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As week eight of the lockdown comes to a close, there are some rumblings of dissent – although it’s coming from people unhappy from the Prime Minister’s easing of the lockdown rather than the fact that we’ve been confined to our homes for two months. Opinium polling for the Observer over the past week has seen a significant drop in public confidence in – and approval of – the Government. Approval ratings have been dropping steadily since a highpoint in late March – and those who disapprove now form the majority for the first time since the lockdown began:

Anti-Lockdown Protests

A Protestor in Hyde Park yesterday holding up a sign

What little genuine dissent there is was confined to a handful of anti-lockdown protestors yesterday. One such demonstration was in Hyde Park where, according to the Mail, 19 people were arrested, including Jeremy Corbyn’s brother. My friend James Delingpole attended and was threatened with a £30 fine merely for trying to report on the demo for Breitbart. You can read his piece about that here (includes video footage of him being confronted by a police officer).

I’ve received several reports from readers who attended the Hyde Park rally, including this one:

I went to Speakers’ Corner today. Britain’s traditional fee speech locale in London. I counted 255 people, but there were more than that, perhaps as many as 300. No “far right” evident. People from all sides of the political divide, including pro- and anti-Brexit. What the people I spoke to had in common was getting their news and info and trying to make decisions based on information from ‘alternative’ sources. All were dubious about the number of deaths from COVID-19 being recored by doctors in the absence of testing evidence, although most were also dubious about the accuracy of the standard PCR tests. Huge mistrust of official “science” and officialdom in general.

It was therapeutic being with these people. Heart-warming after these weeks of terror and house arrest. Odd looks from passers-by, as if we were all mad. Like being a Brexit-voter while working at a university. Some humorous looks, but others aggressive and combative. One cyclist deliberately accelerated towards some protesters who managed to avoid a collision by the skin of their teeth.

I was asked to move on by a police officer after being told I was “breaking the law”, even though I was just sitting on the grass in the sunshine with a few others. When I asked the officer which law I was breaking he got a bit twitchy. Said assembling with others not from my household was against the rules enshrined in the 1984 Public Health Act. When I challenged the lawfulness of these rules and mentioned Simon Dolan’s lawsuit, he said “don’t start being clever” and threatened to arrest all of us.

Spoke with many afterwards. Was told that weekly protests are planned from now on. All the people I met have gone from respectable to deplorable in a matter of weeks.

If you want to see some footage from the Hyde Park demonstration, including the arrest of Piers Corbyn, click here. This was shot exclusively for Lockdown Sceptics by a professional filmmaker who attended the event.

I’ve also been contacted by someone from For Freedom’s Sake, the Manchester-based anti-lockdown group, who attended the demo in Platt Fields Park. Smaller turnout than in Hyde Park and no arrests:

There was a turnout of around 60 people, mixed gender and ages and a largely ordinary working people crowd. Police presence was pretty heavy, including officers mounted on bikes and horseback, but thankfully there were no arrests or fines doled out (as far as we witnessed.)

You can see some footage on Twitter of the Manchester protest here.

Lord Gumption

One person who would defend our right to protest, even in the midst of a pandemic, is Lord Sumption, the former UK Supreme Court judge. He has consistently been the most high-profile public figure to criticise the lockdown – a great advocate for the sceptics’ cause. His lead opinion piece in today’s Sunday Times is worth reading in full (and sharing on social media), but his point about “Protect the NHS” being the main reason for shutting us all in our homes is particularly good:

It was never much of a rationale. The NHS is there to protect us, not the other way round. How could its unpreparedness possibly justify depriving the entire UK population of its liberty, pushing us into the worst recession since the early 18th century, destroying millions of jobs and hundreds of thousands of businesses, piling up public and private debt on a crippling scale and undermining the education of our children?

Since the Prime Minister’s broadcast last Sunday, the lockdown has found a new rationale. The Government has dropped “Protect the NHS” from its slogan. The reason is plain from the paper it published the following day. The NHS is not at risk.

Sumption’s conclusion is withering:

The Prime Minister’s broadcast was supposed to be his Churchillian moment. Instead, we beheld a man imprisoned by his own rhetoric and the logic of his past mistakes.

The lockdown is now all about protecting politicians’ backs. They are not wicked men, just timid ones, terrified of being blamed for deaths on their watch. But it is a wicked thing that they are doing.

Failings of Irish High Court

John Waters addresses supporters outside the Court

It’s a pity the High Court judge in the John Waters and Gemma O’Doherty case – they’re the two applicants trying to get a judicial review of the lockdown in Ireland – isn’t more like Lord Sumption. I’ve published a piece today by an Irish social scientist (whom I’ve given the pseudonym “John William O’Sullivan”) explaining what the judge in that case got wrong when he refused their application last week. Here’s the key paragraph:

Justice Meenan’s argument against Waters’ and O’Doherty’s case is rather simple: he claims they must prove that the Irish Government’s actions have been “disproportionate” in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. He claims, citing previous cases, that constitutional rights are not absolute and that if a government acts against them to deal with a threat “proportionately” then the government is allowed to trample on those constitutional rights.

The problem with this argument is that it implicitly sides with Government action as against the constitution. The Government is assumed to be in the right and the onus is on the citizen to prove not that the Government’s actions are unconstitutional, but that they are “disproportionate” given the threat of the pandemic relative to the constitutionally-protected rights they override.

Not So Rich List

Elsewhere in the Sunday Times is the news that the pandemic has wiped £54 billion from the wealth of Britain’s super rich in the past two months. “More than half of the country’s billionaires are nursing losses as high as £6 billion, with the combined wealth of the 1,000 wealthiest individuals and families plunging for the first time since 2009, in the wake of the financial crisis,” it says.

UK Government Petition Finally Approved

At last, the UK Government Petitions site has approved an anti-lockdown petition. Not as militant as some of us would like, but better than nothing. You can sign it here. If it gets 10,000 signatures the Government will have to respond; if it gets 100,000, it will be considered for debate in Parliament. Last time I checked it had just over 500.

Epidemiologist Condemns Lockdowns

Knut Wittkowski

There’s a great Q&A in Spiked with Knut Wittkowski, former head of Biostatistics, Epidemiology, and Research Design at the Rockefeller University’s Center for Clinical and Translational Science. A more sceptical epidemiologist you’re unlikely to find, and that’s going some given how many we’ve already featured on this site. Here’s one of the highlights:

Spiked: Have our interventions made much of an impact?

Wittkowski: When the whole thing started, there was one reason given for the lockdown and that was to prevent hospitals from becoming overloaded. There is no indication that hospitals could ever have become overloaded, irrespective of what we did. So we could open up again, and forget the whole thing.

I hope the intervention did not have too much of an impact because it most likely made the situation worse. The intervention was to ‘flatten the curve’. That means that there would be the same number of cases but spread out over a longer period of time, because otherwise the hospitals would not have enough capacity.

Now, as we know, children and young adults do not end up in hospitals. It is only those who are both elderly and have comorbidities that do. Therefore you have to protect the elderly and the nursing homes. The ideal approach would be to simply shut the door of the nursing homes and keep the personnel and the elderly locked in for a certain amount of time, and pay the staff overtime to stay there for 24 hours per day.

How long can you do that for? For three weeks, that is possible. For 18 months, it is not. The flattening of the curve, the prolongation of the epidemic, makes it more difficult to protect the elderly, who are at risk. More of the elderly people become infected, and we have more deaths.

Spiked: What are the dangers of lockdown?

Wittkowski: Firstly, we have the direct consequences: suicides, domestic violence and other social consequences leading to death. And then we have people who are too scared to go to the hospitals for other problems like strokes or heart attacks. So people stay away from hospitals because of the Covid fear. And then they die.

COVID-19 and the Cult of Anxiety

I published a piece last week called “COVID-19 and the Infantilisation of Dissent” by a maverick academic whom I called “Wilfred Thomas”. That went down well, so today I’m publishing a follow-up: “The Hyper-Rationality of Crowds: COVID-19 and the Cult of Anxiety“. This academic, a social scientist, is trying to understand why governments around the world seemed to panic simultaneously in response to the viral outbreak, gripped by the same irrational fear. But this isn’t a dry, academic paper. On the contrary, it’s like a rant delivered at 100mph by your best mate in the pub after he’s taken a superdrug that temporarily boosts his IQ to 200. Here’s a particularly good paragraph:

So how did we get here, to a world in which children can be herded into their little playpark Guantanamo cells not as a punishment but – remarkably – as an indicator of a society’s love and care for those same children? One word that springs immediately to mind is “madness.” “We must be mad – literally mad – to be permitting all of this,” you may very well say to yourself (if, that is, you have a fondness for paraphrasing Enoch Powell). Madness. It’s a good word, isn’t it? Rolls off the tongue. Helps to burn off steam. After all, who doesn’t like to channel their inner cab driver every now and then? “The world’s gone mad, mate. Take that wot’s-’is-name. Bonking Boris. That’s ’im. I had ’im in the back of me cab once. Screw loose, if you ask me. It’s all that sex wot’s done it. And that Ferguson? Shag other people’s wives all you like mate, but take your mathematical modelling back to the funny farm wiv ya when you’re done!” And yet, sadly, individual madness can’t really explain our current predicament. It’s a bit like blaming the invasion of Iraq in 2003 solely on President Bush and his family’s supposed mania for oil. Nice and comforting and all that, but hardly convincing when considered in light of the messy complexities of 21st century geo-politics. The problem with any individualised idea of madness is that we have a large group of people in the West right now who have allowed – have willingly and happily enabled – our lockdown societies to emerge. You and I may not be directly culpable. We may not agree with what’s happening. We may turn the cold eye of reproof upon our fellow citizens. If society were a golf club, we might even go so far as to write a strongly-worded letter of complaint to the club secretary. But whether we like it or not, right now we’re individual members of a society that, precisely as a society, has decided that battery-farming kids, playing football without tackling and hiding under the bed in order to avoid social interaction are all genuinely, 100% bona fide great ideas.

Please do read the whole thing.

Welsh Government Angling For First Prize As Most Incompetent Regional Executive in UK

A reader in Wales has got in touch to vent his despair about the idiocy of the Welsh Government, which seems determined to ruin the economy. “The tourism industry, and especially the holiday accommodation and sporting sector (which I am involved with), is being decimated,” he says. He points to this story as evidence of how brain-dead the official response to the pandemic has been – it relates to how police stopped people fishing at Cledlyn Lake Fishery in Ceredigion on Friday, even though the initial advice from Angling Cymru is that fishing is a permitted form of exercise and people are allowed to drive short distances to do it. The revised guidelines now state only disabled people can drive to go fishing. (They may have changed again since going to press.)

US Government Was Advised Against Closing Schools During 1951-52 Polio Pandemic

A reader has drawn my attention to a paper published in the Journal of School Health in 1951 on the US polio epidemic entitled “Should Polio Close Schools?“. Then, as now, one of the biggest questions was about the efficacy of closing schools to prevent the disease being spread. Here’s an extract from the abstract:

Anderson and Arnstein in “Communicable Disease Control”, 1948, in discussing poliomyelitis, say: “School closure, as well as closure of moving picture theatres, Sunday schools, and other similar groups, is frequently attempted in response to popular demand that ‘something be done’. Although tried repeatedly, it is of no proved value, never altering the usual curve of the epidemic: nor has the disease been more prevalent or persistent in those communities with the courage to resist such demands.”

The author of this paper comes to the same conclusion about the 1951–52 epidemic. For context, the number of Americans diagnosed with polio in the epidemic of 1948–49 was 42,173, with 2,720 fatalities. The 1951–52 epidemic was the worst in America’s history. Of the 57,628 cases reported that year, 3,145 died and 21,269 were left with mild to disabling paralysis. By contrast, the number of people aged 19 and under who have died in English hospitals after testing positive for COVID-19 in the UK is currently 12. For those aged 15 and under, it’s two, according to Channel 4 Fact Check. Professor David Spiegelhalter at the University of Cambridge estimates that the risk to children of catching and then dying from coronavirus is one in 5.3 million. In the light of this, might Anneliese Dodds, Labour’s shadow chancellor, reconsider her decision not to send her six year-old back to school?

Scottish Mum Starts a Petition Urging the Government to Reopen Schools… and is Cancelled

Last week, Kathrine Jebsen Moore, a journalist based in Scotland (and a friend of mine), started a Change.org petition urging the Government to re-open schools across the UK. In the hope of getting some signatures, she posted a message about it on a Facebook group she’s a member of called Edinburgh Gossip Girls. Perhaps naively, she was expecting this group of about 16,000 women in the Scottish capital – many of them mothers – to be sympathetic. I’ll let Kathrine take up the story:

Within a few minutes my post had 62 angry emojis, six stunned ones, three sad ones, and only 26 likes – and one heart. The comments reinforced the mood. As well as the simple “that’ll be a no” and “wouldn’t dream of signing this”, it quickly progressed to mud-slinging, strawmen and high tempers. Some comments were, worryingly, from teachers, who failed to show the professional pride that has been apparent among NHS workers and others who’ve continued to do their jobs during the pandemic. Although a few were supportive, I’ll include a selection which conveys the general spirit:

“Eh, not a chance. Most kids are fine without school.”

“Education matters but so does not dying.”

“Can everybody please report to admin and get this goady post taken down?”

Another accused me of having had “too many daytime G&Ts”.

“Boo hoo, my kids miss their friends… they’ll miss them a lot more if they’re dead.”

That was the last comment before the admin switched off comments, with the words: “I’m not sure you’re going to get much support here, and this is a post that clearly stirs up a lot of angst and emotion which I’m trying to avoid. This is one for your personal FB, thanks.”

I’ve published the whole story on Lockdown Sceptics under “Is Shutting Schools Really Necessary?” on the right-hand side. You can read it here.

A Doctor Writes…

I received an email from a doctor today which notes that, among other things, the two-metre social distancing rule isn’t observed by doctors and nurses at her hospital. Nor do they wear masks when off the wards.

I’m a critical care consultant in a non-London District General Hospital and have been working throughout the pandemic.

There has been adequate PPE, which has been used in compliance with Government guidance, throughout this time by staff having patient contact. There has been a noticeable difference in how different areas apply this though, with some areas or specialties being extremely cautious, e.g. full PPE for procedures involving patients who’ve tested negative, making procedures slower, more difficult and more prone to complications.

As part of the escalation plan, more staff have been moved into critical care to assist with patient management. As our facilities have not increased, we have therefore had crowded coffee rooms and offices, with everybody sitting at a normal distance next to each other, without masks – it’s difficult to eat with a mask on) – sharing kitchen facilities and changing rooms. We then have the farce of going to the hospital dining room or coffee shop, and sitting spaced out two to a table, as we are visible to the non-clinical world. Several junior doctors at my hospital tested positive, and had a week off, returning once symptoms had resolved, although as they are not re-tested, and are allowed to return to work with a persistent cough, who knows whether they were still shedding the virus. My personal belief is that a significant proportion of the nursing and medical staff have had the virus, with either no or minor symptoms, and have some degree of immunity.

In my opinion, the hospital I work at did an admirable job of preparing and escalating, and managed well with a significant number of very ill patients. The de-escalation, now that we have far fewer patients, seems to be less logical, although this is probably due to the national guidance.

On a separate note, the news from NHS England earlier this week that showed that patients with diabetes have a higher chance of dying with covid was really unhelpful. Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes are completely different diseases, with Type 2 being associated with obesity, which we already know is one of the strongest risk factors for a poor outcome from covid. I’m not aware of any evidence showing an increased risk from having Type 1 diabetes. I haven’t seen any seriously unwell people with Type 1 diabetes, compared to Type 2. While it seemed logical before we had first hand experience to assume that people with Type 1 would be at increased risk, this hasn’t appeared the case, but statements like this from NHS England will continue to terrify those people with Type 1 who are otherwise fit and at low risk.

By the end of last week, we had no Covid patients left in critical care. As the pandemic dies down, paradoxically, the public’s paranoia and pointless mask-wearing is increasing. I have no wish to wear a face covering in public that will become saturated with the vapour I breathe out, including the many normal bacteria that colonise my nose. Face coverings are wrong for so many reasons – being a harbour for viruses and bacteria being one, but also for reducing facial recognition, contact and empathy with those we are interacting with, which I worry will cause increased friction between members of the community.

I was delighted to find your Lockdown Sceptics website, and know I’m not alone.

Latest on Slow-Mo Car Crash that is the NHS’s Contact-Tracing App

My correspondent who’s been covering the roll-out of the NHS contact-tracing app draws my attention to a leak over the weekend:

Can’t usually bring myself to read the Guardian but I may have to develop a tolerance as it seems to be the go-to paper for leaks from the Ethics Advisory Board overseeing the NHSx ‘public panic’ app. Not surprising, given that the majority of the board are legal and philosophy academics. Not a technologist amongst them as far as I can tell from the publicly available data.

The news is… the Board was not told about the development of a second version of the app (the Zulke developed one). According to the Guardian, which has spoken to some Board members on condition of anonymity: “Some members are particularly concerned that they were not informed about the development of a second, parallel NHS app that was being built in secret until its existence was disclosed by the Financial Times last week.”

If the Ethics Advisory Board cannot speak out publicly and is dependent on Matt Hancock reading the Guardian to get its message across then no wonder Parliament’s Human Rights Committee felt the Board was inadequate (as previously reported on Lockdown Sceptics).

The apparent lack of a tech member of the Board is astonishing. It means dropped balls – such as asking for all app code to be open sourced, but not asking for server-side, backend code to be included. Given the centralised data model, that’s a big deal.

As things stand, the Ethics Advisory Board appears to be a political fig leaf, whining about how powerless it is to the Guardian while Hancock charges ahead with his Big Brother apps.

Sue Denim Responds to Imperial College’s Statement to the Sunday Telegraph

The ex-Google engineer who reviewed Neil Ferguson’s code for this site under the name “Sue Denim” has sent me a response to today’s news story in the Sunday Telegraph – “Coding that led to lockdown was ‘totally unreliable’ and a ‘buggy mess’, say experts“. That story is based on a comment piece in the same paper by two senior software engineers. In response to their scathing assessment of Ferguson’s computer model, Imperial College has dug in. It gave the following statement to the Sunday Telegraph:

The UK Government has never relied on a single disease model to inform decision-making. As has been repeatedly stated, decision-making around lockdown was based on a consensus view of the scientific evidence, including several modelling studies by different academic groups.

Multiple groups using different models concluded that the pandemic would overwhelm the NHS and cause unacceptably high mortality in the absence of extreme social distancing measures. Within the Imperial research team we use several models of differing levels of complexity, all of which produce consistent results. We are working with a number of legitimate academic groups and technology companies to develop, test and further document the simulation code referred to. However, we reject the partisan reviews of a few clearly ideologically motivated commentators.

Epidemiology is not a branch of computer science and the conclusions around lockdown rely not on any mathematical model but on the scientific consensus that COVID-19 is a highly transmissible virus with an infection fatality ratio exceeding 0.5pc in the UK”

Sue Denim has responded as follows:

ICL is asserting here that once a few academics with the right kind of politics agree on something, that’s science. Replicability, accuracy versus observed outcomes and not being buggy are things that apparently only partisans care about. The claim about ideology is probably a reference to my comment about the insurance industry, but they then immediately prove the point by claiming “epidemiology is not a branch of computer science”. That’s exactly the sort of explanation for failure that companies can’t give to their customers, because nobody cares. Refusal to work cross-discipline is a mindset problem unique to academia, one that companies cannot and do not tolerate.

Finally, their claim about the Government never relying on a single disease model to make decisions doesn’t seem to match the official SAGE publication from March 9th, “Potential impact of behavioural and social interventions on an epidemic of Covid-19 in the UK“, which cites the ICL Report 9 paper and its assumptions as the only source of predictions for what would happen. The claim about consensus is equally dodgy: nearly as soon as the UK changed course in response to ICL’s model, a team at Oxford (Gupta et al) publicly contradicted them.

In my second post I asked if Imperial College’s administrators knew how out of control this department had become. Now we know the answer: yes, and they don’t care.

Worth noting that Imperial has just sealed a deal with with the Chinese company Huawei worth £5 million. The Mail on Sunday has the story.

A Banker Writes…

A banker has got in touch to express his astonishment that last weekend’s leak from Her Majesty’s Treasury (HMT), revealing how much the Government’s expenditure is likely to increase by this year, didn’t result in more comment:

I was a banker for 30 years and have worked with governments in the NL, France, Germany and the UK as well as major European corporates on privatisations and major capital raisings. Never have I seen a finance ministry send up what I can only describe as a distress flare to advertise the trouble its economy is in. Most finance ministries would avoid doing this like the plague (pardon the phrase). They all borrow internationally and the rule of the game is do nothing that damages your credit rating. If you damage it, not only does your cost of borrowing go up, but your very ability to borrow may be impacted. This matters when you’re going to have to rely massively on the kindness of strangers to finance your spending by massively increased debt issuance.

He can think of three possible explanations for the leak:

  • There is serious alarm in HMT about the Government’s reaction to Covid and the economic cost of the lockdown, including Rishi Sunak’s expensive and over-generous bailouts. Maybe a worried official hoped the international capital markets could be used to put the frighteners on the PM.
  • There’s tension between No 10 and No 11 and Sunak was trying to appeal to the international capital markets to put a brake on his boss’s recklessness by pointing out the financial and potentially political cost of an extended lockdown.
  • HMT officials are scared shitless about the cost of Sunak’s crowd-pleasing and trying to put a shot across his bows.

He continues:

I’m astonished how little serious reflection this leak has occasioned. The FT barely noticed it. More tellingly, it didn’t spark a week-long comment war on Bloomberg, Twitter or the Wall St Journal. All it did was spark a straw fire about “no tax increases” with some sensible reactions from former Chancellors.

But it still puzzles me as to why it ever happened. And why it didn’t cause utter pandemonium. Because the economic cost of this madness will only be felt once we get out of lockdown’s phoney war and the “Blitz” proper gets underway later this year, by which I mean when all those who are unemployed and don’t know it yet have a bruising encounter with economic reality. I wonder what the Blitz spirit will feel like then? How many royals will have to be axed from the civil list so that Buck House can once again look the East End in the eye?

Or maybe the leak was just mistimed, premature. We’re still all too busy clapping Captain Tom and the nurses (God bless them) to cope with any likely reality 3-6 months down the road. Hence the damp squib?

Round-Up

And on to the round-up of all the stories I’ve noticed, or which have been been brought to my attention, in the last 24 hours:

Small Businesses That Have Reopened

On Monday, Lockdown Sceptics launched a searchable directory of open businesses across the UK. The idea is to celebrate those retail and hospitality businesses that have reopened, as well as help people find out what has opened in their area. But we need your help to build it, so we’ve created a form you can fill out to tell us about those businesses that have reopened near you. Please visit the page and let us know about those brave folk who are doing their bit to get our country back on its feet.

Shameless Begging Bit

Thanks as always to those of you who made a donation in the last 24 hours to pay for the upkeep of this site. A journalist called David Oldroyd-Bolt lent a hand today and I’d like to pay him something, so if you feel like donating please click here. And if you want to flag up any stories or links I should include in tomorrow’s update, email me here. Incidentally, hope you like the new format with sub-headings and more pictures.

And Finally…

I seem to have taken a leaf out of the News at Ten and begun to round off each daily bulletin with a funny bit beginning “And finally…” Today’s “and finally” is brought to you courtesy of our friends at Comedy Unleashed and features Meggie Foster, a performer who specialises in lip-synch comedy. Her Boris is particularly good. Until tomorrow…

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RDawg
RDawg
18 days ago

Wow! I am comment number one today. Woo hoo. Er…that’s it.

Annie
Annie
18 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

Congratulations!
Please, brothers and sisters, sane in the midst of insanity, join me in the following toast ( you don’t have to be Scottish, I just like the style):

Here’s tae us, there’s gey few like us and the rest are all brain deid.

Marcus
Marcus
18 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

We’re possibly getting to the point where it’s all been said before and all that remains is to await the end of civilisation…

IanE
IanE
18 days ago
Reply to  Marcus

Yes indeed – I keep thinking (and showing my age) of That Was The Week That Was; you know (Millicent Martin, I think), ‘It’s aw-awll been said before, but so has every letter of the alphabet’.

I wonder if anything would change if every MP had to read every Lockdownsceptics article? No, probably not!

Marcus
Marcus
18 days ago
Reply to  IanE

By this point I expect many of them must realise what they’ve done, but a hole so deep has been dug it’s almost impossible for them to climb out. It’s clear that it’s going to take much much longer to convince people it’s ‘safe’ (whatever that means), than it did to indoctrinate those people with the fear they are now housebound or paralysed by.

Perhaps the hundreds of thousands who demanded the lockdown by petition could pick up the bill?

Bella Donna
Bella Donna
17 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

Not any longer 😁

Chris John
Chris John
17 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

Only way is down the numbers!

Ethelred the Unready
Ethelred the Unready
18 days ago

It’s all over, bar the politicking

IanE
IanE
18 days ago

Just one word: Lemmings.

grammarschoolman
grammarschoolman
18 days ago
Reply to  IanE

But lemmings would escape (and then, admittedly, jump off a cliff).

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago

Lemmings is an interesting analogy because they’ve never jumped off cliffs. That was a Disney scam that unfortunately is still believed 50 years later. http://www.bbc.co.uk/earth/story/20141122-the-truth-about-lemmings
So to follow the analogy, it’s the media-consuming public who are the lemmings, not the actual lemmings.

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago

I am currently breaking lockdown by visiting my parents. Naughty me.

They might be coming round! Dad is a particularly fan of Lord Gumption.

We might be beginning to turn them guys! Although ‘them’ are the people who remain by and large still normal – the Comfortable Unbothered – rather than the Paranoid Bedwetters.

ianp
ianp
18 days ago
Reply to  Farinances

Absolutely right. The apathetic, the see what happens crowd… That’s a number of my friends. They’re not newnormalista hysterical lunatic turkeys voting for Xmas at all, they’re getting by, sliding around the rules when possible, not risking much.. but they will have a breaking point. There are a huge number of them out there, anyone not wearing a mask is potentially one of those people.

My breaking point was day 1. Break them down one by one using any means possible.

Oh, interesting to note on my drive down to the south coast today, there’s been a rapid infrastructure deployment plan undertaken I have to say. Low energy lights, ‘smart motorway’ work and signs about whole stretches of motorway being closed last week of May. This must be costing a fortune.

I have more of an idea of the endgame here but it’s going to painful to wait and watch as the primitives in society catch up, and at what cost to society. We’ll all end up in the same place, but the idiots will believe the path they were taken on, we on here will know what that path was.

JohnB
JohnB
17 days ago
Reply to  ianp

Which motorway, Ian ?

steve__m
steve__m
17 days ago
Reply to  Farinances

So the idea (of some lockdown sceptics) that the young should freely gain their herd immunity while the old and ill are shielded is a non-starter in your opinion?

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  Farinances

You’re getting results. Brilliant!

My gardener came to cut the grass this morning. At the very beginning of the lockdown, we observed social distancing, though last time he was here, I did criticise the 2m rule somewhat scathingly. Obviously, he has to respect his clients, some of them are very elderly and they hide in their house while he works outside. However, I noticed this morning that we were happily standing shoulder to shoulder discussing which plants to move where.

Chipping away ….

Gracie Knoll
Gracie Knoll
18 days ago

New video from Prof Dolores Cahill

https://youtu.be/U9ti6isM-NY

ESSENTIAL VIEWING!

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  Gracie Knoll

Thanks for this link. I agree, absolutely essential viewing.
Because the sound is slightly distorted, I used the subtitle facility. Some of the transcript was clearly written by an autospell that had trouble with Prof Cahill’s accent. Oh dear, what a travesty but some gaffs were hilarious too.

Albie
Albie
18 days ago

YouGov poll on their “chat” function: Complete the sentence. “We should now start to ease lockdown restrictions for…”

Results so far…

No-one – 44%
Under 60s – 20%
Everyone – 19%
Under 75s – 9%
Not sure – 7%
Under 90s – 1%

People wanting the lockdown eased have their vote split four ways! At a glance it would appear most do not want lockdown eased when in fact they are outnumbered 49% to 44%. I suppose it’s positive news though as we have arrived at a point where opinion polls can’t get the result they crave so they split the unwanted answer 4 ways.

Jerry Nerts
Jerry Nerts
18 days ago
Reply to  Albie

That’s rather a game changer, on the face of it. Seems like most people take it as read that a vast majority want lockdown to remain. Who ever would have thought that poll results would be misleading?

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  Jerry Nerts

Isn’t that the point of polls? Ask the questions that solicit the desired response.

Nigel Baldwin
Nigel Baldwin
18 days ago
Reply to  Albie

I don’t believe these figures anymore than I believe the deaths from Covid. Granted I mix with radicals, liberals and general anti-establishment types but I know of no-one who wants the lockdown to stay in place. (BUT, caveat, I also know no-one who is on a free holiday until October, sorry furlough.)

Hammer Onats
Hammer Onats
18 days ago
Reply to  Nigel Baldwin

I don’t believe the figures either Nigel. Actions speak looser than words – more cars hitting the road, people queuing round the block at garden centres etc. My take on what is happening is that there are a significant number of people who are enjoying a taxpayer funded extended holiday, who don’t give a shit that their kids are not getting educated and are spending their days boozing and watching telly.The idiots don’t realise that they may already be unemployed – it’s just being delayed by furlough payments.

ianp
ianp
18 days ago
Reply to  Hammer Onats

Or they don’t actually understand that you can be furloughed for a minimum of 3 weeks, then an employer is free to say ‘cheerio’ , redundancy which they will do if they don’t think the work wlll be there for them at the other side, especially as from June(?), an employer is expected to pay a larger proportion of this cost (who knows what that is yet)… BUT, here’s the gotcha:

You CANNOT furlough someone on sick leave.

So, the true wastrels will, on ending of Furlough period, immediately call in sick saying ‘I got da corona’ – no need to provide proof or anything, just any one of the million symptoms that seem to cover having this bubonic plague.

Job done, back on holiday (if on an employer occupational sick pay)… but only minimum SSP for those where that’s not in place.

We’ve all seen this happen at work with people on long term ‘sick leave’, their occupational pay runs out, and they then magically appear back at work the very next day, only to start feeling ‘dizzy’ towards the end of the day, and off they go again.

I feel a right old battle coming up soon… HR departments are going to be up to their eyeballs in ‘consulatations’.

This will not end well

JohnB
JohnB
17 days ago
Reply to  ianp

Nothing in the universe works better due to the involvement of HR … 🙂

Gossamer
Gossamer
18 days ago
Reply to  Hammer Onats

Just to add to that… I was happy to see there was an 11-a-side football match in the local park today. I doubt they were all from the same household 🙂

Albie
Albie
18 days ago
Reply to  Nigel Baldwin

Opinion polls are potentially the strongest weapons of propaganda. I’ve noticed the wording on several of these lockdown surveys is “loaded”. It’s not as simplistic and straightforward as say the pre-Brexit polls of leave or remain or unsure. These are weighted to convey a pro-lockdown message, and pounced upon, by the likes of the Observer, as today’s headline above proves.

Jane84
Jane84
18 days ago
Reply to  Albie

During the whole saga from 2016 onwards every Brexit poll was weighted cunningly, depending which side commisioned it, to give a desired answer. And given all the ways that people could chosoe to leave(hard,soft…) or all the different paths to stay remaining(referneumd, revoke…) there were plenty of ways to split that too. Brexit of course was close to a 50-50 split, so they didn’t have to do much to swing a poll either way.

Gossamer
Gossamer
18 days ago
Reply to  Nigel Baldwin

Nigel, please can I have your friends?!

eastberks44
eastberks44
18 days ago
Reply to  Albie

I think their real name is “Anything For You Guv”.

ianp
ianp
18 days ago
Reply to  Albie

“We should ease lockdown restrictions for ‘Not Sure’…?”

I will keep referring to popular cinema culture, as of course ‘Not Sure’ was the name of the guy in the film Idiocracy, which is now been played out in real life, here and now.

…. Gave me a giggle anyway.

swedenborg
swedenborg
18 days ago

The most damning evidence against the lockdown in the UK – evidence showing that it had at best a marginal effect on the number of cases – is to be found in charts prepared by Carl Heneghan, Professor of Evidence-Based Medicine at Oxford, on the basis of data from the established syndromic surveillance of URI (upper respiratory tract infection), LRI (lower respiratory tract infection) and ILI (influenza-like illness) cases.

In the chart entitled “Respiratory infections per 10,000 population” at this link:
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8235979/UKs-coronavirus-crisis-peaked-lockdown-Expert-argues-draconian-measures-unnecessary.html

the numbers of URI and LRI cases are shown in yellow and red, respectively. It is clear that the lockdown came after the yellow curve had already dipped substantially. The last peak of the yellow curve (in the last of the three humps) occurred already in the first week of March. We can assume that the peak of COVID-19 infection occurred then. COVID-19 was in most cases a mild disease like URI and, therefore, classical ILI symptoms were reported much less frequently. But even the blue curve (ILI) peaked well before the lockdown.
The original chart, available at the following link, also includes the period after the start of testing and shows an exponential rise in the number of suspected COVID-19 cases:
https://www.cebm.net/covid-19/what-does-rcgp-surveillance-tell-us-about-covid-19-in-the-community/

Already in early March there was a huge number of COVID-19 cases (with patients requiring hospitalization and some dying). They were all recorded as something else (flu, pneumonia), since none of the patients then was tested for COVID-19. There is always an inherent bias when a new test is introduced. The test is at first used mostly on persons who were exposed abroad. When the number of tests conducted starts to increase exponentially, there is an exponential rise in the number of detected cases. However, the delayed exponential curve of detected cases does not describe the actual epidemic curve, which was already falling steeply. I shall describe the bias as I did in a very early posting on this blog borrowing an example from the following article:
https://www.heise.de/tp/features/Von-der-fehlenden-wissenschaftlichen-Begruendung-der-Corona-Massnahmen-4709563.html?seite=all

Let us assume that the epidemic curve has just left its exponential phase and started to flatten. There are now just 10 new infections each day for a period of three days (Day 1: 10 new cases; Day 2: 10 new cases; Day 3: 10 new cases). We may compare the infections to Easter eggs hidden by parents in the family garden for their children to hunt. On Day 1, a total of 10 eggs are hidden in the garden; on Day 2, the total is 20; and on Day 3, it is 30. On Day 1, the children are allowed to search in the garden for 1 minute and they find 1 egg. On Day 2, they are allowed 2 minutes and they find 2 eggs. On Day 3, they are allowed 4 minutes and they find 4 eggs. The children would conclude wrongly that the number of eggs(infections) was rising exponentially when it was in fact only rising linearly. This metaphor explains why the exponential increase in testing gave a false impression that we were in an exponential phase of the epidemic. We will always be slower than the virus which had peaked almost when we have started our mass testing.
How on earth is the Government going to use the R number (based on which curve?) to guide us out of our misery? How many cases recorded now are asymptomatic (found by contact tracing in hospitals, care homes, etc.) and how many are new clinical cases in the community?

If we consider the graph entitled “Daily new cases in Poland” at this link:
https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/poland/

it looks at first like a typical epidemic curve, but on 12 May a spike appears that is higher than the one in the centre. As many COVID-19 cases were found in the Silesian coal-mining district, it was decided to mass test 500 miners working in one of the shafts. In this group, 90% tested as positive, yet the absolute majority were asymptomatic. This high number of asymptomatic cases contributed to the 12 May spike. How can one make sense of such curves, let alone use them as the basis for decisions on when to end a lockdown?

The whole enterprise is futile. The virus has spread everywhere and will follow its own trajectory whether we do anything or not. Most likely, there are 5 to 10 times more asymptomatic cases than symptomatic ones. If you place that number above the number of symptomatic cases in the yellow curve referred to above, this will give you an idea of the dimensions of the epidemic and how it is impossible to stop it. It will burn itself out in June and disappear but can reappear next winter.

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago
Reply to  swedenborg

Yup, I’m firmly of the belief now that testing is basically pointless. I think antibody testing could still prove valuable – with caveats – but of course as everyone on here has so expertly put the case together, how much value can that really have if not everyone who’s had it produces antibodies?

ianp
ianp
18 days ago
Reply to  Farinances

Hmmm, but what does being tested actually knowingly do… ? Gives your DNA to the NHS and by extension the government.

Let that sink in.

grammarschoolman
grammarschoolman
18 days ago
Reply to  ianp

I suppose it makes things quicker if you end up murdering someone.

ianp
ianp
18 days ago

Yep… and I feel this is part of the road that we are on

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  ianp

When Boris waffles, I can feel quite murderous…..

Jane84
Jane84
18 days ago
Reply to  ianp

Depends how the test is done, no such risk of DNA secrets going astray if it is a home test kit.

Fin
Fin
18 days ago

The figures I am now interested in are:

1) Deaths ascribed to Covid-19 in care homes.

2) Excess deaths, above the five year average, not attributed to Covid-19.

Given that the government ‘cleared the decks’, in the NHS, by suspending all consultations, diagnostics and treatment in other areas of medicine; and cleared the wards of Covid-19 positive elderly by sending them back to their care homes – to seed further infection amongst the truly vulnerable…

…It will give us a good idea how many people the government killed in order to ‘protect the NHS’.

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago
Reply to  Fin

Love your phrase there. “How many people the gvt killed in order to protect the NHS”. Yup. Gonna use that one.

Poppy
Poppy
18 days ago
Reply to  Farinances

So basically this policy failure wasn’t about protecting the vulnerable at all – it was about protecting the UK’s national religion and by extension, the government’s reputation. Says it all really.

Fin
Fin
18 days ago
Reply to  Poppy

David Starkey, in a recent interview, said that the government made the same mistake as the catholic church – when it was dealing with the paedophile priests scandal…

…it moved to protect the institution (in this case ‘our’ NHS) and not the victims.

Elderly Covid-19 positive patients were sent back to care homes, because care homes do not fall into the NHS remit.

BecJT
BecJT
18 days ago
Reply to  Fin

And we couldn’t question it, that made us evil, because the Holy Catholic Church, sorry the NHS, is infallible.

Nobody2020
Nobody2020
18 days ago
Reply to  Fin

Up to 20% of hospital patients in England contracted the virus while in for other illnessess.
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/may/17/hospital-patients-england-coronavirus-covid-19

I always suspected there would be some.

Annie
Annie
17 days ago
Reply to  Nobody2020

To acquire additional infections in hospital is nothing new. Some years ago my father was in a geriatric ward in Addenbrookes hospital in Cambridge. The floor was so filthy that your feet stuck to it as you walked. Requests to a nurse to have it cleaned were rejected: it was a matter of ‘demarcation’. (I threatened to come back with a mop and bucket and clean it myself, at which a man with a mop was grudgingly sent for.)
My father was diabetic, a condition that makes the sufferer prone to foot infections. Allowed to sit in a chair, he had only open sandals on his feet.
He was sent home with an infection of the feet and legs that turned the flesh black. A delightful young visiting paramedic laboured for weeks to treat this wholly unnecessary and dangerous condition.
Protect whom…?

Mark
Mark
18 days ago

Imperial College: “the conclusions around lockdown rely not on any mathematical model but on the scientific consensus that COVID-19 is a highly transmissible virus with an infection fatality ratio exceeding 0.5pc in the UK”

Are we to take from this that our Official Science Consensus is now that we get a lockdown any time a “highly transmissible” virus pops up that might have an ifr above 0.5%?

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

Lol what scientific consensus?? There doesn’t seem to be one – has Imperial not noticed??

Mark
Mark
18 days ago
Reply to  Farinances

There might be no real science consensus, but that doesn’t prevent there being an Official Science Consensus that, remarkably enough, supports the policy the government wants to follow…

paulito
paulito
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

Whyever not. This one has been a roaring success. Imperial College modelling shows that it saved 70 million lives in England alone

Mark
Mark
18 days ago
Reply to  paulito

Bet it’s pulled in some juicy funding support as well

Julian
Julian
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

That’s the really worrying thing, that we might come out of this only to see it repeat, and repeat…. I wonder if it’s an almost inevitable consequence of peace and material prosperity.

TyRade
TyRade
18 days ago

Re the ICL ‘rebuttal’: “lockdown was based on a consensus view of the scientific evidence, including several modelling studies by different academic groups”. Isn’t the key point that their serial ineptitude in predicting past health scares should have disqualified ICL from the “several” in the first place?

Scotty87
Scotty87
18 days ago
Reply to  TyRade

Let’s take a moment to remind ourselves that Prof Neil Ferguson predicted 200 million to die globally from bird flu in 2005, and a reasonable worst-case scenario of 65,000 UK deaths from swine flu in 2009.
The final death tolls were 292 and 457 respectively.

The fact that Her Majesty’s Government have allowed themselves to become so blindly seduced by the nonsense spewed forth by this utter failure’s totally discredited computer models, heralding the “science” as if it were some divine instruction delivered atop Mount Sinai, is not just a cause for grave concern. No, it is tantamount to a most appalling dereliction of duty.

A shambolic, rudderless and most of all cowardly approach to this public health crisis has resulted in a body of elected officials hiding behind a narrow-minded band of scientists. Terrified to indulge in any form of introspection, they are routinely passing up every presented opportunity to realise that the course they have charted has been completely flawed all along.

One can only assume that they are either completely unfit to lead the country or are committing these nefarious crimes against society to their own advantage.

Gillian
Gillian
18 days ago

Can’t escape the pandemic by watching normally uplifting programmes like Landward tonight. It seems that there is a major problem with fly-tipping in rural locations. One farmer has had to deal with 150-odd tyres dumped on his land. As it is private land he has to pay for the proper disposal at a cost to him of up to £1000. All because council disposal and recycling centres are closed (why?). Meanwhile a voluntary litter-picker has noticed a new form of litter degrading our landscapes: masks, gloves and other items of PPE strewn about the place. Utterly disgusting.

Bart Simpson
Bart Simpson
18 days ago
Reply to  Gillian

I’ve been litter picking in my area and I can confirm the amount of masks and gloves that I pick up. It is disgusting.

Albie
Albie
18 days ago
Reply to  Bart Simpson

Increased fly-tipping and PPE strewn everywhere is another sign this whole Blitz spirit, “we’re in it together” and “looking out for each other” nonsense, is a fallacy. Everything about this lockdown from top to bottom, from statistics and models and surveys to claps and “togetherness” is a con.

Bart Simpson
Bart Simpson
17 days ago
Reply to  Albie

And don’t forget a platform to “virtue signal”

South Coast Worker
South Coast Worker
18 days ago

Nothing to add really. Just throughly fucked off now. Met some friends today, was positive thinking they must be fellow sceptics agreeing to come for a walk across the downs with us. Nope, had to walk along with them keeping our distance. Was horrible. Made me angry To be honest. I haven’t met a single person that isn’t at least concerned, even if they’re healthy 30 year old fitness obsessive, they still don’t want to ‘risk it’. And most people are basically terrified that I come across. This could be pushed further and further, and from the people I come into contact with, most would accept it, some would welcome it, others would say it isn’t enough.
This has to stop. 300 odd people under 45! Bloody hell. Why isn’t that the headline of every paper!

Jane
Jane
18 days ago

I think the only thing that stops people in their tracks, sometimes, is statistics. How many people died of respiratory diseases (ie flu, pneumonia and lung disease) in the UK in 2017? Answer: nearly 65,000. How many people die every day in the UK in a “normal” year? Answer: 1600. That is the sort of information protesters should be putting on their banners.

BecJT
BecJT
18 days ago
Reply to  Jane

I agree it’s messaging, and we haven’t got ours quite right yet. It’s also risk. We need some ranked ‘what are my chances of …’ league tables.

Mark
Mark
18 days ago

It is really bizarre isn’t it? I mean if your experience is like mine a lot of these actually scared people are very intelligent and educated folk – degree level at least, often professionally qualified and even doctors, ffs!

I mean, I expect them at least to resort to the second tier of fearfulness rationalisation – explaining that it’s not themselves they are afraid for, but rather for vulnerable people in their families or among their acquaintances. Or that they might go straight to the third tier and say it’s a general policy thing for reducing the spread overall and thereby protecting the vulnerable members of society in general.

But no, these people, whose personal risk of dying from the disease is basically zero even assuming they catch it in the first place, often actually admit when pressed that they are scared to risk it just in case they might die!

Nigel Baldwin
Nigel Baldwin
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

Crikey, if you have doctors in that group then I’m pretty certain I wouldn’t want a consultation with them. Makes you wonder who’s working for the NHS and how qualified they are really.

paulito
paulito
18 days ago
Reply to  Nigel Baldwin

Don’t be sarky about the NHS or we’ll come round to clap outside your house for 5 hours a day until you recant.

Nigel Baldwin
Nigel Baldwin
18 days ago
Reply to  paulito

Like it!

Mark
Mark
18 days ago
Reply to  Nigel Baldwin

GPs mostly, but genuinely intelligent people. Intellectually they “know” the figures, as they will admit if you press them. They just have a nagging fear that they won’t dismiss.

ianp
ianp
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

Not all, I know a GP who knows it’s bullshit. This whole charade has revealed that a vast suave of the population regardless of age, IQ, and profession are, to put in harshly : Mentally weak

ianp
ianp
18 days ago
Reply to  ianp

It also reveals that I can’t spell ‘swathe’… or at least my phone autospell can’t…;)

anti_corruption_tsar
anti_corruption_tsar
18 days ago
Reply to  ianp

Couldn’t agree more. Some people I know were having a debate on whether R was greater than or less than 1, completely oblivious to the behaviour of respiratory diseases. They thought they were being clever using the epidemiological jargon, little realising that the joke will be on them for getting hoodwinked by the propaganda.

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago
Reply to  ianp

That’s it. It’s not intelligence, or lack of. It’s weakness. Lack of mental (and testicular) fortitude.

kh1485
kh1485
17 days ago
Reply to  Farinances

“(testicular) fortitude” Absolutely brilliant! Mind if I use that in the forthcoming exchange of views that I will no doubt have to engage in?

JohnB
JohnB
17 days ago
Reply to  ianp

I agree, if the main symptom of this weakness is switching on the telly !

They had subliminals 50 odd years ago. What they can do nowadays with sound, colour, brightness, refresh rates, frequency adjustments, fades/merges, etc. must be quite astonishing.

My opinion, for which I have no evidence whatsoever, is that they broadcast the highest intensity fear-causing tools they have, back in March sometime. Repetition, and the absence of the opposing point of view, help, but nothing else seems to explain the intensity of fear being displayed by the many.

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  JohnB

Those awful Newsnight “reports” with the gloom and doom music playing in the background!

IanE
IanE
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

Yes, the hyper-ratioanlity referred to in one of the above links
https://lockdownsceptics.org/the-hyper-rationality-of-crowds-covid-19-and-the-cult-of-anxiety/

IanE
IanE
18 days ago
Reply to  IanE

Oooops, excuse my typo, ‘ratioanlity’: hmm!?

anti_corruption_tsar
anti_corruption_tsar
18 days ago
Reply to  Nigel Baldwin

It might as well be the National Covid Service (NCS) for all it’s done over the past 8 weeks, and left the majority of those needing elective surgery for everything else high and dry.

BecJT
BecJT
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

This is what annoys me about the piety, they don’t mean ‘save lives’, they mean ‘me’. I’ve now started framing it as child rape (child sex abuse is off the charts, and I suspect trafficking will be the next awful thing to come out of all this) so I’m now saying ‘how many child rapes is acceptable so you can feel safe?’.

anti_corruption_tsar
anti_corruption_tsar
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

I agree, and even though you point these things out to these supposedly educated people, they’re all caught up in the mad herd mentality. Unfortunately, as a movement we have to maintain a critical mass, where there is more than a smattering of us challenging the ridiculous mainstream message. And this message is in your face, switch on any radio station and there is the propoganda every 10 to 15 minutes or so. Even the WHO had an advert on Talk Sport when I was listening driving in the car today. Kudos to the presidents of Tanzania and Burundi in Africa who have kicked the WHO out of their countries – of course that never made the MSM! I do sense the worm is beginning to move a little in our direction now, but I have to admit that it is frustratingly slow so far.

4096
4096
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

Exactly, this is what depresses me the most – are there really only so few people in the nation of 65 million and around the world that are willing to go again the crowd and make up their own mind, even when the relevant data e.g. mortality rates by age are so easily available? Or is complete innumeracy really so wide spread? Or are really that many people, to put it simply, cowards?

Nobody2020
Nobody2020
18 days ago
Reply to  4096

The need for acceptance or not stand out is actually quite powerful. I’ve seen studies where there’s a group of people, say 10, where everyone is in on the experiment bar 1. They’re then give a simple question and all have to say out their answer. The 9 give the wrong answer and more often than not the 1 person not in on it also gave the wrong answer despite it being obviously wrong.

kh1485
kh1485
17 days ago
Reply to  Nobody2020

I experienced this in my former working life. A group of us had doubts about the way a major project was being handled. During a meeting, the person in charge sought to obtain our views. I was the only one who said what I really thought (politely of course). Everyone else went against what they had previously said. I looked around in astonishment at people who had five minutes previously been even more vehmently opposed to what was going on than I was (and these weren’t all people who were married with kids, some were quite young). Needless to say, I was given the rollocking of my life and subject to quite unpleasant intimidation. During the second such ‘meeting’, I walked out for good. It’s not always easy to stand up against the crowd but, for me, I need to be able to look myself in the mirror each morning.

Gossamer
Gossamer
18 days ago
Reply to  4096

It’s particularly distressing when scientifically-minded friends and acquaintances so readily buy into the whole miserable package. My assessment is that complex situations require thinking which is truly interdisciplinary, but people tend to think in a very, very limited way. Being educated is no guarantee of a critical and questioning mind: in fact, I’ve seen it have quite the reverse effect.

A13
A13
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

I actually don’t find it surprising. Majority of people are not capable of critical thinking. Taking things at face value is much easier than asking questions. It’s mental laziness.
I’ve also noticed that the majority of the people don’t read news articles in full – they will look at the headline and then maybe read one paragraph (and then post comments of course).
I’m sure that most of us here are spending a decent amount of time every day reading and researching online. It takes time and some mental energy. It’s also quite stressful – not quite the same as watching Netflix.

SRagdoll
SRagdoll
18 days ago
Reply to  A13

When I used to tell people I was studying History at Uni they use to often wonder why and ask me what use it would be to me. It taught me critical thinking. To analyse the sources of information I receive. Why is something being written? Who is writing and what’s was their intention or purpose ? Where did they source their information or opinions? Who was the intended audience?

It is now natural for me to question everything I read like this, but then I forget others do not. These are really skills which you shouldn’t be waiting to university to learn and should be taught at secondary school. I am taken a back by people’s willingness of equally educated people to take a BBC headline at face value.

As you said, I am one of those spending a lot of time reading and researching on line on a daily basis. But it’s worth it if I can increase the R rate of lockdown sceptistim! I want to be on the rightside of history when people look back and everyone finally sees what a massive cluster fuck of an over reaction this all is!

Gossamer
Gossamer
18 days ago
Reply to  SRagdoll

Agree totally, although I would go even further and introduce critical thinking at primary school level. Young kids are often really curious (“Why?” is one of their favourite words) and open to new ways of seeing the world. There’s no reason why it can’t be taught in a fun way, with plenty of puzzles and scope for creativity.

chris c
chris c
17 days ago
Reply to  Gossamer

But socially distanced of course

Yes agree with all the above, somehow even supposedly intelligent people don’t think outside the memes.

JohnB
JohnB
17 days ago
Reply to  SRagdoll

Whether you’ll be on the right side of history, depends, of course, on who’s writing it ! 🙂

sunchap
sunchap
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

Yes I am embarrassed to be a human. Presumably “mass panic” evolved early on to protect us from tigers etc.

It appears humans may not have evolved enough?

Jonathan Castro
Jonathan Castro
18 days ago

Social distancing is total rubbish anyway.

Schrodinger
18 days ago

Lord Sumption’s BBC Interview Today is here

https://youtu.be/fayeKcjnDNE

RDawg
RDawg
18 days ago

Can anyone recommend a decent t-shirt fulfilment company? I want one that involves me doing as little work as possible, other than providing the designs for the t-shirts. It seems most require you to set up your own website first, (which I don’t want to do, nor do I know how to do) – and then link it to their “dropshipping” centre.

Basically I need one that can offer –
– Automated eCommerce shop online and payment
– Automated production of t-shirts
– Packaging, distribution and sending items to customers
– Returns options

I’ve come up with some lovely (but highly controversial) anti-lockdown t-shirt ideas, and want to start selling them online ASAP.

Your recommendations are welcomed. Thanks

R Dawg (soon to be CEO of The Downward Dawg T-Shirt Co.)

x x

Mark
Mark
18 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

I’ve used shirtinator before for my own designs personally and they were very good. I can’t speak for using them as a commercial partner, obviously.

https://shirtinator.co.uk/

RDawg
RDawg
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

I have found streetshirts.co.uk to be brilliant for personal designs (got one on its way) but I need a fulfilment centre that can take orders.

Mark
Mark
18 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

Yes, you need someone to advise you who’s done it as a commercial scale operation, I suppose.

NoName
NoName
18 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

I’ve ordered from streetshirts.co.uk too. Can’t yet vouch for them as I only ordered very recently so my print hasn’t been done or posted yet. Hope it turns up good quality and fairly soon, though I’d be overjoyed if the lockdown ends soon enough for any such shirt I’ve ordered to become a historical curiosity.

Nigel Baldwin
Nigel Baldwin
18 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

I don’t know of any but put me down for a t-shirt.

Pebbles
Pebbles
18 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

I’ll have one 🙂

chris c
chris c
18 days ago
Reply to  Pebbles

I’ll have one that says

IT’S NOT THE FUCKING PLAGUE

kh1485
kh1485
17 days ago
Reply to  chris c

Me too!

Awkward Git
Awkward Git
17 days ago
Reply to  chris c

Me for a couple – fat bastard size so nice and baggy.

Kristian Short
Kristian Short
18 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

Redbubble. Cafe press. There are quite a few. I want a T shirt that says Corona cowards- get s job. Or, Save lives – privatize the NHS etc

Kelly
Kelly
17 days ago
Reply to  Kristian Short

Think you’ll lose supprot if you propose NHS privatisation. Because really how the NHS is funded is not the sisue here, the issue is that all our freedoms and livelihoods have been sacrificed for a lunatic ideal of safety, and the NHS has merely (and perhaps against the will of most of its staff) been made the public figurehead of this.

paulito
paulito
17 days ago
Reply to  Kristian Short

Or, I like the old normal.

Schrodinger
18 days ago

As for face mask wearing this from a recent letter to the BMJ

Just a doctor and epidemiologist’s view.

(1) Wearing a face mask may give a false sense of security and make people adopt a reduction in compliance with other infection control measures, including social distancing and hands washing.

(2) Inappropriate use of face mask: people must not touch their masks, must change their single-use masks frequently or wash them regularly, dispose them correctly and adopt other management measures, otherwise their risks and those of others may increase.

(3) The quality and the volume of speech between two people wearing masks is considerably compromised and they may unconsciously come closer. While one may be trained to counteract side effect n.1, this side effect may be more difficult to tackle.

(4) Wearing a face mask makes the exhaled air go into the eyes. This generates an uncomfortable feeling and an impulse to touch your eyes. If your hands are contaminated, you are infecting yourself.

(5) Face masks make breathing more difficult. For people with COPD, face masks are in fact intolerable to wear as they worsen their breathlessness. Moreover, a fraction of carbon dioxide previously exhaled is inhaled at each respiratory cycle. Those two phenomena increase breathing frequency and deepness, and hence they increase the amount of inhaled and exhaled air. This may worsen the burden of covid-19 if infected people wearing masks spread more contaminated air. This may also worsen the clinical condition of infected people if the enhanced breathing pushes the viral load down into their lungs.
(5B) The effects described at point 5 are amplified if face masks are heavily contaminated (see point 2)

(6) While impeding person-to-person transmission is key to limiting the outbreak, so far little importance has been given to the events taking place after a transmission has happened, when innate immunity plays a crucial role. The main purpose of the innate immune response is to immediately prevent the spread and movement of foreign pathogens throughout the body. The innate immunity’s efficacy is highly dependent on the viral load. If face masks determine a humid habitat where the SARS-CoV-2 can remain active due to the water vapour continuously provided by breathing and captured by the mask fabric, they determine an increase in viral load and therefore they can cause a defeat of the innate immunity and an increase in infections. This phenomenon may also interact with and enhance previous points.

Antonio I Lazzarino
Medical Doctor and Epidemiologist
University College London

https://www.bmj.com/content/369/bmj.m1435/rr-40

Bart Simpson
Bart Simpson
18 days ago
Reply to  Schrodinger

I have seen point 1 with my own two eyes. Like I’ve said before, I’ve always found those wearing masks have been the worst offenders when it comes to not observing basic hygiene. I’ve come across mask wearers not washing their hands after using the toilet or picking their noses.

And if you’re going to wash cloth masks, its like cloth nappies you have to wash them at really high settings to get rid of the germs – which ain’t good for the environment.

Lastly to paraphrase Jack Straw, masks also impede communication. Two weeks ago I had a run in with a post office worker who was masked and became rude when I asked her politely to repeat what she said to me twice because the mask was muffling her speech.

bluefreddy
bluefreddy
18 days ago
Reply to  Bart Simpson

I have seen point 3 with my own ears.

chris c
chris c
18 days ago
Reply to  Schrodinger

(7) A huge amount of garbage even if they are disposed of “properly”.

Do they count as medical waste? In which case you can’t put them in your bin.

Tim
Tim
18 days ago

For me, one of the most frustrating things about this pandemic is the inability to test for antibodies. Judicious sampling of the population would tell us how many people have had the virus and which parts of the country are still vulnerable. It would also give some solid figures on which to do some proper modelling, without having to rely on worst case assumptions.

Are we anywhere near getting a reliable antibody test?:

BecJT
BecJT
18 days ago
Reply to  Tim

I suspect they don’t want to do that because then the gig is up.

Tyneside Tigress
Tyneside Tigress
18 days ago
Reply to  BecJT

Agree. As I recall many weeks ago Chris Whitty said Porton Down had done a random study, and despite several journos asking about it at the 5pm press conference, no information has been forthcoming. One can only wonder!

chris c
chris c
18 days ago

Yup. And today’s talking head was on about The Vaccine again.

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago
Reply to  chris c

Loved that bit where (yes, my parents had it on– but I managed to catch God Emperor Sumption beforehand so it was worth it) he kept saying “The vaccine work has been accelerated and we’ve crammed ten years’work into six months! It’s amazing!”

Not at all reassuring dude. Not at all reassuring.

paulito
paulito
18 days ago
Reply to  Tim

Wan’t there something in the media last week about a purchase of antibody testing kits from Switzerland. 100% accurate, if memory serves.

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  paulito

Never to see the light of day again.

Gossamer
Gossamer
18 days ago
Reply to  Tim

I’ve come across a couple of things which might complicate matters (sorry, don’t have the links immediately to hand). One is that in some people, their T-cells might jump in and defeat the virus before any Covid-specific antibodies are even created. I’ve also read about the possibility of cross-immunity from other coronaviruses, such as the common cold. So *if* this is the case, then although someone isn’t showing the “correct” antibodies, it doesn’t necessarily follow that they are non-exposed and therefore non-immune.

That said, I’d still be curious to see what the serology tests find….

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  Gossamer

That Australian WHO spokeswoman (she of the long blond hair – sorry to be so vague) recently told the Beeb she thought children might not get it because they run almost constant colds.

Schrodinger
17 days ago
Reply to  Tim

If you really want to know about that I suggest that you listen to some of these long and excellent podcasts on the science. The answer would, it seems, be no.

https://infectiousmyth.podbean.com/

A pdf of the one relating to antibody tests is here

http://theinfectiousmyth.com/coronavirus/AntibodyTestingForCOVID.pdf

swedenborg
swedenborg
18 days ago

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8aHrx68IT7o&feature=youtu.be
This is the third video from Prof Michael Levitt, Stanford, Israel. Posted the other 2 videos yesterday. Here he describes the outbreaks in South Korea and New Zealand fitted the model used in video 2. The outbreaks are not truly exponential but hit a ceiling and then fast decline.

Nerd Immunity
Nerd Immunity
18 days ago
Reply to  swedenborg

I like this guy and I hope he’s onto something. I think Prof. Sikora tweeted yesterday that he has seen similar signs from data: that outbreaks tend to level off quite quickly suggesting, he posited, maybe some sort of existing immunity in the population. Of course Sikora was then flamed on Twitter by the mob who will not see any light on this topic. My worry about Levitt’s theory (as I understand it) is this: as all countries who notice an outbreak immediately put measures in place, how do we know that the leveling off is not due to the measures? However, against this again, I have heard him point out himself that the effect seems to be fairly constant even though all countries don’t enact the same measures e.g. China’s lockdown was much tighter than Iran or Italy’s.

This is my first comment here so I’d like to say thanks to Toby for the site.

Mark
Mark
17 days ago
Reply to  Nerd Immunity

Also see other work suggesting a regular peaking of this disease at quite low levels:

https://www.timesofisrael.com/top-israeli-prof-claims-simple-stats-show-virus-plays-itself-out-after-70-days/

As you say, it’s not trivial to disentangle all the threads here, including the possibility that there are common epidemic responses short of lockdown that might explain this common epidemic progression, but still it’s very suggestive.

Early on I was assuming there must be much higher infectiousness and lower impact, meaning the disease ran through the population and played itself out before responses could get going. But as more info has come through that began to look untenable and the better option now seems to be that there are quite a lot of people who just don’t catch this disease and so it tops out at quite a low level of prevalence.

Anyway, the bottom line is that for whatever reason it just is not a particularly dangerous disease, on a societal level.

(Welcome to Toby’s site, by the way.)

Adele Bull
Adele Bull
17 days ago
Reply to  Mark

Chris Whitty said in the daily briefing of 11th May, that the vast majority of people “won’t get the disease” that of those that do “80% won’t know they’ve got it” that “a small majority will feel ill but won’t need to see a Dr” and only a very small amount of people will need hospitalisation. He said that he had been saying this “from the beginning!” It’s at the end of the briefing, answering a very good set of questions from a reporter from the Sun. Can we just snip this bit of the interview and plaster it everywhere!!

swedenborg
swedenborg
18 days ago

https://www.zerohedge.com/health/study-points-covid-19-lab-creation-lead-author-suggests-forced-selection-vs-genetic
The actual scientific publication can be found in a link in the above article

Mark
Mark
18 days ago

MPs call for transport workers to get death-in-service payouts

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/may/17/mps-demand-covid-19-death-in-service-payout-for-transport-workers

Why?

What possible rational justification is there for giving special payouts to people who happen to die from this particular disease at this particular time?

I mean, giving people money is generally nice (especially when it’s other people’s money you are giving out). I get that. But if it’s the role of government to give extra charity to the family members of deceased disease victims, why isn’t that the case all the time, and for all diseases?

grammarschoolman
grammarschoolman
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

More to the point, what’s a dead person going to do with all that money?

Mark
Mark
18 days ago

That’s neither here nor there, surely? The point is for the politicians and campaigners to look good for their potential voters and various backers. What actually happens to the money is pretty much irrelevant, isn’t it?

Nobody2020
Nobody2020
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

Why specific workers anyway? Pay one pay everyone. Anybody could catch it during the course of doing their job.

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

Hey at least transport workers are actually among the most likely to get it. Along with security guards.
Not er…… doctors and nurses.

Mark
Mark
18 days ago
Reply to  Farinances

Yep – 0.0264% of bus and coach drivers and 0.0364% of taxi drivers up to 20th April, according to the article.

Taking that as over two months as a rough guide and assuming the numbers are constant rather than proportionate, we’re going to run out of bus and coach drivers in only about 630 years, and taxi drivers in only 457 years.

Is there time to set up a breeding program?

Jane84
Jane84
18 days ago
Reply to  Farinances

I should certainly say that more people have been relying on the efforts of transport workers than have actually needed NHS care in this crisis.

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago
Reply to  Jane84

More people with Covid have literally breathed on bus drivers than on medical staff.

South Coast Worker
South Coast Worker
17 days ago
Reply to  Mark

From my experience they’ll likely to be easily dispatched due to their appalling levels of obsesity and lack of fitness. Seems like rewarding failure to me.

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  Mark

Isn’t it because a precedent has been set with NHS workers?

Old fred.
Old fred.
18 days ago

Had to chuckle earlier today – my son said his kids had had a great time in the park as quite a few of their mates from school happened to be there at the same time with their parents. Son’s kids and all the others had played football together for an hour or more while parents sat in a group talking. No social distancing and no face masks anywhere.

Why did I chuckle……well, two of the parents are serving police officers.

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago
Reply to  Old fred.

Not surprised, give the complete lack of social distancing / PPE I’ve seen from gangs of police officers during lockdown.

But hey, good for them, long as they won’t be arresting anyone on monday for doing the same thing.

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  Old fred.

That’s good news!

BobT
BobT
18 days ago

This is how a cult works;

First we need a charismatic leader who knows how to control people. He/she invents an enemy, then gaslights his followers into believing there is indeed a real tangible enemy which they should be afraid of. They stoke this fear and convince their members that they can only be safe if they follow their leader and submit to his will. Only the leader will save them. Not only that but he will create something else for them to deify in addition to himself. Something to worship concentrates the mind.

Now the leader has control over his subjects he must be careful there is no questioning or dissent so he makes strict rules which must be followed. Anyone flouting these rules must be reported by the other now brainwashed members and punishments must follow.

Total control is close but there is one more thing to do. All members must give all their wealth to the leader and in return he will ensure that they have just enough food and shelter to survive. Of course the great leader is protecting us all from the enemy, given us something to worship and clap about, so we should be grateful for his generosity and his self sacrifice.

The Dear Leader is now fully enjoying his power, he is now wealthy, he can abuse his followers at will, take the women for himself and have a jolly good time. Nobody questions.

Then one, just one member becomes sceptical, he is reported by the others but is savvy enough to know what is coming and he escapes the camp to tell the rest of the world what is happening in the cult. Dear Leader is livid and imposes a complete ban on travel or movements and cuts everyone off from any contact with the outside world.

Then the money starts to run out, he demands more from his followers but they have no money left either. The Dear Leader himself is now trapped in his own dystopian world he himsef created, he needs to escape but has too many witnesses, mass poisoning? Fight it out with his loyal army of devotees with the machine guns he has been collecting just in case of such a situation?

Cults never end well.

Do I see any parallels here or is it because its Sunday and I may have had one too many?

BobT
BobT
18 days ago
Reply to  BobT

So, who is the Dear Leader?

Awkward Git
Awkward Git
17 days ago
Reply to  BobT

Can’t be Bill Gates, he’s got no charisma or charm. No-one else that appears from the believer side I can think of except maybe William’s kids.

Clarence Beeks
Clarence Beeks
17 days ago
Reply to  BobT

The NHS?

Julian
Julian
18 days ago

Encouraging to see a fair few people out and about this weekend in groups obviously not just composed of one household. A long way to go though – still millions in a tizz about this. I won’t be signing the petition as it explicitly mentions distancing and face masks as options to help restart normal life. I think it’s dangerous to concede those points. If people want to try and distance themselves then that’s fine by me, or if people want to wear masks then they can if they want. If a private business wants to impose these things, well I just won’t go there. It might get awkward if for example all the big supermarkets do it. But I can’t accept any of these measures being mandated by goverment as a condition of being able to reopen, and I can’t accept any publicly funded organisation mandating these things unless there are special circumstances e.g. any setting with people vulnerable to the virus such as hospitals, care homes, maybe doctor’s surgeries. Maybe I am being unreasonable – happy to hear arguments against me. I also regret the wording focusing on restarting economic activity – this is terribly important, but IMO less important than the abolition of the Coronavirus Act which restricts freedom of movement, separates families and friends from one another, prevents breeding, makes public protest illegal and goes against nature. It’s beyond a human rights issue – it’s utterly immoral. Until it goes, every relaxing of restrictions will be presented as generous gift from a benevolent government to the people, for being good boys and girls.

Mark
Mark
18 days ago
Reply to  Julian

I agree with you about distancing and face masks. Distancing is a practicality and productivity disaster for most aspects of normal life, and face masks are just a no for me. I simply won’t wear one, unless it’s at taser-point.

Also I agree about repeal of the legislation.

In my ideal world there’d be some tarring and feathering of those involved as well, but I recognise that’s not the done thing these days (call me old fashioned)….

chris c
chris c
18 days ago
Reply to  Mark

How about nailing them to the church door? (even more old fashioned)

JohnB
JohnB
17 days ago
Reply to  chris c

Pussies. 🙂 Hang, draw, and quarter them.

Jane84
Jane84
18 days ago
Reply to  Julian

I must agree that the freedom argument is more important than the economic one. I also think that some careful wording to place limits on what “measures” are taken would have been good, to scope the risk of bureaucrtaic creep. I am happy to concede on the masks point if that alone can get us everything else back. I signed the peitition anyway. I did check up on some links I had to other anti-lockdown parliamentary petitions, seems that some of thsoe are STILL in moderation although this specific one has now become live. I don’t know if the eens still in moderation might have wording more focused on the freedom argment agaonst lockdowns.

Nigel Baldwin
Nigel Baldwin
18 days ago
Reply to  Julian

You freaked me, cos I signed that petition without reading it properly (stupid to do, but felt Toby’s endorsement on my shoulder) and I am vehemently and almost irrationally (irrational in my vitriol not the science) anti face masks. Having read the petition properly it refers to ’employees wearing them if desired.’ Since I would resent someone coercing me to wear a mask I can’t endorse coercing someone not to wear one. Off the hook, phew.

Julian
Julian
17 days ago
Reply to  Nigel Baldwin

That’s a fair point about mask coercion – I think it should be up to the individual, but I don’t think there should be anything from the government to push it. Maybe I should sign it as it is maybe better than nothing, but in the unlikely event it is debated in Parliament I would be concerned it could be portrayed as having been complied with at a certain point – PM talked about getting back to near normality in July but think he was talking about the “new normal”. I think it is crucial that at every stage any talk of this “new normal” is strongly resisted. The explicit and implicit messages from state propaganda and their media helpers are already starting to cement this in people’s minds.

Barney McGrew
Barney McGrew
18 days ago
Reply to  Julian

“…distancing and face masks as options to help restart normal life. I think it’s dangerous to concede those points.”

Absolutely. I don’t want to see any concession to these measures whatsoever. I wasn’t keen on the non-disapproving inclusion of the ‘social distancing hats’ yesterday. They’re not funny or enterprising; they’re a symbol of acceptance of the New Normal.

Sally
Sally
18 days ago
Reply to  Barney McGrew

Might I suggest we use instead the term the New Abnormal, to drive home what is going on here?

paulito
paulito
17 days ago
Reply to  Sally

We should refuse to use the orwellian language used to describe this charade. It’s not a “lockdown”, it’s imprisonment or house arrest, supression of civil liberties. take your pick. It’s anti- social distancing. It’s the abnormal or anti normal. Masks are muzzles.

Adele Bull
Adele Bull
17 days ago
Reply to  Julian

It’ll be interesting to see how many people accept queues outside supermarkets when the weather turns!

Lilly
Lilly
18 days ago

Interesting to see how when confronting the protesters the cops did not wear masks despite coming very clsoe to members of the public. I think this point can be used quite well to our advantage.

Did:
A) the cops’ bosses fail to provide the PPE needed to protect the officers from the public and hence abuse their employees (we all know that it won’t really make much difference but the zealots think otherwise and its them we have to convince)
B) the cops not care about the risk their breath, especially when getting right up in peoples faces, posed to the public (again the mask would do ltitle here, but getting in people’s faces like that is plain wrong even when there isn’t a pandemic on)
or
C) the cops not think PPE was necessary for preventing transmission in either/both directions and hence prove themselves to be hypocrites happily enforcing ministrial guideliens which even they realise aren’t really needed

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago
Reply to  Lilly

They haven’t been wearing PPE in any footage I’ve seen, at any time during this ‘crisis’. They’re constantly hanging around together in large groups, not bothering about distancing among themselves either. When questioning members of the public they often aggressively get up in people’s faces (as they would before corona was a thing), despite having arrested loads of people for coughing at others or even ‘breathing’ near to others.

Obviously I think these measures are bullshit, but the point is the police have been flagrantly disregarding them both in relation to themselves AND the members of the public they’re supposed to be ‘protecting’ and setting an example for. We won’t even mention the Westminster Bridge debacle and all those ridiculous car cavalcade tiktok videos.

It’s rank hypocrisy. Which is quite typical of the police.

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago
Reply to  Farinances

Oh yeah and ‘social distancing’ and PPE are recommending IN THEIR OWN GUIDELINES. They get PPE provided if they ask for it.

Clearly they don’t ask often.

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  Farinances

Hopefully these rule-breaking police are actually sending us a coded message.

Hammer Onats
Hammer Onats
18 days ago
Reply to  Lilly

The cops are loving this gig. Loads of overtime and able to hassle law abiding citizens rather than deal with the scum.

Jonathan Castro
Jonathan Castro
18 days ago
Reply to  Lilly

Masks don’t do anything outside and social distancing is useless.

Farinances
Farinances
17 days ago

I would say the police probably agree.
Trouble is, they agree whilst arresting people for not respecting the bullshit guidance whilst they get off scott free.

LookHere
LookHere
18 days ago

Found a very good columnist article at:

https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/my-fears-about-the-new-normal-

Regrettably she does get a bit partisan about Brexit, which might make the article less persuasive to remainers, but otherwise it is an EXCELLENT read. As a remainer myself I disgaree with some of her Brexit points and think she misunderstood why some of us voted remain (because we know Whitehall can’t be trusted and thought Brussels bossing it around sometimes helped protect civil liberties), and worry that such points might make this article less persuasive to remaienrs than it could otherwise be. The article talks about the dangers of a safety culture and how “my freedom must not end where your fear begins”. This article should be required reading for MPs.

Barney McGrew
Barney McGrew
17 days ago
Reply to  LookHere

As far as I can tell, she doesn’t mention what motivated remainers, only what *didn’t* influence Brexiteers: fear. Project Fear was a tactic used against potential Brexit voters; it implies no criticism of ideological remainers who had their own positive reasons for voting remain.

Remainers such as yourself are not in the frame for having perpetrated Project Fear (people are not responsible for every tactic adopted by their own ‘side’), so she’s not criticising you.

JohnB
JohnB
17 days ago
Reply to  LookHere

I think that would be good on a t-shirt –

My freedom does not end where your fear begins.

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  LookHere

Now there’s a good t-shirt slogan!

AN other lockdown sceptic
AN other lockdown sceptic
18 days ago

James Dellingpole’s report from today in London village https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vhalwb-yHPM

A Meshiea
A Meshiea
18 days ago

DIARY OF A COVIDIOT Sunday May 17th
I had been both looking forward and anxious about leaving my family for a week and getting the work done on our Welsh home.
Looking forward to an escape from the thronging madness of London for the rolling hillls and open spaces ], anxious about being with I out my family fo a week. Funny I wonder if this Corona-era, makes that distance more difficult…
The highlights of my day was an early one. My no-hugging father calls. In the aftermath of a highly emotional exchange about lockdown, where I try and engage about the hysteria and the dangers being brought upon us by the reaction to this virus, both economic and liberty-wise, he called to tell me that he respects my opinion and considers it a valid and potentially true response. He merely stressed that it was possible that we would end things soon and that it wouldn’t be so bad for the economy, that we will recover and move on positively.
Much as I doubted his rosy outlook, in was hard not to credit him immensely for actually wanting to give me that. He is a big man and, given the onslaught of CNN, BBC and every other MSM that he listens to for most of his waking hours, a far bigger man than me or anyone I know.
He actually said I may be right and he would leave room on his mind for the possibility and he did not think I was crazy just a bit too negative and too engaged.
It touched me deeply and gave me hope and appreciation off my father.

FiFi Trixabelle
FiFi Trixabelle
18 days ago

This is interesting…and probably won’t gather much traction in MSM. Italy opening up earlier than expected. Tide turning?
“We’re facing a calculated risk in the knowledge that the contagion curve may rise again,” Conte said during a televised address. “We have to accept it otherwise we will never be able to start up again.”

https://medicalxpress.com/news/2020-05-italy-reopen-borders-june-restart.html

A13
A13
18 days ago

That’s good news. Same as Switzerland – they are opening up earlier too.

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago

They all get it. They all know they buggered up. — interesting to see the different levels of climb-down happening in real time.
Or in our case, double down 😣

Bart Simpson
Bart Simpson
17 days ago

I read somewhere that many Italian regions and cities are now defying the central government and basically going further than what Rome has decreed. Methinks this is a backlash from them as all throughout this crisis many local government officials have been decrying the “one size fits all” approach which has caused a lot of damage to their economies and livelihoods.

Barney McGrew
Barney McGrew
17 days ago

Time to leave Britain, maybe…

IanE
IanE
17 days ago
Reply to  Barney McGrew

True – any passing planets around?

Jonathan Castro
Jonathan Castro
17 days ago
Reply to  Barney McGrew

yeah, first job app to U S A posted today 🙂

Pjb
Pjb
17 days ago

I wouldn’t get too excited, it will still be masks compulsory in all public inside spaces…(you are allowed to remove it temporarily to eat apparently)

Jonathan Castro
Jonathan Castro
18 days ago

The argument that you shouldn’t socialize if you’re asymptomatic is utterly ridiculous, as anyone with half a brain would realize.

Farinances
Farinances
18 days ago

My favourite exchange with someone about this took place the other day.

“But what if when you go outside, you don’t know you have it and you give it to a grandma and they DIE?”

My response: “What if you coughed on a grandma last year, have her the flu, and she died? Are we gonna start keeping score of all the people we’ve potentially shuffled off the mortal coil with our breath during our lifetimes? Do people with the lowest scores get some sort of prize?”

Shut them up.

I mean. It’s kinda like saying I shouldn’t be allowed to drive (that we’ll used example) – because one day I might swerve to avoid hitting a cat, distracting a driver coming in the opposite direction, who slams into a fence, which falls over onto a passing pedestrian and kills them. Whoops! MURDERER

SRagdoll
SRagdoll
17 days ago
Reply to  Farinances

Yes exactly this! I have been using the same comparison myself. Is everyone sat at home now thinking about all the people they have potentially killed with flu in years gone by?!?!?

SweetBabyCheeses
SweetBabyCheeses
17 days ago

I think people forget as well that culturally we are very much a “just get on with” society when it comes to respiratory viruses in general. UK employers are not sympathetic at all to people taking time off for colds/flu. Kids are still encouraged to go to school. Only very occasionally do you come across someone who lightheartedly warns you not to get too close as they have the lurgy.

kh1485
kh1485
17 days ago

Agree. People are always coming into my shop when they are ill. It pisses me off because I know at some stage I will probably succumb to their lurgy. The difference being is that they don’t *have* to go out for a coffee but I have to go to work. It’s also very difficult, notwithstanding the financial implications, to close your business if you have no staff and are ill. Customers are, in the main, lacking in sympathy if you have to close due to illness. Even when I closed due to a bereavement, one sensitive soul arse-ached for ages about how she had missed her coffee that day.

scepticalsue
scepticalsue
18 days ago

Feeling a bit fed up tonight for some reason.
I just want this insanity to stop and normal life to be resumed but it’s just going on and on with no resolution in sight.
Here’s hoping this week brings some positive news for us all.

4096
4096
18 days ago
Reply to  scepticalsue

Couldn’t agree more.

CarrieAH
CarrieAH
17 days ago
Reply to  scepticalsue

Me too Sue. Had more than enough of this nonsense now.

IanE
IanE
17 days ago
Reply to  scepticalsue

Yes, but don’t hope for anything like normal life. Massive debts added to our economy, massive fall in tax receipts until the first emergency budget which will have to ramp up tax levels, millions unemployed, many thousands dying from undiagnosed and untreated cancer etc, suicide levels surging, supply problems throughout any surviving industries, etc, etc.

We really haven’t seen much in the way of downsides yet.

Adele Bull
Adele Bull
17 days ago
Reply to  scepticalsue

This was exactly me yesterday. We try and make the weekend a bit “weekendy” with a takeaway and drinks, a game of cards… But yesterday I was not feeling it at all. Depressed, anxious and generally glum. I want it all to go away. 😔

RDawg
RDawg
18 days ago

Does anyone know where Boris has gone? It’s like he’s hidden away and only speaks to the public via pre-recorded message.

As a “leader” he has been absent and shocking. No clarity, no direction, no transparency. It’s all a shambles. We are now entering into week NINE of lockdown. What the actual F**K?

CarrieAH
CarrieAH
17 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

I suspect he’s well aware of the mess he’s in and really doesn’t know what to do or say. It’s why I think it’s up to us to get out there, lead as normal lives as possible in this madness, and try to show the way.

Jonathan Castro
Jonathan Castro
17 days ago
Reply to  CarrieAH

…and look for a job overseas!

Old fred.
Old fred.
17 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

Suggest ‘Where’s Wally?’ posters are renamed ‘Where’s Boris?’

james007
james007
17 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

I think when he was mayor of London he recruited a team of senior advisers to help out with things like coming up with ideas, direction and having policies.
He likes to be in charge and for everyone to like him, but he doesnt like to lead.

Win.Smith
Win.Smith
17 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

My heck, he’s become Big Brother.

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  RDawg

He’s practising for that paternity leave he’s going to take later.

chris c
chris c
18 days ago

OK now this is totally weird.

A friend’s sister, in her sixties but with rheumatoid arthritis, has until now been happily going to the shops and for walks, without catching anything, as you don’t.

NOW she has been sent a letter telling her to self-isolate FOR THE NEXT TWELVE WEEKS. WTAF?

“More than half of the country’s billionaires are nursing losses as high as £6 billion, with the combined wealth of the 1,000 wealthiest individuals and families plunging for the first time since 2009, in the wake of the financial crisis”

We should start a GoFundMe for the poor dears.

IanE
IanE
17 days ago
Reply to  chris c

Agree with much of that – but the fall in wealth of the ultra-rich, whilst deserving of little sympathy, is a very real early indicator of the dreadful consequences to come from the crazy lockdown.

Jane
Jane
17 days ago
Reply to  chris c

I hope your friend’s sister is going to ignore the advice.

chris c
chris c
17 days ago
Reply to  Jane

Now they are “finding” new symptoms, such as loss of taste and smell, as a reason to self-isolate. Meanwhile in the real world covid is basically a busted flush, well on the way out. They are getting desperate to find excuses to continue the lockdown. IMO Boris and Sturgeon are racing to see who can have the longest.

Morris_Day
Morris_Day
18 days ago

The David Starkey interview is spot on. His comments about the political game and the NHS are completely accurate. However, I don’t see a way out. The Government will never admit their mistake, it would be the end of them to say they have over-reacted. Maybe we’ll get to mid June and they’ll throw us a bone of pubs a week earlier, but what use is that to anyone.

My social media is still overwhelmingly a hateful place. There is no thought process or counter argument to fact or reason, it is an outright rebuttal of anything to do with lifting restrictions, opening schools etc. They are filled with venom, there is no gratitude for anything that was given to appease them – the over-generous furlough deal which will set up back months – they will moan and they will complain and they won’t stop until it is over. Then they’ll go back to posting instagram pictures of beers in the pub and concerts, but ignore the hypocrisy in that. This is The Cult of Corbyn and now The Cult of NHS.

With the death toll where it is, no matter what the reason, there is no where to go other than to pay the price of this nonsense and hope we can get out of our self-imposed suicide as soon as possible. Pass me another beer.

paulito
paulito
17 days ago
Reply to  Morris_Day

Is it just a refusal to admit their mistakes or a fear of getting lynched when the truth about this comes out and we have to face up to the economic, social and public health disaster that their imprisonment of an entire country has brought about.

Gillian
Gillian
18 days ago

News in The Scottish Sun online that Nicola Sturgeon is to announce relaxation of the Scottish lockdown on Tuesday, along the lines of Boris last Sunday. The comments are hilarious and show anti-lockdown support combined with an an understanding of the nasty political game being played by Sturgeon. The following is the best:-

So, if you want to see our future, look at what England does and presume that after about a week of Krankie’s hysterical condemnation of the English position together with Piers on GMB, spittle flying all over the cameras and crew, we will do exactly the same.

Can’t wait for the elections Krankie. Everyone I know says they want you out now… no idea who does your 80% support polling (your hairdresser maybe, how is she? Does she get a pass to break lockdown? Can I get one before my businesses collapse?) but I can’t find a single person who supports you anymore. And I know a lot of people through my businesses.

Remember, Cameron, Clegg, May all defeated by the polls – all assumed things that weren’t.

How long will any remaining support take to ebb away when the furlough money stops flowing across the border? Then you’ll have to explain to the people furloughed what happened to their jobs whilst they were sipping drinks on the balcony, on 80% salary, on a government holiday.

You politicised a pandemic. People are dying and you either cover it up – Carlton Hotel and care homes – or twist it into an anti – English, pro independence narrative. Then you have the gall to call out anyone trying to save the economy as risking lives!

Not as many as will be lost by the long term effects of lockdown little missy.

Krankie out! Fandabydosy!

wendyk
wendyk
18 days ago
Reply to  Gillian
Jane
Jane
17 days ago
Reply to  Gillian

Here is an extract (sounds very grand) of what I wrote to Stuart Campbell of Wings over Scotland this morning. I really hope he’s more honest than the others.
In 2018,
58,503 people died in Scotland from all causes combined.
7128 people died from respiratory diseases.
3433 people died from respiratory diseases in the first four months
This compares to 2389 people who died from respiratory diseases including covid19 in the first four months of 2020…
76 per cent of all covid deaths in Scotland are in people aged over 75. Remember that the average life expectancy for men in Scotland is 77 and for women 81. 91 per cent of all covid deaths are among people with at least one co-morbidity. It is clear that covid19 is not an equal opportunity killer…
Boris Johnson is an idiot – I’ll grant you that – but for shutting down the country in the first place on the basis of poor science and panic. Now he is trying to save his political hide by refusing to admit he made a mistake. That is where the Scottish independence movement should be attacking him. So far your own blog has sinned by omission rather than commission. Either you genuinely believe that the virus is so dangerous it warrants locking up everybody, young and old, or you agree that the Scottish government’s strategy of outflanking Johnson on the compassion front will lead to independence and should be supported. This boils down to: “We’ll stay in oor hoose till Wee Nicola tells us it’s safe tae come oot!” What happened to Scots wha’ hae wi Wallace bled? What sort of freedom is that? Freedom has to be based on truth and there is very little of that in Scotland on the subject of covid19.

Andrew Clapton
Andrew Clapton
18 days ago

I find the criticism of Lord Sumption fascinating. First he shouldn’t criticise the government’s approach because he is no epidemiologist. Second he is rich and privileged and wishes to see the working men and women thrown into the virus’s path and third he is – the now banal criticsm of people who should know better – only thinking of the economy over lives. I support his argument because he is a citizen defending principles of freedom and the defence of social justice, to which he has dedicated his working life. We all have a duty as citizens in a democracy to uphold and defend those rights. The onus is on the government to supply evidence when it wishes to deminish those rights. One does not need to be a scientist to ask legitimate questions and criticize bad policy. Lord Sumption speaks for the working man and woman when he raises concerns about the impact and the efficacy of this non evidence based lockdown – he is a friend to low income workers such as myself who are on a precipice of financial ruin and will be paying for the resultant recession/depression for years. And lastly, there is growing evidence that the lockdown will be paid for in lives, ie cancer patients, mental health etc. Well regarded scientists are very critical of the policy of lockdown – from Stanford to Harved and Oxford. Where is the evidence that lockdown works, that the two metre rule works and that children are at risk never mind people without morbities under 50? However the main point is that since 1215 we are a nation of law and principle. Lord Sumption is correct. Principles of law and society connot and must not be simply erased over night. If they are we enter a world that endagers us all.

This was a reply to The Times web page to all the flack Lord Sumption got for his article. I just wanted to make sure that somewhere in cyber space it would remain intact as they edit replys and I think his intervention in the near non debate should be supported by all citizens. He has been insulted and criticized to an intolerable dregee. Thank you Mr Young for this website – I’m on the other divide from you in many things. But here we must stand together.

james007
james007
17 days ago
Reply to  Andrew Clapton

Appealing to an authority (ie. they are an epidemiologist) doesnt settle a matter. We should be be able to listen, question and examine a matter intelligently to see if we think it is true. The opposite is true as well, we dont dismiss and not consider a view BECAUSE of who someone is (ie. a Lord).

I think of Gove’s widely misunderstood comment in the referendum- about having had enough of experts. He was not saying that we should ignore all experts, but we should not consider a matter closed just because a particular sub-group of experts (economists) have decided that it is so. Experts from other fields matter too, and so does the ability to ask questions and test their ideas. Going on about which expert said this, and which expert said that… we know, but we ought to nurture the possibly that they may not be infallible, and that we have legitimate questions, and that in public policy we should consider more than one field of knowledge when making public policy. (Also applies in academia – I think of imperial’s comment about virology not being computer science – yes, but computer scientists may be good at improving your models, maybe talk to them occasionally!)

Mark
Mark
17 days ago
Reply to  james007

“I think of Gove’s widely misunderstood comment in the referendum- about having had enough of experts. He was not saying that we should ignore all experts, but we should not consider a matter closed just because a particular sub-group of experts (economists) have decided that it is so. Experts from other fields matter too, and so does the ability to ask questions and test their ideas.”

One of the great ironies being that is precisely what seems to have happened to this government – letting policy on this epidemic be set by an over reliance on not just the experts in one particular field (medical), but on a particular well connected and vociferous subset of those experts.

Peter93
Peter93
17 days ago
Reply to  Andrew Clapton

Sumption has been excellent through this, just a shame he couldn’t give some specific pointers to the people on how to seize their rights back.

Sally
Sally
18 days ago

I Wear My Face Mask In My Car (Corey Hart Parody)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G30M80YF81U&app=desktop

I can’t guarantee the link is alive. YouTube has apparently been removing this.

Farinances
Farinances
17 days ago
Reply to  Sally

😂 this is amazing

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  Sally

Wonderful! Thanks.

wendyk
wendyk
17 days ago

Yesterday, while waiting in the quick ‘baskets only’ queue, I did my bit for lockdown subversion by handing a basket to the bloke waiting behind me .

Shock, horror! He did accept it, even though I had to shorten the distance rules to hand it to him.

Human contact and a friendly face- whatever next!

Call the Sturgeon hot line; rules broken by an insurgent.

Disapproving glances from the maskerons waiting in the trolley area.

And Gillian- see below- is right: Sturgeon’s sniping is wearing thin, as is her engagement of notably obese public officials to tell us what we can and can’t do.

As for indyref 2: seriously?

Jane
Jane
17 days ago
Reply to  wendyk

I sent a letter to Stuart Campbell of Wings over Scotland today. So far, unlike the rest of the indpendence movement, he has sinned by omission rather than commission on the subject of covid19 by not mentioning it. I know he doesn’t worship at the Krankie shrine and is against woke politics so I’m hoping he will be honest enough to try to start a movement of lockdown sceptics for independence, or something. He could be fairly influential.

wendyk
wendyk
17 days ago
Reply to  Jane

Good for you Jane; let us know the outcome.

wendyk
wendyk
17 days ago

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2020/apr/28/sturgeon-urges-scots-to-wear-coronavirus-face-masks-for-shopping-and-travel

Sturgeon and the Maskonauts seeking the golden fleece of obligatory divergence from Westminster , combined with an insistence that UK plc continues with the furlough hand outs, should lock up Scotland be extended beyond the Chancellor’s cut off date.

Cheezilla
Cheezilla
17 days ago
Reply to  wendyk

Sturgeon and the Maskonauts seeking the golden fleece ….
Just brilliant.

Bart Simpson
Bart Simpson
17 days ago

I watched the David Starkey interview and he’s right about the UK (and the rest of the world by extension) committing economic suicide which means that we will be worse off than where we were before 23 March and will be picking up the pieces from this for many, many. many years to come.

As someone who studied history, I also agreed with him about this virus being minor if you compare it to the likes of the Black Death and even the Hong Kong Flu of the late 1960s yet the whole world didn’t shut down for that.

What I would like to see now is the government (and also MSM and scientists) doing a mea culpa (as Starkey suggested) and be man enough to admit that they panicked and that the reaction was disproportionate. However the government doesn’t have the guts to do it and we’ll be doomed to carry on with this charade in order to appease those who have been scared witless about this and expect the state to do everything for them. Unless the worm turns.

IanE
IanE
17 days ago
Reply to  Bart Simpson

Yes, probably the biggest self-imposed tragedy ever caused by incompetent and feeble governments. The chance of a mea culpa however is probably less than the proverbial snowball’s.

Mark
Mark
17 days ago
Reply to  Bart Simpson

I agree that a mea culpa is the only thing that could begin the process of trying to mend the damage that has been done by this panic. Without that, we are still digging deeper.

But it’s difficult to believe that any of the men and women who got us into this situation precisely because of their cowardice and lack of moral fibre are capable of such a response.

wendyk
wendyk
17 days ago
Reply to  Bart Simpson

No one should be ashamed to admit he is wrong, which is but saying, in other words, that he is wiser today than he was yesterday. Alexander Pope
Read more at https://www.brainyquote.com/topics/admit-quotes

Nigel Baldwin
Nigel Baldwin
17 days ago
Reply to  wendyk

Admitting you’re wrong and coming clean can be a major catharsis, but you have to overcome your ego first: quite impossible for most politicians.

scuzzaman
scuzzaman
17 days ago

They are not wicked men, just timid ones, terrified of being blamed for deaths on their watch. But it is a wicked thing that they are doing.

Forrest Gump would repeat here his mother’s wisdom that wicked is as wicked does.

It’s a bit of psychological self-defense going on here; none of us want to admit that our rulers ARE wicked, nor that we collectively and/or individually have supported them in doing wicked things.

But I care not for their professed reasons for their actions, even less for the entrail-readings of people remote from them who yet pretend to know the “real” reasons.

I greatly appreciated the learned Lord’s article, but I strongly suggest he at least consider the possibility that some proportion of our rulers ARE wicked and that all their professed concern for our welfare and respect for our rights are simply their own personal propaganda.

I don’t KNOW, of course, any more than anyone else, what goes on in the heads of every single person in a position of power over us, but I do know some things about human nature, about history, and about the kinds of people attracted to politics. I know some things about statistics and the distribution of common human traits, including psychopathy and sociopathy, too.

Statistically speaking it is an absolute certainty that some proportion of our rulers ARE wicked.

I will not pretend otherwise and I highly recommend you do not either.

BecJT
BecJT
17 days ago
Reply to  scuzzaman

It depends how you are defining wicked, which is what I took from what he said. As the old saying goes, the road to hell is paved with good intentions, in the end it matters little what your intentions were when you end up in hell. I think what is going on generally is a kind of lack of morality (hear me out!), not just in our politicians, but in all of us. Even this fear of dying, and our pious incantations that we are saving lives, isn’t a concern for others, it’s a narcissistic self-obsession, and a kind of misanthropy, a fear of others as ‘diseased’, it’s immensely self centred.

There is huge intellectual laziness going on all also, and an infantile refusal to extend ourselves to understand anything properly, a sort of sitting like infants waited to be parented. Then, the other thing that is getting my goat is how indisciplined people are with their feelings, it’s supremely self indulgent (and links to the article published here about the infantilisation of dissent), I don’t think I’ve ever seen Brits EMOTE quite like we currently are, this vomiting of tedious feelings everywhere, without a hint of fortitude or forbearance.

The whole thing is played out on devices, we were isolated before this happened, consuming infotainment on the internet, that’s hardly knowledge, or wisdom, and it requires no effort.

Then, there is a simple refusal to accept our own mortality, this narcissistic God like demand that we can cheat death, that death itself is the disease. And in it all, what do we revere? Life? Do we revere anything at all? (I would point out that EVIL is LIVE spelt backwards!).

As for respecting our elders (Honour thy mother and father not being a bad bit of psychological information by which to order your life), we SAY we do, what we’ve done would say otherwise. I personally am feeling a little chastened that I didn’t do or say more to demand we sort out social care before this happened, we’ve been insulting our old for a really long time.

Then we have our hailed expert, sneaking around in the middle of the night, to covet another man’s wife (I’m not religious, I do think the bible is an extraordinary thing), a sexually incontinent idiot with dubious standards, unable to discipline his own desire for an orgasm.

I’m starting to think the whole thing is a kind of reckoning, our chickens coming home to roost. It’s all wicked in a way.

wendyk
wendyk
17 days ago
Reply to  BecJT

Emotional incontinence and conspicuous compassion replaced rationality, independent thought and personal responsibility with its attendant maturity many moons ago.

This ‘sceptred isle’ has become ‘this slavish pile’.

BecJT
BecJT
17 days ago
Reply to  wendyk

Sadly, I agree. And unless we buck our ideas up, it’s only going to get worse. People confuse what they want with what they need, and what they feel with what is true. It’s so entitled, a feeling of being unsafe, is not the same as actually being unsafe. With all this carry on you’d think we’re in Syria with barrel bombs falling on our head.

As for what we are now doing to our children, adults demanding that children make them feel safe, that really is wicked.

paulito
paulito
17 days ago
Reply to  BecJT

Well said.

Bart Simpson
Bart Simpson
17 days ago
Reply to  BecJT

Your comment about the refusal to accept mortality is spot on. I think as well that society has been a victim of its own success in prolonging the human lifespan and as Francis Fukuyama has pointed out, unfortunately the quality of life has not kept up with the quantity hence why we’re seeing more conditions such as dementia and issues with care homes and end of life provision.

BecJT
BecJT
17 days ago
Reply to  Bart Simpson

Very true, I not long ago did a big research job for a hospice, they are future proofing now for what is ten years down the track in terms of who will need palliative care, elderly frail, particularly dementia, and life limited children with profound disabilities (all those prem babies we saved at the very edge of viability grew up). These are complex moral and ethical questions. What did we do instead? Stood in the street banging a saucepan with a wooden spoon!

We’ve also santised death. I was talking to my mum, born in 43, grew up absolutely rock bottom poor (poor in a way we don’t see now). She was telling me about the women in those communities who laid out the bodies, you’d have the body in your living room for days, we were much closer to life and death then. Children died in infancy, people died of treatable diseases too soon. I think also probably two episodes of total war gave us some appreciation for life.

I got shouted down with my comments about pornography the other day, with the advent of the internet, I’m sure I don’t need to tell you how depraved, violent, humiliating, disgusting it is now. Whatever your perversion, you can find it. But if you think about it, it’s really all about DEATH. Women literally are the bearers of new life, and pornography is the insult of it, the degradation of it, the humiliation of it. And that’s why I object to it. It’s EVIL (as in the opposite of ‘live’) in a very real sense imho. It abhors LIFE.

It’s the same with how we industrially farm animals for meat (I’m not a veggie, I have no overall objection to eating meat) but just the lack of reverence and respect we have for life.

I dunno, maybe I’m thinking too much, but I’m so angry and sad about this situation, and pretty disgusted with humans right now.

wendyk
wendyk
17 days ago
Reply to  BecJT

Fully agree that porn and industrial farming are an abomination-I am a vegetarian,for more than 30 years- but the refusal to accept death and the frankly irresponsible obsession with the prolongation of all life, at any cost, is one of the most fundamental problems facing our society.

We seem to have developed an entirely rights based, consumerist approach to all and every form of medical intervention, regardless of cost and how appropriate this might be.

The longevity nuts are some of the worst offenders; scientists trying to beat the ageing process, cryogenics cultists, mad women who demand the right to conceive after the menopause and ,of course, elderly men who wish to become fathers.

To repeat an earlier comment, when I asked for the right to refuse to attend resuscitation attempts, depending on the age, prognosis, morbidity, of patients, I was treated as a heretic and ostracised by some, although quietly agreed with by others.

And let’s not forget that amidst all the shouting about genocide and sacrifice, that those approaching the ends of their lives, need palliation, not heroic interventions in hospital wards, no matter what the MSM might demand.

Weaponising the deaths of the very old and frail to score political points does no good.

To be sure, the care staff should be properly paid and trained, and have qualified nurses in charge of palliative protocols,with GPs and geriatricians on call when needed.

This way, the residents can be relieved of pain and distress in a familiar setting and their deaths eased, with families allowed to visit where appropriate.

Unfortunately, as I know from experience, nursing homes can be very depressing, with an endless round of washing, changing of incontinence pads, heavy lifting and attempts to stimulate the more lively residents, this with limited success.

Many care assistants don’t stay long, worn down by poor wages, zero hours contracts and the messier aspects of the work routines.

Furthermore, so many homes are now privately owned, hence the conflict between running a profitable business while applying acceptable standards of hygiene and safety for residents and staff.

BecJT
BecJT
17 days ago
Reply to  wendyk

I really hear you, and I’d agree. And really all of the above is our refusal to really engage with what sustains life (whether we’re talking about what we do to our old, porn, industrial holocaust of animals or whatever, laying aside any scepticism about climate science, what we are doing to the planet) and that is respect, compassion, intimacy, love, kindness, connection, a willingness to confront things that are painful, or make us uncomfortable, and a total lack of discipline of our own appetites. Porn especially is the opposite of love or intimacy, it’s actually hate (death).

Weaponising of DNR was a disgrace, at the best of times only about 5% survive CPR, to do it to an elderly frail person, when you break all their ribs, it’s extremely traumatic, including for families, with very little hope of a good outcome. I wouldn’t put my mum through that, I’d much rather she slipped peacefully away. I agree with you about care, and I don’t know what the answer is, inter-generational living possibly, but that requires men to step up and share the care, I understand why women wanted to get away from endless unpaid, unappreciated dreary grunt work (ironically we now pay other women the minimum wage to do it). Our response to that should not be to privatise it and outsource it but share it (see point above about intimacy and respect!).

I feel sorry for kids too, we’ve even robbed them of youth culture, so obsessed are we with not getting old. They can’t even go and get wrecked at a festival without some ridiculous middle aged people also being there in a luxury yurt and designer wellies, botoxed to the eyeballs it’s all a bit embarrassing. How do you rebel as a kid, if you and your mum share clothes, and your mum talks about being ‘your best friend’ and not your parent and your dad is doing lines of coke on the weekend and w*nking into a sock?

Anyway, I’m in danger of starting to rant that ‘everything is rubbish’, but we are in a mess, I fear where we are now is just the culmination of it.

wendyk
wendyk
17 days ago
Reply to  BecJT

I stopped the resus attempts on my late Mum, as she had requested; a quick peaceful death was hers.

And you’re so right BecJt, about embarassing oldies ‘getting down’, or whatever the phrase is now.

Smug articles in the Guardian about gruesome 80 year olds who flaunt their ‘sexy’ vibrant selves get my cringeometer flying into the red zone-(they’re usually former models)-, along with such grotesque figures as some of our more ‘mature’ celebs, who appear to have transformed themselves into pneumatic aliens with joke shop lips.

Or the stupendously obese who proclaim that fat=fit?

I mean, what can one honestly say about a supposedly mature western democracy when so many of its female citizens appear to be under the delusion that alarmingly bizarre surgical enhancements and horrible tarty clothing confer equality, liberation and automatic respect?

BecJT
BecJT
17 days ago
Reply to  wendyk

Ah choicey choice fun feminism, don’t get me started, what a con trick that is. It’s tragic really. And yes I do wish some old rockers would retire gracefully, rather than clinging to cool like a desperado (and it all works back around to contempt for the old, so abhorrent to be old).

I’m wondering if all this snowflakery we criticise kids for is actually their rebellion, what with having such badly behaved, ridiculous parents? Haha. Lots of kids don’t even drink now, they’re quite a sensible lot. And here’s a fun fact, the age group with the most rapidly rising rate of STD infections? The over 50s (they call them Saga Louts), post menopausal, can’t get pregnant, box of viagra, wey hey!

Pleased about your mum, dying with dignity is really important (and is what has upset me about what’s gone on in carehomes). My parents are getting on now, all they keep saying is ‘for the love of God, keep us out of hospital’. I will do my best!

wendyk
wendyk
17 days ago