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Whenever the LDs have issued data like this they’ve won – politicalbetting.com

SystemSystem Posts: 8,489
edited December 2021 in General
Whenever the LDs have issued data like this they’ve won – politicalbetting.com

Lib Dem internal polling in North Shropshire (Postal Voters Only):CON: 47.7%LDM: 37.8%LAB: 10.5%GRN: 1.9%OTH: 2.1%This is a CON lead of 9.9% in postal votes only.Context: A like for like poll was done for the Chesham & Amersham by-election and showed a CON lead of 23.8%.

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Comments

  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 69,349
    Confidential. Arf.
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 69,349
    Looks like it'll be a well deserved beating for the Tories.
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 69,349
    edited December 2021
    & the hat trick, 3rd.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 41,069
    Pulpstar said:

    & the hat trick, 3rd.

    Performing like an England women's footballer there.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 38,321
    edited December 2021
    Second, like the Tories with any luck

    Or third!
  • Looks promising for lib dems and to be honest would be a well timed wake up call to the conservatives
  • I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 26,108
    Were it to happen, would the PM shrug it off or take some action?

    If so, what?
  • EabhalEabhal Posts: 709
    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"
  • dixiedeandixiedean Posts: 17,281

    I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    All this is true.
    And yet we've been hearing about the Centre Party winning 100+ seats ever since the heyday of the SDP.
    If they win it will be a by election shock which will put the wind up this band of bluffers.
    No more.
  • EabhalEabhal Posts: 709
    edited December 2021
    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    "Cancel your big Christmas party and have a couple of small ones instead"

    "Avoid 'making merry', don't hug your relatives"

    Holy shit these people have gone completely power mad.

    This is Sarah Pitt btw.
  • Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    This attitude has to be resisted not least because it is impossible
  • If the Lib Dems do pull it off this will surely give them a lot of momentum going forward.
  • BurgessianBurgessian Posts: 1,167

    Were it to happen, would the PM shrug it off or take some action?

    If so, what?

    For the record I'd be surprised if Tories hold North Shropshire.

    Boris will shrug it off, like he did Chesham & Amersham and, before that, Brecon & Radnor which the Tories easily regained in the subsequent General Election.

    Xmas will likely kill off any political momentum from the result.
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 3,163

    If the Lib Dems do pull it off this will surely give them a lot of momentum going forward.

    As long as they don't end up gaining a lot of Momentum :wink:

    (although that would be good for Labour, I guess)
  • eekeek Posts: 17,710
    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    To which the next question should be how do you do that? And drill the person down to he turns silent at which point the interviewer should say "so that would be impossible"...
  • I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Keep daydreaming.

    The Lib Dems should be favourites to win a by-election in midterms. Governments don't win by-elections in general.

    If the Lib Dems do win, it doesn't mean anything other than they campaign hard in a by-election and voters would rather kick the government in midterm than reward them. In the words of Angela Lansbury its a tale as old as time.
  • AnabobazinaAnabobazina Posts: 12,499

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    This attitude has to be resisted not least because it is impossible
    Indeed. I wrote the other day that the imposition of ‘minor’ NPIs would have two very negative consequences: 1) it would spook and scare the general public and 2) it would encourage the zerocovidians and the lockdown hawks yet again.

    Sadly, I was right on both counts.
  • EabhalEabhal Posts: 709

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    This attitude has to be resisted not least because it is impossible
    Also ineffective as it's really pissed me off, unlikely to take any precautions at all now.

    I feel really bad for those with anxiety etc who, having heard that, must be near going into full isolation.
  • EabhalEabhal Posts: 709
    eek said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    To which the next question should be how do you do that? And drill the person down to he turns silent at which point the interviewer should say "so that would be impossible"...
    Presenters response was to comment that it showed how misguided many callers were.
  • tlg86tlg86 Posts: 21,301
    Just over 800 non-COVID excess deaths in the latest weekly deaths stats...

    https://tinyurl.com/2p8c64c2

    Week ending, 5-year average, COVID deaths, non-COVID deaths, excess non-COVID deaths
    24-Sep-21: 9,264 | 888 | 9,796 | 532
    01-Oct-21: 9,377 | 783 | 9,727 | 350
    08-Oct-21: 9,555 | 666 | 10,141 | 586
    15-Oct-21: 9,811 | 713 | 10,464 | 653
    22-Oct-21: 9,865 | 792 | 10,516 | 651
    29-Oct-21: 9,759 | 859 | 10,128 | 369
    05-Nov-21: 9,891 | 995 | 10,555 | 664
    12-Nov-21: 10,331 | 1,020 | 11,030 | 699
    19-Nov-21: 10,350 | 952 | 11,151 | 801
  • DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Sorry to hear of your troubles. Things do indeed some to be dire across the NHS.

    What happened to them buying in the private sector stuff to try and reduce waiting lists?
  • Eabhal said:

    eek said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    To which the next question should be how do you do that? And drill the person down to he turns silent at which point the interviewer should say "so that would be impossible"...
    Presenters response was to comment that it showed how misguided many callers were.
    The Groupthink is strong that "something must be done, this is something, so this must be done".

    To even suggest that death is a part of the circle of life and not to be prevented at all costs is now viewed as a monstrous suggestion by some people.
  • Eabhal said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    "Cancel your big Christmas party and have a couple of small ones instead"

    "Avoid 'making merry', don't hug your relatives"

    Holy shit these people have gone completely power mad.

    This is Sarah Pitt btw.
    There was a piece in one of the sundays about how Whitty is very worried that if they do have to lock us all down and so on again this xmas, the public will just raise two fingers and ignore them.

  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 38,321

    I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Keep daydreaming.

    The Lib Dems should be favourites to win a by-election in midterms. Governments don't win by-elections in general.

    If the Lib Dems do win, it doesn't mean anything other than they campaign hard in a by-election and voters would rather kick the government in midterm than reward them. In the words of Angela Lansbury its a tale as old as time.
    Most obviously, a LibDem win (which still looks a long shot to me) would give them an extra MP, which in a very small parliamentary group is a not insignificant benefit in itself. It also helps re-establish the narrative that they are the principal challengers to the Tories in the rural south - something that was taken for granted prior to the coalition.

    I doubt it would bring about a lasting change in national politics - although every so often a dramatic by-election has done so, leading to the downfall of leaders (we can only hope) and suchlike - but it would come at a bad time for the PM whose capability and judgement is being questioned by many in his own party, with consideration of his suitability normally leading to a "but" followed by "he's a winner". A series of bad by-elections followed by bad local elections in 2022 would all undermine the persisting belief that he is still capable of electoral magic.
  • Eabhal said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    "Cancel your big Christmas party and have a couple of small ones instead"

    "Avoid 'making merry', don't hug your relatives"

    Holy shit these people have gone completely power mad.

    This is Sarah Pitt btw.
    There was a piece in one of the sundays about how Whitty is very worried that if they do have to lock us all down and so on again this xmas, the public will just raise two fingers and ignore them.

    So he should be. 👍

    If they do, I'll be very proud of the public.
  • I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Keep daydreaming.

    The Lib Dems should be favourites to win a by-election in midterms. Governments don't win by-elections in general.

    If the Lib Dems do win, it doesn't mean anything other than they campaign hard in a by-election and voters would rather kick the government in midterm than reward them. In the words of Angela Lansbury its a tale as old as time.
    I have no expectation of a LD 100 seat haul in 2024. There is always swingback. The point though is that the Tories will be fighting a two-front war. Trying to keep enough red-wallers happy to fight off Labour, and trying to keep enough red-corduroys happy to fight off the LDs.

    Two front wars tend to be problematic for the very best generals. And unless it changes the Tories are led by Peppa Pig.
  • It's possible that the Lib Dems could win but I don't think it would actually signify that much in the medium/long term. I think this is more comparable to the Ribble Valley (1991), recent Brecon and Radnorshire and to a lesser extent the Witney by election which were all largely to do with local issues and LD pavement politics unlike Chesham and Amersham which was related to a trend towards the lib dems in the Southeast of England.

    Even under Menzies Campbell, the Lib Dems almost won Bromley and Chislehurst in 2006.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 41,069

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Sorry to hear of your troubles. Things do indeed some to be dire across the NHS.

    What happened to them buying in the private sector stuff to try and reduce waiting lists?
    Don't know but we already have a 2 tier dental service and we are heading the same way with medicine. It's troubling.
  • DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Not good, hope that you get your scan quickly and it is ok.

    The point your GP is making is one made fairly broadly by people inside the NHS and is - frankly - largely pooh poohed by supporters of the government. Thanks to front line underfunding and Covid the NHS is on its knees.
  • tlg86 said:

    Just over 800 non-COVID excess deaths in the latest weekly deaths stats...

    https://tinyurl.com/2p8c64c2

    Week ending, 5-year average, COVID deaths, non-COVID deaths, excess non-COVID deaths
    24-Sep-21: 9,264 | 888 | 9,796 | 532
    01-Oct-21: 9,377 | 783 | 9,727 | 350
    08-Oct-21: 9,555 | 666 | 10,141 | 586
    15-Oct-21: 9,811 | 713 | 10,464 | 653
    22-Oct-21: 9,865 | 792 | 10,516 | 651
    29-Oct-21: 9,759 | 859 | 10,128 | 369
    05-Nov-21: 9,891 | 995 | 10,555 | 664
    12-Nov-21: 10,331 | 1,020 | 11,030 | 699
    19-Nov-21: 10,350 | 952 | 11,151 | 801

    Though with the research cited on the previous thread it's possible you could attribute (some/many) of these deaths as being due to Covid, but delayed.
  • dixiedeandixiedean Posts: 17,281
    Eabhal said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    This attitude has to be resisted not least because it is impossible
    Also ineffective as it's really pissed me off, unlikely to take any precautions at all now.

    I feel really bad for those with anxiety etc who, having heard that, must be near going into full isolation.
    People with anxiety have better coping strategies than people without anxiety. Going into isolation is run of the mill stuff.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 5,572
    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    Which virologist btw?
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 38,321

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Not good, hope that you get your scan quickly and it is ok.

    The point your GP is making is one made fairly broadly by people inside the NHS and is - frankly - largely pooh poohed by supporters of the government. Thanks to front line underfunding and Covid the NHS is on its knees.
    Indeed. I had a root canal filling gone wrong in August and, for an urgent referral from the dentist, my appointment at the hospital only came up last week, with another this week. My GP said an ordinary referral to ENT could have been anything up to a year to first consultation. Having suffered toothache and bad sleep for nearly four months it looks like the upshot is going to be having the filling again, something I could have done months ago.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 22,380

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Sorry to hear of your troubles. Things do indeed some to be dire across the NHS.

    What happened to them buying in the private sector stuff to try and reduce waiting lists?
    The NHS has used rationing by queue since the beginning. The queues are getting longer....
  • dixiedeandixiedean Posts: 17,281
    IanB2 said:

    I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Keep daydreaming.

    The Lib Dems should be favourites to win a by-election in midterms. Governments don't win by-elections in general.

    If the Lib Dems do win, it doesn't mean anything other than they campaign hard in a by-election and voters would rather kick the government in midterm than reward them. In the words of Angela Lansbury its a tale as old as time.
    Most obviously, a LibDem win (which still looks a long shot to me) would give them an extra MP, which in a very small parliamentary group is a not insignificant benefit in itself. It also helps re-establish the narrative that they are the principal challengers to the Tories in the rural south - something that was taken for granted prior to the coalition.

    I doubt it would bring about a lasting change in national politics - although every so often a dramatic by-election has done so, leading to the downfall of leaders (we can only hope) and suchlike - but it would come at a bad time for the PM whose capability and judgement is being questioned by many in his own party, with consideration of his suitability normally leading to a "but" followed by "he's a winner". A series of bad by-elections followed by bad local elections in 2022 would all undermine the persisting belief that he is still capable of electoral magic.
    Point of order.
    NS is far from the rural South.
    Which is a little more than me being pedantic. It is not LD heartlands.
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 3,163
    edited December 2021

    I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Keep daydreaming.

    The Lib Dems should be favourites to win a by-election in midterms. Governments don't win by-elections in general.

    If the Lib Dems do win, it doesn't mean anything other than they campaign hard in a by-election and voters would rather kick the government in midterm than reward them. In the words of Angela Lansbury its a tale as old as time.
    You should not however discount the possibility that "there may be something there that wasn't there before"* :wink:

    *beyond the extra LD MP
  • I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Many of us thought the Lib Dems would do reasonably well in 2015, because they'd put in at least one good by-election performance. They didn't.

    By-elections are different. The Lib Dems are extraordinarily good at concentrating resources to contest by-elections. They cannot do the same across dozens of seats in a general election.

    However, a defeat for the Tories in North Shropshire would still be huge. It would indicate that Brexit was losing its dominance of British politics, and that the Tories position is more vulnerable than previously thought.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 41,069

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Not good, hope that you get your scan quickly and it is ok.

    The point your GP is making is one made fairly broadly by people inside the NHS and is - frankly - largely pooh poohed by supporters of the government. Thanks to front line underfunding and Covid the NHS is on its knees.
    There is apparently roughly a 2% chance of something seriously nasty but as all PBers know 50/1 chances never come off!
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 38,321
    dixiedean said:

    IanB2 said:

    I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Keep daydreaming.

    The Lib Dems should be favourites to win a by-election in midterms. Governments don't win by-elections in general.

    If the Lib Dems do win, it doesn't mean anything other than they campaign hard in a by-election and voters would rather kick the government in midterm than reward them. In the words of Angela Lansbury its a tale as old as time.
    Most obviously, a LibDem win (which still looks a long shot to me) would give them an extra MP, which in a very small parliamentary group is a not insignificant benefit in itself. It also helps re-establish the narrative that they are the principal challengers to the Tories in the rural south - something that was taken for granted prior to the coalition.

    I doubt it would bring about a lasting change in national politics - although every so often a dramatic by-election has done so, leading to the downfall of leaders (we can only hope) and suchlike - but it would come at a bad time for the PM whose capability and judgement is being questioned by many in his own party, with consideration of his suitability normally leading to a "but" followed by "he's a winner". A series of bad by-elections followed by bad local elections in 2022 would all undermine the persisting belief that he is still capable of electoral magic.
    Point of order.
    NS is far from the rural South.
    Which is a little more than me being pedantic. It is not LD heartlands.
    Hence why I still feel it's a longshot.

    In electoral terms the rural south is everything that isn't in the north or urban!
  • Eabhal said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    "Cancel your big Christmas party and have a couple of small ones instead"

    "Avoid 'making merry', don't hug your relatives"

    Holy shit these people have gone completely power mad.

    This is Sarah Pitt btw.
    There was a piece in one of the sundays about how Whitty is very worried that if they do have to lock us all down and so on again this xmas, the public will just raise two fingers and ignore them.

    So he should be. 👍

    If they do, I'll be very proud of the public.
    Personally, I'm optimistic that is an unnecessary panic and the variant will not be a problem. But if it is, I can still see a large number of people just ploughing on and doing the full xmas.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 5,572
    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Hope things work out for you. On the NHS - something needs to change.
    I pay to go to the vet for my animals. Its expensive, but thats the cost. Visiting the GP is 'free', except its not really free, we just don't see the price. I have come to believe that we need private GP's that can prescribe NHS medication (pay your 40 quid, or whatever the GP visit is, pick up a prescription, take it Boots/Lloyds/Well etc). Plus I also think patients need to be made more aware of what medical care costs - GP visits should still be free, but you get a note saying how much it has 'cost'. That and prescription medicine - the true cost should be shown somewhere.

    We need a politically neutral debate on the NHS, but sadly its been a political football for too long.
  • Selebian said:

    I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Keep daydreaming.

    The Lib Dems should be favourites to win a by-election in midterms. Governments don't win by-elections in general.

    If the Lib Dems do win, it doesn't mean anything other than they campaign hard in a by-election and voters would rather kick the government in midterm than reward them. In the words of Angela Lansbury its a tale as old as time.
    You should not however discount the possibility that "there may be something there that wasn't there before"* :wink:

    *beyond the extra LD MP
    Anything is possible, but it would take more than by-elections to be evidence of that.
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 3,163
    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    All the best. Good that you're getting the scan - normally nothing, but best to be sure.
  • MattWMattW Posts: 11,911
    dixiedean said:

    IanB2 said:

    I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Keep daydreaming.

    The Lib Dems should be favourites to win a by-election in midterms. Governments don't win by-elections in general.

    If the Lib Dems do win, it doesn't mean anything other than they campaign hard in a by-election and voters would rather kick the government in midterm than reward them. In the words of Angela Lansbury its a tale as old as time.
    Most obviously, a LibDem win (which still looks a long shot to me) would give them an extra MP, which in a very small parliamentary group is a not insignificant benefit in itself. It also helps re-establish the narrative that they are the principal challengers to the Tories in the rural south - something that was taken for granted prior to the coalition.

    I doubt it would bring about a lasting change in national politics - although every so often a dramatic by-election has done so, leading to the downfall of leaders (we can only hope) and suchlike - but it would come at a bad time for the PM whose capability and judgement is being questioned by many in his own party, with consideration of his suitability normally leading to a "but" followed by "he's a winner". A series of bad by-elections followed by bad local elections in 2022 would all undermine the persisting belief that he is still capable of electoral magic.
    Point of order.
    NS is far from the rural South.
    Which is a little more than me being pedantic. It is not LD heartlands.
    Hmmm.

    1 - Are the Tories freewheeling on this one?
    2 - There have been LD wins up that way before in byelections in unexpected places.
    3 - But 3 - I would treat all LD publications, especially polls, as propaganda.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 5,572

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Not good, hope that you get your scan quickly and it is ok.

    The point your GP is making is one made fairly broadly by people inside the NHS and is - frankly - largely pooh poohed by supporters of the government. Thanks to front line underfunding and Covid the NHS is on its knees.
    It is. I question what the solution is though - it can't just be more money? Maybe it is, and maybe thats the case that needs to be made.
  • BurgessianBurgessian Posts: 1,167
    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    NHS, of course, is devolved to the Scottish Govt in your part of the world. Perhaps if they spent less on ramping up salaries, providing "free" baby-boxes, free bikes, free tuition fees, and various other perks for the middle-classes, there'd be a bit more for front-line health provision.

    But, as we know, Nicola is politically bullet-proof, and nothing much will change however bad services get.

    Rant over!
  • eekeek Posts: 17,710

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Hope things work out for you. On the NHS - something needs to change.
    I pay to go to the vet for my animals. Its expensive, but thats the cost. Visiting the GP is 'free', except its not really free, we just don't see the price. I have come to believe that we need private GP's that can prescribe NHS medication (pay your 40 quid, or whatever the GP visit is, pick up a prescription, take it Boots/Lloyds/Well etc). Plus I also think patients need to be made more aware of what medical care costs - GP visits should still be free, but you get a note saying how much it has 'cost'. That and prescription medicine - the true cost should be shown somewhere.

    We need a politically neutral debate on the NHS, but sadly its been a political football for too long.
    There are a set of people who would see a £100 cost of a GP appointment and book more simply to spend the money.

    I do believe we should charge for GP appointments to ensure people actually turn up..
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 3,163

    Selebian said:

    I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Keep daydreaming.

    The Lib Dems should be favourites to win a by-election in midterms. Governments don't win by-elections in general.

    If the Lib Dems do win, it doesn't mean anything other than they campaign hard in a by-election and voters would rather kick the government in midterm than reward them. In the words of Angela Lansbury its a tale as old as time.
    You should not however discount the possibility that "there may be something there that wasn't there before"* :wink:

    *beyond the extra LD MP
    Anything is possible, but it would take more than by-elections to be evidence of that.
    Yes, of course. But how often does one get to quote beauty and the beast? Perhaps the voters look upon Davey and think "he’s no Prince Charming but there’s something in him that I simply didn’t see"?

    Probably not, of course...
  • moonshinemoonshine Posts: 3,482
    The last week has crystallised my thinking a bit on uk politics. I don’t really care who is leading the Tory party at the next election, I will vote for them (first time since 2015) no matter what, because it’s clear Starmer’s Labour has lined itself up as the Lockdown Party. Meanwhile the government hasn’t done everything right (far from it) but I do believe there is reluctance in the Tory party to impose restrictions.

    This won’t be the last Greek letter we all hear about and there are plenty of other alphabets to use thereafter. And of course, plenty of pale horses sleeping in the zoonotic virus stable. Those that think covid won’t be key issue at the next election are most likely letting their optimism get in the way.
  • Eabhal said:

    eek said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    To which the next question should be how do you do that? And drill the person down to he turns silent at which point the interviewer should say "so that would be impossible"...
    Presenters response was to comment that it showed how misguided many callers were.
    The Groupthink is strong that "something must be done, this is something, so this must be done".

    To even suggest that death is a part of the circle of life and not to be prevented at all costs is now viewed as a monstrous suggestion by some people.
    You don't think a thousand extra deaths a week, many of them avoidable, is enough?
  • I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Many of us thought the Lib Dems would do reasonably well in 2015, because they'd put in at least one good by-election performance. They didn't.

    By-elections are different. The Lib Dems are extraordinarily good at concentrating resources to contest by-elections. They cannot do the same across dozens of seats in a general election.

    However, a defeat for the Tories in North Shropshire would still be huge. It would indicate that Brexit was losing its dominance of British politics, and that the Tories position is more vulnerable than previously thought.
    Or it may just be rejection of Paterson's and Boris's unacceptable behaviour by decent voters
  • FarooqFarooq Posts: 3,689

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Hope things work out for you. On the NHS - something needs to change.
    I pay to go to the vet for my animals. Its expensive, but thats the cost. Visiting the GP is 'free', except its not really free, we just don't see the price. I have come to believe that we need private GP's that can prescribe NHS medication (pay your 40 quid, or whatever the GP visit is, pick up a prescription, take it Boots/Lloyds/Well etc). Plus I also think patients need to be made more aware of what medical care costs - GP visits should still be free, but you get a note saying how much it has 'cost'. That and prescription medicine - the true cost should be shown somewhere.

    We need a politically neutral debate on the NHS, but sadly its been a political football for too long.
    How can you have a politically neutral debate on the NHS? Resource allocation and service funding is core politics.
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 3,163

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Hope things work out for you. On the NHS - something needs to change.
    I pay to go to the vet for my animals. Its expensive, but thats the cost. Visiting the GP is 'free', except its not really free, we just don't see the price. I have come to believe that we need private GP's that can prescribe NHS medication (pay your 40 quid, or whatever the GP visit is, pick up a prescription, take it Boots/Lloyds/Well etc). Plus I also think patients need to be made more aware of what medical care costs - GP visits should still be free, but you get a note saying how much it has 'cost'. That and prescription medicine - the true cost should be shown somewhere.

    We need a politically neutral debate on the NHS, but sadly its been a political football for too long.
    There has been some success, I believe (have seen some studies, but a while ago) in reducing non-attendance at outpatient appointments by making the patients aware of how much the appointment costs and so how much is wasted if they do not go.
  • DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Not good, hope that you get your scan quickly and it is ok.

    The point your GP is making is one made fairly broadly by people inside the NHS and is - frankly - largely pooh poohed by supporters of the government. Thanks to front line underfunding and Covid the NHS is on its knees.
    It is. I question what the solution is though - it can't just be more money? Maybe it is, and maybe thats the case that needs to be made.
    Its more money *to the front line*. Tories always popup and parrot how much cash is going into the NHS, but spent on what? The Lansley reforms make healthcare ludicrously expensive. Instead of GPs being GPs we're back to them being business managers purchasing services from competing internal bodies.

    Sweep away all that bullshit and free up the cash spent on procurement and accountants and lawyers and contract managers. You'd think the Tories would have done this already - "Bring Back Matron" sounds like just their kind of policy.

    Then you remember why they don't - too many donor mouths to feed. I did enjoy the Twitter feed this morning exposing that charlatan Hancock, whining to the Commons about "Labour Lies" saying claims his former pub landlord won a PPE contract was an egregious fabrication. Except the Good Law project has gone through the documents, found the document that had been redacted and there it is - a contract to the pub landlord as sub-contractor.

    Why do we have multi-year waits for basic healthcare? Because Tory snouts in the trough.
  • AnabobazinaAnabobazina Posts: 12,499
    dixiedean said:

    Eabhal said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    This attitude has to be resisted not least because it is impossible
    Also ineffective as it's really pissed me off, unlikely to take any precautions at all now.

    I feel really bad for those with anxiety etc who, having heard that, must be near going into full isolation.
    People with anxiety have better coping strategies than people without anxiety. Going into isolation is run of the mill stuff.
    That’s one of the most egregious sweeping generalisations I have read for a long time.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 26,660

    I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Yep rooting for those lib dems. And let's have reciprocation for lab in our targets.

    Progressives of england unite! You have nothing to lose but your horrid tory governments.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 41,069

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    NHS, of course, is devolved to the Scottish Govt in your part of the world. Perhaps if they spent less on ramping up salaries, providing "free" baby-boxes, free bikes, free tuition fees, and various other perks for the middle-classes, there'd be a bit more for front-line health provision.

    But, as we know, Nicola is politically bullet-proof, and nothing much will change however bad services get.

    Rant over!
    Her Teflon shielding is starting to wear a little thin. Interesting article in the Courier today be Jim Spence: "Is independence a busted flush?" The response to their virtual conference has been pretty negative well beyond the usual suspects (like me). Subscription only unfortunately.
  • Eabhal said:

    eek said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    To which the next question should be how do you do that? And drill the person down to he turns silent at which point the interviewer should say "so that would be impossible"...
    Presenters response was to comment that it showed how misguided many callers were.
    The Groupthink is strong that "something must be done, this is something, so this must be done".

    To even suggest that death is a part of the circle of life and not to be prevented at all costs is now viewed as a monstrous suggestion by some people.
    You don't think a thousand extra deaths a week, many of them avoidable, is enough?
    I don't think its too many.

    Most deaths are either the unvaccinated who can own their own choices, or people who are very vulnerable and could die from the common cold or flu or anything else.

    NPIs made sense pre-PIs, not anymore. If a thousand 'extra' deaths is the 'new normal' then that's the new normal and that's what we have to live with, though I'm sceptical that excess deaths actually are a thousand a week.
  • FarooqFarooq Posts: 3,689
    Eabhal said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    "Cancel your big Christmas party and have a couple of small ones instead"

    "Avoid 'making merry', don't hug your relatives"

    Holy shit these people have gone completely power mad.

    This is Sarah Pitt btw.
    Power mad? As in, exercising the power of speech to advise people?
    If Sarah Pitt is forcing you to do something against your will, I'm pretty concerned. But is she?
  • algarkirkalgarkirk Posts: 4,612
    edited December 2021
    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    'Underfunding' is the suggestion about NHS, as here, and more or less everything else the tax payer pays for.

    But curiously we are at a moment of record highs in: tax levels, tax take, tax proportions of GDP, public spending, borrowing and debt.

    Every issue, taken one at a time, required increased tax and spend - try listening for a few days to Today on R4 and count up the times it is the answer.

    So something is missing in this discussion. And it feels insufficiently wide in its scope. It isn't possible or practicable that more tax take/borrowing is the universal panacea.

  • TheuniondivvieTheuniondivvie Posts: 31,040
    edited December 2021

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    NHS, of course, is devolved to the Scottish Govt in your part of the world. Perhaps if they spent less on ramping up salaries, providing "free" baby-boxes, free bikes, free tuition fees, and various other perks for the middle-classes, there'd be a bit more for front-line health provision.

    But, as we know, Nicola is politically bullet-proof, and nothing much will change however bad services get.

    Rant over!
    If only there was a democratic system whereby moderately intelligent and talented people could make their case persuasively and get people to vote for it.
  • NigelbNigelb Posts: 35,331
    Farooq said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Hope things work out for you. On the NHS - something needs to change.
    I pay to go to the vet for my animals. Its expensive, but thats the cost. Visiting the GP is 'free', except its not really free, we just don't see the price. I have come to believe that we need private GP's that can prescribe NHS medication (pay your 40 quid, or whatever the GP visit is, pick up a prescription, take it Boots/Lloyds/Well etc). Plus I also think patients need to be made more aware of what medical care costs - GP visits should still be free, but you get a note saying how much it has 'cost'. That and prescription medicine - the true cost should be shown somewhere.

    We need a politically neutral debate on the NHS, but sadly its been a political football for too long.
    How can you have a politically neutral debate on the NHS? Resource allocation and service funding is core politics.
    You cannot.
    But you might just have a more honest and informed one (I confess to being an incorrigible optimist)...

    Interesting article here on how political debate might be made less divisive:
    https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2021/11/30/why-american-politics-is-so-stuck-and-what-new-research-shows-about-how-to-fix-it-523517

    And it doesn't even require both sides to agree, just for one or other to see the benefit to themselves of this approach.
  • FarooqFarooq Posts: 3,689

    Eabhal said:

    eek said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    To which the next question should be how do you do that? And drill the person down to he turns silent at which point the interviewer should say "so that would be impossible"...
    Presenters response was to comment that it showed how misguided many callers were.
    The Groupthink is strong that "something must be done, this is something, so this must be done".

    To even suggest that death is a part of the circle of life and not to be prevented at all costs is now viewed as a monstrous suggestion by some people.
    You don't think a thousand extra deaths a week, many of them avoidable, is enough?
    I don't think its too many.

    Most deaths are either the unvaccinated who can own their own choices, or people who are very vulnerable and could die from the common cold or flu or anything else.

    NPIs made sense pre-PIs, not anymore. If a thousand 'extra' deaths is the 'new normal' then that's the new normal and that's what we have to live with, though I'm sceptical that excess deaths actually are a thousand a week.
    You seemed concerned about people drowning in the channel in far smaller numbers.
  • TimSTimS Posts: 993
    On topic, a good showing by the LDs won't be transformational but I agree with other posters that:

    - It keeps the party relevant nationally
    - It helps create a narrative about the LDs being the natural alternative in the rural South. Forget the fact that NS is really the West Midlands, nobody knows where it is and if they've heard of Shropshire they're probably thinking a Shropshire lad or nice restaurants in Ludlow
    - It shows the Tories can be beaten in a majority Brexit constituency

    On omicron - unless I see something suggesting major increased virulence or massive immune escape - and the stats from SA so far don't seem to suggest this - I have zero intention of cancelling any Christmas socialising. We just all need to get boosted and trust in the vaccines.
  • NigelbNigelb Posts: 35,331

    OT and FPT, on the terrifying amendments Patel is thrusting into the already worrying Policing Bill :


    Cicero said:




    Yes indeed a much warmer morning than recently. OT, Monbiot is bracingly and completely correct this morning that the extra amendments bolted on to the policing bill, and completely missed by the media, as well as parts of the original bill itself, are a threat to all of us and our basic democratic rights.

    Most concerning of all, among many concerns, is the open door to making any noisy, rather than violent, protest - and even helping to publicise such a protest online, by retweeting it, for instance - an arrestable offence.

    Very concerning stuff, and as so often in the last two decades, the British media, claiming to be fearless, is asleep at the wheel .

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/dec/01/imprisoned-51-weeks-protesting-britain-police-state

    The UK media is alternately useless or dangerous. The quality of analysis can be seen by who have been the best paid OpEd writers: such Augustan figures as Gove and Johnson, and various other "luminaries" as Heffer or Hitchens. Meanwhile both print and broadcast media are sloppy with facts and critical details. The feral frenzy on the doings of the latest ingenue is matched by the indifference, ignorance or contempt demonstrated to most serious subjects.
    I really hope there's going to be some pushback from Tory MP's as well as the Liberal Democrats and Starmer on this. There's a small group of Tory MP's who actually mean what they say about libertarianism, and despite his loopy views on Brexit, I class David Davis as one of those.

    A few aspects of the bill and its amendments are some of the most dangerous threats to our freedoms in almost a century, particularly the undefined criminalisation of 'disruptive' protest. A retweet of a noisy protest could even be arrestable under the "facilitating disruptive protest" section.

    Extremely dangerous.
    Judging by the response of some natural Tory voters on here, there might just be some pushback. It is a very badly formulated, and as you say, potentially dangerous piece of legislation.
  • dixiedeandixiedean Posts: 17,281
    edited December 2021

    dixiedean said:

    Eabhal said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    This attitude has to be resisted not least because it is impossible
    Also ineffective as it's really pissed me off, unlikely to take any precautions at all now.

    I feel really bad for those with anxiety etc who, having heard that, must be near going into full isolation.
    People with anxiety have better coping strategies than people without anxiety. Going into isolation is run of the mill stuff.
    That’s one of the most egregious sweeping generalisations I have read for a long time.
    Which happens to be true.
    The group whose mental health suffers most severely from restrictions are previously non mental health suffering extroverts.
    Although research is at a preliminary stage it all points that way and is suspected to be a major cause of the fall in suicides.
  • Mr. L, hope it turns out ok.
  • algarkirkalgarkirk Posts: 4,612

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Hope things work out for you. On the NHS - something needs to change.
    I pay to go to the vet for my animals. Its expensive, but thats the cost. Visiting the GP is 'free', except its not really free, we just don't see the price. I have come to believe that we need private GP's that can prescribe NHS medication (pay your 40 quid, or whatever the GP visit is, pick up a prescription, take it Boots/Lloyds/Well etc). Plus I also think patients need to be made more aware of what medical care costs - GP visits should still be free, but you get a note saying how much it has 'cost'. That and prescription medicine - the true cost should be shown somewhere.

    We need a politically neutral debate on the NHS, but sadly its been a political football for too long.
    Try getting one of the army of shroud wavers, policy wonks, vested interests and spokespeople to say with some precision how much in actual pounds of taxpayers money, or as a % of GDP, should be spent annually on the NHS to be enough for the foreseeable future.

    They won't, and it vitiates the entire discussion.

  • EabhalEabhal Posts: 709
    edited December 2021
    s
    Farooq said:

    Eabhal said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    "Cancel your big Christmas party and have a couple of small ones instead"

    "Avoid 'making merry', don't hug your relatives"

    Holy shit these people have gone completely power mad.

    This is Sarah Pitt btw.
    Power mad? As in, exercising the power of speech to advise people?
    If Sarah Pitt is forcing you to do something against your will, I'm pretty concerned. But is she?
    Not literally, I take your point.

    But it's the confidence to say something like that and expect listeners not to have an immediate and violent reaction to it that concerns me.

    They have come to expect adherence to a zero-covid strategy.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 41,069
    algarkirk said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    'Underfunding' is the suggestion about NHS, as here, and more or less everything else the tax payer pays for.

    But curiously we are at a moment of record highs in: tax levels, tax take, tax proportions of GDP, public spending, borrowing and debt.

    Every issue, taken one at a time, required increased tax and spend - try listening for a few days to Today on R4 and count up the times it is the answer.

    So something is missing in this discussion. And it feels insufficiently wide in its scope. It isn't possible or practicable that more tax take/borrowing is the universal panacea.

    I also think that there are 2 tiers of the NHS as well. Front line crisis services generally run flat out with phenomenal efforts by those involved. But there are also large sections where productivity seems astonishingly low and where money seeps away. Poor management allows this to be tolerated for far too long. We simply cannot afford this anymore.
  • Mr. L, that's what happens when you have a sacred cow that's beyond criticism and any proposed changes provokes shrieks of outrage. Anything other than throwing more money at the NHS makes the political class and media wet themselves.
  • FarooqFarooq Posts: 3,689
    Nigelb said:

    Farooq said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Hope things work out for you. On the NHS - something needs to change.
    I pay to go to the vet for my animals. Its expensive, but thats the cost. Visiting the GP is 'free', except its not really free, we just don't see the price. I have come to believe that we need private GP's that can prescribe NHS medication (pay your 40 quid, or whatever the GP visit is, pick up a prescription, take it Boots/Lloyds/Well etc). Plus I also think patients need to be made more aware of what medical care costs - GP visits should still be free, but you get a note saying how much it has 'cost'. That and prescription medicine - the true cost should be shown somewhere.

    We need a politically neutral debate on the NHS, but sadly its been a political football for too long.
    How can you have a politically neutral debate on the NHS? Resource allocation and service funding is core politics.
    You cannot.
    But you might just have a more honest and informed one (I confess to being an incorrigible optimist)...

    Interesting article here on how political debate might be made less divisive:
    https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2021/11/30/why-american-politics-is-so-stuck-and-what-new-research-shows-about-how-to-fix-it-523517

    And it doesn't even require both sides to agree, just for one or other to see the benefit to themselves of this approach.
    Really interesting read, thanks.
  • NigelbNigelb Posts: 35,331
    DavidL said:

    algarkirk said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    'Underfunding' is the suggestion about NHS, as here, and more or less everything else the tax payer pays for.

    But curiously we are at a moment of record highs in: tax levels, tax take, tax proportions of GDP, public spending, borrowing and debt.

    Every issue, taken one at a time, required increased tax and spend - try listening for a few days to Today on R4 and count up the times it is the answer.

    So something is missing in this discussion. And it feels insufficiently wide in its scope. It isn't possible or practicable that more tax take/borrowing is the universal panacea.

    I also think that there are 2 tiers of the NHS as well. Front line crisis services generally run flat out with phenomenal efforts by those involved. But there are also large sections where productivity seems astonishingly low and where money seeps away. Poor management allows this to be tolerated for far too long. We simply cannot afford this anymore.
    As Hunt pointed out, the substantial increase in funding will have poor results if it is not accompanied by a significant increase in newly trained doctors and nurses.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 41,069

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Hope things work out for you. On the NHS - something needs to change.
    I pay to go to the vet for my animals. Its expensive, but thats the cost. Visiting the GP is 'free', except its not really free, we just don't see the price. I have come to believe that we need private GP's that can prescribe NHS medication (pay your 40 quid, or whatever the GP visit is, pick up a prescription, take it Boots/Lloyds/Well etc). Plus I also think patients need to be made more aware of what medical care costs - GP visits should still be free, but you get a note saying how much it has 'cost'. That and prescription medicine - the true cost should be shown somewhere.

    We need a politically neutral debate on the NHS, but sadly its been a political football for too long.
    How do you have a politically neutral debate about the expenditure of 8-9% of GDP? Our government is increasingly becoming a health and social care service with some subsidiary departments attached. Some of these, such defence, seem marked for closure in the near future to set aside more resources.
  • DavidL said:

    algarkirk said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    'Underfunding' is the suggestion about NHS, as here, and more or less everything else the tax payer pays for.

    But curiously we are at a moment of record highs in: tax levels, tax take, tax proportions of GDP, public spending, borrowing and debt.

    Every issue, taken one at a time, required increased tax and spend - try listening for a few days to Today on R4 and count up the times it is the answer.

    So something is missing in this discussion. And it feels insufficiently wide in its scope. It isn't possible or practicable that more tax take/borrowing is the universal panacea.

    I also think that there are 2 tiers of the NHS as well. Front line crisis services generally run flat out with phenomenal efforts by those involved. But there are also large sections where productivity seems astonishingly low and where money seeps away. Poor management allows this to be tolerated for far too long. We simply cannot afford this anymore.
    The entire structure is an absurd waste of money. Abolish the marketisation and save a fortune which can be reinvested back into front line health.

    In the meantime why can't the government pay private providers to clear the backlog? If Labour can hire the private sector why can't the Tories...?
  • TheuniondivvieTheuniondivvie Posts: 31,040
    edited December 2021
    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    NHS, of course, is devolved to the Scottish Govt in your part of the world. Perhaps if they spent less on ramping up salaries, providing "free" baby-boxes, free bikes, free tuition fees, and various other perks for the middle-classes, there'd be a bit more for front-line health provision.

    But, as we know, Nicola is politically bullet-proof, and nothing much will change however bad services get.

    Rant over!
    Her Teflon shielding is starting to wear a little thin. Interesting article in the Courier today be Jim Spence: "Is independence a busted flush?" The response to their virtual conference has been pretty negative well beyond the usual suspects (like me). Subscription only unfortunately.
    Spence is of the Albanian persuasion isn’t he? I suspect he would prefer Indy to be a busted flush rather than the woke hell of cops dancing at Pride and non binary pronouns that inhabits his fevered imaginings.
  • Northern_AlNorthern_Al Posts: 3,511
    eek said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Hope things work out for you. On the NHS - something needs to change.
    I pay to go to the vet for my animals. Its expensive, but thats the cost. Visiting the GP is 'free', except its not really free, we just don't see the price. I have come to believe that we need private GP's that can prescribe NHS medication (pay your 40 quid, or whatever the GP visit is, pick up a prescription, take it Boots/Lloyds/Well etc). Plus I also think patients need to be made more aware of what medical care costs - GP visits should still be free, but you get a note saying how much it has 'cost'. That and prescription medicine - the true cost should be shown somewhere.

    We need a politically neutral debate on the NHS, but sadly its been a political football for too long.
    There are a set of people who would see a £100 cost of a GP appointment and book more simply to spend the money.

    I do believe we should charge for GP appointments to ensure people actually turn up..
    That would destroy the principle of the NHS. A more tolerable policy would be to charge people who fail to turn up to any NHS appointment, not just GPs, without a very good reason.
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 69,349
    edited December 2021
    DavidL said:

    algarkirk said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    'Underfunding' is the suggestion about NHS, as here, and more or less everything else the tax payer pays for.

    But curiously we are at a moment of record highs in: tax levels, tax take, tax proportions of GDP, public spending, borrowing and debt.

    Every issue, taken one at a time, required increased tax and spend - try listening for a few days to Today on R4 and count up the times it is the answer.

    So something is missing in this discussion. And it feels insufficiently wide in its scope. It isn't possible or practicable that more tax take/borrowing is the universal panacea.

    I also think that there are 2 tiers of the NHS as well. Front line crisis services generally run flat out with phenomenal efforts by those involved. But there are also large sections where productivity seems astonishingly low and where money seeps away. Poor management allows this to be tolerated for far too long. We simply cannot afford this anymore.
    The front line is top notch, can't fault them - particularly the hospital staff, but too many Deputy Director of Organisational Development dining out on £1,500 steak...
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 22,380
    Farooq said:

    Nigelb said:

    Farooq said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Hope things work out for you. On the NHS - something needs to change.
    I pay to go to the vet for my animals. Its expensive, but thats the cost. Visiting the GP is 'free', except its not really free, we just don't see the price. I have come to believe that we need private GP's that can prescribe NHS medication (pay your 40 quid, or whatever the GP visit is, pick up a prescription, take it Boots/Lloyds/Well etc). Plus I also think patients need to be made more aware of what medical care costs - GP visits should still be free, but you get a note saying how much it has 'cost'. That and prescription medicine - the true cost should be shown somewhere.

    We need a politically neutral debate on the NHS, but sadly its been a political football for too long.
    How can you have a politically neutral debate on the NHS? Resource allocation and service funding is core politics.
    You cannot.
    But you might just have a more honest and informed one (I confess to being an incorrigible optimist)...

    Interesting article here on how political debate might be made less divisive:
    https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2021/11/30/why-american-politics-is-so-stuck-and-what-new-research-shows-about-how-to-fix-it-523517

    And it doesn't even require both sides to agree, just for one or other to see the benefit to themselves of this approach.
    Really interesting read, thanks.
    But that would require politicians to admit that they are really arguing about whether we should spend 35% or 40%* of GDP on public spending.

    Rather than a Moral Crusade Against The Heretic Unbelievers opposite.

    *Randomly selected numbers.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 41,069

    DavidL said:

    algarkirk said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    'Underfunding' is the suggestion about NHS, as here, and more or less everything else the tax payer pays for.

    But curiously we are at a moment of record highs in: tax levels, tax take, tax proportions of GDP, public spending, borrowing and debt.

    Every issue, taken one at a time, required increased tax and spend - try listening for a few days to Today on R4 and count up the times it is the answer.

    So something is missing in this discussion. And it feels insufficiently wide in its scope. It isn't possible or practicable that more tax take/borrowing is the universal panacea.

    I also think that there are 2 tiers of the NHS as well. Front line crisis services generally run flat out with phenomenal efforts by those involved. But there are also large sections where productivity seems astonishingly low and where money seeps away. Poor management allows this to be tolerated for far too long. We simply cannot afford this anymore.
    The entire structure is an absurd waste of money. Abolish the marketisation and save a fortune which can be reinvested back into front line health.

    In the meantime why can't the government pay private providers to clear the backlog? If Labour can hire the private sector why can't the Tories...?
    There is no simple way of managing 1.3m employees and over £150bn of expenditure. Trying to claim that there are simple or simplistic solutions like that dodges the much more difficult choices we face.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 22,380
    Nigelb said:

    DavidL said:

    algarkirk said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    'Underfunding' is the suggestion about NHS, as here, and more or less everything else the tax payer pays for.

    But curiously we are at a moment of record highs in: tax levels, tax take, tax proportions of GDP, public spending, borrowing and debt.

    Every issue, taken one at a time, required increased tax and spend - try listening for a few days to Today on R4 and count up the times it is the answer.

    So something is missing in this discussion. And it feels insufficiently wide in its scope. It isn't possible or practicable that more tax take/borrowing is the universal panacea.

    I also think that there are 2 tiers of the NHS as well. Front line crisis services generally run flat out with phenomenal efforts by those involved. But there are also large sections where productivity seems astonishingly low and where money seeps away. Poor management allows this to be tolerated for far too long. We simply cannot afford this anymore.
    As Hunt pointed out, the substantial increase in funding will have poor results if it is not accompanied by a significant increase in newly trained doctors and nurses.
    Yes - as anyone who has dealt with large organisations of any kind* will tell you, their capacity to absorb money and doing nothing more for it is extraordinary.

    Ring fenced spending, tied to specific goals is required.

    *Public, private, in between - they all behave like this.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 41,069

    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    NHS, of course, is devolved to the Scottish Govt in your part of the world. Perhaps if they spent less on ramping up salaries, providing "free" baby-boxes, free bikes, free tuition fees, and various other perks for the middle-classes, there'd be a bit more for front-line health provision.

    But, as we know, Nicola is politically bullet-proof, and nothing much will change however bad services get.

    Rant over!
    Her Teflon shielding is starting to wear a little thin. Interesting article in the Courier today be Jim Spence: "Is independence a busted flush?" The response to their virtual conference has been pretty negative well beyond the usual suspects (like me). Subscription only unfortunately.
    Spence is of the Albanian persuasion isn’t he? I suspect he would prefer Indy to be a busted flush rather than the woke hell of cops dancing at Pride and non binary pronouns that inhabits his fevered imaginings.
    Albanian?
  • CarnyxCarnyx Posts: 17,875

    I spotted this on my twitter feed this morning. I follow quite a lot of LD campaigners and activists and they have been feeling increasingly confident of at least a good showing.

    Remember that for the LDs there is no downside. If they run the Tories close they come from a distant 3rd, show people that the true challenger to the Tories are the LibDems in significant parts of the couuntry and get motivated by the swing. Remember the LDs are in challenging range 2nd in about 100 seats, and even a loss in NS would show that many of those Tory seats are winnable.

    And then, if they win....

    Many of us thought the Lib Dems would do reasonably well in 2015, because they'd put in at least one good by-election performance. They didn't.

    By-elections are different. The Lib Dems are extraordinarily good at concentrating resources to contest by-elections. They cannot do the same across dozens of seats in a general election.

    However, a defeat for the Tories in North Shropshire would still be huge. It would indicate that Brexit was losing its dominance of British politics, and that the Tories position is more vulnerable than previously thought.
    Or it may just be rejection of Paterson's and Boris's unacceptable behaviour by decent voters
    The mentality revealed by the Paterson affair is evidently a distinctive part of Conservative Party culture, judging from recent revelations. Much less prevalent in other parties (though, I stress sadly, not absent). So it's not 'just' rejection of that pair's recent behaviour.
  • FarooqFarooq Posts: 3,689
    Eabhal said:

    s

    Farooq said:

    Eabhal said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    "Cancel your big Christmas party and have a couple of small ones instead"

    "Avoid 'making merry', don't hug your relatives"

    Holy shit these people have gone completely power mad.

    This is Sarah Pitt btw.
    Power mad? As in, exercising the power of speech to advise people?
    If Sarah Pitt is forcing you to do something against your will, I'm pretty concerned. But is she?
    Not literally, I take your point.

    But it's the confidence to say something like that and expect listeners not to have an immediate and violent reaction to it that concerns me.

    They have come to expect adherence to a zero-covid strategy.
    I don't know, I hear plenty of things I don't agree with and don't think are even realistic. I tend to feel a bit weary at it rather than having a violent reaction.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 22,380
    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    algarkirk said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    'Underfunding' is the suggestion about NHS, as here, and more or less everything else the tax payer pays for.

    But curiously we are at a moment of record highs in: tax levels, tax take, tax proportions of GDP, public spending, borrowing and debt.

    Every issue, taken one at a time, required increased tax and spend - try listening for a few days to Today on R4 and count up the times it is the answer.

    So something is missing in this discussion. And it feels insufficiently wide in its scope. It isn't possible or practicable that more tax take/borrowing is the universal panacea.

    I also think that there are 2 tiers of the NHS as well. Front line crisis services generally run flat out with phenomenal efforts by those involved. But there are also large sections where productivity seems astonishingly low and where money seeps away. Poor management allows this to be tolerated for far too long. We simply cannot afford this anymore.
    The entire structure is an absurd waste of money. Abolish the marketisation and save a fortune which can be reinvested back into front line health.

    In the meantime why can't the government pay private providers to clear the backlog? If Labour can hire the private sector why can't the Tories...?
    There is no simple way of managing 1.3m employees and over £150bn of expenditure. Trying to claim that there are simple or simplistic solutions like that dodges the much more difficult choices we face.
    There is also the issue that the private sector medical staff and the public sector medical staff are, to a considerable extent, the same people.
  • Farooq said:

    Eabhal said:

    eek said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    To which the next question should be how do you do that? And drill the person down to he turns silent at which point the interviewer should say "so that would be impossible"...
    Presenters response was to comment that it showed how misguided many callers were.
    The Groupthink is strong that "something must be done, this is something, so this must be done".

    To even suggest that death is a part of the circle of life and not to be prevented at all costs is now viewed as a monstrous suggestion by some people.
    You don't think a thousand extra deaths a week, many of them avoidable, is enough?
    I don't think its too many.

    Most deaths are either the unvaccinated who can own their own choices, or people who are very vulnerable and could die from the common cold or flu or anything else.

    NPIs made sense pre-PIs, not anymore. If a thousand 'extra' deaths is the 'new normal' then that's the new normal and that's what we have to live with, though I'm sceptical that excess deaths actually are a thousand a week.
    You seemed concerned about people drowning in the channel in far smaller numbers.
    They're healthy young people dying a horrible and preventable death and there's a simple solution to stop it happening that doesn't restrict the rights of anyone living here.
  • rcs1000rcs1000 Posts: 42,552
    The new data on the Merck drug looks pretty depressing: https://arstechnica.com/science/2021/11/womp-womp-efficacy-of-mercks-thor-inspired-covid-pill-crumbles-vexing-experts/

    Let's hope that the Pfizer pill does not suffer similarly.
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 3,163
    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    NHS, of course, is devolved to the Scottish Govt in your part of the world. Perhaps if they spent less on ramping up salaries, providing "free" baby-boxes, free bikes, free tuition fees, and various other perks for the middle-classes, there'd be a bit more for front-line health provision.

    But, as we know, Nicola is politically bullet-proof, and nothing much will change however bad services get.

    Rant over!
    Her Teflon shielding is starting to wear a little thin. Interesting article in the Courier today be Jim Spence: "Is independence a busted flush?" The response to their virtual conference has been pretty negative well beyond the usual suspects (like me). Subscription only unfortunately.
    Spence is of the Albanian persuasion isn’t he? I suspect he would prefer Indy to be a busted flush rather than the woke hell of cops dancing at Pride and non binary pronouns that inhabits his fevered imaginings.
    Albanian?
    I think perhaps TUD needs a different term for the Salmond fan club :smile:

    Alban?

    Salmondic?

    Nutty?

    Or, in homage to our own Malc, Malcomian?
  • algarkirk said:

    So something is missing in this discussion. And it feels insufficiently wide in its scope. It isn't possible or practicable that more tax take/borrowing is the universal panacea.

    I think rent-seeking is the missing explanation. It's rent-seeking that makes living costs so high in this country, that makes so much investment ruinously expensive, that extracts so much money from the NHS, Education and other budgets.

    We're a country of people labouring hard so that a small minority can achieve guaranteed returns of >5% on their investment portfolios.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 26,108

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Hope things work out for you. On the NHS - something needs to change.
    I pay to go to the vet for my animals. Its expensive, but thats the cost. Visiting the GP is 'free', except its not really free, we just don't see the price. I have come to believe that we need private GP's that can prescribe NHS medication (pay your 40 quid, or whatever the GP visit is, pick up a prescription, take it Boots/Lloyds/Well etc). Plus I also think patients need to be made more aware of what medical care costs - GP visits should still be free, but you get a note saying how much it has 'cost'. That and prescription medicine - the true cost should be shown somewhere.

    We need a politically neutral debate on the NHS, but sadly its been a political football for too long.
    I have to say that if the cost of the medication was shown on the dispensed product many people who have paid £9.75 for it would get a very nasty shock!
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 22,380
    rcs1000 said:

    The new data on the Merck drug looks pretty depressing: https://arstechnica.com/science/2021/11/womp-womp-efficacy-of-mercks-thor-inspired-covid-pill-crumbles-vexing-experts/

    Let's hope that the Pfizer pill does not suffer similarly.

    I find the contrast between the approval of this drug and the rejection of LFTs.... interesting.
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 3,163

    DavidL said:

    Went to see my GP this morning because of headaches. Getting an "emergency" CT scan some time before Christmas and advised to go private for my respiratory issues because nothing is going to happen soon. Told by the GP that the waiting time for gynaecology (not for me, of course) is now 2 years. He sees no prospects of anything improving in the foreseeable.

    My GP is an excellent chap and expressed frustration at how many times he is now recommending private health care. He said he is a strong believer in the NHS but the long term underfunding (in his view) has simply meant it cannot cope with something like Covid and the reductions in capacity that the safeguards bring about.

    Pretty sobering way to start the day.

    Hope things work out for you. On the NHS - something needs to change.
    I pay to go to the vet for my animals. Its expensive, but thats the cost. Visiting the GP is 'free', except its not really free, we just don't see the price. I have come to believe that we need private GP's that can prescribe NHS medication (pay your 40 quid, or whatever the GP visit is, pick up a prescription, take it Boots/Lloyds/Well etc). Plus I also think patients need to be made more aware of what medical care costs - GP visits should still be free, but you get a note saying how much it has 'cost'. That and prescription medicine - the true cost should be shown somewhere.

    We need a politically neutral debate on the NHS, but sadly its been a political football for too long.
    I have to say that if the cost of the medication was shown on the dispensed product many people who have paid £9.75 for it would get a very nasty shock!
    Particularly when the medication is significantly cheaper! :wink: (Although in my experience pharmacists and even GPs generally point this out and suggest/offer buying over the counter instead where possible - many, many are more expensive than a prescription, of course)

    There would be some value in people seeing how much things cost, I agree.
  • ChrisChris Posts: 7,779
    eek said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    To which the next question should be how do you do that? And drill the person down to he turns silent at which point the interviewer should say "so that would be impossible"...
    Except given the coronaphiliacs' penchant for making things up, what the virologist really said probably bears no relation to that.
  • FarooqFarooq Posts: 3,689

    Farooq said:

    Eabhal said:

    eek said:

    Eabhal said:

    Radio Scotland phone in has been fun this morning.

    Callers flat out refusing to cancel any Christmas plans, asking how many more variants there will be and whether this will the case every Christmas for evermore.

    Virologist comes on and responds with zero-covid strategy: "we must stop this variant in its tracks".

    "We should not learn to live with it. We must eradicate it now"

    To which the next question should be how do you do that? And drill the person down to he turns silent at which point the interviewer should say "so that would be impossible"...
    Presenters response was to comment that it showed how misguided many callers were.
    The Groupthink is strong that "something must be done, this is something, so this must be done".

    To even suggest that death is a part of the circle of life and not to be prevented at all costs is now viewed as a monstrous suggestion by some people.
    You don't think a thousand extra deaths a week, many of them avoidable, is enough?
    I don't think its too many.

    Most deaths are either the unvaccinated who can own their own choices, or people who are very vulnerable and could die from the common cold or flu or anything else.

    NPIs made sense pre-PIs, not anymore. If a thousand 'extra' deaths is the 'new normal' then that's the new normal and that's what we have to live with, though I'm sceptical that excess deaths actually are a thousand a week.
    You seemed concerned about people drowning in the channel in far smaller numbers.
    They're healthy young people dying a horrible and preventable death and there's a simple solution to stop it happening that doesn't restrict the rights of anyone living here.
    So you're a "zero crossings" believer then?
    Well, good luck with that.
This discussion has been closed.