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polishgenius

UK politics: Veni Vidi Vaccinati

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3 hours ago, polishgenius said:

Van Der Leyen is just determined not to make any friends, isn't she? Like it's not even like her point is unfounded but making out the UK approach was pure marketing rather than, you know, getting it out as fast as possible because that's what needs to happen is just snide pettyness on her part.


In other news, sad to see that Captain Tom has died in hospital after catching Covid. Wbat a don though.

She is performing to the best of her abilities. Why do you think I called her a German Chris Grayling, who despite showing absolutely no ability and making a total mess out of every appointment kept failing upwards.

She's just a fundamentally inept politician, who is good (well, more or less capable actually) at blaming others for her failures. She should have never ever been promoted to the head of the EU commission.

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3 hours ago, polishgenius said:

Van Der Leyen is just determined not to make any friends, isn't she? Like it's not even like her point is unfounded but making out the UK approach was pure marketing rather than, you know, getting it out as fast as possible because that's what needs to happen is just snide pettyness on her part.

Hmm.  I do think it is more complicated than that.  Van Der Leyen said that "the commission and the member states agreed not to compromise with the safety and efficacy requirements linked to the authorisation of a vaccine".

I can see why the UK would take that awry but last June (IIRC) when the choice was made, you can easily imagine the discussion.

  1. Emergency use v conditional authorisation
  2. The latter will take 3 or 4 weeks longer
  3. Does increase the safety margins.

Now, regarding 3), I can only imagine the possibility of missing something with emergency use is very small.  While conditional authorisation may be half that (say), half a very small number is not appreciably different.  You might then wonder why the EU went for conditional authorisation?  Well, the EU is risk adverse and I can see governments deciding that there will be no suggestion that it compromised on safety in any way by rushing approval.  There certainly seems to be a higher percentage of vaccine skeptical people in the EU than the UK.

But that doesn't mean that the UK compromised with safety.  Even if you can infer it.  It is just 2 different processes.

Its similar to how a number of EU countries aren't going to use the AZ vaccine for those over 65.  I don't think it means that the UK (or Ireland) is foolhardy, it is just an over abundance of caution.  (Something going wrong with the vaccine would make everything up to now child's play.  There is very little chance of that but still).

19 days between EU and UK approval isn't that large given this vaccination program is going to take most of the year to complete.  But, those 19 days did happen to overlap with a major increase in cases, variants emerging etc.  But the real frustration is that February (its second month of vaccinations) was supposed to be the month where things started to ramp up in the EU (in the same way that UK significantly ramped up its second month).  But that wouldn't happen now.  And it wouldn't happen in March neither.  A difficult time.

All these things are misleading anyhow.  The real question is regarding production.  Did the EU do enough to ensure production would be ramped up for Q1 this year.  But even that might be misleading.  Individual countries in the EU probably had more ability to move that dial.  And it would be hard to separate that discussion from hindsight.

3 hours ago, Heartofice said:

Also like pretty much this whole EU vaccine debacle it mostly comes down to blaming someone else

She could have taken responsibility but then the question would be "did you not realise the sensitivity of the NI Border"?  And she would say "Yes.  I did".  So "how did you approve that caveat"?

She may as well be honest.  She probably didn't know it was there. 

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1 hour ago, A Horse Named Stranger said:

She is performing to the best of her abilities. Why do you think I called her a German Chris Grayling, who despite showing absolutely no ability and making a total mess out of every appointment kept failing upwards.

She's just a fundamentally inept politician, who is good (well, more or less capable actually) at blaming others for her failures. She should have never ever been promoted to the head of the EU commission.

Guess you could always vote her out... oh

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53 minutes ago, Filippa Eilhart said:

she was a compromise, as is everything in the EU ;) 

It was the only way to get her out of German politics I guess. 

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2 minutes ago, Filippa Eilhart said:

because you personally vote for your prime minister?

Think I’d have more ability to vote out Boris than you would have voting out VDL to be honest 

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The EU Commissioners are more comparable to Permanent Secretaries than elected members of parliament.  Although comparing EU governance to a country's governance is not simple.

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https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2021/feb/02/labour-urged-to-focus-on-flag-and-patriotism-to-win-voters-trust-leak-reveals

Internal leaked document from Labour gives suggestions that they should 'wrap themselves in the flag' and display more levels of patriotism and sense of national belonging, as well as dressing smartly, if they want to win back voter in red wall seats.

On the face of it this seems like a sensible move, part of the issue with Corbyn of course was that he seemed to always be on the other side of the argument when it came to foreign policy, often seeming to take the side of anyone BUT Britain. It's understandable that voters might want to vote for someone who takes pride in being British. 

This of course has created a backlash amongst some parts of the party, who associate any level of nationalism with racism, and are terrified of even giving an inch in that direction. Part of the problem I think is that often people are talking past each other on the issue, nationalism might mean different things to different people. 

The other problem for Labour is that it doesn't appear to be obvious what they stand for right now. Their main position is simply opposition, fence sitting and being masters of hindsight. Having a clear strategy and vision of Britain would be helpful.

Of course this all seems like it's not that important, because Labour have wiped out the Tories lead since the election, but I think more importantly they are still roughly neck and neck with them or even behind sometimes. This is quite staggering given what an absolute mare Boris has had last year. Any sort of post vaccination bounce should worry Starmer quite heavily.

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The election isn't for four years.  Why on earth would Labour worry too much now about short-term bounces/falls?  And why would they stake themselves to a position so far out.  The early years after an election are the perfect time to only be an opposition, try to appear competent while pointing out everything the government screws up, and reading the tea leaves for where to sit themselves when it does get closer to the election.

Oh, and try and get any skeletons out of the closet as soon as possible so people have forgotten them in 4 years time. 

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7 hours ago, ants said:

The election isn't for four years.  Why on earth would Labour worry too much now about short-term bounces/falls?  And why would they stake themselves to a position so far out.  The early years after an election are the perfect time to only be an opposition, try to appear competent while pointing out everything the government screws up, and reading the tea leaves for where to sit themselves when it does get closer to the election.

Oh, and try and get any skeletons out of the closet as soon as possible so people have forgotten them in 4 years time. 

Maybe 3 years in May?

5 years exactly would be December 2024, but Indoubt they’ll want another winter election, so either May 24 or May 25.

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https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/grant-shapps-uk-border-australia_uk_601a78c0c5b668b8db3d3a74

The UK cannot “close” its border like Australia has because the UK is an island and Australia is a continent, Grant Shapps has said.


Boris Johnson has been under pressure to explain why the government has not introduced stricter measures at the border to prevent new variants of coronavirus being imported from abroad.
...
Quizzed on Wednesday over why the government was not introducing tougher border controls, Shapps told the Commons transport committee: “The idea that the UK could completely button down its hatches and remain buttoned down for a year is mistaken.
“But also the evidence that that is the only thing that you need to do, or even the primary thing you need to do, is also pretty shaky.”
He said: “People say: ‘Why don’t we just close down and then we’ll be safe?’.
“But, of course, we wouldn’t be safe, because we are an island nation, unlike Australia or something which is an entire continent.
“That means that we need to get medicines in, we need to get food in, we need to get our raw materials in, sometimes we have to move people around, scientists and others.
...

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15 hours ago, Derfel Cadarn said:

Maybe 3 years in May?

5 years exactly would be December 2024, but Indoubt they’ll want another winter election, so either May 24 or May 25.

Under the Fixed-Term Parliament Act, the next general election is already scheduled for 2 May 2024. The election must be held within five years of the last one, by preference on the first Thursday in May, so they wouldn't be able to push it to May 2025, but could in theory push it to December 2024.

There is a repeal bill at the drafting stage which would return to the pre-FTPA arrangement, which is that an election must simply be held within 5 years of the last one but the government can dissolve Parliament at will rather than needing the House of Commons to vote on it, which caused the government some major ball aches last year. It'd be interesting to see if the four-year convention (i.e. an election should be held in the fourth year of a Parliament if the government judges it has a great chance of winning) was restored, although there was never any legislation on that.

Edited by Werthead

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Talking to my colleagues who are involved in the UK-NZ FTA, it's a total shit show. The UK is throwing total garbage onto the table, and they really don't care. To be fair, the UK gains nothing from a FTA with us except to be able to point to another post-Brexit FTA. It does bugger all UK export trade with us, and what trade they do has an easier time getting into NZ than the same goods trying to get into the EU or Northern Ireland, aside from the distance.

Edited by The Anti-Targ

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It's technically UK politics, so I'm putting it here. David Allan Green, one of the most well known people on UK legal Twitter, has read the standing orders (read them AND understood them) and written an entire blog about whether Jackie Weaver had the authority.

https://davidallengreen.com/2021/02/did-jackie-weaver-have-the-authority-the-law-and-policy-of-that-handforth-parish-council-meeting/

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36 minutes ago, Denvek said:

It's technically UK politics, so I'm putting it here. David Allan Green, one of the most well known people on UK legal Twitter, has read the standing orders (read them AND understood them) and written an entire blog about whether Jackie Weaver had the authority.

https://davidallengreen.com/2021/02/did-jackie-weaver-have-the-authority-the-law-and-policy-of-that-handforth-parish-council-meeting/

Jackie Weaver 'the Winston Wolf of Cheshire local government'. :lol:

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4 hours ago, Maltaran said:

You Have No Authority Here Jackie Weaver would have made a great thread title.

In other news, hotel quarantine for arrivals in the country starts on 15 February but the government has not signed any contracts with any hotels

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-55944464

Surely there's some hotel chain out there that a spouse of a Tory politician works for that could be given the contract?

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7 minutes ago, williamjm said:

Surely there's some hotel chain out there that a spouse of a Tory politician works for that could be given the contract?

Too advanced. Some donor without a hotel, but with the intention of acquiring one in time. That's the Grayling vibe you need.

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5 hours ago, ljkeane said:

Jackie Weaver 'the Winston Wolf of Cheshire local government'. :lol:

 

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