Last updated2020-04-22T13:27:06



410 AN other lockdown sceptic, 16, #1 of 50 🔗

Thank you Toby. Brilliant as ever. Lets keep the momentum going. Off for a drive + longer walk now.

411 BoneyKnee, replying to BoneyKnee, -7, #2 of 50 🔗

Toby, you’ve done it again. Accuse the FT and others of poor quality journalism then base your point on a single letter in the Lancet about one set of experiences. The letter might be right. However, there is not one ventilator – as you well know – so maybe the letter writer did see failure because it was the wrong type of ventilator or used by people with poor skills. I don’t know & neither do you. But you still chose to use this knock others and spread uncertainty.

I struggle to believe that highly trained practioners globally are asking for a piece of equipment that in fact kills people. Seems a tad unlikely. I can accept that the media has bigged them up as some sort of magic device. Some use them as a stick to beat Hancock with and don’t care about the therapeutics.

416 ▶▶ Hector Drummond, replying to BoneyKnee, 10, #3 of 50 🔗

BK, there are plenty of other reports of these issues with ventilators, for example:

419 ▶▶▶▶ BoneyKnee, replying to Hector Drummond, #5 of 50 🔗

Yes. Indeed I am not denying that. People die from Covid. There isn’t a cure or a good set of treatments. That includes ventilators.

454 ▶▶▶▶▶ Mr Robert J Jolley, replying to BoneyKnee, 10, #6 of 50 🔗

Most die WITH Covid not FROM. Government should publish full data of deaths with primary cause. Covid has to be included on death certificates as they made it a notifiable disease.

462 ▶▶▶▶▶▶ Danny, replying to Mr Robert J Jolley, 4, #7 of 50 🔗

For most of them COVID-19 is what kileld them by being the straw on the camel’s back, but it in 95% of cases wouldn’t have been able to kill if they hadn’t already been weakened by underlying conditions of various types. This is a nasty disease, it does need to be fought, but not by shutting down our country, tearing up our civil liberties and destroying the futue of local buinesses. Most, not all but most, coronavirus deaths are people who wouldn’t have lasted much longer anyway. But even with the fact that some vicitims were healthy to begin with, this virus isn’t so dangerous as to necessitate shutting down all of life.

468 ▶▶▶▶▶▶▶ BoneyKnee, replying to Danny, -4, #8 of 50 🔗

“Most, not all but most, coronavirus deaths are people who wouldn’t have lasted much longer anyway” Oh really and what’s your data set for this sweeping statement. People like our PM?

People died “with” HIV not from HIV directly. Shall we do some more semantic dancing?

478 ▶▶▶▶▶▶▶▶ Peter Thompson, replying to BoneyKnee, 4, #9 of 50 🔗

Italian statistics indicate the mean age of cvd19 deaths was 80 and 99% had one or more significant illness . https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-03-18/99-of-those-who-died-from-virus-had-other-illness-italy-says

528 ▶▶▶▶▶▶▶▶ Danny, replying to BoneyKnee, 1, #10 of 50 🔗

BoneyKnee: Boris is ONE datapoint, I didn’t say nobody who is young(ish) and (possibly) in good health would get a bad case. And besides, he survived, there is a pretty high chance that the status of being the PM meant he was given treatment quality far beyond necessary for the state of condition he may have been in. The stats are showing that in the UK 95% of serious cases have underlying conditions, I work by stats not emotional anecdotes, that way I don’t have to cower in fear at every possible risk. I made no comments about HIV, it is a much nastier disease than COVID-19.

434 ▶▶ SteveB, replying to BoneyKnee, 1, #11 of 50 🔗

This opinion piece in the New York Times goes into a bit more detail on the subject, interesting reference to the treatment Boris received as well:


465 ▶▶▶ Danny, replying to SteveB, #12 of 50 🔗

Interesting article, that silent hypoxia suggests that those who die from the coronavirus might slip away quite painlessly, were it not for intubation and invasive ventilation which only seems to save about 10% of cases anyway. Might see about getting a pulse-oximeter for occasional checking, if they are cheap, and a do-not-resuscitate card for if my oxygen content gets low enough that intubation would be considered. Wonder what effect it could have if most households had a pulse-oximeter? earlier diagnosis of those at risk? shorter less intensive stays in hospital? less beds take up for time? less risk of hospital overload? no arguments left for lockdown-lovers to stand on? More research is need on this, some proepr stats to see if this diagnsotic could really achieve all those hopes.

480 ▶▶▶▶ Peter Thompson, replying to Danny, 1, #13 of 50 🔗

The oxygen destauration curve is one of those pesky S shaped curves. Certainly if you were in good health and didnt have COPD ( emphysema ) you would probably run at 96-98 % . If it was going down to 93- 94 % I would be ringing 999 .
if you have COPD then alarming desaturations are individual specific.
You can buy a sats probe through Amazon.

529 ▶▶▶▶▶ Joe, replying to Peter Thompson, #14 of 50 🔗

I do hope there are some studies of whether mass use of oxygen stauration probes could help ease the pressure on hospitals. Anyone aware of such? Could be a hugely helpful method to reduce the societal chaos that the virus is causing.

532 ▶▶▶▶ ThinkScale, replying to Danny, #15 of 50 🔗

This is very much going to be a matter of seeing if they can help en-masse for reducing pressure on hospitals. Individuals getting pulse oximeters is only going to make supply harder where they are needed in hospitals. This sort of measure is only of use if combined with a medical infrastructrue set up to handle all the queries about dodgy readings and to recognise and quickly handle suspect cases. Saving individuals is not the main issue, the issue is getting to as many of the later-to-be-severe cases ASAP so they can be treated mroe quickly and use up less hospital resources.

438 ▶▶ Tim Bidie, replying to BoneyKnee, 1, #16 of 50 🔗

For clarity, it is a letter that gives six medical study references. The author also links to a youtube piece by a New York doctor describing first hand experience of problems caused by ventilators in this context.

469 ▶▶ Paul Seale, replying to BoneyKnee, #17 of 50 🔗

I suggest you scour the Internet, there are plenty of articles relating to this, I find Google quite effective for assistance with finding them.

412 giblets, replying to giblets, 14, #18 of 50 🔗

Perhaps an aside, but one aspect people seem to totally forget is the effect on developing nations. The BBC report that UN is warning the pandemic could cause a famine of “Biblical proportion”s is neatly buried ( https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-52373888 )
This would result in 265MILLION people starving (that’s even more than Neil Ferguson predicted for bird flu!).
We should also remember the literal millions of garment workers (and other manufacturers) in the third world who will be let off work with the global slump, or work places closed with the lockdown. These are people often earning under $5day, no doubt their governments will not be supporting them in anyway. How many deaths will result there?
Needless to say the deaths as a result of this could well obliterate the numbers from the virus.

420 ▶▶ BoneyKnee, replying to giblets, #19 of 50 🔗

Indeed, this is happening already. Radio 4 did cover problems in a recent segment. The flower growers are already in deep trouble.

425 ▶▶ Peter Thompson, replying to giblets, 1, #20 of 50 🔗

see my notes on Singapore. They have good reporting and covid19 is now rageing in the Bengali and Indian barracks . Yet so far no deaths. Maybe because covid 19 is not such a serious illness for the younger populations like most of the thrid world.

437 ▶▶▶ giblets, replying to Peter Thompson, 2, #21 of 50 🔗

Yep, these countries with very young populations will suffer minimally, with 22% of the population over 65 in Italy, compared to 7% in India. Dare I also say it that the relative lack of healthcare in India also means a far lower % of patients living with complex morbidities

413 Hector Drummond, 5, #22 of 50 🔗

Readers might also be interested in my blog post looking at whether the latest ONS numbers show that the lockdown is killing people:

414 Gko, 2, #23 of 50 🔗

Re: the peak and Phil Nuttridge/Pr Ben Israel analysis, while peak might take the same amount of the days to be reached regardless of measures (because people are scared and doing distancing without being forced, CF Sweden movement analysis) and geos, the peak and penetrance of the virus DOES vary. A peak with 100,000 new cases or 10,000 new cases (even if it’s always after X days) would lead to very different outcomes.

On the ventilator, better safe than sorry. We didn’t prepare in the eventuality that they were needed or will be needed with a potential second wave (this is Trump’s comment yesterday during the task force meeting and why he didn’t cancel the ventilator orders although they aren’t used today). Outcomes also really vary: in France, more than half of people in ICU survive (not all are under a ventilator).

417 rossum, 3, #24 of 50 🔗

Give him the Medicine and the Nobel Peace Prize as well!

421 BoneyKnee, replying to BoneyKnee, #25 of 50 🔗

Oh and as PS. For all those talking about immunity as the way out, that’s not yet proven. I “believe” in immunity because I can’t contemplate not having it there. It seems that it is there given the case for second occurence is unclear. But, again we don’t know. So it’s great for some economist to live in a world where your people all get it voluntarily next week to become immune – we don’t even know that that is the case.

By the way, I am all in favour of the discussion of exit strategies. They need to be thought through now and discussed. I disagree with Hancock who I think won’t discuss them because they came back to testing and PPE, hospital capacity all of which he has cocked up and aren’t ready. This is the real problem.

426 ▶▶ Thomas Pelham, replying to BoneyKnee, 7, #26 of 50 🔗

Hi BK – it’s hard to prove during an epidemic. I’m hopeful for three reasons: a) we do see some antibody responses in some people suggests that some people gain immunity. b) we gain immunity (even if short term) from other coronaviruses and c) we’d surely have more evidence of reinfections if it were common, especially as we’ve locked everyone away with their coronavirus positive family members.

428 ▶▶ Mark H, replying to BoneyKnee, #27 of 50 🔗

It’s also worth noting is 75% or greater shareholding in the Porton Down lab working on a vaccine.

439 ▶▶▶ SteveB, replying to Mark H, #28 of 50 🔗

“It’s also worth noting [h]is 75% or greater shareholding in the Porton Down lab working on a vaccine.”

Errr… Porton Biopharma Limited is (presumably 100%) owned by the UK Government. Matt Hancock doesn’t have a personal shareholding!


Also I haven’t seen any evidence that Porton Down is involved in any of the vaccine trials to date, although they have certainly been heavily involved in testing (and testing of tests) and probably have the only true picture of serology in the UK to date.

477 ▶▶ Dwayne, replying to BoneyKnee, 5, #29 of 50 🔗

Consider then that the H1N1 influenza strain has been around for 11 years, and that we have a vaccine for it. Yes, it is comparable, it is a virus, and we even believe that it has a lower transmissible rate than the coronavirus. But year after year the H1N1 strain is still a factor during influenza season. So we have to hope that immunity is the way out, because even with a vaccine this new coronavirus will be visiting with us for years to come. And the only way to get immunity is to get it and survive. We are just prolonging the time it takes to achieve immunity in hopes a vaccine will become available to assist in immunity, and to ensure we can develop treatments for something that cannot be cured.

And now public health, politicians, and the media are acting like we can avoid all of this just by destroying the economies of the world by hiding under our beds. You can’t stop death, you can only put it off for a little while.

422 Peter Thompson, 5, #30 of 50 🔗

Two interesting things I have picked up on today.
1. Autopsy post mortems indicate that actually the first confirmed covid19 death in California was a month earlier than thought up until now, ie February 6 th . It was noted that the flu season was bad in California this year. This might explain why in April there has been no typical epidemic in California unlike New York


2. We have now a good model for how Coronavirus has differing effects in first and third world populations, with respect to CFR. In Singapore we have a first world population having an appropriate lifestyle supported by tens of thousands of imported labourers brought in from the third world. The latter mainly come from Bangladesh, India and the Philippines.
Covid19 is now rampant among the labourers often living in crowded dormitories yet so far no deaths The very few deaths in Singapore are coming from the frail elderly Chinese .
Conclusion ; Why is India and sub safaran Africa imposing lockdowns ??

423 wendyk, 10, #31 of 50 🔗

I made the recommendation for the use of palliative care in another piece: ‘How should we value the lives…’.

It must be the most appropriate use of resources for the very elderly, frail and debilitated residents of nursing homes ; it can be directed towards the relief of distress, the provision of safety and as much comfort as is achievable in a familiar setting.

There is no sense in moving those who are approaching life’s end into a high tech, crowded hospital environment, with the aim of prolonging existence by means of heroic interventions, despite the increasingly shrill demands of some media busybodies.

The care assistants who provide these services should have their invaluable contributions suitably rewarded in better working conditions: secure contracts and decent wages.

As to the house arrest/ heavy manners which now control our lives, should we perhaps consider dusting off Magna Carta for future reference?

It now seems ever more likely that Covid is indeed replicating its pattern of spread, infection, and recovery across the world, regardless of government policies, local conditions and cultural differences.


Here is an excellent article by Dr Matt Strauss on ventilator usage and suitability of same.

Finally, it seems that our increasingly tiresome MSM are collectively displaying symptoms of Covid Derangement Disorder, with the likes of Messrs Peston and Morgan most severely affected.

To close, ‘walkies!’ has now become equally tempting and enticing for humans and canines: the thrills derived from a sneaky second perambulation in the open air.

Who’d have thought that the humdrum pedestrian life could become so exciting?

427 Mark H, replying to Mark H, 11, #32 of 50 🔗

To say this lockdown’s consequences are depressing doesn’t go far enough. Today’s BBC headlines include famines of “biblical proportions” and how most of the vulnerable children in the UK are falling through the cracks right now.

Sturgeon has said that she’ll do what she thinks best “in her judgement” for Scotland, regardless of when and how the rest of the UK eases the lockdown. Never let a good crisis go to waste for furthering your political stranglehold on 5 million Scots.

429 ▶▶ wendyk, replying to Mark H, 5, #33 of 50 🔗

How right you are: many of us up here are fed up with the SNP’s spin on current events.
Surely unity is called for, so we can arrange a workable way out of the lockdown for the entire UK.

430 mogg42, -1, #34 of 50 🔗

The ventilator is interesting but confounding by indication is massive here. A bit like saying that people who have chemotherapy post cancer surgery die more frequently than those that don’t; ergo chemotherapy bad.
Incidentally the letter was published in Lancet Respiratory Medicine, not the Lancet – they are different journals.

432 RDawg, 16, #35 of 50 🔗

The real scandal here, is why this brilliant journalism is not being published in the mainstream media. Do you think Joe Public would be so enthusiastic about staying in their homes if this information was published in all the tabloids, BBC News (aka Biased Broadcasting Corporation) etc?

When the so-called “cure” kills more people than the virus itself, how is this “saving lives” and “protecting our NHS”? It is an absolute farce!

433 nowhereman, replying to nowhereman, 2, #36 of 50 🔗

Very interesting discussion between medical staff can be found here https://www.mumsnet.com/Talk/coronavirus/3886452-The-hospital-I-work-in-is-so-quiet

443 ▶▶ Annabel Andrew, replying to nowhereman, 4, #37 of 50 🔗

This is so interesting- is there any way that these comments can make their way to the press or even the Government? We should not be still locked up.

435 Daniel Smallwood, #38 of 50 🔗

Whereas Frances Hoar, above, may argue that some of the lockdown restrictions may be unlawful, I would hesitate to follow the path of Gina Miller, Jolyon Maugham et al, by challenging them through the courts, a course that most of us would execrate under other circumstances. If pursued by the constabulary, it would be nice to quote this article
by way of justification; possibly risky though, as they may be vindictive, individually and collectively. Better maybe to quietly ignore the dafter strictures, but avoid antagonising the vopos.

436 SteveB, 5, #39 of 50 🔗

Latest numbers now in from Sweden:


The graph is “Intensivvårdade fall/dag” (intensive care cases / day) is probably most interesting because it’s a binary metric and there is presumably less lag than “Avlidna/dag” (deaths / day). Also I think it includes all deaths.

I will let you draw your own conclusions.

440 wendyk, 6, #40 of 50 🔗


Here are the latest figures from the Kings College covid tracker for those who might not have seen them

444 Claus Hetting, 15, #41 of 50 🔗

This website is outstanding – please please please keep going. It’s saving my sanity.
Here for reference is another very good reference source by a Swiss doctor:

461 Ethelred the Unready, 7, #42 of 50 🔗

“Ever get the feeling you’ve been cheated?” J Rotten, 14th January 1978, Winterland SF

“Yes, indeedy ” L Belle, 22nd April 2020, Poole Dorset

466 maudboggins, 3, #43 of 50 🔗


“THERE will be in the next generation or so a pharmacological method of making people love their servitude and producing dictatorship without tears so to speak, producing a kind of painless concentration camp for entire societies so that people will in fact have their liberties taken away from them, but will rather enjoy it, because they will be distracted from any desire to rebel by propaganda, or brainwashing, or brainwashing enhanced by pharmacological methods. And this seems to be the final revolution.”

484 Laura, 13, #44 of 50 🔗

This website is my only hope right now. All else is screaming into the void. I also hate how politicized this has become. I am a social liberal and I despise Trump and I think the lockdown (especially continued as it looks like it will be into JUNE) is the worst decision ever. It will cost hundreds of millions of lives – as someone else mentions, the food crisis to come is staggering. But yet woke New Yorkers and Londoners prance around in masks and feel very virtuous for staying home. It makes me realize that Trump will be reelected in November because of the backlash – people want their liberty. The death rate will be right in line with seasonal flu. Stop the madness!!!!!

507 Dan, 1, #45 of 50 🔗

Love the ranting New Yorker!

575 Jeff Molyneux, replying to Jeff Molyneux, -3, #46 of 50 🔗

The assumption that getting the Covid 19 virus will leave people resistant is false. Covid 19 is a derivative of SARS Covid 2 virus seen inn2003/4

You may wish to investigate this:

Extracts from a “Nature” article – 2003”

“If SARS does return at a later date, its epidemiology could be different”

“Another crucial question is how long immunity to SARS persists. If this is as short as a few months, and SARS bounces back with the next Northern Hemisphere winter, even those previously exposed to the virus may be just as vulnerable as they were the first time around. “It’s quite possible that we haven’t seen SARS at its full force,” warns Donald Burke, an international health expert at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland”


“Herd Immunity” was and remains a stupid strategy – who promoted it?

On Sunday a virology Professor was interviewed on Andrew Marr. She very clearly stated that recovered victims of Covid 19 do not have long term immunity and the only way to achieve this is through vaccination. Long term resistant antibodies are only formed in 2-4% of the population. For herd immunity this needs to be around 80%.

This means the decision to adopt a “herd immunity” strategy was founded on spurious and inaccurate science. It was assumed immunity would be delivered to those surviving the virus. But Covid 19 doesn’t behave like the influenza virus. Does this mean the scientific advisors didn’t check? Covid 19 is based on SARS Covid 2 virus and it is well known long term immunity is not developed to this virus.

The decision to adopt a “herd immunity” strategy is probably responsible for the dithering and slow lockdown response to the virus at the beginning and is almost without doubt now responsible for the huge number of deaths being seen.

So who advised the government to adopt a “herd immunity” strategy to a deadly virus when no long term immunity is achieved from this strategy?

Best regards

Dr Jeff Molyneux

649 ▶▶ Dylan Jones, replying to Jeff Molyneux, 2, #47 of 50 🔗

Sweden seems to be doing fine. Not a “deadly” virus otherwise why would it be officially downgraded?

651 ▶▶ Thomas Pelham, replying to Jeff Molyneux, 1, #48 of 50 🔗

So why are antibodies being found in up to 22% of the population (New York) 15% (Germany)?

Can you link a paper for your assertion that very few people are immune? Why would a vaccine work if immunity isn’t being generated? Is this common in vaccines?

652 ▶▶ Barney McGrew, replying to Jeff Molyneux, 2, #49 of 50 🔗

Perhaps the idea was that if herd immunity doesn’t work, we are doomed as a society, anyway. We may as well just live life to the full for as long as we can rather than put up with this sh*tshow. (Sorry I have no ‘data’ on this.)

The ‘scientists’ are in a frenzy such as we have never seen. Never before have they had so much power, so many people actually taking notice of their ‘research’. I fear we are finished because we have put pygmies in charge.

663 Barney McGrew, 2, #50 of 50 🔗

Is there a name for the fallacy where in lieu of an argument, something is presented as new and uniquely shocking, but in the unlikely event that someone investigates it it turns out not to be unique at all?

Many people resort to pointing to images from Italian hospitals as if it ends the argument about whether the virus is more dangerous than flu. Or they give details of the lung damage that Covid-19 produces. Or they link to news articles about young, healthy people apparently being struck down.

But in every case, if we look at a bad flu year, we find the same things happening, the difference being that no one worries about flu.

It’s not that the people perpetrating this deception are necessarily doing it deliberately. Their ignorance is quite sincere.


32 users made 49 comments today.

22Hector Drummond510, 7
21wendyk10, 65
16AN other lockdown sceptic16
16giblets14, 2
15Claus Hetting15
11Mark H0, 11
11Peter Thompson54, 1, 1
10Mr Robert J Jolley10
8Thomas Pelham7, 1
7Ethelred the Unready7
6SteveB51, 0
4Annabel Andrew4
4Barney McGrew22
2Dylan Jones2
1Tim Bidie1
0Daniel Smallwood0
0Paul Seale0
-3Jeff Molyneux-3
-11BoneyKnee-7, 0, -4, 0, 0