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Posts Tagged ‘Boris Johnson’

‘Project Fear’ is here: Perfect storm of the new Covid variant and looming Brexit deadline exposes Boris the buffoon’s empty hand — RT Op-ed

Posted by M. C. on December 22, 2020

Fear is a handy tool. like a crisis, don’t let it go to waste.

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/510326-project-fear-brexit-covid/

Tom Fowdy

Tom Fowdy

is a British writer and analyst of politics and international relations with a primary focus on East Asia.

With lorries lining the roads, food shortages & the UK cut adrift by its former EU allies to suffer its fate, the prime minister is in a pickle he won’t be able to bluster his way out of this time.

Britain is in crisis, a multifaceted one at that. Over the weekend, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that areas of London and south-east England would be placed under “Tier 4 restrictions,” or in other words, a total lockdown, following the revelation that a new mutation of Covid-19 has gained rapid traction. The new variant of the virus is reportedly 70 percent more contagious, and has been described as “out of control” by Health Secretary Matt Hancock.

If that wasn’t bad enough, a growing number of countries, including most of Europe, have subsequently responded to the development by blockading travel from the UK. Most alarmingly, this has also included incoming lorries and freight from the port of Dover into France via the Channel tunnel, the artery of Britain’s supply chains to the continent. Although it will not be a permanent measure, this has provoked serious warnings from politicians and supermarkets concerning potential food and supply shortages throughout the country.

Of course, all the talk about cargo delays, Calais and Dover sounds very familiar. Because in the background of this crisis is the looming deadline for Brexit trade talks between the UK and the European Union (EU). Johnson has repeatedly threatened a no-deal outcome if he does not secure preferential terms for Britain, and while there is some suggestion he may be bluffing as a negotiating tactic, suddenly this strategy doesn’t seem too smart on his behalf. Why? Because what is currently happening with Covid-19 is a taster of what a no-deal outcome will be like, and for the UK, it doesn’t look good at all. With potential shortages and national panic, the coronavirus crisis has just served to undermine the prime minister’s negotiating hand. Boris has failed the country on multiple fronts.

The entire logic of Brexit in its most dogmatic form is premised on the belief that the UK does not need to rely on the EU, and is, in fact, fundamentally “better off” as an “independent sovereign nation.” This attitude has thrived on a sentiment of national identity, rather than on geographic and economic realities. Britain is perceived to be “global,” born out of imperial nostalgia, rather than part of Europe, which is deemed to be separate and different. Stark warnings of potential repercussions from leaving the bloc have for years been dismissed under the popularised termproject fear” – and as the debate became polarised and toxified, many stopped listening.

The Conservative government has actively pushed a mantra of Brexit optimism: “This is going to be a fantastic year for Britain,” boasted Johnson in January, talking of potential new trade deals with far-flung countries which Brussels apparently got in the way of. As talks have approached the climax, with just 10 days left until the transition period comes to an end, he’s not hesitated from weaponising the threat of a no-deal, saying Britain will walk away and even subtly threatening to deploy the Royal Navy against France to protect fishing rights. Of course, it may play triumphantly domestically, but leaders on the continent have long deciphered that this isn’t really serious and that Boris is playing to the political gallery.

Now, he’s been made to look the fool. Brexit is one thing, but the prime minister’s utterly catastrophic approach to Covid-19 is another. European leaders must be laughing as Johnson has bluffed over a no-deal Brexit, only to see his virus mismanagement shut down Dover in the precise way his trade threats would do. It blows apart the fantasy that leaving without an agreement will be fine, and illustrates to the public just what beckons in that scenario, meaning that support for his position, and thus his negotiating hand, is seriously undermined. Brussels may now believe it can make him capitulate, not the other way round. The overlapping disasters of Covid-19 controls and a no-deal would serve a hammer blow to an already depleted UK economy, and his support would evaporate.

So, what does Johnson do now? The freight situation will not last for the long term and will eventually be resolved before it inflicts serious problems, irrespective of the spread of the virus at home. However, Brexit negotiations are going on simultaneously regardless. Now that Europe has shown that it can bring the UK economy to heel with collective action, Boris’ bluster isn’t going to wash. The prime minister may be inclined finally to compromise on EU demands at the last minute, or if the timing doesn’t suffice, even extend the transition agreement. 

Of course, either of those options might also be politically destructive for him, but what choice does he have? This is a true case of the ‘Prime Minister’s New Clothes’ – initially going against Europe with tough rhetoric, when in fact he had nothing. Now everyone sees the naked truth for what it is, and it’s not a pretty sight.

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Always Covid & Never Christmas: Breaking the Spell That Holds us in its Grip

Posted by M. C. on October 30, 2020

In Covidia, the perpetual thing that drags everyone down is the constant, unrelenting fear, dished out via “hard-hitting emotional messaging,” using cherry-picked and out of context statistics, in order to back up the absurdly superstitious notion that we can control viruses by hiding from them.

It is plainly obvious that the people in charge of the Covid debacle have no intention of relinquishing their grip, or of allowing us to return to proper life,

http://www.theblogmire.com/always-covid-never-christmas-breaking-the-spell-that-holds-us-in-its-grip/

“Boris Johnson? Who is he?” asked Lucy.
“Why, it is he that has got all Covidia under his thumb,” said Mr Tumnus. “It’s he that makes it always Covid. Always Covid and never Christmas; think of that!”
– The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, CS Lewis (with a few changes)

Were he around today, I have no doubt that C.S. Lewis, one of the 20thCentury’s greatest intellects, would be utterly scathing of what the British Government has done to this country over the past 7 months, given that it has been the very epitome of the scientific and technocratic oligarchy he warned us about decades ago. And so I feel somewhat at liberty to take his comment about the White Witch turning Narnia into perpetual winter without joy and without Christmas, and apply it to our own situation in the land of Covidia (which is where you now live) – a place of perpetual fear and misery, where ordinary life is impossible, and where any hints of joy breaking out must be nipped in the bud before they are allowed to grow to challenge the new winter  normal that is settling fast around us. 

The words may even turn out to be literally true. In Scotland, they are already talking about what they call a digital Christmas, whatever absurdity that is, whilst in England a psychological game of Good Cop/Bad Cop is going on, with Comrade de Pfeffel Johnson apparently desperately hoping that we’ll all have a normal Christmas, but with members of the ironically named SAGE committee saying this is wishful thinking. Who will win out? Of course the Bad Cops will win out, but no doubt carefully managed and cleverly messaged to present it as a kind of victory for Good Cop, whereby he wangles some concessions for us, such as a relaxation of the Rule of 6 to the Rule of 6+1 for a day, so that Great Aunt Maud doesn’t have to spend the day alone, and with Rishi Sunak perhaps pledging some more of his magic beans to fund subsidised turkeys. Come to think of it, cut-price turkeys would be a fairly apt metaphor for those in charge of this debacle. But lest they try to befuddle us with silly details over the next few weeks, hold this thought front and centre: The idea that anyone should need permission from the likes of de Pfeffel Johnson and his crew to be able to celebrate with their family and relations the coming of the King of Kings into the world is beyond parody.

Lewis’s point, like so much of what he wrote, was really rather profound. His original words — “Always winter and never Christmas” — were his way of showing how tyrants operate. They desire two things:

Firstly, they need to create perpetual oppression, a “new normal” which is depressing, ongoing, and which pulls everyone down into the resigned acceptance that there’s nothing they can do about it.

Secondly, they need to eradicate all attempts at celebration in the midst of the drudgery, because celebration reminds people of what life could be like and indeed what life should be like if it were not for the tyrants, and so is in danger of breaking the spell. 

In the case of Narnia, that perpetual thing that dragged everyone down was winter. Ordinarily, winter is wonderful, but constant winter for 100 years without hope of thaw is oppressive and enough to destroy the morale of the population who gradually come to accept their conditions as normal. And just in case they should attempt to restore morale in the midst of the drudgery, reminding themselves what real life looks like, feels like, tastes like, why it must be stamped out. This indeed happens when the White Witch comes upon “a merry party” of animals sitting down to “a lovely smelling feast” with “decorations of holly,” “the smell of plum pudding,” and “raised glasses”. Joy cannot be allowed to imperil the misery, and so the scene ends with her turning them into stone. 

In Covidia, the perpetual thing that drags everyone down is the constant, unrelenting fear, dished out via “hard-hitting emotional messaging,” using cherry-picked and out of context statistics, in order to back up the absurdly superstitious notion that we can control viruses by hiding from them. Like the White Witch, any semblance of normality and real life breaking through must be crushed, as this is the greatest threat to the perpetual fear and, if allowed to go unchecked, may start to convince people that we really don’t need to live like slaves and that life can operate perfectly normally if we allow it. The imposition of absurdly high fines for non-compliance, which could ruin a person, are the Covidian equivalent of the Narnian turning into stone. 

One of the saddest things about all this, is how the unlawful decrees (and yes they have no proper basis in law) are greeted by those in charge of enforcing them with what seems to be a kind of relish. Policing Christmas meals might not seem like the sort of thing you pay your taxes for, or the sort of thing that threatens your life or livelihood, yet the West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner, David Jamieson, whose force has historically not been very quick to break up grooming gangs, said this about breaking up Christmas celebrations:  

“If we think there’s large groups of people gathering where they shouldn’t be, then police will have to intervene. If, again, there’s flagrant breaking of the rules, then the police would have to enforce.” 

Of course, he could have said something along the following lines: 

“West Midlands officers are paid to protect law-abiding citizens from criminals and criminal activity. If the Government thinks we’re going to pour our resources into policing Christmas gatherings, they’ve got another think coming.” 

But of course that would take common sense, courage, and a backbone, all of which seem to have deserted a good number of our authorities many years ago. What he went on to say must make it to the shortlist for the 2020 Ironic Statement of the Year Award:  

“We’re sitting on a time bomb here. We’re getting very near the stage where you could see a considerable explosion of frustration and energy. Things are very on the edge in a lot of communities and it wouldn’t take very much to spark off unrest, riots, damage.”  

Well yes, but might policing people’s Christmas gatherings be one of those things that contributes to the tipping over the edge? Worth considering, David.

It is plainly obvious that the people in charge of the Covid debacle have no intention of relinquishing their grip, or of allowing us to return to proper life, or of allowing us to take proportionate decisions for ourselves again. It is equally obvious that they are ably abetted by hordes of willing lower level bureaucrats who seem to have finally found their calling in life — hassling law-abiding citizens who are doing perfectly normal things. They are attempting to police almost every aspect of our lives, and the tragic thing is that we have largely allowed them to do it without so much as a peep. These joyless, soulless, technocrats intend to keep Britain under their thumb, making it always Covid and never Christmas.

In the long run, they need to know that it shall not always be so. That same King of Kings whose annual incarnation celebrations they wish to wreck and whose world they wish to control, did not come to earth 2,000 years ago to have his eternal plan wrecked by the likes of them. He is very patient, but when he decides enough is enough, that will be that (see Psalm 2), and these wannabe authoritarians will find themselves in the same despot’s dustbin of history as their predecessors. 

In the meantime, what can we do as these tragic technocrats keep us in their icy, pseudo-scientific grip? Maybe not much, yet there is one small thing that we can all do, which if it catches on may have a chance of breaking the spell that has us in its grip. As Lewis teaches us, the one thing tyrants fear is masses of people suddenly defying them by refusing to act according to their joyless, soulless technocracy. And so that is just what we should do. As much as is possible, defy them by thinking normally, speaking normally, and living normally. Don’t let their absurd measures dictate to you how you should think and act. Rather, let your life be like that merry party, with its lovely smelling feast, its decorations of holly, its plum pudding, and its raised glasses. And go all out on that this Christmas.

Make this your new three-phrase slogan to replace the banal phrases with which this Government has effectively hypnotised millions of people into giving up their lives and placing us in a superstitious Doom-Loop:

Act normally. Defy the killjoys. Defeat tyranny.

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The More the EU Tightens Its Grip, the More Countries Slip Through Its Fingers — Strategic Culture

Posted by M. C. on October 27, 2020

These lockdowns have nothing to do with public health. They have everything to do with maintaining the political health of the current ruling classes. Nothing more.

https://www.strategic-culture.org/news/2020/10/24/more-eu-tightens-its-grip-more-countries-slip-through-its-fingers/

Tom Luongo

It finally looks like the four-and-a-half-year saga of Brexit is coming to an ignominious end. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson called the final bluff of the incompetent bureaucrats in Brussels, walking away from trade talks while leaving the door open.

But that door is only open if the EU is willing to crawl in on its knees and give the UK what it wants, a minimal free trade deal, Canada-style, which was offered by then President of the European Council Donald Tusk.

The EU played hardball giving zero ground for four years while undermining the UK from within its own political and bureaucratic structures. It was as transparent as it was cynical, but it couldn’t sway the British people and that gave Johnson the political will to just say no.

And it was this hardball negotiating stance that had worked in the past finally broke like waves along the Cliffs of Dover. The reason why it failed was that arrogance was fueled by powerful forces having their back,

They believed in the power of coercion being stronger than the will of the British people.

And they were wrong. Dead wrong.

In an instant this past weekend the entire façade of he the EU’s inevitability vaporized as Johnson went on TV and told the world to prepare for a No-Deal Brexit, regardless of whether that was the optimal outcome or not.

It signaled to the rest of Europe that no longer do you have to take the diktats of a bunch of feckless, unelected technocrats if you don’t want to. And this failure to secure submission of the Brits will have immense consequences during this next election cycle in Europe.

This is why the fiction of the Second Wave of the Coronapocalypse persists all across the continent. Germany, France, Spain and other countries are implementing the worst kind of draconian lockdowns on people hanging on by a thread while the pols in Brussels scheme as to how best to continue advancing their plans for a future with the people trapped in the neo-feudalism of the EU corporatocracy.

These lockdowns have nothing to do with public health. They have everything to do with maintaining the political health of the current ruling classes. Nothing more.

And I include the UK in this as well but for different reasons. It’s my feeling that even though Johnson may have given the EU ‘two fingers up’ the EU and those behind it aren’t done with the Brits yet.

Walking away from narcissists inevitably invokes anger. There is too much at stake for the European Project for the annoying Brits to just walk away from it and give everyone else the wrong idea.

So, I feel very strongly we should be watching for more signs of the same color revolution tactics on display in the U.S. to depose Donald Trump showing up in the UK I don’t rule out an attempted coup against Johnson in the next seven weeks.

This is why I think he’s imposing similar lock downs in the UK to manage the inevitable activation of ‘ground forces’ once things get down to the wire later this year.

Brexit has exposed a myriad of fault lines within the EU, most notably between the two heavyweights, Germany and France. And Johnson, for all his shambolic organization, understood this perfectly, playing Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron off each other capturing their agendas in amber so when crunch-time came, they were paralyzed with inaction.

Weasels on both sides of the channel refused to accept the vote for any number of reasons but it didn’t matter.

The UK always had the upper hand in this situation if it stood its ground, made its demands known and negotiated like an equal rather than a wayward child.

Ever the abusive parent, the EU Council and its Chief Negotiator continue to treat the Brits like they treated Greece in 2015 and are now openly furious that no one is taking them seriously.

But why should anyone take Brussels seriously, other than because it is backed by the failing and sclerotic post-WWII institutions revealed to be complicit in the wholesale destruction of Western culture and economic vitality who are pushing a Great Reset on them whether they want it or not?

One need look no further than the insipid way Merkel has handled the obvious intelligence job surrounding Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny. Navalny is a nobody outside the halls of the CIA and MI-6 who, through the media, sell him to the West as a major thorn in Russian President Vladimir Putin’s side.

But he’s nothing of the sort. He has fewer people show up to his ‘rallies’ now than Joe Biden. So, the idea that Putin would poison this bozo is laughable. And yet, because the EU, and specifically Germany, are so scared of angering the U.S. they entertained this fantasy hoping the Russians would bail them out and play along with the fiction, publicly threatening the completion of the Nordstream 2 pipeline over it.

Putin told Merkel to go scratch, and why not? She’ll be out of the picture in a year.

So, now she has personally lost Russia as a potential ally for Germany. Instead of finally choosing a side, Merkel, ever the dutiful soldier, kept playing the U.S. and Russia off each other alienating both.

Germany will get no help from Russia when a vindictive second-term Trump tightens the screws on her even more. Because stop looking at polls designed to gaslight you and look at what’s happening in the U.S. People will walk over broken glass to vote for Trump. The biggest worry about Biden is whether he’ll soil his Depends.

Merkel ham-fistedly played for time hoping to run out the clock on Trump and Johnson both over the U.S. election and it will cost Germany everything in the long run. She has a chance post-election to make things right with Putin but don’t bet on it.

Once she loses Russia, she’ll lose the Visegrad nations as the U.S. abandons Europe and the 21st century will turn most unkind on a hubristic and vainglorious European elite.

If the EU leadership want to be taken seriously then they need to act like world leaders and not like a bunch of vindictive high schoolers vying for class president. That these incompetent people are leading some of the most powerful countries in the world should frighten you.

They also reflect very poorly on the people who stand behind them, who I like to call The Davos Crowd, whose policies they were chosen to implement.

And now that the best of all possible Brexits is near at hand, the rest of Europe is going to get an object lesson in just how much it costs to keep them around as the UK thrives in the post-Brexit world and why they shouldn’t be afraid of their wrath.

© 2010 – 2020 | Strategic Culture Foundation | Republishing is welcomed with reference to Strategic Culture online journal www.strategic-culture.org.

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PETER HITCHENS: Britons are being sentenced to a slow, agonising death… by No 10’s panic squad | Daily Mail Online

Posted by M. C. on October 19, 2020

Britons like the late Peter King are being sentenced to slow, agonising deaths … by No 10’s panic squad, writes PETER HITCHENS

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-8850927/PETER-HITCHENS-Britons-sentenced-slow-agonising-death-No-10s-panic-squad.html

By Peter Hitchens for The Mail on Sunday

One of the filthiest tactics of the Panic Merchants is to claim that anyone who opposes their strangling of the country is callous and cares only about money, not life. 

Dissenters have been pelted with slime of this kind by Johnson, the man who ruined Britain, and by his dense sidekick, Hancock – perhaps the first Health Secretary in history who does not know that malaria is spread by mosquitoes. They tell us we wish to ‘let the virus rip’.

Well, Johnson and Hancock, if you care so much about lives, get in touch with Lisa King, as I did. Ask her to tell you about how her husband Peter, a retired taxi driver aged 62, died. +4

One of the filthiest tactics of the Panic Merchants is to claim that anyone who opposes their strangling of the country is callous and cares only about money, not life

It is a horrible, upsetting story, involving a grown man screaming in agony. And in my view it is an absolutely direct consequence of Hancock’s conversion of the NHS into a National Covid Service which treats everything else as a nuisance.

Peter King was grudgingly granted (as so many now are) a remote session with a GP who, unable to meet him, and apparently ignorant of his records, diagnosed his severe chest discomfort as reflux. I am not especially interested in blaming this doctor. Under the conditions created by Hancock, he was presumably doing his best.Dissenters have been pelted with slime of this kind by Johnson, the man who ruined Britain, and by his dense sidekick, Hancock – perhaps the first Health Secretary in history who does not know that malaria is spread by mosquitoes. They tell us we wish to ‘let the virus rip’+4

Dissenters have been pelted with slime of this kind by Johnson, the man who ruined Britain, and by his dense sidekick, Hancock – perhaps the first Health Secretary in history who does not know that malaria is spread by mosquitoes. They tell us we wish to ‘let the virus rip’

But it was not good enough. Actually the trouble was far more serious – a stone trapped in his gall bladder – and the resulting delay meant he was overcome with indescribable pain a few days later.

Peter was given emergency surgery to reduce the agony, but needed a more radical operation. He was put on the urgent list for it. But this was still too late. 

He fell terribly ill again and despite the heroic efforts of paramedics, he died. The many years of happy life which Peter and Lisa King might otherwise have had were wiped out for ever.

This is not just some isolated case. Something like 25 million appointments with GPs have been lost as a result of the Johnson Government’s panic (not as a result of Covid, as the hopelessly pro-Government BBC always says. The Government had a choice over how to respond, and took the wrong path).

Millions have not had referrals for diagnoses including cancer and heart disease. Some of them will have been scythed down as Peter King was. Others will have been needlessly damaged in smaller, slower ways.

See the rest here

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“Build Back Better”: Why Are Both Biden and Boris Now Using This Phrase? | Mises Wire

Posted by M. C. on October 14, 2020

During lockdown, countless commentators waxed lyrical about how “nature was coming back to life” during our miserable house imprisonment. Now, economist Mariana Mazzucato, of University College London, is floating the idea of “climate lockdowns”—that is, forcing people to stay in their homes to limit carbon dioxide emissions. And the UN is pushing a global propaganda campaign to get a good percentage of national bailout budgets siphoned off into “green” gravy train projects with highly questionable environmental and economic returns.

https://mises.org/wire/build-back-better-why-are-both-biden-and-boris-now-using-phrase?utm_source=Mises+Institute+Subscriptions&utm_campaign=705dd97dc7-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_9_21_2018_9_59_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_8b52b2e1c0-705dd97dc7-228343965

Mark Tovey

Listen to the Audio Mises Wire version of this article.

The Trump campaign shared a video on social media this week, claiming Joe Biden had ripped off a slogan from British prime minister Boris Johnson.

“We have a great opportunity to build back and to build back better” (emphasis added), Biden said in the video, dated July 9, 2020. Then rolled a video of the British PM, using the same phrase on May 28: “We owe it to future generations to build back better.” Damning evidence—it seemed—that the Democratic nominee had, once again, copied his homework. (Biden was famously caught passing off a Robert F. Kennedy quote as his own during his ill-fated 1988 run for president.)

In fact, the story here is not one of lazy speech writing or plagiarism. The use of the phrase “build back better” by both Biden and the British PM spells something far more sinister. “Build back better” is the rallying cry of a globalist plot to exploit the coronavirus pandemic for the sake of narrow-minded, well-connected lobby groups—particularly of the “environmentalist” stripe.

Boris Johnson did not coin the phrase “build back better”. It first surfaced on April 22 in a UN press release, marking “International Mother Earth Day”—a faux holiday created by the UN in 2009.

As the world begins planning for a post-pandemic recovery, the United Nations is calling on Governments to seize the opportunity to “build back better” by creating more sustainable, resilient and inclusive societies.

“The current crisis is an unprecedented wake-up call,” said Secretary-General António Guterres in his International Mother Earth Day message. “We need to turn the recovery into a real opportunity to do things right for the future.”

But would “Brexit Boris” really swallow a globalist scheme hook, line and sinker? On October 6, the British PM unveiled a plan at the Conservative Party conference to dump £160m into powering every home with wind energy by 2030—all part of a harebrained scheme to “build back greener.”

The Conservative lawmaker Lord Matt Ridley excoriated Boris’s “build back greener” policy in a radio interview the next day: “It takes 150 tonnes of coal to build one wind turbine…if we want a zero-carbon future by 2050, the only way we’re going to get it is nuclear. Wind is messing around and rewarding rich people at the expense of poor people.”

But it is not just Boris Johnson and Joe Biden who are being played like cheap violins by the UN. All around the world, politicians are echoing the same sentiment.

The European Commission used the slogan when announcing their €750 billion stimulus fund on May 27: “Through this fund, officially titled Next Generation EU, the Commission hopes to “build back better,” through channels that contribute to a greener, more sustainable and resilient society.”

In Canada, PM Justin Trudeau signaled his allegiance to the globalist “green” lobby in August, saying: “We need to reset the approach of this government for a recovery to build back better.”

The UN have even taken the liberty of translating the slogan into Spanish (reconstruir mejor), Portuguese (reconstruir melhor), French (reconstruire en mieux), and many other tongues—so that politicians all over the world can sing from the same hymn sheet. The No Agenda podcast, hosted by Adam Curry and John C. Dvorak, is a fantastic resource for keeping track of the growing number of co-occurrences of the “build back better” meme.

Some environmentalists are twisting the covid-19 pandemic into a pretext for extreme “green” policies, of the type that would have been unthinkable less than a year ago. During lockdown, countless commentators waxed lyrical about how “nature was coming back to life” during our miserable house imprisonment. Now, economist Mariana Mazzucato, of University College London, is floating the idea of “climate lockdowns”—that is, forcing people to stay in their homes to limit carbon dioxide emissions. And the UN is pushing a global propaganda campaign to get a good percentage of national bailout budgets siphoned off into “green” gravy train projects with highly questionable environmental and economic returns.

Talk of “building back better” and “green growth” obfuscates the tradeoff between growing GDP and limiting carbon dioxide emissions. Globally, GDP is forecast to plummet a whopping 4.9 percent in 2020, according to the International Monetary Fund.

Lifting lockdowns, cutting taxes and deregulating would quickly get the world turning again. On the other hand, financing a global racket with billions of dollars of funny money—or “building back better”—will only cause us to sink deeper into this malaise. Author:

Mark ToveyMark Tovey works for a data news agency and has authored numerous reports for London-based think-tanks, including the Institute of Economic Affairs and the Taxpayers’ Alliance. His research has largely focused on health economics issues and the UK foreign aid budget. He graduated in 2016 with a degree in economics from the University of Sussex.

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I’ve gone from pro-lockdown to NO lockdown. Here’s why people must take over from inept governments and learn to live with Covid — RT Op-ed

Posted by M. C. on October 8, 2020

No matter what middle-class journalists like me tell you from their home offices, this will be a disaster on so many fronts. It will stamp on the teeth of an economy that’s already lying in the gutter crying for its mummy. It will send half the population either mad or into the streets with flaming torches. It will crank up the dial on already bitter societal divisions to 11. It will utterly wreck Christmas.

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/502841-uk-second-lockdown-covid19/

Andrew Dickens

Andrew Dickens is an award-winning writer on culture, society, politics, health and travel for major titles such as the Guardian, the Telegraph, the Independent, the Daily Mail and Empire.

I supported the first national lockdown but a second one would be a mistake of titanic proportions. Here’s how we can wrestle control from governments and learn to live with Covid.

Sometimes, if you want a job done well, you have to do it yourself. Sadly, many jobs that need doing well are occupied by people whose gift for doing them isn’t just non-existent, it’s a black hole that sucks in and destroys any crumbs of talent that happen to be floating in the vicinity.

Here in the UK, the job of prime minister is taken by a man who, when the going gets tough, gets going on holiday. Other jobs, such as those of health secretary, home secretary, chancellor and education secretary are taken up by fawning lackeys with all the independent thought and qualifications of a reluctant 15-year-old intern who’s only there because their dad’s mates with the CEO.

And yet, despite this, when Covid-19 made its intentions and capabilities known, I backed this U-turning confederacy of dunces. I thought that a ‘lockdown’ was the right thing to do. I know there were arguments about the efficacy of various measures, about mortality rates and transmission. I also know that those arguments have become mind-numbingly tedious and repetitive, so let’s not go there. At the time, nearly all evidence and expert advice suggested that we should err on the side of caution. End of.

Lockdown here was a walk in the park, literally, compared with what some populations endured but it still hurt people – financially, emotionally, even physically. I lost thousands in income and sought help for my skyrocketing anxiety levels, and yet still I gave that flock of dangerous idiots leewayin what can comfortably be described as a very, very weird situation.  Read more As Boris Johnson announces Britain’s ‘great reset’, were the Covid ‘conspiracy theorists’ right all along?

However, there’s a ‘but’ – one big enough to get Sir Mix-a-lot interested. There must not be a second lockdown. 

After a summer of relative liberty, sharp rises in infection rates have triggered Boris Johnson and the man who operates him, Dominic ‘no-one talks to me at the office Christmas party’ Cummings, into burdening us with new draconian measures, somehow more confused and complicated than the original rules. It’s now clear that we’re weeks, maybe days, away from a return to the ‘all but essential’ mantra. No more nights out at the pub, no more nights in with friends. Back to the heavily-scraped bottom of the Netflix barrel.

No matter what middle-class journalists like me tell you from their home offices, this will be a disaster on so many fronts. It will stamp on the teeth of an economy that’s already lying in the gutter crying for its mummy. It will send half the population either mad or into the streets with flaming torches. It will crank up the dial on already bitter societal divisions to 11. It will utterly wreck Christmas.

Shutting the country down again, with no end in sight, will be like sticking a cork in one end of a balloon while filling it with a waste pipe at the other. Whether the balloon bursts or is uncorked at a later date, it’ll create a terrible mess.

You have, of course, the fact that it’ll be adding salt to particularly nasty economic wounds that are about to have the clumsy fist of Brexit shoved into them. The ruination of businesses, charities, families, support services, and the travel, hospitality, arts and entertainment industries, is a surefire bet. This is a government that simply doesn’t care if you don’t have music, film or theatre in your lives next year. 

Jobs and homes will be lost, people will end up on the streets. The uncertainty and short-termism of the government’s measures (sometimes announced overnight in its signature cowardly style) make it impossible for anyone to plan or invest. Government aid is ending, so who’d keep staff, let alone hire them? Who’d book a holiday? Who’d order a turkey? Also on rt.com UK health secretary claims rise in Covid-19 cases is ‘very serious problem’

Then there’s people’s wellbeing. People are already dying of other diseases as a result of Covid-related measures. Some of this is due to a shift in resources towards dealing with the pandemic, but much is down to hospital services being limited or frozen and people being frightened to visit doctors. Workers will refuse to get tested because they fear quarantining without pay, making them more likely to spread the virus. 

It’ll cause a mental health nightmare, plunging people into depression and causing unmanageable stress levels at a time when they can’t get proper help – not least students who already feel imprisoned in halls. Some will be forced to work in risky conditionsbecause a lack of financial support means they have no choice. Others will simply be fed up with arbitrary, ill-explained and increasingly short-notice limitations and therefore tempted to flick a collective V-sign at the authorities.

There are already indications that people have had their fill of lockdown measures and tightening the grip further is asking for trouble. As Mayor of Manchester Andy Burnham said, these measures could make matters worse and lead us to a “winter of discontent.” Our lives have to varying degrees been hammered like a tough steak for months and most of us have accepted it with some grace. But we all have our limits. Read more ‘Priority is jobs,’ UK’s finance minister says, but warns Covid-19 will remain a ‘factor in the economy’

To misquote Newton’s third law of motion, every action has an equal and opposite reaction. The harder you try to contain people, the more dramatically they’ll rebel.

Among these people will be the usual arseholes whose raison d’etre is to make life uncomfortable for other people, no matter what the situation; the cough-in-face types, the spoilers for fights over masks. There will always be the incurably stupid, too. And then there’ll be responsible citizens, of which I’m generally one, who have had enough. If this group sees no reason or effectiveness in the rules, perhaps sees their elected and unelected leaders continue to break the rules, then they’ll be less inclined to follow those rules. 

A heavy, nationwide lockdown also won’t work because this virus isn’t going away any time soon. There will almost certainly be no widespread vaccine or divine intervention that sees it disappear by Christmas 2021, let alone this winter. And you can’t shut the country down forever.

So what do you do when something can’t be got rid of? You don’t hide from it, you learn to live with it. The problem is, as mentioned, this government, like many, doesn’t have the smarts to do that. 

It specialises in things that don’t work. Effective track-and-trace app? Nope, sorry, can’t do that. Functioning testing system? You’re having a laugh, mate. A vague semblance of competency? It can’t even master an Excel spreadsheet. This is the government that didn’t think a return to schools and universities would cause a September surge in infections, that flips daily between telling us to get out and stay home, like a political hokey cokey, and whose hardline measures so far have still allowed more than 42,000 deaths (and that’s just from the virus).

This is why its role needs to be limited, like you would that of the aforementioned 15-year-old intern. It should provide, not instruct. It can supply data and advice, and can give people freedom and responsibility, and it can write cheques for things like testing and healthcare and for ideas with brains. But that’s it. 

Decisions need to be taken on a micro level; national government is too macro for this situation. Blanket rules won’t work now. We need to adapt and adjust by location, age, job and risk. We need to give people clarity and reliability. 

We need to think local and use more intelligent data analysis. Look at hospital admissions, not just infections and deaths. Look at demographics, postcodes, favourite ice-cream flavours. We’re a data-filled, algorithm-obsessed planet, so let’s use this to be nimble and clever.  Also on rt.com Cineworld to close all US & UK movie theaters this week, putting 45,000 jobs at risk

The R-rate in Birmingham should not be affecting my ability to have a pint and a pasty in Falmouth. If I’m 25 (I’m not) I should have more freedom than is currently being offered, because I’m statistically at less risk than someone who’s 85. However, I should also have more responsibility for the 85-year-olds, the asthmatics, the diabetics. Don’t punish me for being young and healthy, but encourage me to protect the vulnerable – and maybe have a punishment up your sleeve if I don’t. 

Mini local lockdowns and short-term local furlough schemes with defined time limits could be used as ‘circuit-breakers’ for the spread of infection. If pubs shut for one weekend, for example, with help and clarity they can adjust and cope. As can pub-goers. These are bumps in the road, not walls to smash into.

People and businesses should be trusted to be ‘Covid-smart,’ too. Rule one of this pandemic (and of life) should read ‘Don’t be a d**k,’ and we work from that. Everyone should have the right to work from home if they can, but also the right to go to a safe place of work. Have restrictions in a cinema, sure, but not at a funeral. Give guidelines on hygiene and safety but allow us to be sensible with things like mask use, social-distancing and numbers at gatherings, particularly when it comes to friends and family. No one (well, very few people) want to give their nearest and dearest a dose of a potentially deadly bug. Not even at Christmas. 

I’m just spitballing here but all of this makes more sense than harsher, ineffective rules that breed resentment, discord and disorder. It’s all about less pain, more gain – the opposite of that Newton principle. The less you press people, the less likely they are to overreact. Give them room to breathe and adjust and they’ll feel like they’re being treated as adults. But there will be idiots, so don’t spare the rod on those who flagrantly abuse that freedom to the detriment of others. Carrot dangled, stick held behind the back.

This is not about belittling the obvious dangers of the virus; too many people have died and suffered for anyone vaguely intelligent to do that (comparing it to other causes of illness isn’t logical or helpful, thanks). It’s about facing up to reality and necessity, and dealing with these two very annoying things in a way that allows people to live as normally and happily as possible, protects their jobs and businesses, and looks after their mental and physical health. 

The UK government has consistently blamed its failings on the public, despite using Covid to give itself dictatorship-like powers. So we might as well be given the chance to fail – or succeed – on our own terms.

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As Boris Johnson announces Britain’s ‘great reset’, were the Covid ‘conspiracy theorists’ right all along? — RT Op-ed

Posted by M. C. on October 8, 2020

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/502795-boris-johnson-uk-great-reset/

Neil Clark

Neil Clark

is a journalist, writer, broadcaster and blogger. His award winning blog can be found at http://www.neilclark66.blogspot.com. He tweets on politics and world affairs @NeilClark66

The UK Prime Minister’s remote speech to his party conference saw him dismiss the idea of returning to normality. Is he using Covid-19 to follow the World Economic Forum’s ‘Great Reset’ agenda, as many have warned?

It’s not really about public health or a virus. They have another agenda.’ That’s what the so-called ‘conspiracy theorists’ have been saying since March, when the first British lockdowns were imposed and our lives were turned upside down. 

Those ‘conspiracy theorists’ were denounced, as always, as ‘cranks’ and ‘flat-Earthers’ but here we are in October, and, let’s face it, there is absolutely no sign, despite very low numbers of deaths ‘with’ Coronavirus, that we are returning to anything like normal. In fact, in his keynote speech yesterday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson specifically ruled out a return to normal, not even with a vaccine.

After all we have been through, it isn’t enough just to go back to normal. We have lost too much. History teaches us that things of this magnitude – wars, famines, plagues, events that affect the vast bulk of humanity, as this virus has – they do not just come and go. They can be the trigger for economic and social change.” 

When I heard Johnson utter those words I thought, ‘where have I heard this stuff before?’ Well, the answer is in the book ‘Covid-19: The Great Reset’ by Klaus Schwab, the executive chairman of the World Economic Forum, and Thierry Malleret. They too, like Johnson, invoked the Second World War as the trigger for fundamental changes, not only to the global order and global economy, but to society and the way human beings interact with one another. Like Johnson, they don’t want to return to normal. “Many of us are pondering when things will return to normal. The short response is never.” Also on rt.com ‘No peasants, please’: BoJo’s love-in with Bill Gates on Twitter shows just how broken UK democracy really is

Instead, Schwab and Malleret want a world changed forever by a virus which they admit is only ‘mild’ compared to others in history. Covid-19 is seen as the catalyst for the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’. 

As to where all this is heading, I recommend you read Schwab’s ‘Great Reset’, and his earlier ‘The Fourth Industrial Revolution’, but please don’t do so late at night, because they will probably give you nightmares. Schwab’s elitist Davos-man utopia is a trans-human, socially distanced, utterly soulless dystopia for the rest of us. Think of the most terrifying sci-film you’ve ever watched and that still doesn’t go anywhere near it. And the worst thing is that it is sold to us as some kind of ‘progressive’ vision.

Johnson, in his speech yesterday, showed he’s a fully-signed up ‘Great Resetter’. It was, for me, the most chilling oration ever made by any British prime minister at a party conference. 

The man who justified a national lockdown in March on a purely temporary three-week basis to ‘flatten the curve’, and ‘protect the NHS’, and who said in the summer, after the lockdown had lasted three months, that he hoped Britain would return to ‘significant normality’ by November, now tells us: “We have been through too much frustration and hardship just to settle for the status quo ante – to think that life can go on as it was before the plague; and it will not… We are resolving not to go back to 2019.”

For Johnson, using the globalists’ phrase ‘Build Back Better’, this is the time to launch Britain on the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’. “From internet shopping to working from home, it looks as though Covid has massively accelerated changes in the world of work… as old jobs are lost and as new ones are created… The Covid crisis is a catalyst for change…” he said. 

Did Schwab actually write his speech? It looks like it. Although Johnson didn’t use the phrase ‘The Fourth Industrial Revolution’, he did mention a ‘Green Industrial Revolution’ twice.

Johnson foresees a future in which every home in Britain relies on wind power (he certainly produces a lot of that), and “instead of being dragged on big commutes to the city” people can “start a business in their home town… and bring up their children in the neighbourhoods where they grew up themselves.” 

Working from home is here to stay, with “gigabit broadband,” shopping from home, conferencing from home… in fact, let’s do everything from home. Who needs to meet other human beings? Not that there’d be anywhere to meet, with pubs, cinemas and theatres all closed down due to the never-ending coronavirus restrictions. 

Johnson pledged to make Britain “the greatest place on Earth” but to me it sounds more like hell. The question, as ever, is who benefits? Also on rt.com Boris Johnson’s £100bn Operation Moonshot needs to be shot down – fast

The World Economic Forum, founded by Schwab, has been incredibly influential when it comes to the changes we’ve already seen in 2020, and what is being openly planned for the future. It was the WEF which co-hosted the Event 201 conference in New York in October 2019, which modelled a fictional global pandemic. 

It was at the WEF’s annual meeting in Davos on January 24, 2020 that Bill Gates’ Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness and Innovations (CEPI) held a press conference to announce a ‘new partnership’to develop vaccines for the virus, when the number of confirmed worldwide cases was still in the hundreds.

It was the WEF’s Schwab who declared in June: “The pandemic represents a rare but narrow window of opportunity to reflect, reimagine and reset our world.

It was the WEF that in July was promoting a Covid-19 Health Passport app, the ‘brainchild’ of one of its ‘Young Global Leaders’, as the future for travel and attending events.  

Travelling with confidence.📕 Read more: https://t.co/VIihRPwJPcpic.twitter.com/QmRGhYfURG— World Economic Forum (@wef) July 30, 2020

And for those who don’t have the app or a ‘negative‘ test result? Well, you can just stay at home.

Conspiracy theorists eh?”The World Economic Forum-backed project aims to create the first globally recognised proof that a passenger has tested negative for the virus before a flight, using a digital certificate downloaded to a mobile phone” https://t.co/4RHLzeXeCv— Simon Dolan #KBF (@simondolan) October 7, 2020

If you take a look at the founding partners of the WEF’s Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution you’ll see names such as Microsoft, Palantir, Facebook, Netflix and Gavi, The Vaccine Alliance, founded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Yes, that’s right, hi-tech online giants and hi-tech multi-billionaires supporting a big shift towards a stay-at-home, ‘do everything on the Internet’ society.  

Is it a ‘conspiracy theory’ to say that Covid-19 is being used as a convenient opportunity to introduce long-planned changes to the economy and society, when those pushing for such changes like Schwab openly talk of there being a “rare but narrow window” for a major ‘reset’? 

Actually, after Johnson’s speech yesterday, the biggest ‘conspiracy theorists’ now are those who DON’T think the British government is working to another agenda.

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Boris’s new Covid restrictions are unscientific mumbo jumbo and an exercise in futility that will wreak havoc on millions — RT Op-ed

Posted by M. C. on September 25, 2020

But this is no oversight. It is a low trick the mandarins have conjured to avoid the consequences of their actions – they can always change the story post hoc. Like so much else of modern Britain, it could have come straight out of Orwell. Unsurprisingly, those 32 brave dissenters suffered personal abuse and their calls were ignored, as the government announced their half-baked scheme that very evening.

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/501522-covid-restrictions-unscientific-havoc-british/

By Peter Andrews, Irish science journalist and writer based in London. He has a background in the life sciences, and graduated from the University of Glasgow with a degree in genetics

I accept my dissenting voice may not be heeded by the UK government, but when a former Supreme Court judge delivers a damning verdict that the rules are ‘pointless, arbitrary and unnecessary’, shouldn’t they be listening?

The UK has announced a fresh suite of draconian Covid restrictions, with Prime Minister Boris Johnson warning they could be in place for six months. But, like all previous attempts, the new rules are worse than useless.

You’ve all heard the new rules by now, so I won’t analyse the details of what the individual implications will be. Just as poring over a government white paper based on astrology would be pointless, tepid nit-picking within the nascent pseudoscience of ‘Covidology’ is an exercise in futility. It’s also an immediate acceptance of the quacks’ terms of the argument.

‘The rule of six’ could be ‘the rule of seven’, the pubs could close at midnight or 10pm, level 4, 5 or 75 could be enforced – none of this would make any difference. Nor is it acceptable. The fiddled numbers, the fake compromises, the newspeak – all of it is misdirection. In a nutshell, this doubling down means nothing less than the acceleration of an end to the free, decent life to which all human beings are born entitled. Only a total return to normality should be demanded, and it’s non-negotiable.

Heavyweight opposition

Just ask former Supreme Court justice Lord Jonathan Sumption, who has been making waves this week with his scathing analysis of the government’s madcap plot. He’s dubbed Johnson’s ‘rule of six’ “pointless, arbitrary and unnecessary”. 

It’s pointless, he says, because, without a Stasi-like secret army of citizen spies, it cannot be enforced. He is correct, of course (although I don’t consider the likelihood of an army of snitchers quite as unlikely as he seems to). It’s arbitrary because it’s far from universal – people mix in much larger numbers in schools and workplaces, on public transport and in the streets, all of which is essential. And it’s unnecessary because the increase in positive tests is being driven – as Health Secretary Matt Hancock is so fond of reminding us – by the young, to whom the disease poses relatively little threat.

Lord Sumption’s verdict is a pretty comprehensive takedown of the prime minister by one of the finest legal minds in the country, and every word of it is right.

I would add one more adjective to the list, to apply to all Covid restrictions from national lockdowns to hand-washing: unscientific. That’s not to claim that alcoholic soap, say, does not kill viral particles. I have no doubt that it does. But my question to any scientist would be “why are we trying to kill viral particles?” A reason for pitting state power against an endemic respiratory virus is never asked for or given. If you think the answer is self-evident, then please briefly and clearly outline it. Otherwise, I suggest you recall the words of the Hippocratic Oath, and first do no harm.

What’s the plan?

A large part of the problem is that the government has stopped declaring what it is that it’s  trying to do. Is it flattening the curve, getting to zero cases of Covid, or what? As 32 top scientists wrote in their open letter to the government leadership this week, without a clearly stated objective, “neither the overarching strategy, nor individual policy choices within it, can be evaluated”.

But this is no oversight. It is a low trick the mandarins have conjured to avoid the consequences of their actions – they can always change the story post hoc. Like so much else of modern Britain, it could have come straight out of Orwell. Unsurprisingly, those 32 brave dissenters suffered personal abuse and their calls were ignored, as the government announced their half-baked scheme that very evening.

I try never to wave my scientific education in people’s faces in arguments, and, not being a devoted scholar, would never claim to be truly expert in any realm of science. But one thing a scientific education does teach you is that scientists can be just as irrational, cultish and politically compromised as everybody else. Do not ‘trust the experts’. Never ‘follow the science’. These are often PR canards designed to boondoggle people into horrible conditions that their instincts scream against. Trust your instincts, and believe in evidence, not politics dressed up as science.

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Crossing the Rubicon: The UK Slips into a Repressive State – OffGuardian

Posted by M. C. on August 3, 2020

I’m forced now to doubt that we, the British people value our freedom as much as we profess to. We take to the streets in droves to embrace new forms of repression, such as an anarchistic movement that seeks to rewrite history and dismantle our police forces, or an anti-human death cult that seeks to suppress all human activity by frightening us all into believing we are destroying the Earth by existing.

https://off-guardian.org/2020/07/31/crossing-the-rubicon-the-uk-slips-into-a-repressive-state/

Mark Chapman

Julius Caesar’s crossing the Rubicon River in 49 BC in defiance of Roman law placed him and his army on a direct collision course with Rome, leading to the Civil War which established him as Roman dictator. It is a well-established metaphor for a point at which there is no going back and at which things will never be the same.

I predicted a few weeks ago that the UK Government would in the near future try to force everyone to wear facemasks in public. Leave aside the plethora of information that makes it clear face masks are of practically zero benefit in everyday circumstances, and may in fact be dangerous, the forced wearing of facemasks is a transgression so fundamental and of such significance that it is difficult to adequately express.

It implicitly hands your body over to state control, and renders one of your most basic existential freedoms subject to state interference. For the first time, the right to exercise a choice of whether you should inhibit your respiratory faculties and hide your face in public is taken out of your hands. If you doubt the significance of this, try to remember the public outcry that followed a debate regarding banning the wearing of burkhas and hijabs in the face of Islamic terrorism, and the connotations this had for civil liberties at the time.

Facemask wearing is the visible hallmark of Asian states perceived in the West as repressive and authoritarian. It is a badge of serfdom, akin to the yellow star that Jews were forced to wear in Nazi Germany. There is no greater invasion of your person possible short of tattooing you with a number.

This astonishing about-turn in policy has not happened overnight or without preparation. It has been preceded by a cleverly-orchestrated media campaign which seeks to bizarrely turn established professional and scientific research on its head, making virologists, infection-control bodies and academics who have published papers for the medical profession into liars and charlatans.

This campaign has included editorials and blogs which talk in disapproving and accusatory tones of “mask-shirkers” and “mask-deniers” allegedly “refusing” to wear face masks. Leave aside the obvious fact that refusal cannot take place without a demand: in other words someone has to give you an instruction to which you reply, “No, thanks.”

Absent such a demand, you are not refusing anything, merely making a choice. And until now there has been no such demand. But those making this choice are now psychopaths and enemies of humanity without a shred of integrity, respect or regard for their fellow human beings. When I returned from Asia early this year the advice was clear: face masks do not protect you from infection and it is not advised that you wear them.

What is more, face mask wearing was actively discouraged because of limited supplies required for hospital environments, where infection control is king and every precaution makes sense. Above all the only situation in which it is appropriate to wear a facemask in public is if you are unwell and have a cough, in which case why not stay at home?

But this piece of simple logic has been covered by the mask-advocates whose logic runs like this: “You may have coronavirus without knowing it, and may infect others with your breath even at unlimited distances so you need to wear a mask.” This covers all bases despite the evidence for this being at best negligible and at worst manipulated and dishonest.

It is part of the greater logic that renders every societal value worthless unless it contributes to the impossible task of making sure that not one single individual anywhere, ever, is infected with Covid-19. None of this means I think we should do nothing about this pandemic. But there is now a growing awareness that the cure proposed is not indefinitely sustainable and may in fact be worse than the disease.

The virtue-signalling of face-mask advocates is easily refuted. Facemasks have been available for decades for use in industry and ideas generally considered good are taken up by the public. Nobody needed the government to tell them to go out and buy a car or a television set.

So if you’re so convinced face masks are a good idea why has it taken the State to tell you before you came to this Eureka moment?

And for how many years or decades have you been going around disrespectfully infecting your fellow human beings by going out without a mask when you had a cold or the flu?

However, apparently all the established research is now wrong and face mask wearing is essential. It is a vast game of “Simon Says,” in which we only do anything when Simon says. And it won’t stop there. Expect newspapers like the Guardian to run sanctimonious editorials demanding that face-mask wearing be extended to pubs and restaurants, and eventually to every departure from your home.

Following this such a move will become policy: indeed, the British public will do what they are already doing, gleefully embracing this perverse doctrine, boasting of buying colourful face masks for their children, and showering anyone who has a different point of view with disapproval.

I’m forced now to doubt that we, the British people value our freedom as much as we profess to. We take to the streets in droves to embrace new forms of repression, such as an anarchistic movement that seeks to rewrite history and dismantle our police forces, or an anti-human death cult that seeks to suppress all human activity by frightening us all into believing we are destroying the Earth by existing.

But in the face of mounting attacks on our liberty and our freedom, we are silent. We have had our liberty taken away from us. Our movements are monitored. Our discussions are censored via social media. We are no longer free even to make fundamental choices about our bodies. A public that will silently accept these things has learned nothing from history, will accept anything and deserves its fate if that is a dystopian world-state.

We are no longer entitled to lecture other nations about being repressive states. Their representatives, quite rightly in my view would laugh in our faces. There is a growing fear in the minds of many of us that Western lockdowns may be permanent. The spectres of identity cards, martial law and forced vaccination now hover over us.

Dismissing this as “conspiracy theory” and accusing those who feel this way of an inhuman disregard for life is the rhetoric of fascism, a force that always thrives in the face of a perceived threat. I believe forced face-mask wearing in British streets is a brutal act that crosses the Rubicon, and finally signifies our descent into a de facto repressive state.

Mark Chapman is an artist and educator based in the UK. His work is often concerned with questioning established narratives where evidence is contrary to these. You can read more of his work at his blog Humanism

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The Seven-Step Path from Pandemic to Totalitarianism – OffGuardian

Posted by M. C. on July 30, 2020

https://off-guardian.org/2020/04/23/the-seven-step-path-from-pandemic-to-totalitarianism/

There are just seven steps from pandemic declaration to permanent totalitarianism – and many jurisdictions are about to start Step 5

Rosemary Frei

As if it was planned in advance, billions of people around the globe are being forced step by rapid step into a radically different way of life, one that involves far less personal, physical and financial freedom and agency.

Here is the template for rolling this out.

Step 1

A new virus starts to spread around the world. The World Health Organization (WHO) declares a pandemic.

International agencies, public-health officials, politicians, media and other influential voices fan fear by focusing almost exclusively on the contagiousness of the virus and the rising numbers of cases, and by characterizing the virus as extremely dangerous.

Within a few days governments at national and local levels also declare states of emergency. At lightning speed they impose lock-down measures that confine most people to their homes – starting with closing schools – and shut down much of the global economy. World markets implode.

The stunned, fearful and credulous public – convinced over the previous few years that their bodies do not have the natural ability to react to pathogens by producing antibodies that confer long-lasting immunity – largely complies willingly.

The first weekly virtual class on local emergency and crisis responses to COVID19 is held for mayors and other city officials around the world. Coordinated by a handful of American organizations in the academic, medical, financial, political and transportation spheres, the classes feature guests ranging from Barack Obama to Bill Gates.

Step 2

National, state/provincial and municipal leaders, as well as public-health officials, start daily press briefings. They use them to pump out frightening statistics and modelling asserting the virus has the potential to kill many millions.

Most of this information is hard to decipher and sheds little real light on the natural course of the virus’s spread through each geographic area.

Officials and media downplay or distort inconveniently low death tolls from the virus and instead focus on alarming statistics produced by compliant academics, social-media influencers and high-profile organizations.

The main message is that this is a war and many lives are at stake unless virtually everybody stays at home. Mainstream media amplify the trope that the world is at the mercy of the virus.

Simultaneously, central banks and governments hand out massive amounts of cash largely to benefit the big banks. And they bring in giant private-sector financial firms to manage the process despite these global companies’ very poor track record in the 2008-2009 crash. Governments also rapidly start to create trillions of pounds’ worth of programs that include compensating businesses and workers for their shutdown-related losses.

Step 3

There is a concerted effort by all levels of government and public health to very rapidly ramp up testing for viral RNA, along with production of personal protective equipment.

They push aside the need for regulation, including quality standards and independent verification of tests’ rates of accuracy, by insisting that fast approval and roll-out are imperative for saving lives.

Models are released that predict snowballing of numbers of cases, hospitalizations and deaths even under best-case scenarios.

At about the same time, public-health officials significantly loosen the criteria for viral infections, outbreaks and deaths, particularly in the oldest members of society. That increases the numbers of cases and deaths ascribed to the new pathogen.

The media continue to clamour for more testing and for severe punishment of people who aren’t completely compliant with the lock-down measures.

As a result, there’s little backlash as police and military with sweeping new powers enforce these measures and give stiff penalties or even jail terms to those who disobey orders. States also monitor with impunity massive numbers of people’s movements via their cellphones.

Vast human resources are focused on tracking down people who have had contact with a virus-positive individual and confining them to their homes. Thus the portion of the public exposed to the virus remains relatively small.

It also contributes to social isolation. Among many effects, this enables those in control to even further erase individual and collective choices, voices and power.

Step 4

When the numbers of cases and deaths start to plateau, local officials claim it’s too early to tell whether the virus has finished passing through their population and therefore, restrictive measures must continue.

An alternative narrative is that if such measures aren’t kept in place there will be a resurgence of cases and deaths. Yet another is that the continuing climb in elderly persons’ deaths means all bets are off for the time being.

They admit that initial models incorrectly predicted there would be a tsunami of cases, ICU admissions and deaths. However, they assert more time is needed before it can be determined whether it’s safe to loosen some of the restrictions and let children return to school or adults go back to work.

Officials do not try to calculate the overall skyrocketing cost to their populations and economies of the shut-downs and other measures against, nor do they discuss what cost level may be too high.

They and powerful media organizations also push for the massive virus-testing over-capacity to be used to surveil the general population for viral RNA in their bodies. At the same time, the roll-out begins of widespread blood testing for antibodies to the virus.

Meanwhile, new data are published showing the virus has a high capacity to mutate. Scientists and officials interpret this as meaning a larger medical arsenal will be needed to combat it.

Step 5

About two or three weeks later, the dramatic increase in testing for viral RNA produces the desired goal of a significant upsurge in the number of people found positive for the virus.

Public-health officials add jet fuel to the surge by adding to their case and death tallies the large number of people who are only suspected – and not lab-test-confirmed – to have had an infection. Politicians and public-health officials tell the populace this means they cannot return to their jobs or other activities outside the home for the time being.

Governments work with public-health agencies, academics, industry, the WHO and other organizations to start to design and implement immunity-passport systems for using the results of the widespread antibody testing to determine who can be released from the lock-downs. This is one of many goals of the seven steps.

Meanwhile, government leaders continue to highlight the importance of vaccines for besting the virus.

Step 6

Large-scale human testing of many different types of antivirals and vaccines begins, thanks to a concerted push from the WHO, Bill Gates and his collaborators, pharmaceutical and biotech companies, governments and universities.

Large swaths of the population don’t have the antibodies to the virus because they’ve been kept from being exposed to it; they eagerly accept these medications even though they’ve been rushed to market with inadequate safety testing. They believe these medical products offer the only hope for escaping the virus’s clutches.

Step 7

Soon the new virus starts another cycle around the globe – just as influenza and other viruses have every year for millennia. Officials again fan the flames of fear by positing the potential for millions of deaths among people not yet protected from the virus.

They rapidly roll out virus and antibody testing again, while companies sell billions more doses of antivirals and booster vaccines.

Governments simultaneously cede control of all remaining public assets to global companies. This is because local and national governments’ tax bases were decimated during Step 1 and they’re virtually bankrupt from their unprecedented spending in the war against the virus in the other steps.

The overall result is complete medicalization of the response to the virus, which on a population level is no more harmful than influenza.

This is coupled with the creation of permanent totalitarianism controlled by global companies and a 24/7 invasive-surveillance police state supported by widespread blossoming of ‘smart’ technology.

The key players repeat the cycle of hysteria and massive administration of antivirals and booster shots every few months.

And they implement a variation of steps 1 to 7 when another new pathogen appears on the planet.

Sounds far-fetched? Unfortunately, it’s not.

With the arrival of COVID19 many countries quickly completed Steps 1, 2 and 3.

Step 4 is well under way in a large number of jurisdictions.

Step 5 is on track to start in early May.

Rosemary Frei has an MSc in molecular biology from a faculty of medicine and was a freelance medical writer and journalist for 22 years. She is now an independent investigative journalist in Toronto, Ontario. You can find her earlier article on the novel coronavirus for Off-Guardian here, watch and listen to an interview she gave on COVID19 and follow her on Twitter.

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