The debacle continues!!
The Corona Diaries – Day 171
Lunacy hits new heights with operation Moonshot. Obviously, Johnson has failed with his ‘world-beating’ Track and Trace system here on this planet, so it determined to have a ‘world-beating’ system on another. He will be able to Track and Trace every single person on the moon. Truly world-beating, out of this world – and complete lunacy! No wonder the lunatics came up with Moonshot!
This government needs locking up in a loony bin. They are coming up with all sorts of madness. Cummings is surpassing himself. This breaking of international law over Brexit legislation is another example. They are so arrogant that they think they can do whatever they like and get away with it. But I don’t think they can with this one. They are trying to justify it by saying how terrible the agreement was (that’s the world-beating, best deal ever of not long ago). Seemingly that justifies it. But there is a Tory revolt, The Lords are up in arms and even the Yanks are threatening to pull out of deals. With the EU threatening to walk out I think they will have to back down. They won’t get it through, and if they do it will be the kiss of death to other trade deals.
Over-ready Brexit – remember? Easiest deal in the world – remember? Stupid, ideological imbeciles – remember? What a bunch of idiots! What a mess they are making!!
Then there is the break up of the Union. Remember – that was project fear – another of those things that is going to turn out to be real – like job losses, price rises and diminished influence in the world; like becoming a US vassal state while we tuck into GM cornbread and chlorinated chicken on our reduced salaries and worse contracts.
The trouble with Covid is the lag. There is a lag between becoming infected and going down with symptoms. There is a further lag of a couple of weeks before you might become hospitalised – then a further lag of a couple of weeks until you die. So the big increases in new cases we have seen this last week are the people who caught it a couple of weeks ago. The low hospital cases are because they haven’t got that ill yet. But they will.
Then there is the asymptomatic side. Nobody is sure if they have it or have had it. It might have been very mild. A very stout lady coughed as she came near to me. I must have looked at her because she shouted at me – ‘I haven’t got bloody Covid.’ The thing is, she might be wrong. None of us knows if we have it.
In the UK the new cases are soaring up to 2919 with 14 deaths. We’re heading back up!
In the US it is back up to 36,080 and 914 deaths.
In Brazil, it’s back up to 40,557 new cases and 983 deaths.
The safest place is Switzerland – just 191 new cases and no deaths. What are they doing right?
Worldwide it is now past 10 million cases with half a million deaths – but that’s a gross underestimate.
I consoled myself with a walk up my hill and played some Andy White.
Stay safe everyone!!
A letter to the Guardian on Brexit – From Matthew of Hove
I cannot believe that we have got into such a mess on Brexit. We have been manipulated and misled every step of the way!
Brexit is the dreamchild of a bunch of nationalists who detest Europe. They want to leave whatever the cost to Britain and set about making that case. In the process they lied. We were told that the NHS would benefit to the tune of £350 million a week! LIE. We were showered with images of mass migration with the prospect of 5 million Turks heading our way! LIE. We were told that this would be the easiest deal ever. LIE.
There was no mention of the cost of disentangling ourselves from the interconnected projects and systems or the huge cost of setting up our own systems.
We were not told about the increased costs of basic foods and medicines as tariffs are applied.
We were not told about the massive costs of setting up border controls, lorry checks and customs facilities and officers.
We were not told about the lorry queues and massive delays.
We were not told about the job losses that come from firms either partially or wholly moving into Europe.
We were not told about our diminished influence and power.
We were not told that we were going for an extreme Brexit.
We were assured that deals with other countries would be simple. LIE.
We were not told about lower food standards, chlorinated chicken, more expensive medicines, lower environmental standards or lower workers rights.
We were assured that workers rights, environmental standards and food standards would be up to European standards or better. LIE.
We were told that Johnson had an over-ready deal in the bag. LIE.
The main problem was that May gave the job to the extreme Brexiteers the ERG, instead of setting up a cross-party group, and they went for an extreme form of Brexit. If they had sorted out a soft Brexit, staying in the single market and customs union, a compromise reflecting the views of the nation.
A letter from a Guardian reader, 9 September.
I cannot understand why there is not more tangible opposition to the government’s approach to the Brexit negotiations (Brexit: Boris Johnson to override EU withdrawal agreement, 7 September).
During the referendum campaign, many frontbench Conservative MPs said that there was no reason for the UK to leave the single market as a result of Brexit; some even said we would definitely stay in it. After the referendum result was announced, that idea was immediately thrown away. During the referendum campaign we were told that a trade deal with the EU would be “one of the easiest trade deals in history”, and yet we are now facing a no-deal Brexit – not, apparently, by default but as a more or less deliberate choice. Instead of having the frictionless trade that was promised, the government is belatedly spending billions of pounds creating lorry parks, recruiting customs officers and installing new IT systems.
Supporters of Brexit accuse “remoaners” of being undemocratic for not accepting the result of the 2016 referendum. But the Brexit being delivered bears no more than a superficial resemblance to that with which voters were wooed in 2016, and there is thus no democratic mandate for it any more than there would be for overturning the original vote.
If the Brexit that was promised turns out to be undeliverable, as I always thought it would, the prime minister should come out and say so, and either offer another referendum or call a general election. To have made those promises in the full knowledge that they would later be broken is an act of the utmost cynicism and dishonesty, and undermines our democracy.
Hove, East Sussex
What came out yesterday was that the UK was refusing to agree not to undercut worker’s rights and environmental standards.
What does that tell us?
The report on Russian Interference in elections.
So the Russians have been interfering with elections. They have interfered with Brexit and the elections of Trump and Johnson.
But the British government have not bothered to find the extent of the interference. Nothing has been done about it.
Surely that has nothing to do with Russian donations to the Tory Party and Tory MPs?
That poses a lot of questions:
Do we have anything that even faintly resembles a democracy?
Why did the Russians want Brexit?
Why did the Russians want Trump and Johnson?
Why did Trump and Johnson want to cover the interference up?
Did the Russians secure Brexit?
Did the Russians land us with Trump and Johnson?
Why did they want Brexit, Trump and Johnson?
Why are Trump and Johnson not investigating?
Do I smell cover-up??
Why is there not a huge fuss about this in the media?
I think I know the answers to all those questions!
£700,000,000 – seven hundred million! Just spent on Brexit!
I had to do a double-take yesterday. I thought I’d misheard. It was slipped into the news. The government was spending seven hundred million setting up new customs arrangements for when we leave in January. That will be new buildings, offices, equipment and personnel.
I can just imagine the ongoing costs of maintaining all that and paying all those wages.
Every person, and all goods, will have to be checked and processed. An immense new mountain of bureaucracy. A huge expense. Massive inconvenience.
I thought that one of the big moans about the EU was the bureaucracy? We will all be having a lot more to contend with and one thing is certain – we will pay for it. Every single one of us will be paying more.
I remember the lie on the side of Johnson’s bus – the Dominic Cummings boast about £350 million going to the NHS. These are the grateful men who are now going to make the nurses and cleaners, the heroes of Covid 19 who we all clapped for, pay exorbitant rates to park at the hospitals they work in. These low-paid people have to subsidise the NHS just to have the privilege of working there on minimum wage. I heard that the parking costs as much as £1500 a year! That’s a hell of a lot out of a minimum wage salary.
That £700,000,000 is the tip of a very big iceberg. How many extra civil servants? How many job losses? How much economic damage?
I wish there was some honesty here. There are huge costs and a huge gamble. Behind the scenes, Johnson is rushing through a trade deal with the US. What will that mean for the NHS, food standards, environmental standards or workers rights? I reckon chlorinated chicken is the least of it.
Some people think that this is worth it. They hate the EU. But let’s be honest about the real cost of Brexit. It is going to cost the whole nation a fortune.
Under the smokescreen of Covid 19, I reckon we are sliding into a Cummings-driven no-deal that will take generations to pay for.
Ever felt duped?
Tories using the tragedy of Covid 19 as a cover to sneak in a ‘No Deal’ Brexit.
While everybody is obsessed with the unfurling tragedy of Covid-19 the extreme Brexiteering Tories are quietly pressing ahead with their plan.
They are planning to crash out of the EU without a deal. They really do not care about the economic devastation that will cause. They are planning to hide that up in the aftermath of the virus.
Sneaky and despicable!!
They are hoping we won’t notice!!
Poetry – Oh – the Irony!!
Oh the Irony!
Oh the irony.
A Prime Minister
Cared for by foreigners.
A Prime Minister
Whose immigration policy,
Whose hostile environment,
Whose extreme Brexit,
Drove so many carers away.
Who said we did not need these people.
Oh the irony.
But some stayed to save his life!
For a decade he starved the NHS.
For the last three years he told the EU to go.
For three years he’s been driving nurses away.
They were not wanted.
They were unskilled and
Not worthy of paying much.
Now they save his life.
The two who cared,
Nursed him for long hours,
Day and night,
Tending and caring,
At extreme risk to themselves and their families,
Came from New Zealand
They risked their lives to save him.
They risk their lives each day
For pitiful pay.
Because the care.
Oh the irony.
Low paid and unwanted,
Abused and threatened,
Fearful and insecure,
They continued to give!
There will have to be
We do need the low paid after all!
We do need cooperation!
The harsh policies and nationalistic jingoism
Are replaced with reality.
Though abused and driven out,
They gave their all!
Saved by the very people he railed against!
Oh the irony!
It is time we recognised the irony
And got our principles right!
Opher – 13.4.2020
Brexit and the Hostile Environment.
How times change!! I wonder how many regrets there are now?
We are in the process of isolation and withdrawing our cooperation with our neighbours. Instead of working together to fight this disease we are on our own.
The Hostile Environment has driven hundreds of thousands out of the country. We sneered and said we don’t need those ‘unskilled’ people here. They include:
The care-home carers
The vegetable pickers
The doors were only open to the rich.
Funny how times change isn’t it? We now find that we don’t really need the rich at all. We need doctors and nurses to look after the sick. We need carers to look after our old folk. We need cleaners to keep us safe. We need vegetable pickers to keep the food on our tables.
It’s a new world out there. We need international cooperation to fight this disease. The last thing we need is isolation and new trade deals. We need to work together.
Our economy has been devastated. The last nail in our coffin is the economic hit of Brexit!!
What a huge expensive mistake!!
Migration and Immigration – why we need checks.
Migration and Immigration – why we need checks.
The overriding issue that was behind Brexit was immigration. There is a fear of terrorism, a feeling that we are being swamped with foreigners – particularly Muslims and Eastern Europeans, a sense that they are taking our jobs, receiving housing and benefits, causing overcrowding, creating problems for schools and the NHS, putting pressure on transport, displacing our culture and not wanting to assimilate and take on British values.
How accurate are these fears?
Is there a basis to them?
Is an opposition to mass immigration xenophobic or even racist?
The British people are a mongrel race. We always have been. We take in immigrants from all over the world, welcome them and assimilate them into our culture. I like the richness of culture that introduces. I like the cosmopolitan communities it produces and I like the way immigrants over the centuries have assimilated, become British, taken on our customs and values while still celebrating their own heritage.
But I do not think it is either racist or xenophobic to be concerned with mass immigration. It is the sheer numbers and attitudes of the recent immigrants that are causing the problems.
We have areas of the country with high Muslim populations who have completely displaced the indigenous people and culture. The perception is that many do not wish to assume British values at all. There are militants in the Muslim community who espouse to take over Britain and bring in Sharia law. The Hijab and Burqa do not fit easy with many people. It represents a culture and attitudes they do not agree with. Many, because of the association with terrorism and this strident, arrogant militancy, find it threatening.
There are a number of Muslims who support ISIS and the Caliphate. People find this traitorous to the country they have come to live in. ISIS is our avowed enemy. We have had terrorism from these militants. It creates suspicion and fear. In reality the number of incidents are few, the Intelligence Services are doing a good job rooting the militants out before they cause atrocities, and most Muslims do not subscribe to these extreme views.
There are Eastern European shops opening all over the place and Eastern European languages all around in many cities. I do not think that people have a problem with this until it reaches a point where they feel saturated and displaced.
Yes it does cause big pressures on the NHS, Schools, housing and the infra-structure. That causes aggravation but I don’t think it is the main issue.
The main issue is not one of racism, xenophobia or pressures on services – it is simply that there have been too many people coming in.
I believe we need immigration. We need labour for our economy. We need to staff the NHS, to pick crops, to work in Old People’s Homes. These people are valued. Their cultures are respected.
But when they come here they should respect our culture and if they are planning to stay, be prepared to assimilate into our communities.
In my opinion this integration is not assisted by more Faith Schools or concentrations of immigrants in any one area.
Education is the long-term solution. But mass immigration needs curbing. We need to stop so many coming into the country and the ones that do come in need processing. We do not need terrorists, criminals or people who do not subscribe to our values being allowed into the country.
We did not need to leave Europe to achieve this. Most of Europe wants the same thing. It surely is not beyond the wit of man to devise a practical system?