Need the NHS suffer because of public spending cuts

One of the big news items today was a claim that the government’s spending cuts would hit NHS front line services.
From BBC News
Government spending cuts will stretch the NHS and social care services in England to the limit, according to a report by the Commons Health Select Committee. The committe of MPs say the plans assume efficiency savings on a scale never before seen in the NHS, or in other countries. Steven Dorrell, chair of the committee, said the NHS had to save 4% per annum for four years – a “huge target”.

Read John de Roe in the Daily Stirrer on how we can make savings on the bnloated NHS budget without sacrificing essential clinical care.
Government Spending Cuts Hit NHS

Flu Deaths Soar To Fifty This Winter – 1/60th of annual average

The Milk Of Clone Kindness – Cloned Cattle

When news leaked out that milk and beef from cloned cows, cows raised from embryos created by biologists in laboratories, was being sold for human consumption scientists were quick to point out there was no health risk from consuming such foods. Nobody had suggested there was, what worried people is the inceasing tendency of science to play God. Fortunately they stopped short of telling us the science is settled otherwise nobody would have believed them.

The other big question of course is as usual “Cui Bono?” Who gains from this,; no doubt the politically correct wailers will be whinging about feeding the third world poor but as cloned cattle are delicate creatures and need warm, dry sheds, an enriched diet and plasma TVs, pool tables, gymnasiums with personal trainers etc. the produce from their bodies will sell at quite a premium.

And they have an enormous carbon footprint.

So who is likely to benefit? Not you and I for sure, not the poor and hungry. I think it might be the political control freaks, the scientists who get a step nearer to playing god and the corporations that will control the breeding stock and thus another important part of the food chain.

The point nobody wants to discuss is where is the need for this technology? Are we short of cattle? Is the current production method failing? Or is this another technology that will be forced on us.

Soon you will eat meat and drink milk from cloned cattle – But there is nothing wrong with real ones so what’s the point?

RELATED POSTS:
Never Let Me Go (cloned humans)

Swine Flu Vaccine – Just Say No

It is not often we agree with The Daily Mail or The Mail On Sunday but they are right on the Swine Flu vaccine story. Technically we are not agreeing with them (phew !!!!) as we had the vaccine danger story over at The Daily Stirrer yesterday and have been running regular updates on it for several months. Follow the link at our Daily Stirrer Just-Say-No article and you will find a page run by medical professionals featuring articles on why not just Swine Flu but many vaccines should not be trusted.

The problem, which relates to how the vaccines stimulate the auto-immune system to go hyper in response to a very weak dose of vaccine, is explained thoroughly in a level headed and professional way. How different to the attitude of the boy-scientists who have visited Little Nicky Machiavelli in the past when we have questioned the integrity of the healthcare industry and whose defence of suspect medical products consists of telling us we cannot possibly understand a scientific issue because we are not scientists.

In all these cases however, the science is not the point at issue. IT’S THE MONEY. And we can all understand that.

So when the government is telling you that your family must be vaccinated with a potentially lethal vaccine against a disease that will in most cases be very mild, when the Government is muttering darkly about making it a criminal offence to refuse a vaccine which in a Swine Flue epidemic in the USA in 1975 actually killed more people than he Swine Flu infection, just THINK ABOUT HOW MUCH MONEY those New Labour donors in the Pharmaceutical Industry stand to make out of vaccinating us all. And the tell Mr. Brown and his cronies to fuck off.

RELATED POSTS:
How seriously should we take scientists? Recent posts at Boggart Blog, including Crocodile Snack Science offer a big clue.

THEY CAN’T PUT US ALL IN PRISON.

I Am Not A Number I Am A Human Being

The Guardian’s Jenni Russell, a Labour supporter in the past turns on the party and explains how their failure to win the popularity they expected after their claimed increases in public spending can be explained by the obsession with figures, targets, statistics and management babble. On top of that they made the great mistake of treating the public as stupid, thinking we would happily accept their statistics showing improvement in the NHS when people’s experience is of patients being neglected while clinical staff are prioritizing bureaucratic tasks, why so many children are emerging from the education illiterate and inummerate and even university graduates on entering employment need remedial training in basic literacy and numeracy while examination result statistics show year on year improvement..

Read Jenni Russell’s article New Labour’s Mistake Is In Thinking We Are All Automatoms

LITTLE NICKY MACHIAVELLI now spends most of his time at Greenteeth Multi Media. Keep up with his page there at The Daily Stirrer

.com/dailystirrer.shtml”>THE DAILY STIRRER
and don’t forget all the other Greenteeth Multi Media pages…
Greenteeth Multi Media
bogboggart
Greenteeth Comedy Pages
A Tale Told By An Idiot
Ian at Authorsden

Blog Grab

The U.S. Election still dominates the news and I am still bogged down with programming.

Here are a few interesting items just to keep tis blog alive.

A Question of Ethics
Medical science wages war on common sense – again. And once again they try to mask their mendacity by talking about ethics to justify taking huge risks with our collective health.

The Bullying Starts Again
This blog’s response to the hysterical and unreasoned support of the scientific community for their paymasters Big Pharma.

Obama got Gustav wrong Another American Liberal trying to pain Obama’s failings as virtues.

America’s extraordinary election And a warning to the Obama nuts who are convinced the election is all over. The election ain’t over til the voters sing.

Sunday’s Blog Roundup

The appearance of this article in HuffPost’s green page raised a few eyebrows but aparently the author is deadly serious. Is a gas fuelled BBQ better for the environment that a charcoal one? If we are being picky then an open cooking fire is the best but it makes little dfference if you are cooking grain fead meat on it.

McCain says Obama’s word cannt be trusted. News from the American election, John McCain who changes his position more often than a contortionist, has accused Barak Obama of untruthfulness and hypocrisy because Obama seems to change his position on every big issue according to which audience he is adressing. Words like pot and kettle come to mind

Remember the scandal of Maidstone hospital, where the boss had to resign over dirty wards. Well the hospital management has not learned its lesson as Iain Dale reports.

A Conservative blogger says he enjoyed Cherie Blair’s book. That’s how bad it is

What does Henley Mean for the Lib Dems? So was the by-election a disaster for the Liberal Democrats. Opponents are quick to write off the third party but though unspoectacular their vote could point to a positive trend.

Three Bees Sting The Old.

It had to happen. In spite of our generosity we punters could not keep underwriting the follies of capitalism and free market economics for ever simply by infinitely increasing our personal debts. Everything is finite, except perhaps the Universe, the mendacity of politicians and the greed of free market capitalists.

Over the past six months everybody has become painfully aware that the good times are gone. The three Bees, Blatcherism, Bureaucracy and Bean – counting have been stirred up and are stinging with a vengeance.

First to be hit were the poor, but now the old are starting to suffer. A social care crisis has been brewing for as long as the climate change crisis and has been as assiduously swept under the carpet. Politicians could not see many votes to be had from the old and capitalists could see easier ways of making money from old age than by providing high – cost, low return care homes (simpler by far to create fraudulent investment vehicles and steal people’s life savings)

Solutions to the growing problem of old age all seem to involve raising taxes or the abandonment of balls out foreign policy initiatives like The War or expensive vanity projects the The Games.

Making up a threesome along with the failure of capitalism and neo-con politics is the failure of modern medicine. While advances in drugs, surgery and other therapies have succeeded in prolonging life by finding ways to downgrade killer diseases to merely nasty, debilitating diseases we do not hear much about successes in prolonging the healthy, active portion of life. The medics have extended our lifespan but failed to combat the infirmities of age.

Another factor is the way successive governments of the Tory right and the Labour right have pandered to the demands of the business community, allowing them the freedom to export proper jobs to low labour cost economies. This has resulted in a disproportionate number of our workers being employed in candy-floss industries or in public administration. While the work of those who actually deliver a service in health and social care, transport, education, environmental services and public order is always costed to the penny and very tight budget restrictions imposed, the budgets for administering these services seems to be open ended.

We would expect nothing else as the administration of public services is now outsourced to the private sector and the only growth industry is in the creation of middle men, all wanting a piece of the action without actually doing anything practical to earn it.

This is why in a Blatcherite world there is never enough money to hire more doctors, nurses and teachers, but funds are always available for more bureaucrats and bean counters. It puts all that guff about enterprise in perspective.

Nurses Bogged Down With Bean Counting

The Royal College of Nursing has complained that NHS nurses are spending so much time on bureaucracy it is detracting from patient care.
The administrative tasks being laid on nurses include form filling, filing, copying, ordering supplies and keeping accounts. None of these tasks require the professional abilities of a highly trained healthcare professional according to Peter Carter, general secretary of the RCN.
Some nurses leaders think the administrative burden is harming recruitment to the profession.

Once again Little Nicky Machiavelli has been saying since the start of this blog is proved true: our national Health Service is controlled by bean counters and patient care is a lower priority than paperwork.

TODAY WE COMMENTED ON
Beyond The Pleasure Principle The credit crunch, rising food prices, oil prices through the roof; is this the end for hedonism?

Orwell Turns In His Grave Emily Bell asks can a media degree ever make a decent journalist or is experience more important?

Time To Bring Back Campbell Daily Mail politics blogs throws Gordon Brown a lifeline

BBC rewrites political history Lib Dem blogger appreciates the blogger who started the rumour that Harriet Harman had joined the Tories.

Boxing Brides sounds like an episode from Shameless but it really happened in America (where else?)

First Thatcher the Milk Snatcher, now Brown the Body Snatcher.

The Government’s plan to solve the shortage of organs available for transplants by presuming assent and licensing the “harvesting” of organs from the newly dead is a real humdinger of a Public Relations disaster. Donation of organs is one thing, harvesting (the very word the medics choose for the business is repulsive) is another.
I have always been ambivalent about organ transplant. It sounds fine to talk of the dead being able to grant the gift of life to somebody suffering terminal or debilitating illness, but the ethical conflicts between the boy-scientist school of medicine who regard everything in terms of how big an intellectual wank it will give them, and the more caring, less selfish kind of medical professionals who understand that the feelings of the deceased’s relatives must be considered. In the light of the government’s proposal, my attitude has now hardened to “what’s attached to me stays attached when I am dead, end of story.”
Attitudes to death do not vary much from culture to culture; whether we believe we will go to meet our maker or got to make friends with the worms, throughout 5000 years of civilisation it has been understood that the bodies of the deceased should be disposed of respectfully. Now as the “science is God” fraternity led by silly Polly Toynbee are already ranting irrationally that we cannot possibly be aware of what happens to our body after death, we are not allowed to have a say, let me point out that the rituals surrounding the disposal of bodies are not developed for the benefit of the dead, but for the comfort of those who survive them.
In casually dissing the feelings of the bereaved, silly Polly who claims to be a humanist, reveals herself as an inhumanist, as despicable as those medics who cannot see any difference in the status of a human patient and a lab rat.

The other ethical issue arises from our knowledge that the Government proposing this plan is money obsessed and there is a lot of money to be made from selling healthy organs. Once a reliable source has been secured, does anybody really think it will be long before Broon the Body Snatcher will be creating a market in harvested organs. Its is easy to see a link here between this proposal and the plans, already well advanced, to marketise the National Blood Service.

What nobody is mentioning is that organ transplant is something of a lottery, well a lot of a lottery. Put together deaths while waiting for a suitable organ and the survival rate following a transplant and, as we are a society obsessed with the bottom line, transplant is not very cost effective. (see statistics availabe at Science Daily http://www.sciencedaily.com/) On top of that there is the question of how many harvested organs are suitable for transplant and whether they are compatible with patients on the waiting list. It is not a simple question of give a liver, save a life. But these ethical questions are never simple, which is why self interested politicians, boy scientists (who tend to be simple minded in the extreme) and bossy, post menopausal, middle class mad old biddys like Polly Toynbee would prefer just to sweep them aside and focus the debate on the highly emotive but misleading issue of “saving lives.”

I have a cunning plan to thwart the dark forces of inhumanism; never having feared death myself (there’s a lot to be said for stoicism) I now intend to live a life of such uinmitigated debauchery my organs will on my demise be totally fubar, useless, not worth the trouble of removing.

The boy scientists and the Polly Toynbees of this world may delude themselves that if unconstrained by ethical considerations or the need to consider people they like to describe as being “ruled by superstition and belief in magic”, one day medical science will be able to abolish death. Is it not then the boy scientists and their supporters who are ruled by belief in magic? We will never abolish death. As the philosopher David Hume said, “It is better to die at sixty five than endure a further ten years on increasing invalidity.”

We should all heed the sentiment. Organ donation must be voluntary. To even consider making it otherwise shows how far along the road to tyranny this government has travelled. But you can bet your life savings this “harvesting will only be done to NHS patients, they’re not gouing to be ripping to shreds corpses belonging to rich families.

COMMENTS on Little Nicky Machiavelli are now moderated for all except friends. If you want to tell me I am an idiot or talking through my arse and can do so wittily, fine. If you wish to challenge my opinions, fine. If you just wish to add something funny or interesting that’s fine too, but if you are a boy scientist and simply want to repeat the boy scientist mantra that because I am not a “scientist” I may not write on topics concerning science, sorry but this blog is not a platform for boring fuckers.

Blood Sweat and Profits – marketisation of the blood service

A couple of weeks before Christmas Little Nicky Machiavelli brought to your attention the scandal that is going on in the National Blood Service under the guise of reorganisation. Market driven policies are being introduced, regional blood banks are to be closed in favour of a centralised service. Cost cutting is given as the justification, the consequences of delaying emergency surgery on an accident victim because blood products have to be transported a couple of hundred miles on our gridlocked motorways are not even considered.

If you think this is wrong and want to help you can get involved on Monday Jan 7th. Here’s how.

How can you help: We are calling a co-ordinated phone blockade about the proposed NBS cuts to coincide with the return of parliament on 7th January.

Please telephone, fax or email the UK Health Minister outlining your concerns about the cuts to the National Blood Service. Help tie down his phone and fax machine on January the 7th and help us make an impact.

Alan Johnson MP

Phone:-
0207 219 1305
0207 219 6637
01482 219211

Fax:-
01482 219211
0207 219 5856

Email:-
windlet@parliament.uk
johnsona@parliament.uk

This blog will bring more news of the campaign and info about how you can support it. Follow our tag link to blood shown below for web sites dedicated to this cause.

Is The Blood Bank Run By Northern Rock?

Little Nicky tries to avoid stress, my oversized adrenal glands can cause a lot of trouble, especially when something makes me so angry I start going green. This mail I received from a contact at facebook made me so angry I went very bright green. So will you too when you read it.

This meddling with the Blood Transfusion Service can only mean one thing, the morons are thinking of privatising the blood transfusion service. So successful was the business of buying and selling blood in America, it contributed to the spread of the HIV and HEP C viruses.

This of course made millions of people customers for life of the pharmaceuticals manufacturers. Isn’t free enterprise wonderful?

I hope many of my readers will want to support this campaign and the people behind it who cannot be named because of the fascistic attitude of NHS management to workers who tell the truth about what is being done to OUR health service by the self serving “managers” who run the service providing sections. Contact the campiagn here or use any on the links in the article below to find out how you can support the campaigns nationally or locally.

Your life could depend on this. Over to my anonymous informant.

Dear campaign supporter

The Save Our Blood Service facebook group has gathered a massive number of members and is growing all the time. We have a paper petition with 7000 signatures from around the West Mids which we will be presenting to the council (and getting the media to cover) very soon. We are also contacting patient groups around the country.

* We are now asking for your valuable help with a quick and easy action that you can all do, to build mounting pressure on the Board of Directors not to reduce local processing and testing labs.

The NBS Board is appointed by the Health Minister and is ultimately responsible to the government. We need volunteers to email councillors in the affected cities telling them you are opposed to the NBS cuts and expressing your anger. This is not glamorous, but it will build pressure on local councils to adopt stances against the closure, which is strategically vital for the campaign at the moment.

* Why is this necessary? Flooding of lazy councillors inboxes with queries about the NBS cuts will make them pay attention and make them more likely to look into the restructuring plans.

The response of Sheffield and Birmingham councils has shown that the board of directors has not bothered to properly inform the local authorities about the mad scheme and what it will mean for the health service. We hope to make the directors sweat by grassing them up and raising the interest in the strategy from their political masters. They don’t think they have to answer to the staff or the public, but they do have to answer to the government!

* The campaign has developed detailed lists of all the local councillors in all of the affected areas to make life easier. You can find the list here:
http://secouncillors.wordpress.com/

(see tabs at the top of the page for different cities/areas) and use them to select who you write to.

* Also to save you time we have a few model/example emails that you can use – see end of message.

We need to do this mass lobby on a massive and co-ordinated scale to
make it properly effective, so we are asking for every supporter of the campaign to make that extra effort. Please take a minute to contact councillors using these templates, and let us know who you have hit, along with any response you get from them, at the campaign email address:
nbs.sos@googlemail.com, so that we can keep tabs on how much volume we are bombarding these guys with.

Thanks for your support!
NBS SOS

Save Our Blood Service blog with many local links
http://nbs-sos.blogspot.com/

Links to NHS campaign groups
http://www.healthemergency.org.uk/linksuk.php

My critics, people such as the boy-scientist Ben Goldacre and his imaginary friends (why make ’em up Benny – boy, are you afraid to face Little Nicky?) will sneer that by not naming my contacts I prove than I am making this stuff up. Nobody will be taken in of course, we all know what happens to NHS whistle-blowers which is why I cannot give a clue to the contact in this instance or the name of my personal whistleblower Dr. Honeybuns who asked me to stir things up for Goldacre for the way he ridicules people who suggest it is far from proven that there is no link between Autism and the MMR virus. Unfortunately he shoots himself in the foot when he fails to mention his main claim to fame is a medical journalism award he won for an article exonerating MMR from any link with autism, was actually funded by one of the main manufacturers of the MMR vaccine.

Little Nicky Machiavelli will keep you updated on this story and others which reveal the rottenness at the heart of the medical profession and the way our leading Doctors profit from their cosy relationships with drug companies.

(Re your earlier threats to sue me Ben, I have not heard from your lawyers yet. Perhaps someone told you I would slaughter you in court)

Do not make the mistake of thinking these criticism apply to all doctors. Most of the profession are honest, hard working and put the interests of their patients first.

Please point all your blog friends to the National Blood Transfusion Service campaign and other crookery in the NHS.
Bloggers can make a difference.

Interview With A Cybersweetie

This month I had the chance to interview my cybersweetie Janet Caldwell for Poetry Life and Times. Until ill health stopped her in her tracks a couple of years ago Janet was a phenominally popular web poet.

Read the interview as Janet speaks about her writing, her liver transplant earlier this year and the abuse she suffered in childhood that triggered so many of her problems with mental illness and addiction.

You will also find my review of Janet’s best selling poetry book 5 degrees to separation. 5 degrees is not available at the moment but we are hoping to get it back in print through Greenteeth Multi Media early in 2008.

Checkout the rest of the current mag
Poetry Life and Times November issue
including some of my poems (one features Janet in her role as muse) and contributions from many talented writers.

Dr. Strangelove’s Secret Bacon Butty Weapon.

Those harbingers of misery, the clinical research laboratory technicians or “scientists” as they like to style themselves, The Dr. Stranglove’s of medical science are busy peddling their misinformation and disinformation, or “research results” as they like to call it, again. Having kept up their 100% record for talking utter arse dribble last month with warnings on hazardous drinking (actually moderate alcohol consumption which is good for us) and how even thinking about having a cheese sandwich increases a woman’s risk of breast cancer by ninety nine million percent, they are now directing their attention towards our bacon butties. Is no British institution safe from these people as they target our dietary habits.

Their five year mission (sorry, scrub that – I wouldn’t want to give the impression these people are sad obsessive geeks who spend all their time in laboratories molesting small furry animals and get together once a year to celebrate Mr. Spock’s birthday) their mission as they see it is to make everyone live forever. Their approach is to make life so boring we will not live forever but it will seem as if we have. If we heeded the warnings, everything that makes eating pleasurable would have been removed from our tables by now.

The problem with the Government’s letting these nerds off the leash is that because the warnings are general rather than selective, nobody takes any notice. We all know that what is going on is the manufacture by a government intent on privatising the National Health Service, of excuses for denying people treatment in publicly funded hospitals. Unfortunately due to this and to the ineptitude of civil servants in all aspects of PR, the warnings are going unheeded by the people who need to heed them. Instead of mumbling about obesity and the discredited Body Mass Index ( BMI – this is the method of measuring obesity that showed Lynford Christie and Lennox Lewis at the height of their careers were both clinically obese – yeah, right.) why not show pictures of a hugely overweight couple and their overweight kids and caption it “Mr & Mrs Too Fat To Wipe and their family.” That would bang the message home. Forget the effing Body Mass Index, check the mirror. Love handles are OK, saddle bags are a no – no.

The Strangelove boys will never get their heads round such effective ways of communicating, quite simply they cannot communicate with organisms more complex than lab rats. The idea that human beings are all individuals who think for ourselves and make our own decisions is beyond their understanding. And we understand that we all die of something and the choices we make may effect that.

But if the choice is between a couple of years extra tagged on to the incontinent, demented, non – ambulatory end of our lives or a tasty breakfast now, bring on the bacon butties.

No doubt the dull witted denizens of the Bad Science forum, followers of thick – boy science guru Ben Goldacre will be anxious to remind me that as I am not a scientist I cannot understand these things and merely react emotionally to the hysterical misrepresentations of the media. Well as usual I looked up the reports and they are written to give the impression that eating red meat three or more times a week is a critical factor in the development of intestinal cancers. The statistics used in the report however show that if there is any critical factor it is simply old age.

The key to writing these reports is to use language with such precision they cannot be spun. A high level of red meat and particularly processed meats in the diet, combined with other lifestyle and environmental factors may contribute to the development of certain cancers. There is a science to language you see. Unfortunately scientifically precise language is never going to be sensational and hysterical enough to attract any big fat research grants, which is the real purpose of all these reports.

Before I move on to politics, economics and corporate fascism, kudos to the guys who won the Nobel Physics prize this year for their work on giant magneto resistance. Absolutely fascinating stuff, bordering on the mystical in fact, and an evolution from a technology I helped develop during my career. Got that Bad Science Forum thick – boys. Science is a big church, we all have our specialities and only those who are wannabees would refer to themselves with characteristic lack of precision as “scientists.”

Colon Cancer Set To Increase say scientists

Whose Life Is It Anyway>

Yet another about turn on government guidelines regarding health. Today NICE has produced draft guidelines stating that after the first three months of pregnancy there is no evidence to show that drinking up to 1.5 units of alcohol a day causes any damage to unborn children, contradicting earlier advice from the Department of Health.
Of course fifteen to twenty years ago and beyond women were actively encouraged to drink alcohol, particularly stout as this helped to prevent anaemia, quite common in the later stages of pregnancy.
Who listens to this advice anyway, certainly not alcoholics whose babies are the ones at risk of Foetal Alcohol Syndrome.
It’s the same with all government advice. Eat five pieces of fruit a day. Why five? Where did that figure come from? If you eat more is it bad for you? If you eat less will you still be at risk of heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure and an early death? Is it quantifiable, if you only eat three pieces of fruit a day will you live two fiths less long that someone who eats five? Will vegetarians live forever?
Take more exercise. What counts as exercise? According to a recent campaign anything active no matter how moderate, a gentle stroll, gardening, sex – this featuring an older couple, can they really actively bonk for thirty minutes or does foreplay count which isn’t really that active, just hands and mouths?
How many people are now more active than they were before the smoking ban because they have to go outside for a fag? Does that count?
The government continually identifies a problem, which may or may not be transient and/or confined to a small section of society and then berates everybody with expensive advertising campaigns. This leads to a general trend to
a) ignore government advice on the grounds that its so bloody obvious and we do it anyway,
b) take it to heart and try to follow the guidelines strictly, resulting in guilt and stress, contributing to high blood pressure, heart disease etc. or
c) ignore it because everybody is always banging on at you anyway.
Shouldn’t the advisory bodies be targetting the specific groups that need help, doctors and midwives offering help and support to those pregnant women who do have a problem with alcohol for instance, whilst encouraging those that are more than capable of making their own choices to do so?
Giving peple responsibility makes them more responsible whilst taking away accountability seems to encourage the idea that somebody else will do it for you.

NHS Financial surplus.

So the NHS has made a profit.

And they have achieved this by sitting on budgets that were underspent while turning away people with health problems who needed urgent treatment simply because some budgets were spent up.

Little Nicky is getting quite bored with saying “told you so” this week but if you check tags like health, NHS, hospitals, and similar you’ll find we have been warning all year that this scam was being operated.

Machiavelli is thinking of approaching Shaz the Prole, sallyontour and a few other to talk about forming a new political part, The Really Awkward Bastards.

The Unhappiest Children In The World

The first good thing that might possibly come out of yesterday’s UNICEF report on the health and wellbeing of children in industrialised countries is that the embarrassment of being rated second from the bottom might help rid our government of its obsession with league tables. The other thing we should hope for, a return to common sense, will at best be a long time coming.
The two nations that have championed globalisation, free market economics and the selfish society, Britain and the U.S.A. are respectively second from bottom and bottom of the list. Thus we are shown once more that the economic policies of the Reagan – Thatcher era have not only failed, been proven to fail and destroyed lives and cultures in the third world, the continuation down this road to lunacy is destroying the souls and communities of nations that claim to have been successful exponents of the global market.
Forget democratic values, family values, Victorian values, middle class values, Christian values, Liberal values and all the other platitudes politicians have embraced, the two leading members of the English Speaking Axis have become nations whose children know the price of everything and the value of nothing.
It is not just toxic twizzlers and too much TV that are destroying the quality of life for our children, the whole structure of our money obsessed society is at fault. Many moons ago when this blog was young, optimistic and positive and squadrons of flying pigs passed overhead every day I commented on The New Apartheid which was increasingly segregating young from old.
Sectors of the media whose job it is to sell young stuff to young people and old stuff to old people must take a large share of the blame but politicians have been quick to jump on band wagons too. Remember “Cool Britannia”?
The world is changing very quickly and we have not understood the changes let alone begun to adapt to them. Technological advance has meant that the system no longer requires masses of people be born into lives of poverty, ignorance and drudgery just to service the needs of the elite. Everybody can have a decent crack at making a fulfilling life for themselves. Yet at the same time society in engineered to deny most people that.
Education systems have lost sight of the life enhancing aspects of education. Schools now merely provide conditioning for a lifetime of mortgage slavery while promoting an intense competitiveness that will result in many pupils being written off as losers by the time they are ten, abandoned to dead end jobs where their resentment will fester.
We abandoned the unfairness of selective education only to replace it with uniform mediocrity. The best pupils with the most supportive parents will rise to the top of the heap of course, but without help from the system.
The majority of children are turned into greedy little consumers, believing their status and worth among their peers can only be measured by what they possess. So the ones whose parents, both working long hours to simply to service their debts, provide neither a loving and supportive home nor the material compensations that modern society accepts as substitutes really have little chance to develop emotional survival skills.
The issue the UNICEF report raises is one of human rights. Do children have a right to be equipped for adulthood in a complex and dangerous world? Do parents have a right to choose a non materialistic lifestyle, safe in the knowledge that schools will protect their children from the bullying and peer pressure that being different attracts?
Last week Government legal expert Charles Falconer said human rights is simply a matter of common sense: But common sense involves thinking for oneself and that is just what the neo – con governments of the free-market global economies do not want us to do.

Cluedo: It Was Gordon Brown In The Surgery With A Spreadsheet.

Not so long ago Machiavelli commented on the planned closures of A & E units and specialist children’s facilities as part of the Governments drove to “make the NHS more efficient and give patients more choice.” We thought nothing the Department of Health And Bean Counting could do would leave us more gobsmacked than a blatant attack on sick children.
Now we learn that in the interests of efficiency (i.e. saving a few quid) people recovering from major operations will not routinely have follow up appointments with the consultants who treated them but will be referred to their G.P.s
Its true that many follow up appointments are routine and do not require the involvement of a consultant. This is why (and I speak from experience) most follow up appointments at hospitals are conducted by registrars and junior doctors.
While not having attained the highest level these doctors will be specialists in their field and will have daily briefings with their supervisors during which concerns can be raised.
Can we really believe that a G.P. no matter how competent and committed can deal with orthopaedic, cardio-vascular, neurological and oncological cases all in the same day. And if that were realistic, are G.Ps not under enough pressure already from the workload imposed by ever more demanding patients and an implacable bureaucracy?
The Government counters all logical arguments by citing cost, efficiency and “the widening of patients choice” as its justifications. What is really going on however is the withdrawal of an important layer of patient care and an important learning process from the next generation of doctors.
And this LABOUR government has the gall to tell us they are doing us a favour by making it possible for us to choose in which dirty, cash strapped hospital we get third rate care from inadequately trained staff. We will probably never be able to prove how many deaths will result from this shoddy exercise in short – termism and bean counting but if any are identified we all know who will be to blame don’t we?
The most scary thing of all about it is thirty per cent of the electorate would still vote for them.

Stealing From The Poor Box?

It sems the American government, ever anxious to advance the cause of war on poverty – sorry, I mean war on the poor, is lobbying Downing Street in support of megaPharm’s efforts to have the NHS market opened up to unbridled competition. The American Paharmacutical giants do not like our quaint Olde English way of having drugs evaluated by independent experts before they can be launched on an unsuspecting public.
“If we say our anti cancer drug works then who the eff are you to question us?” is the line. Of course the patients may die of heart failure after a few weeks on the drug, but that provides evidence of the drug’ efficacity, after all the poor sods will not have died of cancer will they.

The line being ppeddled by the White House (and swallowed hook line and sinker by the money grubbing scumbags of New Labour is that marketisation will increase “choice” and thus benefit everybody.

Now haven’t we heard that before?

NHS Accountans must be called to account.

An ex nurse, Pat Robinson has won a high court judgement against The National Health Service Trafford Primary Care Trust which had acted illegally in closing hospital wards in Altrincham General Hospital. Ms. Robinson acted independently and risked bankruptcy to fight this crime which was inspired solely by the Government target driven culture.
Great.
On the same day it was announced that the Accident and Emergency unit at Burnley General Hospital will close and all emergencies in the area will be dealt with by the new superhospital at Blackburn. Well its only a few miles from Burnley to Blackburn, another fifteen minutes maybe. But wait.
The catchment area for Burnley General stretches north to Slaidburn and other villages in the Ribble Valley and East to Barnoldswick, Trawden and Thornton in Craven (look em up in your Atlas if you are interested.) By the time an ambulance gets out to these places and back to Blackburn it will be getting on for an hour if the response is very quick.
Now I used to live on the east (Burnley) side of Accrington and when I was haemorrhaging into my brain the time differential between getting to Burnley or Backburn was crucial. I survived literally by a few minutes.
The same kind of thing is going on all over the country and yet this week the Lib Dems have been mealy mouthed on the subject of the Blair/Brown philosophy of Government by financial targets.

Next time you have the opportunity to vote ask youself are you really prepared to lose a loved one prematurely because of the crimes of a corrupt government and their crooked lackeys?

And let’s get out on the streets, backing people like the former Trafford nurse. Let’s chain ourselves to railings, blockade the car parks (the management car parks) support the strikers, refuse to respond to bureaucratic requests for information, do not pay fines, ignore parking restrictions (get yourself an angle grinder and a battery booster with AC inverter and you need never worry about clamps again) be obstructive in any way you can.

They Can’t Put Us All In Prison.

Its about freedom

Interesting article about smoking and individual liberty on Guardian Newsblog today. Its about time someone on the Liberal left started to see the deomisation of smoking for what it really is, not concern for our health but a sly attempt at sovial engineering. If they were concerned for our health they would bring in stronger employment laws to stop corporate mangers turning up the stress leveals til they break us and ban the toxic chemicals roiutinely put in our food by the same corporations.