Protesters Have Brought Down The Lockdown.
In his Spectator article of 13/6/20 under the above title, the self-styled lockdown-sceptic Toby Young expressed his pleasure in observing the inconsistency of the activities of Black Lives Matter protesters and of those who introduced the Covid -19 lockdown. To focus on this inconsistency he asks, ‘why are police officers, who were so zealous about enforcing the social distancing rules until last week, now getting down on one knee to the BLM demonstrators? and why is Sadic Khan, who has been urging Londoners to remain in their homes to suppress the spread of the virus, expressing his solidarity with the “progressive” activists thronging White Hall and Hyde Park in their tens of thousands?’
He then goes on to say that ‘for months he has been blogging away at lockdownsceptics.org., pointing out that the public health argument for suspending our liberties on a scale never seen before, even in wartime, doesn’t hold water’; while excusing his failure to prevail by opining that ‘the case against lockdowns is often quite technical and so doesn’t have much cut-through with the general public’. However, further to illustrate his scepticism he reports that ‘he has written thousands of words on why he thinks the infection rate of Sars-CoV-2 has been over-estimated’; that ‘the virus is likely to kill fewer people world-wide than seasonal flu did in 2017-18’; that ‘he has published an article by an ex-Google software engineer criticising the code used in the apocalyptic Imperial College computer model that spooked Boris Johnson into imposing a full lockdown’; and that ‘he has even published two lengthy papers by Mikko Paunio of the University of Helsinki which pour scorn on the World Health Organisation’s dire warnings and claims that the populations of large cities, including London, are close to herd immunity’; but that ‘while some of these arguments have been taken up by other journalists, none of them have moved the dial’; and that ‘the British public has remained stubbornly attached to their own confinement, until now, that is’.
He then concludes that ‘many of the same politicians, public health panjandrums and celebrities who’ve been telling us that if we emerge from under our beds we risk a second spike and all of our sacrifices will have been for nothing, are now enthusiastically endorsing the BLM protests’; that ‘this is quite incredible, given that almost 150,000 people across the UK have participated in them so far’; and that the number will probably swell by tens of thousands over the weekend of 20-21/6/20’. He then asks, ‘how it can be that the virus poses such a threat that we are not allowed to hold weddings and funerals or send our kids to school, but it’s perfectly acceptable to attend mass rallies to protest about the killing of a man 4000 miles away?’. Again, he asks ‘why are the same progressive journalists who were so indignant about Dominic Cummings driving 260 miles to Durham with his sick wife and child, now publishing handy guides to attend the nearest demo’. He then opines that ‘the public will smell a rat and conclude correctly that “the science” on which the lockdown is based is not an uncontested body of knowledge which dictates a number of unambiguous government interventions including the insistence on people remaining two metres apart until a vaccine is available’; that ‘it is a constantly evolving hodgepodge of competing hypotheses (beliefs) a few of which will (might) turn out to be right and most of which will be wrong’; that ‘in this scientific potpourri, experts cherry-pick those theories (beliefs) that fit most closely with their ideological biases and ignore the others which explains why they can condemn anti-lockdown protestors as granny killers but applaud the BLM activists as brave warriors for social justice’; and that, ‘in other words, we no longer need to take them seriously’.
Thus, on the foregoing analysis, Toby Young concludes that ‘by insisting in the little people remaining in their homes unless they have “reasonable excuse” to be outside, the holier-than-thou elites found an opportunity to remind us of their role as custodians of our welfare’; but that ‘their “scientific” advice has now been trumped by another bossier, even more self-righteous form of virtue signalling – namely anti-racist sermonising’; that ‘the fact that the two are completely at odds with each other does not bother them in the slightest, so long as they can wag their fingers in our faces; and so long as they can turn puce at us, they are happy’. In contrast, however, my analysis of the foregoing topics is that “the science” is not science at all; that it is a transient belief-consensus arrived at by the on-going debate of opinion/counter-opinion; that all political debate and all media commentary thereon is never more than belief/counter-belief supported by inconclusive facts/counter-facts, evidence/counter-evidence and/or news/false-news; that this lamentable situation will be rectified only by public pressure for all beliefs to be replaced with conclusive knowledge wherever such is available, or by recognition of the need for its acquisition by the scientific method of designed experimentation which reality-validates beliefs (hypotheses) to positive knowledge, or reality-refutes them to negative knowledge, as these terms have been defined and thus definitively differentiated in my third book and in this website. 19/6/20.