Update: 13/10/20

 

The latest announcement of the 3 tier system and accompanying restrictions is unbelievably feeble and a serious error of judgement. The virus must have laughed itself silly when it heard them. As many of us have been arguing, including the Sage Committee, a national circuit-breaker is the only way to reduce the alarming, uncontrolled rise in infections. This will not only save lives it is quite obviously the best way to get the economy moving.

Everyone must call on the government to think again and I urge all MPs to support any amendments that will make this happen.

It should go without saying that a generous level of financial assistance should be provided for all those who would suffer hardship as a result of having a circuit-breaker.

 

 

Correct behaviour and self-discipline from EVERYONE and we can DESTROY THE VIRUS not learn to live with it. See how at:

https://www.quercuspublications.co.uk/how_to_destroy_the_virus.html

#destroythevirus

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Update: 7/10/20

 

No improvement which means I'm in favour of a national circuit breaker immediately. It sounds drastic but is absolutely necessary. In all humility my thoughts on the virus since the start have largely proved to be correct, including the wearing of masks. See: 

https://www.quercuspublications.co.uk/thoughts_on_51_-_55.html

 

 

Update: 4/10/20

 

If there is no improvement in the next 3 days regrettably we must have a 2 week national circuit breaker immediately. To be effective this must be highly restrictive and observed by everyone. It should include: no opening of hospitality outlets; no non-essential retail including on-line; travel restrictions; no household mixing; possible closure of schools and universities; minimal social activity and closure of leisure, entertainment and sporting facilities.

 

 

Note: 29/9/20

 

Since writing this there has been a huge increase in the number of daily infections in the UK and I now believe more restrictions should be introduced immediately. Households should not mix, pubs should be closed altogether and there should be travel restrictions. At present I'm not sure whether these should be part of a temporary circuit breaker or longer lasting. 

However, the key points of this post still stand. We should be determined to destroy the virus, not live with it and the way to do this is for everyone whatever their age to exercise self-discipline, to accept imposed discipline, to behave correctly in following national and local rules, and to look out for each other.

 

How to destroy the virus

 

The pandemic has produced many heroes: NHS and social care workers, delivery drivers, people working in shops and supermarkets, those engaged in essential services, community volunteers and many more. I thank and salute them all. We can never repay them enough. It has also demonstrated the fortitude and resilience of the British people who have endured the hardships and isolation of lockdown as well as anxieties about their employment and income.

 

Tragically, however, too many people did not take the virus seriously enough early on. They believed that daily life and economic activity could go on as normal. This was the view of the government and the right wing press and sadly it went unchallenged in the political establishment. It was denial on a massive scale.

 

It is because, once again, we are not taking the virus seriously that the number of infections has risen dangerously. Understandably everyone wants to get back to normal as soon as possible and as restrictions are lifted it is natural to feel that life is returning to normality.

 

But it seems to me we have been too impatient. The pandemic has been the most unique event in human history in terms of the combination of its death toll, its global reach, its effect on daily life and its disruption to the economy. Too many people have not yet grasped its unique place in history and the fact that this has required a unique response bringing normal life to a halt.

As long as the virus is with us life will not return to normal. Which is why it must be eliminated – not controlled, nor managed nor accepted as an inevitable fact of life. Eliminated, eradicated, exterminated, killed off, destroyed. It may not be possible to kill it off completely but we can come very close.

 

How can we do this? By changing our mindset about it in two ways. First, we must believe we can come close to killing it off. We must have high expectations of ourselves that we can do this if together we all make a determined effort, as determined as we have ever made before in peacetime. As individuals each one of us must take on the challenge so that collectively we succeed.

 

And to succeed we must change our mindsets in another way. We must not think that life is now getting more or less back to normal. It is not and will not be until we either get a vaccine for the virus, or it mutates into a less deadly form, or we get rid of it. Crucially, too, we must not behave as if life is getting back to normal.

 

It is our behaviour that determines whether the virus is transmitted or not. If we get our behaviour right we can prevent infection spreading as the spread of infection is on the whole preventable.

 

We have a moral responsibility as individuals to act and behave in a way that protects other people as well as ourselves. It is a basic human instinct to care for our fellow humans and we must put this instinct to the forefront of our actions and behaviour. To this end all of us, whatever our age, must exercise maximum self-discipline in following to the letter the existing rules and procedures brought in to prevent the infection spreading – social distancing, hand washing, mask wearing and abiding by the restrictions required in different parts of the country. The reasons why we have these procedures must be carefully explained by the government and gently but very firmly enforced.

 

But there is no reason why we cannot go further. We can exercise self-discipline by not travelling abroad, by reducing the travel we do in this country, by not going to pubs and cafes more than once a week. In fact by staying at home and within a mile or so of it as much as possible.

 

It should go without saying by now that no one who has any symptoms of the virus should go out at all and should exercise great care within their home. If they suspect they have the virus they must ask for a test immediately. The government must compensate for loss of earnings those who need to isolate.

 

It must also continue to give financial support to employees, employers and the self-employed.

 

Beyond being totally conscientious in the way we abide by protective measures and totally self-disciplined in the way we voluntarily go further, we can do more as a society.

 

We can persuade members of our families and our friends to be totally conscientious and self-disciplined.

 

We should be asking well-known celebrities and public figures to get behind the fight against the virus and urge the best behaviour on their fans and followers. Sportspeople, especially premier league footballers, should continually be putting over the message about correct behaviour and why it is necessary. They must set an example by not hugging or getting close to each other at the end of a game.

 

We must ask leaders of different communities to reinforce the necessity of being conscientious.

 

Every teacher and lecturer in schools, colleges and universities must do the same as must every manager in the workplace.

 

Her Majesty the Queen should broadcast to the nation and ask everyone to do their moral and civic duty.

 

We must have a government of national unity to present a unified response and to demonstrate the resolve of our decision-makers to adopt the far more determined approach I am advocating. This does not mean, of course, that its decisions will go unchallenged. A government of national unity will also have the moral authority to take decisions that may at first be unwelcome.

 

A huge public information campaign must be undertaken to explain why by far the best strategy for dealing with Corona must be to do everything within our power to destroy the virus, not appease it, as we have been doing.

 

Much more strongly worded messages must be put out and everyone must be regularly reminded of the appalling and immensely tragic loss of life and human suffering in this country and throughout the world. Visual images should be used to do this. The slogan hands, face and space, is nowhere near strong enough.

 

However uncomfortable it may be for the government to state, the British people must be told that other countries have managed to get the virus under control, and if they can, we can.

 

If we want to prevent a further tragic loss of life on a large scale we must all come together to eliminate the virus. We all want daily life to return to normal. We all want employment and the economy to be secure. And we all want precious lives to be preserved.

 

At this stage we don’t need a second lockdown but we urgently need to change our mindsets, to exercise self-discipline and to have the highest standards of behaviour.

 

Sadly lost lives have become little more than daily statistics but every life is precious and every lost life a tragedy. To save lives we must do much, much more to destroy the virus. We must not contemplate failure. It can be done.

 

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