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6 hours ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Our survey. Johnson’... · 1 reply · +1 points

I respectfully disagree. There is, of course, no perfect way of measuring R1; all will have errors. However hospital admissions may be confusing. 2 or three months ago it was the old and those with certain medical conditions who were being admitted but now there is a greater proportion of younger people being admitted whilst the old and vulnerable are largely still in lockdown. So it is probable that a lower proportion of those infected require hospital treatment.

My excel model, which calculates R1 from the records of reported deaths, shows R1 increasing from about 0.75 in early May to around 0.95 now and, for the past 3 months, gives very accurate "back predictions". That said, I could be falling into the same trap as the climate change modellers fall by tweaking models to curve fit and then saying it must be true! Nevertheless my model is, so far, quite good at forward predicting deaths using its own latest calculated values of R1 which are generally within the range suggested by Chris Whitty.

8 hours ago @ http://www.conservativ... - David Green: The new C... · 0 replies · +1 points

Also their incredibly naive Libya policy.

8 hours ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Our survey. Johnson’... · 0 replies · +1 points

I think we could probably get by if only those aged 60 were locked down. In large organisations the one downs are often as good as, or better than the bosses I agree that it might be more difficult for SMEs with, perhaps, only one manager who does everything but, even for these, telephones, emails and the ubiquitous Zoom should help

11 hours ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Our survey. Johnson’... · 4 replies · +1 points

If I were Boris I would pray, every night, the Oxford Vaccine works and will be available for Christmas whilst, in the meanwhile, trying to keep R1 below 1.5 (it is currently about 1.0 and rising). Then total deaths should be kept below 100,000, the NHS will, just about, cope this winter, the economy will stagger along until spring when the pandemic, in this country at least, will be over. That way I would be able to claim the credit and, with the right PR, become a national hero.

If the Oxford vaccine does not work, I would jump in the Thames.

12 hours ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Alexander Woolf: My ec... · 0 replies · +1 points

No, of course economics is not a science. So what is it for? Is it a useful skill like carpentry, cooking or accountancy? It might be a useful planning tool if it were able to predict the outcome for a variety of different strategies but its record in this field is poor and so its efficacy doubtful. How then does one distinguish between good economics and bad economics? I repeat, what purpose does the study of economics serve?

20 hours ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Alexander Woolf: My ec... · 0 replies · +1 points

Intelligence is multi-dimensional and high academic success does not inevitably lead to competence even in the same field. Complicated beings, people!

20 hours ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Alexander Woolf: My ec... · 0 replies · +1 points

Why should the study of politics "require extensive analysis" when most politicians, anyway modern politicians, are somewhat dim? Keeping to Prime Ministers but avoiding controversy about the present PM, I would rate Mrs May as way out of her depth, Cameron as shallow and facile, Gordon Brown as bright but missing some essential ingredient, Tony Blair as shallow and facile, John Major as truly thick but Mrs T as bright and well informed (albeit she came off the rails towards the end of her time in power).That is not a good record for what should be the top job in the land!

21 hours ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Alexander Woolf: My ec... · 1 reply · +1 points

C P Snow in his 1959 lecture Two Cultures identified professional engineers as being predominantly right wing because their primary motivation is to design and make and, for this, a stable society is required. However, since then things have changed a bit in that, with its extreme devotion to "market forces", which are often disruptive and destructive, the Conservative Party has ceased to be the party which is trusted to actually conserve things (e.g. Allowing, even facilitating, the sale of ARM to SoftBank - but one example of many, albeit one of the most damaging). So most engineers I know, of my age but also a lot younger too, who are also generally socially conservative in their private lives in that they tend to marry and stay married, now have no political home. If they voted Conservative this time it was not out of devotion to Boris but due to fear of Corbyn.

I would add that, for reasons that should be obvious, the the best and brightest professional engineers tend not to make a career in academia.

1 day ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Alexander Woolf: My ec... · 4 replies · +1 points

Given that economics, like all social sciences, beyond the research into and extrapolation of trends, is largely twaddle, does it really matter?

I have no idea what political economics may be but, given that there is no such thing as political Physics, political Chemistry or political Medicine, the very concept confirms my scepticism.

1 day ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Neave. Berry. Gow. Thr... · 3 replies · +1 points

To be fair people change their views when they mature. I think I am, probably, just about, in favour of forgiving those who held despicable views in their youth which they have since disavowed. But I don't think truly evil actions should be forgiven, ever.