Sunday 26 July 2020

Why The British Wear Masks

Baffled Americans, yes, you did get that libertarian streak from us, even if you did have to fight us in order to assert it for yourselves, although somewhat less so for your slaves.

But as a wise man, who has since gone to his rest, once said to me, "The thing about the Americans is that they have never had bombs dropped on them." After six years of nightly aerial bombardment of an island country whose ports had been blockaded, the people of that country had learned to pull together, to do their bit, to make do and mend.

There is a reason why the British still talk about "the War". Few people alive today were alive during the War, almost no one alive today fought in the War, and Britain has been in plenty of wars since then. But no one would ever ask, "Which war?" And next to no one would ever seek to assert a pre-War libertarian tradition against the wearing of face masks to ward off Covid-19, any more than against the existence of the National Health Service. The same is true of quarantine.

The exceptions spend too much time reading nominally British but culturally American newspapers, whether liberal or conservative in American terms, for the most part because they spend too much time writing for those newspapers. They already worked from home, yet the lockdown seems to have given them somewhere that they urgently needed to be. And you know that they are being silenced, because they never stop bellowing about how silenced or "cancelled" they are being.

Some of us have never not been cancelled, specifically by them; by liberals and Official Rightists alike, insofar as there is a difference, and now by the Official Left as well. But we refuse to be cancelled anymore. The Budget of March 2020 has ended the era that began with the Budget of 1976. The Centre is the think tank for this new era. It already has plenty going on.


  1. I’m sorry where in this is there anything bordering on an argument, or even an acknowledgement of what the muzzles dispute is about?

    The argument is not against wearing muzzles/face nappies if you choose but against the legal compulsion to wear them, since a) there is no Randomised Control Trials showing they work and b) the death rate from this pandemic has now been shown to have been wildly exaggerated and has dwindled to practically zero in the UK c) Sweden never introduced mandatory masks and has had a much better outcome than us.

    “Libertarian streak”? What, the idea free countries don’t tell their citizens what to wear?

    What a radical “libertarian streak” that is!