In the Herald yesterday:

SCOTLAND may have a higher coronavirus infection rate compared to the rest of the UK partly because of its older and more unhealthy population. Roger Halliday, the Scottish Government’s chief statistician, said demographics may be a factor in the slightly higher R number, or reproduction rate of the virus, north of the border. However he said Scotland also recorded its first case later than England. Nicola Sturgeon said this means Scotland could be “a bit behind in terms of the infection curve”.

So, as everyone seems to be starting answers these days:

First, we don’t know what the R number is. The UK Government doesn’t know what the R number is, for the UK, for England or for London.

Recent revelations in the FT tell us that there has been massive under-estimating of the infection rates, with the rate in London 20 to 30 times higher than in Scotland:

They’re not loosening the lock-down for scientific reasons but for ideological ones and to be honest, it’s the same in Scotland. The SNP is not, thank dog, a neo-liberal cabal prepared to take risks with the lives of low-paid insecure workers.

And, why the obsession with the infection rate when the death rate, for the general public and for the key-workers, in Scotland, is at worst only half that of England?

Oh, yes I remember why.