The Coronavirus Diaries, 11th February 2022, parallel worlds

We’ve been living in strange times for quite a while now, but right now some things in the UK are really off the wall. We have a public school educated, billionaire chancellor who is in real terms cutting the poorest and most vulnerable families incomes so that hypothermia, starvation or a combination of the two may be their fate, and he doesn’t seem to think that more than just expressing passing sorrow for the hardship of their lives he needs to do anything. Lack of imagination, callousness, just another example of how many of us are simply expendable.He is also a front runner to take over when finally, if ever, Boris Johnson, is ousted from 10 Downing Street. The current leading alternative is Liz Truss. I can’t even bring myself to describe Liz Truss. He own party nicknamed her the human hand grenade.

Maybe it was looking at these two front runners which inspired someone, and I’m afraid I was too gobsmacked by the message to take in who it was, a politician, someone at number 10, I don’t know, to say that the Met had better think very carefully before fining the Prime Minister for breaking Covid rules on the grounds it might destabilise the country. WTF? In what parallel universe is it morally ok for a Prime Minister to break the rules over and over again he has himself set, and walk away unscathed while someone sitting on a park bench to eat a sandwich when those same rules applied to be fined?

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The Coronavirus Diaries, 23rd January 2022, bleak times

Not sure I’ll complete this before I join Octavia for dinner, and afterwards I may just want to read my book, catch up on some television, or make tracks for bed.

I have had a pretty busy week, but in between working I kept looking at the newspaper to see what else was going on with this car crash of a government. The focus is all on the liar in chief, but you’d have to be deluded to believe if he went everything would suddenly be alright. The government is made up of MPs who voted for Johnson as party leader, who have consistently turned a blind eye to his failings, his dishonesty, his incompetence because of his voter appeal.* It’s only now when it looks like that appeal may have been irrevocably eroded that they want to ditch him. Note I say may have been. Johnson has a Teflon coating. Sleaze, lies, corruption slide off him. Yes they get stuck on someone else, in the same way what you clean off a Teflon coated pan does not disappear into thin air, but he has survived over and over again where others would have been forced to resign and live out their days in obscurity.

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The Coronavirus Diaries, 20th April 2021

I just remembered I promised Pat I’d put a link to an excellent long read in the Guardian on the subject of whiteness and race. I’ll do that now. Here it is. I find the subject fascinating, how we started defining people by the colour of their skin not by where they were born. which explains how some people on these islands just do not understand how you can be black or brown and yet British. It’s really not that difficult. And it would be a great move forward if we could get over it. I think it’s easier if you live in a multicultural place like Walworth, where we are all colours, all languages, united by Britishness.

This morning I met Karima who I knew through my work some years ago. When I say met, it wasn’t an arranged meeting, we were walking towards each other down a street. She was wearing a wonderful pink outfit which I wrongly assumed was to to do with Eid. No, she explained, it was something she liked to throw over her pyjamas or scruffy clothes if she had to go out. She was her usual sunny self. this is a woman who spent two years with a severely ill son in hospital who the doctors told her would die. He’s now twenty, and although his legs are weak, he’s fine. She’d be at the hospital all day, come home, cook for her older children, clean, go to bed, get up, make breakfast for everyone, then return to the hospital. Her attitude is eternally positive.

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The Coronavirus Diaries, 24th September 2020

It’s hard to believe that two days ago we were enjoying warm sunshine. Today the temperature suddenly dropped mid afternoon and tonight I have put on an extra layer and started thinking about making soups. I’m watching the Grayson Perry programme. The first was on last night and I watched it earlier this evening on catch up, but I see the other programmes in the series are also available, so when I finish writing this I am going to settle back and watch the second one.

He made the programmes last year, travelling to different parts of the US by motorbike. The episode I have seen was about his visit to Atlanta and the main focus was on race. He’s a good listener. Maybe he has learned from his psychotherapist wife Philippa, and he says back to people what he has understood them to be saying which allows for further clarity if he has got it wrong. There was a performance poet whose name I didn’t get, but whose work I should like to know more of. Some of the conversations have a greater urgency about them now due to events this year – George Floyd’s killing, the BLM protests, the news today about the acquittal of the police officers who shot and killed Breonna Taylor, the death of Ruth Bader Ginsberg and Trump’s intention to replace her with a judge who supports him, the increasing threats by Trump to disrupt democracy at the election. Continue reading

The Coronavirus Diaries, 15th September 2020

We had another (chipless) evening in the garden. Hartley is definitely bonding with J. The aloof fox came and ignored us. It’s been a hot day, and the evening is still very warm. MasterB is out. I am pleased, as when we go to das Boot tomorrow he’ll spend most of his time afloat. It gets dark so early now, and unless the light by the pontoon has been fixed – I’m not holding my breath – I am reluctant to step off the boat where I cannot see. It’s still going to be warm, but not as warm. I have put some bits and pieces in the car including the older great niece’s birthday presents as her parents are hoping to make a flying visit on Friday. I have bought her a range of art materials, and the not-plasticine-but-something-akin-to-it is very heavy. Too heavy to post in my opinion.

I was in the City and in Westminster this morning. Both were pretty quiet, though people started to emerge from their offices at lunchtime. I found a message on my ‘phone from B&J asking if I was going to the shops. I replied that having eaten my lunch I was thinking about the vegan Magnums I had seen but not bought in Morrison’s the other day. I ended up buying them for both of us. Yummy. Perfect on a hot afternoon. Continue reading

So Mr Johnson, What did Mr Putin do for you in 2016?

We know social media, and in particular Facebook, was responsible for targeting voters in the 2016 referendum with false information. We know that the Leave Campaign has been found guilty of breaking the rules, though mysteriously this is still often referred to as an allegation, and was even denied by Fiona Bruce on Question Time last week.
For those of you still unconvinced, you can read about it here, not as reported in a newspaper with a particular view, but the Electoral Commission’s actual report. Continue reading