Why is the UK government failing to deal with the Coronavirus?

We’re now weeks into the Coronavirus outbreak in Europe, and it is perfectly clear that failing to react in time will lead to something like Italy where the death toll as I type this has hit 1,441, with around 200 people a day dying as the virus takes full grip of the country. Other European countries are locking down, even ones like Denmark where there have been no deaths as yet. Here in the UK, the devolved governments are buying time to get equipment, infrastructure and people to help with the infected, but meantime Boris Johnson and the Tory government are talking of herd immunities and yet again bringing back romanticised false memories of war as if a war that saw hundreds of thousands of people die is a benchmark for bravery. Having nearly died a couple of times, trust me when I say there’s nothing fucking romantic about dying.

UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock was on TV this morning making it clear that in the UK’s worst peacetime crisis we have someone so totally inept in charge that you need to pay to get what information there is out of him.

Right now people are starting to panic with tales of panic buying being normalised and a sense that instead of a clear, effective line of expert communication we have a garbled bag of nonsense with too little being done too late much to the open jaws of doctors and scientists who warn we’re heading for a situation like Italy when the virus hits hard in a month or so.

We seem to be led by donkeys roleplaying war fantasies and dreams of British exceptionalism in their head who are about to be splattered by a brick wall of reality hitting them hard. Sad thing is people are going to die because of this, and as someone who has a one in six chance of dying if I contract the virus I’m going to be pissed off dying because Boris Johnson didn’t have a fucking clue how to deal with a crisis.

And oh, imagine what happens when Brexit kicks in next year.

 

The Crazies

The world is going to shit, and that was before the coronavirus. Now we’re in a world where entire countries are quarantining themselves, Real Madrid are all self-isolating, while Donald Trump tries hard to sit and read a statement to camera but fails to do even that properly. Meanwhile in the UK we’re not banning events where people can meet and spread the disease but we are buying toilet paper in such quantities that by now there must be households where entire rooms are bulging with the stuff.

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Though I can see why people are stockpiling toilet roll. In the event of a real genuine breakdown of civilisation what’s the point of looking all cool, moody and hard like Norman Reedus if you smell like shite because you can’t wipe your arse properly.

And now today hordes of London-based hacks are going insane not over Boris Johnson’s inept handling of the crisis (where we should be shitting down for a week at least)  because Nicola Sturgeon is giving early, clear warnings of what is happening. We live in the time of the Crazies where sanity has been replaced by a barely restrained hysteria and one might ask why am I not panicking as after all, I’m one of the coronavirus’s target audience seeing as my immune system is fucked after the cancer, stroke, etc, etc…

I’m not in a panic because after flirting with death you get used to living with it in the same way you get used to an unwelcome visitor shitting on your couch. The fact is you put your faith in the NHS to do what they can do, and if they can’t well, at least I don’t have to see people panic over whether their arse will be clean enough in the apocalypse.

The coronavirus will kill us all

Every now and then Planet Earth spits out something that’s designed to wipe large numbers of people out, and this latest case of death from nowhere is the Coronavirus. We’ve had these things before and although they’ve sadly killed people in numbers, we’ve not seen the sort of global pandemic which has wiped out hundreds of thousands, if not more.That was back in the time of reason when science and sanity overruled all, even when countries woujld be ruled by idiots.

Well, now we’re in the age of idiocy. In the US, Donald Trump has appointed Mike Pence to oversee the effort to fight this, and here we’ve got Mike Hancock, UK Health Secretary who thinks we can get rid of it by washing our hands while singing God Save the Queen.

So, seeing as white can now be black, and that we’ve already got conspiracy theorists saying ‘THEY’ produced this to for some reasons or another, and in an age where facts are flexible the truth is we’re fucked. I look forward to our forthcoming apocalypse with some glee as it means we’ll be free of the age of stupidity.

The latest outrage against South Park

It is 2020. People are still blaming South Park for all the ills of the Western World. This time instead of the rabidly illiberal censorious right screaming about the show, it’s the rabidly illiberal censorious left in the shape of writer Dana Schwartz.

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There’s a series of Tweets, with above being her first, and the next being her last, but she’s ploughing a furrow dug often since the programme started in the late 90’s.

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The problem is her final message is wrong. Yes it is a very political show, but the message is that often there is nothing that can be done in terms of a simple, easy solution. The character of Kyle especially (often to be said to be the closest in terms of actual beliefs for the creators) pours out hard solutions but is mocked by others because people from the left and right don’t want complex answers but easy ones that fits their own worldview. Which is where Schwartz is as the show doesn’t fit her worldview so she threw out this attempt to basically ‘cancel’ it.

The problem is by blaming South Park from everything from the alt-right, to Trump to the current culture wars is that simple solution. An airy wave of the hand and all your problems are gone. Who needs to understand the socio-economic problems caused by the collapse of industry which has led to an alienated working class who feel isolated and ignored by all the traditional politics out there, hence why many are looking to outsiders for answers. Sadly that gives us Brexit and Trump partly because the left as a whole has advocated the discussion to the right in favour of purity spirals and identity politics rather than creating a narrative where the alienated working class see a way out.

So instead we’re stuck with people being offended by a show nearly 25 years old that’s attacked people from all political backgrounds and while it often misses a point, or gets it wrong, it serves a purpose as a satire of the times where anything is open for debate. Because you don’t like hearing what it has to say is not a reason to ‘cancel’ it, which makes me glad that Schwartz’s attempt to do just that fell flat but these attempts at censorship attack liberty itself, and sometimes liberty means people hearing or seeing things they don’t want to hear or see.

Do Brexiters know why they wanted to leave?

The UK has left the EU, though for the next 11 months we’re in the transition period which means taking all the EU’s rules without making any contribution to them. Brexiters though were overjoyed because they were getting something back but few could articulate how how it’d change their lives, assuming it’d change them at all. Fewer even realised there’d be no real effect on their lives til 2021.

/But overwhelmingly, Brexiters who’ve drunk the Kool Aid by the litre are like these two.

Now these women have been lied to. They’ve also not been taught to think critically, so they soak up the consensus opinions of the bubble they live in. They’re also thick. They were easily used and manipulated, and you know, sometimes people need to deal with the fact they’re thick.

But no, leaping out the shadows are middle class liberals piously defending these people.

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I’m sure many can but most won’t because we all know racism, xenophobia and a sense of ethnic nationalism drove Brexit to this point and beyond, but here’s people who are defending these people who’ve opened the door to the wolves. It’s always the nice, middle-class liberals who can ride things out who first fall in with awful things like Brexit hence why many are saying they ‘accept’ what’s happened as if you would morally sell your soul out to do such a thing under any other circumstance.

But this is what always happens. The fight is lost from these people so any fight back against Brexit and what it stands for will come from the sidelines in England at least. However you don’t defend people so stupid, so thick that they’ve voted sanctions upon themselves for no real genuine reason. They deserve contempt.

The last hours of the UK in the EU

In England there’s parties. Drunken xenophobes cheer how ‘they’re getting their country back’ and hopefully one day will die because of a disease caught from chlorinated chicken. In Scotland it’s like a wake.

It feels like an arm is being cut off. We’re being ripped out the EU against our will and our TV is full of triumphant British nationalists telling us how much they love Britain by telling us how much they hate Europe, and of course, immigrants.

I have no idea where it goes from now but it won’t be good. Once 11pm comes I fear all the last bits of rage and hate which some have been holding onto will be unleashed and people will suffer.

So goodbye to the EU and it’s people. I’ll miss what you did for me over most of my life.