ON Tuesday we asked you whether Sir Patrick Vallance and Professor Chris Whitty, two unelected public officials, the ‘senior scientists’ whose advice the Government either relies on or uses to justify its catastrophic Covid response, had overreached themselves. Should they be sacked?
We put out a poll on Twitter to survey opinion. It closed yesterday lunchtime with these results:
First, the answer could not be more categorical. Over 86 per cent of the Twitter constituency, usually regarded as more Left-leaning, who responded thought the pair should go.
Second, never in TCW’s short history has one of our polls garnered such a sizeable response. No fewer than 3,102 voted. There is no doubt how alarmed people are.
Third, TCW readers who are not on Twitter agreed almost to a man. Here are some of their choicest comments:
‘Professor Neil Ferguson’s notorious over-egged and over-hyped model predicting half a million deaths, which proved to be the biggest exaggeration in the history of political spin’. It’s nowhere near his biggest exaggeration. So far, by predicting half a million deaths when only 42,000 have died, he’s been out by a factor of 12. His predictions about Sweden were out by a factor of 17. His 2009 prediction on Swine Flu was out by a factor of 230 (his prediction: 65,000; the reality: 283). In 2002 his prediction on CJD was out by a factor of 281 (178 deaths against a predicted 50,000). His crowning moment came in 2005 though with his prediction of deaths from Bird Flu (you may want to make sure you’re sitting down for this one). His prediction for worldwide deaths? ‘200million people probably’. And how many people have the WHO identified as having died of Bird Flu? 455. Yes, that’s four hundred and fifty-five. He was out by a factor of 439,560.
Don Benson wrote:
It seems that Whitty and Vallance do not have the mental clarity to understand and accept that the entry of Covid-19 into the world’s population of pathogens brought with it an inevitable and unavoidable level of deaths. What that means is that whichever way you turn, and whatever measures you take, people are going to die either directly from the virus itself or indirectly due to what you have done to reduce the Covid death rate. And the stark truth is that the indirect death rate will very possibly be far higher than what would have happened if you had taken only simple advisory steps telling people how to minimise their personal risk while continuing to live a normal life. One would add that there were always practical steps incumbent on government and individuals to protect the very vulnerable group of people in care homes for example.
We were extremely lucky that Covid turned out to be so relatively mild in effect for most people. But its mildness combined with its infectious nature makes eradication of spread virtually impossible: it was always destined to become endemic. Short of a vaccine of unlikely efficacy, eradication of spread could be achieved only by reducing the nation to the Stone Age. A good scientist should have had no difficulty in coming to terms with that truth.
Instead, to Whitty and Vallance, the Covid spread rate became the only important metric: it superseded all else including any deaths for which efforts to reduce spread might be responsible. If the nation were to be reduced to the stone age in order to save a handful of lives, they were prepared for that to happen. It became a personal obsession. Covid was the only virus which mattered; Covid deaths were the only deaths which counted, and controlling spread of infection was the only remedy. That is tunnel vision at an almost psychopathic level; it is arrogant beyond excuse, destructive beyond reason. Advisers with that attitude, and governments which listen to them, should be nowhere near public office.
I have three grandchildren commencing university at the end of this month. At least one of the universities is stipulating that students must stay in their rooms when not attending classes. Can you imagine 18- and 19-yea- olds locked up in their bedrooms in a strange town and not allowed to go out and explore? No doubt many of them will then be blamed for the spread of the virus.
Lancastrian Oik wrote:
Just look at their expressions and demeanour at the press conference. Both of them – and especially Whitty – struck me as two men who knew they were being asked to present the public with a giant mountain of horse manure.
No questions from the media – not that that would have assisted in getting at the truth anyway, so supine and useless have they been throughout this whole farrago.
We were being systematically lied to by our government and its compliant apparatchiks, something which I had hoped never to see again after the awful Blair/Campbell era.
It’s incredible that I, as someone who is socially liberal (old-fashioned classical liberalism, not the new Fascist kind) and fiscally conservative, now find myself loathing Johnson, Hancock, Gove (pushing for a lockdown behind the scenes apparently), Shapps, Patel et al and the Conservative party as a whole just as much as I did New Labour. I know that I am far from alone in this regard.