John Naughton: Who needs crisis government when you’ve got Amazon to keep things running? | John Naughton

While Trump blusters, the online giant has taken on the role of regulator and benevolent dictator

As we wait for the tsunami, the mood becomes increasingly apocalyptic. This is right and proper, but not for the reason you might think. The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary tells us that “apocalypse” actually means “revelation” and that sounds spot-on to me.

In his magisterial book, Epidemics and Society, the historian Frank Snowden examined ways in which disease outbreaks have altered the societies through which they have spread. “Epidemics,” he said in a recent interview, are “a category of disease that seem to hold up the mirror to human beings as to who we really are. That is to say, they obviously have everything to do with our relationship to our mortality, to death, to our lives. They also … show the moral relationships that we have toward each other as people, and we’re seeing that today.” They are, in other words, revelations.

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First the corona prince, now Johnson. Who are their designated survivors? | Marina Hyde

The trajectory is darkening, with Britain now a significant step nearer to being led by Dominic Raab

Here we are, then. TFI whatever day it is. It might feel unclear if you’re suffering from a persistent cough or are just trying to hack up the red pill.

Unfortunately, return to the simulation is impossible. As I type this, both Boris Johnson and the health secretary, Matt Hancock, have tested positive for coronavirus, while the chief medical officer, Chris Whitty, is self-isolating. The prime minister says he is experiencing mild symptoms, and will self-isolate in Downing Street, where he is continuing to helm the UK’s response to the pandemic. Fatalistically speaking, this die was cast the second we learned he’d appointed Dominic Raab as his “designated survivor”. Why lie about who we are, you know? Just activate whatever protocol installs a roid-fuelled salesman for Magnet kitchen (Esher branch), whose unbeaten monthly commission run will only come to a horrifying end if anyone checks the showroom freezers.

Soon pale rider Richard Branson will hove into view, offering to never sue the NHS again in return for a bailout

Related: Media experts despair at Boris Johnson’s coronavirus campaign | Sonia Sodha

Related: I joined Tesco for a stress-free life but now I’m on the coronavirus frontline | Simon Lord

Marina Hyde is a Guardian columnist

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