Tag: handling

Don’t blame the government for its handling of Covid. It’s our fault, apparently

At the weekend I went to Broadway Market in east London for the first time in seven months, because – and you don’t need to know this, but I’m telling you anyway – I became semi-obsessed with some walnut saucisson I saw tagged there on Instagram, and emerged blinking and pale from my hole just to find some. I’m glad I did, because the entire venture felt like a normal-world autumnal thing to be doing: shuffling round a food market in a long coat, holding a slightly overpriced latte someone made with an imported Japanese machine, marvelling at small, aesthetically bred pedigree dogs, looking at a vintage trinket stall and considering if I want to have a copper diving helmet in my house (no): revelling in that gorgeous early Saturday afternoon ritual of slowly deciding that you want a pint.



a person holding a sign: Photograph: Amer Ghazzal/REX/Shutterstock


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Photograph: Amer Ghazzal/REX/Shutterstock

For a moment I felt normal, and then I gazed out over the crowd and the intrusive thought came back into my head: “Guh, they should all be at home! Covidiots!”

That phrase, GTSABAH! C!, has been in my brain more or less on a loop since April, when the first clench of lockdown loosened just an inch, and people went tentatively to the park, and other people – let’s be honest, snitches – took photos of them there, and tweeted those photos and sent them to the newspapers, which then presented small clusters of people quietly eating a 99 on a park bench in the same way you or I might regard a war crime. Ever since then I’ve been careful not to find myself in too big a crowd out in public, because it only takes one person with a wide-angle lens and there I am, trapped in the same nonchalant, angular pose as Bigfoot in that photo, a super-spreader criminal with a rapidly melting Feast halfway up to his nose, damned online for ever. So mostly, I’ve stayed indoors.

This would be fine if the public didn’t still blame me for, well, coronavirus. As YouGov found this week, the wider public – ie the victims of, and necessarily the spreaders of, coronavirus – predominantly blame each other for the crisis and not – random example – the government that has overseen a succession of calamitous cronyism and policy failures on a thrice-weekly basis since March. Of 1,972 adults surveyed, 53% hold the public (that is: themselves) responsible for the rise in coronavirus cases over the past month, with only 28% pointing their (freshly washed, for 20 seconds or more) finger at the government. Split that data by voting intention, and 78% of Conservative voters blame the public, with only 7% mad at the government. Labour voters went 29% public, 55% government. As for leave voters, 71% said public, 14% government, while remain went for the most balanced split: 42% public, 43% government.



a person holding a sign: ‘YouGov found that the wider public predominantly blame each other for the crisis and not, random example, the government that has overseen a succession of policy failures.’


© Photograph: Amer Ghazzal/REX/Shutterstock
‘YouGov found that the wider public predominantly blame each other for the

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Florida Gov. DeSantis explains his handling of coronavirus: ‘We wanted society to function’

“You can’t kneecap your own society and think you’re going to successfully handle a pandemic,” Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis told Fox News’ “Life, Liberty & Levin” in an interview airing Sunday night.

The Republican DeSantis has been harshly criticized by the mainstream media for his handling of COVID-19. The governor declined to issue a statewide face mask mandate and lifted restrictions on bars and movie theaters in early June. Last month, DeSantis lifted all state capacity restrictions on bars and restaurants.

“What we did, Mark, was really three things,” DeSantis told host Mark Levin. “One is protect those who are the most vulnerable to the disease, which is our elderly population, and focus that protection there rather than trying to suppress society as a whole. Second thing is, we want to make sure that our hospital system had what they needed in terms of PPE, medication, testing, and we were able to do that.

“But then third, and I think this is really important, we wanted society to function. You can’t burn down the village in order to save it … So if you look now, Florida’s open for business. We have everything — like theme parks, all that have been open for months. And we have kids in school in person. Parents have the option to opt for virtual [learning] if they want, but they have the in-person [option], which is very, very important.”

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As of Saturday, Florida (population: 21.5 million) had recorded 15,186 deaths from COVID-19, compared to 32,875 in New York state (population: 19.5 million).

“One of the things we did in the middle of March is we prohibited hospitals from discharging ill patients with coronavirus back into nursing homes because many of them were not equipped to handle that,” DeSantis explained. “And so what we did instead is we established a lot of COVID-only nursing units throughout the state. So if you had someone test positive in a nursing home, but they weren’t ill enough to need hospitalization, they had a safe place to be isolated in.”

DESANTIS: CLOSING SCHOOL IN SPRING MIGHT HAVE BEEN ONE OF NATION’S ‘BIGGEST PUBLIC HEALTH MISTAKES’

According to the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), 3,202 Florida nursing home residents had died of coronavirus as of Sept. 27. It’s unclear how many New York state nursing home residents have died of the illness because the state does not count residents who died in hospitals as part of the total. However, an Associated Press report from August suggested the number could go as high as 11,000.

“One of the problems that we had in terms of some of the restrictions with nursing homes was we stopped the visitation early on,” DeSantis recalled. “We didn’t want the disease to get in. I think most of the people wanted that done. But after months of this, you start to see loneliness and despair creep in … We

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Indonesia’s civil society petitions to remove health minister Terawan over his handling of Covid-19 pandemic, SE Asia News & Top Stories

JAKARTA (THE JAKARTA POST/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) – A coalition of civil society groups, academics and social organisations has started an online petition urging Indonesian President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo to fire Health Minister Terawan Agus Putranto for his alleged incompetence in handling the worsening Covid-19 pandemic.

“We think that Terawan Agus Putranto has failed to carry out his duties in handling the pandemic as health minister,” the coalition wrote in a petition filed through change.org.

“Therefore, we demand that President Jokowi dismiss Terawan from his position as health minister and replace him with someone more competent.”

The petition was started on Wednesday (Oct 30) by the National Network on Domestic Worker Advocacy (Jala PRT), the head of students’ executive board of Syarif Hidayatullah State Islamic University (UIN Jakarta) Sultan Rivandi, the head of the University of Indonesia’s Student Executive Body (BEM UI) Manik Marganamahendra, Irma Hidayana of Lapor Covid-19 (Report Covid-19) community and Supinah as a labour representative.

As of Monday, more than 6,000 people have signed the petition.

“From the beginning, the minister has taken the pandemic lightly. He has not been serious in handling (the pandemic). He is also unable to overcome issues such as protecting health workers and containing the spread of Covid-19,” the petition said. According to the World Health Organisation, as of Monday, Indonesia ranks 22nd among the countries with the highest rate of Covid-19 infections, only second to the Philippines in Southeast Asia.

Indonesia also has one of the highest death tolls in Asia, with 11,151 deaths.

The country recorded 303,498 Covid-19 cases as of Saturday.

In September, Amnesty International also listed Indonesia among the countries with the highest estimated numbers of health workers who have died from Covid-19.

Calls for Terawan’s removal have been made as early as March when another civil society coalition consisting of human rights watchdogs KontraS and Amnesty International Indonesia, among other groups, said he had “an arrogant and antiscience attitude”.

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Hundreds in India protest government handling of fatal rape

NEW DELHI (AP) — Hundreds of protesters on Friday demanded the dismissal of the government of a northern Indian state where a 19-year-old woman from the country’s lowest caste was allegedly gang raped and later died in a hospital.

The demonstrators shouted “Hang the rapists” and ”First raped by devils, then by the system” as they gathered near Parliament in New Delhi.

The protesters, including Bollywood actress Swara Bhaskar, said the Uttar Pradesh state government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party did not allow anyone to meet the victim’s family and that police cordoned off their village.


Protesters accused authorities of trying to hush up the crime. Police have said they have arrested four suspects, all from an upper caste.

The state government suspended five police officer for alleged negligence in their handling of the investigation of the case, said Awanish Kumar Awasthi , a top state official.

Awasthi also said the police officers, the four suspects in the case and the victim’s family will also undergo lie-detector tests as part of investigation.

Indian television news channels on Friday showed journalists being refused entry to the village by many police officers. One posted outside the village said the media would be allowed in after the investigation into the case is completed.

Bhaskar said the hasty cremation of the victim’s body without the family’s approval showed the callousness by the state government. She demanded the dismissal of Yogi Adiyanath, the state’s top elected official.

The victim was cremated early Wednesday, with the family alleging that police did not allow them to perform her final rites. Videos on social media showed the family weeping as police insisted on cremating the body without allowing them to take it home.

A leader of the main opposition Congress party, Priyanka Gandhi said she was prevented by police from visiting the family on Thursday with her brother, Rahul Gandhi.

Priyanka Gandhi said at a prayer meeting at a temple in New Delhi on Friday that blocking off the village was an injustice to the family and showed that the state is unsafe for women.

Dalits — formerly known as “untouchables” and at the bottom of India’s Hindu caste hierarchy — are victims of thousands of attacks each year. According to human rights organizations, Dalit women are particularly vulnerable to caste-based discrimination and sexual violence.

In India, rape and sexual violence have been under the spotlight since the 2012 gang rape and killing of a 23-year-old student on a New Delhi bus. The attack galvanized massive protests and inspired lawmakers to order the creation of fast-track courts dedicated to rape cases and stiffen penalties for those convicted of the crime.

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