The Corona Diaries – Day 149

I see from an article in the Observer sent to me by Dewin –  – the government is wriggling around with the same old duplicity. I remember them talking about herd immunity at the beginning. It was only when the enormity of that choice became apparent from modelling (deaths in millions and the NHS completely overwhelmed) that they panicked and reversed their policy. Why do these people lie?? Why can’t they just explain their thinking??

More tales of nepotism keep coming out about this government. They have a long history of giving contracts to their friends instead of putting them out to tender:

The Track and Trace App

The PPE scandal (£150 million)

Now we have this sent in by Dewin – Unsurprisingly, it’s been exclusively revealed by the Guardian (1) that Public First, a policy and research firm linked to Gove and Cummings were hired to work with Ofqual on A-levels without the contract being put out for tender.

We know a number of these top Tories have fingers in the Brexit Pie and HS2. These people are making a fortune at our expense. They have been busy privatising the NHS – selling it off to their chums.

I think this cronyism goes on and on – there is no end to this corruption. It needs to stop!

Covid-19 has provided a great camouflage for their greed and selfishness. They have used it to blatantly avoid putting anything out to tender. Their chums are making a fortune out of misery. There is an ulterior motive behind a lot of their decisions! It stinks.

It looks as if the virus is starting on its second wave – straight out of the Express (a shoddy tabloid full of Tory propaganda) – On Saturday Britain recorded its highest Saturday infection rate in eight weeks with 1,012 cases while a further 1,040 infections were added to the tally on Sunday. On Friday 1,441 people tested positive for COVID-19, marking the biggest one-day rise for two months.

What does that mean for the pubs, restaurants and schools? We hear a lot of cheerleading and statements of intent but no strategy.

This pandemic is far from over!

But today I’m going to forget about it – play some Hank Williams and go for a walk with friends. It’s a beautiful sunny day in Yorkshire. All right with the world (at least for this afternoon). We’ll share a meal, a glass or two, and talk about duplicitous inept Tories, disastrous Trump and maybe a few more pleasant topics. Nature will refresh.

Stay safe everyone.

10 thoughts on “The Corona Diaries – Day 149

  1. Whilst the awarding of lucrative government contracts without open-tender to Tory friends stinks of cronyism, the estimated amount of money BoJo and his government have wasted in their first year of power is, according to Stephen Colegrave at Byline Times (1), guesstimated to be approx £57.193 billion (The following is abridged, link provided. Please visit the site for his point-by-point explanation.)

    – ‘Get Ready for Brexit’ Campaign – £75 million
    – COVID-19 Advertising Subsidy for Newspapers – £35 million
    – Topham Guerin’s COVID-19 Digital Campaign – £3 million

    – Faulty Tests – £16 million
    – Unnecessary Tests – £790 million

    – Procurement – £15 billion

    * TEST & TRACE:
    – The Failed App – £11.8 million
    – The Ineffective Programme – £5 billion

    – Hospitals with No Patients – £346 million

    – Blue Sky Science Agency – £800 million

    * OneWeb – £500 million

    – A Costly Exit – $40 billion
    – Border Controls – £705 million
    – Blue Passports – £11 million
    – Extra Bureaucracy – £1.3 billion
    – Consultancy Contracts – £100 million

    Total: £57.193 billion (and counting!)

    You may ask yourself what £1 billion pounds would buy the government. Tom de Castella, writing in the BBC News Magazine in 2015 (2), provides an answer to such a question. (The following is abridged, link provided)

    * 147,000 state pensions or 300,000 Jobseeker’s Allowances for a year, or fund 2.3 million people’s disability living allowance (now Personal Independance Payment (PIP) and Carer’s Allowance) per annum – three quarters of the total.
    * Would pay to run the NHS across the UK for nearly three days. Alternatively it would cover all diagnostic imaging – MRI scans, x-rays – for a year with a bit left over for other jobs. Or another way would be to fund 26,000 nurses or 12,000 hospital doctors for a year.
    * It could pay for 167,000 hip replacements or 1.4 million hospital day cases. A billion pounds could also pay for two flagship hospitals, such as Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital which opened in 2010.
    * Education – With £1bn the government could, for a year, fund 27,000 primary or 22,000 secondary school teachers, or give free school meals to 2.5m children.
    * New schools – (working on an average of £6.6 million/school – that would mean about new 150 free schools. These tend to be smaller than conventional schools and the figure includes primaries. (working on an average of £25m/secondary school – that would mean an extra 40 secondary schools
    * Housing – it could pay to build 16,600 new social homes or 50,000 shared ownership homes. according to the charity Shelter.
    * pay for the creation of 180,000 jobs guaranteed at the minimum wage for 30 hours a week, or support for 100,000 socially excluded families.
    * (For hard-working families) – £1bn could make universal the offer of 15 hours a week of childcare for 37 weeks of the year. ((in 2015) available to only the 40% most disadvantaged two-year olds.)

    World-beating governance brought to you by BoJo the Elusive and the U.K’s omni-shambolic Tory spivs.


    (1) –
    (2) –

    1. Interesting Dewin. I’m not sure I would disagree with all of that spending. But the principle is sound – they have been wasting huge sums of money and not putting things out to proper tender. It is quite shocking.
      I had to put this out as a post. I hope you don’t mind!

      1. Whilst certain spending is/was required, it’s the incompetency and wastefulness with which they spend that is the key issue. For example, PPE recalled because it did not meet quality standards suitable for front-line healthcare staff.

        Lest we not also forget items not listed above such as the £900,000 paint-job on BoJo’s ministerial plane, or the costs involved in setting up a new Quango to replace Public Health England.

        Possibly there are other entries also not included on the list that could be.


      2. You are exactly right. When they were spouting about the huge amount of money we would save by leaving the EU there was no mention of the massive costs that would be incurred and the loss of jobs, or this damaging trade agreement with the USA.
        They have given out contracts willy-nilly to their chums, without tendering, and these fools were simply not up to the job. Those contracts should have gone to firms already established and capable.
        There was that fiasco about giving millions to that company for ferrying goods across the channel – and they’d never run a shipping line in their lives.
        It’s all a joke.

      3. Yes it is a joke, on us, the people of the U.K! Those that voted the Tories into power, who believed their hollow words, their lies, and deceits, one wonders if they now have regrets.

        No-one could have foreseen a global pandemic, but a better state of preparedness would have saved billions of pounds, protected the economy and saved jobs and lives.

        Brexit really will be another nail in the U.K’s coffin, but you can bet your bottom dollar, certain individuals – government cronies – will make millions from it.

        You are right, Brexit job losses, a damaging trade-deal with the U.S combined with deregulation of quality standards across the board, will have a huge negative impact on the U.K. If and when the NHS is sold hook-line-and-sinker, and medical insurance becomes the norm, there will be hundreds of thousands unable to afford the expense of treatment: I recall reading that nearly a million people every year in the U.S file for bankruptcy to afford life saving treatment.

        How has the state of the world come to this.


      4. The answer is greed Dewin. Too many people are selfish and greedy. The lust for power and wealth tops decency and compassion. They don’t care. They are alright.

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