‘The current COVID-19 events are not a “second wave”, or a “second peak”, or “second spikes”. They are continuations of the ongoing epidemic. There was no second wave with SARS, a closely related coronavirus, and we are still waiting for one in Wuhan.’
“I wanted to upset everybody, including myself. Half the problem with the world is that half the people take themselves too seriously. The other half don’t take themselves seriously enough.”
In his latest piece, senior statistician James Urquhart, investigates how the UK Government uses UK data to buttress policy decisions for England and asks: manipulation or malfeasance…
As much as a third (32%) of the Scottish workforce isn’t working in the lockdown but it’s the young who are the hardest hit and faces the bleakest future – unless we adopt New Deal-style measures to prevent a “lost generation” being scarred for life.
‘Conspiracy theorists believe that political leaders spend their time plotting, planning and pulling strings. Journalistic accounts… suggest that, far from conspiring to pull anything off, politicians miscalculated, dithered and bumbled. The lateness of the UK lockdown has cost tens of thousands of lives. What we’ve witnessed is not conspiracy but cock-up.’
Conferences, churches, weddings, Cheltenham races: clusters of cases of coronavirus may be key to the spread of the pandemic, says Prof Pennington
Edinburgh Poverty Commission is an independent group working to define the steps required to end poverty in the capital. It has been listening to people and organisations in the city over the past few weeks to hear at first hand the profound impacts of the Covid-19 emergency on people living in poverty, now and in the future, and issues its interim report today.
‘Once the public health crisis of COVID-19 is over, it might yet expose the flaws in this capital-led economy just as it has exposed the inadequacies of our public health systems that has suffered from under-investment over a decade of austerity.’
‘But the more we study COVID-19 the more the differences with influenza become evident. However, public pronouncements still take their cue from that virus, like the need to avoid a second wave that will swamp the NHS…time to stop using ‘flu as a useful model…’
‘Not everything is about the constitution. We need to find a way out of the lazy constitutional rut Scottish politics has descended into. This is not to suggest that the constitutional question or relations between London and Edinburgh are unimportant, only that there are other ways of looking at politics and policy. Even in the midst of this crisis, this needs to be a learning exercise and not only when we look back and seek to learn lessons retrospectively.’