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With the Cummings Commons Committee starting at 0930 – the former advisor Tweets a pic of pre-lockdo

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  • DecrepiterJohnLDecrepiterJohnL Posts: 17,927
    maaarsh said:

    DavidL said:

    I have not been watching this but from the comments on here it does appear that Cummings really does want to focus on the way we make decisions in a crisis, something he was pretty obsessed with in government and has written about extensively on his blog.

    His critique previously is:
    *That government lacks up to date and reliable data and we need to find new ways to collate that data.
    *That the Civil Service has far too many general skills and not nearly enough specific skills or expertise.
    * That those with the relevant expertise or skills find it too difficult to be heard in the decision making process.
    * That politicians generally lack numeracy or other technical skills which allow them to identify the holes in the advice that they are being given.
    *That the whole process is just too slow.

    I find that hard to disagree with but the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. Has he added anything further to this today?

    He appears to live in a fantasy world of high performing organisations which respond to catastrophic shock with calm and capability.

    I've no doubt number 10 and the civil service are a shit show - I just don't share his faith in the existance of impressive alternatives.
    Especially not as Cummings wants to centralise command and control.
  • WhisperingOracleWhisperingOracle Posts: 7,459
    edited May 2021
    MrEd said:

    Leon said:

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    If we could get rid of Gove at the same time you'd really get people on board.
    He’s Scottish. He won’t be allowed to work in England without a visa.

    I’m quite serious. Enough of this Scottish whining. Let them go. And ‘going’ means GOING. No special treatment. This is not Ireland. Scots who want to work in London will need visas
    On that track of rural and northern English ressentiment, London would be equally likely to vote to become a separate city-state just in itself.
    Surrounded on all sides by a potentially hostile rump and with its other components likely to be against the concept of a London mini-state.

    Mmm, I can see that working well
    A bit like an England surrounded by three ex-British states in the EU. None of these plans are practically plausible or viable on the island of Britain. Coming to a modus operandi means compromise.
  • LeonLeon Posts: 30,484
    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    HahahahaHAHAHAHAHAHA

    pause

    HahahaHAHADR%HYUU77875CHI67UUJPFFFGFFF

    Haddaway and Shite
  • Philip_ThompsonPhilip_Thompson Posts: 65,826
    Sandpit said:

    Trouble with Cummings is that he clearly has an axe to grind, and it's with almost everyone.

    Given he can't pick just one target, and he's far from perfect himself, he'll shoot.. and miss.

    I am loving the testimony and find it rings true all the way. But of course it reflects my view on the way the whole thing has been handled.

    It won't change anything but it should.
    I'm not sure what it should change, since most of the things mentioned seem to be those which we kind of already knew and changes have already happened.
    No I am talking about the more fundamental way in which the whole Civil Service/Party system works to fail the British people not just here but all the time. The Lions led by Donkeys line. The pandemic and the Governmental failures that made it worse could be a spark for real change but sadly they won't be because as we see here people are too wedded to their own parties/cliques and the vested interests are too great to bring about real change.

    Cummings was right. But because he too was flawed an opportunity, however slim, has been lost.
    Who's incentivised to be an odd sock in the civil service?
    No-one, which is half the problem.

    “Be quiet and serve your time”

    Meanwhile, successful large business today look very different organisationally than they did a few decades ago, the CS looks exactly the same but with more diversity training.
    It's like the old joke/thought about the BBC: You can have every kind of diversity except diversity of thought.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 45,799

    Damn, I have to leave for a 1300 hours meeting!

    You go to meetings?? How....quaint.
  • kingbongokingbongo Posts: 393
    HYUFD said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    The main problem is it is no longer a Union as such but a Federal UK excluding England.

    Give England its own Parliament or at least English regional assemblies and the problem would be resolved
    no it wouldn't - a UK government would only be allowed to work if the constituent nations accepted the federal government and allowed the federal government to control the overall economic direction of the nation, its defence etc- the English government let alone others would have no incentive to do this - a federal UK could only work if you broke England into pieces so no part was too powerful, and why should England want that?
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 11,507

    ping said:

    This is outrageous;

    England’s NHS plans to share patient records with third parties

    55m patients have until June 23 to opt out of having their health data scraped into a new database.

    https://www.google.com/search?q=https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.ft.com/content/9fee812f-6975-49ce-915c-aeb25d3dd748

    Medical history should be entirely confidential unless requested by the police via court order, IMO.

    Anonymized data is of great value for medical research, both private sector and University led. My colleagues here routinely use it. It often helps reveal safety concerns about medication and/or combinations of medication. As long as it is impossible to uncover the identities then I have no issue with my data being used.
    Does this apply if you don't have the NHS app?
    Its almost certainly not related to the NHS ap - it'll be your NHS records.
  • CarnyxCarnyx Posts: 28,779
    edited May 2021
    Leon said:

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    If we could get rid of Gove at the same time you'd really get people on board.
    He’s Scottish. He won’t be allowed to work in England without a visa.

    I’m quite serious. Enough of this Scottish whining. Let them go. And ‘going’ means GOING. No special treatment. This is not Ireland. Scots who want to work in London will need visas
    He's married to an English person AFAIK.

    Edit: no, I'm wrong to my surprise - Ms Vine is Welsh by birth.
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 4,908

    ping said:

    This is outrageous;

    England’s NHS plans to share patient records with third parties

    55m patients have until June 23 to opt out of having their health data scraped into a new database.

    https://www.google.com/search?q=https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.ft.com/content/9fee812f-6975-49ce-915c-aeb25d3dd748

    Medical history should be entirely confidential unless requested by the police via court order, IMO.

    Anonymized data is of great value for medical research, both private sector and University led. My colleagues here routinely use it. It often helps reveal safety concerns about medication and/or combinations of medication. As long as it is impossible to uncover the identities then I have no issue with my data being used.
    Does this apply if you don't have the NHS app?
    Not quite sure what you're asking.

    The data discussed are those recored by GP practices to manage care. The plan is that all of this (in England) will be shared centrally to NHS Digital and will be available for research (pseudonymised, which is in lay terms anonymised - the difference is that the identifier is an encrypted form of the ID, not a random ID, to the end user researcher it's the same thing as they don't have the decryption key) and with other sensitive data such as address, date of birth etc stripped out and data minimised to be just enough for the research question.

    The general NHS app is irrelevant (unless opting out/in is possible via the app? that would make sense). You can access some of your data via the app, but that will be different (full, non-anonymised) to the data shared for research.

    The Covid NHS app is irrelevant too as no data should be shared from there.
  • SandpitSandpit Posts: 42,433

    Sandpit said:

    Trouble with Cummings is that he clearly has an axe to grind, and it's with almost everyone.

    Given he can't pick just one target, and he's far from perfect himself, he'll shoot.. and miss.

    I am loving the testimony and find it rings true all the way. But of course it reflects my view on the way the whole thing has been handled.

    It won't change anything but it should.
    I'm not sure what it should change, since most of the things mentioned seem to be those which we kind of already knew and changes have already happened.
    No I am talking about the more fundamental way in which the whole Civil Service/Party system works to fail the British people not just here but all the time. The Lions led by Donkeys line. The pandemic and the Governmental failures that made it worse could be a spark for real change but sadly they won't be because as we see here people are too wedded to their own parties/cliques and the vested interests are too great to bring about real change.

    Cummings was right. But because he too was flawed an opportunity, however slim, has been lost.
    Who's incentivised to be an odd sock in the civil service?
    No-one, which is half the problem.

    “Be quiet and serve your time”

    Meanwhile, successful large business today look very different organisationally than they did a few decades ago, the CS looks exactly the same but with more diversity training.
    It's like the old joke/thought about the BBC: You can have every kind of diversity except diversity of thought.
    Dan Hannan: “BBC diversity: people who look different but think the same”.
  • Pulpstar said:

    Can the Hillsborough verdict be appealed upward ?
    I assume it will be if it can be.

    The prosecution has confirmed they are not seeking leave to appeal.
  • Nigel_ForemainNigel_Foremain Posts: 12,341
    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    hahahahahahahahahaha
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 55,103
    Beth Rigby
    @BethRigby
    ·
    1m
    Hancock was interfering in T&T because he's made this public target and was gearing it all hitting my target. "He should have been fired for that thing alone". "It was criminal, disgraceful behaviour that caused serious harm"


    Cummings clearly wants Hancock gone. Helps clear way for Gove?
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 45,799

    DavidL said:

    maaarsh said:

    DavidL said:

    I have not been watching this but from the comments on here it does appear that Cummings really does want to focus on the way we make decisions in a crisis, something he was pretty obsessed with in government and has written about extensively on his blog.

    His critique previously is:
    *That government lacks up to date and reliable data and we need to find new ways to collate that data.
    *That the Civil Service has far too many general skills and not nearly enough specific skills or expertise.
    * That those with the relevant expertise or skills find it too difficult to be heard in the decision making process.
    * That politicians generally lack numeracy or other technical skills which allow them to identify the holes in the advice that they are being given.
    *That the whole process is just too slow.

    I find that hard to disagree with but the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. Has he added anything further to this today?

    He appears to live in a fantasy world of high performing organisations which respond to catastrophic shock with calm and capability.

    I've no doubt number 10 and the civil service are a shit show - I just don't share his faith in the existance of impressive alternatives.
    Hence why I say that the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. But the days of the great British generalist in the Civil Service who goes from department to department learning just enough about each new area of responsibility to justify a promotion to somewhere else are surely coming to an end? We need specialists, employed for their specialism and respected within that field but only listened to at best outside it. He is right about this.
    And why the vaccine task force worked....got rid of the civil servants, hired top people with specific expert knowledge in a variety of niche roles, told them to get on with it, no time for dicking about, diversity training, etc etc etc.

    Compare with PHE roll out of testing.....but Mr Hancock we can't do more than 10,000 a day, its too hard, its too complicated, there is this issue and that issue, and we will only use PHE labs, and no we won't use outside contractors. My Excel spreadsheet can't cope.
    Exactly so. A good example of what DC is talking about and what needs to be done, at least in an emergency. Whether you can generalise from that happy experience to government as a whole is more problematic.
  • CarlottaVanceCarlottaVance Posts: 57,678
    Lukashenko chastened by EU sanctions: “Lukashenko also suggested critics of Belarus should have been grateful he did not order the plane to be shot down”

    https://twitter.com/MacaesBruno/status/1397514472642785282?s=20
  • CyclefreeCyclefree Posts: 23,341

    The only interesting thing on that whiteboard are the words, “Who do we not save?”

    Is some MP going to ask about that?
    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    kjh said:

    I wonder why looking at that white board makes me very nervous about Government brain storming and planning process generally. Eek.

    Whiteboards have never produced anything good in my experience. Banal, lowest common denominator dribble is the most they can aspire to and they generally fall short.
    That’s cos you are in law.
    In tech I’d say they are indispensable.
    Interesting. In law the idea that you can say anything meaningful in a brief phrase without qualifications is risible. In tech equations etc may mean that the board actually has something significant on it.
    "Caveat emptor"?
  • LeonLeon Posts: 30,484
    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    If we could get rid of Gove at the same time you'd really get people on board.
    He’s Scottish. He won’t be allowed to work in England without a visa.

    I’m quite serious. Enough of this Scottish whining. Let them go. And ‘going’ means GOING. No special treatment. This is not Ireland. Scots who want to work in London will need visas
    He's married to an English person AFAIK.

    Edit: no, I'm wrong to my surprise - Ms Vine is Welsh by birth.
    So they both have to go home. I can hear the quark-sized chamber orchestra tuning up

    I’m quite serious here, however. If Scotland goes they need to know the consequences. They will be treated like, say, Denmark, or Portugal. Not Ireland. Ireland was a special case

    A hard border at the border. Visas to work down south
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 107,147
    edited May 2021
    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    The main problem is it is no longer a Union as such but a Federal UK excluding England.

    Give England its own Parliament or at least English regional assemblies and the problem would be resolved
    no it wouldn't - a UK government would only be allowed to work if the constituent nations accepted the federal government and allowed the federal government to control the overall economic direction of the nation, its defence etc- the English government let alone others would have no incentive to do this - a federal UK could only work if you broke England into pieces so no part was too powerful, and why should England want that?
    The UK government already does control the overall economic direction and defence of the whole UK. Just England is the only country in the UK which does not have its own Parliament to run the rest of its domestic policy.

    There is no reason an English Parliament would not work other than leftwingers don't want it as it would normally have a Tory majority, otherwise we should at least have regional assemblies which would still be better than the current situation where England has no government of its own at national or regional level outside of the UK (except in the London region with the Mayor and Assembly)
  • FrancisUrquhartFrancisUrquhart Posts: 73,446
    edited May 2021

    Beth Rigby
    @BethRigby
    ·
    1m
    Hancock was interfering in T&T because he's made this public target and was gearing it all hitting my target. "He should have been fired for that thing alone". "It was criminal, disgraceful behaviour that caused serious harm"


    Cummings clearly wants Hancock gone. Helps clear way for Gove?

    That was a bad thing? Given how piss poor PHE had been for a month they were given to ramp up testing? We would never have got to 100k tests a day without that stretch target (even if there was some fudging going on to save political face at the end).

    I genuinely believe without that change in attitude we would still be like Italy doing f##k all tests for a year after the pandemic, trying to tell the public that smart small scale targeted testing was superior.
  • Big_G_NorthWalesBig_G_NorthWales Posts: 55,345
    Cummings confirms that they thought Boris might die and government collapsed until Cummings returned in April
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 72,853
    Good to see Hancock taking his exercise seriously this morning.
  • Philip_ThompsonPhilip_Thompson Posts: 65,826

    maaarsh said:

    DavidL said:

    I have not been watching this but from the comments on here it does appear that Cummings really does want to focus on the way we make decisions in a crisis, something he was pretty obsessed with in government and has written about extensively on his blog.

    His critique previously is:
    *That government lacks up to date and reliable data and we need to find new ways to collate that data.
    *That the Civil Service has far too many general skills and not nearly enough specific skills or expertise.
    * That those with the relevant expertise or skills find it too difficult to be heard in the decision making process.
    * That politicians generally lack numeracy or other technical skills which allow them to identify the holes in the advice that they are being given.
    *That the whole process is just too slow.

    I find that hard to disagree with but the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. Has he added anything further to this today?

    He appears to live in a fantasy world of high performing organisations which respond to catastrophic shock with calm and capability.

    I've no doubt number 10 and the civil service are a shit show - I just don't share his faith in the existance of impressive alternatives.
    Especially not as Cummings wants to centralise command and control.
    His twin thoughts seem to be

    * The Department of Health (and Hancock) were overwhelmed and needed splitting up as it was too much for them to deal with.
    * There needed to be all power channeled to a single dictator.

    There seems to be a clash between those two.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 11,507

    I think that summary - PM made some very bad misjudgements *and* he was badly let down by advisers/the system - is fair and accurate.

    https://twitter.com/mrianleslie/status/1397505495834009602?s=20

    This is key really. It was never all on Boris, he never had the right information at the time. Off course his personality is entirely wrong for this crisis, and that has been evident from the start. It was not the Premiership he wanted - complete Brexit and then head for the sunlit uplands (in his view). Instead he found himself in a once in a century pandemic, when almost any other politician would have been a better choice for the top job (not Corbyn). Personally I thought Raab did a good job when Johnson was out of action, others will disagree.
  • SandpitSandpit Posts: 42,433

    Beth Rigby
    @BethRigby
    ·
    1m
    Hancock was interfering in T&T because he's made this public target and was gearing it all hitting my target. "He should have been fired for that thing alone". "It was criminal, disgraceful behaviour that caused serious harm"


    Cummings clearly wants Hancock gone. Helps clear way for Gove?

    You could also argue that the other way around, that Hancock’s public testing target was the only thing that was moving things along down the line.
  • DougSealDougSeal Posts: 8,545
    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    The guy who is definately, absolutely, 100% not Anti-English in any way shape or form replies to the UFO and weather obsessive. What a time to be on this board.
  • CarlottaVanceCarlottaVance Posts: 57,678
    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    Writes the man from a country that voted to REMAIN in its current union of the people in the country that voted to LEAVE theirs.....
  • CarnyxCarnyx Posts: 28,779

    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    Writes the man from a country that voted to REMAIN in its current union of the people in the country that voted to LEAVE theirs.....
    Wrong sequence there; 2014 was entirely predicated on the UK remaining in the EU, as you well know. It's not even as if you are in the UK or EU yourself.
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 4,908
    MattW said:

    Selebian said:

    MattW said:

    Selebian said:

    MattW said:

    Selebian said:

    ping said:

    This is outrageous;

    England’s NHS plans to share patient records with third parties

    55m patients have until June 23 to opt out of having their health data scraped into a new database.

    https://www.google.com/search?q=https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.ft.com/content/9fee812f-6975-49ce-915c-aeb25d3dd748

    Medical history should be entirely confidential unless requested by the police via court order, IMO.

    Some facts:
    1. NHS already provide patient records to third parties (hospital data - inpatient, A&E and outpatient). I currently have a dataset of all these records for children over the last 15 years or so
    2. What this adds is a national primary care (GP) data research dataset
    3. There are already GP data research datasets (e.g. CPRD - google it) but these are taken from only a representative sample of surgeries, around 7-8% population coverage
    4. The process of getting access to the data is strict, for limited purposes and time and only pseudonymised data, with very few exceptions*
    5. This does need to be well managed with adherence to 4, above. The way data were given to Google in the pst was shameful.
    6. If you want to be able to work out risk factors for things like Covid or indeed to any large scale epidemiological research then these data are necessary.

    I'm an epidemiologist, working at a university. Getting access to 1 took over 18 months and included justifying the research to an NHS Research Ethics committee and multiple meetings/revisions with the data holders. The data I have are pseudonymised - they have a unique identifier, but those are random strings. I only have month and year of birth (not full date of birth) and I have geographical indicators (which I had to justify) to an area of ~3000 people.

    If I knew their medical history and age, postal address and exact dates of a stay in hospital (and which hospital) I might be able to identify someone and get other information on their health history. If caught, I would be banned for life from accessing the data (ending my career), face criminal proceedings and my entire university would be banned from accessing the data for limited period (years).

    The GP data available in 3 are useful, but too small if you're looking at rare conditions and pretty useless if you're looking at people who move often over a period of time (e.g. a cohort fom pre-18 to post-21 as people move to university, jobs etc). A national GP dataset will be a very good thing for research. The GP data will also not contain names, addresses, exact date of birth etc etc; the current GP data do not provide the GP surgery (only as a random string of numbers/letters) and I'd expect that to remain the case.

    On 5, it's important that the same processes apply to everyone and Google, IBM and the like don't just get given data becausethey promise fancy things. There's also no justification I can see for insurers being given any of these data.

    *Some exceptions where you have direct consent - i.e. if you're running a trial, participants may be asked to consent to access to their medical records. Consent is not enough, you need to get it though an ethics committee before you start the trial and also convince the data holder that you need the data and provide the legal basis. I've been an epidemiologist for well over a decade and have never obtained, nor sought to obtain, identifiable data.
    There are problems with the process, though.

    'We have been working on this for 3 years" then a few weeks to opt-out is not acceptable.
    I believe (although I admit I haven't checked the details) that the opt out system is the same as the one that has been in place since the Care.Data fiasco - so there have been years to opt out of having data shared and anyone who opted out already will not need to do anything. It's a few weeks until the new data collection begins, so those who never opted out before only have a few weeks if this change in data that will be shared is objectionable (for those in one of the CPRD surgeries/other surgeries already sharing data, nothing is really going to change).

    Unless something has changed, opt-outs also act retrospectively, so anyone opting out in two months will not have their data passed on to anyone after that time (the only people who could hold that data for a limited time would be those given data extracts before the opt-out). When a data extract is prepared, all those opting out are removed, each time. Even you have rolling data access with new data each year (which is rare) then people who opt-out in the meantime disappear from the next year's data.

    I do agree that the opt-out system could be done better, although it's hard to get the information to people. Maybe everyone should be contacted once per year to update their preferences, although that, if not online/automated, could be a signficant admin burden. Some of the Scandinavian states with national ID and online health record portals handle this better (I don't know what they do for those without internet access though).
    OTOH I agree that the data access created by previous similar exercises for NHS data has been a key brick which has helped this country be so far ahead in managing trials etc.
    Yep, the key things are:
    - Be honest
    - Be open
    - Be strict
    - Don't cock it up (most important)

    I knew someone who was involved in Care.Data and the frustation is that data and data access is really boring to most people. Get the GPs to offer opt-outs on sign up and it's one of those dull data protection things that people can't be bothered with and either ignore (implicitly opting in without really understanding it) or tick the opt-out box on general principle.* Most of the time, people really don't care and that's understandable. Some GPs when the opt-out became available mass opted-out their patients without asking them.

    Then you get an article like the FT one and people are suddenly asking why they weren't told. Short of sending everyone a letter, which most won't read, what do you do?

    * A problem with this is that if it's patterned by demographics then this group gets underresearched and effectively loses their vote in care and treatment developments. Say they have something in common that also makes them have severe reactions to statins, by opting out they won't be included in healthcare data research on adverse effects of statins, which will be underestimated - they effectively lose the chance for the impact on them to be taken into account in healthcare policy.
    Yes.

    Fortunately we have some competent critical groups who will be on this, to hold them to account.
    Yep, NHS data applications go before IGARD, after first getting cleared by NHS Digital internally
    https://digital.nhs.uk/about-nhs-digital/corporate-information-and-documents/independent-group-advising-on-the-release-of-data/igard-member-profiles
    (mix of scientists, clinicians and lay members - i.e. general public not in the above groups).
    They have periodic open recruitment.
  • gealbhangealbhan Posts: 2,362
    “They vacillate, we vaccinate”

    Starmer floored onto canvas again, PM sailing untroubled through another PMQs
  • algarkirk said:

    Pulpstar said:

    Can the Hillsborough verdict be appealed upward ?
    I assume it will be if it can be.

    The point of law can be appealed but not the acquittal. That can only be appealed on the basis of fresh and compelling evidence with a view to a retrial (eg the Stephen Lawrence case).
    That's not quite right. You can appeal a "no case to answer" but need to do it immediately when the judge makes the ruling (or request a short adjornment to consider whether to appeal, then do so the next morning basically).

    In this case, the prosecution has said it's not appealing, so that's that.
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 47,253

    HYUFD said:

    Excellent question from Aaron Bell, late of this parish, 'Are you here to help us learn lessons or settle scores for yourself?' So far seems more of the latter, with Cummings castigating Hancock and criticising the PM while pushing Rishi

    Terrible question imo. Effectively AB MP has moved the discussion away from Covid decision-making. From HMG's POV, job done.
    His Ministerial post is, er, in the post....
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 55,103
    "If we don't fire [Hancock] then people will die" - Cummings claims.

  • Bob__SykesBob__Sykes Posts: 1,176
    One suspects the headlines of the day are all going to be around Hancock, not Boris.

    From what i have heard, bits and pieces here and there between work commitments, Boris isn't coming out of this badly at all. Hancock could be in trouble unless he can effectively rebut these points. Cummings just looks like Cummings.

    I doubt much of this will play outside the Westminster & media bubble. Are folk in Bolton or Burnley or Batley really bothered by this minutiae and score settling?
  • Big_G_NorthWalesBig_G_NorthWales Posts: 55,345

    "If we don't fire [Hancock] then people will die" - Cummings claims.

    The media are going to go after Hancock after today
  • FrancisUrquhartFrancisUrquhart Posts: 73,446
    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    maaarsh said:

    DavidL said:

    I have not been watching this but from the comments on here it does appear that Cummings really does want to focus on the way we make decisions in a crisis, something he was pretty obsessed with in government and has written about extensively on his blog.

    His critique previously is:
    *That government lacks up to date and reliable data and we need to find new ways to collate that data.
    *That the Civil Service has far too many general skills and not nearly enough specific skills or expertise.
    * That those with the relevant expertise or skills find it too difficult to be heard in the decision making process.
    * That politicians generally lack numeracy or other technical skills which allow them to identify the holes in the advice that they are being given.
    *That the whole process is just too slow.

    I find that hard to disagree with but the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. Has he added anything further to this today?

    He appears to live in a fantasy world of high performing organisations which respond to catastrophic shock with calm and capability.

    I've no doubt number 10 and the civil service are a shit show - I just don't share his faith in the existance of impressive alternatives.
    Hence why I say that the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. But the days of the great British generalist in the Civil Service who goes from department to department learning just enough about each new area of responsibility to justify a promotion to somewhere else are surely coming to an end? We need specialists, employed for their specialism and respected within that field but only listened to at best outside it. He is right about this.
    And why the vaccine task force worked....got rid of the civil servants, hired top people with specific expert knowledge in a variety of niche roles, told them to get on with it, no time for dicking about, diversity training, etc etc etc.

    Compare with PHE roll out of testing.....but Mr Hancock we can't do more than 10,000 a day, its too hard, its too complicated, there is this issue and that issue, and we will only use PHE labs, and no we won't use outside contractors. My Excel spreadsheet can't cope.
    Exactly so. A good example of what DC is talking about and what needs to be done, at least in an emergency. Whether you can generalise from that happy experience to government as a whole is more problematic.
    I think we all know the civil service approach is to start from no, it can't be done, its too hard, too expensive....where as those leading the world, your Elon Musks, start from the it can be done, I will make it happen, now how do I do that, first of all hire some really good people.

    We need to have reform to more the Elon end. The problem is that again, as we said early about ministers admitting I actually don't know, any government programme that fails gets all the attention, not if 4 succeed and 1 fails.

    One of the leading people on the vaccine task force actually said they very nearly didn't join because they knew if all the vaccines didn't work, he would be in front of select committee and being branded by the media as the man who wasted billions...with no room for nuance of we took educated bets on uncertain technologies, because the upside vastly outweighed the downside.
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 55,103
    Sandpit said:

    Beth Rigby
    @BethRigby
    ·
    1m
    Hancock was interfering in T&T because he's made this public target and was gearing it all hitting my target. "He should have been fired for that thing alone". "It was criminal, disgraceful behaviour that caused serious harm"


    Cummings clearly wants Hancock gone. Helps clear way for Gove?

    You could also argue that the other way around, that Hancock’s public testing target was the only thing that was moving things along down the line.
    Dom says you are wrong and he's a genius!! :smiley:
  • DecrepiterJohnLDecrepiterJohnL Posts: 17,927
    Cummings is hammering Matt Hancock for lying. Can any PBers think of a Prime Minister whose veracity is also in doubt?
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 45,799

    Lukashenko chastened by EU sanctions: “Lukashenko also suggested critics of Belarus should have been grateful he did not order the plane to be shot down”

    https://twitter.com/MacaesBruno/status/1397514472642785282?s=20

    With Americans on board. Yes, that would have gone well...
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 37,019
    Sounds like the worst charge against BoJo is that he (and, importantly, Carrie) were fiddling while the UK was about to combust.

    It may have legs, that said.
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 19,918
    Sympathies to government supporters defending this shower on PB today.
  • CiceroCicero Posts: 1,524
    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’
    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    "To cut off your nose to spite your face" is also an expression in Russian, so maybe you trolls should increase your dosage before spouting such tosh.
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 55,103
    Health Service Journal
    @HSJnews
    ·
    2m
    Mr Cummings says he repeatedly - from Feb/March - "if we don't fire
    @MattHancock
    and get on top of the testing catastrophe we will see a lot of people dead".

    "In April, we had this terrible pledge distorting the system and constant lying about PPE."
  • LeonLeon Posts: 30,484
    Carnyx said:

    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    Writes the man from a country that voted to REMAIN in its current union of the people in the country that voted to LEAVE theirs.....
    Wrong sequence there; 2014 was entirely predicated on the UK remaining in the EU, as you well know. It's not even as if you are in the UK or EU yourself.
    What a load of bollocks

    You supported YES in 2014. A YES vote would have meant immediate exit from the EU by Scotland. You were voting for your own mini-Brexit. It might have taken Scotland ten years to re-enter the EU, maybe 20, and you might not have done it. Because currency, etc

    So exiting the EU was what you VOTED FOR in 2014, you pathetic creature, and now suddenly exiting the EU is so bad you want another vote so this time you can vote for... what? Maybe rejoining the EU? Or the EEA? Or not? Or what? You have no idea, do you? It is beyond lame


  • Philip_ThompsonPhilip_Thompson Posts: 65,826

    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    maaarsh said:

    DavidL said:

    I have not been watching this but from the comments on here it does appear that Cummings really does want to focus on the way we make decisions in a crisis, something he was pretty obsessed with in government and has written about extensively on his blog.

    His critique previously is:
    *That government lacks up to date and reliable data and we need to find new ways to collate that data.
    *That the Civil Service has far too many general skills and not nearly enough specific skills or expertise.
    * That those with the relevant expertise or skills find it too difficult to be heard in the decision making process.
    * That politicians generally lack numeracy or other technical skills which allow them to identify the holes in the advice that they are being given.
    *That the whole process is just too slow.

    I find that hard to disagree with but the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. Has he added anything further to this today?

    He appears to live in a fantasy world of high performing organisations which respond to catastrophic shock with calm and capability.

    I've no doubt number 10 and the civil service are a shit show - I just don't share his faith in the existance of impressive alternatives.
    Hence why I say that the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. But the days of the great British generalist in the Civil Service who goes from department to department learning just enough about each new area of responsibility to justify a promotion to somewhere else are surely coming to an end? We need specialists, employed for their specialism and respected within that field but only listened to at best outside it. He is right about this.
    And why the vaccine task force worked....got rid of the civil servants, hired top people with specific expert knowledge in a variety of niche roles, told them to get on with it, no time for dicking about, diversity training, etc etc etc.

    Compare with PHE roll out of testing.....but Mr Hancock we can't do more than 10,000 a day, its too hard, its too complicated, there is this issue and that issue, and we will only use PHE labs, and no we won't use outside contractors. My Excel spreadsheet can't cope.
    Exactly so. A good example of what DC is talking about and what needs to be done, at least in an emergency. Whether you can generalise from that happy experience to government as a whole is more problematic.
    I think we all know the civil service approach is to start from no, it can't be done, its too hard, too expensive....where as those leading the world, your Elon Musks, start from the it can be done, I will make it happen, now how do I do that, first of all hire some really good people.

    We need to have reform to more the Elon end. The problem is that again, as we said early about ministers admitting I actually don't know, any government programme that fails gets all the attention, not if 4 succeed and 1 fails.

    One of the leading people on the vaccine task force actually said they very nearly didn't join because they knew if all the vaccines didn't work, he would be in front of select committee and being branded by the media as the man who wasted billions...with no room for nuance of we took educated bets on uncertain technologies, because the upside vastly outweighed the downside.
    Going even further than 4 succeeds and 1 fails, to make real progress sometimes you need an attitude of it doesn't matter if 4 fail so long as 1 succeeds. Or more.

    Hence Musk with his rapid fire rocket tests that fail gloriously and he's happy with that as he's got good data to help build the rocket 5 from now (since the next 4 are already being constructed and they'll fail too).
  • maaarshmaaarsh Posts: 3,385
    DavidL said:

    maaarsh said:

    DavidL said:

    I have not been watching this but from the comments on here it does appear that Cummings really does want to focus on the way we make decisions in a crisis, something he was pretty obsessed with in government and has written about extensively on his blog.

    His critique previously is:
    *That government lacks up to date and reliable data and we need to find new ways to collate that data.
    *That the Civil Service has far too many general skills and not nearly enough specific skills or expertise.
    * That those with the relevant expertise or skills find it too difficult to be heard in the decision making process.
    * That politicians generally lack numeracy or other technical skills which allow them to identify the holes in the advice that they are being given.
    *That the whole process is just too slow.

    I find that hard to disagree with but the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. Has he added anything further to this today?

    He appears to live in a fantasy world of high performing organisations which respond to catastrophic shock with calm and capability.

    I've no doubt number 10 and the civil service are a shit show - I just don't share his faith in the existance of impressive alternatives.
    Hence why I say that the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. But the days of the great British generalist in the Civil Service who goes from department to department learning just enough about each new area of responsibility to justify a promotion to somewhere else are surely coming to an end? We need specialists, employed for their specialism and respected within that field but only listened to at best outside it. He is right about this.
    Except he's saying PHE was awful and all the people he calls brilliant are generalists.
  • CarlottaVanceCarlottaVance Posts: 57,678
    Carnyx said:

    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    Writes the man from a country that voted to REMAIN in its current union of the people in the country that voted to LEAVE theirs.....
    Wrong sequence there; 2014 was entirely predicated on the UK remaining in the EU,
    Not in the Scottish Government's "Scotland's Future":

    If we remain in the UK, the Conservative Party’s promise of an in/out referendum on EU membership raises the serious possibility that Scotland will be forced to leave the EU against the wishes of the people of Scotland.

    Page 60.

    Of course their lying and obfuscation about Scotland's quick accession to the EU in the event of independence might have undermined belief in this claim - which, almost uniquely, turned out to be true...
  • FrancisUrquhartFrancisUrquhart Posts: 73,446

    Health Service Journal
    @HSJnews
    ·
    2m
    Mr Cummings says he repeatedly - from Feb/March - "if we don't fire
    @MattHancock
    and get on top of the testing catastrophe we will see a lot of people dead".

    "In April, we had this terrible pledge distorting the system and constant lying about PPE."

    What is Cummings arguing, we should have done less testing? Imagine if Hancock hadn't promised 100k a day...we had one week in September when some people couldn't get a test and it was like the world was about to end.
  • DecrepiterJohnLDecrepiterJohnL Posts: 17,927
    Jonathan said:

    Sympathies to government supporters defending this shower on PB today.

    Will CCHQ circle the wagons to defend Matt Hancock?
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 45,799

    "If we don't fire [Hancock] then people will die" - Cummings claims.

    Personally I thought that Hancock had a terrible first 6 months of the crisis where he frequently seemed quite overwhelmed (and understandably so). If that is the period that Cummings is focusing on then his criticism is hardly surprising.

    But Hancock has got better. He has worked hard to get on top of his brief and understand what works and what doesn't. He has a legacy of past mistakes such as T&T and the app but generally speaking he has done well recently. The way the NHS has handled the roll out in England has been pretty exemplary, certainly better than we have managed north of the border.
  • Big_G_NorthWalesBig_G_NorthWales Posts: 55,345

    Jonathan said:

    Sympathies to government supporters defending this shower on PB today.

    Will CCHQ circle the wagons to defend Matt Hancock?
    I expect his appearance before this committee in two weeks and their report in late June will decide his fate
  • SandpitSandpit Posts: 42,433
    edited May 2021

    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    maaarsh said:

    DavidL said:

    I have not been watching this but from the comments on here it does appear that Cummings really does want to focus on the way we make decisions in a crisis, something he was pretty obsessed with in government and has written about extensively on his blog.

    His critique previously is:
    *That government lacks up to date and reliable data and we need to find new ways to collate that data.
    *That the Civil Service has far too many general skills and not nearly enough specific skills or expertise.
    * That those with the relevant expertise or skills find it too difficult to be heard in the decision making process.
    * That politicians generally lack numeracy or other technical skills which allow them to identify the holes in the advice that they are being given.
    *That the whole process is just too slow.

    I find that hard to disagree with but the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. Has he added anything further to this today?

    He appears to live in a fantasy world of high performing organisations which respond to catastrophic shock with calm and capability.

    I've no doubt number 10 and the civil service are a shit show - I just don't share his faith in the existance of impressive alternatives.
    Hence why I say that the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. But the days of the great British generalist in the Civil Service who goes from department to department learning just enough about each new area of responsibility to justify a promotion to somewhere else are surely coming to an end? We need specialists, employed for their specialism and respected within that field but only listened to at best outside it. He is right about this.
    And why the vaccine task force worked....got rid of the civil servants, hired top people with specific expert knowledge in a variety of niche roles, told them to get on with it, no time for dicking about, diversity training, etc etc etc.

    Compare with PHE roll out of testing.....but Mr Hancock we can't do more than 10,000 a day, its too hard, its too complicated, there is this issue and that issue, and we will only use PHE labs, and no we won't use outside contractors. My Excel spreadsheet can't cope.
    Exactly so. A good example of what DC is talking about and what needs to be done, at least in an emergency. Whether you can generalise from that happy experience to government as a whole is more problematic.
    I think we all know the civil service approach is to start from no, it can't be done, its too hard, too expensive....where as those leading the world, your Elon Musks, start from the it can be done, I will make it happen, now how do I do that, first of all hire some really good people.

    We need to have reform to more the Elon end. The problem is that again, as we said early about ministers admitting I actually don't know, any government programme that fails gets all the attention, not if 4 succeed and 1 fails.

    One of the leading people on the vaccine task force actually said they very nearly didn't join because they knew if all the vaccines didn't work, he would be in front of select committee and being branded by the media as the man who wasted billions...with no room for nuance of we took educated bets on uncertain technologies, because the upside vastly outweighed the downside.
    Great analogy

    If you want to build a rocket that lands back, then build one every fortnight and fly it. After a few holes in the ground you’ll have a rocket that lands back. Takes a year or two.

    Alternatively, spend 10 years designing a rocket that lands back, test it on a computer, build models and test them in wind tunnels, spend five years more building the actual rocket, find a problem in the design and spend more time on the computer and in the wind tunnel, then eventually get your rocket. But well done, because you kept 10,000 people employed in 43 different states, for 15 years.
  • Richard_TyndallRichard_Tyndall Posts: 28,142

    Health Service Journal
    @HSJnews
    ·
    2m
    Mr Cummings says he repeatedly - from Feb/March - "if we don't fire
    @MattHancock
    and get on top of the testing catastrophe we will see a lot of people dead".

    "In April, we had this terrible pledge distorting the system and constant lying about PPE."

    What is Cummings arguing, we should have done less testing? Imagine if Hancock hadn't promised 100k a day...we had one week in September when some people couldn't get a test and it was like the world was about to end.
    No, he is arguing that the arbitrary target was actually counter productive as it disrupted the whole development of the test and trace programme. That much seems blindingly obvious.
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 55,103
    Ian Dunt
    @IanDunt
    ·
    1h
    That is.... quite a thing to say. The Cabinet secretary had no confidence that the secretary of state for health would tell the truth during a pandemic.

  • FrancisUrquhartFrancisUrquhart Posts: 73,446
    edited May 2021
    Cummings says he was pushing for a system which would have allowed the government to look at positive test cases and consider bank data, phone data, to triangulate where people were and what they were doing.

    ---

    So he wanted a South Korean model.....given the media had a meltdown about dep-ing an app to go to the pub, just imagine the reaction to well the government is going to covertly spy on your every move.

    Some of us said way back, the only effective trace approach was the South Korean model, but no Western government could ever go for it, because the public just wouldn't accept it.

    Also, Google and Apple have done everything in their power to ensure phone that runs their tech can't do proper tracking.
  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 37,973
    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    The main problem is it is no longer a Union as such but a Federal UK excluding England.

    Give England its own Parliament or at least English regional assemblies and the problem would be resolved
    no it wouldn't - a UK government would only be allowed to work if the constituent nations accepted the federal government and allowed the federal government to control the overall economic direction of the nation, its defence etc- the English government let alone others would have no incentive to do this - a federal UK could only work if you broke England into pieces so no part was too powerful, and why should England want that?
    Why would the other countries want to be dealing with county councils , it will never ever happen. Westminster is the de facto English government and as such everything it does it with respect to England, if it does not suit the other countries then it is tough luck.
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 55,103
    Ian Dunt
    @IanDunt
    ·
    4m
    Reminder that Johnson just said explicitly in the Commons [Cab Sec saying Hancock lies] that this did not happen. Either he is misleading the House or Cummings is misleading the select committee.
  • gealbhangealbhan Posts: 2,362

    Ian Dunt
    @IanDunt
    ·
    1h
    That is.... quite a thing to say. The Cabinet secretary had no confidence that the secretary of state for health would tell the truth during a pandemic.

    Except it’s a Cummings lie, as Boris has just said at the dispatch box, it was never said to him.
  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 37,973

    Carnyx said:

    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    Writes the man from a country that voted to REMAIN in its current union of the people in the country that voted to LEAVE theirs.....
    Wrong sequence there; 2014 was entirely predicated on the UK remaining in the EU,
    Not in the Scottish Government's "Scotland's Future":

    If we remain in the UK, the Conservative Party’s promise of an in/out referendum on EU membership raises the serious possibility that Scotland will be forced to leave the EU against the wishes of the people of Scotland.

    Page 60.

    Of course their lying and obfuscation about Scotland's quick accession to the EU in the event of independence might have undermined belief in this claim - which, almost uniquely, turned out to be true...
    We know who the liars are, they may have made assumptions , it is the English government at Westminster that runs on lies and is full of liars.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 31,942

    Health Service Journal
    @HSJnews
    ·
    2m
    Mr Cummings says he repeatedly - from Feb/March - "if we don't fire
    @MattHancock
    and get on top of the testing catastrophe we will see a lot of people dead".

    "In April, we had this terrible pledge distorting the system and constant lying about PPE."

    What is Cummings arguing, we should have done less testing? Imagine if Hancock hadn't promised 100k a day...we had one week in September when some people couldn't get a test and it was like the world was about to end.
    Yes, I was told that the "system" stated that increasing testing was impossible because of capacity at the "proper" labs and lacked of skilled technicians.

    The obvious answer wa to set up new labs and use technology to fill the skill gap.

    Shades of the Manhattan project Caultrons - The US Army took one look at the claim that only a PhD could monitor a Caultron, laughed, and trained women from the secretarial pool (IIRC) to do a better job than the scientists....
  • Richard_TyndallRichard_Tyndall Posts: 28,142

    Cummings says he was pushing for a system which would have allowed the government to look at positive test cases and consider bank data, phone data, to triangulate where people were and what they were doing.

    ---

    So he wanted a South Korean model.....given the media had a meltdown about dep-ing an app to go to the pub, just imagine the reaction to well the government is going to covertly spy on your every move.

    Some of us said way back, the only effective trace approach was the South Korean model, but no Western government could ever go for it, because the public just wouldn't accept it.

    Just like everyone kept saying they wouldn't accept lockdown - until they did.

    For better or for worse I think many commentators have a very wrong headed view of what the public will accept when their lives are threatened.
  • CarlottaVanceCarlottaVance Posts: 57,678
    Ironically, Dominic Cummings has saved Matt Hancock. Some very serious allegations to be answered but no way that Boris Johnson will act on Cummings' evidence. Interesting to see what happens at the next Cabinet reshuffle though.

    https://twitter.com/SebastianEPayne/status/1397519058942271488?s=20
  • Richard_TyndallRichard_Tyndall Posts: 28,142
    gealbhan said:

    Ian Dunt
    @IanDunt
    ·
    1h
    That is.... quite a thing to say. The Cabinet secretary had no confidence that the secretary of state for health would tell the truth during a pandemic.

    Except it’s a Cummings lie, as Boris has just said at the dispatch box, it was never said to him.
    Well I believe Cummings before I believe Boris.
  • CharlesCharles Posts: 35,758
    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Or to charge Sturgeon with something under a national security law for actions injurious to the country
  • FrancisUrquhartFrancisUrquhart Posts: 73,446

    Cummings says he was pushing for a system which would have allowed the government to look at positive test cases and consider bank data, phone data, to triangulate where people were and what they were doing.

    ---

    So he wanted a South Korean model.....given the media had a meltdown about dep-ing an app to go to the pub, just imagine the reaction to well the government is going to covertly spy on your every move.

    Some of us said way back, the only effective trace approach was the South Korean model, but no Western government could ever go for it, because the public just wouldn't accept it.

    Just like everyone kept saying they wouldn't accept lockdown - until they did.

    For better or for worse I think many commentators have a very wrong headed view of what the public will accept when their lives are threatened.
    Lockdown is one thing, especially with furlough payments....having the government spy on your ever move...I don't think that would fly.
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 4,908
    edited May 2021

    Apparently the EU is asking for compensation from AstraZeneca of 10 Euros per dose per day for delays plus 10 million Euros in penalties.

    Has AZ stopped laughing long enough to comment?
    Like my Gran used to say, "I want never gets...."
    Currently trying to teach a 3 year old. Our approach to "I want" is for daddy to tell mummy (or vice versa) "Dominic* wants x" to which the other replies "Does he? Interesting..." while neither of us moves a muscle to give Dominic X. Seems to be working, slowly.

    Mummy also had a campaign to replace "what?" with "pardon?", despite me telling her that was unbearably common :wink: That's worked so 'well' that he thinks 'what' is completely verboten and utters sentences such as "what did he do, mummy, pardon?" :frowning:

    *identiy changed to protect the innocent/guilty
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 107,147
    malcolmg said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    The main problem is it is no longer a Union as such but a Federal UK excluding England.

    Give England its own Parliament or at least English regional assemblies and the problem would be resolved
    no it wouldn't - a UK government would only be allowed to work if the constituent nations accepted the federal government and allowed the federal government to control the overall economic direction of the nation, its defence etc- the English government let alone others would have no incentive to do this - a federal UK could only work if you broke England into pieces so no part was too powerful, and why should England want that?
    Why would the other countries want to be dealing with county councils , it will never ever happen. Westminster is the de facto English government and as such everything it does it with respect to England, if it does not suit the other countries then it is tough luck.
    On current polling the only way Starmer becomes UK PM in 2024 is with SNP confidence and supply in a hung parliament.

    In which case England would still have a Tory majority but not have the UK government it voted for and not have its own Parliament or Assemblies to run most of its own domestic policy as the other home nations have either.

    That would be untenable
  • Time_to_LeaveTime_to_Leave Posts: 2,547
    edited May 2021

    Health Service Journal
    @HSJnews
    ·
    2m
    Mr Cummings says he repeatedly - from Feb/March - "if we don't fire
    @MattHancock
    and get on top of the testing catastrophe we will see a lot of people dead".

    "In April, we had this terrible pledge distorting the system and constant lying about PPE."

    What is Cummings arguing, we should have done less testing? Imagine if Hancock hadn't promised 100k a day...we had one week in September when some people couldn't get a test and it was like the world was about to end.
    Of all the things to criticise him for, the target seems an odd one. One of the few things politicians can bring to the table during a complex crisis is strategic direction and clear instructions on where to focus efforts and prioritise resources.
  • FrancisUrquhartFrancisUrquhart Posts: 73,446
    edited May 2021
    Cummings approach for test and trace again comes from if I ruled the world, I would do x, and everybody would just have to follow along...without considering that a) many powerful voices would rally against it, b) many powerful companies would rally against it and c) absolutely no guarantee the people wouldn't rally against it and d) the practical aspect of it.

    He makes it sound like it would be a piece of piss to just look back all the info of somebody who has tested positive. If it was that easy, the security services could track the few 1000 radical Islamists while sitting on their arses playing video games all day....not struggling to even keep track of a small percentage of those people and unfortunately from time to time one slipping through the net.
  • Northern_AlNorthern_Al Posts: 5,752
    edited May 2021
    Just caught up on Cummings, and PMQ.

    He does not rate the PM at all, does he? He was absolutely categorical that there is something wrong with a political system that throws up a choice between Johnson and Corbyn as PM. Hard to disagree, though this is not just a UK problem - Trump or Biden? Macron or Le Pen?

    Cummings clearly thinks BJ is unfit to be PM and is a bit of an idiot. Luckily for Boris, his comments on Hancock are likely to distract from his view of the PM.

    And I thought Starmer was good at PMQ. I suspect Cummings would rate his ability higher than Johnson or Corbyn, despite him being Labour.
  • kingbongokingbongo Posts: 393
    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    The main problem is it is no longer a Union as such but a Federal UK excluding England.

    Give England its own Parliament or at least English regional assemblies and the problem would be resolved
    no it wouldn't - a UK government would only be allowed to work if the constituent nations accepted the federal government and allowed the federal government to control the overall economic direction of the nation, its defence etc- the English government let alone others would have no incentive to do this - a federal UK could only work if you broke England into pieces so no part was too powerful, and why should England want that?
    The UK government already does control the overall economic direction and defence of the whole UK. Just England is the only country in the UK which does not have its own Parliament to run the rest of its domestic policy.

    There is no reason an English Parliament would not work other than leftwingers don't want it as it would normally have a Tory majority, otherwise we should at least have regional assemblies which would still be better than the current situation where England has no government of its own at national or regional level outside of the UK (except in the London region with the Mayor and Assembly)
    this is nuts - if there were an English government it would be like the SNP on steroids - questioning every single action of the UK govt and attempting to delegitimise it, be allowed to 'approve' its decisions etc - the UK is not suited to be a federation as England dominates - everybody who has thought about this for more than 10 minutes understands this.
  • CarlottaVanceCarlottaVance Posts: 57,678
    Swiss foreign ministry, in response to Lukashenko claim: "The Swiss authorities have no knowledge of a bomb threat on the Ryanair Athens-Vilnius flight"

    https://twitter.com/adamparsons/status/1397520140120506369?s=20
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 72,853
    Is Stringer the last old school Lexiter in parliament ?
  • gealbhangealbhan Posts: 2,362

    Health Service Journal
    @HSJnews
    ·
    2m
    Mr Cummings says he repeatedly - from Feb/March - "if we don't fire
    @MattHancock
    and get on top of the testing catastrophe we will see a lot of people dead".

    "In April, we had this terrible pledge distorting the system and constant lying about PPE."

    What is Cummings arguing, we should have done less testing? Imagine if Hancock hadn't promised 100k a day...we had one week in September when some people couldn't get a test and it was like the world was about to end.
    No, he is arguing that the arbitrary target was actually counter productive as it disrupted the whole development of the test and trace programme. That much seems blindingly obvious.
    This is true. It’s documented that rather than drive quality, it drove fiddling to meet the targets. Test kits mailed out on mass were being counted as testing done.

    Conservative supporting newspapers like Telegraph, Mail, Sun let the country down by not calling the government out on this, and by accepting target had been reached.

    When Blair’s government was obsessed by targets, the Conservatives used to speak very eloquently about the dangers of targets.
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 4,908
    Sandpit said:

    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    maaarsh said:

    DavidL said:

    I have not been watching this but from the comments on here it does appear that Cummings really does want to focus on the way we make decisions in a crisis, something he was pretty obsessed with in government and has written about extensively on his blog.

    His critique previously is:
    *That government lacks up to date and reliable data and we need to find new ways to collate that data.
    *That the Civil Service has far too many general skills and not nearly enough specific skills or expertise.
    * That those with the relevant expertise or skills find it too difficult to be heard in the decision making process.
    * That politicians generally lack numeracy or other technical skills which allow them to identify the holes in the advice that they are being given.
    *That the whole process is just too slow.

    I find that hard to disagree with but the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. Has he added anything further to this today?

    He appears to live in a fantasy world of high performing organisations which respond to catastrophic shock with calm and capability.

    I've no doubt number 10 and the civil service are a shit show - I just don't share his faith in the existance of impressive alternatives.
    Hence why I say that the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. But the days of the great British generalist in the Civil Service who goes from department to department learning just enough about each new area of responsibility to justify a promotion to somewhere else are surely coming to an end? We need specialists, employed for their specialism and respected within that field but only listened to at best outside it. He is right about this.
    And why the vaccine task force worked....got rid of the civil servants, hired top people with specific expert knowledge in a variety of niche roles, told them to get on with it, no time for dicking about, diversity training, etc etc etc.

    Compare with PHE roll out of testing.....but Mr Hancock we can't do more than 10,000 a day, its too hard, its too complicated, there is this issue and that issue, and we will only use PHE labs, and no we won't use outside contractors. My Excel spreadsheet can't cope.
    Exactly so. A good example of what DC is talking about and what needs to be done, at least in an emergency. Whether you can generalise from that happy experience to government as a whole is more problematic.
    I think we all know the civil service approach is to start from no, it can't be done, its too hard, too expensive....where as those leading the world, your Elon Musks, start from the it can be done, I will make it happen, now how do I do that, first of all hire some really good people.

    We need to have reform to more the Elon end. The problem is that again, as we said early about ministers admitting I actually don't know, any government programme that fails gets all the attention, not if 4 succeed and 1 fails.

    One of the leading people on the vaccine task force actually said they very nearly didn't join because they knew if all the vaccines didn't work, he would be in front of select committee and being branded by the media as the man who wasted billions...with no room for nuance of we took educated bets on uncertain technologies, because the upside vastly outweighed the downside.
    Great analogy

    If you want to build a rocket that lands back, then build one every fortnight and fly it. After a few holes in the ground you’ll have a rocket that lands back. Takes a year or two.

    Alternatively, spend 10 years designing a rocket that lands back, test it on a computer, build models and test them in wind tunnels, spend five years more building the actual rocket, find a problem in the design and spend more time on the computer and in the wind tunnel, then eventually get your rocket. But well done, because you kept 10,000 people employed in 43 different states, for 15 years.
    You also get the advantage, with the first approach, of hiring the best people, because all they really want to do is actually get to launch some damn rockets, rather than spend a career pontificating about launching a rocket.
  • CarnyxCarnyx Posts: 28,779

    Carnyx said:

    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    Writes the man from a country that voted to REMAIN in its current union of the people in the country that voted to LEAVE theirs.....
    Wrong sequence there; 2014 was entirely predicated on the UK remaining in the EU,
    Not in the Scottish Government's "Scotland's Future":

    If we remain in the UK, the Conservative Party’s promise of an in/out referendum on EU membership raises the serious possibility that Scotland will be forced to leave the EU against the wishes of the people of Scotland.

    Page 60.

    Of course their lying and obfuscation about Scotland's quick accession to the EU in the event of independence might have undermined belief in this claim - which, almost uniquely, turned out to be true...
    It was the No campaign that made 'vote No and stay in the EU' a central plank of their platform. And they won, so they take the credit/blame, whichever ypou want to call it.

    I actually pointed out that possibility to friends and family members before the referendum - but they would not believe me, because of the No campaign's relentless promises that voting No was the only way tyo stay in the EU.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 45,799
    Cyclefree said:

    The only interesting thing on that whiteboard are the words, “Who do we not save?”

    Is some MP going to ask about that?
    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    kjh said:

    I wonder why looking at that white board makes me very nervous about Government brain storming and planning process generally. Eek.

    Whiteboards have never produced anything good in my experience. Banal, lowest common denominator dribble is the most they can aspire to and they generally fall short.
    That’s cos you are in law.
    In tech I’d say they are indispensable.
    Interesting. In law the idea that you can say anything meaningful in a brief phrase without qualifications is risible. In tech equations etc may mean that the board actually has something significant on it.
    "Caveat emptor"?
    A good example. It is so qualified by, for example, Consumer Protection legislation or even the terms of the Sale of Goods Act that on its own it is vacuous and meaningless.

    But I am happy to accept that it is useful in other fields. My son is taking his advanced higher maths exam this morning and his calculations have expanded from his white board over his mirrored doors. It clearly helps him think through difficult problems.
  • CarlottaVanceCarlottaVance Posts: 57,678
    The Belarusian official who made the claim about Hamas blowing up the Ryanair plane said the fake bomb threat came from a Protonmail address. They're based in Switzerland and Lukashenko clearly has no idea how the internet works....

    Protonmail say they "have not seen any credible evidence that the Belarusian claims are true and have not received any requests from the authorities regarding any Proton accounts in connection to the incident."


    https://twitter.com/maxseddon/status/1397477206151008258?s=20
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 45,799
    malcolmg said:

    Carnyx said:

    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    Writes the man from a country that voted to REMAIN in its current union of the people in the country that voted to LEAVE theirs.....
    Wrong sequence there; 2014 was entirely predicated on the UK remaining in the EU,
    Not in the Scottish Government's "Scotland's Future":

    If we remain in the UK, the Conservative Party’s promise of an in/out referendum on EU membership raises the serious possibility that Scotland will be forced to leave the EU against the wishes of the people of Scotland.

    Page 60.

    Of course their lying and obfuscation about Scotland's quick accession to the EU in the event of independence might have undermined belief in this claim - which, almost uniquely, turned out to be true...
    We know who the liars are, they may have made assumptions , it is the English government at Westminster that runs on lies and is full of liars.
    I think the liar in that case Malcolm made the mistake of adhibiting his name. It was an Alex Salmond. Whatever happened to him?
  • gealbhangealbhan Posts: 2,362

    Jonathan said:

    Sympathies to government supporters defending this shower on PB today.

    Will CCHQ circle the wagons to defend Matt Hancock?
    I expect his appearance before this committee in two weeks and their report in late June will decide his fate
    He is safe as houses. Just ignore all this, it will be gone in a week.

    Much more serious for Hancock and Boris, they should have learnt from Welsh Government about how to run a vaccination programme more effectively.
  • Nigel_ForemainNigel_Foremain Posts: 12,341
    malcolmg said:

    Carnyx said:

    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    Writes the man from a country that voted to REMAIN in its current union of the people in the country that voted to LEAVE theirs.....
    Wrong sequence there; 2014 was entirely predicated on the UK remaining in the EU,
    Not in the Scottish Government's "Scotland's Future":

    If we remain in the UK, the Conservative Party’s promise of an in/out referendum on EU membership raises the serious possibility that Scotland will be forced to leave the EU against the wishes of the people of Scotland.

    Page 60.

    Of course their lying and obfuscation about Scotland's quick accession to the EU in the event of independence might have undermined belief in this claim - which, almost uniquely, turned out to be true...
    We know who the liars are, they may have made assumptions , it is the English government at Westminster that runs on lies and is full of liars.
    So says the man that supports Alex Salmond. Th fat little toad is so amoral he makes Boris Johnson look like a pillar of moral rectitude (sorry you may need to use a dictionary for those biggy words).

    How do you feel about being a fanbois of a man described as a sex pest by his own QC and his own protege, Ms Sturgeon? And of course, she never never knew of the allegations. How any nationalist has the gall to call others liars. Another case of your psychological projection problem I guess. And how is the anger management going btw?
  • Time_to_LeaveTime_to_Leave Posts: 2,547

    DavidL said:

    maaarsh said:

    DavidL said:

    I have not been watching this but from the comments on here it does appear that Cummings really does want to focus on the way we make decisions in a crisis, something he was pretty obsessed with in government and has written about extensively on his blog.

    His critique previously is:
    *That government lacks up to date and reliable data and we need to find new ways to collate that data.
    *That the Civil Service has far too many general skills and not nearly enough specific skills or expertise.
    * That those with the relevant expertise or skills find it too difficult to be heard in the decision making process.
    * That politicians generally lack numeracy or other technical skills which allow them to identify the holes in the advice that they are being given.
    *That the whole process is just too slow.

    I find that hard to disagree with but the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. Has he added anything further to this today?

    He appears to live in a fantasy world of high performing organisations which respond to catastrophic shock with calm and capability.

    I've no doubt number 10 and the civil service are a shit show - I just don't share his faith in the existance of impressive alternatives.
    Hence why I say that the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. But the days of the great British generalist in the Civil Service who goes from department to department learning just enough about each new area of responsibility to justify a promotion to somewhere else are surely coming to an end? We need specialists, employed for their specialism and respected within that field but only listened to at best outside it. He is right about this.
    And why the vaccine task force worked....got rid of the civil servants, hired top people with specific expert knowledge in a variety of niche roles, told them to get on with it, no time for dicking about, diversity training, etc etc etc.

    Compare with PHE roll out of testing.....but Mr Hancock we can't do more than 10,000 a day, its too hard, its too complicated, there is this issue and that issue, and we will only use PHE labs, and no we won't use outside contractors. My Excel spreadsheet can't cope.
    I admit I am biased here, but the civil service overall is the wrong target there. The problem is the framework it has to operate in (a political choice, and once the choice is made the civil service has to obey) and a complete lack of balls at the top end of the civil service amongst those who should challenge and push against the nonsense.

    The problem isn’t “the civil service”, it’s the ineffectual civil service leadership, and a lack of political desire to strengthen it (e.g. a stronger leader as Perm Sec in the Home Office would have had Patel on toast for bullying his staff).

    I actually don’t think Cummings would disagree with me.
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 107,147
    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    The main problem is it is no longer a Union as such but a Federal UK excluding England.

    Give England its own Parliament or at least English regional assemblies and the problem would be resolved
    no it wouldn't - a UK government would only be allowed to work if the constituent nations accepted the federal government and allowed the federal government to control the overall economic direction of the nation, its defence etc- the English government let alone others would have no incentive to do this - a federal UK could only work if you broke England into pieces so no part was too powerful, and why should England want that?
    The UK government already does control the overall economic direction and defence of the whole UK. Just England is the only country in the UK which does not have its own Parliament to run the rest of its domestic policy.

    There is no reason an English Parliament would not work other than leftwingers don't want it as it would normally have a Tory majority, otherwise we should at least have regional assemblies which would still be better than the current situation where England has no government of its own at national or regional level outside of the UK (except in the London region with the Mayor and Assembly)
    this is nuts - if there were an English government it would be like the SNP on steroids - questioning every single action of the UK govt and attempting to delegitimise it, be allowed to 'approve' its decisions etc - the UK is not suited to be a federation as England dominates - everybody who has thought about this for more than 10 minutes understands this.
    Rubbish. Most large and many medium sized nations, from the US to Canada, Germany, India and Australia work as Federations, no reason we cannot do too.

    Only the left don't want an English Parliament as it would normally have a Tory majority that is all
  • CarlottaVanceCarlottaVance Posts: 57,678
    Paul Waugh thread on Cummings evidence on Hancock:

    https://twitter.com/paulwaugh/status/1397490778100977666?s=20
  • Time_to_LeaveTime_to_Leave Posts: 2,547
    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    The main problem is it is no longer a Union as such but a Federal UK excluding England.

    Give England its own Parliament or at least English regional assemblies and the problem would be resolved
    no it wouldn't - a UK government would only be allowed to work if the constituent nations accepted the federal government and allowed the federal government to control the overall economic direction of the nation, its defence etc- the English government let alone others would have no incentive to do this - a federal UK could only work if you broke England into pieces so no part was too powerful, and why should England want that?
    The UK government already does control the overall economic direction and defence of the whole UK. Just England is the only country in the UK which does not have its own Parliament to run the rest of its domestic policy.

    There is no reason an English Parliament would not work other than leftwingers don't want it as it would normally have a Tory majority, otherwise we should at least have regional assemblies which would still be better than the current situation where England has no government of its own at national or regional level outside of the UK (except in the London region with the Mayor and Assembly)
    this is nuts - if there were an English government it would be like the SNP on steroids - questioning every single action of the UK govt and attempting to delegitimise it, be allowed to 'approve' its decisions etc - the UK is not suited to be a federation as England dominates - everybody who has thought about this for more than 10 minutes understands this.
    Rubbish. Most large and many medium sized nations, from the US to Canada, Germany, India and Australia work as Federations, no reason we cannot do too.

    Only the left don't want an English Parliament as it would normally have a Tory majority that is all
    “Only the left”? No, they are right. An English first minister would undermine the U.K. PM at every turn. It’s an unworkable idea.
  • Northern_AlNorthern_Al Posts: 5,752

    DavidL said:

    maaarsh said:

    DavidL said:

    I have not been watching this but from the comments on here it does appear that Cummings really does want to focus on the way we make decisions in a crisis, something he was pretty obsessed with in government and has written about extensively on his blog.

    His critique previously is:
    *That government lacks up to date and reliable data and we need to find new ways to collate that data.
    *That the Civil Service has far too many general skills and not nearly enough specific skills or expertise.
    * That those with the relevant expertise or skills find it too difficult to be heard in the decision making process.
    * That politicians generally lack numeracy or other technical skills which allow them to identify the holes in the advice that they are being given.
    *That the whole process is just too slow.

    I find that hard to disagree with but the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. Has he added anything further to this today?

    He appears to live in a fantasy world of high performing organisations which respond to catastrophic shock with calm and capability.

    I've no doubt number 10 and the civil service are a shit show - I just don't share his faith in the existance of impressive alternatives.
    Hence why I say that the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. But the days of the great British generalist in the Civil Service who goes from department to department learning just enough about each new area of responsibility to justify a promotion to somewhere else are surely coming to an end? We need specialists, employed for their specialism and respected within that field but only listened to at best outside it. He is right about this.
    And why the vaccine task force worked....got rid of the civil servants, hired top people with specific expert knowledge in a variety of niche roles, told them to get on with it, no time for dicking about, diversity training, etc etc etc.

    Compare with PHE roll out of testing.....but Mr Hancock we can't do more than 10,000 a day, its too hard, its too complicated, there is this issue and that issue, and we will only use PHE labs, and no we won't use outside contractors. My Excel spreadsheet can't cope.
    I admit I am biased here, but the civil service overall is the wrong target there. The problem is the framework it has to operate in (a political choice, and once the choice is made the civil service has to obey) and a complete lack of balls at the top end of the civil service amongst those who should challenge and push against the nonsense.

    The problem isn’t “the civil service”, it’s the ineffectual civil service leadership, and a lack of political desire to strengthen it (e.g. a stronger leader as Perm Sec in the Home Office would have had Patel on toast for bullying his staff).

    I actually don’t think Cummings would disagree with me.
    Absolutely agree. It was noticeable that Cummings went out of his way to say that there were lots of extremely talented civil servants; the problem was the ineffective (at times) deployment of those talents, as a result of ineffectual leadership.
  • kingbongokingbongo Posts: 393
    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    The main problem is it is no longer a Union as such but a Federal UK excluding England.

    Give England its own Parliament or at least English regional assemblies and the problem would be resolved
    no it wouldn't - a UK government would only be allowed to work if the constituent nations accepted the federal government and allowed the federal government to control the overall economic direction of the nation, its defence etc- the English government let alone others would have no incentive to do this - a federal UK could only work if you broke England into pieces so no part was too powerful, and why should England want that?
    The UK government already does control the overall economic direction and defence of the whole UK. Just England is the only country in the UK which does not have its own Parliament to run the rest of its domestic policy.

    There is no reason an English Parliament would not work other than leftwingers don't want it as it would normally have a Tory majority, otherwise we should at least have regional assemblies which would still be better than the current situation where England has no government of its own at national or regional level outside of the UK (except in the London region with the Mayor and Assembly)
    this is nuts - if there were an English government it would be like the SNP on steroids - questioning every single action of the UK govt and attempting to delegitimise it, be allowed to 'approve' its decisions etc - the UK is not suited to be a federation as England dominates - everybody who has thought about this for more than 10 minutes understands this.
    Rubbish. Most large and many medium sized nations, from the US to Canada, Germany, India and Australia work as Federations, no reason we cannot do too.

    Only the left don't want an English Parliament as it would normally have a Tory majority that is all
    sigh... no other nation has a country as dominant in its setup as England - that is the problem but, as you are notably dogged in your insistence on sticking to absolutely bonkers ideas no matter what, we should leave it there.
  • SandpitSandpit Posts: 42,433
    gealbhan said:

    Health Service Journal
    @HSJnews
    ·
    2m
    Mr Cummings says he repeatedly - from Feb/March - "if we don't fire
    @MattHancock
    and get on top of the testing catastrophe we will see a lot of people dead".

    "In April, we had this terrible pledge distorting the system and constant lying about PPE."

    What is Cummings arguing, we should have done less testing? Imagine if Hancock hadn't promised 100k a day...we had one week in September when some people couldn't get a test and it was like the world was about to end.
    No, he is arguing that the arbitrary target was actually counter productive as it disrupted the whole development of the test and trace programme. That much seems blindingly obvious.
    This is true. It’s documented that rather than drive quality, it drove fiddling to meet the targets. Test kits mailed out on mass were being counted as testing done.

    Conservative supporting newspapers like Telegraph, Mail, Sun let the country down by not calling the government out on this, and by accepting target had been reached.

    When Blair’s government was obsessed by targets, the Conservatives used to speak very eloquently about the dangers of targets.
    Yes, but the only thing in the news was that testing was in the hundreds per day, even as hundreds were dying every day.

    This wasn’t trying to routinely fiddle whether someone waits 3:59 or 4:01 in A&E, it was trying to increase the testing by orders of magnitude within weeks, pushing against a system that had better things to do in their own minds.

    It’s definitely possible to argue for both sides on this one, it’s one of few things DC had said with which I disagree.
  • CarlottaVanceCarlottaVance Posts: 57,678
    Carnyx said:

    Carnyx said:

    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    Writes the man from a country that voted to REMAIN in its current union of the people in the country that voted to LEAVE theirs.....
    Wrong sequence there; 2014 was entirely predicated on the UK remaining in the EU,
    Not in the Scottish Government's "Scotland's Future":

    If we remain in the UK, the Conservative Party’s promise of an in/out referendum on EU membership raises the serious possibility that Scotland will be forced to leave the EU against the wishes of the people of Scotland.

    Page 60.

    Of course their lying and obfuscation about Scotland's quick accession to the EU in the event of independence might have undermined belief in this claim - which, almost uniquely, turned out to be true...
    voting No was the only way to stay in the EU.
    So they didn't believe the SNP either?
    On one of the few things they told the truth on.....

  • Nigel_ForemainNigel_Foremain Posts: 12,341
    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    The main problem is it is no longer a Union as such but a Federal UK excluding England.

    Give England its own Parliament or at least English regional assemblies and the problem would be resolved
    no it wouldn't - a UK government would only be allowed to work if the constituent nations accepted the federal government and allowed the federal government to control the overall economic direction of the nation, its defence etc- the English government let alone others would have no incentive to do this - a federal UK could only work if you broke England into pieces so no part was too powerful, and why should England want that?
    The UK government already does control the overall economic direction and defence of the whole UK. Just England is the only country in the UK which does not have its own Parliament to run the rest of its domestic policy.

    There is no reason an English Parliament would not work other than leftwingers don't want it as it would normally have a Tory majority, otherwise we should at least have regional assemblies which would still be better than the current situation where England has no government of its own at national or regional level outside of the UK (except in the London region with the Mayor and Assembly)
    this is nuts - if there were an English government it would be like the SNP on steroids - questioning every single action of the UK govt and attempting to delegitimise it, be allowed to 'approve' its decisions etc - the UK is not suited to be a federation as England dominates - everybody who has thought about this for more than 10 minutes understands this.
    The sensible and easy answer to all this is have an English, Scottish and Welsh parliaments and the current MPs remain at Westminster as a revising chamber for their respective regions, with direct oversight of UK only legislation on defence etc. The current arrangement is completely inequitable. I would also throw in direct election of the PM.

    None of this will happen of course, because we are only an unwritten constitutional quasi-democracy, which some might describe as a pragmatic oligarchy.
  • gealbhangealbhan Posts: 2,362

    gealbhan said:

    Ian Dunt
    @IanDunt
    ·
    1h
    That is.... quite a thing to say. The Cabinet secretary had no confidence that the secretary of state for health would tell the truth during a pandemic.

    Except it’s a Cummings lie, as Boris has just said at the dispatch box, it was never said to him.
    Well I believe Cummings before I believe Boris.
    There’s a lot Boris pointedly refused to refute at PMQs, talked jabs and levelling up instead, but he did refute that one which means he must be pretty confident his version can’t be undermined?
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 107,147
    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    The main problem is it is no longer a Union as such but a Federal UK excluding England.

    Give England its own Parliament or at least English regional assemblies and the problem would be resolved
    no it wouldn't - a UK government would only be allowed to work if the constituent nations accepted the federal government and allowed the federal government to control the overall economic direction of the nation, its defence etc- the English government let alone others would have no incentive to do this - a federal UK could only work if you broke England into pieces so no part was too powerful, and why should England want that?
    The UK government already does control the overall economic direction and defence of the whole UK. Just England is the only country in the UK which does not have its own Parliament to run the rest of its domestic policy.

    There is no reason an English Parliament would not work other than leftwingers don't want it as it would normally have a Tory majority, otherwise we should at least have regional assemblies which would still be better than the current situation where England has no government of its own at national or regional level outside of the UK (except in the London region with the Mayor and Assembly)
    this is nuts - if there were an English government it would be like the SNP on steroids - questioning every single action of the UK govt and attempting to delegitimise it, be allowed to 'approve' its decisions etc - the UK is not suited to be a federation as England dominates - everybody who has thought about this for more than 10 minutes understands this.
    Rubbish. Most large and many medium sized nations, from the US to Canada, Germany, India and Australia work as Federations, no reason we cannot do too.

    Only the left don't want an English Parliament as it would normally have a Tory majority that is all
    sigh... no other nation has a country as dominant in its setup as England - that is the problem but, as you are notably dogged in your insistence on sticking to absolutely bonkers ideas no matter what, we should leave it there.
    Ontario dominates in Canada for example but it makes no difference as the Federal government only decides for other non English nations on just tax and defence now essentially which would not change
  • Richard_TyndallRichard_Tyndall Posts: 28,142
    gealbhan said:

    gealbhan said:

    Ian Dunt
    @IanDunt
    ·
    1h
    That is.... quite a thing to say. The Cabinet secretary had no confidence that the secretary of state for health would tell the truth during a pandemic.

    Except it’s a Cummings lie, as Boris has just said at the dispatch box, it was never said to him.
    Well I believe Cummings before I believe Boris.
    There’s a lot Boris pointedly refused to refute at PMQs, talked jabs and levelling up instead, but he did refute that one which means he must be pretty confident his version can’t be undermined?
    Except as Paul Waugh has just pointed out he denied a claim which he then admitted he had not actually heard.
  • RazedabodeRazedabode Posts: 2,708
    It was quite obvious sturgeon was deliberately leaking Cobra meetings.

    It is also interesting the SNP continue to stoke anti English sentiment. Their ultimate goal is for people in rUK to get so utterly pissed off we are happy to see them go.

    I don’t subscribe to that view. But there are many many MalcolmGs in Scotland who insanely believe Scotland can swan off with an amazing surplus of money, water and wind and encounter no difficulty whatsoever.
  • CharlesCharles Posts: 35,758
    Carnyx said:

    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    Writes the man from a country that voted to REMAIN in its current union of the people in the country that voted to LEAVE theirs.....
    Wrong sequence there; 2014 was entirely predicated on the UK remaining in the EU, as you well know. It's not even as if you are in the UK or EU yourself.
    The data suggests Brexit has not impacted views in independence
  • Dura_AceDura_Ace Posts: 10,764
    DougSeal said:

    malcolmg said:

    Leon said:

    Cummings accuses @NicolaSturgeon of undermining 4-nation covid approach: “As soon as you had these meetings Nicola Sturgeon would go straight out announce what she wanted. So you had these completely Potemkin meetings without anyone actually digging into the reality in detail."

    https://twitter.com/Torcuil/status/1397503263709278208?s=20

    He is obviously right on this. It happened in front of our eyes

    At the time I remember thinking ‘this must make the meetings pointless, because no one will say anything important but contentious, because sturgeon will leak it’

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but it’s possibly time to kick Scotland out of the union. Fuck them
    Sooner the better, but as you are a bunch of cowards and cannot stand on your own two feet or do without our money that will not happen.
    The guy who is definately, absolutely, 100% not Anti-English in any way shape or form replies to the UFO and weather obsessive. What a time to be on this board.
    It's like the Algonquin Round Table.
  • Nigel_ForemainNigel_Foremain Posts: 12,341
    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    The main problem is it is no longer a Union as such but a Federal UK excluding England.

    Give England its own Parliament or at least English regional assemblies and the problem would be resolved
    no it wouldn't - a UK government would only be allowed to work if the constituent nations accepted the federal government and allowed the federal government to control the overall economic direction of the nation, its defence etc- the English government let alone others would have no incentive to do this - a federal UK could only work if you broke England into pieces so no part was too powerful, and why should England want that?
    The UK government already does control the overall economic direction and defence of the whole UK. Just England is the only country in the UK which does not have its own Parliament to run the rest of its domestic policy.

    There is no reason an English Parliament would not work other than leftwingers don't want it as it would normally have a Tory majority, otherwise we should at least have regional assemblies which would still be better than the current situation where England has no government of its own at national or regional level outside of the UK (except in the London region with the Mayor and Assembly)
    this is nuts - if there were an English government it would be like the SNP on steroids - questioning every single action of the UK govt and attempting to delegitimise it, be allowed to 'approve' its decisions etc - the UK is not suited to be a federation as England dominates - everybody who has thought about this for more than 10 minutes understands this.
    Rubbish. Most large and many medium sized nations, from the US to Canada, Germany, India and Australia work as Federations, no reason we cannot do too.

    Only the left don't want an English Parliament as it would normally have a Tory majority that is all
    sigh... no other nation has a country as dominant in its setup as England - that is the problem but, as you are notably dogged in your insistence on sticking to absolutely bonkers ideas no matter what, we should leave it there.
    Except that it isn't bonkers if it were done correctly. Have you never heard of constitutional checks and balances? Our constitution was already a mess, but the asymmetrical devolution settlement which the uncharitable might describe as a gerrymandering attempt gone wrong by Labour, only made it even worse. We need a complete constitutional overhaul , including the HoL, the electoral system and direct election of PMs so we are not left with an absurd choice between two complete clowns.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 45,799

    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    kingbongo said:

    HYUFD said:

    Leon said:

    Mr. Leon, Sturgeon being an idiot is no reason to destroy a nation.

    Devolution is a disaster. Especially the botched, stupid, asymmetric devolution given us by Labour. Boris is right

    Anecdote: at my last large family gathering I was struck by the family members who were seriously anti-union and anti-Scottish. They used to be apathetic, now they are averse. Let Scotland go. Cut them away. This is a growing feeling in England. It will be England that ends the Union, if it ends

    My family is not alone

    ‘MICHAEL Gove has been warned by a Tory MP that the Union could end through "benign neglect" as voters in England give up on it just as they did with the EU.

    The Cabinet Office minister was told by Jackie Doyle-Price that her constituents in Thurrock in Essex now griped about Scotland they way they used to about Brussels.

    She said for many people in England the Union was not a “living entity”and urged UK ministers to do more to help people understand and appreciate it.’

    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/19318323.michael-gove-warned-union-fall-apart-throuhg-benign-neglec/
    The main problem is it is no longer a Union as such but a Federal UK excluding England.

    Give England its own Parliament or at least English regional assemblies and the problem would be resolved
    no it wouldn't - a UK government would only be allowed to work if the constituent nations accepted the federal government and allowed the federal government to control the overall economic direction of the nation, its defence etc- the English government let alone others would have no incentive to do this - a federal UK could only work if you broke England into pieces so no part was too powerful, and why should England want that?
    The UK government already does control the overall economic direction and defence of the whole UK. Just England is the only country in the UK which does not have its own Parliament to run the rest of its domestic policy.

    There is no reason an English Parliament would not work other than leftwingers don't want it as it would normally have a Tory majority, otherwise we should at least have regional assemblies which would still be better than the current situation where England has no government of its own at national or regional level outside of the UK (except in the London region with the Mayor and Assembly)
    this is nuts - if there were an English government it would be like the SNP on steroids - questioning every single action of the UK govt and attempting to delegitimise it, be allowed to 'approve' its decisions etc - the UK is not suited to be a federation as England dominates - everybody who has thought about this for more than 10 minutes understands this.
    Rubbish. Most large and many medium sized nations, from the US to Canada, Germany, India and Australia work as Federations, no reason we cannot do too.

    Only the left don't want an English Parliament as it would normally have a Tory majority that is all
    “Only the left”? No, they are right. An English first minister would undermine the U.K. PM at every turn. It’s an unworkable idea.
    No, no, they would be loyal, public spirited and focused on the general good. Just like Nicola. I mean, who could doubt it?
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 45,799
    gealbhan said:

    gealbhan said:

    Ian Dunt
    @IanDunt
    ·
    1h
    That is.... quite a thing to say. The Cabinet secretary had no confidence that the secretary of state for health would tell the truth during a pandemic.

    Except it’s a Cummings lie, as Boris has just said at the dispatch box, it was never said to him.
    Well I believe Cummings before I believe Boris.
    There’s a lot Boris pointedly refused to refute at PMQs, talked jabs and levelling up instead, but he did refute that one which means he must be pretty confident his version can’t be undermined?
    Presumably he's asked Sedwell?
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 31,942
    Selebian said:

    Sandpit said:

    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    maaarsh said:

    DavidL said:

    I have not been watching this but from the comments on here it does appear that Cummings really does want to focus on the way we make decisions in a crisis, something he was pretty obsessed with in government and has written about extensively on his blog.

    His critique previously is:
    *That government lacks up to date and reliable data and we need to find new ways to collate that data.
    *That the Civil Service has far too many general skills and not nearly enough specific skills or expertise.
    * That those with the relevant expertise or skills find it too difficult to be heard in the decision making process.
    * That politicians generally lack numeracy or other technical skills which allow them to identify the holes in the advice that they are being given.
    *That the whole process is just too slow.

    I find that hard to disagree with but the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. Has he added anything further to this today?

    He appears to live in a fantasy world of high performing organisations which respond to catastrophic shock with calm and capability.

    I've no doubt number 10 and the civil service are a shit show - I just don't share his faith in the existance of impressive alternatives.
    Hence why I say that the answers are more complicated than he wants to admit. But the days of the great British generalist in the Civil Service who goes from department to department learning just enough about each new area of responsibility to justify a promotion to somewhere else are surely coming to an end? We need specialists, employed for their specialism and respected within that field but only listened to at best outside it. He is right about this.
    And why the vaccine task force worked....got rid of the civil servants, hired top people with specific expert knowledge in a variety of niche roles, told them to get on with it, no time for dicking about, diversity training, etc etc etc.

    Compare with PHE roll out of testing.....but Mr Hancock we can't do more than 10,000 a day, its too hard, its too complicated, there is this issue and that issue, and we will only use PHE labs, and no we won't use outside contractors. My Excel spreadsheet can't cope.
    Exactly so. A good example of what DC is talking about and what needs to be done, at least in an emergency. Whether you can generalise from that happy experience to government as a whole is more problematic.
    I think we all know the civil service approach is to start from no, it can't be done, its too hard, too expensive....where as those leading the world, your Elon Musks, start from the it can be done, I will make it happen, now how do I do that, first of all hire some really good people.

    We need to have reform to more the Elon end. The problem is that again, as we said early about ministers admitting I actually don't know, any government programme that fails gets all the attention, not if 4 succeed and 1 fails.

    One of the leading people on the vaccine task force actually said they very nearly didn't join because they knew if all the vaccines didn't work, he would be in front of select committee and being branded by the media as the man who wasted billions...with no room for nuance of we took educated bets on uncertain technologies, because the upside vastly outweighed the downside.
    Great analogy

    If you want to build a rocket that lands back, then build one every fortnight and fly it. After a few holes in the ground you’ll have a rocket that lands back. Takes a year or two.

    Alternatively, spend 10 years designing a rocket that lands back, test it on a computer, build models and test them in wind tunnels, spend five years more building the actual rocket, find a problem in the design and spend more time on the computer and in the wind tunnel, then eventually get your rocket. But well done, because you kept 10,000 people employed in 43 different states, for 15 years.
    You also get the advantage, with the first approach, of hiring the best people, because all they really want to do is actually get to launch some damn rockets, rather than spend a career pontificating about launching a rocket.
    Tom Mueller, left his job as a top rocket engine designer for SpaceX. Because he met Elon Musk at a hobbyist conference, where he (Mueller) was looking for a test stand to fire the rocket engine he was building in his garage.
    One of the best rocket engine designers in the world was so bored with his day job not actually involving rocket engines - so he was building his own at home....
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