Full disclosure, the question comes from a London tabloid but the article does cite a former head of the British government’s vaccine task force
Excitement is growing among Coronavirus experts in Southern Africa and around the world as it increasingly seems that the new Omicron variant is rapidly replacing the much more deadly Delta mutation.
Experts are so ecstatic because it seems more and more that the Omicron variant is much more contagious and dominant than Delta, but also much milder and less deadly.
Some experts are therefore even urging countries to drop restrictions and let Omicron spread so the more infectious but less severe variant can kill off Delta quicker.
Clive Dix [former head of the British government’s vaccine task force] said that, if the new variant did turn out to be milder but more infectious than Delta, it would be worth easing travel restrictions so to let the milder Omicron mutation spread further.
“We’re not seeing serious disease yet and we’re not seeing death. The picture looks like it’s now a milder virus – and that’s what you expect with viruses. They mutate to become more transmissible – they’re not looking to be deadly, because otherwise they don’t get transmitted,” Dix explained.
In fact, Omicron may even turn from a curse into a blessing by diluting the severity of the disease and eventually banishing Delta, Dix stressed.
“There is a school of thought that if it’s weaker in terms of what it does to people then we should let it wash over us, we should get rid of Delta and then we’ve got a weaker virus in circulation that we’re not worried about. That’s really good,” he said.
The calculus here may be different for countries with a high percentage vaccinated, as I’ve heard that the vaccines are much less effective against Omicron than even Delta.* I assume smart people are tracking this, but it is an interesting idea!
Maybe there is a misunderstanding about who “smart people” are. I understand the term as alluding to the people who have most influence on decisions made relating to Cov-19. I apologize to anyone who has been offended by the clumsiness of my last post. It remains a fact that the vast majority of decisions are taken in the intersts of private capital, often against the public’s interest (especially in USA), as was demonstrated in the famous Princeton study.
There is a push to vaccinate the youth in USA (and now coming to Europe) when the data shows they absolutely don’t need it, to the point where one wonders if the risks of side-effects from the vaccine (with concerning reports about myocarditis) are not a more significant danger to them than Cov-19, but it rolls out anyway, supported by journalists and the scientists they interview.
In nearly all western countries, people have massively protested pacifically against mandates, for which they were often if not systematically met with tear gas (a chemical weapon banned from warfare by the Geneva convention), and which has even led to people in Rotterdam being shot by the police with live ammunition.
In Hawaii, Cov-19 relief funds have been spent on robot-dogs tasked to scan homeless people’s eyes to monitor them.
This is what I had in mind with that comment. I hope this clears out any misunderstanding.
Let the Omicron variant spread? Typical human hubris. The Omicron variant is going to spread regardless. Viruses lack awareness of human activity. They just move from one host to another. It’s not as if viruses put much thought into what humans are doing, at least not as far as what I understand about viruses. Even if human beings isolated themselves from each other in hermetically sealed body suits with air filters, eventually they have to come out of their suits every once in awhile to bathe, etc.
Unlike Small Pox, which was successfully eradicated through vaccines, the SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19) virus has reservoirs in animal hosts such as deer and domesticated animals. So even if humans isolate themselves from each other in hazmat suits, sooner or later they are going to encounter animals that spread the virus. The notion that the Omicron variant or any other variant can be eradicated is pure human folly.
To be fair, the young people who are hospitalized tend to not be in ICU.
The smart people who are doing modelling here are hardly in the sway of large corporations. Their day job is in Mathematics, Statistics, and Physics (so I know most of them) and we were just lucky that they knew people in the Government hierarchy who would listen, and that most of our politicians still value expertise over bluster.
I’m working on Covid ward, my colleagues and I see every day how dangerous and deadly that virus is. It’s so strange, almost out of body experience to hear people talking about spreading the virus intentionally and all that kind of stuff. I used to get angry before but now I just wonder if one day coming with me and caring for those patients would change how they look at things. One day risking your own health, one day seeing a patient suffering hour after hour, one day seeing yet an other dead body… As for Omicron, as far as I know we don’t know yet for sure how dangerous it is.
That’s not the direction, all viruses eventually resolve to a less serious strain / epidemic level like the flu, and that’s what’s happening now. South Africa’s gift to the world. But the threat of pandemic will forever modify human behaviour toward Nature, as there is a reservoir of virus in wild animals.
Pandora’s Box has historically been depicted as containing bats.
“The world is becoming aware of why we humanity is suffering through a global pandemic.
COVID-19 is what humanity is paying for, in the form of deaths. for cruelty towards animals. The
world has in fact noticed that maybe, this is a message from the universe.*
*(In Hindu mythology, “Churning of the ocean of milk” is an expression to denote the perpetual battle between the devas or gods and the asuras or demons).”—Van Zeebroeck
“whenever we perform a volitional action, the volition leaves its imprint on the mental continuum, where it remains as a stored up potency. When the stored up kamma meets with conditions favorable to its maturation, it awakens from its dormant state and triggers off some effect that brings due compensation for the original action.”—Bikkhu Bodhi
Thank you for your care and compassion and putting yourself on the line to help others in need.
Certainly it must be extremely challenging to hear people push their theoretical speculations, opinions and views, when it flies in the face of actual lived experience. I was shocked to see news footage of Covid testing staff being physically attacked by passers-by in the USA. The way this situation, and the way people are dealing with Views, has become extremely toxic!
As Buddhists, we could be providing a skillful alternative… Time for a bit of restraint, reflection and Right Effort
May you be able to continue serving with equanimity, and may people treat you with the kindness you show to others
It would be better to give someone omicron rather than delta, just like it’s better to give someone a cold rather than the flu.
It is best to not spread diseases at all.
Also all Covid interventions directed at children are primarily not for the benefit of those children, but for others who interact with those children (including the minority of children who are immunocompromized).