Fat-Cat NHS Bosses: more equal than other animals
So now what for those who keep maintaining in the Westminster MSM that this tax raid is unfair on ‘Teh Young’? Two news items connected to that tax rise had me hit the ceiling this morning. They show irrefutably that some animals are indeed more equal than others – and they’re not ‘Teh Old’, the latest polls notwithstanding (link).
Before I get to those news items, here’s the result of last evening’s vote. To no-one’s surprise the Bill passed by 319 votes to 248, demonstrating nicely the squishiness of the majority of Tory MPs. Only five – yes, that’s right: five! – Tory MPs voted against and they do deserve to be named: Christopher Chope; Philip Davies; Neil Hudson; Esther McVey; Sir John Redwood. 39 other Tory MPs abstained: a very courageous stance!
We also read that Tory Party members resigned in protest and that “One Cabinet minister privately said they feared the plans were “the death knell of Conservatism” (paywalled link). Well – tough! All those ministers and MPs preferred throwing their alleged ‘Conservatie” values to the wolves in order to keep their future prospects of climbing that greasy pole alive by “being loyal to Boris”. Losing their jobs at the next GE will be their just reward.
Not that Labour is any better. Yes, they voted against – but that was an easy decision since they knew this Tax Bill would sail through. There’s no chance they’ll repeal it because the beneficiaries are Common Purpose Labour voters in the NHS, the ‘bosses’ which Labour despises when they run companies – but not when they run the NHS.
And so to that first news item showing that we all are being taken for a ride by yon Sacred Cow:
“The NHS will hire dozens of new executives on salaries of up to £270,000 – to make sure the new £36billion health and social care tax is spent wisely. […] Online job adverts reveal each executive will be paid an average of £223,261. Seven jobs are advertised with salaries of £270,000, which is 80 per cent more than the Prime Minister earns. According to the job adverts, successful candidates will need to be ‘politically astute’ and ‘actively champion diversity, inclusion, and equality of opportunity for all’.” (link)
Yes, “we” need exceedingly well-paid ‘health bosses’ to make sure the money is spent wisely – on themselves. They’ll make sure that everything NHS is “diverse, inclusive and equal” because that’s far more important than dealing with backlogs and patient care. Far worse but typical for how government deals with the NHS is this:
“The handout has been given to the NHS without any firm targets to meet, which has raised fears the money will simply be swallowed. NHS bosses have already complained the sum isn’t enough to clear the backlog.” (link)
Why the fear now? It’s ever been thus! Exactly the same happened when Blair and Brown ‘saved’ the NHS at the beginning of this millennium with a huge money injection. Some articles in the then MSM pointed out that most of this money went to NHS managers and far less to frontline staff, i.e. nurses and doctors, never mind porters and cleaners. Nothing has changed and nothing will change except that the acolytes of the Sacred Cow will keep demanding more and more money:
“The left-wing Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) said the funding is ‘nothing like enough to get through the backlog’, with the NHS alone needing £15billion per year to address the waiting list.” (link)
Yes, how can the poor, downtrodden NHS possibly deal with ‘staff shortages’, shortages especially in top level admin staff – except by demanding a pay rise, or even better – see this:
“Rachel Harrison, national officer at the trade union GMB, said the funding should be used to give NHS staff a retrospective 15 per cent pay rise, which would use up all of £10billion funding, ” (link)
One does not need to be a mathematical genius to calculate that, if most of this money goes on creating more bosses on huge salaries and the rest on salary increases for already existing nurses and doctors there won’t be much left to recruit more of this frontline staff to deal with the backlog. Neither would there be much left to invest in more beds and more technical equipment. The NHS is already at the bottom of the list of comparable European states in that regard. But there’s worse. See this – and don’t scream:
“The NHS will be exempt from the new health and social care levy, government plans reveal […] Buried in the rushed-out plans, read before Parliament, are details revealing that NHS employers will be exempt from the NI tax, yet those in the embattled care sector – which is already facing tens-of-thousands of staffing shortages – will still have to pay.” (paywalled link)
This NI tax is composed of two parts: all employees will pay 1.25% and their employers will pay the other 1.25%. The NHS is one of the largest employers in the UK with 1.7m employees. That’s a nice little chunk of tax income lost to Sunak when only the employees have to pay that 1.25% increase. Why other UK employers who will have to pay their 1.25% aren’t up in arms – no, I also don’t understand that. Why care home providers – who are allegedly the beneficiaries of this huge sum of money because “Social Care!!” – are not exempt like the Sacred Cow: no I don’t understand that either.
All the above is the best, the latest example for Orwell’s statement that some animals are more equal than others. It’s not only that there will be more fat-cat NHS bosses despite staff shortages at the hospital coal face – it’s that the “Church of The NHS” is being treated differently from the rest of the country’s tax-paying employers.
If you believe that surely someone in Whitehall must have know and tried to prevent this blatant unfairness: yes, they knew and no, they had no intention of preventing it as these weasel words show:
“A HM Treasury spokesperson said: “We have taken decisive and historic action to fix the social care crisis that governments have ducked for decades – the health care levy will raise £12 billion a year for the NHS and social care. Everyone is being asked to contribute, in a fair and progressive way, including businesses.” (paywalled link)
Not only are some animals more equal than others, some ‘businesses’ are clearly also more equal than others. This rise is not about generational fairness, it’s not about ‘social care’ – it’s only about keeping the ‘State Church of the Sacred Cow’ going on being a drain on the country.
But then again – the people demanded to ‘Save the NHS’. Perhaps someone ought to ask ‘teh young’ who regard this rise as unfair on them if they’re against saving ‘Our Sacred Cow’. So keep paying up, keep sacrificing, keep clapping and ‘teh young’ better stop complaining about this not being fair: you wanted it – you pay for it. That’s only fair, innit.