Bollocks

Follow Covid rules or see UK deaths return to spring levels, minister warns

We might well see cases rise to former levels. But those elderly with comorbidities are already dead and we’ve not aged into a new crop of them yet.

Jeez.

36 thoughts on “Bollocks”

  1. Meanwhile, the ONS numbers show that ‘flu deaths have been running at the expected numbers all summer — meaning that all this pantomime has achieved exactly nothing in restricting the spread of respiratory disease.

  2. The Sage, there is a clear consensus, 97% of scientists agree that lockdowns and face nappies prevent the spread of covid, but unfortunately they do nothing for influenza. The Science is Settled, and you need to be banned and cancelled for spreading misinformation. You are clearly someone who wants to kill everyone’s gran.

  3. “But those elderly with comorbidities are already dead and we’ve not aged into a new crop of them yet.”
    I know a couple of elderly people with comorbidities and they aren’t dead yet. They know that Covid-19 is still out there and act accordingly.
    And I know a few people who have a risk in the significant percentages, and they haven’t had Covid-19 yet either. (Probably). They have been taking care, but are rather fed up now.
    We have got better at treating severe cases, and it’s mostly running through the young right now, but there is plenty of scope for many more deaths to come.

  4. The ONS stats are showing that over the last 12 weeks, exactly 3,600 deaths have been recorded as ‘Covid 19’ and 11,706 deaths as flu or pneumonia.

  5. Andrew C, rest assured that any or all of those pneumonia deaths can be relabelled as covid if the authorities require any evidence to continue the scare.

    Meanwhile, about 1500 deaths a day from non-covis and nobody gives a stuff.

  6. Why shouldn’t Covid-19 levels return to those of Spring? What makes the government think they can fight the tide like Canute?

    The aim was to flatten the curve. Not prevent infection indefinitely by closing the entire economy down.

  7. Correct, NDReader. Our efforts have reduced the number of targets exposed, but they still remain vulnerable. We think. I could have had it and don’t know it. I must say, this Covid has been a persistent bastard.

  8. If you read the article, there is no trace of the minister actually saying that. What he is reported to have said is “We’re seeing the hospital admissions creeping up, albeit the deaths haven’t followed as yet,” Shapps told Sky News. “What we do know, looking at places like Spain, is that will follow.”
    If he said deaths will reach the earlier levels The Grauniad forgot to report that.
    So the headline has simply been made up by a sub-editor.

  9. Bloke in North Dorset

    Why are we worrying about cases? Leaving aside the false positives they aren’t the problem. Admissions should be the main indicator and those are 3000+ hosp admissions in England at peak in Apr and the NHS was under severe pressure.

    205 on 18 Sep. Its not even close to being something to worry about and I’m willing to bet some of those being admitted today wouldn’t have been admitted in April.

  10. Ljh,

    Along with condemnation from the pulpit of anyone having a bit of fun, the belief that that fun is what is bringing down the wrath of God upon us, outrageous punishments for breaches of the ever-shifting moral code, the (metaphorical) burning of heretics, shaming and guilt by association of any member of the reality and evidence-based community questioning the Bulls and Decrees with conspiracy theorists, Nazis, QAnon* etc, and the insistence that if we just round up and slaughter our very last cattle, the problem will definitely go away, and it hasn’t gone away because we didn’t quite slaughter all the cattle in response to the first prophesy**.

    **: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nongqawuse

  11. *: News bulletin: A few covidiots demonstrated in Berlin today against the government’s sensible and measured response to the deadly coronavirus pandemic, among them Nazis, far-right agitators, and conspiracy theorists, including from the crazy QAnon group who believe in the ridiculous and utterly insane notion that the world is run by a pedophile ring consisting of many prominent members of the global elite.

    In international news there are fresh developments in the Jeffrey Epstein case…

  12. This is prohibition, isn’t it? But instead of merely prohibiting alcohol and drugs, which is an ambition for pikers, this is the prohibition of the stuff of life – based on a template imported from a totalitarian dictatorship.

  13. Anyone remember the huge spike in deaths after the BLM protests and the ‘crowded beaches’ disaster?

    Pubs reopened in July followed by a jump in deaths two weeks later.

    Oh, wait, didn’t happen.

  14. And yet Twitter thinks it likely that after todays lies* by Whitty and Vallance–Blojob will circle-jerk at COBRARS tomorrow morning and announce LD 2 in afternoon.

    It will finish off UK economy. Which is why Agenda 21 stuff returns to mind. Esp with the car grabbing 2030 cockrot included into the mix.

    I will be defying it as last time–though massive penalities will likely be thrown this time. But we will just have to pray for Blojob’s fall before too long. 7 million likely hitting dole after end of October. An extension of furlough just means 100s of billions more funny money. I think even Tory grandees will be smelling the shite flling Blojerks brainpan by now. Millions of bedwetters still but I think about 1/3 realise that the virus is bullshit.

    If businesses stay open we surely win .Doubtless massive fines- (already now min £500 if business fails to get yr name/address for T&T–so make up a v credible false one) but businesses will be out of business anyway so who cares. And they cant get £10 grand if yr broke.

    *Lies is correct–along with transparent silliness such as –“here is the to date graph showing NO exponential increase–and next to it a exponential curve showing what would happen if cases took off exponentially”. To anyone with 2 brain cells the ploy is pathetic.

  15. BiG: thanks. As a Saffer, the aftermath of the slaughter of the Xhosa cattle is close but it happened when the people were already squeezed between white settlers and Zulu impis. What is happening now is that the most affluent, wellfed, longlived population in the world’s history is being panicked and regulated into impoverishment by a bunch of puritanical technocrats, unless you are saying we are analogous to the cattle and the ruling classes the Xhosa elders heading their ancestors (Marx, Lenin and Mao).

  16. “here is the to date graph showing NO exponential increase–and next to it a exponential curve showing what would happen if cases took off exponentially”.

    Why not a graph showing what would happen if cases increased three-fold every week? Or four-fold? Or what might happen if the virus mutated to be 6 foot tall and armed itself with guns and flame throwers?

  17. The problem as I see it is that we’re vacillating between telling women not to wear short skirts ‘cos that’ll get them raped, and lockimg up all men because rapists are men. Nobody with authority is advocating tracking down rapists and removing them and leaving everybody else to get on with their own life as they see fit.

  18. There have been second waves in all the major respiratory epidemics – 1918, 1957, 1968, SARS 1. It’s going to happen, whether you shut down the economy or not.

  19. And yet…

    Since early July new ‘cases’ in Sweden have not gone up, in fact decreased slightly and new deaths have remained near zero despite/because Sweden has no masks, or other restrictions. Perhaps they are not testing healthy people either.

    New ‘cases’ in UK have climbed steadily since July, but new deaths remain around zero.

    Spain since early July new ‘cases’ have increased significantly, yet daily new deaths remain low and show no corresponding increase.

    The same story for France.

    Now isn’t it curious that all these new ‘cases’ in the hysteria Countries all started upward about the same time? Could it be an artefact of increased PCR testing in healthy people which picks up antibody and viral fragments showing previous contact with the virus and false positives aside are neither cases nor new?

    We have a real time comparative study with Sweden as the control. The data show the progress curve of the virus identical in all Countries irrespective of whether and when measures were introduced.

    Evidence from observation shows measures make no difference to outcome. Increased testing finds increased number of positives but gives no information about progress of the virus, which has anyway returned to background noise.

  20. These guys have some brass neck. That projection is so utterly inept even BBC is compelled to point out that it doesn’t match experience in Spain, France:

    “…Spain and France, which both started seeing rises earlier than the UK, have not seen the sort of rapid trajectory that was presented by the advisers…”

    But they got there headline, mission accomplished

    Steve was right: Lions

  21. John B,

    false positives are a big problem when the real prevalence is low. If we were testing just symptomatic people it would be an ignorable footnote, but when testing almost randomly in the population, it could easily account for a majority of positive results.

    Difficult to explain to most people that all medical tests work like this – there will be both false positives and negatives, that are not usually of consequence to the individual as you don’t tend to rely on just one result but seek confirmation. People firstly won’t believe that that can be the case. How can our wonderful medical science produce things that can ever be wrong, or even just “wrong”?

    Then, to explain that the relative impact of false positive and negatives depends on the distribution of the actual condition in the population, forget it.

    It looks to me like a bit of both – artefact of more widespread testing, and some not unexpected real increase in infections. It wouldn’t surprise me if the false positives outnumber the true positive plus false negatives.

  22. And if you can’t explain this to the bedwetter not on the Clapham omnibus, you have absolutely no chance with a cabinet minister!

  23. the Chief Medical Officer did say that lockdowns cause economic damage which leads to more public heath issues, funnily enough the media focused on the claim that deaths could go back up and seem to have missed that bit

  24. @NDReader


    “But those elderly with comorbidities are already dead and we’ve not aged into a new crop of them yet.”
    I know a couple of elderly people with comorbidities and they aren’t dead yet. They know that Covid-19 is still out there and act accordingly.
    And I know a few people who have a risk in the significant percentages, and they haven’t had Covid-19 yet either. (Probably). They have been taking care, but are rather fed up now.
    We have got better at treating severe cases, and it’s mostly running through the young right now, but there is plenty of scope for many more deaths to come.”

    Well put. Tim’s way off to say COVID has wiped out all the elderly with comorbidities that it was ever going to do, the death toll is (thankfully) far too small for that to have been the case, but the downside of this is the potential for future harm is still there. If you want to see the way it’s running through the young it’s worth looking at the ONS random household survey data, particularly Figure 5: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/healthandsocialcare/conditionsanddiseases/bulletins/coronaviruscovid19infectionsurveypilot/englandandwales18september2020#age-analysis-of-the-number-of-people-in-england-who-had-covid-19

    The question is whether that increase in the young will start translating to an increase among the old. Their numbers do seem to be creeping up, but whether that kicks into full-scale exponential growth is another question – as you say, more vulnerable people may be more careful.

    @BIG: The ONS survey above actually is a random sample, and they’re still finding a detectable upsurge in infections, which puts some limits on how how bad the false positives situation might be. Their results with a consistent methodology are a lot more meaningful than the raw “case” numbers, which can change a lot based on testing capacity and eligibility (e.g. if we restrict only to those who are symptoms, or we start sticking extra testing capacity in places with higher local incidence).

    @BIND

    Comparing raw numbers of “cases” now to “cases” in summer would clearly be silly due to the increased testing capacity. Again the ONS data is interesting in that it shows we’re still way below April levels. One problem with running on hospital admissions figures alone (even if that’s actually the quantity we care about keeping under control) is that it’s a lagging indicator rather than a leading one. So probably helpful to look at the age-stratified trends in modelled incidence based on the ONS data as well as the admissions, to get a feel for how admissions might rise in future.

  25. MBE,

    I don’t doubt there is currently an increase in the prevalence and incidence of infection, and didn’t say I did. I haven’t compared ONS to the UK Pillar 2 data, am more familiar with the German data, where it is basically over, deaths running at under 50 per week.

    FWIW, my own risk is definitely in the significant percentages, and I’ve already had it. I still think lockdown is unjustifiable. If lockdown is effective against h2h transmitted respiratory viruses, why does the influenza death rate look exactly like every other year?

  26. If this was in 1990, there would be few mobile phones and no internet, a track and trace system would be possible but hopelessly impractical using landlines, home delivery of food using the market economy would be rare and the PCR tests for viral rNA would be in their infancy. Common sense precautions would prevail like good hand hygiene, closing activities linked to large outbreaks and staying at home if you had symptoms, and staying away from contact with the NHS and care homes. The break point where this thing just fades away would be in the rear view mirror.
    What is extraordinary is the response of countries whose incomes today is roughly that of the UK pre-1990 – why oh why did they have a government imposed lock down?

  27. Bloke in North Dorset

    MBE,

    I agree about hospitalisations being a lagging indicator, the point was that cases aren’t the leading indicator the gov and MSM appear to be claiming.

    As to the age related infections there’s some good analysis here: https://twitter.com/dr_d_robertson/status/1307609224495722503?s=21

    Although I’m not sure that 20 cases per 100,000 pop is the right trigger for concern. Last I read Germany was using 50 and even then didn’t react immediately.

    If you follow the thread you’ll see he reckons the transmission route is young people taking in to work, which sounds plausible.

    David Paton has also developed a good dashboard of indicators that he updates regularly: https://twitter.com/cricketwyvern/status/1308068749417877504?s=21

  28. Sooner or later ~60% of the people are going to be exposed. For those who aren’t going to die from it, the quicker the better. We are throttling it more than we should. We are way past the point of flooding the hospitals.

    Loosen up, unlock, and pay attention to hospitalization rate vs hospital capacity.

    Note we could have done this in May, after April peak.

  29. . . . why does the influenza death rate look exactly like every other year?

    Do they count flu deaths (as in tested cases) or is the rate an estimate based on it being some assumed proportion of overall respiratory deaths?

  30. Dear Mr Worstall

    Grant Shapps is minister for transport; are his pronouncements on health issues relevant? Or just an appeal to authority: “Government minister says blah, blah, blah.”

    Assuming these post OK (preview shows it doesn’t, but it’s decipherable if you feel inclined) – 7 day rolling averages Tuesday 25 August to Monday 21 September, percentages are cf the day before. NB the odd negative figure and scary 11% and 12% on 6 & 7 September, which no-one bothered to be scared about. Doubling every 7 days requires a continuous daily increase of 10%.

    Tue, 25 Aug 2020 1,056
    Wed, 26 Aug 2020 1,090 3%
    Thu, 27 Aug 2020 1,138 4%
    Fri, 28 Aug 2020 1,173 3%
    Sat, 29 Aug 2020 1,147 -2%
    Sun, 30 Aug 2020 1,244 8%
    Mon, 31 Aug 2020 1,323 6%
    Tue, 1 Sep 2020 1,339 1%
    Wed, 2 Sep 2020 1,404 5%
    Thu, 3 Sep 2020 1,435 2%
    Fri, 4 Sep 2020 1,530 7%
    Sat, 5 Sep 2020 1,630 7%
    Sun, 6 Sep 2020 1,812 11%
    Mon, 7 Sep 2020 2,032 12%
    Tue, 8 Sep 2020 2,193 8%
    Wed, 9 Sep 2020 2,358 7%
    Thu, 10 Sep 2020 2,527 7%
    Fri, 11 Sep 2020 2,755 9%
    Sat, 12 Sep 2020 2,996 9%
    Sun, 13 Sep 2020 3,045 2%
    Mon, 14 Sep 2020 2,998 -2%
    Tue, 15 Sep 2020 3,096 3%
    Wed, 16 Sep 2020 3,286 6%
    Thu, 17 Sep 2020 3,354 2%
    Fri, 18 Sep 2020 3,466 3%
    Sat, 19 Sep 2020 3,598 4%
    Sun, 20 Sep 2020 3,679 2%
    Mon, 21 Sep 2020 3,929 7%

    Anyone feeling an urge to panic?

    DP

  31. With his fubby pub curfew Blojob has bottled the Lockdown 2.

    He sent his 2 tame scienceliars out this morning to spread palm leaves in his path. And so great was the gathering storm he has looked into this afternoon that the tubby frog-faced git turned his Hugh Jarse on it.

    So be less dismayed all and prepare to practice the good old art of pub lock-ins rather than lockdowns. His measure is silly and will annoy more folks and his “more to come if you dont obey” will bring steadily more recruits to the side of sanity.

    Like remainiacs there seems to be an irreducible hard core of bed-wetter scum. But they will be stripped down to the bare bones numbers by Bloj’s
    “arrogance on a yellow custard base”.

  32. @ Me September 21, 2020 at 10:49 pm

    Update:

    Mon, 21 Sep 2020 3,929 7%
    Tue, 22 Sep 2020 4,189 7%
    Wed, 23 Sep 2020 4,501 7%
    Thu, 24 Sep 2020 4,964 10%
    Fri, 25 Sep 2020 5,328 7%
    Sat, 26 Sep 2020 5,560 4%
    Sun, 27 Sep 2020 5,816 5%
    Mon, 28 Sep 2020 5,770 -1%

    Thursday 24 – 10% increase. Oh woe! We’re all going to die!!

    Monday 28 – -1%. Move along, please. Nothing to see here.

    DP

    Figures are 7 day averages, % are daily change.

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