Friday, 4 September 2009

3rd September - a day in history

September 3rd 1939 was a momentous day in the history of Great Britain. It was a day on which the Nation announced that it would no longer accept the actions of a tyrant. A dictator who suborned his own people and led them astray with false promises and actions that had festered in his diseased mind over a long period of time.
September 3rd 2009 was such a day. A Junior minister in the Department of Defence resigned and gave his reasons for this step. Eric Joyce, a former major, included these points in his letter of resignation:
I do not think the public will accept for much longer that our losses can be justified by simply referring to the risk of greater terrorism on our streets. Nor do I think we can continue with the present level of uncertainty about the future of our deployment in Afghanistan.
I do not think the British people will support the physical risk to our servicemen and women unless they can be given confidence that Afghanistan’s government has been properly elected and has a clear intent to deal with the corruption there which has continued unabated in recent years.
This declaration should lead on to the removal from a position of power another latter-day tyrant. A dictatorial bully who led us astray with false Budgets promising health, education and wealth. His unelected access to power followed a long period where he had been brooding at what he would do the day he got the foreman's job. We know the attitude of those who get the foreman's job at last.
Now he is to make a speech to the Nation - those who care to listen anyway - reaffirming his dedication to the supposed cause in Afghanistan. Well, of course he has to act as if he were delivering the Mark Anthony eulogy. He cannot now confess that he supported the other power-crazed imbecile who got us into this mess and also did not make any effort to withdraw when Blair went off to pastures new and far far richer ground. He surely cannot be so badly informed as to think that the only base for AQ is Afghanistan and the Taliban R & R leave camp that is Pakistan. All they need is an Islamic country that will ignore their presence or make them welcome in the name of the grand Umma.
Once domiciled in their New Jerusalem they can attack whomsoever they please. They have the funds to travel. The wide range of countries used by the 9/11 plotters illustrated that their sort of terrorism can be located world-wide. Our own 7/7 experience showed that they can even deploy on our streets. So - that should destroy the claim that fighting them in a place far away will stop them killing us in our homes That other tyrant tried that anyway and it did not work for him. This country is capable of looking after itself. I suppose he has the alternative of claiming we are there for some other reason. I cannot see they have any greater claim to the truth than his Sharia el Magi vs Tottenham Court Road claim.
Joyce did the gentlemanly thing and let 'arry Aintsworth know in advance that he was going. 'arry's boys primed him as to what he should say when the day came. He described Joyce as a junior member of his department and claimed that the picture he painted was not recognised by the majority of his department. I do not doubt that is true but he made his ripost with that arrogance and bluster worthy of Fred Kite. He never gave a moment's thought to the possibility that he and his supporters were wrong. He should replace his office junior with a little boy of the same substance as the lad who pointed out the truth regarding the Emperor's clothing.
Fred Kite? Just a snippet to relieve the sombre note

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Just wandering about in the dark corners of the Internet when I came across something called the Liverpool Care Plan. I will provide a link but, in the interests of safety and good mental health, I would like to show you something that will ensure you are in a happy frame of mind at the outset.

Right. That was jolly wasn't it? Now, I feel I can take you to the core of my blog - The Liverpool Care Plan. I can reveal now that everyone reading this - and indeed, all those not reading this that this Care Plan is something that will surely have a massive impact upon - quite literally - your lives.
Liverpool? Easy enough. City on the coast up in the North West. Scousers and scallies. Lovable rogues. Hard times and hard people as befits the North West. European City of Culture and all that. Good Philharmonic band.
Care? I am going to cheat a bit and just cut and paste a few lines here.
The Oxford English dictionary says:
• noun 1 the provision of what is necessary for the welfare and protection of someone or something. 2 Brit. protective custody or guardianship provided for children by a local authority. 3 serious attention or consideration applied to avoid damage, risk, or error: handle with care. 4 a feeling of or occasion for anxiety.
• verb 1 feel concern or interest. 2 feel affection or liking. 3 (care for/to do) like to have or be willing to do. 4 (care for) look after and provide for the needs of.
— PHRASES care of at the address of. take care 1 be cautious. 2 make sure (to do). take care of 1 keep safe and provided for. 2 deal with.
Nice cosy word isn't it? Remember the 'nice' association.
That just leaves us with Plan. This out of my head - the pedantic can Google it. I reckon strategy, scheme, idea, proposal, plot or design will cover that.
So - the whole phrase again. The Liverpool Care Plan. Nice (that word again) cosy thing signifying looking after works. Now, time to get specific The Liverpool Care Plan in all it's glory. Quite a bit to take in but what it boils down to is how the doctors care for and plan your treatment in your final hours. Doctors. Final Hours. Scary eh? You would be very scared if you read an analysis of what it is about. Go on - I dare you. This kicks in when you are 65. Believe me - one thinks that is a age that is far far away but the bugger just creeps up on you. Impotence, thinning hair, dodgy memory, people who speak quietly - all things that distract us whilst the body clock ticks on.
Don't take my word for what may well appear at your bedside clothed in a white coat and expression of concern. See what the learned Journals say
  • The Liverpool care pathway (LCP) is the UK’s main clinical pathway of continuous deep sedation and is promoted for roll out across the NHS. Rietjens et al’s study highlights some serious weaknesses in its design.
  • The eligibility criteria do not ensure that only people who are about to die are allowed on to the pathway. They allow people who are thought to be dying, are bed bound, and are unable to take tablets on to the pathway. In chronic diseases such as dementia, dying can take years, but such patients may be eligible. Reitjens et al’s paper shows that GPs often put patients on to such a pathway without palliative care advice. A pathway for general use should minimise opportunities for early or inappropriate use.
  • Murray et al are concerned that sedation is being used as an inexpensive alternative to assessment and specialist treatment. The LCP recommends sedatives and opiates . . .
  • Adrian J Treloar, consultant and senior lecturer in old age psychiatry

so, he should know

Even the Daily Telegraph has got into the act. Note the nice little panel to the left which amplifies the information. File it alongside last week's report from the Patients Association that very large numbers of aged patients were being pushed over the edge with cruel treatment - and they were not even prisoners of the War on Terror.

That should be enough to keep a few awake. Not 65 - but I bet you know someone who is? Someone you love?

I'm off to my solicitor to arrange my own departure rules. I'll call it the Everton Alternative Arrangements I think.

Wednesday, 2 September 2009


The whole world and his wife seems to have spoken out about the release of the Libyan. (I would name him but I suspect it would cause my spiel chucker to go into meltdown). I have some thoughts on the topic and offer them for anyone who is seeking the views of the cantankerous right wing.
Firstly, the American point of view. Whilst I accept their right to comment in critical terms, I cannot give them any influence arising from those thoughts. It seems to be based upon the fact that we have gone back on our word. This word was given to them way way back and we now know far more than we did at the time we gave the undertaking that the guilty party would end his life in a British prison. There is now much more doubt about whether the man is in fact guilty. I consider this to be a major factor in the 'breaking our word' situation. Another factor in the demands from America is that the speed with which things moved caused many to speak out before they knew the true basis for the decision. It would be easy to criticise the American sense of fair play and justice derived from legal facts. Right back to the lynch-mob up to the widespread bombing of Libyan targets following an explosion in a Berlin nightclub there was a tendency of bomb now, investigate later. If I have any recognition of the American case, I take it from the actions of Jim Swire; father of one of the deceased and a leader in a parents of deceased group. He can understand why the release took place.
So much for the American POV. I would like to se this condemnation taken further. Given that we cannot keep our word and blithely toss aside solemn undertakings - their view and not mine - it must surely be unwise to trust as as allies in  the prosecution of any significant joint enterprise. I'm sure you can all see where I am going here. We would seem to be the last country on earth to be in any coalition and can bring our troops home with no heart ache or problem. Trade - trade with the Americans has always been on the basis that they hold all the cards. They are masters at tariffs. Their much vaunted Lend Lease programme when we faced extinction was drawn on very firm marketing processes and we were saddled with debt for a very long time. No regard as to how Hitler's and Tokyo plans would have prospered if our island-wide aircraft carrier sank. The days of the Marshall Plan are long behind us. Tourism reductions. Big deal; we faced the same downturn when the Lockerbie incident was new and as terrified Americans were too scared to fly. Anyway, only a very small proportion of Americans hold passports and even less have used them.
So - that is the American angle so far as I see it. The furore spinning around the watering holes of our politicians both at Westminster and in Edinburgh's House of Sticks is potentially much more damaging. It seems now that Brown has done the washing of the hands equally as well as Pontius Pilate . 
My attitude is that he has now removed himself from any responsibility, he has no grounds for any further comment. To hide behind Lord Mandy of Randy and have the protection of that man's waspish tongue is cowardly in the extreme. The boy Dave and the Lib Dem chap are merely making their winging calls for an inquiry for party political grounds and not from any desire for clarification. The Scottish Minister has explained his motives to exhaustion of all listeners; what more would an inquiry serve?
We have heard that there was an objection to having the Libyan die in a British jail and this was for humanitarian reasons. I can see another motive. There would be rioting on the streets of Libya and these could have a detrimental effect upon trade when British companies reviewed the security of their assets and personnel. I was responsible for arranging the recovery of wives and children from Tripoli of a major US oil company following the burning of the US Embassy in Tripoli. Many were almost catatonic. The cancelled appeal connects here. What if journalistic enterprise in running their own non-official appeal concluded that the Libyan was innocent. Imagine the ire and harm that would cause when linked into the death of a sick and innocent man in a far away country?
There remains the  question that Scotland's action was related to trade; so far denied. Why deny it? It seems strange that America threatens trade sanctions as part of indicating disapproval but then cries foul when we do something to preserve trade.
This whole thing has gone on long enough. Let us find something else.

Posted via email from John's posterous