This 7 May 2020 satiric song from Britain about Conservative government mismanagement of the coronavirus disaster is called The Iain Duncan Smiths – Pandemic.
It says about itself:
Pandemic on the streets of London
Pandemic on the streets of Birmingham
I wonder to myself
Can’t we just let everyone out again?
If you’re not dead then you’re fit for work
Regardless of your health
Rates may fall on the furlough
‘Cause the economy’s so low
When you lockdown, and you basically scrounge
Though there’s pandemic on the streets of Carlisle
Dublin, Dundee, Merseyside
Please disregard your health
Bring down the furlough
End the blasted lockdown
Because the subsidies we constantly pay
They’re not worth it just to save your life
So end the blasted lockdown
Because the subsidies we constantly pay
On the streets where you can’t even distance
In the care homes we gave no assistance
End the lockdown, end the lockdown
Even though it isn’t technically a lockdown
End the lockdown
By Lamiat Sabin in Britain, 10 May 2020:
UNIONS and Labour have accused the Prime Minister of sending mixed messages about returning to work, which they say could have “lethal” consequences.
In his address to the nation today, Boris Johnson said that people who cannot work from home, such as builders and factory workers, should be “actively encouraged” to return to work from Monday, but that they should avoid public transport “if at all possible”.
TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said: “Boris Johnson’s statement will cause working people a lot of confusion and anxiety.”
While Johnson was on intensive care, doctors thought he had a 50% chance of dying. Yet, Johnson does not seem to have learned anything from that experience.
From daily News Line in Britain today:
Go to work tomorrow! says Johnson – but don’t use public transport
‘WE SAID you should work from home if you can and if you can’t work from home not to work. We have now changed that message: if you can’t work from home we are now saying that you should go to work’, Boris Johnson told the nation yesterday evening.
He added: ‘Those in construction, for instance, should be actively encouraged to get to work, avoiding using public transport if they can.’
The relaxation of the lockdown was announced despite another 269 people dying from coronavirus yesterday bringing the total to 31,855.
The ‘stay at home, protect the NHS, save lives’ slogan was cynically replaced with ‘stay alert, control the virus, save lives’.
However, the ‘stay at home’ advice will remain in place in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland after leaders in the three devolved nations said Johnson had not consulted them on the new message.
Johnson added: ‘From this Wednesday we want to encourage people to take unlimited exercise.’
Emphasising that he wants people to still refrain from using the bus, tube and train network he said: ‘We must and will maintain social distancing’.
He warned on social distancing rules: ‘We will increase the fines for the small minority that break them.’
Unfortunately, Johnson with that ‘small minority’ does not mean bosses of crowded warehouses and factory halls, exposing workers to infection. He means some pedestrian with bad eyesight who did not notice that another pedestrian was approaching.
He continued: ‘We have been fighting the most vicious threat to the people’s lives, certainly in my lifetime.
‘It is a fact we were facing a catastrophe whose worst-case scenario could have been half a million fatalities.
‘It is thanks to you that millions of lives have been saved. It would be madness to throw all of that away with a second spike.
‘So no, this is not the time simply to end the lockdown, instead we are taking the first steps to change our emphasis.
‘Our ambition is that secondary school students that face exams next year will spend some time at least before the holidays with their teachers.
‘In July we will hope to re-open at least some of the hospitality places and other public places, given the scientific advice that says it is OK to do so.
‘And we will take measures to impose quarantine on those people coming into this country by air.’
He added on the issue of a resurgence of the coronavirus: ‘If there are problems we will not hesitate to put on the brakes.’
Labour leader Keir Starmer responded: ‘What the country really wanted tonight was clarity and a real sense of consensus and I don’t think that we got either. The basic message “stay alert” just isn’t clear enough.
‘And frankly this statement raises as many questions as it answers. On top of that, you now have different messages in England than in Scotland and Wales.’
Prime Minister Johnson decides to give up his ‘war to defeat coronavirus’: here.
UK: Johnson’s “phased” return to work puts millions of workers at immediate risk. By Chris Marsden, 11 May 2020. Johnson tried to portray his six-week plan as “cautious” because of the massive opposition in the working class to ending the lockdown.
Hardship for UK carers worsens during coronavirus pandemic. By John Stryder, 11 May 2020. A carer of an elderly family member wrote to the WSWS about the problems faced by carers during the pandemic.