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Anti-vaxxers Party and Plot the Path to Nuremberg 2.0
The radical right want their show trials
History is written by the victors, or more accurately, history is rewritten by the victors.
QAnon John's Antivax Party
John Mappin is the founder of Turning Point UK, the culture war sister organisation Turning Point USA founded by Council for National Policy member Charlie Kirk.
Known for flying a Q flag at the hotel he owns, Mappin regularly posts pictures of social gatherings where the guests are almost entirely made up of those who have used their platforms in the UK to promote disinformation.
On 18 February Mappin posted a thread of pictures from an event held at the exclusive private Carlton Club in London. The guest list demonstrates the coordination of the international disinformation network.
Andrew Bridgen has been suspended from the Conservative Party for likening covid vaccines to the holocaust while Ryan Cole of Council for National Policy linked America’s Frontline Doctors is being sued by the family of a patient who died after he recommended an unproven treatment plan.
The accusation of military grade psych ops comes from a document produced by Patrick Fagan, the former lead psychologist from Cambridge Analytica. Fagan is a member of a number of groups including Pandata, HART and Covid19Assembly. The hypocrisy that they are talking about psych ops while getting support from a lead individuals from one of the most infamous psych ops organisations seems lost on them. Fagan even gave a presentation on how to manipulate behaviour at NudgeStock 2020.
For a group saying they are taking on the elites there was a considerable number of aristocracy and wealthy socialites in addendence.
The MPs in attendance will be those from the Covid Recovery Group who have been working withorganisations like HART, Collateral Global and Us For Them for over two years. The #HARTleaks include emails between MPs and HART.
Mappin’s gathering comes at the end of an escalation of anti-vax disinformation that has been building for some time, with a succession of “revelations” that don’t stand up to scrutiny.
Many attendees have likened vaccines and lockdowns to the holocaust, making claims about globalist conspiracies, Bill Gates and government cover ups, but this isn't an angry mob in the streets, this is a group containing many wealthy well connected people, this is a serious attempt to upend public health structures and bring about the antivaxxers Nuremberg 2.0.
War of Ideologies
The pandemic has been a clash of ideologies, information total war has been waged. Asymmetrical in nature it boils down to one of the fundamental questions of politics. What is the role of government?
The pandemic required government intervention at a scale not seen in peacetime, for those who believe in an ever shrinking state this was diametrically opposed to their beliefs. Pragmatists were flexible in the face of circumstances unprecedented in our lifetimes, but for the fundamentalists and ideologues it poses an existential threat. If government intervention is required to manage a pandemic, what other issues require intervention to solve?
For several months in 2020 some form of accommodation was found for every homeless person in the UK, it demonstrated large scale homelessness was the choice of policy makers. A roof can be found for every head, now there will always be a debate about cost and spending priorities but the pandemic proves intervention can accomplish what the market has failed to do.
There is also the counter argument that intervention grows dependency, if the government ensures everyone can access the most basic accommodation then this will encourage more people to become economically unproductive and live off the state. Leaving people to live on the streets will motivate them to improve themselves better than providing them a minimum level of safety and security. I don’t agree with it, but that’s the argument.
Even in the midst of a pandemic, for some government intervention looks too much like socialism for their liking. If people relied on intervention they may start making more demands for publicly funded healthcare and social housing, it might support the notion that government action is required to tackle climate change.
The debate between the free market approach and government intervention in regards to the pandemic is a question of equality, the statistics clearly show certain groups and communities have been disproportionately impacted by covid. It’s a question about the value of human life. A calculation commissioned by the UK’s Treasury in April 2020 valued the life of one healthy worker lost who died due to lockdown harms to be worth more than the lives of five elderly people who died of covid; in reality the model was focused on protecting GDP. There is a photo of a whiteboard from inside the UK government on the day they realised they would have to lockdown to prevent the collapse of healthcare, on it was written “who don’t we save”. Accusations of ableism and social Darwinism towards the “let it rip” crowd shouldn’t be ignored. The voices of the clinically vulnerable have found it hard to be heard, as have those suffering from long covid, and there are many who have unexpectedly found themselves disabled who have suddenly realised how poorly society treats those with chronic conditions.
Covid should be a considered a workplace hazard, but the end result of the vax and relax approach of governments normalising the harms of covid is that other harms will come to be normalised. The narrative of “we don’t do this for flu so why do it for covid” risks being flipped to “if we don’t do this for covid then why do it for….”, as demonstrated by the comments of Australian journalist Leigh Sales.
While the public are fed a diet of messaging that they must return to normal, the rich and powerful have ensured they have the protections they claim aren’t necessary for the general population.
Is it a coincidence that the same people in the UK media like Toby Young, who prior to the pandemic were making the argument for “progressive eugenics” are the same people who supported the Great Barrington Declaration?
For instance Fraser Nelson, editor of the Spectator which published the GBD in the UK, in his support for progressive eugenics in 2016 said that “the quality of human stock worldwide has been eroded by healthcare and welfare”, suggesting a leading cause of poverty is inferior genes.
Alternative facts and the media
We live in a political era of alternative facts, and over the course of the pandemic a whole ecosystem has been nurtured to create an alternative narrative of the pandemic.
Mainstream media and politicians were happy to provide platforms to sceptics and deniers, allowing a shifting of the Overton window which placed anyone calling for efforts to reduce transmission to be considered fanatics as extreme as the anti-vaxxers and deniers. This allowed governments to market the removal of measures as the sensible centre ground citing vaccines and treatments as the route out of the pandemic. Now the UK government plans to go one step further by removing access to primary doses and boosters from the majority of the population. Younger children will never even have the choice of vaccination, booster infections are the strategy moving forward.
For all intents and purposes the Great Barrington Declaration which called for a strategy of mass infection won the ideological war. The new normal looks suspiciously like the old normal, just with the addition of an increased death rate and rising levels of disability and sickness.
Governments and much of the media got what they wanted, however for the leading characters of the sceptic movement who built a platform on claiming there was never a need for any measures the Rubicon had already been crossed. They couldn’t celebrate the vaccine because that would require accepting a vaccine was needed. Even if they wanted to, there’s no getting off the tiger of the fanatical support base they’ve fostered.
The failure of public messaging by governments to explain and address the full implications of their policy choices leaves a massive gap in the political narrative. A gap that is being exploited by the coalition of anti-vaxxers, conspiracy theorists, snake oil sellers, eugenicists and the far-right that was cobbled together in haste to oppose measures.
Winning the war as far as government policy is concerned isn’t enough, they need to rewrite history, centring themselves as the true heroes of the pandemic, more worrying is how they have portrayed those that don’t share their ideology as tyrants, fascists, and globalist collaborators.
Victory isn’t enough, they want vengeance and retribution, to tear down any opposition.
The Path to Nuremberg 2.0
Calls for Nuremberg 2.0 has been a feature of the anti-vax movement for years before covid, however even before vaccines had been developed lockdown sceptics were adopting the narratives of Nuremberg 2.0.
In the UK lanyards for mask exemptions were likened to the yellow stars Jews were forced to wear by the Nazi regime, before switching to the blossoming flowers lockdown sceptics on Twitter were putting yellow stars in their profiles likening themselves to the victims of the holocaust. In the Summer of 2020 protesters in Trafalgar Square held up banners calling for healthcare workers to be hanged for their role in the covid “hoax”.
Claims that the second wave was simply the artefact of PCR false positives was bad science, but accusations governments around the world were doing this intentionally to force lockdowns for ulterior motives was red meat to the conspiracy theorists, and yet many mainstream media outlets continued to platform the false positive narrative long after it was clear the second wave had arrived.
While there are many true believers, there will be plenty pushing alternative facts knowing they’re false. Recent releases of conversations inside Fox News show how the likes of Tucker Carlson and Rupert Murdoch knew they were promoting disinformation regarding the results of the 2020 US elections in the run up to the storming of Capitol Hill on 6 January. The ends justify the means when it comes to achieving the agenda behind the culture wars.
Details in thread.
In August 2020 the Brownstone Institute, the successor organisation to the Great Barrington Declaration alongside Collateral Global in the UK, published a list of the 101 people they thought should be blamed for lockdowns.
This was followed up with calls to hold these people to account. The choice of language and imagery of guillotines led to some people on the list receiving abuse and death threats.
Is this incitement?
What about this example from Nick Hudson? Many key individuals from Brownstone have also had positions with Pandata.
The network map above was produced for MisinformationKills which has extensively covered the Brownstone Institute and other linked organisations.
The contrarians in the media know full well how their words influence the actions of threatening mobs in the real word and online.
Covid provided a perfect opportunity for conspiracy theorists, the effortd to build an international movement of the radical right by the likes of Steve Bannon prior to the pandemic made it easy to turn the pandemic into another culture war issue with tried and tested campaigning methods.
The Norfolk Group
Recently a new initiative has been launched calling for a US inquiry based on the terms and alternative evidence base the sceptic movement has generated for itself. The Norfolk Group consists of the usual characters from the Great Barrington Declaration and the Urgency of Normal.
Since the Mid-Terms the Republican GOP has begun the process of rewriting history with the creation of a new oversight committee. In Florida Ron DeSantis has also set up his own committee to look into the pandemic response, unsurprisingly the committee consists of many of the same names that are in the Norfolk Group.
Walter Bragman’s recent piece on the Norfolk group provides an overview of these initiatives and the individuals involved.
There is an overlap between the Norfolk Group and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ new covid committe.
There's also an overlap between DeSantis committee, the Norfolk Group and those who are challenging laws designed to tackle medical disinformation with the aid of a Koch funded legal initiative.
In the UK MPs from the CRG and two APPGs with HART members acting as the secretariat have also been seeking to water down legislation designed to tackle disinformation and online harms.
Opposing measures to combat disinformation is a matter of self preservation for a number of members of the covid disinformation network. Some have already lost their licences like Peter McCullough, Washington Medical Commission has leveled a number of charges against Ryan Cole, another promotor of unproven treatments is being sued by the family of a patient who dies while a member of FLCCC has been arrested for crimes against humanity for conducting unethical drug trials that led to the deaths of a number of patients.
As a potential presidential candidate, DeSantis actions should alarm not just US citizens but those of other countries in regards to the impetus he would give to anti-vaxxers, conspiracy theorists and the wider culture wars.
DeSantis appointed Joseph Ladapo to be Surgeon General of Florida in 2021. Asked on the day of his appointment as surgeon general whether he believed that states should promote vaccines, Ladapo said instead that states should promote "good health" and said that vaccines have "been treated almost like a religion. It's just senseless."
Ladapo promptly set about banning the public and private sector from implementing various measures. Florida was the only state not to approve vaccines for the under 5’s and in recent months Ladapo has released a number of misleading papers and statistics on covid vaccines.
What would public health policy look like if Ladapo was Surgeon General of the US under President DeSantis?
The idea of the Great Barrington Declaration's authors holding court over Fauci does not seem far fetched but is a distinct possibility.
The CDC and FDA have been named as enemies, efforts would likely be made to destroy these organisations, and the medical boards that have sanctioned disinformation doctors will face retribution. A great deregulation of medicine and destruction of public health policy as we know it could well be on the horizon.
We already see efforts to overturn scientific consensus at state level on a number of issues.
What happens in the US has implications for the politics in many other countries too, just look at how the culture wars have been imported into the UK in regards to the political narrative on schools.
While this may seem implausible, in 2016 it seemed implausible that Roe vs Wade would be overturned.