Monday 3 May 2021


My forthcoming book: Dying to Know - Running through a Pandemic is an angry work at times. Those who have read extracts recognize my fury at the actions and inactions of Johnson and Cummings when they were working as a team in unthinkable ways back in 2020.


Yes, unthinkable.

Here is Jacinda Ardern, explaining why:

And here are extracts from today's SKWAWKBOX that tell of another man's fury, directed at those guilty of social murder. Howard Beckett is being ignored by the mainstream media (MSM) as he makes his pitch to be the next leader of Unite, the trades union, and declares that Johnson and others should be brought to court to face charges of social murder since 150,000 lives have been lost needlessly in this pandemic:  

'Unite leadership candidate remembers victims of 'social murder' by government during pandemic and pledges legal consequences for Tory PM - yet 'MSM' ignores

Howard Beckett speaking at the May Day rally in Brighton a day or so ago

Unite general secretary candidate Howard Beckett - already the director of the union's legal and political affairs, as well as leading the fight in key industrial battles - made an extraordinary, but absolutely appropriate promise on Sunday to

more than a million Unite members, many of whom will have lost loved ones and colleagues during the pandemic.

If he wins election as general secretary, Unite will pursue Tory PM Boris Johnson in the courts for the murder of 150,000 or more people who died needlessly during the pandemic so far.

Beckett made the pledge in a tweet on Sunday evening that contained a clip of one of several speeches he made at May Day rallies on Saturday:

Despite the unheard-of nature and vast scale of the promise, the so-called 'mainstream' media appear to have ignored it.

Presumably they don't want the topic of Johnson's role in such a staggering toll of needless deaths to become a news item - nor to remind the millions grieving over the loss of loved ones, colleagues and friends, including Unite members, still outraged over Johnson's notorious 'let the bodies pile high' comment - that there is one candidate in the Unite election that is prepared to take on the corrupt Establishment whether it be wearing a blue rosette or a red one.

As ever, New Zealand - an island nation whose government did not treat the lives of its citizens with contempt and has seen only 26 deaths during the whole pandemic - exposes the vast scale of Johnson's recklessness and wilful lethality, which even the usually-conservative British Medical Journal has condemned as 'social murder'. Now there is a candidate to run the UK and Ireland's biggest union who is determined to hold Johnson to account for his actions and inactions, even if the official opposition will not.

This 'MSM' silence about this underscores the essential nature of another of Beckett's promises: to create a union-run TV channel that will bring news to the public's eyes and ears that the Establishment media all too eagerly covers up to preserve the corrupt status quo.

Skwawkbox has endorsed Howard Beckett's campaign.'

In pursuit of justice: A Wanted Poster.
Do you recognize these men? They are dangerous. Approach with caution. 

Yes - Johnson and Cummings inflicted the unthinkable on us, the people of this nation. And now another kind of unthinkable action - one I scarcely dreamed could happen. A leading socialist and trades unionist is campaigning to become the leader of the Unite union and pledging that if he wins he will bring the prime minister to court to answer charges of social murder. This was a scenario I imagined in my book. Now it could become a reality.

We live in strange times. The neoliberal Tories who are misgoverning us follow a deeply flawed and barbarous economic ideology that prioritizes the market and profit-making over people's lives. We are being encouraged and nudged to look forward to a future that returns us to pre-pandemic times by the summer of this year. But there are good reasons for doubting this message.

We have friends who would love, if it were possible, to come to Cornwall for a break in late summer/ early autumn. Here are extracts from my latest letter to them:

'I can understand that the planned visit to Cornwall is a source of eager anticipation. In normal circumstances, meeting up would be a delight and a prospect to relish. However, we are not living life like that; there is no normal now albeit those who are misgoverning us would love to gull us into thinking we are heading back to life as it used to be.

Johnson speaks with two voices. On the one hand, he says that “all the data looks good” for the next stage of restrictions being lifted on 17 May. On the other, he has told the public to expect a third wave of coronavirus. Actually, by my count, that would be a fourth wave – the third wave which Europe is suffering is called the British variant over there because that’s where it came from after BJ’s Christmas injection of mad normality into the bodies of our nation.


The Tony Blair Institute for Global Change (TBI) [Sometimes even the devil has some worthwhile tunes] is reported as arguing (the ‘i’, Wednesday 28 April) that such a wave is not inevitable if adolescents are vaccinated to prevent a summer spike. If that cannot be factored in, there should be a delay in implementing step 4 of the roadmap – releasing all limits on social contact, currently set for 21 June. Here, I would point out that we have ordered twice as much vaccine as we need at a time when only billions of pounds of aid and massive exports of vaccination can halt a humanitarian catastrophe in the poorer parts of the world which will then return to haunt us through new mutations. No one is safe until the global pandemic is over.


Modelling for the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) says the ‘third’ wave may be as high as previous surges, with up to 40,000 further deaths'. There are pockets if infection in some of our poorest communities that explain the 1500-2000 daily cases of new infections that are occasionally reported by a media complicit in BJ’s ‘Emphasize the Good News’ strategy. They are not being eliminated by Dido Harding’s Test and Trace programme that has cost £37 billion so far.


OMG, I could weep. As you say, ‘I wonder what things will look like here in the late summer?’ One thing for sure, Louise and I – and we are both vulnerable – will not be taking any chances.'

These narcissists who indulge in misrule share a characteristic - they lack empathy. They have blocked out any awareness of the pain, sufferings and deaths they have brought to this country. They are blind to the risks they still pose for the people of this land. In this global pandemic, no one is safe until everyone is safe. 

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