Up to 100 times more may have been spent on preventing each Covid death than on preventing each non-Covid death
Boris Johnson was secretly ‘nudged’ into wearing a facemask during the pandemic, according to the head of the government’s Behavioural Insights Team.
In our supposedly liberal and transparent democratic country, it seems that it was a group of remote and unnamed scientists, outside of the formal SAGE infrastructure, who effectively imposed masks on British citizens. Were they well-meaning academics offering their expertise, or conflicted ideologues engaged in a global endeavour to control the masses? You decide.
Summary from The Daily Sceptic:
Mass vaccination mission creep, no rigorous vaccine safety monitoring, counter-terrorism units deployed to crush scientific and social media dissent, major restrictions pursued for political reasons without evidence, expert advisers ignored – just some of the revelations made by Isabel Oakeshott in the Spectator this week. Fresh from co-authoring Matt Hancock’s pandemic diaries, the lockdown-sceptical journalist has written down the “key lessons” she took away from the very revealing writing process she undertook with a man whose approach to the pandemic she vehemently opposes.
Presented as an independent voice for “unbiased” scientific advice, iSAGE provided a channel for media spinmeisters, spies and psy-op specialists to influence Britain’s pandemic policy without accountability. Leaked internal emails show members fretting over its unethical methods.
When a handful of authors were caught reviewing their own papers, it exposed weaknesses in modern publishing systems. Editors are trying to plug the holes.
A senior epidemiologist who advised the government during the coronavirus pandemic claims he was told to “correct” his views after he criticised what he thought was an “implausible” graph shown at an official briefing.
Professor Mark Woolhouse has also apologised to his daughter, whose generation “has been so badly served by mine”, and believes that closing schools was “morally wrong”.
The Edinburgh University academic is deeply critical of the use of lockdown measures and says “plain common sense” was a “casualty of the crisis”.
Speaking to Sky News, Prof Woolhouse seemed concerned about a possible “big-brother” approach to the control of information about COVID.
He says he was told to watch what he was saying following a briefing given by Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA) Sir Patrick Vallance on 21 September 2020.
Long Covid could be being drastically overreported in children, an official report suggests.
The Office for National Statistics said only one in 100 primary-aged pupils actually have the condition, despite half of parents reporting at least one of its symptoms.
Professor Russell Viner, a member of SAGE and child health expert, said it showed ‘just how common tiredness and headaches are in children’.
The report showed that 47.5 per cent of parents said their child was still battling at least one symptom of the virus 12 weeks later.
But almost the same amount (46.6 per cent) had similar symptoms despite never having Covid. Most common symptoms were a sore throat, lost voice, coughs and shortness of breath.
The ONS estimated that fewer than one in 40 secondary pupils in the UK have long Covid.
“Following the science” became a mainstay mantra of the pandemic, frequently trotted-out to justify unpalatable policy decisions such as banning hugging or denying fathers the right to attend the birth of a child.
Yet as Britain’s epidemic begins to fade away, it is becoming increasingly clear that many influential scientists were ignored, ridiculed and shunned for expressing moderate views that the virus could be managed in a way which would cause far less collateral damage.
Instead, a narrow scientific “groupthink” emerged, which sought to cast those questioning draconian policies as unethical, immoral and fringe. That smokescreen is finally starting to dissipate.
It is more than a rebuke to Medley and the modellers though. This pandemic began, for many, with an announcement from Imperial College, whose study predicted 500,000 deaths if we did nothing. We locked down and never tested the prediction.
This time, in the face of what the public saw as dire predictions, we didn’t lock down and the apocalypse never came. The unspoken — and sometimes spoken — implication is clear: are we all fools?
The Government’s “grossly unethical” uses of its “nudge unit” inflated fear among the public during the Covid pandemic, psychologists have said – prompting MPs to launch an investigation into scare adverts.
A group of psychologists have written to Parliament’s Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee, warning that a team of civil servants dedicated to “nudging” public behaviour during the pandemic were unaccountable and unethical.
The letter’s 40 professional signatories – led by Dr Gary Sidley, a retired clinical psychologist – said they opposed the use of dramatic adverts, which included slogans such as: “If you go out you can spread it, people will die.”
“There are some scientists who have absolutely loved being media stars for the first time and they don’t want to stop. We don’t hear as much from the paediatricians, disease physicians, academic virologists and the immunologists who really know about these things.” (says Professor Allyson Pollock.)
Paul Hunter, professor of medicine at the University of East Anglia, said many prominent Covid voices have never written papers on infectious diseases. “It’s like me deciding, ‘I did a course on health and economics a year ago: maybe I should set up a group advising the chancellor on how to manage the tax system.’”
Everything the government has got right on Covid-19 in the past 12 months has happened when it ignored ‘the science’. If the modellers hadn’t made such fools of themselves in the summer and autumn of 2021 they might have been taken more seriously by the government in the winter. As it was, their incompetence had seeded enough doubt in Johnson’s mind for him to resist going beyond ‘Plan B’ despite almost every ‘scenario’ modelled telling him that hospitalisations and deaths from the virus would exceed anything England had ever seen before.
EXCLUSIVE: UKHSA data shows infections are dropping in 96% of the country’s nearly 7,000 neighbourhoods
Parts of Castle Point, Shropshire and Bexley have seen infections fall by more than 70% week-on-week
And MailOnline analysis shows Omicron wave deaths were seven times lower than the peak last winter
Official figures show half as many Covid patients were in hospital at one time compared to the Alpha peak
And 4.5 times fewer patients were moved to critical care beds during the latest wave compared to last winter
Coronavirus cases are now falling in virtually every area of England, official figures show as the Omicron wave continues to collapse with deaths six times lower than in the second wave.
Some 6,519 out of 6,790 neighbourhoods (96 per cent) around the country recorded a fall in infections in the week to January 11, according to the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA).
Arguments to vaccinate children as young as five against Covid are ‘scientifically weak’, British experts claimed today after the US moved closer to jabbing infants.
…Professor David Livermore, a medical microbiologist at the University of East Anglia told MailOnline: ‘Vaccinating children to protect adults via herd immunity is ethically dubious and is scientifically weak.’
…Professor Russell Viner, a pediatrician and member of the UK Government’s scientific advisory group SAGE, said it was crucial the UK does not ‘rush to a decision’ in the wake of the announcement in the US.
Why haven’t lockdowns worked? There are broadly two types of respiratory virus. There are those that spread person to person – like measles – in a continuous chain of transmission, uninterrupted by season and with every susceptible contact falling ill. Then there are those we do not understand so well, like influenza, which are much more complex. Instead of the simplistic close contact model, which assumes Covid spreads like measles, we should perhaps consider an alternative more sophisticated model based on influenza. The influenza virus model is unusual – it is predicated on the majority being exposed to a particular airborne virus but, oddly, only a minority appear to be susceptible to each year’s variant. To complicate matters further, influenza can also spread person to person.
First major inquiry into the Covid crisis says the tragic losses in care homes were among the highest in Europe
The report finds that deaths could have been prevented but instead elderly were treated as ‘an afterthought’
Finding is just one among catalogue of failings detailed in the inquiry by the health and science committees
The report found test and trace system which cost Government £37billion was also branded ‘chaotic’ fiasco
All but one scientist who penned a letter in The Lancet dismissing the possibility that coronavirus could have come from a lab in Wuhan were linked to its Chinese researchers, their colleagues or funders, a Telegraph investigation can reveal.
The influential journal published a letter on March 7 last year from 27 scientists in which they stated that they “strongly condemned conspiracy theories” surrounding Covid-19.
Schools are not spreading Covid, according to an official study that has boosted hopes that the return to class will not trigger an autumn surge in infections.
Pupils sent home in class bubbles were highly unlikely to pass on the virus to their parents even when they did pick up it from a fellow pupil, the research found.