Friday, 27 March 2020

COVID-19: More Gaps

I'm currently on 7-day quarantine after having a temperature on Wednesday.

Its's given me time to see more gaps and inconsistencies.

For instance: if unneccessary journeys by car are being effectively banned, why aren't private aircraft? I'm lookinbg right now and a private jet has just landed at Farnborugh from Barcelona. Spain being a virus hotspot, I just wonder if the passengers and crew on that aircraft will isolate for 14days on arrival?

Or doesn't the lockdown apply to people with money?

Currently I can see half a dozen private aircraft in the air. That excludes air ambulances and rig support helicopters. This is just executive jets and helicopters.

Despite the protestations of some airlines, it seems others are still flying. It would be interesting to note how many passengers are on those aircraft. Given that most countries are not accepting tourists or non-residents ion, there still seems a lot of aircraft wandering the world.

I just hope they're carrying freight and no humans.

As for me, hopefuly my company will still be open next week and I can get back to work.

Nice to see the government is helping he self employed. They just need to pick up those people that drop through the cracks. For instance my daughter who has had to leave work because her childminder has closed down.  She's not getting paid during this time, just leave without pay. As she's technically still employed she gets no benefit and because her company are still trading, she's not elegible for the 80% of her wages being paid. She's effectively removed herself from work.

My final concern is how do we pay for all of this? I assume taxes will be high for a few years to pay it all back.

Tuesday, 24 March 2020

COVID-19: Gaps, I see Gaps everywhere.....


We're getting serious now. Boris has shut all the shops. But even now, after the most draconian rules put in place in the country's history (bar the Black Death), people are still not taking heed.

Here in Portsmouth all the pubs have done is blacked out the windows and are still open. Enter by the back entrance, cash-only, not on the books, nudge-nudge. The first gap that needs plugging. Landlords need to be warned and if they continue then fined and then hauled to the cells for a night. Maybe then they'll see sense. That's gap number 1.

My daughter works for a car spares supplier as a delivery driver. They're staying open as they are classed as essential. She can put her older son in school, but her childminder has shut up leving her literally holding the baby. She's can't go to work. She's not covered by the Government's 80% wage payment. She's now down to one wage coming into the house.
I've already had to drop a parcel containing nappies and baby food.
No help for her. Gap number 2.

The self-employed are kicking up a stink about the lack of support for them. The thing about being self-employed is making sure you save for a rainy day because your not eligible for benefits or holiday pay or any other employee benefits. That's why being self-employed you always charge more than an employee. You get paid more to cover your expenses and to salt an amount away for the bad times. You create your own safety net in the form of public liability insurance and critical illness cover. You keep money in the bank to cover you when you can't work for sickness or holiday and tide you over the lean times. The key is the phrase self-employed: you rely on yourself to provide all of those things, not someone else. Gap number 3 (Sort of).

If your client (not employer) is forcing you to work for the equivalent of a salary, then you shouldn't take the money. Simple as. That's why the so-called "gig economy" annoys me so much. Why would you do it if you cannot afford your own safety net? If you are SELF-employed, why would you expect someone else to pay sickness pay or holiday? That's probably for another time including the stupid IR35 tax rules.

Anyway. The wife is still working (care manager) and I'm still selling car parts. However our counter service and workshop services have closed to comply with Boris' announcement last night.

Tesco across the road was rammed at 8am this morning. People still don't get the idea of social distancing. I blame the schools for making so many idiots and society for not allowing kids to be slapped when they were growing up. We have a nation of adult children with no sense of responsibility. Gap Number 4.

Right now my son messaged me to say he needs kitty litter  and me and the Mrs need milk.

After last weeks shenanigans where I was apparently the only person in the family able to get bog roll, it seems I've been designated the man who can (find stuff to buy) by the family. I'm the official family scavenger.