Saturday, February 24, 2007

Happy Birthday to me

Well, another year has rolled by, I am now 34.

It doesn't really seem to have much effect anymore, the number I mean. I certainly don't feel any different and I should stop expecting to feel so too.

Got really nice gifts from Z, very surprised and I have to say Z is determined to make me look very smart and well dressed, so 3 new shirts from Paul Smith and D&G, plus 2 new ties to go with that, a lovely Paul Smith belt and a nice top as well. Very lucky me, I think Z got me a lot, but not going to complain, going to wear all this stuff. At least Z makes an effort to upgrade my wardrobe more than I can ever do, something I am seriously crap at doing. So very glad Z can do it for me.

This year is going to be an interesting year for me.

I will finish my OU degree in Psychology by October. Though I wish to carry on and get a MSc, I will have to leave it for a while, as I don't have 5K needed to undertake it.

I will be spending 3 weeks in Malaysia seeing family in November. Also be lucky enough to have another holiday at some point before then.

I know a lot will happen this year, it still doesn't feel like I am 34, mid 30s, never thought I would be saying that, seems very strange, very strange. I am awaiting the pouch to go with the middle age spread, worked hard to stop it, but it is like Canute trying to stop the tide, not going to happen....

Anyone else out there whose birthday is today, I wish you the best for the coming year.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Desire for an English Parliament

I have of recent been standing more and more for this and getting more vocal as you might have seen from the posts I have been posting.

In this country – England, there is an increasing call for an English Parliament to correct the wrongs created by the devolution that has occurred at the hands of this Labour government which for some reason wants to destroy what England is and it stands for.

I have said before and many others are increasingly seeing it the same, we English are tired of funding the Scots having it all. Why should they benefit so much from the Barnett Formula

Which gives them so much more than we English get, and for no good reason. And to top it off, their MPs in the UK parliament can have a say on the education and health system of the English, but no English MP can do the same for the Scottish, and even the local MP for the Scottish constituency can’t have a say on those matters.

It comes under the West Lothian question

Got to say it is great that Wikipedia has answers for this, so if you are unsure about it, this describes it in very basic terms.

Current situation

The question is twofold:

How can it be right that MPs elected to Westminster from Scottish constituencies have no ability to affect the issues of their constituents which have been devolved to the Scottish Parliament and

If power over Scottish affairs is devolved to a Scottish Parliament, how can it be right that MPs representing Scottish constituencies in the UK Parliament will have the power to vote on issues affecting England (including those that don't affect Scotland), but English MPs will not have the power to vote on Scottish issues

It creates the following.

Borrowed from the CEP website

If the Commission will set up a Commission to investigate the way in which a member state is discriminating against its citizens on the basis of their nationality: namely the UK Government denying, for example, the English equal rights with the Scots and the Welsh in that the English suffering from bone cancer are denied the drug Velcade whereas the Scots receive it free; the English suffering from Alzheimer’s are refused the drugs Aricept, Reminyl and Exelon whereas the Scots are prescribed them free; the English have to pay University tuition fees but the Scots do not; the English who are elderly must pay for residential care yet the Scots do not; and the English pay for NHS prescriptions whereas from April the Welsh will not.

English Rights

There was even a petition to the Number 10 e-petition site, and the response was typical of this government

English Parliament epetition reply

Then there is an Early Day Motion, EDM670 - English Parliament , which I then asked my local MP to support given that the increasing number of people want an English Parliament.

Here was his response

Dear Mr.X

Early Day Motion 670

Thank you for your recent email.

I do not support the above EDM at all - all MPs are elected as UK MPs, not from separate countries or regions, and to represent their constituency interest in the UK Parliament. I sat on the Greater London Act committee, a matter of arguably no concern to non-London MPs, but on the logic of the EDM, all MPs not sitting for London seats should have been excluded from voting on the important principle of who governs our capital city

I do not accept that the UK Parliament should be balkanised in this way

Thank you for contacting on this issue

Yours Sincerely

Tony McNulty MP

As someone else said to me, balkanised!!
If he doesn't want balkanisation, then why balkanise the funding??! What a weak response. Plus what concern of it was to those outside of London, how London should be run. It explains why London has been continually screwed by this government, and why London is continually bled dry. And they deny that London has 3 of the poorest boroughs in the UK

So where do we stand now. No closer to what we deserve, which is to be treated as an equal partner in this union, as well as the same basic rights given to the other countries in this union of UK. Also bear in mind, England is the only country in the EU that doesn’t have its own parliament, and that is 50 million people without fair representation.

Information re the state of NHS Audiology departments

Today I had an appointment at my audiology department with regards to my hearing aids and it was a follow up appointment to see how I was getting on with them – I am not, they are awful. Oticon Spirit III really don’t work well with me, they just don’t. Too much black and white, no middle ground, which is where my ears operate best.

What I learnt has really angered me and shows this government to be nothing but a pack of liars and have actually made audiology departments worse since they came to power and we are still waiting to have a national standard of what to expect from audiology departments.

Before I go any further, I should say that this is not directed at the staff in the audiology departments, this is directed at the politicians who think they know better than those on the ground in the NHS, as well as those in the finance departments of the NHS who are happy to ensure those using NHS audiology departments don’t get a service they are deserved of.

In the past, audiology departments had to fit people with hearing aids and fitted them with aids that best suited the person, and if they didn’t have one that did the job, they would then be allowed to take the person private to ensure they got aids that were of use to them to allow them to live a decent life.

Now, the following occurs. The manufacturers produce a list of what aids they are offering and the NHS audiology departments are then told to pick one out of maybe 5 options, and they will get a batch of those, and those only. So the audiology department has to chose what they think will serve the majority of their patients. Now anyone who has ever worn a hearing aid will tell you, what is good for one, doesn’t mean it is good for others. I am a case in example, what suits me won’t suit my brother or other members of my family and they even have a very similar hearing loss to mine, as well as the peaks, etc on the charts, to make it look like they are the same.

So for the likes of me and maybe others in my position with profound hearing loss, the departments have maybe one option of a hearing aid to offer and if that doesn’t work, then tough, go private is the response. The audiology departments’ hands are tied by this stupid rule of the finance departments as well as the politics of this inane government which loves micro managing everything in this country, as they can’t bear to accept others might do a better job than them.

There should be a rule in this country that the politicians should have to use the same services as the rest of us and then would experience what we experience. And as you will see from postings following this, they really have no idea what the general populous want and desire for them to do. To say they are a bunch of self serving jackasses feathering their own nests, is polite, I dare like to say what I really think

Can anything be done, sadly not, unless we vote this current bunch out and replace them, and as much as I hate to say it, the NHS was in a better state under the last Tory government than it is now. Right now it is about to collapse and Labour are happy to sit there watching it die.

Well done Indianapolis Colts

Yesterday was the day of the Super Bowl, and the Indianapolis Colts and Chicago Bears were playing.

I stayed up like more and more people are doing in the UK to watch the game live. I am sure my neighbours really appreciated me having my TV up loud at 3am in the morning as I watched the game.

The game was quite good, and despite the numerous turnovers, partly due to the nervousness of the players and the continued rain that they were playing in, it was a good game to watch. I knew the Colts were favourites, but the way the Bears got going was a surprise, I didn't expect them to make such a jump out. But as before the Colts pulled their way back, and finally nailed the Bears and put them down.

Just glad I had the day off, otherwise I am not sure I would have survived the day at work on just over 2 hours sleep.

Plus the announcement that there is to be a game at Wembley is great news for all the fans here in the UK, one can hope that there isn't a screw up with the stadium, otherwise a major embarrassment for us. I have already signed up the list that is requesting tickets, just hoping I get some.

Roll on 28th October 2007, and hopefully my Cowboys will do better next season.