Final Word from Wednesday, November 25, 2020

It's a good thing that the covid crisis is only a pseudo-crisis made worse by media hysteria, because the Czech government has shown that it isn't very good at responding in an emergency situation. The same applies to the Czech opposition and to the governments of most Western countries, so we're not singling out Andrej Babiš. His latest move is nevertheless particularly baffling. Babiš wants Czechs to take a voluntary, free antigen test right before Christmas, which of course means that anyone who tests positive will spend at least part of the holidays in quarantine. Such a nationwide test might make sense if the preponderance of Czechs felt it to be their patriotic duty to protect those around them (to borrow from Joe Biden), but this isn't the case. The uptake rate of the free testing, given the possible consequence of a lonely Christmas, will be low. The whole operation only makes sense if it is meant as a way to blame "unpatriotic" Czechs for harsher covid restrictions early next year. [ Czech Republic covid-19 coronavirus blanket ]

Glossary of difficult words

to single out - to choose someone or something from a group for special treatment;

baffling - perplexing; difficult to understand;

preponderance - majority; the quality or fact of being greater in number, quantity or importance;

uptake rate - the percentage of people who take advantage of an invitation to be tested or screened.

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