ALL the political parties represented at Westminster and most of their MPs are ignoring the interests of the 99 per cent of the British population who will neither get seriously ill, nor die from, Covid-19. In a democratic society which should value all lives and livelihoods equally, how could the interests of the 99 per cent be less important than those of the 1 per cent?
It cannot be that MPs are unaware of the damage being caused to society by the restrictions and lockdowns, and by now they should know the basic epidemiology of respiratory diseases, including Covid-19.
The implication is that MPs, political parties, and ministers are wilfully ignoring the evidence or are overwhelmed by generalised and irrational fears about the virus. This would explain the support from most politicians for any and all counter measures, including the Labour Party and SNP demands for more restrictions no matter what the cost.
Far from being rare, the pattern of minority interest dominating majority interest has become the norm.
The Green Party stands on a radical, regressive de-industrialisation manifesto and consistently gets around 3 per cent of the vote in UK elections. Mostly because of the cost of subsidising expensive solar and wind, energy prices have risen by over 40 per cent in the last five years, way ahead of inflation. This outcome is the direct result of Green policies. They disproportionately hurt low-income households yet governments ignore the impact on the majority and adopt the policies, so allowing the Green Party to get its way despite being unpopular and bar one MP, unrepresented.
The former Conservative MEP, Daniel Hannan, has pointed out that when the public are actually consulted on statues of those deemed by the America-based Black Lives Matter (BLM) organisation to be historical slave owners or racist, only 3 per cent wanted the memorials removed. Yet in most cases the views of a tiny minority have prevailed and local authorities and institutions such as universities, libraries and museums have covered up or removed statues, and often even references to people disapproved of by Black Lives Matter, without any consultation.
‘Taking the knee’ in deference to BLM has become de rigueur for footballers at most top level matches without any indication that most football fans or players support its radical political agenda such as the now removed anti-family ‘belief’ that ‘We disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement by supporting each other as extended families and “villages” that collectively care for one another, especially our children, to the degree that mothers, parents, and children are comfortable.’ No mention of fathers there of course.
It is not much of an assumption to say that this policy would be deeply unpopular with almost all footballers, fans and clubs in the UK.
Yet many large businesses, politicians, local authorities, quangos, museums, universities and schools openly support BLM and, by implication through flaunting their green credentials, increasingly expensive electricity for poor people.
It is hard to imagine the majority of visitors to the National Gallery believing in the BLM agenda, but that is of no consequence to the gallery’s director Gabriele Finaldi, who is reported as saying that the movement meant it was no longer feasible to remain politically neutral and that ‘the climate has changed so that silence is now perceived as being complicit’. Of course, silence does not mean agreement or complicity with a radical political agenda supported by hardly anyone.
Official approval for these usually well-organised campaigns relies on their high profile in the media, and on blackmail, shaming and fear of non-compliance, rather than convincing argument coupled with an assessment of campaign policies. In the case of the Covid-19 lockdown measures the full force of the state is deployed.
In all cases, of which these are just a few examples, compliance is portrayed as good, and supporters of the campaigns and the lockdown measures advertise their personal virtue, implying that non-compliance is intrinsically bad and even immoral. In this way policies are judged by the motives behind them rather than the outcomes, which is an invidious, as well as wrong, approach.
It is the poorest who bear the brunt of the negative consequences so typical of the resulting measures and policies. Accountability for the damage done is skilfully ignored, deferred or avoided.