11 March 2021
Diary of a Corbynista
Decency is Unaffordable
by Don Urquhart
On Question Time Business Secretary Kwarteng started every answer by reminding us of our world beating vaccines programme. It became convoluted when he explained the EU response to the UK breaking the Treaty again as an attempt by Brussels to divert attention from their relative failure to get people vaccinated.
What nobody on the panel referenced was the fact that it was totally to be expected that the Irish border problem would be kicked down the road yet again.
The Health Secretary delivered the Downing Street Press Briefing. The world beating vaccines programme was going well, so was the unprecedented Test and Trace having taken two weeks to find one person in Croydon with a team of 40. Cases, hospitalisations and deaths had a downward trend. The questions from members of the public were lobbed up gently for young Matt to put away confidently. Then the press. A lady from the BBC:
Would the Health Secretary care to explain why a decent pay rise is unaffordable for the NHS front line when you have been shovelling billions at your friends and donors?
But that’s not what she asked. I forget her exact words but it was along the lines of:
Is there anything you would care to share with us Mr Hancock?
I get a lot of stick for saying that in terms of telling truth to power the BBC compares unfavourably with the North Korean Broadcasting Service.
All that’s left of the once great Corporation is In Our Time and More or Less on Radio 4.
Dan Sabbagh’s Guardian article is one of many documenting the country’s success in developing and rolling out a major project in record time.
Unlike most of the triumphs claimed by Johnson & Co. this one is real and it shows what can be done when the Government is committed to achieving great things.
Now that we know that the funds are there, here are a few suggestions for an encore:
Integration of Health and Social Care;
Decent housing, heating and nourishment for all;
Elimination of child poverty.
Not an exhaustive list.
And don’t let us hear that any of these things are unaffordable.
Teachers and parents are apprehensive about children turning up at school tomorrow. Schools do not have the physical space or manpower to protect the children or staff.
What does not help is the misleading article in yesterday’s Sun with a picture of a classroom accommodating 9 children in an ocean of space.
With cases still at a high level we are taking an unacceptable risk with people’s lives.
Wealthy couple fall out with his family.
It’s just not news compared with the big issues facing the world. But handy for politicians needing to shift the focus from NHS pay.
Meanwhile the Society of Editors expresses shock and horror to see UK newspapers characterised as toxically racist. Here’s the Evening Standard:
They don’t read their own papers.
Message Board responses to Corbynista in Shaw Sheet 269:
I am interested in the UK view of countries to be quarantined. Are those where the variant has been identified significant political allies or trading partners? As you point out, if they have identified 6 people with the Brazilian variant from a sample of 1/3, there should be a search for the missing 13, i.e. the 1 they know they have missed and the 12 from the remainder extrapolated from the sample.
One thing you may have missed is the ongoing furore on arms to Saudi vs. aid to Yemen. This country truly does give with one hand, while taking away with the other. This was pointed out by SKS in PMQs, and all the bloviator could do was defend the amount of aid to Yemen, while ignoring the Tory broken promise to maintain aid levels.
David “Corbyn basher” Schneider has posted whiny stuff this week about Tory corruption.
I don’t understand why. Mr Schneider didn’t want Corbyn as PM, so he should be happy he got Johnson, the only alternative. There’s just no pleasing some people.
These technologies are going to create enormous amounts of health and wealth in the world. There will be abundance for everyone, yet how it’s distributed is not being considered.
And it’s not just lower skilled manual jobs that are at risk of being redundant, many professional roles are likely to be taken over by intelligent software..
There were many alternatives to Johnson, apart from Corbyn. However, the UK electoral system doesn’t really allow anyone other than Labour or Tory to get there. Advocate for a better electoral system and we would almost certainly see someone better in tune with the national view.
Anyway, I like David Schneider. And whiney stuff about Tory corruption? It is one of the biggest scandals of the pandemic period. How much money has been wasted on PPE and Test and Trace? Can’t really call it anything other than corruption.
Wife of Bath:
Bizarrely I am watching a TV programme called Bang Goes the Theory about flu. It is trailing the need to vaccinate school age children against flu so they don’t spread it into the general population. I realise that Covid isn’t flu, but I still don’t understand the schools strategy either. But then I am not home schooling…
I am however on part furlough still. And looks like I will be until September. Or I retire…..
Walsall says: ‘Advocate for a better electoral system and we would almost certainly see someone better in tune with the national view.’ Like Nigel Farage perhaps? :-
Nice one. However, Farage would never get in. No party in which he was a leader would get enough votes under any system, I suspect. However, a system where the votes cast represent the seats delivered has to be fairer than the current nonsense. Smaller groups deserve their representation, regardless of the position. However, they would then be subject to scrutiny, rather than shouting from the cheap seats during an election.