Analysis comment

Michael Rosen’s letter on the Tories’ murderous ‘herd immunity’ that the Guardian wouldn’t publish

Rosen says what the ‘mainstream’ media won’t

Michael Rosen (image:

Author Michael Rosen, who came close to death last year when he suffered COVID-19 complications, wrote to the Guardian about the Tories’ original (and frankly murderous) plan to create ‘herd immunity‘ to the coronavirus without a vaccine, which would have caused up to a million UK deaths and perhaps more.

The paper did not publish his letter. It is reproduced below with permission:

Dear sir/madam

Jonathan Freedland’s comment ‘Lies about Covid, insisting that it was a hoax cooked up by the deep state, led millions of people to drop their guard and get infected’ (‘Trump may be gone but his big lie will linger’ Guardian, Jan 15) misses the point. If we look closely at what was being said in official circles in March 2020, we can see quite clearly there was a plan to create ‘herd immunity’ without vaccination.

Robert Peston had his usual inside story on March 12 in ‘The Spectator’ with a headline “Herd immunity’ will be vital to stopping Coronavirus’ and wrote of this desirable outcome without mentioning the inevitable huge loss of life involved nor the high chance of it being unachievable.

A day later, 3 government scientists sang the same tune: Graham Medley told BBC Newsnight, ‘We’re going to have to generate herd immunity…the only way of developing that in the absence of a vaccine is for the majority of the population to become infected…’

Sir Patrick Vallance said that morning on the Today programme, ‘Our aim is to try and reduce the peak, broaden the peak, not suppress it completely; also because the vast majority of people get a mild illness, to build up some kind of herd immunity.’ Same day, John Edmunds said, ‘The only way to stop this epidemic is indeed to achieve herd immunity’.
These people were talking of engineering mass death. It’s not as if science is unaware of the Black Death, Myxomatosis, or Dutch Elm Disease. At the time, Boris Johnson was appearing on TV telling us that he was shaking hands with Covid patients.

The extraordinary fact is that this idea of ‘herd immunity’ without vaccination is lousy biology. No one knew then how long or short nor how strong or weak the body’s immune response would be to this virus. No one knew how often it would mutate nor how different the mutations would be from the original virus. These scientists were gambling with ‘known unknowns’ some of which would result in no ‘herd immunity’.

What’s more, the limited ‘herd immunity’ without vaccination that occurs naturally usually involves the evolutionary process of ‘breeding out’ (through death, before they reproduce) of those individuals who are susceptible to the virus and the ‘breeding in’ of those who are resistant, assuming the resistance is inheritable. This takes generations to effect – if ever. The problem for this scenario is that the section of the population most affected by the virus is above ‘breeding’ age! This negates the process by which evolution favours resistant individuals.

It seems to me horrific that top scientists were able to put forward their proposals to enact mass killing without being challenged, either on ethical or biological grounds. If you want to find out why or how this government has been lax, chaotic, incompetent and cruel in its approach to Covid-19, it starts here. The consequence is that there have been tens of thousands of deaths, and there are tens of thousands of us with long term or lifetime debilitating consequences.

They must never be let off the hook.

Yours faithfully
Michael Rosen

Michael Rosen is absolutely correct. The Tories’ original plan for ‘dealing’ with the pandemic was to throw hundreds of thousands of people on the pyre and hope for the best. That plan, despite a change of language when the public started to catch on, never really went away. 100,000 (in reality a lot more) people have lost their lives in the UK because the country is ruled by Johnson and his ideological ilk instead of making use of our natural advantage as an island, as New Zealand and others have done.

Michael Rosen was very nearly one of them – and wouldn’t even have counted as a virus death, because of the time that had expired after he was diagnosed. That Tory dodge had already hidden 18,000 or more COVID deaths by last October.

They must never be let off the hook. They should be in the dock and the failure of the so-called ‘mainstream’ media to say so is a national scandal and disgrace.

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  1. Is it true there’s a 99%+ survival rate, according to the US Centers for Disease Control? Some in the UK legacy media have branded this ‘fake news ‘. But I’m not so sure.

    1. 99.7% I believe. I thought that was common knowledge by now. Then again, the PCR testing scam isn’t…

  2. Michael Rosen should publish this letter on social media with a permanent link
    He’s got more subscribers than Guardian!

    1. Michael Rosen – a marvellous, happy and glorious man+++. A fountain of wisdom and integrity. An inspiration, ESPECIALLY in these times 🌹🌹🌹

  3. Herd immunity – herd mentality still prevails. Head em up, move em out.

  4. I worry about the Guardian. I fear it is living on past glories these days. It is as London-centric and elitist as the rest of them. There are certain topics, indeed certain words, that will see an article or a post banned. I’m not talking about obscenities, nor libel, nor posts “near the mark.” I am talking about well-researched, calm, justifiable commentary on some of the important issues of the day. Until very recently, ANY slight criticism of Starmer would see a post removed (though perhaps even the Guardian is seeing that he really isn’t up to the job now). Any mildly positive post about Corbyn would equally be removed. It is agenda-driven, and if you’re not on the same agenda as the editor, then your views are out.

    The maturity of accepting all views and arguing your corner in papers, the media, and in politics has gone. The strength that that position gives has been lost, which is why we have had Brexit, why we have the disastrous covid record, and why Scotland is again on the brink of leaving the UK.

    If only our senior politicians and our newspapers would accept that others have valuable views and input, we’d be a far better nation, and react to crises in a far more successful and mature way.

    More power to Michael Rosen’s elbow!

    1. (JR) I agree. The Guardian lost its way some time ago. I’m very selective about it’s columnists nowadays. There’s nobody of the calibre of John Pilger, who champions Assange, regarding whom the Guardian is a vacuum: Assange who? This would not have been the case in years past. A spent force, and nowadays deeply compromised, still parading as something that sadly it no longer is.

  5. I was banned for life from commenting on the Guardian Online around the time Vyner took over some years ago. It has since swung massively Neoliberal, and is funded by HSBC laundered money. Whereas I’m carrying on with the same well-researched, anti-establishment outlook, waiting for it to founder and join the News of the World as a sunken, sister paper.

    1. I started a piss take petition, for it to merge with the Daily mail.

  6. Bravo. Rosen says it all exactly as it is (and was). No wonder The Guardian didn’t want to print it. There is a huge reluctance in the UK media, to state the truth in respect of this governments abject failure to protect us from Covid, let alone to hold them to account. Freedland is a repeat offender in this careless ness with the truth, a well known anti-Semitism conspiracy theorist well to the fore of the anti-Corbyn campaign who’s reporting was shameful throughout.

    Then there’s the BBC. I just heard Sarah Montague on R4 sidle up to some bod and sort of, almost, but not quite, suggest that the UK death toll, massively worse than anywhere else and the worst in the world, MIGHT have something to do with the way the government has handled it. But she couldn’t quite bring herself to suggest it in a forceful way, and didn’t seek in any way to press what is such an obvious conclusion, allowing the interviewee to fudge and obfuscate about future enquiries and ‘now is not the time’ nonsense without any comeback at all.

    Imagine if Corbyn was PM and we had this level of death? He would be eviscerated.

    Conspiracy theories are generally suspect. But it’s the exception that proves the rule: there is a conspiracy between the UK media and the UK government NOT to assertively challenge said government about this matter . . . the mass manslaughter of the citizens of this country. It’s remarkable. It’s probably the worst failure of journalism I’ve ever come across, and there are very very many. Shame on them. They are complicit; and that makes them responsible.

    1. The conspiracies are far more suspect than the theories. For evidence see Watergate, from whence the connotative, weaponised term “conspiracy theorists” originated. The first two CTs were Woodward and Bernstein of the Washington Post, whose achievements are legend.

      1. I thought it came about to discredit people like Mark Lane, who saw that the Warren report was fiction.

      2. Wirral In It Together.
        Just saying, when I was on Twitter we used to follow each other.

      1. Bozo says he follows scientific advice. Therefore we either have the worst scientists in the world or the worst government and just for good measure, the worst opposition leader – a marriage made in Israel.

      2. Spot on, world beating! Oh and the British ‘free press!’

    2. noelstevenson12, that might have been the BBC piece that made my ears prick up – it was just background noise until I heard one of the twats, Hancock possibly, say something like
      “That’ll be a question for the inquiry – we’re very good at inquiries in this country.”
      Or words to that effect.
      Bit surprised the microphone didn’t pick up the gales of laughter coming from CCHQ and Downing St at that.
      Who’d have thought he had a sense of humour?

      1. Oh shit . . . it was Hancock! I hadn’t twigged that. It figures. He now uses Radio 4 as his personal safe propaganda channel. There’s only Mishal Hussain that’s worth tuppence as an interviewer . . . on a good day.

    3. Manslaughter? This is premeditated; either private schools produce complete imbeciles & incompetent fools or everything is going to plan? Can’t have a good war @ this time but we can have a good plague? Hated by the liberals, too many older people manufacturing nothing; blocking beds; taking money out of pension schemes & living in houses that are too big for them. The ‘baby-boomers’ are white & had it all; ‘full employment’ the NHS & council housing. You lucky people. never had it so good. There were many opportunities to stop this Tory plague but why stop now when you’re ahead? A bad case of Tories win win win & win & the poor & elderly pay the price.

  7. We elected a storyteller over a serious politician. Their absolute incompetence along with the murderous assault on the poor, sick and disabled means we are one step nearer to autocracy and facism

  8. Tory scums herd immunity BS is the reason we have now passed 100,000 UK DEATHS due to Covid-19 FFS!!!

    These scum should not get away with the largest mass killing of their own people making sure any inquiry doesn’t happen or is so watered down as to be pointless.

    Just like with Grenville inquiry these scum should be standing trial for manslaughter due to there endless arrogance and stupidity.

  9. Am I missing something here because I can’t figure out why the faux left wing Guardian refused to print Michaels letter. Quite right the government should be held to account over their handling of Covid and they’re still obsession with herd immunity. One would think the paper would be most happy to do so.
    I’m just hoping their refusal to do so has nothing to do with who the author of the letter is.

    1. The combination of who it is and its content makes it big news. It’s also news (based on facts) from outside the prevailing narrative, so Guardian wouldn’t publish. I don’t think people realise how far beyond the Rubicon we are in the UK now.

      1. Journalistic integrity can no more be bought back than ex-virgins can be unfucked – not even for thirty thousand pieces of silver.

  10. You would have thought after everything we have been through over the last few years, we would accept these are NOT binary choices
    You are allowed to walk and chew gum
    For the love of God accept there is a price to be paid for Lockdown
    5 million hospital waiting list
    200,000 over 12 months
    Pre Covid19 it was 20,000

    1. In a letter to The Times today, ‘ten of the UK’s top experts in child health say that anxiety, self-harm and suicidal thoughts are at “frightening levels” among children and many parents are on the brink of breakdown’.

      1. But on Channel 4 news, they are fixated, of course, on the breaking of the 100,000 deaths barrier. Bugger the youth, obsess about the elderly!

  11. One third of all deaths GB occurred in Private Nursing Homes.
    How did a pandemic span the world so quickly?
    What if all planes had been grounded for one month in January 2020?
    How come a virus that is spread by the bourgeoisie affects the poor the most?
    We are promised a public enquiry into what precisely & will anybody be held accountable?

    1. A public enquiry should have as a term of reference the appalling health of poor people, the effect of smoking, processed food and lifestyle. And take real action against food and tobacco manufacturers along with proper school meals and doubling physical education.

      1. Another term of reference should be the NHS internal market and the lack of spare beds, doctors and nursing staff through perception that excess beds etc are unprofitable.

      2. Since the inquiries act, 2005.
        They will be framed by the minister responsible.
        Blair ensured they would all be whitewashes.

      3. The NHS and Social Care is solved by bringing funding in line with other major economies and under one umbrella
        5, 10 and 30 year plans for investment
        Backed by care in the community
        Now the small matter of how much should folk contribute, let me start
        Estates over £410,000 pay 50% of care costs

    2. “One third of all deaths GB occurred in Private Nursing Homes…”

      The pattern in Canada is very similar. This is from the Toronto Star (the country’s larges paper) today:
      “..British care homes for the elderly were largely privatized beginning in the 1980s under Margaret Thatcher. In the early 2000s, “dazzled by the demographics” of Britain’s aging population, property investors, private equity firms and hedge funds began investing heavily in the sector. They rolled up smaller operators into larger chains, split the property assets away from operations, larded the homes with debt and built out Byzantine webs of companies and subcompanies that made it difficult to know who the ultimate owners were and where the profits were going. “And this was all going swimmingly,” Hood said, “until we hit the global financial crisis in 2008-09.”

      “The industry investors had weighed the homes down so heavily with rents, debt payments and management fees that when the British government slashed care-home budgets, it thrust the industry into a massive cash flow crisis. One of the largest chains went bankrupt. Several others were forced to the brink of collapse. The investors — the ones who hadn’t already taken their profits and gone home — were still making their money, through interest payments and rents, but the homes themselves, where the elderly lived and received vital medical care, were barely hanging on.
      “…More than 3,000 long-term residents have officially died from COVID-19 in Ontario. An untold number of others have been lost to pandemic-induced neglect or a lack of care.” They might not have died because of COVID,” said Dr. Samir Sinha, the director of geriatrics at Mount Sinai hospital in Toronto. “But they die because of starvation and dehydration.”

      Basically it is very simple- in order to make profits and pay shareholders billions of dollars in dividends, these operations have to cut costs, provide less care, hire fewer nurses etc. And they do.
      Capitalism is a form of cannibalism- these shareholders are eating old people.

    3. The public enquiry will not happen for a long time. It will take a long time. And it will be run by friends of this Tory government scum. The delayed, ,diluted and manipulated outcome will be accepted by a compliant collusive complicit media. And nobody will be held responsible.

      The UK today.

    4. How many Nursing Homes around the world are owned by shady offshore tax entities
      Conditions are all the same, Care workers earning SFA moving between homes, dumping grounds for the infected, with no qualified medical cover

  12. Starmorrhoid just equated the 100,000 (PLUS) deaths to the population of a small town – not a great way to drive it home.
    If he’d equated it to dropping a hydrogen bomb on Blackpool… maybe.

    1. I’d say “what an excellent idea”, were it not for the fact I’m within a 100-mile range!

  13. You’ll be fine – I’m only10 miles away…
    Seeing Jenny Agutter as a nipper in a dreadful old movie tonight reminded me of Logan’s Run – the movie where nobody was allowed to live past 30.
    Made me wonder if that scenario coming true seems more or less daft now than it did in 1976 – before we knew that China’s one child policy would begin only 4 years later?

  14. As a class war poster once said “Don’t just kick out the Tories, Just kick them”

    1. That presents a bit of a conundrum.
      I’d need a new pair of foothead boots but I refuse to put money in that cunt Mike Ashley’s pocket.
      Not unless I can try them out in his shop.

  15. Yes, and 10 years of cuts to the public sector prepared the ground for far greater damage to the poor and the BAME community than to the white, well-off. The cynicism is abhorrent. They have sacrificed tens of thousands of lives. Test, trace and isolate handed over to an incompetent private sector; lots of dosh for the Tories’ friends, lots of us dead. All avoidable.

  16. No one should have the vaccine until those who account for 90% 9f deaths have their 2nd dose, then it should be front line and key workers
    Take one for the country and refuse if you are offered it
    Socialists for the most vulnerable and the most valuable

    1. And when I refuse my jab it’ll definitely go to somebody more vulnerable and more deserving, right?
      It won’t put me at risk of becoming a spreader, will it?
      It won’t just go to somebody richer, obviously – no fear – the Tories would never do that, right?

  17. Another PMQ’s WASTED.
    When even the BBC is pointing out Johnson’s failures Starmer can’t make a damn thing stick.
    “Does he agree with me…” Jeezus.
    And he just looks baffled and confused when Johnson shrugs him off so easily.

    Starmer acts like he’s trying to lay out some dry point of law to a judge – a point that he knows the judge already understands and he only has to put on the record – it’s as if he has no clue that he’s got a whole country to persuade.

    To stop Johnson dodging his questions he could treat him like the liar he is – he could use sarcasm, irony and PLEASE – a BIT of FUCKING WIT.
    He’s got to HUMILIATE the lying bitch. EXCORIATE him.
    Who IS writing his questions for fuck’s sake – his script – does nobody even understand that oratory is required – that a leader’s words need to be memorable? That speaking them like a first read-through in rehearsals is no good?
    Why doesn’t he get help? He must know at his age he’s no great wit or raconteur – that he’s a plodder.
    Unless he can figure out how to make a laughing stock of BloJob he’s fucked.
    And deserves to be.

  18. Labour oversight from ✡ Jewish Community
    Ask the EHRC if there was evidence of vexatious claims of anti semitism against members and the party

  19. On Holocaust rembrance day
    if you ever visit Auschwitz/Birkenau don’t take the official tour, you don’t need to be told what to think, the place speaks for itself
    My conclusion, there is evil in all of us, it could just as easily have been this country, we know this is not even a ‘Question of fact’ when we look at Israel and the systemic murder of innocent men, women and children
    How about Israel stops the use of live Ammunition against the civilian population, that would be a great way to never forget

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