21 Jan

‘I haven’t posted for a few days so I thought I’d cover a few of the issues in the headlines’


Atos ‘Healthcare’……

That shining example of the Government’s use of private sector companies to execute important contracts have released shocking statistics from the last years Work Capability Assessments.  They have declared thousands of sick and disabled people as ‘fit for work’, of which 10,000 have died, either whilst going through the assessment and appeal process, within 3 months of the declaration or having been place in the group deemed still sick but expected to be preparing to return to work.  This is a clear demonstration of the failure of Atos who were said to be ‘not fit for purpose’ by Lord Harrington, who undertook the review of the service.  Lord Harrington recently retired from the position with many of the 40 plus recommendations yet to be implemented.

Saddest of all, there have been many suicides caused by the pressure of the process and lack of money for those penalised left to live on.  They have also shamefully treated some clients appallingly, telling on lady who suffers with severe incontinence that she should return to work and ‘wear nappies’.

The ministers and civil servants responsible for this inhumane treatment of vulnerable people should seriously reconsider the consequences of their actions and end this disgraceful, £100m contract immediately and accept the opinion of the people best placed to advise on the ability of people to work; the GPs, Doctors and Consultants who treat them……

Barack Obama……

Due to be sworn in for his second term as the leader of the ‘free world’, the ironic twist is that he will be sworn in with his inauguration_Barack_Obamaleft hand on the bibles belonging to Abraham Lincoln and Dr. Martin Luther King Jnr.  Although the symbolic use of Dr. King’s bible is a statement of recognition of his ideology, the US Constitution specifies the separation of church and state, which makes the ceremony appear somewhat contradictory……

The Reality of Capitalism…….

MoneyIt transpired this week that the 100 richest people in the world made enough money over the past twelve months to rid the entire world of poverty and starvation.  The £150 billion in profits could feed the starving four times over.  When you consider that the world’s population is now 7 billion and almost half live in extreme poverty it gives you a perspective of the amounts of money made by the 100 richest and, do they really need that much money; will they even be able to spend it and one wonders just how much tax they paid on their fortunes.

In another example of the rich and famous benefiting from the exploitation of others, the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton has been seen sporting expensive designer handbags kindly given to her free of charge.  The handbags which cost £200 each are made by workers paid £0.78 pence per hour.  Perhaps the Duchess could donate the cost of the bags to charities who aim to improve the working conditions of those in struggling Asian economies…..?

And Finally……

The terrorist attack on the gas plant in Algeria and their government’s attempts to end it was initially treated by UK politicians with scepticism with the accusation that they could have dealt with it more effectively.  When the later intervention to end the stand off provided the details that 700 people were being held by 32 terrorists who were threatening to blow up the entire complex, the death toll of approximately 80 people was brought into perspective.  The PM appeared on TV to make a statement in which he took the pragmatic approach and said he was sure that the Algerian Special Forces acted responsibly, adding that the blame was laid firmly at the door of the terrorists who were, of course ‘thought to be linked to Al Qaeda’.

The arrogance of the UK to believe that only the old neo-colonial powers have the expertise to deal with terrorists is palpable.  Algeria is a sovereign nation and has dealt with such situations since 1962 when they won their independence from their French colonial masters……


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