The Government is making public it’s National Risk Register according to the BBC today. Not surprisingly it considers a terrorist attack the most likely risk and the gravest threat to be a flu pandemic which could cost between 50,000 and 750,000 lives. The stated aim of publishing this list is to ‘stimulate a mature debate’ with the public and business as to the possible risks facing this country.
Three thoughts sprung immediately to my mind. Firstly, no amount of ‘debate’ mature or otherwise will make the slightest bit of difference to the risks and what the hell do we pay politicians for if not to consider risks and take the necessary precautions on our behalf. Secondly, if they are going to come up with a risk variant of 700,000 lives as a result of ‘flu the usefulness of this statistic is virtually meaningless. Thirdly, put a terrorist attack at the top of the list and what do you get? You get a public that is fearful and worried and therefore willing to accept more and more restrictions on civil liberties.
Top of the Risk List should be a loss of freedom, democracy, accountability and the emergence of a police state.