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Austria (and perhaps other European countries?) return to full lockdown

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clagmonster

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This view won't be shared with everyone, but there comes a point where fun/freedom is drained out of society to the point that death might actually be preferable. I'm personally not afraid of covid as someone of low risk and 3x jabbed, but there is a long list of things I am afraid of that are resulting and might result from our covid attitude.
I take a very similar view. I took three doses of vaccine because I felt, in my circumstances, it was the sensible thing to do. I do, however think that vaccine passports are wrong and thus have missed two football matches already I would otherwise have attended and feel nervous of travelling on public transport or even going to the shops as I am unable to safely wear a face covering.

I would sooner have shot of all this and live with an increased risk of a shortened life.
 

bramling

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It can't be stopped - why do these idiot governments think that it can?

We do seem to be very much in the territory of having taken a wrong turn and keeping driving on either in the hope that a saviour will appear or (perhaps more likely) because it’s too politically awkward to admit to having taken a wrong turn.

A lot of this goes back to decisions made in 2020. Governments could have been honest with people and made it clear the lockdowns at that point where mainly to buy time. Instead many formed the view that they were to “protect me”, and governments did nothing to correct this. We then did similar in 2021, when it should have been made very clear that the January lockdown was the last one, justified only on the basis that it was acting as the bridge until sufficient numbers of people had been vaccinated. Indeed most of us were of the view that vaccines were the exit route.

Since then things have got even more muddled, seemingly led by the core of people who (for whatever reasons) simply don’t want to let this go.
 

MikeWM

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We do seem to be very much in the territory of having taken a wrong turn and keeping driving on either in the hope that a saviour will appear or (perhaps more likely) because it’s too politically awkward to admit to having taken a wrong turn.

It could certainly be viewed as the most extreme 'sunken costs' fallacy in our lifetimes (world war I was probably the only comparable previous example).

As you say, there have been a number of occasions where we could have quietly let it go and moved on to other things. If we don't manage to do it now, with Omicron which seems a very fortunate gift in so many ways, then I fail to see how we ever will. Even more clearly it would be highly obvious that those in charge don't *want* it to ever end.

The next couple of months will be... interesting.
 

bramling

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It could certainly be viewed as the most extreme 'sunken costs' fallacy in our lifetimes (world war I was probably the only comparable previous example).

As you say, there have been a number of occasions where we could have quietly let it go and moved on to other things. If we don't manage to do it now, with Omicron which seems a very fortunate gift in so many ways, then I fail to see how we ever will. Even more clearly it would be highly obvious that those in charge don't *want* it to ever end.

The next couple of months will be... interesting.

I sense that the Conservative party is possibly the nearest thing we have to wanting to move on. The snag is that, despite the bluster, I’m not sure the leadership (specifically Johnson) are quite so committed - which seems to be for the simple reason that he’s frit of leaving office with a toxic stigma along similar lines to what Blair has managed to pick up. And, unlike Blair who will at least manage to articulate a half-decent case for why he thought Iraq was the right thing to do at the time, Johnson simply doesn’t have that intellect, nor is he sufficiently bothered to want to be in the position of having to attempt it. Hence hiding behind the shield of “follow the science”.

Labour’s position is even more bewildering, of course. Sturgeon / Drakeford are meanwhile in full-on blind alley territory — their current policies are producing demonstrably worse outcomes than England, yet the answer to that is apparently to keep doing more of it, and yet it’s all somehow still England’s fault!

It’s pretty high stakes to have spent billions on billions of pounds on these measures, completely upturned elements of the societal structure of the country, screwed over many businesses and their employees, caused significant inflation and probably stagflation, as well as the small matter of locking people in hotels, fining them for walking their dogs and stopping them doing most enjoyable elements of life for lengthy periods. Of course, it’s been made too easy for politicians to justify all this, because of the way sufficient numbers of people go misty-eyed at the mention of three letters of the alphabet and a love-heart symbol.
 

johnnychips

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I sense that the Conservative party is possibly the nearest thing we have to wanting to move on. The snag is that, despite the bluster, I’m not sure the leadership (specifically Johnson) are quite so committed - which seems to be for the simple reason that he’s frit of leaving office with a toxic stigma along similar lines to what Blair has managed to pick up. And, unlike Blair who will at least manage to articulate a half-decent case for why he thought Iraq was the right thing to do at the time, Johnson simply doesn’t have that intellect, nor is he sufficiently bothered to want to be in the position of having to attempt it. Hence hiding behind the shield of “follow the science”.

Labour’s position is even more bewildering, of course. Sturgeon / Drakeford are meanwhile in full-on blind alley territory — their current policies are producing demonstrably worse outcomes than England, yet the answer to that is apparently to keep doing more of it, and yet it’s all somehow still England’s fault!

It’s pretty high stakes to have spent billions on billions of pounds on these measures, completely upturned elements of the societal structure of the country, screwed over many businesses and their employees, caused significant inflation and probably stagflation, as well as the small matter of locking people in hotels, fining them for walking their dogs and stopping them doing most enjoyable elements of life for lengthy periods. Of course, it’s been made too easy for politicians to justify all this, because of the way sufficient numbers of people go misty-eyed at the mention of three letters of the alphabet and a love-heart symbol.
I agree with all that you say but the last sentence leaves me confused. I (heart) NY ?

Edit: Got it! You mean the NHS!
 

MikeWM

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I sense that the Conservative party is possibly the nearest thing we have to wanting to move on. The snag is that, despite the bluster, I’m not sure the leadership (specifically Johnson) are quite so committed - which seems to be for the simple reason that he’s frit of leaving office with a toxic stigma along similar lines to what Blair has managed to pick up. And, unlike Blair who will at least manage to articulate a half-decent case for why he thought Iraq was the right thing to do at the time, Johnson simply doesn’t have that intellect, nor is he sufficiently bothered to want to be in the position of having to attempt it. Hence hiding behind the shield of “follow the science”.

Well, indeed. I suppose it must be fairly tempting to try to drag this on for a bit longer, because once it is over there is a very real tsunami of incredibly serious issues getting ready to hit, and it is hard to see how Johnson will come out looking good once that happens.

It’s pretty high stakes to have spent billions on billions of pounds on these measures, completely upturned elements of the societal structure of the country, screwed over many businesses and their employees, caused significant inflation and probably stagflation, as well as the small matter of locking people in hotels, fining them for walking their dogs and stopping them doing most enjoyable elements of life for lengthy periods.

If we're ever allowed to get back to normal and reassess all this rationally, I can't see this being looked on as anything other than an outbreak of mass insanity ('mass formation psychosis', as Robert Malone has recently been describing it).

Probably the best Johnson can hope for as an assessment from history is that he didn't send us quite as far down the road of insanity as most other places.
 

island

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In a rare piece of common sense, the French Conseil d'État (roughly equivalent to their high court) has ruled that blanket outdoor mask requirements such as those imposed late last year are unconstitutional.

The court ruled that where local authorities wish to require masks outdoors, they must meet three requirements:
  1. The area where they are to be required must be limited to an area with large numbers of people where social-distancing is impossible (although quieter adjoining areas can be included if necessary to ensure the area covered is easy to understand)
  2. The requirement must only apply during the times of day when the area is busy
  3. Any requirement can only apply if the local infection rates justify it.
Several départements (counties) had installed bylaws requiring outdoor mask-wearing nearly everywhere; for example, in Seine-et-Marne, it was defined as any area where the road speed limit was 50km/h or less.

More at https://www.conseil-etat.fr/actuali...impose-en-exterieur-qu-a-certaines-conditions (I am not aware of any English language sources, but I speak fluent French so could establish the above).
 

Mag_seven

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The court ruled that where local authorities wish to require masks outdoors, they must meet three requirements:
  1. The area where they are to be required must be limited to an area with large numbers of people where social-distancing is impossible (although quieter adjoining areas can be included if necessary to ensure the area covered is easy to understand)
  2. The requirement must only apply during the times of day when the area is busy
  3. Any requirement can only apply if the local infection rates justify it.

Its a pity they couldn't add a fourth:

4. Proof that they work!
 

LAX54

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Its a pity they couldn't add a fourth:

4. Proof that they work!
Which increasingly day by day, seems they do not, well not as first stated anyway, I see the U.S is now recommending N95 / KN95 masks, and not to use cloth masks anymore, although I think that suggestion has gone down like a lead brick, and provoking more not to bother at all.
 

Smidster

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So the Netherland has today come out of Lockdown with more cases than it had when it started and another daft set of rules that I am sure will be as effective as the last.

Bars , Restaurants , Theatres and Museums closed
Shops can open - but only until 5pm.
Face mask rules tightened - Should not now use cloth ones
Rules on social contact remain (e.g. no more than 4 people / 1 household per day)
And of course all the hits of Social Distancing and Vaxxports remain in effect.

It is all complete nonsense but the one that really befuddles me is closing shops at 5pm - Surely you would want to give shops more hours to reduce the risk of overcrowding?

Interestingly there are also some signs that the public mood is souring - lots of protests apparently in recent weeks.
 

Yew

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It is all complete nonsense but the one that really befuddles me is closing shops at 5pm - Surely you would want to give shops more hours to reduce the risk of overcrowding?
We can't bring sense into these sort of arguments.


It's about making a sacrifice.
 

Freightmaster

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So the Netherland has today come out of Lockdown with more cases than it had when it started and another daft set of rules that I am sure will be as effective as the last.

Bars , Restaurants , Theatres and Museums closed
Shops can open - but only until 5pm.
Face mask rules tightened - Should not now use cloth ones
Rules on social contact remain (e.g. no more than 4 people / 1 household per day)
And of course all the hits of Social Distancing and Vaxxports remain in effect.
Still sounds like a lockdown in all but name to me! o_O





MARK
 

Cdd89

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Bars , Restaurants , Theatres and Museums closed
Shops can open - but only until 5pm.
Face mask rules tightened - Should not now use cloth ones
Rules on social contact remain (e.g. no more than 4 people / 1 household per day)
And of course all the hits of Social Distancing and Vaxxports remain in effect.
Not forgetting of course quarantine for international arrivals (with exceptions).

The Netherlands’ lockdown is fairly permissive by Jan 2021 standards (it was similar to their lockdown then, as well as how it eased), and I would be happy to point to them as an example of what we should be doing. The only snag is that it’s Jan 2022 in a post vaccination world and they appear to remain stuck in the past. I’ve chatted to relatives there about it who (unfortunately) seem quite accepting of it.
 

kristiang85

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So the Netherland has today come out of Lockdown with more cases than it had when it started and another daft set of rules that I am sure will be as effective as the last.

Bars , Restaurants , Theatres and Museums closed
Shops can open - but only until 5pm.
Face mask rules tightened - Should not now use cloth ones
Rules on social contact remain (e.g. no more than 4 people / 1 household per day)
And of course all the hits of Social Distancing and Vaxxports remain in effect.

It is all complete nonsense but the one that really befuddles me is closing shops at 5pm - Surely you would want to give shops more hours to reduce the risk of overcrowding?

Interestingly there are also some signs that the public mood is souring - lots of protests apparently in recent weeks.

It's complete madness, especially when you compare it to here. How do they still think any of this nonsense works?!
 

island

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The trailed changes in France have finally passed Parliament and are slated to take effect from Thursday. In summary, those aged 16+ will no longer be able to use negative tests to enter restaurants, bars, cinemas, or large venues and will need a vaccine or recovery pass. For those over 18 years and 1 month, a booster is necessary if the 2nd dose was over 7 months ago. From 15 February the 7 months drop to 4.
 

nw1

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We can't bring sense into these sort of arguments.


It's about making a sacrifice.

It's because Covid only spreads at night! ;) A bit of googling reveals that Amsterdam sunset today is... precisely 17:00.

Maybe it'll become 18:00 next month. At least they're on a sensible time zone and don't have our disproportionately dark evenings; if the same rule was applied here, it would probably be 16:30, and 16:00 back in December!

Still sounds like a lockdown in all but name to me! o_O





MARK
Sounds very like what applied between about June 15th and July 3rd 2020 here. I can't remember at what stage they stopped calling it a lockdown though. Perhaps when the shops opened, which would be analagous to the Netherlands now,
 

MikeWM

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The trailed changes in France have finally passed Parliament and are slated to take effect from Thursday. In summary, those aged 16+ will no longer be able to use negative tests to enter restaurants, bars, cinemas, or large venues and will need a vaccine or recovery pass. For those over 18 years and 1 month, a booster is necessary if the 2nd dose was over 7 months ago. From 15 February the 7 months drop to 4.

The latest entry in the ever-expanding 'it's not (anymore) about stopping the spread of a virus' list.

Else why prevent people who we *know* don't have the virus as they have a recent negative test, but allow people who may well have the virus (as effectiveness of the vaccines is now effectively nil in stopping infection or transmission).
 

yorkie

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The Netherlands' position is hilariously ridiculous; cases have been rising steeply over the past 2 weeks, despite being locked down. As for disallowing cloth masks, is that going to be in law? Are they actually mandating highly effective FFP2/3 or equivalent masks, or will flimsy loose fitting surgical masks be accepted? Either way cases will continue to rise regardless.

The only way out of the epidemic stage is to build up a significant proportion of population immunity, and ultimately the level of immunity we need should be more than just against the spike protein, i.e. it requires exposure to the full virus.

All they are doing is prolonging the epidemic over there.
 

island

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The latest entry in the ever-expanding 'it's not (anymore) about stopping the spread of a virus' list.

Else why prevent people who we *know* don't have the virus as they have a recent negative test, but allow people who may well have the virus (as effectiveness of the vaccines is now effectively nil in stopping infection or transmission).
France has an election this year so we will see in the coming months what the people think of the rules.
 

ExRes

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France has an election this year so we will see in the coming months what the people think of the rules.

I wonder if it's just vaguely possible that Macron will loosen up his rules as the election gets closer? perhaps he will lend us some of his water cannon and tear gas supplies so that we can be more a part of the European ideal
 

MikeWM

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France has an election this year so we will see in the coming months what the people think of the rules.

The problem with asking the people is that, after two years of constant propaganda and lies, they may not be making rational decisions.

Consider this rather terrifying poll of Democrat voters in the USA:

https://www.rasmussenreports.com/pu...rsh_measures_against_unvaccinated?aff_id=1262

- 55% support fines for those unvaccinated.
- 59% support lockdown for the unvaccinated 'at all times, except in emergencies'
- 48% think there should be fines or prison (!) for those that question the efficacy of the vaccines in the media or on the internet
- 45% would support proposals for the unvaccinated to be forced to 'temporarily' live in a 'designated facility or location'
- 47% think the unvaccinated should be digitally tracked by the government
- 29% think the unvaccinated should have their children taken away from them

Which seems to me to be a pretty clear example of what two years of constant propaganda and lies can do to a significant part of the population.
 

island

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Unfortunately, the price of living in a democracy is that the people can choose to make bad decisions at the ballot box. I am sure we can all cite plenty.
 

nw1

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The problem with asking the people is that, after two years of constant propaganda and lies, they may not be making rational decisions.

Consider this rather terrifying poll of Democrat voters in the USA:

https://www.rasmussenreports.com/pu...rsh_measures_against_unvaccinated?aff_id=1262

- 55% support fines for those unvaccinated.
- 59% support lockdown for the unvaccinated 'at all times, except in emergencies'
- 48% think there should be fines or prison (!) for those that question the efficacy of the vaccines in the media or on the internet
-
- 47% think the unvaccinated should be digitally tracked by the government
- 29% think the unvaccinated should have their children taken away from them

Which seems to me to be a pretty clear example of what two years of constant propaganda and lies can do to a significant part of the population.

That's Democrat voters? If this poll is true: I thought they were supposed to be MOR in outlook. That sounds like the sort of reactionary nonsense that I would expect more from the more militant Trump voters.

Given that many (not all) Trump voters have some wacky ideas, and this poll, if true, suggests that many (not all) Democrat voters also have some wacky ideas, this points to a dangerous spread of extremism in the USA. Please let the poll above be biased reporting from a pro-Republican source rather than the truth.
 

ExRes

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The problem with asking the people is that, after two years of constant propaganda and lies, they may not be making rational decisions.

Consider this rather terrifying poll of Democrat voters in the USA:

https://www.rasmussenreports.com/pu...rsh_measures_against_unvaccinated?aff_id=1262

- 55% support fines for those unvaccinated.
- 59% support lockdown for the unvaccinated 'at all times, except in emergencies'
- 48% think there should be fines or prison (!) for those that question the efficacy of the vaccines in the media or on the internet
- 45% would support proposals for the unvaccinated to be forced to 'temporarily' live in a 'designated facility or location'
- 47% think the unvaccinated should be digitally tracked by the government
- 29% think the unvaccinated should have their children taken away from them

Which seems to me to be a pretty clear example of what two years of constant propaganda and lies can do to a significant part of the population.

What a load of rubbish, even more so than the usual 'polls', 1016 voluntary Democrat voters form the view of the USA?
 

MikeWM

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That's Democrat voters? If this poll is true: I thought they were supposed to be MOR in outlook. That sounds like the sort of reactionary nonsense that I would expect more from the more militant Trump voters.

Given that many (not all) Trump voters have some wacky ideas, and this poll, if true, suggests that many (not all) Democrat voters also have some wacky ideas, this points to a dangerous spread of extremism in the USA. Please let the poll above be biased reporting from a pro-Republican source rather than the truth.

It's Rasmussen, who are somewhat considered to have somewhat of a Republican bias, though I'm not sufficiently familiar with them to determine whether those accusations are true or not.

The same problem is here though, if not quite so wacky. Where does someone who wants all Covid restrictions removed but also objects to the Policing bill, the new Immigration Act and the 'Online Harms' bill go politically?
 

nw1

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It's Rasmussen, who are somewhat considered to have somewhat of a Republican bias, though I'm not sufficiently familiar with them to determine whether those accusations are true or not.

The same problem is here though, if not quite so wacky. Where does someone who wants all Covid restrictions removed but also objects to the Policing bill, the new Immigration Act and the 'Online Harms' bill go politically?

The least worst option I would say. I am aware Labour are more pro-restriction than the Tories but Starmer is nothing like as extreme as some of these apparent sentiments from the US. Also one has to remember that the next election will be in a post-Covid world and one in which Covid restrictions are unlikely to come into play. So I am almost certain to vote in a way which maximises the chance of a Labour government, as Labour don't seem to be (in the non-Covid aspects of life which will become increasingly important) as against civil liberties as the Tories are.

What's the 'new' Immigration Act incidentally? Is that the same one from a couple of years back which removed automatic residence rights for EU citizens, or something else?

I personally do not necessarily need 'all Covid restrictions' removed, I don't have a problem with masks for instance (I am aware this is a bit controversial!) but do have a strong objection to the demonisation of the unvaccinated on human rights and general decency grounds.

But you're right, both parties have been exhibiting 'big state' and 'anti-libertarian' politics lately. I do think the Tories with the Policing Bill, Elections Bill etc, are the more dangerous long-term, in the post-Covid world, however.

I am not sure if I am typical but I have definitely swung more towards Labour in the past few weeks. The fact that a real end to the Covid crisis now seems in sight in the wake of Omicron is a key factor here, and I'm wondering if this is typical across the population and could lead to a more long-term swing to Labour as non-Covid concerns take over.
 
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Bantamzen

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The problem with asking the people is that, after two years of constant propaganda and lies, they may not be making rational decisions.

Consider this rather terrifying poll of Democrat voters in the USA:

https://www.rasmussenreports.com/pu...rsh_measures_against_unvaccinated?aff_id=1262

- 55% support fines for those unvaccinated.
- 59% support lockdown for the unvaccinated 'at all times, except in emergencies'
- 48% think there should be fines or prison (!) for those that question the efficacy of the vaccines in the media or on the internet
- 45% would support proposals for the unvaccinated to be forced to 'temporarily' live in a 'designated facility or location'
- 47% think the unvaccinated should be digitally tracked by the government
- 29% think the unvaccinated should have their children taken away from them

Which seems to me to be a pretty clear example of what two years of constant propaganda and lies can do to a significant part of the population.
That poll seems heavily skewed towards the assumption that these types of measures will "limit the spread", when in reality they really don't.
 

Baxenden Bank

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Say, as per the US poll above, that we segregate into independent communities the entire 10% who are unvaccinated (regardless of age, family ties etc). Just take them all to the Isle of Man / Wight / Mull / Anlgesey and catapult food at them from offshore. Just what are the 90% vaccinated going to do when COVID continues to circulate within their own pure community? Will they then realise that it is not simply the unvaccinated who are spreaders of the disease? That most of the unvaccinated do not have anything to spread and pose zero danger to the remainder of society beyond potentially taking up some NHS capacity IF they catch it and IF they then require long-term hospital treatment.

Where Austria (and perhaps other European countries) place their unvaccinated is a different question. Perhaps the UK could become the island to which they are sent. All vaccinated UK citizens to be moved to Europe in exchange.
 

MikeWM

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What's the 'new' Immigration Act incidentally? Is that the same one from a couple of years back which removed automatic residence rights for EU citizens, or something else?

I was referring to the Nationality and Borders Bill - which I erroneously called an Act, which it isn't yet - it hasn't even started to go through the House of Lords.

The parts of that regarding Ministerial power to withdraw UK citizenship (without notice or reason given!) for those who 'may' be eligible for another citizenship, for one example, are extremely problematic.
 

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