Realities

The Rules Don’t Apply To Them

(Image of Dominic Cummings by Radical Larry (CC BY-SA 4.0)) The last two months haven’t been the greatest of my life. Fundamentally, I’ve been one of the lucky ones. My job is safe and I’ve been able to work from home. I’m pretty bored with lockdown but I seem to be coping well enough. And I haven’t been seriously ill (like about…

The UK’s Hi-Vis (but Invisible) Workforce 

(Picture Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/bisgovuk/9191500878) After Boris Johnson’s address last week, my phone was vibrating endlessly with messages: ‘Looks like I’m back at work tomorrow then’  ‘Social distancing is over lads’  ‘Surely we’re not being sent back yet, there’s still thousands of people dying.’ The contradictions on show in these messages are damning. The Coronavirus crisis is by no means at an end, but the…

Keir Theory

It is often said of Boris Johnson that his mode of doing politics is a bluff: a bumbling fool act that hides a very nasty strain of Tory politics which people don’t truly see until they have learned to love him. His opposite, Keir Starmer, seems to have the reverse image; a man who constantly and straightforwardly tells us exactly what he…

OPEN LETTER: Cancel the Rent

To: The Labour Party cc: Thangam Debbonaire MP, Keir Starmer MP On the Subject of Rent and COVID-19: Across the United Kingdom, in every single one of your constituencies, there are private renters. These private renters are key workers. They are workers for the NHS, for supermarkets, across all essential services. They are the workers that you wish to centre your post-pandemic…

Left Reading Groups and Lockdown

Photo Credit: Rich Grundy  In 1792, a British army officer sent to assess the morale of potential troops in an imminent war against revolutionary France reported with horror that the workers of Sheffield did not only ‘read the most violent publications,’ they also ‘comment on them.’ In Halifax, a Methodist chapel had set up a debating society at which the town’s weavers…