The American Left 6 months on

16 May 2005

Over at the Daily Kos, Bill in Portland Maine thinks George Bush's track record makes him nothing better than a hack psychic - and he wants his money back from the 62 million Americans who voted for a second Bush term. Well, as Todd Gitlin points out in today's openDemocracy piece on America six months after the US elections, it's time for the Left to put the election behind them and renew their struggle for control of American hearts and minds. As one of the core memebers of the SDS in the 1960s, Gitlin is an authority on the topography of prolonged struggle.

And while we're on the subject of the American Left, Stirling Newberry has an excellent potted history of the US Democrat party here.

Stop the secrecy: Publish the NHS COVID data deals

To: Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

We’re calling on you to immediately release details of the secret NHS data deals struck with private companies, to deliver the NHS COVID-19 datastore.

We, the public, deserve to know exactly how our personal information has been traded in this ‘unprecedented’ deal with US tech giants like Google, and firms linked to Donald Trump (Palantir) and Vote Leave (Faculty AI).

The COVID-19 datastore will hold private, personal information about every single one of us who relies on the NHS. We don’t want our personal data falling into the wrong hands.

And we don’t want private companies – many with poor reputations for protecting privacy – using it for their own commercial purposes, or to undermine the NHS.

The datastore could be an important tool in tackling the pandemic. But for it to be a success, the public has to be able to trust it.

Today, we urgently call on you to publish all the data-sharing agreements, data-impact assessments, and details of how the private companies stand to profit from their involvement.

The NHS is a precious public institution. Any involvement from private companies should be open to public scrutiny and debate. We need more transparency during this pandemic – not less.

By adding my name to this campaign, I authorise openDemocracy and Foxglove to keep me updated about their important work.

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