Jackanory Tell a Story in a Rose Garden

I hope that people who are now so exercised by the Dominic Cummings affair can now understand why so many of us have been so passionately exercised about the EU referendum and everything Brexit related that has unfolded from that.   Several excellent analyses I have seen from columnists as to why the majority of people are furious, have made the point about how personal this issue has been.

Everyone was expected to follow the Covid lockdown rules and they are, without doubt, difficult rules which divide family, which isolate people, which cause anxiety on many fronts, whether that is health, social or financial.   To see a person with power allowed to justify his breach of the rules so publicly without so much as an apology then have him and his slightly fantastical explanations defended furiously by PM and cabinet ministers alike has not only made the government a national and sadly an international disgrace,  but has touched people up and down this land at the most personal level, as they feel the pain of missing their children and grandchildren, or as they cope with their own childcare dilemmas without leaving home.

Their people have died alone, their frail elderly relatives are in care homes are maybe completely baffled as to why they are not getting visits from loved ones.  Their houses and flats are crowded, and their children are climbing the walls.  I read an article about young people going back to school in Spain as we ease out of lockdown, and the thing they found hardest was not being able to hug each other because of the social distancing rules.  This lack of being able to show our normal affection for each other is a source of pain.  Yet most people in Britain have followed the rules despite all these difficulties and temptations.  The previous government advisers found to have breached their own recommendations resigned swiftly.  Dominic Cummings instead held a personal roadshow in the Rose Garden and refused to admit he had done a single thing wrong and even let slip he has been making decisions for the Prime Minister without bothering him, a rather worrying revelation which hasn’t really been followed up by the press yet.  Nobody every voted for Dominic Cummings.  But he has done what they have all done since 2016 – doubled down again and again and got Boris Johnson and his mates to do the same.

So hold on to that thought for a moment – why you are so angry?  The Dominic Cummings/Boris Johnson partnership and their cabinet muppets are taking the mick, that’s how you feel, right?  For some of us, all this is just a continuation of the fury we have felt at the egregious interference with our families and businesses and lives that Brexit represents since 2016.  For us this has been personal for many reasons.  We have been lied to constantly, we have had broken promises, our concerns have been ignored.   You see, when government decisions have such a personal impact on the day to day lives of so many people and they are managed so badly, they cause division and make it impossible to forgive anything.  The scale of anger over the “one rule for them aspect” jars because the lockdown has affected every single person directly.  The scale of rage over Brexit and Brexit lies has been met with much apathy, indifference or irritation from the other half of the British public largely, I believe, because there are so many people who don’t think they will be affected.  They don’t think it’s relevant to them.

Conversely, the rest of us have raged because we see the hypocrisy of the crowing about removing freedom of movement for a nation, and for us personally, by a bunch of politicians many of whom have sneakily got themselves a second EU passport or who’s financial position means they will always have freedom of movement.  We have seen government ministers owning companies which have profited from the volatility of sterling through these long and terrible 5 years, a volatility caused by them,  whilst many of us with small businesses contemplate the damage that leaving the EU represents to our life’s work.

For millions of us will be affected, have been affected in the most personal way by Brexit.  People have already lost jobs, closed businesses, scrabbled around for new contracts.  Our sense of identity has been assaulted; a part ripped from us.  Families have been divided, children face a future having to choose between looking after elderly parents in one country or living with their spouses in another – forced to choose.  EU citizens have been insulted and faced discrimination and xenophobia never faced before as they have been made to justify their presence on British shores.  They are being made to pay extra for their access to medical treatment, in effect they are paying twice because they have a different passport.

Yes, I know you will point out that health and care workers are now exempted from the NHS surcharge,  but really, it’s the worse kind of racism that attempts to make out that some foreigners are more useful than others.  It’s really an extension of the “we didn’t mean you” attitude which is so offensive.   The policy should be scrapped for all immigrants living and working in the UK permanently, regardless of where in the world they are from.

EU citizens who had a legitimate vote in the EU elections last year were denied a vote with no justification simply because the Brexit government has nothing but contempt for Europeans and didn’t care enough to sort out its voter registration systems.  There is an attempt to hold the government to account for this disgraceful chapter by the way, and I would urge all of you who have professed to stand by the 3 Million to please support the 3 Million in this endeavour.  The crowdfunder offers a tangible way to challenge the government through the courts since you won’t be able to vote them out until 2024/5.  I have added the link at the bottom for this.  Please share and help if you possibly can.

The scale of rage over Brexit has been met largely with indifference or irritation amongst the general public because there are so many people who don’t believe they will be affected.  I am sorry to break the news, but whoever you are, you will be affected too at the end of 2020 when transition ends. You will all be affected.  When the government is totally blasé about whether we will have a reasonable trade deal with the EU by the end of the year, why would you now unquestionably trust them that no-deal won’t be a problem in light of current government behaviour?  If they can defend a bizarre story about driving to a castle to check your eyesight is okay, why would you believe them that we don’t need an extension to transition in the current circumstances.  If you are dependent on meds imported from the EU to stay alive, why would you think it will all be hunky dory if negotiations fail on trading arrangements when one of the key architects added something to his blog after his regulation breach in order to present himself in a certain way in that performance, claiming he had warned about Covid before it all began?  You don’t have to be a trade expert to know that no deal will present problems to supply chains.  If a virus can cause challenges to supplies of all sorts of things, as it has done,  so can a lack of trading arrangements.

If your job is hanging by a thread because your employers have used all their reserves to stay afloat with no income for months, why would you think after the economic shock of this Covid disaster is being worked out, that they will have anything left over to keep you in paid employment when their competitiveness and profitability is further slashed by no-deal consequences on their supply lines or when a deep recession removes discretionary spending from their customers pockets?   If government can carry on with a recess of parliament during a massive global health crisis and emergency, the like of which we have never seen before in our lifetimes, what makes you think they won’t keep avoiding being held to account on absolutely everything with their massive majority and 5 years to the next election.  They are taking you for mugs over Covid and Dominic Cummings, what on earth makes you think they aren’t taking us all for mugs over the refusal to request an extension and abandoning our trading relationships with our closest trading partners, neighbours and friends?  In fact, what else are they taking you for mugs over?

@redalphababe

To help right a wrong against our EU27 friends and family who were #deniedmyvote, please follow this link HERE

To sign a petition requesting the extension of transition until the Covid crisis is over please follow the link HERE

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