What a ridiculous man Chris Whitty is. He now compares his efforts to those of campaigners for seat belts in cars and for prohibition of child labour in chimney sweeping, and speculates that future historians will reach a favourable judgment on those efforts. Let's examine.
Try a few, Janet and John diagnostic questions (yes/no answers suffice):
Did the introduction of seat belts seriously disrupt the normal functioning of motor cars?
Did the prohibition of child sweeps seriously disrupt the lives of millions of children?
Did the prohibition of child labour cause large numbers of chimney sweeps to go out of business?
Did Lockdown seriously disrupt the normal functioning of the economy?
Did it seriously disrupt the lives of millions of children?
Did it cause large numbers of businesses to close?
As for the judgment of future historians, my bet is that it will go to medics like Andreas Tegnell and our own Carl Heneghan & Karol Sikora, who took a much wider view of public health (& indeed human wellbeing more generally), not to those obsessed with Covid-19 uber alles.

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More from @george_yarrow

15 Oct
1/4 One of the potential long-term effects of the quite mad social experiments to which we are being subjected is that they will convert a nation of relatively assiduous compliers with the rule-books into a nation that is much more comfortable with non-compliance, ...
... living in a land where compliance is viewed as an individual choice rather than a duty owed to others.

This is just one aspect of the general de-socialisation entailed by the pursuit of restrictive and oppressive policies, but it is one that carries very high risks.
Inter alia, for example, the robustness of the future tax base may be affected by it.

Non compliance is becoming a routine thing now, because it's necessary to avoid/mitigate many of the more costly disruptions of daily life being suffered. It has the potential to become ...
Read 4 tweets
14 Oct
1/4 The aim of Covid policy should not be to suppress or to control the virus (aims which all nations who were not able to do that at the very outset are now finding it very difficult to achieve), but to find a new equilibrium (in the vernacular, to learn how to live with it).
2. As always for complex socio-economic ecosystems, we don't yet know what such an equilibrium might look like. It can't be deduced, it has to be discovered. Myriad individual adaptations/experiments are a normal part of such a discovery process, but there is a major problem...
3. ... in that central govt seems intent on disrupting the adaptive processes, using its coercive powers to impose its own views of how things should be done. In so acting, Leviathan hinders rather than helps adaptation & the discovery of a new, workable equilibrium.
Read 4 tweets
23 Jul
1. This is a long citation from a great Scottish scholar (Adam Smith), but please bear with it. It could almost have been written for this hour and it is relevant in relation to more than one contemporary political faction.
2. " The leaders of the discontented party seldom fail to hold out some plausible plan of reformation which, they pretend, will not only remove the inconveniencies and relieve the distresses immediately complained of, but will prevent, in all time coming, ...
3. ... any return of the like inconveniencies and distresses. They often propose, upon this account, to new-model the constitution, and to alter, in some of its most essential parts, that system of government under which the subjects of a great empire have enjoyed, ...
Read 8 tweets
12 Apr
1. The chart below updates the new CV19 case numbers to include today's. As before, the general picture is of flatness, though with a slight upward drift of around 92 cases per day. The drift has got me wondering. What might it show? One possible hypothesis follows.
2. Up until yesterday 269,598 people had been tested yielding 78,991 cases. That's an average case rate of 29.3%. We know the testing is not random & is biased toward finding a +ve result, relative to a random sample. We know also that the rate of testing has been increasing.
3. As testing is rolled out, the +ve average bias can be expected to fall. Still, to assess today's numbers, take the conservative assumption that the average of +ves from previous testing remained good for today's. Since it was reported today that an extra 12,776 people were...
Read 8 tweets
2 Nov 19
1. An interesting thread raising impt. qus. Adam Smith described the Wealth of Nations as "a very violent attack I have made upon the whole commercial system of Great Britain", a radical, liberal critique of the status quo that predates Marxism & is highly relevant today.
2. The 18th century status quo was a system in which vested interests (the East India Company & merchants on the N. American trades being prime examples) procured legislation from venal politicians which established market-rules biased/rigged in favour of those interests.
3. Sound familiar at all?
Re billionaires, it's not their number that matters, it's how they acquired their corn. If someone has acquired £5bn by providing value to customers equating to, say, £20bn, e.g. via major innovations, that's a Good Thing. (A Type 1 billionaire)
Read 8 tweets
27 Sep 19
1/7 A reminder of the root causes of Brexit, which lie in a divergence in political objectives & traditions. It was there from the start, but for as long as EEC/EU objectives were mostly aspirational & not translated into operational policy, the divergence was tolerable.
2 The 'operational' divergence has increased over time, particularly from Maastricht onwards, with its prioritisation of monetary & fiscal union by the EU, & it is still increasing. Parties to an international treaties typically sign up to shared objectives, to shared purposes.
3 Why then should anyone think it a good idea for the UK to be a party to a Treaty (Lisbon) some whose major objectives (e.g. the creation of supra-national authorities to govern a European Empire) & its chief policy priorities (e.g. Monetary & Fiscal Union) it does not share?
Read 7 tweets

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