Hopefully BoJo will be back soon
The good news first: Boris Johnson is out of the ICU and back on a normal ward. Keep getting better, BoJo – the Nation needs you, especially when we read the ongoing campaign in ‘Our MSM’ against the Johnson Government. More on that below.
The bad news next: with or without having been infected, the pandemic shows that entities – from EU governments to universities to businesses seem to be suffering from a softening of their economic acuity. They all want more money from “Teh State” without even the slightest question of where that money is going to come from. They all seem to believe in the existence of money trees and unicorns – unless they think that taxing us all at a general rate of 90% is perfectly sensible.
The EU’s finance ministers haven’t agreed to a ‘corona Bond’ as of yet – yesterday evening all they agreed to was the creation of a ‘fund’ of at least a cool 500bn Euros (link, in German). When even RemainCentral ponders the state of the EU one might wonder if some Remainers are beginning to wake up to the atualité:
“After a series of crises and big gains for Eurosceptic populist parties, the European Union is especially vulnerable to the coronavirus. Are Germany and northern European countries prepared to let the pandemic kill the European Union? That is the explosive question asked accusingly by Italy, France and Spain as the contagion exposes, as never before, deep rifts and resentments at the heart of the EU. At issue are demands from the hardest-hit countries for the EU to share the enormous financial costs of fighting and then recovering from Covid-19. Doing so would mark a significant step to federalism. Failing to do so may tear the EU apart.” (link, paywalled)
This wrangle about money is a reiteration of the constant demand from the Mediterranean countries for a debt transfer union – three guesses who’d also be made to ‘participate’ in that monetary bailout of debtor countries! It’s also about the EU being asked to spend lots of money to prevent the return to ‘nation states’ and to block ‘populist parties’:
“Nine, principally southern, countries insist that the EU must share the “no-limit” debt burden of post-pandemic economic recovery, meaning a common fund able to mobilise up to €1 trillion primarily earmarked for the worst hit countries, Spain and Italy. […] The EU is caught between a rock and a hard place. If it goes for “coronabonds” it may buy some political space to fight Mr Salvini, Spain’s right-wing Vox party or Marine Le Pen’s National Rally, but at the price of boosting populism in Germany, the Netherlands, Austria and Finland.” (link, paywalled)
Billions, trillions – who cares! Just distribute other nations’ money to fight ‘populist parties’, forget ‘that virus’. You might like to read the latest excellent analysis from our friends at facts4eu on the general state of the EU here.
Should Johnson accede to the Remain demands for an extension, the EU seems to indicate that we’d have to pay a hefty sum for that privilege, up to £26bn pa (link) – peanuts, innit! Who cares where those extra billions should come from, on top of those Sunak is already distributing to Lockdown-damaged businesses and workers.
Universities asking for a bailout – just £2bn – because their foreign students aren’t coming (mostly Chinese) and thus their finances are in disarray (link, paywalled) – that’s also peanuts, innit! Just print the money! Inflation while interest rates are non-existent is good, and never mind that savers and especially pensioners will lose out bigly. And let’s not forget the UN declaring this pandemic to be a ‘global security threat’:
“UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said the pandemic “poses a significant threat to the maintenance of international peace and security – potentially leading to an increase in social unrest and violence that would greatly undermine our ability to fight the disease”. (link)
That’ll cost extra! There are already demands that Western nations must support the 3rd World in their Corona-fight with, of course, more money – never mind the coming global economic crash due to the lockdowns in Western nations. We can all be poor together, right?
Meanwhile, ‘Our MSM’ are keeping on sniping at the government. There’s the question of when and how that Lockdown will end. Forget the numbers for a moment, nobody knows what sort of immunity, what tests, will be needed. Nobody knows – because nobody has looked! – if widespread immunity already exists or if ‘80%’ might catch the virus anyway (link) or if the Lockdown must be kept because ‘only 10%’ of the population has been infected at most, as the government’s scientific advisers believe (link, paywalled).
It’s like we’re forced to take part in a scientific experiment involving the whole Nation, an experiment run by modellers, epidemiologists and virologists. So far they have been able, with the help of ‘Our MSM’, to scare us into giving up our liberties, not to forget our economy. It’s to ‘save lives’, to ‘protect the NHS’ …
However, some seem to cautiously question the way corona patients have been treated in hospital. There’s a report in The Times that 80% of patients in New York who were placed on ventilators had died (link, paywalled). Why that is remains open to speculation – not being a medic I won’t go there, I’m just pointing to that report. Doctors here in the UK seem now also to become more thoughtful, as this report in the DT describes where we read:
“The initial recommendations from doctors in China and Italy were to ventilate Covid patients early and aggressively, […]” (link)
At the start it couldn’t be helped that we had to ‘do as China did’, no questions asked, in order to save lives. Might now be the time to question that approach – and to question the whole ‘let’s do as China did, they said they beat the virus’ approach?
Meanwhile the ‘Bash Boris’ campaign is still ongoing in ‘Our MSM” – read this article in the DT if you need your blood pressure raised! Not only is there no mention in the whole thing of which ‘Tory MP’ criticised Johnson’s government set-up, the author is again segueing into the old Cummings-Bashing which had abated because he was ill with the virus:
“With the decision on when the UK’s coronavirus lockdown should be lifted seemingly on hold until Mr Johnson is out of hospital, the Government – and indeed the country – appear to be in a state of paralysis. Naturally some Tory MPs are already beginning to point the finger of blame at Mr Cummings who, like the PM, is still suffering from symptoms of Covid-19. “I’m afraid the Cummings plan of a centralised Government is unravelling on a daily basis,” said one. Yet to be fair to Mr Cummings, it was Mr Johnson who appointed one of the last experienced Cabinets in recent memory.” (link)
Obviously, Johnson ought to have appointed all those ‘experienced’ Remainer MPs. You might think this anonymous Tory MP is so vituperative because he, she or it have lost out on a place at Johnson’s cabinet table – I couldn’t possibly comment …!
Fraser Nelson in the DT equally points out that only Johnson can make the decision about a Lockdown Exit while we and especially ministers wait for him to come out of hospital. Apparently, Johnson had already started to think the Lockdown ‘message’ had gone too far:
“This was troubling Boris Johnson during his initial Covid self-confinement. He’d started to discuss this with colleagues. Had they overdone the message? The stay-at-home exhortations were issued with such vigour because it was assumed – wrongly – that Brits would not really listen. Instead, we’ve become as obedient as Swedes while the Swedes – in their collective refusal to lock down – are behaving like Brits.” (paywalled link)
Well, let’s leave aside the negligible fact that Sweden has far fewer inhabitants per square mile, it still throws an interesting light on modern Britain. Perhaps Brits, having just elected Johnson, accepted him as proper leader of the Nation and were thus willing to follow his message?
That message (“Stay at home, Protect the NHS, Save lives”) was apparently not ‘made by Cummings’ but by Isaac Levido, the Tory election campaign chief. It “has worked. All too well”, writes Nelson who then states:
“It’s hard to soften the lockdown message with the Prime Minister, the main messenger, out of intensive care – but, until he fully recovers, out of action. Other options are, now, being discussed. Perhaps adverts, politely telling us that our country needs us to work. (As one minister puts it: “somebody has to pay for the NHS”). (paywalled link)
Yay for that minister – this is indeed the point overlooked by all now bowing to our national Sacred Cow, “Our NHS”. All were clapping again yesterday evening which made me ask myself why we aren’t clapped – we the peasants who have been made to put our lives on hold to ‘protect the NHS’ and who will pay for this.
I leave you with this excellent bit of news – excellent for Mr Keith Watson, and excellent for us:
“A 101-year-old man has returned home after being treated in hospital for coronavirus. Keith Watson was admitted to the Alexandra Hospital in Redditch for surgery last month and tested positive for Covid-19. But he was discharged on Wednesday and a post celebrating the recovery from the Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust has been shared thousands of times on Facebook: ‘He went home today after beating Coronavirus.’ (link)
If proof were needed that the numbers of cases and outcomes are not just wobbly but wonky, this is it: a patient is admitted for an operation – tested positive for CV – the operation is successful – thus he ‘beat the virus’ … for which he wasn’t admitted nor, presumably treated! All hail to ‘Our NHS’ – all praise to ‘Our MSM!
Today then let’s be cautiously hopeful, let’s enjoy the spring as we can, observe the Lockdown restrictions as best we can, read some books, listen to some music and above all,
Photo by UK Prime Minister