Assuming that those behind the Otterpool Development were born with average intelligence and an open mind, a thinking person is bound to wonder at the capacity they have developed while growing up (?) to ignore the unequivocal response of thousands of local people who have made clear beyond a peradventure that the Otterpool Development is neither needed nor wanted.
Of even greater significance is the almost complete absence of evidence of community support for the development, a statutory requirement.
No amount of artists’ impressions of roads full of cyclists, pretty flower beds, willowy trees and repeated references to ‘green spaces’ and ‘visions for future transport’ alters that fact.
That being the case our Local Authority has no mandate, no authority per se, to proceed with the Otterpool Development having jettisoned the once proud British ethos of public service wherein elected representatives and civil servants worked for the public good. Now they do as they please filling their boots in the process.
Who are these people and what makes them think that their warped opinions on the Otterpool issues trump those of ordinary people, some of whom they claim to represent? Here we characterise them, their backgrounds and their recorded opinions about the desirability and the need for the development.
Otterpool Developers are driven to assume political power through which to accumulate money from housing development and associated activities, in the case of the Reuben Brothers and others like them, through buying and selling land for which those with political power, the connivance of our corrupt and self-serving planning authority and supine members of Parliament, are attempting to grant development rights raping the open countryside surrounding Westenhanger Castle and Racecourse, Lympne Airfield, thousands of acres of farmland and for good measure any remaining plots big enough to contain two bedrooms and a handkerchief of garden centre plants.
The level of overpopulation in southern England manifest as ever smaller dwellings built on ever smaller plots of land is resulting in increasingly crowded ground space which lies at the root of our rapidly degrading natural environment, driver of the Coronavirus debacle and its current manifestation in the form of ‘Covid 19’.
The mess we are in.
The mess we are in following Coronavirus spp. having jumped ship to emerge as a zoonotic disease in late 2019 in the form of ‘Covid 19’ in live wild animal ‘wet markets’ such as that in Wuhan in China from where the virus almost certainly emanated, is of our own making.
It is a situation of grim portent threatening all human life, requiring considerable investigative research, effort and innate intelligence to comprehend which ability is noticeably lacking in our simple minded and self-important Prime Minister who consistently fails to address the problem appropriately. Being a politician his hollow words amount to no more than dancing on the head of pin as last Sunday evening’s incomprehensible diatribe demonstrated.
The title ‘Coronavirus’ derives from the characteristic ‘crown/halo like’ image of the virus covered with ‘docking spikes’ when viewed under an electron microscope and the term ‘zoonotic’ denotes animal diseases which have through enforced direct human contact become transmissible and capable of infecting humans. A classic example being rabies.
As with ‘Spanish Flu’ – an A(H1N1) virus, ‘Asian Flu’ – an A(H2N2) virus, ‘Hongkong flu’ and ‘SARS’ virus per se – the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome typical of zoonotic viral illnesses – remembered as occurring in 2003/4, ‘Covid 19’ results from human activity which has created the conditions conducive to the Coronavirus spp. emerging from the wild as a zoonotic disease.
The medical condition commonly presented by patients suffering from the Coronavirus family of viruses is pneumonia, symptoms including heavy, dry coughing, increasing difficulty breathing, rising temperature and headache, in terminal cases resulting in the patient drowning in the build up of liquid in the lungs. Hence the present international scramble for ventilation equipment.
Influenza pandemics have occurred at intervals over decades during the 20th century, the most severe of which was the so-called “Spanish Flu” caused by an A(H1N1) virus estimated to have resulted in 20–50 million deaths in 1918–1919. Milder outbreaks occurred in 1957–1958 known as “Asian Flu” caused by an A(H2N2) virus and in 1968 H3N2 “Hong Kong Flu” was followed by H5N1 ‘Bird Flu’ in China in 1996 and 1997 and the SARS epidemic per se of 2002 to 2003.
Other than its scale, our fight in Shepway is essentially no different to that going on throughout the world.
The election of Jair Bolsonaro to the presidency of Brazil whose environmental credo is to the right of Ghengis Khan, spells disaster for the people of the world on at least two counts. Major climate change globally and the proliferation of new zoonotic viruses resulting from large scale deforestation given life in the form of the pandemic we are currently experiencing.
Bolsanoro makes no secret of his desire to open up the Amazon to mining, timber and agribusiness interests and his contempt for conservationists’ efforts, which he sees as a impediment to economic growth from cattle ranching and palm oil cultivation in Brazil.
Climate change resulting from continuing and increasing combustion of the main fossil fuels, coal, oil and natural gas is being significantly exacerbated by the loss of huge swathes of the Brazilian Amazon and central African rainforests while directly threatening the existence of unique species such as mountain and lowland gorillas . The Congo Basin forests span six countries – Cameroon, Central African Republic (CAR), Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Equatorial Guinea and Gabon.
In all such areas encroaching human impact through urbanisation, road networks, the extractive industries such as logging and mining provide the circumstances for viruses to evolve zoonotically to emerge and migrate from wild animals where they normally reside without harming their hosts such as bats, to we humans who have no such immunity. Civet cats are known to have been a primary source of the SARS virus epidemic of 2003/4.
International condemnation of the Chinese practice of consuming all forms of wildlife from snakes to pangolins and bats has caused the Chinese authorities to attempt to ban the trade.
But while China’s State Forestry and Grassland Administration (SFGA) purports to oversee and control wildlife markets such as that in Wuhan, so great is the economic and financial value of the sale and consumption of wild animals that it comprehensively fails to do so and the transfer of animal diseases to humans continues more or less unabated.