Sunday 17 May 2020


Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse, it has.

UK deaths drastically understated - and even Financial Times' 'cautious' estimate misses mark
(Skwawkbox: Friday 15 May 2020)

The global comparison on the government's own sham figures - this is what is being withheld from the daily press briefings

The UK government continues to understate the deaths Boris Johnson's mismanagement of the UK's response to the coronavirus pandemic has either caused or allowed - many of them entirely avoidable. The official daily total, exposed weeks ago by the SKWAWKBOX as a sham, barely states half of the deaths even according to the 'cautious' analysis of the Financial Times.
ITV's Piers Morgan on the latest FT figures

The Tories' daily charts - now abandoned after the UK reached second-worst in the world even on the government's figures - showed this country in a cluster of European nations, including France, Spain and Italy, with the US way above.
But even based on that cautious FT analysis, an honest chart - shown in a linear form so the distances
between points are proportional and showing the FT's honest-cautious UK death toll of around 61,000 - will look something like this:

A more honest representation of the UK government's shame - but still understated

However, even that figure of over 61,000 is almost certainly far short of reality.
Leaks from UK hospitals have demonstrated that in-hospital deaths - for a long time the only figure the government released - were being under-reported. Hospital whistleblowers revealed that the under-reporting was by half.
And every nation that properly measures its deaths in care homes has found that around half of all COVID-19 deaths take place in care homes - and those nations do not follow the Department of Health's deliberate policy of sending infected elderly patients back to die in care homes, where they infected fellow residents. If care home deaths in the UK are any different to those of European care homes, the UK figure will be higher.
With a real in-hospital figure double that of the official number and that doubled again by care home deaths, the real UK total is likely to be well over 70,000 and perhaps even rivalling the US's shame - something like this:

None of this will particularly disturb Boris Johnson or the eugenicists among his advisers. The 'herd immunity' plan, from the beginning, accommodated the deaths of half a million UK people or more - and it never went away; only the language and charts were changed.
And, as SKWAWKBOX exclusively revealed yesterday, the government has been quietly tripling its emergency mortuary capacity - at the same time as relaxing the lockdown and driving working people back onto public transport and into workplaces.

Around 70,000 deaths from Covid-19 so far - and Stage Two is taking us towards a second spike and another lockdown.

Now a reminder of how we got here:

Award-winning doctor Kailash Chand welcomes BBC's Panorama programme - but points out the government's failures and negligence go far further than mass shortages of protective equipment and says it's time to hold it to account
(Skwawkbox: Wednesday 29 April 2020)
Dr Kailash Chand OBE has spoken out to welcome the BBC's Panorama exposé of the Tories' massive and negligent failure to prepare for the coronavirus pandemic and to provide adequate 'PPE' - personal protective equipment - to front-line NHS staff.
But he also points out that the PPE disaster - which has already cost more than 150 health workers and uncounted patients their lives - is just the tip of the huge iceberg of the government's guilt. Among a litany of Tory decisions, Chand lists:
  • nurse shortages of 40,000
  • doctor shortages of 10,000
  • a decade of real-terms funding cuts
  • the collapse of A&E capabilities
  • the decision to reduce the status of COVID-19 from the highest threat level (to avoid legal responsibility to provide protective equipment)
  • the ongoing refusal to follow World Health Organisation advice
  • unforgivable delays in acting when we knew the pandemic was coming here
  • 150 or more deaths among health staff (though the government is still understating the number by a third)
  • ongoing shortages of protective equipment
All these have weakened the NHS and made us all far more vulnerable to the pandemic than we needed to be.
Chand talks of his pride in the NHS and his sense of shame and furious anger at the scandal of UK death rates compared to the rest of the world: 325 people per million - up from 233 per million just a week or so ago - versus around 25 per million in most other countries.
13 times higher.
Kailash Chand says he is not sad over these appalling facts - he is deeply angry. And he calls for people to rise up and demand accountability.'

And here's the way forward urged by Dr Chand:

Mask or visor - what will best protect when lock-down is relaxed?

"Matt Hancock and Boris Johnson can no longer hide behind the ever-changing and conveniently-timed 'science' they have used so to delay taking measures."
We definitely need masks - until  we reach 'acceptable' levels of infection, until a vaccine is produced and until  we have sufficient mass testing.
Visors should only be one part of any infection control effort, along with social distancing and hand-washing. A cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing.
Matt Hancock and his team must apply the precautionary principle now and encourage people to wear face shields on the grounds that we have little to lose and potentially something to gain from this measure. He and Boris Johnson can no longer hide behind the ever-changing and conveniently-timed 'science' they have used so to delay taking measures.
I urge the government to get ready now to quickly produce affordable face shields - and to prepare to distribute them. There can be no repeat of the constant excuses that capabilities are being eternally 'ramped up' and that the government is 'straining every sinew' while sacrificing lives to its failure to actually achieve.
Suitable face shields will save lives. No more excuses.
Dr Kailash Chand OBE
Twitter @kailashchandobe

But our (mis)government has decided to try to open schools - wealth before health has always been the mantra of the neoliberal Tory. But there is resistance:

Liverpool's Labour mayor, Joe Anderson, is putting health before wealth - the guy on the right on the screen. 

Liverpool's Labour mayor has stated emphatically that he will not re-open schools while the coronavirus is still a threat to local children, telling the BBC:
We're still one of the highest areas for COVID-19... and we're concerned about allowing children back into school who could then either get the virus themselves or spread the virus.
When asked whether this meant he would refuse to re-open schools on 1 June 'whatever the government's telling me to do', Anderson responded:
Yeah, absolutely. The safety of our children comes first.
Anderson is a 'marmite' character in the city, but it has been hard to fault his stance on the pandemic, in stark contrast to the party's national leadership.

One last set of images - a taste of what's coming in the UK? 
Hope springs eternal ....

Belgium shows UK a proper response to government handling of pandemic crisis

Belgian health workers have turned their backs en masse on the country's Prime Minister in protest at their government's mishandling of the coronavirus crisis:


  1. Why did we not emigrate to New Zealand? Their Prime Minister has dealt with COVID19 so much better then morally bankrupt Boris... How will history show this time .. ?

  2. History will make a judgement - it generally does. Let's hope that the people who are living through this and survive will bring in a verdict too.