Friday, 14 August 2009
People seriously in need of medical help on both sides of the Atlantic have been proving just how serious they are about medical help by voicing their opinions on 'Twitter'. In the US, jocks who loathe free healthcare have been comparing the NHS to Bolivian death squads and the Lubyanka. They have posted tweets such as 'The NHS kills more people than it cures' and 'Being treated in a British hospital is like being tortured in the Gulag Archipelago' and 'Lenin was treated by the NHS and look where it got him.' Meanwhile, in London the Prime Minister Gordon Brown has come out guns blazing by saying, "The NHS, it is quite nice. Honestly." And in a shock tweet tonight the Health Secretary, Andy Burnham, showed the depth of his feeling for free healthcare by tweeting that he loved the NHS about as much as Everton Football Club (which in some parts of Northern England is about as close as you are ever going to get to a witty riposte). So will the battle for free healthcare really be won on the playing fields of Twitter? Will we seriously 'fight them on the internet' where once upon a time we would have fought them 'on the beaches'? And what hope have we when the men at the top and the men in grey suits and bureaucrats and the 'advisers' and the PRs and the scumbag hangers-on now tell us: In soundbites we trust? Maybe the last word (or last 'tweet') should be that of the wife of the British Prime Minister, herself a PR, who entered the fray this evening with this lofty meditation (quoted verbatim in actual fact): "We love the NHS more than words can say." With that level of profundity, who needs 'the beaches'?
Hot on the heels of confirmed bachelor Alan Duncan's outburst about 'living on rations', the Leader of the Opposition David Cameron has now been accused of discriminating against the privileged. His decision to cut front bench salaries has been declared 'plutophobic' by certain high profile figures on both sides of the house who are partial to a 'bit on the side' (outside earnings) and who like 'batting for the other team' (the private sector). But Mr Cameron who is yet to come out of the closet when it comes to declaring his own appetites thinks that he might be able to improve his standing with the public if he takes the knife to his honourable members. At a stroke he would appease a public that wants MPs to feel some of the pain of the recession whilst also appearing to show concern for more junior members who feel that Mr Cameron failed to shield them throughout the expenses scandal. But the Conservative leader has of course failed to factor in Mayor Boris Johnson, or Boris the Blond Bombshell, as he is known in Eton circles. Boris is already known to have claimed that his own income is 'chicken-feed' - which amongst plutosexuals is code for 'not getting enough.' Boris is well known for his voracious appetites and whilst not a Cabinet Member, he has on many occasions expressed his opposition to 'milking the rich'. Boris said today: "My background might indeed be somewhat privileged. Some people even call me a 'nob'. But one thing I do know is that we 'nobs' should stick together." But a chastened Mr Cameron replied: "I remember Boris from my Eton days and in those days we did indeed swing together. But if Boris thinks that I am going to jeopardise our chances at the next election so that he can feed his chicken then he has another thing coming."