Britain's Secretary of State of Health Matt Hancock

Britain's Secretary of State of Health Matt Hancock speaks at the daily digital news conference on the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in London.

16-05-2020ANDREW PARSONS

... was the UK government’s health minister Matt Hancock, who felt that it was “unlikely that big, lavish international holidays are going to be possible this summer”. Perched on a remote, virtual sofa next to Phillip Schofield, the minister added that nothing had been decided but said it nonetheless. In this regard, as we observed, he wasn’t that different to Thomas Bareiss, the German tourism secretary of state, who had said something similar, only to say something totally different a couple of weeks later - Germans may well be going on holiday after all. Matt Hancock has the honour of succeeding Herr Bareiss as the Bulletin’s Person of the Week.

Three Cheers...

For the Balearic government announcing that it will be spending 3,500 million euros on reactivating the economy and that key aspects of the plan to get the economy going will include more agile administration and procedures. In other words, public institutions will be less bureaucratic and will be operating with greater rapidity. This did perhaps beg a question as to why such agility couldn’t have existed previously, while an implication of measures being adopted was that this greater agility will only last eighteen months. There was a further question. Where do the 3,500 million euros come from?

A big boo...

For the anti-government protests in Madrid. Being anti-government wasn’t the issue; it was the fact that there were masses of people on the streets who quite clearly (and obviously) weren’t social distancing. The protests were applauded by Vox; they were an expression of “legitimate indignation” at confinement and could well be replicated across Spain. Vox reminded protesters that they should observe social distancing, fully aware that this wouldn’t be the case and therefore somewhat contradicting their stance in having criticised the staging of the International Women’s Day marches the week before the state of alarm was declared.

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