No strategy – no way forward
When it comes to the pandemic there’s a bit of a hiatus in Britain at the moment. As there is still (as there has never been) no coherent strategy all that the Government is doing is crossing their fingers in the hope that the pandemic will just go away. That was the Buffoon’s approach in March 2020 and it hasn’t really changed. If there has been a change in perception it was that the pandemic was an ideal opportunity for the State to give billions of pounds of the public’s money to private companies – preferably those with a link to the ruling Conservative Party.
When the first indications that a vaccine would be quickly available this was touted as being the way out of the problem. However, even though the vaccination programme in the UK has been one of the most successful in the world that certainty seems to be gradually drifting away. Now things are happening which weren’t planned for – such as variants which are always expected in such circumstances but lacking any strategy the Government hasn’t really allowed for them.
We are still in the realm of knee-jerk reactions;
- what to do with school children when one child in a ‘bubble’ tests positive;
- which countries people can go to or what they must do when they come back from ‘foreign climes’;
- whether mass events should or shouldn’t take place;
- whether such mass events cause outbreaks – or they don’t;
- what will happen later in the year and will the covid outbreak be superseded by the regular winter influenza season, sometime serious, sometimes not;
- there’s still a great deal of confusion for higher education students in how the first term of the new academic year (which starts in September) will look like;
- whether unemployment will increase drastically after support packages end or whether there will be a labour shortage;
- whether England’s progress through the Euro Football tournament will be ‘what the country needs’ after a ‘unprecedented year’ or will lead to further ‘disappointment’.
The Government certainly, and probably the majority of the population are just crossing various parts of their bodies in the hope that things will get better. But history has shown that hope alone for a better future rarely leads to good results – very often the reverse.
What the country (and the world – there being challenges in many of those countries that were considered to have been on top of the issue in the past year or so) needs is a proper strategy which addresses the underlying causes and systemic failures to deal with such ‘natural’ disasters as a pandemic.
What we have been shown in countless examples since the end of 2019 is that the present ruling system is incapable of formulating such a strategy – at least as far as it goes in benefiting the vast majority of the population.
Vaccination programme in Britain ….
Did a delayed second dose give the delta variant an evolutionary helping hand?
The only vaccine being distributed ‘at cost’ and the only one that has ‘serious’ side-effects. Coincidence? Just means more money being shovelled, worldwide, into the bank accounts of ‘big pharma’. The Oxford vaccine: the trials and tribulations of a world-saving jab.
Why most people who now die with covid in England have had a vaccination.
….. and around the world
Sinopharm covid vaccine: the world needs to keep using it, even if it’s less effective.
To end covid-19 we need vaccine justice for developing countries not outdated charity.
The G7’s vaccine pledge: donating 1 billion doses to end the pandemic is far too little.
What are the Sinopharm and Sinovac vaccines? And how effective are they?
G7 donations unlikely to bring pandemic to an end by 2022.
South Africa’s latest covid-19 lock down puts spotlight back on vaccination failures.
Data not fear
No major outbreaks found at government mass pilot events.
What the pandemic has exposed
How covid-19 exposed the systemic ageism at the heart of Britain.
What about ‘herd immunity’?
A phrase that went out of fashion for most of the last year, now coming (quietly) back into the conversation.
Covid-19 may never go away, but practical herd immunity is within reach.
Global herd immunity remains out of reach because of inequitable vaccine distribution – 99% of people in poor countries are unvaccinated.
More than 2 million adults in England have had ‘long covid’ for over 12 weeks.
At least 130,000 households in England made homeless in pandemic.
Compare with that article with another published in the same newspaper on the same day. Clamour for wealth tax grows after revelations about super-rich’s affairs.
Number of children on free school meals in England soars to 1.7million.
Working from home: How classism covertly dominated the conversation.
What has been the experience of those young people who started university in September 2020? Not very good, it seems. Some idea of the result of the last year can be listened to in this section from BBC Radio 4’s You and Yours programme of 24th June, Students value for money.
The situation in schools is becoming chaotic – and unsustainable if the idea is to keep education as normal. Yet another mismanaged process with the Government making changes – or maybe not – or maybe not until later in the year. No strategy means even more uncertainty. And who was it came up with the idea of ‘bubbles’? As if a pandemic can be managed in such a childish manner. Williamson wants to scrap bubbles to keep pupils in school.
Poverty in Britain
Statistics reveal a 153% increase in UK households hit by benefit cap.
A report produced by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, Freeing low-income single parents from in-work poverty’s grip, concentrates upon the situation in Scotland – but a similar situation (as always) would also exist in the other parts of the so-called ‘United Kingdom’.
‘Jaw-dropping’ fall in life expectancy in poor areas of England.
Covid death rate 25% higher in Greater Manchester.
Who has/is gained/gaining from the pandemic
Although sold as a worker friendly measure the real winners of the so-called ‘furlough scheme’ was, is and will continue to be the major companies that operate throughout Britain. Here’s an example of just one of them – so sure of themselves that these millionaires don’t even attempt to hide their greed. JD Sports faces investor backlash over boss’s bonus.
Counterfeiting – the underworld threat to beating covid-19.
Power, wealth, and justice in the Time of covid-19.
Contracts given out because of the need for speed – or was that just a cover for corruption and cronyism? BBC Radio 4’s File on Four looked at this on 22nd June 2021, in a programme entitled Contracts of interest.
Covid loan fraud and error will cost UK taxpayers tens of billions.
Concerns over VIP lane for covid testing contracts after ‘fast track’ email revealed.
What’s happening in the shadows
The government is relentlessly privatising the NHS.
Decisions are supposedly being based on ‘data not dates’ – but the data is being kept secret. Experts press ministers to publish mass event pilot findings for England.
‘Lessons’ from the pandemic
What we can learn about risk from the covid experience.
‘Natural’ disasters are due to societal failures – so, here’s a six-point pandemic recovery plan.
Learning from covid: how to improve future supplies of medical equipment and vaccines.
Fire, tsunami, pandemic: how to ensure societies learn lessons from disaster – this page offers a link to a podcast.