Monthly Archives: December 2009

Merry Christmas x

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Missing Aesop’s: Trunkless

There was once an elephant without a trunk.

He was bathing in the setting sun when an animal passed by and stopped.

‘What are you looking at?’ challenged the elephant.

‘You’re weird,’ replied the animal. ‘What beast are you?’

‘I’m an elephant,’ replied the elephant.

The animal looked at him. ‘But you haven’t got a trunk.’

‘Oh,’ replied the elephant. ‘That must be why I rarely trumpet.’

‘So how can you say you’re an elephant if you have no trunk?’ persevered the animal.

‘I’m grey and wrinkly, with elephant parents,’ explained the elephant. ‘But more than that, I feel like an elephant.’

‘Well, sometimes I feel like a superhero but that doesn’t make me one,’ the animal persisted.

‘That’s true,’ confirmed the elephant. ‘What you are is rude, which makes you an arsehole instead.’

The animal raised his eyebrows and strolled away. ‘Funny that,’ he said.I feel like an animal with a talent for reasoning and an interest in the truth. And my parents are very polite.’

Moral: Individuals live outside definitions.

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NHS Underhaul

God Bless Barack Obama, a misguided but well-meaning man.

High-quality healthcare for all does indeed sound appealing, along with those special garden centres that give away money tree seeds.

Here in the UK we’ve been letting every Tom, Dick and Harry get ill for free for over 60 years and what has been the result?

They’re doing it all over the place, that’s what.

This Summer large swathes of the British population supposedly chose a ‘staycation’ over a trip abroad.

In fact, many of them were self-harming at home awaiting transferral to the cosy units of London hospitals; there are wings of St. Mary’s, Paddington that are nicer than most coastal holiday resorts. (And the shepherds pie gets delivered to your bed with a glass of squash.)

The problem is not that the NHS is underachieving, it’s that it’s too good.

And this is not the only strain on resources.

There are people clogging it up: patients who aren’t really ill and doctors who are crap.

Neither Simon Cowell’s salary nor an extra tuppence tax on Twiglets from the population at large could change this.

The way forward is a two-tier health system designed to service a two-tier customer base that acts as a deterrent to anyone considering getting ill; deeply segregated, thoroughly unattractive healthcare available to whoever dares use it; a British medical apartheid underpinned by fear.

The Proposal: Stage 1

This involves a simple filtration process at the demand end of the spectrum, as follows:

[Part 1: Medical professionals]

After 2 years of practice a G.P would be required to complete the following mini-survey (surgeons are exempt because there’s not enough of them to get picky about).

1. A patient comes to you looking depressed. Do you:

a.) Note symptoms, explore possible causes and consider counseling referral.

b.) Give them a packet of chocolate buttons (special edition white ones that look a bit pharmaceutical).

2. You are tired at the end of the week and are required to administer important medication to a critically ill patient. Do you:

a.) Summon a replacement doctor or ensure another medically qualified person is present to oversee your performance.

b.) Close your eyes and shoot ’em up humming ‘Everybody Hurts’ by REM.

3. A patient comes to you presenting a set of symptoms you are unfamiliar with. Do you:

a.) Do some research/ seek a second opinion.

b.) Nod knowingly and say, ‘There’s a lot of this going around’.

c.) Assume its meningitis and admit them to hospital immediately.*

(* You are American and doing the wrong survey)

4. You kill a patient by mistake. Do you:

a.) Care

b.) Not care

Mostly A’s: You’ll do.

Mostly B’s: You’re a crap doctor.

Equal A’s and B’s: Answer the decider question below.

5. You kill a patient on purpose. Is it because you are:

a.) Kind and compassionate.

b.) Crap and evil.

[Part 2: Potential patients]

On the day a U.K citizen turns 18 they would be required to complete the following mini-survey.

1.) Are you lonely/old/a parent of a young child?

a.) No

b.) Yes

2.) Do you think most illnesses you have are fatal?

a.) No

b.) Yes, how did you know that? You’ve seen something haven’t you? Is it on my brain? Will it grow really big? How long have I got?

3.) Do you like the sound of your own voice covering every angle of a complaint, even if there are 10 other people in the waiting room who also have lives, for crying out loud?

a.) No

b.) Yes

4.) Do you like the sound of the doctor’s voice covering every angle of a complaint, even if there are 10 other people in the waiting room who also have lives, for crying out loud?

a.) No

b.) Yes

Mostly A’s: You may have a pain in your arse.

Mostly B’s: You are a pain in the arse.

Equal A’s and B’s: Answer the decider question below.

5.) If you were in hospital how many noisy and demanding relatives would come to visit you?

a.) Not many, I’m a hermit.

b.) Hundreds, I am the last of 12 children in a tight-knit, opinionated family.

(Refuseniks of the proposal would receive a courtesy call once every 10 years because these are the people who would not ring the doctor even if they were dead.)

The Proposal: Stage 2

This involves a sabotaging process at the supply end of the healthcare spectrum, as follows.

1. The conversion of 50% of all hospitals into health clubs that sell only carrots and wheatgrass shots at the canteen.

2. All surviving NHS establishments to be ‘made-under’. ie. stripped of wall decorations, magazines, non-essential and most essential medical supplies.

[Note: the prison service have a better idea but the poorer Eastern Bloc countries nail it.]

3. Max Clifford to be retained to seed negative NHS press through all media, with the goal of achieving at least a 20 % increase in the ‘I was left in a corridor without water for 2 hours’ stories and a 20% decrease in ‘I couldn’t fault my care’ ones.

The Manifesto

A healthcare system rendered efficient by the prioritising of critical over bogus ill health. To be achieved by sidelining whingers and incompetents and incentivising the remainder to value prevention over cure by impoverishing the treatment environment.

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