Technorati href="http://www.technorProfile Thinking Nurse: General Election 2005 - The Most Stinking Election In Living Memory

Thinking Nurse

This blog will reflect my interests in learning disabilities, nursing, nursing theory, philosophy and politics and my general interests in the arts and literature. (Nursing is an art as well as a science!) Philosophy and nursing have been intrinsically linked since the days of Socrates, his mother was a midwife, and taught him everything he knew!

Friday, April 29, 2005

General Election 2005 - The Most Stinking Election In Living Memory

On May 5th 2005, British voters will go to the polls, or more accurately, some British voters will go to the polls. The majority who do make it to the ballot box will be pinching their noses tightly with expressions of disgust as they mark their papers. Why? Because this must be the most stinking election in living memory - and we are faced with a choice between some of the lowest, vilest examples of the ways that the lust for office can distort human values.

I have been trying to avoid watching the election coverage. I knew it would make me angry. I didnt realise how much it would make me seeth with anger at the depths to which British politics have sunk.

The first thing I would like to do, is to ban politicians altogether from NHS premises (unless obviously they are using their services!). The sight of Michael Howard walking round hospitals, no doubt spreading vile bugs as he shook hands with patients without washing in between was bad enough, but the knowledge that the politicians, both Labour and Tory who enter these hospitals know full well that their parties plan to continue the creeping privatisation of the NHS, with more dodgy PFI schemes and more Foundation hospitals, and to raise the age at which health workers can retire, all the time that they are grinning and saying 'the NHS is safe in our hands' is even worse.

You can be sure of one thing - when a politician says 'the NHS is safe in our hands' you can be sure that very soon, there will be big business hands in the NHS safe.

The Tory election campaign has attempted to benefit from deep racial fears, targetting asylum seekers, immigration and Roma/travellers. This is unprecedented in a British General election, in the past politicians have been decent enough in general to avoid playing 'the race card'. This time round neither of the parties has felt such inhibitions as they vy to prove that they are the 'toughest' on immigration, without considering the major benefits that immigration brings to this country, the reality of the dangers that asylum seekers are fleeing from and the dark forces that their racist rhetoric could unleash.

The publication of the Attorney General's guidance on the legality of the Iraq war has led to clear evidence of the way that Blair, just like Thatcher, treats his own cabinet with contempt, using them as a 'rubber stamp' for his decisions (or more accurately the decisions that GW Bush has made for him). Michael Howard pretends he would have acted differently - we dont remember him questioning Thatcher's dictatorial approach to cabinet government. He accuses Tony Blair of being a 'liar' with perfect justification, but is just as vulnerable to the charge himself.

I have friends who are going to vote liberal democrat, but in the councils where they hold office or share power, they have enthusiastically implemented the same cuts and attacks on their workforces as the Labour and Tory administrations.

Other friends say 'I know Tony Blair is a liar and is privatising the NHS and attacking our pensions, but Howard will be worse'. This seems to be the main theme of Labour's election campaign 'we are not the Tories', 'Vote for anyone else, and you will let the Tories in'.

The reality for the NHS (and other public services), is that whatever the result of the general election, there are dark days ahead: Privatisation via PFI and Foundation Hospitals, will be stepped up. Workers will face further casualisation and attacks on their conditions, such as retirement age and pensions.

The future of our public services depends not on which dishonest bunch of politicians comes to power, but on the determination of public service workers, and the British people to defend them from these politicians, and the big business interests they serve.


At 3:36 PM, Blogger Comrade_Smirnoff said...

Vote Labour because... well... otherwise the Tories will get back in!

Very convincing

At 1:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think I know what's up with energy.



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