Thanks to Brenda Steele for spotting this:
Iain MacWhirter yesterday:
Now, I don’t subscribe to the view that Boris Johnson has allowed thousands to die in order to save his billionaire Brexit chums. The UK government behaved reasonably, according to its lights, muddling through as always.
Is he just naive or ill-informed? We know for several facts that the UK’s uniquely late and fatal lock-down was ideologically informed. The Tories are wedded to free-market thinking which put business interests first unless something really extreme change things in a way they cannot resist but they will always tend to resist as long as they can.
To give one simple example, the Cheltenham horse racing four-day-event in March went ahead, despite the warnings of a professor of public health. The local Tory MP had received donations from several horse-racing business groups. The infection and death rates in the area spiked. Details:
Even the business-friendly FT had little doubt that the Government’s chief adviser, Dominic Cummings, was behind the delay.
As for Johnson, the FT claimed:
Mr Johnson remained suspicious of draconian crackdowns. He once claimed the real hero of the 1970s film Jaws was the mayor who kept his beaches open while a shark was eating holidaymakers.
MacWhirter is just one of those self-styled ‘reasonable moderates’, comfortable in his circumstances among the horrors of the turbo-capitalism we now inhabit. I’m comfortable too, physically, but at least I haven’t convinced myself it’s alright out there and that people like Johnson are ‘reasonable’, just ‘muddling through’ when quite a few of us have seen through that to cruelty they embody.