Blog powered by Typepad

« On leadership | Main | Some good advice on how to work at home »

Thursday, 26 March 2020


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Haven't read old "Cry Wolf Ambrose" yet but did he mention that Germany's debt as a percentage of GDP was 61.9% which when you add 30% is just a tickle over Blighty's debt as a percentage of GDP of 85.9% before the C19 crisis!

That's what austerity gets you in the good times: A Panzer division's worth of reserves for the bad times.

The Jerry and Northern European reserves are more than adequate to save the fiscally incontinent southern states, and of course, reap the benefits of the poltitical control that comes with the saving deal.

Shame Blighty isn't part of that deal. The greatest objective Blighty has ever had since the Romans was to avoid a hegemony on continental Europe that we weren't a leading part of. Epic fail on that front then.

Good call 23rd June 2016.


Here you go ...

Read and weep, Capt Mainwaring!


Sherelle Jacobs puts the "herd immunity" case against "lock-down" ...

Of course the one response profile she doesn't even mention is the techno-solution - app tracking and testing - delivered in South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan and Hong Kong which softened the lock-down regime and curbed the infection to prevent healthcare systems being overwhelmed.


But will the voters of Germany continue to support Merkel if she asks them to take on debt on behalf of Italy? Bearing in mind that her support is crumbling anyway and that Germany was flirting with recession before this virus appeared.
And will the voters of Italy be happy if she doesn't/can't? Judging by how close Salvini is to office probably not.
At the last crisis the Greeks were determined to stay in the Euro. I hear they've gone off that idea and might well decide to leave this time round. All it takes is a preponderance of political will and the other problems are soluble.
I guess it comes down to whether or not Germans have enough fellow feeling for the Italians, Greeks etc. to make sacrifices for them just as Germans are start to lose jobs.

Unless and until someone comes up with a cure for Covid, immunity is our only defence. It would be nice if that were acquired by vaccination but that is not yet possible. Personal immunity protects the individual, and should enough individuals acquire it then then we acquire herd immunity and incidence of the disease becomes negligible because transmission slows down. Should a country eliminate the disease without acquiring herd immunity it will simply need one infected visitor to start it up again.
I am hence expecting places like S Korea to be struggling with this for a long time.
We don't know when the disease first reached this country. We don't know how many have been infected so far- estimates range from thousands to tens of millions. We know how many died with it but are less sure how many of those would have died anyway.
Hence we have no idea how fast it is transmitted nor how deadly it is.
We'll never know when the first case arrived, but we need urgently to measure the spread in the general population, which would mean testing for antibodies in a large random sample. Only then can we institute a policy based on evidence rather than fear.

I am hence expecting places like S Korea to be struggling with this for a long time.

Not struggling, but dealing with it for a long time, yes. Forever, in fact.

Once the track and test app gets going the virus can't win, as demonstrated in South Korea, Taiwan, etc.

And in fact, more lives than those taken by C19 will be saved. Those who die from seasonal flu, pneumonia, sepsis all started with a dodgy tummy or the sniffles. If they are immediately isolated and everyone they've seen in the last 2 weeks likewise, all the killer second stage conditions will diminish along with the precursor dodgy tummies and sniffles.

The herd will never become immune because it doesn't need to because diseases cease to exist, or rather, they will only exist very shortly in small chains of people who quickly get isolated.

Even manflu might become a thing of the past.

Here's the potential savings entry in the "ledger of death" in Blighty ...

Sepsis 36,900
Pneumonia 30,000
Seasonal flu 17,000

There may be some overlap there, but that's the C19 death toll predicted at the lowest end (80,000-ish) saved every year forever.

So in descending order of benefit over cost, the strategies are: -

1. App and track
2. Lock-down
3. Herd immunity

And finally, not wishing to be a doom-monger, but what about the next virus after C19: what if it has a death rate of 50% ?

Fancy trying "herd immunity" with that one?


The comments to this entry are closed.