How should we live with and control CV 19?

Today I seek your views on how much economic sacrifice we should make to try to slow or delay the transmission of this disease.

It is clearly lethal for a minority who get the bad version of it, but no worse than flu or bad colds for many others. The Global death rate so far from it is 0.015% of the world population, and it seems to account for under 3% of deaths. Cardiovascular problems remain the prime killer. CV 19 is on track to kill a few more than road traffic accidents but ranks well below cancer and other lung infections.

It is good news that in its second wave in the Americas and Europe the death rate is much reduced. Treatments are better and maybe more younger people are getting it with much less risk of death.Some of the advisers think it is just a lag and deaths will rise as they did in the spring. That would every worrying.

So how much economic pain should we suffer to delay the spread of the disease? Is there a realistic exit through a vaccine to make the cost of delay a price worth paying, or will there just be another flare up as soon as we relax controls again?

I think the government needs to do more to save livelihoods and needs to remove those controls that have limited utility in defeating the virus but do considerable damage to jobs and business. Can we do more to help people most at risk protect themselves from it? Can we have isolation hospitals and high standards of infection control in all care homes and other health settings?

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361 Comments

  1. Peter Wood
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:22 am | Permalink

    The PM has a big problem, his government is floundering around trying to secure us from CV19; this is a fools errand. All he is managing to do is irritate the population and lose support. Leave the management of CV19 to the local communities, give them the funds and provide Covid ONLY hospitals.

    The PM can turn his failure into success with a ‘Brexit’ big win; hold firm to a free and independent UK; do NOT relent on fisheries – it is symbolic of Brexit. Get that right and he’ll be remembered for it.

    • Nigl
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:20 am | Permalink

      Get ready for a sell out, level playing field/subsidies/enforcement. Allegedly the Japanese deal gave away all we have been fighting the EU for. Well done Liz Truss!

    • Nigl
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:44 am | Permalink

      Ps Charles Moore in the DT sums it up perfectly. Are we being spun to whilst being conned? Essential reading for all naive Tory MPs.

    • dixie
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:52 am | Permalink

      do not relent on fisheries or anything and get rid of the WA+PD.

    • Sea_Warrior
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:02 am | Permalink

      The Burnham problem of last week shows us that local government is incompetently led. Whitehall must take the lead.

      • agricola
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:01 am | Permalink

        Yee of blind faith, do you seriously think that Whitehall is competent.

        • Sea_Warrior
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

          At the moment, no. My suggestion was a purist’s view of what any ‘RACI Analysis’ should be pointing at. Whitehall is NOT competent -and a dysfuntional No 10, led by the Johnson/Cummings axis is the root-cause – but it is more competent than local government.
          P.S. I know you’re going to object to my acronym but I’ve explained it before – so tough. 🙂

      • JoolsB
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:52 am | Permalink

        And that should apply to the devolved nations as well. We should all be singing from the same hymn sheet on this. (Which in my humble opinion is learn to live with it and get back to work) Reading this morning that Hancock, as useless as he is in England, and the Tories are getting the blame for the decisions of the little dictator in Wales. No doubt the other little dictator in Scotland is blaming the UK Government as well. They can make all their grandiose decisions and just send the bill to the English taxpayer taking the credit when it suits them and blaming that nasty Tory UK Government when it doesn’t.

        • Mike Durrans
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

          +1

      • Hope
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:46 am | Permalink

        JR,

        The Great Barrington Declaration is the only way forward. There is no other way of saving our economy or way of life in a free thinking, free speaking democratic society. Your govt and EU driven perverse devolved govt and regionalization is threatening our way of life.

        Your left wing govt. wants to curtail all our freedoms by using Chinese flu or any other excuse to bring in its culturally Marxist society.

        It wants to change our society by mass immigration. Your Govt sneakily introduced new measures on Thursday coming in on 01/12/2020 to prevent limits or caps to mass immigration. The point based system is not worth an absolute fig in reducing numbers. Quite the opposite it allows millions more! With millions expected to be out of work in the near future it is nothing short of disgusting behaviour towards indigenous people. An absolute betrayal of our nation and its people.

        Another brazen lie hidden under a fake new policy announcement. Your govt and party are thoroughly dishonest with the public about its true policy intentions.

        • DavidJ
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:32 am | Permalink

          Indeed Hope; we must collectively hope that common sense prevails. Sadly our host is in a minority on that.

        • Iago
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:44 am | Permalink

          What have you to say to this, JR? that is the changing (in my view destruction) of our society by mass immigration.

        • Timaction
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

          Plus another million from Hong Kong promised. On top of nothing being done to stop illegal immigration from the Channel at £4 billion over 10 years. So obviously planning for more to come at our expense under May’s UN agreement. We are the most overcrowded Nation in Europe. Our health, education, public services and infrastructure cannot cope with existing numbers. We’re about to be sold out on the EU. A totally dishonest, unscrupulous Government that will be toast at the next election.

          • Hope
            Posted October 24, 2020 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

            Good article in Breitbart about European Convention on Human Rights and all the abuses from murderers tomprevent being deported etc being allowed to continue by tribunal judges. Govt apparently has assured EU it will continue beyond 2020!

            Time for people to realise what idiots they were voting for Fake Tories when Johnson’s policy on immigration is worse than May’s, economic policy worse than Corbyns, liberty free speech and freedoms curtailed more than you would expect in a dictatorship, unbelievable but true.

        • beresford
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

          This is why I remain sceptical about their intentions regarding Brexit. What is the point in leaving the EU if we implement the globalist Kalergi Plan in parallel with the EU, destroying national identities with mass immigration to facilitate the replacement of democracy with direct rule by the ‘elite’?

      • No Longer Anonymous
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

        Errmm

        I thought we’d all voted against regionalisation in a referendum.

    • Andy
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:29 am | Permalink

      It is charming that you still think there is any sort of win from Brexit. Perhaps you are one of those rare souls who like lorry parks and masses of pointless bureaucracy – because it turns out that’s what you voted for.

      • MickN
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:44 am | Permalink

        Well that was predictable, but you missed out the bit about Covid being a good thing because it was taking many of the old people that you so despise.

      • agricola
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:04 am | Permalink

        The rarity of the soul is that which regurgitates repetitive wishful mantra. Put a sock in it.

        • DavidJ
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:33 am | Permalink

          +10

      • NickC
        Posted October 25, 2020 at 11:06 am | Permalink

        Yet, Andy, the rest of the world thinks there’s a win from not being in the EU. Your thinking you know better than 160+ other countries what’s good for them is risible, and patronising.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:32 am | Permalink

      An accurate assessment, so long as the local authorities themselves have a clue about pandemics or statistics. This is doubtful. Many of their council taxpayers have far more nouse, so leave it to them.

      • Hope
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:50 am | Permalink

        The Govt has not produced reliable statisticisalmi formation from March onwards. Hancock had to deceive about his test and trace number target back in April. He still failed and stil has despite a czar and task force!

        £12 billion and counting! What does he have to do to get sacked for gross incompetence and causing death to the elderly moving from hospitals to care homes?

        • Narrow Shoulders
          Posted October 25, 2020 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

          pretty sure track and trace has cost less than £50 million, which is a lot of money but it is not £12 billion

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:32 am | Permalink

      Well, he’s trying to save you the irritation of queueing for hours in the non-European Union/EEA files at continental airports, by comically asking that UK subjects be allowed to use the European Union citizens’ gates.

      What a woolly scarf eh?

      • agricola
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:07 am | Permalink

        I do not know where you regularly travel to, but the rubbish you speak of is not my experience. In fact it is getting smoother and faster with automation.

        • John E
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

          You are still using those EU/EEA gates – for now

          • NickC
            Posted October 25, 2020 at 11:08 am | Permalink

            What, to travel to the Caribbean?

        • Fred H
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

          He’s talking about crossing the Severn Bridge.

      • beresford
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

        There’s no reason for anyone to ‘queue for hours’. Once the prioritised folk have gone through, those gates and officials are available for the rest. In my experience deliberate delay is only inflicted to make some sort of point to the ‘foreigners’. Should the EU play that game they will be disadvantaging their own holiday industry.

    • BeebTax
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:09 am | Permalink

      +1

    • Iain Moore
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:39 am | Permalink

      One of the wins from Brexit was supposed to be controlling immigration, but what we are seeing is the Government back peddling on any proposed restrictions with reduction in the financial hurdle the latest .

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

        The UK always had complete control over its immigration, as do still the sovereign countries of the European Union.

        The movement of Europeans about Europe is pretty well only called “immigration” in the UK, on the other hand

        • Edward2
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:00 pm | Permalink

          Oh so open borders is a myth then Martin.
          One of the four freedoms.
          Which one minute you say you love.
          Now here you deny exist.
          Why?

        • NickC
          Posted October 25, 2020 at 11:10 am | Permalink

          Martin, So you think we can control immigration by just not calling it “immigration”? EU doublespeak.

    • Enrico
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:39 am | Permalink

      We have Covid only hospitals but they don’t appear to be used,they are called Nightingale.All Covid patients should be transferred into these as no one can visit the patients so it doesn’t matter where they are moved to.This will then keep the hospitals free for treatment of all the other ailments be they cancer,heart and stroke or whatever.

      • John E
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

        There has never been any staff for those Nightingale hospitals.

        • Fred H
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

          yep – a major con-trick – assisted by the Army and then the Media, the country fell for it!

        • Mark
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

          Of course there is who do you think works the covid wards in hospitals? Transfer them. Then they won’t risk passing on the virus to other hospital wards.

    • Nicki Morley
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:41 am | Permalink

      Agree wholeheartedly with all you say. PM has now to allow the economy to level out, increase a depleting popularity, and put the onus of the virus on the people themselves and the communities. Otherwise he’s going to take his eye off the ball, and lose to am ever spinning ball of contradictions, the left

    • John Hatfield
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:48 am | Permalink

      To get a a ‘Brexit’ big win; and a free and independent UK, we must rescind the Withdrawal Agreement and the Political Declaration.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

        But you – collectively – want to use the e-passport gates at the European Union’s airports, according to reports.

        How are you to do that without a negotiation?

        The Canadians don’t get that, do they?

        Nor do they drive scores of thousands of trucks on their roads.

        • Edward2
          Posted October 25, 2020 at 8:24 am | Permalink

          The airports and roads in European nations do not belong to the EU.

        • NickC
          Posted October 25, 2020 at 11:14 am | Permalink

          Martin, Yet the Canadians do drive in the USA. And vice-versa. Don’t you think the EU wants its businesses to able to drive trucks in the UK? Especially Irish trucks. UK and EU just swap driving rights. No need for the EU to be our government to do that. It’s not rocket science.

    • Mike Durrans
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

      +1

  2. Cynic
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:41 am | Permalink

    This is not a plague of biblical proportions. It is, however an interesting example of mass hysteria on a world wide scale.
    The virus will be with us for a long time and we need to return to normal now before more damage is caused by lockdowns.

    • Ian Wragg
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:28 am | Permalink

      This is being used by the Western governments to bring about change of epic proportions.
      Locking people up so they will accept the new normal with grace.
      Common purpose post democracy thinking.
      Let’s just hope Trump gets in to expose the whole nonesense.

      • Mr Mike Wyatt
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:06 am | Permalink

        Something the Government fail to understand is that there is more to life than just surviving! Human life relies on social interaction and as this virus mainly affects those in their latter years, either because of their age or their health conditions, maybe their interaction with their family and friends is more important to them at this point in their life than just gaining some extra days or months of life. This being the case, perhaps we would be better letting them choose how to live their lives than force everyone to isolate.

        • SM
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

          +10

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

          But brexiters constantly claim that the UK will “survive” as if that is indeed all that matters, and the only realistic outlook.

          They should make up their minds as to what is important – clearly at present they are utterly confused.

          • Edward2
            Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:03 pm | Permalink

            Do we?
            When has anyone said survival is a key ambition?
            I reckon you are making things up again.

          • NickC
            Posted October 25, 2020 at 11:25 am | Permalink

            Martin, Leaves sometimes use the term “survive” because it is a counter to the Remain propaganda that we won’t survive out of the EU. As it is I, and other Leaves, have repeatedly said that how well we do outside of EU control, is up to us. And, as you know, I think once free of the EU we will do very well.

        • Mike Durrans
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

          Mr Wyatt

          The first time I’ve read a comment that echo’s my sentiment, at 75 I refuse totally to be deprived of my freedom, quality of life is more important than length of life

      • Jim Whitehead
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:26 am | Permalink

        Wholly agree, Ian Wragg.

      • Everhopeful
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:03 am | Permalink

        +1

      • BeebTax
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:08 am | Permalink

        +1. If Trump ‘s not elected then that’s a blow for our freedoms. More power to Silicon Valley and the totalitarian deep state. When you look at those Hunter Biden emails the mind boggles as to what levels of corruption will be normalised if Biden wins.

        • M Davis
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

          Hear, hear!

        • Wrinkle
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:17 pm | Permalink

          Beeb. No change there then.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

      Maybe bring stuff in house, having set up the best systems, and resource them properly?

      Consider this.

      The cost per farm in the Netherlands for foot-and-mouth cleanup, direct labour, was six hundred pounds.

      In the UK, outsourced to the usual, it was a hundred thousand pounds per farm.

      (Result! Cheer the Tory friends of the contractors, did I hear?)

      • Edward2
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:50 pm | Permalink

        Ridiculous propaganda from you again Martin.
        Check on the size of the UK’s farms and the number of animals compared to the Netherlands.

      • Fred H
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:28 pm | Permalink

        back on the Footin mouth stuff again eh? returned to your earlier complaints? What followed Footin mouth – so we can prepare for the next whinge?

      • NickC
        Posted October 25, 2020 at 11:30 am | Permalink

        Martin, Part of the reason for the excessive UK cost of cleaning up the foot and mouth outbreak of 2001 was the over-reaction of the Labour government, egged on by a certain Prof Neil Ferguson. Sounds familiar?

  3. Stephen Priest
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:53 am | Permalink

    It seems that the only point of lockdowns is the delay the spread, not stop the spread. The is according to (less than) SAGE. So why on earth would anyone want to delay the spread into the winter when it will be colder and darker?

    Meanwhile Sweden average 1-2 Covid deaths a day – check Worldometer.

    Logic and common sense died in March.

    In the Daily Telegraph:

    Flu deaths fall as ONS says many who were vulnerable may have died in first Covid wave

    Biggest change in September mortality rates has been in flu and pneumonia, now far lower than five-year average.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:35 am | Permalink

      Indeed but the early lockdown was (only) justified by the need to stop an NHS overload and find best treatments. This when we did have covid deaths running at 1,500 a day double normal daily deaths a the peak. Covid deaths now are only a small percentage of daily death and even this figure might well be exaggerated with false positive tests and other causes being wrongly recorded.

    • Julian Flood
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:37 am | Permalink

      So social distancing, masks and hand washing reduce infections spread by coughs, sneezes and leaving viruses on unsterilised surfaces.

      Now there’s a suprise.

      JF

    • Jim Whitehead
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:47 am | Permalink

      Same old game, just different labels attached.
      Bottom line look any different from other years? Doesn’t look like it, except for the economic bottom line.
      Does Sunak want to be associated with Johnson, Hancock, Whitty, and Vallance?
      I would readily vote for a full return to normal, no masks, no choreography on discs on the floor, theatres and cinemas filled with normal people, the fearful cowering still until the dawn breaks even for them.
      I will cast my votes in future against further officious doctrines and directives.
      LL implores for reduction of red tape. We only see ever more of it, and it emanates from the desks and pens of mediocrities.

  4. Stephen Priest
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:57 am | Permalink

    Also in the Telegraph

    Senior Government ministers are increasingly concerned that working from home is leading to less productivity in the economy, The Telegraph understands.

    There is growing Government alarm over the long-term effect on the economy of the prolonged shift to home working brought about by the coronavirus pandemic. Business leaders have warned that it is harming productivity amid concerns that jobs will be relocated abroad if there is a long-term shift away from the office.

    This was predicted by Peter Hitchen months ago: Jobs will be relocated abroad if there is a long-term shift away from the office.

    How often does panic lead to unintended consequences?

    • Simeon
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:21 am | Permalink

      More cakeism from the government? Get back to the office, but mollycoddle the NHS (because it is not fit for purpose, being, along with schools, the best argument against the state running anything), and try not to die from this killer virus (which is very obviously Not That Bad). This government is, hands down, the worst government in this country’s history. Depressingly, we should add the caveat that it is only the worst government So Far.

      • Simeon
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:50 am | Permalink

        Sir John, since Johnson ascended (arse-ended?), it has been clear that any criticisms you might have of the government would be couched in the mildest terms. Given your reputation as a strong-minded, independent-spirited Tory, mild criticism might be seen as tacit endorsement.

        You say Covid is no worse than flu for the vast majority that contract it, but you omit to mention that, just as a tiny proportion die from Covid, so too does a tiny proportion die from flu. Is this deliberate, or an innocent omission? If the latter, then why not simply say that Covid is no worse than flu, or at least that serious Covid is no worse than serious flu? Perhaps because to do so would amount to damning criticism of the government?

        Finally, you say “government needs to do more to save livelihoods”. This is very odd phrasing when the essence of what you are proposing is for government to get out of the way. Again, why not come out and say that government has done appalling damage to people’s lives and livelihoods? But again, that would be damning criticism.

        In the end, the only intellectually respectable position to hold is that this government has utterly failed in its purpose to provide the framework within which people can get on with the business of living, and in fact is doing the opposite.

        Sadly, you are a long way off acknowledging this, very clearly marking you out as part of the problem. When will you realise that there is no hope whatsoever of reforming your party? You cannot rebuild a healthy structure out of rotten material. That you don’t see this, or don’t accept this, or don’t publicly acknowledge this is deeply problematic for your credibility. I say this not to insult you, but because I’m giving you credit for having some intelligence – credit I wouldn’t extend to any other MP I’m aware of. (Someone like Swayne, bless him, has his heart in the right place, but he has failed to realise that he is out of place in the Tory party. Why has he not resigned the whip already?)

      • Hope
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:54 am | Permalink

        +1

        Johnson has made the immigration policy worse than Mays! Anyone would be forgiven that would be impossible, but no, Johnson on Thursday with JR and chums have now made it worse.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:38 am | Permalink

      Indeed if you can work from home in Surrey or Wigan you can probably do it for 1/10 of the cost in India or similar. Companies will not stop in Wigan or Surrey given this.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:38 am | Permalink

        LL Where my friend lives one side of the street is on lockdown but the other side isn’t. Her daughter lives near Manchester. She’s not on lockdown but 2 doors down her friend is. Mad or what?

        • Lifelogic
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

          Even madder in Wales where you are banned from buying a kettle or a duvet in an open supermarket as they are deemed not essential. I assume a bottle of vodka or gin is OK? Plus they are blocking locking the border up.

    • DOMINIC
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:02 am | Permalink

      Hitchen is the moral conscience of the Tory party. He says the things Tory MPs cannot say but want to. That’s how spineless the Tory party’s become.

      How do Tory MPs look at themselves in the mirror in the morning knowing they have sold this nation down the river and embraced a form of politics that Thatcher fought against all her political life

      It makes me vomit to see Tory MPs saying things I know they don’t believe or remain silent on issues when they really want to scream out in opposition

      Tory silence on many issues is destroying this nation and will lead to social dislocation in the future

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

        Hitchens claims to be a moral conservative but a social democrat.

        The Tories apparently don’t do morals anyway, so I don’t see in what sense what he says can represent any aspect of the Government at all, idealised or otherwise.

        • Edward2
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:04 pm | Permalink

          You think Labour do morals?
          Hilarious

        • NickC
          Posted October 25, 2020 at 11:33 am | Permalink

          Martin, The EU doesn’t do morals.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:02 am | Permalink

      It is imperative to treat ALL the sick as we would normally do, including those with WuFlu. The Government must urgently repeal the outrageous powers they have taken to curtail our human rights.
      The Govt. have enough to deal with collecting taxes from the Corporations Squeezing the State sector until there are no pips to squeak and selling assets that they should never have held in the first place, to pay for their idiocy displayed this year.
      There is not a penny that can be taken from the private sector without causing longterm and total collapse. So the State sector must be reduced by half at least, and we need every mackerel our fishermen can land!
      Any deviation from butting out of our lives and or delivering a full and clean Brexit will lead to a Constitutional crisis. The British people have had a gut-ful of madness imposed on them, to last a lifetime.

      • Hope
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:04 am | Permalink

        +1. But do not hold your breath. He allegedly walked away last week!

        The fools who voted for him must regret it by now, surely.

      • JoolsB
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:41 am | Permalink

        Not a chance Lynn. To cull the bloated pampered public sector would require courage to stand up to the unions they are all subscribed to and this Government headed by clueless appeaser Johnson haven’t got the guts. What the idiots haven’t thought about yet is after they have succeeded in destroying the private sector, who is going to pay for them all and their gold plated pensions, politicians included.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

          The is no choice. Businesses have made no profits this year to tax, the Govt has no income. Seems they don’t know it yet!

          • Lifelogic
            Posted October 25, 2020 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

            No income to tax and many loaded up with deferred VAT and covid loans to repay too!

            Of course since the dire Osborne many taxes to not tax profits they just steal assets of you – as with IHT, Stamp Duty, CGT without indexation and the new double taxation of landlord interest!

      • NickC
        Posted October 25, 2020 at 11:36 am | Permalink

        Lynn A said: “It is imperative to treat ALL the sick as we would normally do”. Indeed it is. For that to happen the government must make the NHS do its job, rather than trying to do the NHS’s job.

    • Mark B
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:27 am | Permalink

      As pointed out here sometime ago, when people stop travelling into the office they no longer need to buy a coffee, sandwich or pay for a fare. When there is little or no money around small, then larger business contract. This leads to small returns in taxes for the government to spend. This means that the government has to borrow, print and / or cut public services. Public Services are heavily unionised and will fight any cuts with Labour leading the charge so, it will fall on whatever is left of the Private Sector since this government hasn’t the guts to stand up against them.

      The Tories are run by Wets who seek compromise. Trouble is, as we are seeing with the EU, it is the Wets that do all the compromising.

      • Hope
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:05 am | Permalink

        +1

        Capitulation is more accurate than compromise.

        • Mike Durrans
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

          +5

      • JoolsB
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:42 am | Permalink

        +1

    • Alan Jutson
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:49 am | Permalink

      Stephen

      Indeed research very many years ago suggested that only 15% of the population were suited to working from home.

      The lack of social interaction, the lack of a work structure, the pressures of home tasks/interruptions, the lack of ability/discipline to self manage time. etc

      After the initial feelings of freedom, boredom and the feeling of isolation is now beginning to set in for many as they feel they are outside of the loop of information.
      The result, lower productivity and interest in the job.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:43 am | Permalink

        Many people we know are fed up with home workIng. Meanwhile many of the large shooting estates in Wales are now in trouble since total lockdown has been introduced. They bought all the birds and employ people to feed them and now suddenly they can’t have their shoots. No money coming in is a disaster. What is this government doing John? Our country is on its knees.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:10 am | Permalink

      Remember how it was reported that they were “concerned” people had taken the virus warnings too seriously….so they made masks compulsory…to “give us confidence”?
      Utter baloney. Masks are to put us off shopping the better to bankrupt small businesses.
      They WANT to destroy everything so they can have their “Great Reset”.
      Which loosely translated means no money/property/jobs/democracy/travel/freedom for us ( all goes to them) and no medical care for us since they will have taken all our money @0%.

    • SecretPeople
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:03 am | Permalink

      Since jobs will be relocated abroad, it makes one wonder about the purpose of this:
      ‘Net migration targets have been abandoned by the Government as it ditches the £35,800 salary cap for migrants to be allowed to settle in the UK’.

    • No Longer Anonymous
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:17 am | Permalink

      London is dead now so why not anywhere else ?

  5. Mary M.
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:21 am | Permalink

    ‘Can we do more to help people most at risk protect themselves from it?’
    This is the key question. In other words, respect every citizen’s personal sovreignty, then leave us to take responsibility for ourselves and our families and our communities. Those of us who feel more at risk can ask for help, if we wish to avail ourselves of it.
    Give people the information. Give all of it, not just the data regarding increased ‘cases’ of Covid-19 but also the number of hospitalisations, and deaths FROM the virus, the age, and existing comorbidities of the deceased. Then allow us to decide for ourselves how we live our lives.
    Entrust us with responsibility, and most people (yes, even young pub-goers) will rise to that trust. Arbitrary rules which seem to be based on selective data will be resented and not abided by. (Witness Naples last night.)

    • Jonah
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:23 pm | Permalink

      Totally agree!

  6. davews
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:22 am | Permalink

    John, I know you are a busy person, but perhaps you can Google for the latest Dellingpole podcast with Dr Mike Yeadon, it is an eye opener. Stop the paranoid testing regime and sack SAGE just about sums it up.

    • Mike Durrans
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

      =1

    • James Bertram
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

      Yes, it is essential listening, even if almost 2 hours long. I’ve emailed it to my MP. It rubbishes all the government interventions – they are not based on even elementary epidemiology. The virus was over in May; there is no such thing as a second wave – it is scientifically illiterate. He calls for SAGE to be disbanded and Sir Patrick Vallance to be sacked – and rightly so. The Government must get new advisers. (He is of equivalent standing to Sir Patrick in his field).
      Highly recommended.

    • Jim Whitehead
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:05 pm | Permalink

      It’s well worth the one hour and forty seven minutes of listening time.
      No stridency, no tub thumping, just more of the calmly presented good sense which we all appreciate from your good self, Sir John.
      What’s a couple of hours when set against the stupidity of the wasted months and more from the worst leadership this country has known in decades?

  7. J Bush
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:27 am | Permalink

    I would like to know why the State is busy destroying the economy, peoples livelihoods and health with draconian laws, when the deaths of actual Covid19 are minimal? ONS data confirms this and that the death rate is still within the average figures for this time of the year.

    Why since the 5th October have they decided to group deaths from Covid19 in with flu deaths ?

    Why they use terminology such as “build back better” and “the great reset”? These phrases come directly from the World Economic Forum mission statement.

    Reading the WEF mission statement doesn’t sound positive for the ‘plebs’ who want to keep their hard-fought their freedoms and retain their right to ‘self determination’.

    What is really going on behind the scenes?

    • M Davis
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:06 pm | Permalink

      … What is really going on behind the scenes? …

      Yes, questions need to be asked in the house!

      Is there anyone out there with guts? Will they please tell the rest of us? We only ever read anything relative to this on Internet sites. This Government tells us SFA about what is REALLY going on!

  8. Lifelogic
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:29 am | Permalink

    There is no second wave. There is just a few ripples in areas that have not been hit badly yet and are not near herd immunity levels. The Covid problem is basically almost over and the governments are now completely over reacting. Areas like London are at basically herd immunity levels as can be seen from the low Covid death rate in London. Even some of these are probably false positives.

    Excellent article by and interview with Mark Yeadon on lockdownsceptics.org he seems to me to be exactly right. The question is why are the governments and their experts still behaving hysterically and killing the economy in the process?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:41 am | Permalink

      By the time we have the vaccine it will probably not be needed for most people. This as the virus will have taken its course and given us herd immunity by then anyway.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

        Only about eight percent of the people have been infected so far.

        And that gave about around seventy thousand excess deaths.

        You are writing of perhaps ten times that number, then.

        That’s selective genocide.

        • James Bertram
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

          Listen to Mike Yeadon first, Martin. That 8% figure is shown to be completely dishonest.

        • No Longer Anonymous
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

          Preferable to the unselective all-age-group version you advocate.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted October 25, 2020 at 2:55 am | Permalink

          Your 8% is complete drivel and a large proportion of the population seem to be immune from catching it anyway (perhaps 30% or so) others catch it without even noticing. In the peak of the infection we had 10,000+ excess deaths per week over the five year average.

          Currently death rates are entirely normal.

      • Jonah
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:27 pm | Permalink

        Worries me that we will be forced to have it… think Boris, Hancock Whitty and Vallance should be at the front of the queue.

  9. Jim
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:30 am | Permalink

    A simple political calculation:-

    ‘if we ease up restrictions, how many people will die?’ – ask the scientists
    ‘how big is our Granny Budget’ – ask the statisticians
    ‘how unpopular will that make us’ – ask Dominic

    If you can prove the cost is worth it then go on telly, tell us the answer and go for it.

  10. Frances Truscott
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:33 am | Permalink

    I don’t think we know enough yet. I have a mental image of scientists beavering away furiously for vaccines, for treatments, for predicting who will get it badly not just who will die.
    A vaccine is not far away. What we need are treatments in the community which lessen the severity and home testing kits.
    In the meantime whack a mole makes sense so some of the economy can keep on going.

    • Richard II
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:47 pm | Permalink

      No ‘beavering’ by scientists necessary. We know who will ‘get it badly’. A very small proportion of older people, a tiny proportion of middle-aged people, and virtually no young people.

      It’s been clear since the ‘Diamond Princess’ cruise ship report published months ago: out of 3,700 on board, 7 dead, 2o hospitalised, 83% not even infected. And they were breathing the same air and mixing together for weeks.

      • James Bertram
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:33 pm | Permalink

        +1

      • Jim Whitehead
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

        Exactly.
        Diamond Princess revealed so much, a template for the virus and it’s effects.

  11. Leslie Singleton
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:36 am | Permalink

    Dear Sir John–Why haven’t the Government ripped Starmer to pieces? His opportunism was disgraceful and his ‘have your cake and eat it’ on lockdowns is breathtaking. He seems to have shut up a bit though, which is something. He is no longer Labour’s blue eyed boy.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

      They have no grounds at all to criticise him.

      • NickC
        Posted October 25, 2020 at 11:39 am | Permalink

        No grounds for criticising Sir Kneel Starmer?

  12. Maylor
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:38 am | Permalink

    Vaccines for the ordinary flu have never been 100% effective and it is reasonable to expect a covid 19 vaccine to follow the same pattern.

    Rather than focus on the search for the impossible, I think we should investigate the drugs that work to alleviate the symptoms. Doctors have already made some progress in this area. Perhaps such drugs could be available from chemists to ensure victims had ready access to them. Also, the drugs/vitamins which boost our immune systems should be better publicised and perhaps made available on the NHS for low income families..

    If covid 19 was no longer seen as a dire threat, I think people would be anxious to return to normality.

    • James Bertram
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:41 pm | Permalink

      Big Pharma wants to sell us vaccines. Governments seem keen to follow this course. Information about cheap drugs that alleviate symptoms is being censored. A good article on this is here: https://www.conservativewoman.co.uk/demonising-of-virus-doctors-who-dare-to-tell-the-truth/
      ‘… Particular exception was taken to Dr Stella Immanuel’s widely circulated report that none of the 350 Covid patients she’d treated with hydroxychloroquine had died. The oldest was 92 and many had significant health conditions. One assumes that this was not what Big Pharma or those with interests in it wanted to hear.
      The entire press conference was heavily censored, as now has been their second Summit last week. I doubt if it made the news anywhere in the UK….’

  13. DOMINIC
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:53 am | Permalink

    Mr Redwood’s inference that the primary aim of the British State is the protection of human beings from harm is typical of devious of the contemporary politician. They simply cannot tell be themselves nor can they reveal their true feelings or beliefs

    The British State and all that this entails (the entire dependent class) have one aim. The expansion of power and control over every aspect of our lives. The CV19 issue is a gift from god for the contemporary political class. It gives them the perfect excuse to impose Socialist authoritarian control over us and all in the name of keeping us safe

    This PM is a danger and a threat. He’s just another Socialist clone with fantasies of social engineering and the imperfect society who’s removing our freedoms for our own benefit. That’s tyranny not democracy and Mr Redwood should know better than pander to the ego of his party leader

    I shall leave it to C S Lewis to describe perfectly what we are now seeing:

    ‘Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies’

    • a-tracy
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:19 am | Permalink

      I can’t believe the power that Drakeford has been given over the public in Wales. I also can’t believe the Welsh people are just taking this. Just stuff their mouths with English taxpayers cash (because you know this is going to fall back on us soon) and it might keep them quiet.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:04 pm | Permalink

        Well, generally, Mark D has proven himself to be pretty trustworthy so far.

        Now, as for Alexander Johnson?

        • a-tracy
          Posted October 25, 2020 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

          We’re only a couple of days into lockdown in Wales, lets wait and see Martin. I know a lot of northern Welsh they’re not happy.

    • No Longer Anonymous
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:31 am | Permalink

      Nicely put.

    • Mark B
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

      Hear hear.

  14. Ian Wilson
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    Are ministers heeding too small a circle of advisors, perhaps the wrong ones at that? Sage reportedly includes not a single immunologist but plenty of computer modellers. It is deplorable that ministers have dismissed so glibly the Great Barrington Declaration and advice from parties such as Professors Carl Heneghan and Sunetra Gupta who are opposed to stringent lockdowns.

    Much evidence, from Sweden inter alia, points to lockdowns and restrictions such as curfews having little effect on the virus beyond perhaps tweaking its timescale but catastrophic effects on the economy and on treatment for other conditions. It is quite possible government action is killing more than it saves.

    At risk of repetition, immunologist Mike Yeadon believes immunity is nearing a level which will see infection numbers and deaths start falling within a few weeks, but doubtless ministers will claim all the credit when it happens. Let’s hope Mike Yeadon is correct!

    • Jonah
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:34 pm | Permalink

      This is not the time for models we have the facts from 7 months of lockdown and looking at who the virus impacts. The government are quite simply praying for a way out that leaves their reputation intact…

  15. hefner
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    O/T: 322 nasty Cons two days ago. The Bakers, Bradleys and other Clarke-Smithes can keep on enjoying their subsidised £6.41 meals in Parliament, but this will not be forgotten. Horrible people.

    • Hope
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:10 am | Permalink

      +1 ……and subsidised bar!

      Incremental Pay rises to top earners to stop MPs thieving rather than reforming the corrupt dishonest culture that was allowed to flourish, including main party leaders, as we were lied to / told in 2009.

    • a-tracy
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:16 am | Permalink

      Hefner, these people with starving children do need seriously auditing and the Tories need to fight back on this and tell everyone exactly how much net people are getting from the State. Exactly in every benefit and every extra.

      An investigation is needed if this is people who normally work full time as a parent aren’t used to the benefit claiming system and are falling through the cracks, and John your party need to do this quickly, because something is not right. We know from personal experience how much single mothers get now with the compounded benefits and allowances for children with adhd, and other conditions that top up claims. The mother if she worked full time 40 hours per week couldn’t match anything like her net benefits. This needs a light shining on it.

      • Hope
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:00 pm | Permalink

        I do not think it is hard to work out. These people do not budget spend it all then ask for more go to food banks etc. during the lock down supermarketesmwere reminding people,food,vouchers were for food not goods like, dvds, cigarettes etc.
        They were remonstrating they should be able to spend on what they liked! Greed pure and simple but do not want to work for it.

        As another commentator put it, why hasn’t Rashford targeted absent fathers? Where are the dads for these alleged hungry children and why are they not forced to pay more? Free school meals were increased under collation for every child.

        Perhaps this fits in with Johnson’s dysfunctional family life style choices he promotes, or irresponsible life style I guess?

      • hefner
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

        a-tracy, I agree with the description in your second paragraph. There are very different cases, some well advertised in a particular press, some rarely talked about.
        There are indeed families with children with two adults working full time (before March) receiving no or little benefits with still their usual regular monthly outgoings facing tough situations and having had no help (despite all what has been advertised by the Treasury) and having to restrict greatly their daily life expenses.
        I know of such a family previously living on a £5k+£4k/month salaries with a £1.5k monthly mortgage which was doing reasonably well before Covid. These last few months, their income dropped to £5k. Quite a shock for them, but would not look like a desperate case for most people. ‘Unfortunately’ they had originally around £20k in savings (built over the last 5 years in view of future university fees), which clearly prevented them to ask for any help whatsoever.
        The two children (young teenagers) are not starving but I wonder how they will vote when they turn 18.

        • NickC
          Posted October 25, 2020 at 11:54 am | Permalink

          Hefner, One things for sure, a couple with two children on £108k a year (£9k/month x 12), or even £60k a year (£5k/month x 12) are not poor, or anything like. And if their children expect that sort of money when they grow up, they won’t get it under Labour (except by becoming apparatchiks).

  16. Mark B
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    If 95% of the population achieve a level of immunity then the virus can no longer be transmitted from person to person. This is what I believe to be herd immunity. We started out to achieve that then through a mixture of panic in a rise in cases in West London near Heathrow Airport, dodgy predictions, and threats from the French President of an effective blockade, we changed course. So why not again now we know more ? We know lockdowns do not work. We know that you cannot have the same lockdown policy for a metropolis like London as you do for a sleepy English village. We know that people are going to ignore various stupid government dictats, and we know that the Left are using this to destroy the government.

    The government said it would be led by the science. Well, the science tells us that it is mostly the old and the very ill that are the most vulnerable. So if we can isolate them, get everyone else infected over time, we should be on the road to recovery.

    The government is pursuing a policy design to protect the economically inactive at the expense of the economically active. This makes no sense ! Yes there will be calls that the government does not care, but governments are not put in place to care, they are put there to govern and make difficult but necessary decisions. If you cannot do that, why the hell are you there in the first place ?

    I offered advice at the beginning of all this. I said that the government should not do anything to panic people. That both it and the populace should remain calm. I said that this disease has a butcher’s bill and that it will have to be paid. But an opportunity was seen by politicians to grandstand and have what they thought was a good war. A war that would enhance their popularity just like the Falklands War did for Mrs.T. But Mrs.T never sought war it was thrust upon her.

    We need to row back the laws and calm this down. Hancock needs to be either replaced or told to calm it down, as do the so called ‘advisors’.

    Finally. We need honesty. As someone once said. “The first casualty of War is Truth”

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 25, 2020 at 11:38 am | Permalink

      Since only 8% have been infected so far, but at a cost of 70,000 excess deaths, you are writing about up to around a million dead to achieve your survivor immunity.

      And there is no evidence that it is long lasting.

      And as the survivors age, they too become generally more vulnerable.

      You are advocating not Involuntary Homicide, but Involuntary Selective Genocide, ongoing, in perpetuity.

      • Edward2
        Posted October 25, 2020 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

        Your 8% is wrong.
        Your 70,000 figure is wrong.

  17. SM
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:58 am | Permalink

    In answer to your questions, Sir John, I belong to the cohort regularly vilified by one of this site’s posters, Andy.

    I have grandchildren aged between 10 and 19; I do NOT wish to see their future damaged in order to prolong my life by either a couple of months or a couple of years. I have not subjected myself to extreme self-isolation (while observing S Africa’s rules for public safety), since I could not see the point of suffering endless boredom and loneliness in exchange for a slightly longer life.

    NB. I live on a continent that suffers widely from HIV, malaria, TB and cholera amongst other fatal infectious diseases, but no-one has ever suggested shutting the whole land down from Morocco to The Cape of Good Hope.

    • ChrisS
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

      Excellent post, SM.

      The ridiculous Barnett formula is allowing Sturgeon to run riot spending English Taxpayers money irresponsibly and to no good effect. The SNP are now, seemingly, well ahead in the polls and are heading for an even bigger landslide in the next Holyrood election which they will run on an Independence ticket.

      They must be allowed to have a second go and if Scottish voters freely choose to leave the UK, I for one will not be sorry. English taxopayers will all benefit from the saving of more than the £11bn a year that we waste subsidising their free prescriptions and universities.

  18. Sharon
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:00 am | Permalink

    It seems to me that there opposing forces at work here, hence I believe, all the false recording of data, and exaggerations of numbers. Someone , somewhere wants this pandemic to continue for their own ends.

    Vaccines are merely for suppressing symptoms not for prevention of catching the virus.
    The economy is almost on life support.
    People are losing their jobs and businesses . The NHS is it’s usual inefficient self.
    Some areas of the country have clearly passed the worst. Others, in the north, are seeing their first wave.

    NONE of the government’s measures are working- even the furlough scheme was utterly abused by some unscrupulous characters.

    No-one is taking notice of the stupid restrictions and are quietly and sensibly getting on with life.

    A huge test of mask wearing has just been completed in Denmark which tested 6000 people on the effectiveness of wearing a mask or face covering. No-one will publish their findings, presumably because they aren’t want governments want to see. And having just read an explanation by an American scientist, which shows that unless you wear a proper 99% proof mask- it actually makes spreading Covid and flu more effective. So the opposite of what we’re told!!

    I’d say get everyone back to work, get the governments collective nose out of people’s personal lives, stop the risky wearing of masks and support those on lower incomes who can’t afford to have a week off work if they’re ill.

    And something needs to be done about the leaders of Wales and Scotland. Their respective leaders’ behaviour is barking mad!!

    And most importantly, sack all those who are using this ‘pandemic ‘ to sneak in socialism by the back door! Of which, I’d say, there are quite a large number!!!!

    • James Bertram
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

      Excellent post, Sharon.

    • NickC
      Posted October 25, 2020 at 11:55 am | Permalink

      Sharon said: “No-one is taking notice of the stupid restrictions and are quietly and sensibly getting on with life.” Yes, that’s my observation too.

  19. Martyn G
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:08 am | Permalink

    Whatever else is done, Boris must not even think about following the insane, dictatorial example of lock down now being used in Wales. Almost overnight the devolved Welsh assembly has become a dictatorship, against which the people are powerless. Naturally, of course England will be expected to bale out Wales for the ensuing costs of their draconian jumble of lock down regulations.

    • BeebTax
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:03 am | Permalink

      Reasonable point. I fear though that this is a political game: the nationalists are ruining their economies in order to force the English to prop them up economically, or face the charge that they don’t care and thus increase support for independence.

      I would hope their voters have more sense than to do that, but I think that’s what nationalist politicians are banking on ( not seeing any downside, they reckon they’ll either get our cash or independence).

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:29 am | Permalink

      Marry yes and wait for Sturgeon to join them. She’s already got a different Tier system to everyone else. Really everyone just wants to get on with life now and accept what’s thrown at us, even the oldies.

  20. The Prangwizard
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:09 am | Permalink

    We must hope we get a vaccine soon because the hysterical response, lockdown restrictions, authoritarian officials and police actions is destroying our society, not the virus. Just look at Wales, the leader is power crazy – this is what happens when you give small people unquestionable power, often beyond law.

    Lets have some facts about the positve tests. How many of the students who are said to have got it become ill? How many people who travel on trains catch it? The distancing there is arbitrary so it can’t be claimed the present restrictions are perfect. When is is the media going to stop stoking the fires?

    When is someone going to tackle NHS failings? When will UK government stop panicking and posturing? When are we to get English ministries who can act solely for England? Then ‘Westminster’ can deal with the constant bleating and point scoring tricks of the rest.

  21. Sakara Gold
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:16 am | Permalink

    You are asking how to shut the stable door after the horse has bolted. The Chinese plague virus appears to have mutated to a much more infectious, tho less virulent strain. The next mutation may be into a more lethal strain and so it seems to me that we should take more agressive action to get transmission rates under control.

    Trying to justify the government’s incompetent response by minimising the effects of the virus is going back to Trump’s or Bolsonaro’s original view – that it’s no worse than the flu. Doing so is to insult the bereaved of the 70,000 UK casualties and the charts are showing another inexorable rise in UK hospital admissions and deaths. Have the shorter days already sparked the mutation into a more lethal strain?

    Johnson was given scientific advice by Vallence a month ago that a short “circuit breaker” total lockdown was immediately necessary to bring infection levels down to a manageable level. Johnson has no medical or scientific background and should listen to the people the government pays to deliver his advice.

    The first priority of the government has to be to protect the public. We should learn from countries like New Zealand, Australia, S Korea, Thailand or even China who have managed to bring the virus under control by an aggressive response – and who now have functioning economies again.

    Close the borders, follow Vallence’ advice and implement a second total lockdown – then use the breathing space to sort out the test and trace scheme and implement Jeremy Hunt and Greg Clark’s swift review recommendations.

    • James Bertram
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:54 pm | Permalink

      Scientifically illiterate comments, SG – sadly. Have a listen to Dr. Mike Yeadon (Delingpole podcast – link on Lockdown sceptics . org today) – then you will understand that you have been badly misled and misinformed.

  22. Nutrient Dense
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    Launch a campaign teaching the nation how to nourish themselves correctly and how to cook, but first ditch the ‘eat well plate’ and replace it with‘Nourishing Traditions’ by Sally Fallon Morell. Follow Dr Zoe Harcombe PhD in public health nutrition. Eating nutrient dense food will build the immune system and protect against illness. We urgently need to get this message across. We have far too many unhealthy people in our country who are at risk, and cost us a fortune in more ways than one.

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:13 am | Permalink

      Nutrient. I totally agree with this post. All this low far nonsense has been detrimental to health. Get back to real and proper foot cooked with good healthy fats.

    • Narrow Shoulders
      Posted October 25, 2020 at 9:49 am | Permalink

      Learning to cook will also feed all the “poor” children.

      There a very few “poor” children, but there are many in households with the wrong priorities who do not know how to budget and cook.

  23. Sir Joe Soap
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    Sorry but I still can’t see why you denied children school meals. Why not vote for it and deduct the cost from child benefit? Then it’s cost neutral.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:19 am | Permalink

      Govt. presumably has to avoid “mission creep” re benefits.
      Where would it then draw the line when lefties start whining for shoes, uniforms etc etc to be paid?
      The benefits some get are enough to make your hair stand on end! Freebies galore!

    • BJC
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:06 am | Permalink

      Perhaps a different question should be posed, SJS, i.e. who is responsible for feeding children, the parents or taxpayers? Parliament decided that the responsibility lies with parents, but there’s obviously nothing to stop those who wish to feed someone else’s children from acting independently.

    • a-tracy
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:08 am | Permalink

      Sir Joe, what a total PR disaster and the Tories walked straight into it. BAM. The government increased Universal Credit several times during Covid large bail outs. A full investigation needs doing now on why people didn’t use the money to buy food. The government can dish out computers, they’ll buy ventilators that experts tell them to buy, that they then say they don’t need, but they can’t direct benefits to ensure the children rather than the hopeless parents get the direct benefit. Supermarkets have been putting up boxes of food basics to feed a family for £30. Why, when these women with starving children are being interviewed are the questions not being asked, how much in benefits do you get each week? What are your outgoings? What do you receive from the father of the children? How are you still having children if he isn’t around? If the housing costs more than the housing benefits then the State should step in and help them to find more suitable accommodation to live within the means it has allocated to that family. I know people that have never worked, running a people carrier, big trampoline and heated pool, Sky, Netflix latest phones for every child and themselves, holidays including foreign holidays – seriously investigate. And a message to the Guardian, ask the full picture please when you interview Jenny from Liverpool or Judy from Nottingham. Actually do an audit and try to help these people with advice and guidance, then write pieces that the government can use in targeted area benefits.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:11 pm | Permalink

        A-Tracy. A truly brilliant post full of common sense and realism. There are many parents who don’t need to work. They are better off keeping their bums on the mattress.

    • oldwulf
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:47 am | Permalink

      Yep ,,.. free school meals would be a good short term fix pending changes to correct apparent shortfalls in the benefits system and charity sector.

      However, I feel a little uncomfortable if my tax money is to be spent according to the whim of a millionaire professional sportsman. There might be more credibility if the Premier League organised a whip round and our Government agreed to match the amount raised with taxpayer money.

      Our Government should have taken the initiative, although it may be that prejudices in the media made it difficult to get the message across. With the right message and the right messenger, it is not too late.

      • hefner
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:49 pm | Permalink

        Not Marcus Rashford’s whim as the money is being distributed by 17 independent organisations under the umbrella of the FareShare (’fighting hunger, tackling food waste’) charity.

      • Mike Durrans
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:30 pm | Permalink

        Oldwulf,

        Its not my responsibility to feed any child other than my own, our government does not need to take any initiative, pressure must be exerted of the parents.

        I suggest that family allowance is paid for the first child and an extra half for the second then no more.

        • Oldwulf
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:25 pm | Permalink

          Hi Mike

          I think that the decision is as much about politics as it is about welfare.

          The PR has not been handled well.

    • Sea_Warrior
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

      What is Child Benefit for – if it’s not to feed children?

      • Sir Joe Soap
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:21 pm | Permalink

        Fags and liquor of course.

      • Fred H
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:21 pm | Permalink

        actually it was intended to asssist with the various additional costs involved with children in the family. Food being just one of them.

        • Sea_Warrior
          Posted October 25, 2020 at 5:03 am | Permalink

          Thank you. If that’s the case then anyone in receipt of Child Benefit should not be given additional assistance for the purpose of feeding their children during school holidays. No 10 – surprisingly – is making the right call on this issue. It should now stick to its guns and avoid making another U-turn. If it doesn’t, it will face calls for additional welfare payments so that every ‘vulnerable child’ can get a new Smartphone at Christmas.

  24. Martin in Cardiff
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    The title is premised on the defeatist, fatalist, useless position, that we have no choice but to live with the virus.

    More rational, existentialist countries, such as New Zealand, Japan, and many others, have decided that there is a choice – for practical purposes, eradicate it.

    Sadly, at a global level, dissolute, irresolute countries, such as the US and the UK undermine the work of the heroic.

    • Philip P.
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:32 am | Permalink

      Oh dear. Another fact-free post from our friend in Cardiff. Look at Ourworldindata.org. Japan has had 500 deaths per month attributed to Covid since August, also large numbers of ‘cases’, and a PCR positive rate of 2.8%. So much for ‘eradicating’ the virus.

      No other coronavirus or flu virus has ever been eradicated anyway.

      We will live with it as we lived with other viruses.

    • James Bertram
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:47 am | Permalink

      Again, embarrassing nonsense from you, Martin.
      Smallpox is the only disease to ever have been ‘eradicated’ and it took 185 years to do it. The Common Cold, another coronavirus, could not be eradicated, even with 40 years of medical research.
      The two countries you cite are vastly different in method, and the Japanese have gone for a far more relaxed approach. New Zealand has gone for your ‘eradication’ policy; as they are now finding out, they have only delayed the onset of the virus and have become a prison island; they can’t stay imprisoned forever. Vaccines will not eradicate this virus – the ones currently in trial do not even attempt to do more than ameliorate symptoms. The Kiwis are waiting for Godot.
      Once the virus is prevalent within a society, it is futile to interfere in its spread.
      Canute and the Sea.
      Man cannot overcome Nature; he sets himself up as God, and will fail.

    • No Longer Anonymous
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:13 am | Permalink

      New Zealand and Japan are both monocultural and therefore easier to manage.

      I wore one of your masks for a full 8 hours yesterday on a long train journey.

      In one of my jobs I used to wear a respirator, goggles and ear defenders all day long and saw it as part of my job and just got on with it – I took the first opportunity to get out of that line of work though (metal surfacing jet engine parts.)

      Masks – however you look at it – are oppressive. I can see why Marxists might like them.

      • No Longer Anonymous
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:15 am | Permalink

        As soon as Japan and NZ open up they will have CV-19 again.

        They have both taken huge economic hits despite being the models of Covid response. NZ had the biggest drop in GDP on record this year.

        Who’s to blame for that then ?

      • Iain Gill
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:50 am | Permalink

        New Zealand is not mono cultural. Immigration is not out of control like here, but there are plenty of Chinese heritage etc.

        • No Longer Anonymous
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:37 pm | Permalink

          Nothing like here. Nothing like here.

          I like multiculturalism. And I’m proud that our far larger nation didn’t produce a gunman run amok in a mosque despite a far larger population.

      • Fedupsoutherner
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:53 am | Permalink

        Masks just make you touch your face more often.

    • DaveK
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:15 am | Permalink

      You appear to have substantial distaste for this country, no doubt affected by your political viewpoint. New Zealand have not eradicated CV19 since that is an impossible task. What they have done is quarantined an island full of susceptible people. Whenever they allow entry they will catch the virus, unless from now on they live like Howard Hughes. Not a future I would aspire to.

  25. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:33 am | Permalink

    From the very outset the government made everything secondary to CV 19 a disease wuith a comparatively low mortality rate.. This was either a disastrous mistake or a deliberate act with sinister motives. The consequences have been premature deaths of those with serious illnesses, delays in treatment and diagnoses of more serious illnesses, worsenung mental and physical health, increasing suicides, elderly deprived of seeing families even when near to death, children’s education badly disrupted, unemployment increasing, economy trashed and personal liberty and freedom usurped. How can any government through incompetence continue with this folly for so long? The question is how can so many have been so incompetent? The nations of the UK compete with each other to show who is the most effective at depriving their people of their human rights. Most MPs have sadly not represented their constituents but been complicit in this travesty.
    Our democracy is being taken away before our eyes as we move inexorably to totalitarian dictatorship.

    • The other Christine
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:27 pm | Permalink

      Sadly I have to say that this was a deliberate act with sinister motives. Let’s just reflect who is benefiting from this situation. Yes, China, of course. Who is pushing for the Great Reset? Yes, the WEF and the IMF, of course. Who is benefiting from the loss of our SMEs? Yes, the globalists, of course.
      One thing is certain. Even if this virus wasn’t deliberately released into the environment, at some point in the future someone will release another intentionally. We had better be prepared.

    • James Bertram
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

      Fully agree, Brian

  26. Andy
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:35 am | Permalink

    The economic cost of this pandemic is not equally shared. It is being paid by the working young.

    The old – the richest demographic in the country – have suffered no significant financial loss. Many own their own homes outright anyway – so the mortgage is not a problem. And pension handouts continue to be paid in full and will, in fact, be rising.

    The young, who have been ordered not to work – are now being compensated just a fraction of their salary.

    Because the Tory response to Covid has been so dreadful we now have to make a choice. And our choice should be to let the young go about their business and to guarantee them priority hospital treatment should they need it.

    Older people should be shielded away. If they want to go out – fine. But if they catch Covid they are at the back of the queue for treatment. If there is hospital space they get help if there isn’t they don’t.

    The older generation voted for this government. It’s a cause and effect thing. The cause is you. The effect of awful for you. Tough.

    • Sea_Warrior
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

      Old people own houses. Gee, what a surprise. I, like many ‘old’ people, worked hard to secure my blessed plot. Knuckle down and work for your own rather than continually bitching about everything.
      P.S. All your repetitive and annoying posts prove is that Sir John has the tolerance of a saint.

      • Fred H
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

        I doubt he bothers to read them, much like most of us?

    • oldwulf
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

      Andy

      I enjoy reading your posts. Sometimes I agree with you and sometimes I don’t. Sometimes I partly agree with you and sometimes I think you could have made a stronger case for your views.

      I would agree with you that the economic cost of this pandemic is not being shared equally. I would also agree that current workers (or maybe the former workers) are bearing the brunt of it. I would not agree that it is entirely paid for by the working young. Also, in the distant future, the debt may still being paid off by young and old workers alike.

      I would agree that the “old” are generally richer than the young particularly as many of them own their homes outright. Historic Government support of home ownership (various forms of assistance to buy, no capital gains tax on the main home and, more recently, inheritance tax reliefs) have contributed to the resulting inequality of wealth, as has cheap money in more recent years. Cheap money has also had the effect of reducing the income of some of the “wealthy” old people.

      The pension handout to which you refer is the state pension. This increases annually, as do many other state benefits although I would agree that the state pension has the advantage of the so called “triple lock”. I think you can take some comfort in the fact that many of the recipients have a limited life expectancy and those pensioners who have a decent income, will pay income tax on their pensions.

      Some pensioners have built up and are receiving workplace pensions. To the extent these pensions are/will be based on stock market values and/or current interest rates, then it is likely that the “old” will also suffer a significant financial loss. However, I accept that you may think that the “old ” should not have been permitted to build up pension wealth in the first place.

      I take your point that the young have been ordered not to work and, because of family and mortgage commitments, are more likely to rely on their income and suffer hardships if they receive “a fraction” of their salary. I would go further and say that, even before the pandemic, finding a job at all was not as easy as it was “in the old days”.

      I too have not been impressed by our Governments responses to covid. Some countries have made a better job of it. Some have made a worse job. I’m not sure that I could have predicted which courses of action would have produced the best results nor how to keep us plebs on board with the message…. but I think “we” could have done better… although I am not convinced that a Labour or a Libdem Government would have done any better. We will never know.

      I have difficulty with the prioritising of some lives over others either on age grounds or on any other grounds.

    • beresford
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:38 pm | Permalink

      The ‘economic cost of this pandemic’ is unnecessary. Rather than arguing as to how that cost should be distributed you should join the majority here who dispute the requirement for a substantial cost in the first place.

  27. Chris Dark
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:37 am | Permalink

    I don’t see how you can do more to “protect the vulnerable”, any more than has ever been done for all other infections. Locking them in a closet trying to prevent death is not the answer, as many unvisited and lonely elderly in care homes will probably agree.
    The hysteria over this virus has been shocking. Vaccines that have been cobbled together and only briefly tested, along with a craftily-timed flare of publicity, are more likely to cause further illness and complications than the original disease. When is government going to realise that they can’t defeat Nature? Let her run her course. Lift all the restrictions, for pity’s sake, otherwise there will be no country left …or maybe that’s the plan?

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:36 am | Permalink

      You might as well let smallpox, polio, cholera, and the whole lot run wild by that pathetic, useless, wet-lettuce reasoning.

      • Jiminyjim
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

        Listen to the Delingpole/Yeadon podcast, M i C, and then tell us where Mike Yeadon is wrong.
        Oh no, on second thoughts it would never do to expose yourself to views that differ from your own home-grown nonsense

      • Fred H
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

        About time you gave up wet lettuce – think of something else?

    • Derek Henry
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:45 am | Permalink

      Ha,

      And then when the dead start piling up on trolleys in hospital car parks because we can barely cope with a flu season due to the underfunding of our health service for decades.

      Because fools think the MONOPOLY issuer of £’s can run out of £’s or the MONOPOLY issuer of the £ needs our £’s before it can spend.

      Chris Dark will be willing to take all the responsibility?

      I very much doubt it. Chris will be hiding in the closet never to be heard of again. Deny he made such a foolish suggestion in the first place.

      Of course we will have a country left. The MONOPOLY issuer of the £ can credit any bank account it likes including yours Chris. At whim using a computer keyboard and An index finger. Parliament just needs to decide which ones and the blips are created.

      This is the problem. Politicians have lied for years how our monetary system operates in reality. So the voters are now turning on the politicians with a vegence using the myths the politicians created against them.

      Oh the irony of it all.

      • NickC
        Posted October 25, 2020 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

        Derek H, Not even the MMT says that the monopoly money issuer can issue however much it wants, on a whim. Issuing substantially more fiat money than the real economy can absorb will cause serious problems. Beyond an unpredictable point it will produce inflation, as MMT accepts. Issuing too much is exactly what happened in pre-WW2 Germany, in Zimbabwe, and in Venezuela.

        • Derek Henry
          Posted October 26, 2020 at 11:56 am | Permalink

          The constraints are skills and real resources.

          We have plenty of both.

          Especially after we find a cure. We can put them to use. Transition people into the private sector.

          Saving a will be spent by consumers if they have not been used to pay off private debt already.

          Brexit will be boom time. We just have to wait and Sunak help in the meantime.

    • Jim Whitehead
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:56 am | Permalink

      So right, Chris Dark, and that first sentence is so full of good sense that it is destined to be ignored. However, its reality will not be denied, the virus is no more respectful of good intentions no matter how often they are repeated like an unchallenged mantra.
      We must live and forge ahead as we have always done. Vaccines (what and when?) and muttered pieties will be ineffective in ‘controlling’ the virus. What a foolish conceit.

      • James Bertram
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:00 pm | Permalink

        +1

    • Everhopeful
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:11 am | Permalink

      Good grief.
      In saner times I used to worry about going to the main Post Office ( remember those?)just before Christmas (remember that?) because I knew I might catch flu.
      I would not have dreamed of wearing a mask in a useless attempt to screen out germs/viruses…..
      BECAUSE I WOULD HAVE GOT ARRESTED!

      • Fred H
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:18 pm | Permalink

        Remember the days when you were banned form premises if wearing a crash-helmet? Not so for wearing a burqa, and now if you are not wearing a covering to hide your chin, mouth, nose and almost eyes you might well be arrested. Funny old world.

  28. Old Albion
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:42 am | Permalink

    Let the young, fit and healthy return to normality. The elderly and unwell need to take responsibility for their own safety. Shield yourself if it is appropriate to you.
    Once Covid has passed through the young, fit and healthy (with little or no consequence) herd immunity will be achieved.

    • David L
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:39 am | Permalink

      But Mr Hancock says that herd immunity is a dangerous falsehood unless accompanied by a vaccine. Therefore throughout human history all communities must have had to develop and apply vaccines otherwise how else could they have survived the stream of viruses afflicting them? Or have viruses only been around in the modern era?

  29. Everhopeful
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:57 am | Permalink

    How can this help? If there is a virus surely the first port of call should be the borders?
    You know, as in “the virus” spreads, jumps and hops into mouths and all orifices to the point where we must be masked and separate. MOST unfair to bring people here to catch it!

    From today’s Telegraph regarding latest Tory scam.

    “Mehmet, the chairman of Migration Watch UK, said: “This is quite outrageous. It will weaken immigration control further and risks helping drive settlement beyond even the record highs of a decade ago. It will also reduce the incentive for employers to train British workers.”

    • Anonymous
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:14 am | Permalink

      How can this help? If there is a virus surely the first port of call should be the borders?

      …..
      please do not encourage them.

    • Iago
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:31 am | Permalink

      It’s obvious the government has no intention of reducing immigration, let alone stopping it which is what is required. Our country is being destroyed before our eyes.

      • Iain Moore
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:47 am | Permalink

        Agreed, every act of the Government (this and other Governments) have been to cram more people into the country. Nobody can be this incompetent, the loss of control of our borders had to be a policy decision. They couldn’t win the no borders policy with the electorate, so they brought it in via the backdoor through their manufactured incompetence.

  30. Andy
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:59 am | Permalink

    It is heartening seeing so many individuals, businesses, even councils get on side with a Marcus Rashford’s campaign to feed hungry children.

    Of course you would have thought it would be something government would do but virtually every Conservative MP voted against it.

    They are happy to spaff hundreds of millions of pounds of our taxes up a wall on failed Covid projects – usually run by Tory donors – and on Brexit lorry parks to make us poorer and lives more hasslesome. But feeding hungry kids? No money for that.

    I hope Mr Rashford decides to quit football and stand in a safe Conservative seat at the next election as the candidate who still has a moral compass.

    • a-tracy
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:54 am | Permalink

      Yes it is heartening Andy proper charitable giving – the poor businesses that have all virtually been closed down through CV19 lockdowns with all this spare food putting it to good. But to imply this government has done nothing is just not true. What did the parents on Universal credit spend their extra £1000 on? Then they were given an extra £20 per week on top of their usual benefits. They couldn’t go out, take their children to any entertainments, most of us have just been watching tv, eating and walking. The Tories walked into this trap and they need to explain just how much extra people have been getting.

      What responsibility do you expect parents to take when they have children? None? I want an investigation into why so many can’t feed children, what benefits do they get? How much is the housing they choose to rent for example one woman in the Guardian was saying she rented a two bed in Liverpool for £750pm, there are three beds in Liverpool to rent for £550 so what is that about?

      Do you think the State should completely take over and just provide a free home choose where that home is and how much the State pays for it, the State to make and provide free ready made meals for children and also pay these parents that don’t work- to do what if the State carries over the responsibility for everything else, where are the Dads, why aren’t they paying up for their kids, Rashford had a Dad who took him to his footy practice, why wasn’t he providing food?

    • BJC
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:15 am | Permalink

      Leaving aside the emotional blackmail, Andy, who do you think is responsible for feeding children, the parents or taxpayers?

      • Fred H
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

        While there are parents that put other things before ensuring children are fed, the so-called wealthy democratic and socially responsible country needs to step in and deal with it.
        Go on, look away if poverty and ignorance offends you!
        Everything’s hunky-dory in your world?

        • rose
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:16 pm | Permalink

          Successive governments have brought about this predicament:

          1 The welfare state has made fathers redundant
          2 Women have been driven out to work rather than looking after their families and neighbours.
          3 Mass immigration has driven down wages and conditions, and driven up the cost of housing
          4 Entry into the CAP and CFP drove up the cost of food which was memorably cheap before.

          It would surely be better for fashionable footballers to campaign for Families Need Fathers, for more apprenticeships, and against mass immigration. But I don’t suppose they would dare, judging by the vile reaction to the decent Conservative MPs’ thoughts on the subject.

          I do hope HMG doesn’t cave in again. There is some sign they are at last beginning to distinguish between Twitter and the public, between the media led opposition, and common sense.

          • rose
            Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:23 pm | Permalink

            It should not need saying, but I suppose it has to be: HMG has already made the required provision through increased benefits and a very large payment to councils for just this sort of thing.

      • Andy
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

        Society is responsible for ensuring that all children are fed. Usually parents can manage. Sometimes they can’t. And sometimes kids don’t have parents.

        I would much rather ensure children are properly looked after than giving yet more handouts to the elderly.

        • Fred H
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

          I take that as meaning you agree with me?

        • a-tracy
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:50 pm | Permalink

          OK Andy, how do you propose to ensure The actual children are fed with the ‘child benefit’, child tax credits’, ‘working tax credits’ money they’re given if they don’t do this now. Some parents are just hopeless and this needs dealing with. We live in an area of mass deprivation the local chippies, pizza houses, kebab houses, burger and chicken joints are doing a roaring trade, queuing up in the streets. You can buy meals at the local Aldi for 65p ready made just warm them up. Somebody needs to audit what they’re spending the money on they are given. Many of them are skipping paying the rent, being allowed to rack up debts, allowed to leave horrible messes outside their free houses, they seem to able to feed their dogs and make a trip to the local bookies but they can’t feed their kids. This disgusts me. This whole campaign is like pouring petrol on a fire. There should be shame on people who don’t put the priority on feeding their kids healthy. The BBC should think twice about paying people like Lineka to talk football and put on programs to remind parents how to prepare cheap veg and make meat go further or make pizza bases themselves. If you’re expecting a school to prepare a meal for £1.50 per day then why when the parent is given a lot more per child aren’t we expecting anything of them at all.

          Now if this is parents who aren’t getting benefits I want to know why they aren’t, I want to see a proper investigation. I want people to get a fair share and a couple that usually pay all their taxes, work hard, and pay their own their own way if they’ve been deserted then I’d be the first in line to bash the government.

        • NickC
          Posted October 25, 2020 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

          Andy, The young are looked after by our society from -1 year to 18 years, and for about a half of them to 21 years. The elderly are looked after for only 15 years (66 to 81). Your obsession with the elderly is based on bigotry rather than facts. If you are teaching it to your children I pity your old age because your children will unthinkingly absorb your prejudices and turn them on you when you are old.

    • RichardP
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:35 am | Permalink

      Totally agree that most of the covid project money has been wasted and the ‘consultants’ fees alone would have fed hungry children.
      Don’t agree about the lorry parks though, we’ve needed those for decades. Kent gets gridlocked every time the French go on strike whether we are in or out of the EU.

    • John E
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

      Yes billions wasted on panic buys that have delivered no value from companies that donate to the Conservatives. And nothing for the free school meal children.
      Difficult not to be completely cynical isn’t it?

    • SM
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:35 pm | Permalink

      Mr Rashford reputedly earns more than £10million pa. Perhaps he could fund some hungry children out of his own salary, and get some experience of the real world?

      • Fred H
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 4:08 pm | Permalink

        until he was a talented teenager at football – he was very much with siblings in the real world with just a mother.

      • Dave Andrews
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

        Exactly, let him dip into his own deep pockets of his own volition, rather than lobby government to borrow from their future to pay for it.

      • miami.mode
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

        Hopefully, SM, he won’t be among the footballers being investigated by HMRC for their tax affairs.

      • Andy
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

        If he earns £10m he pays a lot of tax – and it’s spent on your pensions and lorry parks. Perhaps it should be spent on needy children instead.

        I am more interested in the people who earn £10m+ who don’t pay much tax because they keep in in tax havens. (And donate to the Tories so their earnings stay secret and hidden).

      • steve
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:23 pm | Permalink

        SM

        “Perhaps he could fund some hungry children out of his own salary”

        Actually SM, he did just that.

    • steve
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

      Andy

      “I hope Mr Rashford decides to quit football and stand in a safe Conservative seat at the next election as the candidate who still has a moral compass.”

      I wouldn’t have believed it if I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes !……well said Andy, and a sentiment with which I wholeheartedly agree.

      • Fred H
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

        I think about 150 Conservative seats will be available. Prepare your CV, voter appeal, and fee for standing. The way things are going any person of colour, invalid, non-heterosexual, retired civil servant, science extremist, media experienced, non-alien must be in with a real chance of a seat. Working from home, secretarial support, £80k, redundancy payment, small pension linked to service……whats not to like.

  31. Everhopeful
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:02 am | Permalink

    None of this is about any virus.
    Given the mask-wearing adherence of those in the know they would all be dead if one existed.
    We should not have made one single penny worth of sacrifice.
    And pray, oh politicians do not think you have been in any way clever.
    It is just that we respected and trusted you…but you all turned out to be unworthy of it.

    • matthu
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

      +1

      This vaccine has a 99.9% survival rate.
      Lockdown is harming people and causing children permanent mental damage.

  32. Alan Jutson
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    The Government cannot win on this one John, they are dammed if they do, and dammed if they don’t.

    They should introduce sensible infection precautions that allow most businesses to remain open, it is up to customers to use or not use as they choose.

    There certainly should be support for those who choose to shield, although that support is difficult to gauge as different people have different needs. So this really is a Local Authority/Regional task.

    Information is the key here, present it in as simple way as possible with a weekly update, outline the symptoms, outline the risks and the means of helpful prevention.

    I have to say the recent video updates by the Reading District Medical Officer, where he gives LOCAL FACTS AND FIGURES, I find very informative.

    Thus people should make up their own minds about their actions, because it is people who spread it, not the Government.

    Clearly it is up to the medical profession as to how they attack and treat the infection, as indeed they do for every other medical problem, the government can of course, and should provide the funds and equipment (as they do for everything else)
    Seems to me the Nightingale hospitals/wards have be grossly underused from what I hear reported.

  33. Cliff. Wokingham
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:07 am | Permalink

    I feel the government needs to be seen to be doing something because they are attacked and egged on by the media and opposition parties.
    Image has become more important than policies in many ways. The government are in a no win situation because they are dammed if they do something and dammed if they do nothing.

    I read this morning that The Welsh Government (sic) have told supermarkets, with less than twenty four hours notice, that they can Only sell essential items during the firebreak lock down. Some politicians just don’t have a clue do they?

  34. Harry
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:07 am | Permalink

    Covid is not a threat. It’s death rate is lower than most years flu which is what it actually is. This manufactured hysteria will be looked back on as ridiculous and inexplicable except as a deliberate plan to crash and loot the economy whilst locking up the population to prevent them complaining. The lockdowns, mask wearing and handouts to big pharma for fake vaccines should be ended instantly and public and criminal enquiries made into all aspects of the 2020 insanity.

    • RichardP
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:23 am | Permalink

      +1

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:08 pm | Permalink

      Why do you who all believe that not all get together and infect yourselves then?

      You seem convinced that it will make you immune too.

      Go on, do us all a favour, by carrying out this experiment.

      • Edward2
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:08 pm | Permalink

        Stay under your quilt Martin
        You are safe there.
        What a life awaits you.

      • NickC
        Posted October 25, 2020 at 12:40 pm | Permalink

        Martin, Why do you want the young to suffer just to futilely protect an elderly minority who are at death’s door anyway? Normally you follow Andy down the rabbit hole of ageist hatred, rather than condemning the young to unnecessary financial and social hardship.

  35. Chris
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:12 am | Permalink

    Why on earth were Covid-19 patients not isolated in the Nightingale Wards from the start? These were developed at great expense and are still largely empty. Are there ‘managers’ in the NHS worthy of that title?

    • Everhopeful
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

      That wasn’t what they wanted.
      None of this is accidental or caused by inefficiency.
      How many dead because of the Nursing Homes muck up??

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

      There are no STAFF for all the extra hospitals.

      Reply. untrue. NHS has been busy adding to staff and has recalled former trained staff to handle Cv 19

      • a-tracy
        Posted October 25, 2020 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

        Perhaps we should offer money to the New Zealand healthcare workers to come over apparently they don’t need them.

    • ChrisS
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

      +1

  36. Kevin
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:13 am | Permalink

    The Great Barrington Declaration sets out the way forward. Use that as your template, lift all restrictions now and just emphasise good hyienic practice.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:04 pm | Permalink

      They are more likely to declare those scientists “far right” and have them banged up!
      This is all going very much according to plan I imagine.

    • James Bertram
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

      +1

  37. Arthur Wrightiss
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:19 am | Permalink

    The vast majority of deaths in the UK are from heart attacks and dementia not a bad dose of the Covid flu. Add in cancer , accidents and all the other stuff out to get us and the Covid deaths are very small. Even the deaths recorded as Covid can be all sorts of other things, even being run over by a bus if there is, or has been, a trace of Covid in you.
    The Govt should bite the bullet and open up absolutely everything again immediately. Vulnerable people should take control of their own lives and isolate if thats what they want to do. Follow the teachings of St.Maureen of Barnsley….I’m not stopping in, I don’t give a sod.

  38. Will Jones
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:20 am | Permalink

    Are you aware that the vaccines are not being tested to prevent infection and will be accepted if only 50% effective? In other words, they won’t end it either so we need to move to a plan B of optional focused protection now before any more harm is done.

  39. villaking
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    The answer to the questions in your last paragraph is obviously yes. Therefore, since the answer is so simple and logical, we know for certain that Hancock and Johnson will do the opposite. Why people tolerate this shocking loss of livelihoods and liberties is beyond me. The polls suggest the vast majority still want a complete lock down, potentially forever, with the expectation that the state must protect them from a sometimes quite nasty bug whatever the cost. If the polls show that’s what the public wants, Johnson and Hancock will do it. This is no longer a country I want to live in nor let my child grow up in.

    • BeebTax
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:57 pm | Permalink

      I’ m not quite at the “no longer” stage, but rapidly getting there.

    • NickC
      Posted October 25, 2020 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

      Villaking, Exactly so. Please have a word with your Remain mates, Andy, Martin, Hefner, etc, who all want harsher longer lockdowns until the virus is completely “stamped out”.

  40. Rachel Chandler
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    As many reputable scientists and practitioners are saying, the virus is now behaving like A N Other seasonal pathogen that causes respiratory disease and can kill the vulnerable. The big problem we now have is a pandemic of mental illness in the western world. People, including most of my friends and family, have been scared into submission by SAGE’s groupthink madness and now they can’t accept that they’ve been fooled all this time, despite the growing evidence. In the meantime it breaks my heart to see the cruel treatment of children in schools, the sinister wearing of masks in the open air and to be criticised as selfish because I don’t want people to be suffering from all the consequences of lockdown.

    • NickC
      Posted October 25, 2020 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

      Rachel C, Thank you, that is a very cogent assessment, measured and sensible.

  41. Peter
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:26 am | Permalink

    ‘I think the government needs to do more to save livelihoods and needs to remove those controls that have limited utility in defeating the virus but do considerable damage to jobs and business. ’

    Agreed. However, the government has already gone along with the doom mongers like Ferguson, Whitty and Vallance. Discussion about alternatives is actively discouraged or suppressed.

    The policy was either to predict carnage and comfortably do better, then claim credit; or to go along with most other countries and improve the hold of the globalists and big pharma in the process.

  42. kenneth
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:27 am | Permalink

    I believe we should put more resources into protecting those most vulnerable to the virus and allow rest to be free from restriction.

  43. Bill B.
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:38 am | Permalink

    How much ‘economic sacrifice’? None, no more, stop now.

    You and your friends in Parliament have done enough damage already, and then some.

    End all ‘Covid’ restrictions on normal life and business, if you are not to go down in history as collaborators in the worst scandal in our country’s history.

    • RichardP
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:21 am | Permalink

      +1

  44. Bryan Harris
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:56 am | Permalink

    A lot of people still believe that the virus was created to move us into a position where we would be forced to give up our way of life, our freedoms and our future.
    So the answer to your question JR, is that we should resist in every way possible all actions that can potentially destroy our way of life and our future.

    Huge number of People die every year, but a fuss is made of the deaths through CV-19 because it is contagious — that is the opening the NWO cohorts are exploiting.

    That the government and their advisors have no plan-b, and are totally reliant on a vaccine that may or may not help makes them look incompetent at best, duplicitous at worst.

    HOW SHOULD WE LIVE WITH CV-19?

    1. We should find out why the virus touches some people without serious harm;

    2. We should make sure that everyone gets supplements, like vitamin D that have shown themselves capable of strengthening the immune system;

    3. We should be open to all solutions that will make people strong enough to shrug off the virus;

    4. We should NOT be so reliant on a vaccine that (a) doesn’t yet exist, (b) will lead to the imposition of more and more dictatorial restrictions, including social ostracism, being blacklisted, health passports, digital id numbers, and electronic chips;

    5. We should be doing everything possible to keep the economy thriving, at every level, and allow people to decide for themselves where and when they use masks, and when they self isolate. The government treats people like fools that have to be told what to think. Allow people to be responsible for themselves;

    6. We should stop the constant bombardment of CV propaganda from the MSM – IT is making people scared witless and sick.

    • Bryan Harris
      Posted October 25, 2020 at 8:47 am | Permalink

      JR – I can see how my comments here cut across the establishment view of life, and how you might want to limit exposure to too many people by approving very late in the day…. But I really thought here we could be totally open.

      I believe it is vital we get these considerations out into the open for full examination, to rebut or otherwise

  45. agricola
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    You ask a big question so do not quibble at getting detailed answers.

    1. Isolate those with Covid 19 in home lockdown or in the Nightingale hospitals created for that purpose.
    2. Make use of the drugs that have to date proved effective in reducing the terminal effects.
    3. Treat care homes for the elderly like GCHQ ie. no access unless authorised.
    4. Put test and trace in the hands of a professional IT company rather than government.
    5. Direct GP services to get back to a normal appointment service. They need to be in direct contact with the sick. A GP should, at times with a second GP opinion, decide if the patient is:-
    a. A malingerer
    b. A problem we can partly or fully handle at the practice.
    c. A problem in need of specialist investigation and resolution at a hospital
    Bring GP services out of hiding.
    6. Professionalise the management of the NHS. Make NHS purchasing a stand alone national, but above all professional service.
    7. Re think the business plan of the NHS free of politics. Should the patient have a direct financial responsibility toward it via insurance and social need.
    8. By examination of waiting lists, the capital , personnel and other requirements become instantly apparent, and are in the hands of government to rectify.
    9. Close airports to Covid 19 hotspots, and do not go on official figures in all cases, base it on pre knowledge. Test all arrivals at airports and ferry ports and make sure tracing is covered.
    10. Get the rest of the population back to work and normal social behaviour. Develop a comprehensive set of criteria for working from home.

    Until a vaccine is readily available and taken up, the above allows us to live with Covid 19 and contain it.

  46. DaveK
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    Sir John,

    I implore you to read Dr Mike Yeadon’s paper, listen to his podcast with James Delingpole or somehow arrange a meeting with him. He explains in terms even a layman can understand the evolution of viruses including CV19. 1. There is no such thing as a second wave. 2. The rises in the current small “blip” demonstrate governments success in reducing the height of the peak to protect the NHS. 3. We should live normally as with any other coronavirus with good hygeine and including annual vaccination for those at risk. As some comments mention, this seems to have morphed into politics rather than medical.

    • steve
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

      Dave K

      “We should live normally as with any other coronavirus with good hygiene”

      Exactly !

      You echo my sentiment. I’ve said all along this virus exploits poor hygiene.

      As long as people need to be told to wash their hands after visiting the loo, and not to sneeze or cough irresponsibly, this virus will remain transmissible.

      Lockdown is not the answer……..strict personal hygiene is.

      Poor hygiene needs to be made as socially unacceptable as smoking, then the transmission mode will be denied and the virus dies out.

  47. Alison
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    Prophylaxis is surely one of the most important ways to ‘defeat’ the virus. The virus won’t go away – indeed, it’s probably mutating right now into an adjusted form, to attack again.
    To be able to live with it, individuals must be healthy.

    A large percentage of our population is not healthy, because of life style. Not enough exercise. Food saturated with salt and the wrong sort of fats and sugars. Artificial sweeteners are worse for health, if anything. So people are overweight or very overweight, with excess fat in all the wrong places which make us more vulnerable to covid’s effects.
    The body age of these people is much greater than their actual age (there was a TV series by Dr Michael Mosley and Angela Rippon about precisely this – it screamed the fact and also the benefits to the people who were able to lower their body age back to their actual age).

    Get people to get healthy. Exercise – walking can be organized at community level.
    Get people to eat a British apple every day.
    Provide vitamin D in tablet form to every adult.
    Educate people to cut back on sweets, too many sweet biscuits, ready-made high-fat meals. Eat more fresh vegetables.
    Incentivize people to do so by showing them the difference it will make to their life – before and after losing weight and getting fitter.

    A healthier population has infinite benefits. Not just that people will be much less vulnerable to covid – less likely to fall badly ill, ending up in hospital and ICU, if and when they catch it.
    Individuals will be less likely to have heart attacks, strokes. Less likely to have diabetes (one in ten people over 40 have type 2 diabetes, studies show), with all its dreadful effects. Happier individuals, less prone to anger. Fitter people who can achieve more.

    And why, oh why not provide for free school meals during the holidays during covid times? Get a decent meal into children. Combine it with eating out to helping out – get some of the hospitality businesses to help provide the meals, so you do two birds with one stone.

  48. formula57
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    Covid may well be an enduring feature of our lives and so economic arrangements ought to recognize that for per Matt Hancock:

    – Herd immunity may never arise (For some bad reason the scientists who devised the initial approach that relied upon herd immunity are still employed.)

    – it is not possible to devise measures that protect the vulnerable and ill whilst permitting the low risk and healthy to suffer few restrictions.

    There may be no vaccines or they may provide only short-term protection.

    Widespread mask-wearing and sanitation measures ought to become routine (to help reduce the reinfection rate (R)) and testing needs to be abundantly available (not least at all points of entry to the UK), providing reliable results promptly. Better to spend billions on testing facilities than on IT “experts” who predictably cannot deliver systems that meet specifications.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

      Yes, thanks to people like you it may well be an enduring feature.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted October 25, 2020 at 10:04 am | Permalink

        Apologies.

        I agree with much of your post – I confused you with another poster for a moment.

  49. Dave Andrews
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:05 am | Permalink

    Even if restrictions were removed completely, how long before a public spooked by warnings of the virus return to normal anyway?
    No doubt people will flock back to football matches, horse racing and pop festivals, as soon as they are can, but if there is any lingering attempt to control the virus, aren’t they the last things to be allowed to open up?

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

      The latest madness is to watch rugby in a cinema rather than in an open air stadium

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:10 pm | Permalink

        You can do it the usual way in New Zealand.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

        +1. Why watch rugby at all though.

        • miami.mode
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:17 pm | Permalink

          Yes, LL, American Football is so much better.

  50. Pat
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:19 am | Permalink

    The only long term solution is via. herd immunity. We can just relax and get there quickly, or we can delay and get there slowly, the total number of deaths will eventually be the same either way.
    The other thing to consider is the possibility of reaching herd immunity by way of a vaccine, which of course would be preferable if it is possible.
    If a vaccine is fully tried and tested in the next year it would be far the quickest vaccine production ever.
    And a year of delay might well see us reaching herd immunity without a vaccine.
    But the biggest problem is the expectation that government and science can solve all problems. Sometimes they can’t, and we simply have to put up with unpleasant things.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

      Indeed, though a vaccine or better treatments are found quickly it might save a few lives by delayed and reduced mortality rates. But many other costs and health risks in doing this.

      If the NHS were at German competency levels tens of thousands of lives could have been saved (or rather extended). The pandemic is largely over now anyway many areas are already at herd immunity levels.

  51. Stephen Silverstein
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:20 am | Permalink

    The virus has never been isolated, the PCR test simply does not work, testing centres are empty as are most Covid wards, so the PCR test numbers are simply a lie. Add to this the fact that the death numbers are a contrivance at best, less than 1,500 have died have died from the alleged virus in England since the start of the epidemic and you can see that government credibility is crumbling.

    Lockdowns do not work and the WHO has recently advocated against the strategy, masks do not work and are more likely to damage the wearer and finally, collateral damage from measures taken is already exceeding direct damage.

    We cannot see a GP and we are not allowed to get better if we become ill, the hydroxychloriquine regimen is usually effective in the first 4/5 days but Boris has banned it, preferring that people die unnecessarily.

    Sweden remains the model and the sooner ALL restrictions are removed and life be returned to normal the better. Oh, and we need replacements for Hancock and Johnson.

    By the way, the evidence for my observations is still all over the internet despite Fascistbook and YouTube’s best efforts but how many will? In a country where the population is suffering from delusional psychosis, as planned, it is difficult to see a way back!

    • James Bertram
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:15 pm | Permalink

      Well said.

  52. Newmania
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    Manufacturing, Services, Schools, Agriculture and the Public sector are functioning. The economy is not dead it is just “sleeping“ .In fact, unlike our idle MPs, most of are working our Christmas nuts off ! So why is Sir John so desperate to chuck another few bodies on the pile ( oh yes he is ) ?
    Well it not the economy dummy. There is Japanese bear outside the door .We have just about shut it out but if you think we can let it flap open and enjoy our sausages, you are crackers. More dead and more fear , risking the fatal destruction of the calm that has been preserved at such cost. We will kill off more companies as well as more people .
    Ignore the doomsters and Covidiots , those pesky experts are closing in on a workable vaccine .With near 100 % take up it will kill Covid by the end of next year . Stay hopeful ,calm and responsible. Lets dig in for victory, and, with luck, it may yet turn out nice again.

    • hat man
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

      Dig for victory???
      No, my friend, when you’re in a hole like the goverment is, you stop digging.

  53. Andy
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:48 am | Permalink

    There is a lot of Brexiteer outrage on social media (quelle surprise) that the EU will not allow Britons to use the fast lanes at EU airports after Brexit. This was one of the many perks of membership – and you left. Think of the extra queuing time as an opportunity to admire you Polish made blue British passport (which is actually black). Because nothing screams freedom like being significantly less free than we used to be.

    Enjoy your queues. At least you are not trying to take a lorry load of beef over the border because then you’d have to spend a while in the Farage Garage too – complete with portaloo.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:56 am | Permalink

      Come on, no deal brexiters.

      Please tell us why UK subjects should be allowed to use the gates expressly and exclusively for citizens of the European Union/EEA/ Swiss?

      Last time that I used a continental airport with my burgundy passport there was no queue at all for me, but the one for the rest of the world was six wide, and a quarter of a mile long, barely moving.

      Enjoy that.

      We saw it, but the Leave campaigns didn’t tell you, so you had no idea – again.

      • Sea_Warrior
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

        Last time I went through Innsbruck Airport I made a point of using the ‘Non-EU’ line. I was through inside a minute. I’ll let you know how I do this January. I’m predicting that the efficient Austrians will be just as welcoming to Brits wanting to ski their lovely slopes.

      • miami.mode
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:01 pm | Permalink

        Which airport was that, MiC, and surely you should have said 400 metres!

      • Edward2
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:46 pm | Permalink

        They are not citizens of the European Union
        It is not a recognised nation state.
        Get your facts right Martin.

      • steve
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:00 pm | Permalink

        MiC

        “Please tell us why UK subjects should be allowed to use the gates expressly and exclusively for citizens of the European Union”

        Umm…..because without UK subjects there would be no European Union, no Europe at all, in fact.

        The ungrateful EU, esp the French have short memories.

        • Fedupsoutherner
          Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:56 pm | Permalink

          +1 and +1

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted October 25, 2020 at 10:06 am | Permalink

          Hmm, by that measure the Russians would be waved through way ahead of the English.

          Upwards of twenty-five million dead in WWII.

          • Fred H
            Posted October 25, 2020 at 9:40 pm | Permalink

            But the Russians fought the Nazis to save themselves, not occupation of Europe. The British and allies fought the Nazis to save Europe.

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

      Andy I thought I was reading a comic but then realised it was more childish rubbish from you.

      • steve
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

        FUS

        You couldn’t even credit him with the slightest degree of comic.

    • Edward2
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

      Biggest queues are coming back to UK airports and trying to get through automated passport recognition gates.
      I travelled a lot in Europe and elsewhere in times before EU open borders and never had any real delays.
      More Project Fear 3.0 from you.

    • steve
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

      Andy

      “….. you Polish made blue British passport”

      And what is wrong with a passport cover made in Poland ? Do you now have a problem with Polish people ?

      Perhaps your xenophobia now encompasses Poland.

      Let me tell you this: I work with a lot of Poles, they’re good at their work, they’re fast, and they pile the hours in. Were it not for them my company would not exist.

  54. Original Richard
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:52 am | Permalink

    How can it be sensible to shut down the country and destroy the economy and livelihoods of millions of people to reduce deaths from a disease where the average age of death is 82 and above the UK life expectancy figure of 81?

    • Anonymous
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:25 am | Permalink

      How can it be sensible to shut down the country and destroy the economy and livelihoods of millions of people to reduce deaths from a disease where the average age of death is 82 and above the UK life expectancy figure of 81?

      ….
      we are moving to a global governance now.

  55. BeebTax
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    For God’s sake please save us from this self-destructive madness!

    The Mail reports today that Covid was the 19th from top cause of death in this country last month. Why have we ruined our economy and social wellbeing and democratic freedoms for this? If we were logical we would have been more effective in “saving lives” by banning tobacco, junk food and alcohol and using the Covid Marshals to force everyone to take part in daily communal mass-exercise sessions.

    I’m over 60. I have a lung condition. I’m happy to take measures I deem proportionate to manage risks to my health, by myself. Which is, pretty much, carry on as usual until something kills me. That’s a 100% bespoke solution. I don’t want the government to impose its life-prolonging measures on me.

    If people are worried, they can stay away from others, and we can certainly spend some money on helping the most vulnerable do this. Apart from that, it’s time to let the politicians know they do not have a mandate to ruin our lives and freedoms simply to reduce the chances of us dying from one, rather uncommon, cause that they are fixated upon.

  56. cornishstu
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:58 am | Permalink

    First off what second wave ? The numbers do not reflect this, the rise would be much steeper as at the beginning of the year, also it is not the way of these types of virus, more fearmongering based on the Spanish flu scenario. The testing also seems to be orientated to hype the numbers, positives test do not relate to people being seriously ill so why not just test those who are admitted. The number of people who have immunity is probably much higher than sage is portraying which negates the need for a vaccine, all government needs to do is make sure the NHS does its job, advise the populace with some real science based info and get out the way so everyone can get on with their lives.

  57. The Great Reset
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:08 am | Permalink

    Coronaviruses make between 15-40 percent of the seasonal flu virus we get every year. They are often novel as viruses mutate each year. Looking at the ONS stats for deaths we see exactly what we do every year, no more respiratory disease than normal. So my question to MPs is as follows: Did you in previous years want to crash civilization for the flu? And if not, why this year?

  58. Anonymous
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:08 am | Permalink

    Coronaviruses make between 15-40 percent of the seasonal flu virus we get every year. They are often novel as viruses mutate each year. Looking at the ONS stats for deaths we see exactly what we do every year, no more respiratory disease than normal. So my question to MPs is as follows: Did you in previous years want to crash civilization for the flu? And if not, why this year?

  59. Anonymous
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:12 am | Permalink

    The powers that be are terrified of us calling covid the flu, as it exposes the lunacy
    but Dr Wolfgang Woodard says coronavirus is the flu.

  60. Anonymous
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    ays coronavirus is the flu.

    ….
    and a very mild form at that.

  61. forthurst
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    The case fatality rate for Covid-19 increases dramatically with age so quoting the overall rate without even referencing the case infection rate is entirely meaningless. It is frequently a very serious illness for people over 50 years old and infrequently below that age. Furthermore, people who have had a serious bout may not recover quickly but can have lingering disabilities including permanent organ damage. It behoves the government therefore to take this illness seriously. That means it should use sensible measures to contain the spread of the disease until a vaccine is available for mass inoculation.

    So far the government’s attempts at containment have been predictably half-baked: giving a national contract to a company with no scientific expertise is half-baked. Trying to control an epidemic nationally when the clusters of disease are locally based is also half-baked. The government has therefore resorted to lockdowns with serious consequences for the economy and people’s lives because they are entirely clueless otherwise as to how to effectively control the spread.

    Clearly the epidemic should be controlled locally. Covid-19 is a new infection but other infectious diseases are not and are controlled by local health authorities so why did the government decide to by-pass the normal systems in this case? The truth about central government is that it engages in frenetic activity in some matters which are not its concern and entirely ignores others which are, whilst never understanding the problems they face often as a result of their total lack of scientific knowledge and training.

  62. glen cullen
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:22 am | Permalink

    The media and politicians tell us its the black death

    But if you look closely at the official data its no different from flu

    We’re killing our industry for nothing

  63. a-tracy
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:44 am | Permalink

    Which of the advisors think “its just a lag and deaths will rise again as they did in Spring”, were they the ones saying they needed thousands of ventilators to treat CV19 in the early days, what are they basing this ‘lag’ theory on? Why do they just poo poo other treatments that other just as qualified scientists think would have good results. This whole thing just feels like one big scientist -v- scientist experiment with opposing views silenced, I can’t remember anything like this before.

    • cornishstu
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:38 am | Permalink

      Have you forgotten the man made climate change scam, where exactly the same SOP is applied. Opposing voices are ridiculed, do not get published in the main journals and generally denied a platform in the MSM. The only difference is with this it has had much quicker and traumatic effect upon our daily lives.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

        +1

        Though no one sensible thinks climates do not change nor that human activity does not have some effect. But an imminent climate “catastrophe” clearly has no real evidence and is pure invention. Anyway the solutions that the alarmists loons propose renewables etc. would not prevent it even were.

      • rose
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

        The entire media on both sides of the Atlantic are pooh poohing the Biden scandal too, and don’t want to expose the cover up and the censorship.

  64. Anonymous
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:08 am | Permalink

    MPs also need to face up the reality that deaths remained at normal levels until the actual week (week 14), the lockdown started and was mainly due to life saving care been suddenly withdrawn from the elderly. They died of Covid policies not Covid.

  65. Anonymous
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    MPs also need to face up the reality that deaths remained at normal levels until the actual week (week 14), the lockdown started and was mainly due to life saving care been suddenly withdrawn from the elderly. They died of Covid policies not Covid.

    So far the only excess deaths we have seen this year were caused by decisions of MPs.

  66. Original Chris
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:17 am | Permalink

    We should open up the economy, stop the mask wearing and social distancing and let people earn livings freely and get on with their lives. Why? Because we are not in a pandemic. The advisers for Johnson have been permitted to bankrupt the economy and destroy far more lives than Covid alone would have done. See the data from the ONS:

    “New monthly mortality figures from the ONS show that there were 2,535 fewer overall deaths in September compared to the five-year average. What pandemic ?”

    Flu deaths fall as ONS says many who were vulnerable may have died in first Covid wave.

    Biggest change in September mortality rates has been in flu and pneumonia, now far lower than five-year average.

    telegraph.co.uk and T Anderson tweet.

  67. Anonymous
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:31 am | Permalink

    I can’t remember anything like this before.


    get your popcorn

  68. BetterTimesAhead
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:32 am | Permalink

    So much “noise” at the moment. Truly the “fog of war”.
    The “Search for the guilty…and the punishment of the innocent”.

    – Opponents of the Government out to bring Boris and co, down.
    – Troublemakers sowing FUD in the population, from home and abroad.
    – Covid-deniers doing what they do best…being in denial.
    – The Brits also doing what we do best…moaning…and many refusing to follow requests to isolate.

    Meanwhile, we are the ones spreading the virus, not the Government.

    Sadly, our family have lost good friends during the pandemic.

    Local lockdowns are the only sensible way forward, to keep the economy going and to suppress the virus.

    We were previously told that a return to school/college/university would cause a spike in cases. We are still riding that wave, but it will subside soon. Treatments continue to improve.

    We need to put Test, Track and Trace under the control of the Army. Only they can handle it now.

  69. Lexi Dick
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    I’m not afraid of Covid 19. I’m very afraid of what the lockdown has done to our country and our people.

    • glen cullen
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

      Exactly that – good post

    • Barbara
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 1:01 pm | Permalink

      Quite

    • Original Chris
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

      Exactly.

      The people who are not worried are the Great Reset/NWO/one world government/UN Agenda21 and 2030 globalists, for whom things are going exactly to plan, I fear.

      I am praying for a landslide victory for President Trump, as I believe he is the only politician/world leader who can stop them and expose the corruption, (and put a stop to this COVID madness. James Delingpole tweet had a much more graphic description of this madness).

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 25, 2020 at 10:11 am | Permalink

      I’m not afraid of the traffic, but I do look both ways before crossing.

      I’m not afraid of food poisoning, but I don’t use food after the “best before” date.

      I’m not afraid of the dark, but I do put on the bathroom light to have a shave.

      Are you starting to understand, yet?

      • a-tracy
        Posted October 25, 2020 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

        We locked down for SIXTEEN WEEKS. It is supposed to have an incubation period of 14 days.

  70. Barbara
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:42 am | Permalink

    4 weeks ago, Florida Governor RonDeSantis ended lockdown. Many people predicted doom, but it hasn’t happened and hospitalisations are flatlining.

    Let us get on with our lives while taking sensible precautions. HK flu killed far more in 1968, and we didn’t shut everything down for that.

    • glen cullen
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

      Correct – we just need an PM with some bottle to do it (in the face of media and footballers)

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:26 pm | Permalink

        A miracle in other words!

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted October 25, 2020 at 10:15 am | Permalink

      Yes, HK ‘flu killed similar numbers – over the whole year – BECAUSE we did not shut down.

      If there had been similar measures – but no one is saying that there should have been – then there would have been just a few hundred deaths, according to credible comparisons.

      • a-tracy
        Posted October 25, 2020 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

        No there wouldn’t Martin because people flew in every day by the thousand, ferries docked every day, people flew in to Dublin and got ferries across, many of these people came in from highly infected areas. Even if we’d locked down the minute we re-opened we have a lot more visitors than New Zealand. Are you really saying you want a total circuit break for what two weeks, a month, another 16 weeks. No-one in or out the Country like New Zealand without being able to pay for a two self funded quarantine in a hotel/prison. You blab on but dont ever say what you wanted. When London got hit the Northern regions were not highly infected so they locked down early it still didn’t work.

  71. John Hatfield
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    I think we should put the economy and people’s livelihoods before the virus.
    Folk should be trusted to take their own precautions based on their degree of risk/fear.

  72. a-tracy
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:59 am | Permalink

    What a nightmare this is becoming, what do the total lockdown people like Drakeford, Starmer, Sturgeon really want? For the UK to do a New Zealand as Martin keeps throwing in to the equation. Over Christmas/New Year no ferries, no airplanes, no one coming in to the Country after the 20th December, no people or freight movement around the entire UK. Where you are on the 20th is where you stay for 14 days, no visiting, no shopping, get your food in ready folks, tins, freezer food, long life stuff, you’ve got two months to prepare (Most people do for Christmas anyway). A total circuit break, no visiting each other a complete bleak mid-winter, if you have a relative you can stay with for two weeks you can as long as you are there for the 20th. Take your elderly out of the care homes for a fortnight. The ones with no family get volunteers to live with them and care for them. Use the hotels to accommodate people who have no one or need help they can clean for themselves and get volunteer cooks who can live in for the fortnight. Whatever is going to be enough for the total wipe out people? When we re-open everyone has to enter the UK with a negative covid 19 test taken 72 hours before travel and visa versa. Let the true dystopian nightmare begin!

    • Anonymous
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 1:08 pm | Permalink

      For the UK to do a New Zealand as Martin keeps throwing in to the equation. Over Christmas/New Year no ferries, no airplanes, no one coming in to the Country after the 20th December, no people or freight movement around the entire UK

      ….
      This would cause an immediate spike in deaths they could then blame on Covid.

  73. Gordon
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

    As I understand the ONS figures they are counting flu and CV19 deaths as CV19. Do they think we are mad or are they? I know which I think. The death figure is 20 over the 5 year average for last week. Get the country back to normal and stop this very foreign type of Panic.
    We should be ashamed of ourselves. I’m 84 and agree with the Lady who said “Sod it”,

    • glen cullen
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

      +1

  74. rose
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:15 pm | Permalink

    “From late September, the IICSA held two weeks of public hearings for its ‘organised networks’ investigation, with the final day for closing submissions set to take place on October 29.

    However, it decided not to hear evidence from survivors or those with knowledge of the crime pattern, and instead chose to select six areas of England and Wales – St Helens, Tower Hamlets in east London, Swansea, Durham, Bristol and Warwickshire.”

    Apparently the barrister involved said it would not be “appropriate” to look at where the crimes happened.

    If we are still having organized dishonesty over this matter, what hope is there of ever getting an acknowledgement from Government that shutting down the country in March and again now, was not the right course to take. They should have stuck to their original guns and not caved in.

  75. oldwulf
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

    We plebs do not like being told what do do. However, at the start of the pandemic we were better behaved and more submissive. Our minds were focussed on the chaos within the NHS brought to our screens by our ever helpful media and on the high number of deaths. However, we have now grown tired of it all. The reported “failure” of our previous sacrifices. The changes to the “advice” e.g. we didn’t need masks and now we do.

    Perhaps our Government should now open up everything. Either all will be ok (perhaps a vaccine or drugs based solution or a general immunity) or else the return to NHS chaos and a significantly increased number of deaths, will again focus our minds.

    I am happy for someone else to make the decision.

  76. Anonymous
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:46 pm | Permalink

    The death figure is 20 over the 5 year average for last week.

    ….
    and those twenty died as they couldn’t see a GP in time?
    it’s self-fulfilling

  77. Martin C
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 12:51 pm | Permalink

    How much more economic sacrifice ? No more. You’ve done what you can and it’s time to let go.

    The entire population of the world is here because of the effectiveness herd immunity. Let it happen. Expand the NHS with more Nightingale Hospitals if the needs arises. It will be less expensive than the economic, social, psychological and cultural damage from further lockdowns.

    Life is a terminal condition. Get over it.

  78. NickC
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    Remove all top down restrictions and restore normality. Let the local NHS deal with covid19 as it deals with other significant diseases such as influenza.

  79. ian
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    It doesn’t seem to be a problem for the hundreds of thousands of immigrants still entring the UK so why should it be a problem for people already living here.

    Look for immigration to go up to 500,000 net it’s called the BJ bouns.

    • glen cullen
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 9:11 pm | Permalink

      Border Force said it dealt with four incidents involving 33 people on Friday.

      More than 7,400 people have been intercepted crossing the English Channel in 2020

  80. Edmund Hirst
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

    The inhumanity of the lockdown ordinances, as illustrated by the case of the 104 year old Scottish lady begging to be allowed to see her family, reflect disgrace on all those responsible for these totally disproportionate measures. They are testing us to find out how far we can be forced into condoning, and even participating in, wicked behaviour if we are sufficiently softened up by endless propaganda.

  81. ChrisS
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:39 pm | Permalink

    The term “Saving the NHS” seems to have morphed into meaning “save the NHS for the sake of itself, rather than for us, the patients !

    While I was fortunate enough to be able to report a very efficient procedure and outcome yesterday, in Dorset, I am conscious that in other areas of England, patients are nowhere near as lucky and Covid has been used as an excuse to cut back on all types of hospital treatments.

    The move to telephone consultations seems to have reduced the number of time-wasting GP appointments dramatically, probably to the same extent as if a modest fee was introduced to see a GP. This is something that should be considered for the future, if it turns out that there is not an increase in poor outcomes because patients are not coming forward for appointments.

  82. BJC
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

    The government has been sucked into the maelstrom of scientific possibility, whilst reality is passing them by. They should stop focusing their energies on easily discovered worst case scenarios and accept that there will be tragedies despite their best endeavours to protect the vulnerable.

    Our lives are being dictated by a virus that’s guaranteed to circulate forever and there’s nothing any government can do about it, yet they keep trying. Data is routinely massaged to support certain views and carefully selected words are used to add weight, but not veracity, to scientific opinion favouring draconian measures. Please, get these patronising boffins off our backs! We simply need information to make our own judgments and our own mistakes and we need a government prepared to lead the way with practical solutions, not one guided by fear and crippling stasis.

  83. Mark
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

    Three words economy, economy, economy.
    The vaccine is a massive risk, time scales, will it work, will people even take it, will there be other complications,too much uncertainty.
    Herd immunity is the only way we can live with the virus and keep the economy going.
    Age matters. We need to use age to our advantage.
    We should not be punishing the younger portion of the population.
    To date we still don’t understand the our risk profiles according to our age. The government needs to produce an age risk matrix. We need to know.
    So just like we are risk profiled to our post codes we need to add a further filter for our age. Until we properly understand our age risks no decisions can be made.

  84. Martin C
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

    In my youth in the 1950s and 1960s I recall that the previous pandemic, at that time, was the Spanish Flu. Since the 1970s we have seen an ever increasing incidence of new pandemic diseases. HIV, Ebola, Sars, Mers, Covid 19, and now I hear there is a new form of Scarlet Fever in China, for which no one in the world has immunity.

    There is a possible reason for this. Since the nineteenth century the earth’s magnetosphere has been weakening. In the first 100 years or so it dropped 10%, then the rate increased to 5% per decade, but it has just been announced that it is currently decreasing by 1% per annum. This coincides with the pole shift; the north pole is heading towards Siberia and the south pole is no longer in Antarctica, but at sea, heading towards Australia and Indonesia.

    Reports on YouTube show that UVC radiation is being detected at ground level. I understand it can alter and sever DNA. Pole shifts happen from time to time, and it would make sense that they are a part of the thrust of evolution.

    Whether the new pathogens are natural, or manmade, Covid 19 is not the first, and won’t be the last. It would be unwise to bankrupt the country in an attempt to mitigate this virus. There’s another around the corner . . .

  85. Raymond
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

    I think we should be allowed to go about our daily lives as we see fit within the law of the land as it has been historically (except in war time). Those who are vulnerable and elderly should be advised and helped as appropriate. I personally am content to run a greater risk of dying a little before my time rather than put up with these Government diktats.
    It is fortunate that the young are generally not seriously affected by Covid. The young should not be penalised in the way they are, nor should the future generation be burdened with unnecessary public debt.
    Each of my three grown up children’s careers and jobs have been adversely affected by the Government’s proscriptions. I would prefer it not to be so.

  86. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 3:21 pm | Permalink

    A few blogs ago, I opined that we needed to ban only those activities that were associated with high transmission rates and had no economic value. I listed house to house visits, visits to care homes and religious services. Everything else should go ahead subject to social spacing.

    To my immense surprise, I was accused of being an authoritarian bossy boots. Who was I to say what activities were of economic value and were not old people entitled to a life?

    Two points. The restrictions that I advocate (after the emergency in tier 2 and tier 3 areas is over) are just about the mildest needed to keep the virus under some sort of control and prevent the number of cases per day increasing.

    I think a problem is that some people, particularly the elderly, get lonely more easily than others. These people would benefit from getting some sort of intellectual life or hobby. You can use your internet search engine to make an initial investigation of any topic and follow this up by going online to order delivery of books or tools. There are also communication tools like Skype and Zoom. In the case of Zoom, tutorials are available. So there are plenty of ways to ease the pain of loneliness without hugging and bugging. It just needs a bit of initiative.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:40 pm | Permalink

      Best way to stop the rise in “cases”.
      Stop testing!

    • SM
      Posted October 25, 2020 at 6:02 am | Permalink

      One of the reasons the elderly get more lonely is quite simply that their loved ones – and that includes dear friends – die, and the actual physical contact is lost: until you have experienced the complete absence of a hug or a handshake, the quick allusion + eye-to-eye glance that only the very long-acquainted understand, you will not comprehend the heartache of loneliness.

      Skype and Zoom depends on having both the equipment and the enduring memory of how to use them.

  87. L Jones
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

    How should we live with it?
    Just live with it. Treat people (now THERE’s a radical idea!) who get sick with it (or anything else) and carry on as normal. Remember ”normal”?

    All these positive test result figures that are quoted just show many healthy people ARE ”living with it” already. A few are in hospital ”with” it – inflating the admission numbers very nicely to reinforce the government’s policy of keeping the Terminally Terrified even more terrified and compliant.

    Dr Sebastian Rushworth has just written a piece ”How deadly is Covid-19?” That puts it into perspective, answering Sir John’s question very clearly.

  88. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 3:55 pm | Permalink

    Semantics but important – living with the virus would be going about life as normal instead of cowering in our homes for much of the time.

    There have been several films due to be released that I was looking forward to seeing in the cinema which I have no idea when I will be able to see. I like a pint in the corner of the pub. I like to go out to eat. I actually quite like being in the office, if I have to work I would rather do it in a designated space. I like to go on holiday (sometimes on a whim).

    We are existing with the virus not living with it.

  89. Caterpillar
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    Part 1
    Is there a realistic exit through a vaccine to make the cost of delay a price worth paying, or will there just be another flare up as soon as we relax controls again?”
    No there is not an exit through a vaccine which makes the cost of delay worth paying. Even though the U.K. is in a different situation to early April (the vast economic damage has already been done, many vast negative health spillovers have already been caused), it still appears that deaths brought forward due to impediments to economic recovery look more costly than deaths delayed by lockdown – but where are the Government’s calculations?
    Two most important questions for Government and advisers to answer remain:-
    1. What is the current implied infection fatality rate as a function of age and comorbidity (and how were these calculated)?
    2. What proportion of the population are currently susceptible (some argue about 90% based on antibody studies, other argue much less than 50% based on pre-existing immunity and antibody studies being a very poor lower bound for estimating immunity)?
    If the Government and advisers cannot answer these questions then they are simply making stuff up, they are not making rational decisions.

  90. Caterpillar
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    Part 2
    The question is what Hancock, Sunak, Johnson and their advisers are actually capable of enacting? (Presuming the P.M. continues not to sack Hancock, Sunak and advisers).
    An estimate would be to immediately roll out Level 0 over all of England (with Levels 1-3 reserved if and only if NHS is expected to collapse nationally).
    Level 0:-
    (1) The economy is opened up under a minimum set of rules (and more guidance) that is consistent and sustainable. This will allow a lower immunity threshold to ensure self-limiting outbreaks. The economy is left to adjust under these rules. (Labour should not be funded to be immobile, UBI could be rolled out to help adjustment).
    (2) Economic resource and intellectual effort should be directed towards protecting the vulnerable (the GBD argument). It is disgusting that U.K. advisers state that this is not possible. Has the Government considered doubling the care home work force? Has the Government considered shipping city vulnerable to other parts of country? Have there been anthropologists living with multiple generation houses to understand their behaviours? It appears that it is considered more stimulating to put intellect into understanding the immune response than understanding practical interventions now (- those that automated cotton during industrialisation did not need new science, instead they solved practical problems).
    (3) Intellectual effort should be directed towards reducing R at the micro intervention level, not the macro level of lockdown. This involves better understanding of transmission to better understand covid-secure design. It involves case studies that track back from recent deaths to understand how these people were infected. It involves better technology perhaps face coverings that actually work, air flow management etc. It involves periodic stratified testing (it is a plus that Govt is now progressing cheap, fast tests, but some with lower sensitivity & specificity were available very early and could still have been used to reduce R, a missed opportunity). It involves completing the prophylactic studies that have been so delayed. Etc.
    In summary, open up under sustainable rules, focus resource and intellect on protection (GBD), focus resource and intellect on micro interventions to reduce R. Once vaccines are available add these into the areas of existing focus.

  91. Everhopeful
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 6:42 pm | Permalink

    Liberal Fair.

    Modeller , modeller compute me a model,
    Make sure that it’s full of the most awful twaddle,
    For we are going to screw up the world with:
    Dead cattle, six million,
    Pandemics, all deadly,
    Many Lockdowns to bankrupt,
    Exam marks most faulty,
    Statistics, all conjured
    And chuck in a new virus too.
    And chuck in a new virus too!

  92. glen cullen
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:31 pm | Permalink

    Please ignore Marcus Rashford

    • No Longer Anonymous
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

      Yup.

      Many working people can’t afford school meals yet aren’t eligible for them.

      Most parents of ‘deprived’ children smoke, drink, are in their bedclothes all day and have tattoos up their necks.

    • Fred H
      Posted October 25, 2020 at 7:55 am | Permalink

      and the children who go hungry?

  93. XYXY
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 8:47 pm | Permalink

    I think we should allow people to make their own decisions. If they feel under threat they can work from home (if viable for the job type), or they can work in a workplace (again, if viable).

    Socially, if they have a problem going out, there’s nothing forcing anyone to do that. If they wish to go out, it is their risk to take. The NHS should have caught up with capacity by now.

    Even if we have a vaccine there is likely to be a similar situation to flu – people will still catch it and some may die, so this is not really optional – we must live with cv19 as we live with flu and other omnipresent diseases.

    However, we live in a free society, so people must be allowed to make their own choices.

  94. No Longer Anonymous
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:00 pm | Permalink

    https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/13013928/experts-politicians-graph-deaths-from-lockdowns/

    You’ll all be clinging on by your fingertips by next summer.

    It won’t be BLM that gets you out.

    Retire, John. It’s all over

    • No Longer Anonymous
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:10 pm | Permalink

      I have found a dreaded lump (in my mouth) along with the continuous smell of smoke.

      Not the sort of thing I wanted to be experiencing at this time. I always thought that the Tories were more dangerous to my health than Covid 19; I’ve worked throughout the pandemic including the scary early stage.

      A vile party. Led by a corpulent, overprivileged and spoilt PM who could balance his personal finances nor raise his own kids properly.

      Ignore the polls and Andy and Martin in Cardiff. I don’t know a single person who isn’t pissed off with lockdown or who has any faith in your government.

      • APL
        Posted October 27, 2020 at 5:58 pm | Permalink

        No longer Anonymous: “I don’t know a single person who isn’t pissed off with lockdown or who has any faith in your government.”

        I agree, this government is abysmal. We would have expected this totalitarian nonsense from Labour, but the Tories? FFS!

  95. beresford
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:03 pm | Permalink

    It is being reported in the Daily Express that our man JR has ‘warned’ Boris Johnson not to sign us back into the Single Market and Customs Union. Is there something in the wind that the public don’t know about?

    • graham1946
      Posted October 25, 2020 at 10:34 am | Permalink

      It’s been pretty obvious for a long time. All the pantomime about the 15th October, then more meetings after the last deadline. We are going to be sold out and the EU and the UK will trumpet it as a great victory for both sides, particularly the UK. Only later will we discover just how far we’ve been had. They are relying on 4 years to go, with the public having a faulty memory. Neither side has the courage to walk away, so a fudge it will be, probably revolving around the E.C.T. having supreme authority over our laws and a ‘transition’ lasting forever on fishing and us having to obey what the EU say, with no say ourselves. Brexit it won’t be. Too many big fingers in pies to allow it to happen the way we voted. I notice you did not get an answer to your question – deafening silence that says so much.

  96. Ginty
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:36 pm | Permalink

    Where are the other graphs ? Deaths caused by lockdown and poverty ?

    • Ginty
      Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:37 pm | Permalink

      Deaths caused by people taking to road instead of much safer rail and air ?

  97. No Longer Anonymous
    Posted October 24, 2020 at 11:53 pm | Permalink

    Johnson, the man who ruined Britain, continues to stamp across the landscape like a mad giant, squashing small businesses, obliterating jobs and then flinging funny money at the victims as if that could bring back what they have lost for ever.

    By doing so he achieves nothing. The crisis which he claims to be dealing with exists only in twisted statistics and shameless propaganda.

    No suspicion that he might be mistaken appears to have crossed his mind. Those of us who have tried using facts and reason to change his mind are more or less in despair. The funny money is visibly running out.

    Increasingly, I fear that anger is the only force that will bring this misery to an end.

    (Peter Hitchens today)

    Your government will not last beyond next summer, Sir John.

  98. JamesG
    Posted October 25, 2020 at 3:12 am | Permalink

    First and foremost disband Sage. and remove Whitty, Vallance . You don’t get to call yourself an expert when you are proven wrong all the time. Bring in the people who have been proven correct and who know how to actually do stats, and epidemiology – ie Sunetra Gupta, Carl Heneghan, Anders Tegnell plus proper modelers who use correct assumptions and the data we know now. Most especially get rid of the social workers and loony lefties (who clearly have a different agenda than public health). Then have a proper, quick debate on the true effects of masks, 2m distancing, rule of 6, quarantining healthy people, curfews and selective policing* – all of which seem to be barmy ideas based on flimsy and contradictory assumptions. Lets have a proper estimate of the number of excess deaths caused by lockdowns for a kick-off as well as the positive and negative things due to home-working.

    *mass gatherings of BLM protestors assumed immune due to their protective shield of self-righteousness versus small groups of lockdown protestors who are treated as mass-murdering super-spreaders.

  99. lojolondon
    Posted October 25, 2020 at 6:35 am | Permalink

    The government should step right out of this situation. Covid 19 is NOT a “pandemic”, it is the flu. Some people are badly affected, but most are not, and the survival rate is 99.97% , while the average age of death is 82.
    So, if you are healthy and young, at school or university, or working you should be doing your job exactly as usual, and kids should be playing every single sport, including rugby and wrestling, etc.
    If you are old, have diabetes or otherwise vulnerable, it is your own responsibility to isolate yourself, as strictly as you choose.
    If you are old and live with your children, then you need to think about it – either make the children miss out for some months, or make space.
    LockDowns / house arrest does not work, because EVERYONE WILL catch Covid, sooner or later. If you isolate yourself for 3 years, you will catch it in 4 years time, you are only postponing the inevitable, and it is likely you will be in a worse condition to defeat it when you catch it.
    Take VitaminC, VitaminD and Zinc. Treatment is becoming better, fewer people now killed by ‘ventilators’. Lastly, I believe there never will be a vaccine, that is just the MSM forcing politicians to waste millions subsidising big Pharma.

  100. Clive
    Posted October 25, 2020 at 9:11 am | Permalink

    Outside my front door I have a sign which simply says . Please come in, but you enter at your own risk . Works great . Yes I know it’s a bit grown up for some .😁

  101. Roger Phillips
    Posted October 25, 2020 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    If people want to protect themselves then they are free to do so, but let the rest of us get back to normal now.

  102. TooleyStu
    Posted October 25, 2020 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    SJR…
    What an excellent post and question.

    SJR asked.. (I think the government needs to do more to save livelihoods and needs to remove those controls that have limited utility in defeating the virus but do considerable damage to jobs and business.) ..

    (add) .. but do considerable damage to jobs, Careers, Self Esteem, Mental Health and business.

    I have seen, first hand, members of my own family retract into their shells this year..
    Due to PROJECT FEAR, my 82 year old parent had NO HUMAN CONTACT FOR 6 WEEKS.

    It was never about health.
    It was always about power and control.

    **** FEAR IS THE CURRENCY OF CONTROL ****

    Best regards, as always,
    Tooley Stu

  103. Sarah Tun
    Posted October 25, 2020 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    The government has two real problems (apart from the media which a thorn in their side) which they can solve.
    1. Coronavirus
    2. Communication

    First to communication: Mr Johnson needs to convey much more comprehensively his agenda/plan about any specific item. The school meals issue for example, is badly communicated. He simply needs to say funding is included for local governments and let them deal with it. With the pandemic, there are too many side issues expected of the government. He needs to step ahead of media criticism and anticipate it. Example: regionals want more control (track and trace) so I’m giving them control vis a vis school meals.
    He needs to anticipate criticism and confusion and deal with it before it arises.
    When he manages communication, the coronavirus matter will be addressed as he communicates the delicate balance he is attempting to strike.
    BY THE WAY, to answer your query: I think the less fear and less knee jerk reaction to the virus the better now. NHS has its problems and needs to deal more with regular cases now. And it would help if people stopped worshipping the NHS. It is flawed just like any organisation.

    • a-tracy
      Posted October 25, 2020 at 6:49 pm | Permalink

      Boris should offer to take the money back from the local authorities and figure out a national way to deliver meals in schools for those normally on school meals with a sandwich for them to take home for tea, surely parents can provide some cereal for breakfast. I give up!

      The communication is APPALLING from the Conservatives. John you must object to this constant media and sports and arts people with social media platforms finding more and more ways to diss Conservative MPs without ANY rebuttal. You need to come back and communicate with facts and allowances available for parents or you’re dead ducks.

  104. M Brandreth- Jones
    Posted October 25, 2020 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

    The question must be := If you were aware that there were people infected with covid working around you, would you be happy to go into that environment or send you nearest and dearest?

    • TooleyStu
      Posted October 26, 2020 at 10:19 am | Permalink

      Yes, I have no problem with that at all.
      And I mean.. *absolutely no problem*.

      I have read all the available info on this ‘virus’, including the work by…
      Dr Kaufman, Cowan, Lanka, Schoning, Coleman, Mikovits, Merkolin, Adil, Buttar, O’Shea, Lando, Alexov, Corbett, Watson, Madej, ..

      And the excellently researched (140 pages of citations) book ‘The Invisible Rainbow’ by Arthur Firstenberg.

      So, Yes, I would have ‘no fear’ going to a virus heavy environment.

      Best regards, as ever,
      Tooley Stu

    • a-tracy
      Posted October 26, 2020 at 12:25 pm | Permalink

      M Brandreth-Jones, there are people working around people infected with the covid virus week in and week out and they have been since March, caregivers, medical staff and cleaners, supermarket workers, bakers the whole place doesn’t close down if one colleague gets the virus, you isolate and test and have bubble groups that may need to be isolated and checked on.

  105. APL
    Posted October 25, 2020 at 9:24 pm | Permalink

    JR: “Today I seek your views on how much economic sacrifice we should make to try to slow or delay the transmission of this disease.”

    Economic sacrifice? After giving yourselves a £6grand pay rise, tell me, what economic sacrifice have you MPs made?

    • APL
      Posted October 27, 2020 at 10:23 pm | Permalink

      APL: “After giving yourselves a £6grand pay rise, tell me, what economic sacrifice have you MPs made?”

      Silence, probably working on volume 1:-

      Why after taking a quarter of the year off, cowering in front of our video cameras, we deserve £6,000 pay rise, while our constituents have been losing their jobs, and businesses,
      and the really unfortunate, their lives, while we’ve all sat on our hands thinking of new innovative ways to curtail or destroy the liberties of the population.

      Contributory authors: 650 Westminster MPs.

      Reply I do not recall taking one quarter of the year off and successfully pressed for the resumption of Parliament At Westminster in person.

  106. Martin
    Posted October 27, 2020 at 10:50 am | Permalink

    I still think we need to test, for Covid-19, more maybe the whole population every month.

    When a vaccination arrives it is going to be repeated every six moths, with stamps in passports needed for international travel.

    • APL
      Posted October 27, 2020 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

      𝐌𝐢𝐤𝐞 𝐘𝐞𝐚𝐝𝐨𝐧: “Medical, scientific, legal people, you must be able to see now, and say it is our professional view that SAGE is providing aberrant, seriously, lethally wrong advice. The people of this country and the scientists and scientific bodies should demand their immediate ejection. Listners? The reason the pandemic is not over, is because SAGE says it’s not. That’s it.”

      James Dellingpole interviews Dr Mike Yeadon.

      https://delingpole.podbean.com/e/dr-mike-yeadon/?fbclid=IwAR3QUV2F8JhucWrAw3FM-qGl_2cg_JSzBIG5U3F9NhQfNmu3ra8udi0GBt4

      • Martin
        Posted October 28, 2020 at 11:25 am | Permalink

        Its a pity that some keep falling for this “herd immunity” stuff.

        There are plenty of diseases where boosters or repeat vaccinations are needed.

  107. Jonathan Brown
    Posted October 28, 2020 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    It is time for a review of policies which have concentrated on the one disease at the expense of almost every other aspect of life.
    Evidence is mounting of damage to economic and business life; healthcare (other than covid), physical and mental; education; community, social and family life.
    A cost-benefit analysis of lockdown policies, taking properly into account what has been learned in the treatment of coronavirus is needed.
    Many have invested heavily in lockdown, but we need clear demonstration that this is really the only show in town.

  108. Celina Fregoso
    Posted November 2, 2020 at 6:58 am | Permalink

    Let the local NHS deal with covid19 as it deals with other significant diseases such as influenza.

  • 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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