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New lockdown in England, including school closures, announced by Johnson, 4/1/21

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Gadget88

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What’s peoples thoughts on 1,000 cases a day before lockdown ends? How will that work when they are wanting to test everybody?
 
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Bikeman78

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No it won't.

The public love the restrictions and want them to continue.
What people say in public and what they do are often very different. I've recently watched a film about the Ufton Nervet derailment. It mentions that Finland put seatbelts in three carriages to see how much they were used. 70% of people think that seatbelts are a good idea but only 1% bothered to use them.

Perhaps it's the same with lockdown rules. Most people like to go out for a meal occasionally or meet up with friends. I bet most of the pro lockdown people are quietly having friends or family round for dinner in their homes.
 

Reliablebeam

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Seems to me that a lot of these leaks coming out are either different factions of cabinet fighting it out in their favoured papers or the other usual suspect: float policies through the morning papers to see what causes a backlash.... I can't see how we can get to <1000 cases a day with the amount of testing we do in the UK and a population of 66m..

I see no change to work from home guidance planned. At my place, this is clearly causing difficulties, with some sections of the workforce reluctant to come in even if we really need their in-person presence for something or to do some floor walking and run through issues with technicians, factory acceptance and so forth...
 

6862

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I keep asking - why on earth would the government want to maintain restrictions? What would be the benefit of paying out furlough costs and restricting income for the public purse ad infinitum? It's a daft concept.

Does there have to be a reason? They are in total command of the lives of the entire population and they want to keep it that way! Its the same reason for any authoritarian regime keeping hold of power - simply because they like having power and want to keep it!
 

Bikeman78

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Up until October, I actually think Johnson was doing alright, in that he did genuinely seemed to be trying to find a good balance between Covid-19 restrictions and allowing people and the economy to operate somewhat normally. He was clearly listening to what the scientific advisors said, but he was not slavishly following what they saying.

Since November he has essentially played scant regard to non Covid considerations. He seems to be following only what the scientific advisors say and ignoring everything else.
Wasn't that when the new varient nonsense started? Hands up if you know anyone that has had Covid twice? By which I mean actually felt ill twice not just had two positive test results.

Worth noting that our testing is on a different scale to many other countries. For example Japan, South Korea and Taiwan are often held up as examples as how to handle Covid.

Taiwan has done 374k tests in total since the start. We do that in ~12 hours.
South Korea has cumulatively done 6.3 million tests. We are cumulatively on 80 million tests.
Japan was on Jan 8th at a total of 5.3 million tests. We were cumulatively on 57 million tests on the same day.

It seems, the more you look, the more you find.
So the solution is: don't get tested. Zero positive tests, problem goes away :)
 

nlogax

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Does there have to be a reason? They are in total command of the lives of the entire population and they want to keep it that way! Its the same reason for any authoritarian regime keeping hold of power - simply because they like having power and want to keep it!

Again, this thinking is daft. We aren't China.
 

yorksrob

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If the plan which has been leaked to the Daily Mail this morning is anything to go by, hospitality will reopen in early May, with rules broadly similar to the old Tier 2. Then in June the rules will be relaxed so that they are like the old Tier 1. Then in July the rules will be relaxed further so that there are very few restrictions, if any, still remaining in place.

The effect on the hospitality industry will depend to a large extent on whether the public has any confidence that the timetable announced by the government is going to be stuck to. In other words, if they believe that pubs, restaurants and other venues will be open from late June/early July with few restrictions, then you will see an increase in advance bookings, which will increase business confidence.

I do think that the government must stick to whatever timetable they announce next week, regardless of the inevitable onslaught of doom laden forecasts from SAGE scientists and the pro lockdown brigade in general.

Also, I can't help but think that the dates announced next week will give Boris Johnson some leeway to bring the reopening dates forward if the various statistics are better than expected. He may say that the dates in the roadmap are the earliest that this or that can happen, but he is not legally obliged to stick to them.

As long as it is the "old" tier 2, and not this SAGE inspired crap about having to have a scotch egg etc.

The BBC are now reporting that "researchers" want the Government to add the following symptoms as those that should trigger a Covid test.

  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Diarrhea
I can't help but wonder if this is a deliberate attempt to keep cases high. Get more people taking tests = more postivies results (even if false positive) = more reason to keep restrictions going.

I mean the above along with the existing symptoms practically means that if you are not feeling 100% then you must have Covid.

I think most people have one of those every week.
 

6862

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Again, this thinking is daft. We aren't China.

I agree that this is the UK not China.. But who said we could never go down a similar road to China? What makes us so special in the West that we could never end up being led by an evil authoritarian regime? To think we are somehow so enlightened or progressive that this would never happen to us is arrogance in the extreme. Just because we have been fortunate to live in a country that has been free and democratic for centuries, doesn't mean that things won't change. I believe things are already changing for the worse. We're entering a dark era, along with much of the rest of Western Europe.
 

Chester1

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Word I am getting around friends is more and more companies are realising some of their staff do sweet **** all at home. Varies widely between companies but certainly companies don't seem as collectively keen on WFH as they were in the summer.

My work is fairly easy to quantify and my colleagues know it. Some jobs are like that but others aren't. The managers of people in the former category are much more likely to be happy with home working if they look at monthly stats and see the numbers are good.
 

HSTEd

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Again, this thinking is daft. We aren't China.
We are not China because the public would not countenance the imposition of these measures.

The public now countenance it, and thus the primary block on a slide towards China is removed.
 

Philip

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What’s peoples thoughts on 1,000 cases a day before lockdown ends? How will that work when they are wanting to test everybody?

A problem could be regional variations; Yorkshire and NE have seen case numbers level off around 1000-1200 per day for quite a while now, and there are early signs the same is happening in the North West. London, the South and parts of the Midlands are continuing to see fairly big reductions over the 7 day period. I suppose one reason for this could be that more people are working from home further south and so there is less mixing.

But what would happen if, for example, in a month or so case numbers had levelled off around the 3000 per day mark, but 80% of the cases were in the north? On the one hand it wouldn't be right to hold the whole country back, but on the other it'd be more unfair to 'punish' people living in the regions with the bulk of the case numbers by keeping them in lockdown while other parts of the country have relaxations.

That's why I don't think aiming for data targets is a good idea.
 

yorkie

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Seems to me that a lot of these leaks coming out are either different factions of cabinet fighting it out in their favoured papers or the other usual suspect: float policies through the morning papers to see what causes a backlash....
Yes agreed. Fortunately we only have a few days to go until things become genuinely clearer...
 

david1212

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Will be interesting to see of the furlough scheme is extended in any way on the 22nd, Boris as you would expect dodged the question last week at PMQ

I hope so. My employers business is supporting industry. The order book is empty. Without an extension the doors could be locked for good.

Please be clear. None of the staff want to be on furlough as we are all thinking of our employment long term.

Even if right now a switch was flicked that worldwide ended Covid and all the restrictions it would be some time ( I'm thinking at least 3 months ) before orders rattled down the chain from corporate HQ's to UK sites and then the external suppliers. Once received first confirming the detail the specification then second the detailed design it would be several weeks before actual manufacture could start. Hence at least a month before most design staff required, another month before any of the manufacturing staff required then maybe be full staff a month later.

......

By the end of April if many restrictions are still in place but deaths and hospital admissions are very low, which is likely going by current trajectories and the vaccine rollout could exceed expectations and have groups 5-9 with a first dose and 1-4 getting second doses if supply is maintained, independent candidates and anyone standing on an anti-restrictions platform can gain plenty of traction.

I agree.

Adding a month until the last full week of May if after then many businesses are still closed ( maybe just nightclubs, theatres, cinemas and similar ) and many restrictions still in place, maybe just large gatherings in confined places ( hence the previous list plus private parties e.g. full blown wedding receptions rather than just a sit down meal for at least 30 ) there will be a lot of questions to be answered.
 
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HSTEd

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The vaccination programme will not exceed expectations.

We are very unlikely to even make 2 million doses this week.
 

kristiang85

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The vaccination programme will not exceed expectations.

We are very unlikely to even make 2 million doses this week.

I would argue it has already well exceeded expectations.

Mondays are always low days for vaccinations, so I fully expect this week to vaccinate as many as usual (I haven't seen yesterday's data yet?)
 

NorthOxonian

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The vaccination programme will not exceed expectations.

We are very unlikely to even make 2 million doses this week.
Right on cue - I've just seen yesterday's figures and they indicate we're probably still on course to do 2 million this week.

315,797 additional vaccine doses registered in England yesterday (312,669 1st doses, 3,128 2nd doses)

32,070 in Scotland (1st doses only)

17,161 in Wales
 

brad465

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The vaccination programme will not exceed expectations.

We are very unlikely to even make 2 million doses this week.
It's certainly meeting expectations that are already very high: 30% of the adult population now has at least one dose and maybe influencing the plummeting death statistics and to a slightly lesser degree hospital admissions. Expectations won't just be about how many we vaccinate at a given speed, but the effects in the wider population, so from the 8 March the key Covid stats will be very interesting/insightful.
 

HSTEd

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Right on cue - I've just seen yesterday's figures and they indicate we're probably still on course to do 2 million this week.
It appears I dropped a digit on the calc when I did - I had about ~215k in England
 

VauxhallandI

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I passed my nearest Vac centre today on the way to and back from the shops. Not a scientific analysis by any means but no cars in the front car park, no Marshalls in the front car park when previously it was a hubbub of activity and cars.
 

Freightmaster

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35B said:
Strange how other countries manage very low rates with all those false positives.
Worth noting that our testing is on a different scale to many other countries. For example Japan, South Korea and Taiwan are often held up as examples as how to handle Covid.

Taiwan has done 374k tests in total since the start. We do that in ~12 hours.
South Korea has cumulatively done 6.3 million tests. We are cumulatively on 80 million tests.
Japan was on Jan 8th at a total of 5.3 million tests. We were cumulatively on 57 million tests on the same day.

It seems, the more you look, the more you find.
Not only that, but performing such a high number of tests day in, day out as we do in this country
leads to yet another cause of false positives - cross contamination - which cannot be totally avoided
irrespective of how careful the labs are.

On the other hand if prevalence is extremely low (as it is in Melbourne), cross contamination isn't
an issue because there is no virus on the swabs to cause contamination in the first place!

So all the evidence leads back to the same conclusion - testing can only provide meaningful data
where prevalence is sufficiently low enough to render false positives a non issue.






MARK
 

MikeWM

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I agree that this is the UK not China.. But who said we could never go down a similar road to China? What makes us so special in the West that we could never end up being led by an evil authoritarian regime? To think we are somehow so enlightened or progressive that this would never happen to us is arrogance in the extreme. Just because we have been fortunate to live in a country that has been free and democratic for centuries, doesn't mean that things won't change. I believe things are already changing for the worse. We're entering a dark era, along with much of the rest of Western Europe.

The UK is fairly unusual in that it has neither had a particularly authoritarian regime, nor been occupied by one, for many centuries. I think there is a strong element of exceptionalism - similar to what is often seen in the USA - in the idea that 'it couldn't happen here'. When one considers the enlightened societies where it *has* happened - within living memory - there are, unfortunately, no real grounds for that belief.

'The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance' (to give the correct quote, rather than the more usual and inaccurate version). I think we've forgotten how to be vigilant.
 

6862

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The UK is fairly unusual in that it has neither had a particularly authoritarian regime, nor been occupied by one, for many centuries. I think there is a strong element of exceptionalism - similar to what is often seen in the USA - in the idea that 'it couldn't happen here'. When one considers the enlightened societies where it *has* happened - within living memory - there are, unfortunately, no real grounds for that belief.

'The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance' (to give the correct quote, rather than the more usual and inaccurate version). I think we've forgotten how to be vigilant.

Very well put. I fear that it is already too late for vigilance though. Many authoritarian regimes were established by democratic means initially and for the first few years of their reign appeared on the whole to be fairly harmless. I'm thinking of one in particular (you can probably guess, but there are many others), not drawing a comparison in terms of severity or level of evil, but rather making the point that evil regimes can arise from apparently innocuous beginings.
 

yorksrob

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It should be remembered that we haven't yet had the chance to vote on the current authoritarian restrictions. If they were still in place by the time of the next general election, I would have expected an anti-authoritarian movement to have emerged.
 

joncombe

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It should be remembered that we haven't yet had the chance to vote on the current authoritarian restrictions. If they were still in place by the time of the next general election, I would have expected an anti-authoritarian movement to have emerged.
I don't think parliament have either?

I mean things like masks and social distancing came in before Boris even agreed to let parliament vote on stuff retrospectively.

That means there is nothing in law about when it will end, what conditions would need to be met and so on. That's the really big problem here. If it was debated I would expect these questions to have been asked. As it was rushed through as an "emergency" they weren't, so there was no debate as to effectiveness, how long it might be required for an so on. I don't know if this stuff will come up when these emergency powers are due expire or whether all the laws made when they were in place now continue to exist, despite never having been debated in parliament.
 

bramling

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Have to admit I'm missing what the issue is in that case - could you elaborate? I personally think he'll be up for fighting the next election.



.

No way is he going to fight the next election (IMO). There’s multiple reasons for that. First and foremost is that I think he’s bored of the PM job, it isn’t what he expected, and he is clearly finding it tougher than he expected. Then there’s the pull of the after-dinner circuit, which is what he really craves - attention, making people laugh and money, without having to take on the responsibility of small matters like a health pandemic.

Then looking wider I think there will be a push from inside the Conservative party for fresh blood, and probably from the country as a whole too - especially when we get to the stage when there’s going to be inquiries, which the media (fairly or otherwise) will spin into “Boris missed opportunities to save loved ones”.

The only slight saving grace could be that Labour aren’t in that much of a better state themselves, though they can of course disassociate themselves from the death figures. However Labour aren’t Boris’s danger at the moment, the Conservative party and MPs are.

The UK is fairly unusual in that it has neither had a particularly authoritarian regime, nor been occupied by one, for many centuries. I think there is a strong element of exceptionalism - similar to what is often seen in the USA - in the idea that 'it couldn't happen here'. When one considers the enlightened societies where it *has* happened - within living memory - there are, unfortunately, no real grounds for that belief.
'The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance' (to give the correct quote, rather than the more usual and inaccurate version). I think we've forgotten how to be vigilant.

Absolutely agree. “It couldn’t happen here” is very dangerous thinking.
 
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Yew

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I don't think parliament have either?

I mean things like masks and social distancing came in before Boris even agreed to let parliament vote on stuff retrospectively.

That means there is nothing in law about when it will end, what conditions would need to be met and so on. That's the really big problem here. If it was debated I would expect these questions to have been asked. As it was rushed through as an "emergency" they weren't, so there was no debate as to effectiveness, how long it might be required for an so on. I don't know if this stuff will come up when these emergency powers are due expire or whether all the laws made when they were in place now continue to exist, despite never having been debated in parliament.
Indeed, even in Ancient Rome, the emergency powers required a new 'Dictator' every 6 months, to prevent the consolidation of power.
 

35B

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Very well put. I fear that it is already too late for vigilance though. Many authoritarian regimes were established by democratic means initially and for the first few years of their reign appeared on the whole to be fairly harmless. I'm thinking of one in particular (you can probably guess, but there are many others), not drawing a comparison in terms of severity or level of evil, but rather making the point that evil regimes can arise from apparently innocuous beginings.
I'm trying to think of any such regime that has come about as the programme of a government which has been led by someone whose whole career has been libertarian, and failing.

I see no desire among the politicians in government in this country to use the current restrictions except as a measure against Covid, and the "authoritarianism" of which many here complain as minor, low key, and intended for specific purposes; they have also typically been implemented both later and more half heartedly than advised. There are advisors whose expert opinions on Covid lead them to specific conclusions about what restrictions are required, and for how long.

If the UK were genuinely led by authoritarian politicians, we would be seeing a very different style of policing, with much more aggressive use of the courts, and legislation that is both more onerous and more prescriptive. And we certainly wouldn't be seeing what some on here have described as reducing compliance without significant ratcheting of enforcement.

Those opposed to the government's policies on Covid should actually look at what an authoritarian state is like, and the implications that has - including on our freedom to complain about "authoritarianism" on forums like this.
 

yorksrob

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I don't think parliament have either?

I mean things like masks and social distancing came in before Boris even agreed to let parliament vote on stuff retrospectively.

That means there is nothing in law about when it will end, what conditions would need to be met and so on. That's the really big problem here. If it was debated I would expect these questions to have been asked. As it was rushed through as an "emergency" they weren't, so there was no debate as to effectiveness, how long it might be required for an so on. I don't know if this stuff will come up when these emergency powers are due expire or whether all the laws made when they were in place now continue to exist, despite never having been debated in parliament.

Indeed. I think the longer these powers are in place, the more pressure there will be. If labour continues to fail to act in opposition, I expect it will be sidelined by a new political movement.
 

Richard Scott

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All the discussion about authoritarian rules takes me back to 1989. It comes to an end in the end but it does take a considerable number of people to make it happen. If it did carry on eventually enough people will have had enough. In reality expect this to fizzle out over time.
 
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