Watching a pandemic — a view from London

Image: Pete Linford, Pixabay

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Show your patriotism by being thin!

The government has decided that we must stop being so obese. We are putting the National Health Service under strain by going around having obesity-related health problems, particularly by making ourselves susceptible to covid.  The government has therefore announced a “war on obesity”, which includes: Banning junk-food advertising on TV before 9pmEnding buy-one-get-one-free offers onContinue reading “Show your patriotism by being thin!”

Masks, absence of

Here’s the thing. Nobody’s wearing masks. Well, not nobody, exactly, but mask-wearers are definitely the exception rather than the rule in the UK. Shop staff don’t wear masks. Shop customers don’t wear masks. Delivery drivers going from house to house to house placing parcels into people’s hands don’t wear masks. My neighbour who is anContinue reading “Masks, absence of”

Do you want your old life back?

“Sindrome della capanna“, or “don’t-make-me-get-back-on-the-hamster-wheel syndrome” Italy’s lockdown was very stringent. Nobody was supposed to leave their home except in cases of dire necessity, and the police prowled the streets making sure that people were following the rules. Now that the country is getting its covid cases under control (this wave, at least), most ofContinue reading “Do you want your old life back?”

Why not to fear the debt

Raise your hand if you’re starting to feel more afraid of the economic fallout of coronavirus than you are of coronavirus itself. (Keep your hand up if you wonder if this makes you a bad person.) Raise your hand if the picture below sums up your concerns: Simon Wren-Lewis, emeritus professor of economics and fellowContinue reading “Why not to fear the debt”


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