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New Zealand's longest-running online daily news and commentary publication, now in its 25th year. The opinion pieces presented here are not purported to be fact but reasonable effort is made to ensure accuracy.

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Another sage reminder

15 February 2021

The fact that Auckland is now in L3 lockdown and the rest of the country has been elevated to L2 is a sage reminder of just how vulnerable we remain to the CV19 pandemic.

I suspect that New Zealand's enviable position of being effectively Covid-free for many months now has lulled many in to a false state of security that we have things under control and that CV19 is only a problem in other countries. Well yesterday's announcements should be a wake-up call to the falicy of that stance.

In a matter of hours, we've gone from being "without a care" to being much closer to where we were a year ago -- and that's not good.

Plus, there's another very worrying situation developing in Guinea right now.

Yes, as if to remind us that CV19 is not the only viral threat that mankind must face, new cases of ebola have been reported.

It would be hard to imagine the devastation that would occur if ebola had spread at the same rate and scale as CV19 -- but it is always a possibility at some time in the future.

Ebola isn't well suited to creating a global pandemic (yet) but, as we all know, some viruses mutate quite quickly and often, always advantaging those changes that make them more contagious and with a longer infectious incubation period. There's a very real chance that sooner or later, ebola will refine itself to tick the boxes required to turn it into a very real pan-global threat.

In the meantime however, we're left dealing with CV19, which could actually be a very good thing. I say a good thing because it may be our one chance to make sure we've got a handle on really dealing with a global pandemic before "the big one" hits.

With a death rate that varies from about 1.5 percent to as much as 3 or more percent, depending on numerous factors, CV19 is nothing to be scoffed at but if eboloa or some similar far more deadly virus was to become a pandemic, the death toll would be massively greater. This means all the lessons we learn whilst dealing with CV19 should be used to sure up our defenses against the next viral attack.

Right now we're facing an upgrade to our lockdown statuses for the next three days and again, this is probably a good thing. People were becoming far too complacent and beginning to ignore the fact that outside our borders, the pandemic is very real and claiming thousands of lives on a daily basis around the globe. Perhaps this is just what we needed to remind ourselves to be vigilant.

Unfortunately it's probably only a matter of time before one of the more transmissible variants of CV19 find their way into the general population such that a critical number of people are infected. Once that critical number is reached, hope of containing an outbreak effectively reduces significantly and we're all back to L4 lockdown. Could we be facing another Autumn lockdown in 2021?

Without the novelty of the 2020 autumn lockdown to offset the boredom and financial pain, I have a feeling that another protracted lockdown this year could be far harder for most folk to deal with. Let's hope it doesn't happen.

Of course the light at the end of the tunnel has to be the availability of an effective vaccination campaign. Sadly, even this appears to be fading a little, as it appears the newer, more contagious strains of CV19 are less affected by the current vaccines. What's more, by the time the vaccines are updated, chances are the virus will still be one step ahead.

Vaccination will reduce the spread of CV19 but it won't halt it.

Our only hope now is that the radiation from all the new 5G towers will kill the viral particles whilst also returning the earth to being a sphere, from its current flat state. All of this, of course, is contingent on planet Nibiru not smashing into the Earth as it flies out of nowhere on a collision course.

And let's hope that the tiny computer chips that are a covert payload within the vaccines malfunction, so as not to allow Bill Gates to take over our brains and turn us into BSOD zombies!

Did I miss anything?

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