This afternoon.

London, England.

No rat is safe.

It’s Freedom Day – but anti-lockdown protesters are still causing a scene in London (

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100 thoughts on “Whitehall & I

      1. Haroo

        There is freedom. No one is tying you down and forcing you to take a vaccine. You have the right to choose. However most choices come with consequences. You personal rights and freedoms are not more important than another’s right to be protected from being potentially harmed. The vulnerable (both those who do and do not know they are vulnerable) are still at risk.

        Your right to not be vaccinated does not mean society will ignore the current circumstances and evidence. You should deal with the consequences of your choices to the greatest extent possible… Not another person.

        The more people are vaccinated, the less serious cases requiring hospitalisation there will be. This means lowering pressure on health services and allowing other treatments to go ahead.

        You are clearly in the minority given the vaccination numbers. Most of us are happy to act for the benefit of society. Part of living in a society is recognising that we have to protect the most vulnerable. We balance our rights with the rights of others and accept rights cone with responsibilities.

        There is no authoritarianism here. Just people acting foe the public good.

        1. Haroo

          And we will not ignore the current circumstances and evidence just because you feel it impinges on your right to live as if the the current circumstances and evidence do not exist.

        2. E'Matty

          Please explain why a vaccinated person who can carry and transmit the virus should be given preferential treatment over a healthy unvaccinated person? The vulnerable are vaccinated so there’s no justification for such discrimination. Do you not belueve the vaccines protect those people? If you believe unvaccinated people may lead to new variants, guess what, such variants will emerge even if every Irish person is vaccinated because we live in a global society and there is no prospect of every person being vaccinated so new variants will always emerge, though in keeping with most viruses throughout history, the variants will be weaker and even less dangerous, as we see with Delta. Your mindless view will see us living under medical tyranny forever. It has no basis in science, reason or rational thought. You’re an adult. Start using your mind instead of abdicating all responsibility as a citizen to think for yourself. Stop blindly following authority and considering yourself virtuous for doing so. Every tyrannical regime has stood on the shoulders of your kind.

          1. Haroo

            Don’t you ever accuse me of being an adult.

            Ok, so a few things there. It is all about framing. There is no discrimiation here. There are public health measures. If someone working in a sandwich shop goes to the bathroom and goes tinkles all over their handies should it be their choice whether to wash their hands or not and wear gloves while preparing your food? Cool, your choice, but it doesn’t mean you have the right to make food and retain a position whereby you endanger others based on your choices. Vaccines require a critical mass of the population to be properly effective. Look at the reemergence of certain diseases in developed countries due to lower vaccination rates (USA, France).

            Secondly, your approach seems to be if we cannot 100% solve the problem then we should just let rip and do nothing. No in between. All or nothing. Mitigation is not success. What if we did the same with other things (rape, murder – can’t fix it 100% so let it all fly).

            Third, the vaccines are effective. That is not an opinion. Is a critical mass vaccinated? Genuinely I don’t know. Does having the vaccine mean you are invulnerable, absolutely not. Do they dramatically reduce your chances of being in serious trouble, yes by all evidence. Am I advocating eternal lockdown, absolutely not. Do I think it is safer and smarter to phase in a return to normal so we can observe unforeseen consequences and developments and react to them in a resonable way giving us plenty of room for manoeuvre, yes.

            Lastly, medical tyranny? Is this because of my Darth Vaccine comment?… You remind me of Moe in The Simpsons in the Angel episode when they all decide they hate science and decide to destroy anything scientific. And Moe is destroying the dinosaur skeleton and then it falls on him and he says “I hope medical science can save me”

          2. Formerly known as

            People will oppose vaccines that have been through rigorous clinical trials, and ignore the increasing evidence of their efficacy, while at the same time, subscribe wholeheartedly to the New World Order myth because someone on Twitter/Facebook said so.

          3. Papi

            Well said! E’martyr, I mean, Matty, might even listen over the sounds of his own dramatic proclamations.

            Doubt it though.

        3. Cui Bono?

          The vaccines are meant to protect the person who took it, not anyone else.

          It’s also starting to look like they don’t even work because in Israel and other high vaxxed countries over 70% in hospital are fully vaccinated.

          Most of us are not at any risk to covid so we don’t need a vaccine in the first place.

          The vaccines are the tool to try get everyone on the vaccine passport which is really a Digital ID. It’s a system where we will all have to use a digital pass to access everyday services and entertainment. They want to put cryptocurrency wallets on it and social credit scores like in China too – but this is a few years down the road. And yes it is authoritarian by it’s very nature.

          1. Nigel

            ‘The vaccines are meant to protect the person who took it, not anyone else.’

            The vaccines are mean to protect the person who took it AND everyone else.

          2. Haroo

            Spurious jumps and connections. No evidence. Conjecture and a desire to find an ulterior motive.

            Well of course vaccinated people will account for the majority of cases in hospital in a population with such a high vaccination rate. But what are the underlying figures pre and post vaccination:

            Israel 85% of adults vaccinated.
            Spread is 2% among vaccinated population vs 13% among unvaccinated.
            Overall case rates remain extremely low (their increase in percentage terms is high but that is because they are growing from a low base – think of growth rates in developing economies – growth from a low base is easy).
            But let’s look at absolute numbers:
            7 day average of new cases 800 vs 7 day average in Jan of over 8000 (1/10th)
            Hospitalisations: 120 seven day average vs over 2000 seven day average in Jan (1/16th)
            ICU cases represent 1.6% of hospitalisations compared to 4% prior to vaccines.

            All in all Israel is a really good example of vaccine effectiveness.

          3. Micko

            Ah all joking aside lads. Yep vaccines are great. They’ve saved millions of people.

            These ones are scary as poo poo though.

            Giving any medicine to people with no idea of possible long term effects is a bad idea (in my humble opinion)

            So, I guess you guys are braver than I am. And maybe indoor dining and pubs should be your reward.

            But as I’ve said before, most of the craic happens in the smoking area and now I have the ADDED bonus that I don’t have to queue at the bar.

            My vax’d mates will have to go in for me and do that awkward trying to get the barman’s attention thing along with loads of other people, who are also really nervous of getting too close to each other.

            Gonna be a bit of a laugh ;)

        4. Micko

          “ You are clearly in the minority given the vaccination numbers.”

          Someone’s never seen Star Wars

          Majority are always the bad guys :)

          1. Janet, dreams of an alternate universe

            democracy one could argue is a bit of a sham these days anyway

  1. Toe Up

    When we say freedom, we mean complete freedom, including the freedom to examine other peoples’ poo!

    1. E'Matty

      Freedom from this brainwashed nonsense that sees our Taoiseach telling citizens when they can or cannot hug or embrace a loved one. Only the dumb herd acquiesce to such an intrusion on the sovereignty of the individual. Those people are born for slavery.

          1. Bitnboxy

            Deriding your immaturity is not something that warrants contact with BS. ROFL. I am simply content to have the facility to point it out!

          2. E'Matty

            My immaturity? I’m not the one delegating my thinking to supposed betters like you are. Authority speaks. You follow. Best boy in class. Pathetic.

    1. Formerly known as

      Ivor the fat snake oil salesman blocked me for sending a link to data. He doesn’t like facts, just likes selling BS to vulnerable people.

      1. Micko

        Dude you’ve been saying that for months.

        “ Ivor blocked me”

        Yes he blocked you. you’re very important. ;p

        Christ, I don’t even like Ivor ffs…

    1. Haroo

      But what they will have to put up with is a potentially severe lockdown, an overwhelmed healthcare system, the real possibility of new wacky variants, mixed messaging and communication blunders and finally a further undermining of trust in govt and state if this all blows up (if they get it so wrong why listen to them at all).

      Treat it with the caution it deserves. Give the vaccines and health service the help they need for the upcoming flu season. Get back to normal while protecting people, the health system and in a sustainable way (end the pattern of lockdown – deconfine – lockdown – deconfine)

      1. SOQ

        Caution? Either this strategy works or it does not. The idea that what happens in the middle of July is somehow going to inflame the situation in October really doesn’t have any logic to it. It will have well burnt out by then. As for variants- there is zero evidence that immunity from one does not apply to others- the immune system is much more sophisticated than that.

        1. Haroo

          Really? What happens in July has no impact on October? It’s all in the moment stuff? No future consequences for cases levels, variant formation, healthcare capacity, length of future lockdown required to get the healthcare capacity back to manageable levels?

          As for variants – why do you think vaccine efficacy is continually tested for new variants. Because as we know from other viruses, they can mutate and develop resistance to vaccines. Our immune system learns, so do viruses – well it is more like evolution: iterations change, “successful” changes thrive.

          1. Haroo

            And it is not simply a case of “it either works or it doesn’t”. There are consequences outlined. You could take a more cautious approach, trying to build on successes with minimal reversals. Give us all confidence that whatever “unlocks” or “returns to normal” will stay that way… Not we are fully reopening now but we know we might have to go back to a complete lockdown in autumn.

            Yes either way you could end up in a lockdown, but gambling with vulnerable people’s lives and a willingness to just throw whatever you can at healthcare workers seems callous and stupid to me.

          2. Haroo

            I had l’esprit d’escalier. If you do end up back in a lockdown after being cautious no one is going to think, “well we should have went mental and just opened up everything and made this sitiation worse”. At least with the cautious approach you either protect your gains and gain confidence for further unlocking based on empirical evidence or mitigate against a worse situation.

          3. SOQ

            As below- if the vulnerable have been vaccinated then what is the problem? Either vaccines work or they do not. And. either removing all restrictions works or it does not- time will tell.

          4. Haroo

            The vaccines weaken the correlation between cases/hospitalisations/deaths but do not break it completely. The more unvaccinated people, the greater the spread in a fully unlocked society who will then potentially end up in hospital with serious covid cases = puts pressure on health services.

            Again, it is not binary. Vaccines have efficacy in lowering serious covid cases and death rates and in that sense they work. They are not a panacea yet and no one claimed they eradicate covid. The UK is 54% fully vaccinated based on total population. By opening completely exponential spread is inevitable – are a sufficient portion of the population protected to a degree that it will protect healthcare capacity? Well the UK govt accept that an autumn lockdown is on the cards implying no. Also, those conditions are ripe for variant formation as witnessed for differing reasons in Brazil and India. Add this time an opportunity for exponential spread in a partially vaccinated population and who knows what will come out.

          5. SOQ

            60% of people currently in hospital with Covid-19 in the UK are fully vaccinated- SIXTY PERCENT.

          6. Haroo

            Look all I am saying is that their modelling shows that their healthcare capacity can cope and that it is extremely unlikely based on present circumstances that there will be enough cases to overwhelm capacity. However, given that the vaccines have not been through a flu season, efficacy of the vaccines seems to be holding up but could change, exponential spread amongst a 50/50 vaccinated/unvaccinated population seems to be a breeding ground for variants with who knows what resistance to vaccines suggests that caution is advised. Give a vaccinated population space, let’s see how these bad boys stand up to the real test, continually improve your vaccination numbers.

            Modelling is only as good as its inputs. If vaccine efficacy declines through mutation or a new super variant emerges then their models aren’t worth anything as they have not taken account of this. Are these impossible scenarios – no unfortunately.

            Are vaccines effective – yes at present. Will they be effective against all variants – who knows, maybe not. Is the UK strategy enabling variant formation – yes probably so.

            To me they got one thing right in this whole thing: they pushed the vaccines early and went on an impressive early vaccine drive. Are they putting that at risk if a variant emerges that is resistant, yes. They cannot guarantee a variant will not emerge whatever they do but they can try in a fairly reasonable way to reduce the chances that it will emerge.

          7. Micko

            Actually 60% of people in hospital with covid while having received double vaccine makes perfect sense.

            Vaccines aren’t perfect and if the majority have been vaccinated the numbers would add up and make perfect sense.

            Simple… which is what they said. No issue.

            BUT WAIT. – why did he said he made a mistake and completely U turn on it. WF ABSOLUTE F?

            What he said initially was factually correct and makes perfect sense, and yet he still turned around and said he made a mistake because it didn’t suit the narrative. And anti-vaxers ran with the “60% vaccinated in hospital” story as a big reveal – not realising it made perfect sense.

            At this stage science is politically malleable – and this is proof.

            They literally said they made a mistake to stop an anti-vax message.

            Why would anyone believe anything now.

          8. Micko

            Here they both are saying it – and offering the reasoning!


            This makes perfect sense. More people double jabbed in the population = more opportunity to get covid in these vaccinated people. The base level is skewed.

            Why would they then say they made a mistake if not to influence and control?

            Surely both sides of the argument here can see this is dodgy as hell

            Not science

        2. paddy apathy

          SOQ I truly, absolutely wish that what you say will come to pass. Thing is there is no way to know. But once again you say such things with such astonishing certainty without any evidence. Bookmark your comment and we’ll discuss again in October.

          1. SOQ

            Actually, there is evidence- Florida and Texas- and hopefully soon, England. .

            There is obviously a saturation point with this thing but nobody really know what that is because nobody really knows how many people have been infected.

            The vulnerable have been vaccinated and if they do as they say on the tin, there is no real reason to keep wrecking the economy and society,

          2. Cian

            Florida has stopped publishing covid numbers by county (because they are so bad).
            Florida and Texas are in a bad condition.

          3. Cian

            A spike in patient admissions for COVID-19 has put Florida hospitals on high alert, with Miami-Dade’s Jackson Health System announcing that it would suspend visitations at many of its facilities beginning Wednesday.

            Driven by a highly contagious variant of the virus and the significant share of Floridians who remain unvaccinated, the number of new infections reported weekly by Florida’s health department has increased more than fourfold in a month, from 10,095 cases for the week ending June 17 to 45,449 on Friday.


        3. Formerly known as

          @SOQ – Was it you who was on here 12 months ago, saying that the virus would become less malignant over time, because that is what they always do? How has that worked out? I won’t be taking medical advice from you. I will stick with qualified people.

          1. Cian

            I think you’re mistaken.

            SOQ was telling us there couldn’t be a second wave (because Igor said so)

    2. Formerly known as

      @SOQ – “You have to hand it to the English- they are just not going to put up with this BS.”

      That explains why they have a hereditary royal family. That explains why they are OK with a 43% vote for Bozo resulting in a massive majority. I could go on.

  2. Nigel

    Protesting against lockdowns on the day that the lockdown has ended has a fierce Brexity feel to it, and I expect it’ll work out about as well.

  3. millie bobby brownie

    That wagon Gillian McKeith.

    Wasn’t she discredited a few years ago as being a bogus doctor?

    1. Fearganainm

      Whatever she’s claiming to be she comes across as quite false, as if she’s just going through the motions…

        1. Bertie blenkinsop

          They’re very good, yep.
          Used to really like his writing, he seems to have slipped off the radar of late.

        2. paddy apathy

          I’ve been dozing off to that book since 2008. Still only half way through but better than any sleeping pill. I shall persevere.

  4. Clampers Outside

    I’m surprised I haven’t seen any mention on here of the 23 million children that have gone without polio nor measles vaccines because of how governments have responded to Covid-19… which is why I’m dropping that here.

    And for the doubters, the 23 million figure is from the W. H. O.

    Why mention it?
    Well, simply, because it is a major negative on how the whole world is handling the covid problem.
    And likely just one of many more of such stats to come….

    1. Micko

      Man. That’s a scary statistic.

      If only those diseases predominantly effected middle class old people just like Covid.

      Lots of kids thrown under the bus – yet again. .

    2. Formerly known as

      I wonder how all the anti-vaxxers here feel about polio and measles vaccines. Are those ones OK or are they part of a New World Order, too?

      What is the cut-ff date for good vaccines vs. ones from Big Pharma?

      1. Micko

        “What is the cut-ff date for good vaccines vs. ones from Big Pharma?”

        I’d say availability of long term data. Yep, long term data. Final answer Chris.

        But yes, In general vaccines are amazing and have saved millions.

        These ones are terrifying though. You guys are braver than me.

        Giving the vast majority of the population a brand new never before used injection with absolutely NO idea of the possible long term effects?

        “Not a great plan…” (RDJ)

      2. General Public

        The polio vaccine was a disaster, that’s why polio is still alive and well in certain countries, the vaccine was about 50 to 60% effective and resulted in many many deaths and adverse effects.

          1. Slave to the Rhythm

            They do that all the time – they know everything, you see – everyone else is a dunce

          2. Clampers Outside

            It’s a well known story of the disaster that was the polio vaccine.
            I’m sure there’s a docume tary on it out there somewhere.

            For someone seemingly si going praises of early use of untested vaccines, you appear to not have done any research… Bit of a silly “yikes” moment that, in fairness.

        1. Haroo

          Two doses of inactivated polio vaccine (IPV) are 90% effective or more against polio; three doses are 99% to 100% effective.

          A person is considered to be fully vaccinated if he or she has received:

          four doses of any combination of IPV and tOPV, or

          a primary series of at least three doses of IPV or trivalent oral poliovirus vaccine (tOPV)


          The last dose in either series should be given after 4 years of age and at least 6 months after the previous dose.


          A quick search seems to contradict what you are claiming. In fact according to most sources it has quite the impressive effectiveness.

          1. General Public

            Polio Salk vaccine 60% effective..


            Polio still alive today, ie the vaccines don’t work unless you clean up the water supply



            Polio transmission through tainted water


        2. Joe

          Your anti vaccination bilge as always is nonsense. Worse there are a tiny amount of gullible, weak minded easily led people out there and you and your nonsense statements could potentially harm them if they are dim enough to be vaccine hesitant.

          The POLIO Vaccination has been a world wide superb success and to claim otherwise is lies and nothing else.

          Heres the European success in eradicating polio

          This is a tremendous achievement in the global effort to eradicate poliomyelitis. To get where we are today required the full commitment and cooperation of each of our 51 Member States, the hard work of public health workers in the field and the firm support of international partners in coordination with WHO,” declared Dr Marc Danzon, WHO Regional Director for Europe.

          The European Region has been free of indigenous poliomyelitis for over three years. Europe’s last case of indigenous wild poliomyelitis occurred in eastern Turkey in 1998, when a two-year-old unvaccinated boy was paralysed by the virus. Poliovirus imported from poliomyelitis-endemic countries remains a threat. In 2001 alone, there were three poliomyelitis cases among Roma children in Bulgaria and one non-paralytic case in Georgia – all caused by poliovirus originating on the Indian subcontinent. A decade ago, imported poliovirus paralysed 71 people and caused two deaths in a community in the Netherlands that refused vaccination.

          1. General Public

            More nonsense from Joe. Clearly hasn’t a clue what he’s talking about. Yet again.

            Polio was conquered in Europe by developments in society and sanitation.

            The fact that polio is still alive and well in less developing countries, even with vaccines tells the story.

            These countries have a poor water supply and hence polio is still rife.

            Without developing sanitation it doesn’t matter what vaccine you thump out.

            Quit spouting nonsense Joe.

          2. Clampers Outside

            I’m not anti-vax but I won’t be dumb enough to deny the problems that were had with polio vaccines.
            Upwards of 200,000+ kids were given a live virus, ffs.

      3. Clampers Outside

        Good vaccines have been tested properly, have known long term effects, if any, and most certainly don’t come with a waver.

  5. Formerly known as

    The Brits have two Freedom days in one year. Wow! They have been oppressed for so long. Wait till they hear about the British Empire, oh wait.


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