“Without a measureless and perpetual uncertainty, the drama of human life would be destroyed.”
Nope, not a leak of Matt Hancock’s attempts to defend the government’s testing service but the words of one Winston Churchill.
Britain’s wartime leader is, of course, Boris Johnson’s greatest hero.
But after the chaotic stinker of a week his government has just presided over, you have to wonder whether if Churchill’s bulldog spirit offers Number 10′s current occupant - or indeed the British public - much comfort.
More lockdowns, a jump in the all-important Covid-19 “R” rate, more U-turn drama, Brexit talks exploding and Jacob Rees Mogg telling people to cease “carping” on about tests are just some of the things in Johnson’s in-tray.
Here’s a breakdown of yet another bad week for Boris Johnson.
Testing is a mess
On Friday, the latest official figures showed that the Covid-19 pandemic is continuing to grow, with the “R” rate jumping to between 1.1 and 1.4.
This was reflected in a surge in hospital admissions and daily case numbers growing to reach 4,000 for the first time since May.
So it would help if NHS Test and Trace - which Johnson promised would be “world beating” - was doing its job.
Instead, up to three quarters of a million Covid test requests are going unanswered every day and thousands of people are being turned away from test sites, due to the “unexpected” rise in demand.
Dido Harding, the head of the testing service, admitted that online and phone applications for tests was “three to four times the number of tests we currently have available”.
The fiasco will not give people much faith that Johnson’s much-vaunted “Operation Moonshot” - which would see quick-result on-demand tests available for everyone by spring - is remotely realistic.
Meanwhile, the north-east, huge swathes of the north-west and Midlands have seen curfews and new social distancing rules imposed, with London and other parts of the...