Tag Archives: shortage

Will people realise the food shortages they suffer in January are due to Brexit?

Grant Shapps: he’s telling us supply chains will remain open after Brexit-imposed border restrictions are imposed from January 1. But he’s the guy who said it was perfectly safe to go back to work, while remaining safe at home himself.

Wasn’t it a stroke of genius to stagger the date the UK leaves the EU and the date any changes to our relationship take effect, so people don’t recognise the connection?

Clearly Boris Johnson wasn’t behind it. We can all agree that a yoghurt has more intelligence than the prime muppet.

So the UK is no longer a member of the European Union at the time of writing – but the Tory government still needs to make preparation for border controls that must be imposed from January 1.

And that isn’t happening.

Rod McKenzie, from the Road Haulage Association, said the government should “act now before it’s too late”.

Mr McKenzie told BBC News: “It is a real case of the government sleepwalking to a disaster with the border preparations that we have, whether it is a deal or no-deal Brexit at the end of December.

“The supply chain on which we are all dependent to get the things we need could be disrupted and there is a lack of government focus and action on this.”

He added: “When we are trying to emerge from the crisis of covid, if we then plunge straight into a Brexit-related crisis, that will be a really difficult moment and we need real pace.

“The difference here is between a disaster area and a disaster area with rocket boosters on.”

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps is busy fitting the rocket boosters to this disaster area.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme he “could not pre-empt the outcome” of trade talks with the EU, which he conceded created “some uncertainty”.

But, he said the government had kept supply changes going [I think he means “routes open”] throughout the pandemic and “we are absolutely confident we will do that again in the future”.

Let’s take a moment to remember that the Tory government was unable to supply personal protective equipment during the pandemic, meaning many doctors and nurses died of Covid-19 and Covid-related conditions.

The Tory government was unable to supply respirators during the pandemic, meaning tens of thousands of UK citizens died of Covid-19 and Covid-related conditions.

The government did not keep supply routes open – in fact, there is evidence that the Tories consciously shut them down.

And now Grant Shapps wants us to believe in his pie-in-the-sky promise that everything will be fine.

I don’t buy it. And that’s not all that you won’t be buying from January onwards, if your MPs don’t get their fingers out of their collective rear ends.

Source: Brexit: UK ‘sleepwalking into disaster’ over border plans, hauliers warn – BBC News

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Leaked report warns of Covid-Brexit “horror show” – remember THIS IS WHAT BORIS JOHNSON WANTS

Two-fingered salute: the UK might fall into lawlessness and chaos because of Boris Johnson but he doesn’t care, as long as he gets what he wants.

A Cabinet Office “reasonable worst-case” report on the effects of a ‘no-deal’ Brexit combining with another wave of Covid-19 has laid out exactly what Boris Johnson wanted for the UK when he became PM.

Johnson, you’ll remember, did not want any trade deals with the European Union after the UK leaves that bloc.

It was widely believed that this is because the hedge fund managers who supported his bid to be Tory leader have bet heavily on the UK going into recession, with many big-name firms going out of business. The claim was that they could make £8 billion out of it.

Of course, none of these multi-billionaires care a fig about the rest of us. If the country falls into chaos they’ll be off to their holiday homes in the sun, with their cash safely stowed in a tax haven.

Meanwhile, back in Blighty, you will be left to deal with food, fuel and power shortages, illness and deaths caused by flood, flu and Covid-19, and incursions into the country from outside such as EU boats coming into our fishing waters.

And, as may reasonably be expected from his government’s failures so far on Covid-19 – the school reopening furore, school meals, exam results, care home deaths, PPE procurement, face mask procurement, test and trace, contract nepotism… the list goes on and on – on flooding (remember that?) and on any other subject you care to mention, the Johnson government has not planned any response to this at all.

The article goes on to state:

  • One in 20 Town Halls could go bust in a second Covid wave, sparking social care chaos.
  • The economic impact of the virus and Brexit could cause public disorder, shortages and price hikes.
  • Troops may have to be drafted on to the streets to help the police in the worst-case scenario — 1,500 are already on stand by.
  • Social distancing measures and masks will have to continue until 2021 regardless.
  • Supplies of food and fuel are all under threat this Christmas if Dover becomes blocked.

The planners warned that “pandemic influenza, severe flooding, a Covid second wave and an unruly exit from the EU transition period could cause a systemic economic crisis with major impact on ­disposable incomes, unemployment, business activity, international trade and market stability.”

It could be combined with likely “coordinated industrial action” as well as shortages risking public disorder and a mental health crisis that will hit the poorest hardest.

Nobody in a Tory government is going to worry about a mental health crisis that harms poor people, of course.

And the attitude by leading Tories to this frankly terrifying report seems to be that if they ignore it, it will go away.

Michael Gove is quoted as babbling: “We got Brexit done with a great deal in January.

“A brighter future awaits as we forge our own path.”

A government spokesperson did add that this was a “reasonable worst case” scenario.

But on the Johnson ministry’s record so far, it is stretching the facts to breaking point to suggest that the government is “ensuring we are ready for all eventualities”.

That simply is not going to happen. On the evidence of the last 12 months, it would be irresponsible to believe anything Johnson, his ministers or his spokespeople say about it.

But there’s one more matter to remember:

If this disaster happens, then there is absolutely nothing you can do about it, other than to prepare as well as you can (because the Tories simply won’t).

I anticipate another stockpiling splurge, worse than the rush for toilet roll in March, at the very least.

Obviously the worst-case will be social unrest and violence – and I’m not ruling that out, either.

Whatever happens, if we end up with no deal and any of the feared outcomes are triggered, you must remember (because he’ll lie about it):

It is what Boris Johnson wanted all along.

Source: Leaked document reveals Cabinet’s emergency plans for perfect storm of No Deal Brexit and coronavirus second wave

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Coroners told to ignore lack of PPE in coronavirus-related inquests

One more time: PPE provided to UK medical staff is at the bottom right. Coroners are being told not to consider whether a national failure to provide proper equipment contributed to the deaths of medical staff.

Now the coroners’ courts are being told to hide the fatal results of failed Conservative policies to tackle the coronavirus, it seems.

Guidance handed down by Mark Lucraft QC, chief coroner for England and Wales, says “an inquest would not be a satisfactory means of deciding whether adequate general policies and arrangements were in place for provision of PPE to healthcare workers”.

He said that “if there were reason to suspect that some human failure contributed to the person being infected with the virus”, an inquest may be required.

The coroner “may need to consider whether any failures of precautions in a particular workplace caused the deceased to contract the virus and so contributed to death”.

But he added: “An inquest is not the right forum for addressing concerns about high-level government or public policy.”

Isn’t that an attempt to palm off responsibility for a lack of PPE onto “a particular workplace” rather than keeping it where it belongs – with the government that sent all our equipment to China and sold domestic stockpiles to a private, US-owned company?

Source: NHS staff coronavirus inquests told not to look at PPE shortages | Society | The Guardian

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Coronavirus propaganda: why would the Tories want to silence NHS staff?

Ask yourself: why does my Conservative government not want me to know what NHS staff have to say about the coronavirus?

The Tories, it seems, have told NHS staff not to tell the public what’s really going on in our hospitals:

Workers at Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust were sent the social media guidance via a staff newsletter on Friday.

In the newsletter, seen by the East Anglian Daily Times, staff were told to avoid tweeting about “political issues, such as PPE, testing and exit strategies”.

They were however encouraged to praise staff for their hard work, working over the weekend and keeping people safe.

Sure, the orders came from a health trust but nobody there would have an interest in deceiving people about the situation. It has to come from the Tories, really. Don’t you agree?

If not, perhaps This Writer should provide a reminder of the PPE situation:

Hospital leaders have directly attacked the government for the first time during the coronavirus crisis over the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE) after a desperately needed consignment of surgical gowns that had been announced by ministers failed to arrive.

In an unprecedented intervention, which hospital leaders privately say is the result of “intense frustration and exasperation”, the organisations representing NHS trusts in England urged ministers to “just focus on what we can be certain of” after weeks of “bitter experience” with failed deliveries.

The NHS Confederation and NHS Providers spoke out amid continuing alarm that shortages of equipment will soon have disastrous effects on the frontline, with representatives of intensive care staff warning on Sunday that the critical shortage of PPE could lead to some people refusing to continue working there.

See? If hospital bosses are complaining publicly, it can’t be them telling staff to keep their traps shut. Can it?

Here’s one trust’s list of available PPE, at the time of the tweet:

Here’s the situation:

NHS staff would rather you knew about it. The only people with an interest in deceiving you are in the Tory government.

How about testing? Remember Matt Hancock saying that the UK would be carrying out 100,000 tests a day by the end of April – in 10 days’ time?

Let’s see how we’re doing:

Scientists are now saying it is impossible to reach that testing target:

The government’s target of carrying out 100,000 Covid-19 tests each day by the end of the month has come under criticism from senior scientists, who say it will be impossible to reach.

Experts told the Guardian that a “macho” focus on headline-grabbing figures had been pursued at the expense of rigorous science.

But we already know that it is Tory government policy to ignore science when it’s against them:

The scientists said stock up on PPE – in 2016.

Instead, when the coronavirus hit China, the Tories gave that country 278,800 bits of kit and left us with hardly any.

They don’t want NHS staff telling you that because it makes them look bad. And they don’t care how many of us die, either.

Source: NHS staff told not to tweet about ‘political issues like lack of PPE’ – Mirror Online

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Does coronavirus-created condom shortage make a baby boom in 2021 more likely?

When Boris Johnson ordered us all to stay in our homes unless it was absolutely necessary to go out, This Writer thought there would be a large increase in births, starting in about nine months.

I mean, what else is there to do? You could watch all the movies you’ve got, do all the housework, play video games, even educate yourself if you like – but there’s likely to be a lot of time in which to stagger those things.

So those of us for whom the two-metre distance restriction is likely to be pointless – couples – are likely to find another way to pass the time.

In such a circumstance – now the condoms are running out – what do you think is going to happen?

The world faces a shortage of condoms, the world’s largest producer has warned after being shut for more than a week due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Malaysia’s Karex Bhd, which produces one-fifth of condoms globally, had to close its three factories because of the lockdown enforced by the Malaysian government.

Over this period, the company would usually make 100 million condoms.

The factories reopened on Friday after being exempted from the restrictions, but are only operating at half capacity.

Goh Miah Kiat, chief executive of Karex Bhd, told Reuters: “It will take time to jumpstart factories and we will struggle to keep up with demand at half capacity.”

At least, with us all stuck at home with our nearest and dearest, there won’t be any increase in sexually-transmitted diseases.

Right?

Source: Coronavirus: Looming condom shortage crisis as factories forced to close | The Independent

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Martial law plan for post-Brexit Britain shows This Site was right again

Theresa and the troops: I used this image in my previous article on martial law, but it seems she really does mean to rely on them to keep her in power after she stubbornly forces the worst possible Brexit on us all.

I know it’s a dodgy source – The Sunday Times – but if it is accurate, the claim in that paper that the Conservative government is preparing to declare martial law marks the third in a series of correct predictions for Vox Political, despite the claims of some readers.

People told me Jaguar Land Rover was making decisions because of wider economic reasons than Brexit – until a press release from the company made it clear that uncertainty over that situation was directly responsible for the decision to halt production for an extra week during the summer.

After my story about the double standards that allowed Rachel Riley to complain that she needed extra security on Countdown because of death threats, after she brought death threats down on an innocent teenage girl with anxiety issues by falsely tweeting that she was an anti-Semite, I predicted that Ms Riley’s followers would revive the false accusations against me – and they did.

And now: Do you remember a commenter on this site stating, “3,500 troops could not enforce martial law on a country of 60 million,” after I stated it suggested Theresa May was preparing to impose martial law on the UK after a “no deal” Brexit? Well, it seems I was right again.

In that previous article, I stated: “Martial law would preserve her government – sorry, dictatorship – against the civil unrest that her policies seem certain to provoke.”

Now we discover (I got this from the i, as I refuse to pay money to the Murdoch machine): “Britain is preparing to declare a state of emergency and introduce martial law in the event of disorder after a no-deal Brexit, according to officials who say the Cobra emergency committee will be able to deploy the army to quell rioting.”

The i article states: “Powers available under the Civil Contingencies Act 2004 would allow ministers to impose curfews, travels bans, confiscate property and deploy the armed forces to quell rioting.

It quoted a Sunday Times source who said: “The over-riding theme in all the no-deal planning is civil disobedience and the fear that it will lead to death in the event of food and medical shortages.”

And another source said a no-deal Brexit would be “about a thousand times worse” than the volcanic ash cloud crisis of 2010, adding: “The only other thing that would be comparable would be something like a major Europe-wide war.”

Inevitably, the claim has provoked a strong response from the public:

Of course, martial law is an extreme measure that would be imposed only in dire need – or if a government is desperate to keep power in spite of the will of the people.

Do you trust Theresa May not to follow the latter path?

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‘I was misquoted’ bleats Tory bully Patel. Nobody believes her

Get back in your car and clear off: The public has spoken and Priti Patel needs to make herself scarce.

Arrogant Tory bully Priti Patel is upset.

It seems she doesn’t like the fact that we all took her at her word when she said the UK should threaten Ireland with food shortages to “encourage” (read: blackmail) that country into dropping its demand for a border “backstop”; a guarantee that there will be no hard border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.

Tough.

Nobody believes her now. Witness:

The above are just a few of the responses to Ms Patel’s unwise words.

You can read the whole thread here.

This one’s probably the best, though:

She’ll never apologise.

But then, she’ll never hold public office again. Not after this.

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Lack of cash means NHS is mothballing entire wards, exactly when they are needed

There is plenty of money in the UK but the Tories have decided to starve public services like the NHS to give tax breaks to the very rich.

This has led to chronic underfunding for services across the board, including health – which has also had to cope with the introduction of profit-making private companies into the system which drain out even more money.

They talk about funding increases but the amount they provide each year is barely a quarter of the average since the NHS was formed in 1948.

There can be only one conclusion: Whatever the Tories are planning for the NHS, it isn’t good for your health.

Hospitals are mothballing scores of wards, closing them to patients despite the NHS’s ongoing beds crisis, new figures reveal.

At the last count in September 82 “ghost wards” were recorded containing 1,429 empty beds, the equivalent of two entire hospitals, according to data provided by hospital trusts across England. It represents a sharp increase on the 32 wards and 502 beds that were unused four years earlier, statistics obtained under freedom of information laws show.

The closures, often a result of hospitals not having enough staff or the money to keep wards open, have occurred at a time when the health service is under unprecedented pressure and struggling to cope with demand for beds.

Source: Revealed: 82 ‘ghost wards’ containing 1,400 empty NHS beds | Society | The Guardian


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Hunt trolls NHS staff by praising rota showing dangerous staff shortages

Evolve Politics has also published a decent article on this subject, here.

How does this man get to remain Secretary of State for Health and Social Care?

Jeremy Hunt has issued a tweet claiming that he is proud of the appalling staff shortages he has created in the National Health Service.

See for yourself (hint: red means bad):

See, he wasn’t showing how safe staffing levels were being maintained; he was proving that they aren’t.

Every red box on that rota means at that time of day, on that ward, patients were considered to be at high risk due to understaffing.

On the early shift, only two wards have adequate staff. In contrast, no less than 11 wards have an inadequate number of nurses and are labelled “high risk”.

And everybody realised exactly what it said:

This is what happens when Tories start tinkering with organisations they simply don’t understand. And it will get worse, unless they are stopped:

So let’s stop them.

You can start by joining the NHS day of action on February 3:

There will be another day of action on February 3:

If you can attend both, please do. Only by keeping up the pressure can we overcome the Tory government and its automatic bias against a health service that exists not for profit, but to serve the needs of the people.


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Bad news for Brexiteers as another study predicts gloom

Pro-EU demonstrators march towards Parliament Square in Central London [Image: REX/Shutterstock].

Tories will be thrilled about this. After a Home Office report was leaked, we now know the minority Conservative government expects the UK to lack 60,000 badly-needed nurses and midwives after Brexit.

Tories don’t care – they hate the NHS.

But it will harm the health of the nation – and that will harm our economy.

Perhaps the stupids will understand when it hits them in the wallet – but I doubt it.

Brexit will leave Britain short of 60,000 nurses and midvives, MPs and medical erxperts [have warned].

The Government’s plans for a hard … Brexit and a crackdown on immigration will worsen Britain’s shortage of nurses and midwives, with the already record shortfall set to increase by 20,000 by the year 2020, MPs and medical experts warn.

New figures from the Open Britain campaign … warn that Brexit could “leave our NHS in intensive care” by making Britain a much less attractive place to work for nurses and midwives from the EU.

And experts say that the figures are especially worrying as they come after a Home Office report, which critics describe as advocating a “draconian” fall in immigration, was leaked.

Read more: Brexit will see Britain short of 60,000 nurses and midwives because of crackdown on immigration


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