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“Freedom of Choice a Nonsense,” Says Labour Commie 4 March 2007

Posted by David in Education, Labour, Policy, Public Services.
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“It is nonsense that everybody has the right to go to a school that they want,” said David Hawker, Brighton’s director of children, families and schools,” complete nonsense.”

Of course Mr Hawker, I mean, they only pay for them through their taxes… Surely you – their servant – should dictate where they go.

Labour has got to go. Article link.

Brighton Goes Bonkers With School Lottery 1 March 2007

Posted by David in Policy, Public Services.
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Labour run Brighton council might advertise its City to tourists with the slogan “Have a BrightOne”, but it’s latest idea better fits the slogan “Have a DuffOne” – allocate school places by lottery.

Lottery, they say, is fairer than any other method. It is also totally illogical and fundamentally evil.

There have generally been two options. Either everyone goes to their nearest school (good or bad, like it or lump it, at least its easy) – or the far superior freedom of choice (where standards are driven up by competition and schools are diverse in their specialism and ethos to suit different children’s needs).

The School Lottery has the benefits of neither. Children will be forced to travel past nearer schools, not because of parental choice or school selection based on that schools speciality, but because a computer lottery says so. As they say, “computer says no.”

Labour again decides to take life changing decisions for people and to trap children – likely for their entire lives – in the aim of mythical “fairness”. There is no such thing.

Academically gifted children will be forced into poor schools, whilst less academic children will be forced into more academic schools where they’ll feel inferior and get bored, maybe causing trouble. That’s if good schools can survive this system, chances are they won’t.

The only answer is to take the powers away from the evidently stupid councils, and let schools and parents decide things amongst themselves. People manage to organise their own shopping and  holiday choices, why not schools? Good schools will grow, bad ones get replaced. It’s children that matter, not the schools or council.

Next week, Tower Hamlets decides planning decisions based on Wheel of Fortune and Swansea rations hip replacements using Deal or No Deal.

University Applications Up, NUS Silent (Almost) 14 February 2007

Posted by David in Policy, Public Services.
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University applications are up despite the introduction of fees. Last years small drop in numbers – which the NUS ranted and raved about as a result of increased tuition fees – has proven to simply be a blip. Indeed it was probably NUS and other anti-fee scare mongering that put so many off.

But naturally, the loony left NUS can’t remain totally silent. Having no case what so ever, now they are complaining there aren’t enough figures and obsessing about the demographics of applicants. Being a socialist must be really awful, it must be like living in a constant state of depression, woe and obsessive heart on sleeve empathy. Are they ever happy?

There’s also fears from the BBC that students “are choosing courses more with their heads than their hearts” as “with the introduction of variable fees prospective students no longer see education as an end in itself but as an investment in the future.” Good. We shouldn’t encourage young people to waste 3 years on a pointless and value less degree, we certainly shouldn’t fund it.

And students finally selecting with heads rather than hearts is good news for civil engineering, economics, physics, chemistry, maths, history, English and biology – traditional subjects up between 6% and 13%. It seems when students realise they have to pay, they select something worth paying for. Quelle shock?

It’s all the more proof that we must privatise universities in the ‘All American’ style so hated by the NUS. The NUS demand greater public spending on universities, but provide no reason why we all should pay for their minority privilidge to 3+ years off work followed by higher salaries, because there isn’t one.

They say they pay more tax on their higher graduate salaries, but not more than a person earning the same wage who didn’t attend university. A graduate on £40k pays the same tax as a shon £40k, yet the graduate cost the taxpayer a fortune whilst the shopkeeper was working. And that assumes the student graduates and gets a graduate job, instead of moving abroad, staying at home, getting run over by a bus etc….

As a current student I should pay for what I get now (in the form of a loan). I should not pay for it in taxes, nor should anyone else. It’s my education, and should be my expense. I fill with disgust when students rant and rave that the taxpayer should be paying for them – why should the binman, window cleaner and taxi driver pay for someone’s media studies or archeology degree?

Why Do Schools Need Fingerprints? 7 February 2007

Posted by David in Public Services.
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Schools have been taking children’s fingerprints. This is apparentlylegal, even without permission. So schools need parental consent to go swimming, wear a blindfold to play ‘pin the tail on the donkey’, or leave the premises, but taking the fingerprints of 4-year olds is fine! The big question, why?

Apparently children’s bio-metric data is taken so they can use bio-metric scanning equipment for use of the library, school meals, and the register. Just leaving aside the civil liberties argument, isn’t this all a very expensive replacement of library cards and a paper register list, which can be used in the playground to check everyone is safe if there was ever a fire?

It’s not compulsory, but you can’t use the scanners without it, so no doubt have a hard time if you refuse. It reminds me of my school’s “voluntary £10 school fund donation” – voluntary but you got asked for it publicly at register and detention if you didn’t pay. Whatever is happening to this country?

The No2ID and Leave Them Kids Alone Campaigns are right, it’s social conditioning, conditioning our young to accept a technocratic, centrally controlled, impersonal world. The schools system is why so many academics are left wing, and unless this kind of Soviet craziness is stopped, we’ll have a generation of them.

Clamp Down On NHS Abuse Will Have Consequences 10 June 2006

Posted by David in Labour, Public Services.
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The BBC is reporting that there will be a clamp down on abuse of NHS Logoworkers in the NHS. Soon, any patients or relatives abusing staff could face a £1,000 fine and be removed from the premises. Whilst obviously we oppose abusing staff, what about patients? A small minority of staff treat patients with utter contempt, yet there is no fine or threats for them. There isn't even an easy complaints process, certainly not one that results in action. Unlike an open source system, patients are trapped and cannot go elsewhere. I feel this fine – despite its good intentions – will simply be used to stop patients and relatives causing a fuss when the level of care is below satisfactory. Staff will simply say "you'll get fined" and that will be that. It is highly unlikely to stop anyone really physically assaulting someone, particularly the mentally ill or drunk mentioned by the BBC article, since there are already laws against assault. If they ignor the law, they'll ignor fines too, and any other laws. Why not use the existing laws about abuse and asault, but do it properly? It's not as if there wouldn't be witnesses – the NHS is overcrowded!

Under our [Labour govt] proposals, patients and relatives who verbally abuse or threaten NHS staff could face a fine of up to £1,000. We will also give the NHS the power to physically remove offenders from the premises. We aim to create a culture of respect towards NHS staff, and where needed, enforce it – Health Minister Caroline Flint

Unison also said it wanted health workers to be given the same legal protection as police officers, through the introduction of a new crime – assault on a public sector worker. But surely, an assault is the same whoever it's on? Why are public sector workers to be held higher? Why not just use existing laws? A culture of respect must be grown, it cannot just be enforced.

Focus like this on abuse denies credit to the good workers within the NHS, whilst giving protection to a few less caring members of staff. Existing laws should be used if physical assault or threats takes place, but we shouldn't run the risk that patients and relatives complants may result in fines, or those complaints being stopped by threats of fines.

Ed: As a young child I once used a plastic baguette to 'donk' a doctor on the head – I also yelled at him a lot. He deserved it! The doctor had used me as a demo for his trainees without permission many times, calling us to endless unneccessary meetings dressed up as clinics, keeping us waiting hours while he had 'lunch', then there would sometimes be 7 or 8 others in the room who were never introduced. He did so to many people, yet no one would ever say anything. There was too much respect – he felt superior and patients felt overly greatful yet their taxes paid him! After they had all tested my knee's reflexes one day, one after the other, he did so, and I tested his head's with the baguette (which had handily been left nearby by someone unknown to me). Since he has been a lot better to everyone – including nurses – with no more time wasting and mystery guests. Perhaps free baguettes for all patients will create a new, safer complaints process?

Whatever, we do not need a sepperate set of rules for public sector workers. We need a better complaints system and a more responsive "customer is always right" NHS – so that most of this abuse would never happen. Then real abuse can be tackled with normal laws.

NHS Treatment