How scary is the UK government?


The BBC chairman, Richard Sharp, formerly a banker at Goldman Sachs, helped to arrange an £800,000 loan guarantee for Boris Johnson, weeks before the then prime minister recommended him for the BBC role. Oh - and Sharp had already personally donated £400,000 to the Tories.


Never mind the government, better check (if you live in Scotland) that the NHS hasn’t quietly slipped a DNR into your person medical file

I’m sure England and Wales would not do the same

Already the case in England.

Theoretically, they need to consult, but in the end it’s the doctor’s decision.


Is reminding me of this

“The Sun, then the tabloid newspaper with the widest circulation in Britain, encouraged its readers to back the Conservatives and published the election day headline “If Kinnock wins today will the last person to leave Britain please turn out the lights”, with Kinnock’s portrait in a lightbulb.”

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This BBC thing is also beginning to stink more and more…

You have to ask: was it really impossible for Boris Johnson to find somebody actually qualified for the job of BBC Chair - such as a reputed journalist or other media professional that actually understands the industry - rather than a personal friend, tangled up in his dubious personal finances, yet another City of London investment banker, whose own personal history is of shady deals intertwined with Tory party politics (with Sunak as well as Johnson, by the way)?
Really? Not a single candidate in the whole media landscape that we could all respect?

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It’s an endless stream of corruption…

Jeremy Hunt just said “economic indicators and statistics are bollocks”. Remind you of anything?

Are we still allowed to say “bollocks”? Given all the words currently being struck from the language due to sensitivities, mightn’t this be next?

I have long given up on anything a governent does or says.

Here’s one: Yesterday I noted that my MiL, who is in a small care home, had £600 credited to her bank account from DWP as ‘WFP’ - winter fuel payment. A bit odd I thought seeing she is in residential care. I called the Home and asked if they would like £600, and how stupid is it that the DWP give £600 to someone who is in care?

Apparantly the Govt is not joined up so there is no record that a pensioner might be in full residential care! Of the 24 residents in this Home, I was only the second person to offer this money towards heating of the Home…

This got me thinking, and using figures from Google, there are 430,000 persons in residential care. Let us assume only 400,000 are pensioners - this is £240M paid out to pensioners not in need of fuel assistance. Unless I have this wrong, it is astonishing that a Govt can waste such money unnecessarily…!

If they can waste this amount on a small subject, how much is wasted elsewhere?

Bollocks are very sensitive​:grimacing::wink:

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There are a couple of ways of looking at this.

One is that there are 12.5 million pensioners, who receive roughly £8k each in state pension per year for a total around £100 billion - even if £240 million is “wasted” that represents 0.24% of the budget.

The second thing is that not all of the payment is technically winter fuel - there is a “Pensioner cost of living” element in this (and next) year’s payment

Finally - is it “wasted”? People really need to get their heads around the fact that government spending is not like household spending. Many (probably the majority) of pensioners are not well off. The £600 will be spent one way or another and will therefore come back to the government through VAT and other taxes, it will act as a (small) boost to the economy in general. It is not, for the most part, “wasted”.

This is one of the points made in the report The NHS Funding Crisis & How To Solve It by Finance for the Future and Tax Research UK - they calculate indeed that half of the annual £30billion needed to restore the NHS would come straight back to the Treasury as taxes on the extra doctors and nurses and patients returned to work by faster treatment. That’s without the VAT etc on what those people spend, the other taxes paid by the businesses they spend it with, their staff, etc, etc…

And as Richard Murphy also points out - £30billion is small beer compared with the accounting sleight-of-hand this government uses to justify cutting public services.

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What interested me about this was its similarity with many other reports of Tories that have suddenly changed their minds. Why? Hasn’t it been obvious to at least a decade that the Tories would run the NHS - indeed the UK - into the ground?

What’s the explanation? These people are stupid? They’re as careless as Zahawi making a tax return? Or they’re just gullible - and believed a Daily Mail version of reality?