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This is going to be shorter and faster than people think

Option three gathers wings

Finally the world is tossing out the pointless old Influenza Pandemic plan that called for six months of slow bleeding. Leaders are waking up to the high speed, hard and fast option. Tonight 20% of the worlds’ population are crushing that curve with a full lockdown because it’s the only option. 1.3 billion people in India are now in a three week home quarantine, joining France, Italy, China, Poland, Spain, Belgium, the United Kingdom, New York, California, South Africa, Colombia, Bolivia, Jordan and Tunisia and New Zealand. Sadly half a million people (at least) have caught Covid-19 and there will be another few doublings before the new lockdowns even start to show on the graphs.

Maybe stop feeding it fresh meat?

The Lucky Country Downunder, meanwhile, is copying the Italian-plan-that-failed with a bunch of wishy arbitrary rules that change by the day and are not remotely enough. We know the infection is spreading, but we’re still able to share our germs in Centerlink queues, at Kmart and while getting a haircut. We can’t have 6 people at a wedding, but we can have 600 at a school. Borders are closed but people are still going through them for essential jobs, and “every job is essential” says Scott Morrison.

Obviously after more people die, we’ll do the hard sharp lockdown too. I predict exponential numbers will rise exponentially in Australia, and the PM and Brendan-two-weeks-too-late-Murphy will say “it looks worrying but this is what we expected.” Then they’ll make some excuse for how people are not social distancing enough on their way to work and school and back and how, now, “medically” the time is right for a lockdown.

Simpletons will wonder why, if they knew numbers would rise, they didn’t do it earlier.

But even smart people won’t be able to answer that.

The worst of this will hopefully be over in four to six weeks. Not six months. The sooner we start the better. It’s not the end of the world to mind the kids at home (parents do it every school holidays).

The difference between Covid-19 and Influenza is that this disease is so awful we can afford (we have to afford) to eradicate it — or at the very least — deal with it, find a treatment, a cure, a vaccine. Everyone thinks we can’t possibly stop Influenza, but the truth is, if it hurt this much, we could. We’d find a way. We don’t because the price is just too high.

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