The predicted Covid death toll in the UK rose as high as 500,000 and fell back to 20,000. The current guess is 40,000. Today Worldometers gives the UK’s total of deaths linked to the SARS-Cov-2 virus as 15,464, trailing Spain, Italy and France but expected to surpass them before Season One is over.
Infections from the virus are seriously under-recorded in the UK – and probably most other countries too. Even nations doing a lot of testing are using methods that are not wholly reliable.
I am “following” a few countries. This chart shows how few citizens have so far been infected. (The countries are ordered by population size.)
Given the asymptomatic nature of the disease and a “mildness” that doesn’t require hospital treatment, it has been surmised that some countries may be close to achieving herd immunity.
The Case Fatality Rates resulting from these unsatisfactory figures are very high for most countries. (The WHO is suggesting a mortality rate of 3 to 4 per cent.) Raising the number of cases by two orders of magnitude (x100) brings the CFR down to seasonal flu levels for some countries. When the final figures are calculated, millions of people may realise they lost their livelihoods, homes, families, liberty and numerous opportunities to pursue happiness for a paper tiger.
Worldometer gives up to date Deaths per Million figures for every country with infections. My numbers are different because I’m compiling weekly tables – so I could be up to six days behind.
Abstract 51 · Reighton Sands
The Beasts from the East earlier this year wrecked the Bay beaches. They may recover eventually but powerful storms can be expected any year now in this era of Extreme Weather Events, not once every hundred years. I thought I’d walk to Reighton Sands this morning to photograph the beach, for comparison with Today’s Image.
There was a strong breeze from the south but it had teeth – unwelcome after recent hot days. I was warmed, though, by the love for passing strangers offered by Gracie on Hunmanby Sands. (I’m not sure where Muston Sands end and Hunmanby’s begin; this heart was near the track up to The Bay Holiday Village.)
Thinking of Iran brought back memories of Persian music that a commenter on a previous blog brought to my attention.
The 2015 photo was taken in the early afternoon, at a time when, today, the waves would be lapping near the base of the clay cliffs. I didn’t attempt to make today ’s picture an exact compositional match but if you look for the remnant of Second World War defense with a hole through it you can “get a fix”. Today’s human element would be at the very bottom of the frame (left). The concrete blocks are clearly bulkier now, giving some idea of how much golden sand has been scoured away. Looking north from this viewpoint, the beach is much stonier. I chatted for a while with a chap walking his two dogs, a black lab called Sophie and a dachshund. He has known the beach for forty years and never seen it in such a state.
Meanwhile, in the Middle East… The mainstream media in the UK, and in the USA I think, is not reporting the full extent of Israel’s aggression against Syria. And anything the MSM does say is framed in the lie that “Israel is defending itself against an Iranian attack”. This is already “old news” – Escalation in Syria.
The two Beasts from the East last month gave the tides enough muscle to wreck Filey Bay beaches and damage man-made structures. Here is Herring Hill, photographed a week ago.
Transcore men were on the case today.
The concrete jumble in the middle distance is to the left of my shadow in the photograph below. You can see how much sand has been scoured away by the variation in colour at the base of the two relict pillboxes. The ridges and furrows of pebbles and gravel are a sight to behold. It may, however, only take a couple of tides to bring all the lost sand back. The sea works in mysterious ways.
The damage done to the credibility of the United Kingdom by the present government may take a lot longer to repair. May, Johnson et al continue to double down on the Skripal farrago and the BBC’s well-spring of useful idiots trotted out to make unsubstantiated claims of Russian guilt is showing no sign of running dry. Jeremy Corbyn must be wondering why “calling for the utilization of proper channels of international law before attributing blame” (source) makes him an instant traitor.
Maybe The Phantom Poisoner will be proven, eventually, to have Russian connections. But the British Government doesn’t have the proof yet, otherwise it would have presented it to the world already.
Thank goodness for the antidote to poisonous Tory hate speech offered by Maria Zakharova.