Notes From the Northern Colony

PlagueDiary

The latest reminder that Scottish devolution is only symbolic:

LNER is a train company company owned by the UK government. It provides services in Scotland, and it has decided it can ignore Scottish law.

As of today, England has ended all restrictions that were in place to stop the spread of Covid, even though the plague numbers are so high the US is advising its citizens not to travel to the UK.

This is not the case in Scotland, which still requires mask-wearing and social distancing on trains. But LNER has decided Scottish law does not apply to it in Scotland, declaring, “We have made the decision to operate under English guidance, with regards to social distancing on cross border services, to provide consistency to customers.”

Yet again, Scotland gets what England votes for, to the extent that a transport company can decide to break the law.

#LNER #EnglishContemptForScotland #ScottishLaw #NominalScottishDevolution #ScottishIndependenceNow #Covid19 #PlagueDiary #ScottishBlogs #ScottishPolitics

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Discarded face mask on the ground

Throughout the pandemic, it has been common to see disposable masks littering the streets of Glasgow, but in the last few weeks it has become almost as common to find reusable masks in the same state.

And, even though yesterday Scotland beat its all-time record for Covid infections, with more than 4000 new cases and six new deaths, Glasgow is in level 2, and in a few weeks the entire country will be in level 0, no longer required to wear masks or socially distance.

#covid19 #plaguediary #pandemic #lockdown #level2 #level0 #glasgow #scotland #scottishblogs

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Santa Muerte

When I wrote this in April, I hoped to be wrong. I was not.

#covid19 #plaguediary #pandemic #lockdown #level3 #scotland #scottishblogs

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If you are a virus in Scotland, things have been tough since the start of this year, with lockdown making it harder for you to kill people. But tomorrow your life will get easier. Lockdown is ending, Scotland is moving to Level 3. Here are all the ways you can find victims starting tomorrow:

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“You want it to be one way, but it’s the other way.”—Marlo Stanfield, The Wire

The stay-at-home rule was lifted yesterday. Since then, Covid cases in Scotland have risen by 414, and Scotland has the highest infection rate in the UK. Professor Jason Leitch, Scotland's national clinical director, says this should be “a warning to us not to go too fast.”

But we are going fast, heading towards a further lifting of restrictions on April 5, and bars and restaurants starting a phased reopening on April 26.

Yesterday and today, the weather has been sunny and warm in Glasgow, so parks have been crowded, with few people wearing masks.

I had my first dose of the AstraZenica vaccine on February 21, but my behaviour will not be changing with the rules. I will continue to go outside as seldom as possible, always masked. If the ending of lockdown is not cancelled, it means Scotland is in life-threatening denial. There is what we want, and there is how it is, and how it is always wins.

“Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.”—Philip K. Dick

#covid19 #coronavirus #scotland #pandemic #lockdown #plaguediary #scottishblogs

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Even in lockdown, essential services continue. And, when a woman has been murdered by a cop, protests and vigils are essential services.

#saraheverard #policeviolence #acab #misogyny #violenceagainstwomen #patsystevenson #plaguediary #covid19 #lockdown

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Laura Henderson Photo: Cube Housing Association

Dear Landlords,

I remarked today to a fellow tenant (or “customer,” as you call us) that communicating with Cube is a bit like praying. But then I corrected myself, because when praying we do not know for certain that no one is listening or that our supplications will be ignored — which we can be certain of when communicating with you.

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A week after I posted this, the stairwells and lifts in the high flats on Wyndford Road are no less manky. I sent the link to Laura Henderson, Cube's Managing Director, right after I posted it, but I have had no reply from her, or anyone else at Cube. I did not expect one, but I hoped to be wrong.

But at least one tenant (or, as Cube calls us, “customers”) has a sense of humour, as evidenced by this in a stairwell:

#cubehousingassociation #wyndford #maryhill #glasgow #healthhazard #laurahendersoncubehousingassociation #scottishblogs #plaguediary #pandemic #covid19 #wyndfordtenantsunion

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This is after cleaning

In a time of plague, Cube Housing Assocation's neglect of the health and safety of its tenants is medieval.

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The anarchist ideal and the libertarian ideal have something in common: they cannot work, because they are based on the assumption that people are sensible and well-intentioned, a thesis that can be disproved these days just by going outside, where you will view:

People wearing masks around their necks, not their faces

People wearing masks over their mouths, not their noses

People not wearing masks at all

People taking their masks off to cough or sneeze

People in any of the above categories standing close to strangers, and becoming angry when asked to distance

There is, as Marx wrote, a lumpen proletariat, but there is also a lumpen bourgeoisie, and the most sensible rules of lockdown will not contain the plague unless they are enforced.

#covid19 #coronavirus #pandemic #lockdown #plaguediary #scottishblogs

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