Friday, 29 May 2020

George Floyd's Sickening Murder by US cops Sparks Mass Protests

Black American George Floyd was pinned to the ground by a white police officer who knelt on his neck in full view of the public. The police officer, Dereck Chauvin, knew a camera was filming as his victim screamed he couldn't breathe for minutes on end, meaning the police officer thought his behaviour was acceptable. He thought the law would protect him. He thought causing a restrained man (who was clearly posing no threat) to die from his injuries was justifiable. The only reasonable conclusion is that Chauvin believed he was justified because his victim was black and his role was to play the oppressor. Horrifying.

Now I might live on the other side of the Atlantic, but I am trained in restraining techniques and licensed by the Security Industry Authority. If I restrained a person in such a manner, even if my actions did not result in death, my SIA license would be immediately suspended and I would be up in court for excessive use of force.

If my actions did result in death, this could lead to manslaughter or murder charges. Yet police officers, particularly in the US so rarely face prosecution for excessive force, let alone conviction, and if the victim turns out to be black, as is usually the case, it seems the establishment is not only willing to turn a blind eye, but quite happy for the situation to continue. It seems fear and violence is a tool of the establishment. But of course it is.

If this kind of behaviour, this murder, was simply the action of rogue cops, we would in every circumstance see suspensions and prosecutions leading to jail sentences. Instead we see officials rushing to find the most absurd of defences for the murderers and we see the media dig into the past of the victims. If you, at any point in your life, have been guilty of a minor indiscretion, and God knows we all have, then in their eyes you had it coming. But only if you are black of course.

Just think about that for a moment. 

Imagine myself, as a teenager. I got suspended from school for swearing at the IT technician and I also got into a few fights. If I was a black American murdered by cops, they would dig that up and say I had a track record of bad behaviour, that I was a troublemaker, rather than some kid who made a few mistakes. They would say I deserved to be the victim of excessive force, deserved to be dead because my past behaviour was imperfect. This literally happens.

Like I said above everyone of any race has done something, has some stain on their character, but if you're a black man in America the police have (in their minds) justification to murder you any time they feel like. Doesn't matter if you've committed a crime or if you're perfectly innocent and complying with instructions. Doesn't matter if there are eye witnesses with cameras because the establishment is on the murderer's side. 

Imagine living under such a dark cloud in a hostile state where establishment forces see you as an enemy and potential victim. Imagine knowing you could draw the short straw, even if you are a model citizen, but, of course, even if you are not a model citizen, you deserve better than summary execution.

The establishment wants to keep people afraid, keep people impoverished, keep society divided. This is not just an American thing, it happens in Britain too, but in ultra-capitalist America it has gone to the ultimate extreme. I just wish more people would understand race is only one dividing line they create - there are others such as sexual orientation, religion, employment status. It's any method to make it about us and them, turning natural allies into enemies and blinding us to the real enemy. It's ultimately about consolidating power, keeping the elite at the top and keeping everyone else punching down and turning on each other.

When I see white working class Americans waving the Confederate flag and defending rogue cops, I just want to scream "you're playing their game!" 

The white working class (which I myself am part of)  has far more in common with the black community and other minorities, with immigrants and refugees, with every marginalised group than they do with the elite. If you as a white person have ever felt marginalised (and I myself have, being formerly homeless), you need to understand the cause of this is not other marginalised people. I cannot believe I have to type this out because it seems so obvious. 

You too are a victim of the people who are oppressing and killing black communities. You should be on the same side as black communities, but you've been duped into siding with your own oppressors and kicking down on the people half a step beneath you on the ladder. Meanwhile the people above you are cutting out the rungs so you can never stand alongside them. Yours is a position of not only subservience, but complicity in the horrors committed by the state.

And now, no wonder we are seeing mass protests in the US. Rioting and looting committed by violent thugs, the media says, as though destruction of property is equivalent to (or actually worse than) state-sponsored murder. No one, certainly not the protesters wanted to see it come to this, but when society ignores cries for help since the founding of your country - the so-called land of the free which was built on stolen land by slaves - and when you ignore those cries even when mobile phone cameras prove the reality faced by black Americans, you are saying the status quo is something you are happy to preserve. When those police officers don't face prosecution, you are saying you are content with their freedom to murder with impunity. When you gaslight black communities, you are telling the marginalised to remain silent and afraid.

And this situation right now is not a result of corruption, it's a result of capitalism. It's a direct consequence of the measures necessary - the fear, poverty and brutalisation - to keep structures of power in place. And when victims finally rise up, the establishment is left with no choice but to further vilify, to call protesters rioters, looters, and violent thugs as pretext for crushing rebellion. 

People - victims of oppression - will be imprisoned or shot, protests will be quelled, and the middle class will return to their cosy bubble. Maybe they will elect white supremacist Joe Biden next and tell themselves they did a good thing because he won't kick black people quite as hard as the other white supremacist.

Or maybe, just maybe we have reached breaking point, late stage capitalism, the point where the elite have become too greedy, the police too cruel for the comfortable to turn a blind eye.

As the husband of a black woman, the father of black kids, a member of the white working class who has faced marginalisation my whole life, but more importantly as a human being, I hope we can reach that point where the middle class stand with the working class and especially with black communities and immigrant communities and all marginalised minority groups and put a stop to this madness - because ultimately this is about more, so much more than black on white. And I say that in no way to diminish the black experience but to stand in solidarity with black communities and end the unfairness and brutality. 

This is not about black on white. It's about the 99% versus the 1% and so many white people need to understand this.

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Thursday, 28 May 2020

Dominic Cummings is too Rich and Important to Face Prosecution

Durham Police have confirmed Dominic Cummings did break lockdown rules, but he won't face criminal action. How can this be justified?

Cummings made the trip to his parents' farm in County Durham and then to Barnard Castle during Easter with his wife and child while infected with Covid-19 when he should have been self-isolating for 14 days. He was defended by the Prime Minister and senior members of the cabinet, the judgement of who must now be called into question. Not only should Cummings go, but surely those who've taken his side must consider their own positions, including the Prime Minister himself. This was a judgement call Johnson got horrendously wrong which will jeopardise public safety.

Police across the UK have been patrolling beauty spots to issue fines and waiting outside supermarkets to check shopping bags, but the government's chief adviser, the man responsible for writing the lockdown rules, for preventing  people being with sick children or attending funerals, can break lockdown without consequence?

I am struggling to think of a more serious breach a person could commit than travelling across the country while sick and with possibly impaired vision, visiting beauty spots and jeopardising your own parents and niece. Would a regular person be let off without facing criminal action? I highly doubt it, so why should a man who has a public duty to lead by example, a man whose reckless behaviour has undermined his own guidelines and triggered droves of people to flock to parks and beaches, how can he possibly not be fined? How can his behaviour have been any more damaging? 

I struggle to see how, but then again Cummings advises a government who let Athletico Madrid fans flock to Anfield while their own city was under lockdown, a government who are itching to reopen schools and force everyone back to work before they have track and trace in place and while the infection rate is still dangerously high. 

The actions of Cummings and the Tory Party have so far led to 60,000 excess deaths during the pandemic, no doubt with many more to come. The breaches of lockdown which are arising as a direct response of the Prime Minister's Chief Adviser's behaviour will surely lead to avoidable deaths, and yet we are told no criminal action will be taken. We are told the Tories are above their own laws and we are encouraged to break those laws ourselves, even though we would be fined for doing so.

Can there be any doubt that herd immunity was the plan all along?

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Emily Maitlis removed from Newsnight

Emily Maitlis delivered a blistering monologue just a couple of nights ago, dropping devastating truth bombs about the Dominic Cummings scandal and tearing his defence to shreds. This was particularly surprising to see, not just because it was on the super Tory BBC, but because it was coming from Emily Maitlis, someone who so clearly struggles to hide her pro-government bias and openly balked at the idea of making Jeremy Corbyn Prime Minister last year.

Now even the right wing are getting pissed off at Boris Johnson's utter shitshower of a government because they are not just embarrassing themselves and the country, they are costing lives. Tens of thousands of lives. It's times like these when good people must put political leanings to one side and make a a stand.

Yet Maitlis' monologue came not long after BBC's Political Editor Laura Kuenssberg reported a ridiculous rebuttal on behalf of Dominic Cummings and the Tory Party without any journalistic scrutiny - a move you would expect from a PR person, not a journalist. That kind of bias from the BBC is totally fine of course, just like it was fine to mock Corbyn up against a red Kremlin background, just like it's fine for the BBC to completely misrepresent the left and continuously and unquestioningly tow the government line. 

But one time, just one time, a BBC presenter who is certainly right-leaning in her views, finds her spine, uses her moral compass and reflects the current public mood with facts, yes facts, and what happens? The BBC take Emily Maitliss off the air for bias. Here is the BBC's statement:

But of course the truth always has a left wing bias. We knew that. Cue a very predictable social media response. As Bonnie Greer pointed out:

Rachael Swindon posted her views on the absurd situation:

And Wolfie asked a question which many were also asking:

Last night, you would've been had pressed to finding a single person defending the BBC on this. The public mood is changing and those who've spent so long defending the indefensible actions of the Tory government are finding this increasingly difficult. The BBC however will continue defending the Tories, even if it means this wretched government takes them down with it. They are state propagandists who will fight to the death for their cause and perversely do so under the guise of "impartiality". They are utterly complicit in the absolute catastrophe this government's incompetence has created.

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Wednesday, 27 May 2020

A Refund Request to Labour

After the first test of Sir Keir Starmer's leadership - the Labour leaks scandal - did not receive the urgent action I felt it required, I sent an email to the Labour Party and today I received a reply, both of which I have shared further down this article.

The reason I emailed Labour was to request a refund of all subs I had paid to the party because I, like so many others, felt Labour staff had acted against the party membership, undermined our election chances and possibly even acted in a racist and bullying manner. My fears were based on evidence which we have all seen and which if genuine is extremely damning.

My biggest concern however was not even the apparent horrific behaviour of the staff but the party's failure to convince me they were taking the matter seriously. I was hearing rumours of alleged saboteurs being promoted, I was being told some of those implicated (or supportive of those implicated) would be conducting the investigation, and I did not see any immediate suspensions.

We know Labour can and do issue immediate suspensions when the need to protect the reputation of the party arises. I therefore felt the leadership did not think such a need existed and that to me was damning in itself. I felt like I had been duped into paying for a cause which was not what it claimed to be, funding a party bureaucracy which did not share my socialist ideals and which did not even care to win elections, unless it could win on terms that were out of step with the party membership.

I therefore felt I was within my rights to request a refund of the subs I'd paid, subs which were often paid when I was struggling financially, but were paid gladly for a cause which appears to have amounted to a lie.
Here is a copy of my email and Labour's subsequent reply:

"Dear sir or madam,

I am utterly horrified by what I have read regarding the Labour leaks scandal and even more horrified by the party's response. There have been no immediate suspensions, despite evidence of racist bullying and throwing elections. I find this unacceptable.

I now feel like every subs payment I made to the Labour Party was obtained dishonestly by yourselves. I thought I was donating to a party which was sincerely trying to win the last 2 elections and I thought I was donating to an anti-racist party, but it appears I was wrong.

I would like a refund of every direct debit payment I have made since becoming a Labour member in 2017."

Labour's reply:

"As a non-profit, campaigning organisation the Labour Party immediately allocates funds received via membership subscriptions and donations, and therefore in the ordinary course of our activities we do not offer refunds. Furthermore, none of your membership fees or donations were procured as a result of any fraudulent activity or representations as you suggest. We are therefore not agreeing to your request.

In accordance with the Direct Debit Guarantee, the Party will refund any payment of membership fees made within the past 28 days. However, you should be aware that maintaining a subscription payment at the appropriate rate is a condition of membership of the Party. If you wish to request a refund under the Direct Debit Guarantee, please let us know in reply to this email.

The Party will vigorously defend any action you may bring against it, of the sort referred to in your email or otherwise. You should also be aware that we will vigorously contest any allegations of fraudulent activity or representations, or breaches of electoral law in any legal action. All of the Party’s rights remain reserved. 

If you require any further information, support, or assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us by return email."

As you can see, an extremely hostile reply. No acknowledgement of very genuine concerns, no attempt at an apology, no explanation of what steps are being taken regarding an investigation, just a "we will fight you, if you come after us". Also, note how they suggested I threatened legal action when I did no such thing.

I used to deal with complaints for a bank and part of my role was to coach our staff on how to write responses to the public - you're supposed to address concerns, acknowledge possible wrongdoing, explain processes and try to regain trust, not fight fire with fire. If I had adopted such an aggressive tone in a letter to a customer, I would have been out of a job.

The response I received tells me I'm seen by the Labour Party as an enemy. It confirms my fears, and this, along with the horrific recent appointment of David Evans as general secretary, means the Labour Party is now dead to me. 

Will I pursue them for my subs? Probably not. But the likelihood of me voting Labour with Starmer in charge is somewhere between nought and zero – and as a person who gave thousands of hours to the Labour cause, who campaigned with every ounce of strength I have, it pains me to say that. It really does.

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Wednesday, 8 April 2020

My Covid 19 Experience

Lots of people are asking me questions about my experience with Covid 19 and most are concerned they may be infected but are struggling to get medical advice, let alone be tested. While I may not be a doctor, I thought it would be useful to share my experience so you can gauge what may or may not be normal. I must point out however that everyone's symptoms are a little different and if you're genuinely concerned you should call 111. Also, I never got tested myself, but having spoken to other sufferers, I'm as confident as I can be that I did have Covid 19.

Firstly me: I'm 37 years old and in average health and fitness. In my younger days I used to run a lot and would expect to have a good lung capacity so even though I don't exercise much now, this should've helped me deal with the illness better than many. Also I don't smoke or have any underlying conditions that would place me at a higher risk.

About a month ago, I started experiencing mild Covid 19 symptoms - a slight ache in my throat and a cough, dizziness, faintness, numbness and tingliness in my upper-body. It felt nothing like a cold or flu. If I did nothing and lazed around, my symptoms were no big deal and I was mostly coping fine. I didn't have a fever, only minor hot flushes, and I did not feel hugely ill. The symptoms would sometimes completely vanish, making me think I'd recovered and then come back a little harder. If I tried to do anything physical like washing the dishes, I'd get unusually breathless but never to the point where I was in danger. A bad bout of flu certainly feels worse, but this can lead to complacency because Covid 19 really takes its toll on your body.

On day 5, I felt strange throughout the night, but it was as though my body was clearing the infection and I woke up feeling much better. For a day and a half I thought I'd beaten Covid 19 so I foolishly became more active, mowing the lawn and doing other chores, and then it hit me hard on day 7 or 8. I felt a massive tightness in my chest like I was in a vice grip. I experienced lower back pain, indigestion and heartburn. Lots of others have reported this, even though they're not listed as typical symptoms.

For the coming weeks I would get breathless and feel tightness in my chest almost daily, even though I did not feel ill in a typical sense. It appears this is because the infection causes damage to your lungs which need time to recover. Sometimes I'd go a day or so with no breathlessness and then the breathlessness would return when I thought I was finally past it.

Breathlessness is an extremely common symptom of Covid 19 and for me, the worst of it lasted over a month. I still get breathless now, but it's barely noticeable unless I really exert myself. When it was bad though, it was very unnerving, not to the point I thought my life was at risk, but certainly enough for me to fear long term damage.

I want to assure people that if they experience Covid symptoms for weeks, they are not alone and would be expected to fully recover. Having said that, if your breathing gets to the point where you're gasping or wheezing or you feel muscle aches, sickness or confusion, please call 111, or if the symptoms are extreme call 999. Also, if you believe you may be high risk due to age or a health condition, you should seek medical advice from your doctor.

While people are rightly concerned about the death rate of Covid 19, it's worth emphasising the overwhelming majority of people will beat the illness and official survival figures are skewed because most sufferers don't get formally diagnosed. I say this not to play down the seriousness of the pandemic but simply to alleviate the concerns of sufferers. Even most of those in vulnerable groups will beat Covid 19, but obviously we must ensure we minimise the risk to them by observing lockdown guidelines. A small percentage of infections resulting in death could still mean a huge death toll.

There's a very good chance you will get Covid 19 at some point so if and when you do, please remember you're not alone and you should get through it. This pandemic really is one of those situations where we're all in this together.

UPDATE 27/5/20: I am currently approaching 11 weeks since I became symptomatic and I'm still suffering slight breathlessness. It looks like this could be the norm for many people, however, I am now at a point where I feel functional, if not quite 100%.

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Thursday, 26 March 2020

Thank You Jeremy Corbyn

I remember back in 2015 when Bernie Sanders was gaining attention in the US and the wider world, how excited I was by the message of this funny-talking and unpolished old American, how finally a politician seemed to get it, rejecting the establishment machinery in favour of ordinary people, understanding the damage caused by neoliberalism to younger generations and the very obvious need to create a kinder, more caring society.

Then Jeremy Corbyn entered the Labour leadership contest. At the time, I admittedly knew nothing about the man. I was a Labour supporter, but had felt unenthused by Ed Miliband, even more so by those who came before him. I was a homeless and jobless teen during the Blair years. I understood marginalisation firsthand. I understood poverty traps. And I understood Britain needed a Scandinavian-style direction to pull us away from unfairness and inequality. This was self-evident.

The problem in 2015 was few, even on the so-called left in the UK, seemed to understand this - or perhaps didn't care to. It was so disheartening. And then Corbyn made his proud and confident calls for re-nationalisation and higher wages and meaningful climate action and an end to war, and my God, I'd found the leader I'd been waiting for! Britain had its Bernie Sanders figure, but to be fair to Jeremy Corbyn, he is very much his own man!

Every time I saw Corbyn speak on TV with his compassion and wisdom and infectious enthusiasm, I was enthralled. When I looked at his track-record of fighting for civil rights, which mirrored my hero Bernie Sanders, I could not be more impressed. Here was a man arrested protesting apartheid while Thatcher called Mandela a terrorist. A man who campaigned for gay rights when it was unfashionable to do so. A man who backed the miners during the strikes. A man who was on the right side of history, again and again. A true leader.

Jeremy Corbyn was clearly one of the very best among us, and the perfect choice to lead the Labour Party. Back in 2015, I had no idea the lengths today's establishment would go to, to bring down such a man - how shamelessly they would lie, and how easily, even decent people could be sucked in by such lies. Sure, I knew propaganda was a thing, but what came was next-level character assassination. It was McCarthyism.

Every allegation against Corbyn from the IRA sympathies to the working as a communist spy to the antisemitism to the laying a wreath at the grave of terrorists was an easily disprovable smear, but those smears certainly had an impact. If you repeat lies loudly enough and often enough, many will believe them, especially if you appeal to people's fear and prejudice. The smear campaign was cold, calculated, and expertly done, and most gallingly, some of Labour's own MPs joined in, taking the side of the billionaire press barons whose only goal was to maintain the status quo.

How dare those centrist MPs, parachuted into safe seats by Blair, despite holding views utterly at odds with our membership, do every everything they could to bring our twice-elected leader down. How dare they show such contempt for democracy.

To Corbyn's credit, he never stooped to their level. He never resorted to lies or smears or bullying. He maintained his class and dignity and was prepared to reach out, every step of the way. If he was guilty of one thing, it was being too soft with his opponents, too nice, trying to see them as friends, not pushing back hard enough against the lies and manipulation. History shows us appeasement never works.

I distinctly remember the "infighting" starting the day it was announced Labour had a poll lead over the Tories. It seems absurd one of the centrists' key lines of attack was Corbyn's "unelectability" when 1) we had a poll lead, and 2) Corbyn later came so close to power in 2017.

Here's the problem with the centrist position: the unelectability came from their constant sabotage and their disastrous People's Vote policy. They showed contempt for two Labour leadership election results, contempt for a manifesto decided democratically at party conference, and contempt for the EU referendum result. They showed themselves to be absolutely anti-democratic, and today, they're terrified of open selection because more democracy would end their careers.

None of these careerists are fit to lace Corbyn's boots. They lack his dignity, intelligence, proven track record and compassion for ordinary people. Their only goal was to destroy socialism, and in doing so, destroy hope for people like me - the 600,000 who joined Labour, mostly because of Corbyn, making us the largest political party in Europe.

Neoliberal centrism doesn't have answers for the bottom of society and has no intention of providing them. Labour is a socialist party and has been since its inception. Mass privatisation and liberal social policy is the Liberal Democrat way, not the Labour way. We are not supposed to fiddle with the knobs and dials. We are supposed to fundamentally restructure our broken society.

Jeremy Corbyn had the solutions, the policy ideas, the vision for a better world. He had a plan to quite literally save the planet. Is it any wonder he inspired such enthusiastic support from a younger generation who had seen their job market destroyed, their housing market destroyed, their rights destroyed, and their planet destroyed? Here was a generation expected to be burdened with debt to get an education, pay extortionate rents to corrupt landlords, and work zero-hours contracts, knowing they faced ecological disaster when the culprits were gone. The young were rebelling against the Thatcherites who climbed the socialist ladder and kicked it down, and Corbyn was our leader.

Let us make no mistake about it, Jeremy Corbyn would have made an outstanding Prime Minister. He was destroyed not by his shortcomings, but by fifth columnists and a corrupt media who have a strangle-hold over a majority of the older generation. But the younger generations, the children abused by Thatcherism, who are internet savvy and are not limited to one or two news-sources, we have broken free of the media hypnosis. And Corbyn had a huge role to play in that.

Jeremy Corbyn, along with Bernie Sanders across the pond, has created a new wave of socialists, and there is no going back from this - our ideals are embedded in our DNA and will be until the day we die. Our country and the wider world will inevitably embrace socialism in the coming years because neoliberalism cannot provide answers to the problems we face, not least the Covid 19 pandemic, and as more young people come of voting age, and demographics shift, we will be looking at a very socialist electorate. The under 50s want a Labour government. Overwhelmingly.

Jeremy Corbyn may not have become the socialist Prime Minister he deserved to be, the Prime Minister Britain very much needed, but he has absolutely paved the way for socialism. He has changed the conversation, made nationalisation mainstream, inspired the youth to challenge injustice, and demand action to save the world, all while inflicting more government defeats than any opposition leader in history and coming to within 2000 votes of electoral victory.

Let no-one rewrite history: Labour's 2019 failure was not Corbyn's failure, it was neoliberalism's failure, it was People's Vote's failure. Centrism is well and truly dead and the flame of socialism is burning brighter than ever.

A better Britain is possible, thanks to Jeremy Corbyn.

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Tuesday, 17 March 2020


As many of you already know, I am suffering from suspected Covid-19. I wanted to share a quick update which should alleviate some concerns but will no doubt exacerbate others.
Symptoms began late Friday night with a very mild cough. Immediately I suspected Covid-19 because it just felt different. But alas there is no testing available for those with mild symptoms. Those symptoms are a little worse today - my arm is aching as I type - but in all honesty I'm okay.

My symptoms are as follows:
  • Coughing
  • Slight fluid in lungs
  • Breathlessness
  • Hot flushes
  • Dizziness
  • Tingling & tension in upper-body
NOTE: Symptoms should last 5 days. If you are unwell on day 6, call 111 for advice.

My symptoms are not close to the point where my life is in danger, but it's surreal to think I could have such a dangerous virus inside me. I'm taking self-isolation very seriously. I have the kids off school, but I deliberately didn't separate myself away in a room for the following reasons:

1. It seems pointless as our house is small & this thing's so contagious
2. Symptoms are much less severe in kids
3. Best get this out the way before the hospitals are inundated
4. If we develop immunity, we help society

The kids have possible symptoms now, not that you would think so, at first glance. They are enjoying their time off school, jumping on the furniture and fighting over the Nintendo Switch! But we don't know if this is merely a chest infection. It could be. And this is problematic.
What if we develop another cough in a few weeks? Do we self-isolate again? This confusion will jeopardise lives. While many may self-isolate once, I doubt many will more than once. Not least because employers are pressuring people to work.
I've heard the public could be fined and jailed for refusing self-isolation. Will fines and jail apply to employers who don't allow self-isolation and threaten to sack them? If not, we have a problem.
Also, as many are pointing out, sick pay is not enough to live on, and not everyone's entitled to it. While we are certainly struggling, we do have supplies of basic and bland food - mostly tins and cereal. I'm not complaining. Others have it much worse. I couldn't imagine being homeless or hungry through this. We need to end homelessness and hunger now, no matter the cost.
Some have suggested a basic income paid by the government for all in self-isolation, or an increase of statutory sick pay. I would go a step further and trial a universal basic income. We'll surely have to do this one day. What better opportunity than during a crisis where people would otherwise starve, lose their homes, and die in huge numbers?
Of course, there are a range of alternatives, including suspending rent, mortgage, and utility bills. Our government's inaction, combined with their now withdrawn "herd immunity" strategy has been alarming. It seems their motivation is to protect capital, when other countries are protecting their citizens. And don't even get me started on our Houdini Prime Minister. His lack of leadership has been nothing short of breathtaking, so let me tell him how to do his job:
We need 100% testing on suspected Covid-19 cases now, and we need to trace those who've contacted the infected, as the World Health Organisation keeps telling us. We're not even testing the hugely at-risk and heroic NHS staff. Every Covid-19 case must self-isolate for two weeks minimum and we need to be ready for national lockdown for a sustained period.
Our know-nothing, do-nothing government is ignoring international consensus. I think we can be forgiven for not feeling reassured.
My aunty is a nurse. Her grandkids fall into the high-risk category. She can't even visit them for their own safety. What a nightmare.
And let's not forget, high-risk groups are why we are doing this. Self-isolation is not for you. It's for the elderly, frail, and disabled who are vulnerable in the extreme. We can't sacrifice them because we're feeling bored and fed up now.
NHS staff expect 300 severe cases for every hospital bed. They're going to be forced into unthinkable choices about who gets a ventilator - essentially who lives and dies. And viral pneumonia is not a pleasant way to go.
Without extreme action, we are looking at 250,000 to 500,000 deaths in the UK, and up to 100,000,000 deaths worldwide.
The world is at war with a virus. And we must pull together for each other.
This pandemic will bring out the best and worst in us.

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