Monday, 4 January 2021

The Other Side of the Argument

In keeping with my New Year’s resolution to be less dogmatic about things I don’t really understand, here is a different point of view on COVID-19 from my usual toddlerish moaning. I found it expressed as a comment in reply to a video that argued that the current virus is far less dangerous than Spanish Flu. 

I don’t doubt any of the stats quoted in the comment, but I do think they raise some questions. 

The first is: why are so many people obese and suffering from diabetes? Could it be anything to do with a rise in food being processed before sale to consumers and being supplied by big corporations rather than sourced locally (and don’t get me started on that line of thought - most especially don’t let me start wailing on about the loss of community that is an underlying factor in mass food production and supply.)

The second  query I have is this: despite the fact that it might have meant shielding 20 to 25 per cent of the population, was it really beyond the wit of politicians to organise things so that 75 per cent could go about life as normal? That strategy could scarcely have been more expensive than mass lockdowns. Certainly, in Tübingen they seemed to manage to do it, so why not elsewhere?

Anyway here are the pro lockdown figures and facts we ought to consider (sigh, small tantrum, I suppose):

 Who are "the vulnerable"? The Contrarians don't like to give numbers or to suggest how they can be isolated effectively, but let's try and build them anyway: Let's include the over 65 group, which are known to have the highest chance of a serious COVID complication, including death. Ireland's Central Statistics Office estimates these are 14.4% of Ireland's population in 2020, and Ireland's population is younger than most other European nations! There's a NHS list [1] of other groups with proven higher risks of COVID complications, those with existing heart, lung, kidney conditions, diabetics, the obese, people from a Black, Asian or minority ethnic background, among others. I haven't time to find the numbers for all these groups, but in the USA, an estimated 7.7% of adults have BMI > 40 (National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS)), about 10% of the USA population is estimated to have Diabetes (Centers for Disease Control (CDC)).@



  1. An excellent resolve Zoe – and happy new year! Re Covid, it's striking how much impact metabolic health has on mortality (hence low in Japan, high in US, UK etc) and how few messages have come from the authorities about how we could improve our chances by losing weight, getting fresh air and exercise, doing some basic breathing exercises, and simply taking Vitamin D. In all of this we're being treated as passive and helpless – which is pretty much what they have made us. Hey ho.

    1. You say it so much more clearly than me. Once we knew COVID19 affects the old, measures to protect them ought to have been put in place Once high BMI was recognised as a risk factor it was time for the mother of all fitness campaigns: exercise, diet, vit D, transformation through people’s positive efforts, not lockdown, no passivity & ideally helping all the people running local gyms to both earn their own livings & feel they are part of a national effort to fight back against what may be a weapon of biological warfare.