HancockGate, Covid Lies and Conspiracy Theory
There has been only one story in Britain this past fortnight. It is the release by the journalist Isabel Oakeshott of a raft of communications involving the then Secretary of State for Health, Matt Hancock, and other senior British Government figures, relating to Covid decision-making in the early days of the perceived crisis of 2020. It is a little like the “climategate” affair of a decade or so ago, when the real processes and thoughts of those involved in the great climate scam were revealed to the public. It didn’t make for edifying reading, then or now.
Matt Hancock, it may be remembered, was the Minister who was forced to resign when he was found to have violated the British lockdown rules. When he was caught on camera groping his mistress in the corridors of power. A bit like Professor Pantsdown, Neil Ferguson, the academic modeler who was one of the key architects of the entire British fear campaign over Covid, who was also caught violating lockdown rules to visit his mistress. Hancock got the chop. Ferguson, alas, lived on to fight other days. Matt Hancock is a nondescript try-hard Tory who emerged from the swamp of the Cameron-Osborne era of so-called non-toxic Tory rule a decade ago.
Inevitably, the Covid protectorate has sought to place the recent revelations as a case of problematic media morality and as threat to public health. Really. Blame the whistleblower.
Oakeshott and Hancock: betraying a confidential source damages journalism and is a threat to public health.
Well, it is The Conversation, after all. This is more important than what is revealed? Damages journalism? Give me a break. What about the damage done to people’s faith in their elected (sometimes professedly conservative) governments, and hence to the body politic? No, the Covid State is circling the wagons. Look over there!
Another take is that Hancock is being made the patsy. This is another element of the circling of the wagons. If he takes all of the heat, then we can all move on in the age of Covid non-exceptionalism and the people (like vaccine injury victims) won’t come after us. After all, the voters already loathe Hancock.
Then there is the notion of the so-called limited hangout. This is the idea that the State is happy for the public to know some of the bad things it has done and to know some of the bad actors. Better than the whole truth coming out. That is, that the whole show might have been deliberate and done for evil purposes. This is the theory of the hidden agenda. It is not a stretch to think that the British Government actually sanctioned the leaks. Even arranged them.
Fraser Nelson Editor of The Spectator, sees the real problem not as Hancock and his ilk, but in the absence of contrarian voices among decision-makers:
When do we deploy the variant’, asks Matt Hancock after talking of the need to ‘frighten the pants off everyone with the new strain’. The messages yet again remind us of the mindset, at this stage in the pandemic, of the small group of men who had given themselves complete power during lockdown.
… My takeaway from spending all that time with the Lockdown Files was not the stories – extraordinary and appalling though they are – but by what we do not see. Mainly, where are the voices of caution in the fear messaging? Where is the person in the room saying: hang on, what about the unintended consequences?
Release the variant? So, the memes were spot on. The ruling class controlled the variants. Was Hancock just making this up? Or was he linked to those who were in the Covid Lab working on new variants? Should we take him at his uncensored word?
The HancockGate revelations show so much more.
The release of the WhatsApp messages confirms a number of things that we already know about modern day democratic politics and politicians, and how they played out during Covid:
· Our worst fears about our politicians are underlined;
· The covid decision-making framework was built upon fear;
· There was precious little science;
· Optics and “comms” were everything;
· The politicians were clueless;
· The vaccine was always seen as a get-out-of-jail- free card for the political class, nothing more and nothing less;
· The thesis that the lockdown versus vaccine narrative, instigated by Bill Gates, was always a false binary.
Just for starters.
This leads us to the tiresome “stupid versus evil” debate and Hanlon’s razor. And the virtue signalling of those who are determined that no one will ever call them a “conspiracy theorist”. Remembering that Hanlon’s razor is:
… a useful mental model which can be best summarized as: 'Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by neglect.
In other words, most awful policy outcomes are stuff-ups and not the result of evil intent. In this vein, the legendary Eugyppius opines:
Yet another leak reveals that Covid policies owe less to creepy conspiratorial globalists, than they do to the unbounded stupidity of our leaders, boring institutional dynamics and feedback effects.
The Eugyppius line has already been challenged. By James Alexander:
This is a fine, robust, amusing and invigorating argument. But it has two related flaws running through it.
The first flaw is that by emphasising “really dumb” over “callous and evil” he loses the necessary clarity of insisting that the policies were foolish and evil.
Folly and evil are different.
… We do not have to envision Klaus Schwab as a Bond villain. But we do have to hold Schwab, Gates, Ferguson, Fauci, all of them, responsible: and the only way to do this is to credit them with enough Machiavellian intelligence to have had some idea of what the consequences of their actions must have been: and to have known that, to have acted as they did, they were contributing to the most successful conspiracy against lived life ever carried out by peacetime politicians.
To be sure, conspiracy was helped along by corruption, collusion, compliance – all of which floats on Hobbes’s two most important words, ‘fear’ and ‘pride’ – and there were a thousand aspects to the entire sorry tale, many misunderstandings, accidents, interruptions. Many consequences were unintended. But many, if not all, were intended. And the closure of the narrative, the tying up of the narrative by government and media, meant that these figures were conspiring, consciously and coercively, against the public; they were conspiring against anyone who attempted to reveal any aspect of the conspiracy; they used the word ‘conspiracy theory’ as a clever way of distracting from their own conspiring; and they should not be let off the hook just because we do not want to risk being called ‘conspiracy theorists’.
Conspiracy theorising is just as important as cock-up theorising. Each is almost worthless without the other. Both are required.
… In addition, Eugyppius says as part of his case that the original pressure for lockdown came from public health officials, advisers and bureaucrats, not from politicians. He does not ask the obvious question, ‘Why?’ And surely the answer has to involve chains of conspiracies, of lines of possibility opened up by those who sought to influence opinion: in short, ‘conspiracy’. Why was everyone insisting on a strong response – a strong unprecedented, disproportionate response – as soon as they possibly could?
Spot on. In Alexander’s telling, there seems to be an almost incomprehensible effort to avoid “conspiracy” at all costs. And endless effort to prove that politicians are dumb but never evil. Never. I find it difficult to understand why, other than academic virtue signalling and a sense of superiority. Hence the need for using words like “creepy” to set the seen for belittling conspiracy research.
Eugyppius had a second go at HancockGate.
Conspiracy and coordination were important at the beginning, but national governments and their institutions rapidly assumed the initiative in all areas of pandemic policy.
But there is more to the debate.
Commentators like Eugyppius – and he is best in breed and to be trusted on just about every issue – seem to forget that HancockGate is about politicians and officials. Nothing revealed suggests that there are not other, malign forces at work which mobilised at the outset of the plandemic, indeed long before. It is entirely possible that the politicians are stupid AND there has been an organised conspiracy. That the Hancock class is made up of useful idiots. We know, for example, from senior Johnson adviser Dominic Cummings’ earlier statements, that Bill Gates was in there lobbying for lockdowns and vaccines very, very early in the saga. We know of all of the connections between British and other Western leaders with the globalists. Think Jacinda Ardern. Justin Trudeau. Macron. Greg Hunt. And the rest. These connections are fact.
Eugyppius’s second piece on this suggests he understand the nuances of explaining decision-making. The whole conspiracy versus stuff-up issue has the feel of a false binary.
First, a primer on conspiracy theories.
Kelly M Greenhill is a political science professor in the USA. Being a political scientist myself, I have a reflexive disposition to listen to my colleagues. Conspiracy theories are, at bottom, theories about the nature of power and the dynamics of political decisions. So, it is wise to listen to the experts. Greenhill suggests:
The term means different things to different people. For some, conspiracy theory is employed as a catchall term to describe a broad array of generally outlandish and almost invariably false alleged clandestine plots that are usually—but not always—devised by rich, powerful actors and/or governments to dupe and/or exploit others. A wide range of wacky and eye roll inducing conspiratorial claims certainly do exist. But to describe all conspiracy theories with such a broad brush is both analytically misleading and politically unhelpful.
More specifically, the term conspiracy theory simply refers to a hypothesized—as opposed to verified and proven—conspiracy. So what then is a conspiracy? Paraphrasing the Oxford English Dictionary, a conspiracy is a secret plot or agreement between two or more parties for an illegal or dishonest purpose. Again, many conspiracy theories are false, crazy, and sometimes even dangerous, but other such theories are eventually revealed to be true, after which they are referred to as conspiracies—or simply crimes—rather than conspiracy theories.
She goes on to mention Watergate as a conspiracy theory. The chief perpetrators here were lionised. They even made a movie about them. Conspiracy theory became conspiracy fact. It all changed, of course, when the old left, the source of most conspiracy theories of the twentieth century (remember “Yes Virginia, there is a ruling class”?) realised that abusing the “right’s” conspiracy theories could be a useful tactical weapon.
Greenhill also describes the characteristics of conspiracy theories.
Here are mine. Rather, they are assumptions underlying such theories. One, political decisions are often hidden. Second, their intent and agendas are not always stated. Third, there is generally collusion among various actors. Anyone who has ever worked in government and who has observed politics, even casually, will know immediately that all three assumptions are patently true. In effect, conspiracy theories are not remotely controversial. They are the bread and butter of political analysis 101. And of public choice theory and many modern theories of democracy. The whole notion of “policy communities” and interest groups assumes conspiracies, that is, hidden agendas, collusion, secrecy and cover-ups.
Greenhill’s basic point is that some conspiracy theories are “wacky”, some are plausible and some are shown to be true. One of the great victories of the elites during and since Covid has been to posit and (seemingly) show that all conspiracy theories are “wacky”, including those relating to Covid policy. Hence its emergence as a term of abuse.
This doesn’t explain why otherwise intelligent observers seem averse to concede any ground whatsoever to those they believe that Covid wasn’t just a cock-up.
It might be argued – and cogently at that – that it doesn’t much matter. Whatever you think of remote and proximate causes, we can agree that the perpetrators should be locked up. Industrial scale manslaughter and the crushing of freedom has torn the social contract and the consent of the governed asunder. We no longer owe these governing elites anything, including our taxes. They should be in jail. “I didn’t realise” isn’t an excuse.
What is worrying, however, is the disposition of the anti-conspiracy theorists to endlessly forgive the system for its “mistakes”. At all costs. Whatever the interpretation of the decision-making of the British Government during this sordid, low-rent effort, we wouldn’t want anything or anyone to suggest that they had excuses, like ignorance or human error, that might resolve them of their crimes.
One final thought. Andrew Bridgen MP, a renegade Tory who has been a champion for the vaccine injured and for the Covid truth, reveals:
I was approached by a representative, a very senior representative of Number 10, and then I was offered, you know, what do you want to back off?
HancockGate is just the start of it. This doesn’t look like a stuff-up to me. These are crimes against the people. Nuremberg Two awaits. And arguments over whether it was stupid or evil will very quickly look passe.
What on earth is left to forgive?
10 March 2023
Then of course there is the possibility that there was no virus at all. The object of the exercise was to get that potent "vaccine" into as many as possible. So the entire scam was exquisitely planned and executed, including the phony "test" and the phone medicines like Remdesivir, the enormous payments for "covid" death certificates, etc. Apart from the insiders with connections to Mr. Global, the retarded politicians were conned just like the rest of us. Note that the "virus" has never been isolated, and exists only as a computer generated "sequence". At the same time, influenza and pneumonia literally disappeared for the duration of the plandemic. It was all a humungous psy-op, just like imaginary 'global warming' and the ridiculous meaningless term 'climate change'.
The Panic Virus Scam has been useful in one way at least. It has been a vivid illustration of the appalling stupidity and outright nastiness of the majority of our so called "elite", in and out of government and the private sector.
Can corrective measures be applied in time to prevent a meltdown of our Western democratic societies?
This situation contains echoes of the 1930s when dictatorial regimes in Germany, Russia, Italy and Japan lit a bonfire which consumed about 50 million lives and ruined as many or more.
The democratic consensus then was to ignore or appease, as is the case today, in the main.
China, Russia, their satellites Iran and North Korea plus the usual would be if they could be nations like Turkey, perceive the weaknesses in Western society and are adept at exploiting them.
If push comes to shove we can only hope that their weaknesses are greater than ours as in WW2.