Sunday, 27 May 2018
The NHS: Pseudo religion to many; iconic socialist success story (with its shortcomings brushed under a carpet heaped high with uncritical praise); inviolable national treasure and the big stick regularly used to cow dissenters into a hands-off stalemate about its future. Suggest the NHS could be reformed and you will bring down opprobrium and lightning about your head and a plague upon your house. This is a tail which very much wags the dog.
In the British press you are only ever a day away from a big story about the NHS, which itself is only ever days away from total collapse; it has struggled on in this manner since 1948. At seventy it should be pensioned off but no, like those of us who have paid for it all our lives we will be expected to keep on going. Once again – as with Brexit, the immigration debate, the anger of the young, throwing around accusations of ‘having their future thrown away’ – it is all the fault of the old.
Old people have selfishly pushed up house prices. Old people have exhausted the resources of our boom years and left the young destitute. Old people blame it all on the EU and immigration, when ‘everybody knows’ we are a nation of mongrels and we need – positively need – immigrants to do the jobs the lazy Brits won’t do. Old people don’t care about the future, they won’t have to live through it. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah-bloody-blah... The gutless misery of these mantras is not only boringly predictable, it is wrong. So wrong.
For a start it is not old people who push up house prices it is simple supply and demand; it is the sheer number of people. And it is the tax-payer who pays for everything the state provides; who has paid the most tax of all? Why, those who have paid in for the longest. Who earns the most and therefore pays a disproportionately higher percentage of their income as tax? Those who have acquired the skills and knowledge and experience to be worth more to the economy, to generate more surplus wealth. Oh yes, that would be the older workers in the population.
And who disproportionately uses the resources of the NHS? Why that would be the
old I mean sick people. Sick people come in all
guises, but those who work through their entire lifetime tend to consume far
fewer of any public resources than those who have taken the cradle-to-grave
mantra of the welfare state as an invitation to plunder its overly generous
coffers. This includes children, especially babies – bloody babies; it’s all
just take, take, take with them – and all those who eagerly grasp at any
medical straw to excuse their lifelong indolence. (It also includes those beloved,
minimum-wage, zero tax-paying, net-welfare recipient immigrants who displace
many younger Brits who would pick those crops, pack those boxes and stack
those shelves if they had to.)
And now it is older people, those who in earlier decades might have expected to retire after a lifetime of paying for the NHS and everything else, who are opting to stay in work into their seventies to continue paying for it. You might think the vibrant, multicultural, progressive young people – who are the future, remember – would be grateful that the despised older generations are willing to carry on funding that future, but no... Kids, the older generation is not the problem; it is, in large part, the solution.