Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Who says that Christmas isn't about money?

Those of us who may have any doubts that Christmas isn't rooted in making money & commercialism must not have seen any television commercials this evening-Christmas Eve.
What I saw were a number of commercials happily informing the public that some of the large chain store will begin their sales either tomorrow or on December 26th. These stores then add that items are on sale for half the pre Christmas price. They glibly announce for example, that a mountain bike that previously cost £200, is now reduced to less than half price, & then add that we can order on line "today".
Now isn't this just plain wrong??!! Imagine a parent who've paid out £200 odd for a bike which is now hidden awaiting presentation on Christmas Day, how must they feel? Why couldn't the store just charge the sale price before Christmas? I think we all know the answer to that one....Because the stores want to make as much money as possible.
It's one giant rip off.And the public fall for it every year.

Friday, 20 December 2013


Here we are again then....Commercial Christmas, Christmas 2013. Same every year, the big sell,people gorging themselves on all & everything edible. Advertisements flooding the  media, pouring forth their messages of greed & insincere goodwill i
nto our homes. Ugh!
Daily our televisions show us images of the ideal family group sitting together on Christmas Day, eating multiple courses of calorie laden food, then suitably courted, sitting together chatting, laughing & for all the world painting a family scene that wouldn't be out of place in the bloody Walton's or The little house on the sodding prairie.

The reality though is so very much different. In reality there is so much high unimpressed emotion on Christmas Day that it nearly always spills over into full blown arguments or actual fist fights. The end result often being that families fall out & don't speak to one another for God knows how long afterwards. Thus, the whole farce of Christmas Day becomes a combustible powder keg of high expressed emotion.
This is fuelled I believe by the media & advertising industry painting the portrait of how they feel Christmas should be.  Families then try to mimic this false representation with is doomed to failure.
So forget the white rammed down your throats, try to turn a blind eye & ear to the pleading of the advertisers telling you that you should spend money on this & that. Try & see that it's all utter hypocrisy & that in reality your family like 90% of everyone else's will fight on bloody Christmas Day.
Bah humbug! I don't like the bullshit that is Christmas.    

Saturday, 14 December 2013

C'mon stop fuckin. about....

The other week on the news I heard that the UK has one of the highest rates in Europe of young people/school leavers with literacy & numeracy difficulties. This is very worrying & the nation &educational authorities are right to be concerned.
Today though, I heard of & signed a petition against the closure of public libraries in Birmingham. So hear now is the blatant hypocrisy of Cameron's Government & their policies of cuts in public expenditure!!
Close the libraries! Take away the public's access to free literature, increase the numbers of those who have literacy problems.
For God's sake Cameron, make up your mind, get your priorities right & be honest with the people of the UK.
After all Mr. Cameron, we're the one's paying for the 11% rise in your salary whilst everyone else is having to choose between food or being able to heat their homes this winter.And the nurses, as well as other public service workers have, in real terms had to take wage cuts for the last 4 years.
C'mon on stop fucking about, be straight with us, treat us like adults.

Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Birmingham's Sea Life Centre & the penguins-This really takes the biscuit!

Welcome to your new home penguins!!

Sure, their cute, hardly cuddly & they are in their real form utterly inedible.
However the Birmingham Sea-life Centre (& I've never been their & have no plans too).have squired 12 Gentoo Penguins from Melbourne. Some of the birds haven't hatched yet whist others are (God help the poor bastards) are en route to my fair city.

Very nice. However, the cost of the aforesaid penguins and the wonderful snow & ice environment (called 'An ice adventure ' by the idiots who waste our resources) is a cool (sorry for the pun people!)  £1.2 million.
so who foots the bill for this penguin extravaganza?? As usual its the ratepayers of the City of Birmingham.
"This is money well spent" I guess some of you will be saying-"its educational & fun".
No it aint. Because whilst spending £1.2 million on the penguins the City Council is closing libraries, swimming baths, making policeman & firefighters redundant, also reducing street cleansing. All this, as at the same time the majority of the city's roads resemble a lunar landscape.
While I'm in full flow now I might add that perhaps the money earmarked for the bloody penguins & their home from home should be diverted & be spent on Birmingham's Child & Family Social Services Dept which has been described as a national disgrace & "not fit for purpose".
But we live in a democracy & the ratepayers don't have any say do they?

Monday, 2 December 2013


I know, I know, but at the certain risk of being called a miserable old bastard I'm gonna have a rant about Christmas (again!)
I started ranting in the lounge a little while ago and was banished to our back kitchen by the daughter & Kate who got fed up of me.
 Its that time of year again when people go manic-& I don't only mean those poor souls who suffer from the Bi-Polar illness, I mean almost everyone you pass on the street.
The shopping avenues around Birmingham 14 are full of those bloody 'Chuggers', 'Big Issue' sellers, people waving buckets under your nose looking for donations to some 'worthy cause' or other (God Almighty, when I was younger, they had small tins not full size soddin' buckets!!),buskers who cant sing  in tune & play the same tune over & over again on an out of tune accordion, drunks, asking  " got any small change mate?" drivers from hell on those bloody mobile scooters who never give any indication where or when they might be going & ill mannered prats pushing you out of the way to achiever their ends. Jesus, I could go on..... (I hear you say:"Please God don't...")

Its got worse now because of the Christmas shite. Tell me...what is the point of this period of gluttony, of enforced joviality & mayhem? Everyone seems to be on the bloody make. I mean, today outside a local supermarket ATM machine there were no less that 3 people looking for money off those daft enough to draw money out of that particular ATM. There was a 'Big issue' salesperson, a guy swinging a big bucket for a homeless centre & a bloody 'Chugger'. Grrrr!!!!
Standing where they stood is nothing short of direct intimidation. I mean why not ask the customers at the ATM for their bloody cards & PIN numbers? Bastards.
I've hit on a plan though which I'll share with you: I go up to the shops early...O yes...between 8am-9am. The shops are empty, the streets almost deserted, the bastards who are after your money are still scratching themselves in their beds & its generally more pleasant.
This Christmas thing is nothing short of a bloody racket. God help Darren our postie-that poor buggers back will be broken in a couple of weeks what with all the shite that people send & expect him & his mates to deliver.
Christmas dinner?? You know I could make do with a good fry up & wouldn't mind spending the bloody Christmas Day malarkey on me own with a pint, a book, my music & my cat.
Speaking of whom, he's just come thru the back door with a soft meow as he rubbed himself against my ankle.
He doesn't give a flying feck about Christmas. Now Charlie's got the right idea....

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Nursing shortage?.....what shortage?

This week saw the 'nursing trade union' The Royal College of Nursing announce that there were in the UK the NHS were in the region of 20,000 nurses short in order to provide a safe service.
Yet Cameron's health spokesperson glibly announced that his Government has done more to bring about improvement in health care & increase front line nursing numbers. This in practice is utter hogwash-take it from one who works in the 'front line' of nursing.

Although I retired from full time nursing in 2010 I continue to work twice weekly. I am employed by a health care temporary staffing organisation-run by & for the trust to supposedly supplement nursing staff shortfalls on/in 'front line units.
Sad though it doesn't work like that  & I don't think that the public are being told how many of the nurses that care for them & their relatives are working part time, without full time contacts, without sick pay, without allocated annual leave entitlement-no work no pay & no holiday pay & are payed at below a grade that full time contracted staff are graded/payed at.

The trust has an apparent bottomless pit of nurses who they call in to plug the gaps, the temporary staffing organisation(s) send text messages throughout the day advising these nurses what vacancies they have for work either that day or in the long term.

Today (Wednesday) November 13th by 0956am I have received  9 text messages with requests for me to work. These text continue throughout the day, every day even when I'm actually working on the unit where I work!
The best or worse of this, is that the majority of these texts are requests offering me employment for 3  months or so. Therefore the recipient of the text is being offered a 'full time/part time job for 3 months, after which time the post is retexted again.

So what's' the problem?
It shows that NHS trusts throughout the UK have frozen recruitment. That trusts haven't the money to employ full time nurses. That patients do not have any contiguity of care, they see a new nurse looking after them each day with all the implications that this can bring about.
I won't bore you with all my argument why having different nurses each day/month/week on a unit is wrong & not beneficial to good nursing care I'll leave it to you to think about how you would feel if you or your nearest & dearest were a patient in that situation.

And the texts that I receive keep coming through.... I've just received 2 more offering work for 3 months only.
Who's to blame for this situation??

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Chuggers & UNICEF

UNICEF as you'll all agree is a very worthwhile charity. It helps children all over the world & its workers risk life & limb bringing aid to children in all the war zones of this troubled world.

Now I don't wanna blow me own trumpet here people but I have to admit that we here at Woolley Grange do give to this worthwhile cause. Our latest offering took the form of us making an on the spot donation to one of them blood manically inflicted hooligans that accost members of the public on the High Street. 'Chuggers' their called. These young people average age about 22yrs leap out at unsuspecting members of the public, wave their arms about' & great you as if you're a long lost member of their family. In a mental health setting their behaviour could be described as manic. They then do their level best to extract money for whatever cause they happen to represent. I hate 'em.
Whatever. Some 2 months ago one of these bloody Chuggers leapt out in front of me. I resented the strong desire to tell him to fuck off & chose instead to listen to his manic rantings. I was glad I did. He spoke alot of sense, he we talked about the situation in Syria, the suffering & of possible outcomes. Turned out that he represented UNICEF & asked me...here it comes... for a donation for the children of Syria.
I opted to make a one off donation by bankers order to UNICEF.

Then today I received a phone call from some guy saying that he was UNICEF & proceed to pour forth copious thanks for my kind donation. He then without my asking gave me an update of the present situation in Syria-kind enough I thought, then it cam.... "would I be interested in donating another amount?"
I think that's taking the piss abit to be honest. Its milking the financial cow that P J Woolley a bit too often don't you think?
Difficult that it was I declined. I'm sorry but things are a bit tight at the mo.


Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Update on Bonfire Night...Not Fireworks ...

I've done a little research on the celebration of Bonfire Night & I've been a little hasty in my condemnation of the festivities on or around this time of year.
Seemingly the tradition of lighting bonfires around this time of year dates back to Tudor Times in 'Merrie England'. We're talking about 400 odd years ago here people., & the lighting of bonfires marked the passage of summer/autumn to winter. It's pagan I guess & the fire represents the Sun which has gone away for the winter & a 'prayer' to summon the light & heat that brother Sun gives us.
However, I still can't go along with the burning of the Guy Fawkes effigy. How about burning effigies of Cameron's cabinet?? Nor can I agree with waste that is fireworks.
There you go.
Next celebration in the Woolley household is scheduled to be December 21st-Midwinter, cos after that date the days begin to get longer by a few seconds each day.

Saturday, 2 November 2013

Fireworks.....November 5th

My mate Guy Fawkes

The nonsense

I'm gonna have a rant this evening which I'm pretty certain will have the majority of you who aren't (unlike me) anally retentive, grumpy old men (sorry 'persons!').
Ok. Well the clocks have been put back & we're plunged once more into the dark morlock crevasses of winter. Of waking up in the dark, & the sun-remember that bright disc in the sky that gave us warmth??) disappearing below the horizon at around 3.30 pm. That period of the year when Charlie Coal the cat stares out of the back door, looks at me with an expression that seems to say.."..You don't really expect me to go outside in those conditions do you????.  Its dismal but rejoice our friends under us (so to speak!) there in the antipodes have the sun, warmth and they are about to have summer. Gits!. But I'm being mean.
So here we have it November, miserable November. And what's worse its that time of year when people go crazy. When some people appear to have more money than sense.

They stand in the pouring rain  & cold & watch their money go up in smoke!! Yeah...fireworks. what a bloody waste of money. They cause misery when some ejjits burns themselves with them or the bonfires that go out of control, the fireworks cause some prats to have an apparent brainstorm and they think its fair game & fun to throw fireworks at each other,  they terrify domestic pets (including our own Charlie Coal) & the occasion actually celebrates an event which we should morn rather than celebrate.

 Ok, I know all about the pagan symbolism of paying homage to the sun by lighting bonfires & all that, & that would be great by me-I love the romance of that. But people have forgotten that. Saying that though, I do reckon that the majority of people have actually forgotten what November 5th commemorates.
In my opinion (here we go I hear you say!), the November 5th celebrations are a celebration of the execution of the best man EVER to get into Parliament-Guy Fawkes.
And why should I, a Roman Catholic (albeit lapse!) celebrate the death of a fellow Roman Catholic? The aforementioned Guy Fawkes.
I don't like this time of year, its a waste of money.
I know....
 I'm a grumpy old man. There, I've disarmed my critics!

Charlie Coal doesn't like fireworks either!

Friday, 1 November 2013

The closure of Royal Mail Post Offices

Thanks Mr. Cameron. Little by little you are gradually selling off Britain to the highest bidder-usually these bidders are those who a) are Conservative voters. b) Fund the aforementioned 'party' & c) Don't give a toss that the very foundation of British heritage is being eroded by the likes of Cameron et al.
First we had the sell off of the railways,then gas companies, then the electricity companies, then the water boards, then then Post Office telephones & now the Royal Mail has been sold off at an undervalued price to the highest bidders.
Cameron tells us that employees of the Royal mail are to be allocated  (FREE) £750 (odd) shares in the privatized company. How kind....But what he doesn't tell the public is that the recipients of these shares aren't allowed to sell them for 2 years & that they won't receive them until the 'sell off'' is completed By which time the value of the shares (currently flying high) will be worth considerably less that what they were when 'given' to the postmen.
Why?? Because private mail companies-TNT, Fed-X, DHL & the like will cream off the most profitable area of the market leaving the Royal Mail with the dregs-the junk mail etc.
These smug bastards who proudly announce that they are "over the moon" with the profit they've made with the increased value of the shares should be ashamed of themselves.  These money grabbing fascists are out to make a quick buck at the expense of the majority of the population in the continuing sell off of 'Shop UK'.

Now today its been confirmed that Royal Mail is going to close a number of whats called 'Crown post offices' ie-post offices on the high street in the suburbs.
Ut doesn't matter a fig that the old & disabled will have to walk or get a filthy West Midland transport bus to get to a post office. No, it don't matter. All that matters is profit.
There is an alternative though....The local WH Smith newsagents will , we're told accommodate the local post office. But....our local WH Smith is tiny compared to our Post Office. On an average day the queue of customers outside my local.post office stretches out of the front doors! How on earth will WH Smith's cope with this amount of customers? And what of the staff currently employed in the post office?? They tell me that they're going to lose their jobs. But who gives a damn. Very few apparently & especially not David Cameron's cronies.
Cameron by his complete & utter inactivity in dealing with the energy companies and their recent imoral increase in charges has plunged hundreds of thousands of people into what he glibly calls 'Fuel Poverty'.
It'll be both tragic & interesting to see how many people the energy companies send to hospital with hypothermia, and how many die of cold related illnesses this winter. The same energy companies shareholders meanwhile enjoy a sun-soaked lifestyle whist no doubt contributing to Conservative party coffers.
So co on one & all grab a share of sell of Britain.
But don't complain people....You voted for Cameron & his catmite Clegg...I didn't.

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Trick or Treat & all that shite...

Trick or Treat or urban terrorism?

I had the best of intentions about this Halloween. I was prepared & accepting of any small kids who. accompanied by an adult would knock at our front door at a respectable hour dressed in a garish costumes for Trick or Treat. I even brought 2 bags of mixed chocolate sweets to give them.
However I find now that the whole Trick or Treat thing is nothing more than begging by another name & an excuse for some thugs to terrorise the old & vulnerable.
We were lucky...we didn't have one caller. I had all the sweets in a large bowl on the hall table near the front door ready for any little kid who may knock the door & attempt to scare me witless.
However none called. Not 1.
then at 2120 hrs the door bell ranr. We heard the voices of some kids but what the hell!? 2120 pm & knocking on the door for Trick or Treat?/ What the bloody hell are the parents thinking of in allowing small kids out at this hour knocking at peoples doors !?!?
I didn't answer the door. Sod it I'll not be part of this nonsense..
I have to say it but its one import from the USA that we over here in the UK should not have implemented into our society.
There is an upside of all this though...We now have a bowl full of Cadbury's mixed chocolates to eat. Yum!
Keep your bloody Trick or Treat. Damn pagan worship.

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Baked potatoes??

I  gave my books & my brain a rest this evening & I wish I hadn't bothered.
I spent a large part of my evening in mind numbing wastage watching gutter television.There appears to be a glut of programmes-the majority fly on the wall documentaries-with the theme of mental illness,& nearly all of these are about Obessional compulsive disorder.
Tonight the programme producers had suffers cleaning the cluttered & filthy houses of hoarders.On Thursday we have the treat of yet another fly on the wall documentary,this time the programme comes from Bedlam psychiatric hospital in London. It apparently features patients suffering from a range of mental health problems.
I'm delighted that mental health is becoming a conversation in the public domain, in fact the UK spends much less on mental health than on physical health, yet the majority of medications issued by family doctors are for mental health issues.

But: Why the baked potatoes?? I'll tell ya. During the commercial break there was a very flashy commercial that was advertising pre packed baked spuds. Apparently they cook in just 1hour!! This is absolutely incredible!! Have people become so utterly lazy &/or incompetent in their ability to cook that food manufacturers now have to sell pre prepared baked spuds?-It seems so.
We have allowed ourselves to become disempowered by these rascals who claim to be making life easier for us.
Whatever next??

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Lou Reed.

                                                                    REST IN PEACE LUO

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Syria....what next??

The nations of the West stand aloof & speak appeasement like platitudes on the human haemorrhage that is Syria. France, the UK, Turkey and the United States openly condemn the killing by all the barbaric means known to mankind of the civilian population of that country. The United Nations stands by whispering protests towards the butcher of Damascus-President Assad.Yet that is all that is being done. In the 2 & half years that the bloodshed has been going on for God alone knows how many have died. There have been countless ceasefires all broken by the 'ruling Government of Syria. Standing by supporting President Assad are Russia & China-no doubt making a killing financially in selling weapons to the regime.

Today we hear yet more howls of protest & condemnation from the West following the use of poison gas on his own people. The word is that he has killed at least 1000 men, women & children. This hasn't been confirmed though because Assad refuses to allow the UN access into the area to verify the accounts and claims made by the Syrian opposition.
So nothing is done.No 'no fly zones', no troops on the ground, no active aid to the wounded, nothing as far as can be seen to bring solace to the poor people of Syria.
I'm minded of Kuwait some years ago. And of Iraq when in both examples the West led an invasion to 'liberate' those nations. The latter (Iraq) was undertaken I believe without a UN mandate.
So why not go in in some form or other & support the beleaguered population Syria in some form or other??

Simple.....Syria has no oil. Plain as the nose on your face. If Syria had oil reserves then the US, UK & France would have intervened long ago. But.... they aint...all because Syria has no oil to sell the West.

Monday, 5 August 2013

Roman Catholic education & child abuse A personal experience.

I see that the evil spectre of child abuse has arisen once again in a Roman Catholic school.
This time there is evidence that there was physical, sexual and psychological abuse carried out by male teachers on male male pupils at the Scottish Fort Augustus school during the 1950's & 1960's. The abusers were members of a Order of Benedictine monks.
I've been reflecting on this abuse & looking back on my educational experiences as a pupil of the Roman Catholic educational system.

In my formative years as a pupil in a Roman Catholic primary school, I both witnessed & was on the receiving end of physical and mental abuse.
I recall very clearly being literally force fed my school lunch by a nun- a member of the order of Sisters of Mercy, of being hit around the head by the same nun during a practice (of all things!) for my first Holy Communion.On both these occasions I was 6-7 years of age. I recall feeling fear (literally) if, & when this nun stood behind you as it came to signify that a slap around the head was coming.

One especially fearfully and troubling example of abuse I witness by this nun was when she actually tied a 6 year old boy to his chair (after first placing the chair on a table) because he wouldn't sit still.
I don't recall any incidents of sexual abuse, but the incident I witnessed where I believe, the thin edge of the wedge of abuse perpetrated by this nun.

I unfortunately suffered & witnessed examples of physical, mental & psychological abuse as a teenager within the Roman Catholic educational system. I was 15 years of age at a Roman Catholic secondary school when I was systematically physically and emotionally abused by a teacher. The 'man' I'm thinking of wasn't a member of any religious order, but seemed to take some delight in grabbing me  by throat, shaking me and threatening to "pumble me". This was frequently carried out in the presence of my class mates. I, & others, were frequently humiliated verbally by this teacher, told we were "stupid, a waste of time and energy, that we would never come to anything"  Often we were physically punished for the smallest demeanour.
I would love to meet these abusers today-especially the male teacher of my teen years. I would not resort to physical violence towards him, rather I would psychologically humiliate him as he did me.

Having said all this I believe that it was almost expected that pupils in the Roman Catholic schools during the 1950's & 60's were to be the victims of abuse. At best the behaviour/abuse was carried out in the belief that it would "break & mould the child" or at worst it was carried out to satisfy some innate perverse desire of the abuser. Either way it was unacceptable.

But I don't know hat to do about it.

Friday, 26 July 2013

The UK minister for skills....his recent media release.

Matthew Hancock MP

 I heard on the radio news today a worrying and morally repugnant statement released by the UK minister for skills. No doubt it was said with the intention of gaining the favour & votes of those misguided people who harbour bigoted views about none national UK residents, but it made me heave.

The minister who goes by the name of Matthew Hancock said that "employers have social duty, when considering whether or not to take a person they should chose a local British person in preference to an immigrant".
I hear echoes of pre war Nazi Germany policy here. When the national Socialist government of Germany  (post election of Hitler) only employed Ayrian Germans in preference to Jews or those which the government considered 'unpure/inferior.
I guess though that only difference is that the UK minister for skills comment is, as I said, aimed as a vote gaining comment at those bigots in our society.
I wonder though, what kind of society are we heading for with the Government we currently have?
Those of us who forget the lessons of history are destined to repeat them.

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

The Royal baby.....

I guess that all of you knew that I just had to have a rant about the birth of the baby to William & Catherine.So here goes: To be fair, I've left it a day or so to rant otherwise what I'd have written would make even less sense than usual!
I do wish the parent of the baby congratulations, & I hope (rather, I bloody well know) that everything will go well & work out for them.
The baby, God help him, won't have any say in what kind of life he wants. All decisions are already made for him, but that's one of the downsides of being born with a silver spoon stuck in your trap.
What I do strongly object to is (president) Cameron coming out and announcing to the world that ."..the whole of the country is excited" by the birth). What right has this man got to speak for me? How does he know the feelings of every man, woman & child in the UK? & how dare he presume that we are all "excited".
 Where is his research into whether or not the "whole of the country is excited"? The prat.
I could give a flying feck about the birth to be honest. There were a few thousand women giving birth on the day that Catherine did & I wish them all congratulations in equal measure.
Catherine gave birth in a £4k hospital suite complete with hairdresser thrown in-no cheap in & out NHS delivery suite for her folks! She had 2 personal gynaecologists in attendance throughout her delivery unlike the majority of women in the UK who give birth who never see a gynaecologist from the moment their labour begins to the day they're discharge from hospital with their baby.
Its a bullshit, unfair system we live in. The Royals live in a fantasy world in which they believe that the majority of their subjects live as they do. (I'm open for persuasion on that point though)

Then there were the scores of twats who crowded around the Palace & the hospital giving vent to their 'joy' at the birth. One person said that it was the "best Monday she had ever had"-poor sad creature. Get a fucking life!! Its all about people craving celebrity status. They're mad for it, they buy magazines full of photos & stories about celebrities, they queue up for days on end for an audition to be verbally abused by ill mannered louts like Simon Cowell in the hope of becoming a 'star'. These people live in a world of celebrity by proxy.
so there you have it. My rant on the Royal birth. Let 'em get on with it. I won't comment on how much this extra Royal mouth will cost us all-Ill leave that to you to reflect upon.

Thursday, 18 July 2013

You pay them to do your job!!!

I had (yet another) bill drop thru my letterbox the other day-many thanks Darren!! (you know who you are comrade!!)
I expect, like anybody else to get my fair share of bills & I pay them, some without question, but the majority with a grimace on my handsome mug.
The bill kindly shoved thru my letterbox by the aforementioned Darren was from the regulatory body of the UK nursing authority. This body is known these days as 'The United Kingdom Nursing & Midwifery Council'. Least-ways that's what I think they call themselves these days, because they seem to change their name as often as I change my underwear.Since I've been a nurse they've called themselves-The General Nursing Council, The UKCC, & now the long winded name I've just told you above.
Ok, to get to the point: Each year we, as qualified nurses if we desire to continue to practice our art have to register with the above named body. We are required (& should the body desire it) provide written proof that we (as nurses) have kept abreast & undertaken some additional training or other.
But here's the think people....In order to do our job(s) we have to pay the United Kingdom etc etc £100 for the privilege of doing the job. Its went up this year by £25.
The body justified this years increase by saying in a gobshite letter by saying that the bulk of the additional fee will be spent in bringing to heel those nurses amongst us who are brought before the disciplinary committee.
God almighty  are a badly behaved lot or what?
So there you have it.....I have to pay for the privilege of doing my job.
What a fucking diabolical liberty!

Sunday, 14 July 2013

The UK Government privatisation of Royal Mail

It was announced last week by the Conservative/Government that The Royal Mail will be sold off to the highest bidder in the near future.
The Government have valued the service at between £2-£3 billion Sterling. However to those who use and who work in the Royal Mail its worth considerably more. The British public weren't consulted about whether or not they, the users, wanted the Royal Mail sold, and further more, the workers of The Royal Mail actually voted against the sell off of their industry to the highest bidder. This is yet another example of this Governments utter disregard of the electorates democratic voice.

Oh sure, the Government throws in a 'sweetener' to make it appear as though the public and Royal Mail employees will gain from the big give away to 'whoever'.
On this occasion they have said that the workers of Royal Mail will be given  (so its said) between 10% of shares  and an an undisclosed pay rise. What we hasn't been made public is that the Government has told the Postmen that the rise & offer of  '(free') shares is subject to them forgoing their right (s) of industrial action between now and Christmas 2013.
Now then people...... Why throw in this condition?? I wonder...?? Could it be that the Government, amid (secret) sales negotiations with would be buyers know/have planned to impose some draconian change in working conditions or pay which would be so outrageous that the workers have no option but to resort to protest. But due to the clause  thrown in by Cameron & Vince Cable they are unable to do bugger all about it? I wonder.
So then how will the sale affect us, the users of Royal Mail?? Well, I reckon that (as usual with all sale(s) of public industries to the private sector, service will deteriorate. The price of postage will increase, people will use ever more electronic mail etc which will result in decreased use of the service with the subsequent laying off of Royal Mail workers.
I bet you a pound to a penny that deliveries will be even further reduced-especially for those customers who live in rural areas who may only get a delivery weekly.
So who will buy the Royal Mail??? Who has the financial clout to pay the knock down bargain price?
Not many UK buyers I reckon. But.... Last week the Chinese were in town meeting with Cameron....& I  (along with a friend) believe that they, & they alone have the financial muscle to lay out that amount of money demanded by Cameron et al.

So there we have it. Further dismantlisation of a public owned British industry by the money motivated Conservative Government. Mark my words: The British public will live to regret this sell off. But don't hold me responsible I didn't vote Conservative & I DO NOT agree with the sale..

Saturday, 15 June 2013

Now this is bullshit!!!!

I've worn specs since I was 11 years of age, my eyesight is pretty poor &  without my specs I have trouble seeing a hand in front of my face to be honest. So it was with disappointment that after having a stronger script for new lenses less than 12 months ago I felt that my vision wasn't as sharp as it was. Thought that I'd better go for an eye test & get my sight checked out.
The optician tested my eyes at my usual optician-Boots & told me that I needed stronger lenses which he added gleefully would cost me £320.
Then.... He said that my existing lenses were scratched. Now, being extremely myopic my very close vision is excellent-I can see tiny things really really sharply if held close, so imagine my surprise when he told me that the lenses were badly scratched because neither me nor Kate could see any scratches.
Then came the bombshell: "what's caused the scratches , considering that the lenses are less than 1 year old & cost in excess of £300?? I ask. he glibly informed me that my eyelashes were the cause. querying this he then added that if I consider the number of times per day that I blink then it should come as no surprise.
Now this has got to be bullshit of the highest degree!! My eyelashes aren't long, neither are they made of thick hair. So I wonder then, has anyone out there ever had the experience of their spectacle lenses being scratched by the daily blinking action of their eyelashes???
Or is this the latest line of sales bullshit from Boots Opticians??

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Its been a fair time...but....

I haven't posted for a while I know.
My reasons are plain and simple: There is so much going on in the news these days that if I'd given vent to my feelings, then I'd never be off this bloody laptop!!
However today my mobile phone is giving me gip Yeah I could turn it off, but I never do.
So my rant today is about the good 'ole NHS (again).
Almost daily the Government has a dig at the service provided by the overworked NHS staff-waiting times, standards of care etc etc. As a result of this the public's perception of NHS staff is that of lazy, callous overpaid & couldn't care less staff. This is another successful goal that Cameron's Government have scored in their aim to 'divide & conquer' the public.
The truth is this: Staff in the National Health Service are working understaffed, in 'sweat shop like conditions in overcrowded wards, with the majority of staff part time agency or 'nurse bank' employees. The result of this is that the full time staff rush about attempting to make up the short fall whilst continuity of patient care is in my observation & experience penalised.

I work within the NHS, &, being a retired NHS nurse, I have the benefit of hindsight & I am able to part time work on a 'Nurse Bank'. Over the years I have seen corners cut, patient care deteriorate,the computer become the 'new patient and overall government expenditure cut in real terms. Nursing staff haven't had a pay rise for 4 years, & in real terms they have actually had 2 pay cuts!
The Trust I work for doesn't appear to be taking on full time staff because daily I receive text messages offering me 'block booking positions of 3 months here and there throughout the Trust. Daily I receive texts actually imploring me to work shifts-sometimes I receive 12 or more texts daily each with half a dozen locations on occasions! I receive texts asking me to work  night shift on a ward/unit even when the shift has actually begun! Clearly then the Trust is not taking on full term, contract staff. Why??? Because the Trust hasn't got enough money-they have plenty of managers however. 'Bank Nurses' do not receive holiday nor sick pay. They have few of the rights that full time members of staff have. But they are bodies on the ward.
But how can having a different member of staff each shift on a ward provide continuity of patient care???.
From I gather now Trusts throughout the UK are on a 'Payment by results' scheme. Basically this means that the Trusts receive additional money from central government dependant on the number of patients they see. Thus community based staff have to 'turn over' as many patients as possible in order to a):reduce waiting lists/achieve targets, & b): for the Trust to receive more money. Thus my colleagues work in a sweat shop with the product being human beings. The 'burn out' rate is fantastic, cynicism is rife, morale is low- the same applies to Education-but that's worthy of another rant.

I wish the public would be told the truth about what's happening in the NHS & education. But they'll never be told because then the Government risks losing the next election.

Hold on guys..... I've just receive 2 more text messages. 1 text offering me an option to work at 11 different locations (wards) working various shifts & I text offering me a 'block booking' of 3 months on a ward in a regional secure unit!!
And so it continues......
Some one please shout out that the "Emperor has no clothes"

Monday, 15 April 2013

One rule for the BBC & another for.....

The BBC have done it again it appears.
Currently (as I'm sure you're all aware ) there's  an awful lot of bellicose rantings going on between North Korea and the affluent nations of the West. Threats & counter threats emanate between the despotic 'government' in Pyongyang & Washington, London et al.
Now it appears the good 'ole have cast their hand into the melee.
It appears as thought a group of students from the London School of Economics went on an educational field trip to the North Korean capital & surrounding area. But unbeknown to the university & the student a group, of undercover BBC reporters infiltrated the group & went along also with the intention of making a propaganda TV programme on the troubled,paranoid far eastern nation.
The action of the BBC apparently put the lives of the students at considerable risk & the students & university are up in arms about the action of the BBC demanding that the TV programme not be shown this evening on UK national television.
The BBC have refused to withdraw the programme.
So here we have it. Given the psychotic nature of the North Korean 'government' & the pretty good chance there is that the students would at best be thrown into prison with hard labour were the infiltration discovered,it seems a bit risky to go ahead & screen.
The BBC seems to think that's it ok  to do so but not ok to play a record from the top ten hit parade that has the lyrics from the 1938 Wizard of Oz film that goes something like "...ding dong the witch is dead... The BBC refused to play this song (now at number 2 in the Top 20 because they said it was disrespectful to Margaret Thatcher.(!)
Damn it the witch IS DEAD.The students are ALIVE. The BBC behaved with underhand dangerous deceit. They should get their priorities right.

Saturday, 13 April 2013

My last rant about Thatcher-I hope!!

The funeral of Thatcher is some day next week. I'm not sure exactly when to be honest. I will NOT be watching any news bulletins on TV from Tuesday thru to Friday in case there is coverage of it.
But I found this today which I thought I'd share with you.

Please left click on the photo to view it in its entirety.

Enough said??

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

This country is mad, totally insane

Ding Dong the witch is dead....
C'mon, what's all the crap about a state funeral? The type of funeral accorded to The Queen Mother & Lady Di apparently. I could argue that their funeral was a waste of money but lets look at it this way shell we?? The Queen ma & Lady Di din't exactly ask to be born into the status they were born into, they had no choice on their life style or how they lived in reality, However Thatcher did. She chose to reek havoc & wreck thousands of peoples lives & had no conscience about what she did. So why are we, the tax paying people who suffered at her hands having to pay an astronomical amount for her funeral?
I won't bore you with all my objections to her acts, deeds & policies. I cannot see anything decent about the person. She was not, as those with short memories claim "a humble grocer's daughter from Grantham". She was a grocer's daughter who had a millionaire husband who financed her political career.
However I do believe this: You should NEVER judge a corpse by its funeral.

Monday, 8 April 2013

Margaret Thatcher

I don't believe its the sad day that lots of people believe it to be-I mean the death of Thatcher. She .died in her sleep today. God knows, if there was ever injustice in this world it was that that witch died in her sleep after all the misery she poured upon the majority of Britons during her time.
She was a warmonger, a destroyer of morale, robber of children's milk,destroyer of the British coal industry, home wrecker, robber of workers rights etc etc.
I morn her not. A bank holiday should be declared to mark her death.
And what what on earth is President Obama on about in his warm words about the witch? God almighty he was only a fresh faced boy when Thatcher was destroying the United Kingdom!
I morn her not.

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Scratch & Sniff...

If anyone needed any further proof that the authorities in the UK are losing the plot it came today.
O Yes.... Apparently every household in the UK will receive a 'Scratch & Sniff' card with instructions that using a 10 pence coin the owner is to scratch he raised dots on the card. This will then release the smell of...Cannabis.
The aim of this money wasting scam is that by scratching the card & having a sniff members of the public will be familiar to the smell of Cannabis and then if a Cannabis factory exists nearby whereby you live you can then inform the police.
Words escape me
Think I'll have a scratch...& sniff.

Friday, 22 February 2013

Is their no end....?

..to the hypocrisy of the leader of the Liberal Democrats  Nick Clegg.
This was the politician who in his blurb & promises before the last general election said amongst other things that ..."public schools are a caustic sore on the British educational system".
The other day he announced that he is seriously considering sending his son to the same school that he was sent to....Westminster School. which is a public school.
So once again Clegg reneges on a belief. First he breaks his word on university tuition fees & now he changes his stance on public schools.
How can you trust this man? Any man who agrees to join Cameron as 'co-leader' in governing the Uk an't worth a second glance in my world.
One things for certian though....Clegg has put the Liberal party back decades.

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Why the Brits don't holiday in Britain??

I 'll tell you why:
Me & Kate have a couple of days off in early March. We haven't been away since October last year & Kate has been slaving away continuously since then at work (in the NHS) . So we enquired about renting a small self catering bedsit in Whitby (North Yorkshire) during early March.
Now early March in the UK is usually cold, damp & as Whitby is by the sea, its bound to be windy. We sent an email to a couple of renters asking for a quote for 2 days. The cost came back by return email....£160 for 2 days!!! £160! That's why the Brits don't holiday in Britain. Rip off Britain. They can piss off. No way will I fork out that amount of hard earned money for 2 days away In March.

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

The NHS:"..put patients first"

I won't recount fully here the story that prompts this post. But the jist is that a hospital in Staffordshire was the subject of a public enquiry following a catalogue of ill treatment, neglect and unacceptable practices in its care of sick patients. The report apparently ran to 4000 words and the the chairman of the report said in his summing up that the "National Health Service should put patients first".
Fine words, & I have posted about this in previous posts but from where I'm sitting alot has to be done if that maxim is to be implemented.
Today the patient is the computer, its targets, imposed by central government, its paperwork, its cost cutting & 'income generation' for the trust.
I made these comments to the I.T dept in my work last week when I spent approx 45 minutes in entering details on to computer. Time that could have been spent by me spending that time with a patient whom required a nurse actually spending time talking to them. But no, computer work comes first. We are sent emails when the information  is not put on the 'system' within 48 or so hours..
Its all about money. The hospital trust gets money from the referring family doctor & central government for & each every time a patient is see & its proven by the data being  entered.

What a Prat.....!

The footballer & that watch

 I read today in our local newspaper that a football player who plays for 1 of the local national league soccer teams was mugged outside his home today. Whilst this act is beyond justification & the perpetrators should be flogged, the item stolen  for me sums up so much of what is wrong with the 'beautiful game.

The player was held up by 2 men as he parked his car outside his (no doubt expensive flash home) in the up market suburb of Solihull-just outside Birmingham.
What was robbed from the luckless player?? A watch. Not just any watch but a £30K diamond encrusted watch.
Now tell me this....what kind of flash arrogant ejjit wears a watch worth £30k when they leave the house. I believe that not even the Queen of England does! But this prat does. I'm sorry but I have little sympathy for him.
Furthermore, the fact that a footballer owns & wears in everyday use a time piece worth £30k is why I don't go & watch soccer. These overpaid, morons are paid in excess of £100k per week whist other members of our society who perform far more socially beneficial jobs are paid a fraction of this wage. Take a nurse who works on an intensive care ward in a local hospital-she'll be lucky to take home £1.200 per month.
I refuse to pay £50 per match to watch morons like the (sad) fellow who was robbed kick a ball around for 90 minutes.
Get a life!

Saturday, 26 January 2013

As clear as the nose on your face??

George Osborne......"Jus' like that..."

So the latest financial news tells us that the UK has a damn good(?) chance of heading for a 'triple dip recession'. Now I don't know that much about the financial world, & the wheeler dealings of those corrupt band of sharks known as bankers, but I reckon that those words 'triple dip' & 'recession' don't mean that all in the financial garden of the UK is rosy.
Be that the case, doesn't it show that the financial policies of that bumbling ejjits George Osborne  (aka the Chancellor of the Exchequer) are NOT working. Rather, they are sending the financial state of the UK into free fall. The man clearly hasn't got a clue. Sure he's helped the rich Conservative voters/supporters by increasing the tax threshold for them & no doubt delighted the sadistic side of them when he announces that he plans to push the poor percentage of the population to the brink of malnutrition. Evidence of this is the weekly increase in the number of 'food banks' being established across the UK.
 Today then I had confirmation in my belief that Osborne's policies have failed when it was announced that petrol is going to cost more. By how much???? Well, its reckoned that it'll cost the 'average family' an extra £2 per week to fill up their car with petrol.
But the knock on effect of this is the affect that this increase will have upon small businesses . Businesses which Osborne glibly announces that he wishes to "stimulate" . Some stimulation Mr Osborne.
You know, it works out that the UK motorist pays 60% of the total cost of a litre of petrol to the Government in tax. Tax to pay for a pointless war in Afghanistan, to keep a nuclear deterrent (to deter whom/what?) etc. Whilst at the same time local authorities across the country are closing leisure centres and public libraries, nurses, soldiers close to retirement are being forced into redundancy, (thus losing their pension rights)  police personnel  & other public sector staff are being axed and haven't had a pay rise for 3 years (rather a pay cut in real terms) God Almighty, Cameron et al are really messing this country up!
Oh, & then he crawls on his knees towards that right wing political party known as UKIP trying to get their support by announcing that he'll ask the nation for a "Yes or No vote on continued membership of the EU".

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Has much changed???

 Last night I watched the opening 30 minutes of 'Saving Private Ryan'. Then I changed TV channels and watched  news items covering the debacle that is the hostage situation in Algeria & the 'quiet' war in Mali.
And I wondered, & I ask you all no: Has much changed since & between June 6th 1944  & January 20th 2013?
We are still fighting against ruthless Fascist fundamentalist causes & still young men & women die.

"Those who forget the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them"

Thursday, 17 January 2013

The European Union-The UK in or out??

Cameron & his crowd of Liberal Democrat Party camp followers, true to their wont of speaking with forked tongues seem intent on taking the UK to brink of a financial precipice with  their posturing & threats to withdraw the UK from the European Union. Call me suspicious, but I can't help but think that Cameron is trying to court the nationalist right wing UK Independence Party (UKIP) with this intention.
Now I am totally FOR Britain's continued membership of the EU, I will  never be convinced that our membership is in anyway bad for our country, & by Britain being a member of the Union, the other members of the Union benefit also.
But Cameron & an apparent large percentage of the UK remain unconvinced   . Yet this evening I heard on the news that car manufactures in the UK sold a record number of vehicles in 2012. In fact the number sold was 1,000,000.
 Guess what??-Half of those sold were sold to....the European Union!!
So now people, I ask this question: If we withdraw from Europe where will we in the UK sell our manufactured goods to?

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Let kids be kids.

As the old song goes......"The weather outside is freezing and......"
 In line with this people those of you who live in the UK couldn't have failed to notice that winter has (fortunately) arrived. The outside temperature around these parts seldom rises above 3C with bad frosts each night. Being the tight arse get that I am I refuse to line the pockets of the manufactures of car wind-shield  de-icers & so I cover the wind-shield with cardboard  which saves me having to scrape the the ice off in the morning. Clever or wot??
Be that as it is I heard on the radio this morning when they announced the school; closures because of the  cold weather  that 1 school had been closed because of "icy conditions". Bloody hell!. What do they expect its bloody winter!. Icy conditions my arse!!- Why are we treating the next generations as namby-pambies? We're rearing a generation of half soaked, soft kids. When I was a kid there was no finer fun than taking a run at  patch of icy & then sliding. Sure we occasionally bumped ourselves but I don't recall anyone actually braking a limb.
In the same way kids today aren't allowed to throw snow balls at one another. What the fuck is this!!??
Lets let kids be kids.

Monday, 14 January 2013

Old age pensions

We heard today that Cameron's utterly out of touch Government has changed the amount of and age eligibility before a person in the UK gets their old age pension. He plans to raise the basic rate of pension to around £140 per week for a couple from its average  current £105 per week . However at the same time he has announced that what he calls "high wage earner's"-nurses & policeman for example, will have to pay more in National Insurance contributions  in order to get the increase  At the same time he plans to raise the retirement age to 68yrs for everyone!!

I have, (as you might expect!) a couple of comments to make on this, the latest bit of shite to be uttered from Cameron et al.
Firstly, Nurses & other public sector workers, haven'y had a pay rise for the last 3 years-in fact in real terms nurses have had a pay decrease (this from a Government that says it "values nurses"). Secondly I cannot imagine what it must be like for a teacher or nurse to work in a classroom or on a busy medical ward at the age of 68 years of age!! I cannot imagine how a man or woman age 68 years could possibly work outside on the roads when they are 60 odd years old. God help the postman who at 68 years old has to trudge the streets in all weathers carrying  heavy sacks full of junk mail.
This is craziness!! Who said slavery was dead & buried in the UK??
Not in Cameron's 2013 Britain it isn't.

Saturday, 12 January 2013

No time to catch your breath ??

 So here we are then.....12 days into the new year...2013. 12th night-The Epiphany just 6 days past and guess what I saw in sale in a local shop this morning??  Bloody Easter eggs!! Jesus Christ casting the money lenders out the temple!!! Its a world gone mad! Its all sell! sell! sell! Consumerism gone psychotic.
When I pointed this out to the guy behind the counter her gave me a smile & a shrug of the shoulders.
O course I brought one....did I fuck! I refuse to be party to this craziness.

Monday, 7 January 2013

How come??

You may recall from earlier posts that we took my 'mother' in to stay with us during October 2012 fol It was an unmitigated disaster. I won't bore you again with why-though to do so would be therapeutic & cathartic for me!
However. She is now in residential care and, suffice to say, I am still allowing her to create mayhem, distress, anger & guilt in me. She claims now (amongst other things that I have never "done anything for (her)".  We visit twice weekly & take her home to our home or take her out for dinner/lunch etc & pay £150 per month out of our pockets to keep in in the lovely, warm, caring place henceforth known as the 'Beeches'.But her continued complaining & ingratitude is one of the rules of the game with narcissistic personality disorders.
Nevertheless, I had a thought.: The local city council pay out £450 per week to fund 'mother' in the 'Beeches'. Now. when we had her staying with us, when we walked her out, washed her clothes, attempted to cater for her emotional needs, provided some sort of normal family relationships in a family home etc etc we received absolutely no financial help from the council.  If any was available then we were not advised about any!
The 'Beeches'. provide a supervised care package but as far as we can observe don't take the residents out to feel the wind in their faces, nor out for a cuppa in a local cafe. they play bingo, have Tai Chi weekly, the 'odd' singer coming in to sing to the residents as well as providing a warm, safe environment. I am not complaining honestly I'm not.
But I am wondering why the council pays them the £450 weekly & didn't help us (& presumably others who care for relatives at home)???

Friday, 4 January 2013

Professionals led by morons

 If I remember it correctly from my school day history lessons the British army in the war of 1914-1918 were described as 'Lions led by donkeys'. That might have been the case, judging by the mass slaughter motivated by imperialistic greed & paranoia. And looking at the state of our world today mankind has learnt bugger all from that  carnage.
A 2013 parallel in my experience is the National Health Service-I know that I have ranted many times about the debacle that I work in but I feel that today I must give further vent to the shite that I find myself working in & to the service that you the poor long suffering British public have to put up with.
I remember a time when the patient cared for in the NHS was the patient- the person receiving treatment.  Not so now though.
We, henceforth known as 'The care providers' by the donkeys who 'manage' us,  have been made slaves to a new computer system costing £5 million plus that is supposed to enable us to spend more time with the patient, improve 'service delivery' to the 'Service user/client'-(THE PATIENT) and of course save money(!)
In practice the system has spawned a new patient 'service user'......The computer-more specifically Its called 'Rio'.
Allow me to elaborate. The patient 'service user/client' is assessed with a nurse on a 1:1 basis for an hour. The outcome of the assessment is then processed onto the 'system' this takes 1hr 30mins. Duplication in this process is the order of the day. The system was designed (& is regularly being modified & added too) by faceless computer nerds who wouldn't recognise someone with a mental health problem even if they were forced to share a prison cell with them. Yet here we have it, theses cretins have put together a system for patient 'service user/client' care without consulting neither 'care providers' nor 'care users/clients.The result being chaos- more time is spent away from the 'service user/client' than is actually spent with them. And today we -the 'care providers' each received an email from our senior mangers (henceforth known as donkeys) informing us that we have to submit further information via the computer system-'Rio' informing them how many minutes we spent with patients and what we did with them when we saw them we saw up to 4 months ago! More time to be spent away from seeing patients.
What is all this motivated by??? Simple....Money! The NHS Trust gets more money from the Dept of Health for statistics submitted than for actual patients seen.

Further to this I might add that the Dept of Health have today come out & criticised the public for turning up at local Accident & Emergency dept's looking for treatment of "minor complaints". They say that the ill should go to see their own family doctor for treatment. Whilst I agree with the dept in saying this, the comment is ill thought out & stupid. Over the Christmas period Doctors surgeries were closed. Outside of Christmas in order to get an appointment with your family doctor you have to wait for up to 2 weeks. What bloody good is that if you're ill??!! Damn it you want treatment, so people go to a hospital. The doctor's surgeries tell you to phone up at 0830 on the morning when "appointments will be released". But when you do it is impossible to get through as the telephone lines are jammed.

So there we have it. A system in chaos.
A hospital care system staffed by Lions led by donkeys .
Thank you Cameron. Mr Bevan must be spinning in his grave.
Having said that Cameron you have private health care I'm sure.