Johnson back in isolation.

The chief advisor has departed, Brexit looms, COVID spreads, and an economic meltdown the likes of which we haven’t seen since the 1930s is upon us. And the PM is back out of action.

Toby Lipatti-Mesme
2 min readNov 16, 2020


Johnson has come into contact with a COVID positive MP, and now he’s back in 10 day isolation. We’re hearing talk of a virtual PMQS (not confirmed) and our dear leader is back to posting videos to Twitter that begin with “hi folks” recorded on his phone.

Johnson is very unlikely to contract the virus a second time. He had a famously perilous experience earlier in the year and as has been said in a characteristically bullish way, the PM is likely “bursting with antibodies”. So in that sense all stable.

The last week (and particularly over the weekend) we’ve seen the government in absolute freefall. We keep hitting new managerial lows every month.

We have the Cummings drama, we have Brexit as a ticking time bomb with huge ramifications whatever happens, we’ve got a burgeoning green agenda being totally overshadowed, a PM who can’t lead from the front for 10 days (not that he could before) and we have the dilemma of fixing Test Trace Isolate and getting us out of lockdown, oh and “saving Christmas”.

This agenda would imperial the premiership and test the strength of the most adept political leaders; we have the most mediocre and feckless we’ve had in anyone’s lifetime. There is no cabinet, going back to the two wars, less competent than this one. Britain has had weak or useless or indeed cruel governments, but one were all that and utterly incompetent to such a stunning degree.

For the good of the country we absolutely need a reset. We need that cabinet reshuffle to be major AND to be brought forward. Remove the duds, bring in experienced hands.

Use the very best assets of the Tory party and shift to a pragmatic, non ideological approach to crisis management. Embrace the moderate and liberal instincts of Toryism rather than the separatist and vicious elements Cummings exemplified (not that Cummings was ever a Tory).

We’re shackled with hopeless leadership all the way until 2024. We can only sit, and watch the car crash and burn. “I told you so” rings hollow when being vindicated means watching the country slip into decline.



Toby Lipatti-Mesme

Insightful and innovative UK journalism and commentary, from Toby Lipatti-Mesme.