Have yourself a merry little Christmas, but don’t go making any plans for New Year just yet. It seemed that this was the message from Downing Street tonight.

The good news is we’ve been granted a stay of execution. We could find ourselves back in lockdown next week.

The Prime Minister delayed a decision regarding whether or not to place further Covid restrictions after today’s emergency cabinet meeting.

It is unlikely Christmas will be cancelled with only three days remaining. Boris Johnson, however, stated after the Cabinet meeting that there was nothing to be ruled out.

He insisted ministers still don’t have enough data to determine what happens next. Pity he didn’t reach that same conclusion before he pressed the panic button prematurely over a week ago and brought in Plan B, unleashing a fresh wave of uncertainty and inflicting serious collateral damage on the already-struggling hospitality industry.

We can still be grateful for little mercies. It was clear that Christmas could be canceled for the second consecutive year. Yesterday, there were three alternatives to the full lockdown.

After today's emergency Cabinet meeting, the Prime Minister postponed a decision on whether to impose further Covid restrictions. With only three days to go, it is highly unlikely that Christmas will be cancelled. But Boris Johnson said after the Cabinet meeting that nothing was being ruled out

Today’s emergency Cabinet meeting saw the Prime Minister delay a decision regarding whether further Covid restrictions should be imposed. It is unlikely Christmas will be cancelled with only three days remaining. Boris Johnson stated that no decision was being made after the Cabinet meeting.

We can be thankful for our temporary reprieve by thanking those 100 Tory MPs that broke ranks last week to vote against the government and Cabinet members who are strongly opposed to further restrictions of civil liberties.

After losing his Brexit blood brother Lord Frost, Boris couldn’t afford any more ministerial resignations. He found himself trapped between Zero Covid fanatics, and his backbenchers.

It remains to be determined how long this position will last. By all accounts, Whitehall officials have already drawn up plans for a two-week long ‘circuit breaker’ starting as early as next Tuesday, December 28.

Even that doesn’t go far enough for some of the more extreme members of SAGE, the scientific advisory committee, who want lockdown to last the whole of January, if not for ever.

We’re not out of the woods yet. The nation would have benefitted from strong leadership. Instead we got vacillation.

As I wrote recently, Boris is at his best when he gambles and leads from the front — just as he did when winning two London mayoral races, the Brexit referendum and a thumping General Election victory.

Right now, he’s a shadow of his former self, buffeted by events. By nature, he’s always been a risk-taker, but since contracting Covid himself he’s become increasingly risk-averse.

Yesterday, he claimed that he didn’t have enough data. But he’s got data coming out of his ears. He would be able to see the decline in deaths and hospitalisations due to Covid if he carefully studied them.

True, the Omicron variant is especially infectious, but in all but a handful of cases it isn’t fatal. It can even be fatal. Most people don’t even know they’ve got it until they have to take a lateral flow test. Others report mild flu-like symptoms or say it’s a bit like having a bad hangover.

There are still plenty of people with Covid Stockholm Syndrome who have been spooked into staying at home and wearing masks indoor. Pictured, empty desks seen inside the Lloyds of London building on December 20

Many people suffering from Covid Stockholm Syndrome are still able to wear masks indoors after being manipulated into believing they can stay at home. Photographed: Empty desks inside Lloyds of London building, December 20

Ever thought of cancelling New Year’s Eve and Christmas celebrations because someone might have a hangover? SAGE continues to produce absurd and blood-curdling predictions that are invariably wildly wrong.

Up until now, we have been told that Boris has always ‘followed the science’ and tailored his Covid policies accordingly.

This version of events is being rebutted by a hilarious exchange between Fraser Nelson, the editor of the Spectator magazine and the chairman, Sage committee, who predicted that Omicron would kill 6,000 people a week in Britain.

Nelson asked Graham Medley to explain why the committee ignored South African evidence that Omicron is less dangerous than the Delta version. Medley admitted SAGE was encouraged by ‘decision-makers’ to produce worst-case scenarios. ‘We generally model what we are asked to model,’ he said.

That suggests ministers are telling The Science to come up with alarmist ‘evidence’ to support decisions which have already been taken, not the other way round.

Is it any wonder that some of us refuse to believe a single word the ‘experts’ say about Covid any more?

These are the questions the BBC and the rest of the broadcast media should be asking, instead of screaming for ever tougher measures and obsessing over cheese and wine ‘gatherings’.

The idea of one rule being for them, and another for us is a sham. The Guardianista hysteria about whether Boris shared a plate of Camembert with his civil servants after a long day at Downing Street was merely a distraction to the main event.

If dodgy data is being used deliberately to manipulate us into another lockdown, and it turns out there is no danger of the NHS being overwhelmed this winter, it’s a scandal which needs investigating.

If what Nelson has uncovered is true, there’s absolutely no justification for ministers even considering further restrictions.

So why on earth are we still facing the prospect of a crippling ‘circuit breaker’ starting after Boxing Day?

The uncertainty has already cost bars, pubs and restaurants billions of pounds in lost revenue. Any kind of shutdown over New Year would be catastrophic. Pictured, empty tables outside a bar in Soho

Bars, pubs, and restaurants have already lost billions in revenue due to the uncertainty. It would be a disaster if there was a shutdown in the new year. Imagine empty tables in front of a Soho bar

Already, the uncertainty has cost pubs, restaurants and bars billions in lost revenue. A New Year shutdown would be disastrous.

There are many people who still have Covid Stockholm Syndrome.

However, I feel that patience is beginning to fade in an ever increasing number of people. Many of us already know enough. So far, and nothing more.

We don’t trust the politicians to dictate where we can go or who we can meet any more. No, not now.

Boris might have advised everyone to use a mask when they left the house and work remotely.

But that hasn’t stopped millions of us from heading into town to meet friends and do a bit of last minute Christmas shopping.

I can only speak for my patch of North London, but the local shops seem to be doing brisk business and, unless I’m imagining it, plenty of people are ignoring the exhortation to wear masks.

Colleagues who ventured into London’s West End at the weekend report that the place was rocking and rolling. It’s the same story in towns and cities across the country.

Take a look at the photographs of the shoppers in Manchester, Birmingham and Leeds.

Boris is fretting about whether to place a new lockdown, apparently based on dodgy science. Half the country, however, has decided we don’t have anything to fear except fear.

Don’t listen to the preachers of doom. For a moment, the NHS could look after itself. It’s Christmas.

Take the opportunity to eat, drink, & be merry while it’s still possible.

If The Science is correct, then tomorrow will be just as good. . . WE’RE ALL GONNA DIE!