There is a pandemic as a socio-political crisis and there is a pandemic as an epidemiological process.

Sometimes the former is perceived by voters and politicians to have ended long before the latter actually plays itself out.
Public and state risk calculus can shift pretty quickly in ways that can severely disorient practitioners and social groups still anchored in crisis discourses
Economists and specific milieus with the Eurozone crisis or the military world and wars in Iraq and Afghanistan come to mind when it comes to being caught out by the speed with which risk calculus and political consensus can shift
It's easy to blame genuinely irresponsible governments.

For those absorbed by crisis, it becomes much more difficult to face a world in which shifting public attitudes mean what once seemed unshakeable public consensus is widely discarded in ways that help governments move on.
Wouldn't be surprised if in a decade something like Simon Akam's book about the British army in Afghanistan is produced about the British state's struggle to manage crises hitting the NHS
@warmatters's review of Akam's book here. A lot of what hit UK foreign and defence policy since 1994 isn't just about structural problems in the UK military. It's a product of much wider chronic crisis across the British state
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More from @APHClarkson

28 Oct
Is there a supply backlog or shortage of spare parts and components for key infrastructure equipment in energy, water, transport and tech sectors? If so, how would such supply chain issues affect maintenance, system resilience and reliability of provision to states and customers?
At what point do all those containers piling up in ports, ships backed up unable to unload, production facilities slowing down affect supply chains that are essential for maintenance of power plants, rail systems, internet infrastructure, water systems and so on?
Read 4 tweets
27 Oct
US-based economists and economic historians that decry the EU for not emulating US stimulus packages that to a large extent replicate what EU states have been doing for decades
We still get op/eds in American newspapers predicting the decline and fall of the EU because it won't emulate the cash US governments throw at stimulus packages even as the current US government can't even get paid leave legislation through the US Senate.
Read 4 tweets
16 Oct
The entire pitch for Brexit in 2016 was that the sovereignty gains in leaving the EU would make the UK more economically prosperous and more politically stable than the EU.

That's the Leave Campaign's benchmark for establishing success or failure.
The way greater sovereignty from the EU became inextricably linked in the Leave Campaign's pitch with greater prosperity in comparison to the EU is one of the reasons why Soft Brexit as a balanced compromise to ensure UK stability became squeezed out of contention after 2016
Also interesting to look back at the Vote Leave manifesto and see what is still highlighted now and what isn't mentioned. A new European institutional architecture assumes a lot about the UK's power and leverage over the EU as well as about EU weakness…
Read 8 tweets
15 Oct
We'll be getting the @BritainPodcast back running soon, but in the meantime 3 episodes that now seem timely in the wake of debate over Britain's foreign and defence policy:

1. With @ToniHaastrup 'How Global is Britain' on UK foreign policy beyond Europe…
2. With @warmatters aka Matthew Ford on 'The Quest for Global Britain' on the future of Britain's military in the wake of Brexit, Debates over Scotland's future and the Afghanistan and Iraq Wars…
3. And with @bleddb aka Bleddyn Bowen on 'Global Strategy amidst Uncertain Unity' on the crisis of the British state and the UK government's Integrated Review in foreign and defence policy in geopolitical context…
Read 6 tweets
14 Oct
This "I don't think the EU really understands" shtick on the UK side is getting silly and does not help UK credibility. EU and Irish officials have worked every angle of Brexit over and over for five years. Of course they understand. But that doesn't mean they'll do what you want
It's eerily close to the Russian "you don't really understand our relationship with Ukraine" trope that goes on and on. After a certain point you wonder who has problems understanding the state of play
"You don't really understand the situation in Northern Ireland" by officials and ex-officials in London is pitched to whom exactly? Irish officials?
Read 6 tweets
11 Oct
If you're a government that thinks blaming global trends for a crisis you've exacerbated by your own decisions gets you out of trouble then you need to present voters with a set of policy solutions that protects their quality of life from the impact of those global trends
This is the hole in the logic presented by those who have internalised the myth of Boris among those who adore or despise him.

If he blames something else to deflect from Brexit, then voters will demand he protect them from that something else
Erdogan rose promising stability and prosperity to a base that felt it had been cut out from the gains of Turkish economic development. He can deflect as much as he likes, but if he runs out of resources to provide patronage to his base he is in trouble.
Read 4 tweets

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