Mind how you go
Is this government the worst we have ever had? Surely it must be. Yes, OK, they introduced gay marriages, and they stopped us going into the Euro. But apart from that, we can't think of anything they've done that hasn't turned into a disaster. And this morning we're treated to a rash of reminders.
Labour has lost control of our borders. We all know that. In just 12 years, they have permitted more than 3 million foreign born migrants to enter, 5% of our entire population (eg see this blog). Some of these migrants have undoubtedly made us richer, but most have not (eg see this blog). It has produced dangerous social tensions, boosted now by mass unemployment, and there is absolutely no way of stuffing the genie back into the bottle.
Things are now so desperate, that even the arrogant clowns who rule over us realise there's a crisis. Unfortunately the crisis they see is not the one we're all so worried about. The one they're concerned about is that the immigration issue might lose them the next election.
So they've decided they'll admit to a few mistakes.
Today, Brown himself stood up to "admit ‘mistakes’ on immigration after BNP TV furore". Well, that's what the newspaper headlines said he was going to do before his speech. But when you actually read the speech itself, you don't find any such admission. All you find is a statement about how he now "gets it", and how it isn't his fault anyway because previous governments left him a shambolic immigration system that he is now valiantly fighting to sort out.
And the migrants he actually picks on for his
He tells us we can't have a fixed annual limit like Australia's because it would be too inflexible. Too inflexible for whom? We all know that employers want unlimited immigration because it depresses wages. But the rest of us want a clear limit because of all the social and public spending pressures mass immigration brings with it (see previous blogs).
And as for his argument that imposing a limit would "overturn our obligations to our EU neighbours", why not just have a limit applying to non-EU citizens? It's non-EU citizens who have made up more than 80% of the inward migration over the last decade (eg see this blog).
Brown still seems to think we're all stupid.
2. Cost of Nanny
On one level, Labour's nanny state is a source of harmless national amusement. But as soon as you realise it's costing us a ton of money, the joke falls kinda flat.
Here's the latest episode from the Sun:
"POLICE chiefs faced ridicule last night over plans to give cops guides on how to ride a bicycle.No, no, stop it. I'm starting to get asthmatic.
The potty pamphlets, running to 93 pages in TWO volumes, tell cops how to balance so they do not fall off.
The official Police Cycle Training Doctrine - the cost of which is estimated at thousands of pounds - gives full instructions on how to stop and get off a bike safely.
Officers will be taught how to brake and avoid obstacles such as kerbs and rocks. They are warned not to tackle suspects while they are still "engaged with the cycle"...
Officers are advised to wear padded shorts for "in-saddle comfort" and reminded to eat enough food and drink "adequate liquids" - because cyclists get hungry and thirsty.
Undercover cops are told they may need to go without a helmet to avoid being rumbled. But the guide warns: "This lack of protection must be noted and a full risk assessment of the required role to be undertaken."
3. Bonuses for catastrophic failure
We've blogged the issue of bonuses for public sector staff many times (eg see here). And today we hear about the latest bonuses being paid to the buffoons who run the catastrophically awful MoD. Despite all the equipment shortages and all the procurement cock-ups we read so much about, £47m has been paid out so far this year:
It makes you want to spit.
"The bonus figure covers just the first seven months of the financial year. The MoD said yesterday that the bonuses would average less than £1,000, but a senior civil servant could pick up £8,000. Last year, the department had 95 employees who were on a salary of more than £100,000. A private in the Army can be paid as little as £16,681 a year"As we've said before, bonuses in the public sector are a farce. Unlike the private sector, the public sector is not targeting profit, or any such clearcut objective. There is no bonus pool driven directly by the money available. Indeed, there is no transparent and robust linkage back to any real world objective. Just another pile of box ticking commissariat wibble. The practice should be stopped.
And as for the BBC paying for its execs to stay in glitzy £647 per night Las Vegas hotels, I can't even bear to read the story.
4. Too posh to wash
The government is about to insist that all nurses now have a degree.
The health minister says:
“By bringing in degree-level registration we can ensure new nurses have the best possible start to meet the challenges of tomorrow. This is the right direction of travel if we are to fulfil our ambition to provide higher quality care for all.”The minister obviously lives on an entirely different planet to those of us who've visited real NHS hospitals.
The Doc long ago tore out his few remaining wisps of hair over the fact that many essential nursing jobs like washing patients no longer get done by nurses. They are too posh to wash or to ensure patients are eating and drinking properly: upgraded beyond such menial tasks they instead now spend their time studying patient protocols and pathways. A fact not unconnected with the huge upsurge in hospital acquired plagues.
As we've said before, just make sure you keep up your BUPA payments.
And try to forget that state healthcare now costs each and every household nearly £5 grand pa.
I think I need to lie down.