|Wet Meat Markets - the
real cause of the pandemic - one that should have been addressed by the world years ago.
A few video reports centre attention on the real
cause of the pandemic - the appalling and longstanding practice (in South Asian countries
and China in particular) of having vast open air 'wet meat markets' where a variety of
often smuggled and exotic wildlife is either sold or slaughtered 'on the spot' for sale to
buyers who believe that (for example) stewed tiger pups can endow them with enhanced
sexual potency. This is a baby African Serval Cat. Its mother was probably shot. Many websites exist to trade in exotic
species. The USA is a major market for 'exotic' pets - one example
centred upon lions and tigers is well known.
Much of the illicit wildlife trade in the world is centred not only on these markets (some of which span several square miles in area apparently) but on the criminal gangs who supply not only these markets but the world-wide 'pet' trade in endangered species, often servicing wealthy clients in 'developed' countries. Two references out of the dozens available. The pangolin is the world's most trafficked mammal - for its scales.
General discussion of wet meat markets, and the end of life for one small grouper,
far removed from the fish counter at your local Waitrose! Groupers are a major food fish.
Some types can grow to over 350kg. Eating fish is probably a safe way of obtaining
protein - certainly safer than 'bush meat'.
Undercover journalists visited a wet meat market in Thailand ("a torture chamber and a filthy laboratory all mixed into one") (the first two pictures are from their youtube video)
Chinese dog meat market. (link includes videos from India also)
Wildlife market in Libreville, Gabon
An excellent BBC article on
the wildlife trade
|If there is one lesson to be
learned from the economic damage that is and will be caused by the coronavirus pandemic,
it is that vastly more enforcement is necessary of the illicit wildlife trade (much of it
linked to organised crime). The associated encouragement of large scale wildlife farming
that mixes up so many species from different parts of the world may also need to stop. The
Chinese Government is primarily responsible for the Covid-19 pandemic. It was all
predicted years ago by Professor Osterholm (see next section), and other experts and
animal rights campaigners.
Secondly, people as a species need to travel and mix far less - and if this means reducing the tourism industry by 90% then it would be a good outcome for both the world and for many 'tourist' sites themselves. Many tourist sites and especially Venice saw a vast improvement in their local environment during 2020 - and the world benefited from much reduced carbon emissions. Many cities saw vast improvements in air quality.
Once the pandemic is under control, neither of these issues is likely to be addressed by governments keen to see a return to 'normality' and 'economic growth' irrespective (as usual) of the environmental consequences. Indeed, as early as April 2020 there were suggestions that consumption of material goods should be 'rebooted' by giving Chinese citizens vouchers (with a short expiry date) to encourage them to go out and buy manufactured products.
Nevertheless, there were some reports that China's alleged attempt to hide the true scale of its own death rate from Covid-19 might result in a backlash against its leaders.
0. Index page.
1. Wet markets, abuses of wildlife, organised crime and the origins of the virus.
2. Folk dancing and the importance of other 'super-spreader' events - experience overseas.
3. Scientists, government scientists, and criticisms of government policy in the UK.
4. How many people will die - no-one can tell until the final reckoning.
5. Policing of lockdown in the UK - the need for police reform
(starting at the top?).
6. Religious nutcases and despotic governments (often the same people!)
7. Economics vs. Health - the lockdown cure being worse than the disease?
8. Ventilators and cures.
9. Shaggy dog stories - and wash your hands.
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