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Our Governments need to admit that they were wrong. Cut their losses and get us out of the boathouse.

Many decades ago, my late father bought a boat. We called it " The African Queen " because it was an old clinker craft boat in need of restoration and a new motor. After many months of hard graft, the African Queen had a facelift that would have made Nancy Pelosi proud - unlike hers, the Queen had a dignified look and was completely free of botox.

But, much like poor Ruth Ginsberg, our boat could float but it wasn't able to do much else.... it could never leave the boathouse and set sail because it's motor was buggered.

Enter the Wankel Engine. My Dad researched and decided that the best motor for the job was a Wankel, It promised a revolutionary new future and my father was sold on the concept. He ordered a Wankel. My Mother was against it. She felt we should just stick with something that we knew: if it breaks down, Dad knew how to fix it.  But Dad wanted to try something that eradicated all the old problems with a combustion engine.

Wankel Cycle anim en

It was a complete flop.

While the early problems in the Wankel motor were largely solved in later years, at the time my father ordered one, it was a " who's bright idea was this? " moment.

Dad had backed his hunch, his research and his heartfelt belief that Rotary Engines were the way of the future, but , alas, it was a bridge too far back in the late 1960's, early 70's. 

His choices? To stand by his decision and keep pouring good money after bad - or accept that he made made a mistake, cut his losses and start again.

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My father was a pragmatic man and always fessed up to his errors in judgement and was quick to accept kudos for those that were wise.

The Wankel was gone and a more stable and sensible motor ordered in its wake.

We went on to enjoy years of pleasure on " The African Queen " though, I must admit, as a teenager, I would have preferred one of the fast motor boats or jetboats that my friends enjoyed. 

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As we chugged around in our clinker craft old lady, I envied those in their fibreglass hulls and wished that I could feel my hair flying in the breeze aboard a speed craft rather than plodding along at slow speed in the old Lady. But our our tried and true Lady always got us from A to B and we never broke down. 

She neither let us down, broke down or let herself down. She was a staunch Queen and she held herself with dignity and our respect. 

I cannot help but reflect on this story and consider if there is a tale to be told.

If you bugger up, fess up, ditch the dud and fix it.

Are we not in a similar situation right now?

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Many Governments around the world ordered the wankel, metaphorically speaking. Shut down, hope a vaccine will come and keep pouring money in, hoping, hoping, hoping. 

It isn't working. 

In the case of the wankel, it took many years to sort the problems with the rotary engine.  Can we afford to have the boat sit in the boatshed, waiting for a repair to come and, in the meantime, we could have been out there enjoying life if only our Governments, like my Dad,  quit their losses and started again?

Sweden was right. Get over it. Ditch the wankel, you wankers in charge.

No one will blame you for making a mistake. We have all made mistakes.

But admit you were wrong, destroying our economies and keeping us in the metaphoric boatshed for years is wrong and it is time to set sail with an old , tried and true engine: that of herd immunity and old fashioned common sense.

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We may plod and chug but at least we will be sailing again, not stuck in the bloody boathouse.

Surely it is better to set sail bravely than sit, inactive, becalmed and all at sea. 

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