Dan Wootton: Is the government secretly pursuing a Covid herd immunity strategy again?

So much for normality!

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So much for normality.

Turns out Freedom Day has been delayed till August 16.

That’s the only way to read the government’s maddening decision to force anyone who has come into contact with a Covid carrier for ten days – even if they have been double jabbed and tested negative.

The government is doing what it can to keep the hysterical scientists and media in check.

But why on earth is there not more talk about the incredibly positive news to balance out the narrative.

According to the ONS, 90% of English adults now have Covid antibodies.

Ninety per cent!

A handy combination of natural immunity and vaccination that surely makes herd immunity soon a very real prospect. But more on that in a moment.

The issue with the test and trace delay is that it makes it almost impossible for society to open up.

The Adam Smith Institute estimates that as many as 4.6 million of us could be forced to self-isolate by the start of August.

That will make it nigh on impossible for bars and theatres and many other businesses to open. Not to mention NHS staff themselves.

A third of hospitality workers are estimated to already be in isolation.

As former Tory party leader Iain Duncan Smith put it today...

“I wouldn’t go to a pub that wasn’t still having six around a table and social distancing, otherwise you run the risk of everyone in the pub being pinged and locked down.”

It’s great news the rule is being dropped and I celebrate the new health secretary Sajid Javid realising it must happen.

BUT it must happen on Freedom Day. Not four weeks later.

Otherwise what the government is likely to find is that hundreds of thousands of folks will take matters into their own hands and delete the NHS Covid app to avoid the increasing possibility of being pinged.

Is the government secretly pursuing a herd immunity strategy again?

And, given the vaccination programme, is there anything wrong with that?

The Daily Mail’s well-connected political editor Jason Groves and executive Simon Walters today report that ministers hope “an 'element of herd immunity' will help slow the spread of Covid infections among the young.

And bravo to the Duchess of Cornwall for speaking out against masks today.

She told a student at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama: “I can’t wait to get rid of these.”

How refreshing to see a major public figure who isn’t joining the virtue signalling brigade by saying we should stay muzzled in perpetuity.