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X : Don't you think people are over-reacting on events?
Me : No. Congressional doctor has said 70 to 150M in the US could become infected -… - with a death rate of 3-5% then you're talking millions dead. Which is why isolation is so important ...
... I'd rather be like China and get this thing under control. So, meetings and events go online - what's the big deal? It also means less of a carbon footprint. That's another plus.
X : What if we've paid for our venue?
Me : You take the haircut in the name of public safety.
X : But we can't afford to do this?
Me : Hmmm ... you'll be putting your financial interests ahead of public safety. If that's not a criminal offence it needs to become one rapidly.
X : You think I should go to jail?
Me : Not only that, I'd throw away the key.
X : What if I need the money to pay for rent etc?
Me : Well, we better start putting in support systems rapidly. This is at the heart of the issue, the whole "we" vs "me" culture.
X : How can we afford that?
Me : Wealth tax is a marvellous thing in times of emergency.
X : But if economic growth declines then companies will have to lay off workers.
Me : Which bit about pandemic did you not get? It is reasonable for Gov to take draconian actions in such cases, that includes suspending the rights of individuals and that includes companies.
X : What about the mass layoffs in China?
Me : What mass layoffs? You can't simply "layoff" people in China and the Gov changed employment legislation to restrict this further. If anything, the layoffs will be in the US which lacks such protections.
X : What about affording things like food etc?
Me : Gosh, I live in the UK where we have severe debt problems and food banks. We are going to have to take a "we" focus i.e. Gov needs to build those support systems including many that have been dismantled over the last decade.
Alternative is to take a herd mentality i.e. accept 80% will get virus, 1-2% (or whatever the rate is) will die off and the rest gain some modicum of immunity. You'd be talking huge numbers but if China is around 10-20k - I don't think people will forgive the "money" argument.
Oh my ... well, I didn't see this when I wrote that.

Looks like "herd immunity" -… - is the play, a cute name for lots of people dying unless you have a bunker to hide in until vaccines are produced. Hmmm.

So, we are cattle? Great to know.
After the shock of reading this ... well, I suppose once we have got through the reaping then we should all have a long discussion with our Government about responsibility towards people and society. Until then ... may the odds be ever in your favour. Good luck to all.
Hmmm, I can't leave it like that. I have to find the positive.

It is a gutsy bold move, one I certainly wouldn't contemplate because of the numbers. But if you've given up on containment (i.e. didn't really try) then it's just tweaking the edges whilst nature does its thing ...
... ok, other than the inevitable horror of lots of deaths (unless we catch some lucky break in our path to herd immunity) and the inevitable impact to loved ones ... well, it's hard to find any upside ... but here goes ...
.... chances are we will get through it quickly (if peak is summer), it'll probably help social mobility, pension deficits, social care costs etc (all for awful reasons). At the end with a smaller population and some concentrated wealth there could be a mini boom ...
... but mostly, and this is what I'm really hoping for, the one upside I can see is the general population demanding China leads the world on the grounds that it's the only adult in the room.
X : Do you think there is an upside to this?
Me : Wasn't I clear in my "only adult in the room" quip? No, there is no upside, it's truly horrible. We will need to have that long discussion with Government about social responsibility and why people matter more.
X : There's nothing to guarantee that any approach will work.
Me : True but I'd rather try to contain this as much as possible (see China) even if it does cost vastly more and sinks part of the economy (we can build support systems for people) and give time for a vaccine ...
... hell, I'd have gone so far as to send Boris over to China on hands and knees to beg for some help. I'm not a fan of our approach.
X : But if containment failed, couldn't the system be overwhelmed?
Me : We don't have any guarantees that we can "manage" this effectively. However, it's the path we're on, there is no time machine to fix this but after we get through it, we need to have those discussions.
... so until we have the time that we as a nation can have those discussions, let us carry on with life, wash your hands, take sensible precautions and may the odds be forever in your favour.
X : You don't like the Gov approach?
Me : I think it's a gamble. It's not a gamble I'm comfortable with. However, it's the path chosen. So we should accept this, adapt to it, take the precautions advised and carry on. Discussions on the right and wrongs can be left until later.
X : You should stop scaremongering?
Me : Eh?
X : Saying 40 million will be infected in the UK.
Me : Ah ... that's the UK Gov strategy -… ... I'm not comfortable with the gamble instead agreeing with the WHO but this is the path we've chosen.
X : You think you know better?
Me : No. I just happen to rely on the WHO (it has lots of experience) and China's proven containment.
X : UK is about flattening the curve.
Me : Ah yes, that wonderful diagram with two curves and absolutely no figures that everyone believes. Hmmm.
X : You think it's wrong?
Me : I think I'm not hearing the WHO telling everyone to flatten the curve and go for herd immunity.
X : You disagree with slowing the virus?
Me : I agree with slowing, with containment and with generally following WHO / China. Look, I'm a geneticist by training, not a virologist ... so if you want good advice then listen to a virologist -…
However, that said, this is the path we have chosen, the gamble the Gov believes will pay off.

So let us adapt to it and we can come back to the right and wrongs later.
So, let us instead talk about the positive things from COVID-19. For the first time, my small knit community (hidden away in a marsh) has created a WhatsApp group. Offers of help abound. There's already a strengthening of the community, new lines of communication forming.
If I was going to give advice it would simply be ... don't panic and be kind to others. We've all got to get through this, we will all need support.

Focus on the "we" and less on the "me". And later, let us talk about making that change permanent.
Oh, and for future reference. When I talk about "Learn from China" ... this is what I mean, this is how I think we should have acted -
X : I don't understand your concerns over herd immunity?
Me : Ok. It's like being on the Titanic with the UK Gov saying we're going to throw the Brits in slowly and see who floats whilst the WHO recommends lifeboats and China has already evacuated with helicopters.
I'm not exactly feeling confident and it seems at odds with the WHO. But then my training was in Genetics, I'm not a virologist. If this is what the virologists say makes sense then fine. I might not be comfortable but I trust that the right scientific advice will be taken.
Typical ... I write this, then go and decide to have a look at what the BSI is saying ... and well, an open letter -… ... WTF? Where exactly are we getting our advice from? It seems we're ignoring Lancet, BSI, WHO ... who the hell are we listening to?
X : Herd immunity is not Gov strategy.
Me : Eh? What? So the CSA et al talking about herd immunity for the last few days means the plan is not actually this?
X : It's more nuanced, more dynamic.
Me : Hmmm ... some transparency would be nice. My confidence is now rock bottom.
UK - "We need to do the right things at the right time" -…

WHO - "You need to react quickly. If you need to be right before you move, you will never win. Speed trumps perfection. The greatest error is not to move"
X : The UK Gov isn't pursuing herd immunity.
Me : Well, the chief scientific advisor spent days talking herd immunity, then it's reported in the press - - now it isn't part of the plan or the plan is more nuanced or ... we shall see what tomorrow brings.
X : But what about the economy?
Me : ?
X : We have to focus on that as well.
Me : If necessary Gov can just nationalise key industries without compensation. This is a pandemic. Individual rights can be suspended and that includes the rights of companies / shareholders etc.
... the Gov can pass whatever emergency legislation it feels is necessary - restrictive employment practices, nationalisation without compensation, wealth taxes, criminal offences for profiteering ... it's Gov, it can do what it likes in an emergency to protect the population.
Not that the figures are anything but a "guide" (and the inevitable debate on veracity) but the number of cases of COVID-19 outside China now exceeds inside -…
UK Coronavirus crisis "to last until spring 2021 and could see 7.9m hospitalised" with around 318,000 to 530,000 dead assuming the figures are right -… .... hmmm.
Spring 2021 ... well, time to take up a new hobby. Maybe run some online meet-ups / training on mapping or even ... heaven forbid ... I could actually finish the book.
Virgin Atlantic boss asks voters (i.e. UK Gov) for £7.5bn handout for airlines.

Virgin Atlantic boss asks voters (i.e. staff) to go on 8 week unpaid leave.

if some are going to be tossers then I suggest we rapidly introduce universal basic income with hard hitting wealth taxes.
LVMH to switch production to hand sanitiser gels which "will be delivered free of charge to the health authorities" -… ... now, that's called being responsible and part of the community.
I love this but it's a bit fruity -

However, two things that Gov needs to consider - rationing of essentials and universal basic income. With 50 years of market reforms, I do hope UK hasn't transformed from a nation of shop keepers to a nation of tossers.
Amazon staff told to work overtime as virus spikes demand -…

Laura Ashley nears collapse as firms demand help -…

... it's not the companies that need saving (poor biz models and poor management), it's the staff that need support.
Apparently UK Gov has changed its mind on throwing brits slowly off the Titanic into the water and decided to start following China - ... new approach involves ramping up testing, suppressing the epidemic ... WTF were we wasting time with turd immunity?
I do hope UK Gov starts listening to Chinese experts and virologists who've actually been battling (and succeeding) with COVID-19 rather than behavioural psychologists running simulations… ... notice the emphasis on "test, test and test" same as the WHO.
X : 'turd immunity' ... lol.
Me : Well, I'm guessing that was part of the UK wide run on bog roll.
X : Do you think the UK Gov announcements were about anchoring? Is this some China missed?
Me : Gosh, interesting question. Ok, and this'll be tough to unpack. So, I'll try using my culture map by highlighting two paths ...
... on the blue line (we -> collective -> success + behaviour), you've got the more Confucian style culture. On the green line (me -> agency + behaviour) you've got the most "Western" ideal ...
... in a more "We" culture, it should be easier to change behaviour in order to ensure the success of the collective. In a "Me" culture it's about agency and behaviour of individuals, so you need to change self interest without the advantage of a more collective mindset ...
... so you're arguing that first you scare the population witless (i.e. huge numbers will die, 80% need to become infected) in order to be able to change behaviour to mitigate the impact. Whereas in a more "We" culture (i.e. China) you can just explain it's for the common good?
X : Yep, something like that.
Me : An alternative narrative is you scared the public witless, you decide to copy what China is doing because frankly the other choice is daft and now you're just trying to pretend it's part of your grand plan and call it anchoring ...
X : ... so which one is it?
Me : People often rationalise post event that something was part of their grand plan in order to justify a narrative of their own benign genius. Generally, benign genius can be found in fixing the problems rather than convoluted plans.
X : You think this anchoring stuff is nonsense?
Me : I think it's a nice narrative but first I'm highly skeptical and its seems reckless. Second, China didn't just tell behind to behave differently, it introduced a massive testing and isolation regime that was highly targeted.
X : Thoughts on UK £330bn package of guarantees for businesses?
Me : Voting public have agreed to underwrite more debt for businesses to the tune of £5,500 per person? I don't mind if its advantageous loans or buying shares in companies through some favourable rights issue ...
... but Government sets the rules i.e. it could simply introduce legislation to prevent companies laying off or force them to pay contractors etc and Gov is the lender of last resort. So, I expect them to act like pirates when it comes to any business that isn't playing well.
... I mean, how annoyed are people going to get if in this future of strife some large company takes big loans or largesse from Government and continues with some cutbacks whilst giving dividends or more likely share buybacks?
What you ned to remember in this world of coming together (I do love that Chinese message) ... is that we've also got some right tossers out there. Latest would be that Medical Co. threatening to sue volunteers that 3D-printed valves -…
... and we all know what has been happening over the years with price inflation of drugs and various predatory practices by some very bad actors in the US.
X : Chinese message?
Me : Stamped on the crates for the Italian supply of masks and other equipment -
X : You seem pro China?
Me : That's because they're leading the world in how to deal with this virus. The WHO rightly points to China as the example to follow.
X : US?
Me : Less so. I'm also not happy about the claimed "exclusive" attempts -…
When the pandemic ends, I suspect the West is going to need a discussion on Me versus We culture, how pandemics are not market opportunities, inappropriate use of IP, being a good neighbour to other countries, real world examples rather than claiming your model is science etc.
X : What did China do that was right?
Me : Testing, testing, testing ... virus clinics, quarantine centres (rather than isolation in the family unit) and testing, testing, testing.
X : UK?
Me : You can get tested ... if you can afford it -
X : What face mask do you use?
Me : As if I would know anything? Ok, so face masks are more about protecting others. I'm focused on social distancing / cleaning hands but will use face masks when Amazon start selling directly rather than buying from untrusted / dodgy vendors.
... one thing about COVID-19, is it will certainly change my trust profile permanently. For example, my trust in WHO, China Gov, Amazon etc is certainly increasing but my trust in particular Governments and suppliers is without question plummeting.
X : Did you see the "America virus" propaganda -…
Me : Yes, along with the equally unhelpful "China virus" narrative. The origin is not important, this type of outbreak was inevitable. The actions taken to deal with it matter.
... so I certainly agree that early actions in China appeared to be unhelpful. However that should be dealt with later, the first thing to focus on is the current outbreak i.e. lockdown, test, test, test, virus clinic, isolate, test, test, test etc.
Finally got around to reading the Imperial Paper -… ... "epidemic suppression is the only viable strategy at the current time" ... hmmm, 2 years of adaptive suppression ... social distancing, school closures, isolation ... that's more like it.
I do hope this is now the Gov policy ... I would be so encouraged especially after the whole "herd immunity".

Needs that oodles of testing though. Feeling much more reassured now. A target of 50k fatalities over two years is far more comforting.
Now to start planning for the long haul, having to re-invent conferences, study tours, research and training in a virtual world on a more permanent basis. Not just as one-off but as a multi year program.
X : Are we entering a new dark age?
Me : The opposite. This is the start of a new renaissance where practices and policies will have to change as we are forced into a digital world by external forces. A world of virtual conferences, virtual tours and new systems of meaning ...
... a world where relationships are not forged on the golf course but in EVE online. Those virtual ideas we've long talked about will now have to become reality. The implications of two+ years of adaptive suppression are profound. The world is not going back to how it was.
Those early experiments of running virtual theatre in 2nd life, remote working of Canonical honed over a decade, early virtual workshops and today's more remote teaching in medicine ... at the same time VR/AR, 5G, Space, Robotics are all about to start industrialisation ...
... the very components you need to industrialise and become commodity like are doing so just when it is needed.

The transformations this will kick off over a decade will be dramatic. We'll have to stop thinking in very limited ways i.e. simply replicating the "office" online.
I feel very still ... not in a "oh my, it's a disaster, huge numbers will die, accept our fate" way but in a "some tragedy but finally we are making steps" way.

Just need to ramp up that testing and isolation. A 2 year program of adaptive suppression is just what is needed.
X : You seem to think a long period of adaptive suppression is a better path than herd immunity but what about the economic impacts?
Me The economy will adapt, our practices will change and there really isn't a question here. If there is a question, it's why did we take so long?
However, I am also heartened to see that whilst there have been some utter tossers out there (Richard Branson comes to mind), there are also some really positive and encouraging responses (e.g. Gary Neville) -
"A society will be judged by how it treats its weakest members"
Boeing pleads for bailout under weight of coronavirus, 737 fallout -…

... not a single mention of the $43 billion in share buybacks -…

X : What about people on zero hour contracts?
Me : As I said before we need systems implemented immediately to support those who need it.
X : But how can we afford this?
Me : We can afford £480Bn to bail out the banks over a decade, we can afford to support our citizens ...
... basic things like increasing sick pay, increasing Universal Credit (should have happened long ago), removing restrictions / conditions etc. There are many things that can be done to help people.
X : You haven't answered how to pay?
Me : Wealth tax, Gov bonds ...
... force share rights issue. There are many things that can be done. But you also have to discourage bad actors.
X : Bad acting?
Me : Yes. 50 year ban on dividends / share buybacks for any corporation / executive found to be laying off staff when alternatives were possible ....
... significant conditions associated with any Gov loans to any corporation, exclusion of bad actors from ever operating in the UK again, forced nationalisation with no compensation etc.
X : Serious?
Me : Yes, it's a pandemic. Citizens first. The measures can be very draconian.
... but you have to take action, create a symbol, a fable that people can rally around.
X : Such as?
Me : Virgin Atlantic? Forced nationalisation of all Virgin companies. All executives banned for 50 years for holding directorship / shares in any company.
X : You are kidding?
Me : No, you need a powerful message with immediate effect i.e. all the executives involved suddenly find all holdings in any company immediately acquired by Gov with no compensation with themselves barred from any holding or even operating in the UK.
X : Message?
Me : Yes, a symbol. A sacrificial lamb if you prefer. You encourage the right sort of behaviour but you have to be prepared or a least been seen to be prepared to deal with those who fall outside the bands of acceptable behaviour.
i.e. you give medals to Gary Neville and you throw Richard Branson under the bus ... metaphorically ... from a Gov perspective.
More bad actors - "chucked out of their accommodation with no notice and no redundancy pay" -… ... this is why Gov needs draconian powers i.e. local council should be able to seize buildings with no compensation, directors barred for 50 years etc.
We're going to need that reckoning soon to prevent public anger ... that means support systems in place for those who need it but also no forgiveness for those who have exploited or not done what was necessary ... no-one will cry if a bunch of execs are stripped of everything.
... what we must avoid is public unrest and this is what these bad actors threaten, this is not the time to be breaching the social contract.
This is a real test of the self styled "one nation tories" ... is this the paternalistic, social reforms and ideals of Disraeli or just marketing? It's often in crisis that the Conservatives return to a more one nation view ... I hope this will happen.
There many things China Gov bungled badly in the early days of COVID-19 ... concerns over local economy leading to caution and cover-up but since lockdown of Wuhan the approach of test, test, test, quarantine and other restrictions have been exceptional, I agree with the WHO ...
... when I talked about "Learn from China", those are the lessons we needed to learn. We've had two months since Wuhan was locked down ... where is the blanket testing, where is the isolation (not in family units) ... what have we done with our time? ...
... again, though action is encouraging it does seem to be slow, as with China's early bungling over concerns on economic impact.

This (H/T to @Jon_Ayre) - - is what concerns me.
But then if we lock down the entire of UK on Monday, introduce extensive testing and isolation, then with good fortune in a few weeks we should only be in a slightly worse position than Italy is today.

This prevents the disaster that COVID-19 could be but action is needed.
So, I hope early next week or even better tomorrow that UK Gov announces a lock-down of the country. Yes, this approach of adaptive suppression will probably go on for 18 months or more but keeping those figures down to 20k or so deaths is far more appealing than the alternative.
As a nation, we can adapt, we can learn to work like this, to build new economic models and to rebalance society. We'll have lots of future hard questions about how we used our time, the support systems that had decayed under austerity and the whole "me" vs "we" culture ...
... but for now, we need to lockdown. Fingers crossed that Gov takes that action sooner rather than later.
X : What do you think about the US?
Me : Hmmm ... I do not understand some of the actions being taken. I do not share the President's confidence that he is doing a brilliant job. For me, there is too much focus on the market which is a tool of society rather than society itself.
However, on that point of society, I also see positive examples of agencies, companies and individuals.

The one thing I would hope is that the executive branch of both China and the US Gov stop the blame game going on. That does seem particularly unhelpful.
X : Isn't isolation a personal choice? What if you're willing to take the risk?
Me : Then you should be arrested, put in jail and the key thrown away. Isolation is not about protecting you, it's about protecting others, stopping chains of transmission.
... so this macho bullshit, those people going to "business meetings" etc ... they are all criminals or at least should be. Long prison sentences ... actually, sod that .... throw them in a disused mine and lock the door, they can eat coal because they're that hard etc.
... hence learn to adapt. We're in this for the long haul. Even Churches are holding virtual sessions. Yes, we're going to have to be pretty forgiving of the technology, sometimes things won't work as we planned but that's ok.
Encouraging, 12 year prison sentences seem balanced with endangering others -> Italy charges more than 40,000 people with violating lockdown -…
It may not be N95 but I do find heart warming these spontaneous groups of people emerging to try and help -> How to help sew masks for hospital in coronavirus crisis -…
Whilst some people and some businesses act irresponsibly ... there are also great examples emerging of a stronger "we" rather than "me" culture.
X : What if someone making those masks is infected?
Me : There are many shortcomings in this approach, however, what is encouraging is that people are trying to help. That energy, that effort, that desire to help just needs to be directed.
This ... we need more of this - ... at the end of the pandemic, I want to see some awarded medals whilst others are told "never step on this shore again, you are barred from ever holding shares or conducting business within the UK or with any UK company".
X : Anyone in particular?
Me : For medals, huge numbers. For a reckoning .... a small number but I think most in the UK would have Richard Branson in that list. I doubt he will ever be forgiven.
Hmmm, some people need to be told over and over -
Some people were told but didn't listen - - do remember isolation / social distancing isn't so much about protecting yourself as protecting others. By breaking it then you put others at risk.
More good behaviour ... this needs to become the norm, the absolute minimum -
Of the two WhatsApp channels we have locally (emergency and chitchat) ... the chitchat has become a discussion on gallows humour, duck rearing and education. It's an eclectic mix as the community settles and finds its pace.
"if this administration had invoked the Defense Production Act" - thread - ... it is surprising that the powers haven't been invoked.
"Stay indoors or risk strict lockdown" warns Boris ... hmmm ... part of why the UK had that chipper "blitz spirit" in WW2 was because there was no choice, anyone failing to do their bit could end up in court. Can we just move onto the lockdown and skip the ultimatums?
Michael Bloomberg pledges $40M to fight COVID-19 -

... that sort of feels somewhat awesome except it's $860 million less than he spent failing to become president -…

The optics just don't look right on this one.
In 2019, the top 1% of US households had a net worth of $35 Trillion. Just, a one-off, 20% wealth tax for this select group in the middle of a pandemic would give you three years of universal basic income. Enough time to change society whilst providing some sort of safety net.
X : Do you think China will introduce a universal basic income before the US?
Me : China has been experimenting with a minimum livelihood guarantee for over a decade. Search for dibao system. It's far from perfect ... but "yes" would be the answer you're looking for.
One of the many positive moves by UK Gov -
Something that has been expected. It is probable that court cases will have to move increasingly towards a virtual / online environment -
Family piano lessons ... all now through zoom. Regular social gatherings online - G&T evenings, cooking lessons. The WhatsApp channel has now turned to organising a community store, lots of sharing / offers of help etc. it is becoming even more social online than real life ...
... but then that's showing a part of my prehistoric mindset. It always was more social online, just look at the younger generation and the way they interact. Pubs, cafes, theatre ... they will all have to re-invent and so they should. The past is the past.
So, finally ... we are into lockdown. Police to have powers to enforce new rules.

"You must stay at home" -

Good on @BorisJohnson
X : You seem quite calm about this?
Me : I don't see any value in panic.
X : Aren't you concerned?
Me : Of course. I have concerns, I have fears ... I am after all human. But I don't rule my life by fears and concerns, I try to act in ways that I think will help ...
... I'm not the sort of person who will ignore something nor am I the sort of person who will be ruled by fear but that doesn't mean I don't have fear. Of course I do, I just choose to focus and take small steps.

So yes, I'm glad by this bold move by the PM. It needed to happen.
This is not awesome - people lying about symptoms in order to be seen by a GP. I know people are concerned but think about the impact you're having on others. Don't try to bullshit those who are trying to help you and others. Don't be a complete tosser -…
X : What are your largest concerns with COVID-19?
Me : Gosh, there are so many complex parts to this and so many cascade effects that it simply wouldn't be helpful to talk about it. Let us simply say that I'm very glad that UK Gov is taking this positive sort of action.
Dreadful. Another one for the list of "Gov needs to have a long chat with" after the pandemic - ... by long chat, I mean disbarred from holding shares, directorships, conducting business in UK, any business forced nationalisation with no compensation etc.
... no-one would complain ... well, no-one who matters.
Another set of executives sticking two fingers up at Gov. No-one will care if after the pandemic they are stripped of all wealth, shares and barred from any form of directorship within the UK. No-one will bat an eyelid if they are thrown in prison -
What people must remember is that boycotts will hurt the staff more than these parasites. Their companies will need to be nationalised and exceptional measures taken i.e. these execs will need to be stripped off all wealth - property, shareholdings, trust funds - everything ...
... they have broken the social contract to such an extent, putting their own personal gain above the safety of the nation that no-one will bat an eyelid if Gov goes to town on them.
Ah, so they've finally decided to act like members of society. Well, any punishment can now be less severe, say 20% wealth tax for the execs. A clear message needs to be sent -> Sports Direct to close during lockdown -…
A good graphical explanation of why isolation matters -
X : Isn't UK lockdown a bit over the top? No public gatherings of more than 2 people?
Me : It's perfectly reasonable in my view. In fact, I would have preferred this earlier. I also want to see rationing and police / army on the streets enforcing.
X : You are kidding?
Me : No.
X : Surely that's is overkill?
Me : No. Whilst most want to make the right choices, there are some that are misguided. Gov needs to act accordingly. I take the view that army joining the police on the streets combined with rationing would be bold but also reassuring moves.
On the other side of the pond, I see a growing religious like fanaticism to protecting the economy, a cult of the market ... talking up the positives of herd immunity. Do these people have any idea of the risks they're encouraging -… ...
A market cult attitude that is off the charts and well into total fruitcake land -> "to deal with a pandemic of this sort ... leave it to the institutions of voluntary civil society and the competitive, profit-directed forces of supply and demand" -…
As difficult as this must be, this is also the right decision - - putting people first. Well done @LauraABaldwin, thoughts are with you and all @OReillyMedia
Hmmm - - well, at least someone has said it.

Except ... the risks are far more than people realise. I cannot emphasise enough the importance of isolation and not fixating on the economy.
X: O'Reilly laid everyone off by email,

Me : That's not good, not good at all. What about redirecting effort, the online publishing side ... I am reminded of @timoreilly mantra of putting more in than you take out.

This is the time to be putting back in .
X : It's important to maintain the economy.
Me : If the virus is left uncontrolled, it's not just overwhelming of a health service, police etc and such loss of life that you need to worry about.
X : Internet?
Me : Are you kidding? Power generation and the stability of the grid.
X : A few blackouts?
Me : Try no running water. This is why you manage these pandemics, you just don't let it run out of control. Fixing the economy ... that's like No. 20 on the most important things to do list. It's also why when Government says "isolate" then bloody listen.
It's also why I'm really pleased with how UK Gov has been stepping up, imposing lockdowns, pushing isolation ... a lot of good, calm but meaningful action.

A path of adaptive suppression. Really top bar stuff. It's also why I get annoyed with muppets like Branson, Ashley etc.
Trump to use DPA -… .... I want to say good but I think I'll settle with finally.
Awesome - good, clear and no nonsense advice. Great stuff. ->
Encouraging -> UK is transforming a ExCeL venue into a coronavirus hospital…
I have to say that @BorisJohnson, @MattHancock et al have really been impressive, really started to shine since that change of direction - - It'll be tough but personally, my confidence grows daily.
however ... that said ... more support systems are needed with firmer action against bad actors.
Encouraging -> FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, Rep. Liz Cheney, Sen. Lindsey Graham .... a common message of 'No functioning economy unless we control the virus' -…
Says it all ... more support systems are needed. But despite the strife and harm to come, think of this also as a great opportunity to rebuild society, a more "we" rather than "me" focused culture -
It's like our very own spring breakers -
#WearAFabulousMask -… (H/T @paul_hammant)

.... or even, a very simple mask from a T-Shirt -

... one of my favourite -

... remember, you're wearing such masks to mostly protect others.
Also encouraging, well worth a read -
The issue, of course, is that many cannot afford (financially) to stay away. There must be better support and the only effective way I can see forward is the introduction of a universal basic income in part funded by a one-off wealth tax of considerable size.
X : You think this Government has been impressive?
Me : Yes. For almost two weeks, since about the 15th March, I view they have set off in the right direction with purpose. I applaud and encourage them. The seven weeks prior to that is another matter but now is not the time.
Grim reading for a near future that will be difficult for all clinicians. These are terribly hard choices -
"A statement of good intentions won’t pay the bills." - ... there will certainly need to be a rebalancing of this economy.
That UK Gov has needed to change the benefit system to cope with COVID-19, to provide loans, to provide guarantees on salaries tells you everything you need to know about how vicious and cruel the UK benefit system has been over the last decades. Most could not survive on it.
Hmmm, this is getting a very small cheer from me and a stern "this should have always been the bloody case" at the same time -
.... after the pandemic, we're really going to need to have that whole "me" vs "we" culture discussion as a nation and a bit of rebalancing. I mean, really ... nurses being charged to park cars ... in a pandemic? Were people really doing that? Seriously? Hmmm.
"We need to build resilience into our future public services" - ... I couldn't agree more. By resilience, I'll assume that engineering and ecological resilience of C.S. Hollings i.e. plan for what we can and enable diversity for what we can't.
X: Is the cure worse than the disease?
Me : ?
X : Will a recession harm more than COVID-19
Me : Only in neoliberal fantasies desperately arguing such. They unfortunately suffer from that common neoliberal weakness of "looking at data disagrees" -…
Unfortunately we live in a world driven by narrative where powerful story tellers can dismiss that inconvenience of data or science.

Just look at the US. One of the greatest story tellers of modern history is running the country or is that ruining?

Common with business.
X : How is UK Gov doing?
Me : On COVID-19?
X : Yes
Me : Much much better. The last two weeks have seen big improvements compared to the previous 7 weeks. Still weak on testing etc.
X : How about compared to China?
Me : After and around Wuhan lockdown? No comparison.
I am positively reassured that we're taking steps but there is such a long catalogue of questions from early inaction, lack of testing, clarity of communication, PPE, support systems, too much focus on economy, lack of equipment / beds etc etc.
A few weeks ago, I was terrified by the idea of using "herd immunity" not simply because of excessive deaths due to overloading the health system or social order impacts but knock on effects to power generation. Lose that and you lose society. So yes, I'm a lot "happier" today.
Not good (H/T @jamesaduncan) but also a symptom of another problem which became clear during brexit. Outside of specific areas (i.e. FSA) then Government seems to have a poor handle on critical supply chains in UK, there are no maps -
i.e. as any mapper will tell you, going off and building prototype ventilators when there are existing supply chains of increasingly industrialised components is ... well ... barking mad, egotistical, story driven nonsense.
... though admittedly, it's not quite as mad as "herd immunity" ... so, at least it's an improvement.
X :With COVID-19, Is Map Camp happening later this year?
Me : Yes. On the 13th October. We took the decision to move to a virtual event on the 11th March - - after a week of wobble on my part.
"We can’t allow this virus to completely upend American life, so we are recommending that these soulless humanoid contraptions return to powering the country as soon as possible” -… - the onion makes my eyes water (H/T @doctorow)
Oh my, the underlying discussion and ideas are dreadful (H/T @conways_law).

Whilst the virus doesn't give two whoots over political persuasion - - in times of crisis then authoritarian regimes often look to engineer conflict.
... this whole blue vs red state thing is as unpalatable and morally reprehensible as the blatantly racist Wuhan Virus / Kung Flu / China Virus nonsense.

Any past glimmer of US world leadership seems to be rapidly disappearing.
Excellent. UK should follow and nationalise all healthcare provision along with all PFI contracts. Yes, some would lose financially but then ... it's a crisis, society wouldn't care and there's always risk in investment -
Awesome, the Police on the streets reinforcing the lockdown - (H/T @mcraddock) ... I must admit, I was expecting the Army on the streets in support of the Police by now. Really impressive work by our emergency services, volunteers & communities ...
... there will also be many working overtime behind the scenes to protect us. There are many bad actors who will try and exploit the situation. My thanks to all of them as well.
Tips for keeping chipper in the lockdown ... dancing and lots and lots of Ink Spots -
Exceptional. If this continues to be shown to work then the design has to be opened up and spread quickly to manufacturers - - in effect doubling the stock of ventilators would be a massive boost.
'Nuff said. I thought Trump would mostly be harmless because the adults in the room would keep him under control. I do not understand what has happened to the GOP, it seems to have become a market cult. I'm glad some are challenging -
Fingers crossed. I do hope this pans out ->
Awesomeness. This is what leadership looks like. Thank you Jack Ma Foundation, Alibaba and Prof. Tingbo Liang ->
Not good. The US approaches seem increasingly bizarre. Spending time trying to find ways of providing taxpayers funds to those registered offshore in order to avoid paying tax - ... why are they bothering? Focus on people and focus on support systems.
Positive. I do like agencies publishing guidelines for everyone to see ->
"It's national scandal" ... yes, it is ... but it's still so much better than "herd immunity". However, there needs to be a lot of hard questions over the waste of time, lack of PPE and there has been too much focus on protecting the market -
However, that said, action is now being taken. At the end, lessons will need to be learned and we will need to have that discussion on "me" vs "we" culture.

Anyway, I'm glad to see UK isn't involved in this finger pointing at China and all those diversion tactics.
On the topic of culture and "Me" versus "We" in the midst of a pandemic -…
Test, Test, Test and Isolate - ... good but still nowhere near enough testing. Also "certificates" ... I'd rather have five days of zero new cases before lockdown is lifted in any way. We also have too many travelling to work due to lack of support.
We do not know how widespread the virus is, what immunity occurs, re-infection rates ... and we want to create a two tier class system? Herd immunity embedded in social systems? I suppose if the grand plan is to make China look like a champion of human rights ... it works.
I tend to have a philosophy (which is heavily reinforced by my use of mapping) that if a practice works in a given context then re-use and don't try to "innovate" something completely different based upon no evidence (this tends to be the realm of storytellers & grand ideas) ...
... so I would tend to look at Wuhan and follow their lead. I'm not comfortable with certificate approach nor lack of street testing (i.e. taking temperatures) and I'd prefer complete lock-down, community teams (not individuals shopping) and lifting after five days zero cases.
X : My worry is people set out to become infected in order to get a pass.
Me : Yes. I'm not comfortable with this certificate idea and such social experimentation in the middle of a pandemic when a known path to control (Wuhan) exists.
I've that terrible feeling that occurs when I see a known map and someone is trying to find a "new" way.

Me : Look, we need to make toast! We don't need to re-invent the toaster and we certainly don't need our own iron mine.
X : But ...
Me : Stop! Buy a fucking toaster.
... it's the same feeling I get when people are making decisions without any understanding of context based upon "great" narratives which admittedly is the norm for most organisations and hence why failure is so common.

I'd rather us learn from China. Learn from Wuhan.
I would rather not discover later on that we create a social collapse or greatly worsen the pandemic because of some "story" and some "story teller" convincing others of their "great idea" etc.

Leave such disasters to business, keep them out of Government. Learn from China.
However, there are warning signs all over the place i.e. from a mapping perspective, with a known ventilator then you would force the design to be opened and just build more ... are we doing this? No but we're prototyping new forms of ventilators ... in a pandemic? Really?
X : You don't like storytellers?
Me : I think it's great for theatre. But powerful storytellers in environments with no effective means of challenging the stories they create are not a good combination when it comes to running peoples lives. I'm looking at Trump and ... well.
This is not going to age well ->
The first of many. It is at least comforting that this is now happening but we are missing many elements of Wuhan and we've wasted a lot of time getting even here -> NHS Nightingale hospital show scale of expected emergency -…
Recovered Coronavirus Patients Test Negative ... Then Positive -… .... this desire to provide certificate in the UK and get people back to work looks like it's going to end badly. People 1st, Environment 2nd, Society 3rd, Happiness 4th, Economy 5th.
... As long as you follow WHO guidelines (distance, disinfect, wash ... AVOID touching face) ... then wearing a home made mask / bandana / scarf seems a reasonable addition (I can't see harm) as long as you ... wash, avoid touching your face, keep distance from others etc.
In my discussion of Me vs We -… ... I mentioned the darker paths of propaganda.

It looks like the propaganda machines are coming out in force trying to deflect blame.

This is not the time, this is not the way -
The simple reality is China made many early mistakes due to economic concerns. But since the time it locked down Wuhan we've had ample time to prepare.

We've messed up badly. Ok, we're now making steps which are great but too much effort was focused on the economy.
Same with the US. Too much belief that the market would solve it, now looking to deflect rather than face the issue that our market systems are flawed, they can't provide and a mixed economy (China) model where the market is a servant of society works.

Own it.
Excellent, plaudits and brickbats -… ... there will need to be a reckoning after the pandemic. Some companies and executives will need to be barred from every conducting business again or holding shares or investments in the UK. Some will need medals.
50 Richest Americans declare $900 billion fund to protect poorest -"We've benefited from the hard work of our fellow citizens, it seems fair to contribute 50% of this wealth back in a time of need. It's not like we will be poor" ... oh wait, sorry, just woke up. Weird dream.
Though this needs to have the right support structures in place i.e. no layoffs / cutbacks on staff (without onerous long term penalties) and $55k corporate fine per day per member of staff travelling to work unnecessarily.
X : How can companies survive?
Me : Raise capital through a rights issue.
X : Rights issue?
Me: It's the opposite of share buybacks.
A friend has recovered from COVID-19 ... however, when talking with 111, they were advised they "could be immune for up to 18 months (which would be the length of time it could take for a vaccine)" ... does anyone know if this is the official HMG / NHS advice?
X : You seem against using herd immunity?
Me : Not if we're using vaccines to achieve this. But that's not what people are talking about. For me, the uncontrolled "herd immunity" is the ultimate expression of wealth over people, the me vs we society. I do not agree with its use.
X : How much responsibility does China bare for US?
Me: China messed up early stages but US had more warning than China and it had China's playbook. Trump bares responsibility for any difference in the US caused by his decisions. China bares responsibility for early cover up.
"first batch will only include 30 ventilators, with hundreds more expected in the coming weeks" ... hundreds more? Gee whizz -…
More on the UK's approach to testing -
Anyway ... the 1st week of isolation is almost over. I'm reckoning on about another 19 weeks to go. Just finding a rhythm.
Any stock tips ... ouch ... ouch indeed ->
X : Thoughts on immunity passports and restarting economy?
Me : Did you see this in China? I would focus first on dealing with the pandemic - test, test, test and isolate. There are numerous ways of coping with economic impact i.e. redistribution through a significant wealth tax.
X : That won't happen.
Me : Probably, "Passport immunity" is just a continuation of the ideas of "herd immunity" in all but name. It's another bad path - ditto lack of testing, lack of early action, lack of support for the poorest, too much focus on the economy ... long list.
However, what concerns me is not just failure of approach or the pandemic but the blame game.

Collectives whose values are shown to be clearly wanting often look for others to blame for this in order to deflect public anger rather than face up to their own shortcomings.
I'm ok with "Our Gov messed up" .... even China messed up in the beginning.

As long as we can have that honest conversation, learn from it and constantly try to improve then fine. Part of that will need to be the whole "Me" vs "We" question of how we run our society.
There are also a lot of positives that can come out of the horror ... ways of working are being challenged, new mechanisms of conducting business are being found etc ...
... i.e. the need for isolation is a forcing function to change, it might also encourage further industrialisation of technology which will create entirely new businesses ...
... so I understand the desire from existing power structures to rush to put the old economy back the way it was and rebuild the status quo using whatever techniques or "nudging" mechanisms available but .... along with the cost to lives, it is rather lacking in imagination.
This is an opportunity to reshape our economy and society, to build future structures such as universal basic income, to encourage new industries that the isolation economy has triggered - "herd immunity" is a brutal path devoid of intellect to put an old economy back together.
Hmmm, rather than looking to use the pandemic as an opportunity to reshape our economy for the future ... we should instead bailout companies and do more austerity after? Original thinking by the Institute of Muppets or whatever they call themselves -…
I finally understand why in Confucian ideals the hierarchy of society is :-

* Highest : scholars & bureaucrats
* Farmers & peasants
* Artists
... and finally ...
* Lowest : People who just make money by investing including buying and selling things - merchants, traders etc.
Hmmm ...

Popn. 1.4 Bn
Forewarned by : 0 days
COVID-19 deaths : 3,300 and stable.

Popn. 66 Mn
Forewarned by : 5+ wks
COVID-19 deaths : 3,600 and rising.

Well, if we will insist on not following China's gameplay and making up our own. Slow handclap to the nudge unit.
X: I'm an epidemiologist. It feels like we've been ignored in favour of other fields.
Me : Why listen to science when you can manipulate or policy your way to a future? Pity the virus wasn't listening. When it comes to being ignored, try talking to climate scientists.
... also, be warned. If things get hairy then along with China being blamed, then epidemiologist will probably come in for some stick for being simultaneously too alarmist and not alarmist enough. It's what the lobbyists did to climate scientists. You should probably talk.
CDC now recommends everyone wear some form of mask -… ... This doesn't have to be mass produced thing (which you can't buy) instead get creative and make one.
Hmmm ... this deserves a lot of air time -
'There has been some abnormal behaviour" ... hmmmm ...
X : Do you think UK Gov is badly handling this?
Me : Initial start was very poor, whole herd immunity daftness. I view recent focus on isolation as being positive. If they keep it under 20k deaths, it will be an exceptional job. So, very shaky start seems to have got better.
X : Do you think China's figures on COVID-19 deaths are right?
Me : There will probably be some adjustment. When I used to research China it would take many sources to get a reasonable picture. Be careful, there are people willing to provide you with a figure you want to hear.
... or more importantly, a figure which suits their agenda. That's both in the East and the West btw. I'm sure there will be adjustments made in US figures as well.
Something worth noting. one of various techniques used to manipulate and propagate agendas ->
Whilst UK Gov (in terms of political class) made some early poor choices, never confuse that with a failure in the civil service. If private companies were running our COVID-19 response we would all be dead by now through "Brawndo" overdose. +100 this ->
X : Brawndo?
Me : It's got electrolytes.
X : Why do you always go on about China?
Me : It's not really about China, that's just a proxy. iI's about Confucian values. This is what underpins the difference between the collectives' (East vs West) approach to the economy, to COVID-19, to society in general.
I have an overwhelming urge to shout "drink Brawndo, the thirst mutilator" -
"Are costly, boring office buildings something of the past" - ah, yes ... when we get through this, the economy and our behaviours are likely to be very different -…
Inspiring. After the pandemic, our nations are going to need a long discussion on "Me" vs "We" -> Iraqis rally to help needy families as virus hits, economy falters -…
Excellent. People and businesses adapting to the new world ->
Despite the horror, the pandemic represents an opportunity to challenge our economic and social systems including our past ways of thinking. Let us be frank, for most people the market economy was a bit shit ... so let us not put it back together again. Rebuild something better.
I am disappointed by a lack of imagination and a desire to return to the status quo by some that are not willing to consider change. Classic was George "one trick pony" Osborne talking how austerity had enabled us to spend now and after the pandemic we will need ... austerity!
X : UK strategy wasn't herd immunity

Me : What was communicated was isolate the most vulnerable, attempt to mitigate the infection in the general population (flatten the curve) until herd immunity was achieved at which point the most vulnerable could be returned. It was daft.
... they wasted months when they should have been following a suppression strategy. It probably wouldn't have changed if Imperial College hadn't published that report and given ammo to the backlash.

Anyway, now is not the time. After, there needs to an inquiry.
Awesome advice on Whale blubber and COVD-19 ...
This is what leadership in action looks like. @DrTedros and @KGeorgieva. Awesomeness by both the WHO and IMF - ... saving lives and protecting livelihoods go hand in hand - focus on health and the most vulnerable people first.
Awesome. This is what leadership looks like. PS @jack would make a far better future president than @realDonaldTrump (at least @jack understands technology and built his own businesses rather than inherited) .... or how about a veep alongside @AOC ->
X : Why leadership?
Me : In a time of crisis, to overcome the desire to maintain your wealth and to take advantage of the situation (which is what many have done) and to realise it is better for society to give back at scale and quickly ... that is leadership. We over Me.
In the UK, we don't have examples of business leaders as much as business arseholes like Richard "Let the staff take unpaid leave" Branson and Mike "Trainers, you've got to let me sell more trainers" Ashley ... very few of which deserve any respect.
This is not leadership. After months of being dismissive of COVID-19, to then in panic start deflecting towards China and now point the finger at the WHO -… ... America deserves better.
Another example of great leadership. Sharing lessons as the Wuhan lock down is lifted - "learn from our mistakes".

Thank you Wuhan. Thank you China ->…
Mutualise the debt caused by COVID-19 or ... start bickering and horse trading. What leadership doesn't look like ->…
X : China lied about numbers.
Me : Hmmm ...
a) China has undertaken a massive campaign to conceal deaths whilst warning the world over the dangers?
b)A small band of egotistical "leaders" in the West are looking for someone else to blame for their own failures?
... and the answer is ...

c) sounds like squabbling kids, and doesn't address the problems we face.
Solid reasoning in this article on how Europe failed the coronavirus test. This sort of impassioned retrospective will be necessary when it comes to learning lessons -…
Outstanding. "The supreme irony is that our economies are built on foundations of everlasting exponential monetary growth but are incapable of protecting us against the real-world exponential growth of a virus gone pandemic" by @JKSteinberger -…
... the whole We vs Me balance within our culture and our economic systems is a debate which we must have after the pandemic is resolved.
Me : Ah, the ever continuous rise of Ivanka Trump ... fashion icon, mother, business woman, advisor, first woman as Veep 2020, first woman as US president -
X : That'll never happen.
Me : What, like Trump will never be president?
Herd immunity and 80% of the population having caught the virus is ultimately part of an adaptive suppression model but that "infection" is via inert / attenuated forms (i.e. vaccines) over a 2 year period and not some quack telling people to go to work -…
Test, test, test and isolate ... this is inspiring. Awesome ->…
On the "finding a silver lining" theme ... one thing I enjoy about the isolation is the early morning ritual of getting up to bake some bread. Well ... it's the smell of the bread (i.e. now) when it's finally baked that makes it.
Alas, the cascade effects are such that this will be necessary (H/T @cxi ) -> Safety Practices for Critical Infrastructure Workers Who May Have Had Exposure -…
Reading lots of people talk about how @bbcproms might not happen. I will be disappointed if Auntie doesn't organise online choirs and orchestras up and down the country - ... wasn't this Newman's vision, music for the masses? This is an opportunity.
The ethics of Wall Street (H/T @monkchips) ... punitive (i.e. 80%) wealth taxes on all investors in AIP seems reasonable-> "how some private investors are looking to quickly take advantage of the unprecedented government intervention" -…
"What sort of social settlement might need to be put in place" ... gosh, this is a very enlightened comment. The normal path is for the wealthy to deny a problem exists until it's far too late and the pitchforks have arrived -
Hmmm ... older people being 'airbrushed' out of virus figures -… ... and we're still not testing enough. After a dreadful start (herd immunity), we took a more promising path (suppression) but we seem to keep slipping back ...
... I do have an uncomfortable feeling that somewhere in Government there is still some utter muppet, a numpty of a fool of a Took that believes that 80% of the population being infected is a good idea rather than waiting until we have a vaccine.
If, of course, such a person did exist ... which hopefully they don't ... could someone please find them something to do which is more fitting with their intellect and more useful for the nation e.g. cutting the grass at Wembley stadium with a pair of nail clippers?
Hmmm -> "Most people seem to be getting their theories from YouTube, Whatsapp, or private groups on Facebook" -…
... or ITV's This Morning, don't forget the role of mainstream. At least with WhatsApp someone can respond with "don't be a plonker" -…
Powerful message and yes, there are tough questions that will need to be answered. ->
John Conway, inventor of the Game of Life, has died of COVID-19 -…
"Testing is crucial, it's like pointing a flashlight in the dark" ... oh, I couldn't agree more. Test, test, test and isolate ->…
Hmmm -> Trump cuts WHO funding over coronavirus pandemic -…
On the importance of test, test, test and isolate. The inspiring Angela Merkel -

Meanwhile, in the UK - .... I suppose it's "nice" but not as nice as PPE and testing.
One of the knock on effects that needs to be covered ... you really don't want to lose essential infrastructure -…
Uplifting ... Captain Tom -…
This is so sad. The problem with "Make America Great Again" is that few bothered to ask ... "for whom?" ->
"Healthcare should be treated as a human right in the US" ... it is barbaric that it isn't, truly abhorrent. Unfortunately for the last decade, the UK Gov seems to have been decimating the NHS in pursuit of such vile economic slavery ->
China has 4x population of US but the US has 10x the number of COVID-19 deaths.

China is out of lock-down, the US doesn't know when this is ending.

Please learn from China. Test, test, test and isolate.

Keep safe. Keep that distance.
Good. I'm pleased to see this form of positive action. Still need more testing. more PPE and more adaptive suppression. He does say some daft things sometimes but generally Raab instils confidence -> UK lockdown extended for 'at least' three weeks -…
X : Aren't you Labour?
Me : I am but I'm old Labour. It's close to one nation. Many of my friends are Conservatives and we agree on many things. I don't see a problem with celebrating when they are right.
X : Keir?
Me : He has a lot to deal with but I'm hopeful.
X : Better than Corbyn?
Me : Corbyn was fantastic and incredible given the abuse that was thrown at him. I doubt many would have had his fortitude. Alas some in the party seem to have behaved in a truly appalling manner. Hopefully with Keir we can turn a new leaf.
X : How do you think UK Gov is handling COVID-19?
Me : Reasonably? A bit of a poor start with all the herd immunity stuff, occasional slippage into that way of thinking, we're still lacking testing and PPE but overall ... not bad, steps are being taken.
Excellent thread on the dangers of relaxing lockdown too rapidly. Under adaptive suppression we will need waves of lockdown over a long period of time. Don't rush, build up that testing and PPE -
.. the game is not just to avoid overloading the NHS, the real prize is to buy enough time for a vaccine to be mass produced.
Wow, has the Independent changed editor?

It has recently become a lot more direct and challenging. Keep it up -> "You clap for me now – but give it a few months and it’ll be racism as usual" ->…
For those individuals who had difficulty in behaving like actual human beings ... McMuppets are here to help with a useful wheel to remind you (H/T @djryan) ... I'm somewhat disappointed it wasn't a 2x2 ->
An example of what good looks like ->

Can we please revoke Branson's passport and give to Abramovich instead? Just for the symbolism.
From the "US alerted Israel, NATO to disease outbreak in China in November" -…

To the "tin foil hat" wearing republican right claiming it's all WHO mismanagement and a China conspiracy -

.... hmmm.
* extreme mood swings or unexplained outbursts.
* detachment from reality and self.
* depressive symptoms with fears over the future and loss of status
* actions likely to cause self harm.

As time goes by, I worry about the mental health of the US nation as an entity in itself.
I am aware of how a group of reasonable individuals (green dotted line) can exhibit irrational behaviour as a collective i.e. the collectives memory, rituals values and behaviours (thick blue line) can become very ... unusual.

I've never thought about this as a nation. Hmmm.
X : Not true. I heard a talk you gave over three years ago where you argued Trump could be a useful fall guy for the psychological shock of the US losing status.
Me : Fair. But I wasn't considering long term issues of safety and psychological well being of a nation entity.
With epigenetics we have have cross generational transfer of environmental changes. I am now realising I haven't looked into cross generational inheritance of trauma within nation entity i.e. not just the collective of one, of the family, of some workplace but the nation itself.
Raises eyebrows. This strikes a worrying note from a voice which ... well, I adore @tom_peters work, he is my guru, one of the most sound voices in business ->
X : Do you think UK Gov has done a poor job on covid-19?
Me : No, quite the opposite. Bar the early stages, it seems to have recovered fairly well. There are some hiccups but that's unsurprising given the scale of what is needed.
X : recovered fairly well?
Me : Yes. The early stages were shocking, head in hands sort of horror bad. I view the turnaround as quite remarkable.
X : Thoughts on Sweden?
Me : It's a country with a pleasant climate?
X : Covid?
Me : Hmmm. A bold experiment in laissez faire epidemiology involving the whole population without its consent?
X : Is it working?
Me : Not that I can tell. Bit of a disaster in the making.
... I mean, if China had the same figures as Sweden then you'd be looking at 260,000 dead in China not 4,500.

Of course, China levelled off long ago but Sweden shows no signs of stopping. Pretty daft if you ask me but hey, it's a bold experiment.

Glad I'm not part of it.
X : UK is doing worse.
Me : We had a shockingly poor start, following the same path as Sweden. At least we changed direction. I'm not convinced Sweden will be so lucky. It seems a hell of a gamble.
The general rule of thumb is when someone has learnt how to effectively deal with something, you learn from them rather than go - "oh, I've come up with this untested idea which no-one has tried but I believe it will work rather than wiping out huge numbers of people".
... of course, it's less innovative but then in safety management another term for "innovation" is "making shit up" which is not ideal in disaster response.
X : You always praise China.
Me : China makes many mistakes from human rights to early responsiveness to covid to president Xi for life but overall the strategic play is exceptional and it beats a bunch of chinless wonders throwing toys out of the pram because they're not No.1.
X : Hasn't that changed with Cummings?
Me : I'm quite positive about Dominic. He is no Deng Xiaoping but it could have been a lot worse.
Probably one of the most frightening trailers I've seen in a long time.. In a soon to be released dystopian film noire, tin foil hat wearing conspiracy theorists and racists have combined to take over the levers of power in the US -…
"why they waited until late March to shift from a laissez-faire approach to the virus to the stricter measures adopted by other European countries" -… (H/T @glynmoody) ... yep, there will need to be some hard questions. The early stages were a shocker.
Hmmm ... that dystopian film noire involving tin foil hat conspiracy theorists has taken a much darker path. Inject yourself with disinfectant? I think the script writer has had a funny turn -…
I do love the propaganda of "reasonable" dressed up as "practical" as in accepting huge numbers of deaths in order to keep wealth creation going ... there is nothing reasonable or practical about this advice. There is just extremism -
Given an apparent willingness to put dogma on wealth generation above the value of human life and to sacrifice others in this pursuit - I think it's about time we formally recognise "neoliberalism" as a terrorist ideology and treat groups appropriately.
We are rapidly approaching the time where the US (1/4 of the population size of China) will have more COVID deaths in a single day than China has had in the entire outbreak.

It's very sad and was completely unnecessary.
X : Suing China?
Me : Many countries (US, Nato group etc) knew about COVID in Nov. Many didn't react effectively until mid March. Blaming China (which made early mistakes) is misdirection, trying to shift the spotlight off the real causes i.e. the inaction was all home grown.
Hospital exec sounds alarm bells over poor management at UK testing centre which is "not being managed by Deloitte" (according to Deloitte) -… .... hmmm.
X : Have you seen the Trump and injections of disinfectant?
Me : Unfortunately, yes. I would be grateful if no-one would mention to him that boiling things is also an effective mechanism.
X : As in boiling people?
Me : A quick dip in a high powered microwave? What could go wrong?
This made me laugh, and cry, and laugh and ... oh, it nails it ->
"Why we were slow into lockdown, slow on testing, slow on protective equipment” ... good questions to ask. Maybe not right now but this must not be allowed to slide -…
"The only group to have secured regulatory approval and supplied ventilators to the NHS in significant numbers is Ventilator Challenge UK, a consortium of manufacturers that focused on scaling up production of proven devices, rather than building new ones" ... shock!!
A minute of mapping would have saved the trouble of trying to encourage firms to build new forms of ventilators .... what a waste of effort and energy. Still, there's been much worse.
X : Should UK copy Sweden?
Me : No.
X : But Sweden is doing well.
Me : Hmmm.
X : You disagree?
Me : I think the Government is playing Russian Roulette. This could become truly horrible, end of nation sort of stuff.
X : You're wrong.
Me : Let's hope so. I wouldn't take the gamble.
"SARS-CoV-2 has acquired mutations capable of substantially changing its pathogenicity" ... hmmm ...…
Ah, lunatic right religious group peddling bleach as a COVID / AIDS / Cancer / Autism cure gets shutdown by regulators and @realDonaldTrump comes to the rescue ... finally it all makes sense -…
If you haven't been to US, there is a difference on right vs left.

* US doesn't have Labour. (UK Left)

* Democrats are like UK Conservatives. (UK Right, US Left)

* UK doesn't have republicans, a really rabid and extreme form of UKIP on a bad day. (US Right)
Listening to Philip Hammond talking about the need to re-open the economy.

There are many systems including wealth taxes, universal basic income, enforced debt holidays, nationalisation and other means of redistribution which should be undertaken first.

Don't rush to re-open.
At least 30 variations of COVID-19 out there. This idea of immunity passports is on questionable grounds. I'm glad the WHO is stepping in because in the rush to get "wealth creation going" the risks are high. Better to look at wealth redistribution -…
X : Surely the entrepreneurs can just generate wealth?
Me : Oh, but this is so spot on ... what some seem to be in a desperate rush to do is to put the old economy back to work before it changes too much. That seems to be the real fear. The economy itself can adapt.
X : I'm not sure I understand.
Me : Ok, let us take a value chain ... it could be any value chain. Let us pick an event, like a tech show, which occurs in some physical space (point [A])
Now, let us consider that physical space evolving to more of a utility, such as virtual space of some form. Lots of potential opportunities for efficiency gains ... BUT ...
It hardly meets all our needs we'd cry. What about social needs [C]. that need to meet and greet, to shake hands etc. Hence, whilst we've been able to do this, we've resisted such change ...
But think of the benefits, the use of more utility forms [B] will allow for new practices [D], new types of need to be met i.e. highly specialised worldwide conferences feeding into ... ah, I can't tell ... it's unchartered. But something will be there.
... and of course, once we find it then capital will flow from those past areas to these new forms.

Still, we've that tricky problem of social needs, that's what holding us back. We just don't have that impetus to jump into this new world.
Then along came a new need - the isolation economy [E] i.e. covid. This need is a forcing function for change. We're going to now need to jump into this new world. Suddenly the resistance to change is disappearing.
But what about my business [F] which makes its money from events and physical spaces. How do we fit into this world?
Well, I've probably got huge amounts of inertia to this change caused by past success and pre-existing capital in terms of practices of running physical events and possibly ownership of physical spaces.
So, this will break into two parts of the economy. Part of the economy that will want to put things back together exactly as they were because of past success and inertia. This is the "we don't want to change" and "what's wrong with how we used to make money" brigade ...
... and then there's the smart money, that will focus on those new needs, those new practices, that'll adapt to the forced industrialisation of a space and ... well, basically adapt.
... from a nation state perspective, our interest is in progress and adaptation. Which is why it's really important for Gov to be investing in change and not trying to put the old economy back together again despite a bunch of blowhards wanting to get back to the golf course.
So right now, is the time for the UK Gov to be launching huge (I'm talking £1Tn) investment funds but not about maintaining or returning to that past status quo but enabling a mass of small startups to fundamentally shift the entire economic model. We have to let go of the past.
We already know China is launching a huge $3.6 trillion stimulus ... we don't know the details. Having watched China's play for over a decade, expect them to go for the future by targeting spaces ripe for industrialisation. We would be wise to do the same, not recreate the past.
X : UBI a better model for bail out IMO.
Me : Fair point. UBI would be an incredibly useful way of releasing talent but I'd combine this with Gov directed investment i.e. some form of sovereign fund focused on small startups. The focus must be forward, not to the past.
X : Do you expect this to happen?
Me : No. It's very one nation Tory but I suspect Gov is more neoliberal / Thatcherite.

Expect lots of bailouts for past giants under "market knows best" and one massive missed opportunity to rebalance society. China won't fail to take advantage.
I don't really have a lot of confidence in our political leadership at the moment, it's not too bad but we're certainly not playing at the Deng Xiaoping level that has become the norm in China. We've too many chinless wonders wanting us to rebuild the status quo.
""Tory grandees : it's time to ease the lockdown" ... well, if we don't then we might have to invest in the future and how would we get back to the status quo then? Those "trebles all round" on the golf course don't come cheap ->
I would rather us not rush to try and recreate the past but instead to focus on adaptive suppression (test, test, test and isolate) whilst building a future.

Good letter by @Keir_Starmer -
X : By investment fund, do you mean like small startup loans?
Me : No. I would want to be more ambitious - a massive fund providing £50K investments to start any business in particular sectors designated for industrialisation. Not a loan but a joint venture.
X : Organised through banks or investment houses?
Me : No. They're far too risk adverse and would seek schemes to profit from i.e. charging management fees, providing add-on services. It would have to be run by Gov, possibly through a nationalised bank.
... but it's this sort of thing which will determine winners and losers of the future. I don't think UK has the leadership for this, I'm certain the US hasn't. I expect China to dominate the field and the future. China will unleash its people, we will just talk about it.
X : Could UK Gov provide such a fund under EU law?
Me : I would imagine it would be very problematic under state aid rules. And, don't get me started. We should have already left.
X : I don't understand your maps.
Me : Have you tried reading the book - - and building one? It's free.
X : No but they're not obvious. I should just be able to read it.
Me : Do you think you were given a map as a child and just went "that's obvious"?
Just as a reminder that it took you years to learn how to use geographic maps.

Now, you've been making business decisions without any understanding of your landscape. Yes, it's still going to take effort to learn how to map.
Church calls to bar tax-haven firms from bailouts ... Chancellor refuses. Oh come on, this sends all the wrong messages. This is not the nation of "Jesus loves a wolf king" ... a one nation Tory would back the church here and do what is right -…
X : Do you think there is opportunity in COVID-19?
Me : From the earlier part of the thread - ... I showed you how to map a space
Now, a lot of the "dafter" money is on simply recreating the past ...
... a lot of the "smarter" money is on the future being different ...
.... but the smartest of all have realised there will be many shocks in the future. The focus should be on building the capability to change and cope with shocks. That is what real leadership is about. Everything else is reactionary.
X : How do you build an organisation which copes with constant change?
Me : Oh, "Spotify" yourself .... that's a joke except in McKinsey's fantasy world. Best to start with @GCHQ "boiling frogs" paper. It'll at least set you on the right path -…
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