Modelling errorThe Fatal Mistakes Which Led to Lockdown

Published 13 July 2020

On the basis of what were fateful decisions about economic lockdowns as a proper response to the coronavirus made? And why is there such resistance to efforts to go back, cautiously and intelligently, but in a determined fashion, back to semblance of normalcy? Dr. John Lee writers in The Spectator that those who insisted on lockdowns and who now question economic and social reopening explained that they are being “guided by science.” In fact, he writes, “they are doing something rather different: being guided by models, bad data and subjective opinion. Some of those claiming to be ‘following the science’ seem not to understand the meaning of the word.” The decision-making leading to lockdowns was of exceedingly low quality, as is the resistance to economic and social reopening. The reason for both? “An early maintained but exaggerated belief in the lethality of the virus reinforced by modelling that was almost data-free, then amplified by further modelling with no proven predictive value. All summed up by recommendations from a committee based on qualitative data that hasn’t even been peer-reviewed.” Lee concludes: “Mistakes were inevitable at the start of this. But we can’t learn without recognizing them.”