THIS was the week that I got out – or ‘was got out’ – from behind my desk, where I normally spend far too many hours of the day, to enjoy some of the things that London still has to offer. The first was an invitation (courtesy of my elder son) to the Magdalen College Oxford choir’s carol service held at the magnificent All Saints Church in Margaret Street, central London. It was a traditional service of lessons and carols, the lessons read by college alumni, one of whom was the wonderful John Sergeant (BBC political correspondent from 1992 to 2000, ITN political editor 2000-2002 and later of Strictly fame), which was a treat. So was an eclectic choice of ‘ancient music’ carols. ‘Magnificent’ is no exaggeration for this hidden gem of London church architecture. A red-brick ‘Gothic’ edifice barely visible from the street, it was designed in 1850 by William Butterfield and built around a small plain courtyard which belies a soaring interior (it is one of London’s tallest churches) of breathtaking tiled friezes, extraordinary ochre tile work in the baptistry ceiling and the nave, ‘amber’ marble arches, stunning stained glass windows and generous gilding.
It was a sublime start to a social week during which I was able to forget, for some of the time, the far from sublime happenings elsewhere, such as the excess deaths that are haunting us the world over. However unforthcoming governments are with the data analysis, and however difficult it is to prove they are vaccine-related, excess deaths cannot be denied.• Canada is but the latest to admit to a 300 per cent rise in ‘unspecified causes’ of death from 2019-2022. Here in the UK, the brilliant Professor Norman Fenton has sent David Davis MP a detailed Freedom of Information request for ONS data that would finally end all debate about whether or not the vaccines were ‘safe and effective’ and to establish how many excess deaths are vaccine-related. You can find it on his substack here. Let’s hope Mr Davis jumps to and sends it off forthwith. For as Alex Kriel set out in these pages during the week, some data without comparable data, as is the case with the much-hyped leaked New Zealand data, is not much use. Fenton’s analysis if the ONS would cooperate would end the argument once and for all.
On the subject of excess deaths, the Daily Mail is fast turning into the Daily Death. It would be in bad taste to tweet questions about autopsies and possible vaccination causes of the many ‘news alerts’ about deaths they keep sending out, so I don’t. I honestly do not remember ever seeing so many such reports as this year. I wonder if the paper’s staff are doing their own count? Then there are the traffic accident reports that, unless I am imagining things, seem to be rising too. Why? Are more drivers having cardiac arrests at the wheel? Are post-mortems routinely carried out or not? I asked TCW‘s friend and ally Dr Clare Craig for her ‘go to place’ for road traffic accident data to see whether my perception was right. A German site indicates accidents rising this year, not by a lot but definitely up. It is a space to watch.
US politics is another of my ongoing concerns, in other words the concerted plan to assassinate Donald Trump’s potential Presidency. A recent article in the Federalist was a sobering read. Trump doesn’t need to be killed for his opposition to strangle a second term (this time before he’s even fought the election). The irony is that everything he’s speculatively accused of planning, for example that he might use the Justice Department to take down his political opponents, is exactly what Biden is doing right now. And, just as they did with Covid, the US media are running a campaign of fear – on the Trump virus – meaning the threat they claim his very existence poses to America. One headline after another.
This is gaslighting of a grand order. With the election interference case against him, which has a US District Judge, Tanya Chutkan, deciding whether Trump can be accused of engaging in a criminal ‘multi-part conspiracy’ to overturn the results of the 2020 vote, and a series of charges in at least four separate cases, including New York Attorney General Letitia James’s accusation that Trump headed a $250million fraud scheme, it is a relentless assault. Now Special Counsel Jack Smith has petitioned the Supreme Court for an immediate ruling on the defence’s appeal to argue presidential immunity in the federal election case. As a witch hunt it completely eclipses McCarthy’s 1950s pursuit of ‘reds under the bed’.
Depressingly, a not unsympathetic National Review editorial concluded that since Trump is not immune from criminal prosecution, a conviction ‘could determine the viability of Trump’s 2024 presidential bid’. What then? Megyn Kelly, the American journalist and media personality, warns there would be riots and the country would burn if Trump, who is 50 points ahead in the polls, is jailed before election day. Could America be set for another civil war?
Freedom-fighting allies I met at a London pub midweek agreed. There could be, and America is a gun-owning country. There was some pretty lively discussion as we put the world to rights between us. Could direct democracy be the solution? It led to good-humoured but deep disagreement. Could Andrew Bridgen hang on to his seat at the election? Why a Labour government that’s less far left than the Tories won’t be a good thing for a right-wing opposition to galvanise against, and so on. Then came advice about what I should do to get TCW Defending Freedom reaching more readers because, at the moment, it is a brilliant but wasted resource. I agree – just look at the quality of this week’s articles, from Jonathon Riley’s ‘What the modern world can learn from Napoleon’, and Laurence Hodge’s excoriating takedown of the Hallett Inquiry, to Sally Beck’s report on the latest South Korean universities’ vaccine studies which combed millions of records from the country’s National Health Insurance Service database, and concluded that the unvaccinated are less likely to suffer from many diseases including inflammatory musculoskeletal disorders, gynaecological disorders, and blood disorders.They are all top notch. It is a tragedy that we are not more widely read and more influential. We ought to be!
So I did come away a bit chastened to sit down at my computer (while they carried on drinking!) to work once more late into the night, wondering if this will ever change or whether anyone will ever give us enough money to ‘action’ some of the better suggestions!
But it was all forgotten (temporarily at least) at the end of the week when I was taken out again! This time to the ‘European vanguard for jazz and blues from world’s top musicians’ – yes, I am talking about Ronnie Scott’s basement club and bar, where son number two and his lovely wife organised a pre-Christmas night out. And what fun that was. A week that went from the musical sublime to the musical blues! I am one lucky woman with my own family and a truly wonderful TCW family too – by that I mean both our home team, Margaret, Alan, Emma and Priscilla, and you, our readers, many of whom I feel I now know from all the emails even though we haven’t met. You are so kind, supportive, helpful and appreciative – you are what makes the site what it is even if we don’t stretch quite as far and wide as we should.
This is my last TCW week in review now until after the New Year. We have planned a special Christmas schedule which we hope will keep you entertained.
So now it’s just for me to thank you once again and wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
* Since this went out as a newsletter yesterday one of TCW’s wonderful readers alerted me me to a post in The Lancet published on Thursday reporting the latest ONS excess death calculations:
7.2% or 44,255 more deaths were registered in the UK in 2022 based on comparison with the five-year average (excluding 2020) and 8.6% or 28,024 more deaths registered in the first six months of 2023 than expected. The causes of these excess deaths posited ‘are likely to be multiple’ and could include ‘the direct effects of Covid-19 infection, acute pressures on NHS acute services resulting in poorer outcomes from episodes of acute illness, and disruption to chronic disease detection and management’.
Anything but vaccination! Yet the trends they specify are at the very least ‘suggestive’ as Poirot would say:
The model they refer to also finds that ‘in the period from week ending 3rd June 2022 to 30th June 2023, excess deaths for all causes were relatively greatest for 50–64 year olds (15% higher than expected), compared with 11% higher for 25–49 and < 25 year olds, and about 9% higher for over 65 year old groups. While the median age of these groups has changed since 2020, age standardised mortality analysis breaking down death by rates by sex find clearer age differences still. Several causes, including cardiovascular diseases, show a relative excess greater than that seen in deaths from all-causes (9%) over the same period (week ending 3rd June 2022–30th June 2023), namely: all cardiovascular diseases (12%), heart failure (20%), ischaemic heart diseases (15%), liver diseases (19%), acute respiratory infections (14%), and diabetes (13%).
‘For middle-aged adults (50–64) in this 13-month period, the relative excess for almost all causes of death examined was higher than that seen for all ages. Deaths involving cardiovascular diseases were 33% higher than expected, while for specific cardiovascular diseases, deaths involving ischaemic heart diseases were 44% higher, cerebrovascular diseases 40% higher and heart failure 39% higher. Deaths involving acute respiratory infections were 43% higher than expected and for diabetes, deaths were 35% higher. Deaths involving liver diseases were 19% higher than expected for those aged 50–64, the same as for deaths at all ages . . ‘ My bold.
These do not ‘mirror’ covid deaths, which were predominantly of older adults. You can read the full comment here.
‘Such a state of denial’ was Neville Hodgkinson’s comment on the article.
How long can the ONS keep its head in the sand before it choses to investigate the vaccine? This isn’t just the UK, it’s Canada and the US too on which Pierre Kory has just tweeted: ‘We’ve never seen dying at this rate . . In the first 9 months of this year, 158,000 more Americans died unexpectedly than in all of 2019’.