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:
So how come this photo of Whitty confronting Johnson and his idiots, went public? pic.twitter.com/JXHQtahsst
— AndyY #FBPE #rejoin #FightOn (@peakajy) September 18, 2020
Why on earth did they put this picture out? This looks less like a prime minister at work than a dishevelled sex offender being confronted by the Westminster CID. pic.twitter.com/nQyOCHHhy0
— Tim Walker (@ThatTimWalker) September 18, 2020
What on earth did Whitty say? He looks furious. Hancock looks like he's seen a ghost, Johnson looks like his parentage has been called into question, and Cummings looks like someone's smacked him in the face with a frying pan.
— Dr Heather Williams (@alrightPET) September 18, 2020
That hands across the chest defensive position is getting you nowhere, Whitty is livid , HELL ON pic.twitter.com/iWt7Ib7PWK
— Berek C (@FTMBezza) September 18, 2020
Whitty: "You've completely fucked it up. We're exactly where we were in the second week of March after all that hard work and fucking the economy over. DO IT AGAIN … BUT DO IT PROPERLY THIS TIME!" pic.twitter.com/toFFHjLovj
— John Spiers (@squeezyjohn) September 18, 2020
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.
A 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.