Boris Invites Tory MPs to Pre-vote Zoom Meeting

Campaigners at Recovery are hoping the government suffers a rebellion of over 40 MPs, thus putting Boris on notice that he does not have a majority for a future lockdown. At the same time Downing Street is trying to game raised expectations with supposed fears of a 100-strong rebellion. Take the latter figure with a pinch of salt. Boris nevertheless has invited MPs to join him for a Zoom meeting at 6pm ahead of the vote result expected an hour later. He will try and charm rebels angry at the lack of a real cost benefit analysis evidencing the need for strict Tiers.

Over at Civitas they have produced a timely working paper today titled The Cost of the Cure“. The paper tries to quantify the estimated costs that have been incurred. Accepting that whilst “…many of these estimates rely on certain counterfactual assumptions which are by their nature unprovable. In all cases, the assumptions and estimates have been set out; and in all cases these assumptions and estimates have been cautious.” Sector by sector, Tim Knox and Jim McConalogue identify economic black holes of:

  • over £70 billion for manufacturers;
  • £40 billion for the construction industry;
  • £35 billion for retailers;
  • £69 billion for small businesses;
  • £30 billion for hotels and restaurants;
  • £42 billion for airline-enabled international travel costs;
  • £7 billion for pubs;
  • £21 billion for rail transport;
  • £22 billion for car production and;
  • £29 billion for the arts and entertainment industries.

Other costs include:

  • Public sector net debt is expected to increase by £473 billion in 2020-21;
  • GDP has fallen by 11.3% in 2020;
  • Unemployment is expected to increase by between 450,000 and 2.45 million above pre-pandemic levels;
  • 20,000 loss of lives could be lost from delayed treatment for cancer and other diseases;
  • 16,900 additional domestic violence cases (on 2019) were recorded between March and June 2020;
  • Significant increases in depression (64% recording common depressive symptoms), anxiety (69% report increases) and loneliness (reports of loneliness parents of under-fives up by 1.4 million)
  • Significant increases in substance abuse including high-risk drinking among adults up by 3.7 million, 20% increase in opiate addictions, 39% increase in number of relapses among addicts;
  • A 25% to 30% reduction in learning among primary and secondary pupils, respectively.

Download “The Cost of the Cure” here…

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