The European Council on Foreign Relations think tank surveyed 11,000 people in the nine countries that make up about two-thirds of the EU’s population: Bulgaria, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Spain and Sweden. The polling took place in April. (ER: we imagine the polling stats may be worse by now.)
A majority of poll respondents in all of the countries said the EU responded poorly to the crisis, with 46 percent of all those surveyed saying the bloc did not live up to its responsibilities during the pandemic, and almost half (47 percent) saying it was “irrelevant.” Almost two-thirds of Italians and 61 percent in France said the EU had failed its citizens.
Boris is to blame: the conclusion as Britain emerges from the pandemic
Lockdown is lifted in Britain, as people begin to ask why the rich nation has suffered so badly from coronavirus…
As the Coronavirus pandemic abates in Britain, the analysis has begun of where things went wrong.
‘Not Britain’s finest hour’ concluded The Economist this week, a publication which up until now had refrained from pointing the finger of blame directly at the government. A nation so keen to detach itself from its European partners via Brexit has now succeeded in setting itself apart from Europe in another way: it has the highest death toll to Covid-19. The timeline of events in the build-up to lockdown on March 23rd will likely be gone over again and again in a bid to figure out exactly where the government went wrong in their reaction to the pandemic, and we can expect a host of literature, documentaries and films on the subject. The consensus seems to be already that Britain simply had the wrong government for the time.
Ironically, these journalists are the same ones that were arguing only a few months ago for a Boris Johnson victory. A Jeremy Corbyn government would be ‘dangerous’, The Economist said before the December election. Well, there can’t be a more ‘dangerous’ situation than the one we are in now, in the midst of a pandemic with a government at the helm in which people don’t trust. According to a recent poll, 55% think the government has handled the coronavirus pandemic badly, and 76% believe lockdown was imposed too late. Professor Neil Ferguson, an epidemiologist at Imperial College London, has said that had Britain locked down a week earlier, at least half of the 50,000 or so lives lost could have been saved. For a Prime Minister who was constantly referring to being guided ‘by the science’, the blasé attitude of Boris Johnson to the oncoming storm was concerning.
Who could blame people for panic buying? Statistics now show that Britain’s production of flour went up by 2000% in March, with yeast at 400%, as people went into survival mode, preparing themselves for baking their own bread – as if people even know how to make it. Seeing how the virus was spreading across the globe, and in particular how our European neighbour, Italy, was struggling to cope, sent shockwaves across the country. And yet, all we were told was ‘wash your hands’ while singing God Save The Queen – as if we were living in the 19th century. For someone who was supposedly listening to ‘the science’, it seemed as if Boris Johnson was leaving everything up to fate, and to God.
Restrictions are gradually being lifted across the UK as the number of cases subsides. Only 15 deaths were reported on Monday with no deaths in Scotland. People can now visit relatives outdoors, some outdoor pursuits have resumed and shops in England have opened. But we are still some way to go until normality is resumed. Masks and social distancing are now compulsory in certain situations, like travelling on public transport, and this may be the case for some time. Most school pupils will only return in the Autumn, and even then only part-time. This has caused uproar amongst parents, already tired of months of home-schooling, who wonder how they will cope with their jobs and kids at home for half the week.
But there are no certainties yet. Airlines may be preparing to transport passengers again to newly opened resorts in the deserted beaches of sunny Spain, but we don’t know how long this will last. It’s too early to say the virus has been beaten. There are now almost 9 million cases in 188 countries, with cases peaking in several South American countries. And in countries which were thought to have fought off the virus – like China and Germany, for example, we have seen recent resurgences. In Iran, there are also fears of a second peak, as cases have begun rising once again to around 100 a day for the first time in two months. Governments therefore need to act with extreme caution when lifting restrictions.
And yet it’s essential for the health and sanity of the nation, that people are given a breathing space. Life, after all, is for living, not for pickling like a cucumber in a jar. The relief felt by relatives being able to meet each other after months of isolation was huge. Prolonged lockdown can have a considerable negative effect on the physical and mental health of society. In short: it can destroy it.
But not only society suffers. It was revealed today that the Bank of England had to step in to save the UK economy and bail out the government. Governor of the Bank of England, Andrew Bailey, said that the government had come close to ‘insolvency’. He said that the dislocation in markets in March so serious, that the Bank had to intervene with £200bn of quantitative easing – the biggest single cash injection in its history. He also warned that the British economy would be permanently scarred by the crisis and that many companies would simply not survive.
So the economic crisis is only just beginning. As time goes on, it’s likely that more and more often the finger of blame will be pointed at Boris Johnson and his cabinet. He may have come to power with the promise to ‘Get Brexit Done’, but he will be remembered as the Prime Minister who ‘washed his hands’ of coronavirus.
The Liberty Beacon Project is now expanding at a near exponential rate, and for this we are grateful and excited! But we must also be practical. For 7 years we have not asked for any donations, and have built this project with our own funds as we grew. We are now experiencing ever increasing growing pains due to the large number of websites and projects we represent. So we have just installed donation buttons on our websites and ask that you consider this when you visit them. Nothing is too small. We thank you for all your support and your considerations … (TLB)
Comment Policy: As a privately owned web site, we reserve the right to remove comments that contain spam, advertising, vulgarity, threats of violence, racism, or personal/abusive attacks on other users. This also applies to trolling, the use of more than one alias, or just intentional mischief. Enforcement of this policy is at the discretion of this websites administrators. Repeat offenders may be blocked or permanently banned without prior warning.
Disclaimer: TLB websites contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to our readers under the provisions of “fair use” in an effort to advance a better understanding of political, health, economic and social issues. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving it for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than “fair use” you must request permission from the copyright owner.
Disclaimer: The information and opinions shared are for informational purposes only including, but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material are not intended as medical advice or instruction. Nothing mentioned is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.