Short comment on Bloomberg's COVID Resilience Ranking: Distorted optics
Updated 16:31, 16-Jul-2021
Helga Zepp-LaRouche
A patient is wheeled out of Elmhurst Hospital Center to a waiting ambulance in New York, U.S., April 7, 2020. /AP

A patient is wheeled out of Elmhurst Hospital Center to a waiting ambulance in New York, U.S., April 7, 2020. /AP

Editor's note: Helga Zepp-LaRouche is the founder and president of The Schiller Institute. The article reflects the author's opinions and not necessarily those of CGTN.

Bloomberg's COVID Resilience Ranking professes that it proves it is not the ability to "order people into submission," but the "high degree of trust and societal compliance" which were fostered by "democratic" governments, that were the reasons for success in tackling the pandemic.

Essentially this ranking is a demonstration of the thesis, that one can prove anything with statistics, as long as you define how the statistics are constructed. While most of the nominal facts of the listed rankings appear to be factual, the accompanying article in the section "Containment Formula" belies the overall purpose and bias hidden behind the statistics. Here the worry is expressed, that the "underperformance of some of the world's most prominent democracies" as compared with "authoritarian countries like China" has raised questions about the ability of democratic societies to cope with pandemics.

The reality shows a quite different story. In Wuhan, China, it demonstrated that the prioritization of society's well-being over individual liberty was very successful. The Chinese approach after the containment in Hubei Province to test, isolate, quarantine, continues to spot cases to the present day and has resulted in only 4,636 deaths to date. In the U.S., on the other hand, more than 600,000 people lost their lives with many people suffering from long-term COVID debilitating effects.

Quite opposite from "ordering people into submission," the idea of wearing masks to protect others is part of the culture in China and other Asian countries; while in many Western societies, masks are seen as the ultimate proof of suppression of freedom, and thus society as whole is burdened by huge economic losses, especially by the poor, due to the irrational and self-centered segments of the population.

Firefighters conduct disinfection at Terminal 3 of Wuhan Tianhe International Airport in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province, April 3, 2020. /Xinhua

Firefighters conduct disinfection at Terminal 3 of Wuhan Tianhe International Airport in Wuhan, central China's Hubei Province, April 3, 2020. /Xinhua

For Bloomberg to talk about the "high degree of trust and societal compliance," as if this would be the situation in Western countries, is turning things upside down. The influence of the "anti-vaxxer" movement in the population is alarming. In the U.S., almost the entire political base of former President Donald Trump made it a point to not wear masks and not keep social distancing as a demonstration of their view, that the supposed reality of the pandemic was only a conspiracy to suppress their freedom on the part of Bill Gates.

In many European countries likewise, the speed of vaccinations is slowing down significantly, after only roughly half of the populations was vaccinated, because many people have been swayed by wild conspiracy theories about the supposed intention of the governments to take away their civil liberties and enact authoritarian powers. This irrationality affects an amazingly large part of otherwise rational populace, including educated professionals and members of the medical profession. Since Bloomberg for sure is aware of this, it takes significant audacity to write what they did.

What the Bloomberg ranking leaves out completely, is the consequence of the vaccine national egotism and hoarding, leaving many developing countries completely without vaccines. The resulting number of casualties is unknown, since many countries either don't have or don't perform testing, or accurate diagnostics of the cause of death.

In India, for example, it is estimated that the actual number is five to 10 times higher than officially reported. There are many countries in the developing world who only have vaccines, because they got them from China, Russia and India, but that has been smeared as "Vaccine Diplomacy" by other Western mainstream media. This Bloomberg ranking is akin to a schoolyard bully who takes all the lunch bags from the other pupils and gorges them all up, to then accuse the other pupils of being skinny.

The article mentions the "wild card," namely that mutations are developing. They don't mention that this happens primarily in the neglected countries with poor healthcare systems and little if any vaccinations – and that these could make existing vaccinations ineffective. They don't mention that the pitiful condition of some of the developing countries is the result of colonial policies and their persistence through Western financial institutions to the present day.

Overall, the purpose of Bloomberg's COVID Resilience Ranking is to provide a justification narrative for the liberal approach to the pandemic and reflect a complete disrespect for the value of the individual human life, of which far more than two million have been lost.

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