Tag Archives: vaccine

Protesters mob #Starmer shouting ‘#JimmySavile’. What does this say about the UK?

A matter of trust: one of these politicians was mobbed because people believed the other, even though he’s known to be a habitual liar.

One person, at least, may be delighted to learn that Boris Johnson has been blamed for an incident in which anti-vaccine protesters mobbed Keir Starmer – and it may not be who you think.

Here’s the story:

Starmer and the shadow foreign secretary, David Lammy, had to be bundled into a police car after anti-vax protesters surrounded him near parliament with shouts of “traitor” and “Jimmy Savile”. One witness said a protester carried a hangman’s noose prop, which another protester had joked was for Starmer.

MPs from all sides angrily rounded on Boris Johnson and accused him of whipping up political poison after the Labour leader… was set upon by protesters who accused him of protecting the paedophile Jimmy Savile.

Johnson provoked widespread fury last week when he suggested Starmer had protected Savile during his time as director of public prosecutions.

Who’s likely to be pleased by this horror story?

Why, Boris Johnson himself, of course!

It shows that, even in the face of all his lies, there are still people in the UK who will believe anything he says.

Source: MPs blame Boris Johnson’s ‘poison’ after protesters mob Keir Starmer | UK news | The Guardian

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The #ToryCorruption wagon doesn’t stop rolling just because #BorisJohnson is in trouble

Snout in the trough (all right – bucket): perhaps the Conservatives should rename themselves the Corruption Party?

There has always been more to Tory government corruption than Boris Johnson possibly going to parties.

Just trawling through Twitter yesterday I found more examples of the kind of behaviour that shows corruption is widespread in the Conservative government. It might be radiating outward from Johnson but that doesn’t mean it will go away if he does.

See for yourself:

The scandals won’t stop just because one UK constituency got rid of its Tory.

They all have to go.

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#BorisJohnson’s #Omicron announcement is a dud. Where’s his #apology & #resignation?

Mistaken identity: Boris Johnson took to our TV screens to announce new government measures to tackle the Omicron variant of Covid-19. But we thought it was another Christmas quiz. What was the first question again?

This Writer’s booster injection, if all went as planned, was due on December 20. Am I now to expect it on Thursday, after Boris Johnson’s announcement on Sunday evening?

Johnson intruded on our Sunday viewing to announce that the UK’s Covid alert level was being raised to 4 – the second-highest – indicating a high or rising level of transmission.

And he said the government was accelerating vaccinations and booster jabs, intending to fit seven weeks’ worth of injections into three. That’s how I calculated the schedule for my own booster.

No further social distancing restrictions were announced.

To be honest, the government could have made this announcement without putting Johnson out to broadcast it in a pre-recorded statement (that he still stumbled through like a drunkard who’s lost his reading glasses).

This Writer was most struck by what wasn’t said.

This could have been a press conference, with media reporters (and, preferably, members of the public) lined up to ask questions.

But it seems Johnson wasn’t having any of that. Was he afraid we would all go off-script and start demanding answers about his own failures to follow the Covid-19 rules last Christmas?

I think he was. I think he dreaded being asked why he told us all the regulations were followed in Downing Street last December when we now have photographic evidence that he, personally, did not.

Also – and I got this from Alastair Campbell who, whatever you may think of him, should know – it seems that, having allowed the Conservative government air time to make the announcement, broadcasters like the BBC are now obliged to provide the equivalent air time to the opposition political parties. When’s that going to happen, BBC?

Finally, it occurs to me that this announcement is only necessary because of Johnson’s laissez-faire attitude to Covid-19. He should have admitted that his government had made mistakes – in timing the vaccine rollout at the very least – but he couldn’t even get that right.

Given the nature of the announcement, which was that the government and NHS are going to do more, but we don’t have to do anything we wouldn’t have done anyway, I’m drawn to only one conclusion: that Johnson had used this as an opportunity to present himself in a good light.

To that, I can only say:

Tough luck, corrupt liar! You shouldn’t have come out of hiding for any reason other than to explain yourself, or simply to resign, and you bottled it! Don’t come back until you’re ready to face the consequences of your actions.

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Top scientist condemns #Covid19 ‘lack of leadership’ and demands international #vaccination

He’s right, you know: Sir Jeremy Farrar quit Sage so he could tell you the government is wrong about Covid-19.

Isn’t it funny how scientists instantly start singing a different song, the instant they stop being employed by the government?

Sir Jeremy Farrar quit the Tory government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) last month.

Now he is joining the growing number of people calling for vaccines to be supplied internationally, rather than being rationed according to which countries can pay.

He accused rich countries of taking “a very blinkered domestic focus, lulled into thinking that the worst of the pandemic was behind us”.

“The longer this virus continues to spread in largely unvaccinated populations globally, the more likely it is that a variant that can overcome our vaccines and treatments will emerge,” he wrote. “If that happens, we could be close to square one.

“This political drift and lack of leadership is prolonging the pandemic for everyone, with governments unwilling to really address inequitable access to the vaccines, tests and treatment.

“There have been wonderful speeches, warm words, but not the actions needed to ensure fair access to what we know works and would bring the pandemic to a close.”

He’s right, of course – and the emergence of the Omicron variant has proved it.

It is believed to have developed in a country that has not been broadly vaccinated: Covid is much more likely to mutate in places where vaccination is low and transmission is high, while immunisation greatly reduces the change of new variants emerging.

So providing the vaccine to poorer countries is a matter of survival, not profit.

But just try telling that to Boris Johnson after he spent the last – almost – two years helping Tory donors and friends profiteer from Covid!

Source: ‘Lack of leadership prolonging Covid pandemic’ says top scientist warning UK is heading ‘back to square one’

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Even if you don’t believe in #Covid #vaccines, you should support the #TRIPSWaiver

Covid-19 is really exposing the ethical vacuum at the heart of the pharmaceutical industry, isn’t it?

Vaccines have been around for more than 220 years. Our kids are routinely vaccinated against diseases like measles, mumps, rubella and tetanus; we have ourselves vaccinated against more exotic diseases if we plan to travel to foreign countries. The companies making the vaccines are paid for them, and that’s fine.

But Covid-19 has created a huge opportunity for those companies because their vaccines are desperately-needed to stop people dying in a rapidly-spreading pandemic. They are charging huge amounts of money for their jabs and this is restricting the distribution of these substances around the world; if a country’s government can’t afford it, the people don’t get it.

The knock-on effect is that the people of these countries catch Covid-19 and it mutates, creating new variants, some of which are immune to the current vaccines.

It is unreasonable to restrict life-saving treatments in this way; it creates further threat to us all.

But the pharmaceutical companies are hiding behind TRIPS – the Agreement of Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property that restricts the right to manufacture vaccines to those companies that have patented them.

Labour MP Clive Lewis is supporting calls that initially came from South Africa and India to waive these companies’ patent rights temporarily, in order to make all of us safer, rather than just making a small number of shareholders richer.

Here’s his explanation of the issues – which shouldn’t be discounted just because he’s mistaken about the name of the new variant:

Even if you don’t want vaccination for yourself – for whatever reasons of your own, this is something you should be able to support in order to allow other people to have the choice that you’ve taken.

But here’s one thing:

Isn’t it sad that Mr Lewis has also to appeal to his own party leader, Keir Starmer, to do the right thing?

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If a new Covid-19 variant started in Africa it’s because countries like the UK withheld vaccines

Back in the UK? A new Covid-19 variant could be spreading here because western governments refused to provide vaccines to Africa in good time.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid has reacted in typical slow fashion to the threat of a new Covid-19 variant from South Africa.

He said the variant “may pose substantial risk to public health” as it has “an unusually high number of mutations” and added that “we must move quickly, and at the earliest possible moment” to prevent its spread in the UK.

Too late, I think.

And if it is, our Tory government is probably doubly to blame.

Correct me if I’m wrong, but wasn’t vaccine distribution to many African countries delayed because the manufacturers wanted more cash, and then because they couldn’t be used, having reached their expiry date?

It’s no good saying Africa had managed to restrict the virus more successfully than the so-called developed nations if this has only given it a chance to become more deadly!

And it lends credence to conspiracy theorists who want us to believe organisations like our Tory government are using the virus and its variants to control us – pitching us from one threat to another while they follow their own selfish agendas in the background where they can’t be seen.

Think of the £300 billion spent on Covid-19-related commercial contracts, most of which were not honoured.

Boris Johnson and his Health Secretaries Matt Hancock and now Sajid Javid had the opportunity to show the world how to defeat a deadly pandemic and they didn’t. Instead they sank into a mire of duplicity and “let the bodies pile up in their thousands”.

It seems this latest scare is simply the next chapter in their catalogue of corruption.

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Vaccination to be OFFERED to UK 12-15 year olds

Jabber Johnson: this overgrown teenager has had the vaccine already, despite having already been infected. It has been argued that 12-15 year olds may not benefit from vaccination because of previous infection.

Chief Medical Officers in the UK have recommended that people aged between 12 and 15 should be offered the Covid-19 vaccination.

The decision by the four CMOs comes 10 days after the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) said it could not recommend adding this age group to those receiving the jabs because of a side effect of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines that causes heart inflammation and may lead to palpitations and chest pain.

And children were said to be at such a low risk from the virus that vaccines would offer only a marginal benefit.

But the JCVI said ministers may want to consider wider issues like how vaccination may reduce school disruption.

Crucially, though, it seems the decision will be left to the family. This will not be an attempt to force vaccination on young people.

But if a child and parent are of opposing views and the child is considered competent to decide, the child will have the final say.

That may create a difficult situation in the future.

What else will children be considered competent to decide? On what will they be denied the choice? And how will any discrepancies be justified?

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Vaccine passports scrapped – but what does that say about Voter ID?

The ballot box: Boris Johnson doesn’t want you to be able to put anything into it until you can show valid photo ID, like a Tory Party membership card.

Let’s remind ourselves of something Boris Johnson said, way back in pre-history:

Brilliant! And half-true…

The plan for Covid-19 vaccination passports has just been scrapped by Sajid  Javid.

Clearly he has been reading This Site’s discussion of the rights and wrongs of forcing people to vaccinate. Denying them entry to places unless they have been forced to vaccinate is still forcing people to vaccinate, of course.

(Amazingly, one of the guys who was so determined to force his will on other people – even though it wouldn’t make any difference to whether they passed the virus on to him – is still demanding it. His latest effort was to say that people should be force-vaccinated for the same reason we aren’t allowed to smoke in offices – to prevent passive smoking. But passive smoking is forced on non-smokers by smokers and the prohibition is to stop smokers putting something in non-smokers’ bodies that they don’t want there – which is exactly what this guy is trying to do by forcing injections on people who don’t want them. Some might say that’s practically rape.)

However Johnson is still forcing voter ID on us.

It makes a nonsense of Javid’s claim that “I’ve never liked the idea of saying to people you must show your papers or something to do what is just an everyday activity.” Voting might not be everyday but is still regular.

The Welsh Assembly has already recommended that consent for the Elections Bill – which demands that voters produce a recognised form of photo ID or be turned away – should be refused.

It would make sweeping changes to the UK’s electoral system with very little justification – the “voter ID” demand is being made in spite of the fact that voter impersonation is very nearly nonexistent in the UK.

So convention requires the Assembly to give consent – and it is being withheld. The Welsh Government is seeking amendments that will reduce the impact on Welsh law.

That should keep the Bill tied up for a while.

And just as well, to judge from the reactions:

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Guilt-shaming Gove should know: people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones

Michael Gove: that’s a Chelsea FC scarf he’s wearing. His love of that team led him to fly to Portugal where he had close contact with people who had Covid-19. He didn’t follow the rules that we must; he put himself on an elite ‘daily testing’ scheme instead, potentially endangering his work colleagues. And now he’s threatening to deny people who don’t have the vaccine access to events like the one he attended. What a barefaced hypocrite.

It’s a classic ‘nudge’ strategy: you want somebody to do something, you make them feel guilty about it.

So Michael Gove probably thought it was perfectly reasonable to say people who don’t want the Covid-19 vaccine are selfish; that they are endangering the rest of us.

Trouble is, he‘s the selfish Tory minister who refused to self-isolate after the Covid-19 app on his phone pinged him for close contact with infected people when he flew off to Portugal to watch the Champions League final. Instead, he availed himself of a ‘daily test’ regime available only to a select few.

So he added another stick to poke the non-vaxxers into the vaccination centres: anybody turning down the vaccine may be barred from events he described as requiring a certain level of safety.

Like football matches?

His argument doesn’t work. His own history makes this another “one rule for Tory ministers, a different rule for everybody else” situation.

And if the vaccine is so fantastically good, then the people refusing it will be the only ones likely to die if they catch Covid-19. Everybody else will be protected – right?

Right?

The alternative is that there really is a covert reason for making us all have these injections.

Are the conspiracy theorists right?

What are these Tories pumping into us?

So now Gove has gone from making us feel guilty if we haven’t had the jab to making us all worry that the injection is secretly an attack against us.

And what does it mean?

It means if I hadn’t already had my jabs, I’d be seriously considering turning them down. I don’t go out much anyway.

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Mike recovers from vaccine reaction. What’s been happening in the world?

Well, that was a lot of no fun.

Readers of This Site will recall I stopped posting articles on Monday, right after the piece about Dido Harding being a racist. I posted a tweet explaining that I had received my second dose of the Oxford/AstraZenica Covid-19 vaccine and was having a strong reaction against it, and that I was going back to bed.

Interestingly, the literature on reactions to the vaccine turned out to be entirely accurate; I read it on Sunday afternoon, right after having the shot and it said strong reactions could last up to four days. Yes indeed.

I didn’t stay in bed for all four days but this is the first chance I’ve had to get back to the site.

I’ll try to clear the decks of everything I was planning to write about, back on Monday (or, more accurately, Sunday). I’ll just quote from relevant news articles, possibly with a comment – as they are now “old news”, I’ll be posting more for historical interest rather than to make any hard-hitting points.

Looking to the future, I have been out of the loop for half a week, so I will be keen to find out what has been happening in the world and what you think is important (I think the signal-to-noise ratio in the news at the moment is very poor).

Let’s get back to work…

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