Canaries, Mines, Denial and Apathy!

Posted on June 24, 2021

After seeing that Dido Harding has applied to become the head of the NHS, I couldn’t help but wonder something. Is Harding employed as the Conservative Populist Party ‘canary down the mine’?

Her application has made headlines in anti-populist movements, with plenty of people suitably outraged. Elsewhere, nothing. Apathy, denial, and in some cases, support for her application, is commonplace.

The Parliamentary Committee

It is worth remembering this. A parliamentary committee ruled that despite costing tens of billions, Test & Trace made no impact on stopping lockdowns or controlling Covid-19. It was an abject failure that some estimates suggest, cost the UK taxpayer £37 billion. Harding is either useless, corrupt, or both. Yet she is hoping to head up the NHS. How can that be?

Serco were awarded Test & Trace contracts despite a history of public sector failure. It soon emerged that they were charging the NHS £21.00 per hour for people being paid £9.50. No one seemed bothered. Serco are major conservative party donors and supporters, so it should be concerning. Supporters of Dido Harding might say that if any signs of wrongdoing needed investigation, the Conservative Party have an anti-corruption champion. This would ensure such things can’t happen.

Indeed, they do. He is John Penrose, MP. He is also a champion of an NHS insurance-based system. Perhaps most striking of all, he is the husband of Dido Harding. If corruption is taking place, Boris’s populists have covered every angle with their own people. If that were any other political party, there would be outrage. Somehow, the conservatives get away with it. 

One Nation

This is also a week where kids are being encouraged to sing a ‘one nation’ song at school. How long before they are given detention if they do not conform? If kids singing nationalist songs is not entirely the stuff of fascists, it is not far off. We are also seeing the government attempting to dismantle Channel 4. C4 is about the only news channel that holds the government to account.

I must admit, when I heard what was potentially happening to Channel 4 News, I pretended it was not real. I also tried to pretend that implanting populist songs into children was a joke. It’s like a form of denial where I find myself trying to run away from the lunacy. I have found that getting pummelled with daily lunacy, is exhausting.

I can only conclude that is what populists do. Testers, canaries down mines and a good pummelling of the grey matter, until denial and apathy set in. I am convinced that most of this nation doesn’t want to live under a populist one-party state and that is being reflected in some voting patterns in the shires.

However, by pummelling false information into citizens who are busy with work, families and general survival, the government are succeeding. They are creating confusion, denial and most importantly of all, apathy. A feeling that nothing can be done, so perhaps it is better the keep out of harms way and hope for the best.

It’s not the ideal way to deal with far right-wing populism. Possibly the only way forward, is for those who oppose Johnson and his band of lunatics, to unite. To stand up for the good of the nation and put aside their own inflexible ideologies, at least in the short-term.

That’ll be the day.

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