I got as far as Mr Chivers claiming that six billion pounds was a tiny amount of money before I gave up.
Indeed, part of the problem with having let the lunatics run the asylum over the past few years is that basic notions of responsible fiscal policy have been thrown completely out the window.
Any government that can commit six billion pounds of spending to a project without a clear, justifiable objective does not deserve to have the right to levy taxes against its citizenry.
And testing serves no clear objective. The virus is endemic, Mr Chivers. It is endemic, Mr Chivers. Endemic. Endemic.
That means everyone. Literally everyone. Will be exposed to it and ‘get it’ in some form.
So what in heaven’s name is the point of all this testing?
You could make an argument if it was in support of early outpatient treatment (i.e. test positive? Take your Covid cocktail of zinc, ivm, monoclonal antibodies… for 6 days, then test again!) But this of course is not what is happening. The only purpose of testing is to force ppl into (yet more) soul-destroying isolation. Isolation that has done nothing to stop the spread, in two years of trying.
Incidentally, the issue of how much has been spend on the vaccines should also be looked at. These products have largely failed, at tremendous cost to the taxpayer.
This money is real, people. It’s money that could be used to provide actual care, to reduce human suffering and therefore prolong life.
“And testing serves no clear objective. The virus is endemic, Mr Chivers. It is endemic, Mr Chivers. Endemic. Endemic.”
A question not asked nearly enough this past two years is: “what problem are you trying to solve?” I no longer know what the government and public health bureaucracy is trying to accomplish. I now know that Tom Chivers doesn’t know, either.
They were mainly trying to stop the NHS from collapsing, no matter who else was harmed
It seems that even pharma shills such as Mr Chivers have now woken up to the fact, or at least they have been forced tacitly to acknowledge, that the PCR tests are fraudulent. He and others like him can sense the narrative creaking and can see the cracks starting to appear. They can write and say what they like but they just don’t have the humility to accept that they don’t have the power to stop it collapsing all around them. It’s going to happen, Tom, and you know it. Andrew Dalton is spot on – you don’t really know what you are trying to achieve.
Quite obviously, we won’t and we can’t become hypochondriacally dependent on tests – of one form or another – to determine what we each believe we can and cannot do. We will take our power back and we will live our best lives in what is a contingent, sometimes hostile and always risky, but very beautiful, world.
And six billion quid isn’t tiny. That’s exactly like a heroin addict saying that £100 is a small amount to pay for a sandwich because it is small compared with the amount they pay to feed their addiction. It’s time to stop this dependency now.
I think he meant it was a small sum in the whole scheme of things. And it may not yet be endemic, because a virulent new variant may yet arise.
Nevertheless, we may have reached the point where we should just try to live with it
Endemic doesn’t mean ‘everyone’ will get a virus, nor does it necessarily mean that people should do diddly squat trying to reduce its spread.
People used to traipse their viruses as a matter of course into offices and on the tube, resulting in loads of sick leave, which of course is also a huge economic cost. If that culture changes a bit as a result of this pandemic, that might be a good outcome.
You will absolutely hate this, but it may be that employers start to demand or influence their staff to take these types of tests.
I agree with much of what you say, stop this huge spend on testing. As for those who communicate a positive result to a govt database- are they just nuts? But I agree withTom in regard to visiting elderly or ill/fragile friends and rellies, where you could check yourself if you feel slightly off-colour. Not sure if there’s any point if you have n symptoms. Scientists say that no symptoms= no transmission.
Just stop the testing. This is costly both in respect of money and in respect of damage to the environment and in constantly feeding the fear factor. Feeding the fear factor is unhealthy in itself.
Where you are visiting older or health compromised people and they are shielding themselves (their choice), then a case could be made to use them. If this course is taken, then these people will in most cases be consciously deciding to do this for a very long time, if not forever. From this another industry will be spawned, where other diseases will be tested for. Note to self – invest in this company at inception.
Yes, I wonder about the environmental consequences of all those masks and plastic by-product incinerated or in landfill.
From what I’ve seen at hospitals recently, NHS is probably the world’s biggest user of single use plastics. I don’t know. Nobody ever asks or calculates the numbers publicly and all I could find by googling was how they’re fighting to reduce it, which I guess is some kind of admission.
Nobody pursues it ,I presume, because then they’d have to admit the enormous benefits of plastics.
What if we abolished tests altogether?
Just a thought…
(Anyway, reading this article now is NOT going to send me to sleep… First sweet Nicola saying that we might have to use masks indefinitely, now this. I think I’d rather catch Covid and die).
The “just keep testing” world is turning more paranoid & dystopian than ever. TC is case and point. Keep testing and keep tests free, even though the disease is so mild that even the vulnerable will recover from it. The paradigms of safety have shifted to hyper levels. They may never return to “sensible”
You really are an utter cretin.
Fairly pathetic attempt to worm your way out of an imbecilic comment. I suspect Andrea was being ironic – whereas you most likely were not.
Not necessarily, when the ‘cure is worse than covid’
Isn’t the key point here “putting an end to mandatory isolation, and starting to trust people to make their own decisions about risk”? Kind of the opposite of the Sweet Nicola approach. I suspect I share your views on what our future direction should be, but I found this article quite heartening…
I’ve gone 22 months without having to test despite having had a continuous series of cold-like infections which I’ve managed to nip in the bud with vitamin C and gargling antibacterial mouthwash. I’m there again having had a bit too much contact with others including work meetings with colleagues who had recent contact with infected colleagues. It would be nice to get a test although it’s not really necessary at the moment but there are none available since 350,000 others a week in Sweden are testing for largely the same symptoms. So I’ll just keep taking vitamin D, C, mouthwash garling and virus-impeding nasal spray. Why can’t most of the other 350,000 do the same?
Oh, and I know you’re being ironic but Sturgeon is as toxic as a 1 kg bag of cyanide crystals, now jumping the gun as usual and declaring fully vaxxed to be 3 doses.
And she wonders whether vaccine passports should be extended (like overseas have worked a treat)
The more I think about the transmission process the more puzzling and paradoxical it is. In June 2009 the first wave of swine flu commenced, it peaked and declined in about a month, having infected about 10% ( we can never know the precise proportions) of the population. I doubt if even 5% of us were aware of it, let alone modified our behaviour in response. There was no vaccination, and only the most modest attempt to do some testing early on, purely to understand the scale of the spread. Nobody was required to isolate.
Transmission alone drove the daily numbers upwards to the peak, and transmission alone drove them back down to sub- epidemic levels. Over the course of that epidemic wave, every infected person therefore was equally likely to have contributed to its increase (by infecting others), as to its decline (by creating immune firebreaks in the transmission chain).
It is impossible in my opinion to know what the relative contribution of each infected person was.
Given this thought experiment I can’t help wonder what the real value of test, trace and isolate is. Our first wave peaked,around the time of lockdown 1, at an attack rate of about 3% of us, (1.7 million approx) and when the epidemic subsided in June about double that proportion were infected. We know this from the first ONS serological surveys.
Suppose we had had a functioning TTI system in place from the start, how many infections would it have permanently prevented, and how many would it merely have delayed until future waves? How many beneficial firebreaks in the transmission process would have been prevented from emerging?
We must never forget that as far as respiratory viruses are concerned in this country, our preventive methodology for Covid has been almost entirely novel and experimental. We have not yet started to ask the searching questions we should be asking about the overall efficacy of these measures.
Whoops. Sorry. Wrong thread 😀
And that, what you just said, is the article we should be reading about.
I think scientists will be busy for many years trying to answer these questions
I think psychopaths have been busy for many years trying to manipulate the answers to these questions.
We cannot continue to be scared of disease. All this testing has to stop very soon. If you feel poorly stay home, if not go about your normal life.
Covid has created a testing / policing / management industry. We neither need it or can afford it. This must stop.
I have been living with this without the vaccine or any testing and I don’t need either. I will never have an experimental product forced on me with inadequate safety trials. I don’t need a test to tell me when I am ill and I don’t care whether it is flu or covid.
Even if they were experimental, surely they have been well tested for safety in real life
The problem is that the COVID vaccines have not been tested adequately for safety, and the signals that have emerged (myocarditis, clotting with thrombocytopenia, various neurological conditions such as Guillain Barre, transverse myelitis, etc….) indicate a safety profile that is orders of magnitude worse than all other vaccines combined. The other issue is that there is extreme resistance on the part of Government and public health officials to even admit that there are obvious danger signals emerging, and hence all adverse reactions are basically ignored.
But is the safety profile worse than the disease? Maybe only in younger age groups
In the context of Omicron, which from all accounts in South Africa, Denmark and the UK, is akin to the common cold, the answer would be a definite yes, unless one is part of a highly susceptible group. i.e. the elderly (over 70-75) with two or more co-morbidities.
But there is another issue at stake that has to be taken into account. An individual can do a significant amount to avoid catching COVID in the first place such as not going into crowded and/or poorly ventilated indoor spaces. But when you get the vaccine, what happens next is completely beyond one’s control.
There’s the rub. Only the elderly or vulnerable need to use a treatment to prevent serious illness. As Steve James and other doctors working in Covid wards have stated- they haven’t had healthy people in those wards. Young, fit people have died suddenly in the past from an undiagnosed heart condition. News items claiming a fit and healthy, otherwise well in all respects person has died from Covid I believe are untrue, hopefully not deliberately so but not sure about that either.
Definitely not as safe as Ivermectin!
Same here. It appears the Test For Everything push is a ploy to turn everyone into quivering hypochondriacs afraid to move without government “experts” giving the okay.
I feel the same as you do about these new vaccines BUT I want to travel and here in Oz you can’t go interstate or international without one. Novavax has been finally approved here and should be avail in weeks. I’d prefer no vax at all but I will go with this one.
I think the author of this article is living in cloud cuckoo land – £6 billion per year is not a low cost. Testing for a now endemic viral disease in non-clinical settings is pointless; we don’t test for a cold and shouldn’t be testing for Covid. At this stage in the saga we need to realise that the government has done enough (some would say way more than what is justified by the risk). If you’re ill stay at home, when you’re better go back to work. We’ve operated in that way for many years and a bit of old-school practically is what’s needed now.
! – eradicate disease and we all become like someone who lives in a bubble, zero resistance to everything. Then we can all be like the Native Americans when the Spanish arrived and wiped them out:
“Diseases such as smallpox, influenza and measles killed approximately 90 percent of the Native American population. The indigenous people did not have any previous exposure to these deadly diseases, and had no natural immunity.”
I think it is time for some ‘Blue Oyster Cult, and the song ‘Reaper’ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dy4HA3vUv2c
““(Don’t Fear) The Reaper”
All our times have come
Here but now they’re gone
Seasons don’t fear the reaper
Nor do the wind, the sun or the rain… we can be like they are
Come on baby… don’t fear the reaper
Baby take my hand… don’t fear the reaper
We’ll be able to fly… don’t fear the reaper
Baby I’m your man…
La la la la la
La la la la la
Valentine is done
Here but now they’re gone
Romeo and Juliet
Are together in eternity… Romeo and Juliet
40,000 men and women everyday… Like Romeo and Juliet
40,000 men and women everyday… Redefine happiness
Another 40,000 coming everyday… We can be like they are
Come on baby… don’t fear the reaper
Baby take my hand… don’t fear the reaper
We’ll be able to fly… don’t fear the reaper
Baby I’m your man…”
———— But your line below….
“I suspect the call to stop giving away LFTs is an extreme case of Treasury brain: lateral flows don’t have to stop all that many infections to pay for themselves many times over.”
So how did dragging this all out for 2 years AND COUNTING, pay for anything? New York/Florida, Sweden/Italy…. Millions of third world children are/will starve to death in the calamity of reduced economic activity in the World because of Western lockdowns. (From UN) Each granny given another year of life likely cost a few impoverished babies theirs, each year a granny got likely cost dozens of years of child’s education – and took their future pensions as they will have to pay for all this….. Chivers, you have an odd take on things….
He has covid delusion syndrome. You will not cure it with obvious truths.
Chivers, I really can’t see the point of endless testing unless one is going to modify treatment as a result. The fact is that if one has symptoms of a cold, just treat this as a cold, and do the sensible thing: take sick leave and stay away from work so that you don’t infect your co-workers, until such time as you’re better (i.e. 5 days from onset of symptoms). It is perfectly true that people used to just soldier through a cold but perhaps now a tiny bit of caution is required.
Now if one were to immediately start a treatment regimen involving prescription drugs, then I could see the point in testing. Otherwise only test if one is admitted to hospital.
Mr Chivers, rather like poor little Jimmy in the Undertones song really cannot let go. As another poster has observed, this disease is now endemic. There is no longer any sense in mass testing, nor indeed mass vaccinations. I have had three and unless I am advised in the future to do so on medical grounds, will not have another. the habits of two years are proving hard to break for some.
Yes, “start trusting people to make their own decisions” as Mr Chivers ends up. Message to government and individual legislators – there is clearly no social or economic reason for any government legislation beyond pre-pandemic UK law. Get rid of legal requirements for testing, self-isolation, vaccination, and require UKHSA to concentrate on providing good information and top doctors’ recommendations (plural). Two points: 1 current legal restrictions have no proven justification in reducing infections, serious illness or deaths; and 2 current (and sadly past) legal restrictions have done enormous social and economic harm, already producing large numbers of excess deaths and serious illness (non-covid). We need maximum economic activity now to afford the cost of addressing these non-covid health problems.
This is completely the wrong way round. ‘Isolation’ should never be mandatory or legally enforced but staying at home with a respiratory infection should become, as it used to be, a cultural expectation. If someone is sneezing and coughing, they are emitting virus which could be seriously damaging to a minority of other people, particularly the very old. It really doesn’t matter which virus it is. If they are not sneezing and coughing, there is nothing wrong with them and they should behave normally. That is how we ‘live with the virus’; treat it like all the others.
Of course, this would require an acceptance by employers that people would stay at home with colds, and proper sick pay for all employees. That should be the case anyway, for all sorts of other reasons, along with proper cleaning and ventilation of workplaces and public buildings.
The obsession with testing for one virus has led to an absurd situation where there is a Bad Cold, that everyone has to stay at home with, and Good Colds that can be spread with impunity.
I have never done an LFT yet and never will. When I had a cold at Christmas I stayed at home. I can probably guess which virus caused it but it really wasn’t relevant to know.
Don’t know about everybody else here, but I can’t get hold of a LFT for love nor money. I live in a South-East commuter town so not exactly out in the sticks. Gov website promises, but doesn’t deliver, chemists run out of stock straightaway. £15 a packet to produce/supply end to end? If they are the answer, we need to be thinking harder about the question.
So I get to the end of the list of comments and I can confirm: literally everyone who commented has a better understanding of the situation that Tom Chivers.
I gave up ages ago. We visit the 91 year old wife’s mother without testing
I know people who are protecting their elderly Mums. No skin of your nose – What is you M-in-L worth?
If we didn’t visit, she would be in a home
Sorry Rodney, but your wife isn’t 91 is she? And how old would her mother be? Let’s hope she’s quadruple-vaxxed.
I’m not sure what you are getting at. Are you suggesting that my wife shouldn’t shop for her mum because of the difficulty getting lateral flow tests? Or that her home help shouldn’t visit?
no, just your grammar. Sorry, I was being flippant.
Oh, I get it now! Sorry, I was being slow 🙂
I noticed the grammar thing right away — but totally agree with your original post. Elderly people should have the right to decide who visits and who doesn’t. If we can’t assume our own risk, then we are being infantilised by our government. Unacceptable.
Whatever the usefulness of these tests some would say it is an excellent way of creating and sustaining the fantasy of a deadly pandemic out of a bad flu season. The wizardry behind these tests, to a large degree incomprehensible to the average bod, depends on these tests finding the thing they are meant to find (the actual disease) and being a truthful diagnostic and measure of the infectious nature of the disease. Asymtomatic infection has received a great boost from these tests while previously one would have to display the appropriate symptoms for diagnosis and treatment. Virologists now not only can find all manner of viruses, actual and potential, but also have a suspect but now generally accepted and readily available means of diagnosis for these discovered diseases. The drugs companies with their new vaccines have, potentially and provided that they can convince us that they were crucial in ‘defeating’ the C virus, an easily adaptable technology to deal with any new virus. Potentially a marriage made in hell.
Always infuriating to read Chivers tying himself in knots as his articles progress. It’s good to have an alternative viewpoint I guess, but like another poster said, he lost me when he claimed 6 billion was not alot of money!
The world is now in a ‘safety bubble’ resulting, it seems to me, in many people with low immunity. Thus it becomes a never ending spiral downwards, with never ending viruses and never-ending lock-downs and never-ending tests. The truth is that we will never overcome nature, clinical medicine becomes a race to the bottom. Get out in the fresh air and walk for an hour a day – Better than any pill.
Simple, just stop doing them.
Given every other comment has been negative, I thought I should add mine:
As always, good article.
Yes, it is
It is so disturbing to see the kerbside litter these days, made up of blue masks and LFT’s. People must just toss them from their cars after use, it’s beyond comprehension. Do any of these slobs also attend climate warming rallies?