The Great Lockdown Debate: Who Won?

The Great Lockdown Debate: Who Won?

Mike Graham is to be congratulated on his professional chairing of the above video debate between two well-known journalists. The question for our discussion is who won the debate? That will be for you to decide, based, of course, on whether you are more convinced by Peter Hitchens’ arguments or those of Dan Hodges.  Watch out for one piece of brilliant “classic Peter” in there – but will it be sufficient to win your vote?  

Comments (35)

  • crofterlady

    It was touch and go but I think the Peter bloke won it. Which bit was “the classic Peter” bit? Who are these people anyway? Journalists?

    February 11, 2021 at 11:07 pm
    • editor


      The answer to your question is found in two places: (1) in my introductory sentence and (2) in the video itself…. I’d accuse you of having a short attention span but I know you’d only come back at me with “attention what?”

      As for the classic Peter bit – well, I’ll wait to see if anyone else can identify it. Too early in the discussion to reveal that nugget… Clue: it is a part of the video where it is designed to really hit you between the eyes – er… figuratively speaking 😀

      I’d be interested to know why you think Peter won, and why “touch and go”. Which specific arguments impressed you?

      February 12, 2021 at 12:10 am
      • Athanasius


        I have only managed to listen to part of the exchange thus far and already I have noticed one fact that Peter failed to mention in response to Dan’s support for lockdowns. The World Health Organisation has advised governments not to lockdown because they are counterproductive. They do not stop the spread of the virus but they do destroy economies and human health. I’m surprised that Peter didn’t quote this, it would have ended Dan’s defence of lockdown on the spot. Otherwise, Peter is certainly more informed and articulate in his argument.

        I’ll listen to the rest of it later.

        February 12, 2021 at 6:42 am
      • editor


        The trouble with quoting the WHO is that they either change their minds (e.g. masks) or give a get-out clause. What they actually said about lockdowns, if I remember correctly, is that they should be a “last resort”. At this stage, with these mysteriously convenient new variants, the Government would say that they did ease the restrictions but the new variants mean that we have to use the “last resort” – lockdowns – again.

        When dealing with people who thinking nothing of lying, one just cannot win.

        February 12, 2021 at 10:21 am
      • Josephine


        I also thought Peter could have mentioned The Great Reset when Dan Hodges went on about conspiracy theories because that’s not a theory, it’s on the World Economic Forum website – they talk openly about using the virus to “reset” the world, using Communist ideology – “You’ll own nothing and be happy”. So, that disappointed me. Apart from that, though, I think Peter won hands down.

        That was a cracker when he quoted Dan Hodges’ own words back at him from an old article, LOL!

        February 12, 2021 at 10:57 am
      • Margaret Mary


        I agree about the “cracker” at the end – even Hodges had to laugh when Peter said that it was him he was quoting. That was a great ending to his side of the debate.

        February 12, 2021 at 4:52 pm
  • sentirecumecclesia

    I definitely thought Peter won. There was no contest for me. It seemed to me that Dan was far more nervous and had an inconsistent position based on propaganda words such as “denier.” The clincher of the debate for me was that moment when Dan tried to escape the consequences of the lockdown by quoting a medical authority. He refused Peter and the interviewer’s common sense link between the number of calls made by suicidal people during lockdown and the lockdown itself. He refused to link them by an appeal to authority. Then there’s the name-calling of “Covid denier”- another typical irrational behaviour of the propagandist lacking a coherent argument. Over and over again Peter made the point that he wanted to tackle the question of the proportionality of the response. I could have cheered. Dan Hodges had NO logical response to that, and he looked quite miserable. Because, of course, there IS no logical response. Plenty of people would prefer, if push came to shove, to die of Covid if God allowed it, rather than live in a dehumanised society of masked-up atomised and distanced people. (Not that the death rates as recorded present a grave danger of death for the vast, vast majority of society anyhow.)

    Anyhow, my position from the beginning has been the same. If I could save, not just the country, but one county or one town from these terrible laws, I’d willingly die of Covid or anything else that resulted.

    February 12, 2021 at 12:39 am
    • Athanasius


      I agree with every word you have written – spot on! I feel exactly the same way and I would gladly risk dying of COVID-19 rather than live this present existence of surreal imprisonment – not that there’s any real risk of dying from COVID for those who inform themselves of the true facts,

      What keeps me going through this is the hopeful thought that one day all the government leaders behind this crime against humanity will stand trial at the Hague! The truth will come out eventually, it always does.

      February 12, 2021 at 6:19 am
      • editor


        Your sense of the injustice of all of this (which should, indeed, end with the perpetrators being charged with Crimes Against Humanity) will be redoubled when you read the following report. Despite their false assurances that there would be no discrimination against anyone who decided NOT to be vaccinated, the Government has been working to introduce vaccine passports by stealth, Forced vaccination is against international law and this is nothing more than a cynical attempt to get around that fact…

        February 12, 2021 at 10:27 am
      • Athanasius


        I should have waited a few more hours after my meal before reading that article, which is raised my ire and given me indigestion.

        I think if the truth be told we all know that vaccination ID is coming soon and there will be no nromal life allowed to anyone who refuses to sign on to the scheme. It’s all part of the Luciferian plan under the new global Communist totalitarianism.

        No matter what punishments they dictate though, I will NEVER allow myself to be vaccinated with their dangerous substances. As for the law: forget it, the judges are largely puppets of big government now.

        February 12, 2021 at 8:46 pm
    • editor


      I, too, decided at the outset that I would sooner risk getting infected than live in a prison.

      Since we no longer live in a free country, however, that is turned around and those of us who think like that are name-called, callous, selfish etc, the nonsense argument being that we don’t care about infecting others , that we are killing others etc.

      I say “nonsense” argument for a number of reasons, including the simple fact that I bear no responsibility for anyone else’s health – I do what I can to protect my own health and everyone else should look after their own health; when they fall ill, they have the NHS to cater for them. It’s not my job to protect either the NHS or the rest of the population. That’s why we pay dearly, all of our lives, for the “free” NHS.

      February 12, 2021 at 10:25 am
    • mary

      ” prefer, if push came to shove, to die of Covid if God allowed it, rather than live in a dehumanised society of masked-up atomised and distanced people”. Agree agree agree, particularly since it’s a disproportionate response to the covid threat . (unfortunately I can’t follow Peter H’s radio discussions, as I wish he’d speak up more clearly).
      And then the shocking child abuse; I read today children in school in France muzzled up frpm 9am to 4pm and here they want to make CHILDREN guinea pigs for the vaccine poison.. Unprecedented evil. Truly they are creating the kingdom of Satan on earth. .

      February 12, 2021 at 9:26 pm
  • editor

    I’ve just received the Keep Britain Free email bulletin – strong stuff… Among other things, below we see the sheer brazenness of Matt Hancock exposed -again. He’s not sure if the Government will “allow” the rest of us to go on holiday this year, but he’s already booked his. You couldn’t make this stuff up…


    Dear Supporters,

    Just a matter of weeks after Matt Hancock suggested that 2021 would be a bumper year for British holidays and announcing that he had planned his own trip to Cornwall, the Government has rapidly back-tracked on this sentiment, with the Transport Secretary warning Brits not to book any holidays – either abroad or in the UK.

    Whilst this decisive U-turn may seem confusing enough, last Wednesday, Hancock re-instated his intentions to travel to the West-coast to the Tory backbench 1922 committee – at the same time the Prime Minister was telling the nation that it was too early to decide whether people can go away this summer. So, are they now suggesting that it is one rule for ministers and another for the general public?

    Whilst this relentless mixed messaging aptly sums up the shambolic handling of the pandemic by our Government, it doesn’t stop there! Just yesterday morning, Matt Hancock once again demonstrated how detached he has become from reality by uttering the words that the government was now working to “allow” people to go on holiday this year. Do they seriously think Britons will stand idly by and allow ministers to dictate their every movement?

    To add to further to this nonsensical narrative, this week the Government has also bombarded us with a stream of utterly ridiculous new border controls.

    From Monday, all arrivals into the UK will face mandatory triple Covid tests at their own expense. Moreover, anyone who tries to lie about their arrival from a so called ‘red list’ country could face a jail sentence of up to ten years, while those who try to avoid the mandatory self-isolation period in a hotel will face a fine of up to £10,000.

    It is simply unfathomable that lying on a passenger information form can carry a higher sentence than crimes including making threats to kill, indecent assault, possession of a firearm or the attempted rape of a child.

    These latest measures are completely disproportionate to the threat and the fact that the Government has once again got away without pursuing proper process in Parliament is astonishing.

    On top of this, the Government is now also threatening to hold us to ransom, suggesting that we will not be able to attend venues or travel abroad again unless we have a ‘vaccination passport’.

    It is simply absurd that this is what society has come to. The Government has gone out of control since the Supreme Court denied our appeal and the cowardly Judges gave them free reign to make decisions on the fly without any consequences.

    These latest infringements echo life under a communist dictatorship and will only push more businesses up and down the country closer to the brink of collapse.
    We have said it before, and we will say it again – throughout this pandemic, our Government has become an utter shambles, turning out a myriad of ambiguous and contradictory rules.

    As a result, 250,000 SMEs are hanging by the skin of their teeth and the unemployment rate is expected to more than double from pre-pandemic levels when the furlough scheme comes to an end.

    Just this week, the Chancellor announced a “pay-as-you-grow” initiative, giving SMEs the option to extend the length of their business loan from six to ten years. However, these new measures don’t go anywhere near far enough in supporting crisis hit SMEs and will do little to alleviate the immense economic pressures businesses are under. Instead, they are now facing a decade of crippling interest rate payments which will only prolong their struggles and impede future growth.
    Small businesses are the lifeblood of our economy and they have been crippled by this pandemic from start to finish. Yet as the vaccine roll out continues and the pressure on the NHS recedes, there is no sign of the current lockdown restrictions easing.

    That’s why I’m campaigning to save our SMEs, by calling on the government to scrap their Covid business loans and give our nation a chance to move forward from this crisis. If you are interested in supporting this campaign, you can find more information here.

    February 12, 2021 at 10:36 am
    • mary

      “…utter shambles, turning out a myriad of ambiguous and contradictory rules”.
      UK Column say that this confusion is deliberate psy -op’ing, to make us feel totally adrift with no control over anything. Utterly evil.
      As for holding us to ransom, these are mafia tactics.

      February 12, 2021 at 9:35 pm
  • Josephine

    I’m not sure whether to post this news on the vaccines thread or here, so I’ll do both, LOL! I saw the video last night and they do mention vaccines!

    The government are admitting that over 200 people have died including unborn babies in miscarriages, after receiving the vaccine.

    I also read somewhere that there is a high refusal rate in the USA. People are right to be worried – it’s a rush job and for something so important as a solution you’re putting into your body, we should not be forced to take it. That includes the blackmail of not getting a “vaccine passport” if we choose not to take it.

    February 12, 2021 at 10:50 am
  • RCAVictor

    The “proportion” argument is in itself problematic and dubious for me, because, as we all know, there really is no problem and there never was: the “pandemic” is 100% orchestrated fear-mongering about a relatively mild form of seasonal flu. Was there any government reaction like this to any other flu in recent history? No.

    So rather than focus on “proportion,” I would prefer a focus on the lies and liars upon which government decrees are based. Proportion? No – how about FOUNDATION? To hammer on about proportion, therefore (as far as I can tell), is a distraction, from the real issue, which is:


    To pose it as a more classic question: “Cui bono“? Who benefits? I believe everyone on this blog knows the answer to that.

    As for Hodges’ opening statement (speaking of lies and liars)

    1. “The vaccine is a game changer” .
    2. The government predictions proved to be correct, the lockdown skeptics were all wrong.
    3. “The lockdown ensures that we have time to protect the most vulnerable.”

    I don’t have time to view the entire debate, and I’m sorry for having to take a short cut, but Hodges’ two-minute opening was enough for me to identify him as a mouthpiece of stupidity and lies. I also agree completely with Sentirecumecclesia’s post.

    PS: If one prefers the “proportion” argument, then one must ask, “Is the government’s response to its own lies out of proportion to the significance of those lies?” An absurd question, obviously, but the answer is no: the lies were designed to justify the response to those lies. They go together and they are perfectly suited to each other.

    February 12, 2021 at 4:26 pm
    • Lily

      RCA Victor,

      I think all Peter means is that the “cure” is out of all proportion to the danger. He watches his words not to let people like Hodges accuse him of being a conspiracy theorist. He has lived in the Soviet Union so he knows how totalitarianism takes hold. There’s no denying that the lockdowns are out of all proportion to the danger from a virus with over 99% recovery, LOL! If that’s not out of all proportion, what is!

      Hodges’s two minute opening was a signal of the rest of his contributions. He’s a blind follower of “the science” and it showed in his answers to every question.

      There’s no question, Peter won that debate fair and square.

      February 12, 2021 at 4:39 pm
      • RCAVictor


        I agree that Peter won the debate (what little I saw of it), but my point was that to refer to the lockdown as a “cure” at all is actually a mistake right off the bat, since it is nothing of the sort. That line of reasoning merely disguises the real problem, and in fact sets the stage for the idea that there should have been some sort of milder government intervention, not such a severe one. I reject that argument completely.

        February 12, 2021 at 5:29 pm
      • Lily

        RCA Victor,

        I probably would agree that the government doesn’t need to do anything about a virus, although we have the NHS providing a flu vaccine every year for the senior citizens. However, it they think there’s a new deadly virus in the country, would they not be obliged to tell us and give us the symptoms, or would it be enough to just notify doctors and leave it to them to deal with when patients go to see them with the symptoms? I think that’s probably about right so I’m talking myself into agreeing with you, LOL!

        February 12, 2021 at 8:32 pm
      • RCAVictor


        Let me see if I can do a better job explaining what I’m getting at. Here is an analogy:

        Let’s say these two gentlemen decided to debate whether the torture and execution of Our Lord was “proportional” to his crime. Absurd, no? Because there was no crime – Our Lord was Innocence Itself – there were only false charges, lies, shouted by a mob who intimidated the weak Pilate.

        Likewise, here we have a debate about the proportionality of the government response to the pandemic. But there is no pandemic and there is no danger, other than being careful to take care of yourself with common sense if you catch the flu. In other words, just like Our Lord’s “criminality,” the so-called facts about the virus are complete government-generated and orchestrated lies. That is, in this analogy, the government’s actions are identical to those of the bloodthirsty mob. Instead of “crucify Him!” we have “lock yourself down!” “wear your mask!” “social distance!” “close your business!” – and soon, “take the vaccine!”

        But it gets worse: the government actually created the danger, where none existed, by suppressing medications, blocking care for other diseases, and decreeing masks and lockdowns, both of which are hazardous to your health.

        In my opinion, these two should have been debating the following instead (and if they did, I apologize, I only watched a little of the video):

        1. Can the government be trusted, or are they lying?
        2. Is government the solution to everything? Is a socialist welfare state, that controls everything little thing from cradle to grave, the ideal form of government?
        3. Who is controlling this well-orchestrated narrative behind the scenes, such that it’s not only the government mouthing and enforcing it, but also big business, big media, big pharma big tech…not to mention the Catholic hierarchy (which I will resist the temptation, given their present state of corruption, to call “little religion.”)

        Hope that helps…

        February 12, 2021 at 10:38 pm
      • editor

        RCA Victor,

        It’s a pity you didn’t watch the whole debate because you would see there – especially from Dan Hodges – what we’re up against over here, with people routinely parroting what he was saying, all of which you have covered in your numbers 1 and 3.

        Mockingly he (and most of the population, at least in Scotland – I think the English are a bit more savvy, any rebellion is occurring there) tried to force Peter into a corner by implying, through his questions, that surely Peter wasn’t saying that the Government can’t be trusted, that they are doing this to us for no good reason… they are lying, are they? Who, Dan asks, is controlling this? etc. His superior to the point of being silly demeanour will come back to haunt him when he discovers that he is painfully wrong about this being the last lockdown. Let’s see what happens to his blind trust in the “experts” and the “science” then.

        What Dan Hodges was saying in that debate is precisely what the followers of the fake news industry leads them to believe – that this is a genuine crisis, that the Government is doing its best and of course they wouldn’t lie to us about something like this.

        Peter did his best in the circumstances to show that [even if true] the manner of addressing this [non] crisis is way out of proportion to what is [or would be if it were a real crisis] required to deal with it.

        As for #2 on your list; well, if there is any good to come out of this Covid-19 fiasco for me, it is that I am now alerted to the fact that having a Government-controlled health service is dangerous in the extreme. And, further, I’m now thus clearly aware that we, in Scotland, have been living in a socialist state for a very long time now. Since socialism leads inexorably to Communism, it’s little wonder that very few have noticed its arrival.

        February 12, 2021 at 11:51 pm
    • sentirecumecclesia

      The problem is that due to the control of the mass media and the relentless, never-seen-before propaganda, one is directly smeared as a “conspiracy theorist” if one questions the fact that Covid is a deadly disease.

      This being so, I think it’s legitimate to fight on the grounds where you can get a hearing. That is, let’s suppose Covid is somewhat deadly to some few people (whereas I agree that there are medications which in all likelihood would render “it”- if “it” has even been isolated- no big deal at all.). On that supposition, or conceding that argument which one is unlikely to win anyway, one can argue the disproportionality of the response.

      I don’t think this is problematic or disingenuous. It’s smart. Hitchens is very smart. Even if he suspects Covid is a big fat zero, he doesn’t have the medical expertise to state this infallibly. On the other hand, he DOES have the ability to call out the response.

      And in a way, I think his response is even more important than the debate about the relative virulence of Covid, because the crux of the issue is what it means to be a human being, Back in the days of early March last year when I still feared every cough might be Covid and therefore someone’s Last End (a temporary propaganda- induced mental blip which was dispelled by the evident lack of deaths), I STiLL thought, based on historical precedent and common sense, they couldn’t possibly licitly legislate for families being divided and people being forced to stay X metres apart. So in a sense, whether this is a mini plague or a sneezing bout is irrelevant. What’s relevant is how far you can interfere with human lives. And the problem is that we are seeing an interference in people’s lives unprecedented in perhaps any regime except a Fascist/Communist one.

      February 12, 2021 at 11:40 pm
      • Josephine


        A fantastic post from you! I agree with it totally.

        You are so right about the need to use smart arguments when we’re not knowledgeable about the science. I certainly couldn’t argue the science except to say that it’s never been the case before that scientists all agreed on something that they said they didn’t actually know about, LOL!

        Peter did really well and was smart to argue that the Government’s response has been disproportionate, keeping us all under house arrest. As you say, this sort of regime is only usually seen at work in Fascist/Communist countries.

        February 13, 2021 at 10:16 am
      • editor


        Josephine is right – that is one excellent post. Thank you for your sanity!

        February 13, 2021 at 1:30 pm
      • RCAVictor


        That’s an excellent argument – and, I have to admit, much better than my “all or nothing” perspective!

        I hope that argument (“how far you can interfere with human lives”) is soon applied to Bill Gates and his depraved theories, as well. A court in Peru has made a start in that direction…

        February 13, 2021 at 4:55 pm
      • editor

        RCA Victor,

        “A court in Peru”?

        Spill !

        February 13, 2021 at 9:43 pm
      • RCAVictor


        Did you forget about that link I posted a couple of days ago? Here it is again:

        February 14, 2021 at 12:39 am
      • sentirecumecclesia

        Thanks Editor, RCA Victor, and Josephine.

        I get your point though, RCA Victor. It’s tiring and annoying for the honest to be constantly forced to fence around what seems increasingly like the Emperor’s New Clothes, and there can be a disingenuous feel to talking about the disease when in your heart of hearts, you’re pretty sure there’s a giant con of some kind going on.

        But the baddies have swiped the whole arsenal, it seems- most media outlets, a complicit, scared-stiff body of politicians and medics, with some very noble exceptions, and a (humanly speaking) disastrously weakened Church, again with noble exceptions- all in all, our leaders just rolled over and played dead. What’s a guy to do?

        The goodies’ only argument and source of evidence is common sense and historical precedent. And that’s where Peter Hitchens drew his sword. Dan Hodges was a rabbit in the headlights when faced with the unanswerable question: is the response proportionate? He could only keep going with the old red herring of the Covid denier (maybe he really believes this) or, even more absurd, the “lockdown denier.”. I mean, what on earth is a lockdown denier? From where I’m sitting, there’s no denying lockdown. It’s coming between me and the pub.

        I take it he means “denier that lockdown works” which is, er, really scary- apparently now to challenge the efficacy of lockdown in combatting disease puts you in some kind of undefined weirdo/fringe category? Wow!

        I’m praying for Peter- I like him. I think he’s Anglican.

        February 14, 2021 at 7:07 pm
  • Margaret Mary

    I think that was well worth doing because although most of the arguments (probably all of them) are well known here, there are loads of people out there who are so brainwashed by the TV that they will never have heard any argument against lockdowns, even the “proportionality” one. They have been brainwashed to think about this as Dan Hodges does, those who are “protecting” the NHS and those who are conspiracy nuts.

    I agree that Peter won, 100%.

    February 12, 2021 at 4:50 pm
  • editor

    Here’s some interesting news just in – given all the pretend concern to protect the elderly… A Sister of Charity has recovered from Covid at the age of 116 … her 117th birthday fell yesterday, 11 February, Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes!

    The report is right at the end of this news report – scroll to 5:22. Despite the newsreader’s Scottish accent, I’ve never heard of this channel…

    February 12, 2021 at 5:03 pm
    • Lily


      That’s great about the nun recovering from Covid – and it shows that even very old people can survive the virus. That’s at least the third person over 100 that I’ve heard about who has recovered. Why they have created the panic, beats me.

      February 12, 2021 at 8:34 pm
      • editor

        Yes, Lily, among the first people to be featured on the TV news (while I was still a viewer) were two elderly people.

        One, a woman of 112 was filmed being wheeled out of hospital to the applause of the staff who formed themselves into a parade to wave her off, and the second a man of over 100 who was similarly waved off.

        There are several other old people, over 100, who have survived Covid across the world.

        So, whatever else the “experts” want to claim about this virus they cannot credibly claim that it is deadly – even for the elderly.

        February 12, 2021 at 11:57 pm
      • Josephine

        That news is proof positive that the Government’s response to Covid-19 has been over the top. If people in their 100’s – even someone of 116 going on 117 can recover, then shutting everything down and keeping people prisoners in their homes is way over the top.

        February 13, 2021 at 10:18 am
  • Margaret Mary

    I heard Peter Hitchens again on the Mike Graham Show this morning and he was emphatic that we have now given away our freedom and we are unlikely to get it back. He thinks there will be some freedom for a bit and then back to restrictions again, because governments don’t ever give back freedoms once they take them. I almost found this report on travel requirements very interesting. Peter Hitchens says he doesn’t expect to do any more serious travel. That’s gone now which is shocking.

    February 15, 2021 at 4:31 pm
  • Margaret Mary

    Should be also not almost.

    February 15, 2021 at 4:32 pm

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