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Is Further Lockdown the "Best Medicine" for Thailand's "Current Ills"?

Transcript of the above video:

As the title of this video suggests, we are discussing whether or not continuation of Lockdown is really the best for Thailand at the moment. For those who are unaware, and I doubt there is anybody here in Thailand that is unaware, but they are discussing at least Monday this video should be published this morning so Monday morning, they should be discussing, they being the CCSA who is monitoring the situation with respect to COVID in Thailand, whether or not continued lockdown is really that great of an idea. For those who are unaware, in my opinion we have been in effective lockdown in all but name since April of 2021; mid-April to be precise. Now it has been to varying degrees and we have discussed this at length in other videos. It started out, it was less intense, restaurants could be open but they were alcohol bands and we got in to all of that and then it has just gotten more and more and basically now it is about as full a lockdown as I can see. Essentially the question is, "Is this the thing to do moving forward?" I want to be clear, I don't have the answers. A lot of people have said "well what would you do?" Well I am not the person that actually has that authority. My default opinion position in almost anything just on a personal level, if you are curious is: "If a clear option does not present itself, usually the best option is to do nothing until a clear option does." In my opinion, to this point I think the evidence is pretty resounding in my opinion against lockdown because the economic hardship is tremendous that this is causing. Especially in light of the fact that we have had these ongoing and case numbers just keep going up and we will get into some quotes here that I think further reinforces this but at least reasonable people can ask the question: "Is there a substantial benefit in this compared to the hardship being sustained?" 

That brings me to a recent article we found from the Pattaya News, that is, the article is titled: Prominent Thai Doctor says Lockdown Measures aren't Working. Tighter ones won't work either, ease them to save the Economy. Quoting directly: “Dr. Manoon Leechawengwongs of Vichaiyut Hospital predicted the COVID-19 situation in Thailand via his online statement that the number of domestic infections and deaths from the COVID-19’s Delta mutant will continue to increase regardless of how intense the lockdown measures are." Quoting further: "The status read: People's homes have become the place where high infections occurred overall, so some lockdown measures should be relaxed immediately before the Thai Economy became even worse. The current measures are only hurting the economy and the people and not stopping the spread of COVID-19. Vaccines are the answer here not tighter restrictions, curfews and lockdowns." Quoting further: "In the next 100 days, the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 infections may increase to 35 million people meaning that half the country will be infected and about 30,000 Thai people would be dying if we don't maximize the vaccination program even further and urgently." Those numbers are chilling, there is no doubt about that but I think as he notes, we have been doing this. We have been continuously doing this lockdown and there is substantial evidence to suggest it is not working and as he says, he is an MD, he is a practicing medical professional and he is making the statement and I quote: "The current measures are only hurting the economy and the people and not stopping the spread of COVID-19. Vaccines are the answer here, not tighter restrictions, curfews and lockdowns." From a medical professional's mouth, I think to me that is pretty dispositive information to my mind. 

Furthermore and I thought this was really interesting and we will go ahead and put this stuff on screen. This is from, the article is titled: COVID cases fell 40% in the UK after Restrictions were Lifted proving the Experts wrong yet again. Quoting directly, and this is a long article. Those who are interested in this and it is very well cited and sourced but under the section: The Actual Results, quoting directly: "When Freedom day arrived, Reuters noted the occasion was marred by "soaring cases" and chaos. The AP had a strikingly similar take. Weeks later however, we have an abundance of empirical evidence that show the prognosticators were once again wrong. Cases did not double or quadruple as Ferguson had predicted nor did cases surge as many had warned. To the contrary, cases fell, a lot." Quoting further: "As of August 8th, the 7-Day rolling average of COVID cases stood at just under 27,000. That is a 40% drop from where they stood when restrictions were lifted. Again, this was not what was predicted. On the basis of the spread of the Delta variant and the UK Government's decision to lift all legal restrictions on individual mobility mixing an adherence to none pharmaceutical interventions, we expected new COVID-19 infections to rise very sharply, said David Mackie an economist at JP Morgan." I noted this to the producer of our videos. I am curious why an economist from JP Morgan is weighing in on this but okay, he did. Maybe he studied this. Quoting further: "The opposite happened and Mackie admitted it was unclear why. Possible additional explanations are a seasonal weather effect and an early arrival of the school vacation effect." I don't know what either of those means so I am going to leave that. Whatever the seasonal weather effect or school vacation effect is, I don't know. Those who are watching this video, if you could put that maybe in the comments I would be very curious to know what that is. Quoting further: "But it is hard to fully explain the dramatic collapse in new infections. Ferguson too admitted his prediction was wrong. (and many readers likely recall this isn't the first time the oft-cited Ferguson's "crystal ball" proved wildly inaccurate.)" 

I just want to go back and quote again from Dr. Manoon Leechawengwongs. Again, this is the Pattaya News, thepattayanews.comProminent Thai Doctor says Lockdown Measures aren't Working. Quoting directly: “People's homes have become the places where tie infections some lockdown measures should be relaxed immediately before the Thai economy became even worse." (I think he meant ‘becomes’ even worse). Quoting further: "The current measures are only hurting the economy and the people and not stopping the spread of COVID-19. Vaccines are the answer here, not tighter restrictions, curfews and lockdowns."  

I don't know the answer to this and I am definitely not going to say that I know but I do find it interesting that he is saying that people in their homes and because everybody is all cooped up in their homes is where this is transmitting. Then the UK goes full open, they had everybody predicting everything was going to shoot up and the opposite happened. So again, this person, this Dr. Manoon Leechawengwongs of Vichaiyut Hospital quoted by, he is a medical professional; he is making that citation; he is noting that. Maybe there is something to it. I don't know but what we do know is the economy in Thailand here is in some real dark water if you will; it is in some real tough times. Again maybe it is time to take a more nuanced approach to all of this rather than just continuing to take in my opinion very extreme measures that I think that reasonable people can ask the question, "Is this having a substantially beneficial impact?"