Whitehall : the seat of our secret government
We the peasants, penned in by Lockdown, obviously need new ‘thoughts’. They’ll be provided by ‘Our MSM’ which are keen to change the public discourse from “CV-19 – we’re all gonna die” to “CV-19 – we’re all racists”. This new ‘narrative’ is still in its infancy but there is bound to be more on this in future.
I was shocked when I saw the homepage of the DT this morning because the top part had nothing at all on CV-19. That part was taken up by ‘slavery’. The top article was an ‘exclusive’ list of businesses which had profited when slavery was abolished (link), taken from a database created at University College London. Next they had an article on two companies which found themselves on that list and are now going to ‘compensate’ BAME (link).
Then there’s the report that Oxford will now remove the Rhodes statue (link) which was accompanied by an article about the Oxford Vice Chancellor having ‘got it wrong’ when she mentioned that Mandela-Rhodes Foundation because a) Mandela didn’t like statues and b) did say that reconciliation must go with compensation (link). If you believe that there will be ‘reconciliation’ now because a) the statue will go and b) there will be compensation then you’ve not understood what BAME is really about. Peasants – get ready to shell out more money to compensate BAME, even those who’ve received money through scholarships!
Meanwhile, what about schools, Labour and the trade unions? The PM had Starmer speechless in yesterday’s PMQs on that issue which the parliamentary sketch writers in both the DT and The Times found very funny. The issue as such was only picked up in The Times, not in order to lambast Labour and Starmer, but in order to demand Johnson do something, like kicking his Minister for Education, a certain Mr Gavin Williamson. I suppose this issue comes under “CV-19 – it’s Johnson’s fault”.
Thus we read that 1,500 paediatricians demand that Johnson must open the schools because ‘a generation of children will be scarred for life’ otherwise. Of course, there’s no mention of the teachers unions. However, in that same article there’s a snippet indicating that the ‘public discourse’ in regard to schools is going to be about scrapping that 2 metre rule:
”MPs on the education select committee accused teaching unions yesterday of making parents afraid to send their children to school by portraying them as “death traps”. Mary Bousted, joint general secretary of the National Education Union, said that schools would not be able to fully reopen in September should social-distancing rules remain in place.” (link, paywalled)
Right at the bottom there’s one (!) paragraph referring to Labour, quoting Johnson, but that’s all there is about Labour’s role in the school opening scandal:
“Yesterday Mr Johnson accused Labour of a “wibble wobble” over the reopening of schools. Sir Keir Starmer, the Labour leader, declined to say when children should return.” (link, paywalled)
Isn’t Labour ‘in this together’ with the rest of us? Another article in The Times is a compilation of ‘sayings’ from school inspectors, head teachers and other grandees. It’s all about that social distancing and that the poor things, the head teachers, didn’t have time to get to grips with this phenomenon (link, paywalled). Comment posters are however clear: this is not only Johnson’s fault for not issuing sufficient guidances, it’s also because, you guessed it, ‘Toreee cuts’. Why our state institutions can’t do without Nanny State telling them how and what, while grocery supermarkets managed to get to grips within a couple of weeks – don’t go there, it doesn’t fit the ‘narrative’!
There’s one article in The Times which manages to bring the three main ‘issues’ together: racism, policing, and CV-19. The headline is certainly inflammatory: “Coronavirus: Police accused of targeting minorities in lockdown”. Now look at the report and weep:
“The police have been 54 per cent more likely to fine ethnic minorities than white people for breaching the lockdown, civil liberties campaigners claim. Analysis of the fixed-penalty notices issued by 25 police forces revealed that ethnic minorities, including those classed as key workers, accounted for a disproportionately high number of fines compared with their proportion of the total population in 18 of the areas. The figures, obtained through freedom of information requests by the group Liberty, showed that police in Cumbria had the most ethnically disproportionate use of fines, with those from ethnic minority backgrounds 6.8 times more likely to be fined. Ethnic minorities in Avon & Somerset and Lincolnshire were 4.4 times more likely to be fined than white people, while those in Suffolk were 4.1 times more likely to be fined.” (link, paywalled)
You’ll have noticed that only percentages are given, not the actual numbers. I rootled around the interwebz to see if these numbers can be found anywhere and found the relevant report – here – which does give a very few, small numbers. Their ‘outcry’ though is deeply worrying because they apparently believe that fines and crime statistics must accord with the percentage of actual BAME people living in the relevant areas. Anything they label as ‘disproportionate’ becomes ‘institutionalised racism’.
The question of a crime or a transgression actually having been committed is apparently irrelevant. So don’t even think of asking if perhaps certain members of the ‘BAME Community’ actually did transgress, or if they have a slightly more ‘relaxed attitude’ towards laws and rules which the rest of us observe and live by. I now expect that these ‘activists’ will demand that black-on-black crimes such as the carnage on London’s streets should only be prosecuted if an appropriate number of white-on-white stabbings has also been prosecuted.
The next item is delicious. It’s about that ‘tracking app’ developed by ‘Our NHS’. The relevant article in The Times wobble-wobbles between ‘ministers’ and ‘Whitehall officials’, blaming Apple – but they couldn’t have been more dramatic:
“Apple is being blamed by ministers for delays in launching the NHS’s Covid-19 phone-tracking app that could lead to the project being scrapped. Amid anger in Whitehall, officials have accused the company of prioritising its own interests over public health and failing to co-operate over a key aspect of the app’s development.” (link, paywalled)
I loved this: Apple, that US Company, ain’t ‘prioritising’ the UK’s ‘public health’! Well I never! In reality, it’s that technically the NHS app doesn’t work because Bluetooth has to run in the background, draining smartphone batteries. It’s also about the Google/Apple apps not centralising the data, something our government and that NHS software entity NHSX are desperate for. It gets even better:
“They [Whitehall officials] warned that if Apple failed to change its approach the government might have to abandon the existing app and accept a system developed by the company and Google that they believe is inferior and would lead to further delays in its national introduction. […] The source added that conversations were under way with other governments trying to develop similar apps, in an effort to force the company to the table, but warned that if this failed ministers might have to abandon the present app altogether. “That is the policy choice,” the source said.” (link, paywalled)
I had to rub my eyes – but yes, they really said that: if Apple doesn’t cooperate with this NHSX thingie they’d have to abandon it – and use that Google/Apple app! I seem to recall that South Korea had offered their app to our government – an offer not taken up. I also seem to recall that this Google/Apple app is being used in Germany with no ill effects. How the Germans cope with non-centralised data is their secret. There’s more:
“Sources within Apple, however, say that they have been working closely with the government throughout the app’s development and during its trial on the Isle of Wight. They added that its engineering and executive teams held weekly calls with NHSX, helping with issues such as tweaks to coding or fixing any bugs. One insider said: “To claim that we are not being helpful is genuinely untrue.” (link, paywalled)
Perhaps those Whitehall officials/sources didn’t know about that? Surely not! And what about this then:
“The two most senior members of NHSX will be stepping back from leading the introduction of the tracing app. Matthew Gould, chief executive of NHSX, and Geraint Lewis, NHS England’s chief data officer and programme lead for the app, are moving back to other duties, in a move reported by the BBC. Simon Thompson, a former Apple executive who has been working for Ocado, will be joining NHSX to manage the app.” (link, paywalled)
Ah – running away, is it? How … responsible …! In this case all you can accuse Johnson and Hancock of is that they believed what these NHS HiTech ‘gurus’ had told them. ‘Tis ‘science’, innit! Somehow “government”. i.e. Whitehall officials/sources as opposed to Johnson and his cabinet are never at fault.
When this app was presented there were many critical articles about it in the technical pages of the MSM. These were obviously too arcane for our “government by Whitehall officials” or don’t seem to have entered into the purview of those Whitehall mandarins. Now, having found out that, yes, the app doesn’t work, just as they had been told, exactly as they’d been warned of, it’s not their fault – but Apple’s.
That, I’m afraid, will be the theme of the coming weeks: nothing will have been the fault of the real ‘government’, i.e. ‘Whitehall officials’. If Johnson cannot be blamed, personally or because of his office, then some other entity will be found, and when in doubt ‘Our MSM’ can always fall back on ‘institutionalised racism’.
And finally: 205 years ago on this day the Battle of Waterloo took place. But let’s not talk about this event which changed the fate of Europe: the participants – the dead, wounded and survivors – were white men and thus unworthy of a place in our history.