Tag Archives: restrictions

All Boris Johnson had to do to distract us from his latest Covid disaster was have a close-up

#HeadAndShoulders: Boris Johnson’s terrible turnout is a disgrace to the nation.

Who knew?

The UK’s prime minister managed to distract everyone from his new nonsense policy that won’t keep us safe from Covid-19, simply by looking what he is – a mess.

And now everybody’s talking about the fact that our prime minister can’t wash and dress himself properly:

This will set an unhygienic trend for the future.

I foresee times when Johnson will appear before the public with bad news – and also with no tie, or with his short untucked, or with his trousers at half-mast because he now knows that we’ll be so busy gossiping about the mess he‘s in…

… that we won’t realise he’s telling us the country is collapsing around us.

(Douglas Adams predicted this in The Hitch-Hikers’ Guide to the Galaxy, with reference to bad language: “In today’s modern Galaxy there is of course very little still held to be unspeakable….So, for instance, when in a recent national speech the Financial Minister of the Royal World Estate of Quarlvista actually dared to say that due to one thing and another and the fact that no one had made any food for a while and the king seemed to have died and most of the population had been on holiday now for over three years, the economy was now in what he called “one whole joojooflop situation,” everyone was so pleased that he felt able to come out and say it that they quite failed to note that their entire five-thousand-year old civilization had just collapsed overnight.”

(What a shame he never lived to see his comedy become a reality.)

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Tory MPs are breaking Covid rules so quickly, Johnson is taking to TV to announce more

Tory ministers like Matt Hancock are breaking even the current complicated Covid-19 restrictions so fast that Boris Johnson is to announce a new, more complicated system in the hope of stopping them.

That’s how it seems to This Writer, anyway.

But then, I’ve lost interest in the restrictions. Instead of being a way of keeping safe, Johnson has turned them into an attempt to distract us from his failure to address the proliferation of the pandemic with threats of huge fines if we don’t do as we’re told!

That’s why he hasn’t been able to provide any evidence to support his edict that pubs must close at 10pm. There isn’t any. It’s just a way to divert attention.

If Matt Hancock knew that, it would certainly explain why he was (allegedly) in a Parliamentary bar until long after the curfew was imposed one night last week.

Alternatively, I think it’s possible that Johnson is trying to address the shortage of new TV material with an idea for a new game show format.

I’ll explain below but first, let’s consider what he’s expected to announce in his own TV appearance later today (Monday, October 12):

England’s three-tier system… will be called Local Covid Alert Levels with England placed into “medium”, “high” and “very high” alert levels.

There is no detail yet on which area of England will be placed in which tier.

Millions of people could be banned from travelling outside their areas or mixing indoors with other households.

According to The Guardian,

Areas with relatively low infection levels will be placed in what is being described as tier 1. Only national restrictions such as the rule of six, the 10pm curfew on restaurants and pubs and existing rules on masks and social distancing will apply.

The next tier is likely to include bans on home visits and indoor socialising with other households in bars or restaurants.

In areas under the toughest tier 3 restrictions – including Merseyside, Manchester and Newcastle – bars and pubs are expected to be forced to close.

None of the above will make a scrap of difference to infection and death rates, of course, because they do not propose lockdowns in education or in the workplace – the main drivers of the current wave of the disease.

But what about that new TV format I mentioned?

It’s simple: after Johnson announces the new “Local Covid Alert Levels”, I expect an enterprising producer to devise a new game show in which members of the public are contacted at random and asked to provide accurate details of the Covid-related restrictions currently in place where they live.

If they get it right, they get a prize; get it wrong and they get a stern talking-to!

Do you think it’ll catch on?

Source: Boris Johnson to give live TV address to unveil new coronavirus lockdown system – Mirror Online

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U-turn again, Boris Johnson – every time you do, you lose more credibility

What he thinks we want to hear: Boris Johnson turns with the wind, as this excellent infographic from @dayvidart shows.

The continued support Boris Johnson enjoys from the UK public is becoming a constant surprise – especially as he is now u-turning several times a day.

It seems clear that he and his people are saying whatever they think they can get away with, according to the news agenda of the day – as Ian Dunt points out here:

When lockdown was imposed in March, we all had to work from home if we possibly could.

Then Johnson changed his mind in June and wanted us all to go back to the workplace and catch Covid-19 from our colleagues.

Now it is September and we’re all staying at home again. At this rate, he’ll have us back in the salt mines again around Christmas.

On the subject of staying at home or going somewhere, shall we discuss schools?

Here’s some footage of Johnson at the Commons Liaison Committee, saying that children readily transmit Covid-19 to adults.

But Adam Hamdy is right:

So Johnson – who said, only at the beginning of September, that it was “safe” to go back to school – has now reversed his position entirely. But it’s a bit late now:

In our houses, out of doors, in, out, shake-it-all-about… We wouldn’t need to do any of this if we had a decent Covid-19 test, track and trace system – but we don’t.

Johnson handed the contract for this to a private company – Serco – that has made a complete hash of it.

So he keeps calling it “NHS test-and-trace” instead, in the hope that nobody will remember it’s a privatised cock-up. Fat chance:

When the Department for Health and Social Care launched its contact tracing app (which version of that are we on now? Two or three?) the announcement stated that it would not carry out contact tracing.

Guess what? Another u-turn was on the way!

Here‘s The Independent:

No 10 has been left red-faced after wrongly saying the long-delayed NHS coronavirus app will not carry out contact-tracing – only to be slapped down by health officials.

The technology will finally be launched on Thursday – four months late – but without its original purpose, Downing Street had claimed, sparking fresh criticism.

But, within hours, the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) issued a correction, insisting contact-tracing would be “at the heart of the NHS Covid-19 app”.

The fiasco over the four-month-delayed track-and-trace system led to uncomfortable moments for Johnson in the House of Commons where – as usual – he made a proper fool of himself:

If you’re having problems understanding what’s wrong with his words, see the following:

And here’s another thing: if the UK is such a freedom-loving country and those others aren’t, then why are we having to put up with endless – and constantly-varying – restrictions from Johnson while they are practically back to normal?

This idiot’s words stand on their heads!

For further proof – if you can believe it – Johnson actually said that contact tracing had nothing to do with the resurgence of Covid-19 in the UK:

Needless to say, the satirists have been having a field day:

I’m going to end with one that’s not related to the rest of the story but refers to Johnson’s intention to bring the armed forces onto our streets to enforce his ridiculous new restrictions on our freedoms. The point, I hope, is clear:

The UK may be a freedom-loving nation – but Boris Johnson doesn’t like it at all.

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Dictator Johnson threatens MARTIAL LAW if we play five-a-side or stay in the pub after 10pm

Dictator Johnson: he’s putting troops on the streets to enforce his will. Remember this comes before a harmful Brexit, and he is planning to abolish our human rights. Do you feel safe with this man in charge?

Boris Johnson appears to have lost whatever grip on reality he had left.

Announcing new restrictions on public freedom in England, in his latest bid to show he’s doing something about Covid-19, he threatened to bring in the armed forces to enforce them.

And what are these new restrictions? Here:

All citizens are being told to work from home if they can with immediate effect – and from Thursday, all pubs, restaurants and even kebab shops and takeaways must shut from 10pm.

Masks will become compulsory for shop and pub staff, taxi passengers within days – while the fine for breaking the ‘rule of six’ on gatherings will double to £200.

Only 15 people will be allowed to attend weddings from Monday and five-a-side football will be axed.

That’s the lot.

And Johnson had the following to add:

Boris Johnson has said the military could be deployed in England to help with the enforcement of new coronavirus restrictions.

Speaking in the Commons on Tuesday, the prime minister said there would now be “greater police presence” on the streets with “the option to draw on military support where required”.

The prime minister’s spokesperson said the military could be used to backfill certain police duties, such as office roles and guarding protected sites, so police officers can be out enforcing the virus response.

That seems a sop to the masses – an attempt to co-opt our support for having the military invading our daily lives.

“This is not about providing any additional powers to the military, or them replacing the police in enforcement roles, and they will not be handing out fines. It is about freeing up more police officers,” the spokesperson said.

And how long will that last before more powers are granted to the military? Before our guardians become our keepers?

Possibly the worst aspect of this is the fact that the Labour Party – Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition to the Johnson government – has no interest in opposing:

Johnson said MPs will have the opportunity to debate the new coronavirus measures next week.

Labour leader Keir Starmer said Johnson was “right” to announce further measures. “We support those measures,” he said.

This is terrifying.

It seems our political leaders are colluding to take our freedoms away from us, using the pandemic as an excuse.

Is it really a coincidence that this introduction of the military into our daily lives is happening just months before Johnson takes us through a potentially traumatic end to the Brexit process that is likely to cause shortages of goods including foods, along with unemployment and civil unrest?

Johnson is preparing to put down any such unrest with military force.

But don’t just take my word for it:

Even Brexit Party bigwig – and hence arch-Brexiteer – Richard Tice thinks this is a step too far:

What do you think?

Source: Military Could Help Police Enforce New Coronavirus Rules, Says Boris Johnson | HuffPost UK

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Image of #Whitty confronting #Johnson over #Covid19 goes viral. What WAS he saying?

Whitty furious: but what was the UK’s chief medical officer saying to the prime minister who has bungled our defence against Covid-19 so badly?

Remember the old saying that a picture is worth a thousand words? It seems the above image of Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty tearing Boris Johnson a new one has merited many thousands more:

That last tweet seems the most likely to be true, profanity-ridden though it is.

The image accompanied a Spectator article by Robert Peston in which that “magazine” heralded a report by the Office for National Statistics that is likely to say Covid-19 is on the march again everywhere, not just in regional pockets.

It is also likely to say that while the illness is rising in all age groups, it is now most prevalent in young people aged 17-29.

The article goes on to discuss the latest plan to stop the march of the virus, by forcing pubs, clubs and restaurants nationally to turf out customers at 10 pm or reverting to closing them altogether for a couple of weeks.

Apparently the name devised for this is “circuit breaker lockdown”, the aim being to interrupt the progress of the virus by stopping its flow along an established route.

Bit of a misnomer, that, as closing pubs at 10pm isn’t going to stop Covid being spread through them.

In any case, the damage has already been done; it’s fixing the barn door after the chicken has come home to roost.

The simple fact is that Boris Johnson, Matt Hancock and their cronies (who don’t like being challenged, according to London Mayor Sadiq Khan, remember) should not have reopened pubs in the way they did after such a haphazard campaign to keep a lid on the virus.

And that’s what I suspect Whitty was saying when the image was captured.

The article does highlight the real aim of Johnson’s Covid-related restrictions on our freedoms:

The priority of the Chief Medical Officer, Chris Whitty, is to suppress the incidence of the virus to a level that doesn’t prevent the NHS from treating other diseases and conditions.

So the idea is to infect the whole nation, piecemeal – presumably in the hope of eventually achieving that mythical “herd immunity” Johnson mentioned to Philip Schofield and Holly Willoughby back in March.

And never mind how many people die or suffer permanent health consequences as a result. Charming.

Peston, and the Spectator, also suggests that Johnson and his government “moved too late to prevent the first wave”, and “eventually applied the sledgehammer of total lockdown at huge economic cost”.

This seems characteristic of many right-wing periodicals; they are deserting the Tories – and in fact have started to criticise them hotly over the Covid fiasco.

Guardian article points out that the same magazine – The Spectator – ran a “Where’s Boris?” cartoon on its front cover “featuring a distant blond dot on a tiny boat bobbing rudderless and oarless on a stormy sea”.

The Daily Mail had reached a similar conclusion. “Boris: We’ve Failed” the front-page headline blared, with the paper claiming it had warned of a “looming test crisis five months ago”.

“Too often the government has over-promised and under-delivered,” concluded a leader in the Times on Friday morning. “Policies have had to be swiftly abandoned after the exposure of entirely predictable problems,” the centre-right broadsheet continued, adding the A-level fiasco and the problems with the contact-tracing app for good measure.

Of course they’re not willing to shift loyalty away from the Tories altogether… at least, not yet.

Labour leader Keir Starmer, for all his attempts to drag his party back into Tory orbit (and perhaps because of it) has failed to impress anybody apart from the most fervent haters of the man he replaced, Jeremy Corbyn. That party will need to find a new leader with a drop of socialism in his blood and a penchant for a decent soundbite. That’s not happening any time soon.

But just look at that picture.

This Writer has never seen a middle-aged bald man look so ready to smash somebody else’s face in – and I make that statement as a middle-aged, bald man myself.

It seems clear that Johnson is at a crossroads – but has probably sold his soul to the devil already. He’s on a road to a Hell of his own making – the question now is whether he’ll drag us all down with him.

Source: With scientists divided, it’s time for politicians to decide | The Spectator

Coronavirus: NI to move to 1m distancing rule from Monday – to help hospitality firms

Apparently Arlene Foster and the NI government reckon the hospitality industry said this would help restart their businesses. Is that a good enough reason?

The Stormont Executive has agreed to reduce social distancing in Northern Ireland from 2m (6ft) to 1m with restrictions from Monday, Arlene Foster has confirmed.

It comes days after the prime minister said England would move to “1m plus” on 4 July, as its lockdown is eased.

The proposal was brought to the executive by Economy Minister Diane Dodds.

The first minister said hospitality businesses must uphold safety.

Mrs Foster and Deputy First Minister Michelle O’Neill also announced a series of other indicative dates for businesses and public facilities to reopen as lockdown is further eased in Northern Ireland.

They include:

  • Betting shops from 3 July;
  • Close contact services like spas and massage; tattoo parlours, holistic therapies and reflexology from 6 July;
  • Indoor gyms and outdoor playgrounds from 10 July;
  • Libraries from 16 July;
  • The resumption of competitive sport from 17 July – with “limited numbers” of outdoor spectators, to be increased from 31 July;
  • Bingo halls and arcades from 29 July;
  • Other seated indoor venues such as cinemas and theatres from 29 July;
  • Indoor sports courts and skating rinks from 7 August;
  • Leisure centres and soft play areas from 7 August;
  • Socially-distanced indoor spectators can return to sporting events from 28 August;
  • Open air museums from late-August.

Source: Coronavirus: NI to move to 1m distancing rule from Monday – BBC News

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Sappy Monday: Confusion and danger as Tories lift Covid-19 lockdown conditions too soon

Did you go down to the beach over the weekend? Then you’ve probably caught Covid-19 and are set to overburden our hospitals. Well done, you!

More people are going to die after the Tories lifted lockdown conditions too soon.

According to Boris Johnson’s silly “Defcon” scale, the UK is still at Covid Level 4: hospitals aren’t overwhelmed but the R number (the reproductive rate of Covid-19) is still above 1 in some areas, meaning more than one person is catching it for everyone who has it already. The government’s own guidance says it should continue in lockdown.

However, the Tories are behaving as if we have reached level 1, with sports events restored (starting with pigeon racing, of all things), and vulnerable people allowed to leave home for the first time in many weeks; your diabetic granny can now visit the supermarket, even if it means she catches Covid on the way and dies in a couple of weeks time. Nice! The guidance says this level is only likely to be reached when a vaccine has been created and there is no vaccine.

Schools in England have reopened but it seems the only people sending their children back are parents who have had enough of trying to “home teach” them, or who don’t understand that they won’t be able to interact with their friends without shouting.

As one response stated: schools should be places where knowledge is passed on – not Covid.

Are they safe? Judge for yourself on the basis of this:

The gullibility defies belief:

And there are inevitable contradictions:

Health officials made a desperate last-minute plea to the Tories, begging them to halt their homicidal plan to lift lockdown conditions – but their fears fell on deaf ears:

Senior public health officials have made a last-minute plea for ministers to scrap Monday’s easing of the coronavirus lockdown in England, warning the country is unprepared to deal with any surge in infection and that public resolve to take steps to limit transmisson has been eroded.

The Association of Directors of Public Health (ADPH) said new rules, including allowing groups of up to six people to meet outdoors and in private gardens, were “not supported by the science” and that pictures of crowded beaches and beauty spots over the weekend showed “the public is not keeping to social distancing as it was”.

On Saturday and Sunday, parks and seafronts were packed as people anticipated the lifting of restrictions on what has been dubbed “happy Monday”. Car showrooms and outdoor markets will also be reopened, millions of children will return to primary schools and the most vulnerable “shielded” people will be allowed out for the first time since lockdown began in March, all as long as physical distancing is maintained.

The argument is strong, and is supported by statistics:

The result of all this nonsense seems inevitable:

So what are you going to do? This, perhaps:

Otherwise…

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Is civil disobedience the answer to Johnson and Cummings?

Boris Johnson: this is his response to your complaints that Dominic Cummings ignored lockdown rules. What are you going to do about it?

How kind of Boris Johnson to grace us with his presence at the daily Cocid-19 briefing, and explain that Demonic – er, Dominic – Cummings didn’t obey lockdown rules because they weren’t meant for elites like him but for plebs like you.

Okay, he didn’t put it in as many words, but the meaning was clear:

(Incidentally, if you’re wondering why I’m using the clip with signing…)

He seemed keen to evade the principle question – is it one rule for Tory government elites and another for the rest of us? – but the message was clear:

Even the UK Civil Service’s dedicate Twitter feed registered its disgust:

“Arrogant and offensive.

“Can you imagine having to work with these truth twisters?”

It was up for only 10 minutes, during which it accumulated around 30,000 retweets, and the same number of likes, which is indicative of the strength of feeling, not just in the civil service but in the UK as a whole.

Okay, Johnson had his supporters, but for the wider attitude of the UK public, see Michael Jones’s tweet below:

He’s not the only one:

Here’s just one person’s story, corroborating Mr Jones’s conclusion:

“My Aunt died alone in a care home from Covid19. My brother and mother who live locally were not allowed to see her, hold her hand in the last moments or say goodbye. My mother couldn’t attend the funeral, or let me stay with them on my way to the funeral, because Govt guidelines don’t allow it.

“What I have seen today is that I was stupid. I could have just exercised my judgement that it was essential. My sacrifices, my mother’s sacrifices were for nothing. Or maybe if we were rich elites it would have been ok.”

That is the mood of the nation – especially those of use who have lost loved ones and were forbidden from even saying goodbye (and remember, thanks to Johnson’s snivelling incompetence, there have been more than 62,000 of those deaths).

If you have any doubts left, check out the results of my own Twitter poll. At the time of writing, it shows more than 96 per cent of respondents believe the Tories cannot be trusted to handle the UK’s response to the coronavirus pandemic – and they want to do something about it:

Civil disobedience?

It’s an idea with a lot of merit to it – especially if done to protect ourselves and our children from the consequences of damnfool Tory stupidity.

And it seems to have gained some traction:

So there it is. Who’s in?

There’s no downside, for obvious reasons. Any objection can be countered with what I think we should call the “Cummings defence”: that you followed the instincts of every parent.

I’m not going to force anybody into it; this has to be an individual decision by the people involved.

But, obviously, if you don’t do something, you’ll be saying you’re happy to let Dominic Cummings, Boris Johnson and all those other slimy creeps do whatever they want and laugh at you. Your choice. Let me know what you’re going to do.

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Johnson’s speech – and what it means

There seems to be a lot of confusion about Boris Johnson’s address to the nation on May 10, and what it means.

Let’s have a look at it again:

Oops! That was in fact Matt Lucas – but it was a good impression and after hearing the real speech again, you may think it a fair approximation.

Here’s a real Johnson. I’ll try to include other social media comments at appropriate points as I go through his speech:

You have to wade through a lot of piffle paffle and wiffle waffle for the first couple of minutes. Anybody who has been paying attention will already know that much of what he says here is not true.

For example: “It is a fact that by adopting those measures [restrictions on our freedom that mean we have to stay at home except for necessary trips/exercise and keep two metres away from other people when we are out] we prevented this country from being engulfed by what could have been a catastrophe in which the reasonable worst case scenario was half a million fatalities.”

This is not true. By adopting these measures, we made it less likely that we would catch Covid-19 during the weeks in which those measures were adopted, meaning the National Health Service – that much-maligned organisation that the Tories have been starving for 10 years, in order to claim it is unable to cope with our health needs and so persuade us it is ripe for privatisation – would be better-able to cope with the thousands of new cases that have still been recorded every day. And it still has not been able to cope, because the Tories ignored advice from 2017, to stockpile personal protective equipment and have enough ventilators available.

The worst-case scenario, as This Writer recalls, was 250,000 deaths over the course of five or six peaks in infection rates. The UK has only just crested the first such peak. If a second arrives – and this seems likely, considering the latest information from Germany and China – then it may be as much as 10 times worse than the current wave that has caused around 60,000 deaths (although only half those are currently included in official figures).

He moves on to some waffle about millions of us being concerned over damage to their livelihoods and their mental and physical health, caused by the lockdown. He makes no mention that harm to people’s well-being is being caused by his refusal to introduce a Universal Basic Income, as the other measures the government promised to protect us were either inadequate, didn’t materialise or do not provide protection for everybody who has been endangered.

He wants to set out a plan to get us all back working for the benefit of the billionaires who run the country (he certainly doesn’t).

He says he has consulted across all four countries of the UK – although this seems unlikely, considering that Wales and Scotland immediately rejected his plan, such as it is.

It’s a conditional plan, he says: “We must protect our NHS. We must see sustained falls in the death rate. We must see sustained and considerable falls in the rate of infection. We must sort out our challenges in getting enough PPE to the people who need it, and yes, it is a global problem but we must fix it.” And we must ensure that the reproduction rate of the disease – ‘R’ – does not exceed one (this would mean that every person contracting the disease would be infecting more than one other person; creating a situation that the health system could not handle).

Then he takes a diversion to talk about the Covid alert system that some bright spark has devised. It’s like the DefCon system that warns us of the likelihood of nuclear war, with level one showing no evidence of the disease in the UK and level five meaning the NHS has been overwhelmed.

The Covid Alert Level will be determined primarily by R and the number of coronavirus cases, he says. So what was the point of talking about all the other things? I would have thought the death rate, at least, might have some bearing on whether we were at DefCon 5 or not.

“Over the period of the lockdown we have been in Level Four, and it is thanks to your sacrifice we are now in a position to begin to move in steps to Level Three,” he says. But he doesn’t say what levels four or three actually mean.

So what’s the point of telling us that?

He moves on to another diversion – telling us that, to keep pushing the number of infections down, we must reverse rapidly the epidemics in care homes and in the NHS; and we must have a world-beating system for testing potential victims, and for tracing their contacts. That may be true, but the general public cannot do anything about either of those matters. It is for the government and the NHS to do these things – not us.

The next part is ironically hilarious. He states that he wants the health service to be “testing literally hundreds of thousands of people every day.”

He has not managed to test even 100,000 people a day, yet!

There’s more waffle… and then, more than halfway through the speech (seven minutes, 10 seconds if you want to check), he finally admits that “no, this is not the time simply to end the lockdown this week.”

So we’re all staying at home, then?

Apparently not.

Johnson went on to describe a change in emphasis for the lockdown that means some people will be required to go back to work. This applies only in England, although he did not make that clear at any point during his broadcast. Indeed, with all his talk of co-operation across the four UK countries, any viewer might easily be confused into thinking we all have to go back. We don’t.

“We said that you should work from home if you can, and only go to work if you must. We now need to stress that anyone who can’t work from home, for instance those in construction or manufacturing, should be actively encouraged to go to work. And we want it to be safe for you to get to work. So you should avoid public transport if at all possible – because we must and will maintain social distancing, and capacity will therefore be limited. So work from home if you can, but you should go to work if you can’t work from home.”

What?

Construction workers, as I recall, were never told to observe the lockdown. That’s why navvies up and down the route of HS2 are grinding up the countryside, hell-for-leather. As for people working in factories: it will be interesting to see whether bosses pay any attention to social distancing rules.

Johnson said his government had been working on new guidance for employers to make workplaces safe but, given the Tory government’s lack of exertion on other promises during the crisis, this seems unlikely – or the result will probably be slapdash.

If workplaces aren’t safe – or if employees are not satisfied – then bear in mind that s.44 of the Employment Rights Act gives them the right to walk away from the job, as their work will be unsafe.

By telling people to avoid public transport, Johnson pushed them into getting to their newly-reopened places of work in their cars – one person per vehicle – thereby ensuring traffic jams, parking problems and a massive spike in pollution.

In the event, thousands of people flocked back to public transport. The government promised guidance on how to use buses, trains and the Tube network safely – but in a typical display of the incompetence for which the Johnson administration is now justly famous, this arrived at 2pm today (May 11) – long after it was likely to do anybody any good.

Moving on to leisure activities, Johnson said it would now be possible (for people in England alone, remember) to take more and even “unlimited amounts” of outdoor exercise: “You can sit in the sun in your local park, you can drive to other destinations, you can even play sports but only with members of your own household.”

He added: “You must obey the rules on social distancing and to enforce those rules we will increase the fines for the small minority who break them.”

Is he hedging his bets here? Suppose there’s a spike in Covid-19 infections after people go back to work – will he try to blame it on people taking exercise in this way?

Moving on again, he said step two of his plan to ease the lockdown would start on June 1 at the earliest: this is when he plans to begin a phased reopening of shops and send children back to school – in England, remember. Not in the rest of the UK.

The Department for Education appears to be taking this as an instruction: children will be sent back to school on June 1, whether it is safe to do so or not:

Here’s a good response to that:

https://twitter.com/ScouseGirlMedia/status/1259560207165816842

Expect a big spike in Covid infections if he imposes this measure on that date. Children are major transmitters of disease at the best of times. And how does he expect to get children in school to conform with social distancing rules?

Step three would start at the beginning of July at the earliest, and would involve the reopening of parts of the hospitality industry and other public places – if they can sustain social distancing.

I don’t think we need to think about this yet. By July 1, if Johnson has gone ahead and implemented the first two steps of his scheme, England will almost certainly be in the midst of a second wave of coronavirus infections and deaths.

I would suggest to people living there that this would be an appropriate time to demand the resignations from Parliament of Johnson and all those involved in his policies relating to Covid-19.

He goes on to say that “it will soon be the time – with transmission significantly lower – to impose quarantine on people coming into this country by air”. What good will that do? The right time for restrictions on travel into the UK was January – possibly earlier.

There’s more waffle – a lot of it – and then he ends with his new, meaningless, slogan: “Stay alert, control the virus and save lives.”

Other responses are more directly critical:

 

In summary, Johnson’s speech says:

Construction and manufacturing workers in England must go back to their jobs. Employers are receiving advice on how make their workplaces safe.

Nothing else has changed.

And the chances are that nothing will. The evidence of today shows that he will fall at the first hurdle – but we will have to wait a couple of weeks to find that out.

The verdict: Johnson’s new plan means alertness won’t matter; the virus will not be controlled and lives will be lost.

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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Coronavirus: half a year before normality resumes – because of Tory stupidity

Johnson: This stupid ass caught coronavirus because he failed to follow his own social distancing advice (once he got round to giving it). Now he’s got the nerve to tell us he may tighten restrictions – but he’ll never admit that he has been at fault.

They’ll never admit it but if it does take half a year or more before people in the UK are allowed to resume their normal lives, it’s because of the stupidity of our Conservative government.

And if the lockdown lasts as long – or almost – that will be because of Tory stupidity too.

Boris Johnson’s letter saying the situation will worsen before it gets better is nothing more than we should all expect.

England’s Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Jenny Harries, said the number of deaths is likely to worsen over the next one or two weeks – because it will take that long before the effects of social distancing begin to be felt.

And Johnson has warned that stricter measures could be put in place if necessary. This makes perfect sense, if deaths continue to rise.

But the reason deaths may continue rising is the government’s failure to impress upon the population the fact that the measures already in place are important.

In his letter, Johnson says, “From the start, we have sought to put in the right measures at the right time.” This is contemptible nonsense.

Before coronavirus arrived in the UK, the Tories had ensured that none of the plans necessary to protect the public against a contagion of this kind were up to date.

And they had dismantled the specialist team in the Department of Health, that would have dealt with the pandemic, nine years ago.

Medical journal The Lancet warned the government to get its act together on January 24.

But Johnson dithered for a further seven weeks, issuing contradictory statements and advice that left members of the public confused.

Is it any wonder, then, that when he ordered us all to stay home and observe social distancing rules, many people have ignored him completely – including himself?

The prime minister himself caught the disease because he failed to follow his own advice.

The news websites are full of reports of street parties being broken up by police, who are empowered to issue fines starting at £60 but rising to £960 for repeat offenders.

This Writer has been told of barbecues in Shrewsbury, and even health professionals have been caught flouting the rules.

This brings us to another point: remember Jenny Harries, who said the number of deaths is likely to worsen? She must take part of the blame for that.

The Lancet (again) has called on her to apologise for claiming that the NHS had “a perfectly adequate supply of PPE [Personal Protective Equipment, worn by medical staff while treating coronavirus patients to prevent them from contracting it or passing on to others]”.

It didn’t – and I note that two doctors are reported to have died in this report alone.

The government failed to join a European Union scheme to provide much-needed ventilators – by misdirecting the email, it seems – and there are concerns over the choices of supplier made by Johnson and his cronies.

Put it all together and you can see that more people will die because of the Tories; there is a lack of equipment to fight the virus because of the Tories; and if it takes longer for life to return to normal – they’ll be responsible for that too.

Source: Coronavirus: Strict measures could last ‘significant period’ – BBC News

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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