brazil – 24,062 new cases with 461 deaths

In New Zealand – 3 new cases and no deaths

Some people are obviously messing up and some are doing it right!

It’s the same with inequality, poverty, violence, rights and working conditions, racism, sexism and justice. Some are not delivering – and it’s the same bunch of dumbasses.

But there is hope. Jacinda Ardern was elected with a landslide. What she said in her speech filled me with optimism. We can be competent, compassionate, empathetic and caring if we try. We just need to stop electing this unpleasant narcissistic sociopaths!! It can be done!

New Eden – Who survives a pandemic?

New Eden – Who survives a pandemic?

We are very fortunate with the current Coronavirus pandemic; it only kills around 2% of the population, and they tend to be (though not always) the elderly or weaker members. Many pandemics are far more deadly. Bubonic plague killed off between 50% and 70% of the population, and Smallpox at least 20%. It is not inconceivable to have a new virus that kills 99.9% of the population.

In my story, New Eden, a government creates a deadly virus to wipe out the excess population.

The theory of evolution is widely misunderstood. It revolves around the selection of the fittest. The fittest are not always the strongest, most intelligent, the fastest or those with skills; they could be the slowest, most stupid, or the weakest. For example – faced with a terrible predator the one who faints might be left alone while those who fight or run away might be killed. The survivor selected might be the weakest member of the group.

Surviving a virus is mostly a question of luck. It is not whether you are clever, fit or healthy; it is merely whether you have the right antibodies to neutralise the disease. This is a quirk of fate.

So, evolution does not always produce bigger, stronger, fitter and more intelligent offspring. It produces offspring more suited to survive.

If a fatal virus was to wipe out most people on the planet the survivors would be the ones with natural immunity. They could be a group of people with a particular genetic ‘disorder’.

In 1986 I took this basic premise and wove it into a story. It is the story of courage, bravery, intrigue, misuse of power and hope. It has redemption, joy and tragedy.

It is also a story that could easily come true.

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