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Sunday 22 March 2020

Dominic Cummings - The Fan Hits The Shit

Dominic Cummings, chief polecat at 10 Downing Street, last week reached the giddy heights of having a BBC2 documentary dedicated to Himself. Fans and mere observers lined up to pontificate on the wonderfulness of The Great Man, or in some cases the distinct lack of it. One of the talking heads was Sunday Times political editor Tim Shipman.
Shippers’ contribution to Emily Maitlis’ documentary was generally uncontroversial, something that cannot be said of the article he co-authored for today’s ST. Just how incendiary the two paragraphs being increasingly widely quoted really are can be gauged from the reaction of the Guardian’s John Harris: “Sunday Times today. Oh God, no”.
Here’s what the ST has reported. “Dominic Cummings, the Prime Minister’s senior aide, became convinced that Britain would be better able to resist a lethal second wave of the disease next winter if Whitty’s prediction that 60% to 80% of the population became infected was right and the UK developed ‘herd immunity’”. There was more.
At a private engagement at the end of February, Cummings outlined the Government’s strategy. Those present say it was ‘herd immunity, protect the economy and if that means some pensioners die, too bad’”. There is no chance of herd immunity without immunisation. But the revelation does explain why the likes of Laura Kuenssberg, Robert Peston and Beth Rigby changed tack last week, claiming “the science has changed”.
The condemnation of Cummings’ callous abandonment of hundreds of thousands of citizens was not lost on Peter Jukes of Byline Media, who concluded “So we were right. The lethal ‘herd immunity without vaccine’ strategy came from Dominic Cummings ‘protect the economy and if that means some pensioners die, too bad’. There’s an audit trail now. I hope lawyers are watching. Herd Immunity without a vaccine is unheard of”.
Marina Hyde of the Guardian added “I was v pleased to take a lecture yesterday from the Spectator’s deputy ed, apparently a journalist, taking issue with the mention of Dominic Cummings in my columns. He’s totally right; we should all give the guy a break”. For shame, all at the Speccy, for shame. LBC host James O’Brien then spoke for many.
And there it is. Worst fears apparently confirmed. Every single time you told yourself it couldn’t all be down to the pound shop Machiavelli, that nobody could allow these life & death decisions to be taken on the fly, a little voice piped up to remind you who was Prime Minister”. Cummings is lucky that his comments were not made into the headline.
Musa Okwonga warned that taking the article as a whole did not make those involved look any better: “Just read the Sunday Times article in full - the one from which Cummings' reported thoughts on coronavirus are taken - and it is even more damning. It is a nuanced, fairly sympathetic account and it still paints a picture of people largely inadequate for the challenge”. And FT news editor Matthew Garrahan drew a damning conclusion.
The most catastrophic public policy failure in peace time Britain” he observed. Cummings is now exposed as beyond the pale. He has to be removed from Government now if that Government is to retain any credibility. And there has to be a public inquiry afterwards.

Politics right now is no longer a game. Anyone who still thinks it is should leave the stage.
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AndyC said...

Lets hope someone, (make that everyone), at the next No.10 presser brings up Cumming's disastrous 'advice' and maybe then the malign little gimp's odious presence on the political scene can be ended for good. Who knows how many will die as a consequence of the poison he poured into Bozo the Clown's credulous ear.

Sam said...

I'm amazed few can see the legal ramifications from this which basically look like wilful criminal negligence if it can be proved Cummings' words can be linked to a pensioner death. And this is the problem- they act like it's a game despite the seriousness and seem to ignore the ramifications of their actions. And believe they can tweak the game if it's going a bit haywire. And this won't be Tony Blair escaping sanction for his lies that led to Iraqi deaths. It's the UK. If Boris Johnson has any sense (doubtful) he would frog march Cummings out of No 10 before he completely destroys his career. He won't though. He'll dig in because the PM is a bloody fool.

Arnold said...

"PETER HITCHENS: Is shutting down Britain – with unprecedented curbs on ancient liberties – REALLY the best answer?"


I must reread Magna Carta. I must have missed the bits about panic buying and infecting other people.

Anonymous said...

Only problem with this is that it means that somehow Cummings got Johnson and the rest of the cabinet to sing up to this without a word of protest. The whiff of 'the King has bad advisers' is strong here: it's the same playbook the Tories tried with May and her advisers. They left, but the problems persisted, so they eventually got rid of May as well. Johnson will happily throw Cummings overboard to protect himself, but it won't change anything - not least because the Tories themselves were/are the problem.

Anonymous said...

Cummings is the least of it. He's just a useful urfascist thug. Dispensable too.

He's one more - albeit one of the worst - symptom of a thoroughly rotten and immoral political and socioeconomic system. How much more evidence is needed?

Remove the scumbag by all means. But don't kid yourself that will be anything more than a tiny cosmetic patch up.

The same systemic rottenness will be in place, all of it disguised by shameful mealy-mouthed far right cowardly propaganda vomited by the likes of Kuenssberg, Peston and Rigby.

Mark my words.

johncarvill said...

>the Guardian’s John Harris: “Sunday Times today. Oh God, no”.

My god the naivety! As if we all didn't know the 'let them die' strategy was Cummings's. Sadly the media including (for them ost part) the Guardian have utterly failed to tackle Cummings who is, let's face it, a sociopathic fascist. That BBC doc was hagiography.

But while it's lovely to think that this story is a potentially fatal Mother's Day hit job on Cummings, is it not a little suspicious? Tim Shipman, the Tories' court jester? Sunday Times?

Either they are throwing Cummings under a bus (we can but hope) or this is a hoax in which Shipman is complicit: the story will be denied by Johnson, scientists will back him up, Shipman will retract, and thus the story will be neutralised even though true. Meaning Johnsono will, for the short and medium term at least, get away with having pursued an insane strategy that cost lives. I hope that's total garbage and Cummings goes, but remember how sneaky these people are.

Arnold said...

No 10 gas denied it, although it is consistent with government policy. Asking us to self-isolate, etc. Not testing NHS staff and inadequate protection.

grim northerner said...

They are a bunch of social darwinists, the iq stuff, leveraging stupidity of the electorate for brexit, Boris's dad welcomed a cull, live on tv on election night for environmental reasons. They got away with brexit, so I can see them spinning and smearing their way through any future reckoning heading their way.

Jonathan said...

Why is anyone surprised it's the Tory way, profits before people every time..
Dom the Machiavellian just letting the inevitable cat out of the bag.

Jonathan said...

They (The Tories) don't give a shit who does, how many or when so long as they're alrightm

AndyC said...

No surprise, not a single journo asking Bozo about Cummings at today's No.10 presser.

Mark said...

Examples please: mealy-mouthed far right cowardly propaganda vomited by the likes of Kuenssberg,