As part of my around the world trip I have reached the Himalayas and so have visited Tibet, Nepal and now Bhutan. The last of these is relatively small and only has four airports so after landing at Paro International I decided to fly past two of the airports and then land at Yongphulla.
In the above image the black line is the direct route, the pink link a route leg I didn’t activate and the red line is the route I took. I’m flying a little Boeing Saab T-7, it has good feels and has the power of a military jet and so is able to cope with my rapid direction changes and approaches.
Thankfully I now have some time off work! It has been a hard few weeks and I need the rest. As if to let me know I spent all of Saturday lying on the sofa sleeping with aches and pains and general ill feeling. Even Sunday morning I wasn’t great but am feeling back to normal now, nearly, apart from a phlegm filled chest. It isn’t Covid, I’ve done many LFTs and also a PCR when I first started showing symptoms. I did the PCR using a postal service and next time I think I will make sure I go to a drive through centre, the results will be quicker.
My summer of letters has continued with a letter to my MP although nothing good will come from that. Teachers, and many other public servants, have had a massive pay reduction in real terms over the last ten years. My union, the NEU, published some graphs showing how pay had changed over the last ten years when compared to the RPI.
Now this uses RPI rather than CPI and I’ve been over to the ONS to see what the CPI rate has been and I can say it has hovered around 2% over the last ten years being generous to the side of the government. Using that generous rate a teacher’s pay would be GBP 44,805. As you can see even using numbers that flatter the government teachers have suffered a real terms pay loss over the last ten years amounting to a current loss of about GBP 3,000. I am not saying we are more important than other professions who have had a pay freeze and I am not saying we should be given the whole amount now. What I am saying is that the government should recognise these facts and put into action some plan to help correct these issues.
Clearly given the governments we’ve had for the last ten years this won’t happen. They won’t see the unfairness of these increases and they’ll say that recruitment is going well. I would argue that while recruitment is going well it is due to the fact that the rest of the economy is fucked and people are having to retrain after losing their jobs and everyone thinks they can be a teacher. Just as a comparison MP salaries have increased an average of 2.2% per year compared to the teachers increase of 1.2% in the same time. Oh, and they can claim fucking loads of expenses and have subsidised food and drink along with massive benefits like swapping prime residence etc.
I’ve been describing accuracy of lateral flow tests to pupils as part of a conditional probability part of the statistics course and I keep forgetting a couple of the words used to describe how good the tests are. The government likes to bang on about the specificity of the LFTs and that is generally a good high number, around 99%. The specificity tells you how the probability of you having Covid if the test returns a positive result. It therefore seems there’s a 1%, or lower, chance of a false positive result. The problematic number is the sensitivity the LFTs have. The sensitivity tells you the probability of getting a false negative, if you have the disease but the LFT returns a negative result. This is a measure of how sensitive the test is to the disease. Currently, depending on who does the LFT, the sensitivity is running at 40% to 80%. So, LFTs will only be positive on around half the positive cases. This is a massive fucking problem and one the government either deliberately doesn’t mention or is just too stupid to understand. You can’t have a policy of opening up the country when the test you are using to maintain the safety of everyone only catches around 50% of the cases. The government are fucking idiots.
This is communication number 1980 [+-1] and so here are some things that happened in the year of my eighth birthday:
- Saudi Arabia beheads 63 people who did a bad thing.
- 123 people dies when a Norwegian oil platform collapses.
- The first 24 hour news channel starts.
- AC/DC release Back In Black.
- A fire in a hotel in Las Vegas kills 85.