By Stacey Rudin
October 14, 2020
“Lockdown” goes far beyond these basic human rights boundaries. They are proven now to only damage societies — they even worsen COVID19 outcomes. When The Economist analyzed all recorded epidemics since 1960, it concluded that “democracies experience lower mortality rates for epidemic diseases than their non democratic counterparts.” This finding holds true at all levels of income.https://www.aier.org/article/whats-behind-the-whos-lockdown-mixed-messaging/amp/
Last week, in a major departure from months of pro-lockdown messaging, Britain’s envoy to the WHO Dr. David Nabarro called for world leaders to stop locking down their countries and economies as a “primary method” of controlling COVID19. “I want to say it again: we in the World Health Organization do not advocate lockdowns as the primary means of control of this virus,” Dr. Nabarro told The Spectator.
“The only time we believe a lockdown is justified is to buy you time to reorganise, regroup, rebalance your resources, protect your health workers who are exhausted, but by and large, we’d rather not do it.” Dr. Nabarro’s position aligns with the Great Barrington Declaration, of which he spoke favorably, in which 30,000 scientists and public health experts have joined in advocating an immediate return to normal life for those at low risk. Nabarro and the thousands of signees of the Declaration opine that this approach will minimize overall mortality and lessen the disproportionate burden of lockdowns on the working class and underprivileged.
The day after Nabarro made his remarks, WHO director-general Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus flatly contradicted him, declaring that lifting lockdowns would be a recipe for “unnecessary infections, suffering and death.” Tedros claims that herd immunity can only be “safely” achieved through vaccination, a conclusion premised upon the frightening assumption that the development of a safe and effective vaccine is guaranteed, and the dubious premise that natural infections can be held back “as long as it takes” to prepare and distribute the vaccine. However, according to Tedros, there is no other way: “allowing a dangerous virus that we don’t fully understand to run free is simply unethical. It’s not an option.”
It’s difficult to reconcile this stance with the data from states and nations which did not lock down for COVID19. For example, Swedish all-cause mortality is on average for 2020 — incredibly, the nation had higher per-capita mortality just five years ago, in a year in which there was no pandemic. This undeniable, easily-verifiable fact is shocking in light of the decimation of world economies on the premise of “stopping” a “highly deadly” pathogen. Far from “unethical,” allowing the virus to “run free” produced a much better result than tight lockdowns such as those imposed in Argentina and Peru — yet Tedros is ignoring this. The question is: why?
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