Tag: pandemic (page 1 of 13)

Declining trust in society isn’t just a ‘vibe shift’

This is a wide-ranging and somewhat jumbled article which nevertheless has at its core a key point about the decline in trust in society. That’s not just a ‘vibe shift’ but a more permanent and worrying state of affairs.

Consider the Edelman Trust Barometer. The public relations firm has been conducting an annual global survey measuring public confidence in institutions since 2000. Its 2022 report, which found that distrust is now “society’s default emotion,” recorded a trend of collapsing faith in institutions such as government or media.

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It’s difficult to imagine how trust in national governments can be repaired. This is not, on the face of it, apocalyptic. The lights are on and the trains run on time, for the most part. But civic trust, the stuff of nation-building, believing that governments are capable of improving one’s life, seems to have dimmed.

Source: What You’re Feeling Isn’t A Vibe Shift. It’s Permanent Change. | BuzzFeed News

Health surveillance

It’s possible to be entirely in favour mass vaccination (as I am) while also concerned about the over-reach of states with our personal health data.

As this article discusses, based on a report from an German non-profit called AlgorithmWatch, such health surveillance is being normalised due to the requirements of responding to a global pandemic.

The idea that technology can be used to solve complex social issues, including public health, is not a new one. But the pandemic strongly influenced how technology is applied, with much of the push coming from public health policymaking and public perceptions, said the report.

The report also highlighted the growing divide between people who fervently defend the schemes and those who staunchly oppose them – and how fear and misinformation have influenced both sides.

Source: Pandemic Exploited To Normalise Mass Surveillance? | The ASEAN Post

Freedom for the few vs. freedom for the many

My wife and I were talking about lockdowns yesterday given that we’re due to be travelling to the Netherlands next month and they’ve announced a partial lockdown. I can’t imagine something similar would be accepted in the UK — by which I mean it would probably be difficult to enforce.

Austria are imposing a nationwide lockdown for unvaccinated people. This sounds like a good solution for those vaccinated, but (a) there’s non-conspiracy reasons why people aren’t vaccinated, and (b) whatever means are used to prove vaccinated will be instantly forged.

It’s a problem, for sure, how to protect the freedoms of everyone.

Austrian Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg at a coronavirus meeting (Credit: Dragan Tatic)

Austria will impose a nationwide lockdown for people who have not been vaccinated against COVID-19, becoming the first country in the world to do so, Chancellor Alexander Schallenberg announced on Friday.

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“A lockdown for the unvaccinated means one cannot leave one’s home unless one is going to work, shopping (for essentials), stretching one’s legs – exactly what we all had to suffer through in 2020,” Schallenberg said earlier, according to Reuters.

The lockdown for the unvaccinated has already been formally approved in Upper Austria, where restrictions have also been announced for the entire population. This includes a legal requirement to wear an FFP2 mask in all indoor public places and a ban on events for 3 weeks.

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However, questions have been raised about the feasibility of a lockdown which applies to only a part of the population. “We don’t live in a police state and we can’t and don’t want to check every street corner,” Schallenberg said.

Source: Austria to declare nationwide lockdown for unvaccinated people | BNO News