The British government has made the exact same mistakes it made in February and March all over again, they’ve been warned about this time after time, they didn’t listen, and now we all pay the price.

We hear by Monday the announcement of a month-long national lockdown (something I said was now absolutely unavoidable) beginning on Wednesday and stretching to December 1st, in order to get those infection rates down.

We should all be absolutely fuming. This was entirely avoidable. Tory ideology and Tory incompetence has lead us to this. It could’ve been a two week circuit breaker if the fools had listened to SAGE, now we have the pain of a month or more and a catastrophic further death toll more or less either way. At the same time, if we’d put an effective Test+Trace+Isolate system in place during the first lockdown with the breathing space we’d collectively bought ourselves there would have been no need for a circuit breaker or a lockdown. We now get the worst, most painful, and longest of all worlds because of government stubbornness and stupidity.

The government has to succeed now. There is a choice between what I’m about to propose and an endless string of shutdowns. We need to take advantage of being an island nation and pursue ZERO-COVID, we need to remake and devolve a new Test Trace Isolate system that works into public (local) hands. And we have to use the breathing space from this shutdown to work for getting life as normal as possible for as many people as possible. None of this is beyond us, if we actually push for it and take some initiative at the top.

This failure lies with the stupidity and flailing of Boris Johnson, a man who is gravely unfit for the office he holds; but it also lies with the flippant libertarianism of Rishi Sunak, and the incompetence of the entire cabinet.

Final thoughts, we need to implement either a full furlough scheme that pays 100% of people’s wages, or implement a Universal Basic Income during the course and aftermath this shutdown. If the govt is to splash the cash this is the time, it’s entirely possible, don’t let them say otherwise.

We’ll get through this together, and we need to build a better world from the ground up, starting now. Solidarity. Oh, and ban evictions again.

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