+Well, my question for yesterday’s No.10 5pm party political broadcast on behalf of the Conservative Party—sorry—on Coronavirus wasn’t chosen. It's interesting to see what kind of questions are chosen. So far they reflect the personal predicaments of people stuck in lockdown, such as how to involve grandparents in the care of children if parents go back to work. Such questions are pressing for those whose situations are already stressed out, but for a politician they are very much softball. The politician merely needs to present (I almost said pretend) a little empathy, repeat the mantra (the ‘action plan’) and move on. It’s not as if they could address personal circumstances. So, as the UK heads towards being the worst performing nation on Earth tackling Coronavirus, I will send my question in again. Why? Why? Why?
+Somewhere today I read of a slight alteration to the government’s ‘stay in’ slogan, which succinctly sums things up and will make a very good poster for the next election of whatever kind we’re allowed to have. Here is my adaptation of it.
+Staying in isn’t entirely bad. Sipping a large glass of Malbec, nibbling on a piece of Gruyere, listening to the gentle sweetness of Berlioz’s L’Enfance du Christ whilst perusing the entire Gerhard Richter exhibition in New York’s Met Breuer gallery on my laptop doesn’t make me feel too deprived.* Unless I’ve missed some technological click, it is a shame that the exhibition can only be inspected in something like postage stamp scale. Well, you can’t have it all.
+If this was 1920 as opposed to 2020, lockdown would be somewhat different. No foreign wine, no foreign cheese, no stereo, no exhibition (except perhaps in a black and white illustrated book). Sadly it occurs to me that many Tory MPs wouldn’t be all that bothered if the conditions for the masses today resembled those of the 1920s. Am I overstating it? What’s your bet on how we’re all going to be in this together (sic) to get the debt back down?
+No DVDs around back in the 1920s. I watched Eisenstein’s October 1917 last night, a brilliant piece of film-making of course, but the scene with the horse hanging off a bridge over the River Neva was shocking—this was no computer generated graphic. I hope the horse was fresh from the slaughterhouse rather than being killed for the film, but given a previous scene it’s hard to say. In our present unrevolutionary times I was entertained by the scene of the Provisional Government of Johnson—oopps, sorry! - Kerensky preparing to meet their fate as the masses stormed the Winter Palace. The cabinet appeared to imagine they would be greeted by polite obsequies over a cup of tea, as opposed to being roughly arrested by the door smashing revolutionaries brandishing bayonets and semi-crazed grimaces. Kerensky himself had of course run away before the final denouement. Are the Thatcher gates of Downing Street stronger than the gates of the Winter Palace? We’ll probably have to leave it to members of the Socialist Workers Party to find out. And who are today’s Mensheviks? What it is to be alive in history!
*I think I would feel deprived if I was forced to watch the crap that’s on telly every day. That would be torture.