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Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

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Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by witchfinder on Sat Oct 08, 2011 2:01 pm

First topic message reminder :

Here is a news item from North Yorkshire which never made it onto the national headlines

A York-based practice has written to its patients offering them a range of minor treatments privately, claiming they are not funded by the local NHS.

Doctors' leaders said this could be the start of a worrying trend due to the squeeze on finances and NHS overhaul.

The letter, seen by the BBC, said local health chiefs had stopped funding a range of services, but added they could still have them done privately at a number of clinics, including one owned by the practice.

These included removing skin tags from £56.30 to treating benign tumours for £243.20.

Dr Richard Vautrey, of the British Medical Association, added: "The dire finances of many trusts means that many more NHS treatments are likely to become unavailable in the future".
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by Ivan on Tue Nov 22, 2011 4:10 pm

Is anyone or anything safe in Tory hands? 180 pensioners died every day as a result of cold conditions during the 2010-11 winter months in England and Wales. Over-65s accounted for 84% of the overall 25,700 ‘excess’ deaths.
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For this winter, and despite massive hikes in gas and electricity prices, the Tory-led government has cut the pensioners' Winter Fuel Allowance............




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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Nov 22, 2011 6:00 pm

As long ago as the 1980's government welfare payments were intended to "wither on the vine" in the words of a Tory minister.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by astradt1 on Tue Nov 22, 2011 6:48 pm

Stephen Dorrell, Health Select Committee Chair, Says NHS At Risk Of Failing Without Closing Some Hospitals

The Conservative chair of the Health Select Committee Stephen Dorrell has signalled his opposition the government's flagship bill for NHS reform, but stressed that the health service is at risk of failure unless hospitals are closed or services merged as part of a process of "service reconfiguration".

It should be remembered that Dorrell was a Health Minister in the LAST Tory government.

Dorrell also said
it was time to reconfigure services to suit needs - implying merging wards, closing some hospital departments, and creating specialised centres for trauma and diseases.

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Should hospital close and services be move to the big hospitals?

How would this fit with Dave's mantra of 'Patient Choice'?
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by astra on Tue Nov 22, 2011 7:31 pm

Hello Astradt

If in Perthshire, DO NOT turn your car into a ditch - leave THAT to Paul Daniels Very Happy . Let's take Dalwhinnie Distillery, which on the old A9 had a hairpin bend which was something of a blackspot. The new A9 is a racetrack so is no safer.
NOW
Your A&E, is Raigmore Inverness, Perth Royal, Stirling Royal or if an airlift is available say for burns, the only burns unit for you is at Ninewells Dundee! The nearest of these being Inverness or Perth some 60 miles distant. There are cottage hospitals for convalescence only up and down the A9 and these used to have limited medical treatments, at least we could throw a nurse or off duty doctor in the back to take car of things but what happens now God only knows.


Paramedic on lunch break refused to help dying woman


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The Tories, indeed ANY gubmint think only of the big cities, if you are out in the country, that's YOUR fault!

Nothing is being done to address this.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Nov 22, 2011 10:35 pm


Should hospital close and services be move to the big hospitals?

Nearly right. The idea is to move services to PRIVATE hospitals until the punters realise the futility of paying National Insurance.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by astra on Tue Nov 22, 2011 10:41 pm

the punters realise the futility of paying National Insurance



AND National Insurance will no longer be deducted from wages at source!


(A new name for this withdrawal is I suppose already dreamed up!!)
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by witchfinder on Mon Nov 28, 2011 10:02 pm

Tonight ( Mon 28th Nov ) on BBC1 North East was a regional programme called "Inside Out", this weeks episode included a report into NHS staff in Cumbria who had contacted the BBC with very serious concerns and allegations.

Nursing staff are so over-stretched that several nurses have gone to the media with stories of seriously ill patients been left unattended in out-patient cubicles, these patients are known as "red priority" and often include suspected heart attacks and people at grave risk.

A book which nurses are meant into write into with any concerns regarding the running or operating of services was reproduced and its contents were frightening, in one instance a lady with a vaginal heomarage was left unattended on a trolley in a corridor.

Nurses are been threatened and bullied if they fill in complaint forms, they are intimidated and warned not to speak out, but even consultants are openly criticising the way in which the trust is been run, one particular consultant said that several of them are considering leaving.

And the problem - cutting costs, saving money, reducing staff levels.

28/11/2011

More:
programme information
related links

Broadcast today, 19:30 on BBC One (North East & Cumbria only) and available soon on BBC iPlayer.

Chris Jackson investigates claims of bed shortages at a crisis-stricken hospital.


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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by oftenwrong on Mon Nov 28, 2011 11:10 pm

The softening-up process of misleading propaganda continues .....

The Sunday Times carried a story of (unidentified) patients paying £200 a week for an Agency Nurse to accompany them into an NHS Hospital to guarantee dignified attention to personal needs. Two hospitals in the deprived area of Kensington and Chelsea were mentioned.

What's next, a Celebrity Chef at selected bedsides?
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by astradt1 on Tue Nov 29, 2011 9:16 am

oftenwrong wrote:The softening-up process of misleading propaganda continues .....

The Sunday Times carried a story of (unidentified) patients paying £200 a week for an Agency Nurse to accompany them into an NHS Hospital to guarantee dignified attention to personal needs. Two hospitals in the deprived area of Kensington and Chelsea were mentioned.

What's next, a Celebrity Chef at selected bedsides?

The thing that does not ring true,to me, about this story is,..........£200 per week?...the current rate of pay for a trained nurse in a private residential home, in the Midlands, is £12 per hour.....So what is the rate in London?....the rate for a Care Assistant (Nursing assistant is £6.90....so £200 would not provide many hours.....

I wonder what the insurenace implications are on the hospital are with having none NHS contracted staff on the wards?
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:18 am

Sorry, sorry. Momentary dyexlsai on my part. The front-page article of Sunday's Times quotes £200 a DAY for nursing fees.

But I suspect the story is another Lansley "plant", anyway.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by astra on Tue Nov 29, 2011 11:54 am

that should not, reasonably, still form part of the burden of being a Pensioner.


Depends if you've got rid of the offspring from the nest OW. Less and less "children" are leaving home to set up on their own. The usual custom and practice now is "Gan doon the road, get the girlfriend up the stick, them go "home" to mummy and Daddy.

Moral - if your child is female, prepare for a burgeoning army of mouths to feed even in retirement.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by Ivan on Sun Dec 11, 2011 4:01 pm

Extracts from an article by Andy Burnham:-

"The Information Commissioner ruled that the Department of Health should publish its risk register to help to inform their Lordships' consideration of the Health and Social Care Bill and shed light on the risks of reorganising the NHS at this time of unprecedented financial pressure. Instead, Tory and Lib Dem peers backed the government's fight to keep it secret, thereby denying the wider public the chance to learn about the risks its government is running with the NHS.

In opposition, Cameron liked to be photographed alongside doctors and nurses promising "no top-down reorganisation of the NHS". It was all part of the Tory detoxification strategy. The subliminal message wasn't too hard to decode: "I'm a different kind of Tory: I love the NHS as it is and don't want to privatise it”. But that is precisely what he is doing. The King's Fund recently compared Cameron's NHS reorganisation with the utility privatisations of the 1980s when Andrew Lansley was one of Tebbit's civil servants. Just as we have seen with green issues or his claims to care about poverty, Cameron has broken every promise he made in his "rebranding" project before the election. The Tories are now re-toxified.

Britain's right wing may have launched a coup against the NHS but it can be stopped. In recent weeks, the BMA has changed its position to one of outright opposition to the Bill. If nurses, midwives, and others were to join them, there is just a chance that it would alert more people to what's happening and the scandal of a government ripping apart the country's best-loved institution without the consent of its people."

For the full article:-
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Last edited by Ivan on Sun Dec 11, 2011 9:35 pm; edited 2 times in total
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by oftenwrong on Sun Dec 11, 2011 5:20 pm

Meanwhile the steady drip of anti-hospital propaganda continues in the Sunday Times EVERY weekend without fail. Today's topic is patients put on the loo with the door open.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by oftenwrong on Sat Dec 17, 2011 10:05 am

Tory propaganda, briefing against the NHS, continues apace. This week's target is DEMENTIA. The headline story is that only one-third of nursing staff are trained to deal with it. The sub-text is that relatives should get into the habit of turning up at mealtimes so as to release hospital staff for medical tasks.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by oftenwrong on Fri Jan 06, 2012 10:39 pm

The current Tory Act of Parliament concerning the NHS is at a late stage of its progress through Parliament.

At the present moment, it continues to include a clause which removes all responsibility for the NHS from the Health Minister.

If passed, as appears lilkely, anything that goes wrong with the NHS at any point in the future will NOT be the responsibility of any elected Official.




It will be our own fault. Obviously.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by Ivan on Fri Jan 06, 2012 11:25 pm

Cameron's lousy government is sacking tens of thousands of nurses, yet he expects those who keep their jobs to do even more work. He also wants members of the general public going into hospitals and inspecting them, no doubt bringing plenty of germs in with them. This is just another smokescreen while Lansley goes about his work of fragmenting and privatising the NHS, rewarding those private health care firms which have been bankrolling the Tories and contributing to his private office.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by keenobserver1 on Sat Jan 07, 2012 6:40 am

astra wrote:Hello Astradt

If in Perthshire, DO NOT turn your car into a ditch - leave THAT to Paul Daniels Very Happy . Let's take Dalwhinnie Distillery, which on the old A9 had a hairpin bend which was something of a blackspot. The new A9 is a racetrack so is no safer.
NOW
Your A&E, is Raigmore Inverness, Perth Royal, Stirling Royal or if an airlift is available say for burns, the only burns unit for you is at Ninewells Dundee! The nearest of these being Inverness or Perth some 60 miles distant. There are cottage hospitals for convalescence only up and down the A9 and these used to have limited medical treatments, at least we could throw a nurse or off duty doctor in the back to take car of things but what happens now God only knows.


Paramedic on lunch break refused to help dying woman

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The Tories, indeed ANY gubmint think only of the big cities, if you are out in the country, that's YOUR fault!

Nothing is being done to address this.

You do realise that this is under the remit of the Scottish Government? And they are not Tories.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by astra on Sat Jan 07, 2012 12:34 pm

You do realise that this is under the remit of the Scottish Government? And they are not Tories.


Aye of course I do.

Iffin I had said that this is what is happening RIGHT NOW, in Cumberland, Durham, Northumberland, Yorkshire,Cornwall, Devon and Wales, you would think it was pittiful enough! (and It is happeningNOW)

Where do you think these chaps and chappesses in Whitehall got the idea??
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by oftenwrong on Sat Jan 07, 2012 5:00 pm

Why don't they invest the money in a new trainset?
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by Ivan on Mon Jan 16, 2012 10:58 pm

"So I say to you all, the sick, the disabled, you have nothing to fear from a Conservative government."
David Cameron (2010)
Evil or Very Mad
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by ROB on Tue Jan 17, 2012 12:33 am


Inquiry from an American USV who understands basic Keynesian economics. I know that NHS isn't free. Who pays the bill, and how?
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by witchfinder on Tue Jan 17, 2012 10:26 pm

RockOnBrother

Most working people ( wage earners ) pay tax to the government, but the deductions from our pay is to two different funds, the main one been Income Tax, the other is called "National Insurance", and it is this fund which goes towards our health care.

The strange thing about the vast majority of British people is that they support the health care system, and any political party which threatens or undermines the National Health Service (NHS) is basicly committing political suicide.

This seems to be a big difference between the UK and the United States where state funded, or free health provision seems to be a bit of a hot potato with bitterly divided opinions.

If you are out of work, unable to work, or even if you have simply opted for a life without work, then it makes no difference, basicly every British citizen is entitled to everything from soothing a bee sting to open heart surgery.

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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Jan 17, 2012 10:39 pm

I would be interested to hear in what respect NICS differs from Tax.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by witchfinder on Tue Jan 17, 2012 10:50 pm

oftenwrong

Dont complicate things for RockOnBrother

Income Tax and National Insurance as you know are both taxes, but they have different names and supposedly go into different funds.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by ROB on Tue Jan 17, 2012 11:20 pm

witchfinder wrote:
RockOnBrother

Thank you, and please accept my sincere appreciation for your informative, comprehensive response to my request.

witchfinder wrote:
Most working people ( wage earners ) pay tax to the government, but the deductions from our pay is to two different funds, the main one been Income Tax, the other is called "National Insurance", and it is this fund which goes towards our health care.

Is “National Insurance” a compulsory deduction, as I assume income tax to be?

April 17 (this year) is the filing date for federal income tax returns throughout the US. Income tax is compulsory; if you don’ pay, IRS agents, possessing full police powers at the federal level and toting guns, might show up at your door. More likely is a visit from the IRS (Internal Revenue Service, sometimes called the “Infernal Revenue Service”) auditors, who seem bent on taking every spare dime with pen, paper, and calculator.

It took a Constitutional Amendment to create compulsory income tax here, and the issue before several federal courts, and I think now the Supreme Court, is the compulsory nature of the health care reform law (inaccurately called “Obamacare” by those more interested in Obama-bashing “sound bites” than truth).

Article I of the US Constitution specifies the powers granted/delegated to the Congress of the United States, the only federal entity empowered to pass laws, one of which is to regulate intestate commerce. The point of contention in the several lawsuits filed by several states against the federal government is that one word, “regulate”, which the health care reform law interprets as “compel” by instituting a compulsory federal health care fee, similar to your “National Insurance”, assessed anyone who doesn’t purchase private health care insurance.

There are folks in America USV who prefer no health care insurance, and no fees, to compulsory health care insurance, no matter how minimal the fee. We’ll see how the lawsuits shake out

witchfinder wrote:
The strange thing about the vast majority of British people is that they support the health care system, and any political party which threatens or undermines the National Health Service (NHS) is basicly committing political suicide.

It seems the opposite amongst members of one voting bloc in America USV; in some circles, mentioning compulsory health care insurance funded by compulsory fees might nearly get a person run out of town on a rail.

witchfinder wrote:
This seems to be a big difference between the UK and the United States where state funded, or free health provision seems to be a bit of a hot potato with bitterly divided opinions.

I agree.

No such thing as free anything, except air, and maybe water if you live close by a natural source. If health care were truly free, requiring no compulsory fee, there would no problem. It’s the fee that seems to separate UK and US voters; UK voters seem to accept the inevitable, that if one desires no “pay at the door” health care, someone must “pat before the door” to ensure at least adequate health care “beyond the door.”

I’ve no personal problem with folks paying fees; my monthly bill for private health care insurance, along with “co-pays”, makes health care one of my biggest deductions. I do have a personal problem with how much I pay, and with the propensity of health car insurers to “play doctor” and tell you that you don’t need thus and such when a medical doctor who smelled the inside of a medical school once upon a time says that you do need thus and such to stay alive a little while longer.

Does NHS “play doctor” in that fashion?

witchfinder wrote:
If you are out of work, unable to work, or even if you have simply opted for a life without work, then it makes no difference, basicly every British citizen is entitled to everything from soothing a bee sting to open heart surgery.

This part seems strange to me. Out of work because our company has outsourced its jobs to countries whose names I cannot pronounce where the going wage is a buck twenty-five per day and you got laid off because you refused to follow your job overseas, work dawn to dusk, and make slave wages is one thing, but someone who has a perfectly good job and quits because she/he has “opted for a life without work” is quite another. It would seem that the hardworking wage and salary earners would rail against supporting health care insurance for someone like that.

Have there ever been any protests against automatic health care coverage of the “opt-outers?”
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by Shirina on Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:31 am

Have there ever been any protests against automatic health care coverage of the “opt-outers?”
Americans are a strange breed apart from Europeans and Britons. I was on Moonbeam's site earlier this morning (US time) and noticed a plethora of threads that were, once again, bashing the poor. One person actually suggested that the country would go into open revolt if we continued spending as we do on social programs. This person's knowledge of historical forces is obviously severely lacking given that there has never been a revolt against the poor in all of human history. Nor has there ever been a revolt against the government on behalf of the wealthy to make the poor even poorer. Who, in their right mind, would take up arms against their own government (and inevitably against their own people) because financially struggling members of the middle class want the wealthy to have even more wealth - in a nation with the third highest wealth disparity of any nation outside of the Third World?

The phrase "only in America" is often used for many reasons, and I find it particularly apt here. Again, these outdated sentiments are a direct result of not having lived through the horrors of the Blitz, the Holocaust, and Nazi occupation. Even the Cold War was planned to use Europe as the battlefield - again - so the US and the USSR could iron out their differences mano y mano. Europeans realized that, after fighting a war of that magnitude, going back to "the way things were" was doing themselves an injustice. From the ashes, they built a better Europe. Americans, on the other hand, went right back to their 19th Century ethics despite Roosevelt's attempts at steering them down a different course.

Thus, there are many (too many) Americans who have an unhealthy obsession with the poor, wishing essentially for them to exist in not a 19th Century but a 12th Century world. If they had their way, the poor would have to rely exclusively on charity - perhaps the cry of "Alms of the poor!" will be heard once again in the filthy back alleys of our major cities. This unhealthy obsession focuses on the "opt outers" (as Rock calls them), but has quickly spread to include just about anyone on government assistance - for any reason. Again, on Moonbeam's site, the same group of Scrooges were saying that even the elderly and the disabled can perform some type of work, so there is no excuse to be on assistance (or "the dole" as they like to call it). They claim they are not anti-poor, yet when reading their posts, you know that they are by the words they use, calling the poor every name they can within the limits of Moonbeam's rules.

Of course, these clowns are not speaking from first-hand experience. Let them try holding down a job while writhing in agony with peripheral neuropathy. Those who live in comfort and plenty adore sitting in judgment of those who don't; it makes me wonder if they have really obtained any sort of happiness with all of their prosperity, for only a truly miserable person can get angry over a poor family affording cable television while you, yourself, has an entire home theater added on to your house.

The rightists believe they can combat fraud - which does exist - by slashing the budget for social programs, but the only people who will get screwed by such measures are those who honestly approach the government, hat in hand, needing help. Those committing fraud already know how to game the system; they will continue getting their assistance while the honest and truly needful people will be turned away.

I know I hear some Britons grumbling about the "opt outers" ... or generational welfare families ... from time to time, but at the end of the day, I have yet to hear one single Briton (or any European, for that matter), claim they want an American-style health care system. Everyone knows that any system, no matter how secure, will generate its share of fraudsters. There simply isn't any way around this. Yet "only in America" do people continuously scream a banshee wail hoping to shut down most of our welfare system because a small percentage defrauds the system. No one suggests that we do away with stores because someone might shoplift so why, then, would we advocate doing away with government assistance because some people steal from it?

Again, the answer is simple. Most of the outcry comes from people who I refer to as the "I walked to school barefoot uphill both ways" crowd. They chafe at the idea of someone having it easier than they had it; if they were miserable, they want to make sure everyone else is, too. In any other setting, they would be considered "downers" and would be avoided like the plague. And perhaps they are, for these are the same people who have managed to rack up around 8,000 posts in a little over a year. My post count just broke a thousand in the same amount of time. One has to wonder why they aren't out enjoying their wealth instead of sitting on a forum all day. I suppose this is one of those things that makes you go, "Hmmmmmm."
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by ROB on Wed Jan 18, 2012 3:50 am

witchfinder wrote:
... even if you have simply opted for a life without work, then it makes no difference...
RockOnBrother wrote:
Have there ever been any protests against automatic health care coverage of the “opt-outers?”

Shirina,

The “opt-outers” to whom I refer are British citizens who “have simply opted for a life without work”, not those whose “"unemployment” is not by choice.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by Shirina on Wed Jan 18, 2012 5:22 am

The “opt-outers” to whom I refer are British citizens who “have simply opted for a life without work”, not those whose “"unemployment” is not by choice.
Oh I know that you personally were not referring to everyone on welfare, but the radical right-wingers do. I was merely expanding on the concept you brought to the surface concerning "opt outers." It would seem that even the disabled and the elderly are simply "opting out" of a life of work.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by ROB on Wed Jan 18, 2012 6:05 am

Shirina wrote:
Oh I know that you personally were not referring to everyone on welfare, but the radical right-wingers do. I was merely expanding on the concept you brought to the surface concerning "opt outers." It would seem that even the disabled and the elderly are simply "opting out" of a life of work.

Depends on which elderly. Old folks once were young folks, so at any time, depending on the comparative survival rates of various non-traditional demographic groups, such as (1) old pimps and hustlers, vs. (2) old hard laborers.

On a summer afternoon, I stood on a porch with a survivor from group (2) a gentleman about seventy-five years old. He had first gone to work full time in the cotton fields at age fifteen, and had worked full time with few “vacations” until past the age of seventy. In the “tradition” of cotton field employment, workers labored from dusk to dawn six days per week during cotton picking season and at various hard labor jobs between seasons.

This gentleman received neither retirement nor social security, as cotton plantations paid into no such frivolous financial foolishness for its employees. It took the entire afternoon to “talk” this man into applying for SSI (which he subsequently received), and it was only when I reminded him that the cotton blend shirt I was wearing would have been impossible without the cotton he picked.

Folks like these are as far remove from folks that “opt” to live a work-free life as they are from folks that “opt” to put females on the street as they practice another version of a “work-free life.”
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by witchfinder on Wed Jan 18, 2012 12:06 pm

RockOnBrother

There are two types of people who use the NHS but contribute nothing towards it, the ones who cannot contribute through no fault of their own, and into this category are people who are genuinely unemployed and people with disabilities which make employment impossible; Then there are those who simply prefer a life on welfare benefits rather than to go out and earn a living.

The British public do often and regularly grumble and moan about what we call "scroungers" - people who are happy to live a life on a low income doing nothing and claiming welfare.

But the British mindset in my opinion is quite different from the way an average American might think, most British people would never deny a person basic healthcare simply because they have not contributed, people would regard this as unacceptable and inhuman.

The other noticable difference in the way that many Americans think as compared to the average Brit is how free health care is viewed or perceived, I find it quite funny that some Americans see it as "socialist" or even "communist", do these same people view state education / schools as socialism. ?

The NHS is not perfect, it has its problems, but in the main its a very good system with some world leading medical professionals and hospitals, from the local ambulance station and clinic to the regional trauma centre, and from the minor injury unit to heart transplants, its a comfort knowing its there.
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by ROB on Wed Jan 18, 2012 2:37 pm

witchfinder wrote:
There are two types of people who use the NHS but contribute nothing towards it, the ones who cannot contribute through no fault of their own, and into this category are people who are genuinely unemployed and people with disabilities which make employment impossible; Then there are those who simply prefer a life on welfare benefits rather than to go out and earn a living.

But the British mindset in my opinion is quite different from the way an average American might think, most British people would never deny a person basic healthcare simply because they have not contributed, people would regard this as unacceptable and inhuman.

I’m definitely American on this one. I spent an afternoon convincing a gentleman to apply for the benefits he earned, even though his employers saw fit to contribute neither to social security nor pension/retirement funds. But able-bodied able-minded folks who every day choose to get up out of bed, stop by the liquor store and pick up a little brew or “Mad Dog”, hook up with their buddies, and play dominos all day while waving at working folks on their way to work irk the fire out of me.

Socialism is a word of which I am unafraid; in fact, on 11 September 2001, I embraced the word, as two of the finest socialist institutions in the world, the United States Air Force and the United States Navy, along with the able assistance of two branches of another exemplary socialist institution, the air and naval forces of Canadian Forces (the Canadian Air Force jointly patrols Alaskan air space with their American brothers), secured and sealed all air and sea access to my country and my fellow citizens following the heinous attacks in New York, Washington D.C., and over the fields of Western Pennsylvania.

Socialism: Contribute to as you are able; partake of as you need. The domino players avoid contributing to as they are able and embrace partaking of as they desire.

witchfinder wrote:
The British public do often and regularly grumble and moan about what we call "scroungers" - people who are happy to live a life on a low income doing nothing and claiming welfare.

I would do more than grumble. “The pen is mightier than the sword.” True. When applied appropriately; the “pen” within the ballot box (now a marker to bubble in ovals) is mighty indeed.

witchfinder wrote:
I find it quite funny that some Americans see it as "socialist" or even "communist", do these same people view state education / schools as socialism. ?

Communism precludes acknowledging God; thus, anyone who knows God cannot be communist (sorry Charlie, Barack ain’t communist, no matter how much you crave this to be so); accordingly, in my country, the Constitution of which says “Congress shall make no law… prohibiting the free exercise thereof (of religion), labeling federally-funded mandatory participative health care is laughable at best.

Socialism, though normally pretty sorry at fueling a national economy (it works a the local economy level in the kibbutz), is extremely effective at providing for equitable benefits from capitalism-fueled economies to all who contribute thereto, like the gentleman who labored more than fifty years in cotton fields (and at other honorable tasks) who didn’t understand that he had contributed to as he was able (and he was “a lot” able), so he had every right to partake of as he needed for the rest of his life and beyond.

Before I forget, another older gentleman worked at various times in cotton fields and on loading docks filling vans (truck trailers, eighteen wheeler trailers, lorry trailers, however it’s said in the UK) with double digit tons of cargo.

I also loaded trucks once upon a time. My normal work day went like this: Arrive on dock at 7:00 AM, load truck trailers like a junkyard dog under the whip (paper, pen, stop watch) of our evil supervisor, “Simon LeGree”, take two precisely timed fifteen minute breaks and one precisely timed thirty minute lunch (that’s why the stopwatch), work until 3:30 PM, drop the seventy-to-one hundred pound box that was in my hand at that moment to the dock, not giving a rat’s posterior where it landed, get off the dock, in my ride, and home as soon as traffic permitted, and fall out across the bed dead to the world (no shower).

I asked this gentleman a question: “Which was harder, picking cotton or loading truck trailers?” No hesitation in his answer: “Picking cotton.”

Compare these gentlemen’s lives (the cotton pickers) to the lives of the domino players, and you’ll see where my heart is.  
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by Shirina on Wed Jan 18, 2012 8:12 pm

Depends on which elderly. Old folks once were young folks, so at any time, depending on the comparative survival rates of various non-traditional demographic groups
Retirement should be enjoyed. It shouldn't simply be a waiting period before death. Our retirement age is set at 65; our life expectancy here in the US is approximately 77. That's only 12 years. Now, after spending 50+ years working, a lousy 12 year retirement doesn't seem very much. In addition, surviving to age 77 doesn't mean you're not suffering from a plethora of health issues along the way which would make working extremely uncomfortable if not downright impossible.

I have always wondered why America, which has everything a person could want, a nation where even the poor live lavish lifestyles as compared with the Third World, would have such an embarrassingly high crime rate. What breeds our John Wayne Gacys, our Jeffery Dahmers, our VA Tech shooters, our Columbine shooters. There is even new and compelling evidence that Jack the Ripper was actually an American. And what gives with all of the pedophiles and all of these teachers having sex with their minor children? Why is the divorce rate so high? Why does it seem people cannot or will not be faithful to their spouses? Even China, with its 1.5 billion people does not have a crime rate approaching that of America's.

I believe that the answer to these questions, at least in large part, has to do with the fact that Americans just work too damned hard. There is less of a social stigma for being gay, being an adulterer, being a liar, or being a single parent than there is for being lazy. Or, more accurately, not working "hard enough." In Hong Kong right now, there are people marching in the streets because they want to reduce lunch from 90 minutes to an hour. In America, only management receives an hour lunch - the workers get half an hour. Recent studies show that most people, even when given an hour of lunch, don't take it. There's just too much to do, and skipping lunch is how you get promoted.

Americans spend more hours at work than any other nation; Americans receive fewer vacation days than any other industrialized nation which includes, by the way, most Asian nations. We always assume Asians work harder than we do, but that's a stereotype. The data disproves it.

What does this mean? Well, it means we're not spending enough time with our families, and more importantly, we're not spending enough time raising our children. In this country, it's work, work, work, and this fanatical work ethic is held with a monumental sacrifice: Our next generation. What's worse, the advent of cell phones, emails, texting, and laptop computers has ensured that one is never able to truly cut the tether from work. Americans are connected to the workplace 24/7, and some companies require to you be reachable at all times - even while on vacation (that means you can't leave your cell phone behind when you take that getaway camping trip). While this kind of fanaticism is making a lot of people very wealthy (usually not the workers themselves, however), it is rotting our society from the inside out. When we foist our children onto the school system, babysitters, daycare centers, the television, and the internet, there is no sense of family and little sense of parental responsibility. As has been said so many times, the most any kid wants from his/her parents is for them to simply be there. That's pretty hard to do when you're working 50+ hours a week.

So do we really need to make the elderly work another 5 or 10 years, cotton fields notwithstanding?

Here's an interesting article:


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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu Jan 19, 2012 11:09 am

"Lunch is for wimps"
Gordon Gekko

Does skipping lunch make you a better team-player, or just a p.i.t.a. ?
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by ROB on Thu Jan 19, 2012 2:20 pm


One of my favorite presidents, James Earl Carter, got bamboozled by Fidel Castro back around 1978-1980. Carter essentially said that if Castro released political prisoners, America would accept then as refugees.

Fidel ain’t no dummy; by releasing the malcontents to America, he cleaned the island of ant-Castro sentiment. But Castro did more; he released Cuba’s most violent and worst criminals to America also, cleverly mixing them in with the political malcontents.

This sea change event was the Mariel Boat Lift. Check it out on Wiki tomorrow after the blackout. The refugees, both legit and non-legit, were called “Marielitos.”

By the mid 1980’s, due to the influx of non-legit Marielitos, violent crime rates in the Los Angeles area had spiked so much that the Los Angeles Police Department, the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Office, the California Highway Patrol, several smaller cities’ police departments, and I believe several federal law enforcement agencies (Drug Enforcement Agency and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and  Explosives?) had formed a Marielito Joint Task Force that sent in undercover to follow Marielitos around until they committed a crime. Their unofficial motto? “Crimes don’t commit themselves; criminals commit crimes.” The task force “brains” figures that every time they removed a Marielito from the streets, they solved a dozen crimes before they happened.

I was reminded of this by Shirina’s comments regarding the mis-raising, or not raising, of children in America today. Here’s one of my unofficial mottos: “If you don’t raise your boy, you raise a criminal.” To a lesser and less violent extent, that works for girls, also.

One factor not mentioned by Shirina regarding mis-raising children is the fundamental change in the attitudes of parents toward their children’s misbehavior. I’ve witnessed far too many parents come screaming am cursing into school offices, complaining about this or that teacher or administrator mistreating and being unfair to their misbehaving brats and blossoming pre-criminals. Children often say, “I’ma tell my momma” with confidence that “momma” is going to come up to the school and raise holy hell because somebody’s picking on her baby. I’ll leave it at that.


Last edited by RockOnBrother on Thu Jan 19, 2012 3:16 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by Ivan on Thu Jan 19, 2012 3:09 pm

Returning to the subject of the thread.....

The wretched Health and Social Care Bill proposes handing over the duties of the Secretary of State for Health to Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs). One of these duties is providing hospital accommodation. In the past there has been discussion as to whether the NHS should pay for your so-called 'hotel charges' when in hospital – for example, the cost of your meals and laundry. Some people argue that you would pay for your food if you are at home, so why shouldn’t you pay for it when you are in hospital?

That argument ignores the fact that patients have different dietary requirements to a healthy person. However, and more importantly, it ignores the issue of what happens if some patients cannot pay the 'hotel charges': will they be denied the healthcare they need? Hospitals already charge for phone, TV and internet use, but they're services that can be regarded as optional, and if a patient cannot afford them they don't have to use them. Food, laundry and bed use as an admitted patient are not optional; without those services you cannot complete your treatment.

No Secretary of State for Health would bring in ‘hotel charges’ for patients because that would be a very unpopular move. But in future a CCG could argue that because of financial pressures (such as Tory cuts in government funding), it will make patients pay. CCGs are not accountable, and cannot be voted out of office like politicians, so such unpopular decisions are much easier for them to make, and they could dissuade some poorer patients from receiving the care they need.

The Tories are wasting £3 billion of our money on undermining, fragmenting and privatising the NHS, an institution which received its highest ever patient satisfaction score in a survey last year. The Tories have no mandate for any of their proposals, having specifically said that they wouldn’t reorganise the NHS. However, they want to reward some of their biggest party donors from the private healthcare industry, and they intend to satisfy their own ideological desire to destroy everything public. Doctors and nurses have told this evil government to drop these unpopular proposals, but the arrogant Cameron and insidious Lansley (who had been working on his plans for six years but kept them quiet) aren’t listening.

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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by astra on Thu Jan 19, 2012 8:16 pm

Some people argue that you would pay for your food if you are at home, so why shouldn’t you pay for it when you are in hospital?

There ain't half some condescending,discriminatory, self serving tw4ts in government!!

Why is it, that when a pensioner goes into hospital for a fixed term - hip replacement, by pass or whatever, THEIR BLOOMIN' STATE PENSION IS STOPPED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THEY ARE, ARE PAYING FOR THEIR FOOD WATER BOARD AND VERY LITTLE CLEANING!!
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by astradt1 on Thu Jan 19, 2012 9:13 pm

I see that terribly nice Mr Lansley has exposed the Royal College of Nursing for what it is, a Nasty Militant Union..............
After all they do go on strike at the drop of a nurses cap don't they..........?

How dare the RCN refuse to back his well thoughtout NHS Reforms?
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by Ivan on Sat Jan 21, 2012 12:43 pm

I wonder how the Tory supporters on this forum will defend all this? The fragmentation and privatisation of the NHS is going to leave it in a similar bloody mess to that which the railways found themselves in on the last occasion that the nasty (sorry, evil) party was in power.

One element missing from current discussions of the Health and Social Care Bill is a straightforward account of what will happen if it becomes law. Please read on:-
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by oftenwrong on Sat Jan 21, 2012 2:20 pm

Yeah, Lansley is hell-bent on destroying the National Health Service.

Was there anything else of interest in the newspaper?
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by Ivan on Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:02 pm

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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

Post by astra on Sat Jan 21, 2012 3:20 pm

Most working people ( wage earners ) pay tax to the government, but the deductions from our pay is to two different funds, the main one been Income Tax, the other is called "National Insurance", and it is this fund which goes towards our health care.


Witchfinder,

These collections go into one treasury pot, along with your road tax, VAT collections and fag, booze and fuel duty! + ALL the other collections that are accrued.

Many people have shouted for the moneys to be kept separate and accountable separately, (Hypothecation) but no! this has always been disdainfully turned down by the Mandrins, suits and spivs, slickers and other troughites!
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Re: Is the NHS really safe in Tory hands?

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