Belgian ‘Health’ Ministry Says Shut Down Shops as a “Psychological Shock Tactic”

Imagine you are a business owner whose business was devastated because the tax parasites felt like psychologically terrorizing the populace

Editor’s note: The Belgian authorities now admit that “shopping does not really involve any risk”. Imagine you are a business owner whose business was devastated because the tax parasites felt like psychologically terrorizing the populace.

Shutting shops at the end of October was a “psychological shock” tactic to bring home the need for restrictions to arrest the spread of the virus, the country’s health minister has admitted.

Non-essential retailers were forced to close at the end of October as infection rates reached the highest level in Europe and hospital admissions threatened to overwhelm intensive care units. Shops will reopen today after a decline in infections.

Frank Vandenbroucke told the broadcaster VRT that, with masks and social distancing, “shopping does not really involve any risk”.

Source: The Times

Machine translated from French.

“A surrealist interview”, “Enough to make Belgians no longer want to follow the rules”: the words of Frank Vandenbroucke after the Concertation Committee make people react

The Minister of Health, Frank Vandenbroucke (sp.a), returned to the reason why the authorities had decided to close non-essential businesses for a month. Explanations that have made many people cringe.

Asked at the exit of the Concertation Committee this Friday, November 27, the Minister of Health gave a speech which challenged many people, including his coalition partners.

Returning to the decision to reopen non-essential shops from December 1, Frank Vandenbroucke (sp.a) explained that “shopping did not really involve any risk when everything was well controlled”. Words to which the journalist from the VRT immediately reacted, asking why these stores had to close their doors on October 30. “Because at one point we needed to make a shock decision, we needed an electric shock and that implied that we immediately close non-essential businesses,” retorted the Minister of Health.

The Flemish socialist’s responses have been singled out on Twitter. The head of the CDH group in the Chamber, Catherine Fonck, judged it to be a “surreal interview”. “I have always pleaded for strong and coherent measures given the gravity of the epidemic. But this interview is surreal: the businesses closed because a ‘shock decision’ was needed. What cynicism in the face of all those who are today rolled by the loss of their business, “wrote Ms. Fonck on the social network to the blue bird. 

A few minutes later, she reiterated her anger by sharing a video in which infectious disease specialist Erika Vlieghe explains that experts have never advised to close non-essential businesses. “

Same story with Bart De Wever (N-VA), who wondered what the Prime Minister and the Minister of Health were based on to make decisions. “We assumed they were based on reason and science. But no. If you want to bankrupt the traders and convince the Belgians to stop following the measures, this is exactly the way to do it” , deeply regretted the leader of the Flemish nationalists.

François De Smet (DéFi) also displayed his dismay at the words of the Minister of Health. “He explains quietly that the businesses could have remained open, but that it was necessary to create a” shock “, he was surprised on Twitter. Let us stop infantilizing the citizens. The population will accept harsh measures if they are justified and explained. Not if taken at vogelpik. “

The former president of DéFi, Olivier Maingain, also did not mince his words about Frank Vandenbroucke. “The words of Minister Vandenbroucke on the closure of businesses is implausible, he said on Twitter. We thought we had a more responsible Minister of Health but we can doubt it. How to ask citizens to adhere to government decisions afterwards such an exit? “

The president of the MR, Georges-Louis Bouchez, did not speak on the subject but all the same retweeted the words of a journalist of the Last Hour estimating that the justifications of the Flemish socialist will not be “considered sufficient by the tradespeople”. Last week, the Liberal Party had already made known its desire to reopen non-essential stores for the month of December. The Minister of Middle Classes and Independents, David Clarinval (MR), considered that it was a “matter of life and death for traders”.

Flemish Vice-Minister-President Bart Somers (Open Vld), meanwhile, supported Frank Vandenbroucke. He said on Monday that the closing of stores at the end of October was “necessary”. “Our health system was under high pressure. (…) We had to intervene drastically and do everything to avoid contact,” he said.

Source: La Libre

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