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Lockdown Skeptics

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-08-12 - Original post - cached version

It’s Official: UK Plunges into Recession The Office for National Statistics (ONS) confirmed this morning what we already knew: the UK economy suffered its largest contraction in Q2 since records began. (Caveat: the ONS only started keeping records in 1955.) GDP shrank by a whopping 20.4% and,...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-08-11 - Original post - cached version

Three Quarters of a Million Jobs Lost During Lockdown According to the Office for National Statistics, UK payrolls fell 2.5% from March to July of this year, amounting to the loss of 730,000 jobs. The Telegraph has more. Meanwhile, the number of people claiming benefits climbed to 2.7m in July,...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-08-10 - Original post - cached version

Love in the Time of Covid Well, that set the cat among the pigeons. Yesterday, I launched a dating section in the Forums called “Love in a Covid Climate” and within hours it had been invaded by trolls posting satirical comments. Some of them were quite funny, although they took it for granted...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-08-09 - Original post - cached version

Another Computer Simulation, Another Alarmist Prediction Last week, a paper was published in the Lancet saying that re-opening schools would cause a tsunami-like second wave of Covid deaths unless the Government improved its test-and-trace programme. Based on a similar computer simulation to...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-08-08 - Original post - cached version

Sunseekers Ignore Official Guidance on Britain’s Hottest Day of the Year Seeing pictures like this of the beach in Bournemouth yesterday, it’s hard to believe the opinion polls about the extent of public support for continuing lockdown restrictions. Looks to me as though the great British public...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-08-07 - Original post - cached version

Yes, Kids Can Get Covid. But They’re More Likely to Die of Flu Last week, there was a hysterical story in the New York Times about how hundreds of children had become infected at a summer camp in Georgia. It led to crazy, paranoid “guidance” being written by bedwetting journalists, such as this...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-08-06 - Original post - cached version

How to Keep Pubs and Schools Open? Merge Them This piece in the Daily Mash is quite funny. TEACHERS have announced that they would be willing to relocate schools to pubs as a compromise to keep both open. As scientists warned that curbing coronavirus might mean closing pubs so schools can...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-08-05 - Original post - cached version

Mumsnet Survey – Quarter of Parents are Bedwetters Mumsnet published a survey today asking parents how satisfied they were with the arrangement schools put in place to re-admit some children in July. It contains this horrifying finding: Among parents whose child was offered the opportunity to...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-08-04 - Original post - cached version

Deaths Below Five-Year Average for Sixth Week in a Row – ONS Today’s ONS release has deaths from novel coronavirus in England and Wales continuing to fall. Here’s PA’s summary: There were a total of 8,891 deaths registered in England and Wales in the week to July 24th, according to the Office...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-08-03 - Original post - cached version

8pm Curfew Imposed in Melbourne by Power-Crazed Premier After reading yesterday’s “Postcard From Melbourne” I didn’t think things could get any worse in the capital of Victoria. But yesterday the power-crazed Premier of the state – Daniel Andrews, known as Kim Jong Dan – announced tough new “...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-08-02 - Original post - cached version

Boris Weighs Up “Nuclear” Options There’s a story by Tim Shipman in the Sunday Times today that I’m struggling to understand. He reports that last Wednesday at 4pm the Prime Minister convened a war-gaming exercise in which they considered various responses to different “second wave” scenarios....

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-08-01 - Original post - cached version

Northern Lockdown Triggered by 14 Extra Cases. Or is it Five? Was the “surge” in cases in the North West that prompted the Government to impose a local lockdown on more than four million people due to 14 additional people testing positive? It certainly looks that way. The ONS infection survey...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-31 - Original post - cached version

The Government’s Incoherent New Measures in the North I didn’t think the Government’s management of the pandemic could get any worse, but I was wrong. The measures announced last night, imposing new restrictions in Greater Manchester, East Lancashire and parts of West Yorkshire, are a new low....

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-30 - Original post - cached version

Second Wave? Virus Has All But Disappeared Your daily reminder that the virus has dwindled away to almost nothing. This graph shows daily triage calls for 19-69 year-olds. Note no uptick during the Hyde Park BLM protests or during the “major incident” on Bournemouth Beach. (Hat tip Alistair...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-29 - Original post - cached version

Censortech Censorship of Covid dissent reached new heights yesterday with a concerted effort by numerous social media platforms to remove all content relating to the press conference held by America’s Frontline Doctors. Not only did Facebook and YouTube remove the videos – and the server hosting...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-28 - Original post - cached version

Dead Souls Zugzwang, a reader of Lockdown Sceptics (not his real name, obviously), has written a great essay which I’m publishing today. The opening three paragraphs set the scene: The anti-hero of Gogol’s Dead Souls, Pavel Ivanovich Chichikov, had his reasons for cultivating the nobility of a...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-27 - Original post - cached version

Fatties – You Don’t Need to Worry About Dying From Coronavirus Matt Hancock has written an article for the Telegraph today in which he warns people who are “morbidly obese” that they are at a higher risk of dying from COVID-19. Obesity is one of the greatest long term health challenges that we...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-26 - Original post - cached version

UnHerd Interview With Anders Tegnell Freddie Sayers, the editor of UnHerd, has done an interview with Anders Tegnell, the architect of Sweden’s coronavirus strategy, that’s worth watching. Freddie kicks off by asking him whether he thinks Sweden’s strategy has been a failure or a success. I...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-25 - Original post - cached version

Boris Johnson is Mistaken About His Mistakes In an interview with Laura Kuenssberg for the BBC to mark his first anniversary of becoming Prime Minister, Boris Johnson admitted to having made mistakes in his initial response to the pandemic. Unfortunately, they were the wrong mistakes. I think it...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-24 - Original post - cached version

A Date That Will Live in Infamy So today is mask day, a new low in the lockdown era. But rather than depress readers by linking to the BBC’s ridiculously upbeat guide to face coverings, I thought I’d confine myself to a few glimmers of hope. For instance, some supermarkets and coffee shops have...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-23 - Original post - cached version

Lockdown Magic-Masked Riders of the Apocalypse Approaching a Town Near YOU This picture was posted by Howard Steen, a retired scientist, on Twitter in response to a sceptical tweet by Michael Levitt. The caption reads: “After 300 years of scientific Enlightenment, the U.K. embraces witchcraft,...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-22 - Original post - cached version

Postcard From Nordrhein-Westfalen I’m publishing another postcard today, this one from Nordrhein-Westfalen in Germany. The author, who has written under a pseudonym, is a professional musician and life has been tough, as you would imagine. But as he explains, he’s been more fortunate that most....

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-21 - Original post - cached version

If Wearing a Face Mask Causes You Severe Distress, You Are Exempt A reader has pointed out that the new Government guidance – “Face coverings: when to wear one and how to make your own” – includes a section entitled “Exemptions to wearing a face covering where they are mandated” that means...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-20 - Original post - cached version

Anti-Mask Rally in Hyde Park The Mail headline was “‘I will be not be masked, tested, tracked or poisoned’: Hundreds of anti-mask activists march on London’s Hyde Park to protest the mandatory use of face coverings in shops from Thursday”, but judging from a reader who attended yesterday’s rally...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-19 - Original post - cached version

Greetings From Venice I’m in Venice where today is supposed to be the climax of Il Redentore, an annual festival held on the third weekend in July celebrating the end of the plague in 1576 that killed 50,000 people. In 1576, the Senat decided to build a small wooden church on Giudecca Island,...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-18 - Original post - cached version

Round-Up No time for an update today, but here’s a round-up of all the stories I’ve noticed, or which have been been brought to my attention, in the last 24 hours (and a special thanks to Mitesh Kariah who has been tirelessly flagging stories up for me for months): ‘How to Talk to People Who …...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-17 - Original post - cached version

Design Your Own Face Mask You can design your own face mask here. My suggestion above, courtesy of my daughter Sasha who came up with the prototype. We were using it in our merch store but I’ve now closed that because I actually lost money in the first month of trading. If you cannot bear …...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-16 - Original post - cached version

Could This be Boris’s Poll Tax Moment? Good comment from Scotty below yesterday’s update. I wonder if he’s right? I feel slightly more optimistic about the mandatory muzzle edict after having a day to digest the news. Something is telling me that as this ramshackle shitshow of a Government...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-15 - Original post - cached version

Face Mask Hell I’m still not over yesterday’s announcement that face coverings will become mandatory in shops from July 24th. Apart from everything else, the only coverings the Government is insisting on are cloth ones, which every man and his dog knows are COMPLETELY USELESS. As Allison Pearson...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-14 - Original post - cached version

God help us, it’s finally happened. Later today, Matt Hancock – it would be him – is due to announce that face masks will be mandatory in all shops from July 24th, with the police empowered to issue £100 on-the-spot fines to anyone who doesn’t comply. To coincide with this fresh hell, I’ve...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-13 - Original post - cached version

Young People Over-Estimate Covid Risk A new working paper published in the National Bureau of Economic Research contains a shocking table (see above). The results are based on an online survey of over 1,500 Americans from May 6th – 13th. The respondents in the 18-34 year-old age group thought...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-11 - Original post - cached version

Confused Man Wears Mask In Spite of Having Had Virus Months Ago This picture really does take the biscuit. Why is Boris bothering to wear a mask when he cannot possibly be infectious or catch COVID-19, having had the virus and recovered. Like me, he has the antibodies. Nicola Sturgeon may have...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-10 - Original post - cached version

Chancellor Rishi Sunak unveiled a £30 billion mini-budget on Wednesday to supposedly kickstart the economic recovery. Perhaps the most eye-catching of his initiatives was a scheme designed to get people eating out again – “eat out to help out”. Participating restaurants will be able to offer...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-07 - Original post - cached version

Refusing to wear a mask in public should become as socially unacceptable as drink-driving or not wearing a seatbelt, the President of the Royal Society has said. Venki Ramakrishnan called for everyone to be required to wear a mask in all indoor public settings, rather than only on public...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-05 - Original post - cached version

Some people had fun in Soho last night. But crowded streets inevitably led to a lot of alarmist nonesense. The story in the Mail about last night’s revels is headlined: “‘A second wave won’t be long in the making!’ Exhausted police officer predicts fresh Covid spike after ‘long late shift...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-04 - Original post - cached version

The re-opening of England’s pubs has rendered me, ahem, unable to do a proper update today but will do one tomorrow. In the meantime, here is a post from regular contributor Guy de la Bédoyère that will, I imagine, strike a chord with many. Sky News this morning featured another of those bizarro...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-03 - Original post - cached version

Got a good piece for you today. It’s by a doctor who works for the hospital trust in Leicester. They’ve called themselves “Dr Q” because doctors are under strict instructions not to talk to the media, but Dr Q has provided me with proof that they are who they say they are. Here are the …

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Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-07-02 - Original post - cached version

First the good news. All schools will re-open in full in September, the Government has declared. No, really. They will. Now the bad news. They won’t. At least, not if all schools are expected to comply with the voluminous and entirely pointless guidance the Government has issued today. The BBC...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-06-30 - Original post - cached version

What on earth does the Government think it’s doing? What possible reason is there for reimposing a full lockdown on Leicester? In an act of sheer lunacy, Matt Hancock announced this morning that non-essential shops have been told to close today and schools asked to shut their doors to the...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-06-29 - Original post - cached version

Holiday bookings have exploded on the eve of the Government’s “air bridges” announcement, according to the Daily Mail. Over the weekend, Britain’s biggest travel websites saw inquires for some European destinations rise by 350 per cent and bookings were up by as much as 80 per cent on the week...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-06-27 - Original post - cached version

No update today, but am planning one for tomorrow looking at the rise in infections in those US states that were among the first to ease shutdown restrictions. In light of this rise, should we be worried about a “second wave” in the UK? You can probably guess the answer…

The post Coming...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-06-25 - Original post - cached version

Lockdown is over as far as the British public is concerned. At least, it is when it’s the hottest day of the year with temperatures peaking at 33.3C, as they did today. Half a million people descended on the Dorset coastline, according to the Times, creating a “major incident”. The council said...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-06-23 - Original post - cached version

Apologies for not filing an update yesterday. Been incredibly busy with Free Speech Union business for the last couple of days. As regular readers will know, we wrote to Ofcom at the beginning of June informing the broadcast watchdog that if it didn’t withdraw its coronavirus guidance, which...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-06-21 - Original post - cached version

Teachers Urged to Give Up Part of Six-Week Summer Holiday A cross-party group of former education ministers is urging teachers to give up some of their six-week summer holiday so schools can reopen in September, according to Sian Griffiths in the Sunday Times. Five former education secretaries...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-06-20 - Original post - cached version

Two-Metre Rule Will be Replaced by One-Metre Rule by July 4th According to the Times, two metres will be replaced by one metre on July 4th so most pubs and restaurants will be able to reopen. Boris Johnson will announce next week that the two-metre rule will be relaxed from July 4th and that...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-06-20 - Original post - cached version

British Public No Longer on Double Secret Probation; Just Probation Okay, it’s an Animal House joke and those who aren’t of my vintage might not get it. But at one point, when Dean Vernon is trying to think of ways to nobble Delta House, he says, “There is a little known codicil in the Faber …...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-06-18 - Original post - cached version

Government Abandons NHSX Contact-Tracing App According to the Mail, the Telegraph, the Guardian, etc., Matt Hancock has finally given up trying to roll out the NHSX contact-tracing app. Instead, the Government will rely on the method that’s been developed by Apple and Google and is already in...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-06-17 - Original post - cached version

Black Lives Matter Protests Haven’t Caused “Second Spike” In my Spectator column last week, I expressed my gratitude for Black Lives Matters protestors for exposing the hypocrisy of politicians and public health panjandrums who enthusiastically embraced the protests in spite of warning us a few...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-06-16 - Original post - cached version

A new law was waved through Parliament late last night, banning gatherings of more than six people, and empowering the police to impose swingeing fines on anyone breaking this new rule. Officially, this was an amendment to the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) Regulations...

Lockdown Skeptics - 2020-06-15 - Original post - cached version

The Grand Reopening The BBC is reporting that queues formed outside shops across the country and the research firm Springboard says that footfall, up until Noon today, was 42% higher than last week. However, worth remembering that the baseline is very low – non-essential shops weren’t open this...

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