Local lockdown to hit northeast England – but why was it first announced on TV?

BBC news has announced – around midday today, September 17 – that the northeast of England will be subjected to stronger Covid-19-related restrictions because of increased infections there. It’s not quite a local lockdown but close. I knew this last night because Robert Jenrick announced it on television, on Robert Peston’s ITV political chat show. The only reason I didn’t publish a story straight away was fatigue (I had been awake for around 19 hours on the trot by then) – and also I wanted to know what Commons Spaker…

Read More

Did Matt Hancock axe Fat Boris’s national anti-obesity fight after just one month?

Apparently so. Boris Johnson launched a new strategy to tackle obesity in the UK – claiming it was crucial in the fight against Covid-19 – only for Matt Hancock to close the organisation running it. It was unlikely ever to come to anything, because the scheme was being run by Tories and they are ideologically opposed to changing the systemic poverty that forces people to buy unhealthy (but cheap) food. But nobody expected Health Secretary Hancock to axe the organisation that was running it – Public Health England – while…

Read More

Thugs who don’t understand the rules are terrorising people over face masks

Look at this: a woman has received abuse for not wearing a mask while out in England – even though she is exempt. The problem isn’t just that the abusers don’t understand the rules. It’s that they don’t care. They’re using Covid-19 restrictions to bully people – especially disabled people and their carers. That’s the result of 10 years of unremitting government anti-disablist propaganda. So not only do they think it is okay to abuse Louise Sharp, of Whitley Bay, for not wearing a mask when she needs to have…

Read More

For once, Johnson was right – it takes ‘world-beating’ incompetence to screw up the health service mid-pandemic crisis

Matt Hancock has secured his position in the top rank of Tory chumps alongside Boris ‘holibobs’ Johnson, Chris ‘failing’ Grayling and Gavin ‘algorithm’ Williamson – by announcing a huge reorganisation of the health service in the middle of a health crisis. He’s handing control of the UK’s response to pandemic threats over to a new ‘agency’ that will partner the government with private firms, even though every single partnership with private businesses over the handling of Covid-19 has resulted in failure and chaos. Hancock seems to think he can hide the…

Read More

Public Health England to be axed as Matt Hancock desperately blame-shifts

Failed Health Secretary Matt Hancock is set to scrap Public Health England (PHE) this week, we’re told, in an attempt to blame somebody else for his failure to control Covid-19 in the UK. The trouble is, he’s planning to replace it with something worse. Public Health England, as an executive agency of the Department of Health and Social Care, exists to protect the general health and well-being of English people – in any circumstance. But Hancock wants to replace it with an organisation dedicated only to handling pandemic threats. And he plans…

Read More

U-turn again, Tories, as face masks are made compulsory in England’s shops (for today, anyway)

Either the Tories can’t make up their collective mind or they’re arguing in public. On July 12, Michael Gove said there would be no compulsion for people to wear face masks in English shops. Didn’t he say he trusted people to use their common sense? The very next day, Matt Hancock – himself a stranger to common sense – at least looked at how well that had worked on the beach and in the pub and announced that face coverings would become mandatory after all. So if we go shopping…

Read More

UK could face second lockdown ‘within months’ as outbreaks occur across the nation

The UK faces a second wave of Covid-19 in as little as a few weeks, according to a professor of global public health. Devi Sridhar, who acts as the public health adviser for Scotland’s first minister Nicola Sturgeon, warned of “constant outbreaks” as lockdown restrictions ease across the country. She tweeted: “I know that everyone wants the economy to go full steam ahead in the UK. But I fear we will be in another lockdown within months, if not weeks… “Eliminate the virus over the summer then open up safely.…

Read More

Is NHS England boss’s social care plea just more virtue signalling?

I have a doubt about Simon Stevens’s sincerity. He has come forward to say that the government needs to put an adequate funding system in place for social care within the next year. This suggests that he supports public funding of this service. But Simon Stevens, formerly a UnitedHealthcare CEO, has been a major player in privatising huge parts of the National Health Service in England – so I’m not convinced that he’s being straight with us. Remember the big land sell-off following the Naylor Review? Remember the NHS Long-Term…

Read More

Awkward! Johnson proved wrong to ease lockdown as ‘R’ rate rises in most English regions

One of the main reasons Boris Johnson has given for easing lockdown conditions in England from July 4 is a reduction in the reproduction rate of Covid-19. He said that, with ‘R’ well below 1 – meaning for each person infected, fewer than one person would catch the disease – restrictions could be loosened. But it seems he spoke too soon. Look at this: Skwawkbox explains: Manchester mayor Andy Burnham has tweeted the latest regional ‘R’-rate table showing how fast the coronavirus is spreading across England’s twelve regions – and the news…

Read More

Bank of England pumps £100bn into UK economy – but who gets the money?

This is a wake-up call. If you’ve seen reports that the Bank of England is bailing out the UK economy with £100 billion of what’s called QE (quantitative easing), you may have been lulled into a belief that everything’s going to be fine. You would be mistaken. The UK economy has taken a pounding because of the Covid-19 crisis. We are currently in the grip of an economic recession that makes the 2008/9 financial crisis look like the temporary misplacement of a back-pocket fiver. In March, the economy shrank by…

Read More
%d bloggers like this:

By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. This includes scrolling or continued navigation. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.