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Friday 15 May 2020

Tories Reclassify Teachers As Cannon Fodder

As the push to restart the UK economy intensifies, despite the death toll from the Coronavirus pandemic now estimated by the FT at 60,700, and closing rapidly on the 67,000 that was the civilian death toll for the whole of the Second World War, the Tories and their hangers-on in our free and fearless press have realised that many of the workers they need to entice back to their jobs have school-age children.
Therefore, to get those people back to work, schools need to reopen. But here a problem enters: teachers and their representatives want their workplaces to be safe for them to return. This, for all those cosseted and obscenely overpaid hacks and pundits, requires the demonisation of Trades Unions, and if necessary, teachers themselves.

So it was that the Murdoch Sun has told readersTHREE cheers for David Blunkett, condemning militant union chiefs and his Labour Party on behalf of our poorest pupils. National Education Union’s refusal to countenance a return to work for teachers, and its ramping up of fear, is a disgrace. So is Labour’s support”. And there was more.

Kids are far less badly hit by the bug [no citation] and probably far less likely to transmit it [no citation]. And millions of workers have soldiered on through this crisis, or are returning now, while minimising their risk [with many falling ill and dying]. Unions must accept that teachers should be doing the same”. Unions must accept their members are expendable.
And the Daily Mail has laid out the battleground on its front page today: “Magnificent staff across the nation are desperate to help millions of children get back in the classroom - but militant unions are standing in their way. To them, the Mail implores … LET OUR TEACHERS BE HEROES”. The inference is that non-compliance equals cowardice.

This is backed up by a suitably judgmental front page editorial, thundering “what a crashing disappointment that the teaching unions refuse to join the common cause, instead playing petty politics … They are obviously happy to gamble with children’s futures. But the Mail firmly believes most teachers are better than that. The profession’s silent majority knows where their duty lies. We urge them to find their voice”.

The problem for the inmates of the Northcliffe House bunker is that teachers’ reluctance to be corralled back to work might not be unrelated to the fact that at least 26 of them no longer have a voice to find. Because they died after becoming infected with Covid-19.
Worse, as the TES has told, not only could that figure be higher, but “between 9 March and 20 April, a minimum of 65 staff working in the education sector died after contracting the virus”. Worse still, ONS figures show thatThere is no evidence of differences in the proportions testing positive between the age categories 2 to 19, 20 to 49, 50 to 69 and 70 years and over”. Children are as likely to become infected as anyone else.

The only difference is that children are less likely to be killed by that infection. But, guess what, their teachers are not. Which means that when the Mail says “Let Our Teachers Be Heroes”, it actually means that it knows some of them will fall ill and die.

But it’s all in a good cause, like keeping the Tory press in obscenely overpaid and cosseted luxury, a style to which they have become accustomed. So that’s all right, then.
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Arnold said...

"Which means that when the Mail says “Let Our Teachers Be Heroes”, it actually means that it knows some of them will fall ill and die.'

Have a day been allocated for us to applaud their sacrifice yet?

DBC said...

Just have a look at Brandon Lewis on today's BBC Breakfast trying to explain how on earth you can persuade a group of 5year-olds to socially distance. Another of Bozo's 5th raters who haven't a clue.

Jeff Pickthall said...

Has Eton college gone back?

Anonymous said...

Corporate media has become far right insanely evil and homicidal.

There is no other adequate description.

Burlington Bertie from Bow said...

One of the most disgusting tabloid front pages ever, in a very competitive field.
It can't be that difficult for someone to calculate the cost in corpses of Johnson and those who surround him's unpreparedness, complacency and misjudgement up to this point. Johnson, Williamson, Hancock and the rest need to be presented with the potential cost in corpses of their current and future actions in this matter.
Daily and publicly.

Simon said...

Meanwhile on the front of the Murdoch Times: 'children and adults have same chance of getting ill'.

Johnspartacusanonymous said...

You are overrating Brandon Lewis by a considerable margin. He has the I.Q of a lemur.

Anonymous said...

How much longer before we return to the 'Two Minute Hate' of doctors and nurses?

Rosie said...

Why has it taken me years to find Zelo Street. It has taken lockdown. By far the best blog around for the left. Tim's writing and insightfulness has become sharper and smarter over the years. Will be visiting regularly and supporting.

AndyC said...

I have long thought Blunkett is an utter *%@&. This has done nothing to disabuse me of that thought.

Andy McDonald said...

I'd not be surprised if someone within Doning Street/CCHQ - let's call him Dominic - reasoned "they never vote Tory, so fuck 'em".

Darren G said...

Have a look at the badly photoshopped image that the Heil used, and then compare it to the original stock image they used.

Now many changes can you spot in the two pictures


Anonymous said...

"The profession’s silent majority knows where their duty lies"

"people must look after themselves first. It is our duty to look after ourselves" Margaret Thatcher, 1987