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And then the establishment closed ranks on Covid…

In one of the most jaw-dropping interjections of the inquiry to date, Baroness Hallett revealed a prejudgement that if masking people could have had even the slightest of benefits, and seemingly without even contemplating that risks and known harms might need to be weighed too, she pressed Sir Peter Horby, an esteemed epidemiologist at Oxford University, who had indicated that he believed universal masking was not a straightforward decision: “I’m sorry, I’m not following, Sir Peter. If there’s a possible benefit, what’s the downside?”

Coming from the independent Chair of a public inquiry, this is an astonishing comment. It betrays a presumption, or at the very least a predisposition, to accept that it was better to act than not to act — the reverse of the precautionary principle. When a comment such as this, from the Chair of the Inquiry, goes unchallenged, it risks anchoring the entire frame of reference for the inquiry’s interrogation of this critical topic. In our view it was a surprising and serious error of judgement for an experienced Court of Appeal judge.

What made Baroness Hallett feel this to be an appropriate thing to think, let alone say out loud? We suggest the issue lies in the fact that the Chair and the official counsel to the inquiry seem already to have the storyline of the pandemic wrapped up.

– Molly Kingsley, Arabella Skinner and Ben Kingsley, writing The Covid Inquiry is an Embarrassment to the English Legal System

10 comments to And then the establishment closed ranks on Covid…

  • Paul Marks

    Sadly Baroness Hallett would not have appointed to be head of the inquiry if the lady was any good.

    The establishment lied about the origins of Covid.

    The establishment lied when it claimed there were no effective Early Treatments for Covid.

    The establishment lied when it claimed that lockdowns were the correct policy – they did terrible harm.

    Yes – the establishment lied about the cloth masks.

    And the establishment lied when it claimed the Covid “vaccines” were “safe and effective”.

    Will any of these international establishment lies be exposed by the “independent enquiry”?

    No the international establishment lies will not be exposed by the “independent enquiry”.

    So the whole thing is indeed an “embarrassment” – it is a vicious farce which is dancing on the bodies of the dead.

  • Stonyground

    I remember the inquiry into the data leak that came to be known as Climategate. I found the whitewashing process to be quite fascinating. The level of dishonesty was quite amazing at the time. Nowadays it would be exactly what I would expect.

  • Paul Marks

    Yes Stonyground.

    The C02-is-evil people, such as Michael Mann, were exposed as frauds – but the media (and the education system) present the whistle blowers as evil “deniers” (telling the truth is “disinformation” which, we are told, should be illegal) – and the fraudsters are presented as noble, and are showered with money and honours.

    Mark Steyn, one of the whistle blowers, is on trial as I write these words – the court case against him (from Michael Mann) for the crime of telling-the-truth – that Michael “Hockey Stick” Mann is a fraudster.

    This trial has been delayed since 2012 – as the establishment wished to torment Mark Steyn for more than a decade before giving him a chance to answer back, hoping to break him financially and mentally, and the state of the mind hits the body. The endless attacks that truth tellers, such as Mark Steyn, face – undermines their physical health.

  • Johnathan Pearce

    As I said in my own comment about lockdowns, I did not expect honesty into the repressive and destructive measures used. And one reason for this is that almost all the UK political class is implicated into this disaster, along with much of the media, public sector, academia, etc. It is outside its mental capacity to think that any of this was not just a mistake, but damaging. To accept that might mean accepting a lot of other potential errors, from climate change alarmism, to the constant attacks on our institutions from the “woke”. And very people want to do that. They see careers destroyed, etc.

    We are living in an age when conformism, cowardice and shallowness of thought are not just the norm, but positively sought out.

  • Paul Marks

    Johnathan Pearce – yes, sadly so.

  • Mr Ed

    Regarding the judge, to our friends in the great land over the western seas: You have phrases such as ‘So and so is an ‘Obama judge’, ‘a Trump appointee’ a ‘Bush I judge’ and so on. From that you might have an inkling of the judge’s perceived ideological tilt.

    Here in the UK, our judiciary are not political appointees, they represent nothing but the finest traditions of the Bar (in the main, where they come from), barristers who are devoted to the rule of law and putting aside their personal prejudices, they have even invented the concept (in others) of ‘unconscious bias’, where someone might have biases that they do not admit, even to themselves, but which our wise judges can discern or infer. Even a former Labour Minister appointed as a High Court judge lost all political leanings on robing up as a judge. Go to any legal conference in London and be blown away by the diversity of opinion on matters such as Brexit.

    Any notion that the judiciary are fully in lockstep with the all-powerful state and are unwilling to intervene where the liberties of the decent citizen are under attack is swiftly rebutted by a range of decisions I can show you from the last 20 years. I just can’t find the links right now.

  • Fraser Orr

    @Mr Ed
    I think you perhaps misunderstand the terminology. A “republican judge” is one who does just as you say — judges based on what the law says, originalist might be the clearer term, a “democrat judge” is one who thinks the courts have a legislative role and like to use vague laws to right what they perceive as wrongs. Activist might be the clearer term. Of course this is a broad general rule, actual people vary from their designated category a lot, Justice Souter being a recent example (and to a lesser extent, Justice Roberts though his concerns are not really so much activist in social terms but rather he is more focused on protecting the institution of the court itself.)

    It is dressed up in political party names to make it seem like both approaches are equally valid and it is for the voters to decide. But nothing could be further from the truth. The courts are one part of government where democracy plays no direct role, unless you consider juries to be part of democracy.

  • bobby b

    “I just can’t find the links right now.”

    Sorry. I put them in the file labeled “Jumbo Shrimp”. 😉

  • SteveD

    The downside is that you are violating individual rights and are therefore now a criminal.

  • Paul Marks

    Mr Ed – sometimes sarcasm (or irony) is indeed justified.