Quebec the latest to tax the unvaxxed
Despite 87% vaccine take up, the Canadian province of Quebec will charge a health tax on its unvaccinated population, with around 45% of patients in intensive care, unvaccinated.
By the end of January, Greeks over 60 will be fined €100 for every month they remain unvaccinated, whilst Singapore requires Covid patients to pay for their own medical bills if they are unvaccinated.
Whilst governments the world over are busy creating a 2 tier society of the vaxxed and the vaxxed nots, this is a very handy deflection strategy from other chronic public health issues that none of them have successfully tackled, including obesity, alcoholism and drug abuse.
The term “antivaxxer“ has become a catch all for anyone who questions the validity of receiving vaccinations of products that are only delivered under emergency use authorisation, where the long term effects are unknown.
Whilst Boris Johnson is reportedly considering the scrapping of pretty much all COVID-19 restrictions from 26th January 2022, as over 98% of the population now has antibodies against the virus, this must apply to the whole of the UK, regardless of devolved authorities or vaccination status. Given the populism of both Nicola Sturgeon and Mark Drakewell, this looks likely.
Djokovic wins on court but not in court
After over a week of Australian melodrama, the “will they, won’t they” has finally been unveiled. No, it is not Home & Away but be on your way for Novak Djokovic.
The 9 time winner of the Australian Open is being deported despite complying with entry restrictions as fears that his “anti vaxx” stance would spread throughout the country, whose zero COVID-19 strategy has unravelled as cases have soared.
Sport and politics are generally best kept separate but given the Federal Elections in Australia in a matter of months, it is hard not to draw the conclusion that this has little to do with sport.
The Serbs are a very proud nation and Djokovic already had God like status but is now a living martyr. The next time Serbia play Australia in anything from tiddlywinks to football, expect it to get “fruity” from minute 1.
Wuhan – the cover ups continue
When Donald Trump alleged that the origin of COVID-19 was an escape of pathogens from the Chinese National Institute of Virology in Wuhan, which had received millions of dollars from the US, he was dismissed as a conspiracy theorist and big tech circled the wagons against anyone who dared to support Trump’s assertion.
The Chinese Communist Party restricted the World Health Organisation to a perfunctory visit of the Wuhan site and buried the possibility of a leak from the site being the proximate cause of the outbreak that has claimed millions of lives worldwide and wreaked unprecedented global economic damage. Apart from in China of course.
There have been rumours for some time that the scientific community were complicit in supporting the Chinese Communist Party in the cover up, which appeared to crystallise this week with assertions of the scientific community not wanting to upset the Chinese.
It is compelling that a prominent part of the scientific community is Sir Jeremy Farrar, a director of the Wellcome Trust and until November 2021, a member of SAGE, so fundamental to “the science” (so called) that the government have relied on so heavily for instructing COVID-19 policy.
Farrar’s hypocrisy appears to know no bounds, having previously advocated draconian lockdown restrictions for his fellow UK citizens, whilst tacitly accepting that covering up an “accidental outbreak” from Wuhan was acceptable collateral damage. Because “science”.
No HRH, no sweat for Andrew Windsor
In November 2019, against the advice of Buckingham Palace, Prince Andrew, The Duke of York gave an interview to Emily Maitlis to address allegations made by Virginia Roberts Giuffre that he had sexually assaulted her in 2001 through his connection to Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell.
Epstein has since “taken his own life” in police custody and Maxwell who has yet to be sentenced is unlikely to see another day outside of an American jail for her part in his grooming and rape ring.
Whilst Maxwell appears likely to take the names of other global figures who committed crimes against women trafficked into human slavery by Epstein with her to the grave, plain old Andrew Windsor, as he will be forever onwards known was ready to defend his honour in the face of such heinous allegations.
Veering like a zig zag from Pizza Express Woking to his inability to sweat after being engaged in gunfire during the Falklands War, Windsor’s interview has gone down in history as a “how not to” clear your name on national television.
Whilst Mrs Giuffre’s criminal case was given short shrift by the US legal system, ensuring Windsor will not at least be facing jail time, his lawyers’ inability to use a gagging order between Epstein and Giuffre signed in 2009 as a shield from her civil suit against Windsor means he must now give pre-trial evidence in “discovery”.
The decision to withdraw all of Windsor’s Royal patronages and military affiliations was reportedly part of a damage limitation strategy agreed on by Prince Charles and Prince William over advent and reluctantly signed off by HM The Queen.
Mrs Giuffre is apparently seeking an apology as a prerequisite of any out of court settlement. $10M may be enough to persuade her to disappear into wealthy and silent obscurity, a route Mr Windsor would be wise to replicate.
True & Fair – this won’t take long
Gina Miller is objectively an excellent lawyer. She was very clear during her succession of legal victories to delay Brexit that she had no political ambitions.
Imagine my surprise when it was announced last year that she was planning to form a new centrist party.
This week, Miller launched the True & Fair party. 13 people, including a number from her public relations company attended. Unlucky for some and certainly for Miller.
That is both true and fair.
The party’s over for Boris
On 8th December 2021, my piece entitled “Conservatively, political suicide” detailed the rapid decline in the fortunes of the Tory party’s fortunes since the Owen Paterson debacle.
In the intervening weeks, Boris Johnson’s fortunes have plummeted yet further with “wallpapergate” and “partygate” haunting him leading to Tory MPs from both Leave and Remain camps calling for his resignation.
In a humiliating if heavily caveated apology at the beginning of Prime Minister’s Questions, Johnson admitted attending a “work event” on 20th May 2020 that with hindsight he realised he should have ended before it had begun.
Repeatedly swatting away requests to resign, Johnson stuck to the line that the Sue Gray investigation into breaches of COVID-19 restrictions within the Cabinet Office at 10 Downing Street must be completed (apparently her report will be available as early as next week).
The optics do not look good. Whilst the public were unable to gather in groups, visit relatives in care homes or hospitals and funerals were “hurried” to the say the least, the good times rolled at Downing Street from DJs in the basement to cheese and wine in the garden.
There has been so much broadcast time and newspaper inches dedicated to the ever increasing number of fires the PM is fighting, I will spare you all an excess of hand wringing and summarise as follows:
- The Coronavirus Act must not be renewed on 26th January 2022;
- Vaccine passports and the NHS COVID-19 app must be scrapped;
- There must be no further infringement on the UK population’s civil liberties (as populists I have little doing that Nicola Sturgeon and Mark Drakeford will fall in line within days of England).
As for Boris if he wishes to leave on his own terms he should resign when he scraps the Coronavirus Act. I’m sure he will be a hit on the after dinner circuit and will trouser a lot of money in the process.
If he limps on until the local elections in May, the Tories face a thumping that even the England cricket team have avoided in the Ashes.
For all the talk of Remainers and the Mainstream media seeking to remove Boris, as the totem of Vote Leave (and I accept the validity of this chatter), it is his chaotic performance as Prime Minister, lack of wise counsel and constant short term reactions to events in the absence of any overarching strategy that will bring about his downfall.
For me, the need for Boris to leave high office is based on policy not personality. It is only a question now of how, when and whether he wants to leave either on his own terms or be forcibly removed after haemorrhaging the remainder of his goodwill with the electorate.
Spooked by China but not in the mainstream broadcast media
The briefing by MI5 to the Speaker of the House of Commons in relation to the Chinese Communist Party (“CCP”) spy, Christine Lee should come as little if any surprise.
Since David Cameron and George Osborne rolled out the red carpet to the CCP in 2010, Chinese technology has been embedded in both the 3G and 4G mobile networks and over £134Billion of British assets have been acquired by Chinese interests.
As far back as 2005, Christine Lee was networking with all 3 main parties, donating £5,000 to the Liberal Democrats.
By donating £675,000 to the Labour Party, mostly through the parliamentary office of the former Shadow Cabinet Secretary of State for International Trade, Barry Gardiner (who until Thursday was also employing her son, who enjoyed full access to the parliamentary estate), one may conclude that given the threat to national security, there would be wall to wall coverage of this outrage in the mainstream broadcast media. You would of course be wrong.
As with lockdown breaker, Sir Keir Starmer’s indoor party drinking during lockdown, this seemingly is not sufficiently newsworthy of screen time.
You might think this is due to inherent mainstream broadcast media bias but as I’m rapidly learning from reading Civil Servant 101, I couldn’t possibly comment.
© justchrisdavies 2022