Just months ago, there was a furore when I commented that we had been manipulated by the way that data had been presented to us during the Coronavirus pandemic, often devoid of any proper context.
Some members of SPI-B committee (Scientific Pandemic Group on Behaviour) have now come clean about the way that fear was ‘ramped-up’ to encourage compliance.
This is very dangerous territory for a democracy to be involved with. On the contrary, it is routine work of totalitarian governments.
What is the difference in principle between stoking fear of Covid-19, and Big Brother’s regime stoking fear of Emmanuel Goldstein in Orwell’s 1984 ?
Of course, the motives differ and our government acted only to protect the NHS and save lives.
The danger however, is that the weapon has been used, has been found to be quite effective, which will be remembered.
(State of Fear an analysis by Laura Dodsworth is published to-day Monday 17 May.)