Last updated2020-05-04T10:30:40



1647 ▶▶ RDawg, replying to Laura, 2, #2 of 227 🔗

This is a great find. Thanks for sharing.

1661 ▶▶ Bobby, replying to Laura, #3 of 227 🔗

Great link, and from a nice strong source to back up our claims.

1686 ▶▶ sunchap, replying to Laura, 1, #4 of 227 🔗

And also good article in Washington Times by Joseph Curl saying this was a “media hoax” https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2020/apr/28/covid-19-turning-out-to-be-huge-hoax-perpetrated-b/ .

Maybe tide is turning…The new antibody tests are showing that it was. Also as time goes on I believe the Swedish and Japanese numbers will stay low and other countries will rise…So lockdown was pointless.

1688 ▶▶ sunchap, replying to Laura, #5 of 227 🔗

A clever and interesting study in MedArxiv about a week ago by a Dr Justin Silverman:
https://www.medrxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.04.01.20050542v3 ,
estimates 10% of America have had Covid-19, based on “excess flu like” symptons compared to recent years. If this is correct the American IFR, based on 63,000 dead out of 33 million infected (10% of US population of 330 million) is about 0.19 %. This is just twice that of the flu.

As serology tests now seem to indicate 5% infection rates in California and a 20% infection rate in New York, a 10% infection across the USA seems about right to me.

Given that Covid19 takes a lot less years from humans than the flu, which can kill the healthy young, this bug is surely about as dangerous as the flu.

1805 ▶▶▶ Alain, replying to sunchap, #6 of 227 🔗

“which can kill the healthy young” Normal flu can, but rarely does. Covid-19 can but rarely does. Interestingly enough, many flu pandemics though have hit the young and healthy worst. Pandemic flus such as the 1918 one seemed to be worst in those with a good immune system and very mild for the elderly. We’re lucky covid-19 isn’t like that and that most of the people who run the infrastructure that civilisation relies upon are therefore not likely to be seriously harmed by it. If we had a re-run of something as bad as 1918 flu then lockdowns might make sense, or not depending on details of how that disease spreads which were never recorded at the time, but for something like covid-19 we need the lockdown over and the young and healthy getting out so they can serve any old and frail who are (not unreasonably) scared enough that they choose to stay isolating.

1716 ▶▶ Jane in France, replying to Laura, 1, #7 of 227 🔗

I read the Bloomberg article. Apparently it is in New York, Detroit and New Orleans that the hospital system has been stretched to capacity. Density of population is given as the reason. Might not obesity and underlying ill health of population also have a lot to do with it? More than half of adult New Yorkers have overweight (34%) or obesity (22%). Detroit residents are more obese than the average American. New Orleans residents suffer from obesity, diabetes and hypertension at rates higher than the national average. Just look up city name and obesity and the information comes up. These cities are also home to a large proportion of African Americans who are likely to be deficient in vitamin D. Lack of vitamin D plus overweight equals critical outcome. Meanwhile people stay at home eating junk food, getting even less exercise and less sunshine than usual and becoming an easy prey for any virus that is going about.

1807 ▶▶▶ Graham, replying to Jane in France, #8 of 227 🔗

Perhaps air pollution too, much worse in big cities than elsewhere. Some studies have gone as far as to suggest that covid-19 spreads on air pollution particles, which sounds a bit far-fetched (although if true makes lockdown pointless), although it can also be concluded from them that in areas where lungs are damaged by pollution the disease spreads more easily and the percentage of severe cases is increased. Also explains, for the UK, why so many cases in London and so few elsewhere. Doesn’t make sense to lock us all down because of a London problem.

1519 Hector Drummond, replying to Hector Drummond, 5, #9 of 227 🔗

Thanks for the mention, Toby.

>So there you have it: the ONS records a death as being from COVID-19 even if it’s not “the main cause of death”.

I blogged about this quite a while ago, after correspondence with the ONS. Note that Covid is a ‘notifiable’ disease, like anthrax, which means that it must always be noted on a death certificate if the deceased had it, or if there were grounds to suspect the deceased had it.

1525 ▶▶ Mark Gobell, replying to Hector Drummond, 4, #10 of 227 🔗

The two new Covid-19 mortality classification codes U07.1 and U07.2 :

WHO.org : Emergency use ICD codes for COVID-19 disease outbreak

The COVID-19 disease outbreak has been declared a public health emergency of international concern.

An emergency ICD-10 code of ‘U07.1 COVID-19, virus identified’ is assigned to a disease diagnosis of COVID-19 confirmed by laboratory testing.

An emergency ICD-10 code of ‘U07.2 COVID-19, virus not identified’ is assigned to a clinical or epidemiological diagnosis of COVID-19 where laboratory confirmation is inconclusive or not available.

Both U07.1 and U07.2 may be used for mortality coding as cause of death

In ICD-11, the code for the confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19 is RA01.0 and the code for the clinical diagnosis (suspected or probable) of COVID-19 is RA01.1.

More information on coding COVID-19 in ICD-10 ( PDF, 194kb )

This document provides instructions for coding and certification of deaths due to COVID-19. The instructions align with the WHO definition of deaths caused by COVID-19 and ICD, and ensure feasibility in all settings.

PDF Extract :

“COVID-19should be recordedon the medical certificate of cause of death for ALL decedents where the diseasecaused, or is assumed to have caused, or contributed to death.”



Notifiable disease reporting : “Accuracy of diagnosis is secondary …”

SARS-COV-2 the alleged novel virus and Covid-19 the alleged novel disease, have also been added to the list of notifiable diseases, making reporting of even suspected cases, mandatory …

Gov.uk : Notifiable diseases and causative organisms: how to report

“Accuracy of diagnosis is secondary, and since 1968 clinical suspicion of a notifiable infection is all that’s required.”


1529 ▶▶ mogg42, replying to Hector Drummond, 1, #11 of 227 🔗

This isn’t news though is it. The guidance was issued in March.

1537 ▶▶▶ BecJT, replying to mogg42, 4, #12 of 227 🔗

It isn’t news to us, but most people haven’t got a clue this is happening.

1566 ▶▶ karate56, replying to Hector Drummond, 1, #13 of 227 🔗

Yes, but if there is no positive test result for each assumed covid death, it shouldn’t be included in statistics used for lockdown justification.

1569 ▶▶ Farinances, replying to Hector Drummond, #14 of 227 🔗

Can you give me some examples of other ‘notifiable diseases’? Just so I have some extreme comparisons for when I slap people I know with how unreliable the death figures are 😆

1521 Sally, 22, #15 of 227 🔗

The argument that the economy would have taken a massive hit whether the Government imposed a lockdown or not is only true if you assume that this virus required a massive reaction involving a significant decline in economic activity. In fact there has been a massive overreaction, and a variety of experts, mostly from continental Europe, have been saying this from the outset. You can read their perspectives and arguments on the immensely useful website Swiss Propaganda Research: https://swprs.org/a-swiss-doctor-on-covid-19/

1522 Mark Gobell, 6, #16 of 227 🔗


It also unearths this gem from the ONS’s website in which it explains that its definition of a death “involving” COVID-19 encompasses those cases “where COVID-19 or suspected COVID-19 was mentioned anywhere on the death certificate, including in combination with other health conditions. If a death certificate mentions COVID-19 it will not always be the main cause of death, but may be a contributory factor.” So there you have it: the ONS records a death as being from COVID-19 even if it’s not “the main cause of death”.

We have known about the above for weeks.

On 14 April I raised an FOI with the ONS to get the data on Covid-19 coded death certificates ( new WHO ICD-10 codes U07.1 or U07.2 ), which also carry any of the ICD-10 respiratory codes ( U00 – U99 ).

The ONS responded pointing me to various data already known about, but not what I asked for, which was only addressed with this, disappointing cop out :

“Further data will be available after the 2020 death registrations are finalised in Summer 2021.”

They have the data already, that’s for sure. A simple query on their database would answer it. Apparently, that’s not possible until Summer 2021. Some transparency from the ONS …

My FOI & response is here :

Home > About us > Transparency and governance > Freedom of Information (FOI)
Daily totals of registered deaths involving COVID-19 and respiratory diseases

Maybe others should also try ….


1523 David Mc, 18, #17 of 227 🔗

I hope I am not the only one who caught this story: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-52466834

Japan has had less than 400 Covid-19 deaths despite (because of?) not having a general lockdown. The Beeb journalist who wrote the story has clearly tried to given Japan’s lack of testing and lockdown a negative spin, but I think the lesson is clear – they only test and treat the most significant cases and tell everybody else to stay at home if they have symptoms, and combine this with a sensible and sane approach to social distancing and hand-washing. My wife is Japanese and my Japanese friends and in-laws can confirm this. (They have been politely asked to ‘only’ leave the house 3 times a day and go to work as normal.)

The real kicker in the story is this one: they reckon up to 780,000 people in Japan may have been infected. What’s 400 into 780,000? Answers on a postcard. Bet it’s lower than 0.9% or whatever Ferguson was claiming.

1526 Peter Thompson, 5, #18 of 227 🔗

During this whole media pantomine the media have played a remarkable role. For the world media the President of the US is of course not only public enemy number one but he is a buffoon as well. To be honest he is a flawed character and his public statements have been sometimes way off mark but hey all politicians are the same if you shone a light upon them.
The media earlier in the show in Act 1 didn’t like Trumps enthusiasm for chloroquine a drug which has been used for decades in malaria prophylaxis. They blamed the death of a pensioner who had taken fish tank cleaner on Trump as it contained chloroquine, but now it would appear that there is more to this story and it might be homicide .


Interestingly the first trials in England of hydroxychloroquine are now being conducted in general practice .


1527 Oaks79, replying to Oaks79, 18, #19 of 227 🔗

The Imperial College paper was not peer reviewed. The simulation and programming that it relies on has not yet been published in the public domain. Given that its recommendations were at variance with the then prevailing policy in the UK, a very low bar seems to have been set by the international scientific community on its wide acceptance.


1590 ▶▶ BoneyKnee, replying to Oaks79, -6, #20 of 227 🔗

University of Washington is advising Trump and have similar conclusions to SAGE.

1726 ▶▶ Andy Riley, replying to Oaks79, #21 of 227 🔗

The Imperial College code has been released here:
They seem to have been porting the code to GitHub during the last month, so at the time of the alarmist predictions that contributed to the lockdown policy, the code would not have been available (as Ferguson admitted).
For those who are not familiar with programming code the Issues tab is interesting.

1730 ▶▶▶ Mike, replying to Andy Riley, 1, #22 of 227 🔗

That’s actually a totally different model, not the Ferguson model (see the closed issues list).

1530 G M, replying to G M, 18, #23 of 227 🔗

As ever, many thanks for this. I do have a couple of points.

On a percentage of population basis, Britain has only a 0.038% mortality rate so far, while Spain has 0.5% and Belgium 0.4%. France is just behind us on 0.034% I think. Whilst indeed we are ahead of other European countries, the deaths-per-head, calculated as percentages, show very tiny variations (and, indeed, an overall tiny mortality rate from Covid so far). Does anyone know why these percentages are not being used in favour of simple raw numbers? I would have thought they provide a better context.

On Germany’s slight infection increase, and Johnson’s oft stated desire only to lift the lockdown when transmission rate is well below 1, surely it’s the case that as with any spreading disease, infections will rise at times and fall at times. The government should presumably be messaging a need to effectively learn to live with covid, not a nonsense about ‘defeating’ it, which implies that we can never go out until there is no danger of anyone catching it again, ever!

1532 ▶▶ G M, replying to G M, 4, #24 of 227 🔗

My apologies. My figures above are wrong. Spain’s percentage rate is only 0.05% and Belgium 0.06%. My broader point does still stand though

1534 coalencanth12, replying to coalencanth12, 11, #25 of 227 🔗

The Giesecke comment was interesting – Ferguson certainly radiates an impression as ‘one of them’ scientists I have encountered a couple of times throughout my career; slightly odd and not in a good, crazy cosmologist type of way. I imagine the other academic/PhD scientists on here know the type, especially as you get towards the theoretical physics end of science.

1540 ▶▶ JASA, replying to coalencanth12, 1, #26 of 227 🔗

Yes. Very true. A theoretical chemist I knew certainly fits your description.

1580 ▶▶ Farinances, replying to coalencanth12, 3, #27 of 227 🔗

I may have been to the famous uni beginning with C (wouldn’t normally be sticking up for Oxford so much in any other normal circumstance 😉 ) and in my college we had a preponderance of engineers (great people but…. quite dull lol), linguists and literature…ists (That would be me), and biologists/physicists. I love physicists because they all seem to be stark staring mad lol.
But not who you’d want around in a health crisis, quite frankly.
Biologists are the practical people of science I find.

1536 BecJT, replying to BecJT, 2, #28 of 227 🔗

Am I getting this wrong, but also aren’t the deaths not the date they happened, but the date they are reported, so if some administrator finds a load of forms in a shoe box in the corner of the office and clears a backlog, that can create a confusing picture? Sure this was buried somewhere on the ONS site. ie) at some point we’ll get a clearer picture of WHEN these deaths happened?

1542 ▶▶ Csaba, replying to BecJT, 2, #29 of 227 🔗

Exactly, That’s the case but not just ONS that’s the same with NHS data as well.
See that:

1549 ▶▶▶ BecJT, replying to Csaba, 11, #30 of 227 🔗

Thanks, well that hardly instills confidence. What an almighty cock up this is turning out to be! I’ve just heard Theo Usherwood on the radio and it made depressing listening, more lockdown, and then contact tracing (I hope that’s voluntary, I don’t want to be a law breaker but might have to be!), and NOBODY talking about what the NHS is forcing on carehomes, what they are testing for, how they diagnosing deaths without a test, time lag on data, nor what the data means in context, and even more shockingly neither is any opposition party or even politician. And then it was rounded off with an entreaty to throw your doors and windows open this evening for a collective effing clap!

1608 ▶▶▶▶ GetaGrip, replying to BecJT, 6, #31 of 227 🔗

Unsurprisingly most of Radio LBC’s presenters have gone in for the weekly virtue-signal in a big way.
Sadly no incisive comment or analysis there, or anywhere else on MSM. Early on in this debacle James O’Brien’s view regarding the lockdown was that if it was unnecessary all we’d lost was ‘some time and money’.
More disturbingly it’s clear most of the hard-of-thinking British public are of much the same opinion.

1723 ▶▶▶▶▶ Anonymous, replying to GetaGrip, 2, #32 of 227 🔗

No doubt these are the kind of people complaining about ten years of “austerity”. They’ll have a rude awakening when they discover the public finances could be back to 2010 levels, or worse, when the dust settles and there’s a danger of another decade of public spending restrictions.

1550 ▶▶▶ JASA, replying to Csaba, 6, #33 of 227 🔗

Exactly and the government don’t make this clear when they give the data each day. On 10th April the media went nuts with the daily rise figure of 980 new deaths, but if you look at the total deaths graph on the NHS website for 10th April, it is 700 as of yesterday, three weeks later.

1591 ▶▶▶▶ Cbird, replying to JASA, 5, #34 of 227 🔗

And (have given up all hope of truth or clarity from the government), did the media then jump up and down with indignation when they saw the 700 figure yesterday?

As a non-scientist/ statistician/ immunologist what I find most shocking about all this is that, while there may be room for discussion about many issues around this virus, a lot of what I see here concerns misrepresentation of facts and data, as in the ONS/NHS examples. Cock up or conspiracy, it’s disgusting that this is not being called out (present company excepted of course)

1600 ▶▶▶▶ Mark Gobell, replying to JASA, 1, #35 of 227 🔗

My post on the 10 April data, illustrating your point, with the day’s headlines :

Reported UK CV-19 mortality 10 April


1584 ▶▶ Farinances, replying to BecJT, 5, #36 of 227 🔗

I’m starting to think there’s a systemic lag of actual weeks between death and it showing up in figures. So maybe we’ll see a drastic reduction in deaths in like another month’s time 😣 😣 When we’re all insane, bankrupt, or both

1640 ▶▶ Jane in France, replying to BecJT, 9, #37 of 227 🔗

After being alerted by an article in Off Guardian, I actually did a calculation a few days ago to check whether cumulative number of deaths really was being reported as daily number of deaths. (You can tell I’ve got time on my hands.) The Daily Mail of April 24th, like other newspapers, reports that another 596 died of the virus the day before. What the Daily Mail does not mention is that 596 is the cumulative total of deaths going back to March 25th. Though the daily death toll gives the impression of being the death toll for that day, it is not; it is always cumulative. If you look up “covid 19 daily deaths announcement” on the NHS website mentioned by Csaba, and add up the totals for each day, i.e. 1 + 3 + 14 + 35 + 111, etc., you arrive at a total of 514 by April 22nd. The number of deaths for April 23rd itself is “awaiting verification” and has presumably been verified in the meantime and included in the Daily Mail figure. This would give the true daily death total for April 23rd as 596 – 514 = 82. The highest daily toll, from the NHS statistics, seems to be 216 on 21st April, nearly a month into lockdown. You can try this for any day you like. Reporting death totals as daily when they are actually cumulative gives a very misleading impression to say the least.

1538 Csaba, replying to Csaba, 22, #38 of 227 🔗

The government seems desperately trying to find any news that supports their original lockdown measures. They jumped on the news from Germany as it was the only valid information out there. Well, they somehow miss any news from Sweden, Australia etc. From countries where the lockdown was less strict or just recommended and much more effective than in the UK. The praise from WHO on Sweden means a lot for me.

1543 ▶▶ coalencanth12, replying to Csaba, 10, #39 of 227 🔗

I’m becoming alarmed at the political developments, Johnson really does look like a busted flush, a complete and utter waste of space being led by public opinion* instead of leading it like an effective politician should, on the back of a cabinet of mostly mediocre characters. Meanwhile in the real world, all of my colleagues are fed up and going stir crazy, I have heard of two incidents of self-harm within my social circle, as well as people not getting needed medical treatment. I was pleased to see one of the Torygraph columnists challenge the ‘new normal’ today. Surely many tory backbenchers must be alarmed?

*On that note, where are these ‘highly frightened, scared’ people the polls keep telling me about? Here in my corner of the London commuter belt life seems to be re-activating in-spite of Boris. I have a mounting suspicion that much of the ‘fear’ is coming from the ‘red wall’ new Tory areas, from speaking to family.

1560 ▶▶▶ Farinances, replying to coalencanth12, 9, #40 of 227 🔗

Let me assure you those of us languishing in the Red Wall do so under extreme duress and without fear.

Keep trying to make this about how we voted, and we’ll keep voting that way.

1563 ▶▶▶ Farinances, replying to coalencanth12, 9, #41 of 227 🔗

Also I’d suggest the highly frightened, scared people are locked up in their London mansions.

1573 ▶▶▶ Farinances, replying to coalencanth12, 10, #42 of 227 🔗

But yes – Boris has no balls.

1625 ▶▶▶▶ chris c, replying to Farinances, 6, #43 of 227 🔗

He also has a very small Hancock

1691 ▶▶▶▶▶ Farinances, replying to chris c, 1, #44 of 227 🔗

omg I have no emojis on desktop *crying laughing*

1544 guy153, replying to guy153, 41, #45 of 227 🔗

Saying that we would have had the economic hit anyway is an argument against lockdown for it.

If people want to lock themselves in because they’re scared of a virus that’s fine. It’s even the rational thing to do if they are at high risk. But that isn’t the point. The point is that it should be their choice.

Imagine if you could have a fine-grained intelligent lockdown where those who weren’t at risk could go out and build immunity while those who were could keep out of trouble, and in which nobody was forced to do anything or suffered harm and frustration from the unintended consequences of blunt instrument regulations. Oh wait you can. It’s called freedom. We should give it a try.

1553 ▶▶ Csaba, replying to guy153, 6, #46 of 227 🔗

I like what you say.
I believe the way that you described is the Swedish way. More recommendations and less must.
However, in this case, we rely on decisions made by individuals. That’s where the responsibility of the government comes on board. If they want to rely on individuals than they need to educate them to get the right understanding and knowledge of the truth. We need a new example of people who read not only social media.

1662 ▶▶▶ Micky, replying to Csaba, 2, #47 of 227 🔗

Csaba, have you though of standing for politics? You’d make an excellent breath of fresh air from all the authoritarian thugs we currently get.

1558 ▶▶ Farinances, replying to guy153, 1, #48 of 227 🔗


1567 ▶▶ RDawg, replying to guy153, 10, #49 of 227 🔗

– 100% agree. What has happened to our liberty in a so-called “free” country? How is this democratic, to legislate rather than provide recommendations? Why are the public so willing to give up their freedom?

Fear is a very powerful motivator. It is through fear they are managing to sustain this lockdown for so long, with very little public dissent.

1545 RDawg, replying to RDawg, 38, #50 of 227 🔗

Popped into my local coffee shop this morning (for takeaway I might add, that’s still currently legal!), and of course the obvious lockdown discussions were occurring. I made the point, “I’m surprised that a Conservative government seems to be neglecting the damage this is doing to the economy. I could understand if it were Labour, but Conservative!” To which I received the response, “Well that’s the choice; save the economy or save lives.”

I find this response infuriating because it is so incredibly naive. It’s as if the general public have been brainwashed into thinking we have no choice but to lock down, in order to “save lives”. When I point out the damage being done such as missed cancer screenings and treatments, people too scared to go to A&E with strokes, heart attacks, and other serious health conditions, the suicides from plummeting mental health, the domestic violence, businesses going bust, the mass unemployment, the colossal government debt, all these reasons are not seen as valid. Interestingly The FT and other newspapers ran an article on 10th April, predicting 150,000 will die as a direct result of this extended lockdown. Read about it here: https://www.ft.com/content/8027d913-2e2f-4d4c-93db-89bd726105f0

I think this again falls down to the “invisible” principle. Covid deaths are happening now in hospitals and care homes, and are therefore very visible and distressing to see. They are being broadcast constantly in the MSM. The public therefore invest emotionally, become fearful and are unable to think of anything other than “saving” these lives by following the “stay at home” rhetoric. The idea of not preventing these deaths is therefore immoral and inconceivable.

My concern however, as is for most of the people visiting this website, is at what cost?

1555 ▶▶ Suitejb, replying to RDawg, 25, #51 of 227 🔗

I seem to recall only a few weeks ago and for much of last year, one of the most significant threats to the nation’s mental health and wellbeing, highlighted in the media, was loneliness. Especially amongst the elderly. Social isolation was considered a rapidly growing problem with calls for steps to be taken to alleviate it somehow.
Then suddenly, within days, forget that! You’ve got to put up with being lonely. As long as you’re ‘safe’.

1664 ▶▶▶ Fred, replying to Suitejb, 3, #52 of 227 🔗

Safety isn’t worth the red tape it’s written on. Liberty is the true measure of a society’s success or failure.

1559 ▶▶ BecJT, replying to RDawg, 9, #53 of 227 🔗

They don’t mean ‘save lives’ they mean ‘save MY life’, it’s immensely selfish, as my long in the tooth friend constantly reminds me ‘nobody is that thick, nobody is that naive’. They’re not.

1561 ▶▶▶ BecJT, replying to BecJT, 13, #54 of 227 🔗

PS my rejoinder to the guff that you endured is ‘what price are you willing to pay, how many raped children, how many battered women, how many lost jobs, how many dead from cancer?’ and they just look embarrassed, but they don’t answer, as they’re still thinking ‘but my life’.

1572 ▶▶▶▶ Csaba, replying to BecJT, 11, #55 of 227 🔗

I would raise a point here as well. How many lives will be lost globally because of the economic crisis such as starvation and all the other diseases where we need financial funds to fight with them? For me, it sounds like we burn out everything on this one virus that sadly can kill people but definitely not the most deadly problem that the world has. With some smart Swedish type lockdown approach, less people would die than the number of people who will be killed because of the lack of financial support.

1593 ▶▶▶▶▶ BecJT, replying to Csaba, 8, #56 of 227 🔗

Exactly, this is the thing annoying me about the virtue signalling about saving lives, or ‘it’s a mother’s instinct to protect her child’ or the cheap political point scoring or whatever, as within that choice to be safe there is another choice that *someone else* can be unsafe, can pay, just as long as it’s ‘not me’. That’s what I mean when I say what has most disgusted me (thought about that, disgusted is the right word) is the moral dishonesty going on. And perhaps because I’ve always been a bit of a centre left softie, those same people who told me if I cared about the poor I’d vote Corbyn (etc etc, I didn’t, I spoiled my ballot) are at the front of the ‘not me’ queue, most of them more likely to be struck by lightning than die of Covid.

1595 ▶▶▶▶▶▶ BecJT, replying to BecJT, 7, #57 of 227 🔗

Sorry, missed a bit, those at the front of the queue, those same people with their sanctimonious banging on about ‘the poor’ have shocked me the most as when push comes to shove, they don’t care at all.

1666 ▶▶▶▶▶▶ Pete, replying to BecJT, 2, #58 of 227 🔗

I think we have a problem in our country’s culture that people in a bad situation want to drag everyone else down rather than boost themselves up. Accounts for all the Stasi neighbour incidents we’ve been seeing. The vurtue signalling only makes this worse, it seems some people have come over to the conclusion that life is all about virtue signalling and not about actually striving for anything yourself.

1570 ▶▶▶ ConcernedPerson, replying to BecJT, 14, #59 of 227 🔗

Yes, exactly that! When I walk around London I can mostly see my own age group (the unbearable late-20s to mid-30s millennials) sporting masks and gloves although they are not anywhere near the risk group – yet they are the biggest supporters of a full-on lockdown.

1667 ▶▶▶▶ Daniel, replying to ConcernedPerson, 1, #60 of 227 🔗

Nothing wrong with masks and gloves, just glad those folks have at least been out to some extent rather than just obsesively virtue signalling on social media by staying in. For those who do support a more extreme lockdown the mere act of going onto the streets proves their hypocrisy. Interesting about the stats, the ones I heard said 18 to 25 year old men were the group in which anti-lockdown views were most prevalent, although still disturbingly rare.

1801 ▶▶▶▶▶ OpenCorona, replying to Daniel, 1, #61 of 227 🔗

I personally really dislike the masks. Everyone has the freedom to wear whatever protective gear they wish, but masks for a cold virus are just silly, and give a dangerous false sense of security. And their gloves are just collecting viruses, bacteria, and mold.

1579 ▶▶ Oliver, replying to RDawg, 11, #63 of 227 🔗

My resposne to “save the economy or save lives” is to say “how interesting you think they are entirely separate”. Then remind them how food gets to their plates.

1629 ▶▶▶ chris c, replying to Oliver, 5, #64 of 227 🔗

The town where I live has become a ghost town. Both butchers are still open but both the veg shops are now closed – they are only doing deliveries. Some of the nearby farm shops are still open.

We used to have s strong local economy of small/family businesses and self-employed people. Now all locked down and unlikely to survive. I envisage one of the dentists reopening sponsored by Coke and the other by Pepsi, and the podiatrist by Kelloggs. The ironmonger’s has closed but you can buy your saucepans and batteries in the supermarket. I predict similar all over the country, only the large corporations will survive. And the banks of course, providing emergency loans at 30% interest.

1669 ▶▶▶▶ Jacques, replying to chris c, 1, #65 of 227 🔗

You might try and give some messages to any contact details for the local firms that you have. Tell them that the locals will support them by shopping with them if they will but re-open, and be sincere about this, make sure that you and your friends will do exactly this lockdown or no lockdown. For a lot of them haing confidence that they’d still get some trade could make enough difference to encourage them to either defy lockdown with public support or encourage them to institute some level of social distancing to sidestep lockdown tyranny.

2020 ▶▶▶▶▶ chris c, replying to Jacques, 1, #66 of 227 🔗

I tend to vote with my money anyway. It’s intriguing how the different shops cope; the supermarket obviously has a queue outside and staff who usher you in when permitted. Then you have to walk round the entire store past everything you don’t want to buy (IKEA anyone?) then stand in another queue until you are ushered to a specific till.

The butcher only allows one customer in at a time. One veg shop (bigger) allowed two as does the newsagent. The other veg shop would bring what you requested to a desk blocking the doorway. One of the farm shops (bigger still) permits FOUR customers at a time. The post office had a queue running the length of the Thoroughfare. The town shops now only open in the morning so you get twice as many people in half the time. How does that help?

So far all the other shops remain closed, I suspect some will never reopen. Sad because this was a very human-sized town.

1679 ▶▶▶▶ Steve Austin, replying to chris c, 1, #67 of 227 🔗

It’s a race to the bottom. After mass redundancies look at the way BA is intending to take advantage of the crisis to ‘restructure’ their remaining employees terms and conditions. Ryanair stylee.

2023 ▶▶▶▶▶ chris c, replying to Steve Austin, #68 of 227 🔗

And they will probably get Government grants to do so

1546 Ethelred the Unready, 1, #69 of 227 🔗

Pulp Ruction

1547 Oaks79, replying to Oaks79, 6, #70 of 227 🔗

So Nadine Dorries tweeted this:
I’m afraid that’s not the case.
You can still carry #COVID19
If you do have antibodies, we don’t know how effective they are or how long they last. We don’t yet know if everyone develops antibodies. Please follow the guidance. #StayAtHome

In response to this:
It’s been rough at times, but I’m glad my family has had #COVID19 We will not be part of a second wave, we can visit grandparents without fear of harming them, we can go back to work and uni and make ourselves useful to vulnerable people.

Thoughts ?

1552 ▶▶ guy153, replying to Oaks79, 8, #71 of 227 🔗

It’s scaremongering. The antibodies might not last forever and the virus might mutate so you might get Covid-19 or something like it a year from now, but it’s very unlikely that you would be any danger to your grandparents now provided it’s a good couple of weeks since you got better.

1557 ▶▶▶ coalencanth12, replying to guy153, 8, #72 of 227 🔗

Nadine does seem to be enjoying the lockdown, the minister for Mental Health I believe? Publishing well-being pieces from her rather large back garden.

1562 ▶▶ BecJT, replying to Oaks79, #73 of 227 🔗


1596 ▶▶ Mark H, replying to Oaks79, 9, #74 of 227 🔗

Isn’t she the one pushing a vaccine? If they don’t know how effective antibodies are, what the f*ck is a vaccine going to do?

1548 mrjoeaverage, replying to mrjoeaverage, 19, #75 of 227 🔗

First of all, I stumbled upon this website by chance, and I am so glad I did, as the blogs here are brilliant and extremely well written. Please keep up the excellent work!

The comments too make very interesting reading.

My problem with the whole thing, is that I have so many questions which I would love to know the answer to. Of course, I won’t get the answers, but this is what I have trouble with:

1) There is constant talk of avoiding a “second wave.” I have heard countless accounts of this illness (or coincidentally an illness identical to Covid) doing the rounds in December and January. This is the case in Italy too. Can the Government be absolutely sure that we are not already experiencing the “second wave?”
2) Can the above be furthered by the huge influx of Chinese throughout December and January, yet it took 4 months to peak here really?
3) They mention schools going back in September. It’s only a month or so after that the cold/illness season starts, and with all these kids cooped up at home for such an extended period, might re-starting in June be actually better for their immune systems?
4) Would we have locked down had China not locked down? What would have happened instead?
5) Looking at the trends on the NHS website for death statistics from Coronavirus, the Excel spreadsheet clearly shows a peak on 8th April, and that probably in a week or two, we should be down to the 200s per day. Is that really going to justify being locked down the whole of May? Ok, you could add care home deaths to this, but these are very ill/frail people anyway.
6) If this thing mutates as much as has been claimed, then surely we will never get a cure, otherwise the common cold could be cured?
7) I’m not a medical expert by any means…..so this last question could very stupid…..They keep telling us to wash our hands, as viruses could be on surfaces. So if there is an R0 of below 1, what happens if an infected person touches a door handle in a shop? Who gets infected if they touch it? How many?

A lot of what is happening I just do not understand. Hence, I prefer to ask questions!

Anyway, keep going with the site, brilliant stuff!

1578 ▶▶ Farinances, replying to mrjoeaverage, 10, #76 of 227 🔗

I second all these questions. The second wave point is a particularly interesting one. I know tonnes of people (myself included) who think they may have a had a mild corona infection already, from as recently as January to as far back as March/April last year (this was me. And I had all the symptoms including ‘crackly’ lungs. – I remember because me getting a cough, even when I’m ill, is extremely rare. And this was a bad cough, to the point that my entire chest ached).

I mean it could just be balls and we all had flu, but……

1592 ▶▶▶ giblets, replying to Farinances, 4, #77 of 227 🔗

All very valid questions, as for the door thing, I wouldn’t worry too much, its all very theoretical, so far don’t think there is single case recorded coming from transfers in supermarkets or restaurants. Everyone round here is going on about killing farmers after touching gates (a dirty farmyard gate outside compared to a temperature controlled and sparkling clean surface in a lab dabbed with an ear bud with virus on it)

Agree on the thinking I had it, did a work trip to Shenzhen in December, and got a very bad dry cough the week after, and out of breath a week later.

1684 ▶▶▶ Nel, replying to Farinances, 2, #78 of 227 🔗

I too had all ‘Covid19’ symptoms from January to February last year, the whole office got it, feverish at times and long hacking coughs that just wouldn’t go away; went on for weeks. The odd thing though it went straight to chest, no blocked nose.
I know many people who also had a dreadful ‘cold’ from beginning December ’19 that laid them up in bed for days and took them some weeks to get over. Sadly I also had a friend who died from it in early January (with co-morbidity).
If these were covid19 then it has been around a long time or a variation of it, so we could indeed be experiencing a second wave now.

1692 ▶▶▶▶ Farinances, replying to Nel, #79 of 227 🔗

I have a theory which I’ve previously dismissed as it sounded too tinfoil hat for my liking. But…. I reckon this thing emerged, in China, waaaaaaaaaayy earlier than anyone thinks – maybe a year before whistleblowers first sounded the alarm bells. It came, as we know, from bats. There may have been a very small outbreak somewhere (not necessarily Wuhan), but the Chinese authorities managed to isolate and contain it pretty quickly – or so they thought, but it actually did spread around the world to a degree but wasn’t identified elsewhere as anything out of the ordinary. Samples of the new virus were then deposited in the Wuhan labs for further research, where they were being worked on when it accidentally got leaked via an infected lab worker, causing the Wuhan outbreak – and the rest is history.

I think the fact that those labs are in Wuhan is just too coincidental.

1693 ▶▶▶▶▶ Farinances, replying to Farinances, #80 of 227 🔗

actually this would also explain why the Chinese were so quick off the mark with the sharing of the genetic sequencing etc. — they’d been studying it for a while

2028 ▶▶▶▶▶ chris c, replying to Farinances, -1, #81 of 227 🔗

When I heard this story it was fourth hand, and I haven’t read it anywhere else so of course it may be “fake news” but allegedly this British guy who had been working in Wuhan prior to the virus claimed that the Secret Police went into a research lab (there are several in the area), lined up everyone who worked there and shot them.

Obviously no chance of verification.

2027 ▶▶▶ chris c, replying to Farinances, #82 of 227 🔗

Yes me too, and a few thousand others – I met yet another one the other day. It caught my attention because in the last fifteen low carb/keto years I haven’t had the flu and had exactly two colds. Sometimes I would feel like I was going to get a cold, then that I had had a cold, without the actual cold in between – I guess that’s what happens when you have a working immune system.

Mine wasn’t nearly that bad – an annoying cough and feeling greebly for a few days.

We’ll never know if it was Covid prior to being “discovered” or if there was some other bug doing the rounds at the same time. Which leads to the thought I’ve seen expressed elsewhere that if you “only” catch Covid you have a mild illness, if you catch it along with the other bug you are doomed

1586 ▶▶ John Bradley, replying to mrjoeaverage, 5, #83 of 227 🔗

That’s a good list of questions. A couple of comments:
4)Yes, I wonder whether absent China lockdown, it would have become the weapon of choice. There didn’t appear to be much happening in China initially. A small number of people dying from a respiratory virus focussed in one region which experiences huge amounts of air pollution. The news story was the draconian measures taken to combat the virus – people being literally locked into their homes, and it being given an identity. Lombardy was next to come into the spotlight. The news story there was the ‘overwhelming’ of a ‘first class’ health service. What was to be done? The Chinese locked down, so it would be negligent of us not to. Then, Italy demonstrates this is a deadly virus that is capable of overwhelming one of the best health services in the world. What’s to be done? Lockdown. Italy did it. It would be negligent of us not to.
7)Yes, I’m confused by this as well, both from the point of view of the meaning of R and the effectiveness of ‘track, trace and test’. The way t, t and t is described is like tracing people infected with an STI. But this virus isn’t like that: you might possibly be able to trace some of the people an infected person has come into contact with (there were these blokes I was stood next to on the tube, one got off at Wembley Park I’m afraid I didn’t ask him name and contact details. average height, slim build..) but you can’t trace all the surfaces that a person has come into contact with and those who have been infected by contact with those surfaces. Am I missing something?

1681 ▶▶ Steve Austin, replying to mrjoeaverage, 6, #84 of 227 🔗

I can’t answer your questions as I’m simple man, but the bottom line for me personally is this. It’s all a load of hysterical b******s. Yes it’s a nasty virus, yes we should take sensible daily precautions like we were initially advised to do and yes, the vulnerable should take extra care. Apart from that lets get back to work. Our collapsing economy will kill far more long term than Coronavirus ever will.

1551 guy153, 5, #85 of 227 🔗

If the way Germany counts deaths is comparable to ours (which is a big if) then they’ve got another 10k deaths or so to go. If they release their lockdown they will get a second wave but not as big as the first one. An unenviable position to be in because any new deaths will seem somehow more deliberate.

The UK probably won’t though (a few more deaths but not really a “wave”) as we did our lockdown too late and got most of the deaths out of the way. Our lockdown was also pretty permeable compared to most others and probably had little effect on the epidemic in places like London.

1554 Oaks79, replying to Oaks79, 11, #86 of 227 🔗
1564 ▶▶ BecJT, replying to Oaks79, 10, #87 of 227 🔗

This is like the sceptic equivalent of a cold glass of wine, thank you!

1795 ▶▶ OpenCorona, replying to Oaks79, 1, #88 of 227 🔗

awesome – unfortunately, brainwashed lib friends who choose to make this a political issue believe Erickson was “debunked” and that Wittkowski is not to be listened to due to this ( https://www.rockefeller.edu/news/27872-rockefeller-university-releases-statement-concerning-dr-knut-wittkowski/ ) as if that invalidates his credentials…

1556 John Bradley, replying to John Bradley, 13, #89 of 227 🔗

A couple of points/questions arising from Toby’s usual excellent update:
1 I thought/hoped that yesterday’s apparent modification of the fifth test meant that controlling R had stopped being the overriding aim. Apparently not. So what am I missing? What possible reason is there for wanting to slow the progression of the virus (other than not wanting to overwhelm the NHS and buy time before a vaccine/treatment) given the costs involved in doing so?
2 I’m struggling to understand whether the R value is an observable number that can be measured, or whether it is a modelled number. I looked at the RKI reference above which says ‘R can only be estimated
and not directly extracted from the notification system’. If it is modelled rather than ‘real’ then what are implications. At the very least I would have thought it’s a number that you can’t simply take at face value. If I’m watching my fuel gauge I’d prefer to rely on a system that actually measures how much fuel I’ve got left, rather uses a model to calculate how much should be left. It may be that they give the same result but I’d want to know how reliable the modelled figure is.

1575 ▶▶ Farinances, replying to John Bradley, 7, #90 of 227 🔗

Very good point. It must be modelled, to a large degree, mustn’t it?

Because the only way to know for sure is to literally test everyone in the ‘active’ population every day at the same time and see what the change in infection is. Surely you can’t even estimate an R factor if you’re only testing a fraction of people?

Another thing that interests me is…..How do they model the thing going forward from this point, when we’re in such a massively different situation now re: the number of people allowed to mix freely outside their homes (I. E. Not many) versus the number had we not locked down. Projections were made on us not locking down, which is what the policy decisions have been taken from. But is anyone remodelling now
Surely if they’re gonna work off models, they’ve got to continually keep doing them to adjust for accuracy, not just keep working off the old model indefinitely. I’m no mathematician as you see but it just seems bonkers to me. Working off a two month old model when there’s ACTUAL.SCIENTIFIC.DATA. now available.

1582 ▶▶▶ Clarence Beeks, replying to Farinances, 7, #91 of 227 🔗

Likewise, there doesn’t seem much point in knowing or estimating R unless we know where the current infections are taking place. For example, it could be that R in public spaces is 0 as we know that the virus dilutes very quickly in the open air. And as (most) schools have been shut for several weeks then R in schools must be close to, or at 0, too.

However, until we know where the current infections are taking place we can’t make sure that lockdown is only applied where it needs to be. This subject was touched on yesterday by one journalist at the daily briefing, I think in regard to garden centres, but he was fobbed off with the standard “It’s still too early to be making those decisions…” response.

But if, for example, it turned out that R is high in hospitals and on public transport but low in shops and factories or building sites then we could move on at little or no risk.

1633 ▶▶▶ John Bradley, replying to Farinances, 4, #92 of 227 🔗

I think it was Chris Whitty who clarified it a bit today. As you say it is modelled to a large degree. He couldn’t say what the value was now – between 0.6 and 0.9 I think, which is huge range. He said they would be moving to make it more measured than modelled by doing random surveys. But how is that going to help with deciding what to do now? As far as I can work out, they’ll say something like: our model says R = 0.6 now, the model says that doing X will add 0.4 to R, so we can do that and nothing else. Would they then do some sampling later to see what R is after doing X? There’s a really good on ‘How reliable is Imperial College modelling’ on this, which I’m trying to get my head round..
I think your question ‘is anyone remodelling now?’ is important. As is the question ‘how well does the model predict the past? As is ‘has anyone run the model with different assumptions?’. As is ‘are there teams of modellers crawling all over it’

1638 ▶▶▶ John Bradley, replying to Farinances, 3, #93 of 227 🔗

Another thing. How can you possibly know how many people one person infects? Surely that’s only possible if you’re dealing with something that’s transmitted person to person like STDs. A person can directly infect a person they come into contact with by coughing in their face say but they will also infect unknown other people by the virus they leave on door knobs etc. Am I missing something here?

1568 Farinances, replying to Farinances, 12, #94 of 227 🔗

So. Let’s start discussing some of the looming realities of what will happen once lockdown is, finally, over. (Will it ever be over? 😭 )

What does everyone think of this tracing app? I think it could possibly be a very interesting flashpoint in the ‘my life’ versus ‘life’ (credit: Bec) cognitive dissonance that lockdown zealots seem to be having trouble getting over.

No doubt most people will just blindly download the thing and keep their Bluetooth on like good little data points. But surely there must be a significant minority who will either not want to make the effort, or who will actually have privacy concerns. What do they do, and where does it leave them in the argument that they’re the virtuous protectors of life?

My personal view is over my literal dead body. Given the NHS’s abysmal record, I don’t trust them with my location data as well as all the other stuff they have on me. I REALLY don’t trust the government not to sell that stuff to the likes of Amazon etc.
Not that Amazon would need it. 😉

1606 ▶▶ fiery, replying to Farinances, 13, #95 of 227 🔗

I certainly won’t be downloading the app but no doubt plenty of idiots will regardless of where this might be leading. As someone who will probably decline the coved -19 vaccine when it’s available I’m certainly not giving the NHS the means to track me. I’m even thinking of not taking my phone out with me or switching it off if I do.

1611 ▶▶▶ Fiat, replying to fiery, 11, #96 of 227 🔗

I won’t be loading up any app. Indeed, I stopped using my phone outside the house weeks ago. We all need to start getting used to living again without our mobile phones. Freedom!

1654 ▶▶▶▶ BecJT, replying to Fiat, 3, #97 of 227 🔗

I’m doing this too, leaving my phone at home. I’ve gone back to writing pen and ink letters, and I’ve deactivated social media, it’s actually a relief!

1626 ▶▶ John Bradley, replying to Farinances, 2, #98 of 227 🔗

What’s an ‘app’? I don’t seem to be able to download such things on my old Nokia. Perhaps I will have to be implanted with one of those ‘chip’ things instead.

1630 ▶▶ chris c, replying to Farinances, 3, #99 of 227 🔗

I started using my card in the local shops where I used to use cash (I expect a lot of people all over the country are doing this). It got blocked for “suspected fraud” when it was actually me going shopping. Three times now.

If this is the level of competence that is going to apply to tracking apps we are doomed.

1672 ▶▶▶ Keith, replying to chris c, 3, #100 of 227 🔗

Refuse to use card, force cash on them. It is for their own good, all local firms would be forced into bankruptcy in a fully cashless economy. Cash is safe to use in a pandemic, just don’t touch your face after handling your wallet. Cash transmits viral particles only between a small number of people, card terminals spread it between many more. Though one does start to wonder if given what we know about covid-19 survival times on different surfaces that we’d have been better with paper notes than the new polymer ones.

2031 ▶▶▶▶ chris c, replying to Keith, 1, #101 of 227 🔗

Good point! I’m just trying to be kind to the people who have been told to avoid cash. Do I want the bank to know how much I spend in the butchers? They might alert the Vegan Police.

1651 ▶▶ ianp, replying to Farinances, 3, #102 of 227 🔗

Will never be downloading anything like that to my device thank you very much

1677 ▶▶ Eldred Godson, replying to Farinances, 1, #103 of 227 🔗

Ditched my mobile 2 years ago…best idea ever!

1685 ▶▶ Nel, replying to Farinances, 4, #104 of 227 🔗

I posted this earlier today on the previous article before today’s article was uploaded…

Finally…170 scientists and researchers have got together and issued a joint statement concerning the deployment of the NHSX contact tracing app.


Maybe we can approach them to band together to address other concerns or use that kind of template to do that ourselves?

1574 swedenborg, replying to swedenborg, 10, #105 of 227 🔗

By mistake uploaded on yesterday’s blog so reupload today

I thought it would be interesting to have a look at the most politically incorrect country in the world, Belarus, and see how they are dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic. All information is from Wikipedia and the actual epidemic curve is extremely informative and much better than Worldometer.
The first case was an Iranian student 28th Feb but very quickly there were sporadic and increasing cases in clusters indicating local transmission but the real explosion was in the beginning of April. Different from neighbouring Russia which had a more “Western European” style epidemic with tourist coming back infected and then the explosion of cases.
Belarus did ambitious testing and closed borders, quarantine of cases, contact tracing and isolation of cases. The only social distancing was prolonging the ordinary spring break in schools with two weeks but no other social distancing at all. A WHO delegation in April noted, in a very diplomatic report, the very ambitious old-fashioned approach with testing, contact tracing early on and isolation but recommended social distancing measures school university closing, stopping mass gatherings etc.
Not something for Europe’s last dictator, Lukashenko.
Quotations” “You just have to work, especially now, in a village […] there, the tractor will heal everyone. The fields heal everyone”. Playing ice hockey “”it is better to die on our feet, than live on your knees […] sport, especially on ice, is better than any antiviral medication, it is the real thing” “People are afraid. Thus, I want to tell them the following: not a single person had died from coronavirus in our country. Not a single one! They died from a bouquet of chronic diseases”” “Utter nonsense. Children cannot wear these masks, especially in schools. There was no such requirement. If there are those who required it, they will answer for it. It’s better to open the window and let fresh air in”
At least you can say that you cannot accuse him for political correctness.
How are they doing in the epidemic? It seems to follow the same pattern as everywhere and they don’t seem to have reached the peak yet but there is a slowing of the increase the last days. Deaths and cases are well below the numbers in the UK per capita, at least so far. It would be fascinating if someone studied the Belarus pandemic afterwards, especially if the March cases indicated massive asymptomatic spread before the explosion of cases in April.
The last dictator in Europe must also be laughing seeing how many tinpot dictators have been created in Italy, Spain, France and the UK by this pandemic.

1576 ▶▶ Farinances, replying to swedenborg, #106 of 227 🔗

So the last dictator *isn’t Orban? 😉

1618 ▶▶ Csaba, replying to swedenborg, 8, #107 of 227 🔗

I think it will be very interesting to follow the number of deaths per capita in Belarus indeed. Can you imagine the thing if it will be exactly the same or very close to other numbers in Europe? What if the Oxford study a few weeks back is true and most of the people were contracted the virus even before the lockdown and the lockdown might not change anything just damaged the economy. What do you think is there anybody out there who is brave enough to write it down?

1632 ▶▶▶ swedenborg, replying to Csaba, 2, #108 of 227 🔗

I doubt it will be Neil Ferguson

1652 ▶▶▶ ianp, replying to Csaba, 2, #109 of 227 🔗

Indeed… Belarus are probably laughing at everyone else. But as ever with statistics, there will be some fake news about underreporting

1793 ▶▶ OpenCorona, replying to swedenborg, 1, #110 of 227 🔗

I was hoping to share some info on this, but what I found in the US media is that unfortunately they are poking like children at Belarus. People in the US are brainwashed by the supposed Russia election propaganda controversy. So liberals just claim any statements are fake/propaganda if they don’t like the findings. If Belarus comes out well, the US libs will simply claim they were playing with their numbers. US libs dismiss https://swprs.org/a-swiss-doctor-on-covid-19/ as propaganda also due to the globalresearch connection. Any editorial, they just claim the author is “playing fast and loose with the facts”. Slippery, dishonest.

1577 Mimi, replying to Mimi, 27, #111 of 227 🔗

I would have thought that governments would be looking for ways to END the lockdown, not searching for excuses to prolong it. The lockdown was sold to us in the U.S. as a painful but necessary 15 days, which would flatten the curve. (Whatever that means and however it would work.) It was meant to be temporary – an unpleasant medical treatment but one that had clear benefits. It was urgent that the step be taken at that very moment, lest we be overwhelmed with COVID, our healthcare system collapse (whatever that means) and society itself fall apart.

My brother, a law professor, actually said that society would fall apart if we didn’t shut everything down. I was like, it sure looks to me like it’s fallen apart already – no schools, no jobs, no freedom – but you know, that’s because I don’t care if people die.

All those initial goals have long been forgotten. Remember ventilators? I’ve heard nothing about them for weeks. It’s now lockdown for its own sake. American governors are instituting increasingly draconian measures even as the epidemic dwindles. There is less scientific basis than ever – in fact, the rhetoric has returned to where it was in early March, with new forecasts of deaths. The Washington Post is increasingly shrill on the subject of deadly deadly deadliness. There are numerous whack jobs on Georgia, which has kind of opened up. Still predictions that going to work is a death sentence.

WTH is going on here?

1603 ▶▶ Old fred, replying to Mimi, 5, #112 of 227 🔗

Staggering figures from the US today – 30 million now claiming benefits with another 12 million jobs lost in last month or two but people unable to claim. Over 20% unemployment likely in next few months. Will UK fare any better?

1607 ▶▶▶ Mimi, replying to Old fred, 11, #113 of 227 🔗

30.3 million official jobless plus 12 unofficial plus 56.6 million K12 students plus 20 million higher ed students: that’s one third of the U.S. that’s lost its daily employment. With no substitutes offered and no stated end in sight.

And the Spectator actually has an article about “saving the lockdown”. People have seriously lost the thread.

This is interesting: https://ukaji.org/2020/04/28/the-emperor-has-no-clothes-a-sober-analysis-of-the-government-response-to-covid-19/

1634 ▶▶ Jane in France, replying to Mimi, 10, #114 of 227 🔗

Here in France, the government is leaving it up to parents to decide whether they will send their children back to school on 11th May when we start to come out of lockdown. Instead of reassuring parents that school children have virtually nothing to fear from covid-19 and the vast majority of deaths are among the elderly and unwell, followed by the middle-aged and overweight, the government puts out alarming messages between radio or television programmes and on the health service website, about how the virus can live on surfaces for three days, how one infected person can infect three more, each of whom can infect three more, and so on, to give the impression of an invisible killer striking at random. Parents are understandably terrified. As you say, you would think a government would be trying to reassure people so that everyone can go back to a normal life, but not a bit of it.

1643 ▶▶▶ Barney McGrew, replying to Jane in France, 7, #115 of 227 🔗

Has the government there planted the story of Kawasaki disease into the narrative, with photos in the papers (with saturation turned up to maximum) just to scare parents even more?

2033 ▶▶▶▶ chris c, replying to Barney McGrew, 1, #116 of 227 🔗

Exactly what I thought. I suspect Boris wants to be famous for having the world’s longest lockdown and they will stick at nothing to achieve this. Those pussies in France and Germany gave up far too soon, and don’t even think about Sweden or Belarus. IMO the consequences will kill far more than the virus ever did.

1581 Tim Bidie, 1, #117 of 227 🔗
1583 Oaks79, replying to Oaks79, 1, #118 of 227 🔗

No end to this madness anytime soon by the looks of it, even suggesting it may run to June. It seems the CMO Whitty has fear running through Downing Street.
I’m done !!!!!


1594 ▶▶ guy153, replying to Oaks79, 4, #119 of 227 🔗

I think/hope it’s all just Johnson’s usual ploy of trying to have his cake and eat it and tell everyone what they want to hear. “Phase 2 lockdown” should mean basically no lockdown. I support ongoing recommendations (not regulations) to wash hands and go to bed if you’re ill etc. although no doubt it will all be much sillier than that.

1585 Rob, 6, #120 of 227 🔗

It’s clear to me Covid is a tool, and I’ve known that since February.
I don’t need any other graphs or experts’ words to see it’s a global scam.
It has been employed all over the world. That means there is something big going on, nations do not exist anymore, nor politicians or parties. It’s like it has fallen from the sky, in the sense it is a reality to which all humans are submitted. The gods’ will? Very likely…

1587 John Bradley, replying to John Bradley, 12, #121 of 227 🔗

”NHS England is considering removing black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) staff from frontline roles, given that they appear to be dying in disproportionately high numbers compared to non-BAME NHS workers.”

Given the role that gender, obesity and age play as risk factors, as well as ethnicity, does this mean that we can expect to see only young, slim, white women in front line roles?

1601 ▶▶ Farinances, replying to John Bradley, 10, #122 of 227 🔗

We’ve passed the peak of the virus, but reached peak woke.

1588 AN other lockdown sceptic, replying to AN other lockdown sceptic, 1, #123 of 227 🔗

I’ve resigned myself to the situation not changing anytime soon here in the UK. We are led by cowards.

In an effort to understand how this mess happened, before it came to the UK, I’ve been reading up on China, The Chinese Communist Party and the WHO.

I’ve read a number of books on China/CCP (and have still more to read). So far, the best have been:
– Stealth War by Robert Spalding, and
– Deceiving the Sky: Inside Communist China’s Drive for Global Supremacy by Bill Gertz

I’ve not read anything on the WHO yet but found the following informative:
– IEA. Covid-19: WHO is to blame? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zOXgNi8qM4s
– TrustWHO, a documentary available on Amazon prime and other channels (it was free on Vimeo before being taken down)

Peter Robinson’s Uncommon Knowledge channel has had some interesting interviews.
– Trump, China, and the Geopolitics of a Crisis https://tinyurl.com/y9ss7ou2
– Victor Davis Hanson on Corona, California, and the Classical World https://tinyurl.com/yb8vuct7

Another source that nobody has mentioned is War Room Pandemic. This is run by Steve Bannon. I know he’s not everyone’s cup of tea and he’s been driving the lockdown narrative. However, they’ve had some very interesting guests on in relation to China and the CCP.
This podcasts, in particular, was interesting
– The Geopolitics of the War Against the CCP (w/ Dr. Edward Luttwak) https://tinyurl.com/y946zhse

Has anyone else got any Podcasts, books etc to recommend?

1642 ▶▶ Beacritical, replying to AN other lockdown sceptic, 2, #124 of 227 🔗

There is a documentary about the WHO on a french channel called ARTE, you might be able to find english versions on youtube.

– WHO: profiteers of fear

1700 ▶▶▶ AN other lockdown sceptic, replying to Beacritical, #125 of 227 🔗

Thank you. Strangely, I can’t seem to find that documentary. Maybe deleted like the other one by The Ministry of Truth? Good channel though and luckily I speak French.

1663 ▶▶ Mr Jim McGregor, replying to AN other lockdown sceptic, 1, #126 of 227 🔗

I’ve started listening to the Bannon podcast. He is really having a go at China on a number of fronts and scathing on the American elites. Over here, I listen to the Delingpod and London Calling which seem to try to be more entertaining than informative, but they often lead to some other sources that are worth checking out.

1702 ▶▶▶ AN other lockdown sceptic, replying to Mr Jim McGregor, #127 of 227 🔗

Sounds like my podcast feed! 🙂

1589 swedenborg, #128 of 227 🔗

In the land of the free.Scroll up and watch a minute video Mother arrested in Meridian, Idaho for letting kids play in park


1597 Farinances, replying to Farinances, 12, #129 of 227 🔗

Today’s shoe hit the TV, and may have caused actual damage.

1602 ▶▶ Moomin, replying to Farinances, 12, #130 of 227 🔗

My jaw dropped when he used the 500,000 figure, I was quite taken aback. I just don’t know what we can do to stop this madness. I wrote to my MP this week and the reply, which I am grateful for, was pretty much what we hear on the news, protect ‘our’ NHS, etc. Will somebody please tell the government that the stupid five steps have all been met already for goodness sake!

1605 ▶▶▶ Farinances, replying to Moomin, 11, #131 of 227 🔗

I’m starting to find it funny now, probably my own immune response to extreme anger. The little posterings about how they know it’s causing collateral deaths, without actually admitting the scale of the problem, are kinda hilarious. It’s like watching a twitter feed of someone trying to address the counter argument whilst remaining bloody-mindedly committed to the cause.

“” We know loads of people are killing themselves, but nobody’s filming that #sorry “”

1619 ▶▶▶▶ John Bradley, replying to Farinances, 4, #132 of 227 🔗

Yes, I think you’ve got to be a little Zen about it and take comfort from the fact that you are not alone in thinking their policy making leaves a little to be desired. Chris Whitty is the only one who seems attuned to the wider impact of lockdown and the deaths, misery and suffering it causes but that recognition doesn’t seem to have any effect on the others.
I also find it astonishing that the media cannot nail them. All they do is bang on about operational deficiencies, grandstand and highlight specific regional angles. The token questions from the public are, naturally enough, narrowly focussed. There is only one question that is relevant: how can you Prime Minister justify a policy of lockdown when all the evidence suggests that it causes more death, suffering and hardship than it prevents? Like Paxo interviewing Michael Howard – keep asking the same question over and over.

1612 ▶▶▶ Fiat, replying to Moomin, 4, #133 of 227 🔗

Perhaps someone could design an, “End the Lockdown Now!” poster that could be downloaded, printed and taped to front room windows.

1616 ▶▶▶▶ Cbird, replying to Fiat, #134 of 227 🔗

Our houses would be vandalised

1627 ▶▶▶▶ Farinances, replying to Fiat, 2, #135 of 227 🔗

I’m up for it. Although, I don’t want my front door egged.

1659 ▶▶▶▶ StevieH, replying to Fiat, 2, #136 of 227 🔗

We need T-shirts…

1680 ▶▶▶▶▶ Farinances, replying to StevieH, #137 of 227 🔗

The police would absolutely love us

1599 Moomin, replying to Moomin, 21, #138 of 227 🔗

I’ve just finished watching the PM’s address and I’m fuming! I just can’t take much more of the patronising propaganda and fear mongering. He even mentioned that 500000 could have died. How can we put up with this blatant lying? What can we do? Does anyone know why that petition to Parliament is taking so long?

1604 ▶▶ StevieH, replying to Moomin, #139 of 227 🔗

Me too – although I only lasted 10 minutes. Had to give up after the Five Key Tests.

1610 ▶▶ AN other lockdown sceptic, replying to Moomin, 11, #140 of 227 🔗

I haven’t watched it for a couple of weeks. A complete waste of time and energy.

I knew that they would claim a win whatever happened. 500k avoided though, that’s some spin!

1644 ▶▶▶ Beacritical, replying to AN other lockdown sceptic, 10, #141 of 227 🔗

My neighbour said that this whole “crisis” is going to be the biggest gaslighting operation in modern history or something along those lines. It made sense though, we were manipulated into this lockdown and we’ll be manipulated out of it. And the worst part is most people will believe that they really did brush death, that the lockdown was totally necessary and that 500k could indeed have died.

1614 ▶▶ Fiat, replying to Moomin, #142 of 227 🔗

What petition is that? Where do I sign? Has anyone started one on the Gov Petition site?

1617 ▶▶▶ GLT, replying to Fiat, #143 of 227 🔗

There was a link to a petition in one of the first of these daily round-ups. It was removed for some kind of verification process. Toby mentioned keeping an eye on it.

1648 ▶▶ RDawg, replying to Moomin, 5, #144 of 227 🔗

I suspect the petition is taking so long because they are deliberately not approving it. The only way to test this would be to set up two new petitions with opposing agendas. One is anti lockdown, the other is for something completely unrelated. I wonder which one would be approved first?

1697 ▶▶ T.G.Velcoro, replying to Moomin, 1, #145 of 227 🔗

Someone questioned them on the apparent success of that medicine – I can’t remember the name – and Whitty said something along the lines of: ‘We can’t make any rash decisions without the data.’
I nearly fell off my chair.

1609 BoneyKnee, replying to BoneyKnee, #146 of 227 🔗

The points raised by John Rhys are interesting. He talks about the hard choices ahead and cost-benefit calculus that we need to make. He observes that the UK has started to shut down of its own accord before the official lock-down came in. Businesses, people and sports teams had started shutting down. I’ll add that this is before anyone had heard the name Professor Neil Ferguson.

John’s point is that people behaviour is driving this. He thinks that the actual behaviour in Sweden probably isn’t that different to here. I don’t know. I do believe that most people run their lives according to a few principles and not the law. How many of us know what the Covid 2020 law says? I know the slogan and the radio ads. I don’t know what the penalty is for taking two walks in a day! My point is that there have been some obviously stupid decisions by a very few police. The official “degree of lock down” probably doesn’t matter that much. It’s what people actually decide to do that matters.

1622 ▶▶ BecJT, replying to BoneyKnee, 2, #147 of 227 🔗

People’s behaviour is massively influenced by messaging, this is why companies spend billions on advertising and marketing. It was ‘sold’ quite well.

1623 ▶▶ guy153, replying to BoneyKnee, 4, #148 of 227 🔗

What people actually do matters for the epidemic. But in general it does matter a lot what the official degree of lockdown is and what the law says. Bad policing starts with bad laws. In a well-governed country most things that break the law are also wrong, police just enforce the law and the public respect it.

What we have now is some pretty daft laws, confused police, stories of people reporting their neighbours for technical infringements, and lots of perfectly harmless things suddenly rendered illegal. All a lot of unpleasantness we can do without. Thank goodness they put a “sunset clause” on them, and that we aren’t as bad as Spain, France or Italy.

1624 ▶▶ GLT, replying to BoneyKnee, 6, #149 of 227 🔗

I think there is some truth that Swedes have voluntarily modified behaviour but, as has already been pointed out, voluntary is a key word. Importantly, the data shows that the Swedish economy has not contracted anywhere near as much as those countries in lockdown. So it does seem to have been a voluntary and rational ‘slowdown’ in response to the unknown and not the equivalent of the draconian lockdown we have here.

1671 ▶▶ Morris_Day, replying to BoneyKnee, 7, #150 of 227 🔗

I think you have a point, I’m all for self-moderation. If you want to stay at home, fine. If I want to go to the pub next door to my house, fine.
Sure, please do keep me out of the local nursing home. I have no plans to visit it. My Nan died, a knock-on of the Stafford hospital scandal (she had Parkinson’s) and I live alone.

To generalise, because there are obviously exceptions, people are inherently ‘good’. They are doing as they are told in the belief it is the right thing. The message has been delivered in such a manner that it is now completely disproportionate to the ‘threat’ society faces. This is a panic generated by the World’s media.

1676 ▶▶ Eldred Godson, replying to BoneyKnee, 2, #151 of 227 🔗

The pub is shut. It was shut by law. This is affecting my behaviour.

1705 ▶▶▶ BoneyKnee, replying to Eldred Godson, 2, #152 of 227 🔗

Yes. That part of the lock-down is clear. Businesses have been told. The law or is it rules for individuals is less clear so we have the sunbathing confusion, the driving “too far” to exercise confusion. The popular focus on cov-idiots. People who are doing things that seem fine but get lambasted. If we are to all live together longer term with the virus then we need to drop these aspects and get a grip of risk.

I think pubs are risky right now (a packed boozer) but having a jogger run past you is not. I think it’s a numbers game in terms of the amount of interaction I have and more importantly the interactions someone with Covid has to pass it on. Little of this comes across at present.

1710 ▶▶▶▶ Barney McGrew, replying to BoneyKnee, 3, #153 of 227 🔗

“I think pubs are risky right now”.

Short of a vaccine, what will change your mind? The scientific establishment claims that we are only at 2% immune or some such, and that we have to keep ‘R’ below 1. On that basis, there is no possibility of opening the pubs before a vaccine is developed in, say, two years’ time.

If antibody testing puts the country at, say, 15% immune, it will still not be possible to open the pubs because it would need ‘R’ to rise above 1 to provide the final push to herd immunity based on the ‘R0’ that the scientists have made up…, er, ascertained.

Bye bye pubs.

1615 Fin, replying to Fin, 23, #154 of 227 🔗

Here in Spain, they’ve just announced the ‘rules’ for finally allowing adults out for exercise after 7 weeks of lock down.

We’re allowed out for one hour a day between the times 06:00 to 11:00 OR 20:00 to 23:00.

So…no vitamin D and let’s concentrate populations by time limits.

Ever get the feeling you’re being governed by incompetent fools?

1621 ▶▶ John Bradley, replying to Fin, 7, #155 of 227 🔗

Fortunately here in the UK we never feel like that.

1620 GLT, replying to GLT, 17, #156 of 227 🔗

It’s a bit late in the day to post this but The Times ran a sensationalist non-story today headed, ‘Scientists say virus as deadly as Ebola For hospital victims’. The quoted study is a perfectly reasonable collation of some of the hospital data so far and, as far as I could see from a skim through it, did not make this claim. The headline came from just one of the group of scientists involved in the study. The comparing of Covid to Ebola in this way i.e. only looking at those who are seriously ill with the virus is a bit like saying, ‘if you are involved in a car accident on a motorway then motoring may be deadly’. It adds zero to the debate and succeeds only in increasing the levels of fear and irrationality.

The poor level of journalism continued through the article with some unfounded, unstudied assertions hidden within supposed scientific reporting.

I subscribe to a number of different papers and have been disappointed by them all. If anything the analysis of the real data is becoming thinner on the ground and there is seemingly less critique of the government’s strategy the longer this goes on. So much for the Fourth Estate.

1653 ▶▶ BecJT, replying to GLT, 9, #157 of 227 🔗

I cancelled my Times subscription this morning because of that article, admittedly been teetering on the brink for weeks, but that was the last straw.

1628 swedenborg, replying to swedenborg, 7, #158 of 227 🔗

Let us stop hearing from incompetent fools like Johnson and Merkel about the second wave. They have no idea what they are talking about. Let us read from someone who knows about it from the The Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine
“We do not know for certain whether COVID will recur in phases, or sporadic outbreaks or disappear altogether.
Making absolute statements of certainty about ‘ second waves’ is unwise, given the current substantial uncertainties and novelty of the evidence. As we cannot see the future and our understanding of this new agent is in its infancy we think preparedness planning should be inspired by robust surveillance, the flexibility of response and rigid separation of suspected or confirmed cases. These measures should stand for all serious outbreaks of respiratory illness. Better evidence and better understanding are needed. Covid 19 will focus our minds.”

1682 ▶▶ Sally, replying to swedenborg, 7, #159 of 227 🔗

The French doctor Didier Raoult has commented on the “second wave”:

“The second wave story is a fantasy that was invented from the Spanish flu, which started in the summer and has nothing to do with it.

“Usually an epidemic happens in one curve. I hate to make predictions, but this way of constructing it is fairly common for epidemics.

“In the past, epidemics disappeared long before we had the means to contain them. They disappeared anyway.

“Humanity didn’t die from an epidemic, that’s the way it is. Epidemics start, accelerate, peak, disappear, and we don’t know why.”


1631 Oaks79, replying to Oaks79, 2, #160 of 227 🔗

Has there been any antibody studies like the Stanford University one, here in the UK ? Vallance said Public Health England did one but haven’t seen anything about it, pretty sure if the result is like results from around the world that questions the Imperial College model doesn’t it, or am I completely wrong ?

1637 ▶▶ Farinances, replying to Oaks79, 6, #161 of 227 🔗

I’ve been looking, but haven’t been able to find any. The excuse seems to be that the antibody testing isn’t reliable. But my understanding is that the antibody tests they’re talking about are the portable kind that are being used in the drive through centres, or people could administer themselves. Like the (probably dodgy) swab tests currently being used to identify positive cases. Surely they can undertake proper serological tests using drawn blood administered by professionals?
Something tells me they might not want to get into that as it will take the IFR right down as it has done elsewhere in the world.

1656 ▶▶▶ Thomas Pelham, replying to Farinances, 3, #162 of 227 🔗

There were some done in Scotland. They found 6 positive matches on the 22nd march I believe, out of 500 in a random selection of blood donors. This is 1.2 percent. Extrapolated out gives you 50000 cases at that point. There were only a couple of hundred known about.

1660 ▶▶▶▶ Farinances, replying to Thomas Pelham, 2, #163 of 227 🔗

Wow. I’m torn on using blood donors. You’re told not to give blood if you’re not feeling 100% or have been ill recently – so you’re likely to get a disproportionately ‘healthy’ sample.

On the other hand, this means that all the sampled people *thought they were 100% healthy, and so had probably been relatively asymptomatic which IS probably representative of most cases.

1698 ▶▶▶▶▶ Thomas Pelham, replying to Farinances, #164 of 227 🔗

Yeah, I’m not sure what the false positive rate was though, I do know that it was done by Oxford, and that it was a lab based test not a quick test.

This is the group of academics who did the test: https://twitter.com/EEID_oxford

1724 ▶▶▶▶▶ coalencanth12, replying to Farinances, #165 of 227 🔗

There is a Dutch antibody study out there somewhere that also used blood bank sampling, and from memory came up with a very similar percentage. That study has been criticised on the same grounds, that blood doners will be a screened/self selecting group…

1639 ConcernedPerson, replying to ConcernedPerson, 9, #166 of 227 🔗

Looking at the data of all deaths in Germany so far this year, one might doubt coronavirus/Covid-19 even exists.

Graph (source: Wodarg.com) comment image

I checked the official data and sources referenced in the image and it matches the graph.

Total deaths in Germany: https://www.destatis.de/DE/Themen/Gesellschaft-Umwelt/Bevoelkerung/Sterbefaelle-Lebenserwartung/Tabellen/sonderauswertung-sterbefaelle-pdf.pdf?__blob=publicationFile

Covid19 cases: https://data.europa.eu/euodp/en/data/dataset/covid-19-coronavirus-data

1646 ▶▶ Farinances, replying to ConcernedPerson, 7, #167 of 227 🔗

They must be attempting to accurately quantify and record ACTUAL Covid deaths over there, that’s literally the only reason I can think of as to why they’ve done so well on death rate. Because their figures are actually closer to being correct ;o)

1695 ▶▶▶ Sally, replying to Farinances, 1, #168 of 227 🔗

No, the Germans do what everyone else is doing: any person who is test-positive is counted as a Covid death, regardless of the cause: https://translate.google.com.au/translate?sl=de&tl=en&u=https%3A%2F%2Fswprs.org%2Frki-relativiert-corona-todesfaelle%2F

1657 ▶▶ Bill h, replying to ConcernedPerson, 3, #169 of 227 🔗

Amazing. Should be on the front page of The Sun tomorrow. Somehow this type of material needs to get out there so that people get what is going on here.

1645 Bill h, 12, #170 of 227 🔗

Amidst the Piffle Paffle Wiffle Waffle at today’s ‘Press Conference’ was one amazing statement, which should be a Game Changer for this mess.

One of the profs, Whitty I think, said ‘As we move into the next phase, we will be using All Cause Mortality as the key measurement to see progress. It is the International standard’. (I may have slightly misquoted, but that was the gist.)

I haven’t seen the MSM pick up on this yet (not surprising), however if this is the plan then it should not take long at all before the whole ‘megadeath’ insanity begins to melt away in front of our eyes.

Leaving just the bombed out economy to be taken care of….

Best hopes


1649 ianp, replying to ianp, 21, #171 of 227 🔗

To echo the complete fraudulent lies about number of covid deaths. A member of my family works in a GP practice and has confirmed that they have been told by the coroner to record all care home deaths as covid. 94 years old ? Terminal cancer?.. = covid death. When will people wake up, take the red pill, and realise that this pointless lockdown has done nothing but damage the economy, people’s lives and livelihoods and should never have happened in the first place. It was too late, it’s already happened. This is a media pandemic, nothing more… And the lockdown freaks are lapping it up. It astounds me just how many sheep there are out there. Just what on earth is the endgame here? That’s what worries me more than some stupid virus, which for the overwhelmingly vast majority of the population is so mild you would not notice it ( I have already had it).

1722 ▶▶ BecJT, replying to ianp, 4, #172 of 227 🔗

Whatever happened to first do no harm? Why are doctors not speaking up about this? I don’t understand why they are not writing open letters to the papers?

1650 Fin, replying to Fin, 22, #173 of 227 🔗

The Spectator has an article by Stephen Daisley, defending both the lock down and lock down sceptics. It contains the line:

“I am in the ‘at high risk’ group three times over and would quite like to go on living, if you don’t mind.”

In the BTL comments, Ken replies:

“If you believe yourself to be at risk, there is nothing to stop your on-going self-isolation. Meanwhile, the rest of us want to get on with life. My freedom doesn’t end where your fear begins.”

An excellent, concise argument against this madness.

1655 ▶▶ Mark H, replying to Fin, 12, #174 of 227 🔗

The implied selfishness of people wanting to get on with their lives is stunning when it comes from someone who is selfish enough to expect everyone else not to.

1658 Mr Jim McGregor, replying to Mr Jim McGregor, 10, #175 of 227 🔗

I was in agreement with the lockdown to flatten the sombrero and take pressure off the NHS. Now I’m told that we have to continue with house arrest to prevent the disastrous second wave? I can’t find anything to tell me why a second wave would be such a disaster. Can anyone tell me why? What will the third wave be like? No doubt we’ll need another lockdown for that too.

1668 ▶▶ Moomin, replying to Mr Jim McGregor, 5, #176 of 227 🔗

There’s an interesting article somewhere that there won’t be a second wave. I’ll try and find the link. Having said that, diseases could increase since forced lock down has compromised our immune systems so in a way the second wave could actually be a self fulfilling prophecy! Just like self isolating is self defeating!

1675 ▶▶ swedenborg, replying to Mr Jim McGregor, 1, #178 of 227 🔗

This article credible evidence based says nobody knows
This twitter site is very interesting every day it is updated and the current pandemic curve is very similar to the SARS outbreak 2003 which was extinguished during the summer as corona viruses are remarkably seasonal usually disppears summertime.However the author says a new wave in southern hemisphere during autumn could be possible

1683 ▶▶ BoneyKnee, replying to Mr Jim McGregor, -2, #179 of 227 🔗

I can trust that there is the danger of a second wave – Fauci is saying so too in the US. However, I agree with your comment. The government is doing a very poor job in explaining what next and why.

1696 ▶▶▶ Mark H, replying to BoneyKnee, 11, #180 of 227 🔗

Trust it based on what scientific evidence?

Firstly, the second wave panic, pushed by Prof Neil Ferguson is based on speculation. It’s not based on science. And this is very important, because, remember, the politicians who are making all the decisions about what our lives look like are claiming to be “led by the science”.

Pandemic models are not scientific. And what I mean by that is the established scientific procedures of ***test the hypothesis, demonstrate the hypothesis, falsify the hypothesis*** cannot be applied to a model.

A model is just a fancy way of saying “a guess”. So, at a guess, 100,000 people could die if the lockdown is lifted. But that’s all it is. A guess. It can’t be tested, proven or falsified. And the actual scientific data directly contradicts that guess.

What the scientific data shows is that the virus has a *low mortality rate*. This fact directly contradicts Prof Neil Ferguson’s guess, that it would have a high mortality rate.

The scientific data shows that 97% of people with the virus will only have mild symptoms and won’t need to go to hospital.

The scientific data shows that 3% of people who have tested positive will need to go to hospital.

The scientific data shows that of the 3% who go to hospital, 87% will make a recovery.

The scientific data shows that only 1.35% of the UK’s population has been tested for the virus. In Scotland, only 1.01% of the population has been tested!

The scientific data shows that the first reported case of the virus was 28th February. If the typical time from infection to symptoms is 14 days, that means the virus was in the UK from at least 14th February. Lockdown didn’t happen until 24th March. So the virus was spreading at a very fast pace throughout the country for 6 weeks.

Prof Neil Ferguson’s model estimates that only 5% of us have been exposed to the virus. This is a guess. And it’s just clearly wrong.

The reality is, no one knows if there will be a second wave. There might be a slight increase in new cases – based on testing – and some new deaths.

However, those deaths will remain within the demographic of the elderly and those with weakened immune systems who have underlying health conditions. And these are the people who should remain quarantined for a bit longer.

1709 ▶▶▶▶ BoneyKnee, replying to Mark H, #181 of 227 🔗

I did use “trust” to be specific. It’s not a belief. I have to trust Fauci and others who work in the field all of the time. I too posted that modelling is not really science – it’s simulation. It’s a tool for the scientists and medics to estimate responses – not predict the future. So we agree on a lot here.

Some of your facts might be correct but not the full story. Who it hits and how it spreads are key. How many people present in hospital at one time is very important so a dynamic model is required not simple maths.

Back to a second wave, there is no “evidence” for it because it’s new. We haven’t got that far. The virus experts says it is almost certain for a corona virus like this. I’ll go with them. The issue is really what that second peak looks like and what measures we need to take. I can agree with you than a full lock down is not the answer. I am not going to dismiss the probable reality. It is the response to the situation that is the problem for me.

2039 ▶▶▶▶ chris c, replying to Mark H, 1, #182 of 227 🔗

Yes excellent stuff!

IMO there needs to be far more differentiation between those who are unlikely to be affected and those who are likely to die.

Age seems to be a big factor, diseases relating to hyperglcemia and hyperinsulinemia and anything else which destroys the immune system.

Then on the other hand are all the people who are going to die because of the lockdown because they can’t get cancer or other non-covid diseases diagnosed or treated or who are rightly paranoid about going to hospitals/GP surgeries.

1707 ▶▶ guy153, replying to Mr Jim McGregor, 9, #183 of 227 🔗

Seeing as the first wave peaked before the lockdown (by the government’s own admission) lifting it completely is not going to result in a second wave.

There will be a few more deaths no doubt whatever we do but we aren’t going to “smash into a mountain even higher than the first” or whatever bobbins it was Johnson was spouting.

It’s just fiction so they can say later “look how great we are, there was no second wave”. Same rhetoric as “never mind the 20k or 40k deaths or so, we got it down from 500k!”. Anywhere that does have a second wave (because they were stupid enough to have measures that were effective and in time) will be compared unfavourably to the UK as having managed the epidemic worse. Which is ironically sort of true with hindsight because at this point it’s hard to see any endgame other than the virus becoming globally endemic.

1711 ▶▶ BecJT, replying to Mr Jim McGregor, 9, #184 of 227 🔗

Look up the interviews of Prof Knut Wittowski (produced by Journeyman Pictures, you’ll find them on youtube), he explains it. This is a bog standard respiratory virus, and all lockdown has done is dragged out it’s natural cycle, if we’d left it alone, washed our hands, shielded the elderly it’d have been and gone by now.

It is also worth pointing out that no epidemiologist or scientist worth their salt would ever claim that their non peer reviewed modelling inputs, and their completely unevidenced by any science whatsoever ‘lockdown’ caused a drop in numbers from 500k to 25k – as epidemiologists whose life’s work is infectious respiratory viruses are saying – all those numbers tell us is the hypothesis is incorrect.

However, from Boris’ speech yesterday, about saving half a million lives, it sounds like he and Ferguson (and the others who flanked him with a straight face as he said it) have made a pact to cover each others’ arses.

1715 ▶▶▶ Barney McGrew, replying to BecJT, 5, #185 of 227 🔗

“However, from Boris’ speech yesterday, about saving half a million lives, it sounds like he and Ferguson (and the others who flanked him with a straight face as he said it) have made a pact to cover each others’ arses.”

Indeed. Why wouldn’t they? History is already being re-written.

1721 ▶▶▶▶ BecJT, replying to Barney McGrew, 5, #186 of 227 🔗

Yup, all that tells me is Boris is shooting for popular and the scientists (who are human and ambitious, worried about their status, funding, professional future, rivals, and are as blinded by confirmation bias as everyone else) appear to be allowing him to do it. That he did it in the same breath as ‘the peak has passed’ – which can only mean peak infections were well before that, before we locked down, is quite mind boggling.

1673 ▶▶ ConcernedPerson, replying to Oaks79, 14, #188 of 227 🔗

Would not be surprised for this to be true. It’d be very strange for a wave of infections to randomly start out of nowhere, kill within 7 days and then vanish. It’s also implausible for a new pathogen to be discovered right when it emerges. If you take a look at influenza epidemics, they tend to infect the younger, healthier population in the beginning of winter to then cause havoc among the old and vulnerable at the end of it.

I for one was incredibly sick in late December as well. I can’t even remember having been more sick in my life. The same applies to a lot of people around me. Half of my colleagues were off sick in early January – a lot of them for a whole month. I’m sure Covid-19 has been in the UK since at least mid-December of 2019.

1674 Mimi, replying to Mimi, 6, #189 of 227 🔗

I would love to see a curve that depicts COVID cases back-dated to January or December. If the virus was actually circulating then, and if there seriously have already been millions of cases that went unnoticed (mild symptoms, deaths classed as general pneumonia due to flu season), wouldn’t the peak be much higher and much earlier than has been described? And we might have started counting when the disease was on its downward slope? And it just took enough tests for diagnoses to rise up to meet the curve, at which point the graph would have to slope downward because that’s where the curve was anyway.

Has anyone with the statistical chops tried this out?

1699 ▶▶ guy153, replying to Mimi, 4, #190 of 227 🔗

Not claiming anything close to full statistical chops but have looked at numbers, chewed pencils and played with SIR models. It’s an interesting hypothesis, but it needs a very low IFR to be true.

I can make it work with an IFR of 0.001%. In that situation we have 36% immune by 100 dead, and the peak of infections is at about 150 dead. So it’s possible in that scenario that by the time you notice it it’s already peaked.

But the IFR can’t be as low 0.001%. The debate now is about where it is between about 0.1% (“it’s just the flu stop worrying”) and 0.7% (“we’re doomed lock everyone up!”).

Under 0.1% IFR, we have only 1.1% immune at 100 dead. Under 0.7% it’s 0.2%. Not much observable difference. The differences in timings between these two scenarios are also only a few days.

(I would argue that the strategy for 0.1% and 0.7% are actually the same and lockdown is counterproductive in either case, which is why IFR is no longer the point really. It was perhaps more relevant when the alarmists were claiming it was 3% or so).

1887 ▶▶▶ Hail, replying to guy153, 2, #191 of 227 🔗

There is a lot of talk about IFR but there probably is no all-purpose IFR. Each population in each region (e.g., pollution levels) will react differently, and probably at different times (seasons, weather).

There was a study this week that found 0.08%. Other evidence points to <0.05% still being plausible for many populations.

I don't think anyone has found anything anywhere in the past month saying anything much above 0.2%. Who is still clinging to something as high as 0.7%?

1678 Hail, replying to Hail, 5, #192 of 227 🔗

“Giesecke has hit back at Neil Ferguson after his dismissal of Sweden’s approach to managing the crisis in last Saturday’s UnHerd interview. Speaking to the Swedish daily Svenska Dagbladet, Giesecke said: “I know [Ferguson] a little and he is normally quite arrogant, but I have never seen him as tense and nervous as during that interview.” He dismissed Ferguson’s prediction that deaths in Sweden will start to rise again […]”

Summary — Doctor Ferguson (a.k.a. “Doctor Frankensson”) clings to the apocalypse cult he helped create.

Ferguson has predicted that the flu-virus epidemic curve in Sweden violates all known rules of the progress of epidemics, reverses itself, and starts to soar again…real soon.

Trust him! The apocalypse is always around the corner!

But in reality, it’s wrapping up in Sweden, like this (from “ Graphing the actual Coronavirus epidemic in Sweden vs. the predictions “):
comment image

1753 ▶▶ Simon Nicholls (sinichol), replying to Hail, #193 of 227 🔗

Have you considered that both Giesecke and Ferguson have agendas to prove?

I’m all for finding the silver bullet that serology surveys are underestimating the spread and the projections as a result are off… but, please let’s not wildly misunderstand data and misquote it…

This plot in your post… comment image ?w=640

Is the data equivalent of a “misquote”.

Sweden has seen a 65% drop in commuter traffic and got it’s r0 to about 1.3. Just go and look at some moovit data for Stockholm. Sweden are plainly in a voluntary lockdown. They are in a suppression not just a mitigation strategy, like us, just not as much we are at 80%.

1) This drop in r0 from 2.5 has lowered their infection ceiling from ~60% to ~20%.
2) Fergusons projections in this plot were for “do nothing” and a “mitigation” strategy, which did not include anywhere near this level of commuter fall off.

So using either line to bash Ferguson relative to Sweden’s current course is just a “misquote”.

More so, the Swedish ONS equivalent that publishes the data in your plot continually revises recent days, so the tail off in deaths (and to a lesser degree ICU) recently is NOT a true reflection of where their data will ACTUALLY be in about 2 weeks.

The assertion in your post that these are FINAL is just not true. Here is the change in the last 2 days alone… comment image
… everything since about the 18th even now is still seeing massive jumps up as death certificates from different parts of Sweden slowly filter in over weeks. To a lesser extent happens with ICU reports too, the last week is partial data.

I’m struggling to not be a Donald here and cry… “FAKE NEWS”.

1758 ▶▶▶ Thomas Pelham, replying to Simon Nicholls (sinichol), 7, #194 of 227 🔗

Hi Simon, thanks for this – I keep trying to point this out too – in fairness the distance between the two lines in your second plot increases (as you’d imagine) which means the week before last will I suspect see very little extra added this time next week – I’d be surprised if we don’t see a slight decline over time. It’s certainly not going up.

I have a number of friends in Sweden; they report that life goes on much as normal. Yes they are distancing, working from home, traveling less. But they are not under house arrest, forbidden from seeing friends and families, forbidden from meeting at pubs and restaurants, and the disease seems under control.

It seems sustainable, in other words, which our lockdown clearly isn’t.

1797 ▶▶▶▶ Simon Nicholls (sinichol), replying to Thomas Pelham, #195 of 227 🔗

For sure, anything before about the 17th is probably unlikely to change, but it does mean the plot always paints a “past the peak” message that is not real.

I don’t particularly feel under house arrest in the UK, although I miss the pub, and don’t understand why I can’t play singles tennis in the park. On the plus side, I go to the park much more than I used to with the kids, and there are always loads of people milling around too close together. Never actually seen the police telling people off.

On all accounts the police walk around in Stockholm telling people to stay apart too and tick cafe/restuarants off if they don’t have their tables far enough apart.

Same authoritarianism… slightly different message.

As sceptics, all we risk doing by trying to perpetuate the belief that there is some massive gulf between conditions in the two countries, is make ourselves look like loons.

The underlying boats are different.

If we look at new case growth in each country… comment image
… we saw much faster new case growth ahead of our peak, probably due to being 11x denser.

If you look at the commuter traffic (which correlates very well with new case impact) we have both implemented a lockdown, theirs is voluntary so only 65%, but at 80% with a stronger policy we have turned the tide in new case growth, them not quite. Given the gradient differences before, I just don’t see how we could have stuck with them.

If we can crack super contact tracing and more than make up for this disadvantage, we could see a return to more freedoms than they have and quicker if we can get the South Korean test/quarantine model to work. BIG if.

I think we’ll see their deaths dip a bit lagging the slight dip in new cases two weeks ago, and then when the figures come out an increase in deaths over the next two weeks, their ICU residency certainly hasn’t fallen off at all… comment image

I worry about their model, their hospitals are just being pushed to the max, Covid hospital fear will only increase, not decline (like it will be in the UK). They will treat fewer and fewer normal cases, cancers, etc. Plus the South Korean experience is get cases low before you stand a chance of staying on top of it with contact tracing, and they are heading in the wrong direction for that to work for them…

1799 ▶▶▶▶▶ Simon Nicholls (sinichol), replying to Simon Nicholls (sinichol), #196 of 227 🔗

Paste error… second link meant to be…
… blooming wordpress 2 seconds to edit policy…

1811 ▶▶▶▶▶▶ Thomas Pelham, replying to Simon Nicholls (sinichol), 2, #197 of 227 🔗

Where do you get the data about ICUs in Sweden being pushed to the max? The ICU intake is dropping off slightly as of last week. How many beds do they have?

I’m skeptical of case growth as a useful metric – it’s partly driven by testing growth.

1838 ▶▶▶▶▶▶▶ Simon Nicholls (sinichol), replying to Thomas Pelham, -1, #198 of 227 🔗

From their own health service portal…
… ICU residency has gone up and not ever really come down.

Yes, case growth sceptisim is healthy, but not relative to themselves if there is little evidence of a dramatic change in testing approach or levels. Which for Sweden there is not.

For the UK this week an adjustment will need to be made. I actually wish all countries had published hospital identified cases separately. Would have allowed for much more meaningful case comparison…

1885 ▶▶▶▶▶▶▶ Hail, replying to Thomas Pelham, 2, #199 of 227 🔗

Sweden’s new coronavirus-positive ICU intakes peaked in the two-week period between about March 28 and April 13 (41/day average; range: 32 to 49). For the next ten-day period (April 14 to 23), which is now complete data, it was down to 35. For the ten-day period after that (April 24 to May 3), I would expect as low as 25/day to be the final number for the period when data is final,say with the Friday May 8 update.

March 8 to March 17: 4 ICU intakes/day (10-day window)
March 18 to March 27: 27 ICU intakes/day (10-day window)
March 28 to April 13: 41 ICU intakes/day (peak; 17 days)
April 14 to April 23: 35 ICU intakes/day (10-day window)
April 24 to May 3: [25-30 ICU intakes/day?] (10-day window)
May 4 to May to May 13: [10-20 ICU intakes/day?]

Many of the ICU intakes from March and April recovered and were released. There has always had plenty of spare capacity; at one point they reported they were at 70% capacity. There was no “swamped hospitals effect.”

The vindication of Sweden is really at hand, because as of early May the data really is in. If not technically complete, it is almost complete and straggler data is not likely at all to change the trend based on all past experience.

There isn’t going to be some sudden, unprecedented reversing of the bell curve to fit the Ferguson “horror scenario.”

In three words:

Sweden was right.

1948 ▶▶▶▶▶▶▶▶ Simon Nicholls (sinichol), replying to Hail, 1, #200 of 227 🔗

I’m no great fan of Ferguson, I think his paper could have been much clearer. BUT, I care about accurate representation of the facts. He never said there would be a “horror scenario” under a suppression strategy, again you misquote, for what purpose?

Plus, why are you so fixated on this being a competition?

Each country has its own unique set of circumstances. Sweden is different enough from the UK to make what you’re trying to do a pointless exercise.

The plot above clearly show the UK had a faster rate of new case growth (higher transmission dynamics probably due to density) ahead of this, and clearly was going to need stronger measures to suppress r0 enough to lower the herd immunity ceiling of this first wave.

One size does not fit all… I’m sure they were right for them.

I also made not comment about Sweden having failed to provide the best care for everyone, I only said by looking at their own website…
… ICU residency is at or around it’s highest level, peak around 558 on the 26th of April, down to 528 yesterday, but given the slight dip in new cases 2 weeks ago as per my plot I’d expect a dip in residency about now.

I can’t seem to find a data stream for normal hospital admission numbers (please share if you’re aware of one) so we can’t tell if there has been an uptick in hospital admissions to match the uptick in new cases in the last two weeks, and they tend to take a little while to get worse in normal wards before they see admission to ICU so we will need to wait to see.

As to whether new cases will wain this week because they are on the downward slope to herd immunity for their current suppressed ceiling we shall see. It is entirely possible, I can see them easily being more than halfway (as per the infection profile description in my previous post)… the take away observation for me would be if new cases are still increasing they cannot be more than halfway to their suppressed ceiling.

As to asking questions about either countries policy.

Be more objective.

Just because I’m raising observations about side effects of their policy choices does not mean I think they have got their choices that wrong for them, I just think we are all too fixed on how green the grass looks.

Their health service is still far more occupied treating Covid cases than ours, and will remain so for weeks ahead. This will keep levels of hospital fear elevated for longer leading to more lockdown death. Sure we have other negatives, but I’m simply trying to say don’t underestimate theirs.

The real question is what is the next phase about for both of us?

Without concrete evidence that serology % infection rates are false, they are fooling themselves if they believe at their suppressed herd immunity ceiling they are done.

The fastest route to more freedoms than either country is seeing seems to be an aggressive contact tracing strategy like in South Korea. I just worry that they have not focused on elevating testing capacity to anywhere near the level we have. Plus, to sustain it, you need to get active cases far lower than either country has right now.

I just think as crap as the lockdown is, it is at least as rapidly as possible putting us in a position to have a crack at getting this approach to work, and that might lead to a quicker way out of wide spread suppression into a phase of far more targetted suppression… which we all want.

1813 ▶▶▶▶▶▶ Thomas Pelham, replying to Simon Nicholls (sinichol), 2, #201 of 227 🔗

I get your point about the differences being relatively minor. I still suggest that, outside of Stockholm maybe, life continues much as normal. Even in Stockholm, they have freedoms that we do not have.

1808 ▶▶▶ Barney McGrew, replying to Simon Nicholls (sinichol), 2, #202 of 227 🔗

“Sweden has seen a 65% drop in commuter traffic and got it’s r0 to about 1.3.”
You’re doing that circular argument thing. You have a pre-conceived idea that a lockdown reduces ‘R’. So if you see a low ‘R’ you say “See, it’s proof they’re in lockdown.”

It does not follow.

1883 ▶▶▶▶ Simon Nicholls (sinichol), replying to Barney McGrew, 1, #203 of 227 🔗

Well, that certainly is not true.
I may not be causal, but from my analysis it is correlated.
So “It COULD follow”, but there is certainly no evidence to say “it does not follow”.
Unless you’ve come to some actual statistical conclusion they are not correlated?

I totally agree correlation is not causation. There is never statistical proof of any cause, just a most likely cause. I apologise for not being more explicit about this.

BUT, I can’t find any other evidence of other data that is as correlated. Specifically, if you lag forward the commuter journey reductions by the average time between infection and test (2 weeks) they are very correlated to the decay in new cases in all places that I’ve assessed that had infections and have seen new cases tail off.

No one as yet has produced any concrete evidence to suggest that serology surveys are not picking up all those that have been infected. If real evidence, not rhetoric or anecdote, comes to light that people can be infected, resist the infection, not develop antibodies, and crucially then be in a situation not to be infected again, then I’m all ears.

… and I’ve looked a lot.

Until then given there is PCR test evidence that 59% of a population (the de Gaulle) can be infected, and serology evidence to show that no civilian population has got much beyond about 22%. I’m going to carry on relying on science to tell us that this can still happen, and something must have curtailed the spread other than magic.

It is not about having any preconceptions, show me a definitive possible alternative cause and I’m happy to work with that instead. Not tied to any explanation, and certainly want out of lockdown asap.

1886 ▶▶▶▶ Hail, replying to Barney McGrew, 1, #204 of 227 🔗

There are many mechanisms by which “R0” goes down, but the relevant point is that its decline is a natural process. Any flu strain has several curves that all tend to follow approximate bell curves. The transmission phase is one of these. It is not surprising at all that Sweden’s “R0” declined, as did Germany’s and Switzerland’s at about the same time, all before the Lockdowns of course.

1960 ▶▶▶▶▶ Simon Nicholls (sinichol), replying to Hail, #205 of 227 🔗

No, the relevant point is the difference in initial r0. This will define the infection ceiling for the virus.

That they will both see a decay in the r0 to that ceiling is interesting, but ultimately confusing and irrelevant.

Two viruses with the same CFR, but different initial r0s will NOT see the same deaths. The one with the higher r0, will need more infections and deaths to burn out.

Take the 2018 seasonal flu, it had a CFR of 0.5, it infected about 5m in Germany out of population of 80m (I read a study on it a few weeks ago I can’t find right now), so burned out with NO changes to natural transmission dynamics (no lockdown) at 6% of the population. Which makes it’s INITIAL natural r0 like 1.1, so really low.

Even if Covid only has the same CFR of 0.5%, it is measured to have had a natural transmission dynamic of about 3, which means left to it’s own devices it would not have burned out till ~65% infection.

10x more deaths.

That the whole world has suppressed Covid’s natural transmission dynamics is the only reason we have set a temporary infection ceiling.

The question remains, (regardless of different initial phase approaches in each country) how do countries lift these transmission disrupting measures and replace them with something that allows freedoms, BUT, does not allow the infection ceiling from lifting at the same time.

Give me an alternative to super contact tracing that shows any signs of working as effectively? This is what China and South Korea are doing.

If you can, think of an alternative, great let’s do it.

If not, look at the steps involved in getting a country into a place to be able to do this asap, and question the sense of a country not making those steps asap.

Proving Ferguson a plonker or the UK was wrong to not do the first phase in the same way as Sweden… pointless.

1884 ▶▶▶ Hail, replying to Simon Nicholls (sinichol), 2, #206 of 227 🔗

The Swedish death data is updated regularly. I have followed it for a while. There has not yet been a case where an update significantly changes the way the curve looks earlier than about Reporting Date Minus 4 Days.

The graph of the Sweden Observed Reality vs. Ferguson Predictions also does NOT include the most recent days (which are partial data) and solves the problem you mention.

See May 1 updated graphs here.

All indications are that Stockholm is at herd immunity, effectively, as of this writing, and may have been for quite a while already (the studies are already in on Stockholm). The rest of Sweden will soon follow. The epidemic is over. Deaths, the most lagging indicator there is, are in clear and sustained decline. There was no Corona Apocalypse; there was no need for shutdowns at all.

I believe you also misunderstand the mechanism by which “R0” declines. This is not some mystical force that requires extreme measures. Every R0 curve eventually declines on its own without any actions by (or knowledge of) the public. This also happened in Germany, where the decline predated the response measures.

1924 ▶▶▶▶ Simon Nicholls (sinichol), replying to Hail, #207 of 227 🔗

Apart from the evidence staring you straight in the face above? e.g. on the 1st of May they revised the 18th of Aril up by 18% from 74 to 87 deaths?

Again, you’re comparing apples with oranges. Neither of Fergusons lines are for a suppression strategy, and Sweden is in one, so it is simply FAKE NEWS. If you remove the questionable tail from you plot it doesn’t look that wrong, but HE doesn’t think either of the lines will happen in a suppression strategy in Sweden either so you MISQUOTING him.

Further, you plainly don’t understand r0 or herd immunity dynamics.

Sure an r0 decays to 0 on the path to herd immunity for a prevelant transmission dynamic, big wow, it does not change the fact that what matters in the prevalent transmission dynamic.

Transmission dynamics are defined by behaviour. In normal times they led to an INITIAL replication rate of r0 =3. Changes in behaviour patterns have inhibited transmissions dynamics (e.g. people see each other less and pass it on less) which has led to suppressing the replication to r0 = 1.25.

If the virus finds is easier to spread, it takes more immune people getting in the way to burn it out, hence the herd immunity ceiling being higher for a higher initial r0. So at 3 you are looking at needing 65-70% of the population, but for 1.25 only 15%.

To be clear the virus’ capacity to transmit remains constant.

To be even clearer the active case measures between 0 and the % ceiling playing out based on the prevalent transmission dynamic will look like a bell curve, so peak % infected halfway, and yes between the two the observed r0 will be decaying as immune people get in the way make it harder and harder to replicate. More so there will also be a varying r0 measures depending on the part of the population, but it is glib and irrelevant to discuss it any more than to observe it’s INITIAL value, as the difference in herd immunity ceiling is defined by the background transmisson dynamics of the virus which is best measured and compared at it’s initial value.

Sure I total buy Stockholm is likely at its suppressed herd immunity ceiling. By my fag-packet calc I had them halfway or two weeks ago, BUT, only at this suppressed ceiling.

… as soon as the population demands to behave as they did before, the background transmission pressure will return, and the herd immunity ceiling will lift and you will see a resurgence of cases. Same will happen all over the world.

As to Sweden, sure deaths will probably dip, but go and look at the weekly increase in new case numbers… their story is not over.

The only way out of this reality is to demonstrate that far more people have been infected and developed immunity than we currently believe, or that a certain % of the population could not be infected in the first place.

Hence my charge, find real evidence of either of these and then you have the silver bullet to influence policy. Until then you’re just confusing yourself and others with your noise.

1694 OpenCorona, replying to OpenCorona, 5, #208 of 227 🔗

I absolutely love the “terrifying” plague doctor; just posted about it. Trying to recruit some in the US. Wonderful idea! Brilliant.

1714 ▶▶ Ethelred the Unready, replying to OpenCorona, 6, #209 of 227 🔗

Apparently, our Police want to find him in order to ‘have a word’ and no doubt check his thinking…

1802 ▶▶▶ OpenCorona, replying to Ethelred the Unready, #210 of 227 🔗

I’d love to have a word myself!!

1701 Tim, replying to Tim, 8, #211 of 227 🔗

We need a new slogan:

Go to work.
Protect the economy.
Save lives.

1703 ▶▶ Thomas Pelham, replying to Tim, 2, #212 of 227 🔗

I’ve been using: “Be brave Boris; Lift the Lockdown” I like the assonance. It only works in the UK though.

1754 ▶▶▶ Simon Nicholls (sinichol), replying to Thomas Pelham, 1, #213 of 227 🔗

Surely “Be Brave Boris, Lift Le Lockdown”…

1812 ▶▶▶▶ Francis, replying to Simon Nicholls (sinichol), 2, #214 of 227 🔗

Wouldn’t that be “Man-Up Macron, Lift Le Lockdown”?

1706 ▶▶ Paul Seale, replying to Tim, 6, #215 of 227 🔗

I would rather live on my feet than die at home.

1708 Oaks79, replying to Oaks79, 1, #216 of 227 🔗

Well I’ve just been told I have no job to go back too once this shitstorm ends, fantastic !!


1712 ▶▶ Paul Seale, replying to Oaks79, 4, #217 of 227 🔗

Sorry to hear that sir.

The first few weeks of this have been relatively painless for most thus far. Far too many folk seem to be quite content getting 80% of their pay to stay at home; they don’t seem to comprehend that that isn’t going to last forever and the ignominy of Universal Credit lies ahead for millions.

You won’t find quite so many sceptics of lockdown when they can’t pay the bills, their kids are hungry and they’re trying to survive on £900 a month with zero help towards their mortgage for the first 39 weeks of their claim.

1713 ▶▶▶ Ethelred the Unready, replying to Paul Seale, 5, #218 of 227 🔗

Completely agree – I am in week five of furlough and my generous employer is giving me 70% of my regular salary, uncapped. Other than the fact that I actually enjoy my work and want to get back to it, this feels like an extended holiday, particularly when the sun shines. As you say, when the reality of redundancy and Universal Credit kicks-in, an awful lot of lockdown enthusiasts are going to quickly lose their zealotry, good!

1720 ▶▶▶ BecJT, replying to Paul Seale, 2, #219 of 227 🔗

Most staff are on 100% pay, the employer pays the 100% and claims back 80%, although most could do it for March and possibly April but can’t do it for May because you need the cash to pay and then wait. I think this will only change when people feel it in their wallet. Sorry about your job Oaks, that’s tough.

1718 ▶▶ Cbird, replying to Oaks79, 1, #220 of 227 🔗

Yes, very sorry

1717 Oaks79, replying to Oaks79, 1, #221 of 227 🔗

Source code for Covid-Sim, simulation used in report 9, is now public


1725 ▶▶ Graham, replying to Oaks79, 3, #222 of 227 🔗

I’m a software developer. I’ve just had a quick look at the code and it’s pretty appalling: unmaintainable and hard to understand. Overall, the style and (unusually for programmers) correct spelling in comments suggest it was coded by an intelligent but impatient person with no skill in or feel for software development.

Skip the rest of this comment unless you want technical reasons for my opinion.

* It’s written in C, despite C++ having been available for nearly a generation, and suffers from the consequent need for manual initialisation of everything because of the lack of constructors. The source files have the extension .cpp but I haven’t found any use of C++ features. Memory is allocated and freed manually. All in all this sort of programming reminds me of stuff I saw in about 1995 written by enthusiastic but unreliable coders.

* Bizarrely, all variables are declared, but not initialised, at the start of functions. Since C99, released in 2000, you can initialise variables at the first point of use in both C and C++, and that is generally best practice.

* Some functions are hundreds of lines long. For example, ReadParams in CovidSim.cpp.

* Copious use of global variables.

* Incorrect comments. For example, the comment at line 347 of CovidSim.cpp is “//print out number of calls to random number generator” but the code below it does no such thing.

* Large amounts of commented-out code. See lines 5137 onward in CovidSim.cpp.

* Buffer overflow vulnerabilities. Line 106 in CovidSim.cpp is

char OutFile[1024], OutFileBase[1024], OutDensFile[1024], SnapshotLoadFile[1024], SnapshotSaveFile[1024], AdunitFile[1024];

which declares some 1K buffers for file names. That should be big enough but there is no need to trust to luck. This is what std::string is for. Some of these buffers are referred to using extern statements in other files; they are not declared in a header.

Well, that’s enough for now. Good luck to anyone trying to use or modify this code. Ohne mich, as the Germans say.

1732 ▶▶▶ Paul Seale, replying to Graham, 1, #223 of 227 🔗

I know nothing about coding but having read your interesting comments, all I could think of was Dominic Littlewood and Cowboy Builders.

1733 ▶▶▶ guy153, replying to Graham, 2, #224 of 227 🔗

Maybe we can get the same people to write the government app to track us all constantly that we need. Apparently they don’t want to use the ones Google and Apple have already written because of concerns they may incorporate too much privacy.

1749 ▶▶ guy153, replying to Oaks79, 1, #225 of 227 🔗

Thanks! Actually quite an interesting model. There are some docs in the docs directory explaining how it works. It takes account of geography, partitions people into groups, models whether transmission takes place in schools, at work, etc., and can model the effects of various interventions (closing schools etc.).

The place where the rubber hits the road looks to be data/param_files/preUK_R0=2.0.txt. This contains all their assumptions about what proportions of each age group will have mild illness, “ILI” (influenza-like-illness I reckon), “SARI” (severe acute respiratory illness), and “Critical”. Then there are further tables in there for what percentage of people in each of those groups will die.

Not sure exactly what the age bands but it looks like they have around 3 or 4% of sort of middle-aged-ish people getting SARI (plus a few critical) and around 20% of that SARI lot dying, giving an IFR of around at least 0.6% for the middle-aged. This may have been a reasonable assumption back in February or whenever they set these numbers up but looks way too high now.

If you updated the inputs with current knowledge it looks like it might be quite useful, but as it’s so complicated there are all sorts of other assumptions in there besides these SARI and CFR percentages that would need validating. They probably have done this but aren’t releasing it as their main function is just to be the backstory to this “it would have been 500k deaths” narrative.

1719 Tim Bidie, replying to Tim Bidie, 17, #226 of 227 🔗

Okay. Somebody once said that when at least four people that you trust all tell you the same thing, then it is pretty much like a communication from the almighty.

So, Professor Spiegelhalter, President of the Royal Statistical Society, on BBC Radio 4 ‘today’ this morning:

‘Your chance of dying from Covid 19 this year is pretty much the same as your chances of dying this year anyway.’

Professor John Nicholls, Pathology Professor at the University of Hong Kong and expert on coronaviruses:

‘So a correct comparison is not Sars or Mers but a severe cold. Basically this is a severe form of the cold.’

‘HK has far more cleanliness (than China) and they are very aware of social hygiene.’ HK (Hong Kong) only 4 deaths from Covid 19

‘Australia and the southern hemisphere will not see any great infections rates because they have lots of sunlight and they are in the middle of summer.’ 06 Feb

Anders Tegnell, Epidemiologist at Sweden’s Public Health Agency, an independent body whose expert recommendations the government follows:

‘It is difficult to talk about the scientific basis of a strategy with these types of disease, because we do not know much about it and we are learning as we are doing, day by day. Closedown, lockdown, closing borders — nothing has a historical scientific basis, in my view. We have looked at a number of European Union countries to see whether they have published any analysis of the effects of these measures before they were started and we saw almost none.’

Dr Kari Stefansson, leading human genetics expert, Iceland. Board-certified neurologist and neuropathologist in both Iceland and the US

‘It looks like the virus was fairly widespread in Great Britain very very early in this epidemic’

Iceland has tested a higher proportion of inhabitants than any other country

‘This leads to a higher confidence in our efforts to contain the spread of the COVID-19 disease in the country.’ (Iceland Government statement)

Iceland measures have focused on testing, contact tracing of infections, social distancing, public efforts to increase basic awareness of hand sanitation, voluntary self-quarantine measures (currently about 5 448 individuals), and strict measures at healthcare institutions, nursing homes and the likes.

The splendid Professor Spiegelhalter also said that the UK lockdown PR campaign may have been too successful…….

Review of ‘Carry on Matron!’: ‘….everything doesn’t go according to plan……’

1842 ▶▶ Farinances, replying to Tim Bidie, 1, #227 of 227 🔗

Lol – I remember saying to a worried friend in January/February when he told me he was worried – “Don’t worry, it’s basically the common cold that turn’s into pneumonia if you’re very, very unlucky or very, very unhealthy to begin with.”

I thought I my lay have understated it a little in order to be more reassuring but…… 😂


74 users made 227 comments today.

118Farinances0, 3, 5, 9, 9, 10, 1, 1, 10, 0, 0, 7, 12, 0, 10, 12, 11, 2, 0, 6, 2, 7, 1
98BecJT4, 2, 11, 9, 13, 8, 7, 0, 10, 3, 2, 9, 4, 9, 5, 2
78guy153541, 8, 4, 4, 9, 4, 2, 1
56RDawg2, 10, 38, 1, 5
50John Bradley5, 13, 4, 3, 2, 12, 4, 7
50Oaks7918, 6, 11, 1, 2, 10, 1, 1
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22G M18, 4
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18David Mc18
18Tim Bidie117
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15Bill h123
15Fiat11, 4, 0
12Beacritical2, 10
12Ethelred the Unready16, 5
12AN other lockdown sceptic1, 0, 0, 11
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11Mark Gobell64, 1
11Paul Seale6, 4, 1
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