Friday, January 12, 2007

Overpaid Doctors and Giant Rabbits

Today we are told in various papers that there are plans afoot to raise the school leaving age from 16 to 18.

On the face of this, it is a great idea. There are too many uneducated, unskilled and therefore unemployable young people in the UK. However, unless this measure goes hand in hand with making the education sector one which is allowed to hold young people accountable for their behaviour not much will change. If accountability is not allowed they will still be able to disrupt lessons, disrespect their teachers and not do homework with impunity and hence still come out as unemployable idiots- albeit at 18 instead of 16.

I wish them well with their measures.


Saw a story in the Times today about a German man who raises giant rabbits. This is just the second time in the past week I have come across these animals, they are huge and quite creepy. Have a look at the photo!
Read this wildly funny story in the Gleaner today about this church in Trinidad. Apparently this man was living next to a church and the noise they were making disturbed him so much he went round to complain The preacher and congregation then ‘rebuked him in the name of the Lord’ and called him the devil. At some point he threw a stone at the preacher - in frustration? Anyway, the story was really funny. When I first saw the headline I thought, no bredrin, you can’t stone a preacher at the pulpit. But after I read it I could understand. I am a devout Christian but that doesn’t mean that noise made by us must be tolerated. If a church is in a residential area they should take steps to make sure they don’t disturb the neighbours. Hope it gets resolved satisfactorily.
So the Lyns’ bodies have been positively IDd. I am so sorry for their loved ones. It’s a terrible thing eh, that if someone goes missing in Jamaica it is almost a certainty that they have been killed. It seems the Lyns were robbed. Now I know we don’t have all the facts now, but if they were robbed, Lawd, wa mek the evil tief dem have to kill dem too? Why Jamaican thieves can’t be satisfied with just robbing people/? They almost always seem to have to murder their victims too. It’s disgusting. Staying away still looks like the
safest choice.
And in the Guardian today we are told that UK GPs earn an average of £118,000 per year and now only have to work office hours. They have had a 63% raise over the past three years – most people in the UK get about 3% per year if they are lucky. It seems that this state of affairs came about because under a new contract signed with GPs in 2004 doctors are paid a gross sum to run their practices. What is left after running expenses (such as hiring staff and buying equipment) they get to keep as profit. According to the press, they have been making so much more money by spending less on their practices and keeping a whopping amount for their salaries.

The story claims that this huge wage bill is crippling the NHS – services have to be reduced and patient care is suffering as a result. The story also claims that the Health Secretary has threatened to cap their annual raise at 1.5% but the doctors are kicking up a rumpus saying they have to get at least a raise in line with inflation. Now if it is true that doctors are skimping on the practices by cutting back on what they purchase so that they can make a huge salary then Lord have mercy, are you telling me that a family cannot manage on £118,000 per year? Fair enough, if the NHS wasn’t in trouble, then take your increase, though I believe this high salary is greed especially if is at the expense of patient care. But the NHS is in financial trouble so surely taking a freeze for a couple of years is the right thing to do – it’s unlikely any GP or his family will suffer - £118,000 per year is a bloody fortune. The average UK salary is £25,000 per year – and many earn significantly less than this.

If true, this is disgusting. I have no problem with people creating wealth through innovation and taking risk, but grabbing as much money as you can (and insisting on an increase) while something like patient care gets screwed is just wrong.

No comments: