* As late as March 11th, 2020, the UK government and medical officers issued practical and minimally disruptive advice to combat the spread of the novel coronavirus.
* On March 16th, the now infamous Neil Ferguson/Imperial College paper was published predicting over 500,000 deaths in the UK and 2.2 million in the US if suppression measures were not introduced.
* Stricter measures were announced on the day that paper was published, and the first UK lockdown was announced a week later, on March 23rd. US states variously followed suit.
* The committee that has been advising the government throughout this period is called the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE). Ferguson was a member of this committee until he resigned in May for having broken lockdown rules.
* This week’s note examines the key influencers on SAGE and their conflicts of interest:
– Organisations invested in vaccines make money from vaccines. People who acquire natural immunity have less/no need for a vaccine. If people are locked in their homes, they have less chance of acquiring natural immunity.
– Twelve out of 20 key influencers work for/have received funding from organisations involved in the Covid-19 vaccine.
– There are four times more modellers/statisticians and experts in behaviour manipulation on the committee than there are virologists. There are no immunologists.
* It doesn’t matter if a drug is good or bad. It matters that those who have a financial interest in that drug are conflicted if they give advice that protects the financial interest in that drug.