CategoriesThought of The Day

Insects, hot water and Covid

Shhh…. I have a secret. Promise not to tell?

Last night, I forgot about the NHS clap. I know, I feel dreadful about it. As the clattering – and why was there clattering? – commenced on the dot, I was luxuriating in a hot, deep, bubbled bath. (In my defence, I had been working or looking after the children since 6 am).

I don’t know about you, but I am always impressed with and grateful for, hot water. Perhaps my relish stems from my backpacking adventures, staying in some of the grottiest South East Asian hostels, always without hot water. When hot water arrives – each time – my mind is blown when I consider that out of all human beings to have inhabited this dying planet, I have always been spoiled with plentiful of the warm stuff.

But it isn’t just with hot water that you and I have been blessed. Most of us have enjoyed limitless food and a never-ending supply of all forms of energy. Julius Caesar would envy us.

If we are really honest with ourselves – really candid – we have known, deep down, that our callous, unthinking use of the world’s resources was going to bring a day of reckoning. Just as a puppy sheep dog intuitively knows that it must do something when it sees a sheep for the first time, humans know that we reap what we sow. Our actions have consequences.

I also believe that, deep down, most of us knew that perpetual economic growth, the obsession with ever-increasing GDP, and the expanding population of the planet, had to end, either through our own deliberate actions, or forced upon us by nature.

These last six weeks, unless you have been on the frontline, or if you were unlucky enough to live in a high-rise flat, like many people I have enjoyed the unusually delicious weather, intermingling with nature as much as possible. Delightfully, no longer can I hear the hum of the roads. And unless my mind is playing tricks on me, nature seems more pronounced, bolder than she was six weeks ago. The birds are cheekier, but there are far fewer insects than I can recall.

In the last few days, oil prices in the United States had a negative value. Now that’s a sentence I couldn’t have imagined writing. Oil – let’s think about it – is so cheap, due to the dramatic drop in demand, that the producers pay other companies to hold the oil. The black gold – cause of so many wars and manmade climate change – has negative value. A cause for planetary celebration?

Quite clearly, I would not wish this pandemic on the planet. In the last 24 hours, the death toll in the UK is at least the equivalent of three Lockerbies. Terrifying, traumatic. This opportunity, though, for the world to recuperate, to breathe, is welcome. The good outcomes, set against the ghastly.

This new world reminded me of the controversial English economist, Thomas Malthus, a population expert. In 1798, he famously wrote: “Famine seems to be the last, the most dreadful resource of nature.” I.e. nature’s in-built brakes control the human population (largely, this has been disproved). I do not claim that nature conspired to send us Covid, nor that a supernatural being sent us this plague to teach us a thing or two. But it does seem pertinent to draw parallels with what Malthus wrote, though flawed, with the impact of coronavirus.

Are we in the developed world at peak economic development? Will we fly as much after this? Will we work as hard?

I mourn the dead. I mourn the collapse of businesses, leaving millions out of work. I mourn the increase in domestic violence. And I mourn so many of the other Covid-caused horror stories.

My hope –though not my expectation – is that for those of us who have had time to think, about the world we want to inhabit, that we come out of our imposed hibernation determined to seek balance with our environment.

I can do no better than quote Jonas Salk, an expert in viruses.

“If all the insects were to disappear from the earth, within 50 years all life on earth would end. If all human beings disappeared from the earth, within 50 years all forms of life would flourish.”

The Covid crisis blurs into insignificance when compared to environmental collapse.


What is work? Enter: Universal Basic Income (UBI)        

Before this crisis, most of us had some sort of work to perform. You might be thinking: what about the retired and the super-rich – surely, they didn’t perform any work? Well, that depends on how you define work.

One of the “gifts” of Covid is that the concept of what is and isn’t work is now up for debate. Whether you are a grandparent schooling a grandchild on Zoom; or a neighbour shopping for a vulnerable neighbour; or a furloughed parent home-schooling their child; or a humdrum office worker, like me, now typing away in a spare room. All of us are performing work. Society might pay – and pay handsomely – for some of these jobs, but not all are considered to be worthy of the title “work”. It’s time for a re-configuration of our definitions.

By chance, two years ago I read Dutch historian, Rutger Bregman’s, career-defining Utopia for Realists. So inspirational I found this book that I sent some friends copies. In it, the historian examines efforts – notably by Richard Nixon (who was born a Quaker!) – to introduce a Universal Basic Income (UBI). Thereafter, Bregman argues – semi-cogently – for the introduction of UBI, internationally. Who would have thought that it was a Republican President who was closest to introducing UBI! Bregman notes that Nixon performed a volte-face when his advisors gave him a paper about the first experiment in UBI the 1830s Britain. Nixon’s advisors argued that the British experiment proved that it couldn’t work in 1970s United States.

In brief, the UBI concept goes as follows: due to technological advances, millions of people will lose their jobs. One way to solve the mass unemployment is to pay each citizen a chunk of cash each month, without any assessments. Citizens can still earn more with paid work. Stay-at-home parents, students, hedge fund managers, retirees et al, all receive the same sum from the State each month, enough to pay for a home, utilities and food. The rate would vary per country. With no assessments, the State wouldn’t need to waste so much time and effort on the Department for Work and Pensions, or equivalents. Some might regard this as the fulfilment of one of Marx’s best-known quotes:

“… society regulates the general production and thus makes it possible for me to do one thing today and another tomorrow, to hunt in the morning, fish in the afternoon, rear cattle in the evening, criticise after dinner, just as I have a mind, without ever becoming hunter, fisherman, herdsman or critic.”

But UBI isn’t Marxism. UBI doesn’t interfere with property rights, nor does it agitate for class struggle.

UBI experiments have taken place all around the world, notably in Finland. The 2019 Labour manifesto was filled with so many give-aways, including the hilarious free internet for all, that its commitment to experimenting with UBI, contained in page 60 of its manifesto, garnered little attention. Labour stated: “And we will explore other innovative ways of responding to low pay, including a pilot of Universal Basic Income.”

Much of the supposed madness of Corbynomics has been introduced by the Tories. Furloughing – where an employee received 80% of pay up to £2,500 per month for doing no work – and the £2,500 scheme for the self-employed, are, combined, UBI by another name. At the very least, the Chancellor’s giveaway should be regarded as demi-UBI. Yet, our media are using the new-fangled furlough terminology rather than the better-known, UBI. However, one main difference is that our UBI doesn’t apply to non-employees or those who weren’t self-employed. But it’s a good start.

According to The Independent, on 6 April, Spain is the first European country to introduce UBI in response to Covid, even though we have implemented demi-UBI first. The difference being is that in Spain UBI is likely to remain post-pandemic. Billionaire Twitter founder, Jack Dorsey, is spending up to $1bn on promoting UBI as a cure to the Corona Depression.

Despite the introduction of demi-UBI, with consumer spending decimated, no amount of Government stimulus will be able to kick-start the economy until a vaccine has been found, implemented, and implemented internationally. Our economy is led by consumer spending, but now that consumers are hard-wired to stockpile food and cash, consumers will not come to the rescue. As a result, it’s likely that we will be stuck in a depression, with millions out of work, whilst technology – now used by people of all ages – hoovers up jobs. Protectionism may well stymie international trade, exacerbating the negative spiral. A full UBI may be our only way out.

During World War Two we have Keynes working away, and then shaping post-war Britain for the better. With the world economy on its knees, our welfare state was created. Do we have a Keynes today? Bregman is no Keynes, but to his credit he has only popularised an idea which has been around for nearly two centuries. Perhaps UBI will be our saviour.


Testing, testing, 1, 2, not 3       

In mid-February, I started with a sky-high temperature. After that, I was absolutely shattered for two days. Adhering to governmental instruction, I telephoned 111, and followed their advice: no need to isolate, nothing to see here, move along now. Not long thereafter, my wife fell ill with a temperature, lethargy and then a persistent cough. During her illness, the advice changed, so we as a family stayed at home.

Was that coronavirus? Perhaps, and perhaps we will never know. Had we been living in South Korea, Hong Kong, China, Singapore or Taiwan, we would know. As a result, we continue to live as if we are vulnerable to coronavirus, when we might be immune. It is not a great imposition on us. No sympathy required. Millions of you are in our boat.

Unfathomably, however, the Government hasn’t tested, to any proper degree, the people that really matter most: the heroes in hospital who are risking their lives. Medics who live with someone with a cough are now obligated to isolate due to the dearth of testing. At a time when the NHS is calling up retired medics to re-join, it is madness not to test the current health practitioners who are languishing at home, well. On top of that, medics who carry the virus but are asymptomatic are spreading the virus to the healthy. You couldn’t make it up. The NHS staff know this: what a personal burden to carry at the most challenging of times. Medics, particularly from a BAME background, are dying.

The countries closest to the virus epicentre have the best reason for being unprepared. Equally, those countries furthest from the virus epicentre have had the longest period to prepare. But we didn’t, in what was the greatest dereliction of duty by a Government in my lifetime. We could have followed South Korea, but we didn’t. Contact tracing, coupled with an early shutdown, could have squashed it, just as New Zealand has done. But we had reckless Boris at the helm, someone who viewed the ill as somehow lacking in moral fibre. To quote the PM’s biographer, Andrew Gimson, in The Guardian:

“Boris never used to believe in illness. He neither admitted to sickness himself, nor noticed it in others. He believed he was strong enough to keep going regardless of any symptoms from which he might be suffering. His strong inclination was to overwork, not to put his feet up. In the light of his experiences one hopes he will change his outlook.”

Though we are as a nation plugged in to the global movement of people, the Government squandered our island advantage. When I returned to the UK by plane in February there were no checks at the airport. We were asking for it. From early February onwards, what has happened to us was entirely foreseeable.

Postscript: I’m writing to record precisely what is happening so that, when the pandemic passes, the Government – through its media allies – cannot spin us all out of the calamity of their making. The Government must pay for its incompetence.

CategoriesThought of The Day

Can I say this? The kids have never been happier

As we roll into our fourth week in lockdown (we started earlier than most because of my wife’s high temperature), my children – 8 and 10 – are the happiest we have ever known. Against the backdrop of the daily carnage, the children’s joie de vivre is uplifting.

It sure didn’t start that way. Their affection and friendship for each other has grown each day. When they were bickering at the start, they are now enthralled with each other’s company.

If the role of the parent is to provide a safe and happy childhood, though we have tried our best, the pandemic has caused us to reconsider how we will continue to parent. It is disconcerting just how wrong we got it before all this.

Why are they happier?

Let’s start by deconstructing how we are living. For the kids, the day starts at 9am with exercise: either Joe Wicks on Youtube, trampolining or scooting. Pre-corona, at 8:30am, we would be flying out of the house – often late, often in the rain, often angry – on foot, evading angry cars and the pollution. So far, the day has got off to much more pleasant start!

At 9:30am, the children practice their set spelling and then – here’s the cool part – they test their friends on Zoom. Not only does this give the children the chance to see a friendly face, but they learn the role of the teacher, whilst using awesome, free tech. Every session has been a success.

At 10am, shared between two other families, my children begin their second Zoom lesson of the day, this time with a brilliant teacher who had the previous night emailed to us the lessons. Taking three children at a time, whilst the other child finishes their homework, at a cost of £10 per hour per family, my children are enjoying a ratio of 1:3 with their teacher. At school, the ratio is ten times higher.

With my wife and I having completed a morning’s work (or there or thereabouts), we have a homecooked meal together as a four. Surely this beats a school dinner!

Following a spell in the garden, at around 1pm, Gran teaches them both German via Zoom – something that they wouldn’t be doing at school. At around 2pm, Grandma reads to them, or listens to them read, again via Zoom. (We appreciate just how lucky we are to have both grans on earth, with both being former teachers.)

At around 3pm, I take over…. My time – which I adore – consists of either exercise in the form of a walk, or the building of a treehouse. As the least practical person I know, my kids have never experienced their father using his hands, other than to type. Away from the constant pinging of email, I’ve had some awesome time with them both, whilst my wife works.

We eat at around 7pm, eating better than we did pre-pandemic: our third meal of the day together as a family. At bedtime, oftentimes a grandparent reads to them via Zoom. And then we press “repeat”.

Of course, their new-normal is so very different from their pre-pandemic lives. Adaptation has been easy for them. But as their lives pre-pandemic were so – we thought – good, why are they happier now? I don’t know, but I must apply my mind to it. Some possible answers, or a combination of them, are:

  1. They now spend much more time with each other, rather than being in different classes.
  2. The children enjoy more time with their parents.
  3. And more time with grandparents – significantly so.
  4. We have had to allow them greater use of technology, earlier than we had planned.
  5. We spend more time outside.
  6. We eat better food.
  7. The children now have the time to get bored.
  8. We no longer rush to meet deadlines, either to school or clubs.
  9. We don’t face pollution on the walks to and from school.
  10. The confines of the curriculum are no more.

Are they better placed in this new world than their old world? I don’t know, but they are happier. I accept that we are one of the most fortunate families in lockdown; that most families don’t enjoy our options. We are doing our best, playing the hand we have been dealt.

The answers to what to do post-corona may lie in the seminal Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari. Our brains are not wired for today’s hectic world. In the history or our species, it is only in the last few hundred years that parents have sent their offspring to school. Before that, parents, grandparents and the tribe raised the child. It takes a village to raise a child goes the African saying, rather than a system of education designed by Victorian industrialists, politically tinkered with each time a new Education Secretary is appointed.

Back to the drawing board, literally.


How a solicitor political leader might act?

With the PM fighting for his life, the mantle has been passed to Dominic Raab, a solicitor. Sidestepping the constitutional crisis, given that it is the Queen who appoints a Prime Minister and there is no such thing as a deputy PM, what can we expect from another lawyer leader? Specifically, what is to be expected from a solicitor leader?

As a lawyer, Raab is in good company. Multiple British Prime Ministers have been barristers, but only one solicitor has made it to the top job: David Lloyd George (and Nicola Sturgeon in Scotland). Internationally, two of the world’s greatest leaders have been lawyers: Mandela and Ghandi. In the US, 26 US presidents have been lawyers, including Jefferson, Lincoln, Roosevelt, Nixon, Ford, Clinton and Obama. If you want to run your country, practising law will enhance your chances.

Are there any skills, typically found in solicitors, which might give us a clue as to how Raab will lead during this potential interregnum, or in the event that the worst should befall Boris (and get well soon, PM)? And which solicitor traits might impede Raab?

In my experience as a solicitor, we learn the rules of the game, and then try to play the game better than others. As a particularly astute solicitor, Raab should be able to digest volumes of written information, committing the key parts to memory. It is fair to say that most solicitors have only a basic grasp of maths, therefore any scientific advice which is data-heavy would need to be translated into words.

Most lawyers struggle when only provided with imperfect, incomplete information. Caveating advice, if not fully armed with the facts, is de rigueur for the solicitor (and so is using terms such as “de rigueur”!). At this time, heavily caveated public information messages will not work.

Due to the uncertainty of the COVID science, any lawyer would struggle to form a conclusion on what to do next, and then convince us – the public – of the rationale. For that is another trait: although lawyers are (most unfairly) notorious for bending the truth, our code of ethics is embedded into most lawyer’s DNA, preventing any distortions of truth. My hope – and my expectation – is that Raab would be straight with us. I have seen nothing to suggest that Raab lacks the key lawyer trait of integrity.

But how would a solicitor, provided with imperfect science, reams of data and surrounded with political apparatchiks, make a decision? For example, when should lockdown be relaxed? Most solicitors would instinctively know what to do: follow the expert’s advice. Using the Socratic method, a lawyer would keep asking questions of the experts until the experts have been “knocked around a little” in order to test the veracity of the advice. After the “knock around,” a lawyer would demand that the expert’s updated advice was provided to them in writing, for a further scrutiny. The lawyer, then, would become the judge: weighing up the various arguments, then making findings of facts, before forming a conclusion. A civil legal practitioner like Raab (i.e. not a criminal lawyer) may intuitively opt for “the balance of probabilities” for his test for action, before being compelled to pluck for the safer, stronger “beyond reasonable doubt” criminal burden of proof. After all, Raab would be making life and death decisions.

Lawyers ought to be adept at both written and oral communication, although our communication can often get littered with jargon. As I type, on my desk is the letter which Boris despatched to every household in the country, ordering us to stay at home. From studying Boris’ writing, I would venture that these are the PM’s own words. As a journalist, Boris has the gift of the pen. We lawyers are comfortable with written communication, but we do not possess the journalist’s magic for written prose (this is a prime example). Heaven forbid that we receive a letter from Raab, but if we do, I doubt that it will he who drafts it.

With the spoken word, again lawyers should be skilled, more so if they practised as an advocate, which Raab did not. When public speaking a solicitor is less likely to ad-lib than a barrister. As a result, solicitor speeches are often shorter and, frankly, less interesting than a barrister’s (unless this is just my speeches!). Unlike barristers, solicitors tend not to have a pronounced style: just compare Raab’s delivery with that of Geoffrey Cox QC. When performing advocacy, I don’t want to come up against a barrister, even if my arguments are more compelling.

Equal with integrity, what we need at this juncture is stellar leadership. In my view, top political leaders read the mood – something that Boris does well. The best politicians know how to compromise – something solicitors do well. And the crème de la crème of political leaders – the Mandelas and Ghandis – usually have a North Star: solid guiding principles. Solicitors do not have a monopoly here. In fact, being open to compromise, open to changing one’s mind, actually makes it harder to be a solicitor political leader.

But what sort of leader do we want at this most bewildering of times? If we need scintillating, Your Country Needs You-type leadership, my guess is that you wouldn’t want a solicitor leader. But if we need someone with integrity, who is evidence-led and expert-led, a solicitor leader is exactly what we need.

Good luck to both Boris and Dominic.


No time for sexism, Secretary General

In a thoughtful piece printed in The Guardian on 2 April 2020, United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, argues for a three-pronged approach to tackling the pandemic. To boil it down, Guterres demands: suppression of the curve; economic rescue packages; and seismic structural changes, so that the world doesn’t return to the pre-pandemic, business-as-usual, world of vast inequalities. We are as weak as our weakest international healthcare system.

Only a fool could disagree with that.

Examining further, the Secretary-General also wrote:

“Clearly, we must fight the virus for all of humanity, with a focus on people, especially the most affected: women, older people, youth, low-wage workers, small and medium enterprises, the informal sector and vulnerable groups.”

Women: why focus on women in this context? The statistics, first emanating from China, and then from every other country, reveal that men are much more likely to die from this virus. In Italy, for example, men accounted for 55% of cases, but 69% of deaths. In Ireland, the figures are stark: men account for 48% of cases but 69% of deaths. A similar ratio is found in the UK.

Why do men die in greater numbers from COVID (and live four fewer years then women in the UK) than women? At the time of writing, the science is unclear. Perhaps the reason is that far more men than women smoke. Perhaps the reason is genetic: for example, women can fight off Hepatitis C far more easily than men, because of their two X chromosomes to men’s one. Shortly, the puzzle will be solved.

But regardless of reason, it is baffling why the Secretary-General’s precise written – rather not verbal (the spoken word can be forgiven, see this post) – words, favoured the gender which is least impacted. Was it sexism, or simply folly? This is a virus in which we are all in it together, though the poorest will, as ever, be hit hardest. At a time when our leaders must be precise with their comprehension of the data, and free from dogma, the Secretary General’s error is unfathomable.

Undoubtedly, today, based on the evidence, I would rather be female than a male. I shall update my will accordingly.


Get well soon, Boris

For temporal context, I type this blog as the PM is spending his second night in hospital with coronavirus. As I type this second sentence, Boris has now been taken to intensive care. Get well soon, please.

I’m shocked, I think, but these last few weeks has been so awful out in the real world that I doubt that much would shock me now. The latest statistics suggest that only half of infected people survive intensive care. I’m rooting for you, Prime Minister. Come on!

It’s disconcerting how quickly one becomes numb to awful news. Will life always feel uncertain? And will this unsettled mindset help us to live more in the moment, than in the future? I will muse on that.

It’s a cliché, but the present is like living in a disaster film. If aliens land, the incident might make the “and finally” section of the news.

For the sake of posterity, (and it is in no way schadenfreude to highlight this), on 3 March 2020 Boris shook hands with coronavirus patients in hospitals. He confirmed this during a press conference. Either Boris hadn’t been briefed properly by the Chief Medical Officer, or he disregarded their advice. My bet is on the second. Boris knew best.

And this tells you a lot about our Prime Minister. The first or, arguably, the second, most important person in the country needlessly shook hands with very ill people, and then hosted COBRA meetings with the most important people in the country, during a time when the top people needed to be well. Recklessness is not a trait that I want in a Prime Minister.

A few weeks ago, when news broke of the COVID diagnosis, my thoughts were: first, get well, PM; and, second, that he deliberately infected himself by shaking hands in hospitals, so that he could recover from coronavirus, proving to us that COVID was not something to be scared of. If this is right, though it is a brave, self-sacrificing move, it was – and has proved – highly risky for both him and us. At these times, we need the very best of decisions, by the very best that we have to offer.

Let’s remember that Boris’ umpteenth girlfriend (pregnant with his umpteenth child), chief strategist, health secretary, as well as the Chief Medical Officer, along with lots of other top officials, have all had coronavirus symptoms. Was Boris the spreader? Or did his blasé attitude to this killer virus provoke others to drop their guard? We will never know. I hope that they all recover, and quickly.

What we do know is that, despite his deteriorating illness, Boris continued to lead the COBRA meetings, when he should have been resting. On a plane, air stewards always instruct us to put our breathing apparatus on before helping a child. There was no shame to be had in staying well during a national crisis, but Boris will be Boris. The quality of his decision-making must have been impaired by his sickness, endangering everyone. And this tells you something else: Boris doesn’t trust his underlings to run the country.

Get well soon, Prime Minister.

CategoriesThought of The Day

Are You Important?

I’m not particularly important to the functioning of society, and nor are most people. But that’s OK. This confirmation was made crystal clear by the Department of Education’s recent list of who the Government states are key workers in our response to COVID-19.

I would argue that the people on this list aren’t just crucial to the tackling of the virus, but they are – and always have been – crucial to the functioning of society. The below people are heroes and have always been heroes.

Health and social care

This includes but is not limited to doctors, nurses, midwives, paramedics, social workers, care workers, and other frontline health and social care staff including volunteers; the support and specialist staff required to maintain the UK’s health and social care sector; those working as part of the health and social care supply chain, including producers and distributers of medicines and medical and personal protective equipment.

Education and childcare

This includes childcare, support and teaching staff, social workers and those specialist education professionals who must remain active during the COVID-19 response to deliver this approach.

Key public services

This includes those essential to the running of the justice system, religious staff, charities and workers delivering key frontline services, those responsible for the management of the deceased, and journalists and broadcasters who are providing public service broadcasting.

Local and national government

This only includes those administrative occupations essential to the effective delivery of the COVID-19 response, or delivering essential public services, such as the payment of benefits, including in government agencies and arms-length bodies.

Food and other necessary goods

This includes those involved in food production, processing, distribution, sale and delivery, as well as those essential to the provision of other key goods (for example hygienic and veterinary medicines).

Public safety and national security

This includes police and support staff, Ministry of Defence civilians, contractor and armed forces personnel (those critical to the delivery of key defence and national security outputs and essential to the response to the COVID-19 pandemic), fire and rescue service employees (including support staff), National Crime Agency staff, those maintaining border security, prison and probation staff and other national security roles, including those overseas.


This includes those who will keep the air, water, road and rail passenger and freight transport modes operating during the COVID-19 response, including those working on transport systems through which supply chains pass.

Utilities, communication and financial services

This includes staff needed for essential financial services provision (including but not limited to workers in banks, building societies and financial market infrastructure), the oil, gas, electricity and water sectors (including sewerage), information technology and data infrastructure sector and primary industry supplies to continue during the COVID-19 response, as well as key staff working in the civil nuclear, chemicals, telecommunications (including but not limited to network operations, field engineering, call centre staff, IT and data infrastructure, 999 and 111 critical services), postal services and delivery, payments providers and waste disposal sectors.

When this virus passes, lest we forget the heroes on this list – those who cannot hunker down at home with every other sensible person.

Let’s celebrate the delivery drivers, and the paramedics.

Let’s praise the refuse workers, and the doctors.

Let’s remember the bank workers and the journalists.

Let’s commemorate the supermarket workers and the police.


Lock Them Up?

It’s a criminal offence to speed, because when you speed, you are a danger to others. It is a criminal offence to have unprotected sex, as a HIV carrier, if you haven’t warned your partner of the likely transmission. The libertarian logic underpinning these laws is sound: your actions are causing harm to others and must therefore be stopped.

For caring and intelligent people, their moral compass has been speedily reconfigured to now include the calculation that their actions might lead to the reckless transmission of COVID-19. The news is filled with knackered, mask-wearing medics, carrying signs, imploring people to stay at home, whilst they bravely save lives. If you won’t obey the Prime Minister, at least listen to these hero medics.

The blindspot for some people is that they haven’t grasped that even if they do not display symptoms, then they might still be carriers. Our actions have always had consequences, but now more so than ever.

It’s now time that the law caught up with morality. There have always been, and will always be, people who outsource their moral compass to the low bar set by the law, so we need to raise the legal bar. Some of these people may be super-spreaders – the unmasked mass murderers of this time.

It’s the first obligation of the Government to keep its people safe. Therefore, time-limited emergency legislation is urgently needed to prevent the morally bankrupt from spreading this virus. Chunky £1,000 fines should do the trick, for prison is the last place we would want to place such fools.

CategoriesThought of The Day

Then The Earth Healed

“And the people stayed home. And read books, and listened, and rested, and exercised, and made art, and played games, and learned new ways of being, and were still.

And listened more deeply.

Some meditated, some prayed, some danced.

Some met their shadows.

And the people began to think differently.

And the people healed.

And, in the absence of people living in ignorant, dangerous, mindless, and heartless ways, the earth began to heal.

And when the danger passed, and the people joined together again, they grieved their losses, and made new choices, and dreamed new images, and created new ways to live and heal the earth fully, as they had been healed.”

Kitty O’Meara

I hope you will agree, this poem is a must-share, in these times.

With the speculation surrounding just how many people COV-19 will take from us, it is right that we remember that according to the World Health Organisation findings, pollution kills around 7 million people annually, with some 40,000 Brits per year. And with our pre-pandemic roads fit-to-bursting, we lose circa 2,500 to road deaths, with thousands of others dying needlessly on the roads.

Whilst the earth heals, due to a significant drop in pollution caused by this pandemic, it might well be that the world’s population will finish this year higher than it would have been. Is this a cause for celebration?

How blinkered we are as a species! We respond with devastating alacrity to acute problems like pandemics, but we find it near-impossible to handle the larger threats to the human species – pollution and climate change. We need a longer lens. It’s time that we press reset on what is important to us as a species.