'Trident' is not an option for Malta

Yes we should protect the vulnerable or those with underlying medical conditions but the majority have little to fear. Let’s re-frame the story since failure to do so will result in a lot of unnecessary economic pain and hardship

Trident is the UK’s submarine-based nuclear weapons system
Trident is the UK’s submarine-based nuclear weapons system

By Kevin-James Fenech

Kevin is the founder and owner of JOB Search - jobsearch.mt and FENCI Consulting fenci.eu.

We are in the midst of summer with temperatures in the 30s and soon hitting the 40s and naturally COVID-19 is almost a non occurrence. High temperatures kill the virus or render it weak, so we are safe for the time being.

My concern is that the COVID-19 doomsayers keep scaring everyone with ‘the second wave’.

Obviously, they are half-right; much like a broken clock is right twice a day (midday and midnight)! Since, as the summer wanes and autumn creeps in the virus will reappear its ugly head.

My concern is that we panic and press the dreaded lockdown button again. I half jest but trust me this time round we will destroy our economy and economic hardship which we haven’t seen since World War II will smack us so hard, we will wish we had COVID-19 instead.

I resent the fact that recently all I ever write about- directly or indirectly- is COVID-19 but like it or not, decisions being taken today because of this virus have huge business implications and financial costs.

The COVID-19 doomsayers simply have no idea of economics or business and unfortunately are having a huge (negative) influence on financial and economic macro-decision making and this because of the dreaded Second Wave!

British Premier Boris Johnson said it right. He recently compared the ‘lockdown’ or the use of a lockdown in reaction to a second wave, to Trident.

For those not familiar to British military and nuclear capabilities, Trident is the UK government’s submarine programme for the deployment of nuclear weapons.

The prospects of Trident are frightening and the consequences devastating, so the use of Trident is more an option of the absolute last resort. In reality, it is a button the UK has never pressed and it acts more as a deterrent than a real feasible military option.

Boris Johnson equates the calling of a lockdown with the use of Trident. I agree with him 100%. Unfortunately, the COVID doomsayers and the face mask dictators, keep telling everyone that when the second wave comes we had better be prepared; we had better call another lockdown; and we had better close-up shop on a national scale.

Well I have news for these people: We cannot have another lockdown since the consequences of a second lockdown would be catastrophic.

Financially, economically and socio-politically, we simply can’t afford to repeat what we did in March. ‘Trident’ is in reality not an option for us.

Consequently, the Government needs to start preparing everyone for what we are going to do when the second, third, fourth, etc, wave hits us since this virus is here to stay.

To my mind, with a world mortality rate of just 0.2%-0.6% we should treat it in the same manner as we do severe influenza and as far as I know we have never shut down businesses, forced people to wear face masks or banned travel! These extreme measures are not proportionate to the actual threat of COVID-19.

The problem, however, is that public opinion, sadly, is all in favour of extreme measures in the eventuality of a second wave and this because they have been brainwashed by the press and media who were following someone else’s narrative.

I remember when I first saw the film Jaws, I was terrified of the sea especially when swimming in the deep and dark sea. I would imagine a shark biting my leg and eating me alive.

Naturally, I wasn’t being rational but hysterical and this because of the film Jaws. We are in a similar situation (sadly). The COVID-19 doomsayers and the face mask tyrants have put the fear of God into normal life and business is suffering as a result.

The most obvious observation I can make is that our economy (quite literally) depends on tourism. The multiplier effect of tourism is estimated to be in the region of one-third of our GDP hence 2020 will undoubtedly be annus horribilis and we urgently and frantically need to start working on 2021 if we want the recovery to happen next year.

Yet people still talk of The Second Wave, another lockdown and they encourage more public health authoritarianism, all of which is irrational and not proportionate to the actual threat.

I also think that most people have not yet been exposed to the reality of our economy less tourism but will do so soon and that’s when their opinion will change.

Our leaders need to explain the truth of the Trident option and how much of a non-option it really is. They also need to dedicate all their energy to the economic recovery and no COVID-19 doomsayer or face mask tyrant should get in the way.

Lastly, our leaders must educate and explain to the people that the actual threat of COVID-19 to the majority of the population is relatively mild so they can go back to normal life.

Yes we should protect the vulnerable or those with underlying medical conditions but the majority have little to fear. Let’s re-frame the story since failure to do so will result in a lot of unnecessary economic pain and hardship.

Trident is not an option for Malta. Let’s be positive and work on the recovery.

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