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-   -   Covid-19 and Politics (http://www.internationalskeptics.com/forums/showthread.php?t=342577)

Planigale 6th May 2020 03:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Planigale (Post 13080380)
No it probably wouldn't. A party would have many more possible interactions, than two individuals. One of whom was (potentially) immune, and the other had already been exposed.

I do think this is the lowest form of 'gotcha' journalism. Hypocrisy is not a major sin. If a murderer says killing people is wrong it does not mean killing people is right. I note the heavy use of 'married lover'. What is the relevance as to whether the individual is married? Is this in the public interest? I think not. All it will mean is that individuals who are not 'public figures' but are merely carrying out their job - giving technical advice to the government, will be less willing to be identified, will be less willing to discuss the technical details with the press, in case they are subject to the same sort of 'gotcha' story for some peccadillo. We are arguing for more transparency, to know who is on SAGE, I certainly would not be in a hurry to be identified or to communicate directly with the press after this. In addition the government has lost an expert advisor. So I do not think there is any public interest defence in this article indeed the consequence will be actually harmful to the public interest. There was no public health risk in the particular circumstances.

In contrast if a politician was arranging regular parties or indeed you, I would certainly view publicising this as in the public interest since unlike this case there is a very real public risk.

Thinking about this if we want true transparency then we may need to allow people certain level of immunity. I think there is an unreasonable view that people follow their own advice all the time. If all doctors and nurses were struck off because they drank more than the recommended amount of alcohol, smoked a cigarette, failed to take sufficient exercise, were overweight etc. we would be seriously short of health care. The old aphorism would seem to be true here 'Do as I say, not as I do'.

Squeegee Beckenheim 6th May 2020 03:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Planigale (Post 13080373)
It depends on whether you view NHS as separate from the UK government (or Scottish, Welsh and NI governments).

Clearly I do, since I've literally said as much.

Quote:

Compared with the direct identifiable data the NHS holds which is not anonymised, the information from your phone seems of minimal concern.
I've also literally said that I don't consider it a huge concern.

Quote:

I note the memo which was a draft was discussing possible options for the development of the app, it does not say this is possible with the current app. One needs to be careful that discussions of options in development are not over-interpreted as representing the final shape of the app.
Yes, I've said all that, too.

Quote:

I am also curious whether you would refuse to interact with human contact tracers on privacy grounds?
There is evidence that contact tracing carried out by humans is actually effective, as opposed to making the danger worse.

Quote:

The issue about trolling applies to all these apps including the apple / google app.
Of course it does. But it is one of the reasons why this app would be unreliable and therefore actively dangerous.

Quote:

The issue about whether the app runs in the background is due to apple / google refusing to allow the NHS app to run in the background. This problem could be solved with the co-operation of apple / google. Perhaps you could criticise them for preventing the development of an optimum app.
I don't give a **** whose "fault" it is. I give a **** about whether or not it will a) reduce the spread of the disease or b) increase the spread of the disease. b) seems like the most likely outcome as things stand.

Quote:

The NHS version is probably less vulnerable to trolling and could be integrated with testing, as the NHS would send out an alert to contacts that might include how to be tested, and perhaps direct contact with a contact tracer, or symptom questionnaire.
They have said that they won't be testing everybody who comes into close contact with someone who is infected.

Squeegee Beckenheim 6th May 2020 03:26 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Planigale (Post 13080380)
Hypocrisy is not a major sin.

It depends on whether or not that hypocrisy can cost lives. In this case it can.

Quote:

If a murderer says killing people is wrong it does not mean killing people is right. I note the heavy use of 'married lover'. What is the relevance as to whether the individual is married? Is this in the public interest? I think not. All it will mean is that individuals who are not 'public figures' but are merely carrying out their job - giving technical advice to the government, will be less willing to be identified, will be less willing to discuss the technical details with the press, in case they are subject to the same sort of 'gotcha' story for some peccadillo. We are arguing for more transparency, to know who is on SAGE, I certainly would not be in a hurry to be identified or to communicate directly with the press after this. In addition the government has lost an expert advisor. So I do not think there is any public interest defence in this article indeed the consequence will be actually harmful to the public interest. There was no public health risk in the particular circumstances.
I did wonder if we were going to get a "it's not his fault for setting a bad example, it's the press' fault for letting people know he was setting a bad example" argument, and here we are.

Squeegee Beckenheim 6th May 2020 03:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by P.J. Denyer (Post 13080392)
He ****** up but he's resigned for it. Give him credit for that.

No. I'm not going to give people credit for the bare minimum that they should do.

In the same way I don't give people credit for not hitting their spouses, or for looking after their own children, even though there are people who do hit their spouses and who do look after their own children.

Or, perhaps more analogously, I don't give someone credit for paying child support while they're hitting their ex just because there are people who hit their ex and don't pay their child support.

Other people behaving worse doesn't elevate better (or less-worse) behaviour into the realm of good.

Captain_Swoop 6th May 2020 03:40 AM

On the day the UK becomes the country with the highest coronavirus death toll in Europe, most of the front pages feature the shagging doctor and Farage looking for illegal immigrants on the beaches of Eat Sussex.

Captain_Swoop 6th May 2020 03:45 AM

You wait for ages for a bus, then a professor gets thrown under it as a distraction
Apparently this happened a month ago and the papers have had it for weeks.
It's almost like they'd been saving it up for a day when the government needed a particularly smelly dead cat.

Planigale 6th May 2020 03:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim (Post 13080403)
It depends on whether or not that hypocrisy can cost lives. In this case it can.



I did wonder if we were going to get a "it's not his fault for setting a bad example, it's the press' fault for letting people know he was setting a bad example" argument, and here we are.

Until the press were involved I am pretty sure he was not setting an example. Setting an example means that you are demonstrating to people how things are done. I am pretty sure he would have been trying to be discrete about his affair, so he would have been doing the exact opposite of setting an example. It is only the publicity from the press that have made this an example, and it may have the opposite effect from promoting good public behaviour, so this article by publicising the action may have been more harmful to the public health than the original private action.

Something that would change my view would be if he was paid for his interviews with the press. If he is earning money from promoting social distancing then this is different from providing an unpaid expert opinion to the press to promote the public good.

Planigale 6th May 2020 03:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Squeegee Beckenheim (Post 13080401)
They have said that they won't be testing everybody who comes into close contact with someone who is infected.

My guess is that testing will depend on issues such as duration and distance of contact. Whether a contact is higher risk or has previously tested positive, whether the source contact is a troll, or there is evidence of infectivity (have earlier contacts developed symptoms). Remember you would probably need to wait a week after contact for testing to be reliable, and if there have been no earlier contacts who are symptomatic or test positive and if the source contact is symptomatic but not test positive it may be felt testing is unnecessary.

Squeegee Beckenheim 6th May 2020 03:56 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Planigale (Post 13080409)
Until the press were involved I am pretty sure he was not setting an example. Setting an example means that you are demonstrating to people how things are done. I am pretty sure he would have been trying to be discrete about his affair, so he would have been doing the exact opposite of setting an example. It is only the publicity from the press that have made this an example, and it may have the opposite effect from promoting good public behaviour, so this article by publicising the action may have been more harmful to the public health than the original private action.

Something that would change my view would be if he was paid for his interviews with the press. If he is earning money from promoting social distancing then this is different from providing an unpaid expert opinion to the press to promote the public good.

Yup, this is the "don't blame the man for his behaviour, blame the people who reported on his behaviour" argument again. It's no more convincing this time around.

Captain_Swoop 6th May 2020 04:00 AM

Cabinet minister Robert Jenrick who travelled 150 miles to his second home and then another 40 miles after that to see his folks wasn't even looked at.

Ulf Nereng 6th May 2020 04:27 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13080405)
On the day the UK becomes the country with the highest coronavirus death toll in Europe, most of the front pages feature the shagging doctor and Farage looking for illegal immigrants on the beaches of Eat Sussex.

Well, they know their readers best, I guess. This is the sort of thing they want to read about, so it's what they get to read about!

Captain_Swoop 6th May 2020 04:57 AM

If anyone nursed a glimmer of hope that near-death or fatherhood may have somehow magically changed Boris Johnson, from conman to statesman, I hope that partisan, evasive, mendacious, bumbling PMQs performance made you wake up.

Captain_Swoop 6th May 2020 04:58 AM

Boris promises 200,000 tests by end of May.

Nothing has changed.

Myriad 6th May 2020 04:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by McHrozni (Post 13080374)
A useful shorthand to get grips on how far you've come is to compare the number of newly diagnosed infections in the past day to the number of total diagnosed infections. In Italy that number is about 1% or lower and has been below 2% for weeks. UK is still at 2-3%, the drop is slow. Epidemic is said to be dying out when the number is consistently below 1%, which has been the case in Italy for just over a week. UK is at least two weeks away from that point and probably closer to a month.


That's how I've been evaluating the data here in the New England states all along. But there's a catch, due to the accumulation of total confirmed cases when you're in a sustained plateau (or close to that). Let's say you have 10,000 cases so far, and you get 200 new confirmed cases per day. That's 2%. Fifty days later, you're down to 1%, but that still means 200 new cases per day.

Samson 6th May 2020 05:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13080405)
On the day the UK becomes the country with the highest coronavirus death toll in Europe, most of the front pages feature the shagging doctor and Farage looking for illegal immigrants on the beaches of Eat Sussex.

For pities sake focus on deaths per million population or something similar.
This reporting of numbers without consideration of population should be banned from this forum.

wobs 6th May 2020 05:06 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13079735)
Government scientist Neil Ferguson resigns after breaking lockdown rules to meet his married lover

Prof Ferguson allowed the woman to visit him at home during the lockdown while lecturing the public on the need for strict social distancing

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/202...igns-breaking/

Boris is so lazy that Prof. Ferguson has to have his affairs for him now

Captain_Swoop 6th May 2020 05:08 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Samson (Post 13080451)
For pities sake focus on deaths per million population or something similar.
This reporting of numbers without consideration of population should be banned from this forum.

Germany - UK. comparable population sizes.

Captain_Swoop 6th May 2020 05:11 AM

The press isn't wat it was for a start, the word “randy” appears nowhere in that headline.

The Don 6th May 2020 06:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop (Post 13080448)
Boris promises the capacity to mail out 200,000 tests by end of May.

Nothing has changed.

FTFY.

Private Eye's "MD" has been particularly scathing about the government's Coronavirus response in this fortnight's issue.

The Don 6th May 2020 06:28 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Samson (Post 13080451)
For pities sake focus on deaths per million population or something similar.
This reporting of numbers without consideration of population should be banned from this forum.

The UK is currently number 4 on the list of countries by per capita Coronavius deaths:

https://www.statista.com/statistics/...n-inhabitants/

Top of the list is Belgium whose rate is nearly 60% higher than the UK's. Belgium's figures are based on suspected rather than confirmed Coronavirus cases.

Cheetah 6th May 2020 06:40 AM

1 Attachment(s)
We’ve had so many Trump tweets, here is one from our minister of health.

Attachment 42046

Squeegee Beckenheim 6th May 2020 06:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Don (Post 13080535)
The UK is currently number 4 on the list of countries by per capita Coronavius deaths:

https://www.statista.com/statistics/...n-inhabitants/

Top of the list is Belgium whose rate is nearly 60% higher than the UK's. Belgium's figures are based on suspected rather than confirmed Coronavirus cases.

That's missing out San Marino and Andorra, both of which have more deaths per million than the UK. Of course, both of those countries have a population smaller than 100,000, so a small number of deaths are going to make for huge figures. San Marino is the most extreme. With a population of around 34,000 its 41 deaths make for 1,208 deaths per million - nearly double the next highest, which is Belgium.

The Don 6th May 2020 07:01 AM

Another right wing demagogue and Coronavirus denier gets it wrong:

Quote:

Brazil's President Jair Bolsonaro said he was hopeful Tuesday’s figures would show "the worst [was] over". But the daily numbers came out shortly after he spoke: a record increase of 600 deaths.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/worl...ost_type=share

Captain_Swoop 6th May 2020 09:26 AM

The daily number of tests dropped to 69,436, as the total remained below the government's 100,000 target.

Captain_Swoop 6th May 2020 09:55 AM

Shouldn’t Johnson resign because he allowed Carrie to join him at Chequers?
James Brokenshire Minister of State for Security leading todays press conference has just said that ‘the Guidance is unequivocal’

KDLarsen 6th May 2020 10:48 AM

The Danish PM has announced that the government's goal for the next round of loosening of restrictions, will be to reopen shops, cafés and restaurants, allowing older pupils to return to school in some form, as well as allowing professional sports to resume without spectators.

This follows a report from the Danish State Serum Institute, in which it is stated that this would be possible to do without furthering the spread of Covid-19.

The political parties will be negotiating the next few days to reach a broad concensus, with a decision most likely not announced until the end of the weekend (Friday is a public holiday, but I'd imagine that negotiations will continue), with a further loosening of restrictions set to start next Monday.

The Atheist 6th May 2020 11:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Don (Post 13080565)
Another right wing demagogue and Coronavirus denier gets it wrong:

I have to admit, it's a pretty good effort by Brazil to elect the only world leader almost as despicable as the scumbag in the WH.

Quote:

Originally Posted by KDLarsen (Post 13080781)
The Danish PM has announced that the government's goal for the next round of loosening of restrictions, will be to reopen shops, cafés and restaurants, allowing older pupils to return to school in some form, as well as allowing professional sports to resume without spectators.

This follows a report from the Danish State Serum Institute, in which it is stated that this would be possible to do without furthering the spread of Covid-19.

I hope it works out ok - Denmark is a standout in Europe so far.

The bad news is, I think you'll probably end up with the same number of infections, it will just take longer to get there.

P.J. Denyer 6th May 2020 11:33 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Atheist (Post 13080805)
I have to admit, it's a pretty good effort by Brazil to elect the only world leader almost as despicable as the scumbag in the WH.

As a citizen of Britain I demand that you recognise our own efforts in that direction! Hell, we even picked a comedy look a like from the same city!

Planigale 6th May 2020 12:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by P.J. Denyer (Post 13080817)
As a citizen of Britain I demand that you recognise our own efforts in that direction! Hell, we even picked a comedy look a like from the same city!

Is it true that BoJo originated in NY? Was the US open about events around this, is BoJoitis a mutation that originated from endemic Trumpism? Did the US take effective action to prevent the spread to the UK? Any chance we can sue the US for concealing the errors that led to an outbreak of BoJoitis?

Captain_Swoop 6th May 2020 02:09 PM

At PMQs Boris Johnson said Keir Starmer wrongly stated care home coronavirus deaths are increasing.
Starmer responded that the figures came from Downing Street's own press conference last night.

P.J. Denyer 6th May 2020 03:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Planigale (Post 13080912)
Is it true that BoJo originated in NY? Was the US open about events around this, is BoJoitis a mutation that originated from endemic Trumpism? Did the US take effective action to prevent the spread to the UK? Any chance we can sue the US for concealing the errors that led to an outbreak of BoJoitis?

Yes (IIRC he eventually gave up his US dual citizenship to avoid tax liabilities)
No
Possibly
No
It's certainly worth looking into.

Planigale 6th May 2020 04:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by P.J. Denyer (Post 13081140)
Yes (IIRC he eventually gave up his US dual citizenship to avoid tax liabilities)
No
Possibly
No
It's certainly worth looking into.

:thumbsup:

a_unique_person 6th May 2020 06:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pixel42 (Post 13080305)
Or it could just be the factor I saw recently neatly summarised:

Makes sense to me.

Ulf Nereng 6th May 2020 09:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by McHrozni (Post 13080316)
No, it only depends on one of those. Vietnam has a greater population density than UK, but their population is not nearly as dense.

Vox named it one of the success stories.

https://www.vox.com/2020/5/5/2124783...iceland-greece

Vietnam health care system, well, leaves something to be desired. Their response however has been swift and effective and kept the outbreak under the lid largely using the old fashioned way.
Before you ask if this is due to inadequate testing, check the bar graph in the article. In Vietnam, one of a thousand tests came out positive. In UK the number is one in five.

McHrozni

It helps when you can send the dense ones to re-education camps.

McHrozni 6th May 2020 10:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Myriad (Post 13080449)
That's how I've been evaluating the data here in the New England states all along. But there's a catch, due to the accumulation of total confirmed cases when you're in a sustained plateau (or close to that). Let's say you have 10,000 cases so far, and you get 200 new confirmed cases per day. That's 2%. Fifty days later, you're down to 1%, but that still means 200 new cases per day.

Yes. If the whole thing takes a little bit longer than anticipated you should substract those recovered from the total.

The 1% rule is a shorthand, something you can quickly check to get a general idea whether the measures are effective or not, it's also highly useful to compare countries with one another. It greatly depends on the disease too and Covid-19 is a downright submarine of a disease. A South Korean level of approach, widespread and aggressive testing, only detects 2-3% of the infections. The first studies of the presence of antibodies on random samples of population are only now trickling in for peer review but what I've seen from the pre-review ones, from institutions that I trust, I doubt any country diagnosed more than 5% of total infections. I expect the average is about 2% in countries that had extensive and widely available testing early on.

Countries like UK or USA are probably closer to detecting 1% of infections or fewer.

McHrozni

Darat 6th May 2020 11:34 PM

Given how many times the PPE order from Turkey was mentioned at the daily briefing I am sure they will today be telling us how 400,000 of the promised gowns don’t meet the regulations...


https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-52569364

Captain_Swoop 7th May 2020 02:00 AM

Was just about to post that.

The Don 7th May 2020 02:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Darat (Post 13081482)
Given how many times the PPE order from Turkey was mentioned at the daily briefing I am sure they will today be telling us how 400,000 of the promised gowns don’t meet the regulations...


https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-52569364

Hanlon's razor usually applies, but the UK government seem to be cocking things up so badly and so regularly, I'm beginning to question it. :(

Darat 7th May 2020 03:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by The Don (Post 13081555)
Hanlon's razor usually applies, but the UK government seem to be cocking things up so badly and so regularly, I'm beginning to question it. :(

They have to have been produced to a specification (as I was typing that I began to wonder.....) so should be easy to return and get the money back, wonder if their contracts allow them to reclaim freight costs?

Tolls 7th May 2020 03:34 AM

I really wouldn't be surprised to find they hadn't actually checked.
Just saw an email "PPE sale! Great prices!" and thought "our troubles are over!"


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