*An allusion to Who can Replace a Man? by Brian Aldiss.
There are encouraging local signs that, after three irrational years, the COVID scare is ending. First, I saw that our local hardware-cum-everything-else store had removed its useless Perspex barriers and queuing separation system; although Tesco still has their screens it gave up on social distancing months ago. Then my wife tells me our dentist’s waiting room is now open, so you no longer have to bang on the door for admission and pass a gauntlet of hand-detoxification before being treated by a dentist in a diving-suit. Lastly I notice that our church no longer opens the windows in freezing storms (the one measure that had some science behind it).
But on the other hand, all this is occurring at a time when friends finding they have come within spitting distance of someone testing (still testing!) positive for COVID will go into purdah for a couple of weeks, whether or not they have cold symptoms. Those who got the bug a few weeks after their third booster last year are still walking around double-masked, and it seems impolite to ask them whether that is because they know the vaccine has destroyed their immunity, or whether they fancy they will shed viruses for ever.
In short, there is a mixture of persisting paranoia combined with blase indifference to the ongoing winter infection spike and excess deaths (which are not far short of the peak of COVID deaths in early 2020). People are like sheep without a shepherd, or robots without a man. And indeed that’s the case, because the powers that be, medical or political, have done nothing to guide us out of the “end of the pandemic.” The lack of any exit strategy, which I noted in 2020, persists now, just as it does in Iraq after (or still during?) our invasion there.
In other news, there has been the revelation by Big Brother Watch that half a dozen security agencies were set loose on dissidents like Julia Hartley-Brewer, Peter Hitchens, Carl Heneghan and David Davis, to do surveillance and, at least, ask social media to censor them. They have not owned up to hacking e-mails or direct involvement in character-assassination or cancellation, but they wouldn’t, would they, because Edward Snowden showed it is naughty.
To me, the most interesting information came in an interview of David Davis by Hartley-Brewer (or vice-versa – it’s hard to tell with her interviews). Davis mentioned that the surveillance began in March 2020, before any firm knowledge about the virus was available (so before there could possibly be “misinformation”) and certainly before the COVID Act provided any legal powers to spy on UK citizens. Davis is interested in this as a case of government overreach, but what we now know about the “pandemic” makes that unlikely.
More plausible is that the narrative-control by security agencies, including the infamous 77th Brigade, snapped into place so quickly because, as Robert F. Kennedy Jnr., amongst others, has revealed, the whole shambles was from the start a biosecurity operation, not a public health emergency. We know that from soon after the time of 9/11, US spooks, with the assistance of Big Pharma, Big Philanthropy and a chunk of the virology trade, had been formulating draconian responses to a possible bioweapons attack. Whether they ever believed Russia or China, Isis or Al Qaeda, were likely to do this, or whether they were planning to do it themselves and mitigate the effects at home, is not clear. Only our side shows signs of actually initiating gain-of-function research, mind you. But we do know, from all the exercises and policies whose records are accessible, that lockdowns, mask-mandates, mass-testing and the rest of it were all designed to quarantine the population until, supposedly, effective vaccines became available.
All of these measures fly in the face of established public health principles, scientific data and, in many cases, common sense (eg wearing a mask standing up in a restaurant, but not when sitting). But biosecurity spooks are ignorant of public health science, and in any case, the aim was always to scare and control the population, not protect them.
And so like the lockstep response of governments in the Western bloc, subsequently imposed upon the rest of the world, the early deployment of intelligence agencies to suppress dissidence makes perfect sense if it was biosecurity-led. It makes a lot more sense than supposing that Boris Johnson and Matt Hancock spontaneously thought of mobilising the 77th Brigade against their own voters in March 2020.
But now the military-industrial complex has other things to worry about, namely fomenting regime change against Russia and/or China. The intelligence community, one would suppose, has its hands full in surveilling and suppressing those who draw attention to the insanity and inhumanity of prolonging the sufferings of the Ukrainian people, as it has previously done for the people of Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Somalia, and so on back to Vietnam and beyond.
If you take the policy-driven leadership of the security services away from the COVID effort, what do you expect to happen? That is especially relevant if the middle-men like Fauci, Collins, Whitty, and Vallance have taken their pensions, knightoods and Pharma shares, and if many of the political prime movers, like Johnson or Ardern, have gone on to higher things.
I would expect that those lower-echelons (such as doctors and their leaders, journalists, SAGE members, or spokesmen for Big Pharma) who were once waving the flag for restrictions would continue to do so to cover their backs, or else find weasel-ways to backtrack. Those in power would be trying to sweep things under the carpet, by blocking inquiries into excess deaths, or stage-managing official investigations to produce the usual bland results too far in the future to matter.
At the other end of the scale, ordinary members of the public would show a mixture of continued compliance, shamefaced deprogramming, or simply boredom combined with following the crowd in forgetting about the whole thing. In addition, of course, catching a cold is the least of your worries if you can’t afford to live.
In other words, we would see exactly the same confused and contradictory mess that is, in fact, the state of COVID in Britain, and no doubt the rest of the world, today.
It’s no more rational than what has been going on for the last three years, but the situation allows individuals to live by common sense rather than by lies, at least with respect to COVID. Just make sure you don’t refer to “boys and girls,” criticise Net Zero, or say you like Prokoviev when you’re in company. You are still, remember, under surveillance.