Diary Blog, 2 April 2020

Sign of the times

https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/thugs-smash-up-hero-doctors-21792310

Police “too busy” to look through videos from just one named building to find the criminals, who must have been caught on camera! I bet that if a Jew complained that he was insulted there, the police would find the time, magically…The police really are usually a waste of space now. They are unwilling to help the public or to detect and solve crimes, most of the time, but prefer to act as a poundland KGB and thought-control force.

Coronavirus

There are tentative signs that the crisis has already peaked in Europe and much of Asia. In Italy, the death toll has reduced for the 7th consecutive day, and Sweden (which is not even in “lockdown”) is no worse off than the UK (which is). In the UK itself, the death toll is still increasing but that comes after a few days of decline and after the goalposts were moved by changing the statistical criteria. In Denmark, the government has said that it will be reviewing whether to ease restrictions after Easter, i.e. by mid-April.

Whatever is happening in the Americas, we in Europe can hope that this, or most of this, will be over by June.

The evidence is sketchy either way, but it seems logical to me (and always has), as a lay person, that if the virus can only live on or in people for 3-4 weeks at maximum, and if it can only live on inanimate surfaces for between seconds and a month (and usually for less than a few hours), then the virus as a social crisis is going to be over within a couple of months. By then, a vast number of people will have been infected, most will either have shown no symptoms or very mild symptoms, a lesser number will show symptoms not requiring medical care, a few will require such care, and a tiny minority will die. Whatever happens to those infected, it is all over, one way or the other, within a month.

In all cases, the virus will have done whatever it will have done within a few weeks or so. Even bearing in mind that new and uninfected people could still be infected, the main links of infection will not exist after May, it seems. That is, about 8 weeks or so from now.

In any case, if the present shutdown of the UK economy continues beyond May, the damage will probably be irreparable.

To what extent is the “lockdown” in the UK helping? It must be helping, but to what extent? We do not know. Sweden’s stats are broadly similar to the UK’s on Coronavirus infections (and better on deaths), but there they have no general “lockdown”. It is logical to assume that the UK “lockdown” is helping slow the rate of infections. However, the main safeguarding measure is that understood from the start: washing hands efficiently and frequently with soap and water.

Differences within Europe

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8180439/UK-declares-569-coronavirus-deaths.html

The NHS is a very fine institution. In principle. In practice, it is patchy. The surgical and some other aspects are excellent, but the administration is more suited to some backward country in Africa or pre-1989 Eastern Europe. Shambolic. A bad joke. Coronavirus has cruelly exposed all of this.

In Germany, Scandinavia, even France, we see their health services dealing with the situation. In the UK, we see political squabbles and nonsense, shambolic NHS mismanagement, combined with fake “community” involvement like something out of Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four: “Clap-in for the NHS”, and now “Second Clap-in for the NHS”. A kind of almost-forced “community involvement” for a country where the most important thing is virtue-signalling; and like other kinds of virtue-signalling, it accomplishes nothing.

The last thing that I would want would be for the NHS to become like the rapacious money-obsessed American healthcare model, but the NHS does need reform, as well as more money. In fact, part of the problem with healthcare in the UK is that we are given this false choice of “either British NHS or American get-what-you-pay-for healthcare”. That is not the choice. There is a variety of different healthcare models in the world, a variety of funding solutions.

Britain has been hampered in choosing and implementing a better healthcare system for several reasons:

  • the NHS as a “sacred cow” that cannot be changed (or criticized);
  • botched “reforms” by inane and often anti-NHS politicians;
  • the huge inertia in a system that employs over 2 million people;
  • entrenched group interests of the various blocs of healthcare professionals;
  • very poor and often hugely overpaid administrative layers.

Anecdote: I knew a retired British couple when I lived in France. The husband and wife both had serious health problems, in the case of the husband mainly heart-related. At first, he used to return to the UK for treatment, thinking, as English people do, that the NHS was bound to be better. When he finally decided to access the French system, it was revelatory. The equivalent of a “consultant” asked him (in English) what medicines he had been prescribed for his condition. He replied. The French consultant was visibly underwhelmed and said “well, I think that we can do better than that.”

The wife of that couple had a cancer condition. She was also far better taken care of in France than in Britain (or so I was told).

Another aspect to the above anecdote. The couple described lived in Finistere-Nord in Brittany. The treatment took place in the city of Brest, an hour’s drive away. The couple had cars, but preferred not to drive too far, partly because of their health problems. The French healthcare system paid for both of them to get to and from the hospital in Brest by commercial taxi! This is in fact quite normal there. In fact, a friend of mine found that it was hard to book a taxi in Finistere for ordinary reasons because most are booked-up by such hospital journeys.

Government aid to private economic enterprises

We are told that large enterprises which are now facing collapse must be given hundreds of millions of pounds each to keep them standing. Virgin Atlantic, BA etc. This is unsustainable, for more than a couple of months anyway. I am not sure that it is even desirable. The support should be given to individuals, not companies. The companies may go down. New companies will emerge, when trading conditions improve. Throwing money at what in many cases are already failing capitalist enterprises is the worst thing that government could do.

Economic growth comes from demand. Demand comes from the bottom, from the millions and tens of millions in the country. Their demand for goods and services fuels the birth and growth of new companies supplying those goods and services. It is wrongheaded to support existing, often poorly-run, companies. In effect, by doing that, government is subsidizing shareholders at the expense of other citizens. This was the conceptual error behind the bank bail-out of 2007-2008, which has suppressed the real economy for the past decade. Money, on a vast scale given to rapacious and incompetent banks run by incompetent and rapacious managements and owned by greedy shareholders. No understanding that banks are just “useful parasites” upon the real economy.

Even government, with its huge reach based on huge borrowing, cannot subsidize the whole economy —not for long—in a situation where the real economy is mostly not functioning. The various “lockdown” restrictions will have to be eased quite soon if mortal injury is not to be done. That may in fact already have happened.

Coronavirus in China and Europe: going, going, gone?

 

 

My take

  • Washing hands frequently with soap and water is the best protection. The countries of Europe with the worst personal hygiene (Italy and Spain) have been by far the worst-hit by Coronavirus (why not Greece too? God knows…).
  • In China, and across Europe, the Coronavirus infection rate and death rate are both stabilizing or, in most places, falling.
  • Social isolation was a good policy to try for a week or so and it has probably greatly helped but in a secondary way. The handwashing is far and away the most important.
  • “Social distancing”, while obviously useful, is not of much importance.
  • Most people either do not get the virus at all, or show no symptoms, or mild symptoms only.
  • Only a few (in the UK about 1 in every 3,000 people) will need to be hospitalized.
  • Very few people indeed —speaking relatively— will die from Coronavirus (in the UK, so far, about 2,900, out of maybe 70 million people, which is about 25 people out of every million or 1 person out of every 40,000).

Evening outing

Went out to Waitrose. Marginally busier than it was 2 days ago on Tuesday (also at 1930). A few poor souls like me lining up, ten feet apart, waiting to be approved by the three or four Handmaid’s Tale militia (Waitrose marshals) loitering outside, then given a trolley and permission to enter the sacred precincts of the store.

Inside, the absurd thing was that the same people religiously “distancing” outside were shopping within a couple of feet of each other at times! Shaking head territory…

Most items available. Pasta (dried pasta) cleared out (again), but plenty of sauce in jars. Rice rather depleted too, though available. Loo paper shelves full of product. Eggs available. Milk too. Bread too. No chickens, and no lemons. Are the locals all making lemon chicken? Ignorabimus (we shall never know).

 

15 thoughts on “Diary Blog, 2 April 2020”

  1. Hello Ian:

    As further proof of the blackout imposed by the lying media about the coronavirus, here is a very revealing video by Dr Eric Berg, a North American physician whose take on nutrition and health-related issues is, in my opinion, to be admired. There is no political angle to this video, he is not like that, but it is very interesting and welcome considering the scaremongering that has been going on.

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  2. Hello Ian. I don’t know if you are a lover of classic movies, but I would like to share with you and other readers this great film of the golden age of British cinema. Let’s have a break from politics and grim reality.

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    1. Claudius:
      Thank you. Yes. I tend to like old films.

      I see that it is based on a story of Eric Ambler, someone tied up with intelligence activities. His autobiography was called Here Lies Eric Ambler, an ambiguous title.

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  3. Today I found that according to the WHO (World Health Organization) 53.205 people have died of the mysterious COVID-19. It seems a lot, in only three months. BUT when you put it in perspective with the stats from the same organization about the common flu, is a joke.

    According to the WHO (in December 2017), every year between 300.000 and 650.000 people die every year because of the flu. Have you ever heard an outcry about this?

    This “lethal” epidemic is a lie

    Here is the full article from the WHO:

    https://www.who.int/news-room/detail/14-12-2017-up-to-650-000-people-die-of-respiratory-diseases-linked-to-seasonal-flu-each-year

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    1. Claudius:
      Yes. At first I myself was more alarmed than I now am, mainly because the Coronavirus seemed to be extremely infectious (which it is, though far less so than at first appeared) and likely to kill as many as 10% of those who got it and 1% or more of any given population. That would kill maybe 700,000 in the UK. Now the death toll seems unlikely to reach 7,000 and is presently at just under 3,000.

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  4. Good points about the NHS. Yes, it is treated as some kind of national religion in this country and as a national icon that is beyond criticism. Also, you are correct to point-out that it has been subjected to botched reforms by politicians who don’t care for it much. This is a problem not just by itself but more importantly because those mainly Tory politicians scare many voters away from considering whether the NHS should be subjected to more serious reforms or whether we should move to a system like the French or Germans have which do have merits to them.

    I am normally a conspiracy theorist but I do wonder if the model of healthcare we have in this country wasn’t deliberately chosen by Attlee’s Labour government to provide a ready-made convenient excuse for constant mass immigration and that this is also the reason why the so-called Conservative Party doesn’t propose to move this country to a French or German model because they also want to destroy us via mass immigration and they can see the value of the ‘if we got truly tough on immigration the NHS would collapse’ excuse.

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    1. Your comment re. immigration may have some truth, but it seems to me that
      a. In those early days, the idea that black and brown immigrants in any quantity could be imported would have seemed incredible;
      b. It was the Conservative Party governments of the 1950s that really started to open the floodgates.

      This “NHS needs immigrants” nonsense is typical of the lies many seem to *want* to believe. Other European countries have health services (often as good or better than NHS) without having to import doctors and nurses. Apart from that, their home countries are often short of medics.

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      1. Germany’s and France’s healthcare systems are better if you consider outcomes like cancer survival rates etc. Whilst we should all applaud those who work for the NHS particularly at this time there is no need for all this virtue signalling. Virtue signalling is about the only thing this sad, PC, ‘modern’, globalist Britain does well now! Talk about embarrassing!🙄😡🤬☹️😞

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    2. Yes, most immigrants have arrived in this country under the misrule of the so-called Conservative Party which just goes to show they are not ‘patriots’ like far too many dimwits still believe but a party of GLOBALIST capitalist values and, in effect, a party of international finance.

      We have an ‘Old Etonian’ (yes, that damm school AGAIN!) Anthony Eden to blame for allowing the flood to start in earnest.

      It is fundamentally IMMORAL for this country to import people en masse to work in the NHS when these often Third World countries need them so much more than we do. Lefties should be against this but are strangely silent about Britain effectively poaching the most educated and needed people in these countries.

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  5. Virgin Atlantic can go to the wall as far as I am concerned. I can’t stand Richard Branson that Europhile who was constantly whinging about Brexit. He is a classic free market loving big businessman who doesn’t give a damm as to whether globalism damages a country or not. If it comes down to a choice between saving his airline and British Airways then it is the latter company that should be bailed out. Every serious country should have a national flag carrier.

    With respect to the virus itself, is it in fact a virus or is there some valid case that it is a Chinese or even American biological weapon that has escaped from the lab?I must admit I tend to believe it is just a virus but neither the Yanks or the Chinese in particular can be trusted and it is known that the Chinese have been involving themselves in biological weapons research when they are supposedly not meant to do so.

    At least the escaped biological weapon theory does have some level of plausibility to it unlike the 5g one does.

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    1. Well, M’Lord of Essex, I too tend to believe that the virus started “naturally”, though there are a few contrary facts around.

      Apart from anything else, why would the Americans *or* the Chinese start this? The Chinese need export markets, so —on the face of it— would not deliberately collapse the markets that they need…As for Americans, would they destroy the world economy? Including their own part of it?

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  6. There should be little trust put in either the Chinese or the Americans. The US under Trump but it would be mostly the same otherwise as well is, undoubtedly, insanely jealous of China and its rising economy and nervous of its potential as both an economic and military superpower that could take the ‘top spot’ away from them.

    One theory is that the US released a biological weapon at a recent sports event (November 2019) held in China and has used the resulting spreading of illness to blame China for it thereby encouraging ‘racist’ consumers throughout the world to boycott Chinese goods thus ‘taking down’ China.

    It isn’t uncommon for the Yanks to be very jealous of other country’s economic prowess or technical achievements eg they banned the British-French Concorde from having routes across the US on account of its supposed excess noise levels which severely damaged the plane’s future viability and I remember seeing a BBC documentary series on Japan’s rise to being an economic superpower where US auto workers were so mad at companies like Toyota, Nissan and Honda for producing better cars at cheaper prices during the oil crisis of the early 1970’s that they took hammers to various Jap models on film!

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    1. It seemingly never occurred to these US auto workers, their bosses and the US government that they should have quit whining about Japanese economic success and attempted to emulate them instead.

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