Presentation by Rob Wallace, author of ‘Big Farms Make Big Flu’ and co-author of ”Neoliberal Ebola’ and ‘Clear-Cutting Disease Control’, Historical Materialism conference, 10 November 2019.
Author Archive | Rob Wallace
COVID-19, the illness caused by coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, the second severe acute respiratory syndrome virus since 2002, is now officially a pandemic. As of late March, whole cities are sheltered in place and, one by one, hospitals are lighting up in medical gridlock brought about by surges in patients.
What are the underlying structural reasons for the coronavirus outbreak? According to Monthly Review Press author Rob Wallace, you have to look at global agriculture if you really want to understand the nature of global outbreaks.
The real danger of each new outbreak is the failure or—better put—the expedient refusal to grasp that each new Covid-19 is no isolated incident. The increased occurrence of viruses is closely linked to the proliferation of capitalist food production and distribution.
The virus’s final penetrance worldwide will depend on the difference between the rate of infection and the rate of removing infections—by recovery or death. If the infection rate far exceeds removal, then the penetrance may approach the whole of humanity, although there will likely accrue large geographic differences.