You might think Japan’s response to Covid-19 would be rather draconian. It’s a very conformist society, with incredible respect for the rule of law and authority. Not to mention population density…

But you know what? Japan didn’t go into a national lockdown. For a simple reason. One which didn’t seem to even occur to our own politicians: it would’ve been against the law. It would’ve violated human rights. And it would’ve been contrary to the constitution.

This, from Reuters:

“The (pre-war) Meiji Constitution had such powers and there were abuses,” said lawyer Koju Nagai. “The current constitution is based on the idea that human rights should be respected.”

To empower the government enough to give it the ability to confine people in their own homes, there would’ve had to be a change to the constitution. And that requires a referendum. Which isn’t exactly what you want to be doing during a pandemic…

And so Japan had a more liberal approach than us. Which isn’t the topic of today’s Fortune & Freedom. The real topic is that your basic human rights here in the UK are being trampled on. The comparison to Japan merely highlights just how suddenly we’ve lost those rights.

Free speech, right of assembly, freedom of movement and a list of other rights. The sorts of things you never would’ve thought your government could take away from you. But now, they’re gone. Or on the chopping block.

Now you might’ve been willing to accept that in March, when uncertainty reigned supreme. Or you might not have, even then.

Regardless, right now, it’s clear that your rights haven’t just been trampled on. They’ve turned into a political football too! They’re now something which politicians spar over in their contest to get elected.

You are mere collateral damage to them.

This has huge financial implications, of course. We’ve seen unparalleled economic contraction. And stocks are down badly.

But it goes well beyond that now, doesn’t it?

More and more people are waking up to this reality. That’s why, when we polled Fortune & Freedom readers about whether they think the government’s restrictions have gone too far, here’s the result we got.

No: 1,074      Yes: 4,385

That’s right – most of you think the government has gone too far. And many of those votes came in before the latest measures…

The result is the opposite to what you’re seeing from broader polling of the population.

In coming weeks, we’re going to discover whether Nigel and his followers are ahead of the curve, once again. And whether Britain is about to turn on those who think they know better.

Political discord would just be another risk to add to our economy right now. Of which there are plenty.

We’ll be monitoring what happens next closely…

Nick Hubble
Editor, Fortune & Freedom