Who deserves treatment? (Pandemic Journal: April 1)


200401 Prince Charles

Out of lockdown: Prince Charles is safe – but are people with long-term illnesses and disabilities being told to die so the privileged can have preferential treatment?

Mrs Mike was on the phone to the doctor yesterday, and he told her the coronavirus is definitely in the town where we live.

He also said the illness some of us had over Christmas and the New Year wasn’t it. He seems to have based this on evidence that fewer people died of it. That’s nice to know.

But Mrs Mike says she won’t be visiting her friend across the road any more, for fear of either of them catching the virus (they’d both had the other illness). Fair enough, I suppose, although it will mean more or less total isolation for her friend, and that’s not good for mental health.

But – with the government apparently determined to deny treatment to people like her if she catches the virus – it seems this is the only thing to do. Forgive me if I explain this in an apparently roundabout way:

Today is April Fool’s Day and Stepdaughter caught both me and the Missus with a good one – albeit in bad taste.

“Did you hear about Charlie?” she said.

“Charlie who?” says I.

“Prince Charles. Coronavirus got him. He’s dead.”

Of course he wasn’t dead. In fact, he came out of self-isolation yesterday, having recovered from the mild symptoms he had been showing.

He would have qualified as one of those in the high-risk category, though – due to his age alone. I don’t know if he has any underlying conditions that make him even more vulnerable.

At the time, I was writing the story on Vox Political about people with long-term illnesses and disabilities being told they won’t get treatment if they contract the coronavirus, because our government’s short-sightedness means there aren’t enough ventilators or other equipment to treat any but those most likely to survive.

It raises the question: who deserves treatment?

I have absolutely no doubt that Prince Charles would have had top-level medical care, whether he had cancer, neurological conditions or heart and lung illnesses or not – and I don’t begrudge him that.

do begrudge the fact that government guidance means treatment is being withdrawn from ordinary citizens with those conditions, due to the mistakes (and that’s being charitable) of successive Conservative governments.

If Boris Johnson had underlying conditions and received preferential treatment, I would begrudge it. Likewise with those other government ministers and cronies who have stated that they caught the virus – Matt Hancock, Alister Jack, Nadine Dorris, Chris Whitty, Dominic Cummings.

As they are part of the organisation that failed to plan properly for a pandemic like the coronavirus – despite having had an ongoing responsibility to do so, ever since the Conservatives came into office in 2010 – I think their proper place in the queue for treatment is behind people with long-term illnesses and disabilities.

Yes, they might have an important government job but all the evidence shows that they aren’t very good at it. If they were, there would be no need to exclude anyone from treatment.

Or so it seems to me.

Cabin fever (Pandemic Journal: March 31)


200331 Woodmancote murder scene

Forensic investigators at the house in Woodmancote, West Sussex, where a family of four and their dog have been found dead. Murder is suspected.

Today marks one week in coronavirus lockdown and already the cracks are beginning to show in some places.

Mrs Mike shouted at the cat, who was only playing at chasing her, pawing at her ankles.

But then, Mrs Mike wasn’t very happy when she woke up today. She has fibromyalgia. Some days the pain is worse than others, and this is one of those days.

As she was getting dressed she was muttering about the noise made by children in a back garden up the street.

Stepdaughter has been champing at the bit to get out since the lockdown began. Her fiance is in the armed forces, meaning they were apart from each other when we were all told to self-isolate, and even now he is on leave they aren’t allowed to meet up. And what if he gets called up to go abroad for dangerous work?

She tells me her employers have launched a series of uplifting (ha ha) webinars, to happen on a regular basis. She says the thought of taking part makes her want to hurt herself.

I’m okay because I’ve been keeping myself busy, but even I can feel things starting to niggle.

I usually write stories for Vox Political quite late at night, because there are fewer distractions, but lately Mrs Mike has been staying up with me – or rather falling asleep next to me while I work.

Then there’s hell to pay when I try to get her to go to bed. It usually takes six or seven attempts to get her to go, and she is always in a bad mood when she finally shifts herself to get up the wooden hill to Bed-fordshire.

Every night I get a little more annoyed. This morning she was complaining because she didn’t get up bright and early, laying the blame on staying up late, and it was all I could do to hold my tongue.

Mind you, I have been finding it hard to get up too.

And I do wonder if it’s because the pandemic, and the lockdown, has affected my state of mind; you know what I mean – that subconsciously I might not think it’s worth bothering to get up, or that if I stay in bed there’s no chance of catching the virus.

Who knows? The subconscious is a mysterious thing.

One thing I do know is that the tabloids are going to be full of stories about what locked-down people have been doing to each other, for weeks and maybe months after the crisis ends.

Already there’s a case of a family of four – and their dog – found dead in a house in Woodmancote, West Sussex. The bodies are understood to be those of a man, his partner and their two young daughters.

Police have opened a murder inquiry but said they aren’t look for anybody else in connection with the incident.

The family was last seen alive taking exercise in a field near their home at the end of last week. All seemed well.

Who knows what else is going on in other homes across the UK?

That’s why it is genuinely important to take care of your mental health.

My stepdaughter might think her employer’s webinars are a waste of time, but they might help others – so good for them, I say.

There is advice on how to keep chipper in these socially-excluding times:

Be aware that anxiety and fear are normal.

Talk to other people about your feelings so you can get help and support.

Take breaks from the news because if you’re feeling down already, it will make you feel worse.

 

How we got to lockdown (Pandemic Journal: March 30)


200320 coronavirus

The coronavirus crisis didn’t happen suddenly in the middle of March this year; it crept up on us over a period of more than a decade.

If you’re surprised by that, don’t be; the arrival of the virus and the consequent lockdown of the population is the result of failure by successive Conservative and Conservative-led governments, going back to the moment they took power in 2010.

You see, the UK government has strategies for dealing with events like this. The Cabinet Office keeps a National Risk Register of Civil Emergencies which it must keep up-to-date – and every single copy of this document ever made lists “pandemic flu” as the most probable and devastating threat to the UK.

This means the government has devised strategies to deal with such a threat. The problem is, they are all out of date.

Oldest of them all is the guide to dealing with the fatalities of the pandemic,  last published in 2008. This has never been updated since the Conservatives took over responsibility for it.

The last strategy written specifically to deal with pandemic flu was published in 2011 – the same year David Cameron’s Conservative-led Coalition government closed the dedicated government Pandemic Influenza Preparedness Team based in the Department of Health, which was tasked with tackling this type of crisis.

It may explain much that the government’s UK Pandemic Influenza Communications Strategy, the crucial document for getting the right messages across to the public, was written in 2012 and is now wildly inaccurate in its assumptions about how and where people get their information.

In October 2016, David Cameron’s now wholly-Conservative government carried out an exercise to estimate the impact of a hypothetical influenza pandemic on the United Kingdom. Exercise Cygnus showed that such a pandemic would cause the country’s health system to collapse, due to a lack of resources.

The Chief Medical Officer of the time said that a lack of medical ventilators was a serious problem that should be rectified, but in 2017 this advice was ignored by the Department of Health under Jeremy Hunt – because it would cost too much. The government was committed to austerity policies, remember.

Boris Johnson was first briefed about a new virus causing havoc in Wuhan, China, in November 2019. He did nothing.

Current Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty warned the cabinet in January that other countries (including the UK) might experience this pandemic, but Boris Johnson resisted a life-changing crackdown. He did nothing.

According to an article in The Times, “there was a lot of talk about how this was just a bit of flu.”

Dominic Cummings, Johnson’s senior aide who famously employed a eugenicist as a Downing Street advisor, apparently said the UK would be better able to resist a second wave of the disease next winter if 60-80 per cent of the population became infected and the survivors developed “herd immunity”. This fantasy has since become infamous but Cummings unaccountably remains in his job.

Cummings was paraphrased after speaking at a private engagement at the end of February, in which he said the government’s strategy was “herd immunity, protect the economy and if that means some pensioners die, too bad”.

And this was the UK government’s plan until mid-March: let pensioners die.

Johnson and his cronies called it mitigation.

So after the editor of The Lancet warned Johnson to take action, in an article on January 24, he did nothing.

The Lancet article warned that “preparedness plans should be readied for deployment at short notice, including securing supply chains of pharmaceuticals, personal protective equipment, hospital supplies and the necessary human resources”. But this warning was ignored.

Not only that, but the government didn’t follow basic World Health Organisation (WHO) advice. According to Mr Horton: “They didn’t isolate and quarantine. They didn’t contact trace. These basic principles of public health and infectious disease control were ignored, for reasons that remain opaque.”

When Johnson had his first Cobra meeting to discuss the seriousness of the pandemic’s effect on the UK  on March 2, he again did nothing.

Medical experts made it clear that “herd immunity” has never been achieved through mass infection; the disease simply mutates in order to infect people again. The only proven way to immunise an entire population is mass vaccination.

(This revelation will be a kick in the teeth for anti-vaxxers who, if they stick to their principles, are facing a very uncertain – by which I mean short – future.)

Perhaps this became clear to him at the SAGE (Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies) meeting on March 12, when Cummings was said to have had a “Damascene conversion” (after St Paul’s conversion to Christianity on the road to Damascus). Did he suddenly develop a conscience and realise that a large chunk of the population – above and beyond pensioners – was going to die? Or did he do his sums and realise that the economy was going to suffer, no matter what happened, and it was better publicity for the government to put on a show of caring? I don’t know.

It is the right thing to do. Writing in Byline Times, Mike Buckley stated that the government was right to think “herd immunity” was worth having – but ignored the fact that it has never been achieved through mass infection; it has only been managed via vaccination.

“To attempt to create herd immunity through mass infection for a disease with at least a 1% mortality rate would lead to an unacceptable numbers of deaths, all the more so in a country with a comparatively low number of intensive care beds, ventilators and specialist staff where access to care will be at a premium,” he wrote.

“Given that the UK knew that containment is possible from examples in Asia, to choose to go down this path – being aware that tens of thousands of vulnerable and elderly people would die as a result – is abhorrent.

“What makes the policy even more flawed is that we do not yet know enough about COVID-19 to know that mass infection would equate to mass immunity.”

His conclusion:

“Foreign governments, the WHO, teams of scientists and our own NHS professionals have been arguing for weeks that the Government’s strategy would lead to disaster.

“We have lost seven weeks which could have been used to order and make ventilators, testing kits and protective gear for medical and care staff.

“We have lost seven weeks which could have been used to retrain staff and build capacity.

“We have allowed the Coronavirus to spread for seven weeks when we could have held it back.”

He was wrong about losing seven weeks. Much more time had been wasted – and more would be.

This was the point at which the government changed its strategy to suppression – but to describe the way in which it did so as half-hearted is to be immensely charitable.

Johnson advised people to self-isolate if anybody in their immediate family showed symptoms. And he refused to close schools until it became clear that there was no point keeping them open. He just parroted “when the time is right” until the right time had long passed.

In all, Johnson wasted four months between being told about the seriousness of the threat and finally ordering the national lockdown, coupled with attempts to equip the NHS to deal with it.

Expert commentators have speculated that his strategy was an attempt to control the rising number of coronavirus cases, just enough to ensure that the National Health Service his government had starved of resources would be able to treat it.

This has not been possible. The lack of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) for health professionals has meant three doctors have died of the disease at the time of writing, and there are not enough ventilators to go around, despite a claim by Deputy Chief Medical Officer Jenny Harries on March 20 that we had plenty. The Lancet (again) has demanded that she apologise to the public for misleading us but that hasn’t happened yet.

As The Lancet‘s editor Richard Horton put it on Saturday (March 28), measures implemented “far too late” have left the NHS “wholly unprepared for the surge of severely and critically ill patients”. As a result, it has been plunged into “chaos and panic”, with patients and NHS staff condemned to “die unnecessarily”.

So ventilators are being rationed on the basis of a patient’s chances of survival. This means people with disabilities are likely to be left to die. Oh… and pensioners.

And patients with other conditions and diseases are likely to be passed over as resources are focused on the coronavirus. Fears have already been raised about people with cancer.

As I write this, the UK has been living in lockdown for nearly a week, and we’ve just been told that we may have to carry on like this for another six months.

If so, it is the product of Boris Johnson’s dithering as his advisors argued that losing a few (hundred thousand) pensioners and cripples would be worth it to keep the money flowing in for rich businesspeople.

That is where their priorities have lain. Or so it seems to me.

The Sivier Review: Robinson Crusoe


Stuck at home while coronavirus ravages the country, I might as well do something with my time – so I’ve been improving myself by trying to become literate. Over the last few days I’ve been reading Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe. Here’s my review:

It’s considered the first English novel, so everybody thinks they know what it’s about – and they’re probably wrong.

I thought I knew. Man gets shipwrecked on a desert island. Lives there a while, learning how to survive alone. Makes friends with another man who gets washed up there one day. They escape. The end. <b>WRONG!</b>

He doesn’t even get to the island until a considerable way through the book; we have to learn about him first – that he starts out headstrong, choosing to go to sea rather than obey his dying father’s wishes, even though his decisions seem doomed to end in disaster. He spends two years as a slave in Morocco after being shipwrecked, but escapes through initiative and ingenuity, sailing down the coast of Africa until he finds a ship whose captain is willing to take him aboard.

Travelling to Brazil, he founds a plantation but can’t resist an offer to go back to Africa as a slaver – only to be shipwrecked again on an island near Trinidad (some say it may be Tobago).

From here, the vast majority of the book covers the practicalities of life on the island, as tackled by Crusoe. He saves as much as he can from the wrecked ship but then has to work to make a home, furniture and clothes, and to learn when and how to nurture crops.

A big surprise (for me) is when Crusoe becomes ill and has a fever dream in which he believes he is visited by a celestial being of some kind who accuses him of failing to repent his sins and sentences him to death. He wakes up with a severe case of Religion, which is handy as the only reading matter he has is three copies of the Bible. Much of the novel is filled with his musings on Divine Providence and quotations from the Good Book, in consequence.

Some readers may find this epiphany hard to square with Crusoe’s treatment of people who aren’t white Europeans. For example: his companion Friday isn’t washed up – he is brought to the island by cannibals (never mind that it is generally believed that there were no cannibals in the Caribbean) and saved by Crusoe from being cooked and eaten. But Crusoe then makes Friday his slave. This is in line with what we know about Crusoe, and with the times in which he was living – and by the time this happens, we’ve already seen him enslave another person – the luckless Xury, who he takes with him from Morocco, only to sell to the captain of the ship that takes him to Brazil.

Does the description of Friday’s speech show racism by Defoe? Is it a faithful representation of the kind of speech the author had heard from people of colour at the time? Or is it a creation of his imagination? I don’t know, but the way Crusoe describes his relationship with Friday does not suggest any enmity, or wish to belittle people of his race.

Readers who struggle through the slow middle section of the book are then treated to an over-eventful end segment, as Crusoe discovers his island suddenly overpopulated after more than 20 years in solitude, with not only the cannibals returning for a rematch but also European mutineers, along with their ship – which provides an opportunity for Crusoe to escape his island imprisonment.

The book doesn’t end there with a tidy summation of how he has changed and what he has learned, as a modern novel might – and we should not criticise it for this. Defoe was breaking fresh ground and had no idea of how future writers would round out their pieces. Instead, we are treated to Crusoe’s adventures in re-establishing himself, both in England and Brazil – and the novel ends with a promise of more adventures to follow.

So we have an unheroic hero wandering through an unstructured story that is full of distracting diversions into religion and that fails to come to a satisfying ending – yet this book forms the foundation stone on which all other novels have been built.

It’s possible that future authors saw this as an example of what <b>not</b> to do!

Pandemic Journal: March 29


200329 Russia coronavirus March 29

I suppose it was only to be expected that people would start spreading paranoid conspiracy theories.

One of these is about Russia. Apparently there’s a lack of information about the spread of coronavirus in that country, and certain people are questioning the reason for that.

Mrs Mike’s grandfather, who is a World War II veteran and has absolutely no affection for Russia at all, was on the phone to her yesterday, suggesting that the Russians had something to do with its spread.

He pointed to the (alleged) use of the Novichok nerve agent to attack enemies of Russia in the UK, nearly two years ago, as evidence of Russian germ warfare.

It’s total nonsense, of course.

Russia has supplied figures.

Apparently that country has 1,534 reported cases, and eight deaths.

The question is whether we believe such small figures. The Russian state apparatus has something of a reputation for being economical with its facts, when it chooses to be.

But that’s no reason to suggest the Russians are behind the spread of the pandemic.

Remember, it began in Wuhan, which is in China.

And Novichok was a chemical agent – not a disease.

There is absolutely no evidence to link it to Russia.

By all means, let’s talk about the international implications. But let’s be reasonable about it, please.

Pandemic Journal: March 28


200320 coronavirus

The sheer boneheaded ignorance of people, in the face of the lockdown, is stunning.

The orders – and they are orders, not advice – are very simple:

Stay at home – only go outside to buy food (and for those at serious risk, only if you can’t get someone else to do it for you), for health reasons (exercise) and for work, if you absolutely cannot work from home.

If you go out, stay two metres from anybody else at all times.

Do not meet with other people – even friends and family. You can spread the virus to them or they can spread it to you.

Wash your hands often – that means after every time you’ve touched something somebody else has – and clean surfaces that are used often.

These aren’t loose guidelines that somebody has dreamed up for want of anything better to do on a Friday afternoon – they are rules to save your life.

But some people are taking their lives into their own hands.

Mrs Mike just had to go and spend some ‘me’ time in the back garden after talking to a close friend on the telephone.

This friend is over 70 years old and in an ultra-high risk category. Mrs Mike told her this, right when the restrictions started coming in. Today she parroted it back, indicating that she believed it now, because her doctor told her.

And what has she been doing in the meantime?

She has told us about visits to the hairdresser (when that was still open); she was shopping in the town where she lives (even though she can get other people to do it for her); she has spent time with her boyfriend who lives elsewhere (when they both have been in contact with other people); and she said she had decided to “start to self-isolate” from now on…

Because now she’s starting to feel ill.

I have to admit that I got on the blower and asked her very bluntly if she wanted to live at all – because all the evidence shows she has a death wish.

As I type this, stepdaughter just had a visit from another relative who wanted to show off his new car.

This guy is a taxi driver. Who knows how many people have been sharing his air or whether they could have had the virus? And the first chance he gets, he’s round here presenting the threat of infection to his relatives.

In the wider world we hear of people having street parties and barbecues, and having to be broken up by the police.

Last weekend, Mount Snowdon was covered with idiots who’d gone for a day out in spite of the self-isolation/social distancing orders.

The National Trust had tried to keep its open spaces available to the public, on condition that those distancing rules were observed – but had to close them when it became clear that people were ignoring them wholesale.

It seems that everybody wants this virus to kill them – or their nearest and dearest.

Try to remember: coronavirus might not kill you. It might not even present itself with more than mild symptoms if you catch it.

But if you, carrying it, so much as breathe on someone in the “high-risk” category – and I think we all know somebody like that – then you could be responsible for their death.

Sure, only 578 people are known to have died in the UK at the moment. But those are very hazy figures because the government had a wobble about letting us know the true extent of the damage.

And the death toll is increasing in greater numbers every day.

If you’re not observing the orders, then you are contributing to those deaths.

Don’t be stupid.

Pandemic Journal: March 27


I’ve been meaning to start a journal of my experiences during the so-called lockdown imposed by the government in the name of our safety.

Being stuck at home with just our near family, and possibly pets, is going to affect us all in different ways. I thought I’d describe how it affects me; what I do, what I’m thinking, and how I react to national developments.

(I do have a bit of an advantage in that, as I’m reporting on the political side of things over on Vox Political.)

I have to report that matters have been relatively harmonious so far. I live with Mrs Mike and her daughter (henceforth to be known as Stepdaughter), and with our cat Crunchie, who’s not the best-behaved of animals and takes a lot of flak from Mrs Mike because of it.

Mrs Mike spends a lot of time doing Art and stepdaughter is Working From Home. I’ve been writing Vox P, but have had plenty of time to think about other things too.

Usually I go to the gym three times a week, but that is closed for the duration. I have weights at home and on Wednesday I started working out which exercises I could perform here, working them into a pattern alongside housework.

I’ve become very sensitive about doing any kind of exercise at home, after having comments from Mrs Mike when I was doing sit-ups in the bedroom. Now I try to take great care not to let anybody hear me go creak.

But I don’t think it’s working.

The bedroom is sprucing up a treat, though.

Yesterday (March 26) I picked up the car from the garage – nearly two months exactly since I put it in for MOT and it failed on emissions.

It turned out that the part that cleans the exhaust before expelling it into the atmosphere had practically eroded away – it was only held together by the oily gunk that had built up around it over the years – and had to be replaced. Now it is wonderfully clean.

I went round to the garage and was asked – quite rightly – to put on a rubber glove before touching anything.

I took that glove home with me and put it to good use, scaring the daylights out of Mrs Mike:

So now I have a car again.

And, thanks to lockdown, nowhere to go.

Almost nowhere to go. Today I took it up to town, as I had letters to weigh at the post office and cheques to cash at the bank.

Except the bank was closed. There was a handwritten sign saying it wouldn’t be open until Monday.

Coronavirus.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. March 26 was a Thursday, meaning normally I would have been out with my buddies.

Thirsty Thursday was a tradition started by two friends, Richard and Rod, both of whom have faded out of the scene somewhat – Rich to St Lucia (lucky b…) and Rod to a neighbouring town’s male voice choir, it seems.

But other friends started coming out after they quit, so there’s now quite a large gathering most weeks.

Except this week we all had to stay in, under lockdown.

So we had a virtual gathering instead – online.

One of the new traditions of Thirsty Thursday involves my friend Jack, who started taking surreptitious photos of me and then adding the kinds of caption that would be unsuitable for public consumption.

Last night was no different, except this time he asked me to provide him with an image.

I obliged – albeit with the express intention of providing a spectacle so abominable that he wouldn’t need to write anything:

200326 Mike

I’m no oil painting.

Jack added a caption anyway. It would be shockingly libellous if anybody took it seriously and – as there are people in this world who would deliberately do so when that isn’t the intention – I won’t be publishing it here. You’ve had a lucky escape.

I’ll try to go into the origins of the pandemic next time.

Vox Political’s new home

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Voxlogo2

Vox Political is changing.

The site has been transferred to a commercial host, enabling Yr Obdt Srvt to monetise it – that means we can host adverts and hopefully make a few quid from doing this.

With the blog currently averaging around 200,000 hits per month, and the possible revenue outweighing the amount YOS receives in Carers Allowance by a considerable amount, it seemed silly not to give it a go.

Visitors to the new site at voxpoliticalonline.com will notice that the adverts are intended to compliment the content, rather than clash with it. The idea is to provide commercial options that coincide with the reader’s interests.

However: This is dependent on the actions of the reader. If you click on an ad, that interest is registered and the programs that serve up ads to the site go looking for similar items. This is how they work to keep everything relevant. If you don’t click on any ads, you’ll probably see ads that don’t interest you.

We’re only a few hours in but already the Amazon ads I’ve put up are reacting well to the site, with a book about George Osborne, the excellent NHS: SOS and other relevant items all getting space on the revolving ad.

Google AdSense hasn’t done so well, so far – possibly because the program seems to have insisted on offering mainly financial service adverts. Hopefully this will improve with time.

Of course, you might see no adverts at all – if you have an ad blocker enabled. While you may have done this for perfectly good reasons, may I prevail on you to disable ad blockers when you visit voxpoliticalonline.com? If you can’t see – and don’t do anything with – the adverts, then the site will generate no money for its proprietor and Vox Political will go to the wall. As a reader and support of the site, it seems clear that you wouldn’t want that.

The hope is that Vox Political can transform itself from a highly-read amateur politics site (albeit one written by a professional journalist) into a professional site that makes a living for its author. Here at VP Towers, we’ve been stuck in the benefits trap for too long; this is our chance to escape.

But that depends on you.

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A damning indictment of the DPP and its failure to prosecute Cyril Smith


Westminster Confidential

My  Exaro colleagues Nick Fielding and Tim Wood deserve a big commendation for doggedly pursuing the Crown prosecution Service to force them to release a damning report revealing how the authorities missed their opportunity to prosecute  paedophile MP Cyril Smith while he was alive.

After using the Freedom of Information Act the CPS has finally  a year later released a police report showing the Rochdale authorities knew what Sir Cyril was up to – but  the Director of Public Prosecutions declined to prosecute,.

The police superintendent in charge of the investigation in 1970 wrote;

“It seems impossible to excuse his conduct. Over a considerable period of time, whilst sheltering beneath a veneer of respectability, he has used his unique position to indulge in a sordid series of indecent episodes with young boys towards whom he had a special responsibility.”

No action was taken, and the paedophile MP was free to continue…

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The Tories attack Miliband because they’ve got no decent policies


Politics and Insights

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Originally posted on LabourList

As the 2015 general election approaches, it is becoming more obvious by the day what the Tory strategy is: there are no new ideas, policies will continue much as they are now, with the emphasis on denigrating Labour proposals and the Labour leader. If Labour announces details to increase income or corporation tax, Tories are ready to pounce.

The Tory propaganda machine has successfully convinced the more gullible that somehow the Labour government’s spending on schools and hospitals caused the 2008 economic crash, and that as a result, they cannot be trusted to manage the economy. It’s upon this, rather than their own proposals, that the Tory election programme is based.

David-Cameron-at-the-EU-s-007

Tories do not shout from the rooftops what their aims are: shrinking the state back to 1948 levels, a further reduction in social mobility and, of course, immigration, and more cuts in government spending. They will…

View original post 1,275 more words