The government is failing their coronavirus strategy. Their approach to the problem has left them treating the nation as if we are children, writes, Sean Walsh.

In September 2012, the remains of Richard III were discovered underneath a car park in Leicester. Had that archaeological triumph been delayed by about 8 years then I think we all know that Public Health England would have moved in and insisted on its own preferred protocol when it comes to "cause of death".

Because let's be in no doubt: this government and its "sock puppet" agencies are monkeying the figures. The transgressions are both mathematical and linguistic: sometimes it's a combination of the two. Why are we being subject to this, month on month?

Maybe it's a sort of Covid Poker of Idiocy: Hancock pops up in the media to show that he doesn't understand that the "false positive" metric applies to recorded positives and not to tests returned overall; Grant Shapps raises him in the idiot stakes to disclose that he doesn't understand the difference between a "positive test" and a "case".

These are our betters, Ladies and Gentlemen, the ones who would lock you up (again) on the basis of an inchoate "science" they do not even dimly understand. This government deserves some measure of sympathy. It was gifted a problem it was (is) incapable of dealing with.

Because governments can never "defeat" the microscopic residues of evolution. Why on earth believe that you can? There's an episode of The Simpsons in which it's disclosed that the reliably evil "Mr Burns" is only kept alive by an equilibrium of viruses in his body. As with all things Simpsons: this is not implausible as a wider hypothesis.

"Covid-19" isn't a simple virus but a family member of a complex cluster of viruses which mutate according to their own timelines. It is hubristic to think that we can "defeat" it. This government is acting like a 10-year-old child who has been handed a Rubik's Cube. The child is jubilant when she "solves" one side but becomes increasingly frustrated when she then mucks the rest of it up. The attempts to "correct" the initial error become addictive. The failure to do so ever more histrionic.

Write for us.

We're always on the lookout for talented writers and welcome submissions. Please send your opinion piece or pitch to:

This virus will not succumb to the easy algorithms which (when you know them) allow the practitioner to restore the Cube to its original state. So why is this government ("sock agencies" etc) not talking to us as adults? Two reasons.

The first is that our government has lost touch with the Truth. In 1986 the philosopher Harry Frankfurt published a paper called On Bullsh@t, in which he delineated two types of dishonesty: one which involves lies; and the other which indulges fakery. The liar, he argues, will always have a grudging admiration for Truth -he has to, because he can't afford to get things wrong. The faker, on the other hand, will say whatever they have to in order to manipulate what is going on around him.

The faker is worse than the liar because, having scant respect for the Truth, he will end up deceiving himself. Self-deception is always a sort of second-order deception. And that's what makes it worse.

This is the real form of dishonesty that this government needs to address. The fakery at the heart of it. The manipulations by Hancock and Johnson, the disgraceful violations against statistics and language, have been itemised by mathematicians such as Carl Heneghan; in epidemiology by Professor Sunetra Gupta and Dr John Lee; and "in the round" by the wonderful work done by Will Jones and Toby Young at 'lockdown sceptics'.

The government is not listening to any of this. Not because it is evil but because it is faking. It has wrapped itself in a set of self-delusions from which you cannot emerge without help.

The second reason the government is treating us like children is, of because, because the UK public is acting like a sufferer from Stockholm Syndrome who -unforgivably- colluded in her initial abduction. We have allowed ourselves -many of us- to be convinced of two things: that death is the worst thing that can happen to you (which of course it isn't) and that by locking yourself away you can avoid death (which of course you can't).

The government's Corona strategy was wrong at the outset, given that the "outset" was several months after C-19 was showing up in the European sewage systems. Viruses, when they are endemic (as this one has been since November) do not respect government graphs. I suspect that Mr Johnson knows this and would love to be helped out of his embarrassment.

37 votes

Sign-up for free to stay up to date with the latest political news, analysis and insight from the Comment Central team.

By entering your email address you are agreeing to Comment Central’s privacy policy