IN THE week after the hospital coronavirus death toll rose above 10,000, the lockdown measures are to be reviewed.
Anticipating this review, Tory chancellor Rishi Sunak warned the Tory cabinet that the UK is reaching a ‘tipping point’ between controlling the coronavirus and saving British capitalism.
According to reports leaked over the weekend, Sunak will be pushing the Tories to ‘find the right balance’ between fighting the coronavirus spread and preventing the economy from total collapse.
Another unnamed senior Tory MP weighed in, warning that the government faces a ‘tough decision – particularly if people are told to stay at home for another four weeks, it’s going to be really tough.’
Asked about when the ‘tipping point’ could be, that is when the benefits of the lockdown become outweighed by the economic impact, the MP said: ‘The tipping point is when there is no money in the economy to pay for it.’
The UK faces economic disaster, according to the leaked warning from Sunak to the cabinet that the UK’s GDP will plummet by 30% between April and June if the lockdown continues, sending the country crashing into recession.
This is causing complete panic amongst the Tory cabinet which is leaking like a sieve with reports of splits between ‘doves’ who fear that lifting restrictions will be met with an uprising by workers refusing to return to work under conditions where there is no protection whatsoever from contracting the deadly virus.
Against them are the so-called ‘hawks’, including Sunak, who are pushing for restrictions to be lifted quickly to keep capitalism from collapse and hang the consequences for people’s lives.
Another unnamed minister was quoted as saying it was important not to do ‘more damage’ and that restrictions could be relaxed after another three weeks.
The split amongst the Tory leadership reflects the fear that dominates the ruling class as they grapple with the question of how to get capitalism back on its feet and resume making profits on the backs of workers, without provoking revolution.
In fact, all across the capitalist world there is a concerted drive by governments to get workers back to work at a time when the death rate from coronavirus is increasing.
In the US, president Trump has been pushing against all medical advice to get workers back to work next month despite the US recording 10,000 deaths from Covid-19 last week alone.
In Europe the drive to end lockdown and get capitalism back on its feet is carrying on in Spain, Italy, France and Germany with absolutely no provision for ensuring the safety of workers which is almost certain to cause another spike in coronavirus cases as unprotected people are forced to resume travel and work.
Behind the Tory push for a swift end to lockdown is the old discredited ‘herd immunity’ theory that blithely allows for 90% of the population to become infected with the possibility of over a million people dying as a result, as a price worth paying to keep capitalism and the profits of the capitalist class flowing.
Capitalism is gripped by the most acute crisis in its history, plunging into a world recession bringing with it mass unemployment on a scale not seen since the 1930s with the IMF predicting ‘the worst economic fallout since the Great Depression’.
Its only way out is to force workers to risk their lives to keep the bosses and bankers going – while at the same time preparing to make the working class pay for their crisis through brutal austerity.
The time has come to put an end to this Tory government that deliberately starved the NHS of cash, left the country totally unprepared for the pandemic, and is now threatening the lives of millions of workers by forcing them back to work.
The immediate struggle today is to mobilise the working class bring down the Tories and go forward to a workers government that will expropriate the capitalist class and go forward to socialism.
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