Do the faux-libertarians opposing lockdown actually want to kill us ?

“We should not need the government to tell us when we can go to the pub or out for a meal.” Rod Liddle in the “Sunday Times”

But we do Rod, that’s exactly what we need. One of the roles of Government is to protect us from others, and from ourselves. As long as I can remember people have railed against “Health and Safety” as some sort of infringement of our personal liberty. Which of course it is. Our liberty to kill ourselves or others accidentally.

I remember my Dad back in the 1960s exploding against Barbara Castle over the breathalyser and seat belts. He and his golfing friends were outraged at this restriction of our freedom – our freedom to be arrogant tosspots actually.

As citizens we have to accept that government and the law curbs what we do.— that a civilised society has to have rules. We must hope that Government acts rationally – which means that it takes due regard of expert advice. A good test is to look at what others are doing. Across Europe countries, taking expert advice, are responding to the Second Wave with a Second Lockdown. It’s not just us.

A driver of populist politics is libertarianism. The idea that we, especially we English, must have the right to do what we like. Whatever the experts say. All of those who truly understood economics knew that Brexit was a very bad idea indeed. But Michael Gove told us that it was alright to stop listening to experts. The same with lockdown. We responded far too late to impose the first lockdown and lifted it too soon. Plus ça change.

Getting the balance between authoritarianism and freedom right isn’t easy. But when increasing numbers of our fellow citizens are dying horrible deaths caused by a virulent and hugely contagious disease to restrict freedoms to prevent its spread ought to be uncontentious. But then you know Rod – he knows best…

One thought on “Do the faux-libertarians opposing lockdown actually want to kill us ?

  1. I had to look that phrase up Paddy. The Urban Dictionary has it as ‘Someone who constantly talks about their liberal viewpoints to overcompensate for other things’.The consequence of “Faux-Liberalism” can be seen in the USA. Today 10.5 million cases and rising. 242,000 deaths. Doubtless, loony Liddle and Trump find that an acceptable inevitability of their form of ‘freedom’.
    Compare that with China to name but one state that has managed to control Covid. 92,000 cases 4,780 deaths with a population of almost 1.4 billion. Of course, the liberal right would claim China falsifies their figures. That may have some credibility but I am sure the truth would emerge somehow if it were true.
    The entire purpose of government is to protect its citizens from harm otherwise what the point of it? Faux-Liberalism is just a fancy phrase for doing nothing or an excuse for not having a clue.

    Like

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