Tue 15 Dec 2020: A Stopped Clock is Right Twice a Day

Again, without any clear explanation of the reasoning behind the restrictions, the government is making another of their long series of what looks like random authoritarian guesses in their attempt to clamp down on the plague. They have not seen fit to share with anyone their evidence that theatres and pubs are significant venues for transmission and that closing them will do any good, but closed they are to be.

I am not a great fan of Sadiq Khan, the mayor of London. The mayor has no significant powers except over transport, and he screwed that up from before his first day in office with his promise of not raising fares (which wasn’t even true – it didn’t apply to season tickets, his fan boys carefully ignore his original promises on this point and only look at the later watered down version of the promise) which means that even in normal times when there wasn’t a catastrophic fall in income caused by the pestilence there would have been a fall of over 10% in real terms over four years. But in an example of a stopped clock being right at least occasionally, Khan has urged schools to close. It is obvious to anyone with eyes to see that the charts of infection rate started going up in September, when children went back to school, and accelerated further in October when older children went to their universities. Absent any compelling data to the contrary (and the government certainly hasn’t given any) then schools and universities must be closed, and the pubs, theatres, and other businesses that have put so much effort and money into being able to operate safely, and which have been operating safely, should be allowed to open.