Michael Gove is having a Zoom meeting with Boris Johnson. 

Gove:  As you know, criticisms of our handling of the pandemic are growing.  I think we need to increase our transparency.

Boris:  More transparency?  Ridiculous idea, that’ll only fuel the criticisms.

Gove:  Might we at least publish more of the Sage reports?  It would help to demonstrate how we are following the science every step of the way.

Boris:  Hmm, I’m not sure that’s a good idea.  All that swearing.  They’d have to be heavily redacted and that would only raise suspicions that we’re hiding something.

Gove:  Well, perhaps we need to be more honest about the lessons we are learning along the way instead of insisting that everything is hunky dory.

Boris:  More honesty? Spell out lessons learnt?  Utter claptrap. I’d rather be found dead in a ditch.

Gove:  Well, what are we going to do about our scientific advisors? It’s starting to dawn on them that we’re setting them up as scapegoats.

Boris:  Read them the riot act. Tell them to keep presenting those charts with a straight face or else they’ll be furloughed like everyone else.

Gove:  But they are threatening to withdraw completely from the  daily briefings unless we agree to unmuzzle them.

Boris:  Unmuzzle them? They’ll be insisting on wearing face masks next.

Gove:  Hang on, that’s not a bad idea!  How about using actors with face coverings?  No one would know.

Boris:  You’ll have a job to find an actor who can impersonate Chris Whitty.

Gove:  Well, how about insisting they wear full PPE gear?

Boris:  Now you’re talking!  And while you’re at it, let’s go the whole hog and replace ministers with actors in PPE. They’d do a far better job.

Gove:  Brilliant idea!  Reduces unemployment and gets us off the hook.

Boris:  Make sure their contract forbids any mention of targets or new initiatives.

Gove:  Or testing and contact tracing.

Boris:  Or care homes.

Gove:  Or the NHS.

Boris:  Or schools. In fact, offer them a bonus if they can do the daily briefings without mentioning the coronavirus at all.



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