The Coronavirus Diaries, 16th March 2021

Just as we were starting to think we were beginning to see an end to our current socially distanced, locked down lives, we learn there has been a case of the South African variant locally. Celia and I picked up our self testing kits this afternoon. We’ll return the swabs tomorrow and hope the results are a) quick and b) negative.

As usual I watched Channel 4 News, though I was cooking at the same time so there were quite a few moments when I listened rather than watched. Boris Johnson was on. Everything about Johnson repels me. His measly words, his lies, his vanity. Tonight was no different. As the news went on I heard about the stark warning that has been issued about the future of the NHS unless there is a huge cash injection. The government has remained silent on this issue. It is no secret that although in public the Tories laud the NHS, in private they would like to see it in private hands. I have no doubt at all that for some this will be seen as the opportunity to sell great chunks of it off and the health of the nation will suffer.

This is a government of chancers, of people who do not understand the concept of public service unless it somehow lines their, or their friends’, or preferably both, pockets. To be poor is a sign of moral failing, not being failed. Paying taxes on all their income is to be avoided. I think they have done more to politicise me than even Margaret Thatcher who I loathed. They are dangerous, immoral, selfish human beings who exude mediocrity and self-satisfaction. They are supported by newspapers as immoral as themselves, and an electorate addicted to celebrity news.

Meanwhile someone at the Daily Telegraph has come up with an idea that journalists who write more popular pieces should be paid more. Well that’s going to work well. Not. So every click on the latest bit of salacious celebrity gossip, or insider news about Corrie, or how some titled household name has painted their house pink will mean financial reward, while the serious, often harder stuff, will be less rewarded. Honestly, I know it sounds like a tasteless April Fool’s joke, but read about it here.

I finished reading Agent Running in the Field by John le Carré. I’d recommend it. It’s his last novel, and some of his observations about the UK at the time of writing are savage. Unfortunately they are equally true today. I haven’t written about Sarah Everard’s murder and the police reaction at some of the protests, but I have been shocked. I am also shocked by the bill going through parliament now that aims to restrict the right to protest. the government’s response to Everard’s murder and the debate it has stirred about women’s safety is to talk about more CCTV cameras. We must be the most photographed nation under the sun. CCTV does not make me feel safe. I want to see a radical change in how boys and men are educated about girls and women. Until that happens, misogynistic crimes, and violence against women will continue.

I haven’t mentioned the Harry and Meghan interview with Oprah either. If you read this page you’ll know that I am not that interested in royalty. So I didn’t watch the interview, but thanks to Gogglebox I saw bits of it. You might say Meghan was naive, but I do not understand why someone didn’t quietly take her by the hand and guide her and continue to be there to guide and support her. The press set up a false rivalry between her and Kate Middleton. Same old, same old: two women, they can’t be friends and all that ridiculous nonsense. William comes out and says the Royal family is not racist. We are all racist. It’s in our culture. We can change that, but just like an alcoholic we have to recognise we have the problem first.

Yesterday would have been my aunt Kath’s 105th birthday. I have written about her before. She holds a special place in my heart, and I am grateful for the time we spent together down the years.

Stay safe. Keep well.

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