Monthly Archives: October 2020

#Lockdown2 – public PILLORIES Johnson before he has even announced it

The general public has condemned Boris Johnson as an interfering idiot who will cause huge suffering simply because he doesn’t like being told what to do.

The mass reaction came in response to details of his new planned lockdown, leaked in advance of a now-twice-delayed press conference:

Here’s how people have reacted to the announcement that there will be any new lockdown at all:

Apparently the new lockdown is going to start on November 4 and run for four weeks until December 2:

Of course there’s always online shopping. We could give our money to foreign-owned multinationals that don’t pay any taxes, ultimately leaving the UK much worse-off in the long term. What responsible government would seriously suggest that?

Schools and universities – where Covid-19 has been spreading most rapidly – will remain open to allow the disease to continue spreading through the population in spite of the lockdown:

Meanwhile, pubs and hospitality establishments are under orders to close:

It all seems extremely “nudge unit” to me.

Remember the nudge unit? It was a Cameron project that attempted to “nudge” people into behaviour that they would not normally follow, by creating conditions that meant they would find it impractical to do anything else.

This organisation was so successful that Cameron privatised it and as far as I know, it is trading as a commercial entity now.

I wonder why any government would want to “nudge” us into situations that make us infinitely more likely to catch Covid-19, though. Is Johnson still quietly pushing his genocidal “herd immunity” doctrine?

In the light of the above – all precipitated, I’m sure, by Johnson’s inability to accept instructions, I hereby offer my own contribution to the festivities:

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Why is ROBERT #PESTON announcing the new #BorisJohnson #lockdown2 restrictions?

 Robert Peston: how come he’s announcing new government Covid-19 restrictions in advance?

I thought Peston’s erstwhile sidekick Allegra Stratton was the one who quit to become the Tory government’s full-time spokes-goon.

What’s Peston himself doing, announcing new policies before Boris Johnson?

And didn’t Johnson fall foul of the relevant authorities for announcing policies via his media stooges before giving Parliament a chance to look at them?

Yes he did.

Some people never learn – or perhaps Johnson’s just thumbing his nose at everybody else and Peston is simply the empty vessel he’s using to do it.

Here’s what the ITV political editor has claimed will be announced at 5pm today (October 31). Let’s compare it with what Johnson says:

Schools and universities to remain open?

This won’t make much of a dent in the spread of the virus, then.

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#NadineDorries take note: #SAGE predicted #Lockdown2 – but NOT with a crystal ball!

Nadine Dorries: The lights are on but nobody’s home.

The MP we all know as “Mad Nad” has struck again.

Nadine Dorries, who has miraculously managed to climb the greasy pole far enough to become a health – health! – minister, has performed another spectacular display of idiocy:

“Only a crystal ball could have predicted the need for a second lockdown”?

The Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies called for it on September 21.

Its acronym may be SAGE but that doesn’t mean it uses a crystal ball!

The reaction on the social media has been exactly what she deserved:

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As Johnson plans a new national lockdown, Universal Basic Income is back on the agenda

Money: Three million people went without because Rishi Sunak refused to try a Universal Basic Income pilot scheme in May. More than a milliion children will go hungry over Christmas because Sunak wants them to starve; will he force starvation onto millions of adults as well?

Rishi Sunak is facing renewed demands to pilot a Universal Basic Income (UBI) scheme in the UK, after it was revealed his boss Boris Johnson is considering another national lockdown to try to halt the march of Covid-19 across the UK.

Johnson – and Sunak – rejected those demands back in April, and millions of people fell through the gaping holes in their support packages for people who were financially disadvantaged by the lockdown.

The Financial Times reported that more than three million people went hungry back then – as This Site pointed out in this article.

Meanwhile, Spain launched its own version of UBI in July, amid much discussion in the UK media. Those right-wing sources have been very quiet about it ever since, which suggests that it has been a success and they don’t want you to know.

The letter from the Cross-Party Parliamentary and Local Government Working Group on UBI has been signed by 520 elected representatives.

It says: “Millions of people have fallen through the cracks of the government’s support packages.

“The pandemic has left countless families facing poverty and extreme hardship.

“Many civil society leaders believe that Universal Credit, which has itself been linked to high mortality rates, is ill-equipped to support people through the financial insecurity arising from the recession we are about to enter.

“Economic shocks from financial, social and environmental crises are likely to continue for decades to come.

“Now is the time to act.

“The creation of a Universal Basic Income (UBI) – a regular and unconditional cash payment to every individual in the UK – could be the solution.

“A UBI would build resilience into our society and our communities, while providing the stimulus we need to rebuild our economy.”

I like this bit, which uses the Tories’ own slogans to make its point [I’ve bolded them up for clarity]: “It would level up towns and cities across the UK, allowing us to build back better.”

“With unemployment set to increase amid a shrinking job market, we urge you not to underestimate the wider costs to society of rising poverty and joblessness. These include the ripple effect of increased mental and physical health expenditure, as well as higher policing costs exacerbated by poverty. These will far exceed the costs of putting in place a Universal Basic Income.”

Back in April, the Tory excuse for avoiding UBI was that it discourages people from seeking work, but This Site revealed at the time that this is nonsense; it means people don’t have to take jobs for employers who undervalue the work they do.

Perhaps the Tories are more concerned that, having squeezed the economy so hard over the last 10 years in order to take money from working people and give it to their exploiters employers, there may not be enough to pay those who are willing to work the amount they demand, if others take the option of subsisting on the absolute minimum instead.

That’s their quandary; they have made it for themselves.

Sunak and Johnson have already caused a public relations disaster for their government and the Conservative Party by demanding that poor children be forced into starvation over the Christmas school holidays.

The choice before them now is between starving huge numbers of the population at large and causing a slight financial inconvenience to employers who happen to be Tory doners.

I don’t think they’ll make the right decision. Do you?

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Unions unite to demand reinstatement of Jeremy Corbyn as Labour’s ratings plummet

 

Seven trade unions have jointly demanded the reinstatement of Jeremy Corbyn to the Labour Party.

Unite, CWU, FBU, TSSA, BFAWU, ASLEF and the NUM have all signed up to the demand after the party’s new general secretary, David Evans, suspended his membership over comments on the EHRC report into anti-Semitism – that Corbyn was fully entitled to make.

It seems Corbyn has been subjected to the usual treatment faced by party members accused of anti-Semitism under a right-wing general secretary: he still does not know what rule he has broken.

For more information see this article.

Meanwhile, the Labour Party’s approval ratings are plummetting, according to an opinion poll.

A snap poll by the admittedly Tory-run firm YouGov found that Starmer’s ‘favourability’ rating had dropped by seven points over the two days of the report and suspension, with Labour’s falling even further, by twelve.

Further information on that is in this article.

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Coward Starmer wouldn’t tell Corbyn he was suspended; former Labour leader heard it from a PHOTOGRAPHER

This is par for the course with Labour’s Governance and Legal Unit, that leaks like a sieve.

I found out about my own suspension from a Western Mail reporter, the day before the Labour Party’s email arrived.

Jackie Walker can tell you herself how she found out:

And as you can see from the clip, Jeremy Corbyn found out from a photographer.

If the correct process is followed, then he will have received by now – by email and/or by snail mail – notification of his suspension, and this should explain exactly who complained about him, what he did that caused the complaint, and which Labour Party rules he broke by this action.

If it doesn’t, then Labour is breaking its own (current rules).

While these matters are usually confidential, I think Mr Corbyn has an obligation to publicise the contents of the letter. His suspension has caused an outcry among many thousands – if not millions – of people across the UK because it seems clear to us that he did nothing wrong.

We need to see Labour’s – in fact party general secretary David Evans’s – reasons for the decision.

The letter should also include a series of questions for Corbyn to answer, in order to provide a defence against the accusation(s), along with a timescale in which to do so and an explanation of the next steps.

None of these elements were in my own letter of suspension in 2017, so I would point out that Corbyn benefits from improvements that he, in fact, imposed.

But I hope that does not lull him into a false sense of security. His best bet, if he wants to challenge his suspension, is to take the matter to court.

I found that an internal Labour Party investigation is always going to be subject to corruption – the hard way.

So I took the matter to court and the verdict is due on November 24. After Labour accepted everything in the EHRC report, I’m quietly confident about the outcome.

Corbyn should do the same, and I am glad to see he is being encouraged to do so:

The problem is that, as Devutopia states, Corbyn tries to resolve matters amicably and that won’t work. He isn’t dealing with reasonable people; he is dealing with thugs in suits.

He spent five years trying to deal with these thugs in a reasonable way and the result was that he lost two general elections. We have heard that he would have won in 2017 if not for sabotage by right-wing factionalists within the Labour Party machine.

He needs to learn from that mistake. These people won’t act reasonably. They want his blood (but they’ll settle for his humiliation).

It’s time he grew the backbone that he has needed since 2015. If he had acted with strength back then, I would still be in the Labour Party, along with many other good socialists, and the UK would be (in) a much better state than it is now.

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New lockdown looms: will Boris Johnson accept responsibility for all the deaths since he ruled it out?

Johnson’s Covid-19 strategy: muddle the message.

The mainstream and social media are full of reports that Boris Johnson is finally going to give in to the inevitable and impose a new national lockdown – possibly as soon as next week.

The reasons are easy to understand: Covid-19 infections are now reaching a point where they are worse than at the height of the first wave, with 24,405 new infections reported on Friday (October 30), and 274 deaths.

Hospitals are feeling the pressure again, with the number of Covid-19 patients in hospitals in Nottinghamshire 40 per cent higher than at the peak of the first wave in April.

And a study found that the government’s Eat Out to Help Out scheme caused a significant increase in Covid-19 cases, with between eight and 17 per cent of newly-detected infection clusters linked to Rishi Sunak’s hare-brained scheme.

It gets worse:

Starmer is a shameless opportunist, as his reckless bid to kick Jeremy Corbyn out of the Labour Party proves. He’ll split the only realistic opposition party to the Tories, leaving Boris Johnson free to carry on with policies that kill people, well into the future.

And Johnson is killing people. Here’s the proof:

The day after Starmer called for a new lockdown – October 14 – the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) reported that

there were between 43,000 and 74,000 people being infected with coronavirus every day in England.

Their report said: “This is significantly above the profile of the reasonable worst-case scenario, where the number of daily infections in England remained between 12,000-13,000 throughout October.”

So at least four times more people are catching Covid than had been anticipated, meaning SAGE’s worst-case scenario figure of 85,000 deaths over the winter is likely to be a vast underestimation.

It seems that on Friday, at long last, somebody finally broke through to Johnson and managed to communicate to whatever rudimentary thought process occurs within his blonde-befuddled head that something needs to be done. If so, that person may well be a miracle-worker.

And now we have reports of a new lockdown:

So Johnson is finally doing what he should have done 17 days ago – and what the evidence told him to do 16 days ago.

Clearly he has learned nothing in the seven months since March, when he also delayed implementing lockdown until the situation reached a point where many thousands more people died than would have if he had only acted a little sooner.

Now, even if he does impose a new lockdown, many thousands more people have already died than needed to – and many thousands more will die.

That is what experience tells us.

Will Johnson accept that, as prime minister, he is responsible for these deaths? If not, how can we make him accept responsibility for them?

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If political interference in anti-Semitism complaints is wrong, why was Chris Williamson expelled from Labour?

Chris Williamson: he was dismissed from the Labour Party after political interference – in extremely bad faith – by right-wing Labour MPs, some of whom are now among Keir Starmer’s chief lieutenants. Shouldn’t THEY now be suspended and investigated?

I called it at the time.

Last year, Chris Williamson’s Labour Party membership was suspended amid false allegations of anti-Semitism. There was an investigation, the charge was upheld (wrongly, in my view) and he was punished for it with a formal warning.

Then a roll-call of the usual suspects – bad-faith Labour MPs acting on an agenda (in my opinion), along with that fake charity the Campaign Against Antisemitism, the Board of Deputies of British Jews, and others – demanded his re-suspension after the details were leaked to the press. They had their way and he was dismissed from the party.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission’s report, published yesterday – ruling that there was no “institutional antisemitism” in the Labour Party during Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership – has condemned political interference of exactly this kind.

Referring to the Williamson case, the EHRC report points out that Williamson “successfully challenged the decision to reopen the complaint in the High Court. The court found that: ‘it is not … difficult to infer that the true reason for the decision in this case was that members were influenced by the ferocity of the outcry following the June decision … the NEC should decide cases fairly and impartially in accordance with the rules and evidence; and not be influenced by how its decisions are seen by others. Internal and press reaction to a decision are not of themselves proper grounds for reopening a case that was not otherwise procedurally unfair or obviously wrong.”

The EHRC does not make any recommendations that could lead to those responsible for the reopening of the Williamson case to be penalised.

But it does call for the current leadership to implement clear rules and guidance that prohibit and sanction political interference in the complaints process, and to acknowledge the effect that political interference has had on the handling of antisemitism complaints.

It occurs to This Writer that such an acknowledgement should include punishment of those responsible in the Chris Williamson fiasco – for bringing the party into disrepute in the way they did.

They are [shadow ministers in bold]: Tom Watson, Holly Lynch, Stella Creasy, Anna Turley, Rosie Duffield, Louise Ellman, Ruth Smeeth, Jenny Chapman, Roberta Blackman-Woods, Stephen Doughty, Karin Smyth, Baroness Thornton, Lord McNicol, Baroness Morgan of Huyton, Lord Turnberg, Gloria de Piero, Baroness Royall of Blaisdon, Yvette Cooper, Baroness Massey of Darwen, Baroness Kingsmill, Lord Soley, Madeleine Moon, Kate Green, Ruth Cadbury, Owen Smith, Seema Malhotra, Liz Kendall, Chris Matheson, Margaret Hodge, Stephen Kinnock, Jeff Smith, Chris Bryant, Wes Streeting, Julie Elliott, Lord Levy, Lord Knight of Weymouth, Lord Harris of Haringey, Ali McGovern, James Frith, Lucy Powell, Bridget Phillipson, Pat McFadden, Baroness McIntosh of Hudnall, Lord Triesman, Lord Dubs, Ian Murray, Darren Jones, Alex Sobel, Karen Buck, Neil Coyle, Lord Mandelson, Anna McMorrin, Chi Onwurah, Baroness Taylor of Bolton, Lord Willie Bach, Susan Elan Jones, Ged Killen, Baroness Ramsay of Cartvale, Lord Livermore, Kevin Barron, Dan Jarvis, Jess Phillips, Martin Whitfield, Rachel Reeves, Peter Kyle, Baroness Armstrong of Hilltop, Lord Young of Norwood Green, Ellie Reeves, Baroness Maggie Jones, Rushanara Ali, Debbie Abrahams, Daniel Zeichner, Lilian Greenwood, Graham Jones, Toby Perkins, Lord George Robertson, Baroness Mary Goudie, Barry Sheerman, Tonia Antoniazzi, Ian Lucas, Lord George Foulkes, Lord Wood of Anfield, Cat McKinnell, Ben Bradshaw, Lord Haskell, Lisa Nandy, Gareth Thomas, Lord Brooke, Sharon Hodgson, and Lord Kennedy of Southwark.

Will Starmer take appropriate action?

Or will he merely provide further proof of his own unfitness to be Labour leader?

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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Online rally to defend Corbyn against Starmer suspension: TONIGHT (October 30) 7pm

This is from that much-maligned organisation, Momentum – who at least seem to be doing something to protect Labour Party democracy:

“This is a pivotal moment for the Labour Party and the future of our movement. The suspension of Jeremy Corbyn yesterday was a factional attack that has undermined the fight against antisemitism.

“Join leading socialists from across our movement in an online rally at 7pm tonight and hear how we defend Corbyn, and build a socialist, anti-racist movement.

“Click here to join the online rally at 7pm. 

Speakers include Diane Abbott, John McDonnell, Richard Burgon, Jon Trickett, Roger McKenzie, Howard Beckett, Rivkah Brown, Barnaby Raine, Jess Barnard, Chardine Taylor Stone, Sonali Bhattacharyya and Deborah Hermanns.

“There are no quick fixes, but there are many things we can do to build a movement and shape the future of our party.

“That’s what Jeremy will be doing and that’s what we must do.”

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Riley libel: new statements show she’s flailing – so support Mike

 

Remember that new witness statement that had me concerned about Rachel Riley’s libel case against me?

I have now seen it and it seems I need not have worried so much.

I can’t say much about it because I don’t want to prejudice anything that happens in the hearing on November 6.

This will be her attempt to strike out parts of my case – and mine to strike out a significant part of hers.

I expect to succeed in my bid. Hers is looking less and less likely.

But I still need funds if I am to get anywhere at all. After my last update there was a welcome surge in contributions and we are now within £2,000 of that £100,000 milestone.

Reaching that before the hearing next week would be a huge psychological victory for all of us, so please – if you can afford it in these Covid-ridden times – follow these instructions:

Consider making a donation yourself, if you can afford it, via the CrowdJustice page.

Email your friends, asking them to pledge to the CrowdJustice site.

Post a link to Facebook, asking readers to pledge.

On Twitter, tweet in support, quoting the address of the appeal.

Riley wanted this hearing – pointless as I expect it will be for her. I reckon she thought she could use it to drain my campaign of its funds.

Let’s show her that this was a bad mistake – and knock her off-balance before next Friday’s court hearing.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


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If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
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The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook