I predict what will become clear once the dust has settled in the years to come
Covid-19 turns out horribly for some people and it is always incredibly sad when people die. The point of my blogs was to investigate behind the headlines and use official data to introduce perspective to the situation. As I write this on November 7th 2020, it is becoming increasingly obvious that there is a huge amount of misunderstanding surrounding the severity of the virus.
1. True death rate will be much closer to flu (0.1%) than first thought.
I predict that the data will show us the virus is not as deadly as it was first thought to be. Initially it was recorded that the infection fatality rate (the number of deaths per infected person) was 2%-3%. But now it is increasingly evident that this was an enormous over-estimation. In previous entries, I’ve explained how death rates could be smaller than 0.1%. One paper describes a median death rate of 0.23% which is gradually decreasing as more data becomes available.
After many months, there will be sufficient data to truly analyse infection fatality rates of Covid-19. Figures have been skewed by the fact that a large proportion of people who get infected display mild or zero symptoms.
2. Total lockdown will be not only seen as an over-reaction, but a very ineffective way of protecting the vulnerable
We will look back on this period of our history with regret that we gave into hysteria and panic.
As of 13th October 2020, 750,000 jobs in the UK have been lost and many millions more worldwide. There will be mass demonstrations as the public become aware of the figures which show that this new coronavirus was far less dangerous than it was made out to be by governments and the media.
I support the Great Barrington Declaration which suggests measures which allows businesses to stay open, but those who are vulnerable to the virus are protected. It is illogical to shut down huge swathes of normal society for a virus which may have a fatality rate similar to influenza. Virus outbreaks will happen for years to come, so we must learn to deal with it in a way which does not destroy the whole of society. If there is no money in the economy, there will be less money to spend on the NHS.
Allowing private businesses to thrive is paramount for supporting our health system. If we turn to a full lockdown every time a virus comes along, it will be a social disaster.
3. Lockdowns for extended periods of time will cause more problems than they solve
Hubris of politicians has always been a problem. Some of them have always been blinded by inability to see the bigger picture and instead focus on doing actions which make them look good in the short term to keep their job, instead of doing the right thing for the most amount of people.
Numerous studies are detailing the damage lockdowns will do in years to come and the results are not pretty. One particular study found that the harm caused may be ten times higher than the benefits of lockdown.
4. Science which led to lockdowns will work out to be flawed
There were multiple different sources who predicted different outcomes. For example, the team that included Professor Gupta at Oxford University predicted that half the population of the UK could have already been infected by the virus back in May. This was at odds with the projections from Imperial College London, who famously predicted that 500,000 people could die if a lockdown wasn’t imposed with immediate effect. What they forgot to mention was that this was one ‘scenario’ and the death rate they used for this prediction was far higher than the true rate.
It only seemed to be disproportionately the viewpoints of the team at Imperial College London that were listened to by the government. Truly listening to ‘The Science’ would mean doing a systematic review of all the sources.
The government’s advisors have already admitted to displaying out-of-date graphs as justification for the second lockdown, which appears to show a disdain for the public. I believe this was strengthened by becoming accustomed to the ease at which they could introduce restrictions to the public’s lives without any resistance. This looks like the slippery slope to dictatorship, when the ruling elite ‘know what’s best for the public’.
5. Fatalities actually caused by Covid-19 will be significantly lower than official figures and will be on a par with influenza
The World Health Organisation’s a protocol for attributing Covid-19 to deaths means that a large proportion may not actually be due to the virus. A recent study suggested that between 17% and 27% of deaths were truly due to Covid-19 and 20% to 28% were accelerated by months or weeks; in other words the accelerated deaths would have happened in 2019 anyway. Using these numbers, the projected UK deaths from Covid-19 are in the range 7,5000 to 24,000 and the global death rate etimate reduces to 0.077%.
The average number of yearly deaths caused by Influenza in the UK is 17,000. This is very similar to the projected figures for Covid-19. In the USA, the above percentages would reduce the death toll to ~47,000, which would put it at 10th in the list of causes of death by number and on a par with suicides.
6. Cancer, heart disease and Alzheimers will remain far more deadly and a far bigger threat for years to come
As the yearly figures emerge, the three top killers in the UK will each have caused a much larger number of fatalities than Covid-19. They kill 170,000, 165,000 and 80,000 on average a year. Compare this to the official projection of 55,000 in the UK for Coronavirus and it suddenly seems less scary. Many feel this number should be reduced even further because, as I report on in a previous post, only around 20% of deaths were found to be truly caused by the virus. For me it highlights the over-reaction we have had to the virus, when there are far more scary causes of death around us, many of which originate from our lifestyle and have been around for years, not just 8 months.
7. People will only realise the truth and the damage the restrictions have done when it’s too late
Once the hysteria dies down, I predict many people will cotton onto the fact that Doctors like in the great barrington declaration are right and the lockdown is not only wrong but is not what is best for the country. This will be way too late to reverse the damage done, and just like in ‘The Crucible’, the hysteria has already gained too much momentum to be stopped.
The same pattern is common; the few who speak out are vilified until the truth comes out and then the braying mob start following the very same people they attacked for speaking out. Many people will have a sense of regret in years to come that they allowed governments to gain too much authority so quickly.
8. The people who had the courage to speak out, whether it be in friend groups, or those in the Great Barrington Declaration, will not be listened to until the “mass” of sheep suddenly turn to following what is popular opinion.
I have experienced a lot of this myself. Whenever I have spoken my mind about how many of the measures in place are actually going to cause far worse damage than the virus itself, I have often been met with questions like “don’t you care for people?”. It’s the same tactic used by people who don’t want to think about the problem. What I, the Great Barrington Declaration, and many others have been saying is that there is a far better way to protect the vulnerable now and in the future.
This type of censorship is so common that it is currently acceptable practice even amongst friends to chastise someone who does not subscribe to the line of thought that is most popular. This is a scary precedent and a lot of young people don’t even realise they are being dragged into it. The way social media mobs police opinion is a major cause of this.
As more data is collected and it becomes clear that millions of people lost their jobs, were pushed into poverty, and had their livelihoods destroyed for a virus that I project will not be much more dangerous than influenze (aka ‘flu’), people will start to question whether the measures were worth it. We are already seeing this seeping into public discourse and the media which had been previously so biased towards supporting every lockdown measure without thought.
9. There will be a backlash, and the need for free speech will once again be realised
10. A movement should arise to campaign for new legislation to stop governments un-democratically imposing restrictions on the country (UK)
I predict there will be a swelling portion of the population terrified of the ease and speed at which the government has been able to impose restrictions on everything from business shut-downs to policing who we can and can’t have sex with. I am one of them.
Many of us forget that the restrictions imposed on us were not voted on in parliament, neither were they legally binding. The reason for a parliament is that new regulations cannot be created at the drop of a hat. The recent events set a very dangerous precedent for democracy and we’ve already seen those in power get used to being able to suddenly impose measures on civilians without going through the due process. The first set of restrictions were met with very little resistance, so the second UK lockdown was just a logical step.
The scary thing about power is that abuses of it are often well-meaning. I always think of the saying, ‘the road to hell is paved with good intentions’, because it beautifully captures the perilous nature of people in power seizing more of it because they ‘know what’s best’ for the people.
11. Many young people will wonder why they did not speak out against increasing draconian restrictions of personal liberties which they will be paying for
Sometimes I feel many young people nowadays have forgotten how to think for themselves. While this is true for some, I feel it is more that they can think for themselves but are made to feel bad for doing so by the orwellian atmosphere creeping into areas of society such as social media.
Students have been locked in their halls, had lectures and sports clubs cancelled after committing to paying thousands of pounds for the experience, and even had fences erected around their halls to stop them even going to the shop. The young have been blamed for the spread of the virus, used as a scapegoat and been patronisingly offered the ‘treat’ of being able to spend time with their families at christmas.
But the most baffling aspect is that, until now, there has not been much of an outcry. Where are all the young people who were protesting about Boris’ election? Especially now he is imposing restrictions with abandon that could severely harm the country for years to come.
As a Conservative government rolls out one socialist measure after another, I can’t help think we might as well have Jeremy Corbyn in power. But these policies have a price and it is the young who will shoulder the heavily increasing national debt. Not only are the young being made out to be the problem, but they will be the ones paying for the restrictions.
The promising thing is that we are finally seeing signs that some young people have had enough. Students in Manchester broke down fences which were erected around their campus without them being informed which even blocked routes to the shops.
12. The left will keep quiet because they see it as the demise of capitalism
Picture this. A Boris-Johnson-led Conservative government imposes sudden restrictions which causes mass unemployment and results in the deterioration in mental and physical health of some of the most vulnerable people in the country. In any other scenario, left-wingers would be going purple with rage at the government’s actions. So why are they silent now?
The answer is because it suits their agenda. Governments having more of a say in its citizens’ lives is what left-wing and socialist or communist thought is based on. At the extreme end, authoritarian state-policing and restrictions on personal freedoms are the perils of this ideology.
Many on the left are very opposed to capitalism, so as the economy is virtually shut down for the second time, they stay silent. Without business and innovation, the government has had to step in with furlough schemes. As job losses mount and times get more desperate, the opportunistic left will see it as a chance to say ‘HAH! See! Capitalism is dead’.
13. Boris Johnson will be seen as the Prime Minister who panicked and his reign will not last long
Boris Johnson was a Prime Minister voted in for his anti-establishment values and his resistance to pandering to the braying mob with pitchforks. But it is obvious he has just totally caved in and panicked when faced with the scientific situation he just does not know anything about. Maybe his own experience in hospital and poor health, understandably, contributed towards the hysteria, but if he were truly to have considered all options, he would not have shut the economy down for months on end and destroyed small businesses across the country. That is not listening to ‘The Science’, but listening to a couple of sources.
14. Risk for under 60s with no health conditions is extremely small. So why has this huge sector of the population been locked up?
In 2020, 388 people under the age of 60 with no pre-existing health conditions died from Covid-19. These are the official figures from the Office of National Statistics. In comparison, around 1,800 die from road accidents every year. The question that will be asked in years to come will be “why did we lock up the healthy?”.
If you are far more likely to die on the road than from Covid-19, the sensible approach would be to focus our resources and energy on protecting the elderly and vulnerable. This way, Britain or other countries could gain some herd immunity, thus decreasing the likelihoods of deadly future waves.
What do you think? Read the next installment in the Covid-19 Review here!