Thursday, 16 September 2021

This thing of being alive is just so utterly amazing - which is why we must confront the bully culture.

This thing of being alive is just so utterly amazing. 

The story of how life moved from bacteria to plants, to animals, to forests and plains full of living creatures, all the way to people singing songs, laughing with children as we play and learn together, crying when we hurt, seeing, tasting, hearing, running and sleeping to awaken again, and everything else that emerges from being alive and human and loving and sensitive. 

Humour me, and stop right now, and gaze at your hand, and feel your hand and fingers, breathe into your hand and fingers, close your eyes, and then move them, move your fingers gently, and feel how utterly strangely wonderful this ability to use a hand really is. Then grip something tightly, with all your strength and relax to hold it ever so gently. Such a range of capability, such potential for finesse. 

Isn't it amazing? 

I do this and I think of the millions of years of evolution that went it to making this possible and I am filled with awe and gratitude. I am excited by this thought, this feeling. I think I did nothing to make this possible. How did I, this consciousness, arrive with this incredible set of capabilities? How lucky am I to be so gifted?

I am more often than not utterly in awe and in gratitude for being alive, even though some days I am deeply depressed, or insanely angry, or confused or frightened, or just meh! 

I know that this thing of being alive is oh so precious, for me and for you and for every baby born, for every person who lives, every being that lives - and this is why I detest the bully cult so much - how dare they (whoever they are) intrude upon that, impinge on that Life in others for their power, wealth and pomp. How dare they! That is the seat of my feeling of injustice, at it's most visceral.

The symptoms of chronic trauma are not a disorder.

People who cause trauma, who deliberately expose others to avoidable harms, are a disorder. People who expose others to chronic stress in order to accumulate wealth and power are a disorder.

Social systems that deny these simple truths are disordered.

George Bush and Tony Blair are disordered. As leaders or presenters or spokespersons of the institutions of competing militarised powers, they are a disorder. They are a dysfunctional psychology in action. 

If they were indicted and put on trial, that would probably go a long way to helping all those harmed by their actions come to better terms with their lived experience, especially if the outcome was to prevent future wars.  Most survivors do not want what happened to them to happen to anyone else, ever.

And for me it's not about punishing Blair and Bush et al - it is about preventing future harms by showing we are willing to intervene and forcibly impede those who would initiate and prosecute war or harm causation. Holding them to account and putting them in prison is a matter of health and safety more than it is a matter of punishment.

It is also true that to indict Bush and Blair is, for so many people, already too late, the vast harm they and those institutions they were embedded in is already done, and cannot be undone. Millions are suffering, un-necessarily. Their precious lives have been trampled upon and desecrated. How do we face that? What do we need to do to ease all that suffering?

The past is finished, the future is always unfinished.  

How we move in the present matters because here is where we determine the potential of the future. That we recognise what happened in the past and confront it matters in the present because it must be done in the present, it cannot be put off until tomorrow, or the day after, or next week, next month. It must be done in the present.

Part of the difficulty is that few, if any, will acknowledge that we live within a violent hierarchy cult that has caused millennia of harm, that is causing immense harm today, that appears to be on a trajectory of more harm into the future, such that it appears to be inevitable, there's a fatalism associated with how this history is regarded, how it is understood. 

In spite of all that it does not have to be this way, at all. It is this way, yet it does not have to be, into the future.

Who paid the price?

1. Externalised costs means that ALL accumulated wealth from industrial culture is toxic, without exception. In war, who pays the price?

2. Because of point 1. the bulk of what we call profit is in fact a cultural and social material  deceit. 

3. Governance of the shared commons implies duty of care which in turn demands an evidence based approach to all activity and policy that affects the shared commons.

Any activist that is not integrating these three elements is failing to address reality as it really is.

Poverty is a weapon system.

It’s an open secret that a lot of people in work mostly think poor people are poor because they are inferior. This is a core component of Industrial Social Conditioning. 

"The Poor Will Always Be With Us."

That is a lie upon which concentrated wealth and power is founded.

It is also built into every hierarchy religion, it is a lie built into mainstream psychiatry, mainstream psychology and mainstream marketing. The only reason 'the poor will always be with us' is because the system mandates that poverty must be maintained as a whip that is used to keep workers working for industries that cause harm as they operate to accumulate wealth and power into the hands of a hegemonic class, the Ruling Class.

And for those of us who are poor we are made to feel a cloud of shame while the others are destroying the environment and looking down on us.

So the problem is clearly laid out.

Life is utterly amazing and precious, bullies undermine that at every turn, it doesn't have to be this way.

We understand it and thus the next question is how do we resolve the problem?

How do we end the culture of bullying?

Kindest regards


"Do what you love, it is your gift to universe."

Tuesday, 14 September 2021

Oligarchy anti-democratic Grooming Memes - an example, debunked. A dynamic explored.

Right Wing oligarch friendly meme take down analysis.

There's a meme circulating suggesting removing or reducing politician's salaries, because the politicians are enriching themselves using our taxes. It is blatantly incorrect and it is a grooming device. Obviously people who are elected to represent the people in our legislatures are engaged in full time work, and so they need to be paid a decent salary. And they are engaged in a lot of work that cannot be done by a lone individual, and therefore they need to run an office, with researchers, advisors and other staff to assist them in their work. They also have the Civil Service to support them. All of these are necessities.

The meme is targeting genuine concern that a significant cohort of leading politicians are corrupt, but it switches the bait to a different hook in order to avoid the actual problem - the corruption is the influence of Wealth as a political hegemon that buys some politicians it is not the wage and expense system which supports their role.
The meme was advertised, sponsored, promoted and targeted at 'progressives' and others who claim to be politically anti-establishment. The targets are reposting it without subjecting it to a critical analysis, without understanding the meme is designed to help the oligarchy achieve their political goal of destabilising democratic regulation of their extractive industrial model..

So I am going to give it a go.

1. The issue is not the politicians wages, the issue is the influence of  Wealth (Wealth with a capital 'W' indicates Wealth as a political movement, a political organisation) on politicians and media, and the revolving door between Wealth, their media and think tanks and Government Office. 

For example in England right now we have a hedge fund banker who rose through the ranks of investment banking designing and then selling dodgy CDOs that caused the '08 crash in charge of the NHS! He was doing part-time work for JP Morgan all year, while being paid as an MP, rumoured to be earning more than 1K sterling per hour until the moment he accepted the role as Health Secretary! His salary is small change. His situation is not uncommon. He who pays the piper calls the tune, as the saying goes.

2. The  Oligarchy want you and I, and anyone who is concerned with political corruption to undermine democratic regulation so that they don't pay fair share taxes. The  Oligarchy want you and I to undermine the possibility of democratic regulation so that we don't fund NHS properly, so that it starts to crumble under the pressure and they will privatise it to save it, and then you and I must rely on privatised insurance to pay for our healthcare costs, generating a cash revenue stream for their coffers. 

The  Oligarchy want you and I to undermine democratic regulation so that the poor remain poor - in order that the oligarchy can make more profit from maintaining low wage workers (which is where they make most profit...) and more importantly The  Oligarchy want you to undermine democratic regulation so that they they don't have to help pay for climate and environmental damages or re-rig their industries to prevent harms, to pay their 'externalised costs'.

3.  To that end they carefully conflate our sense of distrust  of obviously corrupt governments which they influence, ironically enough, with their desire to dismantle democratic legal regulation, co-opting you to their agenda:  they do all of this rather than encourage you to occupy the legislature and exercise your democratic power as a shared responsibility to curtail the abuse of power by oligarchs, which is what you really ought to be doing, for your own and your children's sakes.

4. So to get the oligarch money out of politics, we must do that by electing decent men and women, honest people who are also experienced in the areas we need proficiency and who reject influence and money from lobbyist, into our legislatures and resource them so they can carry out their roles. 

5. We must also learn to spot grooming tactics in News Media and online, to make elections more honest, and we must become involved in understanding the problems and designing solutions. 

The Power Inquiry of 2006 looked at the matter of honesty in elections and direct involvement of citizens in designing policy, in some detail. This short article is a good brief introduction to the work of the Power Inquiry.

The activity of Political Grooming is a serious problem

Many people are being groomed by well organised, well funded grooming operations.

Grooming operates by studying the persons vulnerabilities and then targeting those with emotive concern in order to exacerbate them, which triggers an emotive amygdala reaction, which is often beyond conscious intellectual control and then by associating those heightened concerns with the concerns of the groomer the groomer can direct the behaviour of the target to meet the needs or exploitation target of the groomer. 

It is a very dirty, nasty process.

Utterly abusive.

And they get away with it because very, very few people understand these tactics, and rather than seek to protect the groomed we get irritated with them, and the groomers exploit our irritation to drive even deeper wedge between us all.

Two ways to counter this:

1. Better understanding across the progressive alliances of how grooming operates and functions. Awareness is the best defence, being able to see it happening as it happens...

2. Legislation that identifies grooming as a behaviour set, that names it as psychological abuse and then criminalises it by making it a criminal offence.

Gaslighting and Grooming, Blaming the Victim, Bullying

#Gaslighting is essential to the bully culture  because the bullies have to convince the majority of the population being bullied that they are not being bullied. That is because the bullies are usually a minority who would be unable to face down the majority if the majority united in resistance.

#GaslightingGrooming operates by studying the person's vulnerabilities, targeting those with emotive concern in order to exacerbate them, triggering emotive amygdala reaction, associating targets concerns with the concerns of the groomer by which means the groomer can direct the behaviour of the target to meet the needs or exploitation intention of the groomer. 

Target concerned about lack of housing, because it impacts her or his living situation.

Groomer links lack of housing to immigration - knowing full well the situation has nothing to do with immigration, it has to do with the economic set-up and legislation that reduces access to affordable housing.

Target becomes concerned about immigration. More stories are presented that dehumanise immigrants.

Groomer raises rent, lowers wages and this increases the pressure the target feels.

Groomer shares content blaming immigrants for higher rent, lower wages.

Target angry at immigration more than high rent, lower wages.

In time target hates immigrants. willing to cause harm to immigrants.

Multiply this 10 million times, significant numbers will be more easily manipulated to alter their voting behaviour, and some will be more susceptible to behaviour mod than others and go further.

Pick any concern, study enough people, locate the vulnerable, slowly work on them - ensure funding flows and think tanks and others maintain the 'work flow' of grooming content. Push until significant numbers of people change their behaviour in ways that can be exploited.

This activity is psychological  abuse.

It is locating biases and vulnerabilities, the rather than helping to resolve them, it exacerbates them, it exploits them in order to generate behaviour that is harmful.

Grooming is abuse. It is not a fair game. The groomer knows what he or she or they are doing. The groomed, always unaware of what is being done, is vulnerable.

For one person to to this to another is already quite grim.

For any organisation to do this to an entire population is a crime against humanity.

To do this as a profession, as a career is profoundly amoral and anti-social. To pay people to do this is an intentional action and it is a crime against humanity.

Does this apply to every Hierarchy?

Every Hierarchy of Power, Resources (Wealth) and Violence, yes.

There are examples of non-power hierarchies that are based on skill, age, experience, wisdom and they tend to be within egalitarian cultures.

Grooming is unknown in egalitarian cultures.

The Neoliberal Free Market Fundamentalists are waging a long war. 

In the same way as the endless war against terror, their war is open ended, with only a vague and misleading indicator in public as to the final goal. The Neoliberal Free Market Fundamentalists  will not cease in their efforts to undermine the very concept of a social contract because that is their enemy.

 They see the social contract as binding the democratic state to protecting the population from the worst ravages of the Oligarchy that is built on externalised costs - no one must be allowed to impose any democratic regulation that mandates that those costs be paid by the extractors of wealth.

Think of concentrated Wealth as a political party, a political hegemon with a budget to corrupt every level of democracy.

Their war is against the very idea that governments ought to exercise power to nurture social care on behalf of ordinary people who, having no real social material power, are individually, and as individualised, atomised citizens, weak and vulnerable and for that reason they need that help and protection, which is in part their right because they pay taxation to Government.

For more detail, read this interesting blog on the agenda,  the ideology and the reasons why cruelty is core to the activities of the Neoliberal Free Market Fundamentalists - the adverse effects are 'externalised costs'.

"In Oscar Wilde’s play, Lady Windemere’s Fan, when Lord Darlington defined a cynic as ‘a man who knows the price of everything, and the value of nothing,’ Cecil Graham replied, ‘And a sentimentalist, my dear Darlington, is a man who sees an absurd value in everything and doesn’t know the market price of any single thing.’

Graham is not alone in thinking that any value other than the market price is absurd. Many proponents of free markets think this way. 

This line of thought has an engaging clarity and simplicity: if a willing buyer and a willing seller agree on a price, what right has anyone else to say that this is not the fair value? 

(of course, in the real world many transactions are not between willing buyers and sellers freely assessing the value of the transaction.  Most smokers buy cigarettes, not because they have assessed the value and found it worth the price, but because they are addicted. Workers being paid below the living wage accept it, not because they agree it is fair, but because they have no other choice)."

--- worth a read, I think.

Because they are ideologues, the Free Market Fundamentalists are content to use psychologically abusive tactics most decent people would shrink back in horror from.  Grooming to influence, induct, enrol or hook people into a change in behaviour that can be exploited.

The ends justifies the means for ideologues. 

Their idea, their projection, their version of 'reality' is supreme. In their minds the Free Market is so good that it shoves aside evidence of harm and externalised costs, it rolls over adverse outcomes for people , it ignores collateral damage, it sees avoiding avoidable harms as a hassle or a restriction, a form of tyranny and their attitude clearly lacks empathic concern for people - people are economic units to be deployed that feed the machine that amasses wealth in order to form and maintain their political hegemonic structure.   

The Free Market Ruling Class considers themselves to be 'The Beautiful People'. They truly believe this - the culture of people whose wealth and status encourages them to assume that they are superior to all ordinary folk, they are taught to feel they are better qualified to rule and govern, they think they are wealthy because they are superior rather than lucky. Even those who merely inherit vast wealth think this.

It goes that those who are think themselves superior do not mind so much the wounds inflicted upon the inferior.

Notice how the Telegraph, the newspaper of the Free Marketeers, is waxing lyrical over a teenage woman, Emma Raducanu, who recently won a major tennis tournament, salivating over her 'vast' economic potential - she is a candidate for entry into the pantheon of beautiful people, a clothes horse for the neoliberal free market wealth accumulating mindset hiding behind Nationalism.

They wish to acclaim her as a role model, and will seek to co-opt her for the aggrandisement of their ideology. Her current sporting success is the result of her efforts, her parents support and her luck and is not a marker of Britishness, or of the virtue of vast wealth. They will seek to make of her a marker of both.  Even as they publish articles denigrating desperate people in leaky boats cross the English channel. Even as Priti Pat-Hell, another multicultural icon, seeks to find ways and means to push those vulnerable boat people back out to sea, as a public relations distraction from the many harms of Brexit.

Because these tactics are in essence psychological warfare tools, most of us decent people lack any understandings of how they work, and we are therefore largely vulnerable to that form of predation. 

That is why Murdoch can choose who Rules.

The Labour party elders are completely unable to counter these weapons not least because they are unable to identify them in real time, name them and then counter them in public discourse as a praxis of exposure, a way to educate the electorate on the nature of these tactics. See, show, tell - this they cannot do.

Public awareness of these tactics is the best defence in the first instance.

As things stand the Labour party elders and their membership appear to be unable to take the fight to the political grooming gangsters. They MUST change this, and rapidly. They have the public platform to do this, they need to name the tactical plays, every time they are given ANY platform, and they need to move away from the Press as a means to reach the public - they cannot speak clearly through that Press Mechanism at all. It will always seek to thwart them, twist their content.


Conflation is the merging of two or more sets of information, texts, ideas, opinions, etc., into one, often in error, and when done intentionally it becomes a weapon, a psychological tactical weapon.

The Free Market Oligarchy carefully conflates elements of people's concern in order to gaslight and groom those who are vulnerable within electorate. They know they cannot fool all the people, all of the time, so they target those who they identify as vulnerable by studying biases within demographics. 

Here are some examples.

Authority/Authoritarianism - Authority is the respect afforded to experience and skill in any given field. Authoritarianism is the brute force of Sajid Javid removing mask mandates, with the anti-mask Freedom lobby baying in the background, with impunity,  in order to provoke more spread of the virus to reach mythic herd immunity, aka 'living with the virus' as a means to stabilising 'the economy'.

Freedom/License - Freedom is not license to do as one pleases - Alisteir Crowley's admonition 'do what thou wilt is the Law' is not Freedom at all. Freedom comes with a responsibility to cause no harm. Causing pollution is a breach of Freedom of those who need to live without pollution.

Concern/Fear - Genuine concern is not the same as fear, and to denigrate genuine concern by lampooning it as fear is tactical gaslighting.

Evidence/Opinion - In matters of the shared commons, evidence is critical to developing healthy policy, and because opinion can often be in conflict with evidence, opinion or belief in the design of policy can undermine the health of the commons, precisely because it often ignores or denies the evidence.

Commons/Property - The deliberate occupation of the commons,  only for it to be privatised

Regulation/Limitations imposed - Oligarchs tend to see regulation of their industries as onerous, in particular regulation that limits toxic practices or harm causation. They conflate that regulation with tyranny or unjustly imposed limitations.

Duty of Care/Restrictions - Everyone has a duty of care, as participants in the community, to everyone else in the community. To cast those duties as restrictions is a deliberate conflation.

Autonomy/Sovereignty - Autonomy is about being equal and responsive within a community, with equal rights and responsibilities - Sovereignty means being above others, a law onto oneself. They are not the same thing.

Because they - the Free Market Fundamentalists - are ideologues, for them the end justifies the means, and this means all forms of psychologically abusive manipulation and grooming tactics are being used, without remorse.

Labour elders are unable to identify this, which is why the Blairites were able to sabotage Corbyn.

In order to resolve the problems we face, we MUST address this vulnerability.

We must thwart the political grooming machine before we can make any real progress on Climate, Pollution, Environment, Poverty, Racism, Misogyny or Warfare.

Awareness across the grass roots is key


Kindest regards


"Do what you love, it is your gift to universe."

Sunday, 12 September 2021

Because We Can, We Must

Because We Can We Must

The only way for the English people, the adults in the country, to start to repair the damage of the past 20 years (and more) of war mongering by the English Establishment, the Ruling Class who direct these wars is to indict Blair and to indict all those who prosecuted the War of Aggression against Iraq.

We need to be ruthlessly politically ethical and honest about all that flowed from that.

And yes, I know. I know. That's not going to happen any time soon. The Establishment will oppose and resist that, of course they will. Criminals do not voluntarily walk into the dock. That does not change the facts - the resolution of the problem remains the same. Indict our own war criminals if we want to encourage world peace. Lead by example.

If we want Peace, then we must at least prevent war. Chucking a few war criminals into jail would be a good move in that direction. 'Just saying!' 

Look at him: he is guilty, he is culpable and responsible for so much avoidable harm and he knows it. We all know it. He's not the only one. They all need to be held to account, and we all need to understand how we let this happen, collectively. How do we become so politically weak that we cannot impede our government when they are about to commit the worst possible crimes a state can commit? What does this say about the health of our polity?

"Sitting in the dock at The Hague"?

Some day, it must happen.

Peace is more than the absence of war.

How better to help the people of Afghanistan than to indict Blair, to own up to the awful crime that the English State perpetrated upon the Afghani people and to make appropriate reparations to the Afghani people for the damage our political class have inflicted upon them? 

It is also, given the days we are living in, absolutely critical to understand that there is no way to generate the international co-operation necessary to meet the challenges of Climate, Environment, Racism, Misogyny and Poverty without confronting war making and bringing it to an end. That means we must account for the harms caused and make it very, very clear that we will prevent further abuses of that nature into the future. It means we must demonstrate the ability to wage justice as a co-operative action.

This task will not be taken up by the Ruling Class who see war as a political utility and a cash cow - it must be us, you and I, and our neighbours, our brothers and sisters across the Earth.

Peace is more than the absence of war

It must be us, the people who are always caught in the crossfire, who always pay the price who extract the price of accountability from the abusers.

It must be us, the people working together as a humane polity, who unite in solidarity for our children, for their children and for all their futures as much as we would do it for our own present. 

It must be us who take the democratic legislatures and our judiciaries back from the oligarchy and it must be us who set those institutions and the various arms of the State to serve our people's needs  - to build peace, to establish stability, to start the repair of the damage done and to alter our systems of production and consumption systems so that they facilitate the prevention of further harm, be it preventing war or adapting to climate change, cleaning up pollution, repairing degraded environments, enriching our soils, cleaning our rivers, abolishing poverty and destitution and caring for all our vulnerable people as their needs dictate.

Peace is more than the absence of war

The prevailing profit system is built on deceit and externalised costs. WMD lies, and the costs born by the civilians whose cities, towns and villages have been made into combat zones. They did not invite the war, it came to them, unbidden. They paid the price. The cost in horrific deaths, disgusting maimings, devastating displacement, mass trauma and deep psychological distress is beyond all measure - the externalised costs associated with the profits of war supply logistic industrial production and consumption.

The War Against Terror shovelled vast wealth into the hands of a minority, who dominate our polities, and who continue to accrue wealth and power at our expense.  Obviously they do not want us to hold them to account.

Peace is more than the absence of war

Enough already!

We all understand the grasp the oligarchy and the powerful have on the news media, on the current economic settings, on our democracies, our institutions and our public spaces.  They mean business, and their business is mean, the inhumane desire to grasp power and exclude us from sharing it to improve all our lives. At times their ubiquity, size and aggressive resistance to healthy change suggests a fatalistic appraisal - they are too big to challenge, they have been around for too long, we cannot change them. All of this is true. 

We cannot change them. They will not volunteer to change. We can, however, disempower them. That we certainly can do when we work together, and they know this - that is why they devote so much energy to division within our grass roots population.  The future is always unfinished. Fatalism about the future is an error of judgement, and a logical fallacy.

And that is precisely why we must work ahead, and work together, from an evidence base. We must take up the work of confronting this situation in spite of their degree of control and influence, we must press ahead without their co-operation. 

I think that to do that we must better understand the dark arts of political grooming, economic sabotage, political corruption and manipulation as they present at every level, from the personal to the institutional. 

Neoliberals, bullies, authoritarians and dictatorships rely upon fatalism and logical fallacy narratives as psychological weapons that dissuade an oppressed  and exhausted yet potentially active population from taking the necessary steps to build social and political solidarity. 

Peace is more than the absence of war

We must erase that fatalism with the awareness that our unfinished futures are indeed opportunities, that we can change the situation by our collective efforts precisely because the future is unfinished.  Nothing is set in stone, other than stone itself and even stone is weathered to become sand and soil.

The power of the oligarchy, their normalisation of war, their ubiquitous wealth and their interference in our democracies are not inevitable, immutable, immovable. That power is not carved from the rock. That power is not mountains high nor is it oceans deep. That power is human artifice. That power is temporary. That power is not eternal. The power structures do not define the human species and they do not illustrate the human condition, even though they do mark out this cult that claims to be a culture.

Peace is more than the absence of war

We can set them aside. We must. That is our vocation as humane beings, as parents to the next  generation, this is our true vocation as neighbours, as friends and family and as a species. To craft a peaceful civilisation worthy of the gift of life.

The future for all our children is way, way, way bigger than the ruling class and the old, sordid bully cult.

It is for the citizens of each and every state to do this work within their own polities, as the first step.

Clean our houses, put them in order. We started to discuss this within England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, with diligence, hope and seriousness back in 2006, within The Power Inquiry.

"After eighteen months of investigation, the final report of The Power Inquiry is a devastating critique of the state of formal democracy in Britain. Many of us actively support campaigns such as Greenpeace or the Countryside Alliance. And millions more take part in charity or community work. But political parties and elections have been a growing turn-off for years.

The cause is not apathy. The problem is that we don't feel we have real influence over the decisions made in our name. The need for a solution is urgent. And that solution is radical. Nothing less than a major programme of reform to give power back to the people of Britain..."

Because we can, we must....

Kindest regards


"Do what you love, it is your gift to universe."

Thursday, 2 September 2021

Avoiding avoidable harm. Is it really so much to ask?

Deaths per million, August2021:  does not include cases of long covid or the many other avoidable harms caused by deliberate mismanagement, which is a political choice taking precedence over public health best practice. source

China's population is twice that of  US and EU.

Why are so few people of the Press/News media and government in USUK not taking into account the experience and lessons learned by China, New Zealand, South Korea and the other countries operating Elimination of Community Transmission strategy, and reporting on the successes, and the problems they encounter, and how they resolve those problems?   

When they do comment, why do they appear to deliberately portray these strategies inaccurately and describe them as meaning eradication or Zero Covid, and thus dismiss what is already being done, what is proven to prevent the harms associated with mitigation and 'living with the virus' as 'impossible' or a 'fantasy'?

New Zealand is looking like it's suppressing and eliminating Delta - they are cautiously optimistic. They reveal the efficacy of a caring government, a caring population working together to stop community transmission even as Morrison of Australia, the Murdoch press beloved, tries to denigrate their efforts.

Reports and political commentators often describe those countries as living in isolation', as if they are cut off from the rest of the world. This is clearly not the case. A quarantined border is still allowing human traffic through, even if it limits tourism - consumer goods continue to be shipped across borders. Tourism is a luxury business, it is not a necessity. Indeed internal tourism has increased in pretty much every country, circulating money within economies. For a short term set back, Tourism could be supported to help eliminate community transmission and prevent immense avoidable harms. Instead the tourism industry has become a primary vector of the virus.

As Elimination Strategy functions to leap into action whenever a cluster emerges, usually due to an imported variant, invariably a variant that emerged in the reckless countries, the pundits of USUK et al are quick to crow about how ineffective elimination strategy is, falling silent when the clusters are controlled, and the community transmission is stopped.

The denial and the dismissive attitudes seem to me to be about protecting USUK and other reckless Governments from public scrutiny and close attention, to shield them from an open critical analysis of their deliberate, repeated mismanagement and the huge economic costs of avoidable harms they have deliberately not avoided.

1.8 billion people, c.23% of global population being protected by elimination of community transmission strategies across such a wide variety of economies and cultures is a huge evidence base. 

The USUK mismanagement teams dare not speak of it, honestly.

Freedom and being realistic

Even the 'Freedom!' crew who are highly critical of USUK Government are denying the evidence of China, New Zealand and the other countries, who have experience far less restrictions on their lives citizens of mitigation strategy countries, let alone the adverse health and mortality impacts. Death by Covid is not freedom. 10% of positive cases enduring long Covid is not freedom. So much for freedom. 

Seems to me to be that they are one the same side as the super spreader governments they proclaim against. The spreaders of misinformation are also spreaders of the virus.

Fatalism is understandable

Dr. John Campbell, a youtuber medic who does a decent job of reporting on the evidence from around the Earth, avoids political observations like the plague. So he dare not mention elimination, which he did early on, suggesting UK was insane to not learn from China and East Asia. Now he has abandoned all mention of elimination strategy, and is reliant on vaccine efficacy to get us through to a better situation.

I imagine he’s being ‘realistic’ accepting there’s no way to dislodge this English Government and just getting on with it. 

I get it. He has no option but to get on with his job, which is providing the best information he can find, from the perspective of a medic, a nurse.. Nothing will change, people need best info in order to make better decisions for themselves. Crack on.

But I see that as a form of fatalism, and I simply cannot accept that - and just as I still want to see Blair and the others indicted for war crimes, and even though I know I can’t do that myself, I refuse to let go of the need to see justice done correctly, in full, not so much as punishment but as a preventative - and so I still hold that elimination strategy is feasible, supported by vaccines, and the best way to reduce the avoidable harms that 'living with the virus' mythology leads to.

Stop causing avoidable harm. Is it really so much to ask?

IndependentSAGE is also on youtube, they broadcast a live briefing every Friday afternoon looking at the data, trends and issues, with a Q&A session for press and the public. They are a team of eminent and respected scientists in all the various fields that are affected by Covid, and they are firmly for elimination strategy, rather than 'living with the virus' or 'herd immunity'. 

IndependentSAGE have produced an informative timeline comparison which lays out the Scientific, Epidemiological and Public Health advice offered to English Government and compares it to the actual policy carried out by the English Government.

The situation in England is now that there are close to 25k new PCR confirmed cases daily, going by Government statistics.  ZOE records c. 55k new cases. Current estimates suggest that around 10% of positive cases are likely to contract Long Covid. We don't know how many asymptomatic cases that have not been tested are out and about in the community, people who are probably unaware of their status as potential vectors of infection. The existing test and trace systems are inadequate to the task assigned them.

Daily hospitalisations are currently running at around 750 in England. 

Death by Covid is Horrific

There were 207 Covid deaths in England's hospitals yesterday. How do people die from Covid? Breathlessness, breathing pain, oxygen depletion, headaches, inflammation, secondary infections, organ failure, sepsis: a parade of pain and increasing disability.

This is the thing few people are willing to look at but health workers are forced to see. Death by Covid is very painful indeed, the process is disgustingly awful. There’s no dignity, no peace only suffering often in utter isolation.

The person knows long before they die that they are in deep trauma, unlikely to survive, and that is it's own unique terror - the medical staff spend their days watching frightened people die awful deaths. 

Clap, clap, clap for heroes and no preventative action by government or citizens.

Is there a substantive pay rise in recognition of the extra burden NHS staff are bearing? Is there funding for extra staff to ease the work load of burned out medical staffers? No way. Not with this English government populated by those wealthy enough to take £40,000 holidays, add swimming pools to luxury homes during the summer break, spend hundreds of thousands refurbishing the prime ministers flat as they withdraw £20 'uplift pandemic support' per week from people receiving Universal Credit, which supports as many low paid workers as unemployed people, a benefit employers take profitable delight in.

The situation is similar to a war, with the braided generals at home, sitting in comfort and their combat troops in the trenches, engaged in the reality of combat, who see what it is really like, and then the patriotic civilians who just do not know and cannot therefore understand what war really is at all but who are encouraged to speak about ‘our boys and girls’ and ‘bravery and sacrifice'. 

War is always avoidable.

Every death by Covid is pretty much avoidable.  Stopping the uncontrolled spread of the virus in the community is feasible, and it does not need lockdowns, other than when the strategy fails - and we know why strategy fails.  Each and every death is a horror movie that goes on for days and days and days. Witnessed by medical staff who are powerless to do much more than manage death, and whose insight, wisdom and knowledge is given almost no hearing in offices where Government policy is decided.

Those poor souls. 

English Government cost benefit analysis is accepting one thousand ten days torture ending in death every week.

Can you imagine that as a war price?

Would you accept that?

And what of  our Schools, as they reopen this Friday, and are predicted to become super spreader events, with our children exploited as vectors of spread to attain herd immunity, intentionally so?

Must we accept that future for them?

As a culture, Climate Change, Environmental Degradation, War, Poverty are all Externalised Costs which our children must bear the brunt of, they will pay the price.

This then is the question of our era, in a dark metaphor.

"Have we spent our lives filling our children's shoes with shit, before telling them to go for a long walk?"

Kindest regards


"Do what you love, it is your gift to universe."

Tuesday, 31 August 2021

Elimination vs Mitigation, Acceptable Horror and Externalised Costs - problem solving for whom?

"We need to address the societal well-being of our nation, not just the economic well-being: our people are telling us that politics are not delivering and meeting their expectations. This is not woolly, it’s critical.”  Jacinda Ardern

Amrit Lohia tweeted the following:

Giving everyone "access to water and food" requires socialism. Eradicating SARS-CoV-2 also requires a shift to a socialist model where we recognise our responsibility to protect each other. Tagging in @coreluminous who can probably explain this better than I can.

I replied:  I think you have distilled it into its purest form.

"where we recognise our responsibility to protect each other." 

That is the essence of the situation with regards to COVID, Climate Change, pollution, poverty, environmental degradation, Racism, Misogyny etc.

Then I wrote some more.

I would call it a pro-social model rather than ideological Socialism.

Management of the shared commons implies duty of care to all who share the commons. This demands that decisions on policy and practical implementation are grounded in equity and mutual aid and are based on evidence rather than upon ideological belief or the opinion of any one group.

Externalised Costs

Costs incurred by producers or consumers any other actors acting within the shared commons, that are not resolved, that are passed on to others who bear the burden are anti-social, profoundly so.

This is where I part with existing ideological Socialism which seeks equitable pay and conditions for all, whilst still allowing externalised costs to be accrued. Externalised costs is  the root of all the problems we face, globally. 

Resolution will be of that issue will be complex, that's well understood. 

That said it is attachments to power and status which make it more complicated than it needs to be.

Thus a reckoning with power and status lies ahead, it cannot be avoided.

Does this reckoning have to descend into a power struggle?

Only if those who hold asymmetric power choose to make it so.

Those who hold positions of power and status could choose to share that power, and they could manage it slowly enough to empower the corrective changes required that would protect us all as we move through this phase.

That choice is real.

To recap:

Elimination of community transmission is possible.

It's really simple. Virus needs to date a new human host, or it dies out. It is a complex operation to support a population to do EoCT.  Professor Gabriel Scally is a highly respected, deeply experienced public health professional and scholar. He is in no doubt whatsoever that elimination of community transmission is the best possible strategy under the current circumstances, where in the UK we are still at less than 20% population infected, and globally much less than that. There is an immense amount of harm to prevent, to avoid and it makes no sense to push the global population into harms way.

What complicates it are matters of power, wealth and status. That much is clear.

1. there's a world of difference between eradication and elimination of community transmission.

2. New Zealand is not in complete isolation from the rest of the world. Tourism is not an essential human activity. Quarantine can manage necessary travel.

3. Proof of concept is 1.8 billion people who were not faced with multiple national level lockdowns, health care and economic harms over extended periods. 

4. Proof of concept is variants from areas that rejected elimination strategy arriving and breaking through quarantine systems.

5. Australia’s official COVID-19 strategy, suppression, doesn’t have an epidemiological definition. 

“Suppression isn’t a known technical term,” says epidemiologist Raina MacIntyre, head of the Biosecurity Program at the Kirby Institute and Professor of Global Biosecurity.

6. “It’s either elimination or disease control.”

‘Disease control’ means reducing the number of cases to a locally acceptable level, but community transmission may still occur. 

7. In England that successful disease control is defined by Johnson as being 1000 deaths by Covid19 per week. No mention of the acceptable number of cases of chronic disease, Long Covid.

8. So, if I was one of those 'acceptable deaths' would I agree with Johnson?

If you or your beloved, or your son or daughter was one of those 'acceptable deaths' would you agree with Johnson?

9.  And the other more harsh reality of each death by covid is this:

These are truly awful, horrific deaths. Really, really grim.

Oxygen depletion, organ failure, death. Terror, despair and horror over the course of ten days or so. One thousand times every week. Thousands of families. Hundreds of ICU teams

Who decides these deaths are acceptable? On what metric?

10. In another context, how many terrorist bombings would be considered an acceptable level?

Is it the case that the 241,000 Afghani deaths of the past 20 years are acceptable to UK citizens, but the 404 combat deaths of troops are not? 

11. Who makes these calls about policy and public health strategy, which have such immense impact the shared commons, and on what basis? 

12. Is there a need now for urgent collective decision making and collective action to prevent further avoidable harm, when we are in a situation that affects us all?

Kindest regards


"Do what you love, it is your gift to universe."