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There needs to be a reckoning

‘Lockdowns’ work very well if what you want to do is to destroy a happy and prosperous society and replace it with a desert. It will cost much more as the measureless debt incurred by Rishi Sunak begins to bite in the form of taxes, inflation, shrinking real wages and ravaged pensions and social services. No wonder they dare not announce an actual Budget. It would be the most horrifying public experience since The Exorcist. So the thing to do is to win back what we lost in March.

This requires determination, ruthlessness and large numbers. But it is very easy. Parliament, very slowly waking from its long, induced coma, discusses the latest prison rules on Tuesday.

Before then, I beg and urge you to write to your MP, and to get your friends, neighbours, colleagues and family to join you. Numbers are crucial, as you will see.

On your computer, please find writetothem.com. This will direct your letter to your MP in easy steps. Then write, briefly, politely, acidly.

Say only this: ‘If on Tuesday you vote to destroy the jobs and livelihoods of others, do not expect to keep your own. When the reckoning comes for this, there will be no such thing as a safe seat. Scottish Labour MPs once thought their seats were safe. Look what happened to them.’

Do not worry about any reply you receive or do not receive. These boobies mostly cannot reason. But they can count. And if enough such emails arrive, they will at last grasp what they have done, and fear for their majorities as they should.

This is pretty much the only lawful means of resistance we still have. If you do not use it now, to the full, when are you going to do so?

And if lawful protest is ignored, what do people think is going to happen when the P45s and the bankruptcies spread like a great puce blot across the country through the miserable winter months, and next spring brings no real release?

Peter Hitchens

56 comments to There needs to be a reckoning

  • TimRules

    The three best ways to destroy a city:

    1. Carpet bombing
    2. Rent control
    3. Lockdowns

  • Allen

    4: Democrats

  • Paul Marks

    Some governments acted to save lives.

    For example, Taiwan (the Republic of China) sealed the borders – as did some other countries. It was an effective policy – only seven (7) people have died out a population of 20 million. Although how long Taiwan can remain cut off from the world – I do not know.

    The British government did NOT do that – the borders remained OPEN, instead there was an internal “lockdown” under the “advice” of international authorities (government and Corporate – although the international agencies and the Corporations have largely MERGED over the years) this obviously had nothing to do with “public health” – indeed the World Health Organisation (which is led by a Marxist Doctor of Philosophy loyal to the People’s Republic of China – he has no MEDICAL qualifications) only changed its “advice” on Pandemics last year (2019), and it did so for political (not medical) reasons.

    The idea of the World Economic Forum (and so on) is “Build Back Better” (the slogan is used in many countries), to destroy small business enterprises and to have a “Great Reset” of the world – destroying what is left of freedom in the West and replacing it with a Corporate State (Fascism) with Big Business and Big Government essentially MERGED – with free competition (especially from small business) and the general freedom of ordinary people exterminated.

    This goes back many decades – it was NOT a response to Covid 19 or the Global Warming theory, because these plans go back before these things (for example Klaus Schwab’s book on “Stakeholder Capitalism” was published in 1971 – how can it be a “response” to Covid 19?).

    “Build Back Better”, “Sustainable Development” the “Great Reset”, “Stakeholder Capitalism” (Corporate State Fascism) comes BEFORE Covid 19 and Global Warming theory – it is not a response to these things. Covid 19 is being used as an EXCUSE for what the international establishment elite (government and Corporate – including the Credit Bubble Banks) have been planning for many years.

    This is also why they hate effective EARLY treatment for Covid 19.

    Effective EARLY treatment would mean far fewer deaths – but that is exactly what the international establishment elite do NOT want.

    If there were far fewer deaths then the EXCUSE for the Great Reset would collapse.

    Hence the SMEARING of effective early treatment for month-after-month-after-month.

    To get the world they want, large numbers of people must DIE – and so they smear treatment that would have prevented that.

    Hence they get the excuse for the lockdowns and-so-on.

    It is a lot more than “they want to get President Trump out” – yes they “want to get President Trump out”, but they want so much more than that.

    President Trump just happened to be in their way – their true aim is the crushing of what is left of the free West. And victory (the death of the West) is within their grasp.

    Soon there may well be only two choices left – slavery or death. That is what they intend.

  • Well I wrote, but I think my MP will just go along with it so instead I asked her to pressure the gov to end all the restrictions once the vulnerable have been vaccinated. I also mentioned rapid testing, which I think needs to be proactively permitted within the guidance (test-at-the-door).

  • I live in the most marginal seat in UK & made it clear to my MP that at the next General Election, I vote for Farage’s new party if she votes for the restrictions.

  • Done! Bit pointless, I suspect, but I guess we’ll see…

  • Mr Ed

    Lockdown Sceptics has this piece by Dr Mike Yeadon, which rather calls into question the entire basis of the current restrictions.

    The PCR False Positive Pseudo-Epidemic

    The next logic step is to attack the reasonableness of the Secretary of State maintaining that there is, in fact, an emergency, via a judicial review using all the evidence available.

    It seems that the PCR tests used to test for Covid-19 do not have a protocol for avoiding contamination of the cursory negative control. As Dr Yeadon says, he would fail an undergraduate who designed such a testing system, yet it is driving national policy (not by accident).

  • David

    OTOH. We had a case a couple of weeks back where a woman died because there were no spare ICU beds available. (Pilgrim, Boston in Lincolnshire). That was a genuine case of the NHS being overwhelmed locally. The problem seems to be not lack of beds or facilities but trained ICU staff.

  • Mr Ed

    David,

    But we have the ‘Nightingale’ hospitals that have beds that lie empty and unused, it sounds as if your local hospital wasn’t even trying to save that poor lady. One of many thousands killed by the NHS, from Mid-Staffs to many others. There are even blogs about it, this one not updated since 2012.

    If it is a ‘national’ service, why weren’t steps taken to reallocate resources? The NHS has had since at the least February 2020 to prepare for being ‘overwhelmed’, (and you may note that every winter comes the warning that the NHS might not cope with ‘flu outbreaks, funny how it is taken by surprise every year. It’s almost as if it is set up that way, which it is.

    The NHS is not there to provide healthcare, it is there to provide the illusion of healthcare.

  • Ed Turnbull

    Whilst Peter Hitchens’ idea is great in theory, in many areas it’ll have no practical effect. I’m in central Scotland and have the misfortune to have an SNP MP (thank you, your sympathy is much appreciated). Voting here has, in the last 20 years, become extremely tribal – St Krankie could announce the Slaughter of the Innocents as government policy and a sufficient number of SNP supporters would still ensure easy re-election for her hideous crew.

    So, I could indeed write to my SNP MP along the lines outlined by Hitchens, but my email would simply be ignored by someone who knows no matter what they do – short of declaring a love for England – it will have no adverse impact on them. I find myself in a land of turkeys happily voting for Xmas. Time, perhaps, to sell up and move back to England. Though I’ve lived and worked in Scotland nigh on 40 years, I no longer recognise the country to which I migrated. The landscape is the same, but body politic has become diseased beyond saving.

  • David is correct. You can build as many nightingale hospitals as you want, but without trained ICU staff, then you are wasting your time.

    I’ve written my email. Probably a waste of time, but as I’m in a marginal constituency, you never know…

  • Nullius in Verba

    The politicians could easily reply:

    https://yougov.co.uk/topics/health/articles-reports/2020/11/01/snap-poll-72-english-people-back-prime-ministers-p

    A snap YouGov poll, conducted last night and this morning, reveals that almost three quarters of English people (72%) support returning the country to lockdown, including 42% who say they “strongly support” doing so. Fewer than one in four Britons (23%) oppose the move.

    The result does show signs of lockdown fatigue when compared to earlier in the year. When the first lockdown was announced fully 93% of English people were in support, including 76% who said they “strongly supported” the measure. Back then, just 3% were opposed.

    I’m intrigued by the sentiment – “These boobies mostly cannot reason. But they can count.” By that argument, politicians ought to be counting their voters and supporting the lockdown. Which kind of suggests, since you put this argument forward obviously thinking it would support your own opinion, that you *can’t* count. Or reason.

    Why would you put forward an argument that leads to the opposite conclusion to the one you intend? Surely, as the minority opinion, you should be arguing for politicians to be ignoring the majority of voters? Along with the epidemiologists, and the doctors, and the evidence…

    Go ahead. They can count.

  • John Lewis

    It was too much to expect a sensible thread without NiV popping up with his predictably “smarter than thou” contrary opinion.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    NIV is a troll. Don’t feed it. The fact it uses a pretentious made-up name should set off red flags.

  • Sure because we all trust opinion polls. Get stuffed NiV 💩

  • Nullius in Verba

    “It was too much to expect a sensible thread without NiV popping up with his predictably “smarter than thou” contrary opinion.”

    If you want to make “smarter than thou” comments about the politicians, you must surely expect to have others play by the same rules about you.

    Do you really want to live in a political “echo chamber”?

    And if it was a “sensible thread”, I wouldn’t have a contrary opinion! 🙂

  • bobby b

    Where was NiV’s poll taken? I ask because, had it been taken here in my own progressive-enclave Minnesota, USA, it would have shown the same results.

    Over the border in libertarian South Dakota, the results would have been very very different.

    I’m very anti-lockdown, and have no truck with the pols that push them, but in my state, they’re counting the voters, and we’re locking down.

    I’m assured that I’m anti-science by many around here.

  • X Trapnel

    NiV: you’ve helpfully provided the answer to the apparent conundrum you spell out.

    A snap Yougov poll

    is, I would respectfully suggest, not likely in this of all climates to return data that Yougov would not want to publish. “Are you prepared to sacrifice some of your most marginal pleasures in order to safeguard the most vulnerable members of society?” will get you the required 72% yes, irrespective of whom you ask. I don’t work in polling, or in politics.

    I do take your point about public opinion generally though: my MP (Conservative, very marginal) might worry about losing more votes through opposing lockdown than through supporting it. But s/he’s not running for office again until 2024; our MPs need to look at who’ll be voting in 2024, and whether those voters will still have jobs.

    Peter Hitchens isn’t talking to the likes of us, though. Like it or not, Daily Mail readers will tip whatever balance exists at General Election time; Samizdata readers, not so much. If this government cared about hanging onto the libertarian vote it would have thrown us a bone or two now, and not put it in a ‘To Do in 2021 If Possible’ list. Instead it’s chucking all its garbage at us, right now, and expecting us to pay to get it cleaned up. And vote for them again next time. As they say round here, the chutzpah.

    Voting for a Conservative (stet large C) candidate at a GE (to which even Perry implies he remains conditionally open, even after this catastrophe – and I don’t say that does not remain a tenable position) only has value for a libertarian if that vote seeks to prevent more socialism. The choice in 2019 was stark – or so I thought. I do not think now though that the defeated Corbynite Labour candidate would have protected my liberties one jot more or one jot less had s/he been returned instead of the Tory. There may have been other shit a Corbyn government could have thrown at me, but I struggle to see right now how 5 years of Corbynism could have been worse than this. It might have been This Plus Some Other Shit You Can’t Imagine – I’m just saying I literally cannot imagine that right now.

    So, perhaps we ask any candidate who supports transporting British society back to the late 1640s*, why should I give you five more years? A significant minority of your colleagues opposed this neo-Cromwellism, and showed principle and clear-sightedness; some others publicly refused to support it, and some had smaller majorities than you. What did you do when your constituents needed you most? You hid in a crowd, and hoped we wouldn’t notice. You need my vote? You didn’t need it when I needed you. Get off my doorstep, buddy; you’re blocking out my light.

    *non-UK Anglosphere readers insert more locally appropriate analogy, so long as the baddies are wearing black hats and oppose drinking and disobedience

  • Paul Marks

    The comment of “Nullius” is despicable (utterly despicable), but I have come to expect despicable conduct from him. To use the results of government, and “Mainstream Media”, indoctrination (public “approval”) as an excuse for Corporate State oppression, is just awful. It is a terrible thing to do.

    There was a error (of admission) in my own comment. The international establishment elite also use the names “Agenda 21” and “Agenda 2030” for their plans – even at local government level we have experience of these plans being pushed. I failed to point out these names (along with “Great Reset”, “Build Back Better”, “Sustainable Development” and “Stakeholder Capitalism” – which I did mention), I apologise for not mentioning the names “Agenda 21” and “Agenda 2030”.

    I repeat, these plans can not honestly be described as a “response” to Covid 19 – as they were thought up BEFORE Covid 19 (which is being used as an EXCUSE for them).

    Turning to Covid 19 itself – the need for effective EARLY treatment has never been clearer.

    As well as keeping up high Vitamin D levels (and other supplements to keep up the immune system) and exercise (do NOT be fat like me) – if people do become ill, then EARLY treatment is vital.

    Do NOT wait till you are taken to hospital – contact a medical doctor and get the correct doses of hydroxychloroquine, zinc sulphate and either azithromycin or doxycycline.

    If you wait for medical treatment till you are taken to hospital, the Covid 19 may have developed into a life threatening disease, and treatment may no longer be effective.

    Almost 60 thousand people have died of this in the United Kingdom and more than 250 thousand have died in the United States.

    Please (PLEASE) stop listening to the establishment – government or Corporate.

    Protect your life and the lives of your loved ones – seek EARLY treatment from a medical doctor, as soon as you develop symptoms.

    “But Paul I will have to PAY for such medical treatment” – yes you will, but it is NOT expensive.

    EARLY treatment from a medical doctor can reduce your change of having to go to hospital by as much as 80% – surely that is worth a few Dollars, or a few Pounds.

    And once someone is at the hospital stage it may be too late to them.

  • llamas

    https://web.archive.org/web/20201126223119/https://www.jhunewsletter.com/article/2020/11/a-closer-look-at-u-s-deaths-due-to-covid-19

    Comments, please.

    The reason this article is linked from the Wayback Machine is that Johns Hopkins published it on 11/26 and almost-immediately withdrew it – not for any fault in the article itself, but because it was being used to support the ‘wrong’ opinions.

    llater,

    llamas

  • APL

    Hitchens: “Say only this: ‘If on Tuesday you vote to destroy the jobs and livelihoods of others, do not expect to keep your own. “

    That is no immediate hardship for most MPs ( upper tiers of the Public sector, come to that ). They still so far as I know, have a very substantial ‘golden goodbye’, paid in the event they lose an election.

  • Eric

    That is no immediate hardship for most MPs ( upper tiers of the Public sector, come to that ). They still so far as I know, have a very substantial ‘golden goodbye’, paid in the event they lose an election.

    I expect it will be a terrible hardship for them, having once had a taste of power.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “Sure because we all trust opinion polls. Get stuffed NiV”

    Umm. The post is proposing we provide the politicians with what is effectively a poll of our opinions. If you know that opinion polls are not to be trusted, what on Earth makes you think the politicians will trust yours?

    Do you think MPs read their postbag of missives written in all-caps green crayon expecting pearls of wisdom? Do you really think they think that the people who write to them are in any way representative of public opinion?

    They think of their postbag the way you think of opinion polls. They base their policies on systematic polling of public opinion. Whether you trust them or not makes no difference. The point is the politicians do pay attention to them. And politicians counting up votes are going to go with what the polls and focus groups say.

    So if you want them to change their minds and get them to vote your way, reminding them of the need to chase votes is not the way to go. You’re in a minority. Whether you believe that or not, the politicans certainly believe it. Your reaction to the polls is itself the most obvious refutation of the argument made in the head post. They will react the same way you reacted.

    “A snap Yougov poll is, I would respectfully suggest, not likely in this of all climates to return data that Yougov would not want to publish. “Are you prepared to sacrifice some of your most marginal pleasures in order to safeguard the most vulnerable members of society?” will get you the required 72% yes, irrespective of whom you ask.”

    That wasn’t the question they asked. But it’s a good question. Are you?

    “So, perhaps we ask any candidate who supports transporting British society back to the late 1640s*, why should I give you five more years?”

    Their response would be – “Why should I give you the libertarian policies you ask for when that gets me hardly any votes? When, in this case, it would lose me votes? If you can persuade 90% of the population to vote exclusively for libertarian and against authoritarian parties, I’ll be happy to be as libertarian as you like. When people started voting UKIP in large numbers, Conservative policy changed in response. But most people don’t vote libertarian. And this is a democracy.”

    It’s not the politicians you need to persuade. It’s the voters.

  • If you know that opinion polls are not to be trusted, what on Earth makes you think the politicians will trust yours?

    The ‘opinion poll’ I am offering my MP is letters from actual constituents.

    You’re in a minority. Whether you believe that or not, the politicans certainly believe it

    She turned up on my doorstep and asked for my vote. And got it, winning by 150 votes. And now I explained why she might not get my vote again. So yeah, get stuffed.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “The ‘opinion poll’ I am offering my MP is letters from actual constituents.”

    All opinion polls are of actual constituents.

    “And now I explained why she might not get my vote again.”

    And that’s fine. If she goes one way she loses your vote, if she goes the other way she loses three times as many votes. You know what she’s going to do if she’s basing her policy on counting votes. That’s democracy.

  • All opinion polls are of actual constituents.

    I doubt you are really that stupid.

  • Mr Ed

    Perry has shown more tolerance for trolls than Gandalf for sure.

  • seeker24

    Well, sent it to mine.
    Here in Pontypridd, red in tooth and ballot count, there was a 29,000 majority (64%) for Labour, as recently as 1997.
    Last election the new lady only managed less than 6,000 over the Conservatives.
    I am sure that must have been a sobering lesson.

    I expect the standard form letter reply, but it may have sown some seeds of doubt.

  • Nullius in Verba

    “I doubt you are really that stupid.”

    That’s not an argument.

    Everyone polled is represented by some MP. They’re all constituents, in the generic sense of the word.

    I doubt I’m that stupid, too! 🙂

    “Perry has shown more tolerance for trolls than Gandalf for sure.”

    Where “troll” here is a word for “someone who disagrees with me”? Or for “someone who has annoyingly pointed out the obvious error in my arguments”? Certainly. I’ve got no complaints.

  • I doubt I’m that stupid, too!

    My mistake, clearly you are if you think polling organisations are what they claim to be. Actually the alternative is you know full well and are indeed a troll.

  • Paul Marks

    On the matter of my Member of Parliament.

    The Member of Parliament for Kettering is Philip Hollobone – I do not think I need bother him with more complaints about lockdowns and the international (essentially Fascist – although Klaws Schwab and co prefer the term “Stakeholder Capitalism”) political agenda behind them. Like some other Members of Parliament – he already knows.

    The idea that all Members of the House of Commons are either ignorant or cowardly (or both) is mistaken – thankfully.

    The question is – are there enough such Members of Parliament to make a real difference to policy? I do not know – I just do not know.

    More nagging from me will not help – all I can do is hope and (I hope atheists will not be offended – I intend no offence) pray.

  • Paul Marks

    I repeat – if you wait at home and do nothing, you MAY get better on your own. Absolutely you may get better on your own – at least if you have OXYGEN (if you take a turn for the worse).

    However…..

    I would still urge people (especially in at risk groups) to seek medical aid AT ONCE when the disease strikes. EARLY treatment with the correct doses of hydroxychloroquine, zinc sulphate and azithromycin or doxycycline reduces the chance of having to go to hospital by 80%, and if someone waits till they have to go to hospital, it may be too late to save them.

    And, yet again, keep up your immune system (lots of vitamin D and so on), moderate regular exercise (do not be fat like me).

  • APL

    Paul Marks: “And, yet again, keep up your immune system (lots of vitamin D and so on), moderate regular exercise (do not be fat like me)”

    1. With regard to your first point. The immune system is trained and kept ‘on form’ by recognizing and attacking old and new threats. It needs to be exercised. The whole concept of population wide ‘lockdown’ almost seems calculated to de-tune ones immune system, making us more susceptible to infection ( not necessarily COVID ). A more diabolical plan it’s difficult to have conceived of.

    2. I don’t know your particular circumstance Paul, but being plump is only one contributory factor. In my case, I used to walk four miles a day and attend the gym twice a week. All that stopped with the advent of lock-down ( god knows what’s happened to the gym owners business ) and I’ve definitely put on some extra lbs. It’s not nearly as strenuous walking from one room to another in the same house.

  • bobby b

    “I would still urge people (especially in at risk groups) to seek medical aid AT ONCE when the disease strikes. EARLY treatment with the correct doses of hydroxychloroquine, zinc sulphate and azithromycin or doxycycline reduces the chance of having to go to hospital by 80%, and if someone waits till they have to go to hospital, it may be too late to save them.”

    Leaving in an hour or so in my RV for Watertown, SD, to live in the driveway of, and caretake, my newly-diagnosed sibling, who is 60, fat, and asthmatic. She went to the Watertown hospital yesterday with high fever and headache, and they gave her infusions of many drugs – right from your list, actually – and sent her home. (No beds open.) Instructions to get to the hospital ASAP should anything worsen. They said, don’t call around for a ride from friends, call an ambulance immediately upon worsening. It worsens that fast.

    So they’re treating people exactly as you recommended.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    Anyone who cites snapshot opinion polls obviously deserves to be defenestrated on this blog. Additionally, it ignores the marginal constituency point. As Perry d H. notes, in some places the sitting MP sits on a majority of a few thousand votes, and that is often down to the Brexit issue. Take that away, and throw in all the crap about banning petrol cars and whatnot, and a lot of seats are in play. So the Peter Hitchens argument absolutely does work.

    I have written a differently worded letter to my MP in Westminster. I suggest others do so. Minds need to be focused.

  • bobby b (December 1, 2020 at 12:08 am), recently, like Paul, I hoped and prayed for your safety from BLM rioters. Now I can (I trust) replace BLM (while you are in South Dakota) with another concern and good wish for you and your family. If you don’t show up here as often for a while, that would be very understandable – but it may be the wifi of your sister’s house will extend into your RV, and you will have much mere waiting to do.

    As I remark here, we do sometimes rather batten on your US legal and local knowledge; you will be missed while/if you are gone.

  • llamas

    bobby b – in the words of Ron Pratt, prayers, good thoughts, well wishes for your situation.

    Being somewhat-near in age to your sibling, would be interested to know how she fares on that treatment regime.

    Will be passing on the way to Cavalier, ND in about 2 weeks. Let me know if I can bring you anything.

    llater,

    llamas

  • Paul Marks

    bobby b.

    They may not be treating people IN TIME.

    EARLY treatment is vital.

    Fat and asthmatic – yes sounds like me. About my age to.

    Regular use of medicines for several days (not just a one off) and EARLY.

    Oxygen may be needed – should your sister worsen, take her to hospital at once.

    APL – alas I am not capable of the sort of exercise you suggest. My COPD rather closes off that option -literally.

  • Paul Marks

    “Watertown” – that is famously conservative place (the Terry Redlin gallery is just outside it). One of the many places I will never see.

    Turning back to work…..

    Complaints about the “Woke” “Diversity” agenda and the “Sustainable Development” rather miss the point that Western governments have been signed up for these things since 1992.

    Yes – 1992. That is when we all signed up for “Agenda 21” from the United Nations and allied world-governmental organisations.

    I tend to forget that not everyone is a local councillor – and may have no idea what “Agenda 21” is.

    As I gasp for breath (partly my disease – party rage, I seem to be always in a rage now), I can be intolerant (or a lot intolerant) and I apologise for that bobby b.

    By the way only one American State (out of 50) has formally rejected Agenda 21 – Alabama.

    And as Federal Law takes precedence over State law – even that rejection has no real legal force, although it was a nice gesture.

    The Western World is committed to “Diversity” (the “Critical Race Theory” Marxist stuff) and “Sustainable Development” (“Green” totalitarianism) and has been since 1992.

    The idea that this is a “response to Covid 19” is an absurd lie – I refer people to the date. “Covid 19” – in 1992?

  • APL

    Naturally, everyone here in the UK, is going to jump at the chance to get the new COVID vaccine when its been ‘fast tracked’ into production.

    Just as well really.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    Best wishes to you and your loved ones, bobby b.

  • AFT

    Do you really want to live in a political “echo chamber”? (NiV, 30 November, 1.38 pm)

    Yes, I have regretfully come to the conclusion that many of them do, as evidenced by the fact that so many refer to you as a troll, which you very clearly are not. You’re someone with a different opinion, that’s all. It’s a shame, because there is really no shortage of very bright people on these pages.

  • Clovis Sangrail

    @bobby b
    Best wishes to you and your sibling.

  • Paul Marks

    No AFT – Nullius is not just “someone with a different opinion”, that might have been true in March (I do not know), but it is most certainly not true now. Now “Nullius” is someone who just lies, about almost everything, and over and over again – lying and smearing and being a propagandist.

    As for the “Echo Chamber” – that is the government and corporate propaganda (for example the “mainstream media”) which Nullius is very much part of.

    Why ban dissent when individuals such as Nullius can work to undermine dissent from within.

  • neonsnake

    as evidenced by the fact that so many refer to you as a trol

    Nullius is clearly not a troll, I agree. In fact he/she has been a sole voice of reason amongst trolls for many, many months.

    A shame that Samizdata has degenerated to such a state where NiV is considered a troll!

    Maybe, though, inevitable given those that were given untrammelled voices?

  • Nullius in Verba

    AFT, neonsnake,

    Thank you for the support.

    I’ve been giving some serious thought to AFT’s comment, and whether he/she is right. I first came here nearly 20 years ago (under a different name) and while I always had a somewhat different view to others here, I never had this trouble, we often had interesting and friendly debates where different views were exchanged without rancor, and if there was anything not tolerated or unwelcome, it would be stuff like calling people “trolls”. I went away for a while, but I always thought of it fondly. Since I came back I’ve been thinking of it as much the same place it was.

    But it’s really not. It’s not that the management is merely tolerant of visitors being called “trolls” and “liars” and “stupid” – judging by the most recent comments, this now seems to be how they think too. So I’m seriously considering whether I want to be here any more.

    I expect that to trigger a round of celebration. I wish them much joy in it. And thanks again to those of you who were friends.

  • A shame that Samizdata has degenerated to such a state where NiV is considered a troll!. Maybe, though, inevitable given those that were given untrammelled voices? (neonsnake, December 2, 2020 at 8:01 pm)

    You can find my more nuanced criticism of some of Nullius’ argumentation methods here. It includes an understanding, though not simply echoing, attitude to those who speculate ‘troll’.

    Complaining about ‘untrammelled voices’ sounds like a plea for that ‘permitted speech’ that the state so prefers to free speech. In comments, Nullius appears ‘untrammelled’ – unless you regard the ability of other commenters’ to respond critically as trammelling NiV. If you mean that only those Perry selects get to write posts, not just comments – it is Perry’s blog.

  • llamas

    Regarding NiV :

    1. It’s Perry’s blog. He sets the rules.

    2. As one of the oldest lags here, for what my opinion is worth, I say this – NiV does not gratuitously insult others and his tone, while combative and contrarian at times, is generally polite and within the bounds of common courtesy. Is he right or wrong in his assertions? Most times, I could not say, because most times, they are expressions of opinion, as much as they are expressions of fact. Do I agree with any or all of what he says? Doesn’t matter whether or not I do, or whether anyone else does – does it? He may be right, he may be wrong, he may have his own hobby-horses that he likes to ride (and I would be the last person to judge another for that 😉 ) but he’s generally peaceful and not-totally-unpleasant.

    3. So – not a troll. Or not by my definitions, anyway.

    4. Does he attract dissent? Why, yes – by the bucketful. So – what?

    5. That being said – I believe that, if anyone here should attract any sort of sanction, it would be those using the ‘insults direct’, and specifically, calling him and liar and like terms, accusing him of a lack of good faith (“troll”), and so on. That kind of thing has no place here, I thought. If one contributor here can address another in such terms, then this rapidly becomes the ‘echo chamber’ that others are warning of, and its value degenerates immediately and significantly.

    6. I say – leave him be. Don’t like what he says? Counter it with something better, or better facts, or a better idea. Or, if you can’t do that, pass his contributions by. The descent into schoolyard insults totally devalues the forum. We all talk in high tones of the sacred value of free speech – this is where the rubber meets the road. Interesting to see which directions we choose to drive.

    7. See 1.

    More than this, affiant sayeth not.

    llater,

    llamas

  • neonsnake

    Complaining about ‘untrammelled voices’ sounds like a plea for that ‘permitted speech’ that the state so prefers to free speech.

    You might want to think about my use of the word “given”, and consider the difference between that and “allowed”, which I did not use, and which are two very, very different things. I’m not talking about the commentariat, here, I’m talking about the authors of posts.

    Curiously, like Nullius, I too frequented this blog from the start back in the early 2000s (although I didn’t comment at the time), and I came back through a curious series of events which popped it back up on my radar after a long absence. It’s not the same; but there are still some bright spots amongst it. Unfortunately, those bright spots have drifted away over the past year and a half, and many voices from “back then” are now absent, and a number of the most vocal voices are…well, they’re not libertarian. Samizdata, back then, always leant right economically, but I always put that down to a, uh, naiveté. Now it leans socially right as well, and that’s not naivete, that’s an authoritarian bent.

    There *are* still people here who are genuine libertarians. I’m not going to name names, but only because I’ll forget someone, and that would seem rude of me. But they know who they are.

    I cannot fault NiV for not wishing to be part of this community anymore. They have been treated poorly, and that’s not great. I don’t agree with NiV on everything,- but NiV has always argued in good faith, in my experience, and I’ve enjoye my interactions with them, largely.

    I hope to come across NiV elsewhere, there are discussions we started but got de-railed that I think we would both benefit from (NiV, if you want to, just chuck @msn.com at the end of my screen name to stay in touch).

    All that said – yeah, what llamas said.

  • I’m seriously considering whether I want to be here any more. I expect that to trigger a round of celebration. (Nullius in Verba, December 2, 2020 at 11:01 pm)

    Not from me; you are well aware I have several times noted the value of engaging with you – often not for the reasons you would wish, but we none of us can expect others to see us as we see ourselves. I have before mentioned your generally polite civil tone that llamas (December 3, 2020 at 11:53 am) remarked – though I also note that on a libertarian blog, your claiming to practise ‘free speech absolutism’ while saying

    What I *understand* is you’re closet authoritarians who want freedom for yourselves but not for any group of which you disapprove

    was quite an insult – much more so because it was also quite an absurdity in its context. When you present as arrogantly thinking you are the ‘free speech absolutist’ at the end of that thread, I cannot think it illegitimate for others to speculate whether you are simply phoney. I cannot help but see it is one of the conjectures that can be made – and that you can ‘help’ seeing that is quite something. 🙂

  • APL

    NiV: “But it’s really not. It’s not that the management is merely tolerant of visitors being called “trolls” and “liars” and “stupid” – judging by the most recent comments, this now seems to be how they think too. So I’m seriously considering whether I want to be here any more.”

    As one who has variously been called a racist or a moron, because I refused to accept your or you colleagues narrative. I think it rich to start whinging when some of the sauce runs back to the gander.

    I’m just going to recall that it was you who were among the first to label me a racist, because I disputed the MSM narrative, the observable fact that whites are more often identified when associated with crime while the media dances around the race topic when reporting non white crime. I objected to unfettered 40 year ongoing – systematic rape and brutalization of young white girls predominantly by Islamic … racist rapists. Where by contrast you made up excuses for it.
    And I called attention to the fact that black people were over represented in the ‘justice system’ probably not because of institutional racism, but because of a greater disposition of blacks to commit crime in a white host society than the background noise of white crime. But, it is a fact – one that has been a constant topic of media discussion for at least a half century.

    Being called a racist doesn’t go down well with me, but is reminiscent of the ‘uncle tom’ slurs that Candice Owen and other blacks endure, when she first came out against the ‘Democrat black plantations’ or the ‘pet’ blacks that ‘do gooding’ whites like to cultivate. I have been the dissenting voice in enough ‘lefty’ discussions to know the drill, and my response, is to damn well give as good as I get!

    You NiV and I are on opposing sides of practically every topic. Perhaps, it is an intellectual exercise to you, but to me, these things impact everyday life.

    So, I reject your distortion of Liberty. I reject your characterization of COVID-19, I especially reject your advocacy of the Establishment response to COVID-19. I believe you were wrong about it in March, but not many of us had enough information to go on then, I still believe you are wrong about it in December. I think the balance of evidence has accrued toward to my point of view than yours since March.

    Your support of the State interfering in pettifogging ways in the everyday life of free citizens is an anathema to me. I can hardly believe a libertarian, any libertarian, could support such draconian measures, but then you made up excuses for those too, in my opinion perverting the very concept of liberty to do so. I can understand why the ’empty suit’ Boris, has fallen for it, advised by the Communists on SAGE and scared of any unpopular measure. He has Nationalized the economy of the United Kingdom, and devastated the livelihood of many hard working industrious people. (in effect he has Nationalized the people of the United Kingdom! ).

    You claim that it has saved millions of lives. Well, that is the same pretext every demagogue uses before he does something terrible.

    In any case, I would urge you to continue commenting on Samizdata, as the old saying goes. Keep you friends close, keep your enemies closer.

    This is a long post, and I apologize for it. There is no need to reply to any of it, since all the topics have been discussed previously. These are just my opinions formed over the last eighteen months or so. I too, return to Samizdata after intermittent breaks, I don’t think it’s changed all that much, I have recollections of quite forthright exchanges on the forum during the 2000s.

  • APL, just for the record, Niall pedant Kilmartin’s memory of a thread that may be the one you recall is that you were bluntly accused of being a straight-up no-qualification racist by neonsnake, who claimed only a racist could possibly bet £5 that certain thuggish persons of no-appearance (in mainstream news reports of an incident) were probably (to the £5-bet level of confidence) not persons of pallid appearance (to neonsnake, a non-racist merely wagering on certain biases they had observed in the news was a lusus naturae). NiV did indeed express a similar idea but in a more roundabout way (NiV professed surprise you had not replied “Yes and proud of it” to neonsnake) that, in the course of the comment, took a swipe at neonsnake in passing.

    BTW, I recall being cautious in that thread – noting your £5 bet was not a sure thing. That caution merely concerned specific details of the incident. When it was a question of persons of no appearance attacking Jews in New York, I felt better than £5-sure myself – and met similar Nullian counter-arguments.

    No big deal – just my pedantic precision. I endorse your point that either it is far worse to be a troll than to be a racist or else the complaining here suggests a degree of double standard.

  • neonsnake

    😆

    I rather suspect that I’m one of the “colleagues” that APL references in his comment.

    I seem to escape, for reasons unknown, the more direct level of criticism that NiV is subjected to, despite being, as you noted, far more blunt.

  • APL

    Nial Kilmartin: “BTW, I recall being cautious in that thread – noting your £5 bet was not a sure thing.”

    There was a time, when handed a £5 note, a taxi driver might say, ‘Haven’t you got anything smaller, gov?’** Alas no more. So my £5 bet was with that in mind, if he wins, he wins, no great loss and I might have cause to revise my jaundiced view of the world. But if anything, it was confirmed.

    But that really wasn’t the issue, rather I mentioned it en passant to illustrate that while NiV may be getting some heat just now, it’ll probably pass. Who knows, in ‘the new normal‘ we find ourselves, Samizdata may be shut down and contributors hunted down and put to hard labour in Glenrothes.

    neosnake: “I seem to escape,”

    It’s not all about you, neosnake.

    **Actually happened more than once.

  • I seem to escape, for reasons unknown, the more direct level of criticism that NiV is subjected to (neonsnake, December 6, 2020 at 6:58 pm)

    ‘unknown’ ! 🙂

    I have in several comments in particularly-egregious earlier threads tried to explain what is wrong, and at times suspicious, in certain Nullian methods of argument. A couple can be reached by following links above. There were also others.

    So if the reasons are unknown, it is not through lack of my giving more of my thought and time to them than they innately deserve.

    If this is the reward for taking the effort to think about NiV’s style, it can only encourage those who saved themselves the effort (instead just dismissing the issue with summary condemnations of “troll” or “liar”) to feel that they were wise not to waste their time. 🙂

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