Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #R4today

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Matt Hancock on #r4today says again that the problem isn't the failure of Serco Test & Trace, rather that demand is exceeding supply of testing because it is "free & easily accessible".

2nd time in days he's floated this concept that the problem is people not having to pay. 1/5
How long before GP, A&E or treatment waiting times are blamed on the fact that it's "free"?

The Health Secretary should not need reminding of the founding principles of the NHS, that it be free at the point of delivery; that it be based on clinical need, not ability to pay. 2/5
Those pledges make our NHS the world class health service that it is.

But it isn't free, we just pay for it differently. The challenges come when governments decide not to fund it whilst blaming clinicians for the problems caused by not being adequately funded. 3/5
Read 5 tweets
Listening to Matt Hancock on #R4Today he sounds like a mutant Dr Pangloss where everything he does is for the absolute best , irrespective of whether in practice it achieves any of the benefits he claimed
Thus ignoring Council Leaders in Trafford and Bolton who pleaded with him not to lift Local Lockdown , and reversing his decision 12 hours later ( at point Starmer sat down at end of PMQ's) becomes 'swift and decisive action'

Not muddleheaded Westminster arrogance
Today Hancock is doing media round to promote Operation Moonshot ( you really couldn't make it up) using new test technologies to roll out mass testing

Wide availability of testing is unambiguously a good thing . But important strategic issue is how used and to what effect
Read 10 tweets
Really interesting @MattHancock interview on #r4today, lots covered a few reflections I think worth making.

On the headline of £500m for mass testing - this is potentially really important for helping us get back to normal, but two points really need emphasising:
1 - false positive rates crucial to understand when testing large populations with low prevalence and no symptoms- has real issues for how people might react to +ve results. @mgtmccartney @carlheneghan @deb_cohen all explored this…

2 - testing negative will only tell you that you aren't shedding the virus at that moment in time. It doesn't mean you won't be infectious the next morning so if you've been in contact with a case, you will still likely need to isolate.
Read 6 tweets
If you think the big reason Conservatives hate the BBC is because they can't profit from it, you're hugely mistaken

Of course, there are some juicy assets to carve up & sell at a discount to their friends & family there, but that's not what drives Tory hatred

#r4today @lbc
The reason they loathe the BBC is because it stands as a bulwark against the essence of their ideology

Whether news or drama, every show the BBC produces shares the same basic principles

Racism: bad
Poverty: bad
Hate: bad
Caring: good
Society: good
Facts: good
..and so on

But worst of all it's popular.

It's seen as jewel in the national crown, not only by most at home, but globally, & thus very difficult to destroy

In recent decades, foreign billionaire press barons have combined their muscle with secretly funded right wing lobby groups..

Read 8 tweets
In the morning papers review on #R4Today, Justin Webb breathlessly relays this news, from the Sun, that he says strikes a “more positive note” than other Covid-related news: traffic is virtually back to normal, post-lockdown.
[Thread 1/n]
It is absolutely gut-wrenching to hear the nation’s supposedly top quality news programme appearing to back, without any further comment/balance, the news that we’ve wasted the Covid pause; that air pollution will be getting back to ‘normal’, killing tens of thousands yearly.
It is profoundly disheartening that TODAY is happy to report as ‘positive’ the news that the birdsong so many of us were enjoying hearing better will now be inaudible again; that we’ve resumed rushing around like headless chickens or rats in a race as much as before.
Read 5 tweets
The #UKGovernment Torture Report

This is a very short overview of what the #UKAuthorities have done in the case.

#PraiseTheLORD #PraiseGod #Borisjohnson #Downingstreet #PritiPatel #UKParliament #Dailymail
In 2005, I set up a business selling CDs, namely mixtape CDs after graduating from Uni.

In 2006, my home was raided & my business was stopped. They said the CDs I was selling were in breach of copyright.
It was a complete shock as the exact same CDs I was selling were prevalent on most high streets and supermarkets. They were selling in their thousands in places such as #Tesco & #HMV. And #Woolworths were the actual UK Distributor of these CDs.
Read 91 tweets
"Secret papers on trade negotiations between the UK and US were stolen by Russian hackers from the email account of former trade minister Liam Fox, according to Reuters"


@LBC #bbcpm…
Turns out Russian hackers stole the entire contents of Liam Fox's personal email account (which contained secret govt documents).

@LBC #r4today Image
Read 3 tweets
Despite the lockdown we still brought you a packed #RISJSeminars schedule last term. Catch up with inspiring and insightful talks, chaired by @MeeraSelva1, by our line-up of speakers covering topics inc. #mentalhealth #BBC #pressfreedom #COVID19 #Brexit...

Play them in thread ⬇️
🌍@prashantrao international editor of @TheAtlantic kicked off our #RISJSeminars last term outlining how to build a global media brand and staying true to the brand/mission as they expand.
Watch the video here:
🇬🇧↔️🇪🇺@anandMenon1 on Brexit: “The greatest risk is the talks break down and both sides walk away from the negotiating table in a spirit of animosity and mutual recrimination that gets in the way of co-operation over health, terrorism and security.”
Read 11 tweets
Let's look at Johnson's record since he has been PM:

- illegally porogued parliament
- only appears to announce good news otherwise hides from public scrutiny
- took 2 week holiday during a deadly pandemic
- tried to force herd immunity & untold deaths on us

@LBC #r4today
- lied about 'following the science' & as a result over 30,000 people died unnecessarily so far
- tried to blame scientists, medical staff and care homes for the deaths he caused


@LBC #r4today #c4news #newsnight #bbcpm #bbcaq
- apparently got away with funneling trips & public ££ to a woman he was having sex with while married & in public office
- enabled Cummings to break lockdown law & helped to cover up for him
- enabled Jenrick to break lockdown law & helped to cover up for him
@LBC #r4today
Read 12 tweets
BBC segment on #r4today effusive in praise for #TrumpPressConference performance yesterday.
This is how that ‘metered, sober, restrained’ conference began.
“data driven” says the BBC. #r4today
aside from lying again on testing, this “sober” performance from #trump
BBC #r4today praised Trump’s response in #Portland saying the BLM protests have been overtaken by “people who just want to protest” and “anarchists”.
Read 5 tweets
2016: "The easiest deal in human history"

2019: "We have an oven ready deal"

2020: 👇👇👇


@lbc #newsnight #PMQs #r4today
@LBC REMEMBER 2016 when Boris Johnson said the Remainer claim that we could end up with a no deal Brexit was "totally and utterly absurd"...


@LBC #newsnight #PMQs #r4today #C4News
Read 3 tweets
"There has however been speculation that this report was going to reveal either that Russia had interfered in or sought to influence the referendum, but this committee's view it's worse than that..."



@lbc @mrjamesob #bbcpm #C4News
"the report reveals that no one in govt knew if Russia interfered in or sought to influence the EU ref because they did not want to know. The UK govt has actively avoided looking for evidence that Russia interfered...


@lbc @mrjamesob
"..we are told that they have not seen any evidence, but that is irrelevant if they haven't actually looked for it"


@lbc @mrjamesob #c4news #bbcpm
Read 26 tweets
1/Some really strong campaigns to protect the arts in England are getting covered - especially for the performance venues worst-hit by the pandemic.

To me, they'd be stronger still if foregrounding the voices of people and communities whose lives have been changed; #r4today
2/I hugely respect the theatre directors & musicians making the case; more compelling still for many might be

young offenders set on a better path

older people escaping loneliness

mothers overcoming post-natal depression

disabled people liberated from isolation

3/this only scratches the surface,

These theatres/music venues are for many, many people/places the drivers of jobs & tourism;

Spaces where people find hope/aspiration/pathways for the future;

That bind communities, giving pride/shared identity

Let's hear those voices too
Read 7 tweets
NEW- Grant Shapps explains how traffic light system will work.

Green - countries with v low COVID rates. England will drop quarantine, but overseas country may not (not reciprocal).

Amber - countries with higher rates. England drops quarantine if the overseas country does.
For example...

- New Zealand is on the green list. So no quarantine for people coming from NZ to England. But not reciprocal because NZ may still have concerns about UK travellers.

- France is amber. So a true "corridor" with quarantine-free travel in both directions.
MORE - Grant Shapps also confirms that around 60 countries and overseas territories will be on the exempt list. Adds he wanted to publish the list earlier but blames the Scottish govt for holding it up saying the devolved nations have "their own process".
Read 8 tweets
Sir John Major says the pandemic has made us realise how much we value people like carers, who are “generally lamentably paid”.

“Common decency suggests that this has to be put right”, he says.

“What’s become evident is that many people have been left behind.” #r4today
“Ending dependence on food banks is essential, it’s truly shocking that we have food banks in 2020”, says John Major.

“We need a crusade to improve the living standards of those who have been left behind”.

He challenges Boris Johnson’s government to address those inequalities.
John Major calls for a rise in borrowing to pay our way through the recovery, rather than an immediate rise in taxes.

And believes it will be less likely that Scotland would vote for independence, given the economy turbulence ahead.

Read 4 tweets
Interesting that when concerns were raised for a decade that real term budget cuts and costs of marketisation were leading to larger class sizes the gov told us class sizes didn't make a difference to outcomes, and TA cuts wouldnt have an impact
#edutwitter #r4today
However now they are saying that working in small groups is the way to close the Covid attainment gap.
Also interesting that there is £350m to subsidize tutoring, so sounds like schools will have to use their additional funding to pay £12 an hour for these sessions.
£12 per hour is more than a TAs average hourly wage. I also know that one of the tutoring companies that has been lobbying government for this for weeks has been recruiting volunteers for their tutoring service. So why is gov being charged £48 per hour?
Read 27 tweets
So, we hear on #r4today that a new report (unnamed) criticises the Home Office for not knowing how many undocumented immigrants are in the UK. By definition, nobody knows.

But, a couple of things about that...
Home Office doesn't have its own recent estimate, but there are several credible estimates out there. Mayor of London's research puts the figure at about 675,000. Pew Research Centre puts it at about 800,000 (but includes asylum seekers).

Either number is unacceptable. #r4today
Contrary to what hysteric coverage of Farige, etc. would have you think, vast majority of these people came here entirely legally. They entered UK on legitimate visa and for any number of reasons lost their status.

Our immigration laws systematically force people out of status.
Read 8 tweets
Various people suggesting that 1/3 of people not being reached is some kind of system failure.
A new national programme: new staff, new IT, new governance.
67% response rate would be high for any research study, and in wk one of a central new system it seems pretty remarkable
What i think is much more important is to be upfront that such a massive task won’t be running perfectly from day 1.

There are obviously going to be problems that need sorting out, but it’ll get better. And it’s really very important, app or no app.
Ps well done @felly500 on #r4today this morning.
Read 3 tweets
Rowling apologists out in force on #R4Today this morning, heavily supporting the line that she has innocently wondered into a Twitter debate where equal amounts of toxicity are poured in from both sides. This line is explicitly pushed by the editorial tone.
To be clear: trans people are angry. They would actually like to be left the fuck alone to live their lives the way they wish to. If someone with a HUGE platform chooses to use that platform to attack that uncontroversial wish then anger is an appropriate response.
Without the attack, there is no anger. I'm not engaging with anyone who pops up in the replies peddling any flavour of TERFdom or whataboutery. You're wrong about this and I know that no amount of reasoned argument will change your minds.
Read 3 tweets
The normalisation of suffering is astounding, in its speed and scope. Here's @grantshapps talking about "a long tail" - that is of a long tail of dead people - and celebrating a daily total of 176 deaths. Greece has had 180 fatalities through the entire pandemic so far. #r4today
By the way, feel free to adjust the UK's estimated 50,000-60,000 dead for population size, density, for geography, and for any spurious factor you want. And let me know if you get anywhere near economically ravaged Greece's 180 total, without "the UK gov't completely f***ed up".
Isn't Grant MARVELLOUS. Isn't this government BRILLIANT. Look at the stats yesterday. Only a handful more dead than the Piper Alpha explosion or the Aberfan landslide. Only about three-and-a-half times the dead of the 7/7 bombings. They're doing SO WELL.
Read 3 tweets
The more I hear @BrandonLewis explain plan to impose quarantine to passengers from healthier countries, the clearer it becomes it's a punitive measure, with no scientific basis, designed to give UK a bargaining chip in trying to get others to open their borders to Brits. #r4today
This way, they can make it look like "a deal". Otherwise, the UK appears simply as a supplicant, waiting for countries to announce their decision on whether Brits are allowed in. Which brings into the sharpest relief how poorly it has handled the pandemic.
We know the government became very keen sometime in April to "avoid international comparisons" because they were "unhelpful". And most countries closing their borders to you, is the most brutally unhelpful international comparison. But not if you've closed yours, too.
Read 3 tweets
(Mama, Papa,) Dodo, Tsetse, Murmur, Gigi, Couscous, Hotshots #puzzlepose #puzzlefortoday #r4today
That last one tormented me.
The puzzle, if anyone is interested, was "A question for Mum and Dad: What connects a flightless bird, a bloodsucking fly, a softly-spoken utterance, a French novella, steamed semolina and some exceptionally able people."
Read 4 tweets
A Radio Four thread - dedicated to JW

Britain looks like it will have the highest overall mortality rates
Britain is the epicentre of the 21st century eugenics movement
We have Cummings on politics and science.

He lied to his boss
He lied in the press
He lied to the house
He lied to his wife
He lies to his kids
He feeds us misinformation
He lies and lies
He denies, he waffles, he lies
He lied to the Queen
He lied to the people
He lied on a bus

He's a low down fraud

IDS thinks people should carry on working through illness, until they are incapable of going on
- He was architect of a genocidal welfare benefits system
Johnson thinks death means success
- He's killing us now

IDS and Johnson epitomize evil

#r4today normalize and legitimize it
Read 23 tweets
Let's talk about the UK government's #coronavirus #contacttracing app, which is being trialled on the Isle of Wight as of tomorrow. @MattHancock, the UK govt's Secretary of State for Health & Social Care, was promoting the app on #R4Today this morning.
Matt Hancock urged everyone on the Isle of Wight to download the app, saying it would be an "incredibly important part" of ensuring #CoronavirusLockdownUK restrictions could be eased. /2…
The idea behind these apps - which are in use in other countries already, though the take-up is nowhere higher than 20% - is that it works on your smartphone via your Bluetooth connection & uses your smartphone's ability to measure distance between it & another smartphone. /3
Read 19 tweets

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