South African scientists recently told the media that lockdown may have accelerated the spread of coronavirus, causing a surprisingly high level of herd immunity. This raises the question: why did we destroy our economy?

In a recent article, South Africa’s top epidemiologist, Professor Shabir Mahdi, told John Sparks, the Africa correspondent for Sky News, that he believed the rapid spread of coronavirus stimulated a level of immunity in 12 million to 15 million people.

‘What has happened in SA today,’ Mahdi told Sparks, ‘the only way to explain it, the only plausible way to explain it, is that some sort of herd immunity has been reached when combined with the use of non-pharmaceutical interventions… like the wearing of masks, physical distancing, ensuring ventilation when indoors and so on.’

Several antibody studies have reportedly been conducted in South Africa, finding between 33% and 40% immunity against the virus.

A virologist involved in one of the studies, Dr Marvin Hsiao of UCT’s Division of Medical Virology, who consults to the National Health Laboratory Service, told Sparks: ‘Inexplicably, the numbers started dropping off at the end of July, and at the time I couldn’t explain why. But when we analysed the data it become (sic) clear, this immunity within the population level (linked to) the big surge infections is probably the main reason why we’ve seen the decrease of numbers of infected.’

According to the article, the scientists believe that South Africa’s strict early lockdown ‘inadvertently kick-started a massive wave of infection’, as Sparks put it, because social distancing was impossible in densely populated township areas, and the regulations forced people into queues for groceries and social grant payments, which Dr Hsiao described as ‘new networks for the spread of the disease’.

‘The response needs to be much more nuanced than simply believing that a highly restrictive lockdown is going to get rid of the virus,’ Mahdi told Sparks.

Scandal of the year

The original idea of the lockdown was to slow down the spread of coronavirus to give health services time to prepare for the peak. It now seems that not only did lockdown fail at this simple task, but it accelerated the spread of the virus. It was, in every way, counter-productive.

This raises the question; why turf millions of people out of work and thousands of small enterprises out of business, for exactly no benefit whatsoever? The National Coronavirus Command Council (NCCC) compounded the country’s critical unemployment crisis and deepened the country’s deplorable poverty levels, setting South Africa up for years of misery, malnutrition, disease and premature death. The social and economic impacts of the lockdown far outweigh what the pandemic itself wrought.

Who will take responsibility for a policy that had catastrophic downsides, and no upsides at all? If anyone takes responsibility at all, one assumes it will be the traditional ‘collective responsibility’ that shields everyone involved from accountability.

I will eat my hat if any heads roll over what surely ought to be the scandal of the year.

What did happen

The SARS-CoV-2 virus and Covid-19, the respiratory disease it causes, should not be taken lightly. Although epidemiological projections around the world have wildly exaggerated the potential death toll, it isn’t just like a seasonal flu.

It spreads faster, and when it gets hold of you, kills faster.

What government did was institute a draconian lockdown. Although there was widespread support for the move in the initial weeks, this support rapidly ebbed away as three weeks turned into five weeks, and then into interminable months of varying degrees of restrictions.

The regulations seemed designed to make the lockdown as hard to bear as possible. Instead of prohibiting indoor gatherings, the sale of alcohol was banned altogether.

Tobacco was arbitrarily banned, even though nicotine proved to be somewhat protective against Covid-19. Hardware stores, booksellers, sports shops and other suppliers of diversion for the millions of people now quarantined, jobless, at home, were closed.

Early on, churches – which so often were the epicentre of local outbreaks – were bizarrely permitted to open, but domestic tourism, which could easily have been carried on with hygiene precautions in place, remained banned, and restaurants remained closed.

While everyone else was still locked down, the taxi industry strong-armed the government into permitting it to operate at 100% capacity, contradicting the entire lockdown principle.

The government’s modelling and the minutes of its decisions were kept secret, adding to the belief that it wasn’t really able to justify its authoritarian diktats.

One of my earliest columns on lockdown warned that ‘millions of poor South Africans live in conditions that are simply not amenable to a lockdown’.

If this was apparent to me, it should have been apparent to the NCCC. Lockdown was never going to work in a country like South Africa.

What should have happened

Instead of harsh lockdown measures that not only did not work, but were actively counter-productive by accelerating the spread of the virus, government should have taken an approach more like that of Sweden.

South Africa’s government treated citizens like unruly children, who could not be trusted to act in their own best interests and had to be forced into compliance.

Instead, it should have treated them like adults. It should have rolled out widespread information campaigns to support its recommendations to wash hands, wear masks and keep a safe distance away from strangers.

Instead of closing most businesses in South Africa, it should have imposed the required public health measures that would ensure those businesses could be conducted safely. Instead of closing everything except ‘essential goods and services’, whatever that means, it should have kept everything open except businesses that could not be conducted in relative safety.

Prohibiting public gatherings, and especially indoor gatherings, was probably sensible. Instead of confining everyone to their homes, however, where the virus spread unimpeded, government should have encouraged people to get out into the fresh air, where the risk of transmission is minimal.

If people felt that government was actually on their side, and could be trusted, they might have taken sensible recommendations to avoid gatherings, sanitise hands and wear masks more seriously than many do now.

In terms of the speed of transmission, largely voluntary measures could hardly have done worse than the draconian lockdown we had.

Economically, the country would of course still have suffered. With international travel largely shut down, our trading partners in lockdown, and a massive slump in business for public-facing industries like hospitality, the economy would still have contracted.

But it wouldn’t have been as bad as it is now. For cutting the economy off at the knees, without any public health benefit to show for it, the government must take responsibility. One hopes that the catastrophe of 2020 goes some way towards collapsing the persistent support that ANC misrule retains.

[Picture: Roksana Helscher from Pixabay]

The views of the writer are not necessarily the views of the Daily Friend or the IRR

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  1. ANC unlikely to suffer any repercussions.
    Tribalist loyalty runs deep in south africa and an awfully large part of the media are fawning puppets or near as.

    The correct name is National Communist Command Council.

  2. Great article Ivo, thank you!

    “I will eat my hat if any heads roll over what surely ought to be the scandal of the year.” Sadly I think you are correct.

    “It spreads faster, and when it gets hold of you, kills faster.” This is actually not true. I don’t know where you are getting your data from but if you look up Prof John Ioannides of Stanford University you will see he has analysed the SARS-CoV-2 virus extensively. People have actually died unnecessarily (especially in the USA) because they were not given the correct treatment. Doctors were/are prohibited from using hydroxychloroquine when this is a safe and effective treatment when used early. This is the case for SA as well I believe – HCQ has been banned here. Or, at least not been made available. I implore you to look this up because the wrong information about how the virus spreads adds to the irrational fear that many people have.

    “If this was apparent to me, it should have been apparent to the NCCC. Lockdown was never going to work in a country like South Africa.” I agree with you 100%.

    I have to add one thing though and that is masks do not work to stop viral infections. Again, this is a deliberate political act to subdue people and to keep them constantly reminded of ‘the virus’ and to keep them in fear.

    I so wish you would look up Event 201 and do some more digging on how and why this crime against humanity has come about. It would explain so much. The situation is INSANE but it becomes logical when understanding the agenda behind all of this.

  3. Not only was lockdown counterproductive but the reason for it was a blatant lie since there was and still is NO PANDEMIC. Global elites, Big Pharma medical industry, institutions and governments made themselves ultra wealthy during this made up plandemic and are still doing so worldwide.
    Hopefully, they will all be brought to justice. This probably won’t happen under US Democrats and other left wing governments.

    • So what’s with all these people my nurse wife is admitting to hospital on Friday, only to find them dead by Monday? What’s with the people who look fine in the morning when they come for their test, and are in ICU by the evening? What’s with half her colleagues being off sick, and some — young and healthy — dying?

      Don’t be silly. Just because the pandemic projections were exaggerated, it was exploited for political purposes, and government’s instincts for fighting it were authoritarian and draconian, doesn’t mean there was/is no pandemic. There certainly is. Covid-19 could have been a lot more dangerous than it turned out to be, but that doesn’t mean it merits being dismissed lightly.

      The real world is rarely binary, for-or-against, all-or-nothing. There is a pandemic. The question is exactly how serious it is, and how to respond to it without making things worse.

      • It certainly does need investigation (the speed at which people get sick). What is the treatment they are receiving? Has the patient left it too long before going to hospital? What is the definition of ‘healthy’? Were there underlying and undiagnosed conditions such as high blood pressure? These are all things that we need to know. But there is no pandemic, I do agree. This is just a virus that has an infection fatality rate of about 0.1% to 0.2%. Have you read the John A P Ioannidis paper published in October? It makes for very interesting reading. It was published by the WHO as well and it has been peer reviewed. Ioannidis is a highly eminent professor and epidemiologist. This is the title of the paper – not sure that this comment section will allow a link : Infection fatality rate of COVID-19 inferred from seroprevalence data John P A Ioannidis

    • I agree that most people, including nearly all of the world’s governments, overreacted to the Covid-19 epidemic.

      And that’s what it is, an epidemic, with a few hot spots, where a larger number of people were infected and some, tragically, died.

      A pandemic it is not. For it to be a pandemic, the infections and deaths need to be much, much more.

  4. Great, lockdown = bad, step 1 done. Now for people to realise that a piece of random material on your face does nothing but but makes you look like an idiot.
    The real question is: why did so many people (90% of South Africans, if I recall the polls correctly) embrace the authoritarian approach and casted their liberties away? Why the low level of stoicism in society when society is faced with issues of disease and death?
    My take: people like freedom, but not too much freedom and in the last few decades the western world has become just a little too free and without structure for many. In addition I think people in affluent urban societies have become far to removed from issues like death, birth, sickness, where their food comes from, what it feels like to do manual labour. It created a spoiled, panicked and weak society who always expects a safety net to catch them. The idea of lockdown didn’t originate from the lower castes of society. Lockdown is a creation of the privileged.

    • I disagree with your view on masks, but I do agree with your description of wealthy elites. In fact, it is exactly that blindness to the realities faced by the poor that made the political elite think lockdown might work in crowded shantytowns.

    • I so agree with you on masks. They are futile. Not only are they futile, they are harmful – both physiologically as well as psychologically. Again, it’s the case of the ‘cure’ is worse than the ‘disease’.

      Those who initiated the lockdowns knew exactly what they were doing. It was never designed to stop the virus. Whatever we see has occurred, then that was the goal of the globalists. Nothing is happening by chance.

      • I agree with you, they have taken all logic away from people we have all fallen into the trap of fear. I hate a mask as it has absolutely no benefits except in a surgery ward, and maybe nurses where it was always used, we need herd immunity and not vulnerability. another thing in the heat the mask is not a good thing, my chemist has said that a lot of people are now coming with infections around the mouth area, as some people drive in their cars walk on the beach everywhere just about 24/7 with the mask. We will not live longer with the mask. viruses are in the air, all types, all the time for as long as earth is there.

      • Even IF masks do work to some extend (which is a whole discussion on its own), the real response is: so what if they work? Do we want to hide away behind a mask of dubious value indefinitely and prolong the time needed to establish herd immunity for the 99.9% of people who will not die from this disease? Or do we want to establish herd immunity as quickly as possible?

    • For many years I wore a suit and tie every day. It was not particularly comfortable, but I accepted it because to do otherwise would just distract the people around me, and could make them treat me adversely.

      Now, I wear a cloth facemask. Yes, it’s just virtue signalling (perhaps some miniscule benefit, but I doubt it, especially since I’ve already had COVID). But it’s no more uncomfortable than the suit and tie I had worn all those years, and it serves much the same purpose.

  5. Next in line for the authoritarian covid approach: Forced vaccination with a vaccine that was rushed through the testing phase. It will be like indirect forced mask wearing. You don’t have to get it, but you can’t enter a shop, your work, a plane or a school without your vaccination certificate. I a not an anti vaxxer, but I know from having worked in the pharmaceutical industry that a good quality tested vaccine takes years, sometimes over a decade to develop and test for efficacy and safety. For good reason.

    • Flu vaccines are developed, tested, and rolled out every year. I’m really not too worried about the safety of vaccines developed with all eyes upon them over 18 months.

      If SA ever gets them, I’ll gladly take it, just like I nowadays get a flu vaccine every year to guard against the asthmatic bronchitis I get whenever I get the flu. It’s never done me any harm.

      • Yes, but the ‘flu vaccine is generally worthless. The Cochrane Collaboration did a meta analysis on this and this was their conclusion. Most people don’t get a ‘flu vaccine and most people don’t get the ‘flu. The best guard against respiratory infections is to live healthily and keep the immune system healthy. Bearing in mind that approx. 80% of our immune system is in our gut it means that we must eat healthily and keep the biome functioning properly.

        If you look up the VAERS system in the USA, you will see that a very large percentage of the serious reported adverse events are from the ‘flu vaccine. Guillain Barre Syndrome is very often reported.

        Scientists have been unable to develop a safe SARS vaccine over the past few decades (in fact, they proved extremely dangerous) so there should be even MORE caution moving forward with the current ones that have skipped animal testing and only been ‘tested’ for a few months, not 18 months.

        • The flu vaccine is worthless, I agree. However flu mutates at a very fast rate. Covid doesn’t mutate as fast as seasonal flu. The same can be said for smallpox, measles, etc.

          I would definitely question peoples feedback on the VAERS system. People are not good at making the correct judgement calls as to what caused a problem. I have seen many posts of people claiming problems arise from X vaccine only to see it’s a genetic issue they have been born with.

          Companies stopped investing in a SARS vaccine shortly after the outbreak because SARS ‘disappeared’. It’s not scientists that have been working for years without making progress. The current vaccine seems fairly good. Studies have been running since July without any major issues. If the vaccine was ‘extremely dangerous’ I am sure all trails would’ve been paused. Considering there is over 100 000 people taking part in different trails I doubt it’s as dangerous as you claim.

          • VAERS (Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System) is very problematic. It catalogues claimed adverse events of any kind that occurred after a vaccination. The vast majority of these events are minor (like a painful injection site). There is no attempt to show that the adverse event was in any way related to, or caused by, the vaccination.

            If you consider only the 14% of VAERS events that are serious, and you assume that all of them were caused by the vaccination, you’d have a serious adverse reaction in 1 out of 100,000 cases. The true rate is probably closer to 1 in a million.


          • Yes, I agree that VAERS is not in anyway perfect but a very good study by Harvard (I believe it was Harvard) stated that only between 1 and 10% of all adverse reactions to vaccines are reported. But one has to look at the trend and sift out as much of the real data as possible.

            The reason why they stopped the SARS vaccine research was because the research was proving ineffective and that the vaccine was dangerous. The paper concluded that ‘caution’ must be exercised in humans.

            Ivo, the rate of 1 in a million is not supported by the data. This is a figure used by the CDC and has no basis in fact.

            Vaccine injury is real and should be treated with seriousness just like injury and death caused by other pharmaceutical products. Why should people who question the safety of a pharmaceutical product be labelled “anti” as though these people are crazy and stupid? If I said that I wanted to know what the injury rate of say a statin is, would I be labelled “anti-statin”?. Vaccination has been promoted as a religion which should not be questioned, and this is wrong. Especially when vaccines are not properly tested against a placebo. None of the childhood vaccines on the USA schedule have been properly tested and none against a placebo.

          • Please see the paper I referred to :
            These SARS-CoV vaccines all induced antibody and protection against infection with SARS-CoV. However, challenge of mice given any of the vaccines led to occurrence of Th2-type immunopathology suggesting hypersensitivity to SARS-CoV components was induced. Caution in proceeding to application of a SARS-CoV vaccine in humans is indicated.”

          • Cheery picking a study of 4 vaccines doesn’t amount to all vaccines. That was the conclusion in that study. There are many different reports and reports of scientists being close to getting a vaccine.

            Besides this study. The fact remains that since July 100 000 people plus have taken part in vaccine trails and to the best of my knowledge not 1 person has died as a direct result of the vaccine.

      • Pfizer vaccine effects on young, healthy people: increased blood pressure, increased body temperature, headache, skin rush. I do not know your age, but you should think twice before taking something like that. I know I will definitely not take it, as it may easily kill me due to hypertension I have.

        • Getting vaccines for measles, mumps, smallpox, etc can also cause those side effects. The side effects are generally short lived.

          The details are also vague. How much does it increase blood pressure? By 10mmgh or by 40mmgh? I am fairly certain any drastic increase in blood pressure would declare the vaccine unsafe.

          Additionally, if you have consistent high blood pressure (uncontrolled), your body is already under strain (never mind the damage to organs, vessels and heart) putting you at far greater risk should you get covid or any other flu for that matter.

          • MMR was developed for 2 decades. Smallpox vaccine was developed over a century. SARS vaccine was developed for 20 years and eventually abandoned because it was deadlier than virus itself. I will not take something that was developed over 6 months and partially tested or, as I feel, untested. But, that is my choice, I will take the chance with natural immunization, not saying people should not take the vaccine, just all info need to be presented to everyone before making the choice.

          • The early vaccines took long because scientists knew very little about the approaches to creating them. We now have 4 approaches to making vaccines. In fact H1N1 vaccine was developed over months, starting April to October (the same year).

            I hear what you saying with it being rushed, but my opinion is there is a lot of focus on it. It’s number 1 priority so it will get done faster. It’s not on some back burner for incase. If 40000+ people have had it and had mild reactions I feel it’s fairly safe. Also it’s based on existing vaccine technology, we not reinventing the wheel, we just adapting the signature.

            Taking the vaccine is definitely your choice. But do weigh the risks. Dying of covid 1-3%, dying of a vaccine < 0.01%.

      • The principle of the matter is important. It is always your choice to get a flu vaccine or not. I have a feeling the covid vaccine will be forced. Same as masks. same as lockdown. And that does not sit right with me…

      • Ivo, I will definitely not join you on this one.
        I posted this on ahealth professional site some months ago:

        The more you know.
        Today, 27/07/2020, Moderna Inc is scheduled to commence its trials on its “warp speed” developed nanotech potentially gene modifying mRNA Covid-19 vaccine. 35 000 patients are going to be given the vaccine. To date, it has only been tested on 54 people. Such a vaccine has never been used in humans before. No long term safety studies have been done.
        Scientists have issued grave warnings about vaccines using recombinant DNA and RNA technology which has the potential to irreversibly ”rewrite” the human genetic code. The same technology is used in Monsanto genetically modified tomatoes and other seeds i.e. they look the same but major/minor differences exist.
        I wonder what the informed consent declaration/waiver looks like that the patients are expected to sign? Can the patients even begin to understand the risks involved? How is it explained to them in a manner that they will fully understand the implications which are still unknown, possibly potentially irreversible effects on their bodies and their progeny of the vaccine? Do they know that USA vaccine manufacturers have no liability in law for vaccine injuries? Did an Ethic Committee approve the informed consent declaration?
        Linked hereto is a rather emotional talk by Dr Carrie Madej warning of the dangers of using such a vaccine which has no long-term safety studies. She mentions that the vaccine producers are in unchartered territory, trans-humanism is involved and that DARPA research on electroporation has shown that the side-effects may be aggravated later.
        She is an Internal Medicine Specialist in McDonough, GA and has over 19 years of experience in the medical field. She graduated from Kansas City University of Medicine Bioscience College and Osteopathic Medicine in 2001.
        Some background:
        Recombinant DNA (rDNA) molecules are DNA molecules formed by laboratory methods of genetic recombination (such as molecular cloning) to bring together genetic material from multiple sources, creating sequences that would not otherwise be found in the genome. Immortalized cells (also called continuous cells or cell lines) are primary cells whose telomeres and/or tumour suppressor genes have been altered. Tumour suppressor genes (e.g. p53 and Rb) are important for signalling the cell to stop dividing when the likelihood of DNA damage is higher (i.e. after multiple cell cycles). In the case of immortalized cells, such as those derived from the 1960 aborted foetal cell-line and which appear in a wide range of today’s vaccines, These genes have been knocked down or their function inhibited so that the cell is able to keep dividing indefinitely.

        • Amazing, isn’t it? Go science!

          Admittedly, if you don’t understand any of it, it can sound scary instead of clever.

    • What most of the commentators seem to forget, is what is a vaccine? How does it work?

      A vaccine is a weakened version of the virus that is introduced into your body so that your effective, healthy, working immune system can produce antibodies against it. This is to enable your body’s immune system to effectively fight the full strength virus, if it ever did infect you.

      If you don’t have an effective immune system, you will get ill, either from the vaccine or the actual virus.

  6. Ivo,
    Expecting a mask to stop COVID-19 is like expecting your undies to stop a fart. Wakker word Jong!

    • It’s not a question of Mask = 100% Protection, No Mask = Death.

      There’s a spectrum of protection, where anything is better than nothing, and then protection increasing as the quality of the mask improves.

      Even a cloth covering can intercept virus-laden aerosols which, when combined with other measures (don’t cough on people, avoid indoor crowds) progressively improves the protection.

      So your fart-analogy, while colourful, is not necessarily helpful.

      • I agree with Graham. The mask provides zero protection. But let’s just say it offers a little protection – at what cost? Masks in the general public are nothing more than grubby, filthy, germ-ridden pieces of cloth that will cause MORE infections. People are getting Staph infections, rashes and all sorts of adverse reactions, including dental problems. They are also psychologically damaging to children – both when wearing and when seeing parents and people with face coverings. It is not normal to cover one’s face.

        • So you wash your mask. Easy. If you wear the same mask, day after day, and never clean or replace it, of course you are going to get strange infections.

          It’s like if you wear the same pair of underpants for months on end, and you now want to blame society’s insistence on wearing underpants for your crotch turning grimy and smelly.

          And you don’t wear the mask 24 hours per day, every day, at home, in the car, while outside in the garden. That would be just stupid, but that’s what you seem to be implying when attacking this ridiculously contrived straw man.

          You wear it while you are inside the shops.

          Children are psychologically resilient to these small-scale inconveniences. They are less psychologically resilient to systemic misinformation and conspiracy-theorizing.

          • People are being forced to wear masks all day – shop workers, office workers etc. People are not trained in how to use PPE. Small children are being conditioned into believing that their friends and their family are disease vectors and that they themselves could be guilty of passing on a lethal pathogen. I do not believe this is healthy or transient.

            Healthy people do not need to wear masks. Sick people should stay at home. It’s that simple. What the mask mandate is doing is training people to believe that the government can dictate how and when they get their food/goods. It’s now a ritual. I personally refuse to wear a mask and I won’t wear one just to make other people ‘feel comfortable’. There is no scientific evidence that people in a shop (without masks) are passing on disease. Those who believe in mask-wearing are complicit in the destruction of our society.

    • So first of all Covid is spread via water droplets, not ‘gas’. So what you should say is ‘wearing a mask is like wearing undies and expecting it to stop a runny pooh’. It won’t catch everything but it will stop a good amount from coming out.

      Besides that over 200 scientists petitioned to WHO (who said masks did nothing) to say they disagree, and that masks do indeed curb the spread. The WHO then advised people to start wearing masks.

  7. I think if we could turn back the clock – not just South Africa, but people all over the world – everybody would do things very differently.

    And I think most countries would probably have adopted the Sweden approach (which is probably equivalent to South-Africa’s Lockdown Level 2, except voluntary and done by a population which is relatively highly educated by global standards…so might not work everywhere).

    There’s a lot of wisdom in hindsight and we now know things we didn’t know in March or April.

    So there is little one can fairly criticise the government for with regard to the first weeks of the Corona response.

    But – as you point out – May turned to June, became July and August, and it became inceasingly apparent that the Government’s response was turning into a farce.

    Corona measures that were sane and sensible – banning large social gatherings, mask-wearing, hand-sanitising etc. – were undermined by inconsistent policies (taxis operating, churches opening), deranged (banning alcohol and tobacco) and highly selective enforcement or impossible to enforce (lockdown in Waterkloof isneasier than in Alexandria).

    This either undermined the entire enterprise, or undermined confidence in the government so that people started disregarding everything, the good and the bad.

    I know I’m just repeating much of what you wrote, but there is something cathartic in venting.

  8. I once had some respect for Ivo, thinking he was an investigative journalist who was capable of discernment. Alas, this latest drivel about masks and vaccines shows he is delusional. A vaccine for some as yet unidentified Covid19 virus has never been isolated, purified or shown to exist. Yet by some magic there is now vaccine for it ?

    Your chant about your wife’s experience on admissions and death has no bearing on the issue as that is emotive and there was no proof of anything , only conjecture.

    It is clear that he is confused about masks. That has been shown in RCT’s. The fact that proper clinical RCT’s have shown that masks and other environmental hygiene measure in nonhealthcare settings are also ineffective.

    He needs a dummy, they normally stop crying out aloud toddlers. Oh yes he has a mask. Well than you should be safe it will protect you IVO.

    If you want links to the studies pop me an e-mail and I will gladly send them to you.

    You might think that wearing a mask and social distancing is about your health, but you are wrong. It has never been a requirement ever to lockdown isolate and mask healthy people. NEVER.

    Ask yourself, when has it ever been sound medical or governmental practice to sacrifice – and destroy – the economic, mental, and physical well-being of the 99 percent to MAYBE protect and save the one percent…or less?. When? “The lethality of the virus (or lack of for most people) in no way justified the response.
    Oh but the test… The test used is and was never a diagnostic test. It was a laboratory tool used to amplification and replication for determination of qualitative analyses of “something”.

    It cannot determine a specific virus. It cannot distinguish between infectious and infective virus or debris. It cannot determine any differences between various viruses either. The RT-PCR cannot identify and discriminate between the different corona virus types. Because this test is not looking for the entire sequence of COVID-19, merely a nucleate common to all coronaviruses.

    This is a now a tool used for political arse covering by government and officials who will never admit they are wrong as the objective will be exposed. Covid19 was used to create fear. The numbers are used to justify political policy and to support the hidden agenda. The true agenda need to be hidden at all costs.

    It is about conditioning and control to drive the world into Technocratic and Scientific Dictatorship.
    The whole ruse of masks and lockdowns are simply tools used to implement control measures by this socialist regime who is in full support of the UN inspired “Great Reset” and Agenda 21/2030.

      • The point, Marco, is to stimulate debate. It doesn’t matter who the people are. John’s comment may or may not entice you to do your own research. Sadly though with the censorship by Google et al you would need to dig quite deep. If your mind is open you will find a way. If you would like suggestions for sources then ask John.

      • If one feels strongly enough about an article, a situation, etc, comments sections are always good places for reasonable debate. After all, “Qui tacet consentire videtur” – He who is silent appears to consent, where he can and must speak.

        At least, unlike with fakebook and other SM, we are not censored here…

        John and Sadie are correct in their reactions and comments… the evidence is there and unless we say NO now, we will be muzzled and experimented on with untested vaccines for the rest of our lives. This is fact, not conspiracy theory…

        For anyone who is also interested in what is taking place in other countries, check out Rainer Fuellmich, a highly experienced lawyer who, together with others in a group called the German Corona Investigative Committee, is going after the people who have imposed the PCR testing regime on the world. Also The Bernician in the UK, who is going after the those in that gov who have perpetrated the crimes of lockdown etc against their citizens. The UKColumn is also great to get a good idea about the parasite class cult behind all of the govs everywhere who are following and imposing the insidious Great Reset narrative. Find World Economic Forum (WEF) for the Great Reset, if you’ve not heard of it… And find other search engines which don’t track and censor like google… duck duck go is one…

        • Yes, and some other great resources are: The Corbett Report (James Corbett); The High Wire; Ice Age Farmer; Greemed Info

 (Robert F Kennedy Jnr, lawyer)

 Ben Swann (USA)


          • Marco and Ivo – you see, you show how actually ignorant you are when you cannot take the time to look at the information in the links I gave. Robert F Kennedy Jnr is a high profile environmental lawyer with an excellent record. James Corbett has been investigating history and events for over ten years and his reports are fully referenced with his sources. He invites people to go through his ‘show notes’ for themselves to verify his data.

            You guys are just so, so typical of closed-minded people. Nothing is true to you unless you believe it to be so, irrespective of the evidence. Because you cannot conceive something in your mind, then it cannot be true.

          • Sadie you sound like a nice person and I beg you to at least admit these websites are not honest 100% of the time.

            One of your links has this quote:

            “They claim (Gates) that the dense population of the world guarantees this imminent global pandemic. But let’s be honest: most of the earth is uninhabited. Just fly over America in an airplane and look out the window. You see empty space most of the time, with a few cities here and there. Most of the United States is still wide open and empty. The same goes for the rest of the world. Australia, Russia, India, China, America, Africa… it’s wilderness for the most part. Our planet isn’t nearly as populated as Bill Gates wants us to believe. This world map shows it clearly…”

            I won’t even go into how misleading this paragraph is. Surely you see how dishonest it is?

    • “…an investigative journalist who was capable of discernment”

      There is a lot about Ivo Vegter’s articles that I don’t agree with, but he is intellectually honest and rigorous, reads widely, and does have the ability to distinguish evidence from anecdote and fact from fabrication.

      You criticize him with a post which is the equivalent of “The moon landings were faked and 911 was an inside job”.

      Almost all of us, I believe, knows somebody who was seriously ill with Corona – I know many, including family members, who were in a bad shape for weeks – and a great many people are now grieving over lost ones.

      Over 1.3 million deaths world-wide, which is almost certainly an underestimate if numerous parallel studies on excess deaths in many countries all over the world are considered. How many countless thousands more have suffered, or are suffering still, serious physical debilitation?

      Criticize aspects of our Government’s response all you like. There is much to criticize. Criticize the global response if you will, even though much of the criticism has the benefit of hindsight.

      But let’s steer clear of conspiracy theories and stay rooted in fact.

      • It’s useful to take a step back and try understand the psychology conspiracy theorists.

        Apologies for the copy paste but here are some highlights from stuff I’ve read that seem compelling.

        “Conspiracy theories have also been found to be more likely in people who tend not to think analytically or have a need for uniqueness, which might make them attracted to some hidden secret narrative that no one else knows about.”

        “It’s been argued that conspiracy theories are a symptom of living in that kind of post-truth world.”

        “While conspiracy theories often claim to be skeptics, they’re often really more denialists who are actively rejecting the evidence. There’s a core feeling that authority and experts aren’t to be trusted.”

        “Fear and anxiety were reported as positive predictors of conspiracy beliefs. As people are anxious, fear a threatening situation, or have low perceived feelings of control over situations, they tend to conspiracies.”

        “Because even if the explanations don’t make any scientific sense to the individual, their lack of highly-specialized knowledge in the subject matter makes it easier to believe them.”

        My personal belief is that it’s people with massive egos and issues with narcissism. They do make for amusing reading, just don’t invite them to a braai.

        • Precisely. There was a time when everything that happened had a higher purpose, and could be explained accordingly.

          “Pestilence? Well, yes. But remember that comet we saw? Obviously a sign from the gods”.

          “Flooding? Okay, but is punishment because of that gay parade in our city that other time.

          “Drought? Obviously, but if we end abortion, God will send rain”

          Many people like this certainty, even if it is clearly fabricated. And yes, it is generally very inconsistent but confirmation bias takes care of that.

          The real world is messy and uncertain…and there is nobody to blame. There is no sense that there is a higher purpose to all of this.

          Conspiracy Theories fill that need.

          Add to this an education system which neglects critical thinking skills and evidence-based reasoning, and a Hollywood-inspired vision of how the world works and Voila! Lizard People are ruling the planet and Hillary Clinton eats babies.

        • Do you know where the term ‘conspiracy theorist/theory’ comes from Marco? Because those who wish to stifle debate use it.

          I find it exceedingly tiresome that the moment a critical thinker questions something or has an opinion that differs from the mainstream narrative is slandered with being a ‘conspiracy theorist’.

          Just because someone thinks something is not possible, does not make it impossible or implausible.

      • Because the media said it was corona so you believe there is something called corona. There is a method for determining if something is falsifiable, Its the scientific method.

        All the paper presented to determine the proper isolation and identification of the etiology of covid19 have been falsified. It is necessary to be able identify the Causative Agent of an Infectious Disease. This has not been achieved.

        You may be interested in the following sources. I posted the following on a similar argument.

        Try the following. It may help you.

        “Imagine a virus so deadly you have to have a test to know you have it.”

        Study 1: Leo L. M. Poon; Malik Peiris. “Emergence of a novel human coronavirus threatening human health” Nature Medicine, March 2020
        Replying Author: Malik Peiris Date: May 12, 2020
        Answer: “The image is the virus budding from an infected cell. It is not purified virus.”
        Study 2: Myung-Guk Han et al. “Identification of Coronavirus Isolated from a Patient in Korea with COVID-19”, Osong Public Health and Research Perspectives, February 2020
        Replying Author: Myung-Guk Han Date: May 6, 2020
        Answer: “We could not estimate the degree of purification because we do not purify and concentrate the virus cultured in cells.”
        Study 3: Wan Beom Park et al. “Virus Isolation from the First Patient with SARS-CoV-2 in Korea”, Journal of Korean Medical Science, February 24, 2020
        Replying Author: Wan Beom Park Date: March 19, 2020
        Answer: “We did not obtain an electron micrograph showing the degree of purification.”
        Study 4: Na Zhu et al., “A Novel Coronavirus from Patients with Pneumonia in China”,
        2019, New England Journal of Medicine, February 20, 2020
        Replying Author: Wenjie Tan Date: March 18, 2020
        Answer: “[We show] an image of sedimented virus particles, not purified ones.”
        For more read here:

        From Health Canada
        Health Canada thanks to the Freedom of Information Act (Kari Stevens): COVID-19 and it’s testing is officially a complete fraud. Health Canada response file: A-2020-000208 / BH under the Access to Information Act R.S.C. says that Health Canada has no record describing the isolation of any Covid-19 virus.-
        University of Toronto & Sunnybrook HSC have no record of “COVID-19 virus” isolation

        Public Health England: “We hold no proof we isolated SARS-CoV-2” -

        I suppose no amount of fact will convince those who don’t like to believe they were fooled. Its only in China where it was Isolated. Really? The rooster in the river of rats. –

        • You sound like the perfect candidate to volunteer at your local hospital, then. You can do the tests and swab the corpees and deal with the high-flow oxygen wards that the nurses don’t want to deal with because half of their colleagues are off ill and some of them died of this non-existent virus. You’ll be invincible!

    • I applaud you John for a logical scientific open-minded article. I so agree, I am 75 with hyper-tension and I am not SCARED. I take care of my health, but as I have done, for the past many years. I do not even get a seasonal cold let alone flu, but shucks I do get hay fever, excuse my tongue in the cheek, on this serious matter.

  9. So 40% of us contracted this virus and successfully survived it? 24 million people, and only disaster we had was ANC organized economic disaster. What next? Vaccine that was not properly tested and no one knows how exactly will affect ill or elders. Whole this nonsense should be laid to rest and we need to move with our lives. Yes, it can be serious, yes, it can be deadly, but if he have 40% of the population that has gone trough it without knowing it, is it really so much of an issue?

  10. The good doctor is engaging in conjecture.

    Under the scrutiny of unbiased analytics worldwide, (the local ‘PANDA’
    being one) it is becoming progressively more evident that introduction of Non Pharmaceutical Interventions have had NO EFFECT on any of ‘The Curves’
    No correlation exists between the dates of introduction, ( lockdowns, mask mandates and ‘distancing’ ) and, within 2 weeks, ANY detectable change in the trajectories of deaths, serious morbidity, and ‘Infections and Cases’, the latter responding only to PCR testing regimns.

    Simply put, if one is to claim that somthing ‘works’ it must produce a demonstrable effect, supported by evidence.
    To simply claim that “If the measures had not been put in place the numbers would have been ‘much’ higher” is a mere opinion, ‘expert’ or otherwise.
    Such an opinion is niether science nor evidence

    Yet these obviusly politically motivated positions, founded upon such opinion, have been applied to direct devastating public policy initiatives.

    • I can’t say I agree.

      There is a clear 50/50 split for pro-masks vs anti-masks. One also cannot wear masks 100% of the time. So if all the anti-masks go out they will spread the infection. Pro-masks may pick-up the virus through interaction or surfaces.

      But your analogy is like: You go write an exam and score 90% and so do 10 other students who believe in studying. The other 20 students don’t believe in studying and get 50%. We now have class average of 63%. We then look at the group and say “Well it seems like this class is very average”. Perhaps they just not clever or the teacher didn’t know how to teach. Obviously we have alot more details in real life and can get better analysis, but if I give you the total it’s hard to tell we had distinctions.

    • Absolutely 100%. There is zero correlation between countries/states regarding lockdowns and masks. Absolutely none. And Derrick has nothing to support his disagreement with you except conjecture.

      • Well yes. A few studies have said masks work. But in a real world scenario were people don’t wear masks, don’t adhere to social distancing, go out partying and socializing. You cannot form the opinion that masks don’t work, because not everyone is wearing masks (and wearing them correctly).

        • Yes sure, there are strongly held opinions, for and against, and ‘feelings’ about efficacy, all good and wel.

          As for direction of public policy,there is really only one issue which is germaine.

          Is there incontrovertible EVIDENCE theat Non Pharmaceutical interventions, and the mandates arising therefrom, mitigate the ‘spread’, morbidity and mortality of the SARS-CoV-2 virus?

          Since interventions under the broad catagory of ‘Lockdowns’ have extracted enormous costs to livelihoods, welfare and prospects of millions, not to mention the unprecedented abrogation of human freedom and basic rights, there damn well better be evidence if such interventions are to be regarded as legitimate

          So far, we have been offerd only projections from computer modelling, and the opinions of ‘experts’

          You assert that mask mandates, in particular, ‘would be effective’ if the level of compliance were higher.

          How do you know this?

          Here’s an article referring to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, involving a study group and a control group as per the Scientific Method.

          (Drawing conclusions from data without reference to controls is scientifically meaningless, something politicians and their expert advisors either fail to grasp, or conveniently elect to dismiss)

  11. The only thing I know is if the authorities force me to be injected with some rubbish before I can continue live “freely”, well, we are in Africa, and that has its plusses. I’ll get a certificate no doubt, like most taxis have their driving licence. There is a market for everything.

  12. There is NO corona virus! It’s the biggest scam to date and dwarfs all other false flag events.
    Please report on Event 201 Igo, I would like to hear your take on that? And another thing, the northern hemisphere is experiencing a SO CALLED second wave EXCEPT China, now that’s something to look at.
    I will not take a FAKE VACCINE for something that doesn’t exist! Cheers to all the Fearful Mask wearing Sheep.

    • Dave, you are correct in that nobody has isolated this ‘virus’ and Dr Kaufman gives very clear arguments for this. The truth is though is that there is ‘something’ that is different, so we have to ask ourselves, what is it? And the next question is if they have not isolated the virus or purified it, how can they possibly make a vaccine to prevent infection from it? The answer appears to be that they can’t. So what IS this vaccine? We know that Gates et al are pushing the vaccine (he stands to make billions of dollars, he is certainly NOT a philanthropist!) and that he is pushing the ID2020, track/trace, COVI-PASS (which South Africa has signed up for) so this is not about health, this is about pushing forward the agenda towards Technocracy, transhumanism, internet of things, driverless cars, smart cities etc. And none of this can be done without 5G, which IS dangerous to all living things.

  13. I know with hindsight or even a bit of your foresight a while ago, this pandemic could have been handled better. Loved your article as always very insightful. But I have a question, you mentioned we should have acted like Sweden with less restrictions, so my question is should we, government or even our hidden overlords( mybe they are dolphins), who ever can make a difference create a playbook on different pandemics and how to act. It felt like in the beginning we did not know all to well what to do, felt government winged it by cribbing from other lockdown countries. this way the playbook can be discussed, analysed, simulated with different scenarios, corrections be made. But some how better preparing us. This way a huge number of inputs can be given by different fields. Or is this an impossible task. Again thanks for the great article

    • That was one of my early criticisms. We’ve know for years that pandemics like this were going to come around once in a while. We even knew they’d likely come from horseshoe bats. Yet everyone was caught flatfooted, without a plan to rapidly scale the public health response, or knowing what non-healthcare interventions might work well without destroying the economy.

  14. No real surprises there. We started with the virus shortly before our winter, and now things are heating up. The virus doesn’t survive in warmer climates. This is partially why the Northern hemisphere is seeing a second wave, but we don’t really. In addition, we have a high level of vaccination against TB and other related afflictions, which means we are more resilient against this type of virus in general. Then, we have essentially two economies, and two societies. The one society – the formal economy – had a massive draconian lockdown. The informal economy had no lockdown whatsoever, and still doesn’t.

    Totally agreed on Sweden, though. They just told people hey, act like adults. And people got treated like adults, so they acted like adults. Treat people like children, and you get people throwing tantrums, even though they can reach everywhere unlike children.

  15. Some months ago I posted the following on a health professional thread. It may provide a littel more perspective on what is really going on:

    The more you know
    Posted on this thread on 28/08/2020 was a report that Covid-19 deaths had been double counted thus inflating the mortality figures by orders of magnitude. Also posted on 1/09/2020 was a Department of Justice report indicating that Covid-19 deaths in nursing homes in four USA states were being criminally investigated.
    The latest CDC report now reveals that only 6% (ca 9210) of all deaths ascribed to Covid-19 in the reviewed period were due to Covid-19 alone. 94% of deaths were due to co-morbidities at a rate of 2.6 per deceased patient.
    Here is an excerpt from an independent news media source and a link to the CDC report itself:
    “Only six percent of Americans who have died with COVID-19 died strictly from the virus and not from other causes, according to new numbers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
    The CDC’s latest COVID-19 provisional counts, covering February 1 through August 22, say that 164,280 Americans have suffered deaths “involving COVID-19.

    For deaths with conditions or causes in addition to COVID-19, on average, there were 2.6 additional conditions or causes per death,” the agency says. In other words, 94 percent of those who died with COVID-19 already had two or more other serious health issues such as hypertension or diabetes.

    On top of that, age was a major contributing factor. Ninety-two percent of deaths involving COVID-19 occurred among individuals aged 55 and older. Persons 75 and older accounted for 58 percent of such deaths.
    Hence, it is hardly surprising that 22 percent of COVID-19 deaths occurred in nursing homes and long-term care facilities, where most residents are both aged and infirm. That number is considerably higher in states that ordered these facilities to accept COVID-19 patients and would be higher still in New York if that state had not changed its counting method to disguise the order’s deadly results”.

    Which begs the question regarding the 6% (9210) deaths ascribed solely to COVID-19 – were they caused by SARS-CoV-2 or by the host of other corona virus strains given the inaccuracy of the RT-PCR diagnostic kits. In a previous post to this thread it was reported that even paw-paws and goats elicited a positive COVID-19 response.

    The truth will out….

    • I totally agree and thanks to the enlightened articles of Sadie, Petty, John, Derrick and Johann. Good to see that people questions things that seemed to be wright because everyone is doing it.

  16. Ivo, I believe that every person must read wider than just what the mass media (in addition to the corrupt WHO and organisations that are in cahoots with them, politicians and other so-called philanthropists such as Bill Gates communicates), forces on you and use your own brain to get the real truths.
    You can wear your mask 100% of the day and get your annual flu injections and be a guinea pig for a Covid-vaccine if you want, just do not force it onto others.
    The so-called Swine-Flu Pandemic did not become true but did cause a lot of deaths in certain areas, similar to the flu of 2017 (especially in the RSA) even though this was not called a pandemic – similarly this Covid-flu is just a severe flu-strain that could have been managed properly if the hidden agendas of the “powers-to-be” the world over did not scare the living hell out of everyone in the world, which caused much more damage than this flu itself did.
    Allow myself and others who rather believe more in what the PANDA group has found out and stated publicly in support of what numerous other true honest experts have stated, to do our own thing which is to stay away from crowds, only wear the masks when inside a shop (thus minimising the amount of carbon monoxide/dioxide that I have to re-breathe and re-expel) and as normal wash our hands after touching our dustbins or working in the garden or doing woodwork, etc. (normal hygiene).
    Yes I do believe in properly tested vaccines such as for measles, smallpox, etc. but with this “politically-instigated” so-called pandemic’s rush vaccines, I will stay clear of them for a couple of years still.
    I have studied Pharmacy, have worked in labs and have seen very effective medicines being discontinued since the 1980’s all of a sudden (I guess that this is before you were born) and replaced by alternatives that are less effective so that the big pharma companies can improve their profits and satisfy their investors. Even Bill Gates stated on television that he has seen that the best investment he ever made in his life is in the big Pharma arena – and he is currently the 2nd richest person in the world.
    ‘Nuff said.

    • It was quite interesting. I watched a documentary which interviewed the CEO of a big pharma company. He was asked why the high price for gene therapy. So his response was “How much is your child’s eye sight worth? How much is a normal life for your child?”. So the ‘customer’ said in the documentary later “Well it’s worth everything I have, but you cannot expect to bankrupt me and put me into debt for life”. And I think that is the fundamental issue, companies know people will spend everything they can to get the best for a loved one.

    • If you think I go along with the MSM, listen to the WHO, ignore PANDA, or was born after the 1980s, you evidently don’t know me very well and haven’t read much of my work.

      I have a grey beard, learnt to program on a PC XT, have routinely been critical of the statist-left-green-woke propaganda peddled by the MSM, distrusted Bill Gates long before he became a philantropist, am on record as a harsh critic of the WHO, and have been one of PANDA’s earliest supporters and most vocal defenders.

  17. I prefer to read articles posted by critical/ skeptical /analytical minds.
    Ivo is one of those minds. Instead of scratching the surface and drawing hysterical or conspiratorial conclusions he is prepared to delve deeper.
    As one commentator in the US always says : the facts don’t care about your emotions.
    Emotional responses to the Virus are to be expected as long as one is aware that only an analytical response will achieve any effect on the state of the pandemic. We know it will be with us like the seasonal flu. We know we need to keep on keeping on while at the same time finding an appropriate leash on the virus so we can control it. ie turn it from a rabid dog into a household pet. fyi: there’s a shot for rabies….
    lets hope these vaccines are not another Thalidomide but if the annual Flu vaccine is stable and is refactored every season I don’t see why these Covid-19 vaccines can’t be as stable .
    IF we expect it to be perfect from the get go then you’re going to be disappointed. Everything is a work in progress and as long as their is noticeable improvement they’re going in the right direction.
    I’ve got lots of thoughts and ideas I want to get into this post but it’s already looking like tome so I’ll stop there.

  18. I am amazed and impressed at the quality of the discussion and the expertise of many of the contributors. It will take me a while to check every comment and link. I have been concerned about response to CO-19 since March, even creating a website attacking the concept of lockdowns. I wrote to every media organisation I knew, tried to contact radio and TV to express an opinion, and was either ignored or shut down if I tried to express a contrary view to the official line. I added my thoughts to many publications, but if I quoted my website based almost entirely on links to reliable research and expertise, my comments were not published. My friends and family think that I am a nutter, but then I might be because I returned to SA after over 40 years in Australia.
    Only in the last few months has there be much public dissent. My current goal t is to create an organisation that will take legal action against those responsible for suppressing information, and I would love to start with Google for suppressing successful HCQ articles. Does anyone believe it should be done? See


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