Beau Peep Notice Board > Outpourings

Oops, our bad, children probably are driving the pandemic

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And so after being told it was fine to open schools, we get this.

A large study from Austria shows that SARS-CoV-2 infects just as many schoolchildren as it does teachers. Other surveys indicate that while young children may show no symptoms, they are quite efficient at spreading the virus.

Once again, get your information from multiple sources and don't believe just one. Many on Reddit and other forums have been watching since January the slow train wreck of Covid19.

JANUARY: Human to human transmission is unlikely.

TRUTH: Human to human transmission was evident and the virus was spreading five times faster than the flu. Taiwan tried to warn the world but was ignored and silenced by the WHO.

MARCH: Masks are not necessary.

TRUTH: Masks should have been mandatory immediately. Taiwan stepped up mask production in January, making one mask per person per day, and reduced the cost of a mask to $0.20. They eliminated the disease in April with 500 total cases and 7 total deaths. Masks are not needed in Wuhan and New Zealand anymore after the virus was eliminated there. They are mandatory only on public transport.

Asymptomatic people do not spread the disease.

TRUTH: Asymptomatic spread is a key driver of community spread and the main reason this virus is such a big problem.

Lockdowns are a 'last resort' and must be avoided because of the 'damage to the economy'.

TRUTH: Lockdowns are a first resort as demonstrated in New Zealand. A strong, early lock down can be regional and can eliminate community spread in a matter of weeks. The Wuhan and Melbourne full lockdowns eliminated the disease in 76 and 100 days respectively.

Forget about elimination or eradication: the "curve must be flattened".

TRUTH: Taiwan had 76 deaths from SARS and only 7 deaths from Covid19. The disease has been eliminated in Taiwan, China, New Zealand, Australia and Vietnam. There is always a risk from imported cases but elimination is a real possibility and the proper response. "Curve flattening" and "herd immunity" are phrases that have literally killed a million people.

AUGUST: Do not worry about disinfecting surfaces and groceries: it is not the primary means of transmission.

TRUTH: This is the same as saying "don't wash your hands". It does not make sense. Studies form Australia show that the virus can live on some surfaces up to 26 days. It is easily destroyed by soap and alcohol.

DECEMBER: Children do not spread the disease. Keep the schools open with rampant community spread.

TRUTH: Children are asymptomatic super spreaders. Australia, Wuhan and New Zealand closed school immediately during their elimination effort. Their effective lock downs resulted in eradication of the disease.

Roger Kettle:
Well, given that you urge us NOT to believe just one source of information, it's a bit bold to label all the points you make as "TRUTH"!
One thing I'm sure of---I'd hate to be in a position where I had to make decisions that affect millions of people. Literally, their lives.
Earlier in the pandemic, I listened to several experts who were more than uncomfortable with the wearing of masks. If I remember correctly, their view was that when the material became damp, almost immediately after being applied, it eased rather than prevented the spread of the virus. I made my own decision about this and wear a mask any time I'm in shops etc.
As for lockdowns, well, of course they work in regards to stopping transmission. If we all stayed indoors forever, we'd probably see an end to the common cold. Sadly, it's the horrible knock-on effects that have to be weighed up and there are many. The economic catastrophe that is imminent is obvious and may well destroy millions of lives. Mental health problems have rocketed in the past nine months, along with domestic violence and suicide. The lack of easy access to medical treatment has meant that many lives have been lost that, in "normal" circumstances, would have been saved. It's a diabolical balancing act. Let's be blunt  here. The VAST majority of deaths from this virus has been in the over-seventy group and many of those would have died naturally within a few years. (I'm very aware of this---I'll be 70 next year!). The question is, should 100% of the population be made to make enormous, potentially life-destroying sacrifices for less than 1% of the population? I really don't know but, as I said earlier, I'd hate to be in a position to have to make those decisions.

Tarquin Thunderthighs lll:
I completely agree about the difficulty in making any decisions relating to Covid, Roger, and for that reason, I refuse to indulge in the relatively easy pursuit of knocking governments (I make an exception in Trump's case, but only for him and his closest toads), most of whom are doing their best in enormously difficult circumstances. The fact that they are still pilloried by people who would have them take extreme polar opposite measures to those demanded by other people underlines that they cannot and will not do the right thing by all, but are generally doing okay.

But my support is not unconditional. Even in Scotland, where, from my own perspective, I think it has been handled well, I've been disappointed that we have fallen into line with the Christmas 'relaxation' period. And with numbers already beginning to rise rapidly again, I am very fearful for the month ahead, and the inevitable aftermath of a loving Christmas that I fully understand the desire for, but cannot believe is being sanctioned, especially with the virus about to be rolled out on a nationwide scale. People will die as a direct consequence of Christmas. It's simply not worth it. Christmas in April or May will almost certainly be infinitely safer - just this once, why can't we postpone it till then? I feel we are about to snatch defeat from the jaws of a hard-earned victory.

And whilst I take your point about the over-70 group, and recognise that many people are making those enormous sacrifices, I'd dispute that 100% (much of the current spread is down to those who are making no sacrifices whatsoever, I fear). And the >1% is also questionable, as we are only just beginning to assess the long-term effects of contracting so-called Long Covid, which may have life-long consequences for those who don't even realise they've had the disease yet, due to the way many contract it asymptomatically.

It's anything but simple, and that balancing act is diabolical indeed. I think Mince's "truths" are probably a distillation of many sources, gathered through experience rather than theory, and not just one source. We are learning slowly as we go along, and with each step there is hope and light. But it's a road we must walk with care, possibly now more than at any time so far, with the finishing line hopefully, finally in sight. It's those who have been running ahead since the first slight relaxation of Lockdown who need to examine their behaviour. They are the lifeblood for Covid-19.

Roger Kettle:
Steve, the Christmas "relaxation" period was nothing more than a realistic, pragmatic approach to the inevitable. After virtually nine months of lockdown, people were going to get together whatever the government said. To make this illegal would have been impossible to police. I'm not saying this is right, but it's understandable, and we may well suffer the consequences in the New Year.
I stand by my figure that 100% of the population has been asked/made to make sacrifices for a tiny minority. In the end, will the "cure" for this pandemic be worse that the pandemic itself? Honestly, I haven't a clue.


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