I WAS a latecomer when it came to scepticism concerning the national response to Covid. Being one of the fortunate able to work outside, alongside only one or two other colleagues and with an accommodating client, I remained absorbed in my work, dismissing the whole affair as either sensationalism or indeed a national emergency, but one which would soon pass. I had money to make, a project to finish, travel plans, and no energy left of an evening to do much but vegetate.
The First Ripple passed me by in a fug of fatigue. Only in August and again in November, when two overseas bicycle tours had been curtailed by both the British and Spanish governments’ farcical circus show of non-pharmaceutical interventions, did I begin to pay attention to the Ministerial jesters prattling and prancing around the Big Top.
I found myself back at home, under the house arrest of seemingly endless rain, frustrated at having had my annual adventure stolen from me. For the first time the iron fist of restrictions thumped me in the gut, winding me severely; precipitating a long journey of questioning and introspection that morphed into rage as the full scale of the Great Hoodwink dawned on me.
Every morning I would pore over the headlines – both sceptical and mainstream – and read endless pdf files on Sage minutes, pre-pandemic Government strategies and the like. Piece by piece the wretched jigsaw began to take form, and I found myself utterly gobsmacked. Every day a new sprinkling of lies; every week or two a warping of the narrative. Very little made sense. Life had all of a sudden become a hurricane of falsehood, and I began writing in an attempt to keep myself sane.
Most are unaware of how manufactured certain aspects of life often are – desires, material wants, the magnetic pull of cotton-wool security, and the frequently distorted notion of freedom. Some appreciate that citizens must sacrifice a certain degree of liberty in exchange for State protection, and feel in control of their allotted freedoms. But when the tentacles of the Establishment begin slithering down your street, through your letterbox, and into your living room; then into your eyes, mouth, ears and psyche, at what point does State interference become unacceptable?