Tag Archives: Jacob Rees-Mogg

MP falls ill in Commons, days after lockdown eased. What if it’s Covid-19?

The Conservative Business Secretary, Alok Sharma, has fallen ill after contributing to debates in the House of Commons – with symptoms that resemble Covid-19.

His illness occurs just days after MPs were forced to return to the House of Commons rather than participate in online debates, in a plan devised by Leader of the House Jacob Rees-Mogg, who claimed that online voting slowed debates unduly. Apparently queuing 2km around the Parliamentary precincts and down the road to vote causes no delay at all.

Nobody can say that Sharma caught his illness – whatever it is – in Parliament. The question now is, how many people will he have infected by attending?

If it is Covid-19, then we won’t see the first infections from contact with Sharma for another fortnight at least.

The reaction on Twitter has been uniformly condemning:

https://twitter.com/ToryFibs/status/1268294820876955648

This is a very good point. We have a high-profile case here, that we can use to model the effect in schools if a pupil, parent or teacher turns up with the virus. Of course, if they do, then by the time anybody finds out it will be too late – so all we can do is try to quantify the damage.

There is an upside (there’s always an upside):

What a great opportunity to get the beleaguered “Track and Trace” programme back on track – showing how it works by using MPs as guinea pigs!

It will necessitate Jacob Rees-Mogg falling on his proverbial sword – with a full apology for endangering everybody. Some of us can’t wait for that.

And what about this?

Will Rees-Mogg – and Boris Johnson – revert to locking down MPs?

Will they have the choice, if many are infected?

Or will they insist on keeping it open, endangering not only their colleagues but our democracy?

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New Parliament voting system is a farce that turns MPs into targets

Jacob Rees-Mogg: the image makes him look serious but don’t be fooled – he’s an idiot.

What if a terrorist gets among MPs while they’re queuing to vote, in their “conga line” as the SNP describes it, all spaced two metres apart, two buildings down the road from the Palace of Westminster?

I know it’s not entirely likely, what with the Covid-19 lockdown and all, but anybody could go among them and cause chaos. Security is impossible, thanks to Jacob Rees-Mogg and his silly attempt to cling on to tradition.

Just take a look at this video by Labour’s Lloyd Russell-Moyles:

Anybody could get in amongst them – as indeed they appear to do in the clip.

Not only that, but the plan deliberately excludes MPs who must continue to “shield” from Covid-19 because they have medical conditions which demand that they do so:

The article states: “When returning from recess, MPs will have to vote on the proposal which could see them forming kilometre-long ‘conga-line’ queues in order to obey social distancing rules – despite the Lords planning a move online.

“Robert Halfon is among the senior Tories who say the move will turn individuals who, like him, are shielding and those who are ill, self-isolating or based far away from Westminster into ‘parliamentary eunuchs’.

“He is backing moves to allow digital voting to resume in amendments to Mr Rees-Mogg’s motion led by Conservative former Cabinet minister Karen Bradley.”

Rees-Mogg has reluctantly announced plans to offer shielding MPs a “limited” role in Commons proceedings.

It isn’t good enough.

Our MPs were elected to play a full role in Parliamentary proceedings and if the Leader of the House of Commons tries to limit it then he is acting in an unconstitutional way and should be challenged, in court if necessary.

If such a challenge were to win, then any decisions made under the Rees-Mogg system would have o be voided.

So it would be better all around if no decision were taken until all challenges have concluded.

And that, Mr Rees-Mogg, would slow down Parliament more than digital sessions ever did.

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MPs must physically attend Parliament again from June 2. Let’s see how THAT works for them…

Jacob Rees-Mogg: he wants a return to the way Parliament was conducted long ago and he doesn’t care if MPs die as a result.

MPs have voted to end the “virtual” Parliamentary proceedings they have been enjoying since the lockdown started.

From June 2, they will have to attend in order to take part in debates – even though the limit of 50 people in the Commons chamber at any time will remain.

How’s that going to work, then?

Jacob Rees-Mogg, laughably the current Leader of the House, reckons the change will restore sufficient scrutiny of policy matters, but it is difficult to understand his reasoning.

With fewer people allowed in the Chamber, there will be less opportunity for our representatives to have their voices heard.

Rees-Mogg whined that virtual proceedings slowed down debates to one-third of normal pace – but isn’t that better than excluding MPs from debates altogether?

And then there’s the question of whether the decision is effectively one to “euthanise” MPs:

Jacob Rees-Mogg has been told by a senior Conservative backbencher that an attempt to return to a “physical” parliament will in effect “euthanise” MPs who are sick, shielding and self-isolating.

Former minister Robert Halfon said the proposals would discriminate and threaten the lives of some MPs.

“Is it really morally just to say in effect to MPs, because you are not Tarzan-like and able to swing through the chamber, beating your chest shouting to your constituents: ‘Look, I am here!’ that you are effectively euthanised from the Commons?

“MPs who are disrupted by this awful pandemic are not just old horses to be sent to the knackers’ yard,” he said.

Some of you may be confused by Mr Halfon’s speech.

It seems he was not suggesting that MPs would catch the coronavirus and die in what some members of the public might consider a mercy-killing (as far as the UK’s citizens are concerned).

Instead, it seems he was suggesting that MPs would be excluded from proceedings, meaning they might as well be dead as far as the good of their constituents is concerned. It’s opaque.

More to the point, perhaps is a letter signed by 35 MPs, arguing that a return to a “physical” parliament could mean that those in high-risk categories including BAME MPs, older MPs or those who are pregnant will be disproportionately restricted.

One very dangerous aspect will be the return of physical voting, in which MPs will be packed into small spaces as they file through the “aye” or “no” lobby. That creates a threat of contracting Covid-19, that could be fatal for some.

But Rees-Mogg was never likely to listen to arguments against it. That is the traditional way in which MPs vote and, as the “Member for the 18th Century”, his emotional tie to it far outweighs any concern for the wellbeing of others.

ADDITIONAL: A reader has just reminded me that MPs were all given £10,000 to facilitate working from home. Are they going to give any of that money back? Ten big ones for just eight weeks’ lockdown seems exorbitantly excessive to This Writer!

Source: MPs told to return to Parliament by June 2 despite health concerns – ITV News

Tory MPs were happy for us to go back to work – but are they frit of returning to Parliament themselves?

House of Commons: here’s a scene that won’t be allowed while the coronavirus crisis continues. But Boris Johnson called for others to go back to work, ensuring that they would be packed like sardines into public transport whether he wanted it or not.

Little did This Writer know, when I reported that Jacob Rees-Mogg wanted MPs to go back to work, that he was going to insist on it.

It seems that, as Leader of the House of Commons, he is determined that MPs should set an example for others who are being asked to go back to their jobs by Boris Johnson:

It’s certainly true that  some MPs aren’t too keen:

Valerie Vaz, Labour’s shadow leader of the House of Commons, said she was “alarmed” by Mr Rees-Mogg’s announcement and asked why parliament should “contradict” the government’s own health advice by returning to “business as usual” in June.

The SNP’s Tommy Sheppard said it was a “fantasy” to believe that physical sittings could resume in June without special procedures being in place.

He asked what should happen to MPs considered among those most vulnerable to coronavirus, or Scottish, Welsh or Northern Irish MPs, whose devolved governments have not yet eased any lockdown measures.

Rees-Mogg, of course, instantly seized on this as a way to run down the opposition:

He said: “How can we say to our schoolchildren, ‘you’re safe going back’, some of them, but that we’re not, that we’re going to hide away whilst schoolchildren are going back – is that the right message to give to our constituents?”

Yes!

MPs have every right to be afraid of returning to Parliament, if they can’t be assured that social distancing rules will be maintained, or that they won’t be exposed to a risk of catching the coronavirus from other people working on the Parliamentary estate.

And of course those living in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have those countries’ “no movement” rules to consider; they aren’t actually allowed out to attend Parliament.

Clive Lewis is right about the motivation for Rees-Mogg’s decision:

Yes – but will it trump Tory self-interest?

We’ll find out when we see how many of them turn up after the Whitsun break.

It’s a “win-win” scenario for everybody who isn’t a Tory, of course.

If they don’t turn up, they’re cowards who are afraid to support their own government’s policy; if they do, they’ll probably catch Covid-19 and spend some time in hospital.

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Rees Mogg wants MPs back in Parliament as ‘example’. That’s exactly what they’ll be if they go…

Jacob Rees-Mogg: he probably didn’t intend his words to be the way I’ve interpreted them.

Jacob Rees-Mogg reckons MPs should return to Westminster and vote in person – as an example to all those being urged back to work in spite of the coronavirus.

Good for him!

He’s a complete an utter dunderhead.

Social distancing rules mean there can only be about 50 MPs in the Commons chamber at any time, and many have been using videoconferencing to take part in debates from home.

There is no way anybody should be cramped together like sardines – which is the usual situation during the busier Commons votes – while Covid-19 remains a threat to life.

But in his speech on Sunday, Boris Johnson said he hoped to reopen schools (in England) at the beginning of June, suggesting that reception classes would be among the first to come back.

The problem with that is obvious – it will be impossible to get very young children to understand the need to stay at least two metres away from each other.

So some have responded by saying the following:

So: good for Jacob Rees-Mogg!

He has laid the gauntlet down.

If MPs aren’t returning to Parliament, there’s no reason for children to return to our schools.

Source: Coronavirus: Rees-Mogg wants MPs back to ‘set example’ – BBC News

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Dutch cartoonists can see what’s happening to the UK – even if our citizens can’t

This cartoon in Dutch newspaper Volksrant doesn’t pull its punches.

It shows Boris Johnson, his back to us, raping – that’s right, raping – the UK, while others including Jacob Rees-Mogg, Dominic Cummings and Nigel Farage wait their turn to do the same. The other one may be Michael Gove, according to a commenter to This Site.

Meanwhile a representative of the BBC – who looks uncannily like the granny from the old Times ‘Giles’ cartoons, tells members of the public: “Move along now. Nothing to see here.”

The situation it depicts is even worse than that displayed on this billboard:

This cartoon is saying that the Tories (and Farage) are violating the people of the UK.

And the BBC is helping them do it, by directing the people to look in the other direction.

I’m surprised the granny wasn’t pointing at a cartoon Corbyn and saying, “Look! Anti-Semite!”

But here’s the real question:

If the Dutch can see what’s going on, why can’t millions of the British – even if the BBC is sowing confusion?

The Dutch media are not pulling their punches.

This was published in the Volksrant, a daily newspaper.

As you can see it depicts the UK being gang raped by Johnson, Farage, Cummings, Rees-Mogg and somebody else.

The BBC is saying, “Move along now. Nothing to see here”.

Seems to me the Dutch have a grip of what’s happening here and the BBC’s role in it.

Source: (8) Supporting Jeremy Corbyn & John McDonnell

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Rees-Mogg’s ‘common sense’ claims turn the heat on the Tories [STRONG LANGUAGE]

Jacob Rees-Mogg: The way he looks in this image reminds me of somebody else…

Jacob Rees-Mogg tried to talk about ‘common sense’ in an LBC radio interview about the Grenfell Tower fire – proving he doesn’t have any of his own.

He said residents of the tower, which was consumed by fire due to having been covered with inflammable cladding by a Conservative-run council, should have used their common sense and left the building, rather than follow the ‘stay put’ policy imposed by the same Conservative-run council.

His comments led to condemnation, including this from rapper Stormzy:

https://twitter.com/stormzy/status/1191727557349130241

(Apologies for the weird state of the video.)

Stormzy continued:

https://twitter.com/stormzy/status/1191739324901076993

Comedian Russell Howard also attacked Mr Rees-Mogg, delivering Bristol’s verdict on the representative for neighbouring North East Somerset:

Mr Rees-Mogg has apologised for his words, even though it is clear that they represented his thinking on the subject, and has been keeping a low profile since. Conservatives have tried to defend Mr Rees-Mogg – but feebly:

Tory MP Andrew Bridgen made matters even worse by saying Mr Rees-Mogg was “cleverer” than the Grenfell residents who died.

He has been forced to apologise too:

And the BBC’s Laura Kuenssberg predictably tried to protect the Tory by pretending he had made a mistake – and got her own roasting for it:

I understand the company that put the flammable cladding on Grenfell Tower is still listed by the Conservatives as a “trusted” supplier. What’s that about?

And how can anybody vote for a party that knowingly not only puts citizens at risk, but causes their deaths?

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Brexit myths debunked: there has never been any need to threaten a ‘no deal’ Brexit

“Duper’s delight”: Boris Johnson helped undermine attempts to get a Brexit deal through Parliament. Now he is accusing Parliament of sabotaging attempts to get a deal. What hypocrisy! What duplicity! What a [insert description here]!

Having established that there will not be rioting in the streets if Brexit doesn’t happen on October 31, shall we consider the silly claim that the UK should threaten the EU with the possibility of a “no deal” departure?

Here’s Simon Wren-Lewis in Mainly Macro again:

The myth of the need to threaten No Deal as part of the negotiations soon became another piece of the entrenched narrative.

I am sure some Brexiters believed it, because they never bothered to understand how the Single Market worked. It was forced upon other Brexiters when the cavalry in the form of the German auto-manufacturers who were going to force the German government into concessions never turned up.

But it soon began to have a much more sinister purpose.

It was not long before many in the ERG realised the only form of Brexit they would be happy with was No Deal, and from then on their aim was to try and achieve No Deal by default.

What better ruse was there for this group than to spread the idea that we could not rule out No Deal for negotiation reasons.

So you see, “no deal” is the kind of Brexit that the swivel-eyed screamers of the far-right Conservative party-within-a-party, the European Research Group, want – not in the interests of the UK, but to serve their own selfishness.

This serves Boris Johnson very well as, if headlines are to be believed, he is in hock to a shadowy group of hedge fund bosses who have bet heavily on a “no deal” Brexit crashing the economy and causing misery to millions of us, and stand to make billions of pounds from it.

The reason a deal has not been done is because of the actions of our current Prime Minister, his predecessor, and those in the ERG who are pushing this narrative.

Parliament has failed to agree a deal because the ERG do not want a deal.

Also ludicrous is the idea that a No Deal Brexit fulfills the wishes of the 52% who voted in the referendum, when those campaigning to leave in the referendum said a deal was certain to be done.

This ties in with the false claim that we should leave on October 31 because Parliament has had three years to get a deal and has failed, of course.

A deal could have happened long ago, under Theresa May. It would not have been a good deal, but it had been agreed with the EU.

It failed because the ERG – led by Boris Johnson’s leader of the Commons, Jacob Rees-Mogg and supported by Johnson himself – made it fail.

So we can see that Boris Johnson and his friends have deliberately sabotaged attempts to forge a Brexit deal – and are working to ruin the UK economy – apparently in order to cash in on the chaos afterwards.

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Life imitates satire – in pictures – in “no deal” Brexit debate

A few days ago, cartoonist Ben Jennings produced this illustration for The Guardian:

It was intended as a satire on Dictator Johnson’s vow to kick rebel Tory MPs off the government benches if they vote against him in the bill to block “no deal” Brexit.

Now consider this image of Jacob Rees-Mogg, taken during the debate on whether there should be a debate on that bill (I know; it’s convoluted. But that’s how Parliament works these days):

As I write this, the Graun is reporting that 16 Tory MPs are expected to support the motion – and will be stripped of the whip this evening.

Life imitating satire?

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If it’s fear-mongering to say people will die because of Brexit, why is the government stockpiling body-bags?

A body-bag: No, it isn’t being modelled by Mr Rees-Mogg.

The Minister for the 18th Century, Jacob Rees-Mogg, caused a bit of a stir this week when he attacked a doctor who advised the government on “no deal” Brexit – in flagrant contradiction of the evidence.

Consultant neurologist Dr David Nicholl helped draft the Project Yellowhammer document that predicted shortages of medicines, food and fuel if “no deal” Brexit happens.

Dr Nicholl asked Mr Rees-Mogg, now Leader of the House of Commons, in an exchange on LBC radio, “What level of mortality rate are you willing to accept in the light of a no-deal Brexit?”

The cabinet member bit back hard: “I’m surprised that a doctor in your position would be fear-mongering in this way on public radio. I think it’s deeply irresponsible, Dr Nicholl, of you to call in and try to spread fear across the country. It’s typical of Remainer campaigners to try and you should be quite ashamed.”

Oh, really?

Then why has the National Health Service been stockpiling body-bags?

We knew this was happening back in February, when a letter from then-health minister Stephen Hammond identified body-bags as an important consumable being protected by health service bosses.

But now we know why.

This Independent article quotes Dr Paul Williams, a Labour supporter of the anti-Brexit Best for Britain group, said: “This exchange shows how little regard the government has for those who rely on access to medicines. Their reckless pursuit of a no-deal Brexit is putting lives at risk.”

And it reported a revelation by The Sunday Times “that doctors had warned the NHS to brace itself for the “biggest threat it has ever faced” if the UK leaves the EU without a deal.

“Confidential files seen by the newspaper revealed lists of drugs it has been impossible to stockpile, putting patients at potential risk.”

Dr Nicholl was reported to have used the exchange with Mr Rees-Mogg to argue that people would die because of problems with access to drugs and radioisotopes.

And all the cabinet minister could do was moan that the Yellowhammer report had been written by “Remoaners”.

Who do you believe? The cabinet minister – or the expert with a doctorate?

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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