Day: 12 May 2022

Modellers Predict 1.5 Million Deaths in China if Lockdown is Lifted – But that is Less Than Half the U.K. Covid Death Rate

It appears that China has its own version of lockdown doom-modeller Neil Ferguson and his team. A paper in Nature from a team of Chinese and U.S. researchers has used a model to predict over 1.5 million deaths in China from Omicron should the country cease to impose its brutal controls. The following is from the South China Morning Post.

China could see more than 1.5 million deaths from a wave of Omicron infections without COVID-19 controls and the use of antiviral therapies, a new study has forecast.

A model by Chinese and U.S. researchers suggested that, given China’s vaccine efficacy and coverage, an unchecked outbreak that began with 20 cases of Omicron in March could “generate a tsunami of COVID-19 cases” between May and July.

Such an outbreak is projected to cause 112 million symptomatic cases, or 80 cases per 1,000 people, with 2.7 million of them requiring treatment in intensive care…

The researchers used a mathematical model to simulate a hypothetical Omicron wave in China based on data from the Shanghai outbreak.

“Should the Omicron outbreak continue unabated, despite a primary vaccination coverage of more than 90% and homologous booster vaccination [boosting with the same vaccine] coverage of more than 40% as of March 2022, we project that the Chinese healthcare system will be overwhelmed with a considerable shortage of ICUs,” they wrote.

They estimated that the peak demand of 1 million intensive care beds would be almost 16 times the existing total of 64,000 beds, with a shortage lasting 44 days.

England Has Had Lower Rate of Covid Deaths Since ‘Freedom Day’ Than Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, In Spite of Fewer Restrictions

Raghib Ali, a clinical epidemiologist at the University of Cambridge and a consultant in acute medicine at the Oxford university hospitals NHS trust, has a piece in the Guardian, of all places, arguing that Boris’s decision to end Coronavirus restrictions in England has been validated.

The first Omicron (BA.1) wave, beginning in December, showed us that it was possible to get over a peak without a lockdown. The second (BA.2) wave from March to April was the first time a wave peaked in England without any government-mandated restrictions, as all legal mandates ended on February 24th.

And because England chose a different path on restrictions to the other home nations (and other western European countries) during the Omicron waves, this provides a very good “natural experiment” to assess how much difference the varying levels of restrictions made. International comparisons do have limitations, but in the absence of better evidence to judge the effectiveness of Covid restrictions, such natural experiments provide a useful guide, especially in comparing the UK home nations, which have similar populations, age structures, climate/seasons, healthcare systems and population-level immunity to Covid.

I should stress that given the uncertainty of the evidence at the time, it was perfectly reasonable for the home nations to choose different paths – and the extra restrictions outside England had widespread public support. But what will perhaps be surprising to many is that England has actually had a similar rate of infection and a lower rate of Covid deaths during the Omicron wave – and since July 19th 2021, England’s “freedom day” – than Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, despite having far fewer mandatory restrictions, and none after February 24th. This “natural experiment” shows that having more mandates did not lead to better outcomes.

There was also no significant difference in overall excess mortality across the home nations to the end of 2021. And England’s is now likely to be lower as – somewhat remarkably, given the Omicron wave – excess mortality is negative in England for 2022 so far, with the lowest age-standardised mortality rates (the best comparator to previous years, as it takes population ageing into account) since the series began in 2001.

Worth reading in full.

More Politicians Admit: We’re Fighting a Proxy War With Russia

There can no longer be much doubt that the West is fighting a proxy war with Russia. The goal is not simply to defend Ukraine’s territory and safeguard its sovereignty, but to “see Russia weakened” – in the words of U.S. defence secretary Lloyd Austin (a former board member of Raytheon Technologies).

In a previous post, I reported what the former Supreme Allied Commander of NATO said in a recent interview with the New York Times: “I think we are in a proxy war with Russia. We are using the Ukrainians as our proxy forces”. Since then, several U.S. politicians have confirmed this is a proxy war.

On 2nd May, Democratic Congressman Jason Crow tweeted: “The United States is not interested in stalemates. We are not interested in going back to the status quo. The United States is in this to win it and we will stand with Ukraine until victory is won.”

Speaking to Fox News on May 6th, Democratic Congressman Seth Moulton explained: “At the end of the day, we’ve got to realise we’re at war. And we’re not just at war to support Ukraine. We’re fundamentally at war – although somewhat through a proxy – with Russia. And it’s important that we win.”

Then on May 11th, Republican Congressman Dan Crenshaw tweeted, in defence of his decision to approve the latest $40 billion aid package: “Yeah, because investing in the destruction of our adversary’s military, without losing a single American troop, strikes me as a good idea. You should feel the same.”

MP Calls on the Government to Properly Compensate the Vaccine Injured

Conservative MP Sir Christopher Chope has taken on the unenviable mantle of championing the cause of the vaccine injured in Parliament and to a Government that seems to want to pretend the problem isn’t there. He has a piece in ConservativeHome today saying things are finally moving, but the situation is still far from adequate.

The Government accepted that COVID-19 vaccines might cause serious harm to some people when it decided to bring COVID-19 vaccine damage within the ambit of the existing Vaccine Damage Payment Scheme (the “VDPS”).

But ever since, it has been stalling on addressing those who have claimed. Not a single one of over 1,300 claims has yet been decided, not even those in which a coroner’s verdict has determined that the vaccine was the cause of death. It is intolerable that the Government is failing those people who did the right thing, were vaccinated, but then suffered serious harm or bereavement as a result.

I first raised the issue in Parliament last June, when I presented a Private Members’ Bill. This was briefly debated in September, when I called for an independent review of disablement caused by COVID-19 vaccines and better compensation arrangements for those who have suffered. Since then, I have received hundreds of emails, often with harrowing reports from the families and friends of those who tragically died or continue to suffer severe injury or life-changing consequences.

After a barren year, there is now some positive news to report. The Minister for Vaccines and Public Health, Maggie Throup, has confirmed that external assessors will begin assessing claims next week, on May 16th. They are contracted to assess 1,800 claims in the first year. It is worth comparing the scale of this with the situation pre-Covid, when only 80 vaccine claims were being made each year…

The assumption must be that the policy of non-engagement on this issue was deliberate. Public health officials are keen to avoid scrutiny about the fact that the vaccines are not 100% safe. The Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency has received more than 450,000 suspected adverse reaction reports under its Yellow Card scheme, with the first report dating back to December 9th 2020.

The truth about the vaccines not being absolutely safe is therefore out in the open. My argument to the Government is that being in denial about vaccine damage is undermining the very vaccine confidence which the Government has been trying to promote. The consequence of this is apparent from the declining take up of boosters.

At my meeting with the Minister, I asked her whether the Government agreed that some people had died as a direct result of having received COVID-19 vaccines. Much to my surprise, she could not answer that question, and requested more time in which to do so in writing. She promised such a response within 14 days, but told me this week that she will respond to me “shortly”.

This shows that the Government is really agonising over whether or not to admit that, for some, COVID-19 vaccines have had fatal consequences. This is all the more bizarre when the Yellow Card scheme refers to over 2,000 fatalities, the Office for National Statistics has confirmed a series of fatalities, and even the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine product information leaflet confirms fatal outcomes were observed.

I wonder, is the piece on ConHome instead of in a national newspaper by choice or because the newspapers wouldn’t run it?

Worth reading in full.

Mask Mandate Dropped for Air Travel in Europe

Face masks will no longer be mandatory in airports and on flights in Europe from May 16th amid the easing of coronavirus restrictions in European countries. MailOnline has more.

The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) said it hoped the joint decision, made with the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), would mark “a big step forward in the normalisation of air travel” for passengers and crews.

The agencies said the levels of vaccination, naturally acquired immunity and the lifting of Covid restrictions in many European countries were behind the decision to lift the mandatory mask recommendation, which has been in place since 2020.

“From next week, face masks will no longer need to be mandatory in air travel in all cases, broadly aligning with the changing requirements of national authorities across Europe for public transport,” the EASA Executive Director Patrick Ky said.

Italy, France, Bulgaria and other European countries have been relaxing or ending many or all of their measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Slowly but surely… Though will masks return in winter? Some American cities have already brought back their mask mandate.

And when will America let the unvaccinated back in and drop its tourism-killing testing requirements?

Worth reading in full.

Climate Scare Stories Flood Local Media, Courtesy of Well-Funded U.S. Green Agitprop Operation

Coming soon to a local newspaper near you – your own customised climate catastrophe story. All those much loved local landmarks, weep as they disappear beneath the waves within 30 years.

Last month the Wiltshire Times reported that vast areas of south west England could be under water by 2050 due to global warming. Among the sites that could be lost is Gloucester Cathedral, sited at an elevation of 19 metres. Last year it was turn of the Dorset Echo to inform its readers that the waters would soon be lapping around the village of Lytchett Minster, a mere 17 metres above sea level. Measuring sea level rise is a difficult task, not least because land also rises and falls. Satellite data has helped but estimates still vary around a 1-2mm annual increase. Even at the higher rate, it would take over 8,000 years to lap the steps of these two sites.

Of course fear-inducing stories like these do not just suddenly appear. Behind them is a seemingly well-funded American green agitprop operation called Climate Central. Based in Princeton, New Jersey, it claims to work with news outlets “to produce compelling and scientifically accurate feature stories”, helped by its own research. On the flood stories, it supplies a free interactive map and web tools that can be used by often cash-strapped local media to produce catastrophe-laced stories, based on what are obviously wildly improbable sea level rises.

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“Eye-Watering” SAGE Models Had “Too Much Weight”: Another SAGE Scientist Recants His Lockdown Zealotry as the Winds Change

The U.K. relied too much on “very scary” SAGE models to decide on lockdowns, according to the man behind some of those very projections who repeatedly called for longer lockdowns. MailOnline has more.

Just months after SAGE predicted 6,000 deaths per day and called for a Christmas lockdown in response to Omicron, Professor John Edmunds said the models were only supposed to be “one component” of decision-making but were leaned on too much by ministers.

He accepted the models failed to account for the economic harm and the knock-on health effects that lockdowns caused. 

Professor Edmunds admitted that these harms “in principle” could have been factored into models “but in practice they were not”.

His remarks come as Britons face the harsh reality of two years’ of shutting down the economy and health service, with the NHS grappling a backlog crisis that has seen one in nine people in England stuck on an NHS waiting list for treatment and inflation at its highest point in 30 years. 

The epidemiologist, who was among the most outspoken members of SAGE, said some of the death projections in the model were “truly eye-watering”.

Speaking at a medical conference on Tuesday, he said: “The epidemiological model is only one component [of decision-making] and I wondered and I worried that we’d had too much weight.”

He added: “There is of course an enormous economic impact from many of the interventions and other indirect impacts on psychological health and so on. Now these in principle could be included but in practice they were not.”

Professor Edmunds called for the first lockdown to be extended in summer 2021, warning Britain was “taking a risk” by unlocking while still logging 8,000 cases per day and that the decision was “clearly” political.

And he warned against easing the third national lockdown in early 2021, warning it would be a ‘”disaster” and put “enormous pressure” on the health service. 

Joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth and all that – but you can’t help feel the recantation is very convenient as we move on from the pandemic and people start to look back with more objectivity at all the crazy, costly things that were done in the name of ‘science’ and at the behest of modellers.

Worth reading in full.