We are living in a weird world and a bizarre timeline in 2020. Just the other day Prime Minister Boris Johnson wanted to prove his health with push-ups on the floor. At that point he was copying Ugandan President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. That was all over the front pages of a national newspaper and not a sketch.
Now Prime Minister Johnson is launching his: Build Build Build. He is launching his program of infrastructure spending like this: “ British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will set out plans to spend the economy out of its coronavirus-induced crisis with a speech on Tuesday promising to fast-track 5 billion pounds ($6.15 billion) of infrastructure investment” (News18 – ‘ ‘Build, Build, Build’: UK PM Johnson’s Answer to Covid-19 Downturn’ 30.06.2020).
Also explained by the government like this: “Prime Minister Boris Johnson will today (Tuesday 30th June) announce a “New Deal” which puts jobs and infrastructure at the centre of the government’s economic growth strategy. In a speech in the West Midlands, the Prime Minister will underline his commitment to ‘build, build, build’ in order to upgrade Britain’s infrastructure and skills to fuel economic recovery across the UK” (Gov.uk – ‘‘Build build build’: Prime Minister announces New Deal for Britain’ 30.06.2020).
If you feel you have heard the same before, then read this from the Philippines: “President Rodrigo Duterte’s administration will soon launch the biggest infrastructure push in Philippine history to propel economic growth in the next five-and-a-half years. Big-ticket infrastructure projects, specifically roads and bridges, mass urban transport and alternative green city solutions are among the key investments to be made by the Philippine government. These are aimed at solving the problems brought about by traffic congestion, inadequate mass transport facilities, air pollution, and the lack of healthy, green liveable community spaces. The development mantra is: build, build and build” (Bases Conversation and Development Authority (BCDA) – ‘BUILD, BUILD, BUILD’ 25.10.2017).
So yes, the Prime Minister’s Build Build Build is copying Duterte’s Build! Build! Build! Programme. They are actually doing the same. Boris is copying Rodrigo. It is just like he will steal the paperwork from Manilla and change a few of the places and road-names. Then call it a day and loaf around in his apartartment.
I am impressed that Boris is copying the exact words. Just like he did on the pages saying it was taken inspiration from Roosevelt’s New Deal. That is fine and dandy, but saying Build Build Build after the Philippines has had this program for three years or so now. It is impressive, that he couldn’t mention that too. Give some credit, where credit is due.
I’m sure Manila isn’t the first place coming to mind in London, but they should maybe see what are doing lately. The PM is copying both a Ugandan President and the Philippines. Who is up next? Will he take the Big Four from the Jubilee and Uhuru Kenyatta too?
Johnson should step up and give credit where it is due. Especially, when his copying this easily from Duterte. If you don’t know, now you know. Peace.
“The government department responsible for overseas aid is to be merged with the Foreign Office (FCO), the BBC understands. The move to combine the Department for International Development (DFID) and the FCO follows a review into UK aid spending by crossbench peer Lord Bew. Boris Johnson is expected to confirm the move, long mooted in Conservative circles, in the Commons later” (BBC.com – ‘International development and Foreign Office to merge’ 16.06.2020).
If your thinking the Little Britain is getting better on the world stage with the Tories in power. This sort of move is directly weaponizing foreign aid grants. Instead of having a separate department working on own terms to actually develop and make a difference. That is, if the ideal is to bring a change and making a difference.
This from the party that still clings on top the dreams and ideals of the greatness of the British Empire. An empire that is long gone and the powers of the United Kingdom has already dwindled. They will be even more weaken and lack soft powers internationally when they are finally left the European Union (EU).
The move is to replicate the Secretary of State in the United States. They are copying the mismanaged militarized state supported development schemes of the United States. That is not a good look. Especially, if the UK want to be serious actor on the world stage and look sincere in their motives. However this paradigm will be more of the political motivations at home and bring brownie points to the current leadership. Then actually make a change.
I don’t see any positive out of this, than they will make political moves instead of actually do what its supposed to do. We already knows there are strings to it and reasons for the development projects and aid. No money is free money, if you believe that. Then your lying to yourself and accepting money from someone. There will be something you need to do. If that is being accountable, prove the recites and that it actually was spent on intended projects. Hitting a set of goals and reach a set amount of people so the foreign donors can tell their tax-payers that it was worth giving this money away.
This is something we all know. If not … we are lying to ourselves and thinking the monies are giving away with naive intentions and can be used on ghosts without any fuzz. If it was so, then the donors would quit quickly and be hostile to continue the practice. There is a reason for certain measures and conditions for taking the aid and grants.
The DFID incorporated into the Foreign Office will only turn every move more political and the ambition of it will change. It will depend on whose in office and who is running the Foreign Office. That means the objectives will turn and will be what is benefiting foreign policy agenda. It will be more business oriented and towards the goals of the current leadership. Instead of being a supposed a long-term development tool in the world. It is not perfect, but at least have had some results and some positive use of its currency.
Now we can expect more political ambition behind the grants and the aid. It will be fitting with the additional pressure of the foreign office, instead of the concern of development or actually making a difference. Expect they will invest in a lot white elephants and waste as it fits the political agenda more than what is actually needed in the nation they are spending funds on.
That is my estimation of it. As well as they scrap a lot of projects, a lot of programs and participation as its not positive politically back-home. Even if it does something positive where these things are actually running day-to-day. Peace.
“Is ours a government of the people, by the people, for the people, or a kakistocracy rather, for the benefit of knaves at the cost of fools?” – Thomas Love Peacock
Yesterday. Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Tried to give solitude or enlighten the masses. We can say that ship sailed and the ship got lost in the storm. In the hours after, there been weird things happening. While newspapers was profession beautiful headlines of a positive future. While, the “Stay Alert” memo didn’t catch the deer’s in the headlights.
The PM could have chose another avenue and another way of addressing the measures. He could have done a proper job and actually been coherent in-front of the public. A man who said “Brexit is Brexit” and no “if’s and but’s” clearly couldn’t manage to spell it out. Only create more uncertainty.
Like my favourite from yesterday:
“So work from home if you can, but you should go to work if you can’t work from home” (Johnson, 10.05.2020).
It’s like saying,f please be fish in water, but if you can’t try to swim on land. Fish on land is usually dying. It is not like the government are giving water in bags like to Goldfishes. They are just sending the masses out blindly after months of uncertainty. While UK has the worst statistics in concern to COVID-19. They have beaten Italy, but only United States beat them now. That is because both governments are wacky and incompetent. The UK haven’t done their mission or sufficient
“We have made fast progress on testing – but there is so much more to do now, and we can. When this began, we hadn’t seen this disease before, and we didn’t fully understand its effects” (Johnson, 10.05.2020).
Well, there wasn’t fast progress it was stagnated and lacked work on it. It has been revamped of late. However, the promises of the amount of testing has never really been met in time. Neither, the amount of PPE or other equipment. Your were self in trouble and in treatment when the state was lacking and lack-luster work on helping the NMS. So, we cannot blame you there. But, the government was warned and you skipped COBRA meetings with warnings in January. So, PM you could have done more, but you didn’t take it serious.
You do now, that your have been infected yourself and that’s fine. Well, I wish nobody to get this, but you should not brag about the work when it’s not true.
“Because although we have a plan, it is a conditional plan” (Johnson, 10.05.2020).
Well, I know that the day after a page plan was released, but that is hours after this speech. The “Stay Alert”, the mixed messages to the press isn’t any good. The PM should have had streamlined the operation and information. That is why all the confusion.
They might had it in the bag yesterday, but the speech never proven it. The PM didn’t secure that… The UK and HM government now have to back-peddle and also ensure a coherent message coming across. That should be difficult for the ones governing. However, in London that is hectic, they neither talking directly to Northern Ireland, Scotland nor Wales.
London is calling. PM needs to be consistent. That should be expected, but in the midsts of the pandemic. Its maybe to much to ask. Peace.