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Friday 27 March 2020

Toby Young Jumps The Virus Shark

Those out there on the right demonstrate their support for those of like mind by blindly supporting every article, every speech. Thus new blogs, columns, op-eds, broadcast media appearances are praised as “must-read”, “excellent”, and even “unmissable”, while the infinitely flexible principles of those doling out the praise mean they can then condemn anyone on the left doing likewise, because this is “obedient leftist groupthink”.
So it was that the loathsome Toby Young unthinkingly promoted an op-ed in the increasingly desperate and downmarket Telegraph yesterday, informing his adoring followers “The PM was panicked into abandoning a sensible Covid-19 strategy, and has plunged society into crisis, says Sherrelle [sic] Jacobs”. If only he had engaged brain first.
Sherelle Jacobs

What can one say about Ms Jacobs’ article, other than that it is exemplary only as a prime example of flagrantly irresponsible, intellectually bankrupt, contrarian drivel? She tells readers “Through this ‘herd immunity’ strategy, a resurgence of the virus after it had seemingly peaked would be avoided. Championed by Dominic Cummings, the approach was creepy, clinical and completely correct” [no citation].
She goes on to suggest “He [Boris Johnson] should pay heed to Trump, who is raring to get America up and running by Easter lest the cure be worse than the disease. Premature, perhaps, but at least he is forcing Americans frankly to debate the trade-offs: million of livelihoods versus thousands of lives”. More like two million lives, in fact.
The blame for the UK’s Coronavirus stance is laid at the “managerial elite”, “Liberal managerialism”, and of course “global elites”. The Imperial College research that has driven the Government into taking action is condemned: Ms Jacobs contends there is “no scientific consensus”, and that “Its recommendations also entail just as many risks and assumptions as the herd immunity strategy” [no citation].
This is indefensible claptrap. So what say Tobes in his defence? “I think the government were spooked by ICL’s modelling - but we don’t know how reliable that modelling is. It’s now beginning to look as if ICL exaggerated the risk of not adopting hard suppression measures. We’ll know more once we start widespread testing”. Talking down Imperial College’s work on the basis of what, exactly? Nothing. Just more hot air.
He also proffers “The experience of different countries is sufficiently different to not be much of a guide as to how best to respond. The key bit of data is the CFR and it varies from 0.3% to 9%. And to complicate matters, it’s by definition a variable”. All those hundreds of deaths in Italy, Spain and now the USA? Nah, let’s waffle a bit, eh Tobes?
In his defence, Toby Young will no doubt tell anyone still listening that this is all about FREEZE PEACH. But freedom of speech has its limits: what he is doing here is getting perilously close to the equivalent of shouting “Fire” in a crowded theatre.

Just as gobby and ignorant pundits may see their days numbered as a result of the Covid-19 crisis, the slavish circle jerk of the right wingers may be another of its casualties. Along with the demand that freedom of speech have no limits, or even responsibilities.

Sherelle Jacobs has ventured beyond the pale. And Toby Young is a credulous fool.
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Anonymous said...

Of course softshite Young is entitled to his far right tory batshit opinion.

Problem for HIM is everybody with a functioning brain knows he's a worthless dickhead.

Arnold said...

"The PM was panicked into abandoning a sensible Covid-19 strategy,"
How can that be possible? He's providing strong leadership according to Jeremy Chunt.

rob said...

"We’ll know more once we start widespread testing"

And how long does he reckon that testing will be widespread? And how many avoidable earlier than expected lost lives whilst waiting?

Only I would prefer to wait for an answer from an expert who knows rather than someone who has been studying eugenics and also someone who may feel to be not of the main vulnerable class (where not being of the common herd may prove to be a liability?).

S. Ally said...

Tonight Matthew he's going to be Nil Diamond.

Don't give up the day job.

What a bummer!

Jonathan said...

Tobes the man who runs a Free school who labelled disabled children as 'Troglydytes' and didn't want to make his schools accessible to those children.
Refers to women as sex objects and gets a decent gig on the back of his friendship with the PM's brother..
Then cries when his past is shown to prove how unsuitable he was for the role.