Two weeks ago, in our first steps back into a way of life once considered normal (eating out with friends), it was a jolt to hear some of our fellow diners say the government had done OK in dealing with the coronavirus crisis.
It wasn’t a view I shared, but then I wasn’t sure either whether a different group of politicians would have done anything differently.
The problem seemed to be one of memory. Had the depletion and dismantling of our health and social care systems passed them by? Had they not noticed businesses and councils scraping back every countable penny to the beat of the Austerity drum? The country was on its knees before the virus arrived.
Which makes a second spike look more perilous than ever. Far from having “learned” the lessons of sluggish decision-making, our leaders are daily looking more clueless than ever. Their failure to even speak with one another is only bettered by the viral confusion they seem intent on injecting into the blood stream of a dejected nation.
So will a second spike finally alert the population to the state we’re in? Will citizens then be far less sympathetic towards its poorly performing politicians? Will their screw-ups stick in the memory this time? This is all outlined in this article in the Observer. Don’t read it looking for optimism.
The real issue is probably leadership. There isn’t much of it anywhere to be seen in the corridors of power. A government elected on a manifesto of liberty is struggling with the prospect of having to tell its citizens exactly what is and is not acceptable behaviour. A second spike could end up being the puncture wound that won’t heal.