To The Editor,

Lately the world appears as if waking from a Rip Van Winkle sleep and finding the scene has changed to a completely different place. Identity politics, climate change, even the fear of the common flu have gone by the wayside in the face of the pandemic which is sweeping the globe: replaced by the very real threats of financial ruin, food shortages and supply line breaks. Not counting the disease itself.

One might think that in what is perhaps a singular moment in human history when virtually every person on Earth is threatened by one common enemy, we could all stand together. That is not the case. A blame game goes on as to where that specific coronavirus originated and who designed it. Meanwhile, America added more sanctions on Iran, already hard-hit, making the purchase of medical products almost impossible and increasing the people’s grief. No standing together there. Nor do western scientists seem interested in speaking with their eastern counterparts.

This pandemic is disaster in the making for the vast majority of people; but not all. The famous Rothschild statement to “buy when there is blood on the street” holds as true for the top percentile today as it did in the 18th century. And every politician worth his/her wages understands that a crisis should never be let go to waste. Properly handled, crisis situations provide the ideal environment for government to get even more heavily involved in private life.

Governments and the top .01% hold their own interests first. But central banks have already shown themselves impotent to stop market slide. Trillions shovelled into the system with less than zero results. For regular citizens world-wide, as this situation worsens, it will be people supporting people on a personal scale that will get us through. The opposite of hoarding. The recovery will be from the roots up. Not the top down.

Yet this slow-motion train wreck does hold the hope that when the wave has passed all people everywhere can feel the same common relief, and maybe end the hating and useless wars which have been the cause of misery for too many for too long. We, collectively, will have won.
Another possible benefit is that as life changes from it was to that which it will be, there might be a return to spirituality and the re-acceptance of a higher power; that aspect of life which now mostly focuses on science and technology to lead the way, leaving divinity behind as a relic. During periods of very personal hard times, (or joyous), a deep solid faith is a rock and a saviour. A valuable lesson to be learned from our ancestors.

“Troubles come not as spies,” stated Shakespeare. “They come as battalions.” So look out for each other’s welfare as much as possible. Our real strengths lie in personal interactions and compassion.

Gordon Fraser
Champlain