Steve Baker MP spot on today

Colin Warnek

Well-known member
A new public health act needed to prevent sudden lockdowns without parliamentary consultation in future . I’d have him in Johnson’s place tomorrow as this is exactly the thing we need to make sure happens.

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SB:

It’s time to believe in vaccines, and to start restoring our way of life as we make progress in vaccinating the vulnerable. We simply must have regard to the harms caused by lockdowns and restrictions as well as the disease. Now as we emerge from this lockdown, it is vital we bring back proper democratic checks and balances too.

We cannot be said to be free of lockdowns and restrictions when at a moment’s notice, the Government might shut down our ability to travel abroad to see family, to form relationships with one another, or to start businesses and invest in our futures. That’s why we need the protection of a new Public Health Act.

It would be based on precedent, bringing together and reforming established law and practice.

First, it would ensure Parliament could vote in advance and often on lockdowns and restrictions, to ensure their proportionality is justified by ministers. Second, it would provide that legislation could be amended and debated in the usual way – not imposed as a take it or leave it ultimatum to MPs.

Third, it would require ministers to go through the process – as with other policy proposals – of cost-benefit analysis, quantifying the harms and the benefits of their proposals.

And finally, it would recognise that experts are only human too, ending monopoly expert advice to Government by introducing multi-disciplinary teams and “red team” challenge. Advice to ministers will be improved when Government scientists compete under professional challenge and if we reform the quality of modelling.

Of course we can still provide for the Government to act fast and decisively in emergency, as the Civil Contingencies Act does, but this has been a devastating chapter in our history, made worse by the fact that we cannot be sure whether the Government's response to Covid-19 has done more harm than good.

The use of power by ministers in this crisis has been far above my expectations and the scrutiny of it by Parliament far below. That’s why we need a new Public Health Act which applies the close scrutiny provided for in the Civil Contingencies Act for good reason: draconian powers must be restrained in a free society.


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Muttley

Well-known member
Utter nonsense, wrapped in a smattering of truisms and stating the bluddy obvious.

He's talking about turning pandemic decision making into a committee process. Does anyone believe that the decision making has been too fast this time around? Anyone seriously believe that by introducing a greater number of voices into any process speeds it up? Or makes better decisions? That response to a threat to the people of this country would be better by going through a series of parliamentary debates?

Look, this government of which Mr. Baker is a member, has been appalling at responding to this crisis with decisions to lockdown coming too late and opening up done too soon.

Also "monopoly advice" would be better applied to the likes of the loathsome Cummings and his ilk than SAGE which consists of many scientists from many different disciplines none of whom (and this is important) gain anything from their decisions nor have to answer to sponsors or voters.
 

Colin Warnek

Well-known member
Who can ever forget the ridiculous model at the start of all this that predicted 100s of 1000s of deaths if we did nothing which was rightly given a right hammering by anti-lockdowners ...................... oh, ... wait :unsure:
Imperial did predict we’d reach 250k by June if I recall, which was alarmist in the extreme.
 

Zoophonic

Well-known member
Yes let’s have a consultation committee to discuss, pontificate and debate an issue of massive emergency. Baker’s agenda is transparent enough to ignore him once more.
 

chickenrunner

Well-known member
Imperial did predict we’d reach 250k by June if I recall, which was alarmist in the extreme.
Was it? You do understand that it's a model so in prediction terms we are just talking orders of magnitude accuracy. We had a pretty strict lockdown and still managed 40000 deaths by June.
 

Colin Warnek

Well-known member
Was it? You do understand that it's a model so in prediction terms we are just talking orders of magnitude accuracy. We had a pretty strict lockdown and still managed 40000 deaths by June.
There is a gigantic discrepancy between 250k deaths by June and 40k deaths by June. The latter is just above the expected national average. The former was wildly inaccurate and was the major model cited by the government at the time.
 

junos_boots

Well-known member
Imperial did predict we’d reach 250k by June if I recall, which was alarmist in the extreme.
This was their worst case scenario if we did absolutely nothing to try and check the spread and so hospitals became overrun and failed to be able to cope with any.

We got close to this situation but thank God we had some lockdowns and this was prevented from actually happening
 
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