Ideological viruses laid the groundwork for the deadly Wuhan virus pandemic

coronaWe worry a great deal about natural viruses, but viruses exist in the digital world and they exist in the mental world as well. Ideas can be viruses with just as deadly results.

If you are old enough, you will recall that it was American President Richard Nixon that reached out to China in an attempt to normalize relations.

That olive branch was eventually followed by metaphorical handshakes by successive presidents to an eventually hug by President George Bush who conferred upon China most favored nation status.

China’s entry into the World Trade Organization and its new status allowed corporations to set up shop in China without fear of being shut out of US markets.

Underlying all this, of course, was an idea – that globalization was a good thing.

The argument went something like this: If we can bring China into the family of nations, encourage its development, economic freedoms would lead to political and social freedoms and the world would be one.

Or as the cringe worthy celebrities have intoned of late:

“Imagine”

(from “Imagine: John Lennon” soundtrack)

Imagine there’s no heaven

It’s easy if you try

No hell below us

Above us only sky

Imagine all the people

Living for today… Aha-ah…

Imagine there’s no countries

It isn’t hard to do

Nothing to kill or die for

And no religion, too

Imagine all the people

Living life in peace… You…

You may say I’m a dreamer

But I’m not the only one

I hope someday you’ll join us

And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions

I wonder if you can

No need for greed or hunger

A brotherhood of man

Imagine all the people

Sharing all the world… You…

You may say I’m a dreamer

But I’m not the only one

I hope someday you’ll join us

And the world will live as one

Globalization, however, had a host of unintended consequences. As we have discovered in the past few months, China produces a lot of goods that other countries need to continue production at home. Manufacturers all across the West saw their plants grind to a halt because they lacked parts made in China.

It’s worse than that. China supplies 90 per cent of the antibiotics used in the West. It also produces a vast array of medical supplies, including respirators, masks and protective equipment.

Now, this wouldn’t be as much of a problem if China were a country led by a democratically elected party and one that believed in basic freedoms and transparency. It is China’s totalitarian ideology that made the corona virus outbreak so problematic.

China, after all, kept Taiwan out of the World Health Organization. It was Taiwan that saw some of the first infected individuals, but its voice was not heard.

It was China’s fear of losing control that saw it suppress news of the outbreak until the epidemic could no longer be covered up.

As a result, millions of Chinese nationals traveled all across the globe unknowingly spreading the virus.

At the height of epidemic in Wuhan, New York was receiving 900 Chinese visitors a month.

Is it any wonder, New York is one of the hot spots in the United States.

Similar numbers visited cities along the West Coast.

There were 100,000 workers from Wuhan traveling back forth to northern Italy.

As I noted in an earlier post, the severity of the virus outbreak correlates strongly with the extent of economic contact with China.

In the digital world we battle viruses in a number of ways. We have firewalls so that outsiders do not deal directly with internal computers. We have real time monitoring of programs and downloads so that embedded viruses are found. When they are found, they are quarantined.

The problem is that we do not have anything approaching that level of safety in wetworld.

The WHO is supposed to provided real-time monitoring, but that organization failed to act with speed and urgency when the Wuhan virus was first discovered. The WHO is compromised by over-reliance on China.

The initial outbreaks should have triggered an immediate quarantine of China.

Only a handful of countries did that and they are not suffering the consequences of shutting down their economies.

The West did not quarantine China out of political correctness. The initial reaction of our leaders was to caution us about racism and bigotry.

We are now paying the price of those mental viruses – globalism, political correctness, identity politics – and it’s a massive price.

The cost to our economies will be in the trillions of dollars. We are likely to descend into a full blown Depression.

One thing is certain – we cannot go through another pandemic like this every few years.

We need to understand that all viruses require fast, decisive action.

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