Most liked and shared Brexit stories on Facebook (nat'l), 2020-05-19–2020-05-21

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How can Britain trust this floundering crew of fibbers to tackle coronavirus? | Polly Toynbee | Opinion | The Guardian

theguardian.com

No government could have been completely ready for the pandemic, but taking the public for fools has destroyed all trust, says Guardian columnist Polly Toynbee. W aves of panic radiate from the government. Each day ministers sent out to steady the ship in press conferences and broadcast studios tip it a bit closer to capsizing. Asking Michael Gove to soothe the teachers on Sunday with his, “Teachers will be safe in schools” line was about as reassuring to those he called “the blob” as Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’s Child Catcher summoning children from their cellars. When there are differences of opinion between scientists on what counts as safe, only honesty about what is in doubt earns politica...

Boris Johnson defends making foreign NHS staff pay fees for service even though 'they saved my life'

independent.co.uk

Boris Johnson has insisted foreign NHS staff must continue to pay huge fees for the service, despite admitting they saved his life.Labour urged the prime minister to axe the controversial policy – which The Independent revealed would stay, despite a promised “review” – calling it “a gross insult”.In reply, Mr Johnson acknowledged nurses from overseas had saved his life from coronavirus , but claimed the NHS would otherwise be left short of essential funding.Sharing the full story, not just the headlines“We must look at the realities,” he warned, claiming it was “very difficult in the current circumstances to find alternative sources” of cash.The immigration health surcharge – due to soar fro...

The 'lockdown sceptics' want a culture war, with experts as the enemy - The Guardian

theguardian.com

The dismissal of coronavirus expertise, the pitting of ‘elites’ against ‘the people’ – it’s Brexit all over again for the high-profile contrarians An anti-lockdown protester. Photograph: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images An anti-lockdown protester. Photograph: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images Published on Mon 18 May 2020 14.53 BST W ithin days of Boris Johnson announcing lockdown restrictions in late March, Toby Young – self-appointed general secretary of the Free Speech Union – had his own take on the government’s tripartite slogan . “Stay sceptical. End the lockdown. Save lives.” Scepticism has a long and venerable history. From Descartes’s musings on metaphysics to Carl Sagan’s “fine art of balone...