Is it time to end the lockdown?

Toby Young joins Snowdon and Slater for the latest episode of Last Orders.


Is it time to end the lockdown? Was Trump right to defund the WHO? Could cigarettes be the miracle Covid treatment we’ve been waiting for? Toby Young joins Chris Snowdon and Tom Slater to discuss all this and more on the latest episode of Last Orders. Check out Toby’s new project, Lockdown Sceptics, here.

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Jackie Robbins

25th May 2020 at 2:20 am

We need to at least to inquire into the political motivations for the Lockdowns i.e. are they ONLY about health concerns? I think not.

Why did our leadership cop out to the China Authoritarian Model?

Are we supposed to “Get Used” to this objectionable political propaganda referred to as the “New Normal”?

Speaking as a philosophy prof in the Socratic Gadfly tradition, What the HELL does the New Normal mean? How can a passing virus change our entire social and political liberties Forever!?

In short, is the New Normal a Coup to impose the China Model on free societies?

THAT is far more threatening to Western free societies than the bloody virus! Do you guys know what I mean?

Thank you, Tom! Please do a podcast every day! I’m addicted to Spiked! 🙂 keep up the great work!

Gareth Edward KING

24th April 2020 at 11:09 pm

Curiously, the WHO also congratulated the Spanish government on its handling of the Covid-19 crisis. We’ve been under curfew here for six weeks and there’re still 16 days to go ‘at least’. I’m not sure why the panel here said that Spain was ‘coming out of a lockdown’. In what way? The schools are still closed with no likelihood of their opening again before late May. Sánchez has graciously indicated that shops could be open ‘mid-May’, and they’re still banging on about restricting access to beaches (which means ‘social distancing’ rules being observed). In Madrid the rent-a-bike service re-opened two days ago but it’s compulsory to use disposable gloves! There’s no logic to that at all. From Monday April 27th children are finally being allowed out but the conditions for their ‘release’ are onerous: not being more than one km from home, an hour maximum away, no access to parks and with a maximum of being with three brothers or sisters, the list goes on. In a similar vein to the UK, the Spanish have gone along with these draconian measures. If in Berlin and in the Dixie states people have been protesting, in Spain not a whimper.

Andrew Bailey

24th April 2020 at 6:11 pm

What happens if, as the statistics presently suggest, people from the BAME community and obese people are proven to be at a significant risk of catching and/or dying from Covid-19? We seem to be quite content to propose locking everyone up over the age of 70 for around a further year until a vaccine is found. Are we going to be as comfortable telling all Black, Middle Eastern and Asian people along with all those over a certain BMI that they have to stay in isolation while us skinny white sorts saunter around in freedom?

Vivian Darkbloom

24th April 2020 at 10:01 pm

Vitamin D. The Anglo-Caribbean part of my family take it in spray form. Sorted.

michael savell

24th April 2020 at 5:47 pm

James Knight,there was an effective treatment,Hydroxychloroquine,which should have been given to EVERYBODY,in different doses depending on whether existing conditions existed.That,allied to Zinc and an inflammatory would have saved many lives.The media gave it a thumbs down because of adverse risk without any thought as to risk versus certain death once hospitalised on a ventilator.Paludrine was a drug given to british soldiers serving in malaria ridden countries.Very rarely did malaria strike and furthermore I never saw any adverse effects.In early January when I first read about this virus I decided I would buy some.The surprise was that there was none to be had anywhere so somebody had either bought it all up or Govs had ordered for it to be removed from pharmacy shelves or,perhaps the chinese had bought it to sell back to us at a profit,they managed to do that with masks etc so why not control the only known cure.Our makers,in Westminster are totally despicable and our NHS is choc a bloc with those whose brains have been
sterilised and hung out to dry.Allied to a complacent public the situation is,or going to be chaotic,millions of people will die thanks to deliberate acts making everybody’s lives pure hell,all for a pill costing a few pence.If the Government had said”go out and spit on each other,”no doubt we would have done that too.I am 83 and a carer to my wife,are the immortal words”should I worry”resonate?

Iwan Hughes

24th April 2020 at 2:54 pm

the cigarette thing isn’t entirely counter-intuitive; perhaps our public health researchers could put some Covid-19s in a petri dish, blow smoke over them and see how they manage. If they all die, q.e.d. PHE and the WHO could become terribly conflicted though, so it might not be in the public, er, interest, er, roobarb roobarb….

Mark Houghton

24th April 2020 at 12:58 pm

They’ve already ended the lockdown on Westminster Bridge.

Highland Fleet Lute

24th April 2020 at 9:05 am

More proof that this government have lost their minds….

“New face mask advice explained as UK COVID-19 deaths reach 18,000″….

steve moxon

24th April 2020 at 8:08 am

This was a reply to ‘Vivian Darkbloom’ (his comment below).

steve moxon

24th April 2020 at 7:55 am

It never should have started.
It’s completely unaffordable, causes more problems, including deaths, than it saves, and is about the most inequitable measure ever, destroying the lives of many, whilst simply providing a long paid holiday for others.
It’s the single worst UK governmental decision in modern history — possibly since the decision needlessly to enter, indeed thereby create a ‘world’ war in 1914.


24th April 2020 at 8:06 am

Worse than Brexit? Hmmmm

David Margison

24th April 2020 at 11:56 am

I agree Steve. But the government was stuck between a rock and a hard place. ‘Dammed if they did & dammed if they didn’t’. As it’s turning out the lockdown is madness. The number of deaths this year are far less than in a bad flu year. The problem is the government will want to save face, I doubt they will suddenly open up the economy. The media in this country is a disgrace. Something has to be done, they lie incessantly, distort facts and attack everyone, they alone are responsible for the unnecessary fear of the sheeple in this country. Regarding
Zenobias Brexit comment. Democracy has thank goodness prevailed.

Highland Fleet Lute

24th April 2020 at 7:26 am

A brave new world without pubs. I feel sorry for all the red wall Brexiteers who took the leap of faith and voted for Boris Johnson in the last election in order to, at the very least, “get Brexit done”.

Bo-Jo’s only been in power for a few short months and within that time he’s managed to inflict more damage on this country than the Luftwaffe could have done in a thousand years.

Not an uncommon view….

“This is what you get when you vote Brexit. They place you under house arrest, take away your livelihood, destroy your economy, and threaten you with mandatory vaccination.”

“Oxford University to begin human trials with ‘breakthrough’ coronavirus vaccine.”

“$20 million donated to Oxford by the Gates foundation in the last financial year”.

“Testing and tracing”.

Coming soon: Landfill sites overwhelmed with discarded iPhones.

The road to Hell is paved with nice middle class boys desperately peddling downhill backwards in order to avoid being labelled “conspiracy theorists”.

David Margison

24th April 2020 at 12:07 pm

What a partisan load of driel, no real facts, just a disenfranchised Corbinista unable to grasp the reality of today. Comunism, socialism & dictatorship are the enemis of our times. Take a breath man. Then tell me what’s so great about Russia’ China, North Korea or the Arab Emerates. If your looking for corruption as a way of life, I expect flights will be resuming soon, dust of your passport!

John Brogan

24th April 2020 at 12:37 am

During a Feb. 28, 2020, campaign rally in South Carolina, President Donald Trump likened the Democrats’ criticism of his administration’s response to the new coronavirus outbreak to their efforts to impeach him, saying “this is their new hoax.” During the speech he also seemed to downplay the severity of the outbreak, comparing it to the common flu.

Despite creating some confusion with his remarks, Trump did not call the coronavirus itself a hoax.

Vivian Darkbloom

23rd April 2020 at 11:07 pm

“The welfare of humanity is always the alibi of tyrants” (Albert Camus)

This is madness; collective insanity. An experiment conducted on an entire population, on almost the entire planet.

If anything, the house arrest and street surveillance policies have shown the incompetence and malevolency of the British government and establishment, the otiose political “opposition”, the state, national institutions, “our” NHS, et al. We are animals to be corralled and controlled, if necessary by the full force of the Coronavirus Act 2020, an act passed without detailed scrutiny by a complacent Parliament which then bolted for their Easter break. We have gone from freedom – hard won after centuries of dissent and repression – to authoritarianism in a heartbeat. We are seen as vectors of disease, as little more than filth to be worked and managed by our betters until we are non-productive: “time to sign your DNR certificate Mrs Smith; oh, if you can’t do it yourself one of the staff will help you”.

Isolate the elderly and vulnerable; no visitors in care homes and no staff travelling from their homes to their workplace bringing pathogens in their wake; adequate protection for care home workers; shut the borders – easy enough as we live on an island; no commercial flights or, at least, full screening for those who have to travel to the UK. Freedom to assemble and go about our business for the rest of us.

There may very well be no vaccine. Eventually almost all of us will get the virus, if we haven’t had it already (I’m fairly sure my family has had it and recovered with minor symptoms and small discomfort). The alternative is a rolling house arrest, euphemistically labelled “lock down”, which might continue for years. Yes, years, as successive waves of the virus manifest and panicky governments double down on policy whilst quietly constructing a panopticon biostate “for our own good”.

How can one argue with kindness? Our betters, the smart people, are helping us! Unlike the boot in the face of Orwellian fascism, the therapeutic state is friendly and only seeks to protect us. But we must comply if we know what’s good for us because the kindly ones have our best interests at heart; they have the university degrees and certification, the money and power, to prove it.

Make no mistake: those who have the power and privilege hate, despise, and are terrified of the mass who are subject to the depredations of that power and privilege. Left / Right politics are meaningless now: the dividing line is between those who have faith in the incredible capacity of humans to do, to make, to solve problems and those who deny us our agency to control our own lives; those who prize hard-won freedom and authoritarians who would curtail liberties; rationalists and those driven by emotion; those who cherish the advances of the European Enlightenment and those who would return us to a state of happy serfdom; the brave and the fearful; the slaves and the free.

When a leader of the Labour Party, established to support the interests of the working class, stands up in the HoC and calls for further redundancies of workers in the name of unattainable safety and the benevolence of the biostate, then the pretence is over. We see the enemy and it is not us, the little people who have complied with their demands for social responsibility with good grace. Enough!

Very soon we will need to rise up and resist in order to defend freedom. I suggest a meet-up in Parliament Square of those without fear who can be as certain as they can be that they will not put the elderly and vulnerable at risk. We will shake hands, hug, kiss, and celebrate our shared humanity and essential need for social contact. We will love each other, laugh in the face of fate, and mock tyranny. We must resist this misanthropic legerdemain.

There is no way this policy of house arrest can continue into the next year without unnecessary deaths and the trashing of the small economy (of course the multinationals and tech firms will thrive; yippee for them). The cure will be worse than the disease. I hope the government’s announcement yesterday of an extension that could last until after Christmas will concentrate minds.

steve moxon

24th April 2020 at 8:05 am

You’re right.
And there isn’t even candour about what’s going on. It’s as if we are all treated according to need-to-know (and nothing else).
As an instance, my mum yesterday tested positive for the virus, and when I asked what was the situation in her care home re infections of residents and staff, I was told this was confidential. Why? So as not to alarm relatives of other residents? Well shouldn’t they be made aware? Or is it under government instruction so as to contribute to keeping a lid on the bad news of rates of infection in care homes?

Annabel Andrew

24th April 2020 at 11:12 am

That is a brilliant analysis of the situation. We too have had the virus- very mildly, which is as the vast majority of the population should expect to get it. Give me the time and the date and I will be in Parliament Square.

David Margison

24th April 2020 at 12:19 pm

Well said, me too!

David Margison

24th April 2020 at 12:16 pm

Wow! Tremendously well written piece.
It’s not often someone is able to write so much and keep me enthralled. I agree with everything you have said.
I suspect though that lockdown has been more a game of follow my leader, I doubt it coud be afforded again, by any country.
I suspect

Jane 70

24th April 2020 at 3:26 pm

Splendid , and here is clause 39 of magna carta:

“No free man shall be seized, imprisoned, dispossessed, outlawed, exiled or ruined in any way, nor in any way proceeded against, except by the lawful judgement of his peers and the law of the land.”

Dispossession and ruination are spreading, bringing in their wake poverty, unemployment, despair, frustration ,anxiety and rising morbidity.

Protests are growing in many countries, as the lock ups continue.

Gareth Edward KING

24th April 2020 at 11:20 pm

Absolutely! I’d take up your offer of ‘Parliament Square’, but it’d have to be Sol for me! These are dastardly developments indeed. As you indicate, it’s the ‘therapeutic state’ which has managed to achieve this cowardlyness in the face of authoritarianism. It began with the AIDS-HIV (non) crisis in the late 80s when Thatcher posted to households those ridiculous ‘iceberg’ leaflets and then it was the Left that took up ‘AIDS is everyone’s’ problem mantra with their insistence of ‘safe sex’: a misnomer if ever there was one.

Vivian Darkbloom

25th April 2020 at 12:25 am

Mate, my missus and I would so love to join you in Sol Square with a nice bottle of red. I might even order a calimocho just to see the raised eyebrows. Aah, I so hate what’s happening, the destruction of social pleasantries and everyday simple enjoyments. A pint of IPA in a London pub; a tapa and a tubo by the sea in beautiful Andalucia. Fish and chips FFS! All the chippies are shut in London.

But seriously, in retrospect, gay blokes were the bellwethers of this current nonsense. What you had to put up with back then was unconscionable. But it’s amazing how the same language is now being used to describe all of us; I hadn’t quite made the connection but you’re right, I see it now. We’re dirty, unclean, we mustn’t touch each other, we must maintain distance. Ha! “safe sex”, I remember it well, as if something so primal could ever be sanitised, instead of the filthy delight it has always been. You know, I’m thinking, this is Puritanism back with a vengeance. We didn’t ship enough of that miserable bunch to the New World back in the 1700s, ha! I’ve been thinking about Foucault, his notions of biopower, the panopticon, the “History of Sexuality” books. He was writing during the AIDS years and people thought this only applied to gay people. Well here we are. Thanks for making that connection which I hadn’t quite made myself; it’s another arrow in my quiver against this horrorshow.

Caroline Blackburn

28th April 2020 at 1:50 pm

Count me in on that meet-up in Parliament Square – with bells on!


23rd April 2020 at 9:31 pm

Long-term, I’m more concerned about the creeping Islamicisation of this country than coronavirus. No good can come of this subservience to an irrational medieval death cult. The BBC appears to have adopted Islam as the established religion of this country:

We must resist this or more bloodshed and suffering will follow, and there will be an end to the Christian liberties we have built up over centuries.


James Knight

23rd April 2020 at 7:31 pm

Lockdowns are not meant to save lives. They were meant to save the NHS by flattening the curve. Nobody mentions the fact that there are no effective treatments. The trend for home births may have been taken over by a trend for home deaths. People with symptoms want to avoid hospitals because if what they have is not covid19 and they then get covid19 in hospital it could be more fatal. It has been suggested that ventilators may do more harm than good. One person on death’s door recovered when he was placed face down instead of on his back as they are normally positioned when on a ventilator.

If you are a vulnerable person the best you can hope for is to get to herd immunity as soon as possible.

Adamsson 66

23rd April 2020 at 7:43 pm

Lockdowns are meant to control the narrative and stop organ donars from spreading truths. They work vely well.

Linda Payne

24th April 2020 at 4:32 am

If reports are correct then even referrals for serious symptoms have gone down; the Mail has been running articles on those having to wait hours for ambulances for symptoms of heart attacks and severe pain. In Sweden the cases of corona did not spike as was feared here with fewer restrictions (correct me if I’m wrong but going by figures I’ve seen it seems right). Herd immunity will clearly be the best protection for the vulnerable and I think now is the time to lift restrictions, the economic and social impact would continue to be too great if that does not happen

David Margison

24th April 2020 at 12:35 pm

The Truth is Linda. From the beginning, many of us have said the lockdown is crazy. This is the first time in history that the fit and healthy have been isolated to protect the infirm and ill.
History will record these times as “a time of collective hysteria” in which to decent would mean personal attack from media or even neighbours. Sheeple have no indepedent thought, the citizens of britain have lost their backbone

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