Hearts go out to New York, UK needs to prepare for something better even in tragedy

Our hearts go out (yes we do have them stashed away) to all our friends, and others, in New York who are suffering terribly from the virus – about as many cases as in the whole of the UK.

New York, still the epicentre of advertising, has overcome many tragedies in the past – most notably 9/11 – and doubtless will do again.

Here’s two of NYC’s fictional finest, hardly loveable but in character. Witty and defiant.

At the same time the UK government finds itself on the spot: there’s a glimmer of hope that the Covid-19 virus might be peaking here and a return to (fairly normal) life should be on their agenda. But at today’s press conference acting PM Dominic Raab wouldn’t have any of it, neither would his medical experts.

They’re obviously terrified that people will go out en masse at Easter this coming weekend and the strategy ‘Stay home, support the NHS’ etc will be blown.

But, sooner rather than later, the country needs to get moving again otherwise there’ll be no jobs, no money and, for a long time, no future.

Can’t they devise a strategy to tell people we can do the two things at the same time? Sloganising – as in ‘Get Brexit Done’ – may have worked in an important campaign. But we deserve a bit more.

PS All the best to PM Boris Johnson who’s been moved to intensive care. The gods can be exceptionally cruel.

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About Stephen Foster

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Stephen is a former editor of Marketing Week and London Evening Standard advertising columnist. He wrote City Republic for Brand Republic and is a partner in communications consultancy The Editorial Partnership.