THE BBC could barely conceal its satisfaction as Britain notched up 150,000 deaths “with Covid” this weekend.
The toll, it noted, was equal to the entire population of Oxford.
To emphasise this doleful point the screen was filled with an aerial view of the city as a stain spread like blood across its streets.
Britain is the very first country in Europe to notch up so many coronavirus corpses, noted health reporter Catherine Burns.
Without naming a single blond-haired Prime Minister, her funereal tale left no doubt who was to blame.
Interviews with weeping relatives followed, recalling the BBC’s peak-Covid images of dying patients as newsman Clive Myrie intoned: “We’re all scared . . . we’re all scared.”
You would not have gathered from the harrowing report that we are emerging from this catastrophe and learning to live with Omicron faster than the rest of Europe.
Or that governments across Europe are at war with angry voters amid a tidal wave of fresh infection.
Revels in bad news
Not a word about the methods used by different countries to count Covid deaths. Nor that obese patients are especially vulnerable — and Britain has more fat people than anywhere in the European Union bar Malta.
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There was no reference to the origins of the virus, strongly believed to be a laboratory leak in Wuhan province shamefully covered up by the totalitarian Chinese government. And the pro-Chinese World Heath Organisation. And Facebook.
It seems almost as if the BBC wants Britain — under a Boris Johnson-led Tory government — to be the worst affected, least prepared, most dangerous place in the Western world. It revels in any bad news that can be aimed at No 10.
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There was little mention in early bulletins of the Government’s triumphant vaccine breakthrough, although that emerged later in the evening.
There was certainly no criticism of France and Germany for sabotaging the stunningly successful Astra-Zeneca vaccine, discovered by scientists in that graveyard city, Oxford.
Nor was Boris given any credit for declaring Freedom Day last summer, against the shroud-waving advice of Sage, voiced at every opportunity by the BBC.
Or that this gave the UK a flying head start in coping with the disease.
Nor did it mention the PM’s decision to overrule Chris Whitty and other Sage “experts” who would have cancelled Christmas.
It was Sage, remember, that hysterically warned of a new Black Death, ludicrously predicting 60,000 deaths, a claim even Sage now admits was absurd.
Indeed, Britain is only top of the fatal league table if you don’t look at the actual facts.
Two out of every five deaths “with Covid” have little or nothing to do with the virus. Many catch the bug IN hospital.
The figures to watch are “excess deaths” — those above the annual average.
In which case, Britain, with 217 per 100,000 people, falls behind Hungary (359), the USA (314), Italy (289), Spain (241) and only just ahead of Belgium (199) and Holland (186).
True, many thousands of elderly died needlessly when care homes were packed with Covid patients at the start of the pandemic, not by Tory ministers but by the sacred NHS and the now disappeared Public Health England.
None of these points were mentioned in the Beeb’s bleak diatribe — with its apparent implication that this was all Boris’s fault.
Some might even discern a pattern of institutional bias.
Remember Brexit? Has the BBC ever carried a news bulletin or a documentary suggesting there might be an up side to leaving the Euro-pean Union?
Did it lead bulletins when multi-billion-pound global giants Unilever and the former Royal Dutch Shell upped sticks and switched lock, stock and barrel from Holland to London?
Has the Beeb made much of independent growth forecasts showing the UK beating the whole of Europe, including France and Germany this year?
Of course not.
And if by any chance the decision to live with Covid and resume normal life is rewarded by a sharp economic revival, with extra tax revenues to pay for the NHS, will the BBC say well done, Boris?
Not on your Aunty Nellie.
'No worries' barred
MICHIGAN State university has barred the cheery Aussie salutation “No worries” for being “familiar but problematic”.
Researchers scurried to find the origins of the phrase, some going as far back as the movie Crocodile Dundee, while others blame Australian actresses Margot Robbie and Rebel Wilson.
In fact, the expression was set in stone in 1853 at the waterside Sydney suburb Sans Souci.
Which, as any fule kno, is French for “without care”. Sans souci, mate.