The Contrast Between French and Swiss News

By | 23 November 2021

As I struggled to find a neutral topic to write about I noticed the distinct difference between how the French and the Swiss media are speaking about the fifth wave. The swiss say that it is “pre-occupying” and that it “has won the French speaking part of Switzerland” and “no long term impact on Swiss finances.” Switzerland is not taking the pandemic seriously anymore and reminds me of England. It is denying that there is a problem and taking reactive rather than pro-active measures.

France in contrast, with just 100 cases per 100,000 people are discussing booster shots for the entire population now. There is mention of “a preparation of a strategy to stop the rebound in the number of cases and about how Macron may prepare safety measures, to stop the increase in the number of cases.

I find Switzerland’s approach to the pandemic to be disheartening. I have been reading a book about a Submariner who went from pro-active submarine life to reactive, business life, and he talked about how he tried to change things around, where he could. It’s about anticipating problems, rather than letting them fester until they are impossible to ignore. That is what Switzerland, under the current government is doing.

France has a pro-active approach. We see that a problem is growing and we know that hospitals are going to be overloaded, but we want to get ready to take measures to limit the consequences, and the damage. They are speaking of elaborating strategies that will mitigate the risk, and they are not speaking of just vaccines and boosters. The approach takes a global approach.

Having said all of this, we know that this pandemic, once it gains critical mass, provokes big “waves” of infection. I expect France to go into lock down within a week or two. If this does occur then curfews may come back into play, and driving from one side of France to the other will be complicated. That is why I should leave this weekend, if I want to spend Christmas in Spain. Last year I made excuses for too long, and France, and Spain went into lockdown, and I had no certainty of getting from A to B. This year I want to avoid that. I know that returning to Switzerland will be easier, than going on a “trip”.

At least I will escape crowds and Christmas carols. I will also probably see more sun, and not be as cold. I will also be in a place where people do sometimes wear masks outdoors. You can’t imagine how good it feels to see people being cautious, rather than careless.

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