Red and Black Telly roundup.






Red and Black Telly roundup










Corona virus pandemic comment number four, from the south of England. By Mal Content.

C.W. Profanity, cannibalism.

One nasty side-effect of all this is a widespread acceptance that there is some virtue in doing as you’re told, or that a government can rule by decree, in fact you cannot make statute law by announcing things on twitter. Their intent has been to condition the population into following arbitrary “rules”, raking over the details of what is permitted rather than thinking for themselves, with predictably catastrophic results.

Whatever you decide to do you should have a bloody good reason for doing it.

Why are people calling for “clarity” from the fucking government? Can they not make their own minds up? I find it hard to credit that anyone listens to the incoherent blitherings of Boris de Pfeffle fucking Johnson, let alone discusses them. Remember when he said he wanted the pubs to stay open but he didn’t want anyone to go there?

Did you know?

The UK government’s Coronavirus Act 2020 comprises a series of statutory instruments, supposedly deriving their legal authority from the emergency provisions contained within the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984, as amended.

“In accordance with section 45R of that Act the Secretary of State is of the opinion that, by reason of urgency, it is necessary to make this instrument without a draft having been laid before, and approved by a resolution of, each House of Parliament.”

Remember now who the Secretary of State is – Matt fucking Hancock! Anyone interested in his opinion? Thought not.

Did you know?

Examinations of sewage samples from Italy and Spain (apparently they keep these things) show that the virus was present in Europe as long ago as March last year, months before it was identified in China.

You could be forgiven for failing to keep up with their ever-shifting injunctions about who can do what with some people but not others, here but not there, and for this reason but not that. In fact if you have been keeping up, you’ve clearly got too much time on your hands, in other words, you’re middle class, and probably work in the media – or rather, you’re sat on your arse looking at the internet and getting paid for it. Even the chattering classes, marooned in their expensive flats with little else to chatter about, have been getting it wrong.

Did you know?

The ban on taking exercise more than once a day, widely touted in the media, is in fact not in the English Regulations at all; it comes from The Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions) (Wales) Regulations 2020.

Did you know?

The equally widely-touted “one hour duration rule” is not in any government document but was made up on the spot by Michael fucking Gove!

Did you know?

The phrase “reasonable excuse” set out in Regulation 6(2) has never been defined, though examples were given. Early high-profile test cases were thrown out on appeal. It allows politicians to suit themselves.

Did you know?

The words “furlough” and “lock-down” were borrowed from the US prison system.

We should always be wary of people who find it necessary to coin new terminology out of the blue. When they started banging on about “linked households” I dropped out, but for the purposes of this blog post have looked into it.

Did you know?

(7) After regulation 7, insert—
“Linked households
7A.—(1) Where a household comprises one adult, or one adult and one or more persons who are under the age of 18 on 12th June 2020 (“the first household”), the adult may choose to be linked with one other household (“the second household”), provided that—
(a)the second household is not linked with any other household; and
(b)all the adult members of the second household agree.
(2) There is no limit on the number of adults or children which may be in the second household.
(3) The first and second households are “linked households” in relation to each other.
(4) The first and second households cease to be linked households if neither household satisfies the condition in the opening words of paragraph (1).
(5) Once the first and second households have ceased being linked households, neither the first household nor the second household may be linked with any other household.”.
(8) In regulation 9(2), after “Regulations” insert “, including any person who is a relevant person for the purposes of regulation 8,”.
(9) In regulation 10(12), at the end insert “or the obstruction under regulation 9(2) of a person carrying out a function under regulation 8”.

You lot got that?

Did you know?

On 4th July 2020 the regulations were repealed in their entirety and were replaced with The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (No. 2) (England) Regulations 2020 (SI 684).

Could you construe morality or responsibility in terms of counting “households”, an abstract bourgeois concept? Here are some dictionary definitions of “household” (noun):

  • individuals who comprise a family unit and who live together under the same roof
  • all those who are under the control of one domestic head.
  • the people of a house collectively
  • a family including its servants.
  • one or more people who live together in a common space, share meals, and combine economic resources.

Many of us do not live in “households” at all but share crowded dwellings, occupy sites, or borrow sofas and spare rooms from more settled folk. Some vulnerable people live alone, or with dependants.

Did you know?

(8) In regulation 8—
(a)in paragraph (3)—
(i)in the opening words, for “outside” substitute “staying overnight at a place other than”;
(ii)at the end of sub-paragraph (a), omit “or”;
(iii)omit sub-paragraph (b);
(b)omit paragraph (4);
(c)in paragraph (5), in the opening words, for “outside” substitute at a place other than”;
(d)in paragraph (8), at the end insert “in regulation 6(1)”;
(e)in paragraph (9)—
(i)in the opening words, for “three or more” substitute “a number of”;
(ii)in sub-paragraph (c), for “the gathering” substitute “a gathering in a public place”;
(f)in paragraph (10), after “a gathering” insert “in a public place”.

I wonder what time you’d have to leave to avoid the charge of “staying overnight”…

Did you know?

If you’ve ever tested positive for coronavirus in England and were subsequently killed by something else, you would be counted as a covid death by the ONS, but not necessarily by the government, which only counts deaths in hospitals. If you died in Scotland or Wales however, you would need to have died within 28 days of your test. If a positive test result came in after your death certificate was issued, you would not be counted. If you died in a care home before 29th April you would not be counted, after that you would be counted if it was mentioned on your death certificate, whether you had been tested or not.

Pfeffle excelled himself this morning. After blithering that he wanted people “to go back to (office) work” – everybody else is already working you numbskull – he stated that it wasn’t up to the government to tell people what to do. When challenged on the scientific advice he retorted that it was a matter for politicians to decide. He then clarified that he wanted the bosses to make the decisions for their workforce.

The government is the bourgeoisie and the bourgeoisie is the government!

There has been much speculation over what a “post-furlough” society might look like. The idea of “working from home” appeals to those who can get away with it, of course. People who habitually do fuck all in offices can do fuck all much more efficiently in their kitchens. In future will we continue to pay them to stop indoors doing fuck all, as a sort of tax on the genuine Working Class, while they become ever more dissociated from reality?

Perhaps we will see the logistics Worker, the builder, the cleaner, machine operator and other indispensables emerge as a new labour aristocracy. In H. G. Wells 1895 novel, The Time Machine, the bourgeoisie have evolved into the Eloi, feckless weaklings who caper about in the sun, serviced by the troglodyte Morlocks, who prey on them at night.

Instead it is the middle class who will grow grey and pale, locked indoors jabbering over their futile tasks. Unlike the Morlocks they won’t develop good night vision; their eyes will be ruined by the computer screens and they will have compromised immune systems with no Vitamin D. They will become inbred, as they mate only with their “linked households”. Meanwhile we build our strength and confidence, take over the infrastructure, occasionally drag one out and chuck them on the barbeque. Doesn’t seem so dystopian after all!

Did you know?

The wearing of face masks is to be compulsory in a week or so, until then you are deemed safe without one. There are exemptions, make sure you know what they are …

This will coincide with the re-opening of gymnasia and sports halls, which in the meantime, remain unsafe. My personal view of the masks I have seen is that they are a placebo, which may give a little comfort to those who are especially worried about catching the virus. Now if they succeed in absorbing viral material, what is to happen to discarded masks? Will they be handled as hazardous waste? In a hospital they would be incinerated.

These are mostly pieces of cloth or paper, necessarily loose-fitting and porous. I write as someone who has spent a fair amount of time running around masked up. As you exercise and the carbon dioxide builds up, you puff and blow in your mask forcing material around the sides and through the pores. If you wanted to make a difference you would need a demand valve and a HEPA filter, which would remove all particles down to a third of a micron. Corona viruses are typically around a tenth of a micron and the filter would remove a proportion of these. This isn’t a practical proposition, being prohibitively expensive and impossible to enforce.

The best reason for wearing a face covering is to prevent identification and photography by fascists and agents of the state, and to show solidarity with those putting themselves in harm’s way every day to fight oppression. On the plus side, the cops won’t be using section 60AA anytime soon.

Red and Black Telly roundup







Red and Black Telly roundup







Government announces plans to build four more mega-prisons.

corporate watch

On Sunday 28th June 2020, the British Government announced plans to build four new prisons. This article gives an update on the Prison Estates Transformation Programme – the state’s programme to create more than 10,000 prison places. This programme was the topic of Corporate Watch’s Prison Island report about prison expansion in England, Wales and Scotland published in 2018.

Summary

  • One new prison is planned for the North-West of England
  • Two new prisons are planned in the South-East of England
  • The announcement includes the already-in-process mega-prison at the site next to HMP Full Sutton in East Yorkshire.
  • Two previously announced prisons are also in the midst of construction in Wellingborough and Leicestershire.
  • If all the prisons are successfully built, a total of 13,360 new prison places will have been created, massively expanding the prison system.
  • The government has been boasting about its plans to create 10,000 new prison places since 2016, however, has only created 206 new places in the last four years.
  • Resistance to prison expansion and government bureaucracy have significantly delayed the programme.

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Why Barnard Castle?

Reproduced in full from: Craig Murray Please share widely.

UPDATED Dominic Cummings specifically stated now in the press briefing that he had been eager to “get back to work to get vaccine deals through, move regulations aside” and that is why he drove to Barnard Castle to test his eyesight.

Now it may be entirely a coincidence that the place to which he chose to drive for his eyesight test happened to be the site of the major factory of GlaxoSmithKline. It may be an entire coincidence that two days later, on the very day Cummings actually started work back in Downing Street he has stated was “to get vaccine deals through”, GlaxoSmithKline announced an agreement to develop the vaccine.

It is however plainly not crazy to ask the question. This astonishing Twitter pile-on against Clive Lewis for retweeting my piece says something very worrying, when you consider that the large majority of those piling in are supposedly part of the “opposition” and include many journalists. A society where it is viewed as a sign of madness to look into the prospect of corruption involving a company as massively, provenly corrupt as GlaxoSmithKline and a figure as shady as Cummings, is a very unhealthy society indeed.

One red flag to me is the number of trolls claiming GlaxoSmithKline only has a small and remote office in Barnard Castle. This is not the entire site, and in a further £96 million investment two new blocks are in construction or recently finished:

So to return to my original posting:

In 2012 GlaxoSmithKline were fined $3 billion for fraud, overcharging and making false claims about medicines in the USA. In 2016, GlaxoSmithKline were fined £37.6 million in the UK for bribing companies not to produce generic copies of their out of patent drugs, thus overcharging the NHS.

Despite the fines, these frauds were still massively profitable for GlaxoSmithKline. A perfunctory search on the company brings up similar frauds and fines it perpetrated in South Africa and India. All this within the last decade. I cannot find any information that anyone was jailed, or even sacked, for these criminal activities. It is absolutely astonishing that such an habitually criminal enterprise carries on serenely in the UK. And what is particularly interesting today is that it carries on its crooked activity from its massive manufacturing and research base in Barnard Castle, County Durham.

On 12 April Dominic Cummings was seen in Castle Barnard during lockdown. Two days later, GlaxoSmithKline of Barnard Castle signed an agreement to develop and manufacture a Covid-19 vaccine with Sanofi of France.

Of course, that could be coincidence. As a child I lived in nearby Peterlee and I know families may go to Barnard Castle just for relaxation. Even when that is illegal. But GlaxoSmithKline Barnard Castle has been working 24/7 during the coronavirus crisis including the weekends. It was working.

The government’s extraordinary refusal to confirm or deny Cummings visit to Barnard Castle appears to make little sense if he just went there for a walk.

But surely if he was discussing Covid-19 vaccine business on behalf of the government, that would answer all the critics of his trip, would it not? They would want to trumpet it from the hills? I mean to believe otherwise, you would have to propound a crazed conspiracy theory. You would have to believe that criminal activity may be occurring again involving GlaxoSmithKline of the kind which might lead to fines of 37.6 million pounds for overcharging the NHS, or of three billion dollars for fraudulent medical claims in the USA. Nobody sane believes that kind of thing, do they?

UPDATED: I should never be surprised by the puerile nature of debate on the internet, but I frequently am. There appears to be organised pushback stating that this article is only speculation. Of course it is. It states a number of facts not generally known, and wonders if there is a connection. It does not claim to have proof Cummings visited GSK, let alone of what he did when there. But both GSK and Cummings are known bad actors.

The even sillier argument is that Barnard Castle is the research and manufacturing centre and not the corporate HQ and therefore no deal could have been done there. Because when a company is involved in a massive criminal conspiracy, as GSK undeniably was in the multi-billion fraud in the USA or its price-fixing to the NHS, such criminal actions obviously can only be arranged in the main London company boardroom during normal working hours with lots of people around and the maximum chance of inconvenient people finding out what is happening? That is a stupid argument.

Equally, those who claim I have uncovered a criminal conspiracy are wrong. I have not. All I have done is put together some circumstances around Cummings denied trip to Barnard Castle, that could potentially provide a more reasonable explanation for why he would take the risk of going there, and why the government would stake all politically on denying it, than a day trip for a walk for his wife’s birthday. I have not proven anything.

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We’ve known since Grenfell and Windrush what it’s like to be gaslit by the Tory government

“Keep the same energy you have for Dominic Cummings’ misdemeanours for issues that specifically affect the underprivileged during Covid-19.”

gal-dem

It has been nine long weeks since Boris Johnson first declared the national lockdown. Throughout this time, people have witnessed their incomes dwindle, oftentimes to nothing at all, their livelihoods stripped away from them, weddings, concerts, graduations all cancelled. And many of us have been experiencing real heartbreak and tragedy, the kind that before now only really existed in apocalypse films and dystopian novels, with patients dying alone in ICU and their loved ones unable to attend their funerals, with sick relatives struggling alone in their homes and thousands of people enduring a kind of grief that is marked by solitude and self-isolation. All for the sake of the greater good, so that hopefully, other people would escape the earth-shattering losses that they had the misfortune to experience. However, now it has been revealed that all of this sacrifice, forgoing the chance to hold a dying parents hand or help out a struggling friend with children, is in fact “optional”. Well, at least to the PM’s closest and most trusted friends.

A joint investigation by the Guardian and the Daily Mirror revealed that

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Red and Black Telly roundup





Red and Black Telly roundup