NO QUESTIONS ASKED: Manchester’s suddenly famous mayor, Andy Burnham, has found a way past the UK’s intransigence. Instead of accepting Boris Johnson’s final offer of £60m, he has set up a dormant company and offered to supply PPE.
Within minutes the deal was sealed. No deal proved better than a bad deal, since none of the £108 will go towards PPE. Instead it will alleviate the worst effects of the Manchester lockdown. It’s an instant double your money move.
Other prominent Mancunian leaders are now contemplating pulling the same stunt. One enterprising soul is proposing to run a better Track & Trace system, in return for £12bn. Of this, a more up-to-date version of Excel and a temp to input data will be spent. A few pounds on advertising and bingo! Manchester will be quids in.
Burnham’s genius lies in the naming of his off-the-shelf company. Enterprise Ferries & Fisheries Ltd was such obviously Brexity bait that the big fish in the Department of Health swallowed it, hook line and sinker.
The Financial Director (Burnham) informed the CEO (also Burnham) that the money had appeared via an unspecified route. The Sales Director (Burnham as well) instantly resigned to spend more time with his responsibilities.
It’s not much in the bigger scheme of things, but it’s a start. At just under £40 per person in the region, it should just about cover a meal for everyone in the pub before they are all forced to close again.
Ten days of fractious discussions has led us to the point where both sides allege that the other walked away first. It fills the nation with great hope. Nobody comes out of the situation looking good. Instead, the hope is that, by walking out of Brexit discussions, the EU will look as petty and vindictive as the UK. That should stop Keir Starmer invoking Article 49 for an instant return to the EU, when he takes over shortly after Johnson’s government does a collective bunk with the money next January.
Bring on the winter of our discontent!