The domino effect – The Royal Gazette | Bermuda News, Business, Sports, Events, & Community

Log In

Reset Password
BERMUDA | RSS PODCAST

The domino effect

First Prev 1 2 Next Last

“A domino effect or chain reaction is the cumulative effect produced when one event sets off a chain of similar events.”

At the point of crossroads, individuals or groups have to decide which path they will follow. Some paths may be well paved; others may be dirt roads.

Across the world, including Bermuda, there are those who protest Covid-19 safety measures

Today we will look at some of the options in front of us as a country when it comes to how we deal with the Covid-19 pandemic and the subsequent “domino effects” of those decisions

Option 1 with subsequent domino effects

Covid-19 hits our shores, persons get ill, and some die.

Governments must make politically unpopular decisions in order to prevent mass admissions to hospital

We have access to a vaccine, but because of objections from certain quarters, the Government decides to give in and withhold the doses from the public.

Natural Immunity does not work in time for a significant proportion of the population, and casualties for 2,500 seniors over the age of 70 reaches 6 per cent. The hospital system becomes overwhelmed.

The country then remains on the Centres for Disease Control abd Prevention’s Level 4 list.

Visitor numbers slump, resulting in little to no work for taxi drivers, hotel workers, bars and restaurants.

International business loses confidence in their staff remaining healthy and begin repatriations.

The Government loses millions in revenue from lack of visitors and loss in payroll taxes of closed businesses.

Additionally, the government has to find millions to pay unemployment benefits to those who are now unemployed.

Government cashflow dries up, the debt level rises, and it now becomes an even more significant challenge to provide services and to pay civil servants.

Net result, everyone loses.

Option 2 with subsequent domino effects

Covid-19 and its variants hit our shores.

The Government decides to close the borders to everyone but citizens until Covid blows over, or until a significant proportion of the community is immunised.

Covid-19 infection rates are virtually low with fewer than five deaths.

Visitor numbers slump, resulting in little to no work for taxi drivers, hotel workers, bars and restaurants.

The Government loses millions in revenue from lack of visitors and loss in payroll taxes of closed businesses.

Additionally, the Government has to find millions to pay unemployment benefits to those who are now unemployed.

Government cashflow dries up, and the debt level rises, and it now becomes an even more significant challenge to provide services and to pay civil servants.

Net result, the county remains Covid-free but more financially challenged.

Option 3 and subsequent domino effects

Covid-19 and all associated variants hit our shores.

Bermudians become ill, and some succumb to these illnesses.

The Government puts in somewhat challenging border-control measures to mitigate the inevitable virus importation.

A reliable vaccine is made available free of charge to all who wish it.

The majority take advantage. Some are medically unable to use vaccines; others have strong personal or religious stances against vaccines.

Others accuse the Government of all manner of evil, begin protests, and vow never to support that particular government again.

In the interim, the vast majority of the population is spared from illness and death.

Visitors slowly begin to return, thus providing jobs for thousands.

Net result, despite the positives, there is rift between the Government and a proportion of the electorate.

No popularity contest

To be clear, these are the choices that every government of small jurisdictions is facing.

Bermudians do not think, feel or react any differently from other human beings with regard to Covid-19.

Around the world, just as many persons are willing to get immunised and be in self-isolation, many others are protesting in their individual and collective ways.

The bottom line is that any government at those crossroads has to choose to be pragmatic over being popular.

The reality is unpopular pragmatism could very well cost us votes and or seats.

However, there comes the point in time that one must be willing to be judged by the electorate on actions taken to save both lives and jobs versus inaction that costs both lives and jobs.

There are no easy choices being made in Caucus, Cabinet or Parliament.

However, those are the domino effects that we are fully prepared to encounter at this point in history.

Christopher Famous is the government MP for Devonshire East (Constituency 11). You can reach him on WhatsApp at 599-0901 or e-mail at carib_pro@yahoo.com

You must be registered or signed-in to post comment or to vote.

Published May 14, 2021 at 8:00 am (Updated May 13, 2021 at 2:41 pm)

The domino effect

What you
Need to
Know
1. For a smooth experience with our commenting system we recommend that you use Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Firefox or Chrome Browsers. Additionally please clear both your browser's cache and cookies - How do I clear my cache and cookies?
2. Please respect the use of this community forum and its users.
3. Any poster that insults, threatens or verbally abuses another member, uses defamatory language, or deliberately disrupts discussions will be banned.
4. Users who violate the Terms of Service or any commenting rules will be banned.
5. Please stay on topic. "Trolling" to incite emotional responses and disrupt conversations will be deleted.
6. To understand further what is and isn't allowed and the actions we may take, please read our Terms of Service
7. To report breaches of the Terms of Service use the flag icon