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The week that was in Thailand news: Be a good child and have your vaccination – mummy’ll give you a sugar lump

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The week that was in Thailand news: Be a good child and have your vaccination – mummy’ll give you a sugar lump

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Things were so much simpler when I was a child. My parents’ generation suffered from so many ailments that are past history today. They were damn sure with modern medicines and vaccinations they were not going to let their own children suffer the same fate.

As the years have passed and that generation and even many of their children have died off, they have been replaced with a new breed who don’t know anything about history let alone the history of common diseases. And these ignorants are interspersed with an even deadlier strain that threatens us all, the vaccine denier or anti-vaxxer. They’ll be even worse than the pandemic denier as their misguided nonsense can affect us all.

Before every poster screams civil liberties at Rooster just relax. You’re within your rights not to take the vaccine against Covid. But you’ll have to suffer the consequences that in most cases will not be disease but problems with going anywhere, problems even visiting your local pub or cinema.

Scream injustice behind your keyboards but we won’t care. We’ll be having a good time.

The next few years at least will be marked by vaccine passports and documentation worldwide that’ll make yellow fever regulations look miniscule.

If you wanna be the only denier in the village go for it. You’ll probably enjoy the ostracization if posts on Thaivisa are anything to go by.

When I was a kid in primary school I remember a poor boy that was different. He wore some things I would later know as calipers. Because he couldn’t walk properly due to polio.

I’d taken by polio VAX on a lump of something. Had my vaccinations for whooping cough, diphtheria you name it. Though admittedly I developed enough of an anarchistic streak in teen years to avoid matron’s BCG jab, in my earlier years I was made to feel like a big boy.

“It might not taste nice, might hurt a little,” mother would say. “But be a good boy and mummy’ll give you a sugar lump”.

Yes, there have been some terrible scandals down the years regarding drugs that were supposed to be good for us. Any doubts about that check out the excellent documentary about Thalidomide on Netflix. Many women who had horribly deformed children after taking the drug in pregnancy fought for justice for years.

But comparing the 50s and 60s with today’s regulatory procedures for drugs is chalk and cheese. We’re overdue to return to a time when virtually no one would refuse a vaccination. Then it would have been seen as absurd, inviting death or horrendous illness.

Yet, out they have crept from under their keyboard stones. Under the guise of their pseudo science quoting from like minded muppets who post unsubstantiated drivel on the internet. Regaling us with “facts” that are spurious, attention seeking lies.

Many, too lazy or incompetant to search online accept their diatribes of nonsense and pass it off as new found wisdom to yet more of the gullible.

They are the sort that think a one in a million risk of death is serious enough to warrant risking serious disease instead. The probability challenged with a pass in maths but not a real clue about numbers and how they relate to life.

Worse still there are those that, again despite all the evidence, spout their theories about the efficacy of vaccines. Sinovac, for example has come infor big criticism from these numpties. No coincidence that the next minute you’ll see them post more xenophobia against China on an unrelated subject. You can read them like a book – a book for the trash.

Thailand’s vaccine rollout has been slow. Of that there is no denying. But this is because though they haven’t actually admitted it yet they are banking on producing all of their own – and far more – in the Siam BioScience labs that have now been given all the green lights to produce AstraZeneca.

My prediction is that the local vaccine will not only prove to be highly effective and reliable but that the Thai authorities will be able to produce it by the bucketload and put it into everyone’s arms at a rate of hundreds of thousands per day very soon.

Then or perhaps even during this phase they will sell vast quantities of the vaccine to ASEAN members to recoup money. And why not? While vaccination should have a humanitarian component, someone has got to pay for it.

Thailand – and some individuals in the kingdom – will be seen as white knights to the rescue; a handy political and societal by-product.

For now I would implore everyone to get vaccinated when it comes available to them for free or pay for it if and when that option emerges (Moderna was approved this week for that purpose at private hospitals).

Be good boys and girls and mummy – in this case the world at large – will give you a treat.

Not a sugar lump but a life back.

Rooster will be waiting his turn. I’m in no rush being not particularly old, having a chronic health condition but not one that seems affected or worse due to Covid. I think I’ve probably already had it anyway and if not am very unlikely due to my lifestyle to contract it. When it’s easy and free I’ll have my jab and flash my certificate on Facebook like the millions of others who care more than me.

But while my personal care and fears are low I believe it’s time to be socially responsible and get vaxxed.

The pandemic – particularly its third wave in Thailand – continued to be headline news wherever you turned on Thaivisa this week.

I was moaning about only translating Covid stories. I’m desperate for some good murders to relieve the boredom. Road carnage just doesn’t cut the mustard.

The midweek spike in infections to a daily high of nearly 5,000 was caused by infections in the prison system. The usual fools who don’t read a story and jump to erroneous conclusions thought Thailand had a spike.

It was just another day you’d expect with infections around 2,000 and deaths about 30, par for the course recently and nothing worth getting in a lather about. It’ll go down soon.

Rooster went out to visit friends in Ayutthaya where 50 people are allowed to gather. We were having a laugh about the overzealous authorities who seemed to have busted a few British expats in Phuket for daring to have lunch together, Monday’s clickfest on the forum.

We took the first of two trips all masked up in a car. Absurd really as we’re all from the same household but it’s hardly onerous so why the hell shouldn’t you forego a small personal liberty.

My children were enjoying great food, open air, rides on tubes behind boats, trampolining and motorcycle rides. No wonder they don’t want to go back to school.

(We heard of some people asking the local municipality nicely if they could be vaccinated early; they were accommodated).

D-Day for the start of term is now June 1st and 600,000 teachers and school staff are supposed to be vaccinated before then. Administrators can easily accomplish that by having staff vaxxed en masse. Another 1-2% of the needy population, job done.

Mayor Sontaya was pictured on Facebook getting his second jab. Wow! – all that time in Pattaya and he’s still only got his second dose….

In Amnat Charoen an American man added to the litany of misdeeds of his compatriots recently by fleeing a Covid ward after the doctors told him he couldn’t share a room with his Thai wife, who was also infected.

Blimey! I’d look upon a bit of enforced separation as a good thing – Mrs R has been a tad “Covid Sensitive” in the last week since returning to Krung Thep – pandemic central in her eyes – from the “safety” of Loei.

Pictures of deserted tourist resortsand shopping centers continued to get more clicks than they deserve. Examples were Siam Square One, Big C’s food park opposite Central World and just about everywhere in sleepy Hua Hin where the clusters from pubs and the pineapple factory have devastated tourism.

My last trip there was in December 2019. Apart from a brief Scrabble jaunt to Isaan it’s my last trip anywhere outside Bangkok and its environs. Nothing unusual there!

In Bang Yai, Nonthaburi, local police chief Pol Col Pheeradech paid a poor mum’s 1,000 baht mask fine after she got involved in a fruity slanging match with a fruit vendor.

Similarly humanitarian was a rescue foundation in Hua Hin that took a bedridden old lady to Krung Thai bank so she could get her disabled person’s benefits. These organisations do a grand job in Thailand (and could do without nasty posters on TV’s Facebook arm suggesting they do nothing but take backhanders).

BMA spokesman Pongsakorn said that all foreigners would get free vaccinations. Though the wording from Spring News was a tad disconcerting putting the order of importance as 1 Thais 2 Foreigners 3 Vagrants.

Jeez, Pongsakorn khrap, where do us British residents fit in?? I’m only joking, the “rayron” (tramps) can go in ahead of me, mate.

In Chiang Mai one news org on Facebook said every foreigner would get a jab by June. Free too!

Meanwhile the tourism authorities, with PM’s office heartthrob Traisuree as spokeswoman, “revealed” their 4 “timelines” for the reopening of Thailand to foreign tourism.

We’re in Level 1 and by January 1st the hordes will be arriving, fully vaccinated and eager to reacquaint themselves with a now cleaner and less cluttered Thailand. And no need to quarantine in Level 4!

Ten tourism places will benefit from October to January with visitors not needing to quarantine. They include Bangkok, Phuket, Pattaya, Chiang Mai, parts of Krabi and Surat Thani.

Three and a half million tourists were mentioned spending hundreds of billions of baht but they conveniently forgot to mention a timeframe for that. Tourism minister Pipat – knee high to a doctor – thinks that herd immunity will be achieved well before then.

His boss Prayut and Anutin – Big Too and Big Nut – were guests of honor at Central Ladprao shopping mall where a vaccination center will operate – one of 25 in the capital and surrounding areas in business premises. Hospitals and clinics will be the mainstay but initiatives such as this can only bring vaccination closer to the people.

Thailand’s porous borders were still big news. The IB admitted to thousands getting in each month and regaling journalists at their Suan Phlu press conferences with their sterling efforts to “keep Thailand safe”.

In Prachuap Khirikhan Naew Na reported on a ten year immigrant workers trafficking scandal allowed to continue after a Myanmar agent received help from a whole host of bent officials, past and present.

Keeping Thailand locked down is hard – but crooked officials don’t help matters; a statement that could be said about so many aspects of Thai life.

In lighter news – though by the look of this woman not her weight – a Thai lady was apprehended by immigration for taking 5,000 baht to marry an Indian in Bangkok so he could extend his visa.

And also more humorous than anything else were the irate netizens banging on about a group of people who drove up to the top of a scenic viewpoint in Phu Thap Buek rather than walk.

For many Thais in the heat of the day that seemed to me like par for the course!

In crime news a particularly nasty piece of work who has been preying on “pretties” was arrested just a stone’s thrown from my Ratchayothin Roost. “Denphoom” has been raping women he enticed online at knifepoint. This dangerous miscreant needs to be sealed off as much as Bangkok Remand prison was this week.

Finally, a few words about Bill Gates, the Microsoft founder who has been in the news a lot recently, often because he is at the center of conspiracy theories from the anti-vaccine loonies.

Now he has announced his divorce after trying and failing to reconcile irreconcilable differences with Melinda, we were told.

A wag of mine said it best when it comes to resolving marital differences especially among the computer elite. His advice to Bill:

Have you tried turning it on and off?

Rooster

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