Thursday, 20 January 2011
NHS following disastrous rail privatisation under Tory coalition
Imagine a national health service where the equivalent of this could happen.
You try to get off the train at a deserted station, no station staff, no guard on the train. Your leg is caught in the automatic doors and you are dragged to your mutilated fate.
Luckily, Mark Simpson pulled himself free while his partner was left inside the National Express train at Rayleigh and had to make her way back from the next station along the line by taxi. But Simpson was a tough male. Anyone else would probably have died. As have passengers (no, we are not just 'customers', defined buy our purchase-power) who have been stabbed and mugged at stations left unmanned to protect the health of shareholder dividends.
As for the soaring costs of travel by rail, bus and tube, making us one of the most expensive countries in the world to get around, what a joke. So much for getting us out of our cars.
It is to New Labour's shame that they refused to reverse John Major's (remember him?) destructive move to privatise rail in the dying days of the last Tory government. During the wealthiest decade this nation has ever seen with tons of money sloshing around and a mandate for progressive change, Labour under Blair and Brown squandered our hopes and left us at the mercy of the upper classes now back in the driving seat.
We can look forward to the NHS being similarly incompetent, dangerous and expensive thanks to the Tories and the Lib Dems and their carving up the service, something we did not vote for.
I hope the trade unions note the students' anger and follow suit because the violence inherent in the policies of this Tory-led government is killing us.