David Aaranovitch in The Times today looks at Johnson/Cummings with a wry eye and with a fair degree of “WTF”.
When Michael Gove made his famous remark demeaning experts I was puzzled – even for Gove it seemed a strange, populist load of intellectually deficient detritus. Now I realise it was a statement of Government policy.
Dominic Cummings has revealed (a) Nobody in Government knew what they were doing and (b) the experts who did know what to do were often marginalised or ignored.
As with Brexit the people pulling Johnson’s strings were the Conservative Right – what Cummings referred to as the “Leave” campaigners. Also the ERG, the anti May coup organisers. We know who they are. (Now, incidentally, they argue to tear up the NI Protocol. Johnson obeys.) And they are in charge.
The string-pullers are the antithesis of “experts” driven not by science and logic but plotters driven by ideology and prejudice. Their numbers were boosted in the 2019 General Election when the Conservative benches were boosted by the arrival of shallow Johnson cheerleaders not overburdened with grey matter.
It takes something for those charged with a national emergency to make it worse. But when that failure is compounded by an unwillingness to listen , dishonest statements, delayed action that was deadly and a contempt for substantial cohorts of the population you know we were, and are, in trouble.