in Daily updates, Psychology, Rants, Travel

It’s a tough, strange time right now because of COVID.

Despite the predictable (and predicted) health consequences, governments are not willing to introduce restrictions which would help control this awful wave. They know that the politics of shutting down Christmas would be awful, both for enraged households that feel like they deserve for the pandemic to be over and for businesses that rely crucially on this period for profitability.

Then when it comes to adherence to the restrictions, almost everyone seems to see them as too onerous for themselves personally, given the ways they would prefer to spend their time. Everyone seems to have some nonsense rationalization about how someone else is doing worse things so their choices are fine, or that the omicron variant is nothing to worry about so we should let it spread. And so, inadequate policies become even more inadequate as implemented.

Having not travelled ‘home’ to Vancouver since 2010, I am used to lonely Christmases. I normally feel alienated from the population because their choices show that they prioritize their own entertainment and travel over protecting the Earth. That alienation is magnified this year, with people unwilling to even protect themselves.

I don’t know how we get away from a mindset where people feel such entitlement and lack of responsibility to others, but it’s one that is imperilling us on multiple fronts.

{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

. December 20, 2021 at 8:46 pm

‘If it’s not necessary, don’t go’: B.C. health minister advises against domestic travel

. December 21, 2021 at 5:15 am

Wendt watched an unvaccinated man in his 30s — the father of three young children — enter this restless state. “I looked over at his wife. The lights were very dim and all I could hear was him breathing with the help of a BiPap ventilator. His wife asked me, ‘What do I do?’ I replied, ‘If it were me, I would call your children and have them tell their dad that they love him … I think now would be a good time.'”
Wendt knew by his demeanor that this man was going to be intubated soon. “And you never know if you’re going to get off that ventilator,” Wendt says through tears.

. December 21, 2021 at 5:50 am

Reduce contacts now or hospitals will be overwhelmed by Omicron, says Tam

. December 21, 2021 at 12:02 pm

5,043 new COVID-19 cases as Quebec breaks infection record again

. December 21, 2021 at 12:19 pm

At the most desperate point of the second wave, nurses and doctors in Manitoba intensive care wards somehow treated 129 intensive care patients. At the most desperate point of the third wave, they managed to treat 131.

Over the past few weeks, Manitoba ICUs have struggled to treat between 87 and 104 patients. The health-care system simply doesn’t have the critical-care capacity it cobbled together months ago.

. December 22, 2021 at 12:46 am

B.C. closing bars and gyms, banning indoor weddings and similar events as Omicron takes over

. December 22, 2021 at 2:05 pm

Covid-19 was third leading cause of death in 2020, driving record rise in death rate and nearly two-year drop in life expectancy

. December 23, 2021 at 1:34 am

anada reported 14,995 new COVID-19 infections Wednesday, setting a new record for daily cases since the start of the pandemic. According to data collected by, the country’s seven-day average is also the highest it has ever been during the course of the pandemic.

. December 24, 2021 at 4:54 pm

Ontario reports record-high 9,571 COVID-19 cases on Christmas Eve

Provincewide test positivity rate nearing 19%

. December 25, 2021 at 1:59 pm

Christmas travel chaos as airlines cancel more than 4,500 flights

Passengers returning home for festive season face worldwide disruption as Omicron leaves airlines short-staffed

. December 25, 2021 at 8:16 pm

Anyone with COVID symptoms should assume they are infected and stay home: Henry

. December 26, 2021 at 10:28 am

Ontario reports more than 10,000 daily cases of COVID-19 for the 1st time

. December 26, 2021 at 10:33 am

France sees 100,000 daily COVID cases for first time

France’s third straight day of record cases comes amid thousands of flights cancelled worldwide on Christmas weekend.

. December 27, 2021 at 11:29 am

Tourism industry may have to live off domestic travel until the fall, says minister

. December 28, 2021 at 10:13 am

Public Health Ontario says that infection data should now be interpreted with caution as it is a significant undercount of the actual amount of infection occurring in the province.
At Women’s College Hospital, Michael Garron Hospital, Sunnybook Health Sciences Centre, North York General Hospital and Toronto Western Hospital on Tuesday, the soonest any of them had an opening for a COVID-19 test was January 8.

. December 28, 2021 at 1:06 pm

U.S. airline industry steps up push for CDC to cut quarantine time for breakthrough Covid cases, warning of labor shortages

CDC shortens recommended Covid quarantine time to 5 days, after airlines tell it to

. December 30, 2021 at 2:28 pm
. December 30, 2021 at 7:55 pm

Beginning Dec. 31, polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests will only be available for symptomatic high-risk individuals and those who work in the highest risk settings, as well as vulnerable populations. However, Ontario public schools will remain one of the few groups permitted to distribute PCR tests to symptomatic students and staff.

. December 30, 2021 at 7:56 pm

Quebec reintroduces 10 p.m. curfew as infection rates skyrocket

The Quebec government will reintroduce a curfew of 10 p.m. starting Dec. 31, Premier Francois Legault announced Thursday evening. In addition, restaurants must close their dining rooms, gatherings are banned and businesses have been ordered to close on Sundays.

. December 31, 2021 at 10:48 pm

Ontario to stop reporting COVID-19 cases in schools, memo says; NDP calls move ‘terrifying for parents’

. December 31, 2021 at 10:50 pm

“We’re in for a really rough ride for the next few weeks,” he told Metro Morning on Friday. “I feel that kids and teachers have been abandoned. We’re set up to be mass infected over the next several days, and we don’t have the health supports in order to be able to deal with that.”

“All of this is avoidable, so I’m feeling pretty unhappy,” Furness said.

“We could have built up the testing capacity. There’s no question we could have. We made a conscious decision as a province not to do that. We’ve had 20 months. The technologies are there. We decided not to.”

. January 3, 2022 at 12:46 am


Ontario poised to impose further restrictions to help contain COVID surge
Jan. 5 school reopening date also on the table, sources tell the Star

. January 3, 2022 at 12:59 am

A source told the Star late Sunday that delaying the school reopening date is now under consideration.

The possibility is sure to cause much confusion for parents, given that chief medical officer of health Dr. Kieran Moore announced the Jan. 5 back-to-school date only last week.

Both Moore and Education Minister Stephen Lecce, along with a host of pediatric experts, have repeatedly said that schools should be the first to open and the last to close down during the pandemic.

Education sources have told the Star that Ford wanted to keep child-care centres closed, and kids in kindergarten and Grade 1 home for two weeks to mitigate any post-holiday surge in cases. (Children under five are not eligible to be vaccinated.) But Moore and the province’s science table of advisers resisted that move, sources said, and it was dropped.

Some of the measures now available to the provincial government include further limiting social gatherings, more caps on capacity at all retail stores and personal care services, and also setting maximum numbers for all religious services. Given an anticipated rise in hospitalizations, the province could also put non-urgent surgeries and procedures on hold, although there is already a huge backlog for MRIs and CT scans.

. January 3, 2022 at 1:38 am

Thus far, says virologist Christian Drosten, Germany’s leading voice on the pandemic and also a member of the government’s new expert council, only “conjectures are possible” regarding the seriousness of the symptoms caused by Omicron. “Based on the indirect data available,” he says, he believes there will be “only a slight reduction in case severity.”

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