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Imani
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Post subject: Professor Neil Ferguson: A 'scientist', allegedly... Reply with quote

On April 27th, Professor Neil Ferguson said that over 100,000 deaths by Christmas in the UK could result from the early lifting of the lockdown. Ferguson, of Imperial College, was the government advisor who recommended the measure of lockdown to the prime minister.

A week later, it turns out that the professor was ignoring his 'scientific advice' and the lockdown by going out to get his leg over. Because clearly he KNEW there was no threat to the health of the majority. What he does in his privates' lives isn't the issue, it's the duplicity of the man.

All of this considered, it's now time we ended this lockdown - as enlightening as it's been - and got back to regular activity. As for Ferguson, he's responsible for countless job losses, small business closures, and it's going to take a while to repair the economy.

The story is covered in the Telegraph:

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2020/05/05/exclusive-government-scientist-neil-ferguson-resigns-breaking/

Justin Hinds had just the ska song for the occasion.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IXHFJ895dq8
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Wed May 06, 2020 5:00 pm
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Harry
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Neil Morris Ferguson OBE is a British epidemiologist and professor of mathematical biology, who specialises in the patterns of spread of infectious disease in humans and animals. Yet you say he's only "allegedly" a scientist.
Since the lock down there's been 200,000 Coronavirus cases and 30,000 Coronavirus related deaths in the UK Yet you say, "there was no threat to the health of the majority" Boris Johnson said on TV that rather than closing schools we should have taken the virus "on the chin"
What is it about the spread of infectious diseases that you know that Ferguson doesn't? Are you suggesting that it was all a con and that if we didn't have the lock down the number of deaths would be the same or smaller?

You say that Ferguson is "responsible for countless job losses, small business closures" but why can't you bring yourself to question those who are actually in power?
The Tories repeatedly ignored warnings that NHS stockpiles were woefully inadequate. Jeremy Hunt ignored the warnings after Operation Cygnus in 2016, and Hancock ignored the warnings over inadequate PPE again in 2019.
Because of the Tory party polices 84 % of care homes are now private businesses. Yes, Doctors tell us not to smoke but some smoke themselves -and Yes, Boris has friends who write for the Torygraph who try and save his bacon by picking scapegoats and using distractions but do you not think that the Tory party who have been making all the decisions and who have been in power for so long are not in some way responsible for the mess we're in?

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/may/04/uk-government-using-crisis-to-transfer-nhs-duties-to-private-sector?CMP=share_btn_fb&fbclid=IwAR1hWoEq9sez9rNVPPjOQ7ZTZOGJDzocIia9w5d6qnP4MyMtLcOhtctj1wY
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PostPosted:
Wed May 06, 2020 9:07 pm
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Imani
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The Swedes didn't go into 100% lockdown and most of them are still alive, interestingly enough. Possibly this virus likes Sweden, and that's understandable.

Of course, I'm no scientist. But seeing as 'Fergie' thinks it's perfectly safe to go out and be as 'social' as he likes, you know what they say about actions speaking louder than words? Wink

That's my layman's take on it, anyway.
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Thu May 07, 2020 5:28 am
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Trojan
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It's worth keeping in mind when you see Boris and his merry bunch out clapping for health workers tonight that they voted against a pay rise for nurses in 2017.
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Thu May 07, 2020 11:36 am
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Harry
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I've got friends who used to work with me in London who now live in Denmark. They say they're not being effected etc I think there's only 5 million people in Denmark and probably not much more than 10 million in Sweden. Sweden is a very different to the UK - it's lots of little islands and big forests and lakes etc. Over the last day or so Sweden has admitted they made terrible mistakes not to protect elderly people in care homes. I think they are banning visits to care homes now but the damage has been done. My friends in Denmark say life there is very different to how it was in London - for example people don't meet up in a crowded Weatherspoons. I think Sweden is closer to Denmark than the UK and lockdowns dont seem as necessary.
The UK has had a huge amount of deaths and Boris Johnson has been trying to front it out and pretend its been handled successfully. When the figures became alarmingly high he gets he turns to his friends at the Telegraph (where he works) and asks them to throw an expert under the bus as a distraction to take the attention off him. I think this way of trying to cover up bad news was invented by Blair's spin doctor Alistair Campbell back in the 90s.
On the radio yesterday they were saying we're going to have the worse recession for 300 years. I agree with Trojan's point that we should remember the Conservatives did vote against pay rises (and some of their MPs actually clapped and cheered when the vote was announced). Its hard to be optimistic at the moment. At least the sun is shining
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PostPosted:
Fri May 08, 2020 7:00 am
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Imani
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I know some will focus on the Tories. For me, it's of no relevance to the story, just as it wouldn't be if any other party was in power; it's a side issue at most.
Any platitudes on the failings of the Tories just don't register with me. Pure red herrings.

Because, let's cut to the chase: A scientist warned that EVERYONE should stay at home for fear of a 'pandemic'. His actions show he was lying. It shows that whether his 'advice' had been acted upon a month earlier or not, it would STILL have been phony.

The UK is now looking to gradually ease the lockdown. What happens next is anyone's guess.

Perhaps we'll find out why we were all asked by the government and other agencies to stay home. But that's all I have to say, as I can almost predict the response, i.e more irrelevant Tory bashing.
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Fri May 08, 2020 10:02 am
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Harry
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If you ask your doctor about smoking and drinking he or she will say something like, "Having studied the impact smoking and drinking has on the body, I recommend you never drink more than a few units a week and give up smoking immediately as it's bad for your heart and lungs." If you then see that doctor at party a week later drinking a large scotch and smoking a large cigar it doesn't mean the advice he gave you was phony it just means he chooses not to follow his own advice.
Our economy isn't strong enough for us to stay indoors under lock down. The government can't bail companies out for much longer than it has.
House prices will continue to go down, there will definitely be a recession. Pubs will close, restaurants, theaters, shops will go bust, millions will lose their jobs. 300 wheelchair users have already started legal action against the big supermarket chains - I imagine there will be a lot more places sued for negligence etc
We already know the reason we were asked to stay home and only go out for exercise and vital shopping - it's the same reason we were told to wash our hands and avoid physical contact - we're trying to stop the virus spreading.
I take your point that if a different political party were in power there's no evidence to suggest they would have responded to the warnings earlier and closed down airports earlier etc However it is undeniable that all the heartless austerity cuts weakened our health care system and those most vulnerable in our society. If we hadn't had so many cuts the NHS staff would be better equipped. These policies are unique to the Tory party.
Everyone hoped the virus would be like the flu and that (provided you weren't very old and unfit) you'd catch it, be ill for 4 days and then you'd be immune - sadly that wasn't the case. The Tories have tried to mislead people into thinking they're handling of the situation has all been a great success etc but there are some very bad times just around the corner. The test kits have finally arrived but they've discovered that one in every three tests has given a reading that's proved to be inaccurate.
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PostPosted:
Fri May 08, 2020 10:38 am
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HarryJ185
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I think the professor was just selfish. He took the decision, either because he had been tested, or had no symptoms, to see his girlfriend. However, by leaving her house, she could have come in contact with someone who has the virus. She could then have carried it back and infected her husband and children.

Not sure Sweden can be held up as an example. They have over 3,000 dead with a population of 10 million. The UK has 30,000 dead with a population of 66 million - so 0.03% versus 0.04%. The virus has had a devastating impact worldwide.

The Tories were being criticised for adopting a herd immunity and were worried that, after years of underfunding, the NHS would be unable to cope. I think this is what played in to their decision to lockdown. And regardless of which approach was right, it has undoubtedly reduced the reproduction rate of the virus.

The questions I have are - did the Government's approach result in people dying unnecessarily; despite having contingency plans for a pandemic, why were PPE stocks not replenished; whether the focus on Brexit contributed, both in terms of delay in responding to the virus, and the failure to be part of the EU procurement for PPE; and whether testing and contact tracing should have been implemented a lot sooner.

I find it bizarre that the UK were still allowing rich people to fly into the UK throughout lockdown in their private jets (over 1,300)

The amount of money being spent now makes a mockery of years of austerity - and no doubt we will all be taxed heavily in the coming years to restore the public finances.
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Sat May 09, 2020 9:22 am
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Trojan
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I suspect that the good Professor's behaviour was brought to the attention of the press by one of the spurned spouses. That and he was thinking with the wrong head. To be honest I don't really care what he does his own time, but what he does professionally is another matter. He was part of the body of scientists who advised a lockdown would be a successful tool in suppressing the spread of the virus. The vast majority of the population stuck to the guidelines, he obviously thought he was above that.

And another thing...g

As much as a you have to admire Captain Tom, it should not be left to 100 year olds to raise money for the NHS. The NHS should not need to depend on charitable donations. It should be fully defended by government. It is not safe in Tory hands. Half of them are ideologically opposed to it in the first place



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Last edited by Trojan on Sat May 09, 2020 1:17 pm; edited 2 times in total
PostPosted:
Sat May 09, 2020 9:59 am
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Harry
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Lots of fair and interesting points made in the last couple of posts.

Some of my friends in Scotland love Sturgeon, I think there are aspects of her way of dealing with things that are better than the way Johnson and Co have gone about things...

"Sturgeon is on a collision course with Johnson. And there's no doubt who Scots trust (says Ruth Wishart of The Guardian)
Every lunchtime, Nicola Sturgeon gives a Covid-19 briefing, customarily flanked by her health secretary and the chief medical officer. Occasionally it will feature alternative personnel such as the national clinical director, or the chief constable, but Scotland’s first minister is there, front and centre, every day.
She begins with that day’s Scottish coronavirus statistics and goes on, in detail, to indicate what advice her government is getting and how that is likely to impact on its recommendations to a locked-down public.

The media questions which follow have lately concentrated on the constitutional implications of any perceived deviation from the “four nation” strategy for dealing with the virus (in which England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland have the same policy). On Thursday, however, the day the English tabloids ran headlines describing Monday as “Lockdown Freedom” day, some palpable irritation burst through.
It would have been good, Sturgeon suggested, to have learned of any proposed changes from the prime minister himself rather than from reading the front pages at midnight. It might have been useful to have been included in a Cobra meeting that day but there wasn’t one. Instead, the first minister gathered that Johnson would phone round the devolved administrations later that afternoon. Her unstated message was pretty clear – a tablet of stone from Downing Street, with the message already chiselled thereon, was no way to run a cooperative railroad.
It was the starkest illustration of a fraying partnership already strained by previous media coverage. Why was her Scottish briefing held earlier in the day, some London-based commentators had demanded? Was she trying to steal a march on the Downing Street operation? Didn’t she know her place?

Criticism of Sturgeon reached fairly farcical levels the day she was taken to task for recommending face masks in places where it’s difficult to observe social distancing. Much mockery ensued. Until, of course, the prime minister came up with the same advice two days later. Then the complaint changed to why she’d again pre-empted “the boss”.

It would be wrong to pretend the Scottish government has not made its own mistakes in response to this virus. Scotland too has had its share of tragedy in care homes, not least in a privately-run home on the island of Skye, in the constituency of SNP Westminster leader, Ian Blackford. But the government has set up a specific email hotline to deal with gaps in PPE provision. And it recently took delivery of a massive supply bought and airlifted from China.

Yet there has been a very discernible difference in tone, manner and transparency in the daily briefings. The Scottish government, having insisted it wanted a grownup conversation with the public, has published a series of papers over the weeks outlining what it has been told, and how that will inform future judgments. There has also been no apparent rift in Sturgeon’s cabinet over the economic impact of a lengthy shutdown. They insist that saving lives is the first priority.

But herein lies an uncomfortable dilemma for the devolved administrations within the UK. On issues such as job retention subsidies, they are joined at the fiscal hip to Westminster. As Scottish finance secretary, Kate Forbes, and Scottish business secretary, Fiona Hyslop, noted in a joint letter to Rishi Sunak this week, they do not themselves have the levers to operate any similar stand-alone scheme in Scotland. The stark fact is that Scotland could not keep its workforce locked up if Sunak were to scrap the Treasury’s support across the UK.

Meanwhile there is incomprehension as to why – given the capacity for mixed messaging – we have to wait until Sunday evening before Johnson unveils his roadmap for easing the lockdown. However hard Dominic Raab tried to row back from Thursday’s headlines, nobody seriously believes the papers weren’t briefed from Downing Street.

And there’s genuine anger, too, at the suggestion that the “stay home” segment of the government’s advice slogan may be dropped. That could, argued Sturgeon, be a catastrophic error of judgment, leading to both confusion and non-compliance with other restrictions.

The Covid-19 crisis has brought Sturgeon hugely favourable personal ratings, whereas in Scotland Johnson has never been flavour of the month. (His Scottish party is now led by Jackson Carlaw, a pale imitation of the robust Ruth Davidson.)

In addition, Scots have responded well to a daily forum that encourages debate and discussion – and where politicians are prepared to admit a lack of knowledge – rather than the repetitive recitation of mantras that is the hallmark of No 10’s daily press conferences.

A vox pop in Scotland on Thursday night underscored the credibility that Sturgeon has built up during the crisis. Almost everyone questioned suggested that they would go with whatever Sturgeon thought would keep them safe.

On this particular issue, the first minister seems to have attracted widespread trust in Scotland, and the public seem prepared to take their cue from her rather than accept the latest dictum from Downing Street. Yet that trust will be tested to the full if Johnson veers too sharply off the current messaging on Sunday night.

• Ruth Wishart is a Scottish freelance columnist and broadcaster
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PostPosted:
Sat May 09, 2020 11:43 am
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Imani
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Most people, i.e. not 'at risk', have remained indoors, despite the professor's porkies. Amazing. Or perhaps not.

The past two months has been an invaluable education.
PostPosted:
Tue May 19, 2020 12:13 pm
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Trojan
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Imani wrote:
Most people, i.e. not 'at risk', have remained indoors, despite the professor's porkies. Amazing. Or perhaps not.

The past two months has been an invaluable education.


Everyone is at risk. The variable is how the virus affects you.

People seem to be missing a large part of the Stay At Home message. In fact they are missing half of it. The whole point of it is to not only to stop people getting infected, it's to stop people infecting others. Some people can have little, if any, symptoms and they can in turn can infect others with much more serious consequences.

It's all about having some consideration for your fellow citizens.
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PostPosted:
Tue May 19, 2020 5:02 pm
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