A couple of days ago, Britain reached a milestone by recording no deaths at all from the Coronabug. This was the first such recording in well over a year and most scientists lined up to hail the vaccine miracle that has brought about this remarkable turnaround in this country’s fortunes.
Even so, that did not stop a hard core of experts – most of them from that weirdly acronymed body SAGE (surely it is anything but?) – continuing to call for a delay to the planned unlocking of restrictions on June 21. With grim faces and drooping lips, they warn of a third wave of infections fuelled by the Indian variant. Only we are now told that such descriptions are racist and the various mutations will in future be called by letters of the Greek alphabet instead. More politically correct madness I fancy.
But semantics aside, when will these scientific turnips who seem completely paralysed by paranoia, see the light?
There must be no further delays. No more hitting on the pause button. No more scaremongering about potent new strains. Lockdown must end for good on June 21, and every emergency restriction must be lifted right there and then.
We should be back to normal already dammit. The success of the AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccine rollouts means there are now no reasonable justifications for prolonging the suspension of basic freedom that the lockdown represents.
The supposed ‘cure’ is now infinitely worse than the disease so it is time for victory to be declared and freedom to return.
The numbers show Covid-19 has essentially been beaten in the UK. Or at least it is about as beaten as it will ever be. Even before that day without deaths arrived, fewer than ten people were dying daily from the virus. In a population of well over sixty million that surely cannot be too serious.
Hospitals are not overrun. The more vulnerable have been jabbed at least once – unless they have refused – and the rollout of vaccinations continues with ever more speed and efficiency.
Even if the infection rate ticks upwards from time to time, the spread is likely to be among younger, healthier people who may get ill but are very unlikely to require hospital treatment and far less likely to die. I realise that none of this will be of much consolation to those falling sick or, worse still, losing a loved one, but the death figures are nowhere near high enough to justify any ongoing lockdown of the economy.
If we had not experienced the horrors of the past year and Coronabug had only just arrived on our shores, but with a huge proportion of the population vaccinated would even this panic stricken bunch of political prunes consider imposing a lockdown with the prevailing fatality and hospitalisation figures? Of course they would not. They would not dare.
If they are determined to keep restrictions in place until we can be sure no one ever again will die from Covid, then we will be in lockdown for ever and the economy will collapse. Then the death toll and the human misery involved will make the Coronabug seem like a particularly happy memory. I lived through the hell that was Zimbabwe when we had trillion dollar notes, so I have been there before.
Bunter J’s pathetic government can no longer ignore the toll their measures have taken, and continue to take, on our national finances. The further they extend restrictions on society and the economy, the worse the overall financial hit becomes. Each day is, in effect, more expensive and painful than the last.
Even if one is wildly optimistic that swathes of the private sector can somehow continue on the life support of furlough without a full ending of lockdown, the economic cost to the Government is jaw-dropping. And let’s face it, all of this accrued debt is simply a tax rise delayed. Sooner or later, we will all have to face the bill. Far better to start to do that sooner and to limit it as much as we can.
More than three million workers remain on the furlough scheme, at a cost to taxpayers of more than £3.5billion per month. We need them to return to work now – or to start looking for new jobs. Every day of delay is £100 million more to pay in tax – or to pass on to our children for them to pay in future.
This is not simply an argument about economic worries verses health worried. It goes deeper than that. Gearing the entire government’s efforts to the Coronabug problem has meant other serious issues have gone untackled.
Take cancer for example. The number of people with suspected cancer getting a referral from their GP to a specialist within a fortnight has fallen to an all-time low. The country’s leading cancer charities fear we will now witness the first increase in cancer death rates for decades.
The same applies to many other diseases, far more serious than the Coronabug.
We have long since reached the point where we need to learn to live with Covid in the same way we live with flu, which also claims tens of thousands of lives in a bad year.
For many of us, Bunter J’s roadmap out of lockdown was always too slow and tentative. He claimed it was data against dates, yet he has stuck rigidly to the dates imposed either by him or the gloomy ‘scientists’ of SAGE, most of whom are behavioral experts rather that epidemiologists. Each set of data coming in shows we have been winning the war against the coronavirus more rapidly than many feared was possible.
When Bunter has been bold, it has paid off. Thanks to his decision to bypass the desk jockeys and thanks to Kate Bingham the bog snorkeller, Britain has had the most successful and extensive vaccination programme of any major nation.
More than thirty million people have had both jabs and have nothing to fear from the Nepal variant, Indian varieant or any other ruddy variant for that matter. We should be free to travel where on earth we like. It is surely time to tear up the green list, the amber list and, yes, the red list too. We are perfectly capable of assessing the risks for ourselves.
And if you do travel to a red list country and do not fancy forking out two grand to spend a fortnight locked up in a shabby hotel when you come back, just make your way to Calais and hire a dinghy. Thousands of others are doing it.
If Sage, or Nervtag, or any of the rest of the frantic scientists start squealing in Greek about the Alpha or Omega Variants, Bunter should reach for the NATO phonetic alphabet and tell them all to Foxtrot Oscar.
Come on Prime Minister, just get on with doing the job for which you were elected and that is not pandering to the quacks. We have all had enough dammit!