Not another lock down

The Prime Minister is right to say he does not want another national lock down. The Chancellor is right to warn of economic damage were the government to impose one.

It appears that the Cabinet is arguing over what is the right balance between encouraging people and businesses back to school and to work, and advice or controls over conduct to seek to limit the spread of the virus.

The government needs to ask itself why it wants more of a lock down, and what purpose will be served. The first national lock down had two specified purposes. The first was to save the NHS which was not ready or equipped to handle an upsurge in CV 19 cases. This problem has surely been solved by the addition of many more intensive care beds and the arrival of the Nightingale emergency hospitals, along with billions of pounds of extra funding.

The second idea was to squash the sombrero or flatten the hump in the graph of cases. No-one said they could eliminate the virus. The terms of the lockdown implied a subsequent increase in virus cases as it came off, but at a more acceptable rate and below much increased NHS capacity to cope. It also meant spreading out the virus outbreak reduced the time to the arrival of a vaccine if one is going to emerge this winter.

Now it appears some are moving closer to the idea that we need to eliminate the virus. That would be great. Unfortunately it seems they think this can only be done by imposing very intrusive controls, doing lasting damage to all businesses that rely on social contacts, and keeping the controls in place for a long time. There does not yet seem to be any country worldwide outside China that has imposed draconian lock downs that has avoided a second coming of the virus after relaxing some of the controls. If one country could do it they would need very tough border controls to stop it coming back in from elsewhere.

Yesterday I made some suggestions on how to stop the current spread of the virus leading to more deaths, by stronger safeguarding for those most at risk. I think it unlikely further controls on social contact either for business or within groups of family and friends will be sufficient to end the virus. Test and trace becomes more difficult as we enter the flu and cold season, leaving many more with symptoms. The rate of false results on tests and delays in getting them and finding the results also makes it difficult to guarantee success in stopping the virus by this means.

I have not lectured people on how they should live their lives or respond to the virus. I think the government needs to repeat clear advice on how the virus spreads, what the risks are and what actions might reduce the risk, and leave more to individuals to decide how they wish to respond.

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462 Comments

  1. Stephen Priest
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:06 am | Permalink

    Letter from the Telegraph

    SIR – A major rethink on how we battle coronavirus is urgently needed. Now, we’re far better informed, so locking us all down and destroying more lives and livelihoods are not the answer.

    Even when a vaccine is found, it may not grant total immunity. In the meantime, as with every other disease, we must learn to live with it.

    The most vulnerable are more than capable of deciding how to protect themselves, while the young need to get on with their lives and enjoy their youth, which passes all too quickly.

    Enough of this hourly analysis, which creates an atmosphere of fear out of all proportion to the threat. Our best weapon against the virus, for now, is common sense, not over-reaction, which is devastating our country.

    Richard Drax MP (Con)
    London SW1

    • Stephen Priest
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:52 am | Permalink

      Which is the most likely explanation to the current situation?

      1. Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.
      Hanlon’s razor

      2. “We know that no one ever seizes power with the intention of relinquishing it.”
      ― George Orwell, 1984

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:25 am | Permalink

        Just remember, that in no country has the European Union imposed a lockdown, nor could it ever.

        That tells you where the real power lies and always has done.

        That said, no one “wants” a lock down. However, some accept, that if all else fails, then one could be necessary again.

        • Mike Wilson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:36 am | Permalink

          The EU tells member countries they must accept unlimited immigration from other member countries. That shows you where the real power lies.

        • Mike Wilson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:41 am | Permalink

          They certainly think they have some power.

          https://europa.eu/european-union/coronavirus-response_en

        • agricola
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:09 am | Permalink

          The EU did not because in the case of cv19 even they realised that one size could not possible fit all and work. They left it to individual countries to manage it. I experienced a very orderly lock down in Spain with real policemen applying it. Once the Brits had denuded supermarket shelves and gone home everything returned to a managable norm.

          Should a second lockdown prove necessary then the key will be to manage the functioning of the economy better than we did first time round or as we emerged from lockdown. I am with you in not wanting one.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:20 am | Permalink

          Just remember that the EU subcontracts all its dirty work to its minions – the state governments. They collect the taxes too.

        • Hope
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:36 am | Permalink

          JR we were told in the first major three word strap line- whatever it takes. But that was not true was it.

          Still very selective over using some drugs, still allowing BLM and Extinction Rebellion protests, boat people coming in by the thousands in boat loads more than six everyone else warned of dire fines!

          We cannot afford your govt anymore, economically, financially, culturally, socially, education etc. it has become a mange to our freedoms, liberties, choices, and democracy.

          We read how Ofsted will down grade any school not promoting and teaching the benefits of LGBT issues! Brainwashing vulnerable children against parents wishes. That is not education. These are social issues for parents to decide not a left wing quango or minority protest group.

          Have you lot totally lost the plot. Freedom of thought and choice is democracy not what the London centric lefty politicos say it is.

          • NickC
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:58 am | Permalink

            Hope, You are entirely correct. I am particularly concerned about the disparate treatment of BLM and ER demonstrators on the one hand and, for example, those demonstrating against further erosion of civil liberties during lockdown. What a mess.

          • APL
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 10:43 am | Permalink

            Hope: “We cannot afford your govt anymore, economically, financially, culturally, socially, education etc.”

            It’s a legitimate question Hope, would Labour be any worse? Former life long Tory voter asking that question.

            Totalitarian lockdown, house arrest, Economic ruin. But all owned by the Tory party. I don’t usually swear but WTF?

        • jerry
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:31 am | Permalink

          @MiC; “Just remember, that in no country has the European Union imposed a lockdown, nor could it ever.”

          Only because it has yet to achieve Superstate status! Even now, if the EC and the EP are of one opinion EU law could be made that would require each member state to enact such a Directive/Law.

        • NickC
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:42 pm | Permalink

          Martin, No Leave voter I know of thinks the EU is the only political operator with all the power. Just that it has a lot, and the extent continues to grow. On a range between a simple trading bloc and the ‘United States of Europe’ it is about 80% there. Hence why I call the EU an empire – it’s not quite a single state yet.

      • Everhopeful
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:22 am | Permalink

        +1
        =2

        • Stephen Priest
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:13 am | Permalink

          Alex Belfield – THE VOICE OF REASON on You Tube
          Boris What Have You Done To Our TERRIFIED Pensioners? HEARTBREAKING Call

          Can you imagine being so confused and upset that you’re too scared to let your carers and son in bringing you food. This caller tonight blew my mind!

          • Everhopeful
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:44 pm | Permalink

            Truly shocking!
            And other stories too.
            Good show that!

    • Stephen Priest
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:18 am | Permalink

      Former chief scientific advisor at Pfizer Dr Mike Yeadon has called on Matt Hancock to provide evidence that the UK is heading towards a second coronavirus wave.

      Coronavirus: ‘At most we’re in a second ripple’, says scientist

      This is on YOU TUBE with Julia Hartley Brewer. This has to be seen. He says most of the test are false positives.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:19 am | Permalink

      +1 good man Drax.

    • Richard1
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:17 am | Permalink

      If our host will permit it, here is an extremely comprehensive discussion of the issues from a group of Belgian doctors.

      (NB could some who post here note that there is a similar debate on policy and similar problems and challenges in Belgium. Belgium is in the EU and has no plans to leave.)

      https://www.aier.org/article/open-letter-from-medical-doctors-and-health-professionals-to-all-belgian-authorities-and-all-belgian-media

      • cornishstu
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

        It’s not just Belgian, there are American, Spanish, Dutch and German plus a selection of doctors from around the world. https://docs4opendebate.be/en/doctors-initiatives/
        They can’t all be wrong.

        • glen cullen
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:23 pm | Permalink

          The BBC will tell them if they’re right or wrong

    • jerry
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:24 am | Permalink

      @Stephen Priest; Except [a backbench Tory MP writes] “destroying more lives and livelihoods” seems to be exactly what some are proposing by not wanting to have restrictions that all should obey – talk about the survival of only the fit and active! Many people live otherwise full and economically productive lives with mortalities in remission or other vulnerabilities that could become mortalities to covid-19, never mind those who live unknowingly with such conditions.

      I note the MP in question signed his letter with a Westminster postcode, I wonder what the people of South Dorset postcodes think, many of them elderly and/or infirm, having chosen that area for health reasons.

      • NickC
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 10:04 am | Permalink

        Jerry, People are already dying sooner, or suffering more, because they cannot access suitable timely treatment by the NHS for non-covid19 medical issues. Covid19 restrictions may help protect some people, but cause medical problems for others!

        • jerry
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

          @NickC; By your logic it suggests, rather than just a few token restrictions you are arguing that we should have a very strict lock-down, now, before the Covid, and now sessions flu, numbers get to high, thus keeping NHS (and private hospital) beds clear for wards full of cancer patients, and the such.

          Except what you actually argue for is, little or no restrictions, certainly no lock-down, which would fill the NHS and private hospitals full of Covid patients, not cancer patients etc…

          • NickC
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

            No, Jerry, that’s your “logic”, not mine. We are, quite rightly, not locking down because of influenza and pneumonia. Therefore we should not have had partial lockdowns these last 3 months for covid19. If the covid19 death toll rises significantly then yes we should re-vist a partial lockdown. But not until.

          • jerry
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

            @NickC; ” If the covid19 death toll rises significantly then yes we should re-vist a partial lockdown.”

            Your logic suggest, with regards influenza, that the NHS and govt should wait until they see how bad the seasonal flu is before offering the seasonal flu vaccine

            Clue, the Covid-19 virus is the same virus that killed 35-40k people between March and June, we KNOW deaths will follow, we KNOW hospitals will be full of avoidable admissions, we KNOW this will cause cancer patients to have their treatments curtailed or postponed.

          • DennisA
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

            There are currently 0.76% of NHS beds occupied by Covid patients. In the whole country 138 are on ventilators. Of all the “infections” to date, cumulatively only 34.5% of cases went into hospital, (not all at the same time).

            The government is out of control, not the virus.

          • jerry
            Posted September 23, 2020 at 6:31 am | Permalink

            @DennisA; “There are currently 0.76% of NHS beds occupied by Covid patients.”

            Strange, I always thought the spots caused by chickenpox, for example, appeared after infection, not before, I do7ubt the Virus that causes CV19 has managed to put nature’s cart before the its horse…

    • Stephen Priest
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

      Unless something happens quickly this country is in a very dark place.

  2. Stephen Priest
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:07 am | Permalink

    Criminals being let off by the police to ease pressure on the courts, Telegraph investigation finds

    • Sea Warrior
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:59 am | Permalink

      I’m no criminologist but I’ll hazard a guess that the crims will re-offend, adding pressure on the, er, police.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:43 am | Permalink

        Not only that it removes any real deterrents for others. As they have done by ignoring shop lifting and not even investigating many very real and damaging crimes. Meanwhile put a tyre in am empty London bus lane at 4.23 am and a £130 point fine is yours.

        • Stred
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:35 am | Permalink

          Plus much more in increased insurance charges, as with my own speeding to get over the line when the red traffic light came on and the grey red light camera had been converted to a speed camera without the usual warning signs and colour and behind the bus lane. They have caught thousands out with this trick.

        • Alan Jutson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:34 am | Permalink

          +1

      • jerry
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:43 am | Permalink

        @SW; “I’ll hazard a guess that the crims will re-offend”

        Indeed, the driver of that Chelsea Tractor will no doubt still think those No Parking signs, or the speed limit does not apply to them…

        I very much doubt many, if any, serious crimes are being ignored, I also suspect the Police are offering Police Cautions that are, if accepted, legally speaking the equivalent to a court conviction or guilty plea.

        Headlines sell newsprint, the details seldom do!

        • NickC
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:46 pm | Permalink

          Jerry, It seems to me that the police ignored the destruction of public and private property by the Black Lives Matter and Extinction Rebellion rioters.

          • jerry
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 4:27 am | Permalink

            @NickC’; Straight from the pages of the BNN….

          • NickC
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 10:09 am | Permalink

            Jerry, Either my comment is true, or it’s not. If you have actual evidence, rather than just a sneer, then please give it.

          • jerry
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

            @NickC; No, it is for you to post your evidence of police malpractice, you’re one making the the accusations.

            As for pointing out such style of evidence-less comments can also be found within the BNN website, I guess the truth hurts…

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 23, 2020 at 7:02 am | Permalink

      Yes I put a new roof on some shops 5 months ago. It has been trashed (people jumping on it and pulling it to pieces). One of my tenants videoed them, one of the individuals gave his name on camera, so confident is he that nothing will be done. The police say they have no ‘evidence’ and can do ‘nothing’ but ‘surely my insurance will pay for another new roof?’
      He was surprised when I told him that insurers don’t not cover criminal damage. He said the ‘young people’ would not pay – their parents would pay which is unfair. I asked him if making me pay was fair, because that was what he was deciding. He seemed shocked that anybody had to pay!

  3. Stephen Priest
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:09 am | Permalink

    I see the Telegraph has its own “Global Health Security Team”

    Straight out of George Orwell

    • agricola
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:08 am | Permalink

      As is the Unconsious Bias Training being imposed on MPs. An MP is biased as an essential part of his/her job, or hasn’t anyone noticed, and in a political sense there is reason to believe they havn’t. Do we want MPs without a valid opinion and the freedom to express it on anything contencious. The police and BBC have been nobbled in this Orwellian way making them unfit for purpose. Now it seems MPs are to get the same brainwashing. How long before newspapers suffer the same fate. I think these 1984 society engineers will have a problem with Littlejohn and a small number who still say it as it is.

      • Andy
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:34 am | Permalink

        I saw Mr Bradley moaning in one of the papers about unconscious bias training. This is ironic as he clearly needs it more than most.

        Unconscious bias is not what you think it is. It is not there to tell you white is bad and black is good. It is there to help you understand how you think.

        I’ve been on several unconscious bias courses. They usually only last an hour or two. And they are among the most interesting such courses I have done.

        It should absolutely be compulsory for MPs – they have to deal with all sorts of constituents – as should anti-bullying training.

        Mr Bradley should be sacked if he doesn’t do it.

        • Mike Wilson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:44 am | Permalink

          If you’ve been on them, the courses clearly need to be banned.

          • Mike Wilson
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:44 am | Permalink

            Mind you, your bias is very conscious.

        • Sir Joe Soap
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:49 am | Permalink

          “I’ve been on several unconscious bias courses.”
          Comment of the week, and it’s barely started…

        • agricola
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:51 am | Permalink

          Now we know of yet another place you come from. George Orwell had you sussed before you were born and thankfully warned the rest of us.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:21 am | Permalink

          All your bias is entirely Conscious Andy, so you would be exempt from the indoctrination camp.

        • Fred H
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:30 am | Permalink

          courses or visits to shrinks?

        • percy openshaw
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:15 am | Permalink

          Sinister nonsense. “It is there to help” – in which case it should be voluntary, not compulsory; “to help you understand how you think” – a vile presumption. And as if that were not enough, there is abundant evidence to show that these courses are flawed. Worse, they are predicated on racial prejudiced assumptions themselves, that “racism” is a purely “white” affliction. Frankly, it is difficult to know what is worse – your disingenuous tone or your totalitarian mindset. The two usually go together, of course.

        • Ian Turner
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:33 am | Permalink

          I think he made a very good point that he was one of the few people in this country that couldn’t simply be sacked for stating what he believes to be true – unlike university lecturers for instance.

        • Hope
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:34 am | Permalink

          No he should not. It should not exist. MPs are becoming the puppets of minority causes against the majority’s wishes. Pure madness.

          Teacher in Gloucestershire who did not agree with Transgender and LGBT lessons now suing the school. Good. Everyone should oppose the Relationship and Sex Education Act. A vile peace of socialist cultural Marxism by Johnson. Anyone could be forgiven for thinking Corbyn was in office!

          Everyone should oppose a second national arrest scheme, BLM, tearing down statues or Extincition Rebellion already exempt!

          Target audience should be warned and given support to isolate if they wish, the rest carry on. I note all graphs today are estimates, previous graphs shown to be unreliable, figures adjusted but are still not accurate!

        • MickN
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:56 am | Permalink

          “I’ve been on several unconscious bias courses. ”

          Well you could have knocked me down with a feather !

        • Anonymous
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

          Of course.

          It only seems right because only half of the news is reported.White people bad. Old white people worse.

          Little else.

          And do you know how much these courses cost ? Why so expensive ???

        • NickC
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

          Andy, Have you been on a conscious bias against pensioners course? No, no, Andy, you misunderstand, not the course promoting hatred of the elderly – you passed that with flying colours – I meant the course trying to civilise you into not hating the elderly.

      • Sir Joe Soap
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:51 am | Permalink

        Can I be the first to offer training to remove the Conscious Bias imposed on MPs by this course, taking them back to where they were when they were democratically elected?

      • Lifelogic
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:53 am | Permalink

        Indeed. MP already self select. Most people (with a few notable exceptions) who aspire to be an MP, to boss people around, go to war on the lie, tax and regulate them to death, push climate alarmist non solutions and waste tax payers money hand over fist are totally unsuitable by definition. All but a handful of MPs voted for the climate change act and want the mad net zero carbon lunacy, the Iraq (counter productive war on a lie) vote was 412 to 149, then we had the idiotic support for joining ERM and EURO – I rest my case.

        • graham1946
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

          The only way into parliament is to join one of the two and a half political parties. Independence of thought not required or tolerated. You can’t even get onto our local town council without joining the Tories – its all sewn up. Even a political party having got 4 million votes cannot get a seat – what chance an individual who relies on the ethos of service rather than self aggrandizement.

          • Lifelogic
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

            +1 except 2 and 1/20 of a party.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:41 am | Permalink

      The dismal fatalism and defeatism spread by Johnson at the very start have gladly been adopted by the many apathetic and useless amongst the public – just read the comments here daily – and the forecasts have been lamentably self-fulfilling as a result.

      Other countries, commendably, were not quite as supine in the face of this challenge, and have deservedly been rewarded by brighter economic prospects and by happier social conditions.

      How people can describe the PM as an “optimist” after that goodness only knows.

      • Roy Grainger
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:33 am | Permalink

        Martin. Yesterday you were telling us to follow Japan by having almost no testing and a shambolic weak lockdown. Not sure why you are now advocating something different ?

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:47 am | Permalink

        He was doing what the ‘experts’ told him.

        If he’d been optimistic and refused a lockdown and told us to lead from the front and step up and man up etc. the sainted media would have crucified him.

      • Adam
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:23 am | Permalink

        Lockdowns control the virus like paramedics in a strait-jackets wielding colanders as weapons. They strain to attain little.

        Brenda from Bristol agrees: Not another one.

      • Richard1
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:33 am | Permalink

        The downturn has been about the same in the UK as in other European countries pursuing similar policies. The latest OECD forecasts projects the UK to have the highest growth in Europe in 2o21. The country which clearly has done better is Sweden – whose policies you have been rubbishing. You should reduce the number of your posts and spend a bit more time checking facts.

      • a-tracy
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:53 am | Permalink

        Martin”Other countries…,” Prof Sir Mark Walport, a member of the government’s Sage scientific advisory group told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme. “UK could lose control of the virus. One would have to say that we’re on the edge of losing control, You’ve only got to look across the Channel to see what is happening in France and what’s happening in Spain.” BBC 12/09/2020

      • Ian Turner
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:37 am | Permalink

        I read your daily comments here Martin – always so positive, always so uplifting! Makes my Day! 🙂

      • NickC
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

        So why aren’t you positive about Brexit, Martin, instead of snivelling on about how the UK is too useless to exist outside your EU empire?

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 23, 2020 at 7:06 am | Permalink

          Because of his bias against us. In fact it’s Hatred. Andy and mic demonstrate every day their cup overflowing with hatred.

  4. Everhopeful
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:17 am | Permalink

    He better not have another lockdown!
    He has already acted illegally and there is a pending legal case against him/the govt. which is being postponed due to a govt. lawyer being “on holiday”.
    Johnson had and has no right to inflict the ethos of communist China on us.
    And nor does his “government“.
    Nor the unelected entourage of “experts”.
    Our,liberties MUST be restored.
    With immediate effect.

    • Ian Wragg
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:03 am | Permalink

      I watched Hancock yesterday. He was like a man possessed

      Doomed, we are all doomed he seemed to be saying.
      He’s definitely on a power trip.
      Still no comments on the printing of leaflets for October 11th lockdown.

      • agricola
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:15 am | Permalink

        Long ago, watching Hancock Was the key to half an hour of dry entertainment, now sadly not.

      • Sir Joe Soap
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:02 am | Permalink

        He’s trying to compensate for his lack of gravitas. He was put there as the smiling faux face of technology and youth, now the face has to be deep and serious, and it doesn’t work.
        It’s like watching Frank Spencer playing Henry V.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:23 am | Permalink

          Yep. Some mothers do ‘av ‘em!

      • fedupsoutherner
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:10 am | Permalink

        Ian, well I hope that if it’s true a lockdown is coming on the 11th we get plenty of notice. I have a short break booked on the IOW starting on the 14th. I have booked a B&B and bought my train tickets and ferry ticket. If Boris doesn’t make his mind up by the 6th October I then have to decided if I am going because if I cancel the B&B after this date I have to pay the whole price so not only will I lose £80 on the fares I will lose £360 for the accommodation. Frankly I am losing the will to live not knowing what is going to happen and if I am going to be allowed a simple 4 days break somewhere. I have already cancelled one trip last May and looks like this one will be scuppered and for what? I know how to be careful but still enjoy myself and no amount of draconian measure will stop many people breaking the rules as they have from day one.

      • percy openshaw
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:22 am | Permalink

        A careerist cipher without ideological moorings will always find power more of a burden than an opportunity. The same goes for the PM. These are people trained in the Blairite school of politics, who expect unlimited growth and linear progress, such that governing is comfortable and consensual. They have also surfaced at a time when administrative labour has been taken over by functionaries, whether at the quango, Whitehall or Brussels level. You should also recall that matters are now so needlessly complicated by micro-regulation that only an army of obsessives, dedicated to compliance, can operate the system. Second, or third rate political figures are hence confronted with ideologically charged professionals – in force – whose aim is to frustrate their nominal masters.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

          Good comment.

      • an
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:10 am | Permalink

        Hancock has been involved in all sorts of dark dealings and faked events to get to the position he is today.

      • jane4brexit
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

        Ian I missed your comment about October 11th, although from your comments since have the impression that a printing company near you has been given an order to print leaflets about another lock down. Could you mention which article it is under please, so that I can find and read it all?

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:30 am | Permalink

      Unlike nearly all modern, civilised countries, the UK has no constitution where anything whatsoever is written to protect the people from whatever our supreme Parliament votes to do.

      So your claim as to “having no right” seems to me to be conditional only on Parliament, where Johnson has a large majority amongst MPs, but where almost any potential rebel has been expelled.

      So good luck with that – you cheered the expulsions at the time.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:25 am | Permalink

        You are an obdurate and ignorant fool. You have been told that we impose codified constitutions where we could to weaken. Our Glorious Constitution Is made up of very many documents, there is a class of law called ‘Constitutional Law’ to defend them. It is the highest class.

        • graham1946
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

          Lynn, are you arguing with our own Barrack Room Lawyer?

          • Lynn Atkinson
            Posted September 23, 2020 at 7:07 am | Permalink

            Stupid of me!

      • Fred H
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:33 am | Permalink

        he has about 150 new MPs who don’t want to rock the boat – however, they don’t seem to realise their job is becoming more short-term every week. They must be herded by the older wiser school of Tories before it collapses.

      • a-tracy
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:21 am | Permalink

        Martin, there was an interesting spat on twitter this weekend, if the UK has no constitution as you claim then what work does Jessica Simor QC do she tweeted 19/09/2020 that she is “a constitutional lawyer”. I started to look up about the UK’s constitution because I know nothing about it. There is an interesting article on it from 2008 when Jack Straw floated the idea that Britain could get a written constitution but it would take 20 years to sort it out.

        It also sets out the long road to rights, and key dates in the evolution of the UKs ‘unwritten’ constitution. inc.
        1215 Magna Carta
        1611 Case of Proclamations
        1689 Bill of Rights
        1701 Act of Settlement
        1832 Reform Act
        1911 Parliament Act
        1918 Representation of the People Act
        1949 Parliament Act
        1973 EEC Membership
        1998 Human Rights Act (which made the EC on HR enforceable in UK courts)

        I wonder how many rights the people actually have written in to all of these because it was said it would need a referendum or public vote to bring it in.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:15 pm | Permalink

          Our constitution is written as you proved. It not ‘codified’ into a single sheet of paper – which is a hinderence!

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

          The EEC membership is NOT Constitutional law, it’s Treaty law. Moreover it was not passed ‘Constitutionally’. It would have had to EXPLICITLY repeal those parts of previous constitutional law that it contradicted. It did not attempt to do so because Heath would NEVER have got it through the House. He had to pretend it was a Trade Agreement to do so.
          The EEC law specified that each country had to accede to their Union ‘in accordance with their own laws’. We did NOT – de jure we have never been members of the EU. De Facto, mainly because of the ineptitude of the majority in the House and therefore Government, we have been and remain so on this date.

      • Ian Turner
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:43 am | Permalink

        Well I must admit I did have a very small “Hurrah” Martin

        Which modern, civilised country did you have in mind? China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, Belarus, Saudi Arabia – I think they would all claim those distinctions?

      • NickC
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:05 pm | Permalink

        Martin, You have been told before – the UK has a written constitution but not a codified constitution. That is, our constitution is in many documents, not just one.

    • wab
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:56 am | Permalink

      Glad that “Everhopeful” was not running the country in WW2.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:22 am | Permalink

      +1

    • jerry
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:52 am | Permalink

      @Everhopeful; Oh do find a clue, parliament voted for the current measures (twice [1]), there is nothing illegal about the powers as set out in either the Civil or Health contingency Acts.

      I get the feeling that there are a far few who post to this site and rant elsewhere who simply do not like being told what to do, they would have been the people who would have ignored ARP regs during the war.

      [1] once when the Acts were past and again when the one being used during the current emergency were enacted

      • NickC
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:18 pm | Permalink

        Jerry, I wrote here quite explicitly early on in the course of the covid19 pandemic that we should cut the government some slack – everyone was finding their feet in a novel situation, and mistakes were inevitable, and should be forgiven.

        But it’s different now. We continue to lose civil liberties for a disease with fewer deaths than influenza and pneumonia. That’s not acceptable. If the death toll starts to rise significantly, as it did in March, then yes let’s return to sensible proven measures.

        • jerry
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 4:42 am | Permalink

          @NickC; “We continue to lose civil liberties”

          Like we did for six years from Sept. 1939 you mean, it’s what happens in a health or civil emergency, grow a spin man, for once in your life!

          As for the number of deaths, you really have not grasped the maths, the numbers of CV10 deaths have been kept low because of lock-downs and restrictions, not in spite of them. Also the numbers of mortalities to CV10 will be in addition to those from Flu.

          • NickC
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 10:20 am | Permalink

            Jerry, A balanced view is required. The deaths and suffering caused by the lockdown should not be ignored. Moreover, the covid19 death toll is well below that for influenza and pneumonia, and we’re not locking down for those. Removal of civil liberties must be proportionate to the severity of the problem – in this case deaths from an infectious disease. It isn’t. Finally, we are not at war!

          • jerry
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

            @NickC; “Moreover, the covid19 death toll is well below that for influenza and pneumonia”

            Everything the CMO and CSO say simply washes over you… Never mind that Coivid deaths will likely be in addition to those from influenza and pneumonia.

            “Removal of civil liberties must be proportionate to the severity of the problem”

            Indeed but it is you who wants to remove peoples civil liberties, place many into house arrest – a choice for them between life and possible (even probable) death – just because you still want your Pie and a Pint, to attend a game of Footy, or what ever.

            “Finally, we are not at war!”

            Oh yes we are, our enemy is an invisible virus, commonly, called Covid-19…

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

        The Acts contradict our Constitutional Freedoms. They are therefore illegal. The Government and Parliament are constrained by our Constitution. It is NOT their plaything to be kicked about. We are Sovereign, not them. We allow them to exercise OUR SOVEREIGNTY by consent! We can change our mind!
        Boris needs to get a grip!

        • jerry
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 5:01 am | Permalink

          @Lynn Atkinson; “The Acts contradict our Constitutional Freedoms. They are therefore illegal.”

          Just as many laws do, how many naturist’s did you pass in the street yesterday, how many 14 year old’s driving motor cars, for example. The laws that prevent both activities contradict the Constitutional Freedoms of both groups of people surely – no?

          “The Government and Parliament are constrained by our Constitution.”

          But what does that (unwritten) “Constitution” say about the roll of Parliament. To suggest Parliament has acted illegally is a giant leap from suggesting that either the executive or the PM might have.

          “Boris needs to get a grip!”

          Indeed, a grip on this virus and its spread, but I somehow doubt he will, as he appears unwilling to put peoples health before wealth…

          • Lynn Atkinson
            Posted September 23, 2020 at 7:16 am | Permalink

            Your point 1: NO
            Your point 2: Parliament did not vote for us to join the Common Market, subsequent parliaments have been bamboozled, through ineptitude to act as if we were members when de jure we are not. They have proved that by Repealing the ‘72 Act. They could have done that anytime.
            Your point 3: you think ‘Saving the NHS is more important than eating? How do you propose ‘saving lives’ by this course – or do you think food like the NHS is ‘free’?

          • jerry
            Posted September 23, 2020 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

            @Lynn Atkinson; Talk about nonsense and hyperbole on stilts…

            Who mentioned anything about the EEC, nice try to divert but it hasn’t worked, you claimed that Parliament had not voted on the Civil Contingency Acts, when they did, back in the 2004, they also voted on the Coronavirus Act 2020 – in fact had MPs not done so the latter would not be approaching its six month renewal, for that was an amendment moved by opposition and/or backbench MPs.

            No one is being forced to go without food because of the measures taken to protect public health, that is not to say some people can not afford to eat, but that was also true before Covid-19 was known about, before you claim China created it, some people can not afford food because of economic & employment policies.

  5. Lester Cynic Beedell
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:18 am | Permalink

    Beat the virus….. no chance, learn to live with it….. that’s the only solution!
    It’s most surprising that the most dictatorial government ever is, allegedly conservative
    Recently I’ve been receiving emails asking for donations to enable newly elected Tory MPs to retain their seats, I responded by saying that adopting traditional Tory policies would be a great start.
    Boris aspires to be a Churchillian PM, rarely has a target been so comprehensively missed.
    When he commented recently on the decision to cancel the traditional ending of the Last Night of the Proms he remarked that he was being restrained from commenting….. by whom… we need to know

    • Stephen Priest
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:22 am | Permalink

      In the press over the weekend there were reports that he couldn’t live on his PM’s salary because of his divorce settlement and kids.

      It’s as if someone got hold of his assets.

      • Ian Turner
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:48 am | Permalink

        In fairness he took a big pay-cut when he became PM and there are plenty of others on the Government payroll who earn several multiples of his salary with nothing like the burdens that come with the PMs job.

        • APL
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 11:45 am | Permalink

          Ian Turner: “In fairness he took a big pay-cut when he became PM … ”

          Well:

          No one coerced him to take the job.
          The mean salary in the UK is £30,000
          Boris finds it difficult to manage on five times that + expenses, and grace and favor residences.

          Too bad.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 23, 2020 at 7:17 am | Permalink

          If he could not afford to be PM he should have done us all a favour and not have put himself forward.

    • Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:49 am | Permalink

      @Lester Cynic Beedell

      Well said Lester — this virus will outlive many of us unless we help our bodies to stand up to it…

    • Javelin
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:17 am | Permalink

      Why weren’t healthy people allowed to become immune over the summer when the hospitals were empty?

      Only 8% of the people have immunity. This damaging nonsense will be going on for two more years at this rate. We won’t have an economy left and the vulnerable will be dying from poverty and starvation. But the doctors will have saved every life they were able to.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

        Because some of them would have died, or have transmitted the virus to the old or frail, many of whom would have died.

        Next?

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:26 pm | Permalink

          So now the position remains that we may all die and you think that’s an improvement?
          Don’t call us …

  6. Mark B
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:19 am | Permalink

    Good morning

    I think I might have a solution. All those who do not believe that the virus is as serious as those in the media claim, should be allowed to carry on with their lives as normal. And I so mean normal. All those who are, or think they are, at risk, stay at home and self isolate until this is all over. Or better still, go and live somewhere away from the rest of us. I hear Scotland is quite nice this time of year and they have plenty of space.

    As for our kind hosts first paragraph. May I remind him that he stated here on this diary that the Nightingale Hospitals are not being used. Further. These extra billions. What is it being spent on when other treatments are either being stopped or curtailed? It can’t be on managers and staffs wages and bonuses can it ? 😉

    • Javelin
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:56 am | Permalink

      My solution BEFORE lockdown – was to ONLY to protect the vulnerable and let the rest get on with life. GPs should decide who needed protecting. The vulnerable should have been given extra benefits and support with things like food delivery. “Plague hospitals” should have been set up. Those who are obese should have been given six months to lose weight.

      It makes no sense locking up people who will never get ill, nor does it make any sense locking down the country during summer when influenza is not also around.

      • Everhopeful
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:36 am | Permalink

        They used to have Isolation Hospitals to deal with diseases like diphtheria etc.
        The sick were taken off in “The Fever Wagon”.
        Isolation hospitals were set up by benefactors and local donation and were later subsumed by the NHS who promptly closed them.
        And sold the buildings and land.
        For housing!
        ( Same happened to many of our spas. The sensible Germans did not get rid of theirs and to this day people are prescribed spa cures).

        Of course the two World Wars were a great time for that sort of wealth and asset transfer. Never let a good crisis go to waste.
        As now!

      • Hope
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:29 am | Permalink

        Jav,
        Absolutely spot on. It was well known that statistically the elderly and vulnerable were most likely to have s verse consequences. This has later been confirmed by the govt dodgy figures that 89% of people who died were over 65 years. Still not ascertained if it was with or from making the figure even less worrying.

        Targeted approach was and is required. We read Johnson caved in to Macron on his first major Uturn. The man has a record for being gutless and caves in.

      • NickC
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

        Javelin, come on, Andy and Martin told us that a harsher, sooner, fuller, longer, lockdown but with open borders was soooo necessary to stamp out the virus. And that’s what we’re now mainly doing. Even when the covid19 death toll is below that for influenza and pneumonia.

    • Andy
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:38 am | Permalink

      The irony being that the mostly elderly hard right Tory Brexiteers who don’t believe the virus is a risk are among those most at risk from it.

      That said, I for one certainly have no qualms if they want to kill themselves. We should be clear though, medical treatment must be prioritised for the young should demand exceed supply.

      Live you life as you see fit but if you get sick then you are at the back of the queue.

      • Edward2
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:36 am | Permalink

        Hatred in your heart before breakfast Andy.
        Just swop “elderly” for any other community or racial group and see how your post reads.

        Earlier you said you had been on several unconscious bias training courses.

        • graham1946
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:14 pm | Permalink

          He didn’t anything about ‘conscious bias’ though did he? He’ s full of bitterness and must be a joy to live with, not even talking to his own mother because she voted for Brexit. How shallow can you get?

        • acorn
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

          Ed2, I hadn’t clocked you as a bible puncher. I have always assumed, and still do, that leave voters, voted such for purely anti immigration reasons.

          Any other aspect of Brexit, was far to complicated for them to understand. The anti, being particularly anti the non-white non-christian type of immigrant. A situation that the ERG 62 took maximum advantage of.

          Alas, “leavers” have got exactly what they voted for, the continuation of a decade of an incompetent government.

          Throughout time, Nature has always allowed periods of unrestricted random development of all its lifeforms. At particular points in time, it decides to perform a “selection event”, to choose which developments it will allow to proceed to the next development period. C19 I think is one of those “selection events”.

          • Edward2
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:46 pm | Permalink

            I bible puncher?
            What on Earth are you on about acorn?

            Perhaps the most bizarre post ever seen on here.

            Brexit derangement syndrome writ large.

          • NickC
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 10:35 am | Permalink

            Acorn, Instead of assuming what Leave voters think, why don’t you listen? I particularly opposed the imposition of ….. Walther Funk’s European union via bureaucracy (rather than force of arms).

            Alas, Leaves have not got what we voted for – to actually leave the EU so that it no longer controls our home nation.

            And since when does “Nature” behave like a god, “allowing” some things and “deciding” others? You do realise such views are pantheism, don’t you?

          • Lynn Atkinson
            Posted September 23, 2020 at 7:22 am | Permalink

            Remainers have never understood that Leavers are more informed and have a better understanding of the issue than they are. That’s why they just go round and round in the same circle flushing away like a hen.
            I’m afraid they are such bigots that they will never comprehend the reason why the British people decided to continue existing by voting for Sovereignty over our homeland.

      • Everhopeful
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:38 am | Permalink

        The elderly PAID for the right to get ill.
        Not their fault if criminal politicians have squandered their taxes and lied to them.

      • Roy Grainger
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:40 am | Permalink

        In Andy’s world clinical decisions on who to treat will be taken by politicians not doctors. Eugenics in action from our resident liberal.

        • Sir Joe Soap
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:16 pm | Permalink

          That unconscious bias course he went on just hasn’t done the trick.

      • Arthur Wrightiss
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:27 am | Permalink

        Elderly hard right Tory brexiteers !!!!
        Come up to Sunderland and say that on a street corner.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

          Yes Andy do. You won’t feel a thing …

      • a-tracy
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:56 am | Permalink

        Andy, it was already a thing “A lack of resources could mean that younger, healthier patients are prioritised, while others are left to die” Sat 14/03/2020 Guardian

      • MickN
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

        You must have missed the unconscious bias course where they covered discrimination and nastiness against old people.

      • Ian Turner
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

        Andy, you have a generosity of spirit that is almost impossible to comprehend by people from an older and kinder age.

        One advantage of age is that (hopefully) by the time you and your fellow travellers are finally ready to take this country back to Year ‘Zero’ – I won’t be around to enjoy it.

      • NickC
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

        Andy, I’m sorry to intrude on your private delight at the prospect of hard right Tory Brexiteers dying off, but you may not have noticed that the covid19 death toll is currently extremely low. Hard luck! – no salivating over the deaths of the elderly for you tonight!

      • acorn
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

        Andy, keep this to yourself. Continentals are telling me they are setting up a sweepstake that Boris will cancel Brexit and plead for the transition period specified inside the Withdrawal Agreement Treaty, to be extended for two years. Basically, they expect Boris to call for a two year time-out, claiming the c19 virus has interrupted Brexit – EU hostilities.

        That could mean that the UK net contribution to the EU for 2021/22 budget years will increase from circa £8 billion to £12.2 billion a year. The Thatcher discount having disappeared on the 1st Feb 2020.

        • Narrow Shoulders
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

          I hesitate to pull you up on this Acorn as you are usually good on figures but our net contribution is already closer to £12 billion than £8 billion.

          • acorn
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 7:37 am | Permalink

            NS. Have a look at the EU accounts at
            https://ec.europa.eu/budget/graphs/revenue_expediture.html There is a detailed spreadsheet available above the chart. The accounts are in Euro so the exchange rate makes a difference.

            2019 = 1.14 €/£. net contribution £8.32 bn
            2018 = 1.13 net £8.63 bn
            2017 = 1.14 net £6.52 bn

          • APL
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 11:50 am | Permalink

            acorn: “Continentals are telling me they are setting up a sweepstake that Boris will cancel Brexit and plead for the transition period specified inside the Withdrawal Agreement Treaty”

            This Tory government has just destroyed 20% of the first quarter economy of the UK, if we leave on WTO terms what’s that going to be 3%? You wouldn’t even notice it.

          • acorn
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

            APL, I and many other Euro number crunchers have spent the last three years, trying to work out the Cost/Benefit ratio for the UK’s, EU membership. There are more PhDs on the job than you can shake a stick at.

            The UK “net” cost is currently circa £125 per person per year. The UK net benefit per person per year is somewhere between £1,200 and £2,400 per person per year.

          • Edward2
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 11:16 pm | Permalink

            But a 90 billion a year trade deficit.

        • NickC
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 10:41 am | Permalink

          Acorn, The EU, in its greed, is already planning massive increases to its income for the next MFF. So if the UK remained in the EU we would be liable not only for the elimination of the Thatcher rebate, but also for the next MFF increase – and for the whole of the next 7 years. UK net contribution would probably double to around £20bn/yr.

          • acorn
            Posted September 26, 2020 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

            NickC, how long do you spend everyday making up this bullshit? The UK will pay what it owes as per the Withdrawal Agreement.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:18 am | Permalink

      This is the only real solution. Self-identify as a Transmitter or an Apart.

      The deal is: Transmitters live as normal, and financially support, but cannot meet Aparts.

      Aparts are assisted by Ts to isolate completely for 3 months. Online food deliveries, Travelodge etc. rooms where appropriate, and can only mingle freely with each other. Even medical facilities, care homes need to be defined as A or T areas.

      All incoming travellers isolated at their cost and then required to become Aparts to speed herd immunity amongst the Ts.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:40 am | Permalink

        Oh, yes, “aparthood” or “apartheid” in Dutch.

        Many countries, from New Zealand, to Senegal, to China, and to Norway have no need even to consider such a desperate, fatalistic policy.

        • NickC
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

          No, Martin, the Chinese government’s fatalistic policy is more in your face – or should I say more likely in the back of your head. But that’s all right – with your support, and that of other dupes, communism will be around a while longer.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:35 pm | Permalink

          Martin I speak fluent Afrikaans. Apartheid means ‘separate development’ ‘parallel development’.
          Sadly in many of the countries you cite, there is no development or even peace between the competing racial and religious groups. See Sweden and the daily destruction, France with their 1,500 burned churches including 2 cathedrals. Funny that for centuries the French never bred a single individual capable of burning a church to the ground, now they have thousands.

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:13 am | Permalink

      Mark B. My friend works for the NHS. Shes a receptionist. Some of the money raised by Sir Tom went on ‘presents’ for the staff. Her partner who is an electrician for the NHS received a £200 bonus but she got a box of ‘goodies’. Chocolates and biscuits. Hardly a sensible use of hard raised money. What happened to promoting good health amongs the staff?

    • bigneil(newercomp)
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:41 am | Permalink

      “What is it being spent on ” – – same question about the millions raised by a certain 100 yr old. New cars for the managers? new desks and leather chairs? new laptops etc?

  7. Mick
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:24 am | Permalink

    . I think the government needs to repeat clear advice on how the virus spreads “
    It spreads by the over crowded family reunions, filling pubs and clubs , and the young not giving a toss about it so long as they can let there hair down and have a good time, we’re as the likes of me with heart problems and old stick by the rules and get cheesed off by all the flouting of the rules and panic buying by the couldn’t careless brigade

    • L Jones
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

      So because you’re at risk, you think all those young ‘uns who aren’t at risk should stay at home like YOU have to, because you can’t bear to see them enjoying themselves… Right?

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:37 pm | Permalink

      So you know how the virus spreads. Is the spread bad or good? Surely we want it to spread so that we can become immune?

  8. Peter
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:29 am | Permalink

    I think another lockdown is coming anyway. Whether we like it or not. Whether there is good justification for it or not.

  9. Everhopeful
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:30 am | Permalink

    Very interesting video about the virus and tests for it by President John Magufuli of Tanzania.
    He is a leader who appears to care for his country and he totally rejects Chinese interference.

    This also is very interesting ( hope a link is permitted)
    https://docs4opendebate.be/en/open-letter/

    • Everhopeful
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:30 am | Permalink

      Sorry.
      Video is on YouTube.

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:11 am | Permalink

      Everhopeful. I’ve just read this letter and it certainly puts a whole new perspective on things. Perhaps our PM should read it.

  10. agricola
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:35 am | Permalink

    At this moment in time it is down to individuals to behave responsibly and in my personal experience they do. Those that choose to flaut responsible behaviour should be subject to police control and prosecution. I have in mind excessive social gatherings and political demos. We are going to have to live with this problem until we have an effective vaccine to counter it.

    • Sea Warrior
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:56 am | Permalink

      What Agricola said. I read this weekend of a ‘super-spreader’ who came back from holiday, broke quarantine and promptly infected tens of others. That person should now be in jail. Those who don’t mask up on trains, the Tube or in shops? A largish fine – £200 or so will make the point. If the young won’t behave themselves in pubs then raise the admission age to 30 for a while, to make a point. Police action against those hosting house-parties seems commendably firm and fairly effective.
      P.S. I will shortly pop into my local for a mid-morning coffee. It is doing all the right things, as is its clientele. I hope that the scientists taking the podium at 1100 this morning won’t be blaming my local’s management for where we currently are. Much of the blame needs to be laid at the door in the government NOT having put in place a heightened public information campaign when restrictions were eased. It must do this now and use the BBC to push the message.

      • agricola
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:20 am | Permalink

        The last time the BBC pushed a message was to those resisting the Nazis in Europe. Now they could not be reied upon to push a pram.

        • margaret howard
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:58 am | Permalink

          agricola

          Giver your BBC blaming a rest. It is becoming tedious.

          • Roy Grainger
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:41 am | Permalink

            Margaret – Still waiting for you to congratulate the government on the Japan trade deal ? You told us for years it wouldn’t happen.

          • agricola
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:45 am | Permalink

            Margaret

            It will not rest until they are de-politised and returned to their Reithian principles.

          • Nigl
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:24 am | Permalink

            But deserved

          • Lynn Atkinson
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:27 am | Permalink

            I’m pleased you understand ‘tedious’ Margaret. You are a super-spreader.

          • a-tracy
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:51 am | Permalink

            margaret, I’ll give you an example of BBC news reports causing an issue. On Friday 18/09 the BBC local NW news reported on a lockdown in Lancashire, however, they told everyone Blackpool was open and touting for business. People flocked to Blackpool with it being a sunny weekend. Then endless reports out saying people were irresponsible flocking to Blackpool! Watch the news item back again.

          • Lifelogic
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:10 am | Permalink

            BBC style book – Remember that anything good is despite Trump, Climate Change, Brexit, Private Landlords, Boris. insuficient government “investment” or regulation, or lack of diversity ….. delete as applicable.

            Anything bad is due to:- Trump, Climate Change, Brexit, Private Landlords, Boris. insuficient government “investment” or regulation, lack of diversity ….. delete as applicable.

            Diversity to the BBC is vital but never any diversity of political opinion.

            That’s it the end.

          • fedupsoutherner
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:13 am | Permalink

            Not as tedious as your anti UK rubbish.

      • Andy
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:45 am | Permalink

        The virus is not a risk for the young. Why should they change their behaviour to suit you?

        If the virus is a risk to you, you should change your behaviour accordingly.

        I think young people have had enough of putting themselves to protect the whinging elderly.

        They did it for several months – often having their lives seriously negatively affected as a result. It was the young affected by the government’s exam mess, it was the young losing 20% of their salaries when businesses were ordered to close to protect the old. How much of your pension did you lose? Yes, that’s right. None.

        It is the young now being blamed.

        And all this by a party and a government which has been at war with young people for years over climate, culture and Brexit. You lot do not listen to young people. They now do not listen to you.

        And you should all be nice to them. It is not you being asked to sacrifice anything to save their lives.

        • Sea Warrior
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:40 am | Permalink

          The young’s rights do not trump those of others.

        • Roy Grainger
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:45 am | Permalink

          The young get their culture and politics from the USA, not the EU which they don’t seem the slightest bit interested in – they certainly have very little knowledge of it. For that reason they should welcome Brexit and closer ties with USA.

          • margaret howard
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 12:25 am | Permalink

            Roy Grainger

            Not any young I know thank goodness. Must be moving in different circles.

        • Richard1
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:30 am | Permalink

          What an extraordinary post. It’s a pity you cant be identified and quoted come an election, such language of hatred and ludicrous ‘logic’ would be very valuable to us if we could pin it on one of the left-wing political parties. Any chance you could oblige us?

        • a-tracy
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:49 am | Permalink

          “It was the young affected by the government’s exam mess”

          Hold on Andy, it didn’t turn out to be a mess for the young exam years at all, they got their predicted grades without having to sit any test at all, not even an online assessment. Their teacher awarded their mark.

          “It is the young now being blamed.”

          Hancock needs to give us the facts from the Test and Trace why does he think the young are at fault, what examples does he have of mass spread by the young, what activities were they doing that spread it so everyone not just the ‘young’ know what to avoid to try to sort this out for ourselves.

          You are not young, you do not speak for all the young certainly not the young people I know and love.

        • mickc
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:06 am | Permalink

          Partly agree. Those at risk should be protected, everyone else should go about their business as normal.

          As for climate and culture, everyone has their own views, the evidence is not conclusive at all.

          As for Brexit…there was a Referendum…

        • Anonymous
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:53 am | Permalink

          +1

          Yes.

          Me !

          • Anonymous
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:54 am | Permalink

            Except for Brexit of course.

        • Diane
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

          I am 71 and totally agree, I had my youth and freedom let the young have theirs

        • Ian Turner
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:18 pm | Permalink

          Fortunately, our children and grandchildren don’t share your ideas Andy – they are being responsible and also taking great care in their contact with us.

          I’m very pleased to say that they seem to really like having us (Elderly Brexiteers) around – although we do miss our ‘hugs’ from the little ones.

        • L Jones
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

          Andy – I don’t usually agree with you. But here you are absolutely correct.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:41 pm | Permalink

          Andy I’m no longer young but I want my freedom too. I thought you were in favour of vicious lockdown?

      • Chris Dark
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:17 am | Permalink

        Have you not yet learned that masks are merely a tool of social control? They do not halt or slow down viral spread. If masks work so well then let the scared ones wear them, they will be “safe” then, while the rest of us live normally. Masks are already causing health problems. You sound very much like the authoritarians that we are trying to rescue this country from.

        • Sea Warrior
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:39 am | Permalink

          Your post would have worked better without the conspiracy theory at the opening. But it would still have been wrong. The CDC, which knows more than you on the subject, promotes mask-wearing as a means of reducing the spread of virus-carrying droplets. It you don’t believe CDC then just apply some common-sense to the matter.

          • Barbara
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

            The boxes the mass-produced masks come in state very clearly they are not effective against Covid19.

          • rose
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 7:07 am | Permalink

            Barbara, masks aren’t intended to protect you against infection but to inhibit you from spreading it.

        • Everhopeful
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:44 am | Permalink

          Spot on!
          All lefties WANT this “crisis” to continue.
          They want to bring down capitalism.
          And either Boris is a Marxist or he is being badly misled
          OR he is a scaredy-cat-liberal-caver-into-the-left.
          Or I guess he could be looking for a May style way out of “Brexit”. (Faux Brexit even).

        • Clive
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:25 am | Permalink

          +1. Masks worn in France and Spain clearly had no or at best little effect on there now huge spike. Utterly futile.
          Agree with your comment.

        • DavidJ
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

          Indeed.

        • Mark B
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 2:49 pm | Permalink

          +1

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

          +1 I feel dizzy within minutes of wearing a mask. Unless I remove it I will faint, it is therefore impossible for me to comply with the ‘rules’. My husband is sick after 10 minutes in a mask. No possibility of driving home from the shops (having worn a mask) for either of us.

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

        Yeah, jail. Brilliant idea.

    • L Jones
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

      A vaccine for a virus that is no problem at all to the VAST majority of people. An unproven, barely tested, rushed into production (though lucrative) vaccine that we shall all be required to have as a ”passport” whether we like it or not.
      Coercion?

  11. Everhopeful
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:36 am | Permalink

    Honestly.
    I think the game is up.
    The virus did not live up to expectations.
    The test is rubbish. And as far as I can make out was never meant for diagnostic purposes.
    People can see their lives being needlessly destroyed.
    Hands up…who supports another incarceration?
    Which MPs??

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:31 pm | Permalink

      Correct – and in fact there are only two important numbers, (a) number of people admitted to hospital and (b) number of deaths……..everything else is politics and media hype

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:44 pm | Permalink

        +1

  12. gyges
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:39 am | Permalink

    Can Matt Hancock provide us with the evidence that the lock down worked?

    When we all look at the graphs they show no perturbation from the expected model of natural growth and decay of any epidemic.

    If he can’t do this then why is he persisting with the lock down? Can you point out to him that false positives from a non-validated, non-standardised test aren’t a sufficient reason.

    ps a company providing private tests are currently turning over £163,000 per day and are hoping to attain £1,000,000 per day. (The broken window fallacy of success).

    • Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:28 am | Permalink

      Good point.

    • Stephen Priest
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:29 am | Permalink

      You should check the Ivor Cummins video on YouTube which confirms what you say about the graphs is true. Although no perturbation please, we’re British.

      Viral Issue Crucial Update Sept 8th: the Science, Logic and Data Explained! – Ivor Cummins

      • cornishstu
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:43 am | Permalink

        Yes, a clever chap, a very analytical and scientific approach, but he is not alone, there are a lot of medical professionals online saying how Covid-19 is no more infectious or deadly than Flu and their rationale seems on the ball and more convincing than the actions and reasoning of those in charge.

    • L Jones
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

      Mr Hancock’s not supposed to be the one who is ”persisting in the lockdown”. It’s supposed to be his masters who do that – he’s the mouthpiece.

      Not bad, though, for someone with only a PPE degree. (Or does that stand for personal protective equipment? Oh well, perhaps he is qualified, then.)

  13. Newmania
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:39 am | Permalink

    The government has already got this wrong once ,at a terrible cost to families around the country. To me it looks as if a lock down will have to take place , the only question is dare we hang on until half term.
    John Redwood has prioritised the economy over lives, form the start because he known Brexit will cost and fears the anger of people already pushed to the limit. I take the economy just as seriously but wishes are not fishes, and there can be no bounce back without confidence . Is there anyone left with one ounce of confidence or trust in this Brexit Government ?

    • Stephen Priest
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:31 am | Permalink

      John Redwood has prioritised the economy over lives, form the start because he known Brexit

      Yes all those people in the world who die because they are not in the EU

    • rose
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:03 am | Permalink

      You cannot separate the economy from lives in the shallow, glib way you are doing.

      How would you sustain a food supply or the NHS without an economy?

      • percy openshaw
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:25 am | Permalink

        Well said. His argument is beneath contempt.

      • Newmania
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:53 am | Permalink

        I do not make that distinction . My point is that the Policy of pretending has failed .Encouraging people to take risks in addition to being a dereliction of duty, will also not assist the economy
        There is no good outcome but the worst polices founded on the idea of herd immunity which would imply an acceptable death toll of about 5,000,o0o. Insanity
        The only way forward is to keep deaths as low as possible in the hope a vaccine arrives and if lock down is required so be it .

        • Caterpillar
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:27 pm | Permalink

          Newmania,

          I believe your number is rubbish.

          The CMO states 6% antibodies and uses this as an estimate of the number who have been infected. There have been about 42,000 deaths with covid largely when U.K. failed to protect the vulnerable, and had poor treatment protocols. Noting U.K. population is about 67 million, even under this situation the implied infected fatality ratio is about 1%.

          Now, however, treatment protocols have improved (though there is debate that UK may not be using them all), moreover 6% antibodies may not represent the full number infected (ONS data evidences waning, Karolinska Institute Sweden indicates more people infected than have antibodies – perhaps several times). Together these reduce the infection fatality ratio markedly. Once it is down to about 0.5% (335,000 deaths if everyone contracts) it is equivalent to (low end estimates of) other deaths expected from the lockdown ‘cure’. Finally stable behaviour rather than chopping and changing supports local community level ‘herd’ immunity (Strathclyde University modelling).

          It is not obvious a vaccine is a solution as it is randomly distributed (unlike natural infection which automatically captures those with more exposure) and so would need broad (>60%) rollout to a healthy population with risks still to be specified. Generally elderly people do not respond that well to vaccines, so vaccinating the at risk population might be ineffective.

          There is a reasonable argument to vaccinate workers in and visitors to care homes.

          • NickC
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 10:46 am | Permalink

            Caterpillar, An excellent summary – thank you.

        • Mike Wilson
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:55 pm | Permalink

          And if lockdown is needed, so be it.

          NO.

        • Barbara
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:36 pm | Permalink

          Herd immunity isn’t ‘insanity’. Sweden seem to have managed it.

          • glen cullen
            Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

            I believe its working here in the UK – The infection rates are just a distraction

        • Anonymous
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 11:36 am | Permalink

          Yet again Newmania calls people who disagree with him ‘insane’.

    • Richard1
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:26 am | Permalink

      A silly post, there is the same debate all over the world. Nor is it only about the economy. The cancer expert Prof Karol Sikora estimates we will see an extra c. 30k deaths from cancer due to lack of early intervention due to covid restrictions. There are all sorts of good reasons to avoid the lock-down policy which has not been shown to work anywhere.

    • villaking
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:35 am | Permalink

      Newmania: what would be the purpose of another lock down? And what evidence do you have (evidence, not pre-supposition) that the first one did anything useful? Those opposed to the destruction of the economy and theft of personal liberty have very clear evidence of the harm that lock downs do, those that support lock downs need to find compelling and indisputable reasons to impose them. A bit like the absurd mask laws, “probably” and “may help a tiny bit” are not good enough.

      • NickC
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 10:54 am | Permalink

        Villaking, Correct. The death toll maximum (ie, rollover) happened around 10th April, only two and a half weeks after the lockdown (23rd March). Yet the latest graphs projecting deaths from the current spike in “cases” is labelled with deaths predicted to rise a “month” after cases (ie, 5 weeks after infection). Consequently the 23rd March lockdown was not the prime cause in the reduction of deaths, otherwise the rollover would have been about 1st May.

    • Dave Andrews
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

      The electorate do vote for some pretty useless politicians, don’t they.
      Nothing else for it, they must have their democracy cancelled, accept their serfdom, and be governed by a self-appointed elite in Brussels.

  14. DOM
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:39 am | Permalink

    CV19 is no longer the issue. Protecting people from harm is no longer the issue. Protecting ourselves from the authoritarian British State is now the issue.

    We are going down, deep down into the rabbit hole led by a Tory party that is utterly without direction and purpose. I believe Tory MPs are fearful. They no longer recognise themselves and the party they joined. It has become little more than a party of fear that is being dragged in one direction by the forces of Marxist activism.

    My great fear is the electorate who having been deceived into voting for the ‘progressive’ rabble that is the Tory party transfer back to malignant, rancid Marxist Labour. That would be utterly catastrophic for this nation for they will double down on the Tories policy of destroying for party political purposes our language, our nation and our identity using all forms of Marxist social conditioning strategies

    Your party’s embrace of authoritarian politics and cultural cleansing is unprecedented in Tory party history. Any Tory MP remaining silent on the Tories embrace of Cultural Marxism agrees with it.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:50 am | Permalink

      Utterly true.
      Of course politicians only have themselves to blame for landing us ( in every way) with no health service worthy of the name.
      With a decent system Boris could have waited to see how the virus panned out.

    • BJC
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:05 am | Permalink

      My view entirely. I’m still trying to figure out how this clever little virus can distinguish between social and workplace gatherings! Nature always wins and despite these scientists believing they are akin to gods, the reality is they don’t have the power to eliminate the virus; it will simply weaken over time.

      Yesterday, I observed there was a likelihood that government decisions were being based on threats of disruption from public sector unions. Today I read that a massive 96% of Labour’s income is derived from the unions who obviously expect a handsome return on their investment.

      We desperately need a free-thinking, balanced opposition, not one in hock to power-crazed unions working through Labour to weaponise the virus. I have no doubt that informal deals are routinely done in government and in these extraordinary times, perhaps some of the Chancellor’s largesse should be temporarily directed towards Labour Party coffers in order to give Sir Kier the time and space to find a way for fundamental reforms that weaken the stranglehold of the unions? A good investment, which would benefit UK plc on many levels.

    • A.Sedgwick
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:42 am | Permalink

      Once again I agree with you, from Blair onwards the two party system has allowed the increase of state control against the will and knowledge of the people with the endless EU rules, regulations, directives nodded through being a prime example.

      For years I have only felt comfortable to have an open, wide ranging current affairs discussion within close family. Many able people would like to be MPs but think it is a waste of their time and talent and not worth the kowtowing. I was pleased and not really surprised when Sajid Javid resigned as he appears to be on the case and read the wind.

      Until access to Parliament is a fair fight the UK is doomed. As regards the looming Brexit anything is possible with this crew.

  15. Leslie Singleton
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:47 am | Permalink

    Dear Sir John–Leaving it to individuals not such a good idea because their individual decisions, on what are complex and contentious issues, affect the spread to others, and sadly a lot of the population are everything from ignorant to unanalytic to selfish and do not consider, probably correctly perhaps because they are young, that they themselves are at individual risk. Sadly, they have necessarily to be told what to do and the guidance enforced. Of course it helps if the guidance is correct.

  16. Javelin
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:49 am | Permalink

    As repeatedly predicted … winter is coming and the Government deliberately prevented the under 70s from getting immunity. Now we have a situation far worse than last spring.

    The virus is systemic throughout the population, cold damp winter air will cause the virus to spread, regular influenza will surge, the economy will be crashing, school children have been severely and needlessly damaged, millions will be made redundant lost their careers, lost their houses, lost their businesses, millions will have other health care issues not treated, tens of billions in taxes will go unpaid, people will be fed up of lockdown, senior politicans will have lost credibility, the far left secretly funded to agitate to demand that capitalism is smashed, and the Prime Minister exposed as a weak and broken man.

    But it didn’t have to be like this. Only the vulnerable needed protecting.

    Meanwhile the Chinese don’t get criticised.

    • bigneil(newercomp)
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:30 am | Permalink

      Yes – winter is coming, weather will get worse – – – and the ex-soldiers will be sleeping rough while a continuing flood of foreigners will be tucked up in hotels. I’ve realised that the warm feeling in my heart is not compassion but my blood boiling.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:28 am | Permalink

      +1 to paragraph 1

  17. DaveM
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:12 am | Permalink

    With a PM who’s too lazy to actually make a decision it does appear that this is turning into Chris Whitty’s personal project. The virus isn’t going to be eliminated without sealing off the entire country, isolating everyone and systematically killing or curing every single person who tests positive. Even then it would re emerge somehow.

    Due to my job I’m almost looking in from the outside and it’s like watching some kind of weird film where the country is being run by mad scientists.

    • Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:16 am | Permalink

      Can’t you see that Boris has got long-term Covid? He is a shadow of the man he once was.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

        +1. Cognitive problems.

    • bigneil(newercomp)
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:27 am | Permalink

      You missed a word in the last sentence – the country is being run DOWN by mad scientists.

      • glen cullen
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

        +1

    • graham1946
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:45 am | Permalink

      As you suggest we cannot eliminate the virus by shutting down the UK any more than we could affect climate change by cancelling out our little bit of emissions (if you believe in all that CO2 tosh anyway). If we did manage to get it out of the UK as soon as flights are back up again and whilst RIBS keep arriving unchecked someone will bring it in. China had a draconian lockdown, as they can, but we don’t know the true result because their news services are unreliable and their govt did not even want to tell the world about until it became impossible to keep it a secret.

    • Mark B
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:07 pm | Permalink

      +1

  18. JayGee
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:12 am | Permalink

    You cannot continue to allow emergency powers to be introduced by this feeble government without any proper parliamentary scrutiny and debate of said emergency drconian powers. Is it right that a handful of people should be able to curtail the personal freedom of millions of others in this way? Simply because there is no effective testing in place? Simply because they have failed thus far to get a satisfactory testing system in place? By which I mean one that can distinguish between a positive, a false positive, a negative or even a false negative. Not in my book.

    It is beginning to resemble more than a farce. You have all failed – admit it. You have destroyed lives, and destroyed hope. Nobody has a shred of confidence in this government now, so no matter how many demands it makes of us, no matter how many silly slogans it invents, no matter how many public information adverts it concocts, nobody has a clue now as to what the ‘message’ is, or even whether there is a message hiding somewhere. A fine mess.

  19. Stred
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:15 am | Permalink

    As you point out, no one responsible believes that Covid can be eliminated, even with a vaccine because it mutates and once it becomes a pandemic there will be outbreaks somewhere in the world.

    Having read the article posted in yesterday’s diary by Dr Yeadon and discussed it with a statistician and medical scientist, it appears that Matt Hancock has not understood the implications of the rate of false positive testing and the number of absolute cases that are ten times the true positives. As with the decisions on policy not taking into account the increasing cases caused by increased numbers of tests, the false numbers of the ‘cases’ found by the very high amplification of RNA catches residual amounts after infection has happened and the individuals are no longer infectious. The minister was warned previously about the problems and apparently has forgotten about this or been wrongly advised. The mistake and his arrogant threats to lock down again and heavily fine the public have left him with no option but to hand in his NHS /PHE/MOH badge.

    It could be that the NHS officials are again deciding that protection of their Soviet is the primary objective and they realise that there is bound to be sn increase in the infection rate, as originally predicted in the Imperial estimate. When social distancing is ignored, as in the BLM/Extinction parades and in pubs and parks, there is going to be sn increase and some of the middle aged people who think they are immune are going to find themselves in hospital and some will be badly affected and die. The Spanish have found that middle aged men are the main new hospital cases. Overweight and diabetic middle aged are also susceptible. It could be that it suits the officials to exaggerate the case numbers in order to make the whackamole lockdown, very high fines and heavy policing acceptable. No doubt the extraordinary reliance on the behavioural ‘science’ gurus will be involved.

  20. Alan Jutson
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:29 am | Permalink

    It’s very simple really, the fewer people you mix with whilst keeping a good social distance, the less likely (all things being equal) that you will catch the virus.

    The more people you mix with and the closer you are to them, the more likely you will be to catch the virus.

    Hardly rocket science is it.

    • Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:14 am | Permalink

      Unless
      You dress up in paramilitary uniform and parade through Brixton.
      Unless you want to go to the seaside on a hot day.
      Unless you are a member of XR.
      Unless you want to protest about George Floyd.

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

        Mike

        But those sort of people do not really give a fig about others, but rest assured it will come back to bite them, and their parents if they are still alive, it may also affect their jobs/employment if there is another lockdown or tight restrictions.

        • Bill B.
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

          Alan Jutson – The London BLM protests were in early July, two and a half months ago. Hospitalisations and deaths would’ve occurred within about three weeks if Covid had been a serious risk in those demonstrations. No such thing was reported, and ‘cases’ continued to decline in London and in the country generally for weeks after that. So Covid certainly wasn’t ‘coming back to bite’ participants or their relatives. I’m no fan of BLM, but let’s get the facts straight.

          • Alan Jutson
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 7:38 am | Permalink

            Bill

            Correct, at the time the virus was declining, but not now.
            Who really knows how many caught the virus during that period from whatever contact, but the simple fact is the virus spreads from one person to another, and the closer you get to more and more people the greater the risk of it spreading, it’s simple mathematics.

          • Lynn Atkinson
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

            Proof of herd immunity. Nobody dying now.

    • Hope
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:23 am | Permalink

      Alan, Absolutely. Be careful of yours and others social foot print.

      It was the stupid govt. through Sunak to say eat out to help out while not wearing a mask! A fly in the wall for Johnson’s christening a week ago would be enlightening. Who would snitch on them? He broke the rules, his dad broke the rules and his sister broke the rules. Along with his ministers and advisors! Not even sacked!

      • Alan Jutson
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:33 pm | Permalink

        Hope

        Ah yes the eat out scheme, where mostly fast fatty food was the winner in the popularity contest.
        And then Politicians complain about those who are fat and unhealthy being a burden to the NHS.
        Mixed messages again.

    • Narrow Shoulders
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:54 am | Permalink

      Public transport!

    • Ian Turner
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

      It wouldn’t seem like it Alan – but you wouldn’t know that from listening to many of the people spouting their personal views on TV – or from the photos of young people ‘clubbing’ before the rules were tightened.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

      You need to meet many people to update your immune system. It might surprise you to know that there are scientists who deny that infectious diseases are caused by infectious agents like bacteria and viruses. On his deathbed Pasteur said: ‘The bacteria are nothing. The soil (Body) is everything.” Pasteur was revealing to the world that his germ theory of disease was wrong. If your soil will not feed the virus, it’s feeble. Bolster your soil (immune system) then you have nothing to fear.

  21. Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:31 am | Permalink

    Well said, Sir John. I hope the vast majority of your colleagues feel the same and are prepared to air their views.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:54 am | Permalink

      They need to air them now!
      Quickly and LOUDLY.
      Are we being governed by ministerial decree? Rubber stamp a new law in hours?
      How can any MP support that??

  22. John Hatfield
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:37 am | Permalink

    I despair of the lugubrious Hancock.

    • bigneil(newercomp)
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:24 am | Permalink

      I despair of the whole lot of them. God knows how many jobless when furlough ends. Economy already deep in debt – and STILL the illegals are ferried in. There can only be one outcome – and it is clear that that is exactly what they intend to happen.

  23. Sharon
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    “Now it appears some are moving closer to the idea that we need to eliminate the virus.”

    You can’t play God, life doesn’t work like that.

    The role of a parent is to bring up a child to be able to survive, cope with life and flourish independently. The parent will offer support and advice where necessary.

    This is not the role of government, but currently the government is behaving much like a mollycoddling parent unable to let an adult child fly the nest. With certain social services there are support measures for ‘children’ who weren’t given the parental support and guidance.

    So I think it’s time for tough love and to get back on our collective saddle of living as we were previously. Life is and has always been tough, and there will be casualties on the way.

    You can’t play God and try to protect everyone. That in itself will have unintended consequences, and would be naive to think otherwise.

    Unfortunately, in recent years the government has been an interfering nanny state and has encouraged people to feel unable to act without asking for permission first. Tough love will hopefully mean more will swim than sink. But it needs to be done. A life raft can be thrown to those who start to sink. Is the government up to the task? Let’s hope so.

    • Anonymous
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:42 am | Permalink

      +1

    • Norman
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:39 pm | Permalink

      Agree, Sharon. This ‘playing God’ syndrome is symptomatic of our age. In 1967, a certain parish in Shropshire had many dairy herds that all succumbed to Foot & Mouth Disease – except one, that is. The law honoured that outcome (we could say tacitly, as ‘an act of God’). The herd survived.
      By 2001, when the ‘statistical experts’ took over: ‘the science’ would have dictated this herd, and many more beyond, were slaughtered as a precaution. Thus, the sanctified wisdom of the previous 150-years was laid aside.
      This type of ‘overkill’, based on an over-wrought narrative of ‘expertise’, is exactly what is now in play here.

      • Norman
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

        PS – Having said the above, I have every sympathy for Government, caught up on this treadmill of impossible expectations. I think we all ought to be more positive and far more charitable towards our elected representatives. Give moral support to them, and pray they may be given great wisdom. Our country has had much grace shown to it in the past, but as a people, we have corporately God in recent times, though He is very merciful, always willing to forgive, and to deliver us from mortal peril – as he did at Dunkirk, and the Battle of Britain. The outcome will affect us all.

        • Norman
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

          Sorry, should read ‘corporately spurned God in recent times,’

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 2:05 pm | Permalink

      The endless government pronouncements on various radio stations make me feel sick and that I am back at school. Big Brother is here.

      To the Mayor of London, and TFL, every journey matters.

      Yeuk.

      • Fred H
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

        we’re going on a journey alright. How to destroy a political party, but first destroy tens of thousands of lives, then destroy a world leading economy.

    • Mark B
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

      Your first sentence is worrying, as I believe that some of these people see themselves as God like. A very worrying thought, as when things do not go according to their plans they tend to blame the little people.

    • SM
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

      I fully support everything you say, Sharon.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

      +1

  24. Sakara Gold
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:42 am | Permalink

    You cannot abrogate responsibility for the national catastrophy that is about to befall us this winter by blaming the public.

    Doing so is an admission of defeat and a refusal to accept that those ministers etc that have been appointed to deal with this crisis have failed and now clearly need to be replaced.

    • Philip P.
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

      Completely agree, Sakara Gold. Why are the experienced politicians in the Conservative Party not in government, I wonder?

  25. jerry
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:49 am | Permalink

    Sorry Sir John, you have already lost the argument I suspect, as has the Chancellor, science will carry on making the judgements, not politicos, unlike between June and the end of August, when politicos both the unlocked economy and society to quickly.

    It will be very interesting what the CMO & CSO say at 11am, I suspect there will be some real home truths, not that another full lock-down is inevitable but people have got to be made to rein-in their irresponsible activities one way or another.

    • jerry
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:41 am | Permalink

      The idea of a temporary “circuit breaker” lock-down is a non starter unless the govt is willing to discontent (keep shut) areas of the economy that have caused the overheating, otherwise the country will be lurking in and out of lock-down for perhaps years!

    • Bill B.
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

      Jerry, the entertainment industry, who you obviously want to target, employs a huge number of young people. ‘Discontent’ them enough, and maybe you’ll get a repeat of the poll tax riots, when it wasn’t the veteran campaigners who were smashing the place up, was it?

      • jerry
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 5:15 am | Permalink

        @Bill B; You make as valid point, even though you make an invalid analogy (the Toxteth riots might have been better…), so create and offer them alternate covid-secure jobs, how about training them up to install 10Gbps broadband to the 98% of businesses and private homes perhaps?

        PS, I’m very concerned about the entertainment industry, but you appear to talking about the hospitality & leisure industries.

  26. Caterpillar
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:56 am | Permalink

    All backbench Conservative MPs need to vote against the Coronavirus Act to send a clear message to the Government.

    In general the Govt needs to be clear on what is guidance and what is law, and it should be mostly minimal and clear guidance.

    Conservative backbench MPs need to find out, if they don’t already know, why Whitty, Hancock and Johnson are acting the way they are. Without getting a clear understanding of their motives, usefully influencing them and finding a route out for them will not happen. (The Opposition parties will not help, and thus will not help the country, they are in opposition so whatever happens they can criticise implementation without the need to take responsibility for a change in route.)

    I guess there are two alternatives for the behaviour of the aforementioned people,

    (i) they genuinely believe they can annihilate the virus without the cure being worse than the disease (in which case they need to show the data, the plan and the costs clearly)
    (ii) they know there could have been a higher level of community resistance and stable behaviour patterns by now for a similar number of deaths (with less debt and a more mobile economy); it is psychologically, politically and careerwise difficult to treat the tragic losses so far as a sunk cost and switch to a light touch approach.

    It is easy from the outside and with hindsight to say if we had closed the borders in the third week of Feb we could have been in a NZ situation, or if we had not locked down we could have been in a Sweden situation, but the reality is we did what we did and we are where we are. This though is not a reason to stay where we are. Johnson, Hancock (and Sunak) should view their political careers as ending next year, this might give them the psychological freedom to make the right choices for the country now – it may even save them. The choices are to made by the Govt with advice/explanation but not undue influence from the CMO.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

      Well following the experts’ briefing it looks like (ii). The question is whether Johnson, Hancock and the three national administrations can agree a uniform and socially & economically sustainable behavioural model (most of which should be advice).

      We would, of course, be in a better position if we had already had stable behaviour patterns (walking down the middle of the busy road rather than running from side to side – the policy volatility is bad) and, again of course, had UBI to support people and the economy to respond. I await more tyranny from Johnson and Hancock, and more unfair policies from Mr Sunak. I hope I am wrong.

    • dixie
      Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:29 am | Permalink

      Good comment, your second point is incisive – I think they have the tiger by it’s tail and don’t know how, or some may have no wish, to let it go.

  27. rose
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:56 am | Permalink

    Who are the people who want to eradicate the Wuhan virus? I thought they were only home-made National Socialists like Mrs Ardern, Mrs Sturgeon, and Mr Drakeford? Professor Whitty was withering about them, without naming them, when he said the only disease mankind has ever eradicated is smallpox, and that took a very long time.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:45 am | Permalink

      That is untrue isn’t it?

      SARS-1 and MERS were eradicated pretty swiftly to name but two.

      And for practical purposes, many others have been too, though there exist isolated reservoirs in remote places and rare species.

      • graham1946
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:03 pm | Permalink

        Why don’t you tell Whitty – you expect Rose to be responsible for what he says?

      • Fred H
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

        MARTIN – I forget ….how many people got that, in how many countries, how many died, what was the R number, which economies got destroyed?
        We deserve to be told, come on pray tell us.

      • Barbara
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

        Whitty wrong again?

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 6:39 am | Permalink

          😂Whitty Wong again surely?

  28. John E
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:59 am | Permalink

    I agree with all that. Treat people as adults living in a democratic country.
    Repeal the Coronavirus Act 2020.

    This whole episode has illustrated the value of democracy. We now have dictators imposing arbitrary restrictions and penalties at a few hours notice via Twitter. That has not gone well and never will.

    Restore democratic government immediately.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

      +1

  29. Nigl
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:09 am | Permalink

    I see all politicians who live privileged lives lined up to inform us they will be snitching on the less fortunate suffering because of, in the main, their uselessness.

    I won’t be.

    • rose
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:48 am | Permalink

      I don’t think anyone is lining up to say any such thing. The broadcasters have a nasty habit, among many such, of needling ministers with the same piercing question until it becomes impossible to skirt any longer. The PM managed the best when he said he wasn’t in favour of it. It may be that being Health Secretary makes a politician more authoritarian than he used to be because he knows he will be accused of multiple, multiple murder more often than the rest of the Cabinet.

    • Hope
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:19 am | Permalink

      Carry on and ignore them. Take sensible precautions and carry on. Better still, protests will become a feature to oust them.

    • Al
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:38 am | Permalink

      And yet we now see rumours that in defiance of lockdown and quarantine rules, Boris Johnson may have gone overseas for a weekend in Perugia.

      The problem is not whether or not he actually did, it is that his past actions make the rumour credible enough that he has to disprove it. The near universal response to Downing Street’s statement has not been “Of course it is rubbish,” but widespread scepticism and demands for proof. His word is not considered enough. When a Prime Minister has to prove he was still in the country during a national crisis, I don’t see how he can be held credible in office.

      • rose
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

        Why on earth can’t the PM go to Perugia, if he did? And why have we got so many Stasiwomen? We never used to. That is the problem, not what you are insinuating.

      • Fred H
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:36 pm | Permalink

        Perugia? Lets hope the scientists – who we must bow down to, decide he must stay there. Every black cloud – silver lining.

        • glen cullen
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

          no no no no, don’t go to Italy the scientists told us 4 months ago that everyone in Italy was going to die

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 6:37 am | Permalink

        Irrespective of location, I can’t see how Boris can be held ‘credible in office.’

  30. Andy
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:12 am | Permalink

    So the UK has abandoned plans to launch its own replacement to Galileo. Oh dear.

    Galileo is an interesting case study. In 2016 literally none of you voted to leave it. A multi-national project to produce a better alternative to America’s GPS. That was not what Brexit meant to any of you.

    But then a year or so later, with the UK having invested significant sums and having produced many of the lead scientists on the project, we learned that – because of Brexit – we could no longer take part. Brexiteers like Andrew Bridgen were outraged that we had been ‘kicked out.’

    No, Mr Bridgen. You left it. You didn’t know you had voted to leave Galileo but it is a project which falls under the jurisdiction of the ECJ and you made clear that was a red line for you. Oops.

    So brave Britain launched its own plan to build its own ‘Galileo’. We don’t need them! We are small and plucky! We even bought a failed US satellite company for a cool £400m – Classic Dom – which perplexed experts as they made the wrong type of satellites. And today we have abandoned any attempts to replicate Galileo.

    An exercise in Brexit failure.

    Tomorrow we can look at BREACH. That is the UK’s attempt to replicate the EU’s world beating REACH system of chemicals regulation. The UK industry is aghast at the £1bn bill it faces to try to duplicate what already exists and says there are zero benefits for it doing so. But Classic Dom knows best.

    And we all know you voted leave because of shared satellites and chemical regulation. (Not really – it was fish, foreigners and tampons).

    • NickC
      Posted September 22, 2020 at 11:04 am | Permalink

      Andy, NASA’s latest heavy lift rocket is expected to cost just over £9bn. HS2 is expected to cost north of £100bn. Of course we could replicate Galileo if we wanted. We have the scientists – as you admit – and we have the money. The only thing standing in the way is a slothful Remain establishment, used to simply relaying orders from the EU. Well, with Brexit, we now have a chance to get rid of them. A chance we never had trapped under the EU establishment.

      • No Longer Anonymous
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 7:36 pm | Permalink

        Touche’ !

  31. Nivek
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:15 am | Permalink

    “were the government to impose one”

    You wrote in June about “Avoiding a second lockdown”. I can only repeat my reply to that post:
    “If the first ‘lockdown’ is over, a general election should be called as soon as possible to reaffirm that it is the people who are in charge, and not the politicians.”

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:59 pm | Permalink

      As Starmer insists on completely uncontrolled open borders, we will have to vote for Boris again!

      • glen cullen
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:43 pm | Permalink

        The devil or the deep blue sea

      • HS
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:13 am | Permalink

        why care about uncontrolled open borders when in the middle of a global communist coup led by Tories?

  32. BOF
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:18 am | Permalink

    The salient lesson from the first lock down, and from around the world, is that lock downs do not work. If they did why would we need another?
    Unless of course there is the intention to destroy yet more of the economy.

    What did Einstein allegedly say about the insanity of repeating the same experiment over and over, and expecting a different result? A lesson seemingly not understood by government and advisers.

    • Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:32 am | Permalink

      @BOF

      +++

      Excellent points

    • Frances Truscott
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:35 am | Permalink

      In the first place we didnt even have a test to begin with. Now we dont yet have a vaccine,

  33. Lifelogic
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:20 am | Permalink

    Meanwhile I see that Prince Charles (champion of non evidence based medicine, non evidence climte alarmist “solutions” and a huge fan of using helcopters, Aston Martins and private jets spending circa £1PM on personal travel PA) is going on about climate change again in the Telegraph.

    Does he never think that perhaps he is not really the best person to push this lunacy? BBC

    Then we have these new BBC adverts with a ball rolling in a maze & telling up how impartial the BBC propaganda outfit is. Do they really think that will fool anyone?

    • Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:48 am | Permalink

      @Lifelogic Indeed…!

      If it’s not the fake news on CV – we have mouthpieces brainwashed beyond their intelligence levels worrying us aboutn climate change and how we are all going to be drowned — MSM have still not considered that sea levels are where they were 20 years ago.

      But yes, the overwhelming biased and inaccurate indoctrination from the BBC and other broadcasters is beyond irrational…. and yet the BBC manages to add their agenda to every program they put out.
      If it doesn’t mention CV or CC then it’s not a BBC program

    • Hope
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:18 am | Permalink

      Why listen to someone who has no knowledge, experience or ability is field of work whatsoever. His opinion is no better than yours or mine. Why not listen to him about space rockets or any other subject he as not got a clue about i.e. Marriage, faith, god. I find him an embarrassment.

    • Richard1
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:23 am | Permalink

      I was amused to see that Boris is considering appointing the distinguished writer, journalist and editor Charles Moore as Chairman of the BBC. It is an excellent idea and one which our kind host has allowed me to propose here in the past.

      It shows at least that amid the chaos of policy over Covid at least Boris retains his sense of humour!

      • Lifelogic
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

        He would be an excellent choice. Even if he does not like Duvets much!

    • DavidJ
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

      A clear case of “do as I say, not as I do”. Not fit to be a shop assistant, let alone King.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:00 pm | Permalink

        Sadly correct. I’m afraid we are all Roundheads now.

  34. Jiminyjim
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:24 am | Permalink

    If the government is looking to eliminate the virus, they are even more deluded than I feared

  35. James Bertram
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    Today: ‘I have not lectured people on how they should live their lives or respond to the virus.’
    Yet yesterday you wrote: ‘I take away from the experience of March and April that it is particularly important to protect the elderly vulnerable to keep the death rate down. Shouldn’t we now stop all visits to Care Homes, and ask people to contact friends and relative by phone, or on line video calls which the staff can help the residents set up?’
    I described this intervention of stopping visits to care homes as both ill-informed (basically, the threat of the virus is now over) and BARBARIC (it was loneliness and the loss of the will to live that now was killing people; and the separation of families at such critical times as causing lasting psychological damage).
    The comment did not pass moderation (perhaps due to my more personal comments on what should happen to the perpetrators of such a policy?).

  36. TooleyStu
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:45 am | Permalink

    SJR,
    (The Prime Minister is right to say he does not want another national lock down. )

    In my advanced years, I have learned .. not to listen to what people say .. but what they do.
    So far our illustrious leaders have annoyed, frustrated and exasperated about 50% of the population.. and frightened the be-jeezus out of the other.

    What the PM wants or does not want is irrelevant.
    What the population wants or does not want is irrelevant.

    Everything must proceed according to the plan.
    Or.. more accurately.. the Agenda.
    (those that understand the end goal.. will be aware of the Agenda)

    Best regards, as ever,
    Tooley Stu.

  37. wab
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:53 am | Permalink

    Shorter Redwood: “Citizens of the UK, prepare to die for the FTSE100”.

    The problem we have now is that apparently the R factor is way above 1. Redwood might not understand what that means. Maybe he skipped maths lessons in school.

    Government has failed both with testing and with tracing. Redwood keeps this government in power and so has to share the blame. Take some responsibility for once.

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

      The R number is an estimated figure produced by interested parties

  38. Stephen Priest
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    False information on BBC Radio Four again, saying that Hydroxychloroquine does not work in a hospital setting, but leaving out the important information regarding its use by the public at first sign of Covid, which has been proven to work all around the world in many trials. Many people in hospitals abroad have survived when the drug is used as Switzerland re-introduced it after the so-called “recall” decision from WHO, and saved lives. Tests have been done to show it works, so why are our GPs not ready with this drug, which the government spent £millions on in March and April? Surely it cannot still be because of political bias against anything that Donald Trump originally said worked for him?

    • rose
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

      This may be why the expected huge surge in Africa and India didn’t take place, and it is cheap over the counter.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

        There has been no surge anywhere!

        • glen cullen
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:47 pm | Permalink

          Correct – I just wonder why politicans and the media aren’t questioning the assumptions

    • Zorro
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

      Vaccine investors won’t make money. They love us so much….

      zorro

  39. Roy Grainger
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    The government’s policy, as far as one can discern, is to try to keep positive tests at a very low daily level. (They are calling these “cases” but they aren’t really because many of those tested have no symptoms and so are not “cases” in the normal clinical sense). It appears they wish to do this until a vaccine is available, which is likely to be years. However, the policies they seem to be suggesting to achieve this are incoherent – why does a curfew work ? Where is the evidence for the rule-of-six ? Why are restrictions imposed and then lifted ? If they were serious about eliminating most positive tests they’d implement other policies that have been shown to have an impact like sealing the borders to all travel indefinitely. This mis-match between policy goals and desired outcomes is bizarre.

    In reality I think they are just imposing whatever random measures they think they can get away with to stop the scaremongering newspapers shouting at them.

  40. Ian @Barkham
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    Good morning Sir John

    Outside of the valuable Blog is anyone ‘listening’ or more importantly ‘hearing’ your contributions?

    The original lock down didn’t work other than punish the hardworking enterprising people of the UK. Those that ignored the request to help the country then, will be the same ones that ignore all the laws and demands now being made now.

    The 3 things Government forget is one size doesn’t fit all, those that will get the 10K fine have no financial resources so don’t care, those of us that have heard the advice are already being compliant – we listen to advise.

    The Government, Hancock overseen by Boris have lost the plot. We have to learn to live with this virus, work around it and get on with things. The vaccine is ‘NOT A CURE’ if and when it does arrive. Man has yet to find a cure for viruses, common cold, seasonal flu still exists no matter how hard we try.

    In essence draconian laws, penalties, restrictions in the above situation become the weapons’ of tyrants. We just have to learn to live with the situation, hear what should only ever be advice and then move on.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

      Just a little qualification – I am not an anti-vaxer and hope to be first in the queue. But the Government has lost the plot, the vaccine is not some ‘holy grail’ it is just another tool to reduce the impact. So the need to snap out of this notion that some day we will all be cured and the Government will be hero’s, there is no science or anecdotal evidence to suggest it.

      The only sure way is head the advice and get on with life and stop all these threats to society.

    • Zorro
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

      “The welfare of people is aways the alibi of tyrants” Albert Camus

      zorro

  41. Iain Moore
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:01 am | Permalink

    “the government needs to repeat clear advice on how the virus spreads, what the risks are and what actions might reduce the risk, and leave more to individuals to decide how they wish to respond.”

    Agreed, spell it out and keep spelling it out, but treat us like adults to decide on the risks we wish to take. If infections become problematic in an area I can see the need for a local lockdown , but otherwise leave us alone.

    Part of the problem of course is the state’s addiction to secrecy , where the state keeps the detailed data on infections a state secret , denying us the information to properly asses risks for ourselves.

  42. Hank Rearden
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    Sir John, please help, I’m a simple soul

    Am I supposed to go out for a Pizza on Rishi and go back to work as the PM wants or am I supposed to get tested as Matt wanted last week or not get tested as he wants this week? Shall I go out to help out or stay in to save lives? If I am married with three kids and the grandparents come over, must I schedule the Grand Ma and Grand Pa 30 minutes each with the kids, can I still go to my gym with 35 other people but not go to one of their houses afterwards with a sixth of that number? Is that the rule of six?

    And what should I say to a Covid Marshall?

    Never mind, I’ve got the last one covered.

    I never figured you lot for competence but you had a good comms team once, now it’s push-me, pull-me chaos.

  43. David L
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:13 am | Permalink

    An Open Letter from “Belgian Doctors and medical professionals” to the Belgian government has appeared, claiming that lockdowns, masks and other actions have achieved little apart from curtailment of people’s rights. It requests the immediate cessation of these precautions. I wondered just how many had signed the letter. One thousand eight hundred doctors and other medics it seems. Yet never a mention in the press or broadcast news.
    Dr John Lee, retired Pathologist in Yorkshire, Emeritus Professor Stadler, retired immunologist from Switzerland and many others in many countries also hold these views. Once again, nothing in the MSM. I’m no medic, but I am cynical of governments of all colours. What’s going on?

    • Caterpillar
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

      David L,

      Just read the

      docs4opendebate

      letter, thanks for tip. It does seem to reflect the worries that many here are expressing.

  44. Lynn Atkinson
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:17 am | Permalink

    It transpires that the PM needs to be lectures on how to live his life. It transpires that after a lifetime of high earnings, he has no capital invested for income. He lives hand to mouth. No wonder he had no political economy or idea of the value of capital and investment. My dog is more responsible – she buries bones for the future.
    Mr Johnston is liberal with his money, his body and his politics. This has left him in the predictable mess. He has no right to spread his mess in his message to the rest of us.
    Brexit 15th October and In the name of God – GO!

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

      +1

  45. Will in Hampshire
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    Interesting to see the general tone of comments today. An American colleague once expressed his surprise at the absence of checks in the British system of government. He suggested that the British constitution theoretically allows a Prime Minister with a compliant parliamentary majority powers similar to that enjoyed by the leader of North Korea. The only difference is the ticking clock of the parliamentary term.

  46. glen cullen
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    Its official this government has destroyed our economy – the stock market is tanking

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

      Billions wiped off stock market today – 11 deaths today – looks like further lockdown is on

      • Fred H
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

        seasonal flu will kill more than that – what on earth will Hancock do about that?

        By the way – I picked up a rumour that in some places deaths were incorrectly attributed to Covid thus avoiding a post mortem. When busy change the rules?

    • Everhopeful
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

      Yes.
      But think how it will soar on the news of a vaccine ( however new and lethal).
      Remember Waterloo?
      Whisper, whisper…“We are losing the war.”
      Sell, sell, sell.
      Everything tanks. Buy, buy, buy…
      “ Oh no. Look..my pigeon says we won!”
      “Wow! I’m even richer than before!”
      Tried and tested!

      • glen cullen
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

        greed an’ fear my friend greed an’ fear

  47. a-tracy
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:26 am | Permalink

    Can’t the government put in care homes safe visit rooms (like a sound recording box) a room where visitors can go to talk and see their loved ones through the glass with a vocal microphone in each room so they don’t have to shout if this is going to be going on for another six months as indicated this morning? I know people who the only thing they look forward to is seeing their children and grandchildren and if all they do all day is to watch tv without any social interaction what’s the point. If necessary the visitor’s box could be attached to an outside window of the care home/hospital so the visitors book appointment slots and have to clean the booth before the next visitor.

    • rose
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

      I don’t think nursing homes are flushed with money. Fewer residents now, for more than one reason, and a lot more PPE etc. As it was, councils were paying too little for their clients and the private residents had to make up the difference on top of their already high fees.

      • a-tracy
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

        The government spent millions on the Nightingale Hospitals, millions on ventilators, millions on things the medical experts said they would need. It’s time the government actually took a lead and anticipated the next welfare issue.

        I’ve been watching the news tonight and the charts shown by the two medical experts that showed cases going up in France and Spain from July (the same spike line that we are now being told the UK needs to lockdown over) yet we still put Brits on planes to these spiking regions, why?

    • na
      Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:02 am | Permalink

      Can’t the government put in care homes safe visit rooms (like a sound recording box) a room where visitors can go to talk and see their loved ones through the glass with a vocal microphone in each room so they don’t have to shout if this is going to be going on for another six months as indicated this morning?

      ….
      not if they are evil

  48. glen cullen
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    Everything you’re said Sir John makes sense and is moderate – I therefore predict that this government will do the complete opposite

  49. ukretired123
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:43 am | Permalink

    Simon Heffer DT article sums it up sadly :-
    “Common sense? Decency? We can’t allow that in Covid Britain, I’m afraid…
    Our national character is being bent out of shape by a government that doesn’t trust its people to act sensibly”
    We need to get on with normal living.
    This is not the Blitz!

    • ukretired123
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:59 am | Permalink

      In other words:
      “You can stretch people but you must not tear them”.

      Further “crying wolf” too often guarantees it will be ignored.

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:20 pm | Permalink

      Wise words

  50. DOM
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    Before I die I hope that the two main parties that have imposed so much damage our nation and obliterated our freedoms are utterly crushed by a TRUE conservative party that elevates individualism, libertarianism and a small State to divine status

    Marxism now controls both main parties. Labour because they believe in it and the Tories because they’re captured by it and haven’t the moral courage to confront that most destructive, vicious and violent of extremist ideologies

    Always remembers that Hitler and El Duce were socialists.

    I despair at the BBC who are now using comedy to stoke hate using racial identity.

    Your party has a duty to confront this cancer that’s infected our world

    ps. Give Ben Bradley MP the job as PM. We need his courage at this most pivotal junctures

  51. Ian @Barkham
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:50 am | Permalink

    Along with yourself Sir John, it looks like Sir Graham Brady gets it. Even the cloud cuckoo Baroness Brenda Hale has a similar view.

    In general you could say, most people have seen through this abuse of power without any sort of accountability. Just as with a ‘Clean break’ Brexit, people just want their democracy back and reinforced but effective checks and balances – we didn’t vote to have one form of Dictatorship just to be replaced by another one.

    What all these events have taught us is that the systems we rely on have been corrupted from the top down and ego is a new form of government by the people for the people.

  52. Pat
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    Unless the virus is eliminated worldwide, an impossible task, the virus must be lived with. It is not in the top ten causes of death at the moment, and most of those who do die with it were likely to die from other causes anyway, in fact many do die from other causes the presence of the virus is incidental.
    There is no longer any point to restricting the spread, we are near enough to herd immunity for that not to be an issue. All we are doing is prolonging the agony.
    Why we would want to do that beats me. To justify buying a ton of vaccines that are no longer useful? To keep SAGE in the limelight?
    Just end the restrictions, and abolish the enabling act now. At the very least amend the Act such that all the regulations have to pass Parliament. A £10000 fine for an offence that has not passed Parliament is unconscionable!

    • Jim Whitehead
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:34 pm | Permalink

      +1

  53. NigelE
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    Even if the UK were able to eliminate the virus, the next flight from a hotspot elsewhere in the world or the arrival of an infected illegal immigrant in Kent would start the whole thing over again.

    We must bite the bullet, protect the old and vulnerable and build immunity in society at large. Further lockdowns will only delay the inevitable – that total deaths will probably not change much.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

      Rubbish.

      A British – who’d have guessed? – visitor restarted the outbreak in New Zealand, but the professionals were on the case straight away and swiftly stamped it out again.

      It’s a matter of scale, although this lady did pretty well, having over three hundred contacts in just a few days.

      • NickC
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 11:07 am | Permalink

        So, Martin, you expect that New Zealand will (and should) lock down its borders indefinitely? That is absurd. In any case you were against locking down borders for us.

  54. Ian @Barkham
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    Sir John – Off Topic

    Bad faith over fisheries is all on the EU’s side- from Conservative Woman

    As the UK is now a third Country. The EU perpetually breaking its own laws and rules to leverage control – how can they be trusted at any time

    To be a third country means not being a member of the EU. How the EU deals with fisheries with third countries is established within its own main fisheries regulation 1380/13. This is not happening because the EU is using the basis of a trade deal conditional on access to our fishing waters, thereby breaking their own rules, and worse, expecting the UK to break international law.

    To keep the status quo would result in the UK breaking international law (because the competency is no longer with the EU but at Westminster). It is not the case that the UK expects to changing everything, as the UK is following the treaty Law.

    https://www.conservativewoman.co.uk/bad-faith-over-fisheries-is-all-on-the-eus-side/

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:23 am | Permalink

      From the same source – more on double standards and the EU’s refusals to even acknowledge their own rules.

      LET’S take Monsieur Barnier at his word and get back to the level playing field he demands, set out on his terms by the Institute for Government here, and his reiterated insistence that the UK must sign up to ongoing regulation of its industrial practice by the EU to ensure that it is fair.

      His assumption is of course that the EU is, like God, uniquely qualified to issue fairness.

      The fact is that UK standards are significantly higher in terms of ecological soundness, and the EU is slack in comparison. So we are being lectured by the priesthood to fall into line when the UK is already more draconian in its regulation than the EU. It is somewhat ironic to be told by Monsieur Barnier that we need to be in ‘dynamic alignment’ with it.

  55. Richard
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    Several studies have shown that the population started with significant 40-81% natural innate partial immunity to the virus.

    Evidence from eg Sweden, Japan, Pakistan, Haiti, Egypt where they had little or no prevention supports herd immunity being attained when about 15% of the population have had it.

    NHS Covid hospital admissions data also indicates the UK is close to herd immunity

    Please can we have an update on the leaked Whitehall report which in June forecast 200,000 additional deaths due to the first Lockdown.

    • Fred H
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

      thats been redacted.

    • an idea
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

      Please can we have an update on the leaked Whitehall report which in June forecast 200,000 additional deaths due to the first Lockdown.

      ………

      +1

  56. RichardP
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:34 am | Permalink

    Repeal the Coronavirus Act 2020.
    Time for Parliament to take control and stop the dictatorship!

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

      +1

      • Jim Whitehead
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:29 pm | Permalink

        +1

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

      I’ve written to my MP asking him to lobby against this dictatorship. Have you? Instead of moaning we should all contact our MP’s.

      • glen cullen
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:57 pm | Permalink

        Did that five months ago

        • Fedupsoutherner
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 5:21 am | Permalink

          Bet not many have though

      • RichardP
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:04 pm | Permalink

        Yes!

  57. Mary M.
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    The Coronavirus Act 2020 was rushed through Parliament in March, primarily to give the NHS time to get up to speed. Most people accepted the need for these extraordinary measures.

    At the time, the Government proposed that the Act should be returned for debate after a year. Thankfully, enough parliamentarians (including Steve Baker Cons., Chris Bryant Lab., Jeremy Corbyn then Lab. Leader, and Ed Davey now Lib. Dem. Leader) cautioned the Prime Minister against this length of time and, following an amendment, the Coronavirus Act 2020 (March 25th) is now subject to parliamentary renewal every six months.

    The six months is up. We have very few days in which to do our bit towards slowing Boris Johnson’s runaway train.

    As I write, “Repeal the Coronavirus Act 2020” has only 34,423 signatures.

    Go to https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/313310 and click ‘Sign’ if you want the Coronavirus Act 2020 to be properly debated in Parliament. And please spread the word.

    At least 100,000 signatures are needed for the petition to be considered for debate in Parliament.

    For further reading, I recommend: “Extraordinary coronavirus restrictions on personal freedom require proper parliamentary scrutiny”, Alex Nice, at ‘Institute for Government’.

    • Posted September 22, 2020 at 7:20 am | Permalink

      +++

      Let’s get that petition known to all those that think the government needs to act with more restraint….

  58. Fred H
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:32 am | Permalink

    Parliament must directly approve any new coronavirus restrictions before they come into force, a leading Conservative MP has told the BBC. Sir Graham said ministers had “got into the habit of ruling by decree” on the issue, citing the “imposition” of the rule of six limit on social gatherings. He told Radio 4’s Today public opinion was “moving” and the government could not take its backing for granted.
    His warning comes as further measures are considered to address rising cases.

    At the moment we think the epidemic is doubling roughly every seven days, says Sir Patrick Vallance, the UK’s chief scientific adviser.
    If that continues unabated, then by mid-October we would end up with 50,000 cases per day, he said.
    That would be expected to lead to 200 plus deaths per day by the middle of November.
    He says this graph shows “how quickly this can move”.

    • Fred H
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:22 pm | Permalink

      Sir Graham Brady….

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

        He’s ‘the man in a gray suit’. Why is he not doing his job …. again?

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

      +1

  59. Al
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    “Now it appears some are moving closer to the idea that we need to eliminate the virus. That would be great. ”

    That would be virtually impossible. There are only two diseases in the history of medicine which have been eradicated: smallpox and rinderpest (animals). Both diseases took years to eradicate with fully effective vaccines already in existance, and are now major concerns for germ warfare possibilities given that the vaccine programs have been discontinued.

    Given the fast rate of mutation of coronaviruses, and the Covid-19 strain, any vaccine will only have limited effect. Consider that scientists have been working on a vaccine for the FCoV coronavirus strain for decades and not found an effective one, partly due to the high mutation rate, so it is very unlikely that COVID-19 will be solved quickly.

    • Anonymous
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:52 pm | Permalink

      That would be virtually impossible. There are only two diseases in the history of medicine which have been eradicated: smallpox and rinderpest (animals). Both diseases took years to eradicate with fully effective vaccines

      ….
      The decline of smallpox, as with many other infectious diseases, including diphtheria and scarlet fever, coincided with the sanitation reforms which were instituted in the late 1880s. Where obtainable, government health records from around the world showed that during the periods of the most intense and widespread vaccination, the incidence of and death rates from smallpox were highest. For instance, in Kansas City and Pittsburgh during the 1920s, lawsuits were initiated, and won, against doctors and medical societies for declaring smallpox epidemics when there were none, and for creating epidemics with their vaccination drives.

      • Al
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:51 am | Permalink

        “creating epidemics with their vaccination drives.” – Anonymous

        If you are interested in epidemics created by vaccines, look at the current Brucellosis outbreak in India and China, caused by a factory in Lanzhou city that makes vaccines failing to sterilise its output correctly. As a result it pumped live bacteria into the air. (Details from the Hindustan Times)

  60. rose
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:23 am | Permalink

    Once the Rigby/Peston doctrine that the PM would be personally liable for each and every death from the Wuhan virus was widely adopted, we were doomed. Until this doctrine is overturned, we have no hope of the PM’s common sense and libertarianism prevailing.

    No-one held the PM responsible in 1968 for the 80,000 deaths from Hong Kong ‘flu, hence we were able to carry on as normal. That was a larger number in real terms as the population was smaller, with less longevity, almost no obesity, very little diabetes, and very few susceptible immigrants. If you ask people now, who have been demanding a totalitarian approach to the Wuhan virus, about the Hong Kong ‘flu, they say they don’t remember it. They aren’t embarrassed either.

  61. Anonymous
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    So where is the scientist who gives us the daily death rates for cancer, illness, poverty , suicide and car crash caused because of Covid measures ? Is anyone even bothering to count ?

    How can we make the right decision with only one side of the story ?

  62. Frances Truscott
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    What does “safeguarding” actually mean? I suspect it means solitary confinement for a lot of people.
    A lot of people would rather die than spend their remaining time in solitary.
    The problem is young people not giving a rats because they think it wont harm them.
    That I deeply suspect and the govt is just embarking on a large study.

  63. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:37 am | Permalink

    I can only assume that you are then consciously biased or the courses don’t work Andy

    • Narrow Shoulders
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:39 am | Permalink

      Reply to our Andy at 6.34

  64. Ex-Tory
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    This is slightly off-topic, but I’m getting fed up with government ministers seemingly having so little confidence in what they are saying that they need the Union flag as a backdrop to somehow add a bit of credibility.

    • rose
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:47 pm | Permalink

      Isn’t that, now we have global broadcasting, so people abroad know which government it is?

      • Ex-Tory
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:39 pm | Permalink

        Yes, maybe there are some people in the world who wouldn’t otherwise believe that some of the nonsense we hear could be uttered by British politicians.

  65. The End
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:48 am | Permalink

    It is Revelation 13:18
    Take the vaccine you take the mark

  66. Iain Gill
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:53 am | Permalink

    why has Dido Harding not been sacked yet?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

      Same reason she got the job I assume. Good connections?

  67. The End
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    This Phase 2 lockdown will last 6 months

  68. acorn
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    JR, your last paragraph could be on the front of your “live and let die” party manifesto. How to kill granny and grandad the JR way.

    The chancellor is never going to run out of Pounds Sterling to keep the economy ticking over for a few years. His problem is he has to stop households saving his Pounds and paying down debt with them. Clamp down to zero extortionate bank credit and loan rates for a year.

    We may need a lot of foreign currency to import the stuff we are no longer self sufficient in since 2010. Assuming foreigners are prepared to sell us some of their food and medicine stocks.

  69. Sue Doughty
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

    Eliminating the virus is not going to happen. It will be like TB and bubonic plague, we find treatments and we get a vaccine and have it used.
    Right now we have treatments, and vaccines on the way but for now we just have to abide by the new routine and have even those who do not identify as part of the general community take note and get involved.

  70. Ian @Barkham
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    It is worth noting that if Sir Patrick Vallance and Professor Whitty had controlled their own staff in the NHS at the get go we wouldn’t have seen the contagion that did so much damage in the first place. The lack of discipline and professionalism in the NHS was frieghtening.

    I am still reminded of the NHS Staff with nothing to do having dance off’s via social media in the corridors of hospitals with not a single attempt to social distance. Then the groups in huddled crowds around the hospital doorways for photos to encourage the happy clappers.

    So when these people in charge say everyone else should stand to attention and obey them, it just lack all creditability.

    • forthurst
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:16 pm | Permalink

      Sir Patrick Vallance is the Chief Scientific Advisor and Professor Chris Whitty is the Chief Medical Officer, neither has an executive role in the NHS; both are highly qualified medics. The CEO of NHS England is Sir Simon Stevens who according to his Linkedin entry has a PPE degree from Oxford as has Dido Harding who is Chair(man, not a piece of furniture) of the National Institute for Health Protection and is therefore in charge of Test and Trace; the person in charge of Covid-19 testing is Sarah-Jane Marsh who has a history degree from Lancaster University.

      There is clearly a theory in government circles that the best people to run scientifically based organisations are people with Arts degrees like themselves. As the government has inflicted a higher death rate on the British people than in most Western countries and is now facing an exponentially increasing epidemic as we approach winter, there are grounds for believing that they are living in cloud-cuckoo-land and have got neither the people nor organisations in place that could mitigate successfully without substantially curtailing people’s lives or livilihoods again.

  71. Caterpillar
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    On the Govt website https://coronavirus.data.gov.uk/

    The test numbers are given as “by date reported” whilst the number testing positive is given by “test date”. This apparent lack of date alignment is ridiculous and therefore opaque. Does anyone know where the correct and transparent data is?

    On the NHS England and Wales website there has been an uptick in the elderly deaths with Covid in the hospitals – does anyone know if these are cases infected in the community (under same hospitalisation conditions), caught in hospital as they re-open or caught in care homes and transferred?

  72. JohnK
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

    I watched the press conference from the two doomsters Whitty and Vallance. I had half expected a declaration of martial law, led by “the science”, so at least that was a let-off.

    I did manage to get a close look at one of the graphs used. This showed deaths per 100,000 in Spain and France. If I read the graph correctly, although it seemed at a glance to show deaths rocketing up, in fact they are now at 0.2 per 100,000 in Spain, and I think 0.05 per hundred thousand in France. I think this would imply that you would get one death per 500,000 infections in Spain, and one death per 2,000,000 infections in France. That’s not much of an epidemic.

    I would also note that in March the government was panicked into the lockdown by Dr Ferguson’s projection of 500,000 dead without one. This was based on a rate of 1% fatalities per case, which in turn came from Dr Fauci in the USA. But in fact the figure of 1% fatalities applies to those sick enough to go into hospital, which is what are defined as “cases”. Someone who tests positive for CV19 but who has no or minor symptoms is not a “case”, they are merely infected, and get better. The actual death rate for all people with CV19 is more like 0.1%, which in England would imply about 50,000 deaths. Which is what we had. So what use was lockdown?

    If Lockdown was meant to “squash the sombrero” it failed. If you look at figures for deaths it looks just like a sombrero, peaking in April. If it was meant to “Save the NHS” it failed. The NHS survived by becoming the National Covid Service. Bad luck if you had any other illness, the NHS was closed down for six months for all other cases. If lockdown was meant to destroy the economy it seems to have worked quite well.

    The government is seemingly being led by the nose by scientists. They are clever people, but they cannot make policy. The health of the economy is not their concern. We do not need another lockdown, circuit break or any other name they decide to call it. It is a failed policy.

    I recall that when he made his terrible decision to go ahead with HS2, Boris said something like “when you are in a hole, you have to keep on digging”. I don’t know if he was making a lame joke, or had completely misunderstood the saying. But that seems to be his response to CV19. Did, dig, dig. He is digging his own grave on this. Worse, he is digging it for all of us.

    • Stred
      Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:29 am | Permalink

      There was pressure on the government during early March to lick down or at least take measures to enforce containment of the disease. The warnings from the Italian doctors were stark and many of the vulnerable were already being careful. The request to avoid pubs and crowds came the week before 23.3. My family left the London hot spots two weeks before and moved out completely to isolation before 23.3. It is not surprising that the epidemic peaked two weeks after 16.3. This does not mean that the total lockdown did not assist the continued fall in deaths and hospitalisation. Remember that the death rate was still high and included staff working in the NHS and transport who had picked up the virus through inadequate protection and some of the older at home were infected by asymptomatic relatives who were not locked down. It took two months for the rate to fall significantly.

      Also forgotten is the reaction to the request to isolate and avoid pubs, shopping and crowds. In Sweden everyone did as asked. In France and the UK crowds of generally younger people ignored it, sunbathing in parks and going shopping and to booze ups. In France the lockdown was much stricter. Same in Spain. The UK allowed walks, bike rides and car journeys for essentials and exercise. Most people were happy with this.

      The figures in the report by Ferguson have also been misunderstood. At the time they only had some preliminary information on death rates of those treated and the general population and on the rate of infection. The very high figure of 510,000 was for zero action and hospitals being overrun. In London the hospitals only just coped, with doctors working continuously for 12 hour shifts. There was a middle figure for some minor action and the figure for full lockdown and distancing was 22,000 deaths. In fact, between the sudden start of excess deaths in early March, when PHE reported a large rise in chest infections treated by GPs, and over the three months when the death rate was much higher than normal for the time of year the total excess deaths were around 65,000- three times the estimated figure.

      It may well be that the mismanagement by infecting care home was to blame or that there was a rise in casualties from heart attacks and stroke, but there would have been fewer road deaths and stabbings. These figures will take years to analyse, but the attempt to hide the real disastrous excess deaths by recategorising covid death as only those 28 days after testing positive hides those who died later after treatment and those who were not tested. The sudden peak of excess deaths and badly injured with the classic shape of the graph cannot be hidden. The performance of the NHS was appalling. Over 300 of its own staff died through poor infection control and many patients were infected in hospitals.

  73. bigneil(newercomp)
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 2:13 pm | Permalink

    Have just read of 50 previously kicked out asylum seekers have returned – and now been granted it – -life on the UK taxpayer – all found. Housing, cash, NHS etc etc. No work, no contribution. Grooming gangs, cash for crash and County lines drug gangs get more soldiers – paid for by us – -and here to destroy us.

    You lot must be so damn proud of yourselves.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:11 pm | Permalink

      They are!
      They are obeying orders.

    • Mark B
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

      It is ok for them to lock is in our homes, but they can’t be bothered to keep the gate to the moat shut. If only the Germans in WWII knew how easy it really was to invade England I bet they never would have bothered with the Luftwaffe.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:27 pm | Permalink

        Mark B oh my word, what a great post.

      • graham1946
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:58 pm | Permalink

        That was a different generation – politicians with grit not woke bleeding hearts accepting all the blame for everything in the world and history and wanting to sell Britain out.

    • Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:39 pm | Permalink

      They could not care less.

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:14 pm | Permalink

      Who’s going to vote Tory next time

      • steve
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:18 pm | Permalink

        Glen

        If Boris does not capitulate in any way with France and the EU, I’ll vote conservative.

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 6:27 am | Permalink

        You will. Most of the people who contribute to this site will. Anything but Labour. And never change first past the post either. It’s pathetic and depressing and lumbers us with people like May, Johnson and Cameron.

        • glen cullen
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 8:18 am | Permalink

          Not true – your assumptions are wide of the mark

          • Fred H
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 6:55 pm | Permalink

            I sense among circles we mix/talk to that political leanings and past experience are now thrown to the winds.
            The next GE is for anybody.
            Total distrust based on Ref result & inactivity, resignations/ legal and political skuldugery, manifesto/promises thoroughly broken.
            Clean sheet time – – – MPs prepare your CV – you are going to need it.

  74. a-tracy
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    John, also if we do have a brand new lockdown, this will put people out of work that weren’t previously furloughed, is the government going to allow us to put them on furlough?

    Already all this talk is slowing down trade.

  75. APL
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

    There is now talk of a 10pm curfew?

    What is the justification for this curfew, and why do you think the virus is more active after 10pm than say 8am?

    30th September, the day this pathetic supine Parliament can revoke the emergency powers this lawless administration have usurped.

    If you refuse, then you might as well all of you resign your seats, we’ve been paying you to oversee the government, and this Parliament have utterly failed to do this.

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

      Who’s going to enforce a curfew the police don’t go out after dark

      • Glenn Vaughan
        Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

        glen cullen

        Probably the military will do it by enforcing “martial law”.

        • steve
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:16 pm | Permalink

          Nah, puffed up low IQ people wearing luminous vests, employed by umbrella agencies and hired out to two bit security firms.

          They’re told that the wearing of the dayglo gives them ultimate authority – the funny thing is they actually believe it.

        • Fred H
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

          are there enough? I thought they were all let go?

        • glen cullen
          Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:03 pm | Permalink

          We only hae around 25 thousand combat/street ready troops – and it would take them 12 months to get trained up to task

          • Alan Jutson
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 7:29 am | Permalink

            glen

            In years gone by armed forces training covered some martial law, guess it is probably the same now, so no need for additional training time.

          • glen cullen
            Posted September 22, 2020 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

            British has 1 hour classroom on the law of armed conflict and zero training on martial law

    • steve
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:11 pm | Permalink

      APL

      “What is the justification for this curfew, and why do you think the virus is more active after 10pm than say 8am?”

      I have a hunch it’s because Boris wants to try a softer approach with the pubs. Personally I think all pubs should be shut down and boarded up for the duration.

      • Anonymous
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 2:02 am | Permalink

        Personally I think all pubs should be shut down and boarded up for the duration.

        ….
        you are insane

      • na
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 2:07 am | Permalink

        “What is the justification for this curfew, and why do you think the virus is more active after 10pm than say 8am?”

        I have a hunch it’s because Boris wants to try a softer approach with the pubs.

        …..
        reverse psychology?
        Boris is destroying pubs, our culture,

  76. Posted September 21, 2020 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

    Well said BOF and Life logic.
    We are all here inspite of all the that our forfarthers Had to battle with down the years of time, we are here because of there ability to tough it out , not all will have made it through.
    We must use common sense, and what we have been borne with
    Let us not forget that people have died with Flue this summer, and they always do, they always do in the winter aswell .
    Use common sence, look after your self be careful, Look after your selves, Stay safe. And good lluck everybody

  77. Iain Gill
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:00 pm | Permalink

    we are still allowing planes to arrive from virus hotspots, and the passengers get on public transport to all corners of the country.

    we are still operating phlebotomy clinics in the centre of our major general hospitals, to which all the sick people from miles around are sent for blood tests, coughing and sneezing on each other and all the other people in that hospital in the process.

    the rules are not logical, and anyone with a basic science education can tell the government and its advisors have completely lost the plot.

    • steve
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:05 pm | Permalink

      Iain Gill

      “we are still allowing planes to arrive from virus hotspots, and the passengers get on public transport to all corners of the country.”

      Exactly. This is the one thing upon which I disagree with Boris. Off the plane – M25 – M1 straight up to Birmingham. Crazy, just crazy.

      “we are still operating phlebotomy clinics in the centre of our major general hospitals, to which all the sick people from miles around are sent for blood tests, coughing and sneezing on each other and all the other people in that hospital in the process.”

      Yes, because for the most part they’re too lazy, inconsiderate, or just lacking in basic standards of hygiene to think about anyone else.

      Hospital is the last place you want to go these days. You’d likely come out with infection.

      • Iain Gill
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:22 am | Permalink

        Blood tests should be decentralised absolutely not centralised.

      • graham1946
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:48 am | Permalink

        Is that actual experience knowledge or just bile against the NHS? I have experience within the last 2 days of hospital and it is nothing like either of you say. In fact in my general (very large) one they are so draconian that they do not allow visitors and my wife had a very serious operation last week and I am not allowed in. When I took her some personal effects I had to leave them at the door. When I had a blood test recently, it was by appointment and only one person at a time allowed in the phlebotomists room. I never saw another patient. So I think you need to review your biased ideas about what actually happens.

        • Iain Gill
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 1:03 pm | Permalink

          actual experience very first hand

      • Fred H
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 6:51 pm | Permalink

        ‘Off the plane – M25 – M1 straight up to Birmingham. Crazy, just crazy.’

        might have read – ‘ Off the plane – elbow each other to get to Passport Control – push and shove to get my suitcase off the belt – – rush through crowded Hall and out to carpark machine – – onto M25 – head for nearest home pub – – have a welcome drink – – call mates – arrange booze up later – go home to infect unsuspecting family/sharers.

  78. Ian @Barkham
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:04 pm | Permalink

    Just watched the NI executives’ presentation of actions required for Corvid. Have to say they seem more coherent and effective than the UK’s Government.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:13 pm | Permalink

      Always are.

      • rose
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 6:43 am | Permalink

        And unlike the Welsh and Scottish National Socialists, they don’t use the Pandemic to destroy the Union.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

          No they used their Westminster votes to save the U.K. and defeat Mrs 9%.

  79. Enigma
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

    Dr Malcom Kendrick has posted updated information about Sweden on his blog. Well worth reading.

  80. Stred
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

    In the conference held today with the two chief officers, they claimed that the increased number of tests did not affect the number of positive tests. Yet, as shown by Prof Heneghan and shown on the NHS dashboard, the lines of the two graphs rise together. The increased positive tests may outstrip the number of tests but the effect is lessened.

    They did not address the question of the false positive tests outnumbering the true positives by a factor of ten, as warned previously by members of their own committee. They did not address the extreme sensitivity of the the testing by amplification or the picking up of cases where the subject has recovered and is no longer infectious. They did not give a figure for the rate of false positive tests, previously estimated at 0.8%.

    They quoted the experience of France and Spain but others have pointed out that the true rate of cases reaching hospital is lower and that cases and deaths are a tenth of what they were in the height of the epidemic. See Daily Mail.

    The graphs showing the increased rate of infection by age did not match the much lower and declining graphs published by PHE recently and there is no source given for the changes. See DM.

    No allowance was made for continued and less catastrophic shielding of older people in calculation of deaths and cases increasing exponentially. The exponential graph showing 50,000 cases by October was said not to be a forecast. Was it just propaganda?

    If Boris and Hancock are relying on this standard of analysis, no wonder they are making fools of themselves and will be facing resignation if the figures are proved to be a political stunt to retain unnecessary lockdown instead of relying on common sense hygiene and separation.

  81. Jacqui
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

    No more LOCKDOWNS and no more FACEMASKS.

    Enough is enough, the rise in (cases) is due to increased testing units and PCR tests that have been amplified to the nth degree.
    Numerous scientists have voiced their concern at using this method to diagnose infections and consider it to be wholly unsuitable with up to 90% false positives.

    The MSM keep comparing Covid to the 1918 Spanish Flu virus (trying to frighten people) this is ridiculous, 1918 the end of the 1st world war when the population were malnourished, hygiene in the community and hospitals was far inferior to now and more people died from bacterial infections than the flu virus itself which burnt itself out by 1920.
    Why are the statistics being manipulated to frighten people? 

    More stringent restrictions will make very little difference, the public were told to wear masks in July to “stop the spread” if they worked (as the government suggested) why are cases increasing now? 

    End of summer cold viruses are beginning to circulate, as normal, during summer the healthy should have been building immunity to this virus before the winter arrived.

    Soon illnesses due to wearing unhygienic facemasks are going to manifest as will a large number of additional deaths and suffering caused by lack of NHS screening, treatment and suicide/depression resulting from the lockdown.
    The number of deaths from these causes will by far outstrip the ones from Covid with an over 99% survival rate and guess who will be blamed? 

    Yes Boris Johnson, and the Conservative party for not stopping him.

    I hope that you will be voting against extending the governments emergency Coronavirus powers.

  82. John McDonald
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

    Unfortunately we have seen with large gatherings of people for parties and the like, that some do not think about the wider impact on others and indeed business through their aim to mix with as many people as possible. People still went on Holiday to other countries and other regions of the UK. The purely social interaction has probably spread the virus more than the relatively virus controlled business/catering /food distribution sectors.
    Family and close friends are more likely to be careful than random encounters with strangers, and you know who to warn if you suspect you have contracted CV-19.

    Travelling afar without a good reason is the thing to lock down, likewise meetings with unknown persons(to each other, none regularly seen family members, etc. even in a business environment when can be avoided).

    The real issue, which is not explained by Government is what factors caused the increase in infections and can they be addressed short of another Nationwide Lockdown.
    Is a further lockdown an omission that Government don’t know or more likely won’t say for political reasons ??

  83. Mary M.
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

    The Coronavirus Act 2020 was rushed through Parliament in March, primarily to give the NHS time to get up to speed. Most people accepted the need for these extraordinary measures.

    At the time, the Government proposed that the Act should be returned for debate after a year. Thankfully, enough parliamentarians (including Steve Baker Cons., Chris Bryant Lab., Jeremy Corbyn then Lab. Leader, and Ed Davey now Lib. Dem. Leader) cautioned the Prime Minister against this length of time and, following an amendment, the Coronavirus Act 2020 (March 25th) is now subject to parliamentary renewal every six months.

    The six months is up. We have very few days in which to do our bit towards slowing Boris Johnson’s runaway train.

    As I write, “Repeal the Coronavirus Act 2020” has only 35,315 signatures.

    Go to https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/313310 and click on ‘Sign’ if you want the Coronavirus Act 2020 to be properly debated in Parliament. And please spread the word if you want to get democracy back.

  84. Anonymous
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:38 pm | Permalink

    I urge you to remember I told you this lockdown will last 6 months.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:16 pm | Permalink

      Only 6?

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

      Please tell us that the 2nd lockdown will only last 7 days

      • Fred H
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

        everyone will pick the lock after a week anyway.

  85. Gods Four Winds
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

    Very dark days lay ahead, but Boris will be captured by the Mighty Winds of God. At the end of this, the political class will be abolished for 1000 years.

  86. glen cullen
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

    Ring a-ring o’ roses,
    A pocketful of posies.
    A-tishoo! A-tishoo!
    We all fall down!

  87. Anonymous
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

    When will Prime Minister Whitty consult experts on deaths by other than Covid 19 and try to do a balanced risk assessment on the deaths and suffering that his policies are causing ?

    One assumes that Prime Minister Whitty has even bothered to do this and scoped out his policies’ impact over the decades after CV19 has petered out.

    (I forget the name of his sidekick.. blonde guy, erm.. Thingy-me-bob ???)

    • Anonymous
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

      The message might get through if you all completely ignore Ministers and that blonde guy – erm wossisname? and write to Prime Minister Whitty direct.

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

      all praise to our new dear leader

  88. Never EVER forget
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:08 pm | Permalink

    remember remember the 30th September

  89. Fred H
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:20 pm | Permalink

    off topic.
    arch Remoaner =

    Former Prime Minister Theresa May has said she “cannot support” the government’s plan to override parts of its Brexit agreement with the EU. She told MPs the move, which breaks international law, would damage “trust in the United Kingdom”.
    The Internal Market Bill will be voted on in the Commons on Tuesday, having passed its first hurdle last week. Ministers say it contains vital safeguards to protect Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK.
    The bill is designed to enable goods and services to flow freely across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland when the UK leaves the EU’s single market and customs union on 1 January. But it gives the government the power to change aspects of the EU withdrawal agreement, a legally binding deal governing the terms of the UK’s exit from the EU earlier this year.

    • beresford
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

      OTOH if we meekly allow a consortium of foreign countries to block food supply within our own country because ‘it’s playing the game’ we will regarded by the rest of the world as naive hidebound idiots.

    • Alan Jutson
      Posted September 22, 2020 at 7:21 am | Permalink

      Afraid Mrs May should keep quiet, she had her chance at the top job and failed on all counts, even losing the Conservative majority gifted to her, and she was an absolute disaster in her surrender (so called negotiations) to the EU.
      Who on earth would trust anything she supported any more ?.

      • Fred H
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

        same goes for Blair, Cameron, and seems like Johnson.
        Why are our PMs so ineffective and fail to carry out what got them elected?

    • Sea Warrior
      Posted September 22, 2020 at 11:37 am | Permalink

      Did she offer her solution to a problem largely of her making? If not, she should ‘pipe down’.

  90. steve
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 7:56 pm | Permalink

    JR

    “Now it appears some are moving closer to the idea that we need to eliminate the virus. That would be great. Unfortunately it seems they think this can only be done by imposing very intrusive controls, doing lasting damage to all businesses that rely on social contacts”

    Indeed so Mr Redwood. However this country went through much worse during WWII, and thousands of businesses went under.

    Businesses may go but others will spring up.

    In the absence of vaccine I do wonder if the stark choice is going to be lives or economy.

    Economy will recover, but lives once gone are gone for good.

    Personally I think social – based i.e hospitality & leisure businesses should be given less importance than lives. It’s perfectly possible to go to work, then go home and stay there ’till it’s time for work again. Pubs and Gyms are not essential. Besides, people can always brew their own beer, get plenty of exercise at work or at home by growing their own veg etc.

    Be as self sufficient as possible, then you don’t need to go out and risk getting infected.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

      Surely ‘going to work‘ is less important than lives? Surely shopping is less important than lives? Stay home, for good. Stay ‘safe’ – like Boris.

      • steve
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 12:57 am | Permalink

        Lynn

        I didn’t say otherwise.

        • Anonymous
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 11:32 am | Permalink

          The vast majority of things are not *essential* but they are what makes life worth living.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

          In that case the safest place is the grave. You are opposed to life altogether. You think breathing is good enough.

    • No Longer Anonymous
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

      The economy IS lives.

      Those industries ARE essential if you work in them and you seem to be telling us to go back to subsistence living.

      You write as though this disease is the Black Death, which it most certainly isn’t.

      When there is a real Black Death or Ebola in our midst we won’t need fines to make us live as you suggest.

      I think you have lost all perspective.

      Shield those at risk by all means but don’t tell us that digging potatoes is anything like a Tabata workout for health and fitness – you’re ideas will only put more of us in the obesity/depression zone.

      • steve
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 12:52 am | Permalink

        NLA

        “you’re ideas will only put more of us in the obesity/depression zone.”

        I’m 62, my lifestyle works for me and I’m fit as hell.

        “Those industries ARE essential if you work in them”

        But tough choices might have to be made. We cannot have hundreds of thousands lives lost because of ‘some’ people who work in pubs.

        Yours appears to be the illogic of the moaning minority. Pubs are a major source of cv19 transmission, and this Gov’t knows it.

        • No Longer Anonymous
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 11:30 am | Permalink

          I probably read the same comics as you did as a kid, being only slightly younger I could well have been in the same gang.

          I do the PRMC tests each year and pass them. Even with this I do not consider myself as ‘fit as hell’. Have a look on YouTube to see what this is.

          You clearly don’t know the difference between gym fit and gardening fit and what the closure of gyms is doing to people who like to look after themselves.

          And “hundreds of thousands lost”

          Again – we’re headed towards economic, social, mental and physical catastrophe based on your guess work and without any consideration for deaths caused by CV19 measures.

          • Fred H
            Posted September 23, 2020 at 8:58 am | Permalink

            unless we wish to join and survive really violent hand to hand combat – there is little need to be able to pass PRMC.
            Extreme physical fitness- for that is what it is – plays almost no part in quality of life, nor enjoyment of being alive.

      • steve
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 1:26 am | Permalink

        NLA

        “When there is a real Black Death or Ebola in our midst we won’t need fines to make us live as you suggest.”

        So you think you are better qualified than Gov’t and it’s advisers to ascertain the level of threat to this country by CV19 ?

        After all you’ve just told us you need to see buboes before taking Gov’t warnings seriously.

        • No Longer Anonymous
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 11:22 am | Permalink

          Um – yes.

          When they set about destroying our culture, taking away our liberties and putting us under house arrest I want to see a bit more than some quess work and some dodgy graphs.

          I also want to see the juxtaposition of graphs pertaining to deaths which could well have been caused by CV19 measures. Such as missed cancer treatments, suicides, car accidents because people stopped using trains and planes (the safest transport there is.)

          This government has cornered itself in to a “CV19 must be eliminated at *all costs* ” position.

          Now reflect upon what *all costs* is actually going to mean.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

      Steve,

      Economies don’t always recover, and if they do it can take decades, the reduced GDP per capita in this time having a deleterious effect on many (life shortening, loss of QALY etc).

      Much consumption is not a necessity, thus much production is not. Under such circumstances (i.e. a country choosing to be inside it’s production possibilities) then a social dividend (monetary UBI) has to be paid to give people income to fill the gap (and live).

      Making non-market judgements on people’s essentials has a large normative element. The social areas in cities are often where different people meet with resultant entrepreneurship.

      (Isolating some elderly takes their lives leaving existence, from which some will not have to recover. I have spoken to some elderly recently who are now in fear of being fined, even though they are not breaking any rules. This is the consequence of Hancock et al’s unthinking nastiness.)

      • steve
        Posted September 22, 2020 at 1:37 am | Permalink

        Caterpillar

        Appreciate your comments.

        Assuming western economies will need decades to recover, that would also be end game for China.

        But then many do say the US and China will go to war during the next twenty years. It’s often said it takes a war to sort things out…..makes you wonder if everything is falling into place, sobering thought.

        • Caterpillar
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 8:18 am | Permalink

          Yes. The longer the economies take to recover, the greater chance for other consequences. It is sobering.

        • Fred H
          Posted September 22, 2020 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

          correct. China has become a super-producer and super-power on its labour force size and leadership – with anything goes form of state capitalism. Mass price fixing and product dumping to eradicate competition elsewhere, at the same time using raw material stranglehold and exploitation of foreign owned natural resources.
          When the world market demand collapses so might the Chinese grip on controlling the people.
          A lot of mouths to feed.

    • Anonymous
      Posted September 22, 2020 at 2:29 am | Permalink

      Economy will recover, but lives once gone are gone for good

      ….
      people die, but we believe in Jesus.

  91. Anonymous
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

    on Nov 1st the world economy will collapse
    we will be on emergency lockdown for 6 months
    millions will die

    • No Longer Anonymous
      Posted September 21, 2020 at 8:27 pm | Permalink

      Someone else has pinched my good name but I concur with this nonetheless. I give way to better ability and will change my name accordingly.

      The lockdown of the West is going to kill millions everywhere and probably already is.

      Mass global unemployment as well as national = death. Many old people are going to be murdered in their beds in burglaries and mugged to death for their Fish ‘n’ Chip suppers.

      We have listened too much to gonks.

      Then the cancelled treatments, missed appointments, deaths by car accident (vice rail) and deaths by suicide and the coming crime waves… and wars.

      Such as Prime Minister Whitty really don’t seem to have considered this.

      Any chance of getting that blonde guy, Mr … erm… Thing-umy-bob his mojo back.

      He should read this article.

      https://www.express.co.uk/comment/expresscomment/1338229/Brexit-latest-news-EU-news-covid19-coronavirus-latest-figures-Boris-Johnson-Matt-Hancock

  92. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 9:35 pm | Permalink

    What it boils down to is what is an acceptable number of COVID-19 deaths per day. Would 30 be about right? Or should it be an acceptable number of years of life lost?

    • Sea Warrior
      Posted September 22, 2020 at 11:34 am | Permalink

      Whatever the figure, it needs to be compared against that for lives being lost to the NHS’s operating below capacity.

    • Fred H
      Posted September 23, 2020 at 8:54 am | Permalink

      is about 450 cancer deaths a day acceptable?

  93. XYXY
    Posted September 21, 2020 at 10:23 pm | Permalink

    No discussion on this subject is complete without mentioning Sweden. No lockdown, just some social distancing, yet they are no worse off than other countries.

    The real reason for lockdown is political fear. If we didn’t lockdown and there were 100k deaths while, say France did lockdown and had 1k then our politicians would be lambasted.

    Even now we could what Sweden did, and would reach herd immunity faster than they did given that we are not beginning from a standing start but it is never discussed.

    I’m tired of it and would like my life back.

  94. na
    Posted September 22, 2020 at 2:42 am | Permalink

    Matt Hancock said ‘The virus is spread through social settings not through the work place or schools’ This is a bit convenient isn’t it?’ Does the virus have an economic conscience?

  95. Jeff12
    Posted September 22, 2020 at 7:12 am | Permalink

    No virus has ever been eliminated. What happens is we become immune to it. This alleged virus is entirely a hoax to allow the ruling class to control us like prisoners in a jail. The latest stupidity of a curfew has absolutely no possible health benefit unless the phantom virus can read a clock. It is about brainwashing us into compliance with a police state and quite clearly all our supposed political representatives are totally on board with this new fascism. 2020 has laid bare just how many enemies the people of this country face and the worst of all reside in Westminster and Whitehall.

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 22, 2020 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

      correct

  96. Anonymous
    Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    Hitchens has started doing interviews on Covid policy with a picture of the tower of Babel behind him as a warning to MPs.


    let’s hope it works

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted September 22, 2020 at 8:55 pm | Permalink

      They will not understand.

  97. na
    Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:40 am | Permalink

    if only people knew 911 and all the isis attacks were fake they would have a much healthier scepticism about this latest hoax.

    • hefner
      Posted September 23, 2020 at 8:01 am | Permalink

      !!!!!

      (and that’s my second answer to this comment as the so open minded Sir John did not like my previous one related to the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center). ‘Funny’ what can and cannot get onto this blog.

  98. jbh
    Posted September 22, 2020 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    Why is Grant pretending to not understand this second wave is caused by false positive numbers?

  99. Pat
    Posted September 22, 2020 at 10:31 am | Permalink

    According to a shadow minister at the Labour Party conference the covid pandemic is a good crisis, not to be wasted.

    Perhaps the conservatives should ask for a retraction and apology on behalf of the 41,000 uk victims.

  100. The wine
    Posted September 22, 2020 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    a 10pm curfew for the flu lol
    we really have entered the twilight zone now

    • glen cullen
      Posted September 22, 2020 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

      +1

  101. Big John
    Posted September 23, 2020 at 2:16 am | Permalink

    Why does the govement believe fake science ?
    We need a govenment that dismisses the lies.
    The only reasom I can think off, is we are being forced to pay for this made up crap, a bit like the bbc.
    FYI, the real stats say, lockdowns, face masks have no effect.

  102. shame
    Posted September 23, 2020 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    The PM said he did not want to have to restrict freedoms further but warned the nation he would do so if people don’t stick to the rules.

    ….
    turning us against each other

  103. Anonymous
    Posted September 23, 2020 at 6:51 am | Permalink

    These are our darkest days, pray everyone.

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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