Friday, June 05, 2009

Here Today, Gone Tomorrow



So the NHS has yet another head honcho - Andy Burnham.

As BOM readers will know, 39 year old Andy is chiefly known for his Shakin' Stevens tribute act, although his day job has always been unions and Labour politics. Yet here he is now, in charge of the biggest employer outside the Chinese Army, Indian Railways, and Walmart*, controlling a mega-budget approaching 10% of our GDP.

As Sir Robin Day put it three decades ago, "why should the public believe you, a transient, here-today and, if I may say so, gone-tomorrow politician?"

Why indeed?

Andy is the twelfth Health Secretary since 1985 - the TWELFTH. Each has averaged two years in post, and not a single one has ever worked at the sharp-end in healthcare. Not one.

And yet for some unfathomable reason, we have entrusted them with one of the biggest jobs in Britain. A job that directly impacts the quality of all our lives.

Why?

Why do we go along with such lunacy?

As we've said many times (we even made the vid about it), real customer service businesses, such as Tesco, could not possibly survive under here-today-gone-tomorrow amateurs like Burnham.

As the vid says, since 1985, Tesco has had just two Chief Execs. Two. Both joined the company straight from college, and both learned the biz from the bottom up.

So WTF do we still allow essential industries like healthcare and education, to be managed by ignorant, trough-guzzling, self-serving, spineless, ridiculous, gahdegahdegahdah politicos?

We wouldn't even consider letting them loose on our supermarkets.

*Footnote - The original version of this post contained a "clich├ęd falsehood" - to wit, that the NHS is the third largest employer in the world, behind only the Chinese Army and Indian Railways. But as TomTom points out in the comments: "Wal-Mart employs 1.8 million and only 1.2 million are covered by NHS payroll computers." Thanks for that correction TomTom - the NHS is now only the fourth largest employer in the world. I will endeavour to get all my facts right in future.

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