Social justice activism is a religion in that it provides a set of beliefs. These beliefs are to be accepted unquestioningly, and a common language develops between the people involved by which they may identify one another and interrogate and expel heretics.
Defeating the pandemic became a matter of national pride, and the wishes, freedoms, and even the lives of individuals become secondary to that aim. Almost anything was permitted—including brutality in pursuit of the aim of winning the fight.
We witnessed a prolonged curtailment of freedom of movement, freedom of association, and freedom of speech. But Mark Woolhouse does not address this. In fact, while he clearly comes out as lockdown sceptical, it is not entirely clear why.
The essential thesis of the book is, regardless of the efficacy of pandemic management measures, that there was never an assessment of what the likely damage was going to be. The equation between benefit and damage was unbalanced; in fact, the damage side was left blank.
The SNP displays little gratitude to the other regions of the UK without which Scotland’s very survival would be in question. Remarkably, however, it seems wedded to the idea of being part of the EU and members were furious when the UK voted to leave.
The real problem is that something is wrong with the state of science itself. More accurately, something is wrong with the state of academia, in which the system of academic promotion is overly focused on the superficial outcomes of science rather than on the actual meaning and contribution of the findings.