Don’t Mask, Don’t Tell
The UK government recently spent £150 million on face masks that do not do the one thing face masks are supposed to do (protect you from Coronavirus). Now there are literally millions of face masks sitting in a box somewhere that will have no use except to be sold on eBay as part of sexy-zombie-surgeon Halloween costumes.
The problem with the masks is that they have “ear loops” instead of “head loops.” (Apparently “head loops” are a technical PPE term and not just that thing your brain does after you’ve had eleven spicy margaritas.)
There’s also evidence that ministers overpaid for the useless ear looped face masks by almost £50 million. Very surprising that Kate Middleton’s Ocean Tide milky quartz & diamond earrings weren’t the most expensive thing someone put on their ears in 2020. (Even more surprising that they were beat out by itchy blue cloth sewn onto elastic ear straps).
The company paid to produce the masks, Ayanda Capital, has no prior history of PPE procurement. In other words, it’s kind of like asking Elton John to produce a heavy metal album or asking Ian McKellan to be a contestant on Love Island…or asking Boris Johnson to be the Prime Minister.
The firm also supplied 150 million masks of a different type, which the government says will be tested before being given to the NHS. Right now they’re struggling to test enough humans so it’s unclear how they plan to test 150 million masks.
Boris Johnson said he was “very disappointed” that the masks turned out to be completely useless…but probably not as disappointed as he was to find out it’s going to be at least a year before the next season of Stranger Things.
Meanwhile, Keir Starmer, the charming labour leader with the eyes of Pierce Brosnan and the haircut of Charlize Theron, is less than impressed. He has called for an official investigation into the government’s handling of PPE contracts. Because now that the government has spent a ton of money on useless face masks, they should definitely spend more money to figure out why they spent so much money.
In America, there’s been no such egregious spending on face masks. Although admittedly this is partially, half the population there thinks wearing a face mask violates the very important constitutional right to cough in other people’s faces.