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Losing the habits of liberty
Mark Steyn and GBNews
Last Friday I attended a dinner organised by Together for friends, partners, and life-time members. It was a great evening and it was wonderful to see so many people who have been involved in the freedom movement since our government lost the habits of liberty.
Mark Steyn used this phrase, losing the habits of liberty, in his interview with Maajid Nawaz that went live just yesterday. In the video you’ll hear Mark defending those habits - like the ability to travel unhindered, or the expectation that the media will defend free speech, or that medical people will do no harm.
Those habits are disappearing. And now Mark, like Maajid, is left to defend liberty on the independent video streaming platform Rumble rather than a mainstream news broadcasting organisation.
Meanwhile Neil Oliver, who was the guest speaker at the dinner on Friday evening, is one of the few left to defend liberty at GBNews.
I had the chance to chat to Neil last Friday about Mark’s demise. We chatted about the role of Ofcom and about the pressure the channel’s management was being put under. I asked Neil about what might happen now - now that he was, effectively, one of the last remaining defenders of freedom on a ship that may well be approaching the rocks upon which so many broadcasters of late have met their demise: Ofcom rules.
There’s no doubting that both Mark and Neil have noticed something that we’ve all noticed: the unravelling of the known world. We have seen things in the last three years that we can’t unsee. There’s no going back to the world of the Coast guy. There’s no going back to cookery programmes for Mark Steyn. In my case there’s no going back to working for big tech or consulting for big government. Everything has changed. And none of us knows what’s next or where things might turn for the good, or the worse.
But there’s a comfort in knowing that the good are with us. As Mark pointed out in the interview with Maajid, it was none other than Sue Cook who pointed out to him, on his GBNews show, just how insidious Ofcom had become - as evidenced by its inability to countenance any debate about post-vaccine excess deaths. (Sue Cook - the safest pair of hands in TV broadcasting for years). The fact that she, and Mark and Maajid and Neil were questioning these things must make us question who, exactly, is pulling the strings of Ofcom and the government. Who, exactly, is causing the unravelling of the known world?
It’s some comfort that Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister of Scotland, has announced her resignation, just a few weeks after that other WEF-puppet, Jacinda Ardern, shuffled-off stage-left. The minor players in the apparatus of one world government seem to be falling off their self-assembled pedestals. Perhaps the entire edifice is crumbling under its own weight of hubris. But a call-out is required for the unwavering and the brave and the career-sacrificing. Asking the important, fundamental questions is more important than covering cabinet reshuffles or the fall from grace of first ministers. And those are the questions that Neil and Mark and Maajid are are asking and have been asking - as well as a veritable army of activists and publishers and commentators who have given up on what used to be regarded as mainstream (see Katie Hopkins in the video below).
The most important right in a free democratic state is the right to aspire to high political office. But once the leaders have emerged at the top of that high greasy pole they should expect to be questioned - especially when their policies result in vast excess deaths, the decimation of the economy, or the euthanising of the elderly.
Because a nation without liberty is not a nation. It’s a prison.