Tag Archives: false

Are people turning on Boris Johnson because they’re tired of lies like this?

Boris Johnson: He’s all ‘blood and thunder’ in Parliament but analyse what he says and it turns out to be ‘bull**** and bluster’ instead [not This Writer’s words].

Even the BBC is criticising Boris Johnson. Well, at least it’s sitting on the right side of the fence.

The Corporation fact-checked Johnson’s comments about the delta variant of Covid-19, made during Prime Minister’s Questions on June 16.

Criticised for failing to close the UK’s borders to travellers from India after delta was discovered, Johnson said: “We put India on the red list on April 23 and the Delta variant was not so identified until April 28.”

But the BBC fact-checkers pointed out:

It had been identified through genetic sequencing as being in the UK in the week beginning 8 March.

And it had been designated as a “variant of interest” by the World Health Organization (WHO) on 4 April.

While health bodies are constantly monitoring large numbers of emerging mutations, they are given these designations only if they seem to be making the virus spread faster, making people sicker or escaping the defences put up by vaccines or prior infection.

At a meeting on 21 January, the government’s scientific advisers, Sage, said: “No intervention, other than a complete, pre-emptive closure of borders, or the mandatory quarantine of all visitors upon arrival in designated facilities, irrespective of testing history, can get close to fully preventing the importation of cases or new variants.”

And in its weekly update on 30 March, the WHO pointed out India had the third highest number of new cases in the world, with a 55% increase on the previous week.

So we see that Johnson allowed the delta variant into the UK from India for a month and a half before actually doing anything about it at all.

It is lies like this that undermine trust in the Conservative government – rightly. And this is likely to be what is motivating Tories (and former Tories) to speak up against him.

Source: Delta variant: Fact-checking claims about Covid and borders – BBC News

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Dowden’s Minack mess-up: was he incompetent or was he lying?

Boris Johnson’s Tory government can’t seem to get anything right, can it?

While the G7 summit was taking place, partners of the G7 leaders were invited to visit the famous Minack Theatre, a clifftop amphitheatre on the coast, facing the Atlantic Ocean.

Afterwards, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden turned the event into a pantomime by tweeting: “This unique venue was one of more than 650 theatres helped through Covid with support from the £2bn culture recovery fund, ensuring that it can entertain visitors for years to come.”

All together now: Oh no it wasn’t!

Theatre bosses responded: “Sorry @OliverDowden but this is not true. We did not benefit from any CRF money as we were not eligible to apply. It turned out having a good level of cash reserves meant we had to fend for ourselves and utilise our own reserves.”

Zoe Curnow, the Minack’s executive director, said on Sunday she was surprised to see Dowden’s tweet. “To try to score a political point is unfortunate, to be completely honest. Obviously the DCMS [Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport] didn’t think to check we were on the list.

“We weren’t on the list because we didn’t qualify, and we didn’t qualify because we run ourselves in such a way that we had enough reserves to see us through.”

That’s not to say that the Minack hasn’t been hit by Covid lockdown restrictions, though!

It lost £300,000 last year and was forced to lay off 15 staff members – something Ms Curnow described as “soul destroying”.

She went on to make the political point that open-air theatres like the Minack should be allowed to go back to full operation sooner than their indoor counterparts because conditions are far less conducive to the spread of Covid-19.

But – again – Dowden and his colleagues are unlikely even to have thought of this.

If they can’t be bothered to check whether a theatre is receiving grant money, they’re never going to be interested in fiddling details like whether meeting conditions to reopen mean it should, even if that makes the difference between prosperity and job losses.

Dowden’s only interest was in winning PR plaudits. Instead he was not only panned but proved that his own career should close – due to bad reviews.

Source: G7 partners’ trip to theatre backfires after minister’s gaffe | Politics | The Guardian

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Rising price of Grenfell proves Tory cost-cutting is a murderous false economy

Ravaged: this destruction happened because rich Tories wanted to cut a few farthings from their council tax bills. It has ended up costing them more than a thousand times what they hoped to save.

Tory-run Kensington and Chelsea council has spent more than £400 million trying to cope with the consequences of the Grenfell Tower blaze – a fire caused by its attempt to save just £300,000.

Could anything demonstrate more plainly the bankruptcy of Tory thinking?

If these rich, irresponsible, selfish office-jockeys had not been so keen to shave a few quid off their council tax bills, they would have saved themselves from paying out more than 1,300 times as much.

And 72 human beings would not have died.

I wonder if those responsible ever remember that?

The public costs of the Grenfell Tower fire have exceeded £500m after the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea revealed it had spent £406m on its response and recovery efforts in almost four years since the disaster.

The sum is in addition to the costs to the taxpayer of the ongoing public inquiry, which hit £117m by the end of March this year, most of which was taken up with lawyers’ bills.

The figures stand in stark contrast to the £300,000 saved in a cost-cutting exercise during the refurbishment of the 24-storey council block between 2014 and 2016 that led to combustible aluminium panels being substituted for the planned non-combustible zinc on the exterior of the block.

The plastic-filled replacements fuelled the fire on 14 June 2017 which killed 72 people, the inquiry has already concluded.

Source: Grenfell costs surpass £500m as council bill revealed | Grenfell Tower fire | The Guardian

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Twitter admits it suspended @MidWalesMike account for no reason. Time to kick it into touch?

Take a look at the message immediately following, which raises serious concerns about a social media giant:

“Hello, After further review, we have unsuspended your account as it does not appear to be in violation of the Twitter Rules. Your account is now unsuspended. We appreciate your patience and apologize for any inconvenience. Please note that it may take 24-48 hours for your follower and following numbers to return to normal. Thanks, Twitter.”

Thanks for nothing, Twitter!

This social media platform – that is supposed to act in a responsible way towards its users – arbitrarily removed my ability to communicate with my readers and customers for a day short of a whole month… for no reason.

It has admitted that I did nothing wrong, as I stated on February 2 when I discovered that my @MidWalesMike account had been suspended. I wasn’t notified officially. So why did it take 27 days for staff to check and find out that I was right?

This is not the first time that my account has been wrongly suspended, either. I was stopped from using it in December after a supporter of Rachel Riley sent false information to the platform’s bosses:

Identified? This person posted screenshots that appear to show they are responsible for the complaint that had Vox Political’s Mike Sivier suspended from Twitter. Mike has no idea who this person is and a Twitter search provides no evidence of any contact.

It’s apparently a fake account – I’m told the profile picture actually belongs to somebody in Russia. Stealing people’s images is a classic troll activity and it reflects extremely poorly on Riley that she is supported by such people.

Back in December it took just five days for me to get my account back – but that was five days too long.

I have written to the powers-that-be at Twitter, demanding a more detailed explanation of why my account was suspended without investigation. Am I to expect the same treatment at any time in the future, because this enormous multinational corporation is too cheap to employ anyone to check these accusations before taking action on them?

I do not expect any meaningful reply.

Is it time, then, to leave Twitter to the trolls?

How hard is it to start up a social media micro-blogging site? I’m not a coder so I don’t know. Is it really difficult or would it be simple? Does anybody know how?

I know Twitter is huge at the moment, and many people would hate to leave it because it has billions of users – but if it is unreliable (and it is), then it is time to let it go.

And it seems a bit of competition from an ethical organisation might be what’s needed to make Twitter clean up its act.

What do you think?

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Covid-19 – don’t be fooled: 15 million ‘first jabs’ do not mean 15 million people have been vaccinated

The disinformation is strong in the government’s story.

The Tory government has been making a huge song and dance about having vaccinated a quarter of the UK’s population against Covid-19 – even though they haven’t.

They had an opportunity to vaccinate large numbers of the population – but with both the Pfizer and AstraZeneca vaccines, that would involve giving people two injections, with the second preferably happening after a three-week interval.

That hasn’t happened. Instead – in an attempt to grab headlines by publicising a large number of people getting the vaccine – the Tories ruled that nobody would receive their second jab earlier than 12 weeks after the first.

(That’s nobody apart from super-rich people like Boris Johnson’s father Stanley who could afford to pay for it, of course).

By then, the effects of the first injection are likely to have worn off.

The 15 million people mentioned in the headline are, in fact, unlikely to have any protection at all.

Still, it’s nice that they think they’re protected, isn’t it?

I wonder what will happen if (when?) somebody who’s had the injection then contracts the disease, or even – God forbid! – dies of it.

Who will Johnson try to blame then?

I’m not saying this will definitely happen.

But by ignoring scientific advice – from the manufacturers of these vaccines, for crying out loud! – Johnson and his government have made it much more likely.

Source: Covid: UK vaccinates 15 million people | The Independent

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PMQs: here’s how Badmouther Boris got from his exams failure to accusing Keir Starmer of IRA sympathy

Johnson v Starmer: in the PMQs battle-of-words, Starmer came out the clear winner against a prime minister that didn’t seem to know what question he was being asked to answer – let alone how to do it.

Prime ministerial failure Boris Johnson showed us all he had no answers about the ‘A’ level results scandal when he wandered off in the middle of PMQs and started accusing Keir Starmer of sympathising with the IRA – by proxy.

The Labour leader had asked a reasonable question – when did Johnson know that there was a problem with the algorithm used by Ofqual and the Department for Education to produce results, as exams hadn’t taken place?

Johnson’s response was not only an insult to everybody whose results were tainted by the system that upgraded private school pupils and marked down those at state schools – it was a direct attack on Starmer, with no reason.

He was clearly off-balance; he did not know what to say about the exams fiasco – so he groped for an attack on the Labour leader that he (or more likely his team) had clearly prepared in advance.

See for yourself:

This is Johnson’s tactic, it seems: if he’s asked a tricky question, he’ll throw a dead cat on the table.

The barb about supporting the IRA had nothing to do with anything at all – particularly not Keir Starmer who, as he said, prosecuted many terrorists in his former role as a lawyer and as Director of Public Prosecutions.

It was simply a means of distracting attention away from the fact that his government failed ‘A’ level students across the country and he did not have an excuse.

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Johnson lies again: claim ‘no one knew’ Covid was spread without symptoms is false

By now it should be common knowledge that Boris Johnson’s relationship with factual accuracy is based entirely on his mood.

And his mood at the moment is more cavalier than normal.

Already this week he has blamed the enormous number of Covid-19 deaths at care homes on their bosses, when we all know his government was responsible.

Now he’s trying to pretend we didn’t know that the virus could be spread by people who didn’t display any obvious symptoms.

He’s wrong – as he would have known if he had attended any SAGE meetings, or indeed COBRA meetings.

And he should definitely have been briefed on the fact since those meetings took place.

So it seems clear that he is lying, not just by saying scientists and doctors didn’t know the disease could be spread this way, but about his own understanding of it as well.

Boris Johnson’s claim that ‘no one knew’ coronavirus was spread by patients without symptoms is untrue.

In fact, ministers were warned in January that the virus was being transmitted asymptomatically.

It comes after the PM faced fury after claiming care homes had failed to follow guidelines to prevent the crisis.

Accused of trying to shift blame onto care home owners and frontline workers, the Prime Minister claimed: “No one knew early on in the pandemic that the virus was being passed on asymptomatically.”

But this is untrue.

Minutes of a meeting of the government’s SAGE advisory group on January 28 reveal experts noted asymptomatic transmission was occurring.

Source: Boris Johnson’s claim ‘no one knew’ coronavirus was spread without symptoms is untrue – Mirror Online

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Starmer’s inaction over ‘Israeli billionaire’ tweet shows HE’S wrong, not Steve Reed

Clueless again: Starmer’s hypocrisy in sacking one shadow minister but not another, for the same false accusation, shows his hypocrisy – and also confirms to all of us that he was using anti-Semitism as an excuse to sack Rebecca Long-Bailey.

This is a bit of a tangled web.

Keir Starmer has been criticised for failing to take action against his shadow Communities and Local Government Secretary, Steve Reed, over two tweets which have been said to be anti-Semitic.

One suggested that property developer and former porn baron Richard Desmond, who is Jewish (who knew?) is “the puppet master for the entire Tory cabinet”.

The other was a retweet of an article referring to an “Israeli billionaire” influencing Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick.

Neither of these tweets are anti-Semitic in any way.

One presumes those making that suggestion about the first are referring to the anti-Semitic trope of Jewish conspiracies running the world – but there’s no implication that Desmond is representing the entire Jewish ethnicity in his behaviour; it doesn’t even mention his ethnicity.

As for the other – try replacing “Israeli” with, I don’t know… “Australian”. Would it be racist against Australians to say that one of them was influencing Jenrick? Of course not. And an Israeli isn’t necessarily Jewish so, again, anti-Semitism cannot be rightl applied.

However:

It is only a matter of days since Starmer sacked now-former shadow Education Secretary Rebecca Long-Bailey under the pretext that she had retweeted a link to an interview with actor Maxine Peake containing an anti-Semitic conspiracy theory.

It didn’t – the claim has subsequently been proved accurate – but the damage was done and RLB is out.

The issue with Starmer is hypocrisy. Neither of his shadow ministers did anything anti-Semitic, both were accused, but only one lost their job.

The issue has made the Labour leader’s position even less credible than it was before; this guy just doesn’t have a clue, and has turned Labour’s position on racism into nonsense.

He has to go. It’s only a matter of time until he does.

Source: Breaking: Starmer tells Reed ‘no action’ re Reed’s ‘puppet master’ and ‘Israeli billionaire’ tweets – as Reed deletes tweet praising action vs Long-Bailey. Excuse for inaction implodes immediately – SKWAWKBOX

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Now Labour members must quit if they want to defend against anti-Semitism smears

Out: Karen Sudan.

The grounds on which the Labour Party wants to accuse people of anti-Semitism are getting more and more shaky.

In this case, one of the accusations against Cllr Karen Sudan is that she has blocked Labour Against Anti-Semitism on Twitter.

This is not an anti-Semitic act. Indeed, as LAAS is represented by extremely dodgy characters, Cllr Sudan should be praised for putting distance between herself and that group. It is the Labour Party that should be ashamed for supporting it.

But then, Labour does have its blinkers on when choosing its allies. It kowtows to the Jewish Labour Movement, Labour Friends of Israel and other right-wing, pro-Likud Israel, anti-Palestinian organisations (despite its claim that all peoples should have the right to self-determination) and rejects Jewish Voice for Labour, Jewdas and the Jewish Socialists Group.

The second accusation refers to a tweet from August 2018 in which she accuses the mainstream media of being ‘too busy making up and/or exaggerating stories about anti-Semitism in the Labour Party’ to raise an outcry over other forms of racism.

This was just after local elections in which there was a huge increase in media reports claiming anti-Semitism in the Labour Party. This is now common knowledge as research has been carried out and shown it to be true.

Meanwhile the Windrush Scandal had taken place, and August 2018 was the month Boris Johnson published his shockingly racist remarks about burqa-wearing women looking like “letterboxes” and “bank robbers”. Those are just two high-profile examples. I feel sure Cllr Sudan was accurate in her criticism.

The final charge against her relates to a tweet from January, opposing the so-called “Ten Commandments” by the Board of Deputies of British Jews.

She was right to do so and then-leadership candidates including Keir Starmer were wrong to sign up to those pledges – several of which involve commitments to break the law, if This Writer’s memory is correct.

Now consider this:

Because of recent changes, the only way Cllr Sudan could defend herself publicly against these claims was to quit the party.

She explains:

“If I was a member of the Labour Party, I would have to keep quiet about that – and if I spoke about it to anybody I would be suspended.

“They would know I was under investigation but they wouldn’t know why and I wouldn’t be able to discuss it and I wouldn’t be able to defend myself.

“The only way I could do that and stop the gossip and the maligning stuff that would be around it was to resign from the party and put it out there so that people can see how stupid and ridiculous it is.

Of course, quitting the party means the accusations won’t be prosecuted through its disputes/disciplinary system – but it also means she has been forced to quit the party, possibly for political reasons.

The Labour leader of Crawley Borough Council – one of the authorities on which Cllr Sudan sits – denied any suggestion that the accusation against his former colleague came from anybody in the council’s Labour group.

He said it seemed likely that “someone’s been nationally trawling through Labour accounts trying to find any historical Tweets which may well constitute anti-Semitism”.

But his belief that it was somebody at Labour’s London HQ is less believable. It has been suggested that LAAS has been doing exactly what he described – that’s in the leaked Labour report on anti-Semitism investigations.

Perhaps this indicates the veracity of that claim?

And it would certainly tie in with the fact that one of the disputed tweets is a reference to LAAS.

Source: Crawley councillor quits Labour to defend anti-Semitism accusations | Crawley Observer

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Grossly distorted report by Starmer supporters predictably blames Corbyn for Labour election defeat

The villain of the piece: Keir Starmer set Labour up to fail with a weak Brexit policy – and a new report has blamed that policy on Jeremy Corbyn. How hypocritical.

Why are the media making such a fuss about a right-wing report that blames Labour’s defeat in the last general election on the party’s then – lefty – leader?

It makes the blood boil to read the distortions in this so-called report, put together by a cabal of Starmer-supporting right-wingers with an anti-Corbyn chip on their collective shoulder who have the cheek to brand themselves “Labour Together”!

Labour backstabbers, more like!

It should be no surprise that all the major members of Labour Together now have prominent roles in the shadow cabinet of Keir Starmer: Ed Miliband, Steve Reed, Lisa Nandy and Jim McMahon. Other right-whingers writing the review included Lucy Powell.

The report claims that the biggest issue in the election was Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, which had fallen in popularity. It does not correctly describe the reasons for that fall in popularity.

So for example, the report – falsely, in This Writer’s opinion – claims that the departure of backstabbers including Luciana Berger and Chuka Umunna to form the unpopular and ill-fated Independent Group/Change UK/whatever-they-ended-up-calling-themselves led to a collapse in Corbyn’s approval ratings.

It does not state that this could have been because those now-former Labour MPs immediately went on media junkets trashing his leadership and spreading falsehoods about anti-Semitism.

In fact, after his success in the 2017 election, it is widely accepted that Jeremy Corbyn suffered the longest-running and most unfair hate campaign, possibly of any political leader in UK history – with a complicit media lapping up every lie.

Labour “went into the 2019 election without a clear strategy of which voters we needed to persuade or how”, and failed to settle on a coherent message with the power of 2017’s “For the many, not the few”, the report says.

It states: “It was unclear who was in charge” of the election campaign, and relationships were soured by years of infighting which had created a “toxic culture” and “significant strategic and operational dysfunction”.

And it says: Labour was outgunned by the Tories in the digital war, with messages poorly coordinated and most of them failing to reach beyond the party’s base.

All of these three issues can be related to a single cause: treachery against the party leader. We know this because it was very clearly highlighted in the leaked report on the way the party handled anti-Semitism allegations under Corbyn.

Party officers worked hard to present Corbyn as an anti-Semite, to undermine his leadership and to ensure that Labour could not win a general election with him as leader, that report stated.

Mr Starmer has launched an investigation into that leaked report, apparently with the intention of clearing those accused of treachery (and in many cases racism) and tarring the whistleblowers.

One criticism that rings true is the fact that the Conservatives’ “Get Brexit Done” message was more popular with voters than Labour’s offer of a new referendum on membership of the EU. But the report seems to forget that this particular policy was the brainchild of the current Labour leader, Keir Starmer. I wonder why?

Here’s a more accurate analysis of that part of Labour’s defeat:

Nobody with an ounce of knowledge about politics in the last five years has been fooled by this self-serving pack of distortions from Starmer’s new New Labour elite. See the responses for yourself:

https://twitter.com/JCisAntisemitic/status/1273957714583044096

This Writer was even tempted to respond to some of the usual suspects who have trumpeted this travesty as though it were the Word of God:

But media Toryism of the last 10 years has created a generation of ignorance, with most of the public happy to be spoonfed lies rather than think for themselves about the Age of Hypocrisy into which they have voted themselves.

The hypocrisy is strong in this report. How sad that the same people who lapped up the “Corbyn is a racist/Corbyn is a traitor/Corbyn is the devil” bull will be happy to do the same with this.

Source: Labour: dysfunctional ‘toxic culture’ led to defeat, major report finds | Politics | The Guardian

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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