The Girl with the Edinburgh Tattoo

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Archive for the month “October, 2013”

Publish And Be Damned!

ImageI didn’t think I’d find myself agreeing with Robert Winston about the labelling of medication, indicating whether its development has involved animal testing. I come from the standpoint that if people are given the plain and unpalatable truth about what they consume maybe they would be inspired to take control and make some lifestyle changes and stop an over reliance on quick fixes.

I suspect Dr Winston’s standpoint is quite different. I would imagine his approach is ‘carry on with the medication but don’t bleat about the poor little bunny rabbits’. It’s a very dangerous road this one: in modern, ‘westernised’ societies it’s almost inevitable that you’ll be put on some kind of medication at some point in your life. And those figures rocket the older you get. Well, as patients we’re a bit of a nuisance, aren’t we? And there’s so many of us. The only way these poor hard pressed doctors can cope is to start writing the prescription before we can get a couple of words out. What the patient actually needs could be just a listening ear or advice on lifestyle but more often than not we’re turned into ‘legit junkies’. And with any kind of junkie it’s a dangerous and frightening road you take when deciding to do without your fix. Which is precisely what could happen if ‘tested on animals’ labelling goes ahead.

And Dr Winston knows this only too well. He’s a nasty, arrogant, big bag of moustachioed bile who cares for neither animals nor humans and whose only concern is to get his face on telly and perpetuate the notion that it’s everyone’s alienable right to produce a sprog however much time and money this costs his beloved NHS. Maybe he should spend more time and effort working on how we can all live in a sustainable and healthy way without over reliance on drugs. Or perhaps look at the field of non-animal testing which by its very nature is less wasteful and more relevant to human health. Or maybe address the issue of overpopulation? Hardly, as Dr Winston has grown very rich and influential making himself the nemesis of all these concerns. Let’s hope senility kicks in quite soon, then he can self-medicate and assume a dribbling, catatonic state in a dark corner of the House of Lords and we won’t have to put up with his offensive ravings any longer!

I Can Cure You? Forget About It… !!

ImageSo they may have found a cure for Alzheimers, Dementia, Parkinsons... well, in mice at any rate and the drug they used also produces a myriad of harmful side-effects. I guess the scientists and the people they get to peddle this predictable nonsense must hope that we are all in a developed state of one of these memory-robbing diseases in order that we don’t challenge them and say ‘Wait a minute, haven’t we heard this one before?’ A cure for cancer was something that one of the biggest and richest charities boasted a few years ago – and when that started to look unlikely they changed their tack and made ‘living with cancer’ their slogan. Another reason was because back in the day they could say pretty much what they wanted about the ‘Big C’ and people would accept it – such was its taboo status. It was something that ‘other people’ got.¬† Nowadays it’s hard to find anyone who hasn’t been touched by cancer. Now that can’t just be down to more widespread diagnosis or a more open attitude to the disease. Levels of cancer have gone up and there are cancers which were so rare a few years ago they didn’t even register as a statistic. Bowel cancer has been irrefutably linked to a modern refined diet. Incidents of cancer rocket in areas where there is heavy environmental pollution. And of course – the big forgetful elephant in the room – more people are living longer so they are more than likely to succumb to cancer unless one of the dementia-type diseases gets to them first. And we’re back to square one.

What’s the answer, then? Well, instead of throwing your money into the big bottomless pit that the main medical research charities have created – don’t worry, most of the work they do will be carried out with government funding anyway, so we all contribute already whether we like it or not – support the smaller, ethical guys who carry out research that is relevant to human beings (seems like a no-brainer, that one) or concentrate on promoting prevention rather than finding a ‘cure’. And of course there are the countless charities who give support and advice – like Macmillan Nurses.

Finally, it is hugely ironic that in a week when ‘care’ of the elderly and disabled in this country has been exposed as criminally lacking and underfunded we are meant to applaud the efforts of a bunch of ‘Beakers’ for producing something that might or might not be of use in a time when most of us will be past caring one way or another. I just wonder how many care workers could have been paid properly and been allowed to devote enough time to their clients with the money that particular research cost?

Red Ed Rules – KO!

Ed MilibandThey say there’s no such thing as bad publicity¬† – but as The Daily Mail and Ed Miliband spat rumbles on they may want to add that one to the long list of areas where the two parties diverge. While most people – who have at least a couple of brain cells to rub together – realise that the DM has always been a bigoted, nasty little rag they could always count on a fair number of clueless, apolitical types who bought it in order to score a Jamie Oliver meal-deal or look at pictures of Pippa Middleton‘s bum. You know – people who would vote for David Cameron because they think his hair looks nice or that Nigel Farage seems like a good bloke. But it looks like their clumsy and patronising attempt to present a quick ‘evils-of-Marxism-for-dummies’ primer for their readers (for want of a better term) and at the same time tarnishing Red Ed’s image has seriously backfired on them. While the actions of the DM appear staggeringly misjudged and their reputation goes into freefall Ed’s image on the other hand has been launched into the stratosphere. He’s appeared calm, dignified, statesman-like and – most importantly – loyal to his old dad… what’s not to like? And following on from his energy-price-freeze coup he’s been a publicist’s wet dream this past fortnight grabbing the spotlight from Cameron and making him look even more like the Pilsbury Doh! Boy. So well done DM – and if you want to get something out of Ed Miliband just invoice his PR department – I’m sure they’ll be more than happy to cough up!

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