This Covid-19 crisis is certainly flushing out who and what we are as a nation – with an awful lot of road to travel yet. Douglas Ross probably had no choice in resigning as a junior government minister and I respect his decision; he’s a dyed-in-the-wool constituency MP and I admire him for that. However, here’s my take on the issue which I’ve shared directly with Mr Ross …
This morning my Member of Parliament (MP), Mr Douglas Ross, resigned from his government role as Under-Secretary of State for Scotland. He resigned on the back of the Dominic Cummings’ furore. Here’s Mr Ross’s reason for resigning:
Fair enough. However, the Dominic Cummings’ issue is little more than an insane, politically-motivated episode.
Journalists these days are more political activists than pursuers of the truth, currently being given more visibility and, therefore, more power than they possibly deserve. Parliament should get back to work. The pointless daily press conferences, which tell us nothing we can’t find out for ourselves from other reliable sources, should be stopped immediately; they’re just a platform for those grandstanding journalists. The political debate should occur in the House of Commons and not in daily, televised Kangaroo Courts.
If anybody has come out badly from this self-inflicted crisis it’s the mainstream media journalists who’ve virtually to a man/woman made complete arses of themselves.
Unlike my local MP, I’m pleased that Mr Cummings has kept his job, after flipping and flopping between wanting him to stay, then to go, then to stay [confession for reader, Jerry]. My indecision reflected the controversial nature of the man himself and the extraordinary level of brouhaha surrounding the matter. Let’s hope Mr Cummings continues to contribute to shaking up and stirring up the unholy mess that is our politics and civil service these days whilst shrugging off the dolts in the press like he did yesterday. Dominic Cummings was hired as much as anything to facilitate desperately-needed transformation of our political machinery.
Enforcing lockdown was never going to work the longer lockdown goes on. It’s nothing to do with Dominic Cummings’ behaviour. It’s to do with human nature. People will only tolerate unenforceable and evidently unjustifiable state control for so long before they take matters into their own hands.
Once again the nation is cleaved down the middle: half of us remain terrified of a tiny threat to life, consistent with government fear-mongering propaganda, and half of us simply beg to get on with our lives whilst tolerating the tiny threat of dying from a disease from which we didn’t stand any threat from dying this time last year. Certainly, the vulnerable by age and by pre-existing ill-health must be protected, and can be. However, the latter cohort – the let’s-get-on-with-our-lives group – which includes me, will prevail in the longer-term and, I hope, will be suitably bolshie in the short- and medium-term to foment a shift in political attitude.
When the second quarter economic data is published at the end of June there’ll be some jaw-dropping economic and social horrors made evident. That half of the population determined to hide under their duvets ad infinitum will diminish as reality intrudes; and, by the cringe, that reality’s going to look ugly. We’re still in a phoney lull at the moment. In terms of the impact of Covid-19 on our society, we really ain’t seen nothing yet. The economic consequences will be horrendous.
The Dominic Cummings’ episode was a failed attempt by the Left-Liberal brigade, which includes most of the mainstream media, to subvert the elected government – just like they tried to subvert the EU Referendum result. Look how that worked out.
Mr Ross has fallen foul of the national, lynch-mob hysteria engulfing our every waking moment. He says that, ‘Mr Cummings’ interpretation of the government advice was not shared by the vast majority of people who have done as the government asked’. Mr Ross has no hard evidence that ‘the vast majority of people’ are, in effect, in favour of cowering in their homes as the economy implodes. At best we’re 50/50 – Hide/Emerge. I’ve a suspicion that as soon as the national economic bloodbath is given some airtime, there could well be, as with the EU/Brexit debacle, a silent majority of Brits who couldn’t give a monkey’s uncle about Dominic Cummings’ behaviour. Certainly, I can’t.
PS I’d rather our politicians fulfilled their duties and obligations without the need for Special Advisers, or SPAds as they’re known; people like Dominic Cummings. However, Tony Blair kicked off the arrangement during his Prime Ministerial days, borrowed from American politics, and SPAds would appear to be here for the time being. Dominic Cummings’ mistake wasn’t to expose himself to criticism for allegedly breaking the lockdown rules; his mistake was to be in the public eye, and some.
PPS I wrote the gist of my post above as a comment on the Daily Telegraph online website this morning under it’s Editorial. Currently, mine is the highest rated comment, so I’m not entirely alone in my thinking: It’s time to move on from the Cummings’ saga
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See you down the pub … eventually.