So That’s It

Back in 2004, I started this blog because I was worried about the rise in authoritarianism. That worry has waxed and waned over the intervening years. When the Conservatives took power along with the LibDems in 2010, I relaxed slightly as the immediate concerns were removed – even if they came back in a different guise. The nasty identity cards act still lingers in the bad smell of everyone asking for ID at the drop of a hat and the insane anti-money-laundering laws. But, for the most part, it seemed as if the worst excesses of Blair and Brown were behind us.

But I still believed that although they were part of the cesspit of the political class, the Conservatives were less bad than what had preceded them.

This evening, Boris Johnson proved me wrong. This evening, the government has made a power grab unforeseen a decade and a half ago. Indeed, what he has done would have Big Blunkett, Blair and Brown wetting themselves with joy.

Don’t think that this will go away. Tonight, a precedent was set. Having found an excuse, they know that they can do it again should they choose and they can do it with the cheers and backing of those whose liberties they have stolen. And it was a Conservative government that made the decision to utterly destroy our economy and the livelihood of millions in a naked power grab.

Somewhere between “we’re all going to dieeeeee!” and “there isn’t a problem.” was a sensible and pragmatic approach: Isolating the vulnerable and allowing the healthy to get sick, thereby building herd immunity. However, they have chosen a path that fascists across the world will applaud. This evening, any belief that we live in a free country died as we all submitted with barely a whimper to indefinite house arrest.

Those who will trade liberty for security deserve neither and that is precisely what we got tonight.


  1. Exactly what I was thinking Longrider, but more eloquent. Reading the comments at the Daily Mail yesterday I was sickened at the number of people who were cheering this on – hardly any contrarian voices at all.

    • I’m going to have to stop looking at that site. Not only does it run loads of intrusive content making using it a pain but all it seems to do recently is provide fear porn cat-nip to attract hysterics. I try to comment but get shouted down.

  2. There is no ideology, only pragmatism. This disease is not a problem because it is likely to kill more people than seasonal flu, because it isn’t. It is a problem because it is a new disease and herd immunity does not exist. There is only one way to develop herd immunity and that is to allow people to get it and recover. Until we have a vaccine, sensible precautions to protect the vulnerable become necessary. A lock-down of the country and destroying the economy will do more harm than good. There is no flaw in my ideology.

    • I make no assumptions. The current lock-down will fall apart as soon as one infected person gets out and about spreading it all over again. Then we are back where we started. The only solution long term is for the healthy majority to develop immunity. That majority will not need to be hospitalised as has happened to a couple of my colleagues this past couple of weeks.

    • Are there really large numbers of 30-somethings in hospital with pneumonia due to COVID-19? I’ve seen a few attention-seeking videos by people supposedly in intensive care displaying little apparent difficulty in breathing panic-mongering at great length. Not quite the same thing.

      • Indeed. Part of the scaremongering narrative. The reality is that most people who get it, as with flu – will recover in a couple of weeks or so and won’t need to be hospitalised.

        • There was some fear porn in the Daily Fail last week in which a ‘survivor’ described her horrendous experience of being under the weather for a few days. She said “I had flu 15 years ago and it was nothing like this, I was only ill for half a day.” Flu. As in influenza. Ill for half a day. I had flu once and was bed-ridden for a fortnight and a bit ropey for a couple of weeks after that. I know people abuse language – nobody is ever sad, it’s always ‘depressed’ – but this stupid bint was a doctor. And not just any old doctor, former Chair of the Royal College of GPs. Then today there was a piece by a junior doctor who’d been on Radio 4 this morning: she was simply a hysterical millennial snowflake. These are the people we’re expected to defer to and – terrifyingly – we have to rely on.

        • NHS doctor claims NHS is a breaking point, perhaps a google search will enlighten you. They say it every year!

          • Also the high survival rate. There was a choice: ride the storm with All the difficulties that includes, or completely trash the economy and make future generations pick up the tab. Also, unless there is mass immunity, outbreaks will continue.

            Dear old Paddy is also building a straw man here.

          • I must confess I’ve not kept up with developments in medical education so I’m not sure when it became mandatory to take, and pass, a course in Drama Queenery.

  3. I can’t believe the eagerness of people to be controlled and stripped of their rights. Does no-one remember when Blunkett as Home Secretary was given all those extra powers to ‘fight terrorism’ and they were extended to every two-bit council and used to detect the heinous crime of parents trying to get their children into a slightly less shit school? It’s hardly ancient history. New Labour has a lot to answer for. Blair’s sidekick, the monocular psychotic Scot, effectively nationalised child-rearing with his SureStart octopus and ensnared all but the insanely wealthy in the benefits system with tax credits. Result: a pitiful, infantilised, dependent and compliant population.

    • I agree with Hector’s analysis of the situation and that it has been around, unidentified, since November 2019. Furthermore I think that I actually had this as far back as the middle of December 2019 as well. The reason for this view is that as an Asthmatic and therefore in one of the “at risk” groups I have had my fair share of serious chest infections over the years so I know what to expect and how to deal with it. I also have the flu-jab. But whatever I had in December was quite different:

      Normally when I get a chest infection, I cough up loads of crap from my lungs but rarely does it cause me to be seriously breathless and I let things run their natural course without a visit to the docs or antibiotics.

      What was different about this was the initial high temperature (peak 39.8) and the rapid cycling of my temperature over a number of days. This was followed by a dry cough, at which point I thought, “I’ve got away with this, it hasn’t gone to my chest.” Then came the breathlessness after about 5 days. Fuck me! I’ve never been so breathless in all my days and lots of coughing. I upped my Asthma medication and it had limited effect. After five days of that (day 10 by this point) I was on the verge of going to the Docs. My wife persuaded me not to on the basis of all the Doc is going to tell you to do is rest, take plenty of fluids and paracetamol. So I didn’t go to the Docs and by day 12 to 14 I can feel an improvement in my breathing.

      Two other data points for this: A work colleague that I had been at a Christmas meal with two days before my symptoms appeared noted exactly the same symptoms over the same period when we spoke a couple of weeks ago. I also visited my sister on 23rd December while suffering these symptoms (day 8 for me) and she noted that she was laid up with the same malady between Christmas and New Year.

      People on other forums have also reported similar symptoms as “totally different to having the flu”. I don’t think this is a coincidence and it will be interesting to take an anti-body test when one becomes available.

      • Informative. I agree a test for ‘have you had it’ would be very useful and provide excellent data for Gov. I think I have based on previous infections experience

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