Friday, December 14, 2007

Stop lying, you lying bastards

Yet more fucking horseshit about drinking has been published.
Almost 13 million adults are risking their health by drinking too much because of a failure to appreciate both the increasing strength of alcoholic drinks and the trend for larger measures, Government statisticians have revealed.
...

In recognition of the increasing strength of drinks and larger measures, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has announced its first revision in almost 30 years of the method for assessing safe levels of alcohol consumption.

Until now, one unit of alcohol was a half-pint of beer, a single measure of spirits or a small (125ml) glass of wine.

A large glass of wine will now be counted as three units, a medium glass as two and a small glass as one and a half units.

Right, so the ONS are, effectively, just moving the goalposts in order to be able to scare people to buggery. Although I prefer to say that they are simply lying.
Men are advised to drink no more than 21 units per week and women only 14.

You lying fucks! People may be advised to drink to those limits but, as we found out some weeks ago, these figures were plucked out of the air so that the lying scientist fucks wouldn't look like ignorant scientific fucks.

As I pointed out that the time, it wasn't even a good guess.
If fact, not only were these limits plucked out of the air, we now understand that they were not even a very intelligent guess.
Subsequent studies found evidence which suggested that the safety limits should be raised, but they were ignored by a succession of health ministers.

One found that men drinking between 21 and 30 units of alcohol a week had the lowest mortality rate in Britain. Another concluded that a man would have to drink 63 units a week, or a bottle of wine a day, to face the same risk of death as a teetotaller.

If you look at it that way, these arbitrary guidelines may have cost lives! And yet despite this revelation—despite being rumbled as a bunch of lying cunts—the fucking abysmal health Nazis are moving in to attempt to further curb our "excesses".
In a further attack on Britain’s drinkers, it was revealed yesterday that a coalition of health organisations is mounting a campaign to force a 10 per cent increase in alcohol taxation.

The group, headed by the Royal College of Physicians, is also seeking to secure the support of MPs for stricter regulation of the drinks industry and warnings on alcohol advertising. A total of 21 bodies, including Alcohol Concern and the British Liver Trust, will form the Alcohol Health Alliance, according to Harpers Wine and Spirit magazine.

And here we go again. These fuckers are not interested in the science: they are only interested in power and money. They want the power to order the world as they see fit, and the money to be able to buy their way out of having to obey their own diktats.

These people are, to an extent, worse than politicians or civil servants; they are special interest pressure groups, often funded by the state (for who else would willingly spend money on these killjoy shits) to lobby the state, interested only in prolonging the world's "problems" so that they can continue to draw their fat, fucking salaries.

They use the classic "ratchet" concept; achieve one restriction and then move to tighten up that restriction and spread the net yet wider. How else are they to survive?

They are fucking scum and they should be hanged alongside the stinking, traitorous politicians. And why the Telegraph journos are continuing to report these lies without pointing out that they are, in fact, lies, I don't know.
Ian Gilmore, the president of the Royal College of Physicians and the chair of Alcohol Health Alliance, said: "As a nation we are drinking above the safe limits and putting our health at serious risk doing it.

"Those who are drinking too much alcohol aren't just the type you would typically think of as binge drinkers, they are middle-class people who think that having a glass or two a night every night is fine."

It is fine. Now fuck off and die, you blow-hard shit-stain.

59 comments:

Travis Bickle said...

This is all leading to higher taxes on alcohol, so together with carbon credits not only will we not be able to leave our homes in the EUSSR but we won't even be able to afford a decent drink whilst we're locked in there. (The English country pub will cease to exist within 10 years when the zero tolerance drink/drive limits are introduced)

This government, egged on by the even more dangerous EU, just can't stop interfering in every aspect of our lives. A pox on all their houses (and most of the hypocritical cnts have several).

Not a sheep said...

Have you read this from the BBC? Apparently, having ended all violent crime, theft of property and fraud the government have decided that the best use of police time is to use them to issue £80 fixed penalty notices to bar staff who are “knowingly” selling alcohol to an intoxicated person".
How dare the British public drink and enjoy themselves, they should sit quietly at home, watch the BBC news, pay taxes and vote Labour.

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

And thus preventing in one fell swoop anybody from legally being able to have a bottle of beer or lager and still drive. What is the point?

I'm bored with this democracy shite- it does far more harm than good. Can we not just have a revolution now, please, and get it over and done with? I've got one life and I don't want to be spending a good portion of it fighting these egregious cunts who call themselves 'experts' or 'representatives'.

One ITV reality show I would stay in to watch would be Experts Tap-Dancing on Air. I'd be dialing like fuck for Dr Julian le Grand to win. Cunt.

Anyhoo, moving swiftly on... What do you make of this, DK? http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2007/12/a_slippery_slope_for_health_1.html

You might have read already it on Samizdata. 'Clouds' and 'silver lining' spring to mind, although Perry makes the idealist (but correct) point in the comments.

Machiavelli's Understudy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
verity said...

"middle-class people who think that having a glass or two a night every night is fine."

Well, it is fine, with the proviso that they prime their stomachs with a couple of strong cocktails before hand. I don't believe they should jump straight into the wine. It's against the natural order of the universe.

Cookie said...

You don't know, Devil, if a glass or two of the red stuff a night is harmful to your health, and neither do the 'experts'. But it may be - and under a socialistic health care system avoidable risks to an individual from his behaviour that incur costs to the 'community' are reprehensible. You are not responsible for the costs associated with your potentially risky behaviour, the larger community is. As such, it is rational to be overly conservative and adopt a risk-averse policy. If you have private health insurance, well that's only a small percentage of the population and the law must apply to all.

verity said...

Well, the solution is to get rid of the Sovietesque health system and have everyone responsible for their own health and their own risks.

At the risk of banging my head against a brick wall before I've even had a drink to deaden the pain, to repeat: Slay the dragon of the NHS, but keep the NI contributions.

The salary earner nominates the private insurance company he wishes his contribution to go to. In other words, he chooses his private health care provider. Really stupid people might nominate the NHS, which is fine, if that's what they want. But as millions scampered away in glee, it would shrink to a small, manageable entity and may actually improve its service. But the order of the day is private health insurance paid for by the already extant NI deduction scheme.

This would leave parasitic immigrants, and indeed, parasitic indigenes, without health service, but that is their choice.

As children are unlikely to be able to afford health insurance, there should be some provision for the children of the improvident; but not the improvident themselves.

That would nip bossiness and hectoring from the likes of Patricia Hewitt or whoever the new one is because it would be none of her bloody business what people drink.

Also, a side benefit would be the death of around 100 quangos.

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

I'm in danger of finding one of Verity's comments agreeable...

Keeping the principle of NI would be a progressive compromise for me. There are lots of unknowns and big questions that would to be anticipated and answered, respectively, beforehand, but I'd be willing to support the option over our current "any health care system you want, so long as it's the NHS" option.

Relating to the article link I posted earlier, this might very well come true if we dream hard enough...

cookie said...

Assuming that Verity is referring to the idea of keeping NI contributions, but 'ring-fencing' these as a government income solely for the purpose of Health Insurance, what would you do with those who:

a) wilfully do not contribute to the common pot

b) are unable to contribute to the common pot

???

Anonymous said...

Doesn't the EU health directive come out soon,so you can travel anywhere in the EU and get sorted out in land's where health systems are far better than Britain,with MRSA etc here a lot of people will go from Britain to these countries for healthcare, so the NHS will die a slow death anyway.

Cookie said...

Assuming that the EU will allow national health care systems to exist, then you may have a point 'anonymous 10:18'. I doubt it, though. The rationale is to 'simplify' things and thus cut out 'waste' arising from 'duplication of services' - and this is best achieved by lessening options. If I am correct, it is more probable that an amalgamation of existing national health services (of various forms) into a pan-european EUHS will result.
It is tempting to adopt a pseudo-communist mindset here, and wishfully think that the best outcome is inevitable i.e. if the system is wrong, well, eventually the errors will become apparant and will be corrected. This is wrong. Without the only possible corrective mechanism of the democratic process, other than outright violent revolution, the possibility of the same errors being repeated ad infinitum are vastly greater. And then we come back to the democratic function - the realisation that we are even NOW at a point where a majority of the populace can vote for some policies which they do not have to pay, someone will, but not them. Supporters are not irrational in voting for these. Such policies are and will be presented to them quite factually as being of zero cost to themselves, and so they will and do strongly support them. But this can only be passed if we accept the philospophy that one man's justly earned property can be taken from him for any reason that the majority deems fit. This is now no longer even questioned, and so perhaps we deserve the worst of the logical consequences. If I believed in a god or gods I'd call on him or her to help us, but we're on a long slippery slope for generations to come.

verity said...

Machiavelli's Understudy: I have thought this through.

People will throw themselves on the floor palpitating if you say turn the tap off the NI and let everyone find their own healthcare and to hell with them. It's the dependency mindset.

I am saying, keep the NI. But why should it go to the NHS when there are private healthcare companies/hospitals which perform more efficiently and with better results? Let every working individual nominate where his own NI should go.

(I made it not too radical so the horses would be OK.)

To clarify, instead of the NI deductable going to the NHS, it would go to whichever private healthcare company you chose.

Of course, if you wanted to nominate the NHS, you would be free to do so. But there would be several competing companies out there in the marketplace that offered a better and much more comfortable service. And you may choose to nominate one of them to receive your premiums.

What is wrong with that?

The NHS could stagger on if enough people nominated them over the private healthcare establishments that would spring up, to receive their NI contributions. Or not. The numbers would diminish as more of the population became accustomed to private healthcare.

There is no excuse except Stalinesque control, not to give people a choice of where their NI payment goes.

Sadly, people who contributed nothing would be paid in kind. (Although children to age 18 should be covered by private group licenses in return for the franchises).

verity said...

I thought I may have a few friends over this weekend for Sunday pre-brunch units.

I would hire a couple of waiters to serve the units.

Of course, I would have a choice of units for the guests to enjoy.

Verity said...

Does anyone else agree with me that Gordon Brown's a bit short of a unit?

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

Does anyone else agree with me that Gordon Brown's a bit short of a unit?

No, I just think he's a cunt.

Travis Bickle said...

mach's understudy.

Nail hit squarely on head there I believe. 15000 more of them in "hard negotiation" round the pool in Bali as well. Biggest one being that Indonesian PM writing his songs and shedding his crocodile tears whilst he allows the biggest climate outrage in history to happen in his own country, the destruction of rain forests in the name of bio fuels.

verity.

Whilst I agree the NHS in its current form become less practical every passing year the problem I have with relying on private medical insurance is they will gladly take the payments but then use any excuse to wriggle out of meeting their commitments. "oh look you had a stomach ache in 1984, so not a new illness we can't help you". I know this from bitter experience!

Dr Rant said...

You're pretty close to mark here old chap!

Ivory Towers seems to produce the urge to urinate from the topmost battlement.......all over those below.

As far as I'm concerned, a glass or two of wine per night is absolutely fine, and does more good than harm. Looked at holisitcally, this type of person is less likely to be an anally-retentive twat that can't relax.

Relaxing is good for you. So is Cabernet Sauvignon. However, my tip for a healthy happy life is Tannat varietal wines from South West France (Madiran) or Uraguay. It has magical properties apparently.

Frank

Dr Rant said...

the problem I have with relying on private medical insurance is they will gladly take the payments but then use any excuse to wriggle out of meeting their commitments. "oh look you had a stomach ache in 1984, so not a new illness we can't help you". I know this from bitter experience!

Don't start the Devil off on this one!! I agree with you entirely, even the bit about the NHS becoming more unworkable.

The reason why the NHS doesn't work is bureaucracy and too much 'management activity' that has absolutely nothing to do with providing health care - and the obsession with inappropriate quantification and attaching spurious significance to meaningless statistics.

Insurance systems have the potential to replace like with like if we are not very careful.

StupidPeopleShouldn'tBreed said...

If drinking alcohol in excess (which is taxed highly thus earning the goverment a lot of revenue) is actually bad for you like they say it is (and to be honest haven't seen a lot of alcos live past their sixties max) then what would be the governments' motivation in trying to persuade everyone not to drink to excess?? Surely all the premature deaths from excess alcohol and its effects that have been studied such as colorectal, pancreatic, breast and liver cancer as well as heart disease and diabetes, and the resultant decrease in pension payouts, elderly people health expenses etc would more than offset any potential gain the government and State could hope to achieve??

StupidPeopleShouldn'tBreed said...

"Well, the solution is to get rid of the Sovietesque health system and have everyone responsible for their own health and their own risks."
Holy shit Verity, you are the most dangerous kind of asshole. So I guess poor people and chronically ill people and disabled people should just pay for their own damn healthcare, huh?? Darwinism brought one step further? We could have an Aryan race yet if your kind of thinking gets popular.

"This would leave parasitic immigrants, and indeed, parasitic indigenes, without health service, but that is their choice."

Yes, indeed, in my experience the less fortunate such as refugees, asylum seekers, the uneducated and the just plain not well off often "choose" not to have health insurance which in your ideal would mean access to healthcare at all. Do you work in middle management somewhere? Have you ever had to treat a terrified refugee or read a letter sent in desperation by a less well off local who found the intricacies of accessing the health system incomprehensible and was simply afraid for their loved one? You disgust me. I hope you end up unable to afford healthcare somehow and have a chance to think about what you advocate. Yes, the current Socialist model of providing healthcare is inadequate because it is inadequately funded. If people woke the fuck up, realised that their health and that of their loved ones was actually as important as I-Pods or Wi-fi or some other privatised big money type thing, and demanded that it be funded accordingly, then no problem. Healthcare is a human right. Not a privilege.

Verity said...

Travis Bickle and Dr Rant - It is in the nature of insurance companies to be cautious and you should not be looking to a paternalistic government to cut corners in the market. Your car insurance company is also very cautious, as is your house insurance company. We call this capitalism and it works, although they probably have harsher investigations for wine bores.

Stupid People: So I guess poor people and chronically ill people and disabled people should just pay for their own damn healthcare, huh?? (I love that American "huh?) at the end. I bet, despite using their slang, you're an America hater, though, because you think poor people have no health care there?

Here is my solution: If people are able-bodied, they should be in a job and their NI contributions, like everyone else's, will be going into the health carer of choice. If they're not in a job but on "disability" or on a seven year course of "training" for which they are receiving an allowance, a deduction to compare with the NI contribution should be takenfrom their welfare payments.

Everyone should have health care payments deducted. People in the next town or the next street are not responsible for your healthcare.

And while we're at it, the state shouldn't be rewarding the non-productive at a cost to the productive. They should have the American system of food stamps. That means, the state calculates how much each person/family will need to feed themselves for a week and gives them food stamps in that amount.

I have lived in the US, and I assure you, they cannot buy a Coca-Cola with food stamps. They can't buy a toothbrush or a bar of soap. They're for food. To keep them alive and encourage them to get off welfare. Needless to say, alcohol and tobacco are out of the question. What is wrong with that?

Asylum seekers can go elsewhere. We're full up. The whole of Latin America probably has around two asylum seekers, so they might want to consider that vast continent. Russia's big, as well, so that's a distinct possibility. Or one of the safe countries they passed through on the way to Britain.

Someone above said the problem with the NHS is bureaucracy, and that is probably one of the factors (another is political correctness/thought fascism), but I think there has been enough fiddling and fine tuning the NHS over the last 60 years or so and it's time to admit it's horse designed by a committee and find something new.

Stupid People writes: Yes, the current Socialist model of providing healthcare is inadequate because it is inadequately funded.

Dear God!

Surreptitious Evil said...

what would you do with those who:

a) wilfully do not contribute to the common pot


In the words of the sage: round them up, put them in a field and Bomb the Bastards!

b) are unable to contribute to the common pot

Provide them with the "Citizens Basic Income" and, as part of that, a contribution to the pot.

Oh, "StupidPeopleShouldn'tBreed", I do hope you are following your own advice.

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

AH-HAHAHAHAHAHAHA. HAHAHAHA.

HAHAHAHAHA. Hahahahahahaaaaaa...


Ahh....

StupidPeopleShouldn'tBreed...

Ah-hahaha...

Ahh...

verity said...

Surreptitious - Strange that when I mention my ideas on how healthcare should be pursued in Britain, it is always males, and aggressive ones at that, who become angry. Why is this? Any ideas? Women seem to be able to contemplate a system where everyone is expected to be provident enough to provide for themselves (especially as the state would continue to deduct the NI amounts) calmly.

For the truly improvident, by the way, there used to be charities - usually church or synagogue funded - to help them and there would be again.

Little Black Sambo said...

"Men are advised to drink no more than 21 units" ... etc.
Don't you love that passive tense? "Don't blame us if you don't like the advice. It's just THERE, a fact of life, unalterable; so argument is pointless." (As with global warming, the benefits of EU membership, the evils of American capitalism, etc etc.)

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

Verity,

Perhaps it has escaped your attention, but at least in respect of this blog, the overwhelming proportion of commenters would appear to be male. I think that's representative of the Blogosphere.

Surreptitious Evil said...

Verity,

I wasn't expressing a problem with your suggestion, I was merely replying to Cookie's two questions. And highlighting the difference between how we might treat the impoverished and the malicious.

Sod it. I'm off to have a G&T (I'll open a bottle of wine when I start cooking dinner.)

verity said...

Surreptitious - Apologies. I don't like gin, but I will defend to the death your right to drink it. Cheers!

Little Black Sambo - Well caught! The passive tense. You're right. Manipulative. To make it sound like a fact, as in "the earth rotates around the sun". "Men are advised" ...

I am surprised that on such a bracing,freedom-promoting blog as this there should be a single voice raised in favour of a state-run health service.

We can see in the discussion above that it provides a perfect channel for the government to dictate areas of the citizens' lives which are none of their concern. But, with a state-funded health service, they can dictate "for the common good" as "guardians of the public purse". You mustn't smoke or drink extra "units" because you will take up more than your share of our limited healthcare facilities, which belong to all, including half the world.

The NHS is a tool of oppression and Unit is the second name of Frank Zappa's daughter. I drink drinks.

JuliaM said...

"Healthcare is a human right. Not a privilege."

My God, the list of so-called 'human rights' grows ever longer....

'Stupidpeopleshouldn'tbreed', you really should take the advice encapsulated in your name. Please. For the good of the country...

verity said...

BTW, I see that Gordon Brown has put solar panels in his house in Fife and David Cameron has had solar panels glued onto his house in Kensington for two years now, and this is in addition to the stupid wind turbine on his roof.

These are signs of incipient insanity, plus they are palpable demonstrations that both these stupid men are easily led and unable to reason for themselves. Also that their moonbat detectors are faulty and dangerous.

I hope Nigel Farage doesn't have any windmills, wind turbines, solar panels or any other Heath-Robinson paraphenalia on his home because if he does, I will be unable to vote for UKIP.

MeanPeopleDefinitelyShouldn'tBreed said...

yeah, forgive me. I suppose to be considered intelligent I would have to be a raging capitalist and expect the uneducated, poor and down at heel to just fuck off and die like you guys do. Well, I don't. I do believe that healthcare is a basic human right. I am a doctor so I guess that's why. For those pondering my details I am actually female, and young, I am also American, but left America years ago as it is such a shithole. They run credit checks on sick people who present to hospital before they will treat them in a lot of places in the States. Frankly this type of carry-on makes me sick. I don't believe that people who have fallen on hard times should have to suffer and die because of their misfortune, and I DO believe that it should be the State's responsibility to provide for them if they are unable to do so for themselves. I don't profess to know much about politics, but I know I hate seeing people suffering. I currently live and work in Ireland, which is a much nicer place. Everyone can receive healthcare, not just those who can pay. There are medical cards for those who might not be able to afford care, and the public hospital system if they require it. Yes it needs more funding. If it had more funding it would work better, and the government certainly took in enough on stamp duty last year that I am sure the money is there somewhere. It is a system I am proud to work in as I respect it for providing healthcare to all people regardless of ability to pay. As for food stamps encouraging people to get off welfare, how does that work? There still are, presumably, the problems there that caused the people to become unemployed in the first place. I doubt in such a capitalist, if-you-have-no-money-then-go-fuck-yourself place as America that unemployment is actually a choice for people.

the a&e charge nurse said...

Don't worry meanpeopledefinitely, etc the Devils acolytes have never been able to distinguish the difference between [market] rhetoric and reality when it comes to health.

Here is an interesting BMJ piece which identifies some of the pitfalls when sick people are viewed as commodities
http://www.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/335/7630/1126
With thanks to Dr Grumble for flagging it up.

verity said...

Mean People - Your health is not my responsibility and nor is it the state's responsibility and I'd like to hear your arguments regarding why you think it is.

Regarding the Irish system, you say, to no one's surprise: Yes it needs more funding. If it had more funding it would work better. That it "needs" more funding - because it wants to pay for fertility treatments? Sex changes? "Treatment" for drug addicts? Transplants? - will always be the case. There will never be sufficient funding to meet the demands of modern medicine.

As you are well aware, there are county hospitals all over the United States that are obliged to treat anyone. Yes, they check to find out whether people can pay because no one has the right to squat as a guest on someone else's bank account, but if the patient cannot pay, as you well know, they are treated anyway.

This is county-run hospitals, for British readers. Not private hospitals. But the county hospitals are as effective, if not moreso, as the NHS. They're just not very nice. Like the NHS.

I don't believe in treating immigrants free of charge. If they can't afford to live in the country, they shouldn't be here. I do not believe in universal healthcare regardless of ability to pay, because someone is paying. The money doesn't come shimmering down from heaven. Someone who gets up and goes to work as a waitress or a shelf-stacker or a teacher or a truck driver is paying out of their own family's money to treat a stranger. Why would they want to do that?

Re food stamps, the people I saw using them were primarily single mothers with a gang of children and, of course, quelle surprise, no father.

I do believe in treating children without charge, because obviously, they are in no position to understand the situation or have made their own arrangements. I could probably extend this exception to the mentally feeble.

But I am opposed to universal responsibility for health care or anything else because I am opposed to communism in all its dehumanising creepiness.

Budgie said...

Meanpeople -
In the UK if you are "signed on" as unemployed (and looking for work) then you are automatically credited with National Insurance (NI) contributions (tho' no money actually changes hands). Oddly enough this also applies to those earning about £5200/yr.

Since NI is deducted by law from those working, and the registered unemployed are credited, then what Verity says is workable - for those two groups.

What I'm less clear about is how do the 'economically inactive' (about half the population? - pensioners, children, students, unpaid carers, etc) acquire health care?

Antipholus Papps said...

And why the Telegraph journos are continuing to report these lies without pointing out that they are, in fact, lies, I don't know.

It's because you think of them as journalists, that's the problem. Think of them as ladies of the night and all will be well.

verity said...

Budgie - I don't think 'economically inactive' accounts for half the population, although I wouldn't faint in surprise if this were indeed the case.

My answer to you is, pensioners, having paid into the system, at the going rate in their day, and thus keeping the system going, all their working lives, should be considered to have a fully paid up policy.

I've said before, children up until the age of 18 should be regarded as the responsibility of the state if their parents can't pay.

Students? I would suggest their parents or themselves paying the premiums through part time jobs. I would have extended free care for them through their first degree, but as so many thousands are now studying for worthless degrees that will never earn them more money than if they had just left the education system after their GCSEs,(very few mathematicians; very few physicists or chemists or anything else that is really hard; plenty of media studies, surfing science, etc), I think they're on their own.

Luckily, young people don't get sick that often.

Look, this is a broad suggestion. I haven't fine-tuned it. But we have to get rid of the notion that everyone is "owed" sophisticated, expensive health care. They're not.

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

I suppose to be considered intelligent I would have to be a raging capitalist

That's correct, Comrade Running Dog.

There's a reason you're a doctor and not a political economist. Worked it out yet?

And what are your credentials for writing about the NHS if you're an American in Ireland? Posing suppositions about NI contributions suggests you know fuck all about it.

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

Students? I would suggest their parents or themselves paying the premiums through part time jobs. I would have extended free care for them through their first degree, but as so many thousands are now studying for worthless degrees that will never earn them more money than if they had just left the education system after their GCSEs,(very few mathematicians; very few physicists or chemists or anything else that is really hard; plenty of media studies, surfing science, etc), I think they're on their own.

You'd just build it in to the loans racket that we are obliged to take up to fund our education (and then some). It wouldn't make much difference.

verity said...

MU - Well, you're right.

I would like to say that people studying real subjects, that the country needs, should be exempt, but then it veers dangerously close to the shoals of a comand communist economy.

So, no.

verity said...

Mean People Definitely Shouldn't Breed - Why on earth did you, an American, choose a tiny, tiny country like Ireland?

Irish ancestors, no doubt, fanciful folk tales and a chip on your shoulder, the auld sod and sympathy for the IRA and other twee fantasies? On political issues that you don't understand and history that you've never read?

I think you doctors in Ireland should be funded by the IRA. God knows, they're rich enough.

Do me a favour, don't have the impertinence to respond to any of my posts here or anywhere else the the blogosphere.

I lived in the United States. I know these "green beer" Irish. Just a guess, but your family was tipping money into the jar.

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

I think it rather depends on what it is that people think education is about.

Most people I come across focus solely on the immediate economic price of education. The idea that a degree can be studied for the sake of academic pursuit or intellectual or vocational curiosity does not seem to figure anywhere in the minds of most people these days.

I would say that there is an economic benefit to people opting to pursue a degree in an area of their choosing, as they are ultimately the ones who will determine whether or not they have something to bring to the marketplace and trade with. I think that most often, those individuals are the best judge of that and not somebody else.

The problem- at least where I am concerned- is not with so-called 'mickey mouse degrees' (the content of such programmes), but with the frequency and volume of people being conned in to taking a degree by a government that does not know the value of a degree and the cost of placing an arbitrary target of 50% on young people going on to higher education.

Besides, prioritising some courses and not others might give some students an over-inflated sense of importance and self-worth. Like those who go on to be doctors.

the a&e charge nurse said...

Right wingers, the evidence is out there [vis a vis Public vs Private provision of health services] if any of you care to look.

Extensive research has shown that profit-for-health institutions provide inferior care at inflated prices.

Market mechanisms undermine medical institiutions unwilling to tailor care to profitability.

Commercialisation drives up costs by diverting money to profits and fuelling growth in management and financial bureaucracy.
[see above BMJ item, and multiple sources cited in the article].

Verity says "luckily young people don't get sick that often".
I'm sure this sort of crass number crunching will be of great comfort to families who spend most of their day on an [expensive] paediatric oncolgy, or ITU ward.

As least in the UK they don't have to argue [on financial grounds alone] about whether or not the terms of their insurance policy permits a further MRI scan, as is the case in those countries where profitabilty is the most important arbiter of who does, or doesn't get treatment.

verity said...

A^E Nurse: "Right wingers, the evidence is out there." References, please. Socialism has never worked and it is not, by some miracle, going to start working in the intensive-capital, intensive-labour healthcare industry.

A^E Nurse: "Extensive research has shown that profit-for-health institutions provide inferior care at inflated prices."

Whoaah! Let's have some references on that one! I sense agenda-driven lunacy.

Anything provided by the dead hand of socialism is always inferior and always more expensive to provide - the extra layers of bureaucrats to run it are costly - than a capitalistic enterprise in the same industry. The service will also be better. So will hygiene. One case of MRSA and a whole wing would be shut down in a private hospital, intensive sterilisation employed and people responsible would have been fired without a reference. In Britain, the minister responsible for over 300 deaths retired on a comfortable pension.

In private health care, there is no involvement of incompetent governmemtn ministers. It's run by the Board, who are profit-driven.

In response to my remark that young people are generally in good health, A^E Nurse writes, inexplicably: "I'm sure this sort of crass number crunching will be of great comfort to families who spend most of their day on an [expensive] paediatric oncolgy, or ITU ward."

I wrote further up the thread that, as young people are not capable of providing for themselves or planning for the future, HEALTHCARE SHOULD BE AVAILABLE FREE OF CHARGE UP UNTIL THE AGE OF 18.

What did you not understand about this simple sentence?

Socialism has failed at everything it has touched, world wide. It also attracts bossy, ignorant, self-righteous whiners with a strong inclination to ordering other people's lives for them.

Open NI contributions to private medical care companies and watch hygeine and medical standards shoot up and bossiness decline.

Machiavelli's Understudy said...

Charge nurse,

Would this 'evidence' happen to be helpfully provided your delightful friends, Steffie Woolhandler and David Himmelstein?

I might as well just quote back to you a billion other pieces as to why they're wrong, written by staunch ideologues who are their polar opposites.

You've already made your mind up that socialism works, despite the living reality that it does not.

verity said...

Socialism is a heinous crime against humanity. It saps ambition and the impulse to fend for onseself and one's family and it provides god-awful services and shortages of food and other vital supplies.

How, after failing hundreds of millions of people, it has staggered on into the 21st Century is a puzzle. Even if you didn't want to be bothered to read any history, you only have to look at the people involved in it today to judge the quality of the political system they promote. Gordon Brown. Jack Straw. Patricia Hewitt. Harriet Harman. Ken Livingstone. Jacqui Smith. Tessa Jowell. Peter Hain. Ruth Kelly. Alastair Darling. The Kinnocks. And on and on. Absolute human garbage. Straight from uni, where they toked while gazing dreamily at their Ché poster, onto the public tit, where they have stayed firmly clamped ever since.

Socialism should be outlawed as a dangerous cult that seduces the very young and the weak-minded who continue to vote for it despite the evidence that it is killing democracy and free will.

the a&e charge nurse said...

Right wingers stop prevaricating, either you believe in the "market" [and its ability to deliver health care] or you don't - my guess is that few of you really do.........deep down.

Verity, health care is NEVER free [even for children], somebody else must pay for those not making a tax contributions, or for those whose contribution is inadequate in relation to certain extremely expensive health costs [think chronic disease, organ transplantation, prolonged ITU admission, etc].

Some of you may prefer to put our health into the hands of a few voracious fat cats, I don't.
The reasons are outlined above, or perhaps one or two of you might like to explain why the USA spends so much [nearly double that of the UK up until recently] yet remains so deeply problematic.

There is plenty of evidence to suggest that the NHS has done OK, especially given the history of chronic underfunding when compared to France, Germany, Switzerland, and the USA - yes, a bit more dosh has been thrown at it recently but we are still [and always have been] below the level of GDP expenditure for the above countries.

You all seem to obsess about Socialism but who are these socialists ?
Somebody above has provided a list of bank managers, but none of them have a political conviction between them that could be described as anything more than "me-ism".

Perhaps that's why they to are so enamoured with the type of market solutions that the right wingers here seem to clamour for ?

Budgie said...

Verity,
The ONS UK employment data is:
"The number of people in employment for the three months to October 2007 was 29.29 million, up 114,000 over the quarter and up 226,000 over the year."
Out of a UK total population of 60.5 million, meaning just over half are economically inactive.

Budgie said...

A&E
Socialism pretends to be benign, even beneficial. But the reality across the world is that ideology has killed millions and made miserable the lives of millions more. Why should anyone gloss over this?

You say that private medicine = more bureaucrats, managers, fat cats, profits. But this stands reality on its head. Private hospitals have fewer bureaucrats than the NHS. The reason? - fewer bureaucrats = more profit; fewer nurses/doctors/facilities = less profit. Inside the NHS there are as many bureaucrats as nurses. Whatever for?

There are other models for hospital ownership than state central control (the NHS), and for-profit businesses. For example: local council; charity; church; independent trusts; co-operatives; and not-for-profit businesses. Some of these were killed off by the introduction of the NHS.

verity said...

Emergency Nurse or whatever long-winded name is: you say or perhaps one or two of you might like to explain why the USA spends so much [nearly double that of the UK up until recently] yet remains so deeply problematic.

Not really. You haven't defined "problematic". In fact, this tells me you have no facts, just visceral hatred of the United States and their medical system. And you are angry.

Yawn.

It's better than what they've got in Britain.

Charge Nurse, whatever, writes: Verity, health care is NEVER free [even for children], somebody else must pay for those not making a tax contributions ... Yes. See. This is the second time I have conceded the point that I had already made in my original post - that makes three times you have failed to grasp it. The money isn't handed down from Lord Zog in Socialist Heaven. It comes from the employed. Is this a congenital condition with you?

I can understand being unemployed for a year, because that's about how long it takes to find a job unless you get headhunted. After that, you should be in employment. In Texas, you only get 13 weeks. After that, you're expected to take anything you can get because there is no more public money available to you.

After Charge Nurse's obtuseness, what a relief to come to Budgie!
I agree. There used to be co-operatives, trusts, charities etc that the leaden foot of socialist "health care" killed off. There would be again, once the state had had its jackboot hacked off the neck of the populace.

The NHS is an evil construct. Now they're trying to get the government to agree - and, of course, they will, because they are all of the same stripe - that people newly dead can have their organs canibalised by law while their families are grieving in the waiting room, because there is a "need" for newly dead organs for transplants. The ultimate triumph. They don't just have your mind, and your family. They have your body.

MeanPeopleDefinitelyShouldn'tBreed said...

"Irish ancestors, no doubt, fanciful folk tales and a chip on your shoulder, the auld sod and sympathy for the IRA and other twee fantasies? On political issues that you don't understand and history that you've never read?

I think you doctors in Ireland should be funded by the IRA. God knows, they're rich enough.

Do me a favour, don't have the impertinence to respond to any of my posts here or anywhere else the the blogosphere.

I lived in the United States. I know these "green beer" Irish. Just a guess, but your family was tipping money into the jar."

First off, "Verity", paragraphs of personal insults achieve very little here. You are not exactly convincing me that ability to pay should be how healthcare is distributed. You have convinced me you're probably not a very tolerant or a very nice person,particularly with your comments about immigrants and refugees but that's about it. Were I to do the same fruitless, impossible guessing at your background and demographics I suppose I could say 30 something, British national, investment banker with a small penis,bad relationship with his father and a chip on his shoulder, but I'd be as wrong about you as you are about me. Or would I? You tell me.

I came to Ireland years ago with my parents and went to college there. My parents would really have been the ones to first decide for me, I guess, that the US was a shithole. (Nowadays the US is taking great pains to prove to everyone that this is indeed the case.) I don't fully comprehend the IRA jibes, I'm not from Boston. We originally came from Florida. I likewise don't comprehend what "my family tipping money into the jar" actually means. I'm not Irish. I don't go around with a look of mawkish delight saying loudly "Hey, I'm Irish too!". I appreciate that many, many of my compatriots that manage to realise that there may be other countries outside the US, and then go to the trouble of acquiring passports, baseball caps, those little money pouches that go around your waist and runners designed to look TERRIBLE with white mid-calf socks have paved the way for the rest of us to be insulted in this fashion, but still. As regards responding to your posts, I will respond to whatever I want. You will, I expect, either have to suck it up (OMG more American slang, will she ever stop??) or else insult me more. Frankly I don't mind which, it's actually quite entertaining.

Also, all of this animosity over a little recommendation on the number of alcohol units that is deemed safe? If you don't like it, then don't listen and do as you please, for heaven's sake. They're not going round to the pubs and taking the drinks out of your hands. They're just issuing some health warnings, like everywhere does. Even your beloved America has the Surgeon General warnings on various items, cigs, booze, crap food etc.

Nobody takes away your freedom from issuing advice and warnings. You choose whether or not to follow them. Yeah so they raise taxes on booze. That sucks. I drink a lot too. I know it sucks.
I can tell you on good authority that booze does cause a lot of health problems. The irony being that I ended up on this fucking site commmenting at 2am after 8 beers (I'm quite small, this is actually a fair bit for me). You, however, would be taking away people's right to access SOME form of healthcare with your fuck-off-and-die-impoverished-fucks approach.
You can choose to have private insurance (I assume from your political opinions that you are making good money, most people who aren't earning much are not as in favour of no assistance for the down on their luck types)They can't choose to have insurance. Hence why not have some kind of healthcare they can access for free? I'm happy to pay my taxes if it goes towards taking care of everybody, myself included maybe, at some point.

Verity, I've heard any number of sad stories in the course of my work. You would not believe how quickly your luck can change in this world, for no reason at all other than that "entropy is increasing" that I can see. Contrary to what I said earlier, I hope you don't ever have to experience this on a large scale. You would be glad then to be a member of a nation that has some system in place to bail you out when the going gets tough.

Incidentally, maybe a little extreme to call a little health advice and a tax raise on a luxury commodity "fascism"?? Just a thought. Real honest to God fascism is probably a little bit worse than that. Don't worry though, if you continue to be oppressed by the terrible "fascist" regime in the UK, I'm sure the Americans will come and liberate you soon. Maybe you should say you have oil.....

Vicola said...

Well balls to all of the scientists and the government. I intend to get completely twatted for most of the christmas period and into the New Year. A plague on all their houses, may the fleas of a thousand camels infest their armpit hair. Bums up folks!!

the A&E Charge Nurse said...

Verity - if a punter with learning difficulties ever requires a brain transplant, I would imagine [after the sinister NHS grave robbers have finished with you] that you might be a pretty good match ?

The final paragraph of your last post had me howling, first in derision, then came tears of unadulterated joy, thank you so much.

Exposure to your bizarre cognitive processes is far better than the low-grade hit that usually accompanies a few bottles of peroni, please keep up the good work.

StupidPeopleShouldn'tBreed said...

"The NHS is an evil construct. Now they're trying to get the government to agree - and, of course, they will, because they are all of the same stripe - that people newly dead can have their organs canibalised by law while their families are grieving in the waiting room, because there is a "need" for newly dead organs for transplants. The ultimate triumph. They don't just have your mind, and your family. They have your body."

I agree with A&E Charge nurse. That's the funniest thing I've read all year! Brilliant. Keep it coming, please!
For my views on organ donation and the ethical "dilemma", you can visit www.pleasewouldyoukindlycloseyourcakehole.blogspot.com. I actually wrote about this very subject months ago but never expected to find anyone who was literate enough to post comments on a blog to actually be that stupid. Incidentally, two "n's" in "cannibalised".

StupidPeopleShouldn'tBreed said...

"And what are your credentials for writing about the NHS if you're an American in Ireland? Posing suppositions about NI contributions suggests you know fuck all about it."

Dear Machiavelli's Understudy. I suppose I could enquire of you as to your credentials for commenting on the best way to supply healthcare when you clearly have no experience in the provision of it on any level. However, this being a COMMENT SECTION ON A BLOG SITE, I presumed you possessed the intellectual fortitude to realise that people can express their opinions freely here without actually having to produce credentials of any sort. Also, I was not commenting specifically on NI contributions, if you would care to reread my posts. I was commenting on socialised medicine in general.

verity said...

Mean People Definitely - I can't be bothered to answer your somewhat prolix, repetitive post, but in my experience, Americans can read English with the same ease that we do ourselves.

Yet here is what, inexplicably, you write:You are not exactly convincing me that ability to pay should be how healthcare is distributed.

I have said to the point of tedium that the British (I know nothing of Ireland) compulsory NI contributions should continue but should be directed as the salary-earner commands. If the salary-earner nominates a private health care insurance company, then that is where the payments should go.

I don't care anything about your family history or Florida or your parents and was so deeply bored I skipped it all. Being an American living in Ireland, you are not adept at picking out the characteristics which identify us and your cartoon of me was hysterical.

You also lecture: Incidentally, maybe a little extreme to call a little health advice and a tax raise on a luxury commodity "fascism"?? Just a thought. Real honest to God fascism is probably a little bit worse than that.

Incorrect. The British are living under real, honest-to-God fascism and been living so for over 10 years. Our freedoms have been snipped off our Constitution one by one. You are singularly ill-informed about anything outside the US and Ireland and appear to think that a common language is all that's needed to be gifted into deep insights of an entire nation.

Alert us when decide to analyise the French. That should be good!

StupidPeopleShouldn'tBreed said...

Well, if you didn't care about my details so much then why did you speculate on them ad nauseum in earlier posts??

I understand perfectly well about the fucking NI contributions. I am not concerned with salary earners. What about unpaid carers, for example? I once treated a girl of 19 with Parkinsonism. Her father was dead and her mother had given up work to look after her. How should either the girl or the mother access healthcare and pay for it under your regime? Yes, maybe the girl could have NI contributions through disability as you were suggesting, but her mother? If there is no State supplied care provided then the mother has no choice but to give up work to look after her daughter, thus ensuring she is economically inactive and not contributing to the pot, despite being ablebodied.
"Sadly, people who contributed nothing would be paid in kind." There are many reasons for non contribution, Verity. Not all of them are due to people being perfectly well educated, healthy, of sound mind but yet wilful layabouts.

I see that you have resorted to personal insults yet again. Nice tactic. How's that working out for you? You call me ill informed, yet you appear woefully ill informed yourself about anything other than the great United Kingdom.

By the way, "Incorrect. The British are living under real, honest-to-God fascism and been living so for over 10 years. Our freedoms have been snipped off our Constitution one by one."

Oh-kay. I've been places where people were actually being oppressed and living without freedom. And I've been to the UK a number of times too. Did a nice bit of shopping. Bad food though.

Have you completely lost your mind or have you just never left the Westernized part of the world before?? I am generalising here, some ethnic groups and poorer people do not enjoy these freedoms in the UK, but by your own admission you don't give a toss about them anyway. But by and large, UK citizens can be born in a Western hospital attended to by trained staff, attend schools paid for by the State if they wish, and private if they don't. They can, if they study hard enough and get good A-levels etc, have a choice of what they want to study in college and do with their lives afterwards, both male and female. If a female has unprotected sex, which she has the freedom to do, she can access emergency contraception even more easily than in Ireland, and think nothing of it. They can work at any number of jobs, and a lot of these jobs are protected by laws and unions so that workers are treated well and not exploited, (though I'm sure you are anti-trade union and anti worker protection so no doubt you will take offense at this too) The norm is that people are housed and drive cars, and there is State housing available for a limited number of people. There is healthcare accessible by everyone, and drug payment schemes for those who would have a hard time paying for medication. There are State pensions and private pensions and good life expectancy and a range of leisure activities. A lot of people can afford to go on a foreign holiday at least once a year. Women and men alike can dress how they want when not at work, belong to any religion that they wish (for the most part, I don't know if you guys have Church of Satan in the UK), read what they want, watch what they want and listen what they want.

Real oppression is not like your life in the UK. High tax on alcohol is not real oppression. Grow up.

verity said...

Stupid People Shouldn't Breed - Another stream of baseless assumptions about me based on your own narrow Weltanschuuang. I don't live in Britain. Du-uh. I don't live in the EU, although I did live in France for a while. Double du-uh. You write: High tax on alcohol is not real oppression. Grow up. Where I am, the tax on alcohol is actually very low. A bottle of whisky costs around half of what it costs in Britain. All your assumptions so far have been laughable.

Re health care in Britain, which is none of your business, by the way, I have said before that fine-tuning my outline would produce a plan for providing insurance coverage for people doing an unpaid job, like "carers". I presented the big picture of total, dramatic and easily workable reform of the NHS. I didn't cross every t and dot every i because a) I'm not competent to do so; and b) I'm not a detail person. And c) This is a blog, not a White Paper.

You write of the British They can, if they study hard enough and get good A-levels etc,. Everyone in Britain gets straight As on their A-levels, many of them with a Distinction, as well. This qualifies the dolts among them to work a till at Tesco, which they could have done without acquiring three years of student debt.

The offerings at British restaurants these days are actually quite good. Either you have never been to Britain or you are basing your "observations" on hearsay of 30 years ago, or your palate is uneducated.

And you are a very silly person, with all your chipppy little assumptions.

StupidPeopleShouldn'tBreed said...

Verity, you were, as I recall the one who STARTED the "chippy little assumptions". Umm, I must be an America hater, a green beer Irish, my family are putting "money in the pot" ????? Don't start shit you can't finish, love. If you are averse to chippy little assumptions, then for goodness' sake, don't be the first to MAKE them!

I believe I mentioned I have been to the UK several times. The last visit was 2006, to London. No one there knows the meaning of "medium rare" as it pertains to any meat. I don't know why. Perhaps it has to do with the CJD thing? Although cooking does not denature the prions that cause spongiform encephalopathy, so I wish they would just abandon the meat burning process.

I'm not really sure why it matters whether you, specifically, live in Britain or not. We are discussing goings on in Britain, in particular the tax hike and health advice issued there which you seem so bitterly opposed to. I will reiterate that these measures are not real oppression. I fail to see how where YOU live changes this observation.

I am as entitled as anyone to comment on, discuss, chat about or otherwise converse on, healthcare in Britain. If I am opposed to something, if I am in favour of something, I see no reason why I should not express this. "It's not your business" sounds extremely childish and not actually relevant to a grown-up discussion about the pros and cons of socialised medicine.

Again, I say: Grow up.

PS. I bet you ARE opposed to trade unions etc, though???

StupidPeopleShouldn'tBreed said...

And actually, Verity, I reread my posts and can't find anywhere where I speculated on your place of residence. Nor did my post from the 18/12 contain ANY "stream of assumptions" about you, baseless or otherwise. Are you reading the posts I'm putting up alright? You know, with your glasses on and your dictionary beside you and everything?