Tag Archives: direct

Coronavirus: Johnson takes ‘direct control’ – because the mess isn’t big enough yet?

Boris Johnson: if he really is taking more control – away from chief medical officers – it’s only so he can make this gesture to everybody who has fought off Covid-19 so far.

Take a look at the tweet directly below – and the response by Another Angry Voice:

Good question. According to the Telegraph article…

A shake-up in Downing Street will see the Government’s entire approach to the pandemic run by two centrally-run committees, covering strategy and operational delivery.

Tory MPs said the changes could weaken the influence of chief adviser Dominic Cummings – who was heavily criticised for a 260-mile trip during lockdown – and allow Mr Johnson to tighten his grip on the fight against the pandemic.

… it appears to have been Dominic Cummings.

But isn’t that just scapegoating – blaming the aide who is out of favour with the public? Not only that – we don’t know that the claim has any accuracy at all but, now it has been made, for all we know Cummings can carry on as normal while we assume he’s been consigned to less commanding roles.

It would be hard to blame anybody, even Johnson, for wanting a bit of distance from recent disasters, though.

Consider Test and Trace – the scheme that was criticised as a risk to people’s privacy before it was rolled out:

Channel 4 wasn’t the only recipient of the leaked information; the Daily Mirror had it too:

So much for data security under the Conservatives!

Then there’s this:

So more than 25,000 Covid-19 patients were released from hospitals to care homes that did not have the facilities to isolate them.

It’s a miracle only 20,000 of them died!

Or is that yet another statistical… mistake… of the kind for which the Johnson government has become justly infamous?

Meanwhile, the total number of excess Covid-19 deaths was revealed to have given the UK the worst death rate in the world, proportionate to the size of its population, from May 22. It was suspected but now it was proved:

Against this backdrop, it was revealed that Johnson wanted to lower the Covid-19 alert level – but all four UK chief medical officers vetoed his demand:

Perhaps he is taking more “direct control”, as the Telegraph claims, in order to override this influence. If so, then what follows is ill-advised.

If Starmer was saying Johnson taking a firmer grip should reduce the risk of a second wave of Covid infections, the evidence suggests he is bitterly mistaken.

Johnson taking over is far more likely to speed up that second wave’s arrival – and boost it to overwhelming size.

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Tories have frittered away half a trillion pounds. Is this good financial management?

This looks like another result of Brexit.

It is balance of payments data – the difference between the amount we pay to foreign countries for goods and services and the amount we receive – that shows the loss.

Also, direct investment in the UK by foreign firms has nose-dived.

It is exactly as This Writer warned, only a few days ago.

The really galling aspect of this is that the minority Conservative government will still claim to be the party of sensible financial management, even though it is its own division over Brexit that has created the uncertainty in which the money has disappeared.

Remember: Brexit is happening because David Cameron thought a referendum on EU membership would unify the Tories. It didn’t.

Remember: The vote to leave the European Union was based very strongly on lies and wild speculation by people who knew better but were trying to trick the public. There was never any chance of the NHS seeing £350 million of investment per week, for example.

Remember: The Conservatives have botched negotiations on the terms of our departure so badly that businesses are fleeing the UK. They can’t get away fast enough.

The longer this farce continues, the worse it will be for the UK as a whole.

And it will be the poor who bear the brunt of the harm.

Global banks and international bond strategists have been left stunned by revised ONS figures showing that Britain is £490bn poorer than had been ­assumed and no longer has any reserve of net foreign assets, depriving the country of its safety margin as Brexit talks reach a crucial juncture.

A massive write-down in the UK balance of payments data shows that Britain’s stock of wealth – the net international investment position – has collapsed from a surplus of £469bn to a net deficit of £22bn. This transforms the outlook for sterling and the gilts markets.

“Half a trillion pounds has gone missing. This is equivalent to 25pc of GDP,” said Mark Capleton, UK rates strategist at Bank of America.

Making matters worse, foreign ­direct investment (FDI) by companies is plummeting. It fell from a £120bn surplus in the first half 2016 to a £25bn deficit over the same period of this year.

Source: Britain’s missing billions: Revised figures reveal UK is £490bn poorer than previously thought


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