Predictions of the herd immunity theorists

If you are still pondering the Great Barrington Declaration and related matters, let us try a simple empirical test about predictions.  Start with this from one of the authors of the Declaration:

…the professor of theoretical epidemiology at Oxford University, Sunetra Gupta. In May she declared: “I think that the epidemic has largely come and is on the way out in this country.” 

Link here.  The UK just hit 500 deaths a day, highest since May and about 2x the current U.S. rate. 

She also said:

“So I think the [infection fatality rate, or IFR] would be definitely less than one in 1,000 and probably closer to 1 in 10,000. That would be somewhere between 0.1% and 0.01%.”

Dominic Lawson continues:

As Sam Bowman, of the free-market Adam Smith Institute — and therefore far from an illiberal interventionist — observed: “By this point, 36,000 had died of Covid in the UK. If 100% of the UK’s population had had Covid by then, the UK would have had to have a population of 360 million people for her low-end IFR to be right.”

Or why not read that august institution The Otago Times?:

Sweden’s former top virus expert says lockdowns are just a way of delaying the inevitable and warns that New Zealand could face years of quarantining foreigners entering the country, even after wiping out Covid-19.

Johan Giesecke has defended his country’s coronavirus strategy, saying lockdowns do not prevent surges in cases or deaths, but merely delay them.

Giesecke believes it is “futile” to attempt to stop the spread and says most countries will end up in a similar position, regardless of their strategy, until treatment can be found.

He believes Denmark, Norway and Finland, which are in full lockdown, will end up with the same number of cases as Sweden, which isn’t, as soon as their restrictions ease.

He also says New Zealand will begin importing cases from overseas, after successfully suppressing the virus during lockdown.

To avoid that, quarantine measures will have to stay in place until a vaccine is developed – something he says could take a decade, or longer.

Come on people, you were wrong.  By the way, “Covid-19 hospitalizations in the United States hit an all-time high of 61,964 on Tuesday,” and deaths running about 1,300 a day.  Not a nothingburger.  p.s. One in five survivors end up diagnosed with a mental illness.


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