The chief executive of the firm that developed the new NHS Covid-19 app has said that it’s “rock solid” (Independent, 24th September). In which case, why, when I live three miles into England from the border with Wales and have a Shropshire postcode, does it say “Profi Olrhain Diogelu” (Welsh for “Test Trace Protect”) at the top, and refer me to the Covid guidelines for Wales when I press the “Read Latest Advice” button? That’s about as rock solid as Johnson’s management of the pandemic and mor ddefnyddiol â chiwcymbr pren (as useful as a wooden cucumber).
Today I tried to download the NHS contract tracing app but was told that my phone does not support it. I have an iPhone with 12.8.4 system in place. I can’t be alone!
The Brexit-coronavirus blame game
The government is urging NHS hospitals to prepare for a no-deal Brexit, just as it told the Road Haulage Association to do the same. The strategy bears comparison with the response to spiralling numbers of Covid-19 infections. The coming chaos; shortages of drugs; lack of staff; interminable queues at ports; HGVs stuck at the Kent county boundary; disruption to food supplies; rising hospital admissions and deaths from Coronavirus, all will be the fault of the NHS, truck drivers, logistics firms, supermarkets, and us, the voters. The last is at least 47 per cent right. Who voted for this government of charlatans?
It is too much to hope that ministers will accept responsibility for Brexit or for coronavirus failures. But it is deeply ironic that they are now pursuing their own version of Project Fear. Fear we must. The situation is grave and getting worse daily.
It is almost beyond belief that this shambolic government, driven by the rabid Brexiteers of the European Research Group, is prepared to risk the double whammy of a Covid-19 surge and a no-deal Brexit. Unless of course, they have an ulterior motive. Perhaps the ERG have discovered a way of making a great deal of money by selling Britain short. On the other hand, they may be squeaky clean, and just plain stupid.
Free the strong to protect the vulnerable
We are told to save “Granny” but “Granny”, if she wants saving, cannot self-isolate forever.
When will we see a long-term solution to deal with a virus which will not disappear soon, if at all?
Additionally, when will we see targeted protections for vulnerable groups who are at a higher risk of being harmed by this virus?
The only means of socio-economic recovery and long-term protection for the vulnerable is to remove restrictions for the non-vulnerable – freeing them to start paying the cost which they will shoulder throughout their adult lives and boost the economy, enabling them to provide the resources which the vulnerable will need if they choose to isolate.
The government should not tell grandparents whether they can hug their grandchildren, nor should it pursue short-term policies which leave “Granny” without support when funds run out. Free the strong to protect the vulnerable individual who wants protecting.
It appears that Donald Trump might not accept the election result. I’m not complaining about that approach as my life might have been quite different if I hadn’t accepted “There is no position for you next year”, “It's not you, it's me”, “Your cancer test result has come back positive” or even “Someone has to come last”, but I didn't have that option – I just had to move on, or in Trump’s case, move out.
Like most people following any sport, I have doubted an umpire’s eyesight, character or even honesty but Trump is going to doubt maybe 100 million people who don’t vote his way. Whenever I coached school sports teams I always emphasised: “The umpire is right” even if I doubted it as well.
Mature, strong people accept what the results are and move on. No more challenging the system that brought you to power – it doesn’t make mistakes, usually.