"In this year’s State of the Union address, President Joe Biden took care to
portray the ongoing coronavirus pandemic as a trial that is behind us and a
victory for the people. “Today, Covid no longer controls our lives,” Biden
said, adding that “while the virus is not gone, thanks to the resilience of
the American people … we have broken Covid’s grip on us … And soon we’ll end
the public health emergency.”
This rosy depiction belies reality. Even by the official count, hundreds of
people in the United States are dying of Covid-19 daily. In recent months, more
than half of all Covid deaths have been among people who are fully vaccinated.
Millions more are experiencing the disabling effects of long Covid, a condition
our systems of healthcare and social welfare have struggled to appropriately
address. The official policy for medically vulnerable populations, the
disabled, the immunocompromised and older people is that they politely remove
themselves from society — “back to normal” is not intended for them.
The Biden administration has been chiefly responsible for normalizing this
ongoing tragedy, and that work is set to culminate this spring. On May 11, the
Biden administration will end the official designation of Covid as a public
health emergency, just 1,200 days after it was first declared on Jan. 27, 2020.
This act will close the state’s assumed primary responsibility for the pandemic
and its effects and herald the beginning of the next era of Covid, one where
the private market rules the pandemic response.
In effect, the Biden administration is throwing Covid to the maw of the U.S.
private insurance market, shifting both the payer and the responsibility to our
predatory and extractive for-profit healthcare system. Costs will rise, the
uninsured and underinsured will face tough economic choices, and
pandemic-related resources will be stratified and rationed by a person’s
ability to pay (like all other U.S. healthcare).
As these first 1,200 days of the pandemic come to a close, the federal
government is relieving itself of responsibility for the ongoing death,
disability and debility wrought by Covid at a time when continued intervention
is critical. To get the next 1,200 days right, we need to understand that the
story of Covid has been a story of class war.
And despite our many losses, it’s one we can still win."
Via Violet Blue’s Pandemic Roundup
: March 9, 2023
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics