The Labour party have decided to make the NHS the rallying point for their general election campaign, (again).
Ed Milliband and Andy Burnham spent much of yesterday trying to grab headlines in a "the Tories will just let you roll over and die," kind of frenzy.
Unfortunately for them, no one is buying their made up nonsense. There is a reason for that and it's call the Mid Staffs Hospital scandal. Thats the place where 1200 citizens needlessly died, more than died in the area during the Black Death as has been famously pointed out. Moreover, 14 other trusts were named in the Keogh report on the issue. Thanks Labour, no need to be contrite or anything, just blame it on everyone else.
There is a growing realisation across the country that the daunting scale of the NHS and our rapidly changing demographic demands a thourgh review and repositioning of the service otherwise it's just going to become clogged up and fall over itself. Back in 1978 Mr Mackay, my geography teacher, pointed out that at the then rate of growth we'd all either be working for the NHS or patients in it by 2020. If Mr Mackay back in Inverness could figure that out thirty six years ago it shouldn't be difficult for Labour to when the problems are obvious to anyone associated with the NHS. And actually, Andy Burnham knows that full well having begun to privatise some services when he was Health Secretary.
I'd like to see the backgound research Labour have done into the NHS before announcing that they'll hire for example "10,000 nurses." It won't exist except on the back of a fag packet or beer mat because these people only think in sound bites and what will hold the attention of the Twitterati for more than six minutes. If they handed in GCSE homework of this standard they'd be off to see the Head for as performance review.
All the parties are incapable of long term strategic thinking and it is racking up problems for us in the future across a raft of foreign and domestic policy issues.
Worse, in order to control the narrative of the day they just make it up. They use isolated examples to prove a case in which tens of billions of pounds and thousands of lives might be at stake. It's unforgivable really. I don't believe these men wilfully lie but I do believe they suffer from galloping incompetence driven by an overriding desire to be everyone's friend out as far as the news editors next deadline.
I doesn't matter which party you personally support, I just find the whole "making stuff up on the hoof," terribly demoralising and an insult to the electorate but then you know what they say, "you can't fix stupid."