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Tin Ear over Corona Virus and Boris Johnson

(201 Posts)
POGS Thu 12-Mar-20 18:12:38

Having just watched in the last hour ' yet another ' government media speech by Boris Johnson, Professor Chris Witty and Sir Patrick Vallance to update the country over the COVID 19 virus I don't understand the copious amount of threads denigrating the government handling over the Corona Virus?

What problem do posters have with the government taking advice from and taking the lead from :-

Professor Chris Whitty who is the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for England, the UK government’s Chief Medical Adviser and head of the public health profession.

Chris Witty is also Chief Scientific Adviser for the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), with overall responsibility for the department’s research and development, including the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).

Sir Patrick Vallance FRS FMedSci FRCP is Government Chief Scientific Adviser (GCSA) and Head of the Government Science and Engineering (GSE) profession. His personal research was in the area of diseases of blood vessels and endothelial biology.

I find it a peculiar situation that GN has thread after thread that calls the government and Boris Johnson idiots but there seems to equally be a perverse clamour of voices wanting Boris Johnson to make decisions.

It is like a collective suffering from a tin ear syndrome to the ' fact' that at every stage the government has taken the lead from the above and only Boris Johnson is referred to. If there are voices that accuse Johnson of not dealing with the outbreak then they are also ignoring the likes of Professor Chris Witty and Sir Patrick Valence, it a collective madness.

What is better the government working hand in glove with the ' experts' or Boris Johnson and the government making decisions unilaterally.

I don't get it.

Callistemon Thu 12-Mar-20 19:58:22

^ Did no one see the headline from the New York Times that I posted this morning?^
anniezzz I don't really care what expletive deleted the NY Times thinks about us, frankly.

Opal Thu 12-Mar-20 19:59:16

Totally agree with your OP POGS, but the "collective sufferers" will use any and all means to have yet another go at Boris, no matter what. Just waiting for the anti-Govt culprits to join the thread, wait for it, wait for it ..........

POGS Thu 12-Mar-20 20:05:06


'SO. No tin ear. No praise for Bodgit, but we're stuck with him. So yes, it's good that he NOW has experts behind him.'

What do you mean ' NOW ' has experts behind him?

Out of interest to understand what it is possibly like where you are, which country are you currently abiding in?

GagaJo Thu 12-Mar-20 20:06:28

Well Opal, lets (genuinely meant, before you leap down my throat) hope no one you love is affected. Because it HAS been mismanaged in the UK.

Sod politics. It is the furthest from anyones mind. ANYONE that can see us through this as unscathed as possible is welcome, in my opinion, even a 2nd Thatcher.

ValerieF Thu 12-Mar-20 20:11:22

Brilliant post POGS. Damned if they do damned if they don't! NOBODY has the knowledge of what to do! Lock down the whole country? Ideally but how do you do it realistically? I have no idea what Italy are doing. All I know is realistically just how many people in this country can just give up and go into isolation? Our care homes need carers, our hospitals need to be staffed, our police need to police, our fire service need to operate. Closing schools makes it almost impossible for parent/s to carry on working. I goes on and on. All you can do is be guided by the experts of which our PM or Government are not!

Scary times but no one person has all the answers or is answerable to the situation. Not even Boris! Give him a break! (not a fan but do understand some things are outwith anybody's control)

Opal Thu 12-Mar-20 20:17:15

I genuinely hope the same for you and yours Gagajo, thank you. I'm not sure exactly how it has been mismanaged in the UK, having watched the TV extensively today, it seems each country needs to manage the outbreak in different ways, depending on population, geography, economics and a number of other factors, one size doesn't fit all in this case. And whilst I agree with you that politics should be on the back burner for everyone at the moment, it's interesting to read on the GN threads that it's the same posters criticising the Government, even though they (the Government) are following expert advice. Seems that those posters will take every opportunity to criticize and undermine the Government, when surely, in the best interests of everyone, we should all be pulling together right now? Sadly, it doesn't surprise me.

POGS Thu 12-Mar-20 20:17:27

GagaJo Thu 12-Mar-20 20:06:28

'Well Opal, lets (genuinely meant, before you leap down my throat) hope no one you love is affected. Because it HAS been mismanaged in the UK.'

I hope you have the time to answer my question as I do find it interesting to understand the perspective of posters who are not in the UK.

As for your words above I think it says more about you as a poster than the government handling of outbreak.

I can honestly say that sort of comment would never leave my lips.

GagaJo Thu 12-Mar-20 20:24:36

POGS, 1) You insult me and then 2) You position yourself as superior.

But you still expect me to answer a question?

I hope NONE of us on here lose anyone (or heaven forbid) succumb ourselves.

DoraMarr Thu 12-Mar-20 20:31:21

Pogs again, common sense. I am a lifelong Labour supporter, I haven’t been impressed by Johnson as MP, Foreign Secretary and now as PM, until now, when I have been impressed by his careful speeches, his deferring to experts, and his willingness, as leader, to implement the strategies those experts have suggested.
There is, as you know, a government action plan:
Perhaps we all should read it!

Greymar Thu 12-Mar-20 20:32:24

Opal, not quite sure what you are banging on about, anti Government. In an ideal world I wouldn't want this government or this PM. We now have both. It is not a case of enraged lefties banging on, I just don't feel safe with BJ. Anybody in my mind would be a safer bet. TM for one.

mcem Thu 12-Mar-20 20:34:11

If now 'we' (quite rightly) are prepared to listen to the advice of the experts and are please to see BJ follow their advice, why were 'we' so dismissive of the opinions of the experts in economics who warned against brexit?
He has had the sense to allow the experts to present the case rather than trying to bluff and bumble his way through.
Credit to him!
Has the dreaded Dom rubber-stamped this approach I wonder?
(Silly question really. BJ wouldn't be acting 'sensibly' unless Dom thought it was good PR.)

M0nica Thu 12-Mar-20 20:35:49

I think the government's response to Covid-19 has been masterly. Whoever fronts the press conferences is merely a figurehead for a government wide response.

I think the slow measured response has been wise and will continue to be so. We cannot stop the spread, but we can delay it and smooth the peak to reduce some of the pressure on the NHS.

GagaJo Thu 12-Mar-20 20:36:07

To be honest, Greymar, I'm not sure I can name one politician that has the cojones to handle this strongly and authoritatively.

POGS Thu 12-Mar-20 20:40:30


I thought might like the opportunity to discuss how the government of the country you work and reside in are approaching the COVID 19 virus.

Opal Thu 12-Mar-20 20:43:44

And there you go, it only took half an hour to turn it into another BJ bashing thread. Predictable.

And as for Brexit, there were also "experts" who were pro-Brexit, you probably just didn't want to listen to them. Again, predictable.

Gfplux Thu 12-Mar-20 20:45:44

During the Brexit campaign Johnson amongst others told us loud and clear to IGNORE the Experts.
Now a 360 degree turn around and we are just expected to except it.
Trust is just like Virginity, you only lose it once.

GagaJo Thu 12-Mar-20 20:46:10

The title DOES have his name in it Opal.

You also used the phrase, 'tin ear'.

We're explaining why we don't agree.

GagaJo Thu 12-Mar-20 20:47:01

Apologies, POGS started the thread. Same point applies though.

M0nica Thu 12-Mar-20 20:48:37

Why does it need cojones to manage this crisis. How are they be better than a womb and ovaries?

What a shockingly mysogynistic remark - and from a woman!!!

Greymar Thu 12-Mar-20 20:49:24

My choice of mouthpiece would be Harriet Harman, Teresa May, John Major or Gordon Brown.

POGS Thu 12-Mar-20 20:56:44

Gfplux Thu 12-Mar-20 20:45:44

'During the Brexit campaign Johnson amongst others told us loud and clear to IGNORE the Experts.
Now a 360 degree turn around and we are just expected to except it.
Trust is just like Virginity, you only lose it once.'

What do you mean by ' and we are just expected to except it.'

Are you disappointed Boris Johnson is not ' ignoring the experts ' to make a political point.?

Why not engage in the subject of the virus and not political point score Do you think Boris Johnson is correct to follow the lead of Professor Chris Whitty and Sir Patrick Vallance for example.?

Grandad1943 Thu 12-Mar-20 21:34:00

I believe that Jonson and the government health advisors are taking the right action in this crisis. Indeed, I feel that they have captured the mood of the nation which has changed in the last few days.

There will be no early end to this emergency and the outbreak may not peak for another ten to twelve weeks. In that, no one can expect everyone to just "lock themselves away" for that period and beyond for in a nation that has always enjoyed freedom of movement the above will just not happen throughout that length of period.

Therefore the best way through this Coronavirus outbreak is to keep commerce and everyday life as normal as possible as the attack runs its course.

As the peak of the outbreak is reached then large sporting events etc may have to be cancelled to slow the spread to enable the health service to cope with those who are worst affected.

The above may ensure the most promising way of protecting those most vulnerable such as the elderly and those with chronic health issues, for a country that is running as normally as possible will enable them to obtain all they need as easily as possible.

A major problem that has emerged is the major collapse of the stock market, currency market and through that a large-scale weakness of the international Bond market. The government to finance the promised help to commerce through the crisis will need to heavily sell bonds into that market, and that will to buy may not be there internationally.

Let us all hope that does not become the case.

lemongrove Thu 12-Mar-20 22:01:03

Good posts POGS and Grandad43 ??

Sadly some posters are just continuing with ‘let’s hate the Tories whatever they do’ nonsense, but thankfully very few of them.
Balanced posters on GN do not use a pandemic to score cheap political points.

HurdyGurdy Thu 12-Mar-20 22:26:53

I think if BJ and his government were doing such a bad job, the opposition parties would be speaking up.

I've not heard any opposition MPs argue against the actions and advice of the government.

Not to say there haven't been any, but I've not heard or read anything

Callistemon Thu 12-Mar-20 22:32:12

Gagajo I do have to disagree with you.

I think some people do have a tendency to panic which helps no-one.

POGS, Grandad and others whose posts are measured and sensible, I have to agree with you.

I had doubts about Johnson as PM but he seems to be taking sound advice from the medical professionals and not from his SPADS regarding this and relating the messages responsibly.