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Nuclear bomb announcement sends clear message: warmonger Johnson has cash to KILL, not heal

Terrifying: it’s not quite a Nazi salute but Boris Johnson’s policies come straight from the Adolf Hitler playbook – except Hitler didn’t have nuclear weapons and Johnson does.

Warmongering UK prime minister Boris Johnson is reversing plans to reduce the UK’s arsenal of nuclear weapons after a review of foreign policy.

From what the news reports are telling me – and they are confused – it seems he wants to start a war with a country bordering on or within the Indian or Pacific Oceans and wants to set off a few nuclear weapons, to show how hard he is.

Well, he’s a blowhard, that’s for sure.

And a liar. We knew that already, but today’s reason for saying it can be summed up with the following tweet:

Yes – Johnson has said there is no money available to prevent nurses from receiving a real-terms pay cut, yet it seems he has plenty to spaff around on penis-substitutes that nobody in their right mind would ever take out of their box.

He’s going to halt a planned reduction of our nuclear stockpile to 180 warheads and instead increase it to 260 – a rise of around 45 per cent. Nobody’s saying what this will cost but we’re looking at many billions of pounds.

Already Johnson’s cheerleaders are making stupid suggestions that the UK will be invaded if Johnson doesn’t start piling on the kilotons. This is nonsense.

The 195 bombs we currently have possess a yield of 100 kilotons – nearly seven times as much as the Hiroshima bomb. Setting off even one of them would be devastating enough – and the only situation in which that could be envisaged is one in which other countries were threatening – or doing – the same.

If that happened, there wouldn’t be a UK to invade.

As a deterrent, 195 warheads is many more than enough. How many times do these damned fools think they can blow up the world?

The backlash has already started:

Did you miss those messages when they went up?

Well, guess what: if Johnson gets his way – and with the majority UK voters gave him, he will – this is the only form of protest that his government will allow in the future. Silent protest.

People won’t be allowed to congregate in the streets with banners, and made speeches, or make any visible or audible show of protest because that will provide Priti Patel’s puppet police with the only excuse they need to wade in with their truncheons, break heads and make arrests.

As a result, most of the population – you know the type; the ones who are happy to be distracted with celebrity gossip and junk TV about buying houses – won’t even know there’s anything wrong.

That’s the reason the anti-protest law is being imposed, of course.

Remember when Hitler took power in Germany? He built a bunker in which to plan a massive war, built up his army and stockpiled weapons, while controlling the majority of his population with propaganda and persecuting any dissenters.

For decades, people said it could never happen here in the UK.

How do you feel, now that it is happening here?

Source: Integrated review: UK to lift cap on nuclear stockpile – BBC News

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Tory ideas about money have been wrong since before 2010. Here’s the reason

Flag-waving fools: Rishi Sunak and Boris Johnson have no idea how to run a country. They rely on patriotism to blind the gullible while they take your cash – and still put us into debt.

Some of us have been saying this for years but here’s a big-league economist to back us up.

Remember all the talk about Labour having “Maxed out the national credit card” that David Cameron and George Osborne used to win just enough seats to form a coalition with oily Nick Clegg’s Liberal Democrats in 2010?

It was nonsense. I said it at the time (and many times afterwards in articles on This Site. You can’t compare a national economy with household income and expenditure.

But it seems people are still being taken in by it because the Tories are still using it as the basis of their economic model.

That is the reason the UK has fallen deeper and deeper into debt during their 10 years in office. We can only go into debt, while they continue to follow this course.

Richard Murphy explains it very well in the video clip but I’ll paraphrase: while households become better-off by restricting spending, the nation loses out because businesses don’t benefit from that spending and cannot pass the money on through the system – therefore the nation becomes poorer.

So, by restricting spending with austerity policies, the Tory governments of the last 10 years have starved the UK of its economic lifeblood and plunged us into trillions of pounds worth of debt.

The only way to improve our economic situation is by spending into the economy with wise investments that help it to grow.

But Conservatives simply do not understand this basic (macro)economic fact. They never have.

See for yourself:

Some households fared well during the first Covid-19 lockdown. The lack of any way to spend their money meant they were able to pay off debts and bank spare cash.

But that won’t last. In some cases, families are already suffering because their income has fallen below their outgoings and the lockdowns are still going on.

In fact, the Tory plan is to ensure that they leach that money away from all of us as soon as possible.

There is nothing you can do about it in individual households because the household unit is too small to stave off economic intervention from a national government.

But if you group together with others, you might find a way.

Alternatively, you can just stick your head in the sand and wait for Rishi Sunak to empty your bank account and steal your house. It’s up to you.

You’ll probably see the sense in these words on March 2, when Sunak announces his spring budget.

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Will you be able to pay next year’s FIVE PER CENT council tax rise?

 

Isn’t it wonderful that dodgy Tory Robert Jenrick has announced a huge boost in councils’ spending power next year?

And isn’t it diabolical that, after finding billions upon billions of pounds for fake firms run by Tory cronies, these funds will be provided via a massive five per cent hike in council tax?

Councils will be given the freedom to hike bills by 5% next year despite wages and growth stalling in the pandemic.

The small print of a police grants report, published today, also reveals next year’s police funding is dependent on council tax hikes of £15 for a Band D home.

Those hikes would be over and above the other rises in council tax to pay for general services and social care.

And what will you get for it?

Street lighting, rubbish collection (except you still won’t be able to recycle everything that you should), and inflated salaries for councillors and council officers who don’t deserve them.

Source: 11 bits of bad news the Tories sneaked out hours before the Christmas holiday

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Sunak’s daft ‘Eat Out to Die Out’ caused one in six Covid OUTBREAKS, study finds

Rishi Sunak: his plan to get people eating out over the summer by offering discounts on meals should have been called Eat Out to DIE Out.

He didn’t even help hospitality businesses very much, either.

Tory Chancellor Rishi Sunak made certain that thousands more people caught Covid-19 than would otherwise have done so, with his Eat Out to Help Out scheme.

Research by the University of Warwick has shown that the initiative is likely to blame for 17 per cent of infections – one in six outbreaks – between August and early September (when it was overtaken by outbreaks linked to schools that had reopened at Boris Johnson and Dominic Raab’s insistence, we may conclude).

Even the Daily Mail has turned on the Tories over this one:

Although people had to socially distance in restaurants where the deal was offered, the virus is known to spread more easily indoors and thrives particularly in enclosed spaces.

Many people met people from other households for dinner and also used public transport to get to and from the restaurants, driving up the risk of transmission.

Research from the university suggested that between eight and 17 per cent of newly detected infection clusters could be linked to the scheme.

Areas where there was a high uptake of Eat Out to Help Out also saw a decline in new infections a week after the scheme drew to a close.

People will have died from catching the virus after taking part in Sunak’s crackpot plan.

But nobody has been asking him any hard questions!

Isn’t it time these Tories took responsibility for the fatal consequences of their decisions and left public life for good, under a cloud of shame?

Source: Eat Out to Help Out to blame for 1 in 6 new coronavirus infections | Daily Mail Online

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All Windrush victims to get at least £10,000 – including those who’ve died or been wrongly deported?

The Empire Windrush brought many people to the UK to help rebuild the country after World War II. As I never tire of pointing out, if it had still been in service a couple of years ago, the Tories would have been trying to use it to deport them all again.

People are reacting to this announcement with scepticism – and who can blame them?

Here’s what the government has said:

The government is to give more money to victims of the Windrush scandal, which saw hundreds of people wrongly threatened with deportation.

Home Secretary Priti Patel announced that the minimum payment will rise from £250 to £10,000, and the maximum from £10,000 to £100,000.

The figure will be higher still in “exceptional” circumstances, with money coming through quicker than before.

In the analysis inset by Westminster Hour‘s Jack Fenwick, though, he said

One person [told] me they won’t believe it until a cheque is in the post.

Who can blame them?

The big scandal of the Windrush compensation scheme so far is that people have died before receiving compensation. Did their descendants get the cash? That would have been reasonable, in the circumstances. Taking it back would not.

And what about people who were wrongly deported. Has the Home Office made any effort to contact them, apologise, and ask them to come back? Many of Priti Patel’s deportation victims have suffered terrible ill-treatment since deportation, so that is a can of worms that needs to be opened.

So it’s a nice announcement. But we need to action, not just pretty words.

Source: All Windrush victims to get at least £10,000 – BBC News

Tory message to people on benefits: have yourselves a MISERABLE little Christmas

Therese Coffey: computer says no.

The worst part of this is that Therese Coffey probably didn’t even think about the consequences of her actions.

It is doubtful she gave a moment’s consideration to the fact that the Tory government’s so-called “grace period” exempting many people who claimed Universal Credit due to the Covid-19 crisis from the benefit cap will end this month – right before Christmas.

The number of households affected by the Benefit Cap has doubled since the Covid-19 crisis started – to 170,000. And a further 160,000 will reach the end of the nine-month grace period in the remaining weeks before Christmas.

How nice for them to have to work out how to make up the sudden shortfall just when they are likely to need more!

Still, it could be worse – they could be claiming Employment and Support Allowance, like many people with long-term illnesses and disabilities.

These people were diddled out of a £20-per-week rise in benefits that was given to people on Universal Credit. Coffey babbled a bobbins “computer says no” claim – that changes to computer systems could take months.

For UC claimants, the increase will last at least until next April, although there are demands for it to be made permanent, in the light of increasing uncertainty about the nation’s economic future.

ESA claimants are already £660-a-year worse-off – each – because of Ms Coffey’s computer-illiteracy, and this could almost double to £1,000 if they don’t see the rise in April.

Now for the most insidious part: Ms Coffey hasn’t ruled out the possibility that ESA claimants may get their benefit increase in the future.

But (firstly) she hasn’t said anything about whether they’ll have the rise backdated to cover all the time they’ve had to cope without it.

And (secondly) there’s an enormous orange elephant sitting in the middle of this room: people on Employment and Support Allowance die. One could say it is what they are best-known for.

The most common reason they die, that is known to those of us who check, is lack of money. ESA claimants need more cash because their medical conditions mean their lives are more expensive than those of people who are able-bodied.

And here the Tories have said they are deliberately denying sick people the extra cash that they have said everyone else needs to cope with the extra costs of Covid!

I fear that, for many, that is the equivalent of writing a death warrant.

And, given the Tory record on these matters, I fear that death is exactly what Ms Coffey is hoping will happen to these people – whose only crime is failure to be a “functioning work unit” (as Tory jargon describes the rest of us).

AFTERTHOUGHT: Shortly after I posted this, I received the following comment on Twitter, which I think makes a very good point:

And this:

Source: Two million disabled people set to lose £2 billion in Tory benefits freeze – Mirror Online

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Sunak gets the collection bowl out – and the cosh. But why should we pay?

Tory Chancellor Rishi Sunak wants us to cough up the money he, Boris Johnson and their government have wasted on crony companies that have done nothing – and in some cases weren’t even real (we’re told).

According to the Office of Budget (Ir)Responsibility, by the end of the financial year in March 2021, Johnson is likely to have spent £316.4 billion more than was spent in the previous 12 months.

Not all of it was wasted, even This Writer has to admit. But much of it was – and Sunak is now suggesting that the general public should stump up the cost – even though we’re the ones who have felt the brunt of the harm caused by Covid-19.

And remember, Brexit is likely to take between one and two per cent off the UK economy from January:

And the BBC report states that Sunak

old the Sunday Times people would soon see “the scale of the economic shock laid bare” , indicating taxes might have to start rising next year and there could be spending cuts.

Paul Johnson of the Institute for Fiscal Studies agreed:

Why should we pay a single red cent to cover Sunak’s – and Johnson’s – mistakes?

One of the Tories’ selling-points – on which they stake their reputations and their chances at every election – is that they are the party of financial responsibility. They fool people into voting for them on this premise and then immediately betray those people by throwing money away stupidly.

That is what has happened after every election over the last 10 years, in spite of what David Cameron and George Osborne said about the need for austerity, and in spite of what Johnson and Sunak are saying now.

If you want to get a grip on the scale of Tory waste, visit My Little Crony – the app that shows exactly how the Tories have been siphoning off public funds and giving them to their friends – ostensibly for work to tackle Covid-19 but actually with very little result.

We have very little to do with the way governments spend our money.

We vote according to their promises in election manifestos but, once they’re in office, we can’t force them to honour their promises – and when a crisis like Covid-19 comes along, we have to bow to the inevitability that something had to be done and it had to be funded.

(Was Covid-19 unforeseen, though? Johnson knew about it in November last year – before the election. Why didn’t he mention it?)

Worse, we have no leverage to force a government to keep its spending under control – which would then remove the need for extra taxation. We cannot legally withhold the extra money if the government increases taxes – indeed, we face heavy penalties if we try.

But governments do have alternatives.

There is no laissez-faire in economics. Public demand for goods, services and other commodities changes all the time and it is a matter of good government to anticipate the changes and prepare for them.

So, for example, if a government wanted to divest itself of carbon-fuelled energy and invest in the green economy, in response to public demand and environmental pressures, it might launch a long-term strategy that would involve heavy investment immediately, to be paid off over a long period of time in the future – with no extra burden on the taxpayer. The cash borrowed to carry out the work would be paid down over future decades as the benefits made themselves felt.

This does not work for investments in defence, which carry no immediately-apparent economic benefits beyond the obvious one of a nation remaining free from invasion by its opponents. This is one reason Boris Johnson’s determination to increase defence funding by 10 per cent, at a time of economic trauma to the UK, is confusing.

Sunak doesn’t need to raise taxes. The UK’s borrowing level will decrease – hopefully after the anticipated Covid vaccines arrive. He can impose measures to ensure the costs will be paid off.

He can also make an effort to recoup the cash he wasted on crony companies (although it seems doubtful that he will; the whole point of the exercise seems to have been handing out free money to Tory pals). If he doesn’t, then he’ll be hard-pressed to persuade any of us to part with our cash.

Many of us have lost our jobs. We have lost relatives to the disease because the Tories failed – perhaps deliberately – to contain it. We are poorer and we are demoralised by our government’s lack of ability to get to grips with even the simplest tasks that have been put before it.

And now Sunak wants us to pay up because he can’t do his job properly. What do you think of that?

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Never mind Typhoid Mary – is this Covid Boris? School Johnson visited joins those suffering outbreaks

‘Covid Boris’: this satirical image was made when Johnson caught the virus in April. It’s doubtful that he is now a carrier but he’s certainly doing his best to spread it across the UK again.

Before any of his few remaining supporters write in to whinge, the headline is largely frivolous and I don’t think Boris Johnson is actually responsible for the Covid-19 outbreak at Castle Rock School in Coalville.

Johnson visited the school less than two weeks ago, touting his message that children would be perfectly safe there and adults did not have to worry about catching the virus either.

But a staff member has now tested positive for Covid-19 and pupils in certain classes have been told to stay home for an indefinite period of time.

This is not an isolated case.

Covid-19 outbreaks in UK schools are multiplying exponentially since the Tories demanded that we all send our kids back.

According to Skwawkbox, the number of schools affected has increased by almost 50 per cent today alone (Monday, September 7, 2020) – from 140 to 201 at the time of writing.

All this is happening against a backdrop of infections reaching a 129-day high and the government secretly preparing for a second wave at the beginning of next month – but with no intention of re-implementing lockdown.

Instead the Tories are trying to drive people back into workplaces – against the direct advice of public health experts.

One concern that seems to have been pushed into the background is what the Tories used to lever kids back into classrooms in the first place: education.

Matt Hancock and all the other imbeciles – who clearly don’t have the advantage of a good education themselves – said that our children’s education would suffer if they didn’t go back. In response, I’d like to know:

How much more will a child’s education suffer by being bounced between school and home as Covid-19 outbreaks happen?

And, connected to that:

How are parents supposed to know whether they can physically go to work if they don’t know from one day to the next whether they will have to stay back and look after their kids?

Source: School visited by Boris Johnson less than two weeks ago confirms Coronavirus case | Central | ITV News

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If Grant Shapps wants us to go back to work, why is HE still working from home?

Failure of leadership: Grant Shapps, at home, telling us we should all go back to work. Why should we if he won’t?

Tories just don’t get it, do they? Leadership demands that you give people something to follow.

Example: Grant Shapps trying to get people to go back to all that time-wasting travelling to and from their places of work when they can do the job just as easily from home (and nine out of 10 people say they prefer it).

Here he is, being interviewed at his home, telling us to go to work:

It’s no inducement.

If Shapps wants us all to go – via overstuffed public transport – back to crowded workplaces full of other people who may have Covid-19 and could spread it to us and our families, why isn’t he leading by example?

Covid is on the rise again, with this week seeing the highest number of new cases recorded since June – more than when Shapps’s government put us all into lockdown in March – but now he wants us to go back to work. It’s a contradiction. It doesn’t make sense.

If he really believes that it is safe to go back, why is he not promising that when Parliament resumes next month he will be sitting on a crowded front bench, next to super-spreaders Boris Johnson and Matt Hancock, with all 635 (or so) other MPs, plus Parliamentary employees, crowded around him, as usual?

I’ll tell you why:

Because he’s afraid he’ll catch the virus.

And because he voted to give himself a £10,000 incentive to work from home, while the rest of us took pay cuts.

It’s not a persuasive argument, is it?

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‘R’ rate speculation show how even ‘experts’ say what suits them rather than what you need to know

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So, are Covid-19 infections about to rise exponentially again, now that the ‘R’ rate has risen above 1 for the first time on record?

Apparently not. The so-called ‘experts’ are telling us outbreaks in a few “hotspots” are pushing the average up.

But wasn’t that always the case?

Here in This Writer’s part of Mid Wales there have been very few cases. But the rate for Wales as a whole is between 0.80 and 1.1, meaning we should all probably be bracing ourselves for another wave of the disease.

The ‘R’ rate – in case there’s anybody left who doesn’t know – is the rate at which the disease is passed on; the average number of people an infected person is likely to pass it to.

If it is lower than 1, then the disease may be said to be in decline. But if it rises past that number, there are fears it could multiply uncontrollably again.

The Johnson government, announcing its rules for lockdown, initially said that if the ‘R’ rate passed one the country would go back into lockdown.

But the Johnson government has said a lot of things and it has now become nigh-on impossible to keep a record of all the backtracking and outright lies.

It would be pleasant to think that the ‘experts’ are right and this is no reason for concern. After all, they’ve managed to explain away every other spike (most notably those caused by the government’s lockdown easings.

But winter is coming, and coronaviruses like Covid-19 multiply in the cold.

Source: Covid: UK’s R value may be above 1 for first time on record | World news | The Guardian

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