The UK General Politics Thread Page 52

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  • Deleted user 18 October 2012 13:50:20
    Just like banks and top bosses?
  • LeoliansBro 18 Oct 2012 14:06:26 44,957 posts
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    Firstly it isn't a monopoly, that's like saying the fact that there's only one company providing you with gas etc means there's a monopoly. There are still plenty of suppliers.

    I'm saying centralised collective bargaining is a neatly efficient solution. For us, there's the prospect of more affordable energy costs, particularly for the very poor, there's the prospect of our negotiating being done by people who really know what's available and who have real, collective clout with the companies they are talking to. For the energy companies, there's the prospect of not having to advertise, send out leaflets etc as they will not have to appeal to individuals but only to the Government.

    The problem comes with lobbying and collusion between the companies and the Government, but that's another conversation.

    LB, you really are a massive geek.

  • chopsen 18 Oct 2012 14:15:25 16,290 posts
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    In theory, that's how the NHS works now, and how that is supposed to find efficiencies. In theory...
  • LeoliansBro 18 Oct 2012 14:22:07 44,957 posts
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    The NHS is chronically underfunded. Shifting energy costs to a centralised scheme wouldn't lead to it suddenly being unaffordable, which is what the NHS has been since the 70s. I'd happily take a chunk out of my net salary to ensure that it was properly funded, but I feel I'm in the minority there.

    I take your point though, on 'efficiency'.

    Edited by LeoliansBro at 14:22:27 18-10-2012

    LB, you really are a massive geek.

  • Psychotext 18 Oct 2012 14:39:34 55,032 posts
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    Funny thing is, as bad as the NHS is supposed to be, it's actually far more efficient than the private healthcare systems in a lot of countries.
  • chopsen 18 Oct 2012 15:00:04 16,290 posts
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    Going on a tangent here of my own making, but the problem with calling the NHS underfunded is that it's difficult to define adequate funding. Whereas providing electricity to every home is quite a clearly defined target, even defining "health" is difficult. It is a constantly shifting bar, and probably a limitless demand. You could throw money at it, but how that money is used and for what, and proving the benefit is a non-trivial task.
  • LeoliansBro 18 Oct 2012 15:16:44 44,957 posts
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    That, I agree on. [Edit: I'm pretty solid with saying however that while we can't say what the NHS needs in terms of funding, it isn't getting it.]

    But while we can't define 'adequate funding' or 'health', we can define what the NHS should be there for, and we can do it quite simply:

    1. To provide a first line of advice and face-to-face contact to diagnose and monitor illnesses, and either treat them directly or refer them where appropriate.

    2. To provide lasting care for patients with more serious illnesses and disabilities.

    3. To provide 24 hour emergency facilities to treat accidents and other emergencies in step with the emergency services. Emergency.

    Yeah. Hella woolly still, but it's a start. I could put a 4th in there, if I was feeling particularly libertarian:

    4. To deny all of the above to higher rate tax payers or anyone with net personal wealth of greater than 200k, unless they have medical insurance.

    Edited by LeoliansBro at 15:17:48 18-10-2012

    LB, you really are a massive geek.

  • chopsen 18 Oct 2012 15:27:51 16,290 posts
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    Yup, still woolly! And 1-3 does pretty much describe what it does atm, so the funding it tickety-boo by your criteria :). The devil is in the detail. Even what constitutes an emergency is often not entirely consensual between service provider and service user. If you look at something like heart attacks. Quite straight-forward, you'd think, but he way they get dealt with now is massively different to how the NHS was set up to deal with them about 10 years ago. Labour pissed up a lot of money against the wall on the NHS, but (whisper it) they got some things right.

    Waiting times, I predict, are going to go to cock over the next couple of years I expect, incidentally.

    The 4th is...interesting because the standard of private insurance in this country is a bit crap, because they know the NHS will pick up the pieces. Anything vaguely likely to be chronic or kill you will not be covered on most policies, and same with emergency care. Health care is a leading cause of personal bankruptcy in the USA, and I don't think that really is something we should welcome.

    There is talk about introducing personal budgets for health care (i.e. you have so much money from the state to "buy" healthcare with), but really I have no idea how that is going to work.
  • LeoliansBro 18 Oct 2012 16:05:52 44,957 posts
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    Nope, the funding is too low, I was just outlining what I thought the NHS should be there for. See above - if that's what we truly want, we should be paying more in tax.

    Chopsen wrote:
    Health care is a leading cause of personal bankruptcy in the USA, and I don't think that really is something we should welcome.
    But it's this bit that I wanted to come back on because it's something I hadn't considered. How much more would healthcare cost if a) there were no NHS to pick up any of it, counterbalanced by b) it would only apply to those on higher rates of income, who generally form a healthier part of society (and would have health insurance usually anyway)?

    LB, you really are a massive geek.

  • chopsen 18 Oct 2012 16:27:15 16,290 posts
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    Having *compulsory* privatised health vs socialised health could probably be no different. Controlling the costs is the issue. There's a clear political agenda to do that in socialised health (tax dollars at work, etc), but it's less well defined in privately funded systems I think.

    The problem with the USA isn't so much that it is largely private insurance funded, but there's no cap on the costs and spending. So they've spiralled out of control over the last 50-60 years or whatever. In the 50s and 60s it was cheap enough to insure a regular family that it could be offered as part of an employment package. This became less affordable as healthcare costs spiralled. This really damaged companies that originally offered lifetime medical insurance for employees, such as was seen in the car manufacturing business. Also, insurance companies had to maintain affordability to be competative, so they offer package which don't cover things comprehensively, which means people sometimes find that they aren't covered, thereby losing their assets to pay for their health.

    There is, I think, an entirely reasonable socialist viewpoint that says that health-care can be privately insured, but it still needs state control to make sure that costs are controlled for the greater good. This is not something that happens when the market it left to its own devices, as above. Ultimately there is only so much GDP floating around in a country that you can divert to health care, and if you do that by compulsory private or public funding, either *can* be made to work for the greater good.

    All the above imho, of course.

    Edited by Chopsen at 16:32:27 18-10-2012
  • Tom_Servo 19 Oct 2012 17:06:50 18,082 posts
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    Chancellor George Osborne forced to pay 160 upgrade on train to London Euston after travelling in First Class on a Standard ticket

    :D
  • spamdangled 19 Oct 2012 17:20:47 27,471 posts
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    It's being reported that he refused to move as well, and it was only after the intervention of the train manager that they agreed to pay the extra money. On a Virgin train, to boot.

    If that's true, then Labour are going to be all over it after the whole Mitchell thing.

    Edited by darkmorgado at 17:28:45 19-10-2012

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  • Deleted user 19 October 2012 17:26:48
    I think of you as a pleb.
  • Tom_Servo 19 Oct 2012 17:28:41 18,082 posts
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    I don't really care, TBH. Just sounds like something from The Thick of It.
  • spamdangled 19 Oct 2012 17:29:29 27,471 posts
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    I wonder if the magic words "do you know who I am?" were uttered.

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  • chopsen 19 Oct 2012 17:37:16 16,290 posts
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    At an estimated personal wealth of 4m, I doubt many fucks were given.
  • disusedgenius 19 Oct 2012 18:02:40 5,625 posts
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    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-20008342

    According to ITV News, Mr Osborne had no direct communication with Virgin Trains staff - and an officer from the Metropolitian Police, who was escorting the chancellor, told the train manager in advance that Mr Osborne did not have the correct ticket.

    Once on the train, the manager told the officer Mr Osborne would have to pay an upgrade fare, a request which Mr Osborne's aide initially refused, according to Virgin Trains.

    But after being asking for a second time, the aide agreed that the extra 160 would be paid.

    Sounds annoyingly underwhelming. :(
  • DaM 19 Oct 2012 18:29:38 13,535 posts
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    Mitchell's resigned!
  • X201 19 Oct 2012 18:35:52 15,746 posts
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    Yet again its the cover-up and the denials rather than the actual incident.

    Do any of them study political history before going into politics?
  • spamdangled 19 Oct 2012 18:46:48 27,471 posts
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    Took him long enough.

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  • Deleted user 19 October 2012 18:47:40
    For such a pathetic thing.
  • MrDigital 19 Oct 2012 19:15:54 1,870 posts
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    Most people are plebs in the derogatory sense, too bad for him he is a privileged Tory :D Imagine John Prescott said this, it would blow over in the blink of an eye :)

    Formerly TheStylishHobo and Geesh.

  • LetsGo 19 Oct 2012 19:22:28 5,450 posts
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    I don't even think it was because he was a privileged Tory, it was because he thought he was better than the rest of us.

    But I guess that goes hand in hand...
  • MrDigital 19 Oct 2012 19:23:46 1,870 posts
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    It really was to do with that. You're right that the main sentiment was one of superiority, but that was massively amplified by the privileged Tory card.

    Formerly TheStylishHobo and Geesh.

  • askew 19 Oct 2012 19:27:18 12,725 posts
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    Osbourne will just claim that 160 back in expenses.

    What's the fucking point.
  • LetsGo 19 Oct 2012 19:27:56 5,450 posts
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    I'm sure if John Prescott said; "know your f'ing place" to a policeman, he would be in exactly the same boat IMO.
  • spamdangled 19 Oct 2012 19:38:01 27,471 posts
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    LetsGo wrote:
    I'm sure if John Prescott said; "know your f'ing place" to a policeman, he would be in exactly the same boat IMO.
    Oh I don't know, he pretty much laughed it off when he punched a member of the public in the face.

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  • LetsGo 19 Oct 2012 19:40:24 5,450 posts
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    darkmorgado wrote:
    LetsGo wrote:
    I'm sure if John Prescott said; "know your f'ing place" to a policeman, he would be in exactly the same boat IMO.
    Oh I don't know, he pretty much laughed it off when he punched a member of the public in the face.
    He got away with it because someone chucked an egg over him...
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