“Thanks to the nation’s resolve,” tweets health secretary Matt Hancock, “Horse racing is back from Monday. Wonderful news for our wonderful sport.”  Where to begin with this? By pure coincidence, Hancock is MP for West Suffolk, which just happens to include Newmarket, a place synonymous with horse racing. Indeed, Tattersalls, the race horse auctioneers, have generously sponsored Hancock’s constituency to the tune of £10,000. No question of buying influence, of course. Pure altruism from “our wonderful sport”.

I wonder how the head of UK track and trace Dido Harding feels about this? Quite pleased, I would think, because she is also on the board of the Jockey Club which owns 15 racecourses, including Cheltenham.

Isn’t it refreshing to know those who have so much power are wholly independent of outside influence and care only about the public good?

The Hate Mail on Sunday reports Boris Johnson has put Dominic Cummings on a final warning. Unless he behaves himself, Johnson will sack him. Of course he will. This is the equivalent of Emu sacking Rod Hull. It’s never going to happen.

In true Mail style, they have decided to muddy the waters surrounding Classic Dom’s lockdown trip to his second home near Durham and the birthday treat he gave his wife, dressed up a drive to Barnard Castle to test his failing eyesight. They’ve decided to go after the witnesses who spotted Cummings out and about when he wasn’t supposed to be. Cummings may have been bang out of order, but what about the witnesses? They broke rules, too!

If I was important enough, the Hate Mail would be after me for breaking lockdown rules whilst at the same time slating the odious Cummings. I’ve been a serial rulebreaker. Look what I did:

  • Went out every day to buy a newspaper
  • Bought a fair bit of booze and other inessential items
  • Drove to Severn Beach for a walk in defiance of stay at home instructions
  • Went out more than once a day quite a lot
  • Drove to see my son on the other side of town when I was not allowed to

Can you imagine what the Hate Mail would say about me being critical of that evil toad Cummings?  I full expect Inspector Knacker to be knocking on my door sometime before lunch.

Does anyone else think the end of the semi-lockdown will result in a hurried renewed lockdown? With the R number close to one, it won’t take much to see the numbers of new infections taking off again. Even now, there are between 8000 and 10000 new infections every single day. Generally speaking, people are doing their bit in shops and supermarkets and, from what I can tell, in parks, but the evidence of my own eyes suggests large numbers of people are doing what they want now everywhere else. And almost all of them point out that since the illiberal elite who run the country can interpret the rules however they like, then so can they.

I can imagine a situation where a new harder lockdown is imposed on large swathes of the country at a time when mass jobs losses and company failures pile up. Desperate people do desperate things, especially when they think they have nothing left to lose. What price civil disorder? Thanks, Mr Cummings. You started this but you’re okay: you’ve still got a lucrative job.