Amazingly 200 days in isolation!!
People have said to me that, as I am incredibly critical of the performance of this inept government, what would I have done differently.
I’ll outline it for you. It isn’t rocket science. It isn’t difficult and Covid-19 is NOT something that was difficult to predict!
So – this sorry saga starts a long time ago!
Having had a number of pandemics and dodged many a bullet (swine flu, avian flu, HIV/AIDS, Ebola, MERS, SARS), it was obvious that another pandemic was likely. It was also obvious that it could be a lot worse than previous pandemics.
The first priority of any government is to look after the safety of its citizens. This is something these fools failed to do. They did not heed the warnings (from Obama, from the WHO, from their own scientists). They were complacent. All that was in their heads was Brexit.
This Tory government has been in office for 10 years. They should have strategies and have been prepared. Their complacency and policies have resulted in 43,000 deaths!!
As previous pandemics have arisen in the same way the first thing to do would be to sort that out. Then to sort out our strategies for dealing with it.
- I would put a stop to the opening up of remote regions where reservoirs of unknown viruses lurk.
- I would put a stop to the trade in wild animals.
- I would put a stop to the unhygienic ‘Wet Markets’.
- I would set up a body of scientists to look into pandemics and fund research.
- I would order an investigation into our capability to deal with a pandemic. (they actually did this in 2017. It was called the Cygnus Report. It highlighted all the deficiencies – then the clowns failed to act on it).
- I would take measures to see that we were properly prepared for a pandemic (hospital wards, nurses, doctors, stores of PPE, ventilators and equipment, chemicals for testing, antiviral drugs, strategies for screening and testing). It isn’t rocket science. It is called strategic planning. We knew one was on the way. We should have been prepared. We should have stockpiled. It would not have been a defence if my school had burnt down with all the kids burnt to death because I had not instigated fire drills and procedures. It would have been no good me saying – ‘oh, we did not see that coming!’
- I would have worked closely with the WHO and listened.
- When the disease started up in November a group of scientists should have been monitoring it and reporting back. That should have triggered a response. (It wasn’t and it didn’t).
- When the disease started to spread and cases appeared in Europe in January it should have been monitored and triggered action.
- All points of entry should have had strict entry requirements – temperature testing, symptoms checked, details of where people are (like other countries – Vietnam, Korea, China do). Two million people came into the country during the pandemic completely unchecked.
- When the disease took off in Italy and Spain we should have seriously prepared. Quarantine of all people coming in from infected areas. Testing of all suspects and contacts (as urged by the WHO) should have happened stringently at the beginning but it didn’t. It didn’t because the Tories had been complacent, not prepared, not used the time wisely, had run down the NHS and, through their hostile environment, driven doctors and nurses away, not stockpiled. Consequently, they had no strategy to deal with it, not enough hospital beds, not enough staff, not enough ventilators, not enough PPE and, crucially, not enough chemicals for the Covid-19 tests. All the result of poor government policy.
- Because they did not have the capacity to test and, due to lax entry policies, had allowed the virus to spread they decided to go for a Herd Immunity. Only then did they start modelling and realised that it would kill 600,000 if they went down that route. They panicked.
- I would have formed a cross-party group to handle it.
- I would have involved all local areas.
- I would have told the public as much as I could about the disease, the symptoms, the effects, the risks, the policies and kept them clearly informed about government thinking. The briefings were not clear and withheld information and strategy – and still are.
- I would have locked down sooner.
- I would have used the existed local mechanisms to carry out testing, track and trace – GP surgeries, hospitals, clinics, district nurses – and provided extra funds and staff – rather than re-inventing the wheel with untrained, inexperienced staff.
- I would have tightened regs on all ports of entry.
- I would have talked to countries with more experience (China and Vietnam) and gained valuable information and strategies.
- I would have introduced face-masks.
- I would not have awarded contracts to chums who had not the faintest clue on how to deliver.
- I would have joined in on EU schemes for PPE, ventilators and Apps.
- I would not have sent infected old people from hospitals into homes causing mass deaths (and claimed we were throwing a ring of security around the homes)
- I wouldn’t have put idiots like Raabit and Wankcock in charge.
- I would have opened pubs and restaurants for outside use only.
- I would have sacked Dominic Cummings (and Johnson).
- I would have shared the criteria for shutting down with a graded system. At this number of infected people we do this… At that number we do this….. so everybody was clear.
- I would not have been cheerleading about stupid moonshots, world-beating Apps, world-beating PPE, world-beating test and trace (all of which are dire). I would not have been giving out the wrong message by saying it would be all over by Christmas. I would not have been dithering and backtracking.
- I would, as PM have made it a priority to personally brief the public daily. (They’ve had to hide him away because he keeps putting his foot in his mouth – primarily because he is a lazy inept clown).
That is just off the top of my head. Just think what a team of experts would have come up with. Just think of what the clowns did and the resulting 44,000 deaths.
We are not the worst in the world for nothing. We earnt it with ineptitude, bad planning and poor policies.
To take my mind off this lamentable bunch of morons I went for a walk around near Driffield today – out into the countryside. It was very pleasant. I came home, played some Fats Domino, wrote some of my Roy Harper book and made the most of my isolation.
All the best – stay safe.